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Visch, Charles de


Cistercian historian; b. Bulscamp (Flanders), c. 1600; d. Les Dunes, April 11, 1666. He joined the Cistercian community of Les Dunes near Bruges and was professed in 1618. During the first phase of the Thirty Years' War, the monks were dispersed and Visch sought refuge in several German monasteries, including Eberbach where, from 1628 on, he was professor of theology. Later he acted as chaplain of the Cistercian nuns of Val Céleste. Meanwhile Visch copied and collected a large number of Cistercian manuscripts. In 1646 he became prior of Les Dunes and devoted the rest of his life to the composition and publication of his great and still indispensable biobibliographical work: Bibliotheca scriptorum S. Ordinis Cisterciensis (1st ed. Douai 1649; 2d corrected and augmented ed. Cologne 1656). Further additions remained in manuscript form until they were edited by J. M. Canivez, "Auctarium D. Caroli de Visch ad Bibliothecam Scriptorum S.O. Cisterciensis," Cisterciencer-Chronik 3839 (192627, serial; offprint, Bregenz 1927).

Bibliography: p. a. fruytier, "Namenliste der Religiosen von Eberbach aus dem Jahre 1631 von Karl De Visch," Cisterciencer-Chronik 26 (1914) 267272. j. mercier, Dictionnaire de théologie catholique, ed. a. vacant, 15 v. (Paris 190350; Tables générales 1951) 15.2:309899.

[l. j. lekai]

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