Samiksha Jaiswal

Ancient Diocese of Dax

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Ancient Diocese of Dax

The Diocese of Dax or Acqs was a Roman Catholic ecclesiastical territory in Gascony in south-west France. According to tradition it was established in the 5th century. It was suppressed after the French Revolution, by the Concordat of 1801 between First Consul Napoleon Bonaparte and Pope Pius VII. Its territory now belongs to the Diocese of Aire and Diocese of Bayonne.


It is not certain that the patron of the diocese, the martyr St. Vincent, was a bishop. His cult, at least, existed in the time of Charlemagne, as is proved by a note (in a later hand) of the Wolfenbüttel manuscript of the Hieronymian Martyrology. The oldest account of his martyrdom is in a breviary of Dax, dating from the second half of the thirteenth century, but the author knows nothing of the martyr's time period or the reasons for his death.

Excavations near Dax proved the existence of a Merovingian cemetery on the site of a church which, it is claimed, was dedicated to St. Vincent by Bishop Gratianus. Gratianus, present at the Council of Agde (506), is the first historically known bishop. Among the other bishops of the see were St. Revellatus (early sixth century), St. Macarius (c. 1060), Cardinal Pierre Itier (1361), Cardinal Pierre de Foix (1455), founder of the University of Avignon and the Collège de Foix at Toulouse.

The synodal constitutions of the ancient Diocese of Dax, published by Abbé Antoine Degert, are of great historical interest for the study of the ancient constitutions and customs of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. Degert in the course of this publication succeeded in rectifying certain errors in the episcopal lists of the Gallia christiana and of Father Eubel in Hierarchia catholica.

During the Great Schism, Dax, which was part of Aquitaine, belonged to the Kings of England (in 1378 Richard II). King Richard chose to support the popes of the Roman Obedience rather than the popes of the Avignon Obedience, who were French and likely to support the King of France in what is now called the Hundred Years' War. All of the cardinals of the Avignon obedience were deprived of their offices and benefices in the Kingdom of Richard II of England, by act of Parliament and decree of the King Dax was required to adhere to the Obedience of Rome.

About 1588 St. Vincent de Paul made his first studies with the Cordeliers of Dax, but good secondary education at Dax dates only from the establishment of the Barnabites in 1640. His learning, however, was sufficient to allow him to study at the University of Toulouse.

On 3 June 1857, the title "Bishop of Dax" was added to the titulature of the Bishop of Aire.

Early bishops

  • Vincentius
  • Gratianus
  • Carterius (541)
  • Liberius (549)
  • Faustianus
  • Nicetius
  • Illidius
  • Revelatus
  • Sede Vacante (lasting nearly four centuries, due to Arab invasions and Northmen, until ca. 850)

  • Oltherius (second half of ninth century)
  • Bishops of Gascony

  • Gombaud (end of tenth century)
  • Arsius-Raca
  • Raymond
  • Raymond
  • Reference books

  • Gams, Pius Bonifatius (1873). Series episcoporum Ecclesiae catholicae: quotquot innotuerunt a beato Petro apostolo. Ratisbon: Typis et Sumptibus Georgii Josephi Manz.  pp. 599-601. (Use with caution; obsolete)
  • Eubel, Conradus (ed.) (1913). Hierarchia catholica, Tomus 1 (second ed.). Münster: Libreria Regensbergiana.  p. 97. (in Latin)
  • Eubel, Conradus (ed.) (1914). Hierarchia catholica, Tomus 2 (second ed.). Münster: Libreria Regensbergiana.  p. 91.
  • Eubel, Conradus (ed.) (1923). Hierarchia catholica, Tomus 3 (second ed.). Münster: Libreria Regensbergiana. 
  • Gauchat, Patritius (Patrice) (1935). Hierarchia catholica IV (1592-1667). Münster: Libraria Regensbergiana. Retrieved 2016-07-06.  p. 89.
  • Ritzler, Remigius; Sefrin, Pirminus (1952). Hierarchia catholica medii et recentis aevi V (1667-1730). Patavii: Messagero di S. Antonio. Retrieved 2016-07-06.  p. 93.
  • Ritzler, Remigius; Sefrin, Pirminus (1958). Hierarchia catholica medii et recentis aevi VI (1730-1799). Patavii: Messagero di S. Antonio. Retrieved 2016-07-06.  pp. 92-93.
  • Studies

  • Degert, Antoine (1899). Histoire des évêques de Dax (in French). Dax: H. Labèque. 
  • Dufourcet, Eugène (1879). "Les Évêques de Dax, depuis Saint Vincent de Sentes jusqu'à Mgr Le Quien de Laneufville". Bulletin de la Société de Borda. 4: 205–230. 
  • Pisani, Paul (1907). Répertoire biographique de l'épiscopat constitutionnel (1791-1802). (in French). Paris: A. Picard et fils. 
  • Sainte-Marthe, Denis de (O.S.B.) (1715). Gallia Christiana, In Provincias Ecclesiasticas Distributa; Qua Series Et Historia Archiepiscoporum, Episcoporum, Et Abbatum Franciae Vicinarumque Ditionum ab origine Ecclesiarum ad nostra tempora deducitur, & probatur ex authenticis Instrumentis ad calcem appositis: Tomus Primus (in Latin). Tomus primus. Paris: Johannes-Baptista Coignard, Regis & Academiae Gallicae Architypographus. pp. 1035–1070. 
  • Attribution

  •  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Goyau, Pierre-Louis-Théophile-Georges (1913). "Diocese of Dax". In Herbermann, Charles. Catholic Encyclopedia. 16. New York: Robert Appleton. 
  • References

    Ancient Diocese of Dax Wikipedia

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