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A Hstory Of The Councils Of The Church Volumes 1 to 5 by Charles Joseph Hefele D.D.

SEC. 284. The Frankish Synods about the middle of the Sixth Century

FROM the close of the previous period there elapsed more than a whole century, before Christendom again enjoyed the grand spectacle of an Œcumenical Council. In so much greater number we meet with a series of smaller, yet in many respects not unimportant Synods; and if hitherto the principal localities of such assemblies has been in the East, the majority are now celebrated in the West, especially in Spain and in France.

Soon after the outbreak of the controversy on the three chapters, and before the assembling of the fifth Œcumenical Council, five Synods were held in France, the description of which has been deferred to this place, in order not to interrupt the connection in the history of the controversy on the three chapters.

To the year 549 belongs the great fifth Synod of Orleans, the minutes of which were subscribed on October 28 of that year by seven archbishops, forty-three bishops, and twenty-one representatives of bishops. The seven archbishops were, according to the order followed in the minutes: Sacerdos of Lyons (probably president), Aurelian of Arles, Hesychius of Vienne, Nicetius of Trèves (Trier), Desideratus of Bourges, Aspasius of Elusa (Eause), and Constitutus of Sens. The bishop of the diocese of Orleans was not present, as he had been exiled on false accusations, and our Synod had been called by King Childebert II. of Paris (son of Chlodwig), among other things, also for the judging of his matters. He was found to be innocent, and restored. Besides this, a heresy which had become widespread in the neighbourhood of Orleans is said to have rendered the calling of the Council necessary. The old biography of Bishop Domitian of Trajectum on the Maas, edited by the Bollandists (ad 7 Maii), to which we are indebted for this information, speaks of the Arian heresy. But the first canon of our Synod refers to Monophysitism and Nestorianism, and as it falls quite in the time of the controversy about the three chapters, we may assume that the defenders of the three chapters reproached their opponents with Monophysitism, whilst these threw back the reproach of Nestorianism, or that the two parties had actually relapsed into these heresies. The biography goes on: “Immediately after the opening of the Synod the heretics had maintained their heresy with great pomp of eloquence, but Bishop Domitian, chosen by his colleagues as speaker, had overcome them by testimonies from Holy Scriptures, and had converted very many. The stiff-necked had been excommunicated, and exiled by the princes.”

The twenty-four canons of this Synod ordain:—

1. The rejection of the Euctychian and Nestorian heresies.

2. No bishop shall excommunicate an orthodox man for unimportant causes.

3. No bishop, priest, or deacon may have a strange woman in his house; and even women related to him must not be in his house at unsuitable hours.

4. If a cleric of any degree whatever returns again to the nuptial bed, he shall for his whole lifetime be deprived of the dignity of his Ordo (ab honore accepti ordinis), and deposed from his office (ab officio); but the communion must be given to him.

5. No bishop may advance any cleric or lector, or claim him as his own, unless his bishop assents. If, however, he does so, he must not say Mass for six months, and the person promoted by him shall be suspended ab honore vel officio, according to the judgment of his own bishop (vel = et, see vol. iii. sec. 164).

6. No bishop must ordain a slave or freedman without the assent of his master or emancipator. If he does so he must not say Mass for six months, and the person ordained by him must be given back to his master, but must be treated by him in accordance with his (clerical) position. If this is not done the bishop must give the master two other slaves and demand back the ordained person for his own Church.

7. When slaves are liberated by their masters the Church must protect their liberty.

8. If the bishop has died in a city, no other bishop must ordain clerics or dedicate altars in that city or in the rural parishes during the vacancy of the see, or take away anything of the property of the Church.

9. No layman must be ordained bishop within a year of his conversion (see sec. 237, c. 2). Within this period he shall receive accurate instruction in clerical discipline and rules from learned and approved men.

10. No one must obtain a bishopric by presents or purchase, but with the assent of the King after his election by clergy and laity, in accordance with the ancient canons; the new bishop shall be consecrated by the metropolitan or his representative in union with the comprovincials. If anyone purchases a bishopric he is to be deposed.

11. No one must be forced upon a diocese as bishop against their will, and the citizens and clergy may not be constrained by the powerful to assent to such an intrusion. One who is intruded by force loses the episcopal dignity for ever.

12. No bishop shall during his lifetime have a successor given to him, or another bishop put in his place, unless he is deposed for a capital offence.

13. No one must keep back or alienate what has been given to churches, monasteries, xenodochia [guest-houses for the reception of pilgrims, etc.], or the poor. If anyone does so he shall, in accordance with the old canons, as a murderer of the poor (secs. 220 and 222), be excommunicated until he gives back what he has withdrawn.

14. No bishop or other cleric, and in general no one, must appropriate or take in possession the goods of another church.

15. In regard to the xenodochion, which King Childebert and his consort Ultrogotho founded in Lyons, the bishop of Lyons must claim none of its goods for himself or his church. And, in general, if anyone of any position attacks the rights of this xenodochion, he shall be smitten with perpetual anathema (cf. Kellner, Das Buss- und Strafverfahren, Trier 1863, S. 84).

16. Whoever wishes to take back what he himself or one of his forefathers has presented to priests or churches or other holy places, shall, as a murderer of the poor (see c. 13), be smitten with excommunication.

17. If anyone has a dispute with a bishop or administrator of Church property (actor), let him first endeavour to have a peaceful understanding with him. If he does not succeed, let him appeal to the metropolitan. If the accused bishop, after two admonitions of the metropolitan, neither satisfies his opponent nor himself appears before the metropolitan, he must be shut out a caritate of the metropolitan (see vol. iii. secs. 164 and 200, c. 20, note
until he appears and gives satisfaction as to the contention. If it is shown that he was molested without reason, the unjust accuser shall be excommunicated for a year. If, however, the metropolitan has been approached twice by one of his comprovincial bishops in a case and has not heard him, the bishop may bring his affair before the next Synod, and that which the comprovincials declare to be right he shall observe.

18. Renewal of c. 19 of the second Synod of Arles (vol. iii. sec. 164).

19. Girls who enter a convent of their own free will, or are offered by their parents, must remain a year in the garment that they wore on their admission. In a convent in which they are not continuously confined, they must wear the garment they brought with them three years, and not till then receive the habit of the order. If, subsequently, they go out and marry, they, together with their husbands, must be excommunicated. If they separate again from these, they may again obtain communion.

20. Prisoners should be visited by the archdeacon or provost of the Church every Sunday, so that their need may, in accordance with the command of God, be lightened by mercy. The bishop must appoint a faithful and diligent person to care for the needs of prisoners. The necessary cost they must receive from the Church.

21. The bishop must specially care for lepers, for their food and clothing.

22. If a slave has fled into a church (for asylum), in accordance with the ancient ordinances (sec. 224), he must not be given back until his master has assured him of forgiveness on oath. If the master does not keep his promise, and in anyway tortures his slave, he must be shut out from all intercourse with the faithful. If, however, he has made that promise, and the slave will not leave the church, then his master may take him by force. If the master is a heathen or a sectary, he must produce several good Christian persons as guarantors for his promise, that he will forgive his servant.

23. A provincial Synod shall take place every year.

24. The old canons shall remain in force.

Soon after the end of the fifth Synod of Orleans, probably in the same year, 549, ten of the bishops who had been there met in a new Council at Clermont in Auvergne, Arvernense II., among them the four archbishops named above, of Vienne, Tréves, Bourges, and Elusa. The real reason of this new assembly is unknown, and we know of it only that it repeated the canons of the Synod of Orleans. According to the codex which Sirmond found at Toulouse, they had done this only in reference to the first fifteen canons and the seventeenth; but Mansi discovered a second codex which contained an excerpt from all of these canons, excepting only the one before last, and ascribed them to our Synod of Clermont. Still earlier Peter de Marca and Peter la Lande had obtained from the archives of the church of Urgel (in Spain) the Præfatio of our Synod, which is nothing else but the uninteresting Præfatio of the fifth Council of Orleans increased by four lines.

On the 1st of June, probably of the year 550, a Synod was held at Toul, by command of King Theodebald of Austrasia, under the presidency of Archbishop Nicetius of Trèves. The Acts are no longer extant, but we still possess a statement relating to this assembly from Archbishop Mappinius of Reims to Nicetius, to the effect that King Theodebald (whom Mappinius calls his “Son and Lord”) had summoned him to Toul to a Synod on the 1st of June without saying anything of its purpose. He had therefore immediately petitioned for further information, and had learnt that Nicetius had been in different ways oppressed and persecuted by certain Frankish magnates whom he had excommunicated on account of incestuous marriages. Mappinius assures him now of his sympathy, but does not conceal his view that he ought to have applied to him (his neighbour metropolitan) rather than to the King. Finally, he remarks that he had received the King’s second letter only on the 27th or 28th of May, and therefore it was impossible that he should appear at Toul on the 1st of June. It seems almost as though he had been unwilling to come, as Reims and Toul are only about forty hours distant, and both belonged to Austrasia.

A quite short account of a Synod at Metz we owe to S. Gregory of Tours (Hist. Franc iv. 6, 7). He relates: “After the death of Bishop S. Gallus of Clermont, the bishops who were present for the funeral wanted to consecrate Cato, a priest of that place, as his successor. Out of pride, however, he refused to accept consecration from them, saying: ‘Return to your cities, nam ego canonice assumpturus sum honorem.’ ” What Cato meant Gregory does not tell us, but he adds: “Elected by the majority of the clergy of Clermont to be bishop, even before his ordination Cato oppressed Archdeacon Cautinus, on which account he fled to King Theodebald. The King now summoned a Synod to Metz, and by this Cautinus was consecrated bishop of Clermont.” The time of this Synod cannot be determined more exactly than that it could not have taken place before the year 549 nor after 555; for in 549 Bishop Gallus of Clermont was present at the Synod of Orleans just mentioned, and in 555 King Theodebald of Austrasia died.

About the same time falls the second Synod of Paris. There were present six metropolitans: Sapaudus of Arles (the successor of S. Aurelian, sec. 261), who was probably president, Hesychius of Vienne, Nicetius of Trèves (Trier), Probian of Bourges, Constitutus of Sens, and Leontius of Bordeaux, together with twenty-one other bishops. The synodal decree says: “King Childebert convoked the Synod in order to arrange several matters affecting the Church, and particularly to provide for the see of Paris, whose bishop, Sassaric, had recently been deposed. The Acts passed in regard to him were read; and when they came to the place at which Sassaric confessed his fault before several bishops and other clergy (the judges), the latter were requested by the Synod to make a fresh declaration on the subject, and declared that Sassaric had, in fact, made such a voluntary confession. Another bishop, Ardacius, further testified that he had heard the same from Sassaric’s own mouth. Thereupon the Synod unanimously confirmed the sentence of the previous judges, that Sassaric should henceforth live in a monastery, and according to his own confession deserved deposition, since the offence of which he had been guilty (its nature is not mentioned) was regarded as capital by the old canons. The archbishop (of Sens), however, was requested, in accordance with the ordinance of the recent Synod of Orleans in regard to capital offences (canon 12), to ordain a new bishop for Paris. So far the minutes go. From another source we know that now Eusebius was appointed bishop of Paris. As, however, S. Germanus was present as bishop of Paris at the third Synod of Paris, A.D. 557, as we shall shortly see, Eusebius must have been dead in that year; so that Le Cointe, Remi Ceillier, and others have thought it advisable to remove the second Synod of Paris to the year 551, and not, with Sirmond, Hardouin, and others, to place it in the year 555.

To the same year, 551, belonged also the Synod of Elusa, held by Archbishop Aspasius of Elusa (Eause) with his suffragans. This Synod was formerly entirely unknown to us until Professor Dr. Friedrich published its minutes from a parchment codex in the Court and State Library at Munich, belonging to the eighth or ninth century (formerly belonging to the monastery of Diessen). Dr. Friedrich’s essay, Drei unedirte Concilien der Merovingerzeit [“Three Unedited Councils of the time of the Merovingians”], appeared A.D. 1867. The seven canons of this Synod are, in their principal contents, of the following purport:—

1. Quicumque post acceptam pœnitentiam ad thorum uxorum suarum, sicut canis ad vomitum, redisse probantur (see sec. 211), vel aliis, tam viri quam feminæ, se illicite conjunxisse noscuntur, tam a communione quam a limitibus ecclesiæ vel convivio catholicorum sequestratos esse cognoscant.

2. Si quis vero episcopus, presbyter, diaconus secum extraneam mulierem præter has personas, quas sancta synodus (sec. 222) in solatio clericorum esse constituit, habere forte præsumpserit, aut ad cellarii secretum, tam ingenuam quam ancillam, ad nullam (? ullam) familiaritatem habere voluerit, deposito omni sacerdotali sacrificio remotus se a liminibus sanctæ ecclesiæ vel (= et, see 5th Syn. of Orleans, c. 5, above) ab omni conloquio catholicorum suprascriptæ synodi ordine feriantur.

