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Peter of Vienna


Theologian; b. France; d. in 1183. He studied under Gilbert of Poitiers (d. 1154), and before 1155 went to Austria, where he became known as Master Peter of Vienna. To defend Gilbert, his teacher, he soon turned against Gerhoch of Reichersberg (d. 1169) who had been attacking the "novel" doctrines of the French schools since 1141. He accused Gerhoch mainly of not distinguishing clearly between Christ's divine person and his human nature. Peter and his friend hugh of honau wrote to Hugh Etherian, asking him to provide them with translations of passages in which Greek Fathers teach a distinction between nature and person in God. In 1179, Hugh's answer was brought to the West. Little is known about Peter's official task or position in Austria. As Master Peter he signed a charter issued in 1158 by Bishop Conrad of Passau. In a later document (1161) he is called a member of "the Order of Chaplains" (de ordine cappelanorum ). He taught in Vienna and may have written a compendium of theology (MS Zwettl 109).

Bibliography: peter of vienna, letter addressed to Otto of Freising (d. 1158), ed. h. weisweiler, Scholastik, 13 (1938) 231246; letter addressed to Hugh Etherian, ed. a. dondaine, Archives d'histoire doctrinale et littéraire du moyen-âge 27 (1952) 131132. h. fichtenau, Mitteilungen des Instituts für österreichische Geschichtsforschung 63 (1955) 283297.

[n. haring]

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