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BONIFACE


658


BONIFACE


in which Boniface reported his actions in Bavaria and asked advice in various matters. He also stated the wish of Carloman that a synod be held. In answer Pope Zacharj% 1 April, 742, confirmed the erection of the dioceses, sanctioned the holding of the synod, and gave the requested information. The synod, partly ecclesiastical and partly secular, was held 21 April, 742, but the place cannot be ascertained. The bishops appointed by Boniface were present and several others, but it was mainly the authority of Boniface and the power of Carloman that gave weight to the first German synod. Among its de- crees the most noteworthy are those ordaining the subjection of the clergy to the bishop of the diocese, and forbidding them to take any active part in wars, to carry arms, or to hvmt. Very strict regulations were made against carnal sins on the part of priests and religious. The Rule of St. Benedict was made a norm for religious. Laws were also enacted concerning marriage within the forbidden degrees of kindred. A second national synod was held 1 March, 743, at Liptina in Hainault, and another at Soissons, 2 March, 744. In this synod a sentence of condemnation was passed against two heretics, Adalbert and Clement, the former a native of Gaul, the latter of Ireland. They were again condemned in 745 and also at a synod held in Rome. Several other synods were held in Germany to strengthen faith and discipline. At the request of Carloman and Pepin the authority of Boniface over Bavaria was confirmed and ex- tended over Gaul.

In 744 St. Willibrord, Bishop of Utrecht, died, and Boniface took the diocese under his charge, appoint- ing an assistant or chor-episcopus. About the same time the See of Cologne became vacant through the death of Ragenfried, and it was the intention of Boni- face as well as the wish of Pope Zachary to make this his archiepiscopal see, but the clergy opposed. Be- fore the project could be carried out the Diocese of Mainz lost its bishop through the deposition of Ge- wilieb who led a very irregu'ar life and had killed the slayer of his father, who was h's predecessor in the episcopal office. Pope Zachary, 1 May, 748 (747), appointed Boniface Archbishop of Mainz and Pri- mate of Germany. The new archdiocese comprised the dioceses of Tongem, Cologne, Worms, Speyer, Utrecht, and the dioceses erected by Boniface him- self: Buraburg, Eichstiitt, Erfurt, and Wurzburg. Of Augsburg, Coire, and Constance the decree does not speak, but they are shortly afterwards mentioned as belonging to the province. After a few years Boniface was able to reconcile his enemies with the Holy See, so that the supremacy of the pope was acknowledged in Great Britain, Germany, and Gaul, as well as in Italy.

In 747 Carloman resigned his share of the govern- ment to his brother Pepin and left to spend the re- mainder of his days as a monk. He built a monastery in honour of St. Silvester at Soracte near Rome, and later retired to Monte Cassino. His motives for this are not known, but perhaps he was frightened at the severity of the measures he had felt himself obliged to use in order to obtain a union among the German tribes. Pepin, now the sole ruler, became the fovmder of the Carlovingian dynasty. That Boniface had anything to do with the disestablishment of the old royal family and the introduction of a new one cannot be proved. He did not mingle in the politics of the country, except in this, that he did all in his power to convert the people to the true Faith, and to bring them into spiritual subjection to the Roman pontiff. It is generally stated that Boniface anointed and crowned Pepin by order of the pope, though this is denied by some.

The rest of his life Boniface spent in confirming what he had achieved in Germany. This he did by frequently holding synods and by enforcing the


sacred canons. He did much for true religious life in the monasteries, especially at Fulda, which had been established under his supervision by St. Sturm, and into which Boniface retired yearly to train the monks and to spend some days in prayer and medi- tation. At his request Pope Zachary exempted the abbey from all episcopal jurisdiction and placed it under the immediate care of the Holy See. This was something new for Germany, though already known and practised in Italy and England. It seems that Boniface's last act as Archbishop of Mainz was the repudiation of the claim of the Archbishop of Cologne to the Diocese of Utrecht. The matter was laid before Pepin, who decided against Cologne. The same decision must have been given by Pope Stephen II (III) who had become the succesor of Zachary, 26 March, 752, for after that time no further claim was made by Cologne. No change was made until the ninth century, when Cologne was made an arcli- diocese and Utrecht one of its suffragan sees. Boniface appointed Abbot Gregory as administrator of Utrecht, and Eoban, who had been assistant, he took as his companion.

When Boniface saw that all things had been prop- erly taken care of, he took up the work he had dreamed of in early manhood, the conversion of the Frisians. With royal consent, and with that of the pope previously given, he in 754 resigned the Arch- diocese of Mainz to his disciple Lullus, whom in 752 he had consecrated bishop, again commenced a missionary tour, and laboured with success to the East of the Zuider Zee. Returning in the following year, he ordered the new converts to assemble for confirmation at Dokkum on the River Borne. The heathens fell upon them and murdered Boniface and fifty-two companions (according to some, thirty- seven). Soon afterwards, the Christians, who had scattered at the approach of the heathens, returned and found the body of the martjT and beside him the blood-stained copy of St. Ambrose on the "Advan- tage of Death". The body was taken to Utrecht, afterwards through the influence of Lullus removed to Mainz, and later, according to a wish e-xpressed by the saint himself during his lifetime, to the Abbey of Fulda. Portions of his relics are at Louvain, Mech- lin, Prague, Bruges, and Erfurt. A considerable por- tion of an arm is at Eichfeld. His grave soon became a sanctuary, to which the faithful came in crowds especially on his feast and during the Octave. Eng- land is supposed to have been the first place where his martyrdom was celebrated on a fixed day. Other countries followed. On 11 June, 1874, Pope Pius IX extended the celebration to the entire world. Brew- ers, tailors, and file-cutters have chosen St. Boniface as their patron, also various cities in Germany. The WTitings of St. Boniface which have been preserved are: "Collection of Letters"; "Poems and Riddles"; "Poenitentiale"; "Compendium of the Latin Lang- uage"; "Compendium of Latin Prosody"; "Ser- mons" (doubtful).

Jaffe. BM. Rer. Germanic., Ill, 24-315; P. L., LXXXIX. 687-892; Hauck, Kirchengesch, Deutschlands; Historischea Jahrbuch der Gorres Geselhchaft, I, 252 sqg.; Historisch-poli- Hsche Blatter, 88, 721 sqq.: Hope, Conversion of the Teutonic Races, 11; Smith in Diet. Christ. Biog., s. v.; Thompson in Diet. Nat. Biog.. s. v.

Francis Mer.shman.

Boniface I, Saint, Pope; elected 28 December. 418; il. at Rome, 4 September, 422. Little is known of his life antecedent to his election. The "Liber Pontificalis" calls him a Roman, and the son of the presbyter Jocundus. He is believed to have been ordained by Pope Damasus I (366-384) and to have served as representative of Innocent I at Constanti- nople (c. 405).

At the death of Pope Zosimus, the Roman Church entered into the fifth of the schisms, resulting from double papal elections, which so disturbed her peace