Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/Diocese of Salamanca

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Salamanca, Diocese of (Salmanticensis, Salmantina, Salmanticae), in Spain; comprises the civil Provinces of Salamanca, C·ceres, Avila, and Léon, and is bounded on the north by Zamora, on the east by Avila and Valladolic, on the south by C·ceres, and on the west by Portugal. The episcopal city has a population of 23,000. Its territory formed the southern portion of the ancient Vetonia, and the existence of the city of Salamanca in the Roman period is evidenced by a pretentious bridge over the River Tornes, with twenty-seven arches, measuring 500 paces in length, and probably erected in the time of Trajan.

The See of Salamanca is of unknown origin, probably dating back to the generation immediately after the Apostles, in which generation St. Secundus is said to have founded the Diocese of Avila. Signatures of bishops of Salamanca are found in the Councils of Toledo; in the third council is that of Eleutherius; at the coronation of King Gondemar, that of Teveristus; in the fourth and sixth of Hiccila; in the seventh, eighth and tenth, of Egeretus; in the Provincial Council of Mérida (metropolis of Salamanca) the signature of Justus;in the twelfth of Toledo that of Providentius; in the thirteenth, fifteenth, and sixteenth, of Holemund, probably contemporaneous with the Moslem invasion. Alfonso I the Catholic pushed his conquests as far as Salamanca, and OrdoÒo I captured the city, but its bishops continued to reside in Asturias, where the Church of San Julian, outside the walls of Oviedo, was assigned to them. Bishop Quindulfus (802) signed a royal deed of gift. Ramiro II, who defeated the Mohammedans at Simancas, began to repeople Saamanca. In 1102 the king's son-in-law Raymond, Count of Burgundy, and his wife Urraca, gave the churces of the city to Don JerÛnimo, the count's master, and built the Cathedral of S. MarÌa. The celebrated bishop, comrade of the Cid Campeador, died in 1120 and was interred in the newly-built basilica, to which he left the famous "Christ of the Battles" (Cristo de las Batallas).

Later bishops were: Gerardo; Munio, a partisan of Alfonso of AragÛn: Berengario, consecrated in 1135 and transferred to Compostela in 1151; Navarro; OrdoÒo Gonz·lo; Pedro Su·rez, praised by Alexander III for learning and prudence; and Vitalis, who maintained he validity of Alfoonso IX's marriage with his cousin Teresa of Portugal against the censures of Celetine III and the sentence of the bishops presided over by Cardinal Guillermo in 1197. From his period date the university and the most ancient and famous convents of Dominicans, Franciscans, and Clarisses. In October, 1310, the see being vacant, fifteen prelates of the ancient Province of Lusitania, presided over by the Archbishop of Santiago, assembled in the cathedral of Salamanca to try the case of Templars, and found them innocent in Spain of all the atrocities with which they were charged. Bishop Juan Lucero accompanied King Alfonso XI to the conquest of Algeciras. Later on he became subservient to the caprices of Pedro I the Cruel and annulled (1354) his marriage with Blanche of Bourbon in order to unite him with Juana de Castro. Lucero's successsor, Alsonso Barrasa, on the conrary, supported Henry of Trastamare against Pedro. In May, 1382, a council was held at Salamanca to take action in the matter of the schism of Avignon, and Castile decided in favour of the antipope. In another council (1410) Salamanca again recognized Peter de Luna (Benedict XIII) as pope. At this time Vincent Ferrer laboured to convert the Jews of Saamanca; from 1460 to 1478 St. John of Sahag™n enlightened the diocese of his preaching.

