Graduate Papers/Theses

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Date of Award


Document Type

Graduate Paper

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Theology


School of Theology and Seminary

First Advisor

Maxwell Johnson


The early pontifical is described in a catalog of the cathedral library of Paddau, ca. 903, as "the book of sacraments and all the rest, which pertain to the sole ministry of the bishop." It is true that its use was intended for the bishop alone. However, "all the rest" contained quite a large variety of material which only time could filter out. My aim in this paper is to briefly and succinctly set out the development of the pontifical as a liturgical text from the late sixth century to the beginning of the sixteenth century. A study of such a wide timeline will necessarily be limited to the significant moments of development, contents, and discussion of their impact. These can be divided into three sections: The early period of development (the sixth to the ninth century), the period of organization (the ninth and tenth century), and the period of unification (the eleventh to the fifteenth century).


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