History of the Archbishops of Hamburg-Bremen

History of the Archbishops of Hamburg-Bremen

Copyright Date: 2002
Pages: 288
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  • Book Info
    History of the Archbishops of Hamburg-Bremen
    Book Description:

    Adam of Bremen's history of the see of Hamburg and of Christian missions in northern Europe from the late eighth to the late eleventh century is the primary source of our knowledge of the history, geography, and ethnography of the Scandinavian and Baltic regions and their peoples before the thirteenth century. Arriving in Bremen in 1066 and soon falling under the tutelage of Archbishop Adalbert, who figures prominently in the narrative, Adam recorded the centuries-long campaign by his church to convert Slavic and Scandinavian peoples. His History vividly reflects the firsthand accounts he received from travelers, traders, and missionaries on the peripheries of medieval Europe.

    eISBN: 978-0-231-50085-2
    Subjects: History, Religion

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-viii)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. ix-x)
  3. Introduction to the 2002 Edition
    (pp. xi-xxii)
    Timothy Reuter

    Francis Tschan’s translation of Adam of Bremen’s History of the Archbishops of Hamburg-Bremen was published at a time when studies of Adam were about to experience a renaissance.¹ Adam’s key position as the author of one of the earliest written sources for early Scandinavian history had by 1959 already been established for two generations, following the source-critical studies of the Weibulls in the early decades of the twentieth century, and it has been further reinforced by more recent work. Even if Adam’s view of the ninth and tenth centuries must also be treated with some scepticism,² his importance as a...

  4. Foreword
    (pp. xxiii-xxiv)
    F. J. T.

    To every author his own preface. Adam wrote one for his opus. A foreword by me would then seem uncalled for were it not for acknowledgments I should make for kindly assistance. Librarians are always helpful: Mrs. Margaret K. Spangler for promptly securing books on interlibrary loan; Miss Liberata Emmerich for confirming some surmises of mine about the surtarbrand off the Icelandic coast; and Miss Vera L. Moyer for verifying some references in the Bibliography. Dr. Frank J. Manno must be credited for a final check on a number of references in the Library of Congress. Deep is my gratitude...

  5. Introduction
    (pp. xxv-2)

    But for the chronicler Helmold, Adam of Bremen might today be known only as “A, the least of the canons of the holy Church at Bremen.” This all but anonymous identification Helmold cleared up by citing “Master Adam, who eloquently recounted the deeds of the bishops of the Church of Hamburg,” as authority for what he had said about the early prelates of the suffragan see of Oldenburg. Little more can be learned about Adam. His own pen vouchsafed the information that he came to Bremen in the twenty-fourth year of the archbishop Adalbert, that is to say, between the...

  6. TEXT

    • Prologue
      (pp. 3-5)

      To the most blessed father Liemar, by heaven elected archbishop of Hamburg, Adam the least of the canons of the holy Church at Bremen, offers this slight token of his complete devotion.

      When not long ago¹ your predecessor, evangelical pastor, admitted me to the number of your company, I was anxious to show that I, a proselyte and stranger,² did not appear ungrateful for having been granted so great a favor. As I saw and heard then that the ancient and honorable prerogatives of your Church had been gravely diminished and that the hands of many builders were needed, I...

    • Book One
      (pp. 6-53)

      i (1). Since Hamburg was once the noblest city of the Saxons, we think it neither unsuitable nor profitless, in setting out to write the history of the Church at Hamburg, to state first what the most learned man Einharda and other well-known authors left in their writings about the Saxon people and the nature of its country. “Saxony,”¹ they say, “is no small portion of Germany. It is reckoned to be twice as broad as the part inhabited by the Franks; at the same time it may possibly be as long.” Rightly surveyed, Saxony appears to be triangular in...

    • Book Two
      (pp. 54-113)

      i (1). Archbishop Adaldag held the see for fifty-three years. He it is who is said to have restored for us the state.¹ Illustrious of family, youthful of age, he was noble in appearance, nobler yet in the probity of his ways. He was chosen from the chapter of Hildesheim and was a relative and disciple of the blessed Adalward, bishop of Verden, whose uprightness of life, unblemished reputation, and fidelity were then highly recognized in the palace. It is said that he, celebrated also for his learning and miracles, had preached to the Slavic peoples at the time our...

    • Book Three
      (pp. 114-185)

      i (1). Archbishop Adalbert held the see for twenty-nine years. He received the pastoral staff from the Emperor Henry, the son of Conrad, who was, counting from Caesar Augustus, the ninetieth Roman emperor to sit upon the throne, those excepted who ruled at the same time with others. The archiepiscopal pallium was brought to him, as it had been to his predecessors, by legates from the Pope Benedict mentioned above, who, we have learned, was the one hundred and forty-seventh after the Apostles in the succession of the Roman pontiffs.¹ His consecration took place at Aachen in the presence of...

      (pp. 186-223)

      i (1). The country of the Danes, as one also reads in the Gesta of Saint Ansgar,¹ is almost all spread out over islands. Now, this Danish land is separated from our Nordalbingians by the river Eider, which rises in the densely wooded highland of the pagans, called Isarnho,2a which, they say, extends along the Barbarian Ocean as far as the Schlei Sea. The Eider flows into the Frisian Ocean, which the Romans in their writings call the British Ocean. The principal part of Denmark, called Jutland, extends lengthwise from the Eider River toward the north; it is a journey...

      (pp. 224-227)
      (pp. 228-229)
  7. Selected Bibliography
    (pp. 230-242)
  8. Index
    (pp. 243-258)