William of Ockham, Dialogus
part 3, tract 1, book 4

Text and translation by John Scott.
Revised by John Kilcullen

Copyright (c) 1999, 2000, The British Academy

Conventions used in collation files

CAP. 1

Discipulus: Postquam conferendo quesivimus que scripture recipiende sunt ad ecclesiastica dogmata confirmanda, ad principale revertamur intentum, an videlicet Christus de facto constituerit beatum Petrum principem et prelatum aliorum apostolorum et universorum fidelium. Circa quod diversas opiniones studeas recitare.


Student: Now that we have sought to learn by discussion what writings should be accepted for the purpose of confirming teachings of the Church, let us turn back to our original topic -- whether, that is, Christ did in fact establish blessed Peter as chief and ruler of the other Apostles and all the faithful. Would you endeavour to list the various opinions about this?


Magister: Una est opinio quod Christus de facto beatum Petrum non constituit principem et prelatum aliorum apostolorum et universorum fidelium, quod multis modis videtur posse probari.

Master: One opinion is that Christ did not in fact establish blessed Peter as chief and ruler of the other Apostles and all the faithful. This seems provable in many ways.

First opinion (Marsilius): he did not

Et primo quidem ostenditur quod nullus apostolus ex Christi ordinacione ceteris apostolis, nec quantum ad dignitatem sacerdotalem essencialem nec quantum ad aliquam aliam potestatem, fuit superior. Quod videtur convinci ex Luce 22o c.  Nam tribuens Christus apostolis potestatem ad eucharistie sacramentum, inquit ad eos, “Hoc est enim corpus meum, quod pro vobis datur; hoc facite in meam commemoracionem”, id est, hoc faciendi potestatem habete, proferendo tamen verba consimilia, quando actum hunc exercere debetis, videlicet, “Hoc est enim corpus meum”. Nec dixit hec verba plus ad beatum Petrum quam ad alios. Non enim dixit ei Christus, “Fac et aliis apostolis sic faciendi potestatem tribuas”, sed dixit “Facite” in plurali et omnibus indifferenter.

First, it is shown indeed that no apostle was superior by Christ's decree to the rest of the Apostles either with respect to his essential sacerdotal dignity or with respect to any other power. This seems to be demonstrated in Luke 22:19. For in bestowing on the Apostles power in respect of the sacrament of the eucharist, Christ said to them, "For this is my body, which is given for you; do this in memory of me", -- that is, have the power of doing this, yet by uttering similar words when you are to carry out this act, namely, "For this is my body." And he did not say these words more to blessed Peter than to the others. For Christ did not say to him, "Do [singular] this, and bestow the power of so doing on the other Apostles", but he said, "Do" in the plural and to all of them without distinction. [Cf Marsilius, II.xvi.2]

Item, idem quoque per omnia senciendum de clavium potestate, sive hiis eisdem verbis tradita fuerit apostolis sive aliis aut alio tempore, ut hiis que habentur Iohannis 20o. Postquam enim Christus dixit apostolis, “ ‘Sicut misit me Pater, et ego mitto vos’, insufflavit, et dixit eis, ‘Accipite Spiritum sanctum; quorum remiseritis peccata, remittuntur eis, et quorum retinueritis, retenta sunt’ ”. Dixit ergo Christus, “Mitto vos, sicut Pater me misit”. Nec dixit Petro aut alteri apostolo singulariter, “Mitto te sicut Pater, et cetera, et tu alios mitte”. Nec rursum dicitur, Christus insufflavit “ei”, sed dixit “eis”, non uni per alterum. Nec dixit Christus ad Petrum, “Accipe Spiritum sanctum et aliis postmodum tribue”, sed dixit “accipite” in plurali ut indifferenter omnibus loquens.

Again, absolutely the same should be thought concerning the power of the keys, whether it was handed on to the Apostles in these same words or in others or at some other time, for example those found in John 20:21-3. For after Christ said to the Apostles, "As the father has sent me, so I send you", he breathed on them and said, "Receive the holy spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained." Christ said, therefore, "I send you [plural] as the father has sent me", and did not say to Peter or another apostle in the singular, "I send thee as the father", etc., "and do thou send the others." Nor again is it said that Christ breathed on "him", but he said "on them", not on one through the other. Nor did Christ say to Peter, "Receive thou [singular] the holy spirit, and then do thou bestow it on the others," but he said, "Receive" in the plural, as speaking to them all without distinction. [Marsilius, II.xvi.2]

Item, Apostolus ad hanc questionem diffiniendam, ut videlicet nemo credat aliquem apostolorum habuisse prerogativam seu auctoritatem super alios, eam expresse removet Petro (e quo fortasse videbatur hoc magis propter aliqua sibi a Christo singulariter dicta, et quia senior ceteris erat). Unde 2o ad Galatas inquit sic: “Michi enim qui videbantur esse aliquid, nichil contulerunt, sed econtra, cum vidissent quod creditum est michi evangelium prepucii, sicut Petro circumcisionis (qui enim operatus est Petro in apostolatum circumcisionis, operatus est et michi inter gentes), et cum cognovissent graciam que data est michi, Iacobus et Cephas et Iohannes, qui videbantur columpne esse, dexteras dederunt michi et Barnabe societatis”, et cetera. Qui ergo operatus fuit Petro in apostolatum, operatus fuit et Paulo; hic autem fuit Christus; ergo huiusmodi officium non suscepit a Petro, et similiter nec apostoli reliqui. Ubi eciam glossa secundum Augustinum hoc amplius exprimens, inquit: “Illi ‘qui videbantur esse aliquid’, scilicet Petrus et alii qui fuerunt cum Domino, ‘nichil contulerunt’, id est, addiderunt, ‘michi’. In quo patet quod non illis inferior sum, quia a Domino adeo perfectus sum ut nichil esset quod in collacione perfeccioni mee adderent”. Ecce quod Paulus non fuit inferior Petro nec aliis. Consequenter ad hanc intencionem subiungit glossa, “‘Cum vidissent quod evangelium prepucii creditum est michi’ ut fideli, ‘sicut Petro circumcisionis’”. Ecce quod eque principaliter missus fuit Paulus quemadmodum et Petrus, et non a Petro aut apostolorum aliquo sed a Christo immediate. Quod amplius exprimens Apostolus, eadem, 1o c., sic ait, “Paulus apostolus non ab hominibus neque per hominem sed per Iesum Christum et deum patrem”. Ubi glossa secundum Ambrosium: “‘Paulus apostolus non’ electus vel missus ‘ab hominibus’, scilicet ab Anania, ut quidam dicebant, vel ab aliis, ut quidam ab apostolis electi et missi fuerunt”. Denique parum infra subdit secundum Augustinum: “Ceteri enim apostoli videbantur esse maiores quia priores, iste minimus quia novissimus. Sed inde apparet dignior, quia priores constituti sunt per Christum adhuc ex parte hominem, id est mortalem, novissimus vero Paulus per Christum iam totum deum, id est ex omni parte immortalem, et deum patrem qui hoc fecit per Filium. Atque ut aperiret cur dixerit ‘neque per hominem’, subdit ‘qui suscitavit eum a mortuis’. Et ita dignius constituit me per immortalem Christum quam alios per mortalem”.

