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Dietrich of Nieheim

niem) (c.1340-1418. Historian and papal lawyer. Papal notary in Avignon, he served in the chancery office of several popes. In 1395 he was appointed bishop of Verden by Boniface IX, but was deprived of the office four years later, having never taken possession of his see. Dietrich wrote tracts to help end the Great Schism* and declared his allegiance to Alexander V and John XXIII, whom he later attacked in tracts and in his history of the Council of Constance. Among his works also are an attack on John Wycliffe, guides for curial administration, a history of the papal chancery from 1380, and a work in which he asserted the plenary power of a general council, including its right to depose a pope.