Open main menu

Page:Catholic Encyclopedia, volume 2.djvu/554

This page needs to be proofread.




the cupola in the nineteenth centurj'; likewise basso- rilievos of Fantoni, of exquisite workmanship. Worthy of special note is the octagonal baptisterj' formed of eight pieces of rosso antico (old red mar- ble), the work of Giovanni da Campione, originally placed in the church of Santa Maria Maggiore, the most beautiful of the churches of Bergamo. The interior is decorated with wonderful frescoes by Cavagna, Procaccini, Luca Giordano, Giro Ferri, etc. Remarkable also are the tombs of Cardinal Longo, of the Alessandri, and of Bartolommeo CoUeoni, the last a work of the sculptor Amedeo. The chapel of this tomb is adorned with paintings by Tiepolo, Angelica Kaufmann, and Giuseppe Crespi. Other churches are those of San Alessandro in Colonna, with a beautiful " Supper" by Calligarino; San Ales- sandro della Croce, adorned by Palma il Vecchio, Bramanti'io, and others; San Andrea with paintings of Padovanino and Moretto; San Grata; San Bartolo- meo; Santa Maria del Sepolcro with a wonderful picture of St. Sigismund, the masterpiece of Pre- \itali. Among the shrines of the diocese may be mentioned that of the Blessed Virgin della Corna- busa, formed by a great natural cavern, extending between three and four hundred feet into Monte Albenza, not far from the Jura Pass. Within recent times Bergamo has become the centre of important and far-reaching Catholic movements of a popular character.

The diocese contains 350 parishes, 512 churches, chapels, and oratories, 1,157 secular and 58 regular clergj-. 400 seminarists, 84 lay brothers, 478 mem- bers of female religious orders, 8 schools for boys, 34 for girls, and a population of 430,000.

C.\PPELLBTTI. Le chirse d'ltalia (Venice. 1844). XI, 445: MuTio, Sacra istoria di Bergamo (1616); Gerrijjo, Synopsis eccl. bergomensis (1734); Ltjpi, Codex diplomaticus civUaiis et eccUsicE bergomensis (1784).

U. Benigni.

Bergier, Nicolas-Stlvestre, French theologian, b. 31 December, 1715 at Darney in Lorraine; d. at Versailles. 9 April, 1790. After a course of theologj- in the University of Besan^on, he received the degree of doctor, was ordained priest, and went to Paris to finish his studies. Returning to BesauQon in 1748, he was given charge of a parish and later became president of the college of the city, which had for- merly been under the direction of the Jesuits. In 1769 the Archbishop of Paris, M. de Beaumont, appointed him canon of the cathedral, and thence- fortii Bergier resided at Paris. A pious priest and an energetic student, he devoted a great part of his time to writing in defence of religion. He agreed to correct certain articles of the "Encyclopedic", but found himself obliged to write entirelj- original articles which then formed the " Dictionnaire de theologie" as a part of the " Encyclopedic".

The works of Bergier are in the fields of apologetics and theologj', except "Les Elements primitifs des langues (Besan^on, 1764) and L'origine des dieux du paganisme" (Paris, 1767). Among his apolo- getical and theological works, the most important are: "Le deisme refute par lui-memc" (Paris, 1765); "La certitude des preuves du christianisme" (Paris, 1767, also published in Migne's ■ Demonstra- tions evangeiiques", XI); "Reponses aux Conseils raisonnables de Voltaire" (Paris, 1771, also in Migne, ibid.); "Apologie de la religion chretienne" — against ilHolbach's "Christianisme d^voiie" (Paris, 1769); "Refutation des principaux articles du dictionnaire philosophique"; "Examen du materialisme" (Paris, 1771); "Traite historiqiie et dogmatique de la vraie religion" (Paris, 1780, and 8 vols. 8vo., 1820). The "Dictionnaire theologique ' ' has been often edited, especially by Gousset in 8 vols. (Besan^on, 1838) and Migne (Paris, 1850). Some of his writings con- cerning divorce, the question of the mercy of God.

and the origin of evil, and one volume of sermons were published after his death. Though on certain points, as on the questions of grace and the super- natural necessity of revelation, the doctrine of Bergier lacks precision and completeness, the value of ms theological and apologetical work cannot be denied.

Notice historique. as an introduction to the Dictionnaire theologique. ed. by Migne (Paris, 18501; Janner in KirchenlcT„ II, 408; Htjrter, Nomendator (Innsbrucli, 1895), III; Dn- BL.UJCHT in I>ict. de theol. cath., s. v.

G. M. Sauvage.

Bergomensis Petrus. See Peter of Berg.vmo.

Berington, Ch.vrles, titular Bishop of Hiero- Casarea, b. at Stock, Essex, England, 1748; d. 8 June, 1798. His life is a continued story of disappointed hopes and expectations. At thirteen he was sent to the English College at Douai, where his abilities at once showed themselves; but he never applied himself to his work. His progress was so unsatis- factory that four years later he was removed and sent to St. Gregory's Seminarj', Paris. According to his cousin, the Rev. Joseph Berington, he did verj' little better at Paris than at Douai, though he suc- ceeded at last in taking his doctorate at the Sorbonne in 1776. On his return to England, he became chaplain at Ingatestone Hall, a few miles from his birthplace. After travelling for two vears with young Mr. Giffard of Chillington, on his return, Berington was appointed coadjutor to Bishop Thomas Talbot, Vicar Apostohc of the Midland District, becoming at the same time titular Bishop of Hiero-C^sarea.

The Midland District, one of the four into which for ecclesiastical purposes England was then di- ^^ded, was at that time the stronghold of "Cis- alpine" opinions. With these Charles Berington was in full sjTnpathy, in consequence of which, in 1788, he was elected a member of the Catholic Com- mittee, who were then agitating for the repeal of the Penal Laws, for which end they were unfortu- nately willing to minimize some of their Catholic principles. Two other ecclesiastics were elected at the same time, the Rev. Joseph Wilkes, O. S. B.,and Bishop James Talbot, Vicar Apostolic of the London District, though the latter's appointment was merely nominal, for he never attended the meetings. Berington took a leading part in the disputes which followed between the Committee and the bishops, and though liis sjTnpathies were chiefly with the former, he exerted a restraining influence on tliem, and was ever trjnng to bring about an imderstand- ing between the two contending parties. Never- theless, he did not scruple to sign his name to the most extreme documents which appeared in the official publications of the Committee known as the "Blue Books', and he defended the oath intended to be imposed by the legislature on Catholics, which was afterwards condemned by the Holy See. In the midst of these disputes Bishop James Talbot died, and endeavours were made by the Committee to secure the appointment of Berington in his place, so that he might reside in London and e.xert the in- fluence attached to the position. These endeavours failed, and Dr. Douglass was appointed Vicar Apos- tolic. Some of the more extreme lajTnen, however, maintained that they had a right to choose their own bishop, and called upon the Catholic body to disavow the prelate appointed by Rome, and to rally round Berington; but on this occasion the latter showed his soimd sense by publishing a letter in which he refused to have anj-thing to do with these machinations, by which action he practically put an end to them.

Bishop Thomas Talbot died in 1795, and Charles Berington succeeded as Vicar Apostolic of the Mid- land District. Again he appeared to have a career