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concordat(kənkôr`dăt), formal agreement, specifically between the pope, in his spiritual capacity, and the temporal authority of a state. Its juridical status is now generally accepted as being a contract between church and statechurch and state,
the relationship between the religion or religions of a nation and the civil government of that nation, especially the relationship between the Christian church and various civil governments.
..... Click the link for more information. and as such it is a treaty governed by international laws. The term concordat has also been applied to other agreements; thus, in the Swiss Confederation before 1848 federal decisions were called concordats. The fundamental antithesis between church and state found particularly violent expression in the quarrels over investitureinvestiture,
in feudalism, ceremony by which an overlord transferred a fief to a vassal or by which, in ecclesiastical law, an elected cleric received the pastoral ring and staff (the symbols of spiritual office) signifying the transfer of the office.
..... Click the link for more information. during the Middle Ages and gave rise to the practice of concluding concordats. The earliest agreement to be called a concordat (see Worms, Concordat ofWorms, Concordat of,
1122, agreement reached by Pope Calixtus II and Holy Roman Emperor Henry V to put an end to the struggle over investiture. By its terms the emperor guaranteed free election of bishops and abbots and renounced the right to invest them with ring and staff, the
..... Click the link for more information. , 1122) was a dual proclamation rather than a bilateral act. The Concordat of 1516 between Pope Leo X and King Francis I of France, which abolished the Pragmatic Sanction of Bourges (see pragmatic sanctionpragmatic sanction,
decision of state dealing with a matter of great importance to a community or a whole state and having the force of fundamental law. The term originated in Roman law and was used on the continent of Europe until modern times.
..... Click the link for more information. ), gave the king the right to nominate bishops, abbots, and priors but reserved to the pope the right of confirmation and special rights of appointment. That right was revoked at the States-General of Orléans in 1561, and the struggle between GallicanismGallicanism
, in French Roman Catholicism, tradition of resistance to papal authority. It was in opposition to ultramontanism, the view that accorded the papacy complete authority over the universal church.
..... Click the link for more information. and ultramontanismultramontanism
[Lat.,=beyond the mountains, i.e., the Alps], formerly, point of view of Roman Catholics who supported the pope as supreme head of the church, as distinct from those who professed Gallicanism or other tendencies opposing the papal jurisdiction.
..... Click the link for more information. was resumed, to last until the French Revolution. The Concordat of 1801Concordat of 1801,
agreement between Napoleon Bonaparte and Pope Pius VII that reestablished the Roman Catholic Church in France. Napoleon took the initiative in negotiating this agreement; he recognized that reconciliation with the church was politic.
..... Click the link for more information. , most famous of all concordats, regulated the status of the church in France for a century. In the 19th and 20th cent. numerous concordats were concluded. The appointment of bishops still remained an important issue, but the advance of secularism gave increasing importance to the status of religious education, monastic orders, and church property and to the seemingly conflicting loyalties of Roman Catholics to the state and to the church. In the Catholic countries of Latin America the conflicts and adjustments between church and state gave rise to a number of concordats. The concordat of 1855 with Austria gave vast rights to the church, but it was abrogated by Austria upon the proclamation of papal infallibility. The KulturkampfKulturkampf
[Ger.,=conflict of cultures], the conflict between the German government under Bismarck and the Roman Catholic Church. The promulgation (1870) of the dogma of the infallibility of the pope in matters of faith and morals within the church sparked the conflict; it
..... Click the link for more information. between Otto von Bismarck and the papacy ended (1887) with a modus vivendi, which was a tentative agreement and not called a concordat. The status of the papacy in Italy was regulated in 1929 by the Lateran TreatyLateran Treaty,
concordat between the Holy See and the kingdom of Italy signed in 1929 in the Lateran Palace, Rome, by Cardinal Gasparri for Pius XI and by Benito Mussolini for Victor Emmanuel III. One of the important negotiators was Cardinal Pacelli, later Pope Pius XII.
..... Click the link for more information. . The threat of National Socialism (Nazism) to the Roman Catholic Church prompted the concordat of 1933 with Adolf Hitler, who violated it from the start. In Spain, where Francisco Franco had abrogated the concordat of 1931, a provisional agreement with the Vatican over the appointment of bishops was reached in 1941. After World War II a number of concordats (notably that with Poland) were abrogated by Communist regimes. A new concordat with Spain was signed in 1953.
an agreement between the pope as head of the Catholic Church and a state; it regulates the status of the Catholic Church in the state, its rights in marital and family relations and the schools, and so forth.
The first Concordat was signed in Worms in 1122 between the pope and the German emperor; it delineated the functions of the secular and clerical authority in the appointment of bishops, thus ending the struggle over investiture. The most well-known concordats were the Concordat of Bologna of 1516 and the concordat between Pope Pius VII and Napoleon in 1801, which defined the status of the Catholic Church in France. In 1929 the pope concluded a concordat with the government of Mussolini; this took place simultaneously with the Lateran Treaty, which recognized the sovereignty of the pope over the territory of the Vatican.
REFERENCESLavretskii, I. R. Vatikan. Moscow, 1957.
Sheinman, M. Vatikan mezhdu dvumia mirovymi voinami. Moscow-Leningrad, 1948.