3. De incantatoribus volens (?), qui instinctu diaboli cornua præcantare dicuntur, si superiores forte personæ (sint), a liminibus excommunicatione pellantur ecclesiæ, humiliores vero personæ vel servi, correpti ad judicium fustigentur, ut si se timore Dei corrigi forte dissimulant, velut scriptum est, verberibus corrigantur.

4. Sacerdotum vero vel (= et) omnium clericorum negotia (= processes), ut non apud laicos, nisi apud suos comprovinciales episcopos suas exerceant actiones, sanctæ synodi Arausicanæ præcepta convenit custodire, ea videlicet ratione, ut si quis suprascripta præcepta contempserit, excommunicatione omnium ac detestatione dignus habeatur. Pariter, ut si quis spreto suo pontifice ad laici patrocinia fortasse confugerit, cum fuerit a suo episcopo repetitus, et laicus eum defensare voluerit, similis eos excommunicationis pœna percellat.

5. De ordinatione vero clericorum id convenit observari, ut cum presbyter aut diaconus ab episcopo petitur ordinandus, præcedentibus diebus viii. populus quemquam ordinandum esse cognoscat, et si qua vitia in eo populus forte esse cognoscit, ante ordinationem dicere non desistat; ut si nullus comprobatione certa contradicturus exstiterit, absque ulla hesitatione benedictionem inspector mereatur accipere.

6. Si quis vero pro remedio animæ suæ mancipia vel loca Sanctis ecclesiis vel monasteriis offerre curaverit, conditionem quam qui donaverit scripserit, in omnibus observetur, pariter et de familiis ecclesiæ id intuitu pietatis et justitiæ convenit observari, ut familiæ Dei leviore, quam privatorum servi, opere teneantur, ita ut quarta tributi vel quodlibet operis sui, benedicentes Deo, ex præsente tempore sibi a sacerdotibus concessa esse congaudeant.

7. Nam sicut patrum sanctorum nostrorum præcepta declarant, semel in anno sanctas congregationes episcoporum per loca, qua convenerit, specialiter convenit observari; quam rem si quis nostrorum fortasse contempserit, usque ad aliam congregationem. sit (a) charitate fratrum suspensus. Kal. Feb. anno xl. regni domini nostri Hildiberthi et Hlotari regis.

Besides the Metropolitan Aspasius, the subscribers were Julian (of Bigorra), Proculeianus (of Auscii = Auch), Liberius (of Acqs), Theodore (of Conserans), Amelius (of Cominges), and three other suffragans whose sees cannot be ascertained.

The first two Synods which followed immediately after the fifth Œcumenical Council were, like it, occasioned by the controversy on the three chapters, and have therefore already been described by us (secs. 275 and 278). I refer to the Synods of Jerusalem and Aquileia, between 553 and 555, of which the former agreed with the fifth Œcumenical Council, while the latter opposed it. Whether the bishops of Illyricum, under the Metropolitan Frontinus of Salona in Dalmatia, also held a Synod there, and gave common expression in opposition to the decrees of the fifth Œcumenical Council, must remain doubtful (sec. 277 above).

The series of Frankish Synods was again continued, in the year 554, by the fifth of Arles. The short minutes still extant, of date June 29, 554 (forty-third year of Childebert the son of Chlodwig), show that Archbishop Sapandus of Arles presided. Besides him, eighteen other bishops and representatives of bishops subscribed, most, but not all, belonging to the ecclesiastical province of Arles. The Prœfatio of the minutes speaks of the provincial Synods, that by them the old canons should be brought again to remembrance, and new ordinances should be drawn up.

Canon 1 orders that all the comprovincial bishops, in regard to the oblations which are offered in the church, should be required to imitate the practice of the Metropolitan Church of Arles, under penalty of exclusion a charitate fratrum. (See c. 17 of Orleans 5, above.)

2. Monasteries and the discipline of monks belong to the bishop in whose diocese the monastery is situated.

3. No abbot must, without permission of the bishop, be absent from his monastery for a length of time.

4. No priest must depose a deacon or subdeacon without knowledge of the bishop. If he does so, the person deposed shall be received back into communion, and he who deposed him shall be excommunicated for a year.

5. The bishop must have a care of the convents for women in his city, and the abbess must do nothing against the rule.

6. The clergy must not deteriorate the property of the Church which the bishop intrusts to them. If they do so, the younger of them (under the subdeacon) must be chastised, the elder must be regarded as murderers of the poor.

7. No bishop must advance a strange clergyman to any ecclesiastical rank without a letter from his bishop. If he does so, the person ordained loses the dignity received (ab honore, quem acceperit, remotus), and must not discharge the function committed to him; the person ordaining will be excluded from communion for three months. Cf. vol. iii. secs. 109, 113, 162, 164; above, 209, 237, 246; particularly canon 20 of Chalcedon, note
vol. iii. sec. 200.

We know but very little of a Council in Britanny (the place is unknown), probably in the year 555, at which Bishop Macliavus or Maclivus of Vannes was punished with excommunication because, after the death of his brother Chanaus, Count of Britanny, he abandoned the clerical position, assumed the government of the country, and was restored to his wife, whom he had married before his entrance into the clerical state.

In the same way nothing is known exactly of the holding of the third Synod at Paris. As, however, Bishop Euphronius of Tours was present there, and the seventh year of his episcopate coincides with the second year of King Sigebert, i.e. with the year 563, we assume the year 556 as the first year of the administration of that bishop, and in that case our Synod could not have been held before 556. Sirmond and others place it therefore in the year 557. Archbishop Probianus of Bourges presided. Besides him there were present Archbishop Prætextatus of Rouen and thirteen other bishops, scarcely any of whose sees are named. The most famous was S. Germanus of Paris. The ten canons have the following contents:—

1. If anyone has Church property in his possession in an unrighteous way, and holds it back, he shall be excommunicated until he ceases from his fault. Such people are murderers of the poor (see above in this sec). The bishop, however, before he punishes them, must send forth an admonitio manifesta, so that the unrighteous possessor may be able to give back the property of the Church. If the latter neglects this restitution, and if he has to be compelled to it, then a speedy chastisement shall fall upon the robber. Moreover, no one, on pain of excommunication, in order to retain any Church property, shall maintain that it lies in another kingdom (than the Church to which it belongs), for the power of God knows no boundaries of kingdoms. So no one must retain any Church property under the pretext that it was granted to him in former times by the King. In opposition to such people the bishops in former times would have supported their claims upon the canons, and taken possession; but now, almost overwhelmed by losses, they must finally do so. If the unrighteous possessor of any Church property lives in another diocese, then shall the bishop (whose Church property he has in possession) inform the other bishop of it, so that the latter may either, by his exhortations, bring him to a better mind, or inflict canonical punishment upon him. If anyone, in the earlier times of the schism, has taken possession of Church goods, with permission of King Chlodwig, of blessed memory, and left it to his children, these must restore them. The bishops must not only preserve the documents of the diocese, but also the property of the Church, and must practically defend it.

2. In the same way as robbers of Church property must those be punished who encroach upon the property of the bishop.

3. A bishop, too, must not possess foreign property; he must restore it even without regard to the fact that the King has given it to him.

4. Incestuous marriages are forbidden, namely, those with the widow of one’s brother, with one’s stepmother, with the widow of one’s uncle (father or mother’s brother), with the sister of one’s wife, with one’s daughter-in-law, with one’s aunt (mother or father’s sister), with one’s stepdaughter and step-granddaughter.

5. No one must marry a virgin consecrated to God, either by rape or by courtship. So neither must marriage be contracted with those who have laid aside secular garments, and have vowed widowhood or virginity, on penalty of permanent excommunication.

6. No one must ask foreign property of the King. No one must seize a widow or a maiden, or ask her of the King, without the will of her parents, under penalty of excommunication.

7. No bishop must receive one who has been excommunicated by another bishop.

8. No one must be forced upon the city as bishop unless he has been elected with entire freedom by laity and clergy. He must not be appointed by command of the Prince, or in any other way against the will of the metropolitan and the comprovincials. If anyone ventures, leaning upon the royal command, to force himself into this high place, he must not be received by the comprovincials. If a comprovincial comes into union with him, he must be shut out from the communion of his colleagues. In regard to the dedication of bishops already accomplished, the Synod decrees that the metropolitan, with his comprovincials, or the neighbouring bishops chosen by him in common consultation, shall decide (as to their validity).

9. If descendants of slaves have been appointed (by their dying masters) to certain services at the graves, whether they are given over to the heirs or to the Church for protection, the conditions upon which they were discharged (set free), (so) the will of the departed in regard to them must in all ways be fulfilled. In case the Church entirely frees them from these services for the exchequer, they and their descendants must remain under the permanent protection of the Church, and pay money for protection.

10. All absent bishops are required to subscribe the foregoing ordinances.

Some other canons attributed to our Synod by the collectors of canons, Burchard of Worms and Ivo of Chartres, Mansi has placed in his collection; but they certainly belong to the time of Lewis the Pious. Cf. Mansi, l.c. p. 749 sqq.

SEC. 285. The Synods between the Years 560 and 575

The Collections of Councils mention three ancient British Synods at Llandaff in the year 560, held by Bishop Oudoceus in this his episcopal city in South Wales, in order to pronounce excommunication on three chieftans (Kings) for murders committed, and to impose upon them penances after their professing penitence. The brief accounts of them which have come to us show that they were only diocesan Synods, which were a little removed from each other in time, but the date of which cannot be more accurately given.

The information given by the Libellus Synodicus on two Synods at Constantinople and Antioch is uncertain. Of these the former was held A.D. 565, under the Emperor Justinian and by his wish, and confirmed the doctrine of the Monophysite Julian of Halicarnassus that the body of Christ was incorruptible (see sec. 208), and had as its consequence the banishment of the Patriarch Eutychius of Constantinople, who refused to subscribe. The other at Antioch anathematised the opponents of the Council of Chalcedon.

In the year 562 a Synod was held in Ireland, at Teilte (now Teltowe, a village near Kells, in County Meath). S. Columba, of a royal house, abbot of Derry and other Irish monasteries, when he was on a visit to his former teacher, Abbot Finnian, had privately made a copy of his Psalter. Finnian claimed this as his property (because a copy of his book), and the Irish Over-King Diarmid, Columba’s cousin, decided for Finnian. By this, and also through violation of the Church’s right of asylum by the King, Columba was so embittered that he stirred up an insurrection against him. It came to a bloody battle, and Diarmid was forced to flee. In consequence of this the Synod of Teilte, without inviting Columba, passed a sentence of excommunication upon him, because he had been guilty of causing bloodshed. Columba himself appeared at the Synod, and the excommunication was removed. But it was laid upon Columba that he must convert as many heathens as there were Christians who had perished through his fault. He therefore left his native country, and became the apostle of Scotland. The manuscript on which so much depended, was subsequently venerated by the Irish as a kind of national, military, and religious palladium, and still exists in the possession of the O’Donnell family.

The Synod of Braga, A.D. 563 (in the Spanish province of Galicia), is called the second at that place, reckoning as the first the supposed Synod of A.D. 411 (see vol. iii. sec. 118). There were present seven bishops of the province of Galicia, with their metropolitan, Lucretius of Braga, and many priests and clerics. At the very beginning the metropolitan declared that the bishops had long wished for a Synod, but that it had now, for the first time, become possible through the approval of King Ariamir. Galicia was occupied by the Suevi, and formed a separate kingdom under Arian princes. These were naturally averse to the meeting of the orthodox bishops in a Synod; but the case was altered when Ariamir, whom Gregory of Tours calls Charrarich, converted about A.D. 560 by S. Martin, bishop of Dumium, came over to the Catholic Church. Then was held the Synod of Braga, May 1, 563. On the proposal of the President, they first took up the subject of the Faith, in opposition to the Priscillianist heresy. We have already seen (vol. iii. sec. 167) that Pope Leo the Great called upon the Spanish bishops to take vigorous measures against the Priscillian heresy, and that, on his inducement, two great Spanish Synods occupied themselves with this matter, one at Toledo (of the bishops of the civil provinces of Tarragona, Carthagena, Lusitania, and Bætica), and the other in the province of Galicia (in municipio Celenensi, vol. iii. sec. 167). Only of the former do we still possess the Acts, namely, a creed and eighteen canons. Both documents were now again read at Braga, and seventeen new capitula added in condemnation of the Priscillianist heresy, with the introductory remark: If anyone, cleric, monk, or layman, so think or defend such doctrine, he shall be cut off as an unworthy member from the body of the Catholic Church. The canons are as follows:—

1. If anyone does not confess that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost are three persons of one substance, or power, or might, as the Catholic and apostolic Church teaches; and if, further, anyone recognises only a single Person, so that HE who is the Son is also the Father and the Paraclete, as Sabellius and Priscillian teach, let him be anathema.

