Presbyters Uniwersytet Warszawski
ER 536
Canon 3 of the Seventh Council of Toledo (Iberian Peninsula, AD 646) confirms the decision of the Council of Valencia concerning the burials of bishops. A bishop who is asked by the clergy to attend the burial of their bishop, and fails to do so, shall be punished by one year`s excommunication. Presbyters and clerics who fail to inform another bishop about the death of their superior are to incur the same punishment.
Canon 3
De exequiis morientis episcopi.
Ea quae competunt honestati contingit saepe quorundam desidia non impleri. Proinde, quia notum quae dignitas in exsequiis morientis episcopi ex canonibus conseruetur traditione moris antiqui, hoc tantum adicimus, ut si quis sacerdotum secundum statuta Valletani concilii ad humanda decedentis episcopi membra uenire commonitus pigra uoluntate distulerit, appellantibus clericis obeuntis episcopi apud synodum siue apud metropolitanum episcopum tempore anni unius nec faciendi missam nec communicandi habeat omnino licentiam. Presbyteres autem siue ceteri clerici quibus maior honoris locus apud eandem ecclesiam fuerit cuius sacerdos obierit, si omni sollicitudine pro exsequiis aut iam mortui aut continuo antestitis morituri ad commonendum tardi inueniantur, aut per quamcumque molestiam animi id neglegere comprobentur, totius anni spatio ad poenitentiam in monasteriis deputentur.
(eds. Martínez Díez, Rodríguez 1992: 349-350)
Canon 3
On the burial of a bishop
It sometimes happens that honest things are not done because of one’s idleness. Therefore, because the dignity of the episcopal funeral is preserved in the canons by the tradition of the ancient custom, we only add that if a priest according to the canons of the council of Valencia fails out of indolence to come to attend the burial of the bishop, the clerics of the deceased bishop shall gather on the council or at the metropolitan bishop's, and this priest shall lose his right to celebrate a mass or communicate for the time of one year. If presbyters, or other clerics of the higher rank in the church of the deceased bishop, are found to delay in informing another bishop that their bishop died, or is about to die, or it is proven that they neglected to do so by some distress of soul, they shall be punished with one year's penance in the monastery.
(trans. M. Szada)


The canon refers to the decisions of the Council of Valencia in AD 546 [284].

Place of event:

  • Iberian Peninsula
  • Toledo

About the source:

Title: Seventh Council of Toledo, Concilium Toletanum septimum a. 646, Concilium VII Toletanum, Concilium Toletanum VII
Origin: Toledo (Iberian Peninsula)
Denomination: Catholic/Nicene/Chalcedonian
The Seventh Council of Toledo assembled in October AD 646 during the reign of king Chindaswinth (642-653) and was attended by thirty bishops.
G. Martínez Díez, F. Rodríguez eds., La colección canónica Hispana, Monumenta Hispaniae sacra. Serie canónica 5, Madrid 1992.


Described by a title - Presbyter/πρεσβύτερος
    Described by a title - Clericus
      Ritual activity - Temporal impediment to presbyterial activity
        Ecclesiastical administration - Participation in councils and ecclesiastical courts
          Relation with - Bishop/Monastic superior
            Administration of justice - Ecclesiastical
              Administration of justice - Suspension
                Ecclesiastical administration
                  Administration of justice - Imprisonment
                    Please quote this record referring to its author, database name, number, and, if possible, stable URL: M. Szada, Presbyters in the Late Antique West, ER536,