A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.
A marriage that is invalid but was contracted in good faith by at least one member. Until ther is positive ecclesiastical proof of nullity, such a marriage has all the effects of lawful wedlock. Children of such a marriage are legitimate, and illegitimate children are legitimatized by a putative marriage. (Etym. Latin putare, to trim, cleans; to think over, consider.)
All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.