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Forgery and Memory at the End of the First Millennium$
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Levi Roach

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9780691181660

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: September 2021

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691181660.001.0001

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Forging Episcopal Identity: Pilgrim at Passau

Forging Episcopal Identity: Pilgrim at Passau

(p.61) Chapter Two Forging Episcopal Identity: Pilgrim at Passau
Forgery and Memory at the End of the First Millennium

Levi Roach

Princeton University Press

This chapter details how, in 1854, the young Berlin-educated historian Ernst Dümmler made an arresting discovery: most of the early documents concerning the bishopric of Passau had been forged. What is more, these forgeries could be associated with Bishop Pilgrim, who oversaw the Danube River see between 971 and 991. The chapter then briefly surveys Pilgrim's earliest years. Pilgrim identified Passau not only with an earlier bishopric at Lorch, but with a metropolitan past there. The result was one of the most famous forgery complexes of the Middle Ages: a set of false papal privileges and imperial diplomas tracing Passau's history back to this alleged antique (archiepiscopal) past. Like Anno, Pilgrim was providing evidence for rights he and his church had enjoyed, but for which he lacked documentation. Though his forgeries extend into more recent years (at least in the case of the false bulls), as at Worms, the ultimate focus is historical: recent texts are used to buttress the earlier ones, and the diplomas are all placed at a safe remove.

Keywords:   Ernst Dümmler, Passau, forged documents, Bishop Pilgrim, Lorch, false papal privileges, imperial diplomas, archiepiscopal past, Passau forgeries

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