2. If anyone introduces any names of the Godhead, besides those of the Holy Trinity, maintaining that in the Godhead there is a trinity of the Trinity, as the Gnostics and Priscillianists teach, let him be anathema.

3. If anyone says that the Son of God, our Lord, did not exist before HE was born of Mary, as Paul of Samosata, Photinus, and Priscillian taught, let him be anathema.

4. If anyone does not reverence the birthday of Christ, but fasts on this day and on Sunday, because he does not believe that Christ was born in true human nature, like Cerdo, Marcion, Manichæus, and Priscillian, let him be anathema.

5. If anyone believes that the souls of men and angels have come from the substance of God, as Manichæus and Priscillian maintain, let him be anathema.

6. If anyone says that the souls of men sinned first in the heavenly abodes, and therefore were cast down into human bodies upon the earth, let him be anathema.

7. If anyone denies that the devil was at the beginning a good angel, created by God, and maintains that he came up from chaos and darkness, and had no creator, but is himself the principal and the substance of evil, as Manichæus and Priscillian taught, let him be anathema.

8. If anyone believes that, because the devil has produced some things in the world, he thus also makes, by his own power, thunder and lightning, and storms, and drought, as Priscillian taught, let him be anathema.

9. If anyone believes that the souls and bodies of men are subjected by destiny to certain stars, as the heathen and Priscillian taught, etc.

10. If anyone believes that the twelve signs (of the zodiac), which the mathematicians are wont to observe, are distributed over the particular members of the soul and the body, and assigned to the names of the patriarchs, as Priscillian taught, etc.

11. If anyone condemns matrimony, and abhors procreation, like Manichæus and Priscillian, etc.

12. If anyone says that the formation of the human body is a work of the devil, and that conception in the womb of woman is produced by the action of demons, and therefore does not believe in the resurrection of the flesh, like Manichæus and Priscillian, etc.

13. If anyone says that the production of all flesh generally is not a work of God, but of evil angels, as Manichæus and Priscillian taught, etc.

14. If anyone declares flesh meat, which God has given to man for use, to be unclean, and so abstains from it, not for the chastening of the body, but because of its supposed uncleanness, so that he does not use even vegetables cooked with flesh, like Manichæus and Priscillian, etc.

15. If a cleric or monk adopts any other woman besides his mother, or sister, or aunt (thia), or other near blood relation, and keeps them with him and dwells with them, as the Priscillianist sect teaches, etc.

16. If anyone on the Thursday before Easter, at the Cæna Domini, does not, at the appointed time, after hours, keep Mass (missas non tenet) fasting in the church, but, after the manner of the Priscillianist sect, keeps the festival of that day, after terce, with their fast discontinued by a Mass for the dead, etc.

17. If anyone reads the Scriptures, as falsified by Priscillian in accordance with his heresy, or the treatises of Dictinius which he wrote before his confession, or any other books of heretics, which they have invented under the names of patriarchs, prophets, or apostles, and receives or defends their impious fabrications, etc.

After the completion of this first business of the Synod, many older disciplinary canons of Œcumenical and special Synods were read, and also a letter from Pope Vigilius to Profuturus, the former bishop of Braga, of date 538, with reverent recognition of the authority of the apostolic see; and then twenty-two new capitula were drawn up for the securing of greater uniformity in ecclesiastical matters:—

1. One and the same kind of psalmody shall be used in morning and evening divine services everywhere, and nowhere, particularly not in monasteries, must special uses prevail.

2. At the vigils or (= and) Masses of festal days the same lessons shall be read everywhere in the church.

3. Bishops must greet the people in the same manner as the priests, with Dominus vobiscum, as has been the practice in the whole of the East since the time of the apostles, and they must not adopt the alteration introduced by the Priscillianists.

4. Mass must be celebrated everywhere in accordance with the formulary (Ordo), which was sent in writing from Rome, and received by Profuturus, a former metropolitan of Braga.

5. So in regard to baptism.

6. Bishops shall sit according to the time of their ordination; but the metropolitan has the first rank.

7. All Church revenues are to be divided into three parts: for the bishop, for the other clergy, for the repair and the luminaria of the church (sec. 222). Of the latter portion the archpresbyter, or archdeacon who administers for him, must give an account to the bishop.

8. No bishop must ordain a strange cleric without written permission from his bishop.

9. Deacons are not to wear the Ovarium (Stole) under the tunic (tunicella, dalmatic), but on the shoulder (in sight), because otherwise they could not be distinguished from the subdeacons.

10. Not every lector, but only the subdeacons are allowed to bear the holy vessels of the altar.

11. Lectors are not allowed to sing in church in secular clothing, nor to wear long hair.

12. Besides the Psalms of the Bible of the Old and New Testaments, nothing poetical shall be sung in the church, as the holy canons prescribe.

13. No layman may enter the sanctuary of the church, but only clerics for the reception of the communion.

14. Clerics who eat no flesh, must partake of vegetables cooked in flesh, in order to remove the suspicion of Priscillianism, under penalty of excommunication and deposition.

15. No one must hold intercourse with excommunicated persons.

16. No commemoration of suicides is to be made at the sacrifice, nor shall their bodies be buried with psalmody. So also with regard to criminals executed.

17. So with catechumens who die before baptism.

18. Corpses must not be interred within churches, but, for the most part, outside the walls of the church.

19. A priest who ventures, after being forbidden, to consecrate the chrism, or to consecrate churches or altars, shall be deposed from his office (vol. ii. sec. 112, c. 20; and 406 below).

20. No layman is to be made priest until he has learnt the ecclesiastical discipline a whole year as lector or subdeacon, and has risen through all the orders up to the Sacerdotium.

21. That which has been presented by the faithful, or which has been offered for prayers for the departed, must be collected by a cleric, and distributed, once or twice a year, among all the clerics, since a great inequality and thence discord arises, when each one is allowed to retain for himself the offerings which fall in his week.

22. The more ancient canons read in this Council must be observed by all, under pain of deposition.

At the close, the metropolitan requested the bishops individually to publish these ordinances in their dioceses, and to excommunicate all clerics and monks infected with the Priscillianist heresy, under penalty of proper excommunication.

For the carrying out of the 7th canon of the third Synod of Paris, Leontius, metropolitan of Bordeaux, assembled the bishops of his province, in the year 563, at Xaintes (Concilium Santonense, i.), in order to depose Emerius, the bishop of this city, because he had been intruded in an uncanonical manner. King Chlotar I. had ordered him to be consecrated without the assent of the metropolitan and in his absence. In his place the Synod raised Heraclius, a priest of Bordeaux, to be bishop of Xaintes, and sent him to Paris, to King Charibert, in order to obtain his assent. On his way thither he requested Euphronius, archbishop of Tours, to subscribe the synodal decree; but he refused. It was still worse in Paris; for King Charibert was furious with them for wanting to invalidate an ordinance of his father Chlotar. He caused Heraclius to be placed on a car full of thorns, sent him into exile, restored Emerius, and fined Archbishop Leontius a thousand pieces of gold, and the other members of the Synod in proportion. So it is related by Gregory of Tours, Hist. Franc. lib. iv. c. 26.

Gregory of Tours (ibid. lib. v. c. 21) also refers to the second Synod of Lyons, which took place A.D. 567. Occasion for it was given by two bishops, Salonius of Embrun and Sagittarius of Gap (Vapingum), who had been guilty of several acts of violence, murders, adulteries, and other crimes. In particular, they had fallen upon Victor, bishop of Augusta Tricastinorum (S. Paul de trois Chateaux), as he was celebrating his birthday, with an armed band, ill-treated and robbed him, and killed his servants. When King Guntram of Orleans learnt this, he ordered the Synod of Lyons to be held. Those two bishops were here found guilty and deposed. They appealed to Rome, and Pope John III. ordered them to be restored, which, in fact, was carried out by the King. Immediately they became reconciled to Bishop Victor, who again entered into communion with them. For this reason he was put out of communion by the bishops who had been present at our Synod, because he had renewed intercourse with one whom they had excommunicated, and this on a charge preferred by himself. So far Gregory of Tours. The matter of the two bishops was handled anew at the second Synod of Chalons, A.D. 579. (See below, sec. 286.)

The second matter of business at our Synod of Lyons was the drawing up of six canons:—

1. If bishops from one ecclesiastical province have a controversy, they must be content with the sentence of the metropolitan and the comprovincials. If the quarrel is between bishops of different provinces, their metropolitans shall meet and decide the matter. If a bishop is injured by a colleague, or by anyone else, he must be defended by all his brethren in common.

2. That which bishops or other clerics have left by testament to the Church, or to anyone, shall remain unalterably in force, even if it is not quite in accordance with the ordo of the secular laws. Whoever interferes with such a legacy is shut out from all communion with the faithful until he makes restitution.

3. Whoever makes, or endeavours to make, a slave of one who has long lived in peace without question as to his (free) position, is to be excommunicated until he makes restitution.

4. If anyone is excommunicated by a bishop, he shall be regarded as excommunicated by all other bishops, until he who excommunicated him thinks him worthy of being received back.

5. That which former bishops have granted to any clerics, either from Church property in usufruct, or from their own property, to become theirs, future bishops must not venture to withdraw. If, however, these clerics have done wrong, the punishments shall be inflicted according to the quality of the person, and in accordance with the canons, on their persons, and not on their possessions.

6. In the first week of the ninth month, before the first Sunday in the month, all churches shall hold processions for intercession, in the same way as they are held, according to the ordinance of the Fathers, before the festival of the Ascension.

The minutes are subscribed by the two metropolitans, Philip of Vienne and Nicetius of Lyons, and also by six bishops and six representatives of bishops from the provinces of Vienne, Lyons, Trier (Trèves), and Arles.

Almost contemporaneous with the Synod just named was the second at Tours, where, on November 17, 567, in the Basilica of S. Martin, nine bishops, among them Euphronius, archbishop of Tours (President); Prætextatus, archbishop of Rouen, and S. Germanus of Paris, met, with the consent of King Charibert, for the restoration of ecclesiastical discipline. They summed up their ordinances in twenty-seven canons:—

1. Two provincial Synods shall be held annually, or if this should prove impossible, as in the past, then every year one at least. Only sickness, and nothing besides, not even a royal command, excuses non-appearance. If a bishop does not appear, he must remain in a state of exclusion from the communion of his colleagues until the next great Synod, and no bishop of any other province may have communion with him.

2. If bishops have quarrels among themselves, they must select priests (presbyteros) as umpires and mediators. If any one does not obey the sentence of those judges and mediators chosen by both sides, he shall be punished by the Synod.

3. “Ut corpus Domini in altari non in imaginario ordine sed sub crucis titulo componatur.” Some translate: “The body of the Lord, i.e. the particles of the broken consecrated bread, shall be laid upon the altar, not in an arbitrary order, according to the particular fancy of the priest, but in the form of the cross.” Others translate: “The body of the Lord shall not be placed on the altar in the series of the pictures, but shall be preserved under the cross.” That the former explanation is preferable has been shown by Binterim, Denkwürdigkeiten, Bd. ii Thl. ii. S. 166 f., note *, and Drs. Schwarz and Laib in the Studien über d. christl. Altar, Stuttgard 1857, S. 30. The same is clear also from the Mozarabic Liturgy, which prescribed a cruciform arrangement of the sacred particles (cf. the author’s treatise on Cardinal Ximenes, 2 Aufl. S. 160). It is further here to be remarked, as we have already seen (vol. iii. sec. 162), that in Gaul, as in Rome, the usage prevailed, during the Mass, to lay upon the altar a host previously consecrated, and to cast a portion of this host into the chalice. The particles of this host were ordered to be laid in the form of the cross.

4. As well at the vigils as at the Masses, the laity are not allowed to stand among the clergy near the altar on which the holy mysteries are solemnised; but the space between the railing and the altar is appointed only for the choirs of the singing clerks. At prayer, however (i.e. at private prayer, distinct from the divine service), and at communion, laymen, and also women, shall, in accordance with custom, enter the most holy place (sancta sanctorum).

5. Every community shall support its poor, and the poor shall not wander about in strange cities.

6. No cleric or layman must grant epistolia. This belongs to the bishop alone. (Sec. 247. Orleans, 2, c. 13.)

7. No bishop may depose an abbot or archpresbyter without consultation with the other abbots.

8. If a bishop knows that anyone is excommunicated by another bishop, and maintains communion with him, he himself is to be deprived of communion until the next Synod.

9. In the province of Armoricum no one must consecrate either a Breton or a Roman to be bishop, without the assent of the metropolitan and his comprovincials, under penalty of exclusion from the communion of the bishops until the next Synod.

