search of the bodies of his brother and nephew, and having found them, buried them solemnly in Augsburg.

He now set to work repairing the damages wrought by the war. The church of S. Afra was in ruins, he rebuilt it, and was by a vision informed where the body of the Saint lay. In this church he made a tomb for himself in a sort of crypt, and therein daily said mass.

Order being restored, he made a pilgrimage to Rome (A.D. 958), where he obtained the skull of S. Abundius, and brought it back with him to Augsburg. Either on this occasion, or on a former, he halted at Agaunum, the modern S. Maurice in the Valais, and obtained bones of S. Maurice and some of his legion. But, being hospitably entertained afterwards on his way to Augsburg by the abbot of Reichenau, he divided the bones with him.

Several so-called miracles are related of his life about this time. One day the bishop had to cross the river Werten on horseback (caballicare) with his chaplain Herewig, and a company of retainers. The latter took the river in different places, mistrusting the usual ford, but Ulric and his chaplain rode through the water at the ford they were accustomed to. It was winter, and the bishop wore thick worsted stockings (soccis de sago factis indutus), drawn over his legs. Herewig reached the further bank first, and was splashed with water to his waist. To his surprise, on examining the bishop's stockings, they were not wet.

On another occasion he was boating on the Danube, when a great raft came against the bows, and stove them in. With great difficulty the boat was brought to a shallow, and all in it escaped through the water to shore, when suddenly it occurred to the chaplain that they had forgotten to secure the safety of their bishop, whom they had left in the stern, and who was too old and infirm to escape unaided. Some of them at once waded back,

lifted him out of the boat, and carried him ashore, and no sooner was he in safety than the boat foundered.

In 967, the old prelate undertook another journey into Italy, to see the emperor and the pope. John XIII. received him with cordiality at Rome; and on his way home, Ulric visited Ravenna, where the emperor and empress then were. When Otho heard that S. Ulric had arrived, he ran out of his bed-room with one shoe on, to greet him, and the empress Adelhaid showed almost equal eagerness to see him. The bishop seized the opportunity to implore the emperor to give the see of Augsburg after his death to Adalbert, his nephew, abbot of Ottobeuren, which he held "in commendam." The emperor gladly assented, and on his return to Augsburg he made all his knights and retainers swear fidelity to Adalbert, and then he invested his nephew with pastoral staff and mitre and all the episcopal insignia.

But this step of Ulric caused general dissatisfaction among the clergy of Bavaria, and a synod was convened at Ingelheim (A.D. 972) to consult on this matter.

At the first session, Adalbert, with rash presumption, entered the conclave fully attired as a bishop, and holding the pastoral staff. The archbishop of Mainz and his suffragans refused to receive him, and indignantly charging him with violation of the canons, compelled him to withdraw.

At the second session Ulric was present, attended by a few chaplains. His conduct was brought under consideration, and he was required to defend himself. From age and loss of teeth he was unable to speak so as to be heard by all, and therefore he summoned Gebhardt, provost of S. Mary's at Augsburg, to speak for him. Gebhardt accordingly informed the council that Ulric was advanced in years, and wished to retire from the duties and labours

Son of Liutgarde, his sister, and Burkhardt, duke of Swabia.

of his office into a Benedictine monastery, and then throwing himself at the feet of the emperor and the archbishop of Mainz, implored them to hear the petition of his master. This was no answer to the charge of violation of the canons. The council felt it was not. Many of the bishops, says Gebhardt in his life of his master, were only angry at the appointment of Adalbert, because they had hopes of obtaining the see of Augsburg for themselves after the death of S. Ulric. But there was felt a delicacy in the matter. The bishop of Augsburg was aged eighty-two, and was esteemed by all for his sanctity. The council was unwilling to pronounce a public censure against him, and a middle course was adopted. It was decided that Adalbert should be called in to swear upon the four gospels, that he had accepted the episcopal office without knowledge that he was acting in contravention to ecclesiastical rule, and in the event of his reusing, he was to be forbidden the exercise of his episcopal office anywhere and at any time. He took the required oath, and then S. Ulric, still bent on carrying out his scheme, again supplicated permission to retire into a monastery, and place his nephew in his


Some of the wiser prelates then drew S. Ulric out of the council hall, and talking with him in private, explained to him the inadmissability of this proceeding, and the danger of the precedent he was desirous of setting up. The old man's eyes were opened, and filled with self-reproach and shame, he retired. Adalbert died the following year after having been bled, and S. Ulric regarded this as a judg ment on what had been attempted. two later, of advanced old age. and peaceful. According to his

He died a month or His death was painless request, he was buried in

the church of S. Afra, where his crypt and monument remain, and are visited daily by the faithful. It lies on the

right hand of the east end of the nave. The church has been entirely re-built in late German Gothic, since his days, and little or nothing of the original structure remains.

Nearly the whole of the body of S. Ulric is preserved in the church of SS. Ulric and Afra at Augsburg, together with his episcopal vestments, some of his hair, the handkerchief which covered his head as he lay dying; his comb, a silver chalice which had been buried with him, out of which pregnant women are allowed to drink to give them easy child-birth; also a wooden cup, his pastoral cross, the late legend concerning which has been mentioned. The cross is applied for the healing of persons bitten by mad dogs. The earth in which S. Ulric was laid is popularly believed to drive mice away, and is carried off for that purpose.

S. Ulric is represented with an angel bringing him a cross, or with a mad dog at his side.

(A.D. 1053.)

[Menardus, Surius, and Bucelinus, on April 1st. But also Menardus again on July 2nd, and Bucelinus on July 8th. S. Procopius died on March 25th. But at Prague on July 4th. Authority :-A life written by a contemporary anonymous writer, published by the Bollandists.]

THE saint whose life has now to be written is one very popular in Bohemia. He was born of parents in a middle condition of life, at Chotins, and was early given a canonry in Wissegrad, the cathedral of Prague. But desiring a more quiet life and a closer walk with God than was attainable in the capital, he retired to a cave in the forest, which lay between Chrudim and the Sazawa river, a cave inhabited "by a thousand devils," who however fled before

the presence of the hermit. There, in the stillness of the forest, Procopius spent several years, undisturbed save by the fawn that came at eve to drink of the clear river that rippled round the rock in which the cave was formed, and by the horned owls that lodged in the rents of the crag and hooted at night. But one summer's day as Procopius was cutting down branches of oak to supply his winter fire, a terrified stag bounded up and took refuge behind him, pursued by Duke Ulric of Bohemia and his hounds. The duke was astonished to find a hermit in this wilderness, and willingly gave him land, and sent brethren to range themselves under the direction of the holy solitary. In course of time Procopius moved to an abbey of Benedictines in Prague, and was constituted abbot. He died there in the odour of sanctity on March 25th, 1053; and his relics are preserved at Prague to this day, and held in great veneration.

« VorigeDoorgaan »