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Collegio Teutonico

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The college in 1593
The college in 1593

The Collegio Teutonico (German College), historically often referred to by its Latin name Collegium Germanicum, is one of the Pontifical Colleges of Rome. It was established in 1399 and maintained at the Vatican for the education of future ecclesiastics of the Catholic Church of German nationality. The German College is now divided into two separate colleges.

Pontificio Collegio Teutonico di S. Maria dell’ Anima

The Pontificio Collegio Teutonico di S. Maria dell’ Anima was created in 1399 when Theodoric of Niem founded a hospice for German pilgrims. A confraternity in aid of the suffering souls in purgatory was soon after formed, and in 1499 the first stone of the beautiful church, Santa Maria dell'Anima, was laid, near the Santa Maria della Pace. The Anima, as a college of priests, dates back to the year 1496, and was founded by the Master of Papal Ceremonies, Burkhard of Strasburg. The French Revolution destroyed it; but it was restored of 1859.[1]

The college was reorganized in 1863. A college of chaplains to officiate in the church was established; the chaplains were to remain only two or at the most three years, and at the same time were to continue their studies. They devote themselves chiefly to canon law with a view to employing their knowledge in the service of their respective dioceses;[1] and they receive living and tuition gratis. Other priests also are admitted who come to Rome at their own expense for the purpose of study. The college continues to assist poor Germans who come to Rome, either to visit the holy places or in search of occupation.

Collegio Teutonico del Campo Santo

The Collegio as seen from north
The Collegio as seen from north

The site of the Campo Santo dei Tedeschi goes back to the days of Charlemagne and was then called the Schola Francorum. In the course of time the German residents in Rome were buried in the church of the Schola, then called S. Salvatore in Turri. In 1454 a confraternity was established, and in addition the guilds of German bakers and cobblers had their quarters there. In 1876, the hospice was replaced by the Collegio Teutonico del Campo Santo, established by Christian archeologist Anton de Waal, with a library specialized in Christian archeology for which he put together an important collection of early Christian art. In 1888 the Roman institute of the Görres Society (Görresgesellschaft) was established at the college. together they publish a quarterly review, the "Römische Quartalschrift fur christliche Archäologie und Kirchengeschichte".

During World War II, Monsignor Hugh O'Flaherty operated the “Rome Escape Line” clandestinely from his room in the Collegio Teutonico. O'Flaherty and his associates managed to hide about 6,500 escapees, mainly Allied soldiers and Jews, in flats, farms and convents.[2]

Pope Benedict XVI raised the college to the Pontifical College of Priests[3]


Collegio Teutonico is located in Vatican City
Collegio Teutonico
Collegio Teutonico
Location on a map of Vatican City

The collegio is located in Italy and is one of the properties which form part of the territory of Holy See but which are located outside the confines of Vatican City boundaries.

It is one of the properties of the Holy See which are regulated by the 1929 Lateran Treaty signed with the Kingdom of Italy. As such, it has extraterritorial status.


Bishop Alois Hudal was rector of the Pontificio Istituto Teutonico Santa Maria dell'Anima.[4] After the end of the war in Italy, Hudal became active in ministering to German-speaking prisoners of war and internees then held in camps throughout Italy. In December 1944 the Vatican Secretariat of State received permission to appoint a representative to "visit the German-speaking civil internees in Italy", a job assigned to Hudal. Hudal used this position to aid the escape of wanted Nazi war criminals,[5] activity about which he was later unashamedly open.

Associated individuals of note

See also


  1. ^ a b Schmidlin, August Joseph. "College and Church of the Anima (in Rome)." The Catholic Encyclopedia Vol. 1. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1907. 9 April 2020 This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  2. ^ MacDonald, Sarah. "Mgr Hugh O’Flaherty – The Vatican Pimpernel", The Tablet, June 6, 2019
  3. ^ "Päpstlichen Priesterkolleg", Campo Santo Teutonico
  4. ^ Aarons and Loftus, Unholy Trinity: The Vatican, The Nazis, and the Swiss Bankers (St Martins Press 1991, revised 1998), p. 36
  5. ^ Michael Phayer, The Catholic Church and the Holocaust

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainHerbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "College and Church of the Anima (in Rome)". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company.

External links

This page was last edited on 9 January 2021, at 20:51
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