(placi[e]tum regium, literceparcatis seu exequatur) is the sanction by a reigning prince to the promulgation and execution of an ecclesiastical ordinance. The placet is necessitated as soon as ecclesiastical ordinances transgress the purely religious boundaries, and come in contact with those of the state. As soon as the mutual boundaries had acquired a relative independence, which drew a line of demarcation between both the State and Church, the right of the placet was established, and the first traces of it we find in the quarrels of Philip le Bel of France with Boniface VIII (q.v.), and Louis of Bavaria with John XXII (q.v.). In the 15th century we find this right of assent fully established in different countries. Thus Louis XI, in 1495, appointed a commission at Amiens to examine all persons coming from Rome whether they had any papal briefs upon them "et icelles voir et visiter, pour stavoir s'elles sont aucunement contraires ou prejudiciables a nous et a la dite eglise Gallicane. Et au cas qu'en trouverez aucunes qui y fussent contraires ou prejudiciables, prenez les et retenez par devers vous, et les porteurs arrestez et constituez prisonniers, si vous voyez que la matiere y soit sujette; et du contenu esdites lettres nous advertissez, ou les nous envovez a toute diligence, pour y donner la provision necessaire" (comp. Preuves, Les Libertes de l'Eglise Gallicane, ch. 10). Martin V (q.v.), in a letter to the archbishops of Portugal, complains, anno 1427, of Portugal: "Dicitur enim nobis, quod statuto regio mandatum est, ne quis audeat sine ipsius regis licentia sub poena mortis et perditionis bonorum in dictis regnis literas apostolicas publicare." When John II, king of Portugal, instigated by Innocent XIII, repealed the Placetum Regium, in 1486, the peers of the realm resisted, and declared that without the consent of the states such a repeal was void (Augustini Manuelis, Hist. Joan. II). Philip the Good, duke of Burgundy, decreed, Jan. 3, 1447: "Dat niemandt en brenghe, oft en exequere eenighe geestelycke monitien, inhibitien oft andere gheboden, op eelighe ondersaeten des Landts van Brabandt, uyt wat saecke dat het zy, hy eerst kome by onse Officiere ende Wetholderen, ende geoe hem klaerlyck te kennen de saecke waerom, ende verkryghe oorlof ende consent. Den gene die dat dede, sal daer an verbeurt hebben alle sine goederen, ende te dien aen syn lyf eenen wegh te S. Peter ende S. Pauls te Roomen te doen." By 1594 the placet was already regarded as a customary right. Doctrine, usage, and legislature, however, developed more fully the cases in which the placet should be used, and thus in matters of conscience, according to a royal declaration of March 8, 1772, reissued Feb. 28, 1810, no placet was required. In Austria the necessity of the placet was emphasized as early as the 16th century. In addition to former ordinances, the decree of Leopold II, dated March 17, 1791, decreed that "papal bulls, briefs, and constitutions must have the sanction of the reigning prince before they can be promulgated and accepted. This ordinance also refers to all previous papal edicts, without exception, in such a manner that whenever use is made of an ancient bull the sanction is required, and even such bulls as have been sanctioned shall only be valid as long as new decrees of the state do net affect their validity." According to another decree, dated April 2 and 7, 1784, the placet was also required for all instructions, orders, etc., given to preachers and priests, no matter as to the form in which they are made known to them. The Austrian decree of 1791 was also adopted Jan. 30, 1830, for the province of the Upper Rhine. In Bavaria the same principles, which were still adhered to in the edict dated May 26, 1818, were already the same as in the edict dated April 3, 1770, that all ecclesiastical edicts are subject to the placet, with the exception of summons issued by the ecclesiastical authorities, provided they only refer to the lower clergy, and are the natural issues of ordinances already sanctioned. These claims of the state had always been the subject of protest on the part of the Roman See. The bull "In ccena domini" (q.v.) excommunicates all those who prevent the promulgation and annunciation of papal bulls and briefs (comp. the bull Pastoraelis of Urban VIII, anno 1627, § 7, 13, in the Bullarium Romanum, 6, 38, 40). When Leopold I, while governor of Belgium. would not allow the publication of the papal prohibition of Jansen's (q.v.) work Augustinus without the sanction of the government, appealing to privileges, liberties, and usages, Innocent X, in 1651, protested against it most decidedly: "Quod equidem audiri sine horrore animi non potest." "Never has such a privilege been granted either by a pope or a council, which must needs destroy the papal power. None, however, dare to refer to the privilege of a worldly prince, because it would be nothing else but a foolhardy arrogance to bind and loose the souls, which right the Lord Jesus Christ has granted to none else than to his vicar" (Roskovany, Monumenta catholica pro independentia potestatis ecclesiasticae b imperio civili, pt. 1, p. 203, Quinque Ecclesiis, 1847). In this sense the popes have continually protested against the placet, and the brief of Pius VIII (q.v.), "Pervenerat 1 non ita pridem," dated June 30, 1830, is a bitter protest against the edict of Jan. 30, 1830. This persevering opposition was finally crowned with a result, but the hierarchy owes this' result to an institution which is anything but desirable to the Church, viz. the liberty of the press. The Belgian Constitution of Feb. 25, 1831, art. XVI, decreed: "The state has no right to interfere with the appointment or election of ministers of any denomination, or to prevent them from having intercourse with their superiors and promulgating their records; in the latter case with the proviso of the usual responsibility concerning the press and promulgation." This example was followed in Holland and Prussia in 1848. in Austria in 1855, and in Würtemberg in 1857. In other countries the purely ecclesiastical edicts are freed from the placet; all that is required is that the civil authorities get an insight at their publication. Since the ascendency obtained by Prussia in the German empire at the close of the Franco- German war, the system of Church legislation has undergone a complete change, the details of Church government being largely taken into the control of the state, and obedience to the new code of Church laws being exacted from the clergy under penalty of forfeiture of income, of deprivation of office, and in some cases of exile. For the present status quo of Rome in the German empire. comp. Kurtz, Lehrbuch der Kirchengeschichte (Mitalu 1874), 2, 389 sq. See Wetzer u. Welte, Kirchen-Lexikon, s.v. Placet; Herzog, Real-Encyklop. s.v.; Theolopisches Universal-Lexikon, s.v.; Aschbach, KirchenLexikon, 4, 596-601; Gieseler, Eccles. Hist. (Smith's transl.), 3, 340, note 5; Van Espen, Tractatus de promulgatione legum ecclesiasticarum ac speciatim Bullarum et rescriptorum Curiae Romanae (Opera omnia, Lovanii, 1753, fol. 4:123 sq.); Stockman, Jus Belgarum circa Bullarum pontificum receptionena (Opera, Brux. 1760); Besier, Specimen dejuris placeti historia in Belgio (Trajecti ad Rh. 1848); Philipp, Kirchenrecht, 2, 557 sq.; 3, 556 sq.; Eichhorn, Kirchesnrecht, 1, 772, 782 sq.; Richter, Kirchenrecht, § 66, 177 (5th ed.).

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