Skip to content

Deacons

The name deacon ( diakonos ) means only minister or servant, and is employed in this sense both in the Septuagint (though only in the book of Esther , e.g. 2:2 ; 6:3 ) and in the New Testament (e.g. Matthew 20:28 ; Romans 15:25 ; Ephesians 3:7 ; etc.). But in Apostolic times the word began to acquire a more definite and technical meaning. Writing about 63 A.D. St. Paul addresses "all the saints who are at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons" (Philippians 1:1). A few years later (1 Timothy 3:8 sq.) he impresses upon Timothy that "deacons must be chaste, not double tongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre, holding the mystery of faith in a pure conscience." He directs further that they must "first be proved : and so let them minister, having no crime", and he adds that they should be the husbands of one wife: who rule well their children and their own houses. For they that have ministered well shall purchase to themselves a good degree, and much confidence in the faith which is in Christ Jesus." This passage is worthy of note, not only because it describes the qualities desirable in candidates for the diaconate, but also because it suggests that external administration and the handling of money were likely to form part of their functions.

ORIGIN AND EARLY HISTORY OF THE DIACONATE

According to the constant tradition of the Catholic Church, the narrative of Acts 6:1-6, which serves to introduce the account of the martyrdom of St. Stephen, describes the first institution of the office of deacon. The Apostles, in order to meet the complaints of the Hellenistic Jews that, "their widows were neglected in the daily ministrations" ( diakonia ), called together

the multitude of the disciples and said: It is notreason that we should leave the word of God and serve ( diakonein ) tables. Wherefore, brethren, look ye out seven men of good reputation, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. But we will give ourselves continuously toprayer, and to the ministry of the word ( te diakonia tou logou ). And the saying was liked by all the multitude. And they chose Stephen, a man full of faith, and of the Holy Ghost

(with six others who are named). These they placed "before the Apostles ; and they, praying, imposed hands upon them."

Now, on the ground that the Seven are not expressly called deacons and that some of them (e.g. St. Stephen, and later Phillip ( Acts 21:8 ) preached and ranked next to the Apostles, Protestant commentators have constantly raised objections against the identification of this choice of the Seven with the institution of the diaconate. But apart from the fact that the tradition among the Fathers is both unanimous and early -- e.g. St. Irenaeus (Adv. Haer., III, xii, 10 and IV, xv, 1) speaks of St. Stephen as the first deacon -- the similarity between the functions of the Seven who served the tables and those of the early deacons is most striking. Compare, for example, both with the passage from the Acts with 1 Timothy 3:8 sq., quoted above, the following sentence from Hermas (Sim., IX, 26):

They that have spots are the deacons that exercised their office ill and plundered the livelihood of widows and orphans and made gains for themselves from the ministrations they had received to perform.

Or, again, St. Ignatius (Ep. ii to the Trallians):

Those who are deacons of the mysteries of Jesus Christ must please all men in all ways. For they are not deacons of meats and drinks [only] but servants of the church of God .

St. Clement of Rome (about A.D. 95) clearly describes the institution of deacons along with that of bishops as being the work of the Apostles themselves (Ep. Clem., xlii). Further, it should be noted that ancient tradition limited the number of deacons at Rome to seven ( Eusebius, Hist. Eccl., VI, xliii), and that a canon of the council of Neo-Caesarea (325) prescribed the same restriction for all cities, however large, appealing directly to the Acts of the Apostles as a precedent. We seem, therefore, thoroughly justified in identifying the functions of the Seven with those of the deacons of whom we hear so much in the Apostolic Fathers and the early councils. Established primarily to relieve the bishops and presbyters of their more secular and invidious duties, notably in distributing the alms of the faithful, we need not do more than recall the large place occupied by the agapae, or love feasts, in the early worship of the Church, to understand how readily the duty of serving at tables may have passed into the privilege of serving at the altar. They became the natural intermediaries between the celebrant and the people. Inside the Church they made public announcements, marshaled the congregation, preserved order, and the like. Outside of it they were the bishop's deputies in secular matters, and especially in the relief of the poor. Their subordination and general duties of service seem to have been indicated by their standing during the public assemblies of the Church, while the bishops and priests were seated. It should be noticed that along with these functions probably went a large share in the instruction of catechumens and preparation of the altar services. Even in the Acts of the Apostles (8:38) the Sacrament of Baptism is administered by the deacon Phillip.

An attempt has recently been made, though regarded by many as somewhat fanciful, to trace the origin of the diaconate to the organization of those primitive Hellenistic Christian communities, which in the earliest age of the Church had all things in common, being supported by the alms of the faithful. For these it is contended that some steward ( oeconomus ) must have been appointed to administer their temporal affairs. (See Leder, Die Diakonen der Bischöfe und Presbyter, 1905). The full presentment of the subject is somewhat too intricate and confused to find place here. We must content ourselves with noting that less difficulty attends the same writer's theory of the derivation of the judicial and administrative functions of the archdeacon from the duties imposed upon one selected member of the diaconal college, who was called the bishop's deacon ( diaconus episcopi ) because to him was committed the temporal administration of funds and charities for which the bishop was primarily responsible. This led in time to a certain judicial and legal position and to the surveillance of the subordinate clergy. But for all this see A RCHDEACON .

DUTIES OF DEACONS

1. That some, if not all, members of the diaconal college were everywhere stewards of the Church funds and of the alms collected for widows and orphans is beyond dispute. We find St. Cyprian speaking of Nicostratus as having defrauded widows and orphans as well as robbed the Church (Cypr., Ep. xlix, ad cornelium). Such speculation was all the easier because the offerings passed through their hands, at any rate to a large degree. Those gifts which the people brought and which were not made directly to the bishop were presented to him through them (Apost. Const., II, xxvii) and on the other hand they were to distribute the oblations ( eulogias ) which remained over after the Liturgy had been celebrated among the different orders of the clergy according to certain fixed proportions. It was no doubt that from such functions as these that St. Jerome calls the deacon mensarum et viduarum minister (Hieron. Ep. Ad. Evang.). They sought out the sick and the poor, reporting to the bishop upon their needs and following his direction in all things (Apost. Const., III, xix, and xxxi, xxxii). They were also to invite aged women and probably others as well, to the agapae. Then with regard to the bishop they were to relieve him of his more laborious and less important functions and in this way they came to exercise a certain measure of jurisdiction in the simpler cases which were submitted to his decision. Similarly, they sought out and reproved offenders as his deputies. In fine, as the Apostolic Constitutions declare (II, xliv) they were to be his "ears and eyes and mouth and heart", or, as it is laid down elsewhere, "his soul and his senses." ( psyche kai aisthesis ) (Apost., Const., III, xix).

2. Again, as the Apostolic Constitutions further explain in some detail, the deacons were the guardians of order in the church. They saw that the faithful occupied their proper places, that none gossiped or slept. They were to welcome the poor and aged and to take care that they were not at a disadvantage as to their position in church. They were to stand at the men's gate as janitors to see that during the Liturgy none came in or went out, and as St. Chrysostom says in general terms: "if anyone misbehave let the deacon be summoned" (Hom. xxiv, in Act. Apost.). Besides this they were largely employed in the direct ministry of the altar, preparing the sacred vessels and bringing water for the ablutions, etc., though in later times many of these duties devolved upon clerics of an inferior grade. Most especially were they conspicuous by their marshaling and directing the congregation during the service. Even to the present day, as will be remembered, such announcements as Ite, missa est, Flectamus genua, Procedamus in pace, are always made by the deacon; though this function was more pronounced in the early ages. The following from the newly discovered "Testament of Our Lord", a document of the end of the fourth century, may be quoted as an interesting example of a proclamation such as was made by the deacon just before the Anaphora :

Let us arise; let each know his own place. Let the catechumens depart. See that no unclean, no careless person is here. Lift up the eyes of your hearts. Angels look upon us. See, let him who is without faith depart. Let no adulterer, noangry man be here. If anyone be a slave of sin let him depart. See, let us supplicate as children of the light. Let us supplicate our Lord and God and Savior, Jesus Christ.

3. The special duty of the deacon to read the Gospel seems to have been recognized from an early period, but it does not at first appear to have been so distinctive as it has become in the Western Church. Sozomen says of the church of Alexandria that the Gospel might only be read by the archdeacon, but elsewhere ordinary deacons performed that office, while in other churches, again it devolved upon the priests. It may be this relation to the Gospel which led to the direction in the Apostolic Constitutions (VIII, iv), that the deacons should hold the book of the Gospels open over the head of a bishop elect during the ceremony of his consecration. With the reading of the Gospel should also probably be connected the occasional, though rare, appearance of the deacon in the office of preacher. The second Council of Vaison (529) declared that a priest might preach in his own parish, but that when he was ill a deacon should read a homily by one of the Fathers of the Church, urging that deacons, being held worthy to read the Gospel were a fortiori worthy of reading a work of human authorship. Actual preaching by a deacon, however, despite the precedent of the deacon Philip, was at all periods rare, and the Arian bishop of Antioch, Leontius, was censured for letting his deacon Aëtius preach. (Philostorgias, III, xvii). On the other hand, the greatest preacher of the East Syrian Church, Ephraem Syrus, is said by all the early authorities to have been only a deacon, though a phase in his own writings (Opp. Syr., III, 467, d) throws some doubt upon the fact. But the statement attributed to Hilarius Diaconus, nunc neque diaconi in popolo praedicant (nor do the deacons now preach to the people), undoubtedly represents the ordinary rule, both in the fourth century and later.

4. With regard to the great action of the Liturgy it seems clear that the deacon held at all times, both in East and West, a very special relation to the sacred vessels and to the host and chalice both before and after consecration. The Council of Laodicea (can, xxi) forbade the inferior orders of the clergy to enter the diaconicum or touch the sacred vessels, and a canon of the first Council of Toledo pronounces that deacons who have been subjected to public penance must in future remain with the subdeacons and thus be withdrawn from the handling of these vessels. On the other hand, though the subdeacon afterward invaded their functions, it was originally the deacons alone who

  • presented the offerings of the faithful at the altar and especially the bread and wine for the sacrifice,
  • proclaimed the names of those who had contributed (Jerome, Com. in Ezech., xviii)
  • carried away the remnants of the consecrated elements to be reserved in the sacristy, and
  • administered the chalice and, on occasion, the sacred host, to communicants.

