Aurea Gemma <Gallica> 2.16-20
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[2.16] Now about the testaments of kings or emperors or pontiffs. An emperor or king or pope <may make a testament> in this manner:1

[2.17] H.,2 by the grace of God emperor of the Romans, ever Augustus.

[2.18] Although nothing can be added, nothing can be granted to the Giver of all good things, from Whom we have all that we possess, and although there is nothing for us to give other than to render His things to Him, yet He requires works of mercy from us and promises the eternal in exchange for the temporal.

[2.19] Therefore we bequeath one third of all we possess to the church, one third to the poor, one third to our domestic servants and we shall make friends for ourselves from the Mammon of iniquity, so that we may be received in the eternal tabernacle.

[2.20] Similarly any king, similarly a pontiff, with the names changed.


1 For examples, see GUNTHER WOLF Florilegium testamentorum ab imperatoribus et regibus sive princibus nobilibus conditorum ab anno 1189 usque ad annum electionis Rudolfi illustris regis Romanorum perductum (Heidelberg 1956).

2 The young king Henry of Staufen, who ruled the empire in 1147-8, while his royal father Conrad III was away on the Second Crusade. See above, Aurea Gemma <Gallica> 1.3.

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© Steven M. Wight, Los Angeles 1998
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