The Didache known as The Teaching of the Twelve Apostles, is a brief anonymous early Christian treatise, dated by most modern scholars to the first century. The first line of this treatise is "The teaching of the Lord to the Gentiles by the twelve apostles"; the text, parts of which constitute the oldest extant written catechism, has three main sections dealing with Christian ethics, rituals such as baptism and Eucharist, Church organization. The opening chapters describe the wicked Way of Death; the Lord's Prayer is included in full. Baptism is by affusion if immersion is not practical. Fasting is ordered for Fridays. Two primitive Eucharistic prayers are given. Church organization was at an early stage of development. Itinerant apostles and prophets are important, serving as "chief priests" and celebrating the Eucharist. Meanwhile, local bishops and deacons have authority and seem to be taking the place of the itinerant ministry; the Didache is considered the first example of the genre of Church Orders.
The Didache reveals how Jewish Christians saw themselves and how they adapted their practice for Gentile Christians. The Didache is similar in several ways to the Gospel of Matthew because both texts originated in similar communities; the opening chapters, which appear in other early Christian texts, are derived from an earlier Jewish source. The Didache is considered part of the group of second-generation Christian writings known as the Apostolic Fathers; the work was considered by some Church Fathers to be a part of the New Testament, while being rejected by others as spurious or non-canonical, In the end, it was not accepted into the New Testament canon. However, the Ethiopian Orthodox Church "broader canon" includes the Didascalia, a work which draws on the Didache. Lost for centuries, a Greek manuscript of the Didache was rediscovered in 1873 by Philotheos Bryennios, Metropolitan of Nicomedia, in the Codex Hierosolymitanus. A Latin version of the first five chapters was discovered in 1900 by J. Schlecht.
Many English and American scholars once dated the text to the late 2nd century AD, a view still held today, but most scholars now assign the Didache to the first century. The document is a composite work, the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls with its Manual of Discipline provided evidence of development over a considerable period of time, beginning as a Jewish catechetical work, developed into a church manual. Two uncial fragments containing Greek text of the Didache were found among the Oxyrhynchus Papyri and are now in the collection of the Sackler Library in Oxford. Apart from these fragments, the Greek text of the Didache has only survived in a single manuscript, the Codex Hierosolymitanus. Dating the document is thus made difficult both by the lack of hard evidence and its composite character; the Didache may have been compiled in its present form as late as 150, although a date closer to the end of the first century seems more probable to many. It is an anonymous work, a pastoral manual that Aaron Milavec states "reveals more about how Jewish-Christians saw themselves and how they adapted their Judaism for gentiles than any other book in the Christian Scriptures."
The Two Ways section is based on an earlier Jewish source. The community that produced the Didache could have been based in Syria, as it addressed the Gentiles but from a Judaic perspective, at some remove from Jerusalem, shows no evidence of Pauline influence. Alan Garrow claims that its earliest layer may have originated in the decree issued by the Apostolic council of AD 49-50, by the Jerusalem assembly under James the Just; the text was lost, but scholars knew of it through the writing of church fathers, some of whom had drawn on it. In 1873 in Istanbul, metropolitan Philotheos Bryennios found a Greek copy of the Didache, written in 1056, he published it in 1883. Hitchcock and Brown produced the first English translation in March 1884. Adolf von Harnack produced the first German translation in 1884, Paul Sabatier produced the first French translation and commentary in 1885; the Didache is mentioned by Eusebius as the Teachings of the Apostles along with the books recognized as non-canonical: "Let there be placed among the spurious works the Acts of Paul, the so-called Shepherd and the Apocalypse of Peter, besides these the Epistle of Barnabas, what are called the Teachings of the Apostles, the Apocalypse of John, if this be thought proper.
