Statesman, Benedictine abbot; b. c. 755; d. Bobbio, Italy, Aug. 31, 836. Wala, a member of a Carolingian family, was the brother of Abbot adalard and of (St.) ida of herzfeld. He was educated at the palace school. He served under charlemagne and for a time under Louis the Pious, and then entered the Abbey of corbie, where he held various offices. He later (c. 815) helped in the foundation of corvey and Herford. Wala accompanied lothair i to Rome (822–825). He was made abbot of Corbie in 826 and worked to restore monastic discipline. Because of his opposition to the Empress Judith, he was exiled (830–833); but gregory iv asked him to help resolve the discord in the imperial family shortly thereafter. The Epitaphium Arsenii seu vita Walae, probably by paschasius radbertus, shows the difficult political role Wala had to play in these family crises. Wala was abbot of Bobbio when he died.
Feast: Aug. 31.
Bibliography: l. weinrich, Wala, Graf, Mönch und Rebell (Lubeck 1963). paschasius radbertus, Charlemagne's Cousins; Contemporary Lives of Adalard and Wala, tr. a. cabaniss (Syracuse, N.Y. 1967). Bibliotheca hagiographica latina antiquae et mediae aetatis, 2 v. (Brussels 1898–1901; suppl. 1911) 2:8761. Patrologia Latina, ed. j. p. migne, 217 v., indexes 4 v. (Paris 1878–90) 120:1557–1650. Monumenta Germaniae Historica (Berlin 1826–), Scriptores 2:533–569. a. m. zimmermann, Kalendarium Benedictinum: Die Heiligen und Seligen des Benediktinerorderns und seiner Zweige, 4 v. (Metten 1933–38) 3:4–8. h. peltier, Dictionnaire de théologie catholique, ed. a. vacant et al., 15 v. (Paris 1903–50; Tables générals 1951–) 13.2:1628.
[g. j. donnelly]