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Medieval Sourcebook:
Council of Altheim:
Bequests of the Clergy, 916

It was decided at the Council of Altheim that the bequests of bishops and priests should be honored after death. Intestacy implied forfeiture of the land and goods to the church.

But this also has been discovered concerning bishops, priests, and clerics, if they have an inheritance from the lord King, or from some other noble, or their friend, or if it fell to them, or if they acquired it by hereditary right, that they are allowed to give it for remedy of their soul to whom they wish, while they live, to whatever church they please, or to their relatives or friends. But if they die before they do so, then those possessions are given forever to the altar which they serve, and are so conveyed by law. It has likewise been decreed concerning priests.

Witnesses, etc.


From: N. Schaten, S.J., ed., Annales Paderbornenses, (Neuhaus, 1693), Vol. I, p. 250; reprinted in Roy C. Cave & Herbert H. Coulson, A Source Book for Medieval Economic History, (Milwaukee: The Bruce Publishing Co., 1936; reprint ed., New York: Biblo & Tannen, 1965), pp. 337-338.

Scanned by Jerome S. Arkenberg, Cal. State Fullerton. The text has been modernized by Prof. Arkenberg.

This text is part of the Internet Medieval Source Book. The Sourcebook is a collection of public domain and copy-permitted texts related to medieval and Byzantine history.

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© Paul Halsall, October 1998