A question arose as to whether deacons might give communion to priests but the practice was forbidden as unseemly by the first Council of Nicaea (Hefele-LeClercq, I, 610-614). In these functions which we may trace back to the time of Justin Martyr (Apol., I, lxv, lxvii; cf. Tertullian, De Spectac., xxv, and Cyprian, De Lapsis, xxv) it was repeatedly insisted, in restraint of certain pretensions, that the deacon's office was entirely subordinate to that of the celebrant, whether bishop or priest (Apost. Const., VIII, xxviii, xlvi; and Hefele-LeClercq, I, 291 and 612). Although certain deacons seem locally to have usurped the power of offering the Holy Sacrifice ( offerre ), this abuse was severely repressed in the Council of Arles (314), and there is nothing to support the idea that the deacon was in any proper sense was held to consecrate the chalice, as even Onslow (in Dict. Christ., Ant., I, 530) fully allows, though a rather rhetorical phrase of St. Ambrose (De Offic., Min., I, xli) has suggested the contrary. Still the care of the chalice has remained the deacon's special province down to modern times. Even now in a high Mass the rubrics direct that when the chalice is offered, the deacon is to support the foot of the chalice or the arm of the priest and to repeat with him the words: Offerimus tibi, Domine, calicem salutris, etc. As a careful study of the first "Ordo Romanus" shows, the archdeacon of the papal Mass seems in a sense to preside over the chalice, and it is he and his fellow-deacons who, after the people have communicated under the form of bread, present to them the calicem ministerialem with the Precious Blood.

5. The deacons were also intimately associated with the administration of the Sacrament of Baptism . They were not, indeed, as a rule allowed themselves to baptize apart from grave necessity (Apost. Const., VII, xlvi expressly rejects any inference that might be drawn from Philip's baptism of the eunuch), but inquiries about the candidates, their instruction and preparation, the custody of the chrism -- which the deacons were to fetch when consecrated -- and occasionally the actual administration of the Sacrament as the bishop's deputies, seem to have formed part of their recognized functions. Thus, St. Jerome writes: "sine chrismate et episcopi jussione neque presbyteri neque diaconi jus habiant baptizandi." (Without chrism and the command of the bishop neither presbyters nor deacons have the right of baptizing. -- "Dial. c. Luciferum", iv) Analogous to this charge was their position in the penitential system. As a rule their action was only intermediary and preparative, and it is interesting to note how prominent is the part played by the archdeacon as intercessor in the form for the reconciliation of penitents on Maundy Thursday still printed in the Roman Pontifical. But certain phrases in early documents suggest that in cases of necessity the deacons sometimes absolved. Thus St. Cyprian writes (Ep., xviii, 1) that if "no priest can be found and death seems imminent, sufferers can also make the confession of their sins to a deacon, that by laying his hand upon them in penance they may come to the Lord in peace" (ut mano eis in poenitetiam imposita veniant ad dominum cum pace). Whether in this and similar cases there can have been a question of sacramental absolution is much debated, but certain Catholic theologians have not hesitated about returning an affirmative answer. (See, e.g. Rauschen, Eucharistie und Buss-Sakrament, 1908, p.132) There can be no doubt that in the Middle Ages confession in case of necessity was often made to the deacon; but then it was equally made to a layman, and, in the impossibility of Holy Viaticum, even grass was devoutly eaten as a sort of spiritual communion.

To sum up, the various functions discharged by the deacons are thus concisely stated by St. Isidore of Seville , in the seventh century, in his epistle to Leudefredus: "To the deacons it belongs to assist the priests and to serve [ ministrare ] in all that is done in the Sacraments of Christ, in baptism, to wit, in the holy chrism, in the paten and chalice, to bring the oblation to the altar and to arrange them, to lay the table of the Lord and to drape it, to carry the cross, to declaim [ proedicare ] the Gospel and Epistle, for as the charge is given to lectors to declaim the Old Testament, so it is given to deacons to declaim the New. To him also pertains the office of prayers [ officium precum ] and the recital of the names. It is he who gives warning to open our ears to the Lord, it is he who exhorts with his cry, it is he also who announces peace." ( Migne., P.L., LXXXII, 895) In the early period, as many extant Christian epitaphs testify, the possession of a good voice was a qualification expected in candidates for the diaconate. Dulcea nectareo promebat mella canore was written of the deacon Redemptus in the time of Pope Damasus, and the same epitaphs make it clear that the deacon then had much to do with the chanting, not only of the Epistle and Gospel, but also of the psalms as a solo. Thus of the archdeacon Deusdedit in the fifth century it was written:

Hic levitarum primus, in ordine vivens
Davidici cantor carminis iste fuit.

But Pope Gregory the Great in the council of 595 abolished the privileges of the deacons in regard to the chanting of Psalms (Duchesne, Christian Worship , vi) and regular cantors succeeded to their functions. However, even as it is, some of the most beautiful chants in the Church's Liturgy are confided to the deacon, noteably, the proeconium paschale , better known as the Exultet, the consecratory prayer by which the paschal candle is blessed on Holy Saturday. This has often been praised as the most perfect piece of Gregorian music , and it is sung throughout by the deacon.

DRESS AND NUMBER OF DEACONS

The early developments of ecclesiastical costume are very obscure and are complicated by the difficulty of identifying securely the objects indicated merely by a name. It is certain, however, that in both East and West a stole, or orarium ( orarion ) which seems to have been in substance identical with what we now understand by the term, has been from an early period the distinctive attire of the deacon. Both in East and West also, it has been worn by the deacon over the left shoulder, and not round the neck, like that of a priest. Deacons, according to the fourth Council of Toledo (633), were to wear a plain stole ( orarium -- orarium quia orat, id est, proedicat ) on the left shoulder, the right being left free to typify the expedition with which they were to discharge their sacred functions. It is interesting to note as a curious survival of an ancient tradition that the deacon during a Lenten high Mass in the Middle Ages took off his chasuble, rolled it up, and placed it over his left shoulder to leave his right arm free. At the present day he still takes off his chasuble during the central part of the Mass and replaces it with a broad stole. In the East, the Council of Laodicea, in the fourth century, forbids subdeacons to wear the stole ( orarion ), and a passage in St. John Chrysostom (Hom. in Fil. Prod.) refers to the light fluttering draperies over the left shoulder of those ministering at the altar, evidently describing the stoles of the deacons. The deacon still wears his stole over the left shoulder, only, although, except in the Ambrosian Rite at Milan, he now wears it under his dalmatic. The dalmatic itself, which is now regarded as distinctive of the deacon, was originally confined to the deacons of Rome, and to wear such a vestment outside of Rome was conceded by early popes as a special privilege. Such a grant was apparently made, for example, by Pope Stephen II (752-757) of Abbot Fulrad of St-Denis, allowing six deacons to array themselves in the stola dalmaticae decoris (sic) when discharging their sacred functions (Braun, die liturgische Gewandung, p.251) According to the "Liber Pontificalis", Pope St. Sylvester (314-335) constituit ut diaconi dalmaticis in ecclesia uterentur ( ordained that deacons should use dalmatics in church), but this statement is quite unreliable. On the other hand it is practically certain that dalmatics were worn in Rome both by the pope and by his deacons in the latter half of the fourth century (Braun, op. cit., p.249). As to the manner of wearing, after the tenth century it was only in Milan and southern Italy that deacons carried the stole over the dalmatic, but at an earlier date, this had been common in many parts of the West.

As regards the number of deacons, much variation existed. In more considerable cities there were normally seven, according to the type of the Church of Jerusalem in Acts 6:1-6. In Rome there were seven in the time of Pope Cornelius, and this remained the rule until the eleventh century, when the number of deacons was increased from seven to fourteen. This was in accord with canon xv of the Council of Neo-Caesarea incorporated in the "Corpus Juris". The "Testament of Our Lord" (I, 34) speaks of twelve priests, seven deacons, four subdeacons, and three widows with precedence. Still, this rule did not remain constant. In Alexandria, for example, even as early as the fourth century, there must apparently been more than seven deacons, for we are told that nine took the part of Arius. Other regulations seem to suggest three as a common number. In the Middle Ages nearly every use had its own customs as to the number of deacons and subdeacons that might assist at a pontifical Mass. The number of seven deacons and seven subdeacons was not infrequent in many dioceses on days of great solemnity. But the great distinction between the diaconate in the early ages and that of the present day lay probably in this, that in primitive times the diaconate was commonly regarded, possibly on account of the knowledge of music which it demanded, as a state that was permanent and final. A man remained a simple deacon all his life. nowadays, except in the rarest cases (the cardinal-deacons sometimes continue permanently as mere deacons), the diaconate is simply a stage on the road to the priesthood. [ Note: The permanent diaconate was restored in the Latin Rite after the Second Vatican Council .]

SACRAMENTAL CHARACTER OF THE DIACONATE

Although certain theologians such as Cajetan and Durandus, have ventured to doubt whether the Sacrament of Order is received by deacons, it may be said that the decrees of the Council of Trent are now generally held to have decided the point against them. The council not only lays down that order is truly and properly a sacrament but it forbids under anathema (Sess. XXIII, can. ii) that anyone should deny "that there are in the Church other orders both greater and minor as which as by certain steps advance is made to the priesthood ", and it insists that the ordaining bishop does not vainly say "receive ye the Holy Ghost ", but by that a character is imprinted by the rite of ordination. Now, not only do we find in the Acts of the Apostles , as noticed above, both prayer and the laying on of hands in the initiation of the Seven, but the same sacramental character suggestive of the imparting of the Holy Spirit is conspicuous in the ordination rite as practiced in the early Church and at the present day. In the Apostolic Constitutions we read:

A deacon thou shalt appoint, O Bishop, laying thy hands upon him, with all the presbytery and the deacons standing by thee; and praying over him thou shalt say: Almighty God. . . .let our supplication come unto Thy ears and make Thy face to shine upon this Thy servant who is appointed unto the office of deacon [ eis diakonian ] and fill him with the Spirit and with power, as Thou didst fill Stephen, the martyr and follower of the sufferings of Thy Christ.

The ritual of the ordination of deacons at the present day is as follows: The bishop first asks the archdeacon if those who are to be promoted to the diaconate are worthy of the office and then he invites the clergy and people to propose any objections which they may have. After a short pause the bishop explains to the ordinandi the duties and the privileges of a deacon, they remaining the while upon their knees. When he has finished his discourse they prostrate themselves, and the bishop and the clergy recite the litanies of the Saints, in the course of which the bishop thrice imparts his benediction. After certain other prayers in which the bishop continues to invoke the grace of God upon the candidates, he sings a short preface, which expresses the joy of the Church to see the multiplication of her ministers. Then comes the more essential part of the ceremony. The bishop puts out his right hand and puts it upon the head of each of the ordinandi , saying, "Receive the Holy Ghost for strength, and to resist the devil and his temptations, in the name of the Lord". Then stretching out his hand over all the candidates together he says: Send down upon them, we beseech Thee, O Lord, the Holy Ghost by which they may be strengthened in the faithful discharge of the work of Thy ministry, through the bestowal of Thy sevenfold grace". After this the bishop delivers to the deacons the insignia of the order which they have received, to wit, the stole and the dalmatic, accompanying them with the formulae which express their special significance. Finally, he makes all the candidates touch the book of the Gospels, saying to them: "Receive the power of reading the Gospel in the Church of God , both for the living and for the dead, in the name of the Lord." Although the actual form of words which accompanies the laying on of the bishop's hands, Accipe Spiritum Sanctum ad robur , etc., cannot be traced back further than the twelfth century, the whole spirit of the ritual is ancient, and some of the elements, notably the conferring of the stole and the prayer which follows the delivery of the book of the Gospels, are of much older date. It is noteworthy that in the "Decretum pro Armenis" of Pope Eugene IV the delivery of the Gospels is spoken of as the "matter" of the diaconate, Diaconatus vero per libri evangeliorum dationem (traditur).

