News , Events | 20. Jan. 2024

MGH Lectures 2023/24

This autumn and winter, the MGH are once again proud to present our programme of online and live lectures. We invite you to join us for the following events: a lecture on Karl Brandi in the online series „Vorträge zur Geschichte der Mittelalterforschung“/„Lectures on the history of medieval studies“; three presentations of very diverse medieval sources in the series „Zurück zu den Quellen“/“Back to the sources“; and, in connection with the publication of the anthology „Zwischen Vaterlandsliebe und Ausgrenzung – Die jüdischen Mitarbeiter und Mitarbeiterinnen der MGH“: a lecture on the rise of anti-Semitism in university circles in the 19th and 20th centuries and a panel discussion on the subject of Jewish historians in cooperation with the Jüdisches Museum München (for registration details please see the information at the end of this blog).

Tuesday, 24.10.23, 6 p.m.: Von Logbuch, Zoll und Gold. Theologiegeschichte(n) post mortem in Ost und West (On logbooks, taxes and gold: theological history(-ies) post mortem between East and West)

Online lecture (Zoom) by Dr habil. Andrea Riedl

„Where may we presume the souls of those to be who died without sufficient time to do penance for the consequences of their sins?“ This question, posed by a Franciscan monk, was the starting point of a dispute on problems of eschatology and the so-called intermediary condition of the souls of the dead that occurred in Southern Italy in 1235. According to Georgios Bardanes, a Greek theologian who participated in the discussion, his Latin counterpart insisted that the deceased underwent a process of purgation by fire – succoured by the prayers and alms of the living –, in order to save their souls from hell and bring them to the gates of heaven. For his part, however, the Greek was convinced that the souls of the dead remained unjudged until the day of Final Judgement. He considered it false and even blasphemous to suppose any such pre-judgemental purgation, believing rather that the soul remained in some dark place where it could foretaste both the reward of paradise and the punishment of hell.

We may suppose that many such debates must have occurred in the course of Christian theological history throughout the ages. The individual disputants may vary, but the question remains the same. The lecture traces theological concepts in the East and the West, investigating their context in historical events, the divergent and common elements in the respective ecclesiastic traditions, and how the important eschatological motives that inspired the authors of such texts were transmitted.

Andrea Riedl studied Catholic theology and classical philology in Graz and Thessaloniki; she completed her Ph.D. in Vienna in 2016 and her Habilitation in Salzburg in 2021. Since 2020, she teaches Church history at the Institut für Katholische Theologie at the Technische Universität Dresden. Her research focuses on theological medievistic and the relations between the Latin Church in the West and the Greek Church in the East in the Middle Ages. In 2020, her edition of the „Tractatus contra Graecos“ was pubished in the series Corpus Christianorum (Continuatio Mediaevalis).

Tuesday, 28.11.23, 6 p.m.: Jüdische Erfahrungen auf dem akademischen Feld und der Antisemitismus in Deutschland (1819-1945) (Jewish experiences in academic circles and anti-Semitism in Germany 1819-1945)

Live lecture by Prof. Dr Ulrich Wyrwa in the MGH institute/ Ludwigstr. 16 / 80539 München (with Stream via Zoom)

The „long“ 19th century was shaped by fundamental social upheavals, during which the Jewish minority experienced a remarkable social advancement from the periphery to the centre of bourgeois society. This path was, however, no less steep than thorny, subject to disruptions, and often accompanied by strong opposition – not least in the field of academics. Although Jewish scientists and scholars attained notable achievements, anti-Semitic activists energetically fought to deny them the recognition and equal rights that they deserved. After the last remaining legal obstacles to Jewish scholars had been dismantled during the Weimar Republic, their position suddenly collapsed in 1933. With anti-Semitism in power, Jews were excluded from universities and academies and were forced to either flee from Germany or face deportation to concentration camps. The lecture traces these developments, making reference to the situation at the Monumenta Germaniae Historica.

Ulrich Wyrwa studied history and philosophy in Heidelberg, Rome, and finally in Hamburg, where he attained his Ph.D. In 2003, he completed his Habilitation at the University of Potsdam with a thesis on the emancipation of the Jews in Tuscany and Prussia. From 2005 to 2015, he was the scientific director of the international doctoral college on anti-Semitism in Europe (1879–1914 / 1914–1923) at the Zentrum für Antisemitismusforschung of the Technische Universität Berlin. Ulrich Wyrwa is professor for modern history at the Universität Potsdam.

