Ailly, Pierre d' (pyĕr dāyēˈ) [key], 1350–1420, French theologian and writer, cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. He was the teacher of John Gerson and was Gerson's predecessor as chancellor of the Univ. of Paris (1385–95). Ailly figured prominently among the conciliarists working to end the Great Schism (see Schism, Great). He urged that an ecumenical council be called to name a new pope as the only means of settling the schism. He seems to have been more concerned with a practical solution than with the implications of the conciliar theory. He participated in both the Council of Pisa (see Pisa, Council of) and the Council of Constance (see Constance, Council of). At Constance Ailly took part in the trial and condemnation of John Hus. His vast writings embrace theology, philosophy, cosmography, plans for ecclesiastical reform, and French religious verse. One of his works, the Imago mundi, an astronomical compendium, was studied by Columbus.
See studies by J. P. McGowan (1936) and F. Oakley (1964).
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