In the Russian Church the candidate, after having been led three times around the altar and kissed each corner, kneels before the bishop. The bishop lays the end of his omophorion upon his neck and marks the sign of the cross three times upon his head. Then he lays his hand upon the candidate's head and says two prayers of some length which speak of the conferring of the Holy Ghost and of strength bestowed upon the ministers of the altar and recall the words of Christ that "he who would be first among you must become as a servant" ( diakonos ): then there are delivered to the deacon the insignia of his office, which, besides the stole, include the liturgical fan, and as each of these is given the bishop calls aloud, axios , "worthy", in a tone increasing in strength with each repetition (see Maltzew, Die Sacramente der orthodox-katholische Kirche, 318-333).

In later times the diaconate was so entirely regarded as a stage of preparation for the priesthood that interest no longer attached to its precise duties and privileges. A deacon's functions were practically reduced to the ministration at high Mass and to exposing the Blessed Sacrament at Benediction. But he could, as the deputy of the parish priest, distribute the Communion in case of need. Of the condition of celibacy, see the article, CELIBACY OF THE CLERGY.

DEACONS OUTSIDE THE CATHOLIC CHURCH

It is only in the Church of England and in the Episcopal communions of Scotland and North America that a deacon receives ordination by the imposition of hands of a bishop. In consequence of such ordination, however, he is considered empowered to perform any sacred office except that of consecrating the elements and pronouncing absolution, and he habitually preaches and assists in the communion-service. Among the Lutherans, however, in Germany, the word deacon is generally applied to assistant, though fully ordained, ministers who aid the minister in charge of a particular cure or parish. However, it is also used in certain localities for lay helpers who take part in the work of instruction, finance, district visiting, and relieving distress. This last is also the use of the word which is common in many nonconformist communions of England and America.

More Volume: D 494

Click/Touch the sub-volume below to view encyclopedia articles within the sub-volume.

1

Dávila Padilla

(AGUSTÍN) A native of the City of Mexico, b. 1562; d. 1604. At the age of sixteen he ...

× Close

1

Dénés

( men or people , in most of their dialects) An aboriginal race of North America, also ...

× Close

3

Díaz de Solís, Juan

Spanish navigator and explorer, b. about 1470 at Lebrija (Seville), or, according to some ...

Díaz del Castillo, Bernal

(Corruption of Bernardo), Spanish historian, one of the chief chroniclers of the conquest of ...

Díaz, Pedro

Missionary, b. at Lupedo, Diocese of Toledo, Spain, in 1546; d. in Mexico, 12 Jan., 1618. Though ...

× Close

2

Döllinger, Johann Joseph Ignaz von

A historian and theologian, born at Bamberg, Bavaria, 28 February, 1799; died at Munich, 10 ...

Döring, Matthias

Historian and theologian, b. between 1390 and 1400, at Kyritz, in Brandenburg ; d. there 24 ...

× Close

1

Dürer, Albrecht

Celebrated painter and engraver, born at Nuremberg, Germany, 21 May, 1471; died there, 6 ...

× Close

D' 1

D'Avenant, Sir William

Poet and dramatist, b. Feb., 1605-6, at Oxford, England ; d. in London, 7 April, 1668. He was ...

× Close

Da 72

Da Ponte, Lorenzo

Poet, b. at Cenada, Italy, 1749; d. in New York, 17 Aug., 1838. He was the son of a Jew and was ...

Dablon, Claude

Jesuit missionary, born at Dieppe, France, in February, 1618; died at Quebec, 3 May, 1697. At ...

Dabrowski, Joseph

Founder of the Sts. Cyril and MethodiusSeminary, Detroit, Michigan, b. at Zoltance, Russian ...

Dacca

DIOCESE OF DACCA (DACCHENSIS) Diocese in Bengal, India. By the Constitution "Æquam ...

Dacier, André

A French philologist, born at Castres, 6 April, 1651; died 18 September, 1722. He was a Huguenot ...

Dacier, Anne

( Née Lefèvre) The wife of André Dacier, born at Saumur in 1651; died ...

Dagon

A Philistine deity. It is commonly admitted that the name Dagon is a diminutive form, hence ...

Daguesseau, Henri-François

(Also rendered d'Aguesseau). Chancellor of France, born at Limoges, 27 November, 1668; died at ...

Dahomey

The Vicariate Apostolic of Dahomey, in West Africa, is territorially identical with the French ...

Dalberg, Adolphus von

Prince-Abbot of Fulda and founder of the university in the same city, born 29 May, 1678; died ...

Dalgairns, John Dobree

(In religion F ATHER B ERNARD ). Born in the island of Guernsey, 21 Oct., 1818; d. 6 April, ...

Dalila

(Or Dalila ). Samson, sometime after his exploit at Gaza ( Judges 16:1-3 ), " loved a ...

Dallas

DIOCESE OF DALLAS (DALLASCENSIS). The Diocese of Dallas, created 1890, comprises 108 counties ...

Dalley, William Bede

Lawyer and statesman, born in Sydney, New South Wales, 1831; died there 28 October, 1888. He was ...

Dalmatia

A part of the Kingdom of Croatia according to a convention entered into between Croatia and ...

Dalmatic

PRESENT USAGE The dalmatic is the outer liturgical vestment of the deacon. It is worn at Mass ...

Dalton, John

Irish author and translator from Spanish and German, born in 1814; died at Maddermarket, ...

Damão

DIOCESE OF DAMÃO (DAMAU, DAMAUN) Suffragan to Goa, and situated in Portugese India ...

Damaraland

The middle part of the German colony, German Southwest Africa, between 19° and 23° S. ...

Damascus

Damascus, in Syria, is one of the oldest cities in the world. According to Flavius Josephus it ...

Damasus I, Saint, Pope

Born about 304; died 11 December, 384. His father, Antonius, was probably a Spaniards ; the name ...

Damasus II, Pope

(Previously called POPPO) A native of Bavaria and the third German to be elevated to the See ...

Damberger, Joseph Ferdinand

Church historian, born 1 March, 1795, at Passau, Bavaria ; died 1 April, 1859, at ...

Damian and Cosmas, Saints

Early Christian physicians and martyrs whose feast is celebrated on 27 September. They were ...

Damien, Father (Joseph de Veuster)

Missionary priest, born at Tremeloo, Belgium, 3 January 1840; died at Molokai, Hawaii, 15 ...

Damietta

(Greek Tamiathis , Arabic Doumiât ). An Egyptian titular see for the Latins and ...

Dan

( Hebrew dn , Sept. Dán ),–(1) The fifth son of Jacob, being the elder of the two ...

Danaba

A titular see of Phænicia Secunda. Danaba is mentioned by Ptolemy (V, xv, 24) as a town in ...

Dance of Death

(French, Dance Macabre , German Todtentanz ) The "Dance of Death" was originally a ...

Dancing

The origin of dancing is to be sought in the natural tendency to employ gesture either to ...

Dandolo, Enrico

Doge of Venice from 1192 to 1205; died, aged about a hundred years, in 1205. He belonged to one ...

Daniel

The hero and traditional author of the book which bears his name. This name ( Hebrew dnyal ...

Daniel and Companions, Saint

Friars Minor and martyrs ; dates of birth unknown; died 10 October, 1227. The martyrdom of ...

Daniel of Winchester

(Danihel), Bishop of the West Saxons, and ruler of the See of Winchester from 705 to 744; died ...

Daniel, Anthony

Huron missionary, born at Dieppe, in Normandy, 27 May 1601, slain by the Iroquois at Teanaostae, ...

Daniel, Book of

In the Hebrew Bible, and in most recent Protestant versions, the Book of Daniel is limited to ...

Daniel, Charles

Born 31 December, 1818, at Beauvais, France ; died 1 January, 1893, at Paris. He joined the ...

Daniel, Gabriel

Historian and controversialist, born at Rouen, France, 8 Feb., 1649; died at Paris, 23 June, ...

Daniel, John

Born 1745; died in Paris, 3 October, 1823; son of Edward Daniel of Durton, Lancashire, and ...

Dansara

A titular see in Osrhoene. Stephanus Byzantius mentions Dansara as a town near Edessa (Orfa). ...

Dante Alighieri

Italian poet, born at Florence, 1265; died at Ravenna, Italy, 14 September, 1321. His own ...

Danti, Ignazio

Mathematician and cosmographer, b. at Perugia, Italy, 1537; d. at Alatri, 19 Oct., 1586. As a ...

Danti, Vincenzo

Sculptor, brother of Ignazio, b. at Perugia, 1530; d. 24 May, 1576. He also enjoyed some ...

Dantine, Maurus

Benedictine of the Congregation of Saint-Maur, and chronologist, born at Gourieux near Namur, ...

Darboy, Georges

Archbishop of Paris and ecclesiastical writer, b. at Fayl-Billot, near Langres, 1813; ...

Dardanus

A titular see in the province of Hellespont, suffragan of Cyzicus. Four or five bishops are ...

Dardel, Jean

Friar Minor of the French province of the order, chronicler of Armenia in the fourteenth century, ...

Darerca, Saint

St. Darerca, of Ireland, a sister of St. Patrick. Much obscurity attaches to her history, and ...

Dareste de la Chavanne, Antoine-Elisabeth

Historian and professor, b. in Paris, 25 October, 1820; d. at Lucenay-lès-Aix, 6 August, ...

Darius and Chrysanthus, Saints

Roman martyrs, buried on the Via Salaria Nova, and whose tombs, according to the testimony of ...

Darnis

A metropolitan titular see of Libya, in Egypt. Ptolemy (IV, 4, 2; 5; 6) and Ammian. Marcell., ...

Darras, Joseph-Epiphane

Church historian, b. at Troyes, France, 1825; d. at Paris, Nov. 8, 1878. He completed his ...

Darrell, William

Theologian, b. 1651, in Buckinghamshire, England ; d. 28 Feb., 1721, at St. Omer's, France. ...

