Medieval Handbooks of Penance: A Translation of the Principal Libri Poenitentiales and Selections from Related Documents

By John T. McNeill; Helena M. Gamer | Go to book overview

APPENDIX IV
On Documents Omitted

THE PRESENT WORK is necessarily selective. Several times the space occupied would have been required to present all the documents of the series in their entirety. Besides the secondary documents represented here by selections only, a considerable number are entirely omitted on the ground of their relative historical insignificance. Most of the published documents omitted from the text are comprised in the following list. The titles are given in alphabetic order.


1. The Arundel Penitential

This work was carefully edited from the British Museum manuscript in which it is extant, by Schmitz ( I, pp. 432-65), in the interest of his theory of the Roman origin of the penitentials. Fournier gives reasons for dating it in the tenth or eleventh century and regarding it as of slight influence. "Études sur les pénitentiels," V, Revue d'histoire et de littérature religieuses, IX ( 1904), 98 f.


2. The Penitential Canons of Astesanus, ca. 1317

These canons, extracted from the fifth book of the Summa de casibus of the Franciscan Astesanus (of Asti, d. 1330) were first printed at Venice in 1584, and appear in Schmitz's first volume ( I, pp. 800-808). They deal mainly with the offenses of priests. They are largely drawn from a section of the Confessional of St. Bonaventura (d. 1274), but employ materials from other thirteenth century writers and are through these sources indebted chiefly to the section on Penance in the Decretum of Gratian (ca. 1140). E. Friedberg, Corpus juris canonici, I, 1159-1247 ( Grat. Decret., II, xxxiii, 3). Cf. Wasserschleben, Bussordnungen, pp. 96 f. Gratian is in turn directly or indirectly indebted to Burchard.


3. The So-called Penitential of Boniface

A. J. Binterim published in 1822 in an appendix to his edition of the De diaconis nunquam penitentiae sacramenti ministris of K. Blascus, a penitential which he, through a misreading, ascribed to Boniface, and in 1829 reprinted it in his Denkwürdigkeiten der christ-katholischen Kirche, V, iii, 430-36. Binterim explains Regino's failure to mention it along with the penitentials of Theodore and Bede on the ground that it was regarded as a shortened form of the work of Bede. It is really based on part of the Pseudo-Bede, or Double Penitential.1 The references of Boniface to Bede in his extant letters show that about 745 he had slight knowledge of Bede's works;2 nor is it probable that the Pseudo-Bede was

____________________
1
See above, p. 218.
2
Haddan and Stubbs, III, 358 ff. Cf. M. Manitius, Geschichte der lateinischen Litteratur des Mittelalters, I ( 1911), 147.

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