Montes pietatis

Also found in: Dictionary.

MONTES PIETATIS, or Monts de Piete. The name of institutions established by public authority for lending money upon pledge of goods. In those establishments a fund is provided, with suitable warehouses, and all necessary accommodations. Directors, manage these concerns. When the money for which the goods pledged is not returned in proper time, the goods are sold to reimburse the institutions.
     2. These establishments are found principally on the continent of Europe. With us private persons, called pawnbrokers, perform this office, sometimes with doubtful fidelity. See Bell's Com. B. 5, c. 2, s. 2.

References in periodicals archive ?
After noting the laudable reasons for which the montes pietatis were established (chapter 1), he explains that because the question at hand is one of moral philosophy, (34) arguments from canonical and civil authority should be left aside (chapter 2).
On Cajetan's analysis, all such defenses ultimately rely on appeal to damnum emergens (36) and, while Cajetan does allow for this in certain cases, the practices of the montes pietatis fall short of a just claim thereto.
Thus, Cajetan concludes that, since the montes pietatis observe neither commutative nor distributive justice, they must be judged usurious--thereby arriving at a conclusion far more conservative than that at which he arrived when dealing with monetary exchange.
Fourth, Cajetan's treatise On Charitable Pawnshops, which was remarkable for its objectivity and fairness, was an unequivocally conservative work that set a methodological high bar for discussion of the montes pietatis, clearly framing the issue in terms of either commutative or distributive justice and concluding that neither option could legitimate the practice.
Cajetan was also not afraid to follow those same Thomistic principles to profoundly conservative (and un-Austrian) conclusions--as he did when he condemned tout court, the montes pietatis in On Charitable Pawnshops.
A notable exception to this influence, however, was Cajetan's inability to prevent the Fifth Lateran Council's approbation of the montes pietatis.