Oliva 51 
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[51. ON CONFIRMATIONS MADE BY THE EMPEROR]

[51.1] Having treated compendiously confirmations which are seen to pertain to the pope, I have not caused those confirmations to pass by in silence, which can be made by the emperor or by kings.

[51.2] For the emperor can confirm, in law albeit not in fact, all kings and all secular princes. He can confirm patriarchs, archbishops, bishops, abbots and all prelates of churches by right of temporal possessions, because even if these possessions are possessed through the right of kings, yet more strongly through the right of the Roman empire.327 

[51.3] I do not say that the emperor can or ought to confirm ecclesiastics in spiritualities, or that confirmation principally pertains to him, but that he can confirm an election, that is make valid, which ecclesiastics have made. For nearly all the great prelates of churches swear fealty to the emperor of the Romans.328 Thus it is not indecent if a confirmation is sought for the sake of imperial temporalities, as though from a special secondary patron.329 


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327 The idea that legitimate title stems from royal dispensation also appears above, Oliva 8b.25. The emperor is proclaimed the source of legitimate possession in a preamble: Rhetorica novissima 5.4.12.1. See also above, Oliva 34.3.

328 According to the Concordat of Worms (1122), on which see PETER CLASSEN "Das Wormser Konkordat in der deutschen Verfassungsgeschichte" in Investiturstreit und Reichsverfassung Vorträge und Forschungen 17 (Stuttgart 1973) 411-460 and above, Oliva 5.5.

329 For Boncompagno's ideas of patronage, see Boncompagnus 4.4.11, 5.1.24, 6.3.13 and his Prooemium ad Summam Codicis Azonis.


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© Steven M. Wight, Los Angeles 1998

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