chapter  5
15 Pages

The Black Friars and the Black Death: Effects of the Plague on Friars Preachers in Fourteenth-Century Northern Europe

In 1474, king Christian I embarked on his very famous journey to Rome, to visit the emperor and the pope, a visit which was noted by contemporaries, 'pulchra bestia, si non careret loquela'. To enlarge the results of the journey, historians until today have ascribed the foundation of the University of Copenhagen to this journey as well, even though the papal bull was not issued until a year later. In 1445 Dorothea of Brandenburg came to Denmark and was crowned queen of all three Nordic kingdoms. Dorothea was very aware of the key role she was to play and used the situation in 1448 to expand her own political power. Dorothea stayed in Rome from 29 April to 15 May and by 9 July she was back in Holsatia. Queen Dorothea, however, also brought home one last thing from Rome, something which she never received credit for. She requested and obtained the founding privilege of the University of Copenhagen.