Skip to content

We ask you, humbly: don't scroll away.

Hi readers, it seems you use Catholic Online a lot; that's great! It's a little awkward to ask, but we need your help. If you have already donated, we sincerely thank you. We're not salespeople, but we depend on donations averaging $14.76 and fewer than 1% of readers give. If you donate just $5.00, the price of your coffee, Catholic Online School could keep thriving. Thank you.

Help Now >

Notitia Dignitatum

Free World Class Education
FREE Catholic Classes

(Register of Offices).

The official handbook of the civil and military officials in the later Roman Empire. The extant Latin form belongs to the early fifth century. The last addenda concerning the Eastern Empire point to the year 397 as the latest chronological limit, while supplementary notices concerning the Western Empire extend into the reign of Valentinian III (425-55). The bulk of the statements, however, point to earlier years of the fourth century, individual notices showing conditions at the beginning of this century. The first part of the "Notitia" gives a list of the officials in the Eastern Empire: "Notitia dignitatum omnium tam civilium quam militarium in partibus Orientis"; the second part gives a corresponding list for the Western Empire: "Notitia . . . in partibus Occidentis". Both give, first the highest official positions of the central administration, then the officials in positions subordinate to these, and also the officials of the various " dioceses " and provinces, the civil officials bemg regularly stated along with the military. In addition, the insignia of the officials and of the army divisions are shown by drawings. This register was used in the imperial chancery ; the chief official of the chancery ( primicerius notariorum ) found in it all necessary information for drawing up the announcements of the appointment of officials and of their positions. The "Notitia", preserved as it is in an incomplete condition, is partly an abstract, partly an exact transcript of this official register. It shows that at various periods, extending as late as the first part of the fifth century, additions were made to the state register and gives the essential form of the list in the era just mentioned. It is, therefore, a very important authority for the divisions of the Empire, for an understanding of the Roman bureaucracy, and for the distribution of the army during the late Roman Empire. The first printed edition was "Notitia utraque cum Orientis tum Occidentis" (Basle, 1552); the latest editions were edited by Böcking (2 vols., Bonn, 1839-53), and O. Seeck, "Notitia dignitatum. Accedunt Notitia urbis Constantinopolitanae et Laterculi provinciarum" (Berlin, 1876).

Never Miss any Updates!

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

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2020 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 2020 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.

Catholic Online is a Project of Your Catholic Voice Foundation, a Not-for-Profit Corporation. Your Catholic Voice Foundation has been granted a recognition of tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Federal Tax Identification Number: 81-0596847. Your gift is tax-deductible as allowed by law.