Again, to settle this question -- that is, so that no one should believe that any of the Apostles had a privilege or authority over the others -- the Apostle expressly takes it away from Peter, of whom this seemed more likely, perhaps, because of some things said separately to him by Christ, and because he was senior to the others. Whence in Galatians 2:6-9 he says, "Those who seemed to be something contributed nothing to me. On the contrary when they saw that I had been entrusted with the gospel for the uncircumcised, as Peter had been for the circumcised -- for he who worked through Peter making him an apostle for the circumcised also worked through me in sending me to the Gentiles -- and when James and Cephas and John, who were acknowledged pillars, recognised the grace that had been given to me, they gave to Barnabas and me the right hand of fellowship," etc. He who "worked through Peter", therefore, "making him an apostle", worked also through Paul. Now this was Christ. He [Paul] did not receive this office, therefore, from Peter, and similarly neither did the rest of the Apostles. On this the gloss taken from Augustine, explaining it more fully, says, "'Those who seemed to be something', that is, Peter and the others who were with the Lord, 'contributed', that is, added, 'nothing to me'. In this it is clear that I am not inferior to them, since I have been made so perfect by the Lord that there was nothing they added to my perfection." See, then, that Paul was not inferior to Peter or to the others. In accord with this opinion the gloss adds, "'When they saw that I had been entrusted with the gospel for the uncircumcised' as one who was faithful, just as principally 'as Peter had been for the circumcised...'" See, then, that Paul was sent equally principally as Peter was, and not by Peter or any of the Apostles, but directly by Christ. Expressing this more fully, the Apostle speaks as follows in the first chapter (1:1) of the same letter, "Paul, an apostle, not by men or by a man but by Jesus Christ and God the father." On this, the gloss taken from Ambrose [says], "'Paul, an apostle, not' chosen or sent 'by men', namely by Ananias (as some were saying), or by others, as certain people were chosen and sent by the Apostles..." Finally, a little further on [the gloss] taken from Augustine adds, "For the other Apostles seemed to be greater because they were earlier, he [Paul] the least because the most recent. But then he appears worthier because the earlier were established by Christ, still partly a man, that is mortal, but Paul, the most recent, by a Christ who was now totally God, that is completely immortal, and by God the father who did this through the Son. And to explain the reason why he said 'not by any man', he adds 'He who raised him from the dead'. And thus he appointed me more worthily through the immortal Christ than the others through the mortal Christ." [Cf. Marsilius, II.xvi.3.]

Rursum, confirmans hoc, Apostolus eodem c. ait: “Notum enim vobis facio evangelium, fratres, quod evangelizatum est a me, quia non est secundum hominem; neque enim ego ab homine accepi illud neque didici, sed per revelacionem Iesu Christi”. Ubi glossa secundum Augustinum: “Notum enim vobis facio evangelium, fratres, quod evangelizatum est a me, quia non est secundum hominem’ docentem me vel mittentem. Et vere non est ab homine. ‘Neque enim accepi illud ab homine neque didici ab homine’, ut homo eligeret me ad evangelizandum vel michi iniungeret, ‘neque didici’ ab homine docente me, ‘sed per revelacionem Iesu Christi’”. Ecce quod  neque Petrus neque alius apostolorum aut homo quisquam elegit, misit aut iniunxit Paulo ministerium evangelii. Idem quoque iudicandum est de apostolis reliquis. Nullam ergo potestatem, eoque minus coactivam iurisdiccionem, habuit Petrus a deo immediate super apostolos reliquos, neque instituendi eos in officio sacerdotali, neque segregandi eos seu mittendi ad officium predicacionis; nisi quod hoc sane concedi potest, ipsum fuisse priorem aliis etate vel officio, fortasse secundum tempus aut apostolorum eleccione, qui eum propterea reverebantur merito, quamvis hanc eleccionem ex scriptura nemo convincere possit.

Again, confirming this, the Apostle says in the same chapter (Gal. 1:11-12), "For I inform you, brothers, that the gospel proclaimed by me is not according to man; for I did not receive it or learn it from a man, but through a revelation of Jesus Christ". Upon this the Gloss, following Augustine, says: "'For I inform you, brothers, that the gospel proclaimed by me is not according to man' teaching me or sending me. And truly it is not from man. 'For I did not receive it from a man or learn it from a man', so that a man chose me to proclaim it or imposed it on me. And I did not 'learn it from a man' teaching me, 'but through a revelation of Jesus Christ.'" See, then, that neither Peter nor any of the Apostles nor any man at all chose, sent, or imposed on Paul the task of preaching the gospel. The same judgement should also be made about the rest of the Apostles. Over the other Apostles, therefore, Peter did not have immediately from God any power, and much less coercive jurisdiction, either to appoint them to their priestly office or to set them apart or to send them out with the duty of preaching: except that it can certainly be granted that he was first of the Apostles in age, or perhaps in the time he was in office or by the election of the Apostles, who for that reason held him in due reverence (though no one can demonstrate this election from scripture). [Cf. Marsilius II.xvi.4]

Adhuc ergo per signum ostenditur, quia beatum Petrum nullam sibi assumpsisse singulariter auctoritatem supra reliquos apostolos invenimus ex scriptura, sed magis cum ipsis equalitatem servasse. Non enim sibi assumpsit auctoritatem determinandi que dubia erant circa evangelii predicacionem, quod pertinet ad doctrinam; sed que dubia fuerunt in hoc, ex communi deliberacione apostolorum et aliorum fidelium magis doctorum determinabantur, non Petri aut alterius apostoli seorsum determinacione. Unde Actuum 15o, dissensione orta inter predicatores evangelii an oporteret circumcidere incircumcisos fideles ad salutem eternam consequendam, quibusdam dicentibus oportere, Paulo vero et Barnaba reclamantibus contra hoc, “convenerunt apostoli et seniores videre de verbo hoc”. Super quo locuti sunt Petrus et Iacobus non oportere, quorum sentencie seniores et reliqui consenserunt apostoli. Unde subditur infra: “Tunc placuit apostolis et senioribus cum omni ecclesia eligere viros et mittere Antiochiam”, et cetera, “scribentes per manus eorum”. Et fuit modus scribendi modo deliberandi conformis, et talis: “Apostoli et seniores fratres hiis qui sunt Antiochie et Sirie et Cilicie fratribus ex gentibus, salutem”, et cetera. Simile eciam habetur infra continuata sentencia, cum dicitur: “Placuit ergo nobis collectis in unum eligere viros et mittere ad vos”. Et parum infra: “Visum est enim Spiritui sancto et nobis nichil ultra imponere vobis oneris”. Non ergo determinavit Petrus supradicta dubia circa fidem de plenitudine potestatis.

Further, this is shown, therefore, by a sign [[i.e. something understandable on this hypothesis but not otherwise]], because we discover from scripture that blessed Peter did not assume any separate authority for himself over the other Apostles, but rather preserved equality with them. For he did not assume to himself authority to determine doubtful points in the preaching of the gospel pertaining to teaching, but doubtful matters of this kind were determined by the joint deliberation of the Apostles and the more learned of the other faithful, not by the determination of Peter or another apostle alone. Whence in Acts 15 when a dispute arose among the preachers of the gospel about whether it would be necessary to circumcise the faithful who were uncircumcised in order for them to obtain eternal salvation, with certain people saying that this was necessary but Paul and Barnabas exclaiming against it, "the Apostles and elders met together to see about the question". Peter and James said that it was not necessary. The elders and the remaining Apostles agreed with their opinion. Whence it is added below (Acts 15:22-3), "Then the Apostles and the elders with the consent of the whole Church decided to choose men and send them to Antioch", etc., "writing in their own hand". Their way of writing was similar to their way of deliberating and was as follows: "The brothers, both the Apostles and the elders, to the brothers of gentile origin in Antioch, Syria and Cilicia, greetings", etc. We read a similar thing further on as their opinion continues, when it says (Acts 15:25), "We have decided as a gathering to choose men from among us and send them to you." And a little further on (Acts 15:28), "For it has seemed good to the holy spirit and to us to impose on you no further burden." It was not Peter from the plenitude of his power, therefore, who determined the above doubts about the faith . [Cf. Marsilius II.xvi.5.]

Deliberavit ergo, dubium determinavit, elegit et scripsit fidelium doctorum congregacio; et hac auctoritate validum fuit sic determinatum atque mandatum. Congregacio enim apostolorum amplioris fuit auctoritatis quam solus Petrus aut alter apostolus. Unde ab ipsa Petrum legimus missum in Samariam, ut apparet Actuum 8o: “Cum igitur audivissent apostoli quia recepit Samaria verbum dei, miserunt ad eos Petrum et Iohannem”. Petrus ergo servavit equalitatem cum ceteris apostolis iuxta preceptum Christi, dicentis (Matthei 23o), “Nolite vocari rabbi. Unus est enim magister vester”, Christus, “omnes autem vos fratres estis”. Confirmatur autem sentencia hec per Apostolum ad Galatas 2o, ubi ait, “Ascendi autem secundum revelacionem, et contuli cum illis evangelium quod predico in gentibus”. Ubi glossa secundum Augustinum: “Et non didici ab illis tamquam maioribus”, a Petro scilicet, nec aliis principalioribus apostolorum, de quibus infra dicetur, “sed ‘contuli cum eis’ tamquam amicis et paribus”. Idem rursus infra eodem, cum dixit Apostolus: “Cum autem venisset Cephas Antiochiam, in faciem ei restiti, quia reprehensibilis erat”, et cetera. Ubi glossa secundum Ieronimum: “Ipsi nichil michi contulerunt, sed ego contuli Petro”; et subiungit consequenter, “Ego restiti ei tamquam par. Hoc enim non auderet facere nisi sciret se non imparem fore”. Ecce ergo quod Paulus fuit par officio et dignitate Petro, non inferior, licet Petrus fuerit etate senior et tempore prior pastor.

