Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Dictionary

A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

Search:

Or browse the dictionary by selecting a letter!
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

PATRIMONY OF ST. PETER

The lands, properties, and revenues from various sources belonging to the Holy See. Before the Peace of Constantine (A.D. 313) the Church's properties were very limited, but after his reign, by his gifts and those of newly converted nobles, the Church found herself possessing large estates. About A.D. 600 the Pope might have been called the largest landed proprietor in the world. Large farms, forests, whole villages with their cultivators, though free, constituted a massa. Many massae formed a patrimony, almost the equivalent in extent of a Roman province. these patrimonies were mainly located in Italy, with a few in the Orient, Gaul, Dalmatia, Rome the most numerous patrimonies. Naples, Gaeta, Tivoli, Ravenna, and Genoa contributed their share. All together they were called the Patrimony of St. Peter. Hospitals, monasteries, and churches were built and maintained, the freedom of slaves was purchased, the needy of Italy and elsewhere were relieved by the revenues of Peter's Patrimony. St. Gregory called it the Patrimony of the Poor.

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Making Moral Progress? 24 hours ago
Vatican statement clarifies duties of Catholic faithful after Obergefell decision July 2
Political battles vs. sacrificial service: The Brooks paradox revisited July 2
A Baptist leader with a message the Synod of Bishops should hear June 30
'Helpful' advice for social conservatives: ignore causes, deal with effects June 30

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope approves process for holding bishops accountable in abuse cases CWN - June 10
Pope Francis’ 2nd encyclical released (includes link to full text) CWN - June 18
US Supreme Court rules all states must recognize same-sex marriage CWN - June 26
Archbishop Nienstedt, auxiliary bishop resign CWN - June 15