(I.) "a name of the ancient clergy, supposed to have been given to them in consequence of their shaven crowns. But Bingham and others have shown that the tonsure, as used by the Romanists, did not exist at the time of the introduction of this epithet. The custom was to cut the hair to a moderate degree simply for the sake of decent appearance, and especially to avoid conformity to the existing fashion of wearing long hair. St. Jerome says that none but the priests of Isis and Serapis have shaven crowns. The term coronati might be given to the clergy out of respect to their office and character, which were held in great honor. It was customary, in addressing bishops, to use some title of respect, such as per coronam, and per coronam vestram; and the allusion may be to the corona, or mitre, which the bishops wore as a part of their priestly dress; or it may be considered as a metaphorical expression, denoting the honor and dignity of the episcopal order." — Bingham, Orig. Eccl. 6, 4:17.

(II.) A title traditionally given to four martyrs — Severus, Severianus, Carpophorus, and Victorinus — so named because, it is said, they were killed, in 304, by having crowns with sharp nails pressed into their heads. A church erected at Rome in their honor is mentioned by pope Gregory I, and still exists. They are commemorated in the Church of Rome on Nov. 8; the Acts of their martyrdom are spurious. See Wetzer u. Welte, Kirch.-Lex. 2:880.

"Creation." topical outline.

See also the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

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