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Johann Joseph Ignaz von Döllinger letter, 1882

Emory University

Pitts Theology Library

1531 Dickey Drive, Suite 560

Atlanta, GA 30322


Permanent link: http://pid.emory.edu/ark:/25593/fsx7s

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Döllinger, Johann Joseph Ignaz von, 1799-1890.
Title: Johann Joseph Ignaz von Döllinger letter, 1882
Call Number:Manuscript Collection No. 126
Extent: 0.01 cubic ft. (1 item)
Abstract:Contains one letter by Döllinger in response to a request from the editor of The Nineteenth Century: a Monthly Review that he supply an article on E.B. Pusey for the publication.
Language:Materials entirely in English.

Administrative Information

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Unrestricted access.

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[after identification of item(s)], Johann Joseph Ignaz von Döllinger Letter, Archives and Manuscript Dept., Pitts Theology Library, Emory University.


Processed by Marcia Robinson and Nancy H. Watkins, 1993, 1996.

Collection Description

Biographical Note

Johann Joseph Ignaz von Döllinger was a German Catholic church historian and theologian. He was born February 28, 1799 in Bamberg, Bavaria, and died January 10, 1890 in Munich. His part in the rise of the German Catholic Church against the authority of the Catholic Church at Rome colors his career as teacher and scholar of theology and ecclesiastical history and his role as a member of the Frankfurt Parliament.

Döllinger's career in theology and church history began when his father, a professor of medicine at the University of Bamberg, obtained for him a teaching position in canon law and church history at the lyceum of Aschaffenburg. In 1826, while at the lyceum, Döllinger published his first work, "Die Eucharistie in den dreiersten Jahrhunderten." This well-respected treatise launched his career, earning for him a position on the theological faculty of the Bavarian University of Landshut and a position on the theological faculty at Munich, both in 1826. Döllinger was well-regarded in the German and British academic and ecclesiastical communities and by German royalty, receiving various distinguished appointments, offices, and honors e.g., a canonry in the royal chapel from the king in 1839; provost of canons in 1847; representative to the Frankfurt Parliament in 1848; royal councillor to King Louis II of Bavaria in 1868; president of the Royal Bavarian Academy of Sciences, and general conservator of the scientific collections of the State in 1873.

Döllinger's life was not without controversy. In the 1830s, he became involved in the dispute over mixed marriages. Döllinger and his Munich friends became ardent supporters of Catholic rights which alienated him from Guido Gorres and his friends. The German theologian widened the gap between himself and the Gorres circle when, as a result of his opposition to the Jesuits and the Roman Curia, he became a supporter of a national Catholic Church, independent of Rome. Döllinger's opposition to the authority of the Catholic Church eventually led to his break with it and its excommunication of him in 1871. The dogma of Papal Infallibility, proclaimed on July 18, 1870, played an important role in the rupture of Döllinger's relationship with the Church.

Scope and Content Note

Döllinger wrote this letter on December 26, 1882 in response to a request from the editor of The Nineteenth Century: a Monthly Review that he supply an article on E.B. Pusey for the publication. Dollinger declined, saying that his knowledge of Pusey's theological view was "fragmentary." He remarked on comments about Pusey's contribution to the Church of England that he had made recently in a letter to Gladstone and on his own theological differences with Pusey on the subjects of the Athanasian creed and the practice of confession. Döllinger also explained that Henry Parry Liddon was writing a life of Pusey and encouraged the editor to delay any critical review of Pusey until after the publication of that work. He concluded his letter by recommending a Dr. Geffken, professor at the University of Strassburgh, as someone who might be interested in contributing to The Nineteenth Century. The letter was written eleven years after Döllinger’s excommunication from the Roman Catholic Church.