Dissertation: Gottfried von Weißeneck, Bischof von Passau (1342–1362)

Gottfried von Weißeneck, Bischof von Passau (1342–1362)

Studien zur Geschichtsforschung des Mittelalters, Band 38

Hamburg 2019, 386 Seiten
ISBN 978-3-339-11076-3 (Print), ISBN 978-3-339-11077-0 (eBook)

Abteiland, Bayerische Landesgeschichte, Bischof von Passau, Bistum Passau, Diözese Passau, Fürstbischof von Passau, Geschichtswissenschaft, Gottfried von Weißeneck, Hochstift Passau, Mittelalterliche Geschichte, Ostbaiern, Ostbayern, Regesten

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The government of Gottfried of Weißeneck, Bishop of Passau (1342-1362), not only presents new findings for the immediate local and regional history of the three-rivers-city Passau but covers a larger horizon: The Bishop’s area of responsibility was far bigger than just the urban area; furthermore, it is very well possible to answer some fundamental questions by means of a regional topic.

Just as the other bishops of the Holy Roman Empire in the High and Late Middle Ages, Gottfried of Weißeneck had a double function. As territorial lord, he ruled his principality (the Hochstift Passau or “Abteiland”); as religious leader, he was responsible for the salvation of the people of the Diocese Passau which was one of the largest of the Empire and extended along the Danube from the Isar’s mouth near Deggendorf to the Hungarian border beyond Vienna.

The available sources allow extensive insights into a bishop’s administrative routines in the middle of the 14th century. At the same time, they illustrate the central geopolitical position of city and principality: Passau was situated at the intersection of the Duchy of Bavaria, the Duchy of Austria and the Kingdom of Bohemia – and therefore of the territories of the three most important families of the Late Middle Ages. That’s why, every now and then, Passau was used for meetings between members of the Houses of Wittelsbach, Habsburg and Luxembourg; at these occasions, Bishop Gottfried acted as competent host who was able to cope with the logistical challenge of such events. His relationship with Duke Rudolph IV of Habsburg (1358-1365) was particularly tight which is why he (unknowingly) assisted him with the dissemination of the Austrian Privileges (“Privilegium Maius”).

The clearly structured and well readable book is complemented by a list of more than 500 sources which invite to further explore adjacent topics.

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