The Info List - Ecclesiastical Latin

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Corpus Juris Canonici

* Decretist * Regulæ Juris

* Decretals of Gregory IX

* Decretalist

* Decretum Gratiani
Decretum Gratiani
* Extravagantes
* Liber Septimus
Liber Septimus

Ancient Church Orders
Ancient Church Orders

* Didache

* The Apostolic Constitutions
Apostolic Constitutions

* Canons of the Apostles
Canons of the Apostles

Collections of ancient canons
Collections of ancient canons

* Collectiones canonum Dionysianae
Collectiones canonum Dionysianae
* Collectio canonum quadripartita
Collectio canonum quadripartita
* Collectio canonum Quesnelliana
Collectio canonum Quesnelliana
* Collectio canonum Wigorniensis


* Pseudo-Isidorian Decretals
Pseudo-Isidorian Decretals
* Benedictus Deus (Pius IV) * Contractum trinius * Defect of Birth

Oriental law

* Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches * Eastern Canonical Reforms of Pius XII * Nomocanon

* Archeparchy

* Eparchy

Liturgical law

* Ecclesia Dei
Ecclesia Dei
* Mysterii Paschalis
Mysterii Paschalis

* Sacrosanctum Concilium
Sacrosanctum Concilium

* Musicam Sacram
Musicam Sacram

* Summorum Pontificum
Summorum Pontificum
* Tra le sollecitudini

Sacramental law

* Canon 844 * Ex opere operato * Omnium in mentem * Valid but illicit

Holy Orders

* Impediment (canon law)

* Abstemius

* Clerical celibacy (Catholic Church)
Clerical celibacy (Catholic Church)
* Nullity of Sacred Ordination * Dimissorial letters * Approbation


* Apostolic Penitentiary * Complicit absolution * Canon penitentiary * Internal forum
Internal forum
* Paenitentiale Theodori * Penitential canons
Penitential canons
* Seal of the Confessional


* Eucharistic discipline * Canon 915

Matrimonial law

* Affinity * Banns of Marriage

* Declaration of Nullity

* Matrimonial Nullity Trial Reforms of Pope

* Defender of the Bond

* Impediments to Marriage

* Impediment of crime * Disparity of Cult * Ligamen

* Matrimonial Dispensation

* ratum sed non consummatum

* Natural Marriage * Pauline privilege * Petrine privilege
Petrine privilege

Trials and tribunals

* Tribunals

* Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura
Apostolic Signatura
* Tribunal of the Roman Rota
Roman Rota
* Apostolic Penitentiary

Tribunal Officers

* Judicial Vicar /Officialis * Auditor * Advocatus Diaboli * Defender of the Bond

Tribunal Procedure

* Appeal as from an abuse * Presumption

Canonical structures Particular churches

* Particular churches sui juris

* Latin
Church * Eastern Catholic Churches
Eastern Catholic Churches

* Local particular churches

* Abbacy nullius

* Abbot nullius

* Apostolic vicariate
Apostolic vicariate

* Apostolic vicar
Apostolic vicar

* Apostolic administration

* Apostolic administrator
Apostolic administrator

* Archdiocese

* Diocese

* Cathedraticum

* Archeparchy
* Eparchy

* Deanery

* Vicar forane
Vicar forane

* Military ordinariate * Mission sui juris

* Personal ordinariate

* Anglicanorum Coetibus

* Personal Prelature

Juridic persons

* Parish

* Roman Curia
Roman Curia

* Dicastery * Congregation * Pontifical council


* Canonical coronation
Canonical coronation

* Canonically crowned images

* Computation of time * Custom * Delegata potestas non potest delegari * Derogation

* Dispensation

* Taxa Innocentiana

* Indult * Impediment

* Interpretation

* Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts

* Jurisdiction * Peritus
* Obreption padding:0"> Philosophy, theology, and fundamental theory

* Theology

* Ecclesiology

* Treatise on Law

* Determinatio

Law of persons

* Person (canon law) * Canonical age
Canonical age
* Canonical faculties * Clerics and public office * Clerical celebacy * Consecrated life
Consecrated life
* Defect of Birth * Emancipation * Juridic padding:0"> Canonical documents

* Notary (canon law)
Notary (canon law)

* Protonotary apostolic
Protonotary apostolic

* Apostolic constitution
Apostolic constitution
* Canon * Concordat
* Decree * Decretal * Encyclical
* Motu proprio
Motu proprio
* Ordinance * Papal brief
Papal brief
* Papal bull
Papal bull
* Penitential * Positive law * Rescript

Penal law

* Canon 1324 * Canon 1398 * Excommunication * Interdict
* Internal forum
Internal forum
* Laicization (penal) * Latae Sententiae censure

Catholicism portal

* v * t * e

that is used in the Roman and the other Latin rites of the Catholic Church
Catholic Church
for liturgical purposes. It is distinguished from Classical Latin
by some lexical variations, a simplified syntax and a pronunciation that is based on Italian .