The gathering of the learned faithful, therefore, consulted about the doubt, decided, chose [messengers], and wrote. What was determined and sent in this way was valid because of this authority. For the gathering of the Apostles was of greater authority than Peter or another apostle alone. Whence we read that Peter was sent by that [gathering] into Samaria, as is clear from Acts 8:14: "Therefore when the Apostles heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them." Peter maintained equality with the rest of the Apostles, therefore, in accord with Christ's precept in Matthew 23:8, "You are not to be called rabbi, for you have one master", Christ, "and you are all brothers." This opinion is confirmed, moreover, by the Apostle when he says in Gal. 2:2, "I went up in response to a revelation and communicated to them the gospel that I proclaim among the gentiles." About this the gloss taken from Augustine says, "I did not learn from them as from those who were greater", that is Peter and the other more important of the Apostles who will be mentioned below, "but 'I communicated to them' as to friends and equals." The same point is found later in the same chapter when the Apostle said (Gal. 2:11), "But when Cephas came to Antioch I opposed him to his face because he was to be blamed", etc. About this the gloss taken from Jerome says, "They did not communicate anything to me, but I communicated to Peter", and it adds accordingly: "'I opposed him' as an equal. For he would not dare to do this unless he knew that he was not unequal." See, then, that Paul was equal in office and dignity to Peter, not inferior to him, although Peter was older and had been a pastor longer. [Cf. Marsilius, II.xvi.6.]

Item Augustinus, De questionibus novi et veteris testamenti, q. 94a, ait, “Eodem die, id est Pentecosten, lex lata est quo et Spiritus sanctus decidit in discipulos, ut auctoritatem caperent, ac scirent evangelicum ius predicare”.

Again, Augustine says in question 94 of On Questions concerning the New and Old Testament, "On that same day", that is Pentecost, "that the law was made, the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples, so that they would obtain authority and know how to preach the gospel law." [Cf. Marsilius, II.xvi.8.]

Amplius, sicut Petrus Antiochie legitur electus in episcopum per multitudinem, aliorum apostolorum confirmacione vel consecracione non indigens, sic et apostolorum reliqui prefuerunt in aliis provinciis absque Petri sciencia, institucione vel consecracione aliqua; fuerant enim per Christum consecrati sufficienter. Propter quod similiter opinandum, horum apostolorum successores non indiguisse aliqua confirmacione successorum Petri; quinimo multi successores aliorum apostolorum fuerint electi et instituti episcopi rite, ipsorumque provincias sancte rexerunt, absque institucione vel confirmacione de ipsis facta per successores Petri. Et extitit hoc sic legitime observatum usque quasi ad tempora Constantini imperatoris, qui quamdam preeminenciam et potestatem tribuit episcopis et ecclesie Romanorum super ceteras mundi ecclesias.

Further, just as we read that Peter was chosen bishop at Antioch by the multitude, without needing confirmation or consecration by the other Apostles, so also the rest of the Apostles became heads in the other provinces without Peter's knowledge, or any appointment or consecration by him, for they had been sufficiently consecrated by Christ. For the same reason it must also be held that the successors of those Apostles did not need any confirmation by the successors of Peter. Indeed, many successors of the other Apostles were duly elected and established as bishops and have ruled their provinces piously without appointment or confirmation of them by the successors of Peter. This is how things were legitimately observed right up to about the times of the emperor Constantine, who bestowed on the bishop and Church of the Romans a certain pre-eminence and power over the rest of the Churches of the world. [Cf. Marsilius, II.xvi.9.]

Item equalitatem Petri et apostolorum signavit Apostolus ad Galatas 2o, cum dixit: “Dexteras dederunt michi”, et cetera, Iacobus, Petrus atque Iohannes “ut nos in gentes, ipsi autem in circumcisionem”. Dexteras societatis, ergo et equalitatis, ut ex glossa secundum Augustinum satis ostensum est supra, quamvis in hoc dictum Apostoli sic sit apertum ut glossa non egeat. Quod eciam ex epistola Ieronimi ad Evandrum patet cum dicit omnes episcopos “sive Rome sive” alibi “eiusdem sacerdocii atque meriti” seu potestatis a Christo collate immediate.

Again the Apostle, in Galatians 2:9, marked the equality of Peter and the Apostles when he said, "They", James, Peter and John, "gave to me the right hand", etc."that we should go to the gentiles and they to the circumcised." This is the right hand of fellowship, and therefore of equality, as has been shown sufficiently by the gloss taken from Augustine [cited] above, although in this matter the saying of the Apostle is so clear that it does not need a gloss. This is also clear from Jerome's letter to Evander when he says that all bishops, "whether at Rome or" elsewhere, "[are] of the same priesthood and merit" or power, conferred directly by Christ [Cf. Marsilius, II.xvi.9.]

Si autem beatus Petrus a quibusdam sanctorum princeps apostolorum scribatur, dictum est large ac improprie sumendo vocabulum principis, et, nisi sic, aperte contra Christi sentenciam et oraculum, ubi Matthei 20o et Luce 22o inquit, “Principes gencium dominantur eorum”, “vos autem non sic”. Ideoque dicendum, sic sanctos locutos fuisse, non propter potestatem aliquam a Christo super apostolos sibi datam immediate, sed fortasse quia etate senior, aut quia Christum prius confessus est fuisse verum dei consubstancialem filium, vel quia fortasse fuit in fide fervencior atque constancior, aut quia cum Christo conversatus et frequencius vocatus in consiliis et secretis. Unde Apostolus ad Galatas 2o: “Iacobus et Cephas”, id est Petrus, “et Iohannes videbantur columpne esse”, ubi glossa secundum Ambrosium: “Quia honoraciores erant in apostolis, quia semper in secretis cum Domino fuerunt”.

If, however, blessed Peter has been described as "chief" of the Apostles by some of the saints, this has been said taking the word "chief" broadly and improperly, and if it is not so taken, it is openly against the thought and pronouncement of Christ, when he says in Matthew 20:25 and Luke 22:25-6, "The chiefs of the gentiles lord it over them ... but not so with you." And so it must be said that these saints spoke in this way not because of some power over the Apostles given directly to him by Christ, but perhaps because he was the oldest of them, or because he was the first to confess that Christ was the true consubstantial son of God, or perhaps because he was more fervent and constant in faith, or because he kept close company with Christ and was called more often into private discussions. For this reason the Apostle says in Galatians 2[:9], "James and Cephas," that is Peter, "and John seemed to be pillars", about which the gloss taken from Ambrose says: "Because they were the more honoured among the Apostles, since they were always with the Lord in private". [Cf. Marsilius, II.xvi.10.]

Item, quod Petrus super apostolos nullam a Christo habuerit potestatem probatur auctoritate Christi potestatem huiusmodi interdicentis, et dicentis Matthei 23o: “Vos autem nolite vocari rabbi. Unus est enim magister vester, vos autem fratres estis omnes”.

Again, that Peter did not have from Christ any power over the Apostles is proved by the authority of Christ who forbids power of this kind and says in Matthew 23:8, "But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one master and you are all brothers." [Cf. Marsilius, II.xvi.10.]


Preter predictas allegaciones occurrunt alie ad probandum quod Petrus non erat caput princeps et prelatus aliorum apostolorum. Eusebius enim Cesariensis talem superioritatem videtur negare a Petro et asserere quod fuerit inferior Iacobo fratre Domini. Dicit enim in Ecclesiastica historia, lib. 2o, c. 1o, “Iacobum, qui et Iustus cognominatus est ab antiquis, virtutum merito et insignis vite privilegio, primum historie tradiderunt suscepisse ecclesie que in Ierosolimis est sedem, sicut Clemens in sexto Disposicionum libro asserit dicens, ‘Petrus enim et Iacobus et Iohannes post assumpcionem Salvatoris, quamvis ab ipso fuerint pene omnibus prelati, tamen non sibi vindicant primatus gloriam, sed Iacobum qui dicebatur Iustus episcopum apostolorum statuerunt’”. Ex quibus verbis colliguntur duo. Primum est quod Petrus non fuit prelatus a deo omnibus aliis apostolis, cum in verbis contineatur <et scripturis> quod Petrus et Iacobus et Iohannes prelati fuerunt a Domino “pene omnibus”; ergo saltem Petrus non fuit prelatus Iacobo et Iohanni. Secundum est quod Iacobus per eleccionem Petri et Iohannis fuit prelatus factus aliorum apostolorum, et per consequens Iacobus fuit superior Petro tamquam episcopus Petri et aliorum apostolorum.