It is rejected by Nicephorus, Pseudo-Anastasius, Pseudo-Athanasius in Synopsis and the 60 Books canon. It is accepted by the Apostolic Constitutions Canon 85, John of Damascus and the Ethiopian Orthodox Church; the Adversus Aleatores by an imitator of Cyprian quotes it by name. Unacknowledged citations are common, if less certain; the section Two Ways shares the same language with the Epistle of Barnabas, chapters 18–20, sometimes word for word, sometimes added to, dislocated, or abridged, Barnabas iv, 9 either derives from Didache, 16, 2–3, or vice versa. There can be seen many similarities to the Epistles of both Polycarp and Ignatius of Antioch; the Shepherd of Hermas seems to reflect it, Irenaeus, Clement of Alexandria, Origen of Alexandria seem to use the work, so in the West do Optatus and the "Gesta apud Zenophilum." The Didascalia Apostolorum are founded upon the Didache. The Apostolic Churc
1917 Code of Canon Law
The 1917 Code of Canon Law referred to as the Pio-Benedictine Code, was the first official comprehensive codification of Latin canon law. It was promulgated on 27 May 1917 and took legal effect on 19 May 1918, it was in force until the 1983 Code of Canon Law took legal effect and abrogated it on 27 November 1983. It has been described as "the greatest revolution in canon law since the time of Gratian". Papal attempts at codification of the scattered mass of canon law spanned the eight centuries since Gratian produced his Decretum c. 1150. In the 13th century canon law became the object of scientific study, different compilations were made by the Roman Pontiffs; the most important of these were the five books of the Decretales Gregorii IX and the Liber Sextus of Boniface VIII. The legislation grew with time; some of it became obsolete, contradictions crept in so that it became difficult in recent times to discover what was of obligation and where to find the law on a particular question. Since the close of the ‘’Corpus Juris’’ numerous new laws and decrees had been issued by popes and Roman Congregations.
No complete collection of them had been published and they remained scattered through the ponderous volumes of the ‘’Bullaria’’ the ‘’Acta Sanctae Sedis’’, other such compilations, which were accessible to only a few and for professional canonists themselves and formed an unwieldy mass of legal material. Moreover, not a few ordinances, whether included in the ‘’Corpus Juris’’ or of more recent date, appeared to be contradictory. Great confusion was thus engendered and correct knowledge of the law rendered difficult for those who had to enforce it. In the Council of Trent the wish had been expressed in the name of the King of Portugal that a commission of learned theologians be appointed to make a thorough study of the canonical constitutions binding under pain of mortal sin, define their exact meaning, see whether their obligation should not be restricted in certain cases, determine how far they were to be maintained and observed; when the Vatican Council met in 1869 a number of bishops of different countries petitioned for a new compilation of church law that would be clear and studied.
The council never finished no attempt was made to bring the legislation up to date. By the 19th Century, this body of legislation included some 10,000 norms. Many of these were difficult to reconcile with one another due to changes in circumstances and practice; this situation impelled Pope St. Pius X to order the creation of the first Code of Canon Law, a single volume of stated laws. In response to the request of the bishops at the First Vatican Council, on 14 May 1904, with the motu proprio Arduum sane munus, Pope Pius X set up a commission to begin reducing these diverse documents into a single code, presenting the normative portion in the form of systematic short canons shorn of the preliminary considerations and omitting those parts, superseded by developments. Under the aegis of Cardinal Pietro Gasparri, the Commission for the Codification of Canon Law was completed under Benedict XV who promulgated the Code, effective in 1918; the work having been begun by Pius X and promulgated by Benedict XV, it is sometimes called the "Pio-Benedictine Code," but more the 1917 Code.
In its preparation centuries of material were examined, scrutinized for authenticity by leading experts, harmonized as much as possible with opposing canons and other codes, from the Codex of Justinian to the Napoleonic Code. Pope Pius X in a letter on 19 March 1904 announced his intention of revising the unwieldy mass of past legislation and appointed a commission of cardinals and learned consultors to undertake this difficult work; the Catholic universities of the world and the bishops of all countries were asked to cooperate. The scholars began a copy of the first draft was sent to the bishops for suggestions. In addition to the canon law experts brought to Rome to serve on the codification commission, all the Latin Church's bishops and superiors general of religious orders were periodically consulted via letter; every Latin bishop had the right to permanently keep a representative in Rome to give him voice at the meetings of the codification commission. By the winter of 1912, the "whole span of the code" had been completed, so that a provisional text was printed.
