- Heinrich Kramer
Heinrich Kramer (also known under Latinised name Heinrich Institoris, c. 1430–1505) was a German churchman and inquisitor.
"Institoris" is the Latin genetive case of "Institor" ("retailer"). It was a common practise in those times to take the genetive of the father's name for latinisation [Paul Hinschius. Das Kirchenrecht der Katholiken und Protestanten in Deutschland. Band VI. 1897. Reprint Guttentag, 1959.] , but this genetive was used as nominative in Latin texts ("Venerabilis & religiosus frater Henricus institoris"). In German texts this name was abridged to "Institor" according the custom to omit Latin endings in translations (cf. "Iuvenalis" - "Juvenal").
Born in Schlettstadt,
Alsace, he joined the Dominican Orderat an early age and while still a young man was appointed Prior of the Dominican house of his native town.
At some date before 1474 he was appointed Inquisitor for the
Tyrol, Salzburg, Bohemiaand Moravia. His eloquence in the pulpitand tireless activity received recognition at Romeand he was the right-hand man of the Archbishop of Salzburg. By the time of the Bull " Summis desiderantes" of Pope Innocent VIIIin 1484 he was already associated with James Sprengerto make an inquisition for witches and sorcerers. In 1485 he drew up a treatise on witchcraft, which was incorporated in the " Malleus Maleficarum" (lit. "The Hammer of malefactresses (wrongdoing women - i.e. witches)").
Kramer failed in his attempt to obtain endorsement for this work from the top theologians of the Inquisition at the Faculty of Cologne, and they condemned the book as recommending unethical and illegal procedures, as well as being inconsistent with Catholic doctrines of
demonology. Kramer's claimed endorsement from four of the professors may have been forged. He was denounced by the Inquisition in 1490. [ [http://www.summerlands.com/crossroads/remembrance/_remembrance/malleus_maleficarum.htm Cautions about the Malleus Maleficarum] by historian Jenny Gibbons]
In 1495 he was summoned to
Veniceto give public lectures, which were very popular.
In 1500 he was empowered to proceed against the
Waldensiansand Picards. He died in Bohemiain 1505.
*"Several Discourses and Various Sermons upon the Most Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist", Nuremberg, 1496
*"A Tract Confuting the Errors of Master Antonio degli Roselli", Venice, 1499
*"The Shield of Defence of the Holy Roman Church Against the Picards and Waldenses", c. 1500
* [http://www.bautz.de/bbkl/i/Institoris.shtml BBK page] de icon
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.