Salamanca has two cathedrals; the old, celebrated for its massive strength, was foundned in 1100 by the aforesaid Count Raymond near the River Gate (Puerta del Rio). At the end of the thirteenth century it was not yet finished, and its man entrance, called Del PerdÛn (of the Pardon), was covered over in 1680 with new Doric and Composite pilasters. In 1847 it was freed of its inartistic choir. Its building occupied so long a time that Gothic ogival arches are supported by its Byzantine foundations. Of its three naves the principal one terminates in the main chapel on the reredos of which is to be seen the "Last Judgment" painting of Nicol·s Florentino in 1446 for Bisop Sancho of Castile. In early days none but royal personnages wee permitted to be buried in this main chapel; here lie Mafalda, daughter of Alfonso VIII, Fernando Alfonso, natural son of Alfonso IX of LeÛn, Bishop Sancho of Castile, Grandson of Pedro, and his successor, Juan de Vivero. The cloisster of the old cathedral was Romanesque, but in 1780 JerÛnimo QuiÒones rebuilt it in Renaissance style. Most remarkable of ts four chapels, is that of St. Bartholomew, founded by Diego de Anaya, Bishop of Salamanca until 1480, and then Archbishop of Seville, and founder of the famous Colegio de San Bartolomé. There are also the chapels of Talavera, which was consecrated to the Mozarabic Rite in 1510 and in which Rodrigo Arias Maldonado de Talavera is buried, and that of St. Barbara, founded in 1384 by Bishop Juan Lucero.

The new cathedral was founded by the Catholic monarchs, who in 1491 sought to build one in Seville, but the idea was not carried into effect until 1508, when Fernando was at Salamanca. This new edifice was erected side by side with the old, leaving the latter intact. Its architects, AntÛn Egas and Alfonso RodrÌguez, had built churches at Toledo and Seville; Juan Gil de HontaÒon was master of works. The buildng was begun in 1560, and it was completed in 10 August, 1733. The tower, set on fire by lightning in 1705, was rebuilt by the celebrated José Churriguera, who made it a monument of the style (Churrigueresque) to which he gave his name. In the chapel at the centre of the rood screen are remains of Bishop JerÛnimo, transferred from the old basilica in 1744, and the venerated "Christ of the Battles". In two large silver vessels within the high altar, the relics of St. John of Sahag™n and St. Thomas of Villanova are preserved. Besides the cathedrals, a sumptuous church worthy of especial mention is that of the Dominican convent of San Esteban, occupied by the Dominicans since 1256, where, it is said, Christopoher Columbus was entertained in 1484 and where he found Fray Diego de Deza one of his most ardent protectors. The church was rebuilt in the sixteenth century, the first stone was laid on 30 June, 1524, and the work was completed in 1610. The founder of this convent was the Salamancan Fray Juan de Toledo, of the House of Alva, Bishop of Cordoba, and cardinal; here, too, is buried the famous Duke of Alva with his wife MarÌa Enriquez de Toledo. Another beautiful church is that of the Jesuits, founded by King Philip III and his consort Margaret of Austria in 1614. The college was converted into an ecclesiastical seminary by Bishop Beltr·n in 1779, was made a pontifical university, and is now under the care of the Jesuits. In former times there were numberous hospitals at Salamanca, but in 1851 it was agreed to combine them all into one, under the care of the Brothers of St. John of God, and dedicated to the Trininty. The library of the university and province, containing more than 100,000 volumes is a remarkable one.

Flores, Esp. Sagraada, XIV (2nd ed., Madrid, 1786); Cuadrado, Esp., sus monumentos (Barcelona, 1884); Lafuente, Hist. de Esp. (Madrid,1861).

Ramón Ruiz Amado.


