Konrad Christian Jakob Repgen (born May 5, 1923 in Friedrich-Wilhelms-Hütte , † April 2, 2017 in Bonn ) was a German historian . Repgen has been a full professor at the Saarland University since 1962 and held the concordat chair at the University of Bonn from 1967 until his retirement in 1988 as the successor to his teacher Max Braubach . Repgen was one of the best experts on the Thirty Years' War . The Bonn Historical Seminar became a center of early modern research through the research of Repgen, Max Braubach and Stephan Skalweit . Repgen is considered to be the " nestor of church history research".
Live and act
Konrad Repgen was born in 1923 as the son of a teacher in the workers' settlement Friedrich-Wilhelms-Hütte near Troisdorf . His father was an active member of the Catholic German Center Party and was dismissed from service in 1933 after the National Socialist " seizure of power ". He was deeply influenced by his parents in Catholic Christianity and owed them a high performance ethos associated with the motto “ascent through education”. In 1941 he passed the Abitur at the Beethoven Gymnasium in Bonn . This was followed by three months of Reich Labor Service . From 1941 to 1945 he was used as a soldier on the Eastern Front. After a brief captivity, he studied history, German and Latin from 1945 to 1950 at the University of Bonn. There he joined the Catholic student union K.St.V. Arminia Bonn . In 1950 he was in Bonn with Max Braubach with the dissertation March movement and May elections of the revolutionary year 1848 in the Rhineland to the Dr. phil. PhD. The church historian Hubert Jedin also had a significant influence on Repgen . Originally, Repgen wanted to take the exam for high school teaching after completing his dissertation. However, he rejected this plan when he was given the opportunity to continue his academic work with a grant (1952/53) from the Roman Institute of the Görres Society . From 1953 to 1955 he was an assistant there.
From 1952 to 1955 he did a research stay at the German Historical Institute in Rome . The intensive archival studies in the Vatican Archives laid the basis for his habilitation. From 1955 he was an assistant at Braubach. In the summer semester of 1958, he completed his habilitation at the Philosophical Faculty in Bonn with the thesis The Roman Curia and the Peace of Westphalia. Pope, Emperor and Empire. In 1962 he was appointed full professor of modern and contemporary history at the Saarland University in Saarbrücken. In 1967 he succeeded Max Braubach in his concordat chair in Bonn and taught there until his retirement in 1988 as a professor of Middle and Modern History. In 1970 he was one of the founding members of the “ Bund Freiheit der Wissenschaft ”. Since 1978 he was one of the co-editors of the Historical Yearbook for almost three decades . From 1985 to 1988 he was Dean of the Philosophical Faculty. As dean, he was able to prevent the state government from withdrawing teacher training courses from Bonn. From 1975 to 1976 he was a visiting fellow at the University of Oxford . Repgen supervised around fifty doctorates and seven habilitations. His academic students include Winfried Baumgart , Franz Bosbach , Klaus Gotto , Ulrich von Hehl , Hans Günter Hockerts , Markus Huttner , Christoph Kampmann and Karsten Ruppert .
Repgen had been married since 1957. The marriage resulted in three daughters and three sons.
His scientific interest encompassed the entire modern era. The research focus was on the editorial work on early modern Europe, but also on researching the political and social history of the 19th and 20th centuries. The relationship between Catholicism and National Socialism and the question of religious tolerance in the age of religious schism were his main focuses. He rejected the social science-oriented Bielefeld school and was considered a "conservative".
With his habilitation, Repgen tried to explain the supposedly contradicting papal policy in the Thirty Years War. During his archival studies for his habilitation, Repgen found that the editorial development of the Peace of Westphalia was completely inadequate despite its importance. Older historical research concentrated more on war, military exploits and their generals, but the issue of peace played only a subordinate role. There were innumerable papers on the most important actors, Wallenstein and Gustav II Adolf of Sweden , while there were only very few studies on the Peace of Westphalia. As early as 1957 Repgen had drafted the concept for a long-term editorial company. The "Association for the Study of Modern History", founded in 1958, took over the supervision of the long-term project. Its chairman was initially Braubach. Repgen was secretary from 1958 to 1975 and, after Braubach's death, took over the chair from 1976 to 2002. For decades Repgen was head of the long-term project of the Acta Pacis Westphalicae (files of the Westphalian Peace Congress), which publishes the files on the Peace of Westphalia. The editorial development of the tradition of 300 diplomats and 140 delegations scattered all over Europe was an enormous challenge. The first volume was published in 1962. Another 32 volumes followed under Repgen's direction. In addition, a series of publications was founded in which monographs and edited volumes on the Thirty Years War and the Peace of Westphalia were published. As a result, the Peace Congress is now by far the best-documented event. The editions brought well-founded facts and replaced polemical clichés. In modern research, the Peace of Westphalia is no longer understood as a national catastrophe, but as a model of conflict resolution between states.