Dates and Dating

In classical Latin even before the time of Christ it was usual for correspondents to indicate ...

Daubrée, Gabriel-Auguste

French geologist, b. at Metz, 25 June, 1814; d. at Paris, 29 May, 1896. He studied mining ...

Daulia

A titular see of Greece. Daulis, later Daulia, Dauleion, often Diauleia, even Davalia, was a ...

Daumer, Georg Friedrich

German poet and philosopher, b. at Nuremberg, 5 March, 1800; d. at Wurzburg, 14 December, 1875. ...

Davenport

DIOCESE OF DAVENPORT (DAVENPORTENSIS) The Diocese of Davenport, erected 8 May, 1881, embraces ...

Davenport, Christopher

Also known as FRANCISCUS À SANCTA CLARA and sometimes by the alias of FRANCIS HUNT and ...

David of Augsburg

(DE AUGUSTA). Medieval German mystic, b. probably at Augsburg, Bavaria, early in the ...

David of Dinant

A pantheistic philosopher who lived in the first decades of the thirteenth century. Very little ...

David Scotus

A medieval Irish chronicler, date of birth unknown; d. 1139. Early in the twelfth century ...

David, Armand

Missionary priest and zoologist, b. 1826; d. 1900. He entered the Congregation of the Mission ...

David, Gheeraert

Son of John David, painter and illuminator, b. at Oudewater, South Holland, c. 1450, d. 13 ...

David, King

In the Bible the name David is borne only by the second king of Israel, the great-grandson of ...

David, Saint

(DEGUI, DEWI). Bishop and Confessor, patron of Wales. He is usually represented standing on ...

Davies, Venerable William

Martyr, one of the most illustrious of the priests who suffered under Queen Elizabeth, b. in ...

Dawson, Æneas McDonnell

Author, b. in Scotland, 30 July, 1810; d. in Ottawa, Canada, 29 Dec., 1894. He studied at the ...

Dax, Diocese of

An ancient French diocese which was suppressed by the Concordat of 1801, its territory now ...

Day of Atonement

( Hebrew Yom Hakkippurim . Vulgate, Dies Expiationum , and Dies Propitiationis — ...

Day, George

Bishop of Chichester ; b. in Shropshire, England, c. 1501; d. 2 August, 1556. He was graduated ...

Day, John Charles, Sir

Jurist, b. near Bath, England, 1826; d. 13 June, 1908, at Newbury. He was educated at Rome and ...

× Close

De 133

De L'Orme, Philibert

Celebrated architect of the French Renaissance, born at Lyons, c. 1515 or a little later; died at ...

De La Croix, Charles

Missionary, b. at Hoorbeke-St-Corneille, Belgium, 28 Oct., 1792; d. at Ghent, 20 Aug., 1869. He ...

De Lisle, Ambrose Lisle March Phillipps

Born 17 March, 1809; died 5 March, 1878. He was the son of Charles March Phillipps of Garendon ...

De Paul University

DePaul University, Chicago, is the outgrowth of St. Vincent's College, which opened in Sept., ...

De Profundis

("Out of the depths"). First words of Psalm 129. The author of this Psalm is unknown; it was ...

De Rossi, Giovanni Battista

A distinguished Christian archaeologist , best known for his work in connection with the Roman ...

De Smet, Pierre-Jean

Missionary among the North American Indians , b. at Termonde (Dendermonde), Belgium, 30 Jan., ...

De Soto, Hernando

Explorer and conqueror, born at Villanueva de la Serena, Badajoz, Spain, 1496 or 1500; died on the ...

De Vere, Aubrey Thomas Hunt

Poet, critic, and essayist, b. at Curragh Chase, County Limerick, Ireland, 10 January, 1814; died ...

Deaconesses

We cannot be sure that any formal recognition of deaconesses as an institution of consecrated ...

Deacons

The name deacon ( diakonos ) means only minister or servant, and is employed in this sense ...

Dead Sea

The name given to the lake that lies on the south-eastern border of Palestine. The Old Testament ...

Dead, Prayers for the

This subject will be treated under the following three heads: I. General Statement and Proof of ...

Deaf, Education of the

Education essentially includes the process of encouraging, strengthening, and guiding the ...

Dean

(Gk. déka , ten; Latin decanus ). One of the principal administrative officials of ...

Dean, William, Venerable

Born in Yorkshire, England, date uncertain, martyred 28 August, 1588. He studied at Reims and ...

Dease, Thomas

Born in Ireland, 1568; died at Galway, 1651. He sprang from an ancient Irish family at one ...

Death Penalty

The infliction by due legal process of the penalty of death as a punishment for crime. The ...

Death, Dance of

(French, Dance Macabre , German Todtentanz ) The "Dance of Death" was originally a ...

Death, Preparation for

The basic preparation for death When should a priest be called? Winding up our earthly affairs ...

Debbora

Prophetess and judge: she was the wife of Lapidoth and was endowed by God with prophetic gifts ...

Debt

( debitum ) That which is owed or due to another; in general, anything which one person is ...

Decalogue

(Greek deka , ten and logos , word). The term employed to designate the collection of ...

Decapolis

(From Greek Deka , ten, and polis , city) Decapolis is the name given in the Bible and ...

Dechamps, Adolphe

Belgian statesman and publicist, brother of Cardinal Dechamps, born at Melle near Ghent, 17 ...

Dechamps, Victor Augustin Isidore

Cardinal, Archbishop of Mechlin, and Primate of Belgium ; born at Melle near Ghent 6 Dec., ...

Decius

(C AIUS M ESSIUS Q UINTUS T RAJANUS D ECIUS ). Roman Emperor 249-251. He was born, ...

Decker, Hans

A German sculptor of the middle of the fifteenth century. Very little is recorded concerning ...

Declaration, The Royal

This is the name most commonly given to the solemn repudiation of Catholicity which, in ...

Decorations, Pontifical

Pontifical decorations are the titles of nobility, orders of Christian knighthood and other ...

Decree

( Latin decretum , from decerno , I judge). In a general sense, an order or law made by a ...

Decretals, Papal

I. DEFINITION AND EARLY HISTORY (1) In the wide sense of the term decretalis (i.e. epistola ...

Dedication

A term which, though sometimes used of persons who are consecrated to God's service, is more ...

Dedication, Feast of the

Also called the Feast of the Machabees and Feast of Lights ( Josephus and Talmudic ...

Deduction

( Latin de ducere , to lead, draw out, derive from; especially, the function of deriving truth ...

Deer, Abbey of

A once famous Scotch monastery. According to the Celtic legend St. Columcille, his disciple ...

Defender of the Matrimonial Tie

( Defensor matrimonii ) The Defender of the Matrimonial Tie is an official whose duty is to ...

Definitions, Theological

The Vatican Council (Sess. iv, cap. iv) solemnly taught the doctrine of papal infallibility ...

Definitor (in Canon Law)

An official in secular deaneries and in certain religious orders. Among regulars, a definitor is ...

Definitors (in Religious Orders)

Generally speaking, the governing council of an order. Bergier describes them as those chosen to ...

Deger, Ernst

Historical painter, born in Bockenem, Hanover, 15 April, 1809; died in Düsseldorf, 27 ...

Degradation

( Latin degradatio ). A canonical penalty by which an ecclesiastic is entirely and ...

Deharbe, Joseph

Theologian, catechist, b. at Straburg, Alsace, 11 April, 1800; d. at Maria-Laach, 8 November, ...

Dei gratia; Dei et Apostolicæ Sedis gratia

( By the grace of God; By the grace of God and the Apostolic See ) A formulæ added ...

Deicolus, Saint

(DICHUIL) Elder brother of St. Gall, b. in Leinster, Ireland, c. 530; d. at Lure, France, 18 ...

Deism

( Latin Deus , God ). The term used to denote certain doctrines apparent in a tendency ...

Deity

( French déité ; Late Latin deitas ; Latin deue , divus , "the divine ...

Delacroix, Ferdinand-Victor-Eugène

French painter, b. at Charenton-St-Maurice, near Paris, 26 April, 1798; d. 13 August, 1863. He was ...

Delaroche, Hippolyte

(Known also as P AUL ) Painter, born at Paris, 17 July, 1797; died 4 November, 1856. A pupil ...

Delatores

( Latin for DENOUNCERS) A term used by the Synod of Elvira (c. 306) to stigmatize those ...

Delaware

Delaware, one of the original thirteen of the United States of America. It lies between ...

Delaware Indians

An important tribal confederacy of Algonquian stock originally holding the basin of the Delaware ...

Delcus

A titular see of Thrace, suffragan of Philippopolis. The Greek name of the place was Delkos or ...

Delegation

( Latin delegare ) A delegation is the commission to another of jurisdiction, which is to be ...

Delfau, François

Theologian, born 1637 at Montel in Auvergne, France ; died 13 Oct., 1676, at Landevenec in ...

Delfino, Pietro

A theologian, born at Venice in 1444; died 16 Jan., 1525. He entered the Camaldolese ...

Delilah

(Or Dalila ). Samson, sometime after his exploit at Gaza ( Judges 16:1-3 ), " loved a ...

Delille, Jacques

French abbé and litterateur , born at Aigueperse, 22 June, 1738; died at Paris, 1 May, ...

Delisle, Guillaume

Reformer of cartography, born 28 February, 1675, in Paris ; died there 25 January, 1726. His ...

Delphine, Blessed

A member of the Third Order of St. Francis, born in Provence, France, in 1284; died 26 ...

Delrio, Martin Anton

Scholar, statesman, Jesuit theologian, born at Antwerp, 17 May, 1551; died at Louvain, 19 ...

Delta of the Nile, Prefecture Apostolic of the

The Prefecture Apostolic of the Delta of the Nile is situated in the north of Egypt and ...

Deluge

Deluge is the name of a catastrophe fully described in Genesis 6:1 - 9:19 , and referred to in the ...

Demers, Modeste

An apostle of the Pacific Coast of North America, and the first Catholic missionary among most ...

Demetrius

The name of two Syrian kings mentioned in the Old Testament and two other persons in the ...

Demetrius, Saint

Bishop of Alexandria from 188 to 231. Julius Africanus, who visited Alexandria in the time of ...

Demiurge

The word means literally a public worker, demioergós, demiourgós, and was ...

Democracy, Christian

In Christian Democracy , the name and the reality have two very different histories, and ...

Demon

(Greek daimon and daimonion , Latin daemonium ). In Scripture and in Catholic ...

Demoniacs

( See also DEMONOLOGY, EXORCISM, EXORCIST, POSSESSION.) (Greek daimonikos, daimonizomenos, ...

Demonology

As the name sufficiently indicates, demonology is the science or doctrine concerning demons. ...

