Damian (Damianus or Damiani), Peter

Damian (Damianus Or Damiani), Peter, an eminent cardinal and reformer in the Roman Church, born at Ravenna about 1007. His parents appear to have taken much pains with his education, for he early excelled as much in piety as he did in learning. When he had completed his studies, he entered the monastery of the "Holy Cross" at Avellana, in Umbria. So high was his reputation that pope Stephen X created him cardinal bishop of Ostiao In A.D. 1061 he resigned all his preferments, which at the first even had been forced upon him, being unable to live with such a dissolute, debauched, and unholy crew as the clergy of those parts and times were. In the year 1069 he was sent as legate to prevent the emperor Henry from being divorced from his wife Bertha. His last public employment was in A.D. 1072, when he was commissioned to dissolve the excommunication under which his natal city Ravenna had lain for several years. He died of a fever at Faenza, on February 23, 1072, aged 66 years. His acts and his writings, which are numerous, tended much to the enlargement and consolidation of the papal power; yet he does not seem to haave been at all a party man, but to have proceeded in a direct and honest course, which led him, on the whole, to the support of that dominion which then prevailed. Not one of his least merits with the Romish Church would be that he was the first who required his monks to recite the Office of the Virgin; but that Church should also recollect that he strongly deprecates the use of temporal weapons for the increase of spiritual power. Altogether Damian was among the foremost men of his age, both morally and intellectually. His works were collected by Cajetan (Rome, 1606-1615, 3 vols. fol.), and have been several times reprinted; the best edition is that of Bassani (1783,4 vols. fol.). His life is given in the first volume of his works; also in Vita P. Damiani. by Laderchi (Rome, 1702, 4to); and in the Acta Sanctorum, Feb. 3, 406 sq. See Dupin, Eccl. History, vol. 9, ch. 8, Mosheim, Ch. Hist., bk. 3, c. 1, pt. 2, chap. 2, n. 67; Bayle, Dictionary, s.v.; Clarke, Succ. of Sacred Literature, 2:608; Schrdckh, Kirchengeschichte, 22:523 sq.; Lea, Sacerdotal Celibacy (1867), chap. 12.

Definition of dam

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