Friday, 28 June 2013

The Pallium and its Significance

The Pallium is a circular band made of wool about two inches wide, worn about the neck, breast, and shoulders, and having two weighted pendants, one hanging down in front and one behind. Its ornamentation consists of six small black crosses.

The grant of a Pallium gave the Pope overall control over the appointment of persons to the more important episcopal sees, as the suitability of the appointee was subjected to examination before the Pallium was given. The applicant was required to take a full and regular oath of fidelity to St. Peter, the Roman church, the pope and his sucessors, with only the exception "salvo ordine meo", with no exception being made for any allegiance owed to a king or other temporal authority.  As a privilege the Pallium gave its wearer the right of appeal to the Pope in Rome, over and above any local or provincial synod of bishops, like as if he were a Roman citizen.

Henry Charles Lea (1869). Studies in Church History: The Rise of the Temporal Power - Benefit of Clergy - Excommunnication. Henry C. Lea's son & Company. pp. 134–144.

Anne J. Duggan (2016). Pope Alexander III (1159–81): The Art of Survival. The Curious Case of  Becket's Pallium: Taylor & Francis. pp. 348–. ISBN 978-1-317-07836-4.


Braun, J. (1911). Pallium. In The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company.


A commentary on the new Code of canon Law: The Pallium  p. 292-

Thomas Becket with Pallium



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