10. No bishop, priest, deacon, or subdeacon may have with him any other woman than his mother, sister, or daughter to manage his household affairs; ror yet a woman belonging to a monastery, nor a widow, nor a maid.

11. No bishop must be negligent in carrying through this ordinance. The metropolitan must support his comprovincials in this, and they their metropolitan.

12. The bishop must regard his wife only as his sister. Wherever he resides he must be surrounded with clergy, and his abode and that of his wife must be separated from one another, that the clergy who serve him may come into no contact with the maidservants of the bishop’s wife.

13. A bishop who has no wife (episcopam) must have no woman in his retinue, and the clergy who serve him have the right to drive strange women out of the residence of the bishop.

14. No priest or monk must sleep in the same bed with another, in order to avoid every evil suspicion. The monks, moreover, are not to live alone, or by twos in separate cells, but all in common in one schola (= dormitorium, cf. Du Cange, s.v.), under the supervision of the abbot or provost. At the same time, two or three must keep awake and read in turns, while the others rest.

15. Whoever has entered a monastery must not leave it again and marry. If anyone does so, he is to be excommunicated, and, if necessary, with the help of the secular judge, must be separated from his wife. If the judge will not give this assistance, he is also excommunicated. Whoever defends a monk who has defiled himself by such a union is, like him, excommunicated until the monk returns to the monastery, and does the penance which the abbot lays upon him.

16. No woman may enter a man’s monastery. An abbot who suffers such a thing is excommunicated.

17. In regard to the fasts of monks the old ordinance shall continue. From Easter to Pentecost (Quinquagesima = Πεντεκοστή), with the exception of the Rogation Days, a prandium (breakfast or luncheon, before the cœna, about midday) shall be prepared daily for the monks. After Pentecost they shall fast for a week, and thenceforward, until the 1st of August, they shall fast three times a week, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, except the sick. In August there shall be prandium daily, because there are daily Missæ Sanctorum (not de feria). In September, October, and November, again, the fasts must be three times a week, as before; but in December, until Christmas, daily. From Christmas to Epiphany there shall be daily prandium, because every day is a festival. Excepted are only the three days in the beginning of January, in which the fathers, in order to oppose the heathen usages, ordered private litanies. On the 1st of January, the festival of the Circumcision, Mass shall be sung at eight o’clock. From the Epiphany until Lent there must be three fasts in the week.

18. In honour of S. Martin the following use of the Psalter shall be observed, both in his church and in others: On feast days (according to another reading, Æstivis diebus), at matins, six antiphons with every two psalms shall be sung; in the whole of August are manicationes (i.e. early rising, cf. Du Cange, s.v.), because in this month there are festivals and Masses of saints; in September there are seven antiphons with every two psalms; in October, eight with every three psalms; in November, nine with every three psalms; in December, ten with every three psalms; and the same number in January and February until Easter, more or fewer, as may be possible. But at matins there must never be fewer than twelve psalms, as at Sext six, and at the Duodecima twelve, with Hallelujah. If anyone takes less than twelve psalms at matins, he shall fast until evening, and then partake only of bread and water. Only in the next day may he again take refreshment.

19. As very many archpriests in the country, and also deacons and subdeacons, rest under suspicion of continuing intercourse with their wives, the archpriest must always have a cleric with him, who accompanies him everywhere, and has his bed with him in the same cell. In this seven subdeacons or lectors or laymen can change with one another. The remaining priests, deacons, and subdeacons shall take care, in the country, that their female slaves shall always live where their wives do; they themselves shall dwell and pray in their cells alone. If a priest has intercourse with his wife (presbytera), a deacon with his deaconess, a subdeacon with his subdeaconess, he is excommunicated for a year, deposed from his clerical office (for ever), and placed among the laity. He may sing only among the lectors. A priest who lives with his wife must not be reverenced by the people, but disapproved of, because he is a teacher, not of continence, but of vice.

20. Virgins who have taken the veil, and widows who have assumed the vow, must not marry again under penalty of excommunication (renewal of older ordinances of the second Synod of Arles, c. 52; see sec. 164; and of the Synod of Carthage, A.D. 418, c. 18, formerly erroneously attributed to the Council of Mileve; see vol. ii. sec. 119). The excuse does not avail that a virgin has altered her raiment (taken the veil) in order not to be defiled by an inferior; for it has been confirmed by Kings Childebert, Chlotar, and Charibert, that no one may compel a maiden to marriage against the will of her parents (sec. 284). If, then, a virgin fears violence, let her flee into the church until her relations can rescue her; and then she may marry. If, however, she changes her habit, she must abide by her purpose. In regard to widows, however, one may not say that they could marry again because they have not been dedicated. Their dedication is certainly forbidden; but their vow is still binding. (Vol. iii. sec. 162, c. 27.)

21. The old canons in regard to incestuous marriages shall remain in force. Several of them, belonging to the Synods of Orleans, Epaon, and Clermont (secs. 224, 231, 249) are adduced with passages from Scripture (Lev. 18:4 sqq., etc.).

22. Some still hold fast the old error, that they should honour the 1st of January. Others, on the festival of the See of Peter, present meat offerings to the dead, and partake of meats which have been offered to demons. Others reverence certain rocks, or trees, or fountains, etc. The priests should root out these heathenish superstitions.

23. Besides the Ambrosian hymns which we have in the canon, others also may be sung which are worthy of it, if the authors are named.

24. The property of the Church must not take harm by the mutual wars of the Frankish Kings against one another. If anyone (in warlike inroads into another part of the Frankish kingdom) plunders or confiscates Church property, he shall be exhorted to restitution; and if he remains obstinate, he shall at last be punished by all the bishops in common, with the singing of the 108th psalm [109], not only with excommunication, but also with anathema until his death. (Excommunication and anathema were, in ancient times, employed for the most part as identical. Where the two expressions are distinguished, anathema signifies the excommunicatio major, whilst by excommunication we are to understand only exclusion from the holy communion (minor). Later, however, after the appearance of the collection of decretals of Gregory IX. (thirteenth cent.), by anathema was understood the greater excommunication emphasised by execrations, etc. See Kober, Kirchenbann, S. 37 ff. Cf. below, on the third Synod of Braga, where we read of a solemn excommunication with the singing of Psalm 108 [109].)

25. Partial repetition of the first canon of the third Synod of Paris, in regard to Church property (sec. 284).

26. Judges or magnates who oppress the poor shall be excommunicated, unless they reform at the exhortation of the bishop.

27. It is not merely sacrilegious, but heretical, if a bishop takes money for the ordaining of clerics, as is explained in the book De dogmatibus ecclesiasticis (of Gennadius). Both the giver and the receiver of the money shall be excluded from the Church until the next Synod.

The Jesuit Sirmond recovered, from several MSS., a letter addressed to the Christian laity, either during the second Synod of Tours, or soon after it (as the superscription says), by four bishops who were members of that Synod, particularly Archbishop Euphronius of Tours. In this letter they summon the faithful to penitence and amendment, that they may escape the divine judgment which lies before them. The betrothed should put off their marriage, partly that by prayer and chastity they may propitiate God, partly that, if they perish in the misery lying before them, they may be cut off with a pure soul. From all property the tithe must certainly be paid, even every tenth slave, and so for every son the third of a pound must be given to the bishops for the redemption of prisoners. Enmities must be laid aside, incestuous unions dissolved.

Two other letters have reference to our Council, namely, a letter of the Queen, S. Radegundis (widow of Chlotar I.), in which she petitions the bishops for confirmation of the women’s convent established by her at Poitiers; and a second containing the answer.

On the 1st of January 607 of the Spanish era, i.e. 569 of our chronology, Theodomir of Galicia in Spain, the pious King of the Suevi, convoked the bishops of his kingdom in a Synod in the city of Lugo (ad Lucum), and, among other things, represented to them that his kingdom had too few bishoprics, and only one metropolitan see (Braga). The Synod was asked to assist in removing this evil. It did so, raised the city of Lugo to the rank of a second metropolis, designated other cities (not named) as episcopal sees, and circumscribed, with greater exactness, the Galician sees, now increased to the number of thirteen, so that no disputes might arise on that subject.

This short notice is all that can be discovered respecting the first Synod of Lugo. What the learned Garsias Loaisia further added in his Collectio Conciliorum Hispaniæ (1593) is partly spurious, e.g. the information disputing the circumscribing of the Spanish bishoprics under the Emperor Constantine the Great, partly it belongs to much later times. So with the tables of the Spanish archbishops and bishoprics which he added. The editor of España Sagrada, Florez, in the fourth volume of this great work, has denied the existence of the Synod of Lugo, and his continuer, the Augustine Manuel Risco, in the fortieth volume of that work, defends the statement of his predecessor against the objections of the Dean of Lugo, in a comprehensive Disertacion sobre los documentos de la santa Iglesia de Lugo, que se dicen Concilios Lucenses celebrados en el Reynado de los Sueoos, p. 299 sqq.

More important is the third (properly second) Synod of Braga in Spain, to which Miso, King of the Suevi (son of Theodomir), summoned the bishops of the three ecclesiastical provinces (here named utrumque concilium) of his kingdom of Galicia, A.D. 572. The two archbishops, Martin of Braga (formerly bishop of Dumium) and Nitigisius of Lugo, were at their head, and the former presided. On his proposal, first of all were read the capitula of the former Synod of Braga, at which he had been present as bishop of Dumium, and for their completion two other canons were drawn up. They all refer to Church discipline; and it is remarkable how Archbishop Martin, in the year 572, could say there is de unitate et rectitudine fidei in hac provincia nihil dubium, whilst only nine years before the previous Synod of Braga held it necessary to oppose the Priscillianists so vehemently (see above in this section). Are we to think that this heresy had in the meantime been so weakened as to be extinguished? The 10th canon of our Synod makes reference to this.

The ten canons ordain:—

1. Bishops must visit their dioceses and see that the clergy rightly discharge their functions, particularly that the catechumens are exorcised twenty days before baptism, and are instructed in the creed. The bishops should exhort the laity to keep far away from all worship of idols and from vices.

2. On these visitation tours the bishops must demand of each church no more than two solidi (in honorem cathedræ), and from the parochial clergy they shall require no menial services.

3. Ordinations must be imparted without remuneration.

4. Henceforth nothing shall be paid for the small portion of balsam (chrism) sent to the churches by the bishop for use in baptism.

5. If a bishop is petitioned to consecrate a church he must demand nothing for this, but he may receive a voluntary gift. He is not, however, to consecrate a church unless he has previously received a deed as to its adequate endowment.

6. It has already happened that persons have built a church from selfish motives, and then appropriated one-half of the offerings there presented. A church of that kind no bishop must consecrate.

7. As many put off the baptism of their children because they are unable to pay the baptismal fees, these are for the future abolished, and the clergy must demand nothing for baptism, but may receive a voluntary offering.

8. If anyone accuses a cleric of fornication, he must have two or three witnesses (according to 1 Tim. 5:19), otherwise the accuser is to be excommunicated.

9. The metropolitan shall declare the date of the next Easter festival to the bishops, and at Christmas, after the Gospel, it shall be proclaimed by every clergyman to the people. At the beginning of Lent, Litaniæ shall be held for three days.

10. It is a relic of the Priscillianist heresy that some priests hold and consecrate Masses for the dead after having previously partaken of wine. If anyone henceforth ventures thus to consecrate after he has partaken of anything, he shall be deposed by the bishop.

Some further canons, supposed to be of Braga, which Burchard cites from Worms and Gratian, are given by Aguirre and Mansi (ll.cc.).

Quite incredible is that which is related by the Spanish chronicler under Philip II., Hieronymus Moralis, and after him by Baronius, ad ann. 572, n. 10, respecting a second Synod of Lugo, A.D. 572. Even Florez and his continuator Manuel Risco have mentioned this in the España Sagrada (t. iv. n. xl. p. 252). It is quite correct that the often-named Archbishop Martin of Braga sent a collection and translation which he had made of eighty-four older Greek canons (Martin came from Pannonia) to Archbishop Nitigisius of Lugo, and universo concilio Lucensis ecclesiæ. But by concilium is here, as above, to be understood nothing else than an ecclesiastical province.

In France the fourth Synod of Paris was now celebrated. Gregory of Tours refers to it (Hist Franc. lib. iv. c. 48; earlier, 42) when he says: In order to put an end to a disagreement between Kings Guntrum and Sigebert, Guntrum convoked the bishops of his kingdom at a Synod in Paris.