Dempster, Thomas

Savant, professor, author; b., as he himself states at Cliftbog, Scotland, 23 August, 1579; d. at ...

Denaut, Pierre

Tenth Bishop of Quebec, b. at Montreal, 20 July, 1743; d. at Longueuil in 1806. After studying ...

Denifle, Heinrich Seuse

( Baptized JOSEPH.) Paleographer and historian, born at Imst in the Austrian Tyrol, 16 Jan., ...

Denis, Johann Nepomuk Cosmas Michael

Bibliographer and poet, b. at Schärding, Bavaria, 27 September, 1729; d. at Vienna, 29 ...

Denis, Joseph

( Baptized JACQUES). Born 6 November, 1657, at Three Rivers , Canada ; died 25 January, ...

Denis, Saint

Bishop of Paris, and martyr. Born in Italy, nothing is definitely known of the time or place, ...

Denman, William

Publisher, b. in Edinburgh, Scotland, 17 March, 1784; d. in Brooklyn, New York, U.S.A. 12 ...

Denmark

( Latin Dania ). This kingdom had formerly a much larger extent than at present. It once ...

Denonville, Seigneur and Marquis de

(JACQUES-RENE DE BRISAY, SEIGNEUR AND MARQUIS DE DENONVILLE) Born in 1638 at Denonville in the ...

Dens, Peter

Theologian, b. at Boom, near Antwerp, Belgium, 12 September, 1690; d. at Mechlin, 15 February, ...

Denunciation

Denunciation ( Latin denunciare) is making known the crime of another to one who is his ...

Denver

(D ENVERIENSIS ). A suffragan of the Archdiocese of Santa Fé, erected in 1887 and ...

Denys the Carthusian

(D ENYS VAN L EEUWEN, also L EUW or L IEUWE ). Born in 1402 in that part of the ...

Denza, Francesco

Italian meteorologist and astronomer, b. at Naples, 7 June, 1834; d. at Rome, 14 December, 1894. ...

Denzinger, Heinrich Joseph Dominicus

One of the leading theologians of the modern Catholic German school and author of the ...

Deo Gratias

("Thanks be to God "). An old liturgical formula of the Latin Church to give thanks to God ...

Deposition

A deposition is an ecclesiastical vindictive penalty by which a cleric is forever deprived of ...

Deprés, Josquin

Diminutive of "Joseph"; latinized Josquinus Pratensis . Born probably c. 1450 at ...

Derbe

A titular see of Lycaonia, Asia Minor. This city was the fortress of a famous leader of ...

Dereser, Anton

(Known also as THADDAEUS A S. ADAMO). Born at Fahr in Franconia, 3 February, 1757; died at ...

Derogation

(Latin derogatio ). The partial revocation of a law, as opposed to abrogation or the ...

Derry

DIOCESE OF DERRY (DERRIENSIS). Includes nearly all the County Derry, part of Donegal, and a ...

Derry, School of

This was the first foundation of St. Columba, the great Apostle of Scotland, and one of the three ...

Desains, Paul-Quentin

Physicist, b. at St-Quentin, France, 12 July, 1817; d. at Paris, 3 May, 1885. He made his literary ...

Desault, Pierre-Joseph

Surgeon and anatomist, b. at Magny-Vernois a small town of Franche-Comté, France, in ...

Descartes, René

(Renatus Cartesius), philosopher and scientist, born at La Haye France, 31 March, 1596; died at ...

Deschamps, Eustache

Also called M OREL , on account of his dark complexion; b. at Vertus in Champagne between 1338 ...

Deschamps, Nicolas

Polemical writer, born at Villefranche (Rhône), France, 1797; died at Aix-en-Provence, ...

Desclée, Henri and Jules

Henri (1830-); Jules (1828-1911). Natives of Belgium, founders of a monastery and a ...

Desecration

Desecration is the loss of that peculiar quality of sacredness, which inheres in places and ...

Desert

The Hebrew words translated in the Douay Version of the Bible by "desert" or "wilderness", and ...

Desertion

The culpable abandonment of a state, of a stable situation, the obligations of which one had ...

Deshon, George

Priest of the Congregation (or Institute) of St. Paul the Apostle , b. at New London, Conn., ...

Desiderius

(DAUFERIUS or DAUFAR). Born in 1026 or 1027 of a non-regnant branch of the Lombard dukes of ...

Desiderius of Cahors, Saint

Bishop, b. at Obrege (perhaps Antobroges, name of a Gaulish tribe), on the frontier of the ...

Desmarets de Saint-Sorlin, Jean

A French dramatist and novelist, born in Paris, 1595, died there, 1676. Early in life he held ...

Desolation, The Abomination of

The importance of this Scriptural expression is chiefly derived from the fact that in Matthew ...

Despair

(Latin desperare , to be hopeless.) Despair, ethically regarded, is the voluntary and ...

Despretz, César-Mansuète

Chemist and physicist, b. at Lessines, Belgium, 11 May, 1798; d. at Paris, 11 May, 1863. He ...

Desservants

The name of a class of French parish priests. Under the old regime, a priest who performed the ...

Desurmont, Achille

Ascetical writer, b. at Tourcoing, France, 23 Dec., 1828; d. 23 July, 1898. He attended first the ...

Determinism

Determinism is a name employed by writers, especially since J. Stuart Mill, to denote the ...

Detré, William

Missionary, b. in France in 1668, d. in South America, at an advanced age, date uncertain. ...

Detraction

(From Latin detrahere , to take away). Detraction is the unjust damaging of another's good ...

Detroit

(Detroitensis) Diocese established 8 March, 1838, comprises the counties of the lower ...

Deus in Adjutorium Meum Intende

"Deus in adjutorium meum intende," with the response: "Domine ad adjuvandum me festina," first ...

Deusdedit, Cardinal

Born at Todi, Italy ; died between 1097 and 1100. He was a friend of St. Gregory VII and ...

Deusdedit, Pope Saint

(Adeodatus I). Date of birth unknown; consecrated pope, 19 October (13 November), 615; d. 8 ...

Deusdedit, Saint

A native of Wessex, England, whose Saxon name was Frithona, and of whose early life nothing is ...

Deuteronomy

This term occurs in Deuteronomy 17:18 and Joshua 8:32 , and is the title of one of the five ...

Deutinger, Martin

Philosopher and religious writer, b. in Langenpreising, Bavaria, 24 March, 1815; d. at ...

Devas, Charles Stanton

Political economist, b. at Woodside, Old Windsor, England, of Protestant parents, 26 August, ...

Devereux, John C.

Born at his father's farm, The Leap, near Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, Ireland, 5 Aug., 1774; died ...

Devereux, Nicholas

Born near Enniscorthy, Ireland, 7 June, 1791; died at Utica, New York, 29 Dec., 1855, was the ...

Devil

(Greek diabolos ; Latin diabolus ). The name commonly given to the fallen angels, who are ...

Devil Worship

The meaning of this compound term is sufficiently obvious, for all must be familiar with the ...

Devil's Advocate

("Advocate of the Devil" or "Devil's Advocate"). A popular title given to one of the most ...

Devolution

( Latin devolutio from devolvere ) Devolution is the right of an ecclesiastical ...

Devoti, Giovani

Canonist, born at Rome, 11 July, 1744; died there 18 Sept., 1820. At the age of twenty he ...

Devotions, Popular

Devotion, in the language of ascetical writers, denotes a certain ardour of affection in the ...

Deymann, Clementine

Born at Klein-Stavern, Oldenburg, Germany, 24 June, 1844; died at Phoenix, Arizona, U. S. A., 4 ...

Deza, Diego

Theologian, archbishop, patron of Christopher Columbus, b. at Toro, 1444; d. 1523. Entering the ...

× Close

Dh 1

Dhuoda

Wife of Bernard, Duke of Septimania. The only source of information on her life is her "Liber ...

× Close

Di 100

Diaconicum

(Greek diakonikon ) The Diaconicum in the Greek Church is the liturgical book specifying ...

Diakovár

(Croatian, Djakovo ). See of the Bishop of the united Dioceses of Bosnia or ...

Dialectic

[Greek dialektike ( techne or methodos ), the dialectic art or method, from dialegomai ...

Diamantina

DIOCESE OF DIAMANTINA (ADAMANTINA). Located in the north of the State of Minas Geraes, Brazil, ...

Diana, Antonino

Moral theologian, born of a noble family at Palermo, Sicily, in 1586; died at Rome, 20 July, ...

Diano

(D IANENSIS ) Diocese and small city in the province of Salermo, Italy ; the ancient ...

Diario Romano

( Italian for "Roman Daybook") A booklet published annually at Rome, with papal ...

Diarmaid, Saint

Born in Ireland, date unknown; d. in 851 or 852. He was made Archbishop of Armagh in 834, but ...

Dias, Bartolomeu

A famous Portuguese navigator of the fifteenth century, discoverer of the Cape of Good Hope; ...

Diaspora

(Or DISPERSION). Diaspora was the name given to the countries (outside of Palestine) through ...

Dibon

A titular see in Palæstina Tertia. Dîbîn (Septuagint, Daibon or Debon ) ...

Dicastillo, Juan de

Theologian, b. of Spanish parents at Naples, 28 December, 1584; d. at Ingolstadt 6 March, 1653. ...

Dicconson, Edward

Titular Bishop of Malla, or Mallus, Vicar Apostolic of the English Northern District; b. 30 ...

Diceto, Ralph de

Dean of St. Paul's, London, and chronicler. The name "Dicetum" cannot be correctly connected with ...

Dichu, Saint

The son of an Ulster chieftain, was the first convert of St. Patrick in Ireland. Born in the ...

Dicuil

Irish monk and geographer, b. in the second half of the eighth century; date of death ...

Didache

(D OCTRINE OF THE T WELVE A POSTLES ) A short treatise which was accounted by some of the ...

Didacus, Saint

[Spanish = San Diego .] Lay brother of the Order of Friars Minor, date of birth uncertain; ...

Didascalia Apostolorum

A treatise which pretends to have been written by the Apostles at the time of the Council of ...

Didon, Henri

Preacher, writer, and educator, b. 17 March, 1840, at Touvet (Isère), France ; d. 13 ...

Didot

Name of a family of French printers and publishers. François Didot Son of Denis Didot, ...

Didron, Adolphe-Napoleon

Also called Didron aîné ; archaeologist; together with Viollet-le-Duc and Caumont, ...

Didymus the Blind

Didymus the Blind, of Alexandria, b. about 310 or 313; d. about 395 or 398, at the age of ...

Diego y Moreno, Francisco Garcia

First bishop of California, b. 17 Sept., 1785, at Lagos in the state of Jalisco, Mexico; d. 30 ...