Repgen published fundamental studies on the history of the empire and the church, including the standard work Thirty Years War and Peace of Westphalia . With his work Pope, Kaiser und Reich he made an important contribution to the exploration of the Holy Roman Empire . Repgen was one of the most respected researchers of the Thirty Years' War and especially the Peace of Westphalia . The focus was on the typology of military conflicts, the legitimizing key terms in the manifestos on the entry into war and in the history of this war in the early modern period. Repgen was able to prove that even contemporaries saw the numerous campaigns between 1618 and 1648 as a uniform event. An anthology with scientific articles on these topics from 1953 to 1997 was first published in 1999. In 2015, the third edition of the anthology was published. In 1986 he published an essay on the question of what a religious war is, which is still well received today. Above all, Repgen presented detailed studies. A large summary of his research was not made.
One focus of Repgen's work was Catholic contemporary history research. He was one of the initiators of the Commission for Contemporary History , which was founded in 1962 and chaired it from 1962 to 1977 and from 1981 to 1994. His own publications in this field focused on the relationship between the Catholic Church and National Socialism, especially in the phase of the " seizure of power ". In this context, there was a controversy between Repgens and the Protestant church historian Klaus Scholder in the late 1970s, who argued that there was a causal connection between the prospective conclusion of a Reich Concordat and the Center Party's approval of the Enabling Act . Repgen rejected this thesis on the grounds that it found no support in the source tradition. To date, no scientific consensus has been reached on this issue.
Repgen was awarded numerous scientific honors and memberships for his research. From 1975 he was a member of the board of directors of the Roman Institute of the Görres Society , and from 1976 to 2009 on the advisory board of the Roman quarterly publication . Repgen was a research fellow at the Historisches Kolleg in 1983/1984 . For his research on the Thirty Years' War and the Peace of Westphalia, he was awarded the Historian Prize of the City of Münster in 1998. In addition, from 1976 to 1997 he was head of the files department of the Reich Chancellery , Hitler government 1933–1945. He was a corresponding member of the British Academy (since 1986), member of the Commission for Contemporary History , the Commission for the History of Parliamentarism and Political Parties , the Historical Commission at the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and the Rhenish-Westphalian Academy of Sciences (full member since 1983). In 1989 he became Commander of the Papal Order of Knights of St. Gregory the Great . In 1995 he was awarded an honorary doctorate from the Faculty of Cultural Studies at the University of Bayreuth . In 1998 he received the Ring of Honor of the Görres Society and in 2000 the Alfried Krupp Science Prize . He was appointed to the scientific advisory boards of the Institute for Contemporary History (1972) and the Istituto storico italo-germanico (1973). He was awarded the Great Federal Cross of Merit.
A list of publications appeared in: Klaus Gotto , Hans Günter Hockerts (ed.): Konrad Repgen. From the Reformation to the present. Contributions to basic questions of modern history. Schöningh, Paderborn et al. 1988, ISBN 3-506-77207-4 , pp. 349-359.
- March movement and May elections of the revolutionary year 1848 in the Rhineland (= Bonn historical research. Volume 4). Röhrscheid, Bonn 1955.
- The Roman Curia and the Peace of Westphalia. Idea and reality of the papacy in the 16th and 17th centuries. Volume 1: Pope, Emperor and Empire. 1521-1644. Part 1: Presentation (= library of the German Historical Institute in Rome. Vol. 24). Niemeyer, Tübingen 1962/65.
- War legitimations in old Europe. Draft of a historical typology (= writings of the historical college. Lectures. Vol. 9). Historisches Kolleg Foundation, Munich 1985 ( digitized version ).
- Teacher training (S II) at the University of Bonn. A memorandum (= Politeia. Volume 17). Bouvier, Bonn 1987, ISBN 3-416-09213-9 .