As is well known, Guntrum and Sigebert were brothers, the latter King of Austrasia, the former of Burgundy; both sons of Chlotar I. Besides these, their brother Chilperich possessed the kingdom of Soissons; but the eldest brother Charibert had died A.D. 570, and they had divided his kingdom among them. There was hardly any cessation of war between the brothers, and although Guntrum and Sigebert partly united with one another against Chilperich, yet they were frequently in a state of hostility towards each other; so that it is unnecessary, with Valesius and Le Cointe, to alter the text of Gregory, as if he said: “In order to stop a quarrel between Chilperich and Sigebert, Guntrum convoked the Synod.”

The subject of the dispute between Guntrum and Sigebert was the appointment of a bishop at Chateaudun (Castello-Dunum). This castle belonged to the diocese of Chartres, but to the kingdom of Sigebert, whilst Chartres was under Guntrum. With Sigebert’s assent, Archbishop Ægidius of Reims consecrated the priest Promotus as bishop of Chateaudun, and thus raised this city to be a bishopric and separated it from the diocese of Chartres, without, however, any assent from Pappolus, bishop of Chartres. The latter made complaint at the fourth Synod of Paris, which was held on the 11th of September 573, in the Basilica of S. Peter (afterwards S. Geneviève). It was attended by thirty-two bishops and one priest as the representative of his bishop, and numbered among its members six metropolitans, Philip of Vienne, Sapaudus of Arles, Priscus of Lyons, Constitutus of Sens, Laban of Eause, and Felix of Bourges. Naturally S. Germanus of Paris was also present. They all subscribed the synodal letter to Archbishop Ægidius of Reims, in which his conduct was severely blamed, and the deposition of Promotus pronounced. In a second letter they exhorted King Sigebert no longer to protect that injustice.

In the latter letter, they say, among other things, that the Synod had been summoned non absque conniventia of Sigebert. But these seem to be only words of courtesy. Had Sigebert consented to examine the matter synodaliter, many bishops would have come out of his kingdom also to Paris, whilst those who were present belonged almost entirely to the dominion of Guntrum.

From another expression of our Synod at the beginning of its letter to Archbishop Ægidius of Reims it seems to come out, that that controversy was not the only subject of its transactions, for it says: “Dum pro causis publicis, privatorumque querelis Parisiis moraremur; but we know nothing further on the subject.

We further learn from Gregory of Tours (Hist. Franc. vii. 17), that Promotus was deposed after the death of Sigebert his king (575), and that his endeavours for restitution remained without effect.

SEC. 286. The Synods between the Years 575 and 589

To the year 575 belongs an Irish Concilium mixtum (a kind of Parliament and Synod united), which was celebrated under King Aedh or Aidus at Drum-ceitt (dorgum ceti = whale’s back) on the sea (now Drumkeath, in County Londonderry). S. Columba, the great national saint of Ireland and apostle of Scotland, was also present; and it was his eloquence that succeeded, in spite of the King’s will opposing, in securing the continuance of the bards, who had now for long been Christians; and now celebrated in song, as other Irish heroes, so also S. Columba, and this with special partiality. Moreover, the Irish monarch disclaimed, at this Synod, all supremacy over Albingens, King of the Dalriads, the Irish settlers in Scotland. S. Columba appears also to have brought this about.

In the same year, 575, was Sigebert, already mentioned as Frankish King of Austrasia, assassinated, whilst he was making war on his brother Chilperich, King of Soissons and Paris. His widow, Brunehilde, was taken at Paris, and exiled to Rouen. During her imprisonment, Merovæus, Chilperich’s son by his first marriage, had conceived an affection for her, and now married her at Rouen, without his father’s knowledge. In order to escape from the anger of Chilperich, they were both forced speedily to separate, and Brunehilde betook herself to Metz, to her young son, Childebert II., King of Austrasia. Between Chilperich and Merovæus, however, there arose so violent an enmity, that the son rebelled against the father, who excluded him from the succession, chiefly at the instigation of his wife Fredegunde, who wanted to cast out her stepson and obtain the whole inheritance for her children. Under her influence, Chilperich, when the fortune of war became more favourable to him, persecuted all the friends of Merovæus, and, among them, in particular, Prætextatus, archbishop of Rouen. He had him imprisoned, and sent him for condemnation before the fifth Synod of Paris, A.D. 577. As no Acts of this Synod are still extant, we know it only from Gregory of Tours (Hist. Franc. lib. v. c. 19). There were forty-five bishops, among them Gregory himself, assembled at Paris in the Basilica of S. Peter (later S. Geneviève). King Chilperich appeared in his own person, and complained that Archbishop Prætextatus had, in opposition to the canons, married Prince Merovæus to his aunt Brunehilde, had excited him to rebellion, had won the people over to him by presents, and had plotted the overthrow and death of the King, in order to raise up Merovæus in his place. False witnesses confirmed the accusation. After the King had gone out, Gregory of Tours, in a fine address, endeavoured to restore courage to the intimidated bishops, so as to secure an impartial consideration of the subject, but two colleagues denounced him (as it seems, Bertram of Bordeaux and Ragnemod of Paris). He was forced to appear before the King; but would not be won over either by threats or by flatteries; nor would he be won by the presents of Fredegunde.

Next day, at the second session, the King appeared again, and accused Archbishop Prætextatus of theft. He said he had made away with gold and valuables worth 5000 solidi. Prætextatus was able to show that these things were the property of Brunehilde, left by her in Rouen, and that the King himself well knew of this deposit. Chilperich saw that his proofs did not suffice, and that another way must be chosen. Some courtiers now had recourse to Prætextatus, and represented to him, under the appearance of goodwill, that he would most easily again obtain the favour of the King, if he would comport himself humbly before him and confess his faults. If he were to do this, the King would immediately forgive him. The archbishop consented to this, cast himself, at the third session, at the feet of Chilperich, and confessed that he had been in fault, and had plotted against the life of the King, in order to put the prince in his place. But the promised pardon did not follow. On the contrary, the King cast himself on his knees before the bishops, and demanded condemnation. Raised up again by the weeping bishops, he betook himself immediately to his residence, and then sent to the Synod a collection of canons, to which a new section was appended, containing the so-called apostolic canons. The 25th (24th) of these declares that a bishop, if he is guilty of fornication, or perjury, or theft, shall be deposed, but not deprived of communion (see App., can. 25 in vol. i). In the copy which the King sent, there was added “or murder”; and Chilperich now demanded not merely deposition, but solemn excommunication of the archbishop, with the singing of Psalm 108, and its forms of cursing. As the bishops, by the advice of Gregory of Tours, did not consent to this transgression of the canons, the King had Prætextatus arrested, on account of an attempted flight, severely beaten, and then deported to an island near Coutances in Normandy. Melanius or Melantius received the see of Rouen; but after the death of the King (584) the citizens of Rouen brought Prætextatus back with great rejoicings. He betook himself immediately to Paris, to King Guntrum, the guardian of the young Chlotar II. (son of Chilperich), and demanded a new inquiry. The Queen-widow, Fredegunde, maintained that he had been deposed by forty-five bishops; but, as Bishop Ragnemod of Paris declared that only penance had been imposed upon him, and not complete deposition, he was received into favour by the King, and restored to his bishopric.

We cannot ascertain with certainty the time at which the Concilium Brennacense was held. Gregory of Tours, here our only authority, gives no very exact information on the subject, and the suppositions range between 577 and 581. In earlier times it was assumed that Braine, near Soissons, was the place at which this Synod was held; but Abbé Lebeuf has shown clearly that we must think of the royal domain of Berni (Bergni, Bargni) between Paris and Soissons (fourteen leagues from Paris, and seven from Soissons). On this occasion Gregory of Tours himself is on his trial. Leudastes, who had raised himself from the lowest rank, through every kind of grade, up to the dignity of a count or governor of Tours, and in this capacity had been guilty of much wrong-doing and violence, informed King Chilperich that Gregory of Tours had accused Queen Fredegunde of adulterous intercourse with Bishop Bertechram (Bertram) of Bordeaux. Chilperich, therefore, held the Synod of Berni, and Gregory purged himself there, since he denied under oath that he had originated that accusation against the Queen. He was thereupon declared innocent, and Leudastes, who had taken to flight, was punished with general excommunication.

We referred above to Bishops Salonius and Sagittarius, and mentioned that they were deposed by the second Synod of Lyons in 567, but had been restored by Pope John III. As, however, they persevered in their offences, King Guntrum convoked the second Synod of Chalons sur Marne on their account, A.D. 579. They were accused of adultery, manslaughter, and high treason, deposed, and detained in the Basilica of S. Marcellus. Subsequently they succeeded in escaping; but others obtained their sees.

This or another Synod at Chalons is mentioned in an old document of doubtful genuineness, found among the manuscripts of the learned Jesuit Sirmond, but first communicated by the later collectors of Councils, Labbe, Hardouin, and Mansi. According to this document, a pious woman at Maurienne received intelligence from some monks, who came from Jerusalem, of the relics of S. John the Baptist, and did not rest until she discovered them. Thereupon King Guntrum had a church built at Maurienne, and, at a Synod at Chalons, Felmasius was ordained as the first bishop of Maurienne, in the ecclesiastical province of Vienne.

To the year 579 also that Synod of Xaintes (Santonensis) probably belongs, at which Count Nantinus of Angoulême gave back the Church property which he had seized, and so was released from the sentence of excommunication which Bishop Heraclius of Angoulême had suspended over him.

We have spoken of the supposed Synod of Grado, of A.D. 579, in the history of the controversy on the three chapters (sec. 280), and therefore we now pass on to the first Synod of Macon (Matisconensis I.), which was summoned by the Frankish King Guntrum in the year 581. It was attended by twenty-one bishops from several ecclesiastical provinces, and the most distinguished were the four archbishops, Priscus of Lyons, Evantius of Vienne, Artemius of Sens, and Remedius of Bourges. The Synod occupied itself, according to the Præfatio of the minutes, partly with public affairs, partly with the care of the poor, and drew up nineteen canons:—

1. Bishops, priests, and deacons shall have no intercourse with strange women. Only grandmother, mother, sister, or niece may, when necessary, live with them.

2. No cleric or layman, unless he is of proved virtue and of advanced age, may for any reason enter a nunnery and have private converse with the nuns; and in general they must only come into the common room. Jews, in particular, must not have access to nunneries.

3. No woman may enter a bishop’s chamber, unless two priests or deacons are present.

4. If anyone retains what departed persons have offered to the Church, he will be excommunicated.

5. No cleric may wear secular garments, shoes, or weapons. If he does so, he shall be imprisoned for thirty days, and kept on bread and water.

6. An archbishop may not say Mass without the pallium.

7. If a secular judge imprisons or punishes a clergyman without the assent of the bishop, except for criminal causes, i.e. murder, theft, and fraud, he must be excluded from the Church by the bishop at his pleasure.

8. No cleric may bring another before a secular judge. If a younger (inferior) cleric does so, he is to receive forty blows save one; if he belongs to the higher clergy, he is to be imprisoned for thirty days.

9. From S. Martin’s Day until Christmas, a fast must be kept on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday of each week (sabbati, cf. Du Cange, s.v.). The Sacrifice must be offered after the manner of the Lenten season. The canons, too, shall be read at this time, so that no one may plead ignorance in defence of a fault.

10. Clerics may not, without the bishop’s permission, celebrate feast days elsewhere.

11. Higher clerics who persist in connubial intercourse are deposed.

12. A virgin vowed to God, who marries, shall, together with him to whom she has united herself, be excommunicated to the end of life. If both, in penitence, dissolve their union, the bishop shall exclude them from communion as long as he thinks good.

13. Jews may not be judges or tax-gatherers over Christians.

14. From Thursday in Holy Week to the Easter festival, in accordance with an ordinance of the late King Childebert, Jews may not show themselves on streets and public places, because they have done so to insult Christians. Moreover, they must testify respect to all clerics, and must not sit down before priests, unless they are invited to do so.

15. No Christian may partake of meals with Jews under penalty of excommunication.

16. No Christian must henceforth be slave to a Jew; and if a Jew has a Christian slave, any Christian can purchase him for 12 soldi, either in order to set him free, or to employ him as his own slave. If the Jew is not contented, and hesitates to accept the sum defined, the Christian slave may live with Christians where he will. If, however, a Jew is convicted of having wanted to persuade a Christian slave to apostasy, he loses the slave and the right to make a will.

17. If anyone misguides, or seeks to misguide, another to false witness or perjury, he is to be excommunicated for life. Those who agree with him in his perjury are dishonourable, and may not again offer evidence.

18. If anyone accuses the innocent before the judges or the King, if a layman, he is to be excommunicated; if a higher cleric, to be deposed, until he has given satisfaction.

19. The nun Agnes has given largely of her property to magnates, in order, through them, to obtain protection in her disorderly free life. Giver and receivers are excommunicated.