Wednesday 13.12.23, 6 p.m: Karl Brandi (1868–1946). Mediävist, Frühneuzeithistoriker und Wissenschaftsmanager im Spiegel seiner Autobiographie (The medieval and early modern history scholar and science manager Karl Brandi (1868-1946) through the looking glass of his autobiography)

Online lecture (Zoom) by Dr Lena Oetzel

Karl Brandi was a highly productive historian with a wide scope of interests ranging from the study of medieval charters and the Historische Wissenschaften to the history of the Reformation and the Renaissance and the local history of Osnabrück. His most well-known publications include his Ph.D. thesis on the Reichenau charter forgeries and his biography of Emperor Charles V (1500-1558). Beyond this, he was also a highly active „science manager“. In this function, he was often in close contact with the MGH and acted as co-editor of the MGH journal, the Deutsches Archiv since 1937.

Karl Brandi also wrote an autobiography that remained unfinished at his death: „Aus 77 Jahren. Lebensgeschichte und wissenschaftliche Entwicklung vor dem Hintergrunde der Zeit“ (77 years. A history of a life and the scientific developments against the backdrop of the times), in which he reflected not just on his own scholarly work, but also on the many other projects that he initiated, supervised, and supported. A few passages contain references to National Socialism and, according to his notes, he had planned a separate chapter on the subject of „family and National Socialism“, but never got to writing it. In sum, Brandi’s autobiography offers well-informed insights into scientific networks and systems in the early 20th century.

Dr Lena Oetzel studied Medieval and Modern history, political sciences and philosophy in Bonn. She attained her Ph.D. at the Paris Lodron Universität Salzburg in 2012 with a thesis entitles: „Gespräche über Herrschaft. Herrscherkritik bei Elisabeth I. von England (1558–1603)“. She works as a historian at the Universität Salzburg and is writing her Habilitation thesis on the Westphalian Peace Congress with a scholarship at the Institut für die Erforschung der Habsburgermonarchie und des Balkanraumes of the Austrian Akademie der Wissenschaften. Together with Arno Strohmeyer, Lena Oetzel co-edited the autobiography of Karl Brandi.

Wednesday 17.1.24, 7 p.m.: Zerrissene Biographien und abgebrochene Forschung - jüdische Historikerinnen und Historiker (Torn biographies and interrupted research – Jewish historians)

Panel discussion with Prof. Dr Magnus Brechtken (substitute director of the Institut für Zeitgeschichte München – IfZ), Dr Kristina Milz (IfZ), Dr Stefan L. Wolff (Forschungsinstitut für Technik- und Wissenschaftsgeschichte/Deutsches Museum); moderation: Prof. Dr Dr h.c. Martina Hartmann (President of the Monumenta Germaniae Historica – MGH)

Jüdisches Museum Munich / St.-Jakobs-Platz 16 / 80331 München

In October 2023, the MGH published the anthology: „Zwischen Vaterlandsliebe und Ausgrenzung – Die jüdischen Mitarbeiter und Mitarbeiterinnen der MGH“. The volume contains 28 portraits of scholars of Jewish origins written by authors who themselves, in many cases, are engaged at continuing the same scholarly research as those about whom they are writing into the 21st century. In cooperation with the Jüdisches Museum Munich, the MGH present a panel discussion on the occasion of this publication.

For the first time in their long history as a research institution, the MGH turn to investigate their own role in the lives of the Jewish scholars who worked for them. The anthology reveals the many challenges these scholars faced – culminating in their murder under Nazi rule. Without the Third Reich and the preceding spirit of anti-Semitism, their lives would certainly have unfolded in different ways. Facing discrimination, persecution, and forced emigration, many were obliged to interrupt their research activities, amounting to not only a human disaster but also to a colossal loss of scientific potential.

Thursday 22.2.24, 6 p.m.: Neue Quellen zur mittelalterlichen Geschichte Südwestdeutschlands: Zur Überlieferung der sog. St. Galler Annalen und unbekannter Reichenauer Urkunden in der Bibliothek Konrad Peutingers (1465–1547) (New sources for the medieval history of Southern Germany: On the transmission of the so-called Annals of St Gall and unknown Reichenau charters in the library of Konrad Peutinger (1465-1547)

Live lecture by Dr Benedikt Marxreiter in the MGH institute/ Ludwigstr. 16 / 80539 München (with stream via Zoom)

