Early Church Fathers
1 See V.2, note I.
2 In pretio commodi. On commodum, see I.44, p.90, note 4.
3 Gennadius was Exarch of Africa.
4 Probably the Abbot Probos. See IX. 43, 9
5 See also IX. 1.
6 A bishop in Sardinia, see I. 61. What his case was does not appear.
7 See III .47, note 2.
8 For references to the truce now in course of negotiation (a.d. 598-9), with the Lombard King Agilulph, cf IX. 4, 42, 43, 98.
9 Cf. I. 44, p. 92. note 2.
10 Presbyter(. So the wives of presbyters who had been married before their ordination were called. So in Canon XIX. of the second council of Tours, "Si inventus fuerit presbyter cum sua presbytera," and Canon XXI. of Council of Auxerre, "Non licet presbytero, post acceptam benedictionem, in ono lecto cum presbytera sua dormire." Or deaconesses may possibly be meant, one designation of whom in Greek was presbu/tidej
11 Callinicus had recently succeeded Romanus at Ravenna as Exarch of Italy. The main purport of this letter to him is to secure his hoped-for co-operation in bringing back the Istrian and Venetian schismatics to Catholic communion. See I. 16, note 3; also II. 46, 51. The predecessor of Callinicus, viz. Romanus, had given great dissatisfaction to Gregory by his conduct with regard to the schismatics (see II. 46); but better things are expected from the new Exarch. See also below, Ep. XCIII., &c. As to the case of Maxinius of Salona, briefly referred to at the end of the letter, see III.47, note 2.
12 Capritana was a small island in the Adriatic, not far from the shore of Venetia, containing the episcopal see of Capsula, or Cahorla. More about the desire of the church of this island to return to communion with Rome will be found in the letter which follows to Marinianus, bishop of Ravenna.
13 Mention of a previous order from the emperors, during the exarchate of Romanus, to Gregory himself, bidding him refrain from compelling the Istrians to return to communion, will be found in II.46.
14 See the letter following.
15 So, with initial capitals as proper names, in the Benedictine Edition. Perhaps rather, "the steward (vicedominus) and the guardian (defensor)."
16 Erat quasi per diocesim conjuncta. The meaning is, that the castellum Nov( on the main land had been made the episcopal see of a diocese of the island of Capritana, though not properly within its limits. Cf. IX. 9, note 3.
17 At this time Gregory's apocrisiarius at Constantinople. Cf. VII. 30.
18 See III.47, note 2.
19 Four Vatican mss. and Cod. Colbert give a date to this epistle, viz. "mense Octobris, indictione prima, "i.e. Oct a.d. 597. The Benedictine editors assign it, from certain internal evidence to the following year, and have therefore placed it in this ninth Book of the Epistles. There is this additional reason for placing it later than a.d. 597. Its first purpose is to reply to a request from queen Brunechild that a palliuium should be sent to Syagrius, bishop of Augustoduisum (Autun). Now Autun was in the kingdom of Burgundy, which was reigned over at that time by Brunechild's younger grandson Theoderic II. But it was not till the year 599, according to Gregory of Tours (Hist. Franc. xi. 19), that she had been expelled from the kingdom of Austrasia, and taken up her residence with Theoderic. She had previously been guardian of her elder grandson Theodebert II, who reigned over Austrasia, having his capital at Metz, and she was more likely to have sought the pall for the bishop Autun after she had become the virtual potentate of the Burgundian kingdom than previously; and indeed she seems to be evidently addressed as ruling the country to which the letter refers. The date assigned to this epistle by the Benedictine editors, viz. Indiction 2 (i.e. from September 598 to September 599), is consistent with these circumstances.
20 Bishop of Augustodunum (Autun), one of the bishops to whom Augustine had carried commendatory letters from Gregory on his progress to England (VI. 54). The see of Augustodunum was under the metropolitan jurisdiction of Lugdonum (Lyons); and Brunechild, for some reason, appears to have desired to have it invested with peculiar dignity. She afterwards founded a church, a nunnery, and a hospital there (see XIII. 6). It is to be observed that the sending of the pallium to a bishop did not in all cases imply metropolitan jurisdiction. It did not in this case. See Epistle CVIII. to Syagrius, in which he is told that the Metropolitan of Lyons was to retain his position unimpaired; only that the bishop of Autun was thenceforth to be next to him in place and dignity.
21 We observe here the requirement of the Emperor's Consent for sending the Pallium to a see not previously thus dignified.
22 It seems not to be known with any certainty what the title Regionarius, thus used absolutely, implies, though no doubt some honourable function. John the Deacon (Vit. S. Gregor.) speaks of Gregory's father Gordianus, a layman, as having been a Regionarius. As to Notariregionarii, Sub-diaconi regioaii, Defensores regionarii, cf. VIII. 14.
23 Meaning those who were out of communion with Rome with regard to "The Three Chapters". see I. 16, note 3. There were some in Gaul, as well as in Istria and elsewhere, who long refused assent to the condemnation of the Chapters by the fifth Council. Cf. IV. 2, 3, 4, 38,39; XVI. 12.
24 See note 1.