University of Salamanca.—This university had its beginning in the Cathedral School under the direction, from the twelfth century, of a magister scholarum (chancellor). From this episcopal origin, probably in 1230, sprang the royal foundation of Alfonso IX of Léon, who "with was salutary discretion summoned the most experienced masters of sacred letters and established schools" (Lucas de Tuy); which, however, does no signify, as Rashdall infers, that they taught theology. Alfonso IX granted them the privileges alluded to later by St. Ferdinand, who was in reality the founder, the foundation of his father not having endured. On 6 April, 1243, in letters patent, the saintly king took under his protection the professors, students, and their property, granting them an ecclesiastical tribunal for the settlement of their disputes. In his time began that period of unrivalled prosperity for the university, which for so many centuries made it the "glory of Spain" (Denifle). In Toledo on 8 May, 1254, the king granted the university the privileges that are its Magna Carta, appointing curators, placing it under the authority of the bishop, exempting it from the regular authorities, and assigning salaries for the professors. The professors of law received 500 maravedis a year, canon law 300, grammar, logic, and medicine 200. Some have endeavoured to trace an analogy between these privileges and those granted by Ferdinant I and II to the Universities of Bolgna and Naples.

But the fundamental difference that characterized the Spanish university must not be overlooked, that, although a royal foudnation, it was placed under the direction and control of the bishop, the dean, and the chancellor, who conferred the academic titles in the cathedral. The titles were given until 1830 in the name of the pope and king. Doctrinal and ecclesiastical professorships did not, however, contrary to Stein's view, predominate in the university (Denifle). Departments of medicine and juriprudencewere also established, and preference was given to the law, epecially canon law. By petition of theking, 6 Aril, 1255, Alexander IV confirmed the courses at Salamanca, "because in the multitude of the wise is the security of kingdoms, and their govrnments are mantained not less by the advice of the prudent, than by the energy and bravery of the strong". Later he decreed that any accepted teachr in any branch whatsoeveer at Salamanca cold teach his subject in any other university, with the exceptioni of Paris and Bologna, a limitation wich John XXII instituted in 1333. The principles Alfonso the Wise had put into practice in Salamanca, he drew from the "Leyes de Partida", commenced in 1256 and terminated in 1263. Rashdall calls this "a sort of educational code - the first of its kind in modern Europe". In the time of Sancho the Brave the studies declined because the salaries of the professors were not paid. Finally, Ferdinand IV, authorized by Boniface VIII, assigned for this purpjose the "tertia ecclesarum" and from this date, 7 August, 1300, the university entered upon a new era of prosperity.

Classes were once more discontinued from 1306 to 1313, when Clement V commanded the "tertia" to be used in restoring the churches. In 1313 a third of the "tertia" was once more devoted to paying the professors of law, civil and canon, medicine, logic, grammar, and music. In 1355 the minorite friar, DÌdaco Lupi, taught theology in Salamanca; but this branch, which in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries was to draw the eyes of the entire world to Salamanca, did not flourish there until Benedict XIII introduced it in 1416, and Martin V re-established it in 1422. This pope gave the university its definitive constitution, and numbered it among the four greatest in the world. In 1401 the bishop, Diego de Anaya Maldonado, founded the first college for poor students, which was called the College of San Bartolomé and later the Old College. This and the colleges of Cuenca, Oviedo, and Fonseca were called "colegios mayores", larger colleges. Aftwerwards a great number of "colegios menores", smaller colleges, secular, regular, and of the four military orders were founded. The Liberals suppressed the "colegios mayores" under the pretext of their decadence but without substituting anyting better, or even equally good, to help the poor students. Following this the "colegios menores" were also closed. The laws of 1845 swept aside the last remaning vestures of these ancient establishments for university training, secularizing them and placing them under the control of the Liberal Government. The number of students at Salamanca in 1584 reached 6778; in 1822 it amounted only to 412, and later it dropped even lower. In the catalogue of its professors figure the names of some celebrated women, such as DoÒa Beatriz Gallindo and DoÒa Alvara de Alava.

Chacón, Historia de la Universidad de Salamanca 1569 in EL SEMINARIO ERUDITO, XVIII (MADRID,1789); de la Fuente, Hist.de las Univ. (Madrid, 1899) DENIFLE, Die Entstehung der Ybuv, /berkubm 1885; Rashdall, The Universities of Europe, II Oxford, 1895.

Ramón Ruiz Amado.