APOSTOLIC SEE. The syntagma apostolic see is one of the expressions by which, from the 4th c., the see and the ministry of the bishop of Rome have been customarily named. The expression, however, is not a Roman creation, but was often employed during the first four centuries, together with the more common ecclesia apostolica, to designate other episcopal sees, those traditionally linked to the memory of the apostolic generations and those founded later. Specified by an ample series of adjectives, including apostolikos-apostolicus, the terms thronos and sedes were used to indicate the sees most conspicuous for their civil importance and their links with the Christian origins Rome, Antioch, Alexandria, Jerusalem and later Constantinople: Lampe, 655, as well as other particular churches of apostolic origin, such as Corinth, Philippi, Thessalonica, Ephesus Tertullian, De praescr.
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36, 1, Cyprus Alexander of Cyprus, Barn.laud. CCG 26, 692 and, finally, also for sees of minor importance. The Latin apostolica sedes appears in a letter of Paulinus of Nola in reference to the particular church of Thagaste Ep.
3,1, CSEL 29,14, 7, and Augustine uses a similar expression in the plural, sedes apostolorum, to point out that communion with the most important sees is a sure guarantee of orthodoxy Augustine, Ep.118, 32 CSEL 34, 696,15-16. From the 4th c., making reference to a special Petrine heritage of the Roman Church, the documents of the bishops of Rome begin to constantly use the expression apostolic see as a synonym for the more archaic cathedra Petri and sedes Petri.
The expression is attested for the first time in a letter of 354 by Liberius to Eusebius of Vercelli Ep. 6, PL 8,1350B; Athanasius also uses it apostolikos thronos to refer generally to the apostolicity of the episcopal see of the Urbe, but describing, significantly, precisely the difficulties of Liberius during the Arian crisis Athanasius, Hist.Arian. 35, 2.
The use of the formula is widely attested in the documentation of Damasus, to whom is unanimously attributed a decisive role in the development of the doctrine of primacy. The syntagma apostolic see was increasingly understood as a title par excellence of the Roman see and, in these terms, the expression and the underlying doctrine were used by the Roman synod of 378 PL 13, 575-584, and contested by the Arians condemned at Aquileia in 381 Scolies ariennes, SC 267,306. The expression is widely attested in the documentation produced by Damasus's successors, but also in non-Roman Western texts between the 4th and 5th c.
Priscillian, Lib. Ad Dam. CSEL 18, 34, 11; Rufinus of Aquileia, Anast. 4, PL 21, 625; Augustine, Ep.1,5, 1, CSEL 88, 6,7; Id. Ep.
20,12, 4, CSEL 88, 101, 16; Id. Ep.22,5, 3, CSEL 88, 115, 23; Facundus of Hermiane, Def. Trium capit. CCL 90A, 123, 20; 125, 78-79; 155, 289; 252, 65; Id. Moc. CCL 90A, 403, 101; 404,118. 122; 414, 505; 412, 423; Conciliae Galliae, CCL 148, 105, 4; and numerous other attestations.
At the council of Ephesus of 431 the syntagma was usually attributed exclusively to the bishop of Rome, obviously in Roman and Western documentation Celestine, Ep. 17, PL 50, 503; Capreolus of Carthage, ACO I,I, 2, 53, 12-21, but also in Eastern sedes is rendered both as thronos and as kathedra; see the many recurrences in ACO I,I, 8, Indices vol. Primi, 44.
The doctrinal content attached to Rome in this formula is expressed in a statement of the presbyter Philip, Roman legate to Ephesus, and passed down by the Greek version of the Gesta Ephesina ACO I,I, 3, 60,25-35. At Rome the expression is used by Leo the Great and by Arnobius the Younger in Praedestinatus I,88, CCL 25B, 51, 2, and esp. In the Conflictus in which the author presents himself as sedis apostolicae defensor Conflict.
1,1, since, after the Ephesian synod of 499, he intervened in the christological debate to defend the pronouncements of Leo and the authority of the Roman see. With Felix III and Gelasius I the doctrinal and disciplinary content of the formula was further specified in reference to the Petrine heritage of the church of the Urbe and the responsibilities of its bishop. During the Acacian schism Roman documentation uses the traditional syntagma along with that of prima sedes first, that is, among the four main churches mentioned in cans.
