15 February 2014

Call for help

I've just come across (still going through old papers) a piece by Fr Eric Mascall taking a little further some of the remarks he made about the Papacy in The Recovery of Unity. He lists the possibility that the papal see might have been vacant for forty years during the Great Schism, citing a phrase Papa dubius Papa nullus. I wonder if anybody has ever come across either that proposition or that phrase. (I'm rather less interested in a discussion about these things than I am in being pointed in the direction of exact references to authorities.)


Gregory the Eremite said...

Bossuet ("Defensio declarationis conventus Cleri Gallicani") attributes it to Bellarmine (and others):

"Nam de papa dubio et schismatis casu, ut inde ordiamur falsam illud esse constat, imo periculosissimum, quod a bellarmino et aliisque passim pro certo axiomate asseritur: papa dubius, papa nullus."

(Found with the help of Google's mighty engine).

Patruus said...

In the sixth line of the paragraph commencing RESPONDEO on page 188 of the Tomus Secundus of Bellarmino's 'De Controversiis Christianae Fidei adversus huius temporis haereticos', we read, "nam dubius Papa habetur pro non Papa".


Dr. Adam DeVille said...

I've come across the proposition before. I would check the Jesuit historian John O'Malley's *A History of the Popes* (Sheed & Ward, 2011). I don't know if he gets into this kind of detail in the book, but he does know about it (and you could e-mail him at Georgetown). I talked to him last year about the Gt. Schism, and how the Annuario Pontificio was "updated" in the 1940s to scrub out some embarrassing caesura in papal historiography around that time.