Presbyters Uniwersytet Warszawski
ER 1528
Presbyter Promotus is accused in the letter sent by Bishop Pappolus of Chartres to his fellow bishops of seizing one of the parishes in his territory and proclaiming himself a bishop of that place. Acts of the Fourth Council of Paris (Gaul, AD 573)
Epistola Pappoli episcopi Carnotensis ad synodum
Tenor suggestionis libelli
Domnis semper suis atque apostolica dignitate colendis omnibus episcopis, qui in sancta synodo nunc Parisius conuenerunt, Pappolus Carnotinae ciuitatis episcopus humilis uester.
Ita nos canoneca institutio admonet, ut, quotiens aliquae exortae fuerint in ecclesia causae, synodali hoc conuentu debeat publecari. Adeo, piissimi domni, in uestrae pietatis notitia haec, quae contra nos gesta sunt, per praesentis libelli nostri tenorem studuemus deferendum. Ergo cum me ante aliquod temporis clericorum uel ciuium Carnotinae ciuitatis uoluntas per consensum, cum conniuentia etiam metropolitani mei, fieri episcopum elegisset, quod annuente Domino factum est, post aliquot dies quidam ex ipsius ciuitatis Carnotinae territorio presbyter, nomine Promotus, qui reliquerat sine litteras antecessoris mei cellolam suam, inliceta praesumptione parrociam meam, cui uocabulum est Duno, quasi sub nomine episcopatus uisus est peruasisse; etiam ad facultaticulam ecclesiae, cui praeesse uideor, quantum in ipso pago esse constat, nescio per cuius ordinationem, simeli conditione peruasit. Pro qua re supplex uester sanctitati uestrae suggero et per Spiritum sanctum, qui in uobis habitat, et diem iudicii futuro et per remissionem peccatorum uobis domnis meis coniuro, ut hoc ita, qualiter uobis fieri non uultis, emendari iubeatis, quatenus nec per calledam praesumptionem quis audeat in postmodum per tumorem superbiae simelia perpetrare et simultas ecclesiae uestro studio et ordinatione iam Christo propitio conquiescat.
Cuius suggessione synodus sancta spiritali fauore et canoneco ritu respondens haec contra taemerarios scripsit obiecta.
In the subsequent letter to Bishop Aegidius of Reims, the synodal fathers call for the deposition of Promotus, since he was ordained contrary to canon law. Everybody asking or receiving a benediction from Promotus after this decree will be deemed excommunicated.
(ed. de Clercq 1963: 213, summarised by J. Szafranowski)
The letter of Bishop Pappolus of Chartres to the synod
Contents of the letter of petition
To all of the bishops and lords, always adorned with the apostolic dignity of their [rank], who have now gathered at the holy synod in Paris, Pappolus, bishop of the city of Chartres, your humble [servant].
The canonical decrees remind us, that, as often as some matters are brought forth in the Church, they should be presented at the synodal gathering. Indeed, most pious lords, by the content of this letter, we desire to refer to your pieties the acts which were committed against us. Therefore, when I had been elected a bishop some time ago unanimously by the will of the clerics and citizens of the city of Chartres, with the consent of my metropolitan, which has been done by the favour of God, after a few days a certain presbyter from the territory of the city of Chartres, by the name of Promotus, who has left his cell (cellola) without the letters [of recommendation, i.e. permission] from my predecessor, was seen seizing, with illicit audacity, my parish called Duno as if he was its bishop. In similar fashion, he seized, I do not know by whose authority, the property of the Church he considered himself the superior of, and everything that is located in this district. For that reason, as a pleader to your sanctity, and by the Holy Spirit that dwells in you, and by the future day of judgment, and by the remission of your sins, I plead and beseech my lords to command this [situation], which you would not want to occur in your [dioceses], to be remedied, since someone, by cunning audacity, could dare to perpetrate by tumour of pride something similar; and the hatred could conquer Churches devoted by you zealously and in an orderly way to Christ.
Responding with spiritual favour and in the canonical fashion to this petition, the holy synod wrote these [letters] opposing this recklessness.
In the subsequent letter to Bishop Aegidius of Reims, the synodal fathers call for the deposition of Promotus, since he was ordained contrary to canon law. Everybody asking or receiving a benediction from Promotus after this decree will be deemed excommunicated.
(trans. and summurised by J. Szafranowski)

Place of event:

  • Gaul
  • Paris
  • Orléans
  • Châteaudun

About the source:

Title: Fourth Council of Paris, Concilium Parisiense IV anno 573
Origin: Paris (Gaul)
Denomination: Catholic/Nicene/Chalcedonian
The Fourth Council of Paris was called in order to resolve a dispute between Kings Sigibert and Guntram. The subject of the quarrel was the appointment of Presbyter Promotus to the bishopric of Châteaudun (Castellodunum, Duno). This castle, itself in the possession of Sigibert, was placed in the diocese of Chartres, the city belonging to the realm of Guntram. Sigibert pleaded to Bishop Aegidius of Reims who consecrated Promotus a bishop. The bishops gathered in Paris, all coming from the kingdom of Guntram, condemned this ordination. The acts of this synod consist of three letters, the first of which is the address by Bishop Pappolus of Chartres to the council. The second letter was sent by the synodal fathers to Aegidius of Reims: the bishops condemned his actions and deposed Promotus. In the last letter, the bishops ask Sigibert not to support Promotus any longer.
Gregory of Tours left the account of these events in his Histories (IV.47). The fate of Promotus is described later in VII.17, see [1830].
C. de Clercq ed., Concilia Galliae a. 511-a. 695, Corpus Christianorum. Series Latina 148 A, Turnhout 1963.
J. Gaudemet, B. Basdevant, Les canons des conciles mérovingiens VIe-VIIe siècles, Sources chrétiennes 353, Paris 1989.


Travel and change of residence
Further ecclesiastical career - Bishop
Described by a title - Presbyter/πρεσβύτερος
Usurping episcopal power
Economic status and activity - Ownership or possession of land
Relation with - Bishop/Monastic superior
Private law - Ecclesiastical
Please quote this record referring to its author, database name, number, and, if possible, stable URL: J. Szafranowski, Presbyters in the Late Antique West, ER1528,