Lantbert of Freising, St.

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Bishop of Freising; d. Sept. 19, 955 or 957. He is supposed to have been descended from the count of Sempt and to have been attached to the cathedral even before his elevation. Lantbert was appointed bishop of Freising in 937 or, according to other sources, on Aug. 28, 938, and presided in that see during the period of the Hungarian incursions and of domestic opposition to otto i. A document of Otto I confirmed the donation of the Abbey of Moosburg and of estates in Vöhringen from 950. Lantbert was present at a synod of Augsburg in 952. He has been venerated since the 11th century, and his cult has been officially recognized in Freising Diocese since the 15th century. His biography owes much to the legend of St. nicholas of Myra; e.g., Lantbert is supposed even as a child to have denied himself milk and other nourishment on certain days of the week; three blind men are alleged to have received their sight from drinking the surplus milk. The legend also reflects the Hungarian invasion: the Hungarians are supposed to have come to Freising, ravaged the city for six days, and burned down the churches of St. Vitus and St. Stephen together with the rest of the city, the cathedral alone being spared because of a thick fog that hid it from the enemy. Other sources state that the Hungarians had indeed set fire to the cathedral but that the fog put it out. In either case, the deliverance was ascribed to the prayers of the bishop, who is therefore usually represented in art as praying in front of the cathedral with the city of Freising in flames about him.

Feast: Sept. 18 or 19.

Bibliography: j. e. stadler and f. j. heim, Vollständiges Heiligen-Lexikon, 5 v. (Augsburg 185882) v.3. j. a. fischer, Lantbert von Freising, 937957, der Bischof und Heilige (Munich 1959).

[g. spahr]