- From the Reformation to the present. Contributions to basic questions of modern history. Edited by Klaus Gotto and Hans Günter Hockerts. Schöningh, Paderborn et al. 1988, ISBN 3-506-77207-4 .
- Thirty Years War and Peace of Westphalia. Studies and sources (= legal and political publications of the Görres Society. Volume 81). Edited by Franz Bosbach and Christoph Kampmann, Schöningh, Paderborn et al. 1998, ISBN 3-506-73382-6 ; 3rd, revised and significantly expanded edition, Schöningh, Paderborn 2015, ISBN 978-3-506-77959-5 .
- with Stephan Skalweit : mirror of history. Ceremony for Max Braubach on April 10, 1964. Aschendorff, Münster 1964.
- with Erwin Iserloh : Reformata reformanda. Ceremony for Hubert Jedin on June 17, 1965. 2 parts, Aschendorff, Münster 1965.
- The dynamic pension in the Adenauer era and today (= Rhöndorfer Talks. Volume 1). Belser, Stuttgart et al. 1978, ISBN 3-7630-1190-0 .
- Hubert Jedin. Life story. With a document attachment (= publications of the Commission for Contemporary History. Series A. Volume 35). Matthias Grünewald Verlag, Mainz 1984, ISBN 3-7867-1086-4 .
- War and Politics 1618–1648. European problems and perspectives (= writings of the Historisches Kolleg. Volume 8). Oldenbourg, Munich 1988, ISBN 3-486-53761-X ( digitized )
- with Rudolf Morsey : Christians and the Basic Law . Schöningh, Paderborn et al. 1989, ISBN 3-506-75775-X .
- The image of rulers in the 17th century (= series of publications by the Association for the Study of Modern History. Volume 19). Aschendorff, Münster 1991, ISBN 3-402-05670-4 .
- with Reinhard Elze : Study book history. A European world history. 2 volumes, 5th edition, Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 1999, ISBN 3-608-94166-5 .
- with Hanns Hatt , Josef Isensee , Annette Schavan , Dieter Schwab : to honor Paul Mikat. Schöningh, Paderborn et al. 2014, ISBN 978-3-506-77759-1 .
- Dieter Albrecht , Hans Günter Hockerts , Paul Mikat , Rudolf Morsey (eds.): Politics and denomination. Festschrift for Konrad Repgen on his 60th birthday. Duncker & Humblot, Berlin 1983, ISBN 3-428-05337-0 .
- Patrick Bahners : The ruse of the open word. Reasons are stronger than wishes: on the eightieth birthday of the historian Konrad Repgen. In: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung , May 5, 2003, No. 103, p. 38.
- Patrick Bahners: Wherever there is trade, chips fly. Bonn's view of the world: On the death of the historian Konrad Repgen. In: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung , April 5, 2017, No. 81, p. 11.
- Gernot Facius : Konrad Repgen 80 . In: Die Welt , vol. 58, May 5, 2013, No. 103, p. 29.
- Klaus Gotto, Hans Günter Hockerts (Ed.): Konrad Repgen. From the Reformation to the present. Contributions to basic questions of modern history. Schöningh, Paderborn et al. 1988, ISBN 3-506-77207-4 . (List of publications Konrad Repgen: pp. 349–359).
- Hans Günter Hockerts: Konrad Repgen (1923–2017). In: Historical magazine . Vol. 306, 2018, pp. 121-130.
- Karl-Joseph Hummel (Hrsg.): Contemporary Catholicism Research. Facts, interpretations, questions. An interim balance [Konrad Repgen on his 80th birthday, Rudolf Morsey on his 75th birthday] (= publications of the Commission for Contemporary History, Series B, Research. Volume 100). 2nd revised edition, Schöningh, Paderborn et al. 2006, ISBN 3-506-71339-6 .
- Christoph Kampmann , Thomas Brechenmacher : Konrad Repgen (1923–2017). In: Historisches Jahrbuch 138 (2018), pp. 451–464.
- Joachim Scholtyseck , Klaus Borchard, Georg Rudinger, Maximilian Lanzinner, Hans Günter Hockerts, Jürgen Aretz and Konrad Repgen: Speeches on the 80th birthday of Konrad Repgen on May 12, 2003 (= Bonn academic speeches. Volume 87). Bouvier, Bonn 2003, ISBN 3-416-03044-3 .