Among the heretical Synods of this time we note only a single one, the Arian Synod at Toledo in 581 or 582; and for this reason, that its members, returning to the orthodox Church at the Synod of Toledo of 589, themselves made reference to this earlier assembly.—Leovigild, King of the West Goths, known as a violent, persecuting Arian, summoned, in the twelfth year of his reign (581 or 582), his Arian bishops to a Synod at Toledo, and they decided that the Catholics who went over to Arianism should not be rebaptized, but should only be purged by the laying on of hands. Also, the form of doxology, “Glory be to the Father through the Son,” etc., should be used.—In consequence of this ordinance, as we are informed by the Spanish chronicler John Biclariensis, a contemporary, many Catholics were perverted. That this Synod also published a Libellus, in order to bring about the perversion of the Romans (the Roman provincials) to Arianism, is mentioned at the third Synod of Toledo (589).

On the 22nd of May 583 there met at Lyons (Lugdunensis III.), under the presidency of Priscus, the archbishop of that place, seven bishops and several representatives of bishops, from different ecclesiastical provinces, and ordained:—

1. Clerics, from a subdeacon upwards, must have no strange woman in the house, and the married clergy may not live with their wives.

2. If bishops send out letters of recommendation to a needy person, or a prisoner, the signature must be indubitable, and at the same time there should be noted how high the sum runs for the redemption of the prisoner, and what needs he has.

3. Nuns who desert their nunneries are excommunicated until they return. Only the Viaticum may be granted to them.

4. In regard to incestuous marriages, the old ordinances prevail.

5. Christmas and Easter must be celebrated by each bishop in his own Church.

6. The lepers of every city shall receive food and clothing from their own bishop, and may not go abroad to beg.

Of the second Synod at Valence, in May or June 584, we know only that it confirmed the pious ordinances of King Guntrum and his family, and that there were present there forty bishops, under the presidency of Archbishop Sapandus of Arles.

Of greater significance was the second Synod of Macon on the 23rd of October 585, a kind of French general Council. As already indicated, the whole jurisdiction of the Frankish dominion was divided into only three kingdoms, under Guntram of Burgundy, Chlotar II. of Paris, and Childebert II. of Austrasia (see Synod 4 of Paris in sec. 285). Actually, however, Guntram ruled two kingdoms, as he was guardian to Chlotar II., who was under age. From the two kingdoms subject to him the bishops were now assembled at Macon, forty-three in person, twenty by representatives, and, besides these, two bishops who had no sees of their own, namely, that Promotus of Chateaudun whom we noticed above, and Bishop Froniminus of Agde, who had been expelled by the Goths. Priscus, archbishop of Lyons, presided. He is named patriarch in the Præfatio of the minutes, a title with which, in former times, the primates of whole countries, e.g. the Bishops of Toledo and Canterbury, were not infrequently honoured. Besides him there were present the Metropolitans Evantius of Vienne, Prætextatus of Rouen (lately restored), Bertechram of Bordeaux, Artemius of Sens, and Sulpitius of Bourges. Sapaudus of Arles had sent a representative.

The twenty canons treat:—1. Of the sanctifying of the Sunday. 2. Of the six days’ feast of Easter (from Maundy Thursday to Easter Tuesday inclusive, all servile work is forbidden). 3. Cases of necessity excepted, no one must henceforth be baptized on any other day than on Easter Eve. 4. On all Sundays all the faithful, men and women, must offer bread and wine on the altar. 5. The old law, to pay tithes to the Church, is widely neglected, and must therefore be enjoined afresh. The tithe is to be expended for the use of the poor (also of the clergy), and for the redemption of prisoners. Whoever obstinately refuses it is for ever excommunicated. 6. The prescription of the Council of Hippo (vol. ii.), c. 28, that the Mass may be celebrated only by priests fasting, is renewed, and it is ordained that what is left of the consecrated bread, moistened with wine, should be given, as food, on Wednesday or Friday, to innocent children, who, however, must also be fasting. 7. Slaves who were made free in the church shall be protected by the bishops, and controversies respecting their liberty are to be decided, not by the secular judges, but by the bishop. 8. The right of asylum shall remain in force. 9. It has happened that clergymen have been dragged by the secular power from their churches and put into public prisons. This must no longer be done; but anyone who has a charge against a bishop must bring his complaint before the metropolitan, who, in lighter cases, shall either himself, or with reference to one or two bishops, decide, and, in graver cases, bring them before a Council. 10. Similarly, no one may arrest a priest, or deacon, or subdeacon; but they must be accused before the bishop. 11. The bishops must exercise hospitality. 12. So also they must protect widows and orphans against ill-treatment by secular judges. The latter must not, under penalty of excommunication, sit in judgment on widows or orphans without having previously given information to the bishop or his archdeacon, etc., so that he may take part in the trial and in the judgment. 13. No dogs are allowed in the episcopal residence, so that the poor who seek refuge there may not be bitten. Falcons are also forbidden to bishops. 14. Magnates and those from the royal retinue must not destroy the lowly for their goods and possessions, on pain of anathema. 15. If a layman meets one of the more distinguished clergy, he shall honour him with a reverence. If a cleric and a layman meet each other, both on horseback, the latter shall greet the former by raising his hat. If the cleric is on foot and the layman on horseback, the latter must dismount and make his greeting. 16. The widow of a subdeacon, exorcist, or acolyte may not marry again, on penalty of being shut up in a nunnery. 17. If a female body is not yet decomposed, another male corpse must not be laid in her grave. Moreover, a corpse must not be laid in a grave which is the property of another, unless he allow it. 18. Incestuous marriages are forbidden. 19. Clerics may not be present at judicial condemnations of criminals, nor at executions. 20. After three years all must again meet in a Synod, and the bishop of Lyons shall appoint a place well situated for the purpose, with the acquiescence of the King. If anyone stays away without reason, he is shut out a charitate fratrum (sec. 284, Orleans 5).

We learn from Gregory of Tours that our Synod further deposed Bishop Faustianus of Dar (Aquæ), because he had been consecrated at the command of the insurgent Gundobald (the bastard of Chlotar I.). The three bishops who ordained him, Bertechram of Bordeaux, Orestes, and Palladius, were required to pay him 100 gold florins annually for his maintenance. Another bishop, Ursicinus, was suspended for three years, because he had held with Gundobald. A bishop, who had maintained that women could not be called human beings (homines) in the full sense, was reprimanded by the Synod. Finally, Prætextatus of Rouen read before them the discourses which he had prepared in exile.

These ordinances of the Synod of Macon were published by King Guntram in a decree of November 10, 585, in which he enforced careful observance of the Sunday, threatened sinners of ecclesiastical and secular position with punishment, recommended judges to judge righteously, and this personally and not by deputies, and required bishops and judges not to conceal the faults of their subordinates, but to punish them.

The Council of Auxerre was only a diocesan Synod, which Bishop Annacharius of Auxerre held, with seven abbots, thirty-four priests, and three deacons of his diocese. In the Collections of Councils it is assigned to the year 578, and put before the Acts of the second Synod of Macon, because some codices, in the superscription, give that date. But the similarity which many canons of Auxerre have with those of Macon led long ago to the supposition that Bishop Annacharius, who was present at the Synod of Macon, held a diocesan Synod in his episcopal city, soon after the close of that one, in order to introduce its ordinances into his diocese, and to draw up others for special purposes. The forty-five canons which were here drawn up present a good deal of linguistic and archæological difficulty:—

1. No one may, after a heathenish fashion, dress himself on the 1st of January like cows (or old women) and stags, or make diabolic new year’s presents; but on this day no other gifts shall be made than have been customary. (Sec. 285, Syn. of Tours, c. 22. Cf. Du Cange, Glossar. s.vv. vetula, cervula, and strena.)

2. All priests (in the country) must before Epiphany send messengers to the bishop to ascertain the time of the beginning of Lent. They shall announce this beginning to their people at the Epiphany. (Syn. 4 of Paris, c. 9, in sec. 285.)

3. Private sacrifices in private houses and the spending of the night in church before the holy festivals are forbidden. Moreover, it is not allowed to abolish a vow at a thorn bush, or holy tree or fountain. On the contrary, if anyone has a vow upon him, he should watch in church and discharge it for the benefit of the matricula (register of the clergy) or of the poor. Moreover, no one must make images consisting of a wooden foot or man. (Instead of lineo (= linen), we should probably read ligneo, as the following canon suggests. On compensum = oblata, and matricula, cf. Du Cange, s.vv.)

4. No regard must be paid to soothsayers and predictions, nor to those who interpret the future (caragus or caragius, see Du Cange), nor to the sortes sanctorum (sec. 211, c. 16, of Chalons); nor look at that which they make out of wood or bread.

5. Even the night watches in honour of S. Martin are forbidden.

6. About the middle of Lent every priest should ask for the chrism. If, on account of sickness, he cannot come himself, he may make over this duty to the archdeacon (thus even in rural churches there were such) or the archsubdeacon. But the chrism must be carried in a chrismarium and linen cloth, like the relics. (Chrismarium = theca, in which relics and the chrism were preserved, the latter probably still in an ampulla; cf. Du Cange, s.vv.)

7. In the middle of May all priests—on the first of October all abbots—must come to a Synod in the city.

8. Only wine mixed with water may be offered at the consecration, and certainly not wine or any other liquid mixed with honey.

9. In the church no secular choruses or songs must be performed by girls, nor any banquets held.

10. It is not allowed to say Mass twice in a day at an altar, and at the altar at which the bishop has celebrated no priest may do so on that day.

11. Non licet in vigilia Paschæ ante horam secundam noctis vigilias perexplere, quia in illa nocte non licet post mediam noctem bibere (nec manducare); nee in natali Domini nec in reliquis solemnitatibus.

We thought it necessary to give the original text of this difficult canon. Only one point here is distinctly clear; that on the vigils before Easter, Christmas, and other festivals, nothing was allowed to be taken after midnight, whilst with the Greeks the fasts were continued only till midnight, and then the solemn Easter festival took place, as we see from the recently-discovered festal letters of S. Augustine (in Larsow’s translation, S. 79, 94, and 113), and from c. 89 of the Trullan Synod of the year 692. But it is a question what the first sentence of our canon signifies. Fleury and other French scholars connected noctis with vigilias, understanding by this the night fasts, took hora secunda as second hour of the day (= seven o’clock in the morning), and translated: “The night by vigil fasts must not be ended before seven o’clock in the morning, for after midnight nothing more must be partaken of.” This certainly gives a good meaning; but I doubt whether by hora secunda. we could understand the second hour of the day. We shall meet with doubts on this subject.

Others connect noctis with hora secunda, and translate: “The vigils may not be ended before the second hour of the night,” i.e. not before seven o’clock at night, since the night, at the season of Easter, began about six o’clock. But on this rendering it will be difficult to explain the quia, and to find a connection between the first and second sentence of our canon; for to the question, “Why should the vigils not end before seven o’clock in the evening?” the second sentence, “Because after midnight nothing more must be taken,” is no intelligible answer. Quite astray is the manner in which Binterim, instead of clearing up the difficulty, has further confused it. In the second volume of his History of the German Councils (S. 144), he translated: “Before the second night-hour it is not allowed, on Easter Eve, to end the vigils, because, on this night, it is not permitted to drink after midnight,” and refers to his Memorials (Denkwürdigkeiten, Bd. v. Thl. 2. S. 157). Here, however, he was met by the misfortune, that he changed post mediam noctem into ante mediam noctem, and thence argued as if our canon prescribed that before midnight nothing was to be taken. But no single manuscript has ante instead of post, and the statutes of S. Boniface, which simply repeat this canon, give post.—Let us now see if light may not be cast upon our canon from some other quarter. About a hundred years before our Synod the Gallican Bishops S. Lupus of Troyes and Euphronius of Autun, wrote to Bishop Talasius of Angers: “Paschalis vigilia a vespere raro in matutinum usque perducitur”; and they add, at this vigilia are to be read the Lectiones passionis, the Lectiones of different books of the Bible, quæ totæ habeant aliquid de præfiguratione aut vaticinio passionis (Hardouin, t. ii. p. 791). According to this, then, by vigil is meant not merely the fast, as Fleury and others assume, but also the divine service of the vigil connected with the fast; and this seldom lasted in Gaul, in the fifth century, until after midnight and into the morning. Accordingly our canon can hardly have meant to require that these vigils should last until seven o’clock in the morning.

