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IMC 2015: Sessions

Session 709: Theology in the Carolingian Renaissance

Tuesday 7 July 2015, 14.15-15.45

Moderator/Chair:Stuart Airlie, School of Humanities (History), University of Glasgow
Paper 709-aGottschalk and the 9th-Century Controversy over Predestination
(Language: English)
Miguel Beltrán, Departament de Filosofia, Universitat de les Illes Balears, Mallorca
Index terms: Ecclesiastical History, Mentalities, Philosophy
Paper 709-bArmonia rerum in John Scottus's Aulae sidereae
(Language: English)
Valery Petroff, Institute of Philosophy, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow
Index terms: Learning (The Classical Inheritance), Philosophy, Science, Theology
Paper 709-cCyprian of Carthage and the 'Ecclesiology of Unity' during the Carolingian Renaissance
(Language: English)
Eleni Leontidou, Faculty of History, University of Cambridge
Index terms: Ecclesiastical History, Manuscripts and Palaeography, Political Thought

Paper -a:
In the late 830s, when civil conflicts and invasions almost reduced the French empire to anarchy, Gottschalk took advantage of the times to leave his monastery to travel into Italy and the Balkian regions that gave him the opportunity to preach his rigid beliefs concerning predestination. By 840 news of these teaching had reached Rabanus Maurus, for whom Gottschalk's doctrines evidenced an example of disobedience. According to Rabanus, those doctrines gave license to immorality. In a letter to count Eberhard of Friuli, Rabanus condemned Gottschalk's doctrines, and thereafter Hincmar of Reims and even John Scotus Eriugena felt compelled to participate in the controversy. The aim of the paper is to give an account of the metaphysical and religious background of this intellectual dispute.

Paper -b:
The paper examines the harmonic universe created in John Scottus's poem 'The Starry Court' (c. 869/77). It was supposedly written to celebrate the church constructed at Compiègne by Carolingian king Charles the Bald. It will be discussed how astronomy, arithmology, the sacred history, and eschatology are interwoven in Aulae sidereae's worldview. Among the topics under consideration is the poem’s astronomical prologue: the cosmic harmony manifest when the order of things sings along (concinit) to what is told by Scripture (mundus gestans symbola Christi). It will be argued that the new templum (aedes, domus) becomes a symbol and image of harmonically structured universe.

Paper -c:
My proposed paper will discuss the influence of the work of the important and controversial Late Antique theologian Cyprian of Carthage, during the Carolingian Renaissance. This will be examined through the surviving manuscript material and in the works of some of the most remarkable figures of the 9th-century Carolingian empire, including Agobard and Florus of Lyon and Hincmar of Rheims. The main issue that I will focus on, is the question of how 3rd-century discussions around the nature of the Church and the relationship between ecclesiastical purity and ecclesiastical unity (as seen within Cyprian's works) were received in a 9th-century context