The 1912 text was sent out to all Latin bishops and superiors general for their comment, their notations which they sent back to the codification commission were subsequently printed and distributed to all members of the commission, in order that the members might consider the suggestions. The new code was completed in 1916; the code was promulgated on 27 May 1917, Pentecost Sunday, as the Code of Canon Law by Pius' successor, Pope Benedict XV, who set 19 May 1918 as the date on which it came into force. For the most part, it applied only to the Latin Church except when "it treats of things that, by their nature, apply to the Oriental", such as the effects of baptism, it contained 2,414 canons. On 15 September 1917, by the motu proprio Cum Iuris Canonici, Pope Benedict XV made provision for a Pontifical Commission charged with interpreting the code and making any necessary modifications as legislation was issued. New laws would be appended to existing canons in new paragraphs or inserted between canons, repeating the number of the previous canon and adding bis, etc. so as not to subvert the
Dictatus papae is a compilation of 27 statements of powers arrogated to the pope, included in Pope Gregory VII's register under the year 1075. The principles expressed in Dictatus papae are those of the Gregorian Reform, initiated by Gregory decades before he became pope; the axioms of the Dictatus advance the strongest case for papal infallibility. The axiom "That it may be permitted to him to depose emperors" qualified the early medieval balance of power embodied in the letter Famuli vestrae pietatis of Pope Gelasius I to the Eastern Roman Emperor Anastasius, which outlined the separation and complementarity of spiritual and temporal powers - auctoritas and potestas or imperium, the former being superior to the latter - under which the West had been ruled since Merovingian times. "None of the conflicts of the years 1075 and following can be directly traced to opposition to it". Medieval developments of the relationship between spiritual and secular power would come with Pope Boniface VIII, who famously formulated the image of the two swords in the papal bull Unam Sanctam.
Dictatus Papae is a heading in the letter-collection that implies that the pope composed the piece himself. It does not mean any kind of a manifesto, it was not published, in the sense of being copied and made known outside the immediate circle of the papal curia. Some historians believe that it was written or dictated by Gregory himself, others that it had a different origin and was inserted in the register at a date. In 1087 Deusdedit, a cardinal and ally of Gregory, published a collection of decretals, dedicated to Pope Victor III, that embodied the law of the Church – canon law – which he had compiled from many sources, both legitimate and false; the Dictatus papae agrees so with this collection that some have argued the Dictatus must have been based on it. The Roman Church was founded by God. Only the Pope can with right be called "Universal", he alone can reinstate bishops. All bishops are below his Legate in council if a lower grade, he can pass sentence of deposition against them; the Pope may depose the absent.
Among other things, we ought not to remain in the same house with those excommunicated by him. For him alone is it lawful, according to the needs of the time, to make new laws, to assemble together new congregations, to make an abbey of a canonry, and, on the other hand, to divide a rich bishopric and unite the poor ones, he alone may use the Imperial Insignia. All princes shall kiss the feet of the Pope alone, his name alone shall be spoken in the churches. This is the only name in the world, it may be permitted to him to depose emperors. It may be permitted to him to transfer bishops, he has the power to ordain the clerk of any parish. He, ordained by the Pope may preside over another church, but may not hold a subordinate position; such a person may not receive a higher clerical grade from any other bishop. No synod shall be called a'General Synod' without his order. No chapter and no book shall be considered canonical without his authority. A sentence passed by him may be retracted by no one, he alone may retract it.
He himself may be judged by no one. No one shall dare to condemn any person; the more important cases of every church should be referred to the Apostolic See. The Roman Church has never erred. Nor will it err, to all eternity--Scripture being witness; the Roman Pontiff, if he has been canonically ordained, is undoubtedly made a saint by the merits of St. Peter, St. Ennodius Bishop of Pavia bearing witness, many holy fathers agreeing with him; as it is contained in the decrees of Pope St. Symmachus. By his command and consent, it may be lawful for subordinates to bring accusations, he may reinstate bishops without assembling a Synod. He, not at peace with the Roman Church shall not be considered'catholic', he may absolve subjects from their fealty to wicked men. Apostasy Heresy Libertas ecclesiae Das Register Gregors. VII, ed. E. Caspar, pp. 202–8: section translated by G. A. Loud
Collectio canonum Wigorniensis
The Collectio canonum Wigorniensis is a medieval canon law collection originating in southern England around the year 1005. It exists in multiple recensions, the earliest of which — "Recension A" — consists of just over 100 canons drawn from a variety of sources, most predominantly the ninth-century Frankish collection of penitential and canon law known as the Collectio canonum quadripartita; the author of Recension A is unknown. Other recensions exist later in date than the first; these recensions are extensions and augmentations of Recension A, are known collectively as "Recension B". These recensions all bear the unmistakable mark of having been created by Wulfstan, bishop of Worcester and archbishop of York sometime around the year 1008, though some of them may have been compiled as late as 1023, the year of Wulfstan's death; the collection treats a range of ecclesiastical and lay subjects, such as clerical discipline, church administration and clerical penance and private penance, as well as a variety of spiritual and catechistic matters.