Under the shelf marks 2°Cod 254 and 2°Cod Aug 395, the Staats- und Stadtbibliothek Augsburg houses two early 16th-century manuscripts that, while at first appearance quite unremarkable, nevertheless prove to be highly informative for the study of the medieval history of South-western Germany. The former contains a copy of the so-called Annals of St Gall covering the years 1052 to 1102, and the latter is a convolute of transcripts of early and high medieval charters from the imperial abbey Reichenau. Both texts are unique transmissions without other known copies. The lecture relates the story of the manuscripts‘ (re-)discovery by the Munich historian Alois Schütz († 2017) in the mid-80s, highlights the singular features of their content, and investigates how they came to end up in the library of the Augsburg humanist Konrad Peutinger (1465-1547).

Benedikt Marxreiter studied history and Germanistik at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich and works since 2014 at the MGH. In 2016, he attained his Ph.D. under Martina Hartmann with a thesis entitled: „Bern von Reichenau, De nigromantia seu divinatione daemonum contemnenda. Edition und Untersuchung“. His current research focuses on early and high medieval historiography from the region of Lake Constance and the so-called Bamberg world chronicles.

Wednesday 6.3.24, 6 p.m.: Fortunatę qui tam pulchram discipulam docere habes grammaticam! - Frauen in den Erzählungen Ekkeharts IV. von St. Gallen (Women in the narratives of Ekkehart IV of St Gall)

Live lecture by Prof. Dr. Ernst Tremp in the Plenarsaal of the Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften / Alfons-Goppel-Str. 11 (Residenz) / 80539 München

This year‘s evening presentation by the MGH and the Historische Kommission at the Bayerische Akademie der Wissenschaften features a lecture by Prof. Dr Ernst Trump, the editor of the new edition of Ekkehart IV’s chronicle of St Gall (Casus sancti Galli), focusing on how the learned schoolmaster of St Gall writing in the 11th century depicted the role of women in his narratives of life in the famous cloister during the 10th century.

Continuing the Casus Sancti Galli started by his predecessor Ratpert in the late 9th century, the Benedictine monk Ekkehart IV († ca. 1057) completed the chronicle up to the visit of Otto I and Otto II in St Gall in the year 973. His masterful use of language, the livelyness and colour of his narrative, the wealth of information on life in the monastery, his insights into school practice, his characterisations of elder schoolmasters and scholars, and the royal visits all contribute to make Ekkehart’s Casus famous well beyond the limits of St Gall; indeed it is one of the best-known historiographical works of the Early Middle Ages.

Ernst Tremp studied Medieval History, the Historische Wissenschaften, and Theology at the Universität Freiburg/Switzerland, attaining his Ph.D. with a thesis on the Cistercian monastery Altenryr (Hauterive) in the High Middle Ages. He gained his Habilitation with a study on Thegan of Trier and received a titular professorship in Freiburg in 1993. From 2000 to 2013, Tremp was the director of the Stiftsbibliothek of St Gall and has been a member of the MGH central board of directors since 2010.

Thursday 18.4.24, 6 p.m.: Die Neuedition der Institutio sanctimonialium von 816 (The new edition of the Institutio sanctimonialium of 816)

Online lecture (Zoom) by Dr Dominik Trump

To date, the Institutio sanctimonialium, a canon rule for female religious communities promulgated at a synod in Aachen in 816, is still to be consulted in the 1906 edition: Concilia medii aevi by Albert Werminghoff. Several years ago, Gerhard Schmitz raised some fundamental objections to this edition, criticising, among other things, the reliability of the collation, the constitution of the apparatus, and the critical evaluation of the sources. Furthermore, we now have a number of additional textual witnesses that were unknown to Werminghoff.

There are, thus, more than sufficient reasons for the new critical edition of the Institutio sanctimonialium that will be for the first time accompanied by a German translation. The lecture offers insights into the initial phase of this edition project and will focus particularly on the newly discovered manuscripts.

Dominik Trump studied at the Universität zu Köln (Cologne) and attained his Ph.D. with a thesis on early medieval legal history. From 2014 to 2023, he worked in the project „Edition der fränkischen Herrschererlasse“ at the Nordrhein-Westfalen Akademie der Wissenschaften und Künste in Cologne. Since September 2023, he works for the MGH.

To attend the lectures, please register in advance via e-mail to Please note that the number of seats for the live lectures is limited and also that the events (and Zoom lectures) will be held on various days and at various places, as indicated above. We will send the Zoom login data via e-mail one day prior to the event.