6 and 7 of Nicaea Rome, Antioch, Alexandria and Jerusalem; whereas, because of the conflict with Constantinople at the time, the order of the sees established at the council of 381 was explicitly rejected E.Schwartz, Publizistische Sammlungen zum Acacianischen Schisma, 17,31-37. The expression prima sedes is sometimes also attested in Eastern texts, both ecclesiastical and imperial Mansi XI, cols.
684CD; 716B; XII, 1082C-1083D. After nearly three centuries of elaboration, the sense of an orthodox see par excellence, heir of the testimony of the apostle Peter, was firmly attached to the expression apostolic see, Hormisdas, Exempl.libell. CSEL 35, 521, 4.
The Libellus fidei of Hormisdas can be considered the point of arrival of the doctrinal elaboration that accompanied this expression and that would remain constant, in the successive centuries, in the language of the Roman chancellery and of those who would address or make reference to it Gregory the Great, Ep. Ad Leandrum, CSEL 143, 1,2; Bede, H.eccl. 4,1, 1, SC 490, 192, 14; 5,11, 1, SC 491, 62, 3-4.
Although the expression apostolic see with other equivalents occurs only infrequently before 680-681 in the language and in the official titles given to the bishop of Rome by the prelates of the Eastern sees and by the imperial chancellery, other references related to the Petrine heritage are not lacking De episcoporum ordinatione of Valentinian III of 445, Leges nouellae, 17, 102-103; Codex Iustinianus I,1,8, 8; 6th-c. Letters of the Collectio Auellana, CSEL 35, 322, 8.13. 18; 323, 19- 20; 324, 22.23. 24; 652, 4; 658, 3-6; 660, 4; 710, 14-15; 713, 10; Constantinopolitan synod against Anthimus: ACO 3, 153, 30; letters of Menas: ACO 3, 182, 2; CSEL 35, 232, 2-3; libellus of the three Eastern patriarchs of 553: ACO 4, 1, 16-22; an inscriptio of Constantine IV: Mansi XI, 720A. E.
Schwartz, Publizistische Sammlungen zum Acacianischen Schisma, Munich 1934; Lampe, s.v. apostolikos, 210-211; thronos, 655; G.Bareille, Apostolicit, DTC 12, 1621-1622; P.
Batiffol, Le Si¨ge Apostolique 359-451, Paris 19243; Id. Cathedra Petri. ?tudes d'Histoire ancienne de l'‰glise, Paris 1938 Unam Sanctam, 4; M.Maccarrone, Vicarius Christi e vicarius Petri nel periodo patristico: RSCI 1 19481-32; Id. Vicarius Christi.
Storia del titolo papale, Rome 1952; Id. Apostolicit, episcopato e primato di Pietro, Rome 1976; Id. Sedes Apostolica-Vicarius Petri. La perpetuit del Primato di Pietro nella sede e nel vescovo di Roma sec III-VIII: Il primato del Vescovo di Roma nel primo millennio. Ricerche e testimonianze, ed.
M.Maccarrone, Vatican City 275-362; Id. La concezione di Roma citt di Pietro e di Paolo da Damaso a Leone I: Romana ecclesia. Cathedra Petri.
M.Maccarrone, I-II, eds. P.
Zerbi – R.Volpini – A.Galluzzi, Rome 1991 Italia sacra, 47-48, 175-206; P.
Stephanou, Sedes Apostolica, Regia Civitas: OCP 33 1967 563-582; P.Nautin, Flix III II, DHGE 16, Paris 1967, cols. 889-895; Id. La lettre de Flix III Andr de Thessalonique et sa doctrine sur l'‰glise et l'empire, RHE 77 1982 5-34; Id. Glase, DHGE 20, Paris 1984, cols.
283- 294; Ch. Pietri, Roma Christiana. Recherches sur l'Eglise de Rome, son organisation, sa politique, son idologie, de Miltiade Sixte III 311-440, II, Rome 1976; Id. Damase vªque de Rome: Saecularia Damasiana.
Atti del Convegno internazionale per il XVI centenario della morte di papa Damaso I Citt del Vaticano-Roma, 11-12-384-1012-12-1984, Vatican City – Rome 1986, 31-58; Id. La conversion de Rome et la primaut du Pape IV-VIe: Il primato del Vescovo di Roma nel primo millennio. Ricerche e testimonianze, ed. M.
Maccarrone, Vatican City 1991, 219-243; C.Carletti, Damaso, EPapi I, Rome 2000, 349-372; E.Morini, Roma nella Pentarchia: Roma fra Oriente e Occidente, II, Spoleto 2002, 833-939. Apostolic see – Wikiwand holidaymapq
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