- Werner Schuder (Hrsg.): Kürschner's German learned calendar . 1996, 17th edition. de Gruyter, Berlin 1996, ISBN 3-11-014916-8 , p. 1154.
- Gerrit Walther : Obituary for Konrad Repgen at the meeting of the class for the humanities on September 6, 2017. In: Yearbook North Rhine-Westphalian Academy of Sciences (2018), pp. 144–148.
- Literature by and about Konrad Repgen in the catalog of the German National Library
- Works by and about Konrad Repgen in the German Digital Library
- Search for "Konrad Repgen" in the SPK digital portal of the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation
- Portrait of Konrad Repgen on the website of the North Rhine-Westphalian Academy of Sciences and Arts
- Wolfgang Tischner: Konrad Repgen passed away. An obituary , Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung , April 5, 2017.
- Karl-Joseph Hummel, Michael Kißener (ed.): The Catholics and the Third Reich. Controversies and debates. Paderborn et al. 2009, p. 10.
- Hans Günter Hockerts: Konrad Repgen (1923-2017). In: Historical magazine. Vol. 306, 2018, pp. 121–130, here: p. 121.
- Christoph Kampmann, Thomas Brechenmacher: Konrad Repgen (1923–2017). In: Historisches Jahrbuch 138 (2018), pp. 451–464.
- Hans Günter Hockerts: Konrad Repgen (1923-2017). In: Historical magazine. Vol. 306, 2018, pp. 121–130, here: pp. 128 f. Konrad Repgen: The teacher training at the University of Bonn. A memorandum. Bonn 1987.
- Hans Günter Hockerts: Konrad Repgen (1923-2017). In: Historical magazine . Vol. 306, 2018, pp. 121–130, here: p. 130.
- Gerrit Walther: Obituary for Konrad Repgen at the meeting of the class for the humanities on September 6, 2017. In: Yearbook North Rhine-Westphalian Academy of Sciences (2018), pp. 144–148, here: p. 146.
- Hans Günter Hockerts: Konrad Repgen (1923-2017). In: Historical magazine. Vol. 306, 2018, pp. 121–130, here: p. 124.
- Gerrit Walther: Obituary for Konrad Repgen at the meeting of the class for the humanities on September 6, 2017. In: Yearbook North Rhine-Westphalian Academy of Sciences (2018), pp. 144–148, here: p. 147.
- See the discussion by Winfried Dotzauer in: Nassauische Annalen 111 (2000), pp. 508–509.
- Konrad Repgen: Thirty Years War and Peace of Westphalia. Studies and Sources. 3rd, revised and significantly expanded edition. Paderborn 2015.
- Konrad Repgen: What is a religious war? In: Zeitschrift für Religionsgeschichte 97 (1986), pp. 334–349.
- Christoph Kampmann, Thomas Brechenmacher: Konrad Repgen (1923–2017). In: Historisches Jahrbuch 138 (2018), pp. 451–464, here: p. 460.
- Klaus Scholder: The churches and the Third Reich. Volume I: Prehistory and Time of Illusions 1918–1934. Frankfurt am Main / Berlin 1977, pp. 300–321.
- The contributions to the debate: Konrad Repgen: About the origin of the Reich Concordat offer in the spring of 1933 and the importance of the Reich Concordat. Critical comments on a new book. In: Vierteljahrshefte für Zeitgeschichte 26 (1978), pp. 499-534 and Klaus Scholder: old and new on the prehistory of the Reich Concordat . Reply to Konrad Repgen. In: Vierteljahrshefte für Zeitgeschichte 26 (1978), pp. 535-570.
- Against Repgen's position about Hans-Ulrich Wehler: Deutsche Gesellschaftgeschichte. Fourth volume 1914-1949. Munich 2003, pp. 809–813 and p. 1123 note 3 (“Catholic apologetics”).
- Historical College. Professor Dr. Konrad Repgen
- AAS 82 (1990), n. 4, p. 411.
|ALTERNATIVE NAMES||Repgen, Konrad Christian Jakob (full name)|
|BRIEF DESCRIPTION||German historian|
|DATE OF BIRTH||May 5, 1923|
|PLACE OF BIRTH||Friedrich Wilhelms Hut|
|DATE OF DEATH||2nd April 2017|
|Place of death||Bonn|