Pius Gams

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Pius Bonifacius Gams OSB (born January 23, 1816 in Mittelbuch ; † May 11, 1892 in Munich ; baptismal name: Bonifazius Gams ) was a German Roman Catholic theologian , clergyman and church historian .


Bonifazius Gams graduated from high school in Biberach an der Riß and Rottweil from 1826 to 1834, and then studied philosophy and theology at the University of Tübingen from 1834 to 1838 . In 1838 he received the prize of the theological faculty and the 1st homiletic prize. Subsequent to the study, he entered the seminary of Rottenburg and was on September 11, 1839 there by Bishop Johann Baptist von Keller for ordained priests . He was first vicar in Aichstetten , from 1840 in Gmünd and then from 1841 in Horb am Neckar . In the years 1842 to 1843 he made a scientific trip through Munich, Berlin and Paris . After his return in April 1844 he became parish administrator in Wurmlingen and in December 1844 professorial administrator in Rottweil. In 1845 he switched to the Latin school in Gmünd .

On May 1, 1847, Gams was appointed professor at the theological-philosophical college in Hildesheim , where he taught philosophy and general world history. There he was with Wenceslaus Mattes and others co-founders and co-editors of the Theological Monthly . The Catholic theological faculty in Tübingen awarded him an honorary doctorate ( Dr. theol. Hc ). In addition to teaching and scientific activities, he helped in Hildesheim in the pastoral and founded in 1853, published in Hildesheim Catholic Sunday paper .

In August 1855 Bonifazius Gams resigned his professorship and entered the Benedictine order on September 29, 1855 in the Abbey of St. Boniface in Munich . He made his profession on October 5, 1856 . In the order he received the name Pius, where he published his works under the name Pius Bonifacius . In the order he worked as a preacher and in pastoral care in the parish of St. Boniface. He also held the offices of novice master , subprior and prior . In addition, he maintained his scientific activity. In 1864 and 1865 he made a long research trip to Spain . In the last years of his life he went blind.

Fonts (selection)

In 1873 Gams published the first edition of his handbook Series Episcoporum Ecclesiae Catholicae quotquot innotuerunt a beato Petro apostolo , the content of which goes far beyond the title announcement of the succession of the bishops of the Catholic Church . At that time it was the most comprehensive overview of the Catholic Church worldwide, including statistical information, a handbook of (Catholic) Church Studies, which - thanks to updated new editions - remained unparalleled into the 20th century. In detail (on 72 pages) z. B. the church in "Germania" presented in the past and present.

In addition to countless articles he regularly wrote articles for encyclopedias, he wrote, among other items for the General Kirchenlexikon of Joseph Aschbach that from 1846 to 1850 in Frankfurt appeared.

Other writings:

  • The seven words from the cross . Ph. Gack, Rottenburg 1845.
  • The end and goal of the story . Heinrich Laupp, Tübingen 1850.
  • John the Baptist in prison . Heinrich Laupp and Siebeck, Tübingen 1853.
  • History of the Church of Jesus Christ in the Nineteenth Century with Special Consideration for Germany , 3 volumes. Wagner'sche Buchhandlung, Innsbruck, 1854–1858.
  • The eleventh Säcularfeier of the martyr's death of St. Bonifacius the Apostle of the Germans, in Fulda and Mainz, completely depicted with the sermons delivered . Schott, Mainz 1855.
  • Catechetical speeches given in the Basilica of St. Bonifacius in Munich , 2 volumes. Manz, Regensburg 1862.
  • The Church History of Spain , 5 volumes. Manz, Regensburg 1862–1879.
  • The Peterpfennig as a foundation . Manz, Regensburg 1866.
  • The year of the martyrdom of the apostles Peter and Paul . Manz, Regensburg 1867.


Web links


  1. ^ Pius Bonifacius Gams: Series episcoporum Ecclesiae catholicae. Academic printing and Publishing house, Graz 1957 (Latin, archive.org ).
  2. ^ Franz Babinger : Gams, Pius Bonifacius: "Series Episcoporum Ecclesiae Catholicae" . In: Südost-Forschungen , Vol. 23 (1964), pp. 355-356.
  3. ^ Geoffrey Wallis Steuart Barrow : Series Episcoporum Ecclesiae Catholicae Occidentalis ab initio usque ad annum MCXCVIII . In: The Innes Review. The Journal of Scottish Catholic History , Vol. 42 (1991), No. 2, pp. 154-155.
  4. Gert Melville : Cronotassi dei vescovi d'Italia per l'età medievale. Progetto di una nuova edizione delle "Series episcoporum ecclesiae catholicae" sino all'anno 1198 . In: Rivista di storia della chiesa in Italia , vol. 32 (1978) pp. 504-517, here pp. 504-505.
  5. With "Germania" all German-speaking countries are meant (in the German Empire also Strasbourg and Metz ) as well as the dioceses such as Riga or Reval, which are characterized by a German-speaking bourgeoisie .