Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/Karl von Miltiz

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Papal chamberlain and nuncio, b. about 1480, the son of Sigismund von Miltiz, "Landvogt" of Meissen, drowned in the Main near Gross Steinheim, 20 November, 1529. He received his humanistic and theological education at Mainz, Trier, and Meissen and went to Rome in 1514 or 1515, where he was made papal chamberlain and notary, and acted as agent of Frederic, Elector of Saxony and of Duke George the Bearded. He obtained for the latter the permission to transport some of the earth of the Campo Santo in Rome, which originally had been brought from Jerusalem, to Annaberg, Saxony, where it was used in the cemetery. After the endeavours of Cardinal Cajetan to silence Luther had failed, Miltiz appeared to be the person most suited to bring the negotiations to a successful ending. To have some pretence for the journey to Germany, he was to deliver to his elector the papal golden rose, which the latter had coveted in vain for three years. He went first to Altenburg where he had his first conversation with Luther. Leaving aside all discussion of a promise of retraction, he and Luther agreed to remain silent for the present, and to let the learned Archbishop Richard of Trier conduct the examination. Luther even promised to write an humble letter to the pope. Miltiz then journeyed to Leipzig and covered Tetzel with mortifying, wholly unnecessary reproaches. But the movement started and fanned by Luther, had progressed too far to be halted by mere conclaves and conversations, and for this reason two further meetings between Luther and Miltiz at Liebenwerda (9 Oct., 1519) and Lichtenburg (Oct., 1520) were without success. After a short stay in Rome he returned to Germany in 1522, where he died. He was buried in the cathedral of Mainz.

Seidemann, Karl von Miltiz, eine chronologische Untersuchung (Dresden, 1844); Creutzberg, Karl von Miltiz, sein Leben und seine geschichtliche Bedeutung (Freiburg, 1907).

PATRICIUS SCHLAGER