Mark this man's demise, O traveler,
" The grammarian and metaphysician, Johannes Duns Scotus died in Cologne in 1308. When the vault his corpse resided in was opened later he was found lying outside the coffin. "
The first is from a history of the mania over being buried alive in the 19th century. I need to check and see the reference there, if there's anything more than Bacon. The second is a random internet quote. I was also once told a similar story by an ancient franciscan at the Franciscan Monastery in DC, late at night after mass or a concert. The lights were half off, it was very eerie. But a even a franciscan believed it. Where did this 'lore' come from? Well, like the modern term 'dunce' I believe we have pious order of preachers to thank, the Dominicans, ever jealous for the glory of their "Common Doctor (Christ? oh wait, no, its Aquinas)"
In reading a rather odd book entitled "They gave me an answer: Bl. Duns Scotus, St. Bonaventure and P. Pio", written, oddly enough, by a franciscan who teaches at holy apostles seminary in Conn. (my former landlords), the roots of the mystery can be found. He quotes B. Hechich who wrote an article somewhere on this saying that around 1400 a priest of worms, Herman Pil, wrote a Collectanea Spiritualia in which he repeated a conversation somehow dating back to 1384-1386 between Henry of Hesse and Conrad of Geinhausen, who were trying to use scotus as an edifying example. Henry says that Scotus was often caught up in contemplation that he would become completely insensible, and finally would pass from this life in one of these ecstasies: "ecce quam dulciter et amabiliter homo iste transivit de vita ista: de requie ad requiem de dulcedine ad dulcedinem, de consolatione spirituali ad iucunditatem aeternam. quod et nobis procurare digneutur qui vivit et regnat in saecula saeculorum."
a Dominican maculist, Abraham Bzovius (d. 1637) mistakenly dates Scotus's death to 1294, and describes Scotus a bit scornfully, but does not give the tale. Another Dominican, (or is he, its unclear here, crucially, in fact) John Frederick Matenesius wrote a history based on Bzovius' annals and includes the following grisly tale..."1294: hoc anno, volens nolens, ex hac vita migravit Ioannes Duacius Cotus, subtilis quidem ordinis fratrum minorum doctor; sed adeo tenebrosus ut "skoteinos" passim diceretur. et cum omnia in dubium vocaret, mors quoque eius in dubium vocata est. apoplexia enim correptum, exanimen putantes, nimis festinato funere ad sepulchrum in choro sui ordinis deferunt; qui dein morbi violentia cessante, ad se reversus, pulsato frustra sepulchro et miserabili mugitu edito, elisoque tandem capite, periit coloniae" that's right, he cut off his own head.
That quote was apparently taken from Mattew Frce(1583-1669) who wrote an apologia against all these stories.
apparently, paul giovio, historian and bishop, also spread various slanderous lies as well.
still a bit needs sorting out.