Religion Past and Present

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(350 words)

[German Version]

(accusative of commenda, “trust”, from Lat. commendare, “to give in trust”), a legal institution of classical canon law that permitted a church official to enjoy the income from an ecclesiastical office without having to fulfill the obligations and duties of a regular benefice. In principle, a benefice could be given in commendam only as long as it took to fill the vacancy or while the regular incumbent was prevented from carrying out his duties, for example as a result of suspension; cf. also Decretum Gratiani, cc. 3, 21, q. 1 ( Corpus Iuris Canonici ). For reasons of ecc…

Cite this page
Christoph, Joachim E., “Commendam”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 27 June 2022 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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