Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/Eberhard of Ratisbon

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575540Catholic Encyclopedia — Eberhard of RatisbonPatricius Schlager

Eberhard of Ratisbon (or Salzburg; also called Eberhardus Altahensis), a German chronicler who flourished about the beginning of the fourteenth century. Hardly anything is known of his life; the only positive facts are obtained from documents of the years 1294-1305, which show that within this period he was active as a magister, Augustinian canon, and archdeacon. He is the author of a chronicle that begins with the election of Rudolf of Hapsburg and extends to 1305. He desired to give an account of Bavarian history only, but was unable to fully execute this intention. In reality he describes more or less fully events occurring outside of Bavaria that seem to him of importance. The value of the chronicle is increased by the greater detail with which he treats the last five years, and in this part are also added important letters which serve to make the narrative more life-like. There is no doubt that the work was influenced by Hermann, the celebrated Abbot of Niederaltaich, the founder of a new and brilliant period of annalistic writing and to whom is due a wonderful development in the art of historical writing in Bavaria during the latter half of the thirteenth century. The "Annales" of Eberhard were formerly held to be a direct continuation of Hermann's chronicle, but in the introduction to his edition of the "Annales" Jaffe has disproved this hypothesis. Eberhard's chronicle is, rather, an independent work, connected with its continuations (the so-called "Continuatio Altahensis" and the "Continuatio Ratisponensis") only by their occasional paraphrases of what Eberhard has said or by information they occasionally add to his statements. The earliest edition of the "Annales" is that of H. Canisius in his "Lectiones antiquae", I, 307-358. An improved edition was published by Böhmer, "Fontes", II, 526-553, and another by Jaffé in "Mon. Germ. Hist., Scriptores", XVI, 592-605.