Damian, Peter

, an eminent cardinal, was born at Ravenna in the beginning of the eleventh century, became a Benedictine, and, it is thought, would always have preferred solitude to the dignities of the church, if he had not been in some measure forced to accept them. In 1057 he was created cardinal by pope Stephen IX. and under pope Nicolas II. was sent as papal legate to Milan, to reform certain clerical abuses, which he successfully accomplished, and even turned his arguments against his superiors, whom he found licentious, without any respect for their rank or power. Among other proofs of his zeal, he publicly condemned the liberty which the popes took of opposing the emperors in cases of war; affirming, that the offices of emperor and pope are distinct, and that the emperors ought not to meddle with what belongs to the popes, nor the popes with what belongs to the emperors. “As the son of God,” says he, “surmounted all the obstacles of worldly power, not by the | severity of vengeance, but by the lively majesty of an invincible patience, so has he taught us rather to bear the fury of the world with constancy, than to take up arms against those who offend us; especially since between the royalty and the priesthood there is such a distinction of offices, that it belongs to the king to use secular arms, and to the priest to gird on the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God,” &c. Damian described also in a very lively manner the enormous vices of his age, in several of his works;, in his Gomorrhaetis particularly, which, though pope Alexander II. thought fit to suppress it, has nevertheless been preserved. Disappointed, however, in his hopes of producing any favourable change, he resigned all his preferments in the church in 1061, although he appears afterwards to have been employed on missions as legate. He died in 1073, and his writings, while in ms. must have been frequently read and admired, as we find that between five and six centuries after his deaih they were ordered to be printed by Clement VIII. who employed Constantino Cajetan as editor. This first edition was published at Home in 3 vols. fol. 160b, 1608, 1615, and reprinted at Leyden, 1623, fol. In 1640 Cajeta 1 added a fourth volume. The whole were afterwards reprinted at Paris in 1642 and 1663, in a thick folio. These works consist of

Letters,” of which a separate edition had been published at Paris, 1609, 4 to, “Sermons,” “Dissertations,” &c. kc. 1

1 Gen. Dict. —Moreri in art. Pierre. Fabricius Bibl. Lat. Weil. & Inf.: D^iii, and Saxii Onoinast, in Peter.