Other arguments in addition to the ones above present themselves to prove that Peter was not chief and ruler of the other Apostles. For Eusebius of Caesarea seems to deny such superiority to Peter and to assert that he was inferior to James, the Lord's brother. For he says in the first chapter of the second book of his Ecclesiastical History, "Histories record that through the merit of his virtues and the prerogative of his distinguished life James, surnamed the Just by the ancients, first received the episcopal chair of the Church which is in Jerusalem, as Clement asserts in the sixth book of his Dispositions, where he says, 'Although through the Saviour they were rulers of almost everyone, yet after his assumption Peter, James and John do not appropriate the glory of the primacy for themselves, but established James, who was called the Just, as bishop of the Apostles.'" [Rufinus, in Eusebius Werke, Bd. 2, Die Kirchengeschichte, Teil 1, ed. E. Schwartz, Leipzig, 1903, p. 105] We gather two things from these words. The first is that Peter was not by God's doing the ruler of all the other Apostles, since we find in the words and writings that Peter, James and John were by the Lord's doing rulers over "almost everyone": at the least, therefore, Peter was not the ruler of James and John. The second is that James was made ruler of the other Apostles by the choice of Peter and John, and as a result James was superior to Peter as his bishop and the bishop of the other Apostles.

Item, in eadem Ecclesiastica historia, lib. 3o, c. 21o, sic habetur: “In urbe Roma Clemens quoque tercius post Paulum et Petrum pontificatum tenebat”. Ex quibus verbis videtur haberi quod non plus erat pontifex in Roma Petrus quam Paulus. Idem videtur haberi lib. 4o, c. 5o, ubi sic dicitur: “Rome autem duodecimo anno memorati principatus, Xysto duodecim annis ecclesie gubernaculis functo, Thelesforus septimus ab apostolis subrogatur”. Et lib. 5o, c. 11o, sic habetur: “Effloruit apud Alexandriam Clemens eodem vocabulo, quo et ille in urbe Roma apostolorum et successor et Discipulus: vocitatus”. Clemens ergo fuit successor apostolorum, et per consequens uterque apostolus eodem fungebatur officio quo et Clemens. Ergo et Paulus fuit summus pontifex in urbe Roma.

Again, in the 21st chapter of the third book of that same Ecclesiastical History we read as follows, "Clement was also the third after Paul and Peter to hold the position of pontiff in the city of Rome." [Rufinus, in Eusebius Werke, Bd. 2, Die Kirchengeschichte, Teil 1, ed. E. Schwartz, Leipzig, 1903, p. 237] We seem to find from these words that Peter was not more the pontiff in Rome than Paul was. The same point seems to be found in book four chapter five where the following is said, "In Rome in the 12th year of the aforesaid principate, after Xystus had carried out the government of the Church for 12 years Thelesforus was chosen in his place, the seventh after the Apostles." [ibid., p. 307] In book five chapter eleven we read as follows, "Clement flourished at Alexandria with the same name by which that disciple and successor of the Apostles in the city of Rome was also called." [ibid., p. 453] Clement was a successor of the Apostles, therefore, and each apostle consequently administered the same office as he did. Therefore, Paul also was the highest pontiff in the city of Rome.

Item, beatus Anacletus hoc sentire videtur, qui, ut legitur dist. 21a, c. In novo, ait: “Hic ergo”, scilicet Petrus, “ligandi atque solvendi potestatem primus accepit a Domino, primumque ad fidem virtute sue predicacionis populum adduxit. Ceteri vero apostoli cum eodem pari consorcio honorem et potestatem acceperunt, ipsumque eorum principem esse voluerunt”. Item, beatus Cyprianus, ut habetur 24a, q. 1a, c. Loquitur, ait: “Hoc erant utique ceteri apostoli quod Petrus fuit, pari consorcio prediti et honoris et potestatis”. Ex quibus verbis tam Anacleti quam Cypriani videtur quod ceteri apostoli tam quantum ad honorem quam quantum ad potestatem pares fuerunt beato Petro. Ergo non fuit princeps eorum nec superior eis quoad officium et potestatem.

Again, blessed Anacletus seems to hold this. As we read in dist. 21, c. In novo [c.2, col.69] he says, "This man, therefore," namely Peter, "first received from the Lord the power of binding and loosing and he was the first to lead the people to faith by virtue of his preaching. The other Apostles certainly shared equally with him in honour and power and wanted him to be their chief." Again, blessed Cyprian says, as we read in 24, q. 1, c. Loquitur [c.18, col. 971], "In this way the other Apostles were undoubtedly what Peter was, endowed with an equal share of honour and power." It seems from these words of Anacletus and Cyprian that the other  Apostles were equal to blessed Peter with respect both to honour and power. He was not their chief, therefore, nor their superior with respect to office and power.


Discipulus: Si alia est opinio circa istam materiam, ipsam cum suis motivis non differas pertractare.


Student: If there is another opinion on this matter, do not hesitate to investigate it and the arguments for it.

Second opinion: Christ did make Peter head, superior to the other Apostles

Magister: Alia est opinio tenens quod Christus constituerit beatum Petrum caput, principem et prelatum aliorum apostolorum et quod Petrus fuit ipsis superior, quod multis modis ostenditur.

Master: Another opinion holds that Christ did establish blessed Peter as head, chief and ruler of the other Apostles and that Peter was superior to them. This is shown in many ways.

First argument for Peter's superiority, from John 21:15-17

Hoc enim ex verbis Christi que recitantur Iohannis ultimo videtur posse probari.

Ad Petrum enim Christus singulariter dixit, “Pasce oves meas”, “Pasce agnos meos”, ter replicans eandem sentenciam, et per consequens, cum Christus non distinxerit inter has oves et illas, primus et universalis omnium pastor, eciam apostolorum, immediate a Christo beatus Petrus institutus fuisse videtur. Quod ibidem Chrysostomus expresse videtur asserere cum ait, “Eximius enim apostolorum erat Petrus, et os discipulorum, et vertex collegii. Unde et negacione deleta, committit ei prelacionem fratrum”.


 For this seems to be provable from the words of Christ recorded in the last chapter of John [21:15-17]. For Christ said to Peter in particular, "Feed my sheep. Feed my lambs", repeating that last sentence three times; and since, consequently, Christ did not distinguish between these sheep and those, blessed Peter seems to have been established directly by Christ as the first and universal shepherd of all, even of the Apostles. Chrysostom seems to assert this explicitly when he says, commenting on the same passage: "For Peter was the foremost of the Apostles, spokesman of the disciples and the head of the group. As a result, after he had withdrawn his denial, he [Christ] entrusts to him leadership over his brothers." [Cf. Marsilius, II.xxvii.2.]

Discipulus: Ex hiis que legi tam in historiis authenticis quam eciam in scripturis sanctorum patrum, quorum nonnulle sentencie in decretis habentur, michi videtur quod omnium Christianorum, presertim obediencium Romane ecclesie, fuerit communis sentencia beatum Petrum fuisse institutum a Christo caput et principem apostolorum et eciam omnium fidelium. Que tamen sentencia hiis temporibus impugnatur, et ad motiva que in scriptura divina fundari videntur ex intencione seriosius respondetur. Ideo ut michi et aliis prebeatur occasio subtilius intuendi an priores fuerunt in hoc decepti, motiva precedencium cum responsionibus modernorum quorumdam propono tecum discutere diligenter. Responsiones eorum non truncate sed integre recitabo, et tunc indicabis quomodo vere et realiter aut apparenter seu sophistice valeant reprobari.


