Acta Pekinensia

Kilian Stumpf SJ, The Acta Pekinensia or Historical Records of the Maillard de Tournon Legation, Volume I,  December 1705-August 1706, edited by Paul Rule and Claudia von Collani. CLXX+ 735p. + Cd-Rom. (Vol. 9) ISBN 978 88 7041 209 3. € 70,00

An important text in the history of contact between China and Europe –  the Acta Pekinensia – has just been published. It is a joint publication by the Jesuit publisher of historical studies in Rome, Institutum Historicum Societatis Iesu, and the Macau Ricci Institute. The book presents a lively account by the German Jesuit Kilian Stumpf written during the Papal Legation to China between 1705 and 1710. From his privileged position in Beijing, with local knowledge as director of the imperial glassworks for the Chinese Emperor Kangxi, and his service to the Legation and the Jesuits, Kilian Stumpf keenly observed this important moment in European–Chinese interaction. In these pages, we encounter the question of Chinese rituals for ancestors and Confucius, famously known as the Chinese rites controversy: we discover how the Legation’s negative views contributed to the transformation of Chinese Catholicism, confirming the decision that many local practices were incompatible with Christian teachings and worship; we may observe, too, the vilification of the Jesuits that culminated in their suppression by 1773. The detailed view of events and key documents sent to Rome that constitute the Acta Pekinensia provide a precious record of these contacts and conflicts in China at the beginning of the eighteenth century. The text has been transcribed, translated and annotated for the first time in English in this handsomely-presented volume, with accompanying CD-Rom (containing scans of the original folios and Latin transcriptions of the text); it is edited by Paul Rule and Claudia von Collani.


L'affaire Gagarine

Mireille Chmelewsky, Paul Pierling SJ, Wiktoria Śliwowska, L’Affaire Gagarine. La conversion du prince Gagarine au catholicisme: un drame familial, politique et religieux dans la Russie du XIXe siècle, (Bibliotheca Instituti Historici S.I. 77), Rome, Institutum Historicum Societatis Iesu, 2014, Hardback, Illustrations, 367 p., ISBN 978-88-7041-377-9 € 45.00

La province de France de la Compagnie de Jésus accueille, au milieu du XIXème  siècle, un Russe qui consacre sa vie religieuse à la réunion de l’Eglise orientale et de l’Eglise latine, un passionné de l’unité des chrétiens qui, tout au long de sa vie, plaide auprès du Saint Siège, des religieux et des laïcs de France et de Russie, l’impérieuse nécessité de rendre prioritaire la question de la réunion des Eglises d’Orient et d’Occident.

Dans ce contexte, les documents retrouvés dans les Archives de France de la Compagnie de Jésus et présentés ici révèlent les malheurs qui se sont abattus sur le «prince Jésuite» (L’Osservatore Romano du 14 XII 2010) et sa famille.


Diego Lainez and his Generalate

Paul Oberholzer (ed.), Diego Laínez (1512-1565) and his Generalate. Jesuit with Jewish Roots, Close Confidant of Ignatius of Loyola, Preeminent Theologian of the Council of Trent (Biblioteca Instituti Historici S.I. 76), Rome, Institutum Historicum Societatis Iesu, 2015, Hardcover, Illustrations, XX + 1074 pp., ISBN 978-88-7041-376-2 € 60,00

