Canon

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CANON, eccl. law. This word is taken from the Greek, and signifies a rule or law. In ecclesiastical law, it is also used to designate an order of religious persons. Francis Duaren says, the reason why the ecclesiastics called the rules they established canons or rules, (canones id est regulas) and not laws, was modesty. They did not dare to call them (leges) laws, lest they should seem to arrogate to themselves the authority of princes and magistrates. De Sacris Ecclesiae Ministeriis, p. 2, in pref. See Law, Canon.

LAW, CANON. The canon law is a body of Roman ecclesiastical law, relative to such matters as that church either has or pretends to have the proper jurisdiction over:
     2. This is compiled from the opinions of the ancient Latin fathers, the decrees of general councils, and the decretal epistles and bulls of the holy see. All which lay in the same confusion and disorder as the Roman civil law, till about the year 1151, when one Gratian, an Italian monk, animated by the discovery of Justinian's Pandects, reduced the ecclesiastical constitutions also into some method, in three books, which he entitled Concordia discordantium canonum, but which are generally known by the name of Decretum Gratiani. These reached as low as the time of Pope Alexander III. The subsequent papal decrees to the pontificate of Gregory IX., were published in much the same method, under the auspices of that pope, about the year 1230, in five books, entitled Decretalia Gregorii noni. A sixth book was added by Boniface VIII., about the year 1298, which is called Sextus decretalium. The Clementine constitution or decrees of Clement V., were in like manner authenticated in 1317, by his successor, John XXII., who also published twenty constitutions of his own, called the Extravagantes Joannis, all of which in some manner answer to the novels of the civil law. To these have since been added some decrees of the later popes, in five books called Extravagantes communes. And all these together, Gratian's Decrees, Gregory's Decretals, the Sixth Decretals, the Clementine Constitutions, and the Extravagants of John and his successors, form the Corpus juris canonici, or body of the Roman canon law. 1 Bl. Com. 82; Encyclopedie, Droit Canonique, Droit Public Ecclesiastique; Dict. de Jurispr. Droit Canonique; Ersk. Pr. L. Scotl. B. 1, t. 1, s. 10. See, in general, Ayl. Par. Jur. Can. Ang.; Shelf. on M. & D. 19; Preface to Burn's Eccl. Law, by Thyrwhitt, 22; Hale's Hist. C. L. 26-29; Bell's Case of a Putative Marriage, 203; Dict. du Droit Canonique; Stair's Inst. b. 1, t. 1, 7.

References in periodicals archive ?
Every citizen of India will take pride in the recognition being accorded to Mother Teresa for her service to humanity and God through this Canonisation.
Alenchery also led a brief prayer session after the canonisation ceremony took place.
Ironically, the Mass and canonisation rite, in part said in Latin and Italian, did not have Polish prayers in the Prayer of the Faithful after the homily, even if Pope John Paul II was Polish and was instrumental in the downfall of communism in his native land, noted the TV commentator.
Pell said a formal decision on canonisation and a date for the ceremony were expected in early 2010.
Three years ago, Sir Jimmy asked the then-promoter of Margaret's cause to search for it in the hope that it would help speed up her canonisation. If Pope John Paul declared her a saint, she will be the first Scots woman to be given the title in over 800 years.
Visibly exhausted after a week on the road, Pope John Paul II was greeted by jubilant Catholics in Guatemala City as a 'symbol of hope' for a war-weary nation as he arrived for the canonisation yesterday of a 17th Spanish missionary who dedicated his life to helping the poor.
By clearing the way for the holy honour, Pope Francis has set up a remarkable dual canonisation with Pope John XXIII.
"The canonisation of Karol Wojtyla will be the crowning glory of the recent history of Catholicism, linking the last three pontificates," Saverio Gaeta, who wrote a biography of John Paul II, (http://vaticaninsider.lastampa.it/en/the-vatican/detail/articolo/wojtyla-wojtyla-wojtyla-25765/) told La Stampa newspaper .
Last December the Pope confirmed another miracle attributed to him which opened the way for his canonisation.
Cardinal John O'Connor of the archdiocese of New York announced Vatican approval to open the cause of canonisation of Dorothy Day, founder of the American Catholic Worker.