We come to the same result also in another way, As has been said, Boniface, as apostolic legate for Germany and France, repeats our canon verbally in his statutes; this, consequently, was still in full practice in France about the year 750. A hundred years later, however, the French Bishop Herard of Tours, in his Capitula of A.D. 858, n. 83: “Qui sabbato Paschæ usque ad noctis initium non jejunant, excommunicentur” (Hardouin, t. v. p. 455). The fasts thus lasted then, on the Easter vigil, only until the beginning of the night, which agrees quite well with the hora sccunda noctis in our canon. On other days the fast ended with vespers, and Theodore of Canterbury says, c. 29: “On the vigil of Christmas manducant Romani hora nona expleta,” i.e. at three o’clock P.M. (Hardouin, t. iii. p. 1774). We must, accordingly, maintain that our canon, more stringent than the Romans, ordered for the vigils of Easter, Christmas, and other festivals a continuation of the vigil service and fast until seven o’clock in the evening, and, besides, forbade all the faithful, on these holy nights, to take anything after midnight. But the quia remains to us enigmatic, unless we interpret something in this manner: “Because the following festivals are so high, that from midnight onwards nothing more may be taken, the vigils too, which precede these days, are solemnised more stringently.

12. Neither the Eucharist nor the kiss may be given to the dead; nor must their bodies be covered with the veil or pall.

13. The deacon may not cover his shoulders with the veil or pall.

14. No corpse may be buried in the baptistery.

15. Two corpses may not be laid upon one another.

16. Servile labours are forbidden on Sundays.

17. It is not permitted to receive oblations from suicides.

18. Except in cases of necessity, baptism shall be administered only at Easter.

19. A presbyter, deacon, or subdeacon, if he has partaken of anything, may neither officiate at Mass nor stand in the church during the service (because the adstantes clerici communicated).

20. If a priest, deacon, or subdeacon commits a sin of the flesh, and the archpresbyter does not report it to the bishop or the archdeacon, he shall be excommunicated for a year, but the sinner shall be deposed.

21. No presbyter may, after his ordination, sleep in the same bed with his wife (presbytera), or have connubial intercourse with her. So with the deacon and subdeacon.

22. The widow of a priest, deacon, or subdeacon must not marry again.

23. If an abbot does not punish a great crime of a monk, or does not report it to the bishop or archdeacon, he must be removed for penance to another monastery.

24. No abbot or monk may go to a marriage.

25. No abbot or monk may be godfather at a baptism (commater is the name of a woman in relation to the sponsor for her child; cf. Du Cange, s.v.).

26. No abbot may allow a woman to enter his monastery, even to see a festivity. If he does so, he must be incarcerated for three months in another monastery, and kept on bread and water.

27–32. Prohibition of incestuous marriages.

33 and 34. No cleric may be present at the torture or sentencing of a criminal.

35. No cleric may sue another before a secular judge.

36. No woman may receive the holy Eucharist with uncovered hand.

37. Nor must she touch the pall (palla).

38 and 39. No intercourse must be held with one who is excommunicated, nor must people eat with him.

40. A priest may not sing or dance at banquets.

41. No priest or deacon may sue anyone personally before a tribunal, but he must do this through a layman, perhaps a brother.

42. Every woman must at communion have her dominicale (i.e. either the cloth for covering her hand, cf. c. 36, or a veil for the covering of her head. Cf. Du Cange, s.v. dominicalis).

43. A layman or judge who uses violence against a cleric without permission of the bishop, is excluded for a year from all communion with the faithful.

44. A layman who obstinately despises the exhortations of his archpresbyter shall be excluded from the Church, and punished according to the edict of the King (Macon 2, see above).

45. Whoever neglects these ordinances, or does not report the transgressors of them to the bishop, shall for a year either be excluded from intercourse with the brethren (the other clergy), or from intercourse with all Christians.

Between 585 and 588 falls the provincial Synod at Clermont in Auvergne (Arvernensis), at which Archbishop Sulpicius of Bourges, with his suffragans, decided the controversy respecting some rural churches between Bishops Innocent of Rodez and Ursicinus of Cahors (suspended at the second Synod of Macon for three years, see above), in favour of the Church of Cahors. This seems to me the decision, at least in the words of Gregory of Tours (Hist. Franc. lib. vi. cc. 38 and 39), although it is generally stated that the decision was given in favour of the bishop of Rodez.

Gregory of Tours refers to a Spanish Synod of the year 587 (Hist. Franc. lib. ix. c. 15), when he relates that, when the King of the West Goths, Reccared, after the death of his father, Leovigild, formed the plan of becoming a Catholic, he first arranged an assembly (disputation) of the Arian and Catholic bishops, and attached great importance to this, that the Arians had never proved the truth of their doctrine by miracles. After the end of that assembly he then called the Catholic bishops specially to him, received more exact instruction from them, and embraced the Catholic faith.

In the following year, 588, the Patriarch Gregory of Antioch justified himself at a Synod at Constantinople against the accusation that he had lived with his sister in incest. The same Synod was used by John Nesteutes of Constantinople, in order to style himself “œcumenical patriarch.” In earlier times, however, his predecessors had been entitled “œcumenical patriarchs” even by the Emperors. (See secs. 233 and 250; and Hergenröther, Photius, Bd. i. S. 178 f.)

On the 1st of July 588, King Gun tram summoned all the bishops of his kingdom to a great Frankish Synod, to take counsel upon incestuous unions, on the murder of Archbishop Prætextatus of Rouen, etc. Gregory of Tours, the only authority on the subject, regarded the holding of this Synod as unnecessary, and does not say whether or where it was really held, nor what it decreed (Hist. Franc. lib. ix. c. 20).

SEC. 287. Spain becomes Catholic at the Third Synod of Toledo A.D. 589

After King Reccared had embraced the Catholic faith, he summoned the bishops of his kingdom (Spain and Gallia Narbonensis), in May 589, to a general Synod at Toledo (Toletana III.), of which the minutes have come to us in a tolerable state of completeness. Before the transactions began, Reccared requested the bishops to prepare themselves, by fasting and prayer, for the holy work. They resolved to fast for three days, and then met, on the 8th of May, for the first session. The King was again present, besought the Synod to return thanks to God for the return of so many to the true faith, and then caused to be read a declaration drawn up by him. It contains the orthodox confession of the Son and the Holy Ghost, teaches His procession a Patre et a Filio (cf. vol. iii. sec. 167), describes how the orthodox faith had been hitherto oppressed in Spain, and relates how he, the King, had returned to the Catholic Church, and had invited his whole people to take the same step. The famous and noble nation of the Goths, he says, now in full agreement with him, takes part in the communion of the Catholic Church, and also the Suevi, whom he had subjected, and who had been misled by another (Leovigild) into heresy, he had called back again to the truth (see above, sec. 285, Braga 2). It was now the business of the bishops to instruct these peoples, and he had called the Synod in order to bear witness to his orthodoxy before it. Accordingly he anathematised Arius with his doctrine, and recognised the Synods of Nicæa, Constantinople, Ephesus, and Chalcedon, with the Councils of all orthodox bishops who did not depart in the faith from the four Synods named. He added the declarations of faith of Nicæa, Constantinople, and Chalcedon verbally, that of Constantinople with the formula ex Patre et Filio procedentem, and subscribed this document with his consort Badda.

The Synod replied with acclamations in honour of God and the King, and requested the newly-converted Gothic bishops, clerics, and nobles, on their side, to make their confession. They did so in twenty-three anathematisms:—

1. If anyone still holds the doctrine and communion of the Arians, let him be anathema.

2. If anyone does not confess that the Son of God, our Lord Jesus Christ, is begotten of the substance of the Father without beginning, is like to and of one substance with the Father, etc.

3. If anyone does not believe that the Holy Ghost proceedeth from the Father and the Son, and is coeternal with and like unto the Father and the Son, etc.

4. If anyone does not distinguish the persons in the Trinity, etc.

5. If anyone declares the Son and Spirit inferior to the Father, etc.

6. If anyone does not believe that Father, Son, and Spirit are of one substance, one omnipotence, and eternity, etc.

7. If anyone maintains that the Son is ignorant of anything, etc.

8. If anyone ascribes a beginning to the Son or Spirit, etc.

9. If anyone maintains that the Son, in His Godhead, was visible or capable of suffering, etc.

10. If anyone does not hold the Holy Ghost as the true Almighty God, as the Father and the Son, etc.

11. If anyone declares any other faith than that of Nicæa, Constantinople, Ephesus, and Chalcedon to be the Catholic faith, etc.

12. If anyone separates the Father, Son, and Spirit in regard to glory and Godhead, etc.

13. If anyone believes that the Son and Spirit are not to be honoured along with the Father, etc.

14. If anyone does not say: “Gloria et honor Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto,” etc.

15. If anyone defends or practises rebaptism, etc.

16. If anyone regards as good the abominable treatise which we composed, in the twelfth year of Leovigild, in order to mislead the Romans to the Arian heresy, etc. (see above, sec. 286).

17. If anyone does not condemn the Council of Ariminum with all his heart, etc. (see vol. ii.).

18. We confess that we have been, with all our heart, etc., converted from the Arian heresy to the Catholic Church. The faith which our King has confessed before the Synod we also confess and teach to our congregations. If anyone does not hold this faith, let him be anathema maranatha (1 Cor. 16:22).

19 to 22. If anyone rejects the faith of the Synods of Nicæa, Constantinople, Ephesus, and Chaldæa, etc.

23. This condemnation of the Arian heresy we have subscribed with our own hands. The definitions of those Synods of Nicæa, etc., we have subscribed. They contain clearly the true doctrine on the Trinity and Incarnation. If anyone falsifies this holy doctrine, and separates himself again from the Catholic communion which we have now obtained, he is guilty before God and the world.

Again, the decrees of the faith of Nicæa, Constantinople, and Chalcedon were added literally as in the declaration of the King, and the whole was subscribed by eight bishops, many other clerics, and the Gothic leaders present.

The King then proposed to the Synod to ordain that, in the West Gothic kingdom, after the manner of the Greek Fathers, the holy creed should be recited before communion, in order to confirm the orthodox faith. The bishops were further requested to draw up disciplinary prescriptions for the regulation of morals. This was done as follows:—

Capitulum 1. The old canons, the ordinances of the Councils, and the synodal letters of the holy bishops of Rome have validity. No one shall henceforth, in opposition to them, attain to clerical dignities.

2. In accordance with the proposal of the King, before the Lord’s Prayer, the Creed of Constantinople shall be sung with clear voice.

3. No bishop may alienate Church property. What he gives, without inconvenience to his church, to monks, or to churches in his diocese, shall be valid. He shall also support strangers, the clergy, and the poor.

4. With the assent of his Synod the bishop may turn one of his parish churches into a monastery.

5. As the bishops, priests, and deacons who have come over from heresy still partly live in matrimony with their wives, this is now forbidden to them. Whoever does so shall be regarded as a lector. Whoever has strange women in his dwelling so as to excite suspicion, shall be punished, and those women shall be sold by the bishop. The proceeds of the sale belong to the poor.

6. Those who are set free from slavery stand under the protection of the Church.

7. During the meals of the clergy, there shall be readings from the Holy Scripture.

8. Clerics, born of families who belong to the Exchequer, are to be demanded by no one under the pretext that the King had given them to him. They have only to pay their polltax, and remain in the Church. The King agrees with this.

9. The churches, formerly Arian and now Catholic, belong, with their property, to those bishoprics in which they lie.

10. If widows do not wish to marry again, nobody must compel them to do so. If, however, they wish to marry again, they are at liberty to marry him whom they themselves freely choose. So also with maidens; and they must not be compelled, against their own will or that of their parents, to take anyone for husband. If anyone hinders a widow or virgin from fulfilling her intention of remaining unmarried, he is excommunicated.

11. In some churches of Spain, disorder in the ministry of penance has gained ground, so that people sin as they like, and again and again ask for reconciliation from the priest. This must no longer happen; but according to the old canons everyone who regrets his offence must be first excluded from communion, and must frequently present himself as a penitent for the laying on of hands when his time of penance is over, then, if it seems good to the bishop, he may again be received to communion; if, however, during his time of penance or afterwards, he falls back into his old sin, he shall be punished according to the stringency of the old canons.

12. If a man wished to do penance his hair must first be cut, but a woman must first change her garment, for it frequently happens that laymen, after lax penance, return again to their old offences, therefore sharper penance must be introduced, with cutting of hair, etc. (cf. secs. 222, 252, and Aguirre, Concil. Hispan. t. ii. pp. 280 and 363. Coleccion de Canones de la iglesa española, por Gonzalez, Madrid 1849, t. ii. p. 213 sqq.).

13. One cleric may not bring another before a secular tribunal.

14. No Jew may have a Christian woman as wife or concubine; and if there are children of such a union, they must be baptized. Neither must Jews exercise any public office over Christians with power of punishment. They may not buy for their own use Christian slaves; and if the latter have been by them stained with any Jewish rite they shall become free, and without ransom return to Christianity. It is the King’s will that this be taken into the canons.

15. If servants of the Exchequer have built and endowed churches, the bishop shall petition the King to confirm such.

16. The ecclesiastical and the secular judges must work in common, to the end that the idolatry widely spread in Spain and Gaul may again be rooted out (See secs. 285 and 286).

