Berengar of Tours

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Berengar of Tours

(bĕ`rĭng–gər), c.1000–1088?, French theologian, also called Bérenger and Berengarius, b. Tours. He was archdeacon of Angers (c.1040–1060). After studying at Chartres, he returned to Tours to become head of its cathedral school. Berengar is said to have denied the Real Presence in the EucharistEucharist
[Gr.,=thanksgiving], Christian sacrament that repeats the action of Jesus at his last supper with his disciples, when he gave them bread, saying, "This is my body," and wine, saying, "This is my blood." (Mat. 26; Mark 14; Luke 22; 1 Cor. 11.
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. His defiance of authority angered his contemporaries, particularly LanfrancLanfranc
, d. 1089, Italian churchman and theologian, archbishop of Canterbury (1070–89), b. Pavia. At first educated in civil law, he turned to theology and became a pupil of Berengar of Tours. After teaching in Avranches, Normandy, he went to Bec (c.
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. Berengar was defended by Pope Gregory VIIGregory VII, Saint,
d. 1085, pope (1073–85), an Italian (b. near Rome) named Hildebrand (Ital. Ildebrando); successor of Alexander II. He was one of the greatest popes. Feast: May 25.
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 and Peter DamianPeter Damian, Saint
, Ital. Pietro Damiani, 1007?–1072, Italian reformer, Doctor of the Church, b. Ravenna. He became a Camaldolese monk at Fonte-Avellino (near Gubbio) and because of his rigor and asceticism was made prior.
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. He wrote a reply to Lanfranc, De Sacra Coena, which was condemned. He was declared a heretic, but became reconciled with the church before his death. Berengar's controversy with the church brought about a more explicit formulation of the doctrine of the Eucharist.


See A. J. Macdonald, Berengar and the Reform of Sacramental Doctrine (1930).

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References in periodicals archive ?
While at times a prior idea leads to an alteration of eucharistic theology--for instance how the Anabaptist Melchior Hoffmann's "celestial flesh Christology" precluded any eucharistic realism (132-33)--at other times the relation works in reverse, such as the subtle but decisive influence on Lessing's philosophy by Lutheran sacramental theology and his reading of Berengar of Tours, as Christopher Wild's essay demonstrates.
In the 11th century the French monk Berengar of Tours began to teach that the bread and wine in the celebration of the Eucharist could not change physically into the body and blood of Jesus Christ.
Of course, Berengar of Tours could not appeal to the Pope, as the Pope himself was presiding at his case.
The second part of the work, which is considerably better informed, discusses Lessing's major discoveries and learned accounts, in Wolfenhittel, of works by Berengar of Tours, Theophilus Presbyter, and other medieval writers, paying tribute to his growing expertise in palaeography, diplomatics, and iconography.
He turns as a result to the climate in which the document was copied: the new monastic reforms undertaken by the post-conquest Archbishop Lanfranc, who before coming to Canterbury had been engaged in a dispute over the 'real presence' with Berengar of Tours; and the new meditative practices of St Anselm.
The first, Berengar of Tours, was condemned at a synod in 1075 for arguing that the bread and wine of the mass were signs rather than the reality of Christ's body and blood.
Chazan's comparison of Bernard with the Cluniac Peter the Venerable provokes the thought that the latter's still not entirely explained anti-Jewish virulence may in part have resulted from his transferring to the Jews, as deriders of the sacraments of human salvation, animus built up against Berengar of Tours for a similar reason; Berengar's teachings are known to have caused anxiety at Cluny.
The letter is addressed to Desiderius, abbot of Monte Cassino and later Pope Victor III, but the object of Damian's concern apparently is certain dialecticians, possibly Berengar of Tours or Anselm of Besate (the Peripatetic), who put too great a stress on the capacity of reason to grasp truth independently of Scripture.
Theology, Rhetoric, and Politics in the Eucharistic Controversy, 1078-1079: Alberic of Monte Cassino against Berengar of Tours. By Charles M.
He presents the list of essential authors in an unbroken sequence and thereby indicates his sense of authors such as Berengar of Tours, Anselm of Canterbury, and the rest of the small group of contemporaries at the end of his list as the continuators of a tradition going back through the Carolingian period.
Indeed, the sixteenth century added new layers to the array of perceptions about dissent, among which was the need for Protestants to equip themselves with a "historical perspective." Turning previous convention on its head, they argued that the persecuting Roman Church could not be the true church, and that continuity had been preserved in the face of this by almost any dissenters they could find, from Berengar of Tours to John Wycliffe.