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Medieval Sourcebook: Council of Constance: List of Abuses 1417


The Council of Constance was unable to address all ecclesiastical abuses, so it drew up a list of evils the new pope was required to address

The holy council of Constance decrees and ordains that the supreme pontiff who shall next, by the grace of God, assume supreme office, shall, in conjunction with this holy council or with the deputies of the several nations, reform the Church before this council dissolves, in head and members, as well as the Roman Curia, in accordance with justice and the proper organization of the Church, in all respects enumerated below, which are submitted by the nations as as needing reform :

  • the number, character and nationality of the lords cardinals
  • the reservations [of benefices] by the Apostolic See.
  • annates, both the servitia communia [common] and servia minuta [lesser] services.
  • appointments to benefices and expectative favours.
  • what cases are to be brought before the Roman curia and what not..
  • appeals to the Roman Curia.
  • the functions of the [papal] chancery and penitentiary.
  • exemptions and incorporations granted during the Schism.
  • benifaces in commendam.
  • confirmations of elections.
  • income during vacancies.
  • the non-alienation of the possession of the Roman church or other churches.
  • for what reasons and in what manner a pope shall be corrected or deposed.
  • extirpation of heresy
  • dispensations.
  • the means of support of pope and cardinals.
  • indulgences.
  • tithes.

From the document translated in J. H. Robinson, Readings in European History, (Boston: Ginn, 1905), pp. 513-514


This text is part of the Internet Medieval Source Book. The Sourcebook is a collection of public domain and copy-permitted texts related to medieval and Byzantine history.

Unless otherwise indicated the specific electronic form of the document is copyright. Permission is granted for electronic copying, distribution in print form for educational purposes and personal use. If you do reduplicate the document, indicate the source. No permission is granted for commercial use.

(c)Paul Halsall Jan 1996
halsall@murray.fordham.edu