Index Librorum Prohibitorum

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Index Librorum Prohibitorum


(Index of Forbidden Books), an official list, published by the Vatican, of books which the Catholic Church forbade its members to read upon threat of excommunication.

The Index was first issued as directed by Pope Paul IV in 1559. It was reissued more than 40 times (the latest edition dates from 1948), and during this process it was systematically enlarged.

The Index listed many of the finest creations of human thought, such as the works of G. Bruno, T. Hobbes, and Voltaire. In.the hands of the Catholic Church the Index was one of the means used in the struggle against science, as well as against progressive and revolutionary views. In 1966 publication of the Index Librorum Prohibitorum in its previous form was ceased. At the same time the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and conferences of bishops were charged with the task of keeping track of new editions of books and with warning church members against reading books not approved by the church.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Index librorum prohibitorum

list of forbidden books compiled by Roman Catholic Church. [Christian Hist.: NCE, 1323]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
In part, because of this--and also because of Tertullian's declaration that it was "no part of religion to compel religion" (47)--Tertullian was co-opted by the Reformation movement as ammunition against the Inquisition and the Catholic Church; hence, he began to be seen as "more of a 'Protestant' than a 'Catholic' author," thus landing several editions of his work on the Index Prohibitorum (Backus 152, 172).
(20) It also seems reasonable to assume that, as a well-read man with an obvious love for all kinds of texts (he even admits to reading "papeles rotos" (1.9:179) ["torn papers" (1.9:80)] that he finds in the street), Cervantes would not be in favor of the kind of book ban imposed through the Index Prohibitorum.
(20) Already on the second page of the Princeps edition of Don Quixote I, a citation attributed to the books of chivalry of Feliciano de Silva in truth most closely matches one from Silva's La Segunda Celestina (Stoopen 164), a text banned by the Index Prohibitorum of 1559 (38).