The Ecclesiastical Latin
that is used in theological works, liturgical rites and dogmatic proclamations varies in style: syntactically simple in the Vulgate Bible , hieratic in the Roman Canon of the Mass , terse and technical in Aquinas' Summa Theologica and Ciceronian in Pope John Paul II
Pope John Paul II
's encyclical letter Fides et Ratio .

Ecclesiastical Latin
is the official language of the Holy See
Holy See
and the only surviving sociolect of spoken Latin.


* 1 Usage * 2 Comparison with Classical Latin
* 3 Language materials * 4 Current use * 5 See also * 6 References * 7 Sources

* 8 External links

* 8.1 Latin
and the Catholic Church
Catholic Church
* 8.2 Bibles * 8.3 Breviaries * 8.4 Other documents * 8.5 Course


The Church issued the dogmatic definitions of the first seven General Councils in Greek . Even in Rome, Greek remained at first the language of the liturgy and the language in which the first popes wrote. During the Late Republic and the Early Empire, educated Roman citizens
Roman citizens
were generally fluent in Greek, but state business was conducted in Latin.

The Holy See
Holy See
could change its official language from Latin. The chances of that happening are remote since the fact that Latin
is no longer in common use makes the meaning of its words less likely to change radically from century to century. Since Latin
is spoken as a native language by no modern community, the language is considered a universal, internally-consistent means of communication, without regional bias.

Especially since Vatican II of 1962–1965, the Church no longer uses Latin
as the exclusive language of the Roman and Ambrosian liturgies of the Latin
rites of the Catholic Church. As early as 1913, the Catholic Encyclopedia
Catholic Encyclopedia
commented that Latin
was starting to be replaced by vernacular languages. However, the Church still produces its official liturgical texts in Latin, which provide a single clear point of reference for translations into all other languages. The same holds for the official texts of canon law and for all other doctrinal and pastoral communications and directives of the Holy See
Holy See
(and the Pope), such as encyclical letters , motu propriae , and declarations ex cathedra .

After the use of Latin
as an everyday language died out, even among scholars, the Holy See
Holy See
has for some centuries usually drafted papal other documents in a modern language, but the authoritative text, the one published in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis , generally appears in Latin, even if the translation is available only later. For example, the writers of the Catechism of the Catholic Church
Catholic Church
drafted it in French, the language in which it appeared in 1992. The Latin
text appeared only five years later, in 1997, and the French text was corrected to match the Latin
version. The Latin-language department of the Vatican Secretariat of State (formerly the Secretaria brevium ad principes et epistolarum latinarum) is charged with the preparation in Latin
of papal and curial documents.

Occasionally, the official texts are published in a modern language, including such well-known texts as the motu proprio Tra le sollecitudini (1903) by Pope
Pius X (in Italian) and Mit brennender Sorge (1937) by Pope
Pius XI (in German).

The rule now in force on the use of Latin
in the Eucharistic liturgy of the Roman Rite
Roman Rite
states Mass is celebrated either in Latin
or in another language, provided that the liturgical texts used have been approved according to the norm of law. Except for celebrations of the Mass that are scheduled by the ecclesiastical authorities to take place in the language of the people, priests are always and everywhere permitted to celebrate Mass in Latin.


Written Church Latin
does not differ radically from Classical Latin
. The study of the language of Cicero
and Virgil
is adequate to understand Church Latin. However, those interested only in ecclesiastical texts may prefer to limit the time they devote to ancient authors, whose vocabulary covers matters of importance in that period but appear less frequently in Church documents.

