Summer Research 1998

History of Medieval Canon Law

The editors decided to take a research trip to search for canon law manuscripts on the southern littoral of Canada's Ontario province.  As they prepared the research vessel they were in high spirits. It was named the Song of Roland.


Wilfried Hartmann, senior editor, and Gerd Schmitz, Vice President of the Monumenta Germaniae Historica, Eastern Branch, threw themselves into the adventure.

The weather was perfect, the sea was beautiful, and the siren call of new manuscript discoveries was echoing in their ears.


Their first landfall was Kingston, Ontario, where our two intrepid sailors investigated the local customs with enthusiasm and some success.

Their next site for their research was the St Lawrence River where they suspected that several fourteenth-century cogs had sunk carrying valuable manuscripts.

Professor Hartmann thought that he had found sunken treasure, but Vice-President Schmitz only laughed.  

The captain was proud of his crew, even if the results of the research trip were meager.  The scholarly community can only speculate what this daring trio will do next.

In the summer of 2002 the trio gathered again in Tübingen to explore canon law from the perspective of the Old World.  The German editors arranged for a very serious exploration of Swabian manuscripts and enlisted a large group of assistants. Provisions were provided for the arduous work. (What prompted Professor Hartmann to visit a Barbie Doll Exhibit at Kloster Salem?  I do not know.  I report.  I do not evaluate.)

The Song of Roland is lying in the Chesapeake Bay now.  CUA law student David Morris exploring the Bay with Captain Ken (Spil Auction Day Sail)