FREISING, BISHOPRIC OF: A bishopric organized by Boniface in the spring of 739 after his return from Rome, with the other Bavarian bishoprics, under the approval of Duke Odilo. It was of small extent; the boundary joined Augsburg on the west, ran to the south along the ridge of the hills on the north side of the Inn valley, then along the top of the Mangfall range, and touched the river at the present Kufstein, following its course to Gars, where it turned to the north and came round to meet the Augsburg line again above Geisenfeld. In charge of it Boniface placed Erimbert, brother of Corbinian (q.v.). The number of monasteries it contained was large. The most important of them was that of St. Quirinus on the Tegernsee, which goes back probably to the reign of King Pepin, and asserted its immediate dependence on the Empire until the time of Louis the Bavarian.


The history of the diocese presents few features of more than local interest up to the Reformation, in which period it must be said that the preservation of Bavaria to the Roman Catholic faith is due rather to the zeal of the dukes than to the influence of the bishops. Both, however, were not unwilling to show a reasonable spirit, and the Synod of Salzburg in 1562, including Bishop Maurice von Sandizell of Freising (1559-66), assented to the laying before the Council of Trent of the concessions desired by Duke Albert V. of Bavaria and the Emperor Ferdinand--the marriage of the clergy and communion in both kinds. The next bishop, Ernest (1566-1612), was himself of the ducal family, which gave the see two more bishops, Albert Sigmund (1652-85) and John Theodore (1727-63). The title of prince-bishop was conferred by Ferdinand II. upon the incumbents of the see. By the secularization of 1802-03 Freising was incorporated as a principality with the Bavarian Palatinate, except the portions situated in Austria and the Tyrol, which were given to Salzburg. By the concordat of 1817 a combined archbishopric of Munich and Freising took the place of the old bishopric (see CONCORDATS AND DELIMITING BULLS, VI., 2, § 2).