(Wynfrid (Wynfrith) ca. 680ca. 754). Apostle of Germany. Eng. Benedictine miss. After a short stay in Friesland, commissioned 718 by pope as miss. to cen. Ger.; later made bp. Founded chs. in Hesse and Thuringia; est. sees and monasteries; expelled anti-RC Culdees. Est. 4 sees in Bavaria, but did not overcome anti-RC influence of Culdees. Called by Carloman and Pepin to regulate affairs of Frankish Ch.; had synods pass measures on introd. Roman laws, doctrines, and customs, extirpation of remnants of heathenism, and the reformation of the ch. Despite clergy opposition, the Ger. Nat. Council declared for submission to papal authority and expulsion of married clergy 742. Most bps. acknowledged papal supremacy 747; pope gave Boniface, pillar of papal hierarchy, the see of Mainz. Founded Fulda monastery 744. In 754 resigned office in Mainz to continue work in Friesland, where met death at hands of heathen. See also Adalar; Germany, A 1; Symbolism, Christian, 4.
G. W. Greenaway, Saint Boniface (London, 1956); E. S. Duckett, Anglo-Saxon Saints and Scholars (New York, 1947), pp. 339455; Opera omnia, ed. J. A. Giles, 2 vols. (London, 1844); MPL, 89, 597 to 892.
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