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Regino of Prüm, Collection of


Regino was born about 840 probably in Altrip, near Speyer. He entered the monastery of Prüm in the Eifel (Rhine mountains); was elected abbot after the abdication of Abbot Farabert in 892; resigned in 899; and was appointed abbot of St. Martin's in Trier on the initiative of Abp. Ratbod of Trier. He died there in 915.

Regino was the author of three works: (1) De harmonica institutione, preface to a corrected new edition of the Trier Antiphonarium ; (2) Chronicon, a universal chronicle from the birth of Christ to 906, dedicated to Bp. Adalbero of Augsburg; (3) Libri duo de synodalibus causis et disciplinis ecclesiasticis, a practical vademecum for episcopal visitations and circuit court, composed at the suggestion of Archbishop Ratbod and dedicated to Archbishop Hatto of Mainz. This work in fact covers the entire area of episcopal diocesan administration and provides a vivid and graphic source for the study of ecclesiastical life of the period because of its detailed treatment of the matters with which it deals. Book one treats of ecclesiastical persons and things. It begins with 96 questions that were to serve as guidelines for the bishop on the occasion of parochial visitations. The following 455 chapters provide the legal basis for the precepts and prohibitions whose contravention is examined in the circuit court. Book two deals with the laity. Its 454 chapters contain procedural regulations, 89 questions, and a copious description of the various delicts and their penalties.

The sources used were generally of Roman origin and those deriving from the Carolingian Reform: canons and decrees from the hispana collectio and especially the hadriana collectio; canons from Frankish councils; 14 fragments from the false decretals; numerous texts from the Fathers of the Church, ecclesiastical writers, and monastic rules; fragments from the Breviarium Alaricianum and its interpretation; and texts from genuine and forged collections of capitularies. Regino altered many of the texts to make them better serve his purposes. He was full of the dominant thought of the Carolingian reform and specially anxious for a close tie with the Roman Church. His work had only limited success in the 10th century, but when burchard of worms used it in the following century, it was assured of a great and lasting influence.

Bibliography: Editions. f. g. a. wasserschleben (Leipzig 1840). Literature. p. fournier, "L'Oeuvre canonique de Réginon de Prüm," Bibliothèque de l'École des Chartes 81 (1920) 444. p. fournier and g. lebras, Histoire des collections canoniques en occident depuis les fausses décrétales jusqu'au Décret de Gratien, 2 v. (Paris 193132) 1:244268. g. flade, "Germanisches Heidentum und christliches Erziehungsbemühen in Karolingischer Zeit nach R. von P.," Theologische Studien und Kritiken 106 (193435) 213240. r. naz, Dictionnaire de droit canonique, ed. r. naz, 7 v. (Paris 193565) 7:533536. w. hellinger, "Die Pfarrvisitation nach R. von P.," Zeitschrift der Savigny-Stifug für Rechtsgeschichte, Kanoistische Abteilung 48 (1962) 1116; 49 (1963) 76137. p. hofmeister, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. j. hofer and k. rahner, 10 v. (2d, new ed. Freiburg 195765) 8:10991100.

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