Student: From what I have read in authentic histories and also in the writings of the holy fathers, some of whose opinions are found in the Decretals, it seems to me that the common opinion of all christians, especially those obedient to the Roman Church, has been that blessed Peter was established by Christ as head and chief of the Apostles and also of all the faithful. Yet that opinion is attacked these days and there is a very serious deliberate [ex intentione] reply to arguments which seem to be based on divine scripture. In order, therefore, that I and others should be offered an opportunity of considering more accurately whether our forebears were deceived in this, I intend to discuss with you carefully their arguments and the responses of certain moderns. I will set out their replies not in an abbreviated way but fully and you will indicate how they can really and truly or apparently or sophistically be rejected.

Marsilius' objections to argument from John 21:15-17

Dicitur igitur ad motivum prescriptum quod sensus secundum glossam preallegatorum verborum Christi, scilicet “Pasce oves meas”, et cetera, est quod

“‘pascere oves’ est credentes ne deficiant confirmare, terrena subsidia, si necesse est, subditis providere, exempla virtutum prebere, adversariis obsistere”, fide scilicet, “peccantes corrigere”. Et subditur in glossa, “Et cum tercio audit a Petro se diligi, iubet pascere oves. Trine negacioni redditur trina confessio, ne minus amori lingua serviat quam timori.” Ex hoc autem non aliud convincitur nisi quod ipsum pastorem ovium Christus instituit. Non tamen ex hoc sequitur quod ipsum super reliquos apostolos pretulit ad auctoritatem vel dignitatem priorem; nec rursum sequitur ex hoc alios apostolos non fuisse institutos pastores. Oppositum enim utriusque consequentis iam dicti stat cum antecedente, videlicet cum sermone Christi predicto. Testatur autem dictis quod ecclesia catholica cantat de omnibus apostolis indifferenter: “Vere dignum et iustum est, equum et salutare, te Domine suppliciter exorare ut gregem tuum, pastor eterne, non deseras, sed per beatos apostolos tuos continua proteccione custodias, ut eisdem rectoribus gubernetur, quos operis tui vicarios eidem contulisti presse pastores”. Ecce “apostolos” in plurali, “rectores”, “vicarios” et “pastores” per Christi collacionem immediatam; non autem solum aliquem rectorem, vicarium aut pastorem constitutum per Christum.

Objection 1: A response to the above argument, therefore, is that acording to the Gloss the sense of those words of Christ, namely, "Feed my sheep etc", is that "to feed sheep is to strengthen believers lest they fail, to provide subjects with earthly assistance, if it is necessary, to offer examples of virtues, to resist opponents", i.e. by  faith, "and to correct sinners". And the gloss adds, "When he hears a third time from Peter that he is loved by him, he orders him to feed his sheep. A threefold confession is rendered for the threefold denial, lest his tongue less serve from love than from fear." From this, however, nothing is demonstrated except that Christ established him as the shepherd of his sheep. It does not follow from this, however, that he set him over the other Apostles in superior authority or dignity. Nor does it follow from this that the other Apostles were not established as shepherds. For the opposite of either of the consequences just set down is compatible with the antecedent, that is Christ's statement above. What the catholic Church sings without distinction of all its Apostles supports what we have said: "Truly it is worthy and just, it is right and beneficial humbly to beseech you, Lord, not to desert your flock, O eternal shepherd, but through your blessed Apostles to guard it with constant protection so that it might be governed by those same rulers whom you gave it to rule as shepherds-vicars of your work". Notice "Apostles" in the plural, "rulers", "vicars" and "shepherds", by Christ's direct appointment, and not only some one ruler, vicar or shepherd appointed by Christ. [Cf. Marsilius, II.xxviii.8.]

Interroganti vero cur Christus hoc Petro singulariter dixerit, dicendum utique quod Christus quandoque sermonem dirigebat ad hominem in persona propria, ut in remissione peccatorum, sanacione infirmorum et suscitacione mortuorum. Quandoque dirigebat sermonem ad alterum in persona omnium aut plurium, ut in Iohannis 5o, “Vade et amplius noli peccare”, “ne deterius tibi contingat.” Unde id officium Christus committendo Petro, illi loquebatur in persona omnium apostolorum, sicut met testatur hunc modum loquendi suum Marci 13o, cum dixit, “quod uni” (vel “vobis”) “dico, omnibus dico”. Specialiter tamen ad Petrum sermonem direxit quia senior erat, vel quia caritate ardencior, vel ut significaret ecclesie future quales debeant pastores institui, quoniam etate maturi, ex qua signatur prudencia seu sciencia, et caritate pleni, ex qua significatur cura et diligencia quas debent habere pastores; aut fortasse ne videretur abieccior relinqui, quia Christum negaverat, quod sapere videtur glossa cum dixit, “Trine negacioni redditur trina confessio, ne minus amori lingua serviat quam timori”. 

If anyone asks why Christ said this to Peter separately, it should surely be said that sometimes Christ would direct his speech to a man in his own person, as in the remission of sins, the healing of the sick and the raising of the dead. Sometimes he would direct his speech to an individual in the person of [i.e. as representing] all or many, as in John 5:14 [[a conflation of 5:14 and 8:11]], "Go your way and do not sin again ... so that nothing worse may happen to you." So in committing that office to Peter, Christ was speaking to him in the person of all the Apostles. He himself attests that this is his way of speaking in Mark 13:37 when he said, "What I say to one of you I say to all." [[In the Vulgate it is to "you" in the plural that Christ speaks - and O. quotes him sometimes accurately and sometimes not.]] He addressed his words particularly to Peter, however, because he was the oldest or because he was more ardent in charity or in order to indicate to the future Church what sort of shepherds should be established, namely of mature age, which signifies prudence or knowledge, and full of charity, which signifies the care and diligence shepherds should have -- or perhaps so that he [Peter] would not seem to be left too much cast down because he had denied Christ; the gloss seems to think this when it says, "A threefold confession is rendered for the threefold denial, lest his tongue less serve love than fear."

Hoc enim certissime constat quod omnibus Matthei ultimo dictum est indifferenter, “Euntes ergo docete omnes gentes”, nec dixit Petro, “Vade et alios mitte”; in quo signat omnibus auctoritatis equalitatem, sicut eciam ex Marci 13o predicto induximus, dum ad eos inquit Christus, “Nolite vocari rabbi”, supple invicem aut unus super reliquum vel reliquos, “Unus enim est magister vester, vos autem omnes fratres estis”.

For this is absolutely certain, that in the last chapter of Matthew (28:19), "Go therefore and teach all nations", was said to all without distinction, and he did not say to Peter, "Go thou and send the others." By this he indicates equality of authority for them all, just as we also quoted  from the said Mark 13, when Christ said to them [Matthew 23:8], "You are not to be called rabbi" -- understand over one another or one over the other or others -- "for you have one teacher and you are all brothers." [Cf. Marsilius, II.xxviii.9.]

Aut dicendum est valde probabiliter, atque secundum veritatem michi videtur, quod pro tanto dixit Petro, “Pasce oves meas”, ut sibi specialiter propter sui constanciam committeret populum Israel, qui “dure cervicis populus” fuit versus deum, ut apparet Exodi 33o, et inducit Apostolus per Isaiam, Actuum ultimo, et quoniam propter hunc populum convertendum et salvandum principaliter venerat Christus. Unde Matthei 15o: “Non sum missus nisi ad oves que perierunt domus Israel”: “non sum missus” principaliter, supple. Ideoque huius populi curam beato Petro specialiter commisisse videtur cum dixit, “Pasce oves meas”. Et videtur hec fuisse Apostoli aperta sentencia, cum ad Galatas 2o dixit, “Cum vidissent quod creditum est michi evangelium prepucii, sicut Petro circumcisionis”, et cetera, ubi glossa secundum Augustinum: “‘Cum vidissent quod evangelium prepucii’ a Domino ‘creditum est michi’ ut fideli, ita principaliter ‘sicut et Petro’ evangelium ‘circumcisionis’. Christus enim dedit Paulo ut ministraret gentibus, qui eciam Petro dederat ut ministraret Iudeis. Ita tamen dispensacio distributa est illis ut eciam Petrus gentibus predicaret, si causa fecisset, et Paulus Iudeis”. Nec video quod aliunde Paulus vel alter sanctus assumere potuerit populum Iudaicum specialiter et principaliter fuisse Petro commissum nisi ex eo quod Christus illi dixit, “Pasce oves meas”, cum dicat Paulus ad Galatas 2o sibi “creditum evangelium prepucii” quemadmodum “Petro circumcisionis”. Si namque creditum erat evangelium universaliter Petro plus quam Paulo vel aliis apostolis, inconvenienter utique dixisset Paulus verba predicta; quinimo totus eius sermo predictus fuisset inanis et comparacio quam eciam fecit in eo.

