Gregory the Great as Judge. Juridical Cases in His “Sardinian Letters”
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Gregory the Great as Judge. Juridical Cases in His “Sardinian Letters”
Annotation
PII
S207987840007600-9-1
DOI
10.18254/S207987840007600-9
Publication type
Article
Status
Published
Authors
Elena Marey 
Affiliation: Higher School of Economics
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow
Abstract

Pope Gregory I letters contain a great number of juridical cases, concerning property litigations, controversies between clergy, complaints of priests and against them. But among all Gregory’s Register the letters, addressed to Archbishop Januarius of Cagliari and to Sardinian defensores are — in my opinion — the most fascinating and highly descriptive source. The legal process under Pope Gregory I is analyzed in detail by L. Giordano, and here I pretend to examine the principles of Pope’s jugement. The article is divided in three parts. The first is dedicated to audientia episcipalis, i.e. to judicial authority of Januarius. Gregory had to constantly remind to Januarius of his juridical duties. He appeals to metropolitan to take an active part in lawsuits between clergy and monasteries. At times pope was interfering in Sardinian lawsuits, but only in serious criminal cases. In other cases he preferred to advise the solution to Januarius. Januarius was frequently accused by citizens of Cagliari who were bored by his cupidity and misbehavior. The complaints against metropolitan had been sending to Rome, and Gregory had to judge them. He was a clement judge, like a severe but kind father. Gregory tried to affect in Januarius conscience and gave many biblical and moral examples in his letters. In fact when the pope discussed any complaint against metropolitan he used two arguments — Biblical text and Justinian law. In this way Bible give a juridical authority like laws. If the lawsuits touch the property of Sardinian monasteries, Gregory urged to call the independent arbiters — jurists or pious men. Their judgement had to be impartial, so binding for both two parts, and had to restore the lost agreement. Arbiters were elected by pope’s defensor or by metropolitan. In the upshot the litigation was one of means to restore the agreement between litigant or — broadly speaking — to restore the peace in Church, without what the Church life is can’t be imaginated.

Keywords
Gregory the Great, Justinian’s law, church history, church jugement, Sardinia
Received
28.10.2019
Publication date
15.12.2019
Number of characters
30024
Number of purchasers
3
Views
53
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0.0 (0 votes)
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