Gratian

, a celebrated Benedictine of the twelfth century, was born at Chiusi, and spent near twenty-four years at the monastery of Bologna in composing a work which has gained him great fame, and which he published about 1151, under the title of “Decretal,” or “Concordantia discordantium Canon um,” in which he endeavours to reconcile those canons which seem to contradict each other; but as this author has been guilty of some errors, by mistaking a canon of one council, or a passage of one father, for another, and has frequentlyfquoted spurious decretals, several writers have endeavoured to correct these faults, particularly Anthony Augustine in his valuable work entitled “De emendatione Gratiani,” an excellent edition of which was published by Baluze. The popes are indebted principally to Gratian’s Decretal for the high authority they exercised in the thirteenth and following centuries; but all their pretensions are supported in this work upon suppositious canons, which that age was too ignorant to suspect. This work forms one of the principal parts of the canon law. The editions of Rome, 1582, 4 vols. folio, and of Lyons, 1671, 3 vols. folio, are the best. There is a separate edition of this Decretal, Mentz, 1472, folio. 2

2

Cave, Dupiu. —Moreri. —Saxii Onomasticon.

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