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A Bull issued by Benedict XIV, 23 February, 1741, against secular pursuits on the part of the clergy. In spite of many prohibitive laws of the Church some ecclesiastics had drifted into the habit of occupying themselves with worldly business and pursuits. The object of this papal prohibition was to check that abuse among the clergy. It recalls, therefore, and confirms the statutes made by former Popes against such abuses, and also extends them to such ecclesiastics as might, in order to evade the penalties attached, engage in worldly pursuits under the name of lay persons. It prohibits ecclesiastics from continuing business affairs begun by lay persons unless in case of necessity, and then with the permission only of the Sacred Congregation of the Council within Italy, and with the permission of the Diocesan Ordinary outside of Italy.
Bullarium Bened. XIV (Prato, 1844), I, 36-38; ANDRÉ-WAGNER, Dict. de droit Canonique, 3d ed. (Paris, 1901), s. v. Négoce; LAURENTIUS, Instit. Juris Eccl. (Freiburg, 1903), 93; SÄGMÜLLER, Lehrbuch des Kirchenrechts (Freiburg, 1900), 199; VON SCHERER, Handbuch d. Kirchenrechts (1886), I, 377; DOLHAGARY, Le commerce des clercs in Rev. des sciences eccl. (Nov., 1898; July, 1899).