Diego Laínez (1512-1565) came from a Castilian family of Jewish origins. His studies at the renowned universities of Alcalá de Henares and Paris prepared him for an outstanding academic career. In 1533 he joined Ignatius of Loyola and became one of the first Jesuits. He was valued for his intellectual gifts both within and outside the Society of Jesus.
Right after his arrival in Rome at the end of 1537 Pope Paul III commissioned him to teach at the Roman La Sapienza University. An acknowledged expert on Reformation and Catholic doctrines, he participated in all three periods of the Council of Trent as well as in the Colloquy at Poissy. He was also a popular preacher. Autocratic rulers and the councils of Italian city states sought his help in church reform and the foundation of Jesuit residences. During his generalate Ignatius increasingly sought his counsel and prepared him as his successor. No Jesuit stood closer to Ignatius than Diego Laínez. His influence can be found in elements of Ignatius’s way of governance.
Thus the generalate of Laínez can be seen as a development of Ignatian intentions. Laínez published nothing during his lifetime. Many sermon manuscripts and letters lie unread in the Archives of the Society of Jesus in Rome. The task of this book is to assemble current knowledge and scholarshipabout Diego Laínez and to encourage new and deeper studies of his life and his generalate.


Francisco de Borja y su tiempo

Enrique García Hernán and María del Pilar Ryan eds., Francisco de Borja y su tiempoPolitica, religión y cultura en la Edad Moderna, (Bibliotheca Instituti Historici S.I. 77), Rome, Institutum Historicum Societatis Iesu, 2011, Hardback, Illustrations, 800 p., ISBN 978-84-7274-294-9 € 37.00

Francisco de Borja (Gandía, 1510- Roma, 1572), figura cimera del siglo XVI, ha sido justamente relacionado con la nobleza -pese a renunciar a sus títulos y privilegios-, y con una ejemplar vida religiosa como jesuita. Tempranamente fue considerado patrono de la nobleza española y habsbúrgica por su estrecha vinculación con ese estamento y por su paradigmático navegar en el peligroso mar de la corte. Es también patrono de Valencia y de Lisboa, y desde 1922 patrono de la Curia Generalicia de la Compañía de Jesús.

Los biógrafos han enmarcado el abandono de su ducado de Gandía y el abrazo a la vida jesuítica con Jos contornos dolorosos de las muertes de la emperatriz y de su esposa. También se han destacado algunas de sus especiales actitudes, como la humildad y penitencia. Pero otras, como la prudencia, la alegría, la generosidad y disponibilidad total para servir a su patria y a la Iglesia han quedado difuminadas a causa ele un exagerado empeño por engrandecerle desgajándolo del mundo en que vivió. Ha sido trasladado del siglo XVI al XVII porque las primeras biografías se sirvieron de testimonios de los procesos de beatificación y canonización muy posteriores a la fecha de su muerte. Sus descendientes, en esos momentos en la cúspide del poder, idealizaron su figura. Así quedó descarnado en muchos aspectos, especialmente en lo referente a su humanidad, flaquezas y desengaños, luchas y tensiones. Todo lo referente a sus opciones políticoreligiosas fueron sublimadas sin más; bosquejadas así, someramente, con el adorno de su santidad.


Archivum Historicum Societatis Iesu

The Jesuit Historical Institute (Institutum Historicum Societatis Iesu - IHSI), was founded in 1930 under Father General Wlodimir Ledóchowski. Over the years its members in Rome oversaw the publication of the biannual review Archivum Historica Societatis Iesi (AHSI), the Monumenta Historica Societatis Iesu (MHSI), the monograph series Bibliotheca Instituti Historici Iesu (BHSI), and the series Subsidia ad historiam Societatis Iesu (SAHSI).
In light of Father General Adolfo Nicolás’s letter of 25 February 2010 to the major superiors of the Society (published in Acta Romana Societatis Iesu, vol. XXIV (2010), pp. 931-933), the apostolate of Jesuit history at the Curia in Rome was reconstituted within the context of the Archives (Archivum Romanum Societatis Iesu – ARSI). Henceforth ARSI was given an expanded mission. Among its competences is to oversee publications relating to the Society’s history. Thus the historical publications continue as part of ARSI, while retaining the publication imprint IHSI.
Camilla Russell, Editor
Mauro Brunello, Assistant Editor


Contact details

Publications editor: Dr. Camilla Russell arsi-pubb@sjcuria.org

P: (39) 06-69868631

IHSI
Borgo S. Spirito, 4
00193 Rome
Italy