Corpus Catholicorum

Corpus Catholicorum (body of the Catholics), formerly the collective name of the Roman Catholic states of Germany, as contradistinguished from the Corpus Evangelicorum (q.v.) of the Protestant states. It was not until after the treaty of Westphalia, wherein the pope had, by settling, so to say, the rights of both parties, officially recognised their existence, that the expression Corpus Catholicorum came into general use. Yet the confederation had existed before the Corpus Evangelicorum, as is proved by the harmonious action of the Roman Catholic states at the Diet of Nuremberg and the decisions of the Confederation of Ratisbon (1524). The elector of Mayence was the President of the Corpus Catholicorum, which generally held its proceedings in a convent of that city in which the diet happened to meet. The abolition of the German Empire in 1806 led to the extinction of the Corpus Evangelicorum, and, as a consequence, of that of the Corpus Catholicorum. — See Faber, Europdische Staats Cantzley, who, in vol. 53, p. 237, gives a complete list of the states constituting the Corpus Catholicorum; Moser, Teutsches Staats-Recht, etc.; and CORPUS EVANGELICORUM.

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