In many countries, those who speak Latin
for liturgical or other ecclesiastical purposes use the pronunciation that has become traditional in Rome by giving the letters the value they have in modern Italian but without distinguishing between open and close "E" and "O" . "AE" and "OE" coalesce with "E"; before them and "I", "C" and "G" are pronounced /t͡ʃ/ (English "CH") and /d͡ʒ/ (English "J"), respectively. "TI" before a vowel is generally pronounced /tsi/ (unless preceded by "S", "T" or "X"). Such speakers pronounce consonantal "V" (not written as "U") as /v/ as in English, and double consonants are pronounced as such. The distinction in Classical Latin between long and short vowels is ignored, and instead of the 'macron', a horizontal line to mark the long vowel, an acute accent is used for stress. The first syllable of two-syllable words is stressed; in longer words, an acute accent is placed over the stressed vowel: adorémus 'let us adore'; Dómini 'of the Lord'.

Ecclesiastics in some countries follow slightly different traditions. For instance, in Slavic and German-speaking countries, "C" commonly receives the value of /ts/ before "E" and"I", and speakers pronounce "G" in all positions hard, never as /d͡ʒ/ (English "J") . (See also Latin
regional pronunciation and Latin
spelling and pronunciation: Ecclesiastical pronunciation .)


The complete text of the Bible in Latin, the revised Vulgate, appears at Nova Vulgata - Bibliorum Sacrorum Editio. Another site gives the entire Bible, in the Douay version, verse by verse, accompanied by the Vulgate Latin
of each verse.

In 1976, the Latinitas Foundation (Opus Fundatum Latinitas in Latin) was established by Pope
Paul VI to promote the study and use of Latin. Its headquarters are in Vatican City
Vatican City
. The foundation publishes an eponymous quarterly in Latin. Other initiatives of the Latinitas Foundation include the publication, in Italian, of the 15,000-word Lexicon Recentis Latinitatis (Dictionary of Recent Latin), which indicates Latin
terms to use in referring to modern ideas, such as a bicycle (birota), a cigarette (fistula nicotiana), a computer (instrumentum computatorium), a cowboy (armentarius), a motel (deversorium autocineticum), shampoo (capitilavium), a strike (operistitium), a terrorist (tromocrates), a trademark (ergasterii nota), an unemployed person (invite otiosus), a waltz (chorea Vindobonensis), and even a miniskirt (tunicula minima) and hot pants (brevissimae bracae femineae). Some 600 such terms extracted from the book appear on a page of the Vatican website.


remains the official language of the Holy See
Holy See
and the Roman Rite of the Catholic Church. Until the 1960s and still later in Roman colleges like the Gregorian, Roman Catholic priests studied theology using Latin
textbooks, and the language of instruction in many seminaries was also Latin, which was seen as the language of the Church Fathers. The use of Latin
in pedagogy and in theological research, however, has since declined. Nevertheless, canon law requires for seminary formation to provide for a thorough training in Latin. Latin
was still spoken in recent international gatherings of Roman Catholic leaders, such as the Second Vatican Council
Second Vatican Council
, and it is still used at conclaves to elect a new Pope
. The Tenth Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops in 2004 was the most recent to have a Latin-language group for discussions.

Although Latin
is the traditional liturgical language of the Roman (Latin) Church, the liturgical use of the vernacular has predominated since the liturgical reforms that followed the Vatican II: liturgical law for the Latin
Church states that Mass may be celebrated either in Latin
or another language in which the liturgical texts, translated from Latin, have been legitimately approved. The permission granted for continued use of the Tridentine Mass
Tridentine Mass
in its 1962 form authorizes use of the vernacular language in proclaiming the Scripture readings after they are first read in Latin.


* Christianity portal

* Canon law (Catholic Church) * Reginald Foster * Latin
Church * Latin
liturgy * Latin
Mass * Roman Rite
Roman Rite


* ^ Cf. Pius XI, Apostolic Letter Officiorum omnium, 1 August 1922, and John XXIII, Apostolic Constitution Veterum sapientia, 22 February 1962 * ^ Adoremus.org * ^ Redemptionis Sacramentum, 112 Archived February 3, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
Wayback Machine
. * ^ Roman Missal * ^ Vatican.va * ^ Newadvent.org * ^ Vatican.va * ^ Vatican.va * ^ As stated above, official documents are frequently published in other languages. The Holy See's diplomatic languages are French and Latin
(such as letters of credence from Vatican ambassadors to other countries are written in