Bishop of Segni, in Italy, born at Solero, Piedmont, about 1048; died 1123.
He received his preliminary education in a Benedictine monastery of his native
town. After completing his studies at Bologna and receiving ordination, he was
made a canon of Sienna. In appreciation of his great learning and eminent piety,
he was called to Rome, where, as an able and prudent counsellor, his advice was
sought by four successive popes. At a synod held in Rome in 1079 he obliged
Berengarius of Tours, who denied the real presence of Our Lord in the Holy
Eucharist to retract his heresy. He enjoyed the personal friendship of Gregory
VII, and was consecrated Bishop of Segni by him in the Campagna of Rome, in 1080.
His humility caused him to decline the cardinalate. He is called
defender of the church because of the invincible courage he evinced in aiding
Gregory VII and the succeeding popes in their efforts for ecclesiastical reform,
and especially in denouncing lay investiture, which he even declared to be
He accompanied Pope Urban II in 1095, to the Council of Clermont in which the
First Crusade was inaugurated. In 1102 he became a monk of Monte Casino and was
elected abbot in 1107, without, however, resigning his episcopal charge. With
many bishops of Italy and France, Bruno rejected the treaty known in history as
Privilegium, which Henry V of Germany had extorted from Pope Paschal II
during his imprisonment. In a letter addressed to the pope he very frankly
censured him for concludmg a convention which conceded to the German king in
part the inadmissible claim to the right of investiture of ring and crosier upon
bishops and abbots, and demanded that the treaty should be annulled. Irritated
by his opposition, Paschal II commanded Bruno to give up his abbey and to return
to his episcopal see. With untiring zeal he continued to labour for the welfare
of his flock, as well as for the common interest of the Church at large, till
his death. He was canonized by Pope Lucius III in 1183. His feast is celebrated
on the 18th of July. St. Bruno was the author of numerous works, chiefly
Scriptural. Of these are to be mentioned his commentaries on the Pentateuch, the
Book of Job, the Psalms, the four Gospels, and the Apocalypse.
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