Objection 2: Or it should be said with a strong degree of probability -- and it seems to me [i.e. Marsilius] to be true -- that he said to Peter in particular, "Feed my sheep", to commit especially to him because of his constancy the people of Israel who were a stiff-necked people towards God, as is clear from Exodus 33:5 and as the Apostle quotes from Isaiah in the last chapter of Acts [28:26-7] and since Christ had come principally to convert and save this people, as in Matthew 15:24, "I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel" -- with 'I was not sent', supply 'principally'. And therefore the care of such people seems to have been especially committed to blessed Peter, when he [Christ] said to him, "Feed my sheep". And this seems to have been the clear opinion of the Apostle when he said in Galatians 2[:7], "When they saw that the gospel for the uncircumcised had been entrusted to me as the gospel for the circumcised had been entrusted to Peter", etc. Here the gloss taken from Augustine [says], "'When they saw that the gospel for the uncircumcised had been entrusted' by the Lord 'to me' as a faithful man, as principally 'as the gospel for the circumcised had been entrusted to Peter' ... for Christ gave Paul the task of ministering to the gentiles as he had given to Peter the task of ministering to the Jews. Yet this dispensation was distributed to them in such a way that Peter would also preach to the gentiles, if there was reason, and Paul to the Jews." I do not see from what else Paul or any other saint could have assumed that the Jewish people were especially and principally committed to Peter unless from the fact that Christ said to him, "Feed my sheep", since Paul says in Galatians 2[:7] that the gospel for the uncircumcised had been entrusted to him just as the gospel for the circumcised had been entrusted to Peter. For if the gospel had been entrusted universally to Peter more than to Paul or the other Apostles, Paul would surely have uttered the above words unsuitably; indeed, all the aforesaid speech of his and the comparison which he made in it would have been worthless. [Cf. Marsilius, II.xxviii.9.]

Ad glossam autem ex Chrysostomo sumptam datur una responsio que generalis est ad illam et ad plures alias que idem sonant. Dicitur igitur quod 

auctoritatem nullam essencialem (quam sacerdotalem isti vocant), neque accidentalem aliquam pastoratus preexcellenciam super reliquos apostolos Christus immediate beato Petro tradidit, sed ab illo et ceteris in invicem removit, ut alibi conantur ostendere per scripturas et exposiciones sanctorum doctorum. Propter quod, ut dicunt, Christum et Apostolum et ipsorum quorumdam (scilicet glossatorum) alibi dicta sequentes, declinant sentenciam quam super inducta scripture loca et alia quecumque similia dicere videntur de tali primatu seu principalitate, aliter quam alibi dicunt, scilicet 16o et 22o secunde diccionis sui operis, quoniam talis sentencia nec est canonica nec canonicam sequitur; quinimo ipsorum aliqui oppositum dixerunt alibi exponendo scripturam. Hic autem talia proferunt extra scripturam ex propria sentencia, sequentes consuetudinem et magis attendentes quedam dicta famosa quam verba scripture.

Quis enim non admirabitur, contendentibus apostolis quis eorum esset maior, Christum respondisse semper inter ipsos equalitatem et prioritatem auctoritatis ab ipsorum quocumque negasse, si intendebat beatum Petrum constituisse inter ipsos principaliorem et caput? Quid eciam Christus non dabat reliquis mandatum ut Petro subessent in officio pastorali, ne tantum ministerium lateret eos et ipsorum successores quantum erat caput ecclesie? Nusquam enim legitur in scriptura tale mandatum fuisse datum apostolis. Quomodo eciam dexteras dedit Petrus Paulo societatis? Immo mandatum dare debuit tamquam superior. Tota scriptura, ubi tangitur materia hec, huiusmodi sentencie oppositum clamat aperte.

To the gloss taken from Chrysostom one response is given which is common to it and to many others which suggest the same. It is said, therefore, that 

Christ gave immediately to Peter no essential authority (which these people [i.e. Marsilius] call priestly) and no accidental authority of pastoral care and no excellence, over the rest of the Apostles, but removed it from him and the rest in relation to one another, as they [i.e. Marsilius] try to show elsewhere from the scriptures and the expositions of the holy doctors. For this reason, they say, following Christ and the Apostle and the sayings found elsewhere of certain persons (namely some of the glossators), they reject the opinion which the texts of scripture mentioned above and any others which are similar seem to say about such a primacy or rulership, at variance with what they [i.e. Marsilius] say elsewhere, namely in the sixteenth and twentyfirst chapter of the second discourse of his work [i.e. Defensor pacis, dictio 2], since such an opinion is not canonical and does not follow from anything canonical; indeed some of them [the glossators] have said the opposite elsewhere in expounding Scripture. But here they depart from Scripture, voicing their own opinion, following custom and considering certain famous sayings rather than the words of Scripture. For if he intended to establish blessed Peter as their chief and head, who will not wonder that when the Apostles disagreed about which of them would be greatest Christ always replied that they were equal and denied priority of authority to any of them? And why did Christ not command the rest to be under Peter in his pastoral office, lest so great a truth be hidden from them and their successors as that there was a head of the Church? For nowhere do we read in the scripture that such an order was given to the Apostles. How too did Peter offer Paul the right hand of fellowship? On the contrary he should have given him an order as his superior. The whole of Scripture, when it treats of this matter, clearly declares the opposite of this opinion. [Cf. Marsilius, II.xxviii.25-6]


Magister: In verbis prescriptis non solum habetur quomodo ad preadductam allegacionem tenentes sentenciam contrariam satagunt respondere, sed eciam plures allegaciones pro sentencia contraria continentur. Et ideo si vis nunc omnia discuti, oportet me non solum opponentis seu improbantis sed eciam respondentis personam assumere.


Master: In the words just written we find not only how those holding the contrary opinion try to reply to the argument presented above, but it also contains many arguments for that contrary opinion. Therefore if you want everything to be discussed now, it is appropriate that I assume the role not only of opposer or disprover but also of answerer.

Discipulus: Et tu utrumque facias. Sic forsitan magnam partem istius materie disseremus.

Student You may indeed do both. In this way perhaps we will discuss a large part of that material.

Magister: In verbis istorum due responsiones principales habentur, quarum prima in hoc principaliter videtur consistere, quod Christus illa verba, “Pasce oves meas”, dirigebat ad Petrum in persona omnium apostolorum, licet aliqua alia quasi incidentaliter videatur adiungere. Ideo primo ante omnia aliquas allegaciones adducam quibus videtur posse probari quod Christus verba predicta dirigebat ad Petrum in persona propria et non in persona omnium apostolorum.

Master Two main responses are found in their words. The first of them seems to consist mainly in this (even if he seems to add some other things incidentally, as it were), that Christ directed those words, "Feed my sheep", to Peter in the person of all the Apostles. Before everything else, therefore, I will first bring forward some arguments by which it seems provable that Christ directed those words to Peter in his own person and not in the person of all the Apostles.

Answer to Marsilius' first objection: "Feed my Sheep" was addressed to Peter in his own person

Quod ostenditur primo sic. Verba per que aliquis promovetur ad aliquam dignitatem vel officium ad illum cui dicuntur in propria persona, non in persona aliorum, diriguntur. Alioquin cum per verba aliqua aliquis instituitur in seculari vel ecclesiastica dignitate, omnes alii, presertim eiusdem condicionis vel meriti, intelligerentur in eadem dignitate instituti; et ita si imperator [aliquem instituit] per literas vel ore proprio talibus verbis vel consimilibus, “Instituo aut facio te ducem, comitem, iudicem aut advocatum talis vel talis regionis aut civitatis”, omnes alii intelligerentur instituti in eadem dignitate, et eadem racione sic esset de institucione rectorum plebanorum et aliorum quorumcumque prelatorum ecclesie senciendum: quod quam sit absurdum nulli debet existere dubium, ut videtur. Sed per predicta verba fuit in dignitate et officio pastorali constitutus, sicut et predicti opinantes concedunt, cum dicunt quod ipsum pastorem omnium Christus instituit. Ergo illa verba dirigebantur ad beatum Petrum in persona propria et non in persona quorumcumque aliorum.