Diekamp, Wilhelm

Historian, b. at Geldern, 13 May, 1854; d. at Rome, 25 Dec., 1885. Soon after his birth the ...

Diemoth

Diemoth, an old German word for the present "Demuth", the English " humility ", was the name of ...

Diepenbeeck, Abraham van

An erudite and accomplished painter of the Flemish School, b. at Bois-le-Duc in the ...

Diepenbrock, Melchior, Baron von

Cardinal and Prince-Bishop of Breslau, b. 6 January, 1798, at Boeholt in Westphalia ; d. at the ...

Dieringer, Franz Xaver

Catholic theologian, b. 22 August, 1811, at Rangeningen (Hohenzollern-Hechingen); d. 8 September, ...

Dies Irae

This name by which the sequence in requiem Masses is commonly known. They are the opening words of ...

Dietenberger, Johann

Theologian, b. about 1475 at Frankfort-on-the-Main, d. 4 Sept., 1537, at Mainz. He was educated ...

Diether of Isenburg

Archbishop and Elector of Mainz, b. about 1412; d. 7 May, 1482, at Aschaffenburg. He studied at ...

Dietrich von Nieheim

(N IEM ). Born in the Diocese of Paderborn , between 1338 and 1340; d. at Maastricht, 22 ...

Digby, George

Second Earl of Bristol, b. at Madrid, Spain, where his father, the first earl, was ambassador, ...

Digby, Kenelm Henry

Miscellaneous writer, b. in Ireland, 1800; d. at Kensington, Middlesex, England, 22 March, 1880. ...

Digby, Sir Everard

Born 16 May, 1578, died 30 Jan., 1606. Everard Digby, whose father bore the same Christian name ...

Digby, Sir Kenelm

Physicist, naval commander and diplomatist, b. at Gayhurst (Goathurst), Buckinghamshire, England, ...

Digne

(D INIA ; D INIENSIS ) Diocese comprising the entire department of the Basses Alpes; ...

Dignitary, Ecclesiastical

An Ecclesiastical Dignitary is a member of a chapter, cathedral or collegiate, possessed not only ...

Dijon

The Diocese of Dijon comprises the entire department of Côte-d'Or and is a suffragan of ...

Dillingen, University of

Located in Swabia, a district of Bavaria. Its founder was Cardinal Otto Truchsess von Waldburg, ...

Dillon, Arthur-Richard

A French prelate, b. at St-Germain-en-Laye, near Paris, 1721; d. in London, 1806. The fifth son ...

Dimissorial Letters

( Latin litteræ dimissoriales , from dimittere ), letters given by an ecclesiastical ...

Dingley, Ven. Sir Thomas

Martyr, prior of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem, found guilty of high treason 28 April, ...

Dinooth, Saint

(DINOTHUS, DUNAWD, DUNOD). Founder and first Abbot of Bangor Iscoed (Flintshire); flourished ...

Diocaesarea

(SEPPHORIS) (1) A titular see in Palestina Secunda. Diocaesarea is a later name of the town ...

Diocesan Chancery

That branch of administration which handles all written documents used in the official government ...

Diocese

( Latin diœcesis) A Diocese is the territory or churches subject to the jurisdiction of ...

Diocese (Supplemental List)

Pope Pius X, recognizing how necessary it is for the Church to develop in proportion to the ...

Dioclea

A titular see of Phrygia in Asia Minor . Diocleia is mentioned by Ptolemy (V, ii, 23), where ...

Diocletian

(V ALERIUS D IOCLETIANUS ). Roman Emperor and persecutor of the Church, born of parents ...

Diocletianopolis

A titular see of Palaestina Prima. This city is mentioned by Hierocles (Synecdemus, 719, 2), ...

Diodorus of Tarsus

Date of birth uncertain; d. about A.D. 392. He was of noble family, probably of Antioch. St. Basil ...

Diognetus, Epistle to

(EPISTOLA AD DIOGNETUM). This beautiful little apology for Christianity is cited by no ...

Dionysias

A titular see in Arabia. This city, which figures in the "Synecdemos" of Hierocles (723, 3) and ...

Dionysius Exiguus

The surname E XIGUUS , or "The Little", adopted probably in self-deprecation and not because he ...

Dionysius of Alexandria

(Bishop from 247-8 to 264-5.) Called "the Great" by Eusebius, St. Basil, and others, was ...

Dionysius the Pseudo-Areopagite

By "Dionysius the Areopagite" is usually understood the judge of the Areopagus who, as related in ...

Dionysius, Pope Saint

Date of birth unknown; d. 26 or 27 December, 268. During the pontificate of Pope Stephen ...

Dionysius, Saint

Bishop of Corinth about 170. The date is fixed by the fact that he wrote to Pope Soter (c. ...

Dioscorus

Antipope, b. at Alexandria, date unknown; d. 14 October, 530. Originally a deacon of the ...

Dioscorus

(Also written Dioscorus; Dioscurus from the analogy of Dioscuri ). Bishop of Alexandria ...

Diplomatics, Papal

The word diplomatics , following a Continental usage which long ago found recognition in ...

Diptych

(Or diptychon , Greek diptychon from dis , twice and ptyssein , to fold). A ...

Direction, Spiritual

In the technical sense of the term, spiritual direction is that function of the sacred ministry by ...

Directories, Catholic

The ecclesiastical sense of the word directory , as will be shown later, has become curiously ...

Discalced

( Latin dis , without, and calceus , shoe). A term applied to those religious congregations ...

Discernment of Spirits

All moral conduct may be summed up in the rule: avoid evil and do good. In the language of ...

Disciple

This term is commonly applied to one who is learning any art or science from one distinguished by ...

Disciples of Christ

A sect founded in the United States of America by Alexander Campbell. Although the largest ...

Discipline of the Secret

(Latin Disciplina Arcani ; German Arcandisciplin ). A theological term used to express ...

Discipline, Ecclesiastical

Etymologically the word discipline signifies the formation of one who places himself at school ...

Discussions, Religious

(CONFERENCES, DISPUTATIONS, DEBATES) Religious discussions, as contradistinguished from ...

Disibod, Saint

Irish bishop and patron of Disenberg (Disibodenberg), born c. 619; died 8 July, 700. His life was ...

Disparity of Cult

( Disparitas Cultus ) A diriment impediment introduced by the Church to safeguard the ...

Disparity of Worship

( Disparitas Cultus ) A diriment impediment introduced by the Church to safeguard the ...

Dispensation

( Latin dispensatio ) Dispensation is an act whereby in a particular case a lawful superior ...

Dispersion of the Apostles

( Latin Divisio Apostolorum ), a feast in commemoration of the missionary work of the Twelve ...

Dissen, Heinrich von

Born 18 Oct., 1415, at Osnabrück, in Westphalia ; died at Cologne, 26 Nov., 1484. After ...

Dissentis, Abbey of

A Benedictine monastery in the Canton Grisons in eastern Switzerland, dedicated to Our Lady of ...

Distraction

Distraction ( Latin distrahere , to draw away, hence to distract) is here considered in so far ...

Distributions

Distributions (from Lat. distribuere ), canonically termed disturbtiones quotidianae , are ...

Dithmar

(Thietmar). Bishop of Merseburg and medieval chronicler, b. 25 July, 975; d. 1 Dec., 1018.He ...

Dives

(Latin for rich ). The word is not used in the Bible as a proper noun; but in the Middle ...

Divination

The seeking after knowledge of future or hidden things by inadequate means. The means being ...

Divine Attributes

In order to form a more systematic idea of God, and as far as possible, to unfold the ...

Divine Charity, Daughters of

Founded at Vienna, 21 November, 1868, by Franziska Lechner (d. 1894) on the Rule of St. ...

Divine Charity, Sisters of

Founded at Besançon, in 1799, by a Vincentian Sister, and modelled on the Sisters of ...

Divine Charity, Society of

(SOCIETAS DIVINAE CHARITATIS). Founded at Maria-Martental near Kaisersesch, in 1903 by Josepth ...

Divine Compassion, Institute of the

Founded in the City of New York, USA, by the Rt. Rev. Thomas Stanislaus Preston. On 8 September ...

Divine Nature and Attributes, The

I. As Known Through Natural ReasonA. Infinity of GodB. Unity or Unicity of God C. Simplicity of ...

Divine Office

("Liturgy of the Hours" I. THE EXPRESSION "DIVINE OFFICE" This expression signifies ...

Divine Providence, Sisters of

I. SISTERS OF THE DIVINE PROVIDENCE OF ST. VINCENT DE PAUL Founded at Molsheim, in Diocese of ...

Divine Redeemer, Daughters of the

Motherhouse at Oedenburg, Hungary ; founded in 1863 from the Daughters of the Divine Saviour of ...

Divine Savior, Society of the

Founded at Rome, 8 Dec., 1881, by Johann Baptist Jordan (b. 1848 at Gartweil im Breisgau), ...

Divine Word, Society of the

(S OCIETAS V ERBI D IVINI ) The first German Catholic missionary society established. ...

Divisch, Procopius

Premonstratensian, b. at Senftenberg, Bohemia, 26 March, 1698; d. at Prenditz, Moravia, 21 ...

Divorce (in Civil Jurisprudence)

Divorce is defined in jurisprudence as "the dissolution or partial suspension by the law of ...

Divorce (in Moral Theology)

See also DIVORCE IN CIVIL JURISPRUDENCE . The term divorce ( divortium , from ...

Dixon, Joseph

Archbishop of Armagh, Ireland, born at Coalisland, Co. Tyrone, in 1806; died at Armagh, 29 ...

× Close

Dl 1

Dlugosz, Jan

( Latin LONGINUS). An eminent medieval Polish historian, b. at Brzeznica, 1415; d. 19 May, ...

× Close

Do 85

Dobmayer, Marian

A distinguished Benedictine theologian, born 24 October, 1753, at Schwandorf, Bavaria ; died 21 ...

Dobrizhoffer, Martin

Missionary, b. in Graz, Styria, 7 Sept., 1717; d. in Vienna, 17 July 1791. He became a Jesuit ...

Docetæ

(Greek Doketai .) A heretical sect dating back to Apostolic times. Their name is ...

Docimium

A titular see of Phrygia in Asia Minor. This city, as appears from its coins where the ...

Doctor

( Latin docere , to teach) The title of an authorized teacher. In this general sense the term ...

Doctors of the Church

( Latin Doctores Ecclesiae ) -- Certain ecclesiastical writers have received this title on ...

Doctors, Surnames of Famous

It was customary in the Middle Ages to designate the more celebrated among the doctors by ...

Doctrine of Addai

( Latin Doctrina Addoei ). A Syriac document which relates the legend of the conversion ...

Doctrine, Christian

Taken in the sense of "the act of teaching" and "the knowledge imparted by teaching", this term ...

