Jürgen Miethke (historian)

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Jürgen Miethke (born July 15, 1938 in Berlin ) is a German historian .


Jürgen Miethke attended the Oberrealschule Marktbreit am Main and the Gymnasium Windsbach near Ansbach. In 1957 he graduated from high school in Neustadt an der Aisch. He first studied law (1957/1958) and then history and theology in Göttingen (1958–1960) and West Berlin (1960–1967). In 1967 he was at the Free University of Berlin with one of Wilhelm Berges excited and supervised work on Ockham's path to social philosophy doctorate . From 1967 to 1970 he was a research assistant to Wilhelm Berges at the Free University of Berlin. In 1970 there followed the habilitation in Middle History. From 1970 to 1984 Miethke worked at the Friedrich Meinecke Institute in Berlin as a scientific advisor and professor for medieval history. He was a substitute professor for Hartmut Hoffmann at the University of Göttingen (1973/1974). From 1984 until his retirement in 2003 he taught at the Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg as a professor for Middle and Modern History. He was Dean of the Philosophical-Historical Faculty and Member of the Senate of Heidelberg University (1985/1986). Important academic students of Miethke are Martin Kaufhold , Gerald Schwedler , Karl Ubl and Thomas Wetzstein .

Miethke has been married to Veronika von Ditfurth since 1967 and has three children.

Miethke was a member of the Institute for Advanced Study / School of Historical Studies (1994/1995) and a research fellow at the Historical College in Munich (1988/89). He was visiting professor at the German Historical Institute in Rome (1978/1979), visiting professor at the Institute for Research in the Humanities of the University of Wisconsin in Madison (January to June 1983) and visiting professor at the Centro de Estudios de Filosofía Medievale of the Universidad de Buenos Aires ( August / September 1996).

Miethke concentrated on the history of ideas of the late Middle Ages , paying particular attention to the 14th century and producing numerous publications on the political thinkers of that time. This includes his portrayals of the journalistic controversy about the papacy's claims to power and the corresponding counter-writings. He was involved in the editing of various related source texts and is considered one of the best experts on the political philosophy of the late Middle Ages. Another focus of Miethke is the university history.

Miethke understood the reform councils of the 15th century as centers of personal and media communication. For example, Miethke used terms such as forum, turntable or media event to describe the communicative form of the great councils.

Fonts (selection)


  • Ockham's way to social philosophy. De Gruyter, Berlin 1969 (also: Berlin, Free University, dissertation, 1967).
  • with Arnold Bühler: Emperor and Pope in conflict. On the relationship between state and church in the late Middle Ages (= historical seminar. 8). Schwann, Düsseldorf 1988, ISBN 3-590-18167-2 .
  • The medieval universities and the spoken word (= writings of the historical college. Lectures. Vol. 23). Munich 1990 ( digitized version ).
  • Wilhelm von Ockham: Dialogus. Excerpts from political theory. Selected, translated and provided with an afterword by Jürgen Miethke. Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft, Darmstadt 1992, ISBN 3-534-11871-5 (2nd, revised and corrected edition, ibid 1994).
  • De potestate papae. The papal authority in the conflict of political theory from Thomas Aquinas to Wilhelm von Ockham (= late Middle Ages and Reformation. Texts and investigations. NR 16). Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen 2000, ISBN 3-16-147480-5 .
  • Studying at medieval universities. Chances and risks. Collected essays (= Education and Society in Middle Ages and Renaissance. 19). Brill, Leiden et al. 2004, ISBN 90-04-13833-1 (collection of essays from three decades on university history).
  • Political Theory in the Middle Ages. From Thomas Aquinas to Wilhelm Ockham (= UTB . 3059). Reviewed and corrected study edition. Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen 2008, ISBN 978-3-16-149517-5 (new edition of De potestate papae. 2000).
  • Wilhelm von Ockham: De potestate papae et cleri. = The authority of the Pope and the clergy (= Herder's Library of Medieval Philosophy. 36). Latin - German. Translated and introduced by Jürgen Miethke. 2 volumes. Herder, Freiburg (Breisgau) et al. 2015, ISBN 978-3-451-34197-7 (vol. 1), ISBN 978-3-451-34897-6 (vol. 2).


  • The audience of political theory in the 14th century (= writings of the historical college. Colloquia, vol. 21). Munich 1992, ISBN 978-3-486-55898-2 ( digitized version ).
  • with Lorenz Weinrich : Acta ad ecclesiam in generalibus saeculi XV. conciliis reformandam spectantia. = Sources on church reform in the age of the great councils of the 15th century. 2 parts. Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft, Darmstadt 1995–2002, (2nd, bibliographically updated special edition. Ibid 2015);
    • Part 1: The councils of Pisa (1409) and Constance (1414–1418) (= selected sources on German history in the Middle Ages. Vol. 38a). 1995, ISBN 3-534-06876-9 ;
    • Part 2: The councils of Pavia, Siena (1423/24), Basel (1431–1449) and Ferrara, Florence (1438–1445) (= selected sources on German history in the Middle Ages. Vol. 38b). 2002, ISBN 3-534-02436-2 .
  • with Christoph Flüeler: Political writings of Lupold von Bebenburg (= Monumenta Germaniae Historica . Scriptores. 10: State writings of the later Middle Ages. Vol. 4). Hahn, Hannover 2004, ISBN 3-7752-0304-4 .
  • Lupold von Bebenburg: De iuribus regni et imperii. = About the rights of the Kaiser and Reich (= Library of German State Thought. 14). Translated from Latin by Alexander Sauter. Beck, Munich 2005, ISBN 3-406-53449-X ( review at H-Soz-u-Kult ).


Web links


  1. Heribert Müller , Johannes Helmrath : For the introduction. In: Heribert Müller, Johannes Helmrath (eds.): The Councils of Pisa (1409), Constance (1414–1418) and Basel (1431–1449). Institution and persons (= Constance working group for medieval history. Lectures and research. 67). Thorbecke, Ostfildern 2007, ISBN 978-3-7995-6867-8 , pp. 9-29, here p. 25, ( online ); Johannes Helmrath: The second decade of the long Basel Council (1440–1449). Perspectives, conversions, piccolomineana. Considerations at the end of a conference. In: Heribert Müller (Ed.): The end of the conciliar age. (1440-1450). Attempt to take stock (= writings of the historical college. Colloquia. 86). Oldenbourg, Munich 2012, ISBN 978-3-486-71421-0 , pp. 315–347, ( digital version (PDF; 13.26 MB) ).
  2. ^ Jürgen Miethke Miethke: The councils as a forum for public opinion in the 15th century. In: German Archive for Research into the Middle Ages . Vol. 37, 1981, pp. 736-773, ( digitized version ); Jürgen Miethke: The councils in the 15th century as a hub of international relations. In: Konrad Krimm , Rainer Brüning (Ed.): Between Habsburg and Burgundy. The Upper Rhine as a European landscape in the 15th century (= Upper Rhine Studies. 21). Thorbecke, Ostfildern 2003, ISBN 3-7995-7821-8 , pp. 257-274; Jürgen Miethke: The great councils of the 15th century as a media event. Communication and intellectual progress at the major meetings. In: Laurent Cesalli, Nadja Germann, Maarten JFM Hoenen (eds.): University, council, city. Intellectual culture on the Rhine (1300–1550) (= Rencontres de philosophie médiévale. 13). Brepols, Turnhout 2007, ISBN 978-2-503-52663-8 , pp. 291-322.