This is shown first as follows. The words by which someone is promoted to some dignity or office are directed to him to whom they are said in his own person, not in the person of others. Otherwise, when someone is appointed by some words to a secular or ecclesiastical dignity everyone else, especially of the same condition or merit, would be understood to have been appointed to the same dignity, and so if an emperor, in letters or from his own mouth, [speaks] in these words or similar ones, "I appoint or make you duke, count, judge or advocate of this or that region or city", everyone else would be understood to have been appointed to that dignity. And by the same argument a judgement like this should be made about the appointment of parish rectors and any other prelates of the Church. It seems that it should not be doubtful to anyone how absurd this is. But by the above words he was established in that dignity and pastoral office, as even those who hold the above opinion grant when they say that Christ appointed him as shepherd of all. Those words were directed, therefore, to blessed Peter in his own person and not in the person of any others.

Amplius, si verba predicta dirigebantur ad beatum Petrum in persona aliorum, aut ergo dirigebantur ad beatum Petrum in persona omnium aliorum fidelium, aut omnium aliorum presbyterorum, aut omnium aliorum apostolorum, aut omnium aliorum solummodo qui erant presentes cum Christo et beato Petro. Primum non potest dici, quia tunc quilibet fidelis fuisset constitutus pastor ecclesie. Nec isti possunt dicere secundum, cum dicunt quod ista verba dirigebantur ad beatum Petrum in persona omnium apostolorum, de aliis presbyteris nullam facientes ibidem penitus mencionem. Nec possunt dicere tercium, quod tunc fuisset data aliqua auctoritas beato Petro et ceteris apostolis super alios presbyteros, quod isti negant. Nec possunt dicere quartum, tum quia tunc non fuisset data eadem potestas sive auctoritas omnibus apostolis, cum non omnes fuerunt tunc presentes (quia de apostolis solummodo erant presentes Petrus et Thomas et duo filii Zebedei), tum quia tunc fuisset data maior potestas aliquibus aliis quam quibusdam apostolis, quia tunc erant alii presentes, scilicet Nathanel et duo alii ex discipulis Christi, ut patet Iohannis 21o.

Further, if those words were directed to blessed Peter in the person of others, they were directed to blessed Peter in the person either 1) of all the other faithful or 2) of all other presbyters or 3) of all other Apostles or 4) only of all the others who were there with Christ and blessed Peter. The first can not be said, because then every one of the faithful would have been established as a shepherd of the Church. Nor can they say the second, since they say that those words were directed to blessed Peter in the person of all the Apostles, making no mention at all in that place of other presbyters. Nor can they say the third because then some authority over the other presbyters would have been given to blessed Peter and the rest of the Apostles, and they deny this. Nor can they say the fourth, firstly because then the same power or authority would not have been given to all the Apostles, since they were not all present at the time (because of the Apostles only Peter, Thomas and the two sons of Zebedee were present), and secondly because then greater power would have been given to some others than to some of the Apostles (because at the time there were others present, namely, as is clear from John 21:2, Nathaniel and two others disciples of Christ).

Rursus, quod de uno conceditur de alio negatur (dist. 45a, Disciplina; 1a, q. 1a, c. Per Isaiam), sicut quod de uno negatur de aliis conceditur (dist. 25a, Qualis; 15a, q. 3a, De crimine). Ergo, consimiliter, verba que dicuntur uni ad alios minime diriguntur. Sed verba premissa dixit Christus soli Petro. Ergo ad alios minime diriguntur, et per consequens non dirigebantur ad Petrum in persona aliorum apostolorum.

Again, what is conceded of one is denied of another (dist. 45, Disciplina [c.9, col.163] and 1, q. 1, Per Isaiam [c.98, col.396]), just as what is denied of one is conceded of the others (dist. 25, Qualis [c.4, col.94] and 15, q. 3, De crimine) [c.1, col.751]. In a similar way, therefore, words which are said to one are not directed to others. But Christ said the above words to Peter alone. They are not directed to others, therefore, and consequently were not directed to Peter in the person of the other Apostles.

Discipulus: Ista allegacio efficax non apparet, quia non est universaliter verum quod illud quod dicitur de uno de aliis negatur, cum secundum asserciones sanctorum patrum quod uni dicitur vel conceditur ad omnes extenditur (dist. 5a, Ad eius; dist. 38a, Ignorancia; 16a, q. 1a, Predicator). Ergo illa verba memorata a beato Petro ad alios debent extendi.

Student: That argument does not seem to be effective, because it is not universally true that what is said of one is denied of others, since according to assertions of the holy fathers what is said or conceded to one is extended to all (dist. 5, Ad eius [c.4, col.8], dist. 38, Ignorantia [c.1, col.141], and 16, q. 1, Praedicator) c.64, col.782]. Those aforesaid words ought to be extended, therefore, from blessed Peter to the others.

Magister: Respondetur quod verum est regulas predictas non esse universaliter veras quin aliquando fallant, tamen illa regula, “Quod de uno dicitur de aliis negatur” in casu isto de beato Petro non fallit sed tenet. Cuius racio assignatur, quia sicut quando conceditur unum, conceduntur omnia consimilia, ut innuit beatus Gregorius prout habetur dist. 4a, Denique, et notat glossa ibidem, et consimiliter omnia conceduntur que sunt eiusdem censure (Extra, De excepcionibus, Cum inter), tamen uno concesso non conceduntur dissimilia nec illa que non sunt eiusdem censure: sic quod uni dicitur ad alios extenditur qui sunt eiusdem condicionis, et est eadem racio dicendi uni et aliis, et ita expedit ut dicatur aliis sicut uni, et ubi ad hoc quod aliquid intelligatur aliquibus dici non oportet ut illis explicite et nominatim aut equipollenter dicatur. Sed in proposito non fuit expediens ut in eadem dignitate constituerentur alii apostoli per illa verba Christi dicta beato Petro in qua constituebatur beatus Petrus, quia non fuit expediens ut essent plura capita universalis ecclesie. Ergo illa verba Christi nominatim dicta beato Petro non extendebantur ad alios.

Master: The reply is that it is true that the above rules are not universally true but sometimes fail. In this case, in regard to blessed Peter, however, that rule, "What is said of one is denied of others", does not fail but holds. The following reason is given for this, that when one thing is conceded all similar things are conceded, as blessed Gregory implies, as we find in dist. 4, Denique [c.6, col.6] and as the gloss notes at that place [col.13]; and similarly all things that are of the same valuation are conceded (Extra, De exceptionibus, Cum inter) [c.5, col.376]. When one thing is conceded, however, dissimilar things are not conceded, nor those things which are not of the same valuation. Thus, what is said to one, is extended to others who are 1) of the same condition, and 2) there is the same reason for speaking to one as to others, and 3) it is as useful that it be said to the others as to the one, and 4) where for something to be understood to be said to some people it need not be said to them explicitly and by name or equivalently. But in the present case it was not 3) useful that the other Apostles should be established in the same dignity in which blessed Peter was established through those words of Christ said to blessed Peter, because it was not useful that there be many heads of the universal Church. Those words of Christ, therefore, addressed to blessed Peter by name, were not extended to others.

Rursus, nullus (sicut tactum est supra) promovetur per verba aliqua ad aliquam dignitatem, nisi de ipso per ea fiat mencio specialis aut equipollens speciali quoad ipsum, quemadmodum, licet quod de iure communi conceditur uni intelligatur alii eiusdem condicionis esse concessum, tamen quod ex privilegio conceditur uni non intelligitur alii, eciam eiusdem condicionis et meriti, esse concessum nisi explicite hoc dicatur vel mencio eciam privilegii fiat de ipso (7a, q. 1a, Petisti, et  16a, q. 1a, Hinc). Sed per illa verba Christi tamquam per privilegium speciale fuit beatus Petrus ad dignitatem sublimatus. In ipsis autem nulla fit mencio de aliis apostolis. Ergo ad alios apostolos minime debent extendi. Ista responsio colligi potest ex glossa, dist. 5a, super capitulum Ad eius vero concubitum, que ait in hiis verbis, super verbo “uni”: “Argumentum quod uni conceditur per consequens aliis videtur esse concessum, sicut supra dist. 4a, c. Denique, et hoc verum est ubi de iure communi aliquid conceditur; secus est si ex privilegio, ut 16a, q. 1a, Hinc et 7a, q. 1a, c. Petisti”. 