Dogma

I. DEFINITION The word dogma (Gr. dogma from dokein ) signifies, in the writings of the ...

Dogmatic Fact

(1) Definition By a dogmatic fact , in wider sense, is meant any fact connected with a dogma ...

Dogmatic Theology

Dogmatic theology is that part of theology which treats of the theoretical truths of faith ...

Dogmatic Theology, History of

The imposing edifice of Catholic theology has been reared not by individual nations and men, ...

Dolbeau, Jean

Recollect friar, born in the Province of Anjou, France, 12 March, 1586; died at ...

Dolci, Carlo

Painter, born in Florence, Italy, 25 May, 1616; died 17 January, 1686. The grandson of a ...

Doliche

A titular see of Commagene (Augusto-Euphratesia). It was a small city on the road from ...

Dolman, Charles

Publisher and bookseller, b. at Monmouth, England, 20 Sept., 1807; d. in Paris, 31 December, ...

Dolores Mission

(Or Mission San Francisco De Asis De Los Dolores) In point of time the sixth in the chain of ...

Dolphin

( Latin delphinus ). The use of the dolphin as a Christian symbol is connected with the ...

Dome

( Latin domus , a house). An architectural term often used synonymously with cupola. ...

Domenech, Emmanuel-Henri-Dieudonne

Abbé, missionary and author, b. at Lyons, France, 4 November, 1826; d. in France, June, ...

Domenechino

Properly DOMENICO ZAMPIERI. An Italian painter, born in Bologna, 21 Oct., 1581; died in ...

Domesday Book

The name given to the record of the great survey of England made by order of William the ...

Domicile

( Latin jus domicilii , right of habitation, residence). The canon law has no independent ...

Dominic of Prussia

A Carthusian monk and ascetical writer, born in Poland, 1382; died at the monastery of St. ...

Dominic of the Mother of God

(Called in secular life D OMENICO B ARBERI ) A member of the Passionist Congregation and ...

Dominic, Saint

Founder of the Order of Preachers , commonly known as the Dominican Order ; born at Calaroga, ...

Dominical Letter

A device adopted from the Romans by the old chronologers to aid them in finding the day of the ...

Dominican Republic

(SAN DOMINGO, SANTO DOMINGO). The Dominican Republic is the eastern, and much larger ...

Dominicans

As the Order of the Friars Preachers is the principal part of the entire Order of St. Dominic, we ...

Dominici, Blessed Giovanni

(BANCHINI or BACCHINI was his family name). Cardinal, statesman and writer, born at ...

Dominis, Marco Antonio de

Dalmatian ecclesiastic, apostate, and man of science, b. on the island of Arbe, off the coast ...

Dominus Vobiscum

An ancient form of devout salutation, incorporated in the liturgy of the Church, where it is ...

Domitian

(T ITUS F LAVIUS D OMITIANUS ). Roman emperor and persecutor of the Church, son of ...

Domitilla and Pancratius, Nereus and Achilleus, Saints

The commemoration of these four Roman saints is made by the Church on 12 May, in common, and ...

Domitiopolis

A titular see of Isauria in Asia Minor. The former name of this city is unknown; it was called ...

Domnus Apostolicus

(DOMINUS APOSTOLICUS) A title applied to the pope, which was in most frequent use between the ...

Don Bosco

( Or St. John Bosco; Don Bosco.) Founder of the Salesian Society. Born of poor parents in ...

Donahoe, Patrick

Publisher, born at Munnery, County Cavan, Ireland, 17 March, 1811; died at Boston, U.S.A., 18 ...

Donatello Di Betto Bardi

(DONATO DI NICOLÒ DI BETTO BARDI) One of the great Tuscan sculptors of the ...

Donation (in Canon Law)

(IN CANON LAW) Donation , the gratuitous transfer to another of some right or thing. When it ...

Donation (in Civil Law)

(IN CIVIL JURISPRUDENCE) Donation, the gratuitous transfer, or gift ( Latin donatio ), of ...

Donation of Constantine

( Latin, Donatio Constantini ). By this name is understood, since the end of the Middle ...

Donatists

The Donatist schism in Africa began in 311 and flourished just one hundred years, until the ...

Donatus of Fiesole

Irish teacher and poet, Bishop of Fiesole, about 829-876. In an ancient collection of the ...

Donders, Peter

Missionary among the lepers, b. at Tilburg in Holland, 27 Oct., 1807; d. 14 Jan., 1887. He ...

Dongan, Thomas

Second Earl of Limerick, b. 1634, at Castletown Kildrought, now Celbridge, County Kildare, ...

Donlevy, Andrew

Educator, b. in 1694, probably in Sligo, Ireland ; date and place of death uncertain. Little ...

Donnan, Saint

There were apparently three or four saints of this name who flourished about the seventh century. ...

Donner, Georg Raphael

Austrian sculptor, b. at Essling, Austria, 25 May, 1692; d. at Vienna, 15 February, 1741. It is ...

Donnet, Ferdinand-François-Auguste

A French cardinal, b. at Bourg-Argental (Loire), 1795; d. at Bordeaux, 1882. He studied in the ...

Donoso Cortés, Juan Francesco Maria de la Saludad

Marquess of Valdegamas, author and diplomat, born 6 May, 1809, at Valle de la Serena in the ...

Donus, Pope

(Or D OMNUS ). Son of a Roman called Mauricius; he was consecrated Bishop of Rome 2 Nov., ...

Doorkeeper

(Also called DOORKEEPER. From ostiarius , Latin ostium , a door.) Porter denoted among ...

Doré, Pierre

(AURATUS) Controversialist, b. at Orléans about 1500; d. at Paris, 19 May, 1559. He ...

Dora

A titular see of Palestina Prima. The name ( Dôr ) in Semitic languages means ...

Dorchester, Abbey of

Founded in 1140 by Alexander, Bishop of Lincoln, for Canons of the Order of St. Augustine (or ...

Doria, Andrea

Genoese admiral and statesman, b. at Oneglia, Italy, 1468; d. at Genoa, 1560. His family ...

Dorman, Thomas

Theologian, b. at Berkhampstead, Hertfordshire, England, date uncertain; d. at Tournai, 1572 or ...

Dornin, Bernard

First publisher in the United States of distinctively Catholic books, b. in Ireland, 1761; d. ...

Dorothea, Saint

(1) Virgin and martyr, suffered during the persecution of Diocletian, 6 February, 311, at ...

Dorsey, Anne Hanson

Novelist, born at Georgetown, District of Columbia, U.S.A. 1815; died at Washington, 26 ...

Dorylaeum

A titular see of Phrygia Salutaris, in Asia Minor. This city already existed under the kings ...

Dositheans

Followers of Dositheus, a Samaritan who formed a Gnostic - Judaistic sect, previous to Simon ...

Dosquet, Pierre-Herman

Fourth Bishop of Quebec, b. at Liège, Flanders, 1691; d. at Paris, 1777. He studied at ...

Dossi, Giovanni

Actually named GIOVANNI DI NICOLO DI LUTERO, but also called Dosso Dossi. An Italian painter, ...

Dotti, Blessed Andrea

Born 1256, in Borgo San Sepolero, Tuscany, Italy ; d. there 31 August, 1315. He was of noble ...

Douai

(Town and University of Douai) (D OUAY, D OWAY ) The town of Douai, in the department of ...

Douay Bible

The original Douay Version, which is the foundation on which nearly all English Catholic ...

Double Altar

An altar having a double front constructed in such a manner that Mass may be celebrated on ...

Double Monasteries

Religious houses comprising communities of both men and women, dwelling in contiguous ...

Doubt

(Latin dubium, Greek aporí, French doute, German Zweifel ). A state in which the ...

Douglas, Gavin

Scottish prelate and poet, born about 1474; died 1522; he was the third son of Archibald, Fifth ...

Doutreleau, Stephen

Missionary, born in France, 11 October, 1693; date of death uncertain. He became a Jesuit ...

Dove

(Latin columba ). In Christian antiquity the dove appears as a symbol and as a Eucharistic ...

Dowdall, George

Archbishop of Armagh, b. at Drogheda, County Louth, Ireland, in 1487; d. at London, 15 August, ...

Dowdall, James

Martyr, date of birth unknown; executed for his faith at Exeter, England, 20 September, 1600. ...

Dower

( Latin doarium ; French douaire ) A provision for support during life accorded by law ...

Dower, Religious

( Latin dos religiosa ). Because of its analogy with the dower that a woman brings to ...

Down and Connor

Diocese of Down and Connor (Dunensis et Connorensis) A line drawn from Whitehouse on Belfast ...

Downside Abbey

Near Bath, Somersetshire, England, was founded at Douai, Flanders, under the patronage of ...

Doxology

In general this word means a short verse praising God and beginning, as a rule, with the Greek ...

Doyle, James Warren

Irish bishop ; b. near New Ross, County Wexford, Ireland, 1786; d. at Carlow, 1834. He belonged ...

Doyle, John

Born in Dublin, Ireland, 1797; died in London, 2 January, 1868; English portrait-painter and ...

Doyle, Richard

English artist and caricaturist, b. in London, September, 1824; d. there 11 December, 1883. The ...

× Close

Dr 26

Drach, David Paul

Convert from Judaism, b. at Strasburg, 6 March, 1791; d. end of January, 1868, at Rome. ...

Drachma

(Gr. drachmé ), a Greek silver coin. The Greeks derived the word from drássomai, ...

Dracontius, Blossius Æmilius

A Christian poet of the fifth century. Dracontius belonged to a distinguished family of ...

Drane, Augusta Theodosia

In religion MOTHER FRANCIS RAPHAEL, O.S.D.; b. at Bromley near London, in 1823; d. at Stone, ...

Dreams, Interpretation of

There is in sleep something mysterious which seems, from the earliest times, to have impressed ...

Drechsel, Jeremias

( Also Drexelius or Drexel.) Ascetic writer, b. at Augsburg, 15 August, 1581; entered the ...

Dresden

The capital of the Kingdom of Saxony and the residence of the royal family, is situated on both ...

Dreves, Lebrecht Blücher

Poet, b. at Hamburg, Germany, 12 September, 1816; d. at Feldkirch, 19 Dec., 1870. The famous ...

Drevet Family, The

The Drevets were the leading portrait engravers of France for over a hundred years. Their fame ...

Drexel, Francis Anthony

Banker, b. at Philadelphia, U.S.A. 20 June, 1824; d. there 15 Feb., 1885. He was the oldest son ...

Drexel, Jeremias

( Also Drexelius or Drexel.) Ascetic writer, b. at Augsburg, 15 August, 1581; entered the ...

Drey, Johann Sebastian von

A professor of theology at the University of Tübingen, born 16 Oct., 1777, at Killingen, in ...