Several "canons" in the collection verge on the character of sermons or expository texts rather than church canons in the traditional sense. Cross and Hamer's edition, Wulfstan's canon law collection Thorpe's edition in vol. 2 of his Ancient laws and institutes Johnson's English translation in his A collection of all the ecclesiastical laws Spelman's editio princeps in his Concilia, leges, constitutiones Discussion on the Anglo-Saxon canon law Web site A comprehensive edition of the canonical material in Cambridge, Corpus 265 A comprehensive edition of the canonical material in the Oxford manuscript A comprehensive edition of the canonical material in the London manuscript A comprehensive edition of the canonical material in Cambridge, Corpus 190 P. Wormald, The making of English law: King Alfred to the twelfth century. Vol. I: legislation and its limits. Wulfstan’s canon law collection, eds J. E. Cross and A. Hamer, Anglo-Saxon texts 1. A Wulfstan manuscript, containing institutes and homilies, ed. H.
R. Loyn, Early English manuscripts in facsimile 17
Collectiones canonum Dionysianae
The Collectiones canonum Dionysianae are the several collections of ancient canons prepared by the Scythian monk Dionysius'the humble'. They include the Collectio conciliorum Dionysiana I, the Collectio conciliorum Dionysiana II, the Collectio decretalium Dionysiana, they are of the utmost importance for the development of the canon law tradition in the West. Towards 500 a Scythian monk, known as Dionysius Exiguus, who had come to Rome after the death of Pope Gelasius, and, well skilled in both Latin and Greek, undertook to bring out a more exact translation of the canons of the Greek councils. In a second effort he collected papal decretals from Siricius to Anastasius II, anterior therefore, to Pope Symmachus. By order of Pope Hormisdas, Dionysius made a third collection, in which he included the original text of all the canons of the Greek councils, together with a Latin version of the same, he combined the first and second in one collection, which thus united the canons of the councils and the papal decretals.
This collection opens with a table or list of titles, each of, afterwards repeated before the respective canons. This first part of the collection is closed by a letter of Pope Boniface I, read at the same council, letters of Cyril of Alexandria and Atticus of Constantinople to the African Fathers, a letter of Pope Celestine I; the second part of the collection opens with a preface, in the shape of a letter to the priest Julian, a table of titles. The additions met with in Voel and Justel are taken from inferior manuscripts. Shortly after the year 500, during the pontificate of Pope Symmachus, Dionysius collected and translated into Latin the canons of the major eastern councils, including the so-called Canones apostolorum, the decrees of the councils of Nicaea, Neocaesarea, Antioch, Constantinople, Sardica and the so-called Codex Apiarii causae, the last being a collection of dossiers that includes the canons and acts pertaining to the council held in Carthage on 25 May, 419. Dionysius did this at the request of Stephen, bishop of Salona, a certain'dearest brother Laurence' who had been'offended by the awkwardness of the older translation'.
It is not certain, but it may have been within the context of the Symmachan-Laurentian dispute that these requests were made of Dionysius. Eckhard Wirbelauer, reviving several older arguments, has argued that Dionysius's collection was meant to stand in direct opposition to the views of Pope Symmachus, thus it was to have won neither the favour nor acceptance of that pope, nor his immediate successor and strong supporter, Pope Hormisdas. Shortly after preparing his first collection of conciliar canons, Dionysius prepared a second recension of the same name, to which he made important changes, he updated his translations, altered rubrics, most introduced a system of numbering the canons in sequence. In the Dionysiana II the Canones apostolorum were still numbered separately from 1 to 50, but now the canons of Nicaea to Constantinople were numbered in sequence from I to CLXV,'just"as is found in the Greek authority', in Dionysius’s Greek exemplar. Dionysius altered the position of Chalcedon, moving it from after the Codex Apiarii to before Sardica, removed the versio Attici of the canons of Nicaea from Codex Apiarii.
He added an important collection of African canons to his second recension. Known today as the Registri ecclesiae Carthaginensis excerpta, this'large body of conciliar legislation from the earlier Aurelian councils' was inserted by Dionysius into the middle of the Codex Apiarii ―, between the canons and the letters of the 419 Council of Carthage ― with the fabricated prefatory statement:'and in that synod were recited the various councils of the African province, celebrated in bygone days of Bishop Aurelius'. Thus, the 137'African' canons that make up Registri ecclesiae Carthaginensis excerpta in the Dionysiana II are a concoction of Dionysius's, a conflation of two earlier canonical collections of the African church; the existence of a third bilingual collection of conciliar canons, in which Dionysius removed the spurious Canones apostolorum along with the'African' canons and the problematic canons of Sardica, can be deduced from a preface now extant in Novara, Biblioteca Capitolare, XXX.
