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Archicapellanus

ARCHICAPELLANUS, ɑ̄r´´ki-ka-pel´lɑ̄-nUs (also called capellanus sacri palatii, and by Hincmar of Reims apocrisiarius): The title of the principal ecclesiastical dignitary at the court of the Frankish sovereigns, who not only presided over the other court chaplains but also had the oversight of the court school, and from the reign of Louis le Débonnaire (814-840) adjudicated all matters of justice at court which affected ecclesiastics. It was thus a very influential position. In 856 the archicapellanus was put at the head of the court chancery, which had been managed under the Merovingian line by a secular commission and under the Carolingians by a cancellarius. The combined functions were entrusted to Archbishop Liudhard of Mainz in 870, and the title archicancellarius became commonly applied to the office, which under the Ottos was definitely attached to the see of Mainz. But from 1044 the archbishop only bore the latter title, while that of archicapellanus once more designated a strictly court functionary, whose place was taken after the thirteenth century by the almoner.

(E. Friedberg.)

Bibliography: A. J. Binterim, Denkwürdigkeiten der christ-katholischen Kirche, I. ii. 83 sqq., Mainz, 1825; G. Waitz, Deutsche Verfassungsgeschichte, iii. 516 sqq., iv. 415, Kiel, 1860-61.

« Archevites Archicapellanus Archiereus »
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