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The Conciliarist Tradition – Constitutionalism in the Catholic Church 1300-1870 - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Conciliarist Tradition: Constitutionalism in the Catholic Church 1300-1870

Francis Oakley


In the early 15th century, the general council assembled at Constance and, representing the universal Church, put an end to the scandalous schism which for almost forty years had divided the Latin Church between rival lines of claimants to the papal office. It did so by claiming and exercising an authority superior to that of the pope, an authority by virtue of which it could impose constitutional limits on the exercise of his prerogatives, stand in judgement over him, and if need be, depose him for wrongdoing. In so acting, the council gave historic expression to a tradition of conciliarist c ... More

Keywords: Council of Constance, universal Church, Latin Church, papacy, popes, conciliarist constitutionalism, Vatican I, Roman Catholic Church

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2008 Print ISBN-13: 9780199541249
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199541249.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Francis Oakley, author
President Emeritus of Williams College, Massachusetts
Author Webpage