No copies of the text of this recension have survived. The fact that Pope Hormisdas, noted supporter of the previous pope Symmachus, commissioned this collection from Dionysius is sign
The Decretum Gratiani known as the Concordia discordantium canonum or Concordantia discordantium canonum or as the Decretum, is a collection of Canon law compiled and written in the 12th century as a legal textbook by the jurist known as Gratian. It forms the first part of the collection of six legal texts, which together became known as the Corpus Juris Canonici, it was used by canonists of the Roman Catholic Church until Pentecost 1918, when a revised Code of Canon Law promulgated by Pope Benedict XV on 27 May 1917 obtained legal force. It was about 1150 that Gratian, teacher of theology at the monastery of Saints Nabor and Felix and sometimes believed to have been a Camaldolese monk, composed the work entitled by himself, Concordia discordantium canonum, but called by others Nova collectio, Corpus juris canonici Decretum Gratiani, the latter being now the accepted name, he did this to obviate the difficulties which beset the study of practical, external theology, i. e. the study of canon law.
In spite of its great reputation and wide diffusion, the Decretum has never been recognized by the Church as an official collection. It is divided into three parts; the first part is divided into 101 distinctions, the first 20 of which form an introduction to the general principles of canon Law. The second part contains 36 causes, divided into questions, treat of ecclesiastical administration and marriage; the third part, entitled "De consecratione", treats of the sacraments and other sacred things and contains 5 distinctions. Each distinction or question contains dicta Gratiani, or maxims of Gratian, canones. Gratian himself raises questions and brings forward difficulties, which he answers by quoting auctoritates, i. e. canons of councils, decretals of the popes, texts of the Scripture or of the Fathers. These are the canones, it is to be noted that many auctoritates have been inserted in the "Decretum" by authors of a date. These are the Paleœ, so called from Paucapalea, the name of the principal commentator on the "Decretum".
The Roman revisers of the 16th century corrected the text of the "Decree" and added many critical notes designated by the words Correctores Romani. The Decretum is quoted by indicating the number of the canon and that of the distinction or of the cause and the question. To differentiate the distinctions of the first part from those of the third, question of the 33rd cause of the second part and those of the third part, the words de Pœn. i. e. de Pœnitentiâ, de Cons. i. e. de Consecratione are added to the latter. For instance, "c. 1. D. XI" indicates the first part of the "Decree". Distinction XI, canon 1. 1. de Pœn. d. VI," refers to the second part, 33rd cause, question 3, distinction VI, canon 1. 8, de Cons. d. II" refers to the third part, distinction II, canon 8. 8, C. XII, q. 3" refers to the second part, cause XII, question 3, canon 8. Sometimes in the case of well-known and much-quoted canons, the first words are indicated, e. g. c. Si quis suadente diabolo, C. XVII, q. 4, i. e. the 29th canon of the second part, cause XVII, question 4.
The first words alone are quoted. In both cases, to find the canon it is necessary to consult the alphabetical tables that contain the first words of every canon. Gratian was a canon lawyer from Bologna, he flourished in the mid 12th century. Little else is known about him, he is sometimes incorrectly referred to as Franciscus Gratianus, Johannes Gratian, or Giovanni Graziano. For a long time he was believed to have been born at the end of the 11th century, at Chiusi in Tuscany, he was said to have become a monk at Camaldoli and he taught at the monastery of St. Felix in Bologna and devoted his life to studying canon law, but contemporary scholarship does not attach credibility to these traditions. Since the 11th century, Bologna had been the centre of the study of canon law, as well as of Roman law, after the Corpus Juris Civilis was rediscovered in western Europe. Gratian's work was an attempt, using early scholastic method, to solve contradictory canons from previous centuries. Gratian quoted a great number of authorities, including the Bible and conciliar legislation, church fathers such as Augustine of Hippo, secular law in his efforts to reconcile the canons.
