Gallicanism


Gallicanism
   A set of beliefs and practices in the French Catholic Church that conceived the church in France as an autonomous, self-governing branch of the universal church. It acknowledged the nominal supremacy of the popes but rejected papal intervention in filling church offices, in taxation of the clergy, and in some questions of religious practice. The widespread charges of corruption in the late medieval church, which popular opinion blamed mainly on the popes, encouraged this resistance to papal meddling in local affairs. Gallican tradition also supported the ideas of Conciliarism, which attributed ultimate authority in the church not to the popes but to a general council. Gallicanism was encouraged by the kings of France, who wanted to preserve their control of appointment to valuable church offices. In 1438 the French bishops supported King Charles VII'S enactment of the Pragmatic Sanction of Bourges, a document defining the legal rights of the autonomous Gallican church.
   Although a king of France had issued the Pragmatic Sanction, the kings upheld Gallicanism only when it suited their political purposes. In 1516 the new king, Francis I, and a new pope, Leo X, negotiated the Concordat of Bologna, in which the pope acknowledged some French claims to administrative autonomy. But the Concordat acknowledged the right of the king, rather than the clergy of the diocesan cathedral chapters, to appoint French bishops, subject to confirmation by the pope. The treaty was a betrayal of the principle of an autonomous church, since the independence of the clergy was now threatened not by a distant pope but by a close-at-hand king who exploited his control of church patronage to reward his favorites.
   Gallicanism still survived as an ideal, but in reality it had life only when the kings, for reasons of their own, fostered it, as happened when they resisted papal efforts to extend the decrees of the Council of Trent to France or to block royal efforts to end the religious civil wars by granting toleration to the large Protestant minority. Gallicanism remained a force in French society through the 17th and 18th centuries. In general, however, once the kings had gained control of church appointments and properties under the Concordat of Bologna, they preferred to negotiate specific issues directly with the papacy.

Historical Dictionary of Renaissance. . 2004.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Gallicanism — • This term is used to designate a certain group of religious opinions for some time peculiar to the Church of France, or Gallican Church, and the theological schools of that country Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Gallicanism      …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Gallicanism — is the belief that popular civil authority mdash;often represented by the monarchs authority or the State s authority mdash;over the Catholic Church is comparable to that of the Roman Pope s. Gallicanism is a rejection of Ultramontanism; it is… …   Wikipedia

  • Gallicanism —    Gallicanism was a combination of political positions and theological doctrines supporting the relative independence of the French Roman Catholic Church and the French government in their relations with the papacy. Three distinct, but closely… …   France. A reference guide from Renaissance to the Present

  • Gallicanism — Gal li*can*ism, n. The principles, tendencies, or action of those, within the Roman Catholic Church in France, who (esp. in 1682) sought to restrict the papal authority in that country and increase the power of the national church. Schaff Herzog… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Gallicanism — [gal′i kəniz΄əm] n. the principles enunciated by the French Roman Catholic Church in 1682, claiming limited autonomy: opposed to ULTRAMONTANISM …   English World dictionary

  • Gallicanism — /gal i keuh niz euhm/, n. the movement or body of doctrines, chiefly associated with the Gallican church, advocating the restriction of papal authority in certain matters. Cf. ultramontanism. [1855 60; < F Gallicanisme. See GALLICAN, ISM] * * *… …   Universalium

  • Gallicanism —    This word (from Gallia, the Latin place name for France) refers to the theological position and political movement that resisted papal authority in France. Gallicanism, expressed succinctly in the Four Gallican Articles of 1682, was rejected… …   Glossary of theological terms

  • Gallicanism — noun Date: 1805 a movement originating in France and advocating administrative independence from papal control for the Roman Catholic Church in each nation …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • GALLICANISM —    the name given to the contention of the GALLICAN CHURCH (q.v.) …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

  • GALLICANISM —    the theory developed by French theologians in the fourteenth century and popular until at least the late nineteenth century that the ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH ought to be free from PAPAL AUTHORITY …   Concise dictionary of Religion


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