Dromore

(DROMORENSIS, and in ancient documents DRUMORENSIS) Dromore is one of the eight suffragans of ...

Drostan, Saint

(DRUSTAN, DUSTAN, THROSTAN) A Scottish abbot who flourished about A.D. 600. All that is ...

Droste-Vischering, Clemens August von

Archbishop of Cologne, born 21 Jan., 1773, at Münster, Germany ; died 19 Oct., 1845, in ...

Druidism

The etymology of this word from the Greek drous , "oak", has been a favorite one since the ...

Druillettes, Gabriel

(Or DREUILLETS) Missionary, b. in France, 29 September, 1610; d. at Quebec, 8 April, 1681. ...

Drumgoole, John C.

Priest and philanthropist, b. at Granard, Co. Longford, Ireland, 15 August, 1816; d. in New ...

Drury, Robert

Martyr (1567-1607), was born of a good Buckinghamshire family and was received into the ...

Drusilla

Drusilla, daughter of Herod Agrippa I , was six years of age at the time of her father's death ...

Drusipara

A titular see in Thracia Prima. Nothing is known of the ancient history of this town, which, ...

Druys, Jean

( Latin DRUSIUS) Thirtieth Abbot of Parc near Louvain, Belgium, b. at Cumptich, near ...

Druzbicki, Gaspar

Ascetic writer, b. at Sierady in Poland, 1589; entered the Society of Jesus, 20 August 1609; d. ...

Druzes

Small Mohammedan sect in Syria, notorious for their opposition to the Marionites, a Catholic ...

Dryburgh Abbey

A monastery belonging to the canons of the Premonstratensian Order (Norbertine or White ...

Dryden, John

Poet, dramatist, critic, and translator; b. 9 August, 1631, at Oldwinkle All Saints, ...

× Close

Du 62

Du Cange, Charles Dufresne

Historian and philologist, b. at Amiens, France, 18 Dec., 1610; d. at Paris, 1688. His father, ...

Du Coudray, Philippe-Charles-Jean-Baptiste-Tronson

Soldier, b. at Reims, France, 8 September, 1738; d. at Philadelphia, U.S.A. 11 September, ...

Du Lhut Daniel Greysolon, Sieur

(DULUTH). Born at Saint-Germain-en-Laye about 1640; died at Montreal, 26 Feb., 1710. He first ...

Dualism

(From Latin duo , two). Like most other philosophical terms, has been employed in different ...

Dublin

(DUBLINIUM; DUBLINENSIS). Archdiocese ; occupies about sixty miles of the middle eastern coast ...

Dubois, Guillaume

A French cardinal and statesman, born at Brive, in Limousin, 1656; died at Versailles, 1723. ...

Dubois, Jean-Antoine

French missionary in India, b. in 1765 at St. Remèze (Ardèche); d. in Paris, 17 ...

Dubois, John

Third Bishop of New York, educator and missionary, b. in Paris, 24 August, 1764; d. in New ...

Dubourg, Louis-Guillaume-Valentin

Second Bishop of Louisiana and the Floridas, Bishop of Montauban, Archbishop of ...

Dubric, Saint

(DYFRIG, DUBRICIUS) Bishop and confessor, one of the greatest of Welsh saints ; d. 612. He ...

Dubuque

Archdiocese of Dubuque (Dubuquensis), established, 28 July, 1837, created an archbishopric, ...

Duc, Fronton du

(Called in Latin Ducæus.) A French theologian and Jesuit, b. at Bordeaux in 1558; ...

Duccio di Buoninsegna

Painter, and founder of the Sienese School, b. about 1255 or 1260, place not known; d. 3 August, ...

Duchesne, Philippine-Rose

Founder in America of the first houses of the society of the Sacred Heart, born at Grenoble, ...

Duckett, John, Venerable

A Martyr, probably a grandson of Venerable James Duckett , born at Underwinder, in the parish ...

Duckett, Ven. James

Martyr, b. at Gilfortrigs in the parish of Skelsmergh in Westmoreland, England, date uncertain, ...

Ducrue, Francis Bennon

Missionary in Mexico, b. at Munich, Bavaria. of French parents, 10 June 1721; d. there 30 March, ...

Dudik, Beda Franciscus

Moravian historian, b. at Kojetein near Kremsier, Moravia, 29 January, 1815; d. as abbot and ...

Duel

( Duellum , old form of bellum ). This word, as used both in the ecclesiastical and ...

Duffy, Sir Charles Gavan

Politician and author, b. at Monaghan, Ireland, 12 April, 1816; d. at Nice, France, 9 Feb., ...

Duhamel, Jean-Baptiste

A French scientist, philosopher, and theologian, b. at Vire, Normandy (now in the department of ...

Dulia

(Greek doulia ; Latin servitus ), a theological term signifying the honour paid to the ...

Duluth

DIOCESE OF DULUTH (DULUTHENSIS) Diocese, established 3 Oct., 1889, suffragan of the ...

Dumas, Jean-Baptiste

Distinguished French chemist and senator, b. at Alais, department of Gard, 14 July, 1800; d. at ...

Dumetz, Francisco

Date of birth unknown; died 14 Jan., 1811. He was a native of Mallorca (Majorca), Spain, where he ...

Dumont, Hubert-André

Belgian geologist, b. at Liège, 15 Feb., 1809; d. in the same city, 28 Feb., 1857. When ...

Dumoulin, Charles

(Or DUMOLIN; latinized MOLINAEUS). French jurist, b. at Paris in 1500; d. there 27 December, ...

Dunbar, William

Scottish poet, sometimes styled the " Chaucer of Scotland ", born c. 1460; died c. 1520(?). He ...

Dunchadh, Saint

(DUNICHAD, DUNCAD, DONATUS) Confessor, Abbot of Iona ; date of b. unknown, d. in 717. He ...

Dundrennan, Abbey of

In Kirkcudbrightshire, Scotland ; a Cistercian house founded in 1142 by King David I and ...

Dunedin

(DUNEDINENSIS) Dunedin comprises the provincial district of Otago (including the Otago part, ...

Dunfermline, Abbey of

In the south-west of Fife, Scotland. Founded by King Malcolm Canmore and his queen, Margaret, ...

Dungal

Irish monk, teacher, astronomer, and poet who flourished about 820. He is mentioned in 811 as an ...

Dunin, Martin von

Archbishop of Gnesen and Posen, born 11 Nov., 1774, in the village of Wat near the city of Rawa, ...

Dunkeld

(DUNKELDENSIS) Located in Scotland, constituted, as far back as the middle of the ninth ...

Dunkers

( German tunken , to dip) A Protestant sect thus named from its distinctive baptismal rite. ...

Duns Scotus, Blessed John

Surnamed DOCTOR SUBTILIS, died 8 November, 1308; he was the founder and leader of the famous ...

Dunstan, Saint

Archbishop and confessor, and one of the greatest saints of the Anglo-Saxon Church ; b. near ...

Dupanloup, Félix-Antoine-Philibert

Bishop of Orléans, France, b. at Saint-Félix; Savoie, 2 June, 1802; d. at ...

Duperron, Jacques-Davy

A theologian and diplomat, born 25 Nov., 1556, at St-Lô (Normandy), France ; died 5 ...

Dupin, Louis Ellies

(also DU PIN) A theologian, born 17 June, 1657, of a noble family in Normandy ; died 6 ...

Dupin, Pierre-Charles-François

Known as BARON CHARLES DUPIN. A French mathematician and economist, b. at Varzy, ...

Duponceau, Peter Stephen

A jurist and linguist, b. at St-Martin de Ré, France 3 June, 1760; d. at Philadelphia, ...

Dupré, Giovanni

Sculptor, b. of remote French ancestry at Siena, 1 Mar., 1817; d. at Florence, 10 Jan., 1882. ...

Duprat, Antoine & Guillaume

(1) Antoine Duprat Chancellor of France and Cardinal, b. at Issoire in Auvergne, 17 January, ...

Dupuytren, Baron Guillaume

French anatomist and surgeon, born 6 October, 1777, at Pierre-Buffière, a small town in ...

Duquesnoy, François

(Called also FRANÇOIS FLAMAND, and in Italy IL FLAMINGO). Born at Brussels, Belgium, ...

Duran, Narcisco

Born 16 December, 1776, at Castellon de Ampurias, Catalonia, Spain ; died 1 June, 1846. He ...

Durand Ursin

A Benedictine of the Maurist Congregation, b. 20 May, 1682, at Tours ; d. 31 Aug., 1771, at ...

Durandus of Saint-Pourçain

Philosopher and theologian, b. at Saint-Pourçain, Auvergne France ; d. 13 September, ...

Durandus of Troarn

French Benedictine and ecclesiastical writer, b. about 1012, at Le Neubourg near Evreux ; d. ...

Durandus, William

(Also: Duranti or Durantis). Canonist and one of the most important medieval liturgical writers; ...

Durandus, William, the Younger

Died 1328, canonist, nephew of the famous ritualist and canonist of the same name (with whom he is ...

Durango

(DURANGUM) Archdiocese located in north-western Mexico. The see was created 28 Sept., 1620, ...

Durazzo

ARCHDIOCESE OF DURAZZO (DYRRACHIENSIS). The Archdiocese of Durazzo in Albania, situated on the ...

Durbin, Elisha John

The "Patriarch-priest of Kentucky ", born 1 February, 1800, in Madison County, in that State, of ...

Durham

Ancient Catholic Diocese of Durham (Dunelmensis). This diocese holds a unique position among ...

Durham Rite

The earliest document giving an account of liturgical services in the Diocese of Durham is the ...

Durrow, School of

( Irish Dairmagh , Plain of the Oaks) The Durrow is delightfully situated in the King's ...

Duty

The definition of the term duty given by lexicographers is: "something that is due", ...

Duvergier de Hauranne, Jean

(Or D U V ERGER ), J EAN ; also called S AINT -C YRAN from an abbey he held in ...

Duvernay, Ludger

A French-Canadian journalist and patriot, born at Verchères, Quebec, 22 January, 1799; ...

× Close

Dw 1

Dwight, Thomas

Anatomist, b. at Boston, 1843; d. at Nahant, 8 Sept., 1911. The son of Thomas Dwight and of Mary ...

× Close

Dy 4

Dyck, Antoon (Anthonis) Van

Usually known as S IR A NTHONY V AN D YCK . Flemish portrait-painter, b. at Antwerp, ...

Dymoke, Robert

Confessor of the Faith, date of birth uncertain; d. at Lincoln, England, 11 Sept., 1580. He ...

Dymphna, Saint

(Also known as Dympna and Dimpna). Virgin and martyr. The earliest historical account of ...

Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2016 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2016 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.