17. So also must they in common root out the widely-spread horrible crime of parents killing their children, that they may not have the expense of bringing them up.

18. Since the churches of Spain are so poor and so far removed from one another, only one provincial Synod (instead of two) shall be held annually. In accordance with the command of the King, the judges and officers of the Exchequer must meet on the 1st of November, in order to learn how the people must be dealt with gently and justly. The bishops, too, by the will of the King, must exercise oversight on the conduct of the judges, and must censure them if they are guilty of insolent behaviour, or inform the King, or excommunicate them, if they do not amend. The bishop shall consider, with two seniors, what a province can, without injury, pay to the judges. Before the close of a Synod the time and place of the next shall be announced, so that no further writings and invitations may be necessary for the metropolitan.

19. Many who have built a church request the consecration of it on the condition that the property made over by them to the church should not be subject to the administration of the bishop. This cannot be allowed.

20. Many bishops burden their clergy improperly with feudal services and taxes in a cruel manner. Nothing unusual, however, shall be rendered to them; and the burdened clergy shall complain to the metropolitan (see sec. 285, Synod of Braga).

21. Judges and officials may no longer turn the servants of the Church and of the clergy to feudal services for public or private purposes, under penalty of excommunication.

22. At funerals only psalms shall be sung. The special elegies, and the custom of beating on the breast, are forbidden. Where possible, the bishop shall enforce this with all the faithful, and at least with the clergy.

23. Dances and unclean songs on feast days are forbidden.

The King confirmed these decisions in a special decree introduced into the minutes of the Synod, required their observance of clergy and laity, and threatened the transgression of them with severe punishments. Then he signed first the minutes, and after him sixty-four bishops and seven representatives of bishops. Among the bishops come first the Metropolitans Massona of Emerita, Euphemius of Toledo, Leander of Seville, Migetius of Narbonne, and Pantardus of Braga in Galicia. The last-named subscribed at the same time for his colleague Nitigisius, the second metropolitan of Galicia. Also the eight formerly Arian bishops, who had come over, signed. Finally, S. Leander of Seville delivered an address, in order to express the joy of the Church over the conversion of the West Goths.

SEC. 288. The last Synods of the Sixth Century

Immediately after the great Synod of Toledo followed the provincial Council at Narbonne in Gothic Gaul, which was held on the 1st of November in the same year (589), by the bishop of that place, Migetius, with his several suffragans, for the observance of the 18th canon of Toledo (see last section). These bishops, in part, had been personally present at Toledo, in part by representatives. They ordained:—

1. No cleric may wear purple clothing. This is suitable for princes, not for religious (= clerics and monks, see last section).

2. After each psalm shall Gloria Patri, etc., be sung. Longer psalms should be divided, and after each division Gloria Patri is to be sung (cf. under c. 15 of the fourth Synod of Toledo).

3. No cleric may be present at public punishments (for diversion).

4. Enforcement of the Sunday festival.

5. After c. 18 of Chalcedon (here erroneously called Nicæa) conspiracies of the clergy, and insults of the higher clergy by the lower, are forbidden. Renitents (resisters) must do penance in a convent for a year.

6. If a clergyman, or a distinguished man, is shut up in a convent out of the city on account of some crime, the abbot must treat him as the bishop prescribes.

7. A cleric who acts to the disadvantage of the Church is deposed.

8. So, if he damages the property of the Church.

9. Jews must bury their dead bodies according to ancient Jewish custom, without psalmody.

10. Every cleric must remain in the diocese by whose bishop he was ordained.

11. No ignorant person may be ordained priest or deacon. If he is already ordained, and refuses to learn more perfectly reading and the fulfilling of his office, he must be deprived of his stipend until he learns. If he is obstinate, he is to be shut up in a convent.

12. No priest or deacon may leave the altar whilst Mass is going on; and no deacon, subdeacon, or lector may take off his alb before the end of Mass.

13. The subdeacons, ostiarii, and other servants of the Church must carefully fulfil the duties of their offices. They must raise the curtains at the doors for the superior ecclesiastics. If they obstinately refuse, the subdeacons are to be punished in their pay, the others to be chastised with blows.

14. Soothsaying is forbidden; so also

15. The heathen festivals of Thursday.

Gregory of Tours (Hist. Franc. ix. 37) refers to a Synod at Sourci (Sauriacum) in the year 589 or 590. It permitted Bishop Droctigisilus to return again to his diocese of Soissons. He had become delirious, some said through drunkenness, others through enchantment. As he was always worst when he lived in the city, and better when he was in the country, he had been forced to leave Soissons. Now the sickness was stopped, and he was permitted to return.

A convention of several bishops at Poitiers, and subsequently a proper Synod (A.D. 589), were occasioned by a rebellion among the nuns of Poitiers. Chrodieldis, a Frankish princess and nun at Poitiers, wished to supplant the Abbess Leubovera, left the convent with forty of her friends, drew a miscellaneous rabble after her, intrenched herself in the Basilica of S. Hilary at Poitiers, and had the bishops, who excommunicated her, set upon and cruelly ill-treated, so that blood flowed. The bishops applied to King Guntram, and the bishops assembled around him found it necessary to take counsel on the subject on the 1st of November next at a common Synod (where, is not said). Nothing more of this is given in detail. But we know that, in the year 590, a great Synod at Poitiers punished Chrodieldis, her cousin Basina, and her other companions with excommunication. Another Synod of the same year, 590, at Metz, removed this sentence again, and pronounced the deposition of Bishop Ægidius of Reims on account of high treason.

Photius refers to a kind of Synod at Alexandria about the year 589. This was, however, properly a disputation between the two parties of the Samaritans; and Archbishop Eulogius of Alexandria was present with some other bishops only for the settlement of the quarrel. Both parties were shown their error.

Mention is made of a Roman Synod about this time, but only in a spurious letter of Pope Pelagius II. to the bishops of Germany and Gaul. On the other hand, a Synod of the defenders of the three chapters belonged to the last years of the reign of that Pope at Mariano or Marano in Friaul (vol. ii. sec. 281), and the Synod at Salona in Dalmatia, at which the metropolitan of that place, Natalis, unlawfully deposed his Archdeacon Honoratus. In order to remove him from his important post, the archbishop wanted to ordain him priest, and thus advance him to that order; but Honoratus refused, and for this reason was condemned. He appealed to Pope Pelagius II., and after his death, which speedily followed, to Gregory the Great.

The two Synods of the schismatical defenders of the three chapters fall in the first year of the reign of Gregory the Great, which we mentioned before (sec. 281). The projected Roman Synod of the year 590, for the restoration of the schismatics, appears not to have taken place, on account of the violent protests of the latter.

On the boundary of the three cities of Clermont in Auvergne, Gabales, and Rodez, the bishops assembled, A.D. 590, in a Synod, with secular grandees, and pronounced judgment on Tetradia, who had forsaken and robbed her husband, Count Eulalius of Auvergne, and then had married Duke Desiderius.

In the same year Archbishop Leander, with seven suffragans, celebrated a provincial Synod in his metropolitan city of Seville (Hispalensis or Spalensis I.). Its three decrees (Capitula) are found in the synodal letter to the absent suffragan bishop, Pegasius of Astigis, now Ecija, near Seville. His predecessor, Gaudentius, had set free several slaves, and had given a good deal of Church property to his relations. The Synod, in cap. i., supporting itself on c. 33 of Agde (see sec. 222; cf. c. 6), now declares that these gifts are invalid. The liberations are declared to be without force, unless Gaudentius has left of his private fortune an equivalent to the Church. This decision, by c. 2, shall have effect for the whole Provincia Bœtica. Finally, by c. 3, the prohibition is anew enforced against the clergy having strange women in their houses, with the addition that the secular judges shall sell such women, in accordance with c. 5 of Toledo (sec. 287). Burchard and others cited still more canons of Seville, which have been put in his collection by Mansi (l.c.).

At Saragossa the bishops of the ecclesiastical province of Tarragona assembled in a provincial Synod (Cæsarangustana II., November 1, 592, under their Metropolitan Artemius, and decreed:—

1. If an Arian priest becomes a Catholic and upright, particularly if he is chaste, he may be ordained as priest anew on repentance. So also a deacon.

2. Relics found in Arian churches shall be burnt by the priests.

3. If Arian bishops, who have become converts, consecrated churches before they were themselves ordained anew, these churches stand in need of a fresh consecration.

In a letter to the royal revenue officers the bishops set forth how much corn could be raised from the territories, subject to the bishops.

Mansi showed (l.c. p. 474) that no Synod had been held about this time in Numidia; but somewhat later a Synod took place at Carthage, A.D. 594 or 595, because of the oppression under the Donatist schism. Details are unknown.

The minutes of a Roman Synod, of July 5, 595, are found among the letters of Gregory the Great, in the older edition, as Epist. 44 of Book iv. in the Benedictine, as No. 5 in the appendix to the letters (Gregor. Opp. ed. Benedict. t. ii. p. 1288; printed also in Mansi, t. ix. p. 1226, t. x. p. 475; Hardouin, t. iii. p. 496). Around Pope Gregory there were twenty-three bishops, and many priests and deacons assembled, and he proposed the following ordinances, which were approved by the Synod by acclamation:—

1. It has long been the custom in the Roman Church to ordain cantors as deacons, and, still further, to use them for singing, instead of for preaching and caring for the poor. This has the consequence that, at divine service, more is thought of a good voice than of good life. Consequently no deacon may, henceforth, sing in the church except the Gospel in the Mass. The remaining lections and psalms shall be sung by subdeacons, or, if it is necessary, by those in minor orders.

2. In the service of the person of the Pope, laymen shall no longer be used, as has been done for some time, but only clerics or monks.

3. The administrators of the property of the Church may no longer, as hitherto, place titles (i.e. wooden labels with the names of the owners) arbitrarily on goods of which they suppose that they are Church property, after the manner of revenue officers, and so defend Church property by force instead of judgment.

4. A custom has crept in, at the funeral of a Pope, to cover his body with dalmatics, which are then torn in pieces by the people, and are held in great honour, and preserved as relics; whilst clothes with which apostles and martyrs were covered are less honoured. This may no longer be done.

5. For consecration, the pallium, and the documents referring to these, etc., no more must be demanded under any title whatever, e.g. as pastellum (= pastillum = luncheon, our pour boire). If, however, one who is consecrated, after reception of the documents or the pallium, gives anything voluntarily to a (Roman) cleric (for his trouble), this may be received.

6. It often happens that slaves, who belong to the Church or to secular people, wish to enter a monastery. If we allow this, the Church will at last lose all her slaves. If, however, we do not permit their entrance into a monastery, we refuse an offering to God. Therefore, if a slave shall henceforth wish to enter a convent, his conduct shall first be carefully examined; and if this is blameless, entrance shall be allowed him.

Whether Gregory the Great did also, at the same Synod, inquire into the case of the two priests, John of Chalcedon and Athanasius, a monk of the monastery of S. Mile (Tamnaco in Lycaonia), is doubtful. Both were accused of heresy before the Patriarch John of Constantinople, and were condemned by his commissaries, but had appealed to Rome, and, after Gregory had held a Council on the subject, were acquitted. The letters of Gregory relating to this (lib. vi. Epp. 15, 16, 17, and 66) belong to the sixth year of his pontificate (595).

On the 17th of May of the year 597, sixteen bishops of several Spanish ecclesiastical provinces united in a Synod in the Church of SS. Peter and Paul in Toledo. We know only that they drew up two canons. In the first they enjoined on the clergy the duty of chastity; in the second, forbade to the bishops to appropriate to themselves the goods of any church erected in their diocese. Rather, according to the will of the founder and the canons, there should be appointed to such a church a priest or deacon, or at least an ostiarius, in order to light the tapers before the holy relics in the evening.

Another Spanish Synod at Huesca (Oscensis), in the province of Tarragona, A.D. 598, ordained—(1) every year a diocesan Synod shall be held; and (2) all clerics must lead a chaste life.

To the same ecclesiastical province of Tarragona belongs the Synod at Barcelona of November 1, 599, which, under the presidency of the Metropolitan Asiaticus of Tarragona, put forth four canons:—

1. Neither the bishop nor one of his clerics may demand anything for the imparting of orders, or the institution of the clergy.

2. So also nothing is to be asked for the chrism.

3. No layman may be ordained bishop without conforming to the old canons, which require a regular ascent through the different orders. If two or three are elected by clergy and laity, and presented to the Metropolitan, that one shall be consecrated upon whom the lot falls after a preceding fast by the bishops.

4. A virgin who has laid aside lay attire, has put on the habit of the religious, and has vowed chastity, may no longer marry. Nor one who has received the benedictio pœnitentiæ (sec. 222).

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