Gratian found a place in Dante's Paradise among the doctors of the Church: He has long been acclaimed as Pater Juris Canonici, a title he shares with his successor St. Raymond of Penyafort; the vulgate version of Gratian's collection was completed at some point after the Second Lateran Council, which it quotes. Research by Anders Winroth established that some manuscripts of an early version of Gratian's text, which differs from the mainstream textual tradition, have survived. With commentaries and supplements, the work was incorporated into the Corpus Juris Canonici; the Decretum became the standard textbook for students of canon law throughout Europe, but it never received any formal official recognition by the papacy. Only the Codex Juris Canonici of 1917 put it out of use; as late as 1997, scholars set the date of completion at 1140, but this accuracy in dating isn't possible after Anders Winroth's grou
Decretales Gregorii IX
The Decretals of Gregory IX collectively called the Liber extra, are an important source of medieval Canon Law. In 1230, Pope Gregory IX ordered his chaplain and confessor, St. Raymond of Penyafort, a Dominican, to form a new canonical collection destined to replace all former collections, it has been said that the pope by this measure wished to emphasize his power over the Universal Church. The papacy had arrived at the zenith of its power. Moreover, a pope less favourably circumstanced would not have thought of so important a measure; the utility of a new collection was so evident that there may be no other motives than those the pope gives in the Bull "Rex pacificus" of 5 September 1234, viz. the inconvenience of recurring to several collections containing decisions most diverse and sometimes contradictory, exhibiting in some cases gaps and in others tedious length. The Quinque compilationes antiquæ was a series of five of these collections of pontifical legislation from the Decretum of Gratian to the pontificate of Honorius III.
Raymond executed the work in about four years, followed in it the method of the Quinque compilationes antiquæ. He borrowed from them the order of the subject-matter, the division into five books, of the books into titles and of the titles into chapters. Of the 1971 chapters the Decretals of Gregory IX contain, 1771 are from the Quinque compilationes antiquæ, 191 are from Gregory IX himself, seven from decretals of Innocent III not inserted in the former collections, two are of unknown origin, they are arranged according to the order of the ancient collections, i.e. each title opens with the chapters of the first collection, followed by those of the second, so on in regular order. Next come those of Innocent III, those of Gregory IX. All the rubrics, or headings of the titles, have been borrowed from these collections, but several have been modified as regards detail; this method lightened St. Raymond's task. However, he did more than compile the documents of former collections, he left out 383 decisions, modified several others, omitted parts when he considered it prudent to do so, filled up the gaps, to render his collection complete and concordant, cleared up doubtful points of the ancient ecclesiastical law by adding some new decretals.
He indicated by infra the passages excised by him in the former collections. They are called partes decisae; the new compilation bore no special title, but was called "Decretales Gregorii IX" or sometimes "Compilatio sexta", i. e. the sixth collection with reference to the "Quinque compilationes antiquæ". It was called "Collectio seu liber extra", i. e. the collection of the laws not contained in the "Decretum" of Gratian. Hence the custom of denoting this collection by the letter X. Quotations from this collection are made by indicating the number of the chapter, the name the work goes by, the number of the book, that of the title; the heading of the title and sometimes the first words of the chapter are quoted. 3, X, III, 23", or "c. Odoardus, X, De solutionibus, HI, 23", refers to the third chapter, commencing with the word Odoardus, in the Decretals of Gregory IX, book III, title 23, entitled "De solutionibus". If the number of the chapter or of the title is not indicated it will be learned on consulting the alphabetical indexes of the rubrics and of the introductory words of the chapters, which are to be found in all editions of the "Corpus Juris Canonici".
Gregory IX sent this new collection to the Universities of Bologna and Paris, declared, by the Bull "Rex pacificus" of 5 September 1234, that this compilation was the official code of the canon law. All its decisions had the force of canon law whether they were authentic or not, whatever the juridical value of the texts considered in themselves, whatsoever the original text, it is a unique collection. In this peculiar case it is not possible to overcome the difficulty by recourse to the principle that a law of date abrogates that of an earlier period, it is an exclusive collection, i.e. it abrogates all the collections the official ones, of a date than the "Decretum" of Gratian. Some authors maintain that Gregory IX abrogated those laws prior to Gratian's time that the latter had not included in his "Decretum", but others contest this opinion; the Decretals of Gregory IX differ from modern codes. Instead of containing in one concise statement a legislative decision, they start with an account of a controversy, the allegations of the parties in dispute, a demand or the solution of the question.
The enacting part of the chapter alone has the force of law. The rubrics of the titles have the force of law when their sense is complete, as for instance, Ne sede vacante aliquid innovetur, because the headings form an integral part of the official code of the laws. However, they ought always to be interpreted according to the decisions contained in the chapters; the historical indications concerning each chapter are far from being exact since they were corrected in the Roman edition of 1582. It may be regretted that St. Raymond did not ha