Bordeaux, Councils of

Bordeaux, Councils Of (Concilium Burdeganlense) Of these there were several.

I. Held in 385, by order of the emperor Maximus, against the Priscillianists. Instantius and Priscilliainus were called upon for their defence. The former made out so bad a case for himself that he was judged unworthy of the episcopate. Priscillianus, fearing the same treatment, ventured to appeal to the emperor from the council, which appeal the bishops permitted. Priscillianus and the other accused parties were in consequence brought before the emperor at Treves, Idacius and Ithacius, their accusers, accompanying them. The emperor, at the urgent request of Ithacius, and contrary to his promise made to St. Martin, condemned Priscillianus and some of his followers to death. St. Martin had before strongly urged Ithacius to desist from his violent accusations, and after this business refused to communicate with the Ithacians. Moreover, St. Ambrose, the pope Siricius, and the Council of Turin, in 398, condemned the Ithacians, maintaining that it was far from the part of a bishop to be in any way instrumental in causing the death of heretics. St. Ambrose in his writings also evinced his disgust at these cruelties, and the irregular condemnation of the Priscillianists. See Labbe, Concil. 2, 1034.

II. Held in 1080, in the month of October. Two legates, three archbishops, and several bishops were present. The notorious Berenger here gave account of his faith, either in confirmation of what he had declared at Rome in this same year, or to retract what he had just published in contradiction of that declaration. See Labbe, Concil. 10, 381.

III. Held on April 13, 1255. In it Gerard of Malemort, archbishop of Bordeaux, published a constitution consisting of thirty articles. Among other things it is enacted, that all beneficed clergy and others having the cure of souls shall be constantly in residence; that those persons who remain in a state of excommunication for forty days shall pay nine livres, or some other suitable fine; it is absolutely forbidden to absolve any one under excommunication, even at the point of death; if he, or some one for him, have not made satisfaction to the party interested, the priest so absolving him to be bound for him. To such an extent had the abuse of excommunications been carried in that age, that it was a common case to excommunicate in execution of a judgment, or on account of some money debt remaining unpaid. The fifth article enjoins that the consecrated host shall not be given to children who are brought to communion on Easter- day, but only bread which has been blessed. See Labbe, Concil. 11, 738.

IV. Held in 1583, by Antoine, archbishop of Bordeaux. Thirty-six regulations, relating to matters of faith, morals, and discipline, were drawn up, similar to those of the Council of Rheims in the same year. The last of these refers to the proper regulation of seminaries, and is divided into nine chapters, which enjoin among other things, that they should be built in some open spot hot far from the cathedral church; that mass and prayer should be said daily; that the members of the seminary should obey the superior and other officers; that they shall be modest in their behavior, never eat out of the seminary, and never go out without leave; that all shall go to bed at nine, and rise at four in the morning, etc. See Labbe, Concil. 15, 944.

V. Held in 1624, under Francis, archbishop of Bordeaux, and cardinal. In this council twenty-two chapters, containing a large number of canons, were published, chiefly relating to discipline. See Labbe, Concil. 15:1632.

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