Again, as was alluded to above, no one is promoted through any words to some dignity unless they make of him some special mention, or equivalent to special mention, in respect of him --- just as, though what is conceded to one person by common right is understood to be conceded to another person of the same condition, yet what is conceded as a privilege to one person is not understood to be conceded to another person, even of the same condition and merit, unless this is explicitly said or mention is made of a privilege in relation to him (7, q. 1, Petisti [c.17, col.574] and 16, q. 1, Hinc [c.39, col.771; cf. gloss s.v. sigillatim, col. 1107]). But through those words of Christ blessed Peter was raised to his dignity as by a special privilege, and in those words no mention was made of the other Apostles; therefore, they ought not be extended to the other Apostles. That reply can be gathered from the gloss on dist. 5, Ad eius vero concubitum [col.15], which comments on the word 'one' as follows: "What is conceded to one person seems consequently to be conceded to others, as above, dist. 4, c. Denique. And this is true where something is conceded by common right, but it is not so if [it is conceded] as a privilege, as in 16, q. 1, Hinc and 7, q. 1, c. Petisti."

Ex predictis convincitur quod sancti, tractantes verba Christi premissa et sentencialiter et verbaliter asserentes per eadem verba specialiter soli Petro commissam esse Dominicarum ovium curam, rectum intellectum eorum et catholicum expresserunt, et quod alius intellectus ipsorum — nisi patenter distorqueantur, non solum contra ipsa sed eciam contra precedencia et sequencia, si inspiciantur omnia diligenter — haberi non potest.

The above demonstrates that the saints, when they considered those words of Christ and asserted both in effect and in so many words that by those words care of the Lord's sheep was committed especially to Peter alone, expressed the correct and catholic understanding of them, and that no other understanding of them can be held unless they [the words] are obviously distorted not only against themselves but also (if the whole context is looked at carefully) against the words preceding and following.

Sed ut liquido pateat, quod nonnullis apparet, quod ista fuit sanctorum sentencia, de multis paucas eorum autoritates adducam. Ait itaque sanctus Maximus episcopus in sermone de Petro et Paulo qui incipit “Gloriosissimos”: “Iam necessarium, carissimi, reor ut proprias eorum,” scilicet apostolorum Petri et Pauli, “specialesque virtutes, prout ariditas nostre lingue ingeniique tenuitas patitur, immo ut misericors deus annuit, proloquamur.” Et infra: “Hic est Petrus, cui Christus, ascensurus ad Patrem, pascendas oviculas suas agnosque commendat, ut quos ille pietatis miseracione redemerat hic fidei sue virtute servaret. Et recte sane ei arbiter occultorum, dei filius, pascendas oves suas tuendasque commisit, cui noverat in nutriendo grege Dominico nec studium deesse nec fidem”. Ex quibus verbis datur intelligi quod, cum sanctus ille primo dicat se velle proloqui proprias specialesque virtutes apostolorum, et postea in speciali de beato Petro prescripta subiungat, ipse voluit quod oves Christi generaliter soli Petro pascende essent commisse per verba Christi premissa.

But so that it may appear plainly, what appears to some, that this was the opinion of the saints, I will bring forward a few out of many of their texts. And so bishop St. Maximus says in his sermon on Peter and Paul which begins "Gloriosissimos [PL. 57, cols 392 and 394]", "I think it is necessary now, dearest children, that we declare the particular and special virtues of these men," that is the Apostles Peter and Paul, "in so far as the meagreness of our vocabulary and the slightness of our wit allow, or, rather as the mercy of God grants. ... Peter is the one to whom Christ, as he was about to ascend to his Father, entrusts the duty of feeding his lambs and sheep, so that those whom he (Christ) had redeemed by the compassion of his piety this man (Peter) would keep safe by virtue of his faith. And rightly indeed did the judge of what lies hidden, the son of God, commit the duty of feeding and protecting his sheep to him whom he knew to lack neither faith nor zeal in feeding the Lord's flock." From these words we are given to understand that when that holy man says first that he wants to declare the particular and special virtues of the Apostles and then adds the words above about blessed Peter in particular he meant that by the above words of Christ the duty of feeding Christ's sheep generally had been committed to Peter alone.

Item, Gregorius super illud Iohannis 21o, “Manifestavit se iterum Iesus ad mare Tiberiadis”, ait: “Iam credo quod caritas vestra advertat quid est quod Petrus rete ad terram trahit. Ipsi quippe sancta ecclesia est commissa, ipsi specialiter dicitur, ‘Simon Iohannis, amas me? Pasce oves meas’”. Ex quibus verbis colligitur quod Petro in propria persona, non aliorum, dixit Christus, “Pasce oves meas”.

Again, Gregory says about those words from John 21:1, "Jesus showed himself again by the Sea of Tiberias", "I believe now that your charity observes how it is that Peter hauls the net ashore [John 21:11]; to him indeed was the holy Church committed; to him especially it is said [John 21:17], 'Simon, son of John, do you love me? ... Feed my sheep.'" We gather from these words that Christ said, "Feed my sheep", to Peter in his own person and not in the person of others.

Item, sanctus Leo papa in quodam sermone de ascensione Domini qui incipit “Post beatam et gloriosam” ait: “Beato Petro apostolo supra ceteros, post regni claves, ovilis Dominici cura mandatur”. Ex quibus verbis datur intelligi quod per illa verba, “Pasce oves meas”, Petro erat commissa cura tocius Dominici gregis.

Again, the holy Pope Leo says in a sermon on the Lord's ascension which begins "Post beatam et gloriosam" [PL 54, col. 395], "After the keys of the kingdom, the care of the Lord's sheepfold is entrusted to the blessed apostle Peter above the others." We are given to understand by these words that care of the whole of the Lord's flock was committed to Peter by those words, "Feed my sheep".

Item, Ambrosius in sermone qui legitur in festo sancti Petri ad vincula ait: “Cum tercio interrogaretur a Domino, ‘Simon amas me?’, respondit, ‘Domine, tu scis quia diligo te’, et ait Dominus, ‘Pasce oves meas’, et hoc tercio. Quod quidem dictum ad compensacionem prioris profecit erroris. Qui enim Dominum tercio negaverat tercio confitetur, et quociens culpam delinquendo contraxerat, tociens graciam diligendo conquirit. Videte ergo qualiter fletus profuerit Petro. Antequam fleret lapsus est, et postquam flevit electus est, et qui ante lachrimas prevaricator extitit, post lachrimas pastor assumptus est, et alios regendos accepit qui prius seipsum non rexit”. Ex quibus verbis colligitur quod illa verba “pasce oves meas” dirigebantur ad beatum Petrum in persona propria, non aliorum, cum per ipsa ad regimen ecclesie assumptus est et rector aliorum effectus: nemo autem per verba que dicuntur alteri eligitur neque assumitur neque rector aliorum efficitur.

Again, Ambrose, in a sermon which is read on the Festival of Saint Peter in Chains, says, "When he was asked a third time by the Lord, 'Simon, do you love me?' he replied, 'Lord, you know that I love you' and the Lord said to him a third time, 'Feed my sheep.' This statement indeed made compensation for the earlier error. For he who had denied the Lord three times, acknowledges him three times, and he seeks grace by loving as often as he had incurred blame by transgressing. See how weeping benefited Peter. Before he wept, he fell, and after he wept, he was chosen, and he who was a transgressor before his tears, was after them appointed pastor, and he who before did not rule himself, received the rule of others." We gather from these words that the words, "Feed my sheep", were directed to blessed Peter in his own person and not in the person of others, since by them he was raised up to rule of the Church and was made ruler of others. No one, however, is chosen or appointed or made ruler of others by words that are said to another.

Predictis beatus Gregorius super illud Marci 16o, “Maria Magdalene, Maria Iacobi”, et cetera, concordare videtur, prout habetur dist. 50a, c. Considerandum, cum dicit, “Considerandum nobis est cur omnipotens deus eum quem cuncte ecclesie preferre disposuerat ancille vocem pertimescere et seipsum negare permisit. Quod nimirum magne actum esse pietatis dispensacione cognoscimus, ut is qui futurus erat pastