(Rome, 1234). 129 x 265 mm. (8 1/4 x 10 1/2"). Single column, 13 lines in a fine attenuated and upright papal chancery hand.
With lead seal (38 mm. in diameter) showing heads of Saints Peter and Paul on one side and "GREGORIUS PP VIIII" on the other attached by original silk threads. Small early and later endorsements on verso. Small, thin green stain to part of last two lines (nothing obscured), otherwise A FINE DOCUMENT, especially clean and bright.
In this beautifully calligraphed Bull, Pope Gregory IX offers his blessing to the Abbess and Sisters of the Cistercian monastery in Liège and grants their request to give members of the order and other faithful a church burial at the monastery. It warns that anyone who interferes with this order "will incur the wrath of Almighty God and of his blessed Apostles, Peter and Paul." The Papal Bull takes its name from the lead seals called "bullae." Apart from the rare Solemn Privilege (like Innocent III's famous granting of England in 1214 to his involuntary vassal King John), there are three other categories of Papal Bulls: Simple Privileges (also called Solemn Letters), Mandates (which have seals attached by hemp, not silk), and Letters of Grace--the present item being from the final type. Clemens and Graham have a long discussion of the exact nature of Papal Bulls, and they use as their chief example a Bull very much like ours, a Letter of Grace issued by Gregory IX in 1228. The extremely detailed instructions to the scribes of Papal Bulls, as outlined in the 13th century, are all laid out (see pp. 230-38), as are the ways in which they have been forged over the years. The present item conforms in every way to an authentic Bull. Complete Latin transcription and English translation of the text of the present document are included here. Papal Bulls from Gregory's reign (1227-41) are uncommon in the marketplace, especially when in excellent condition and with the original seal attached by its silk threads. (ST12778-0554)
Add to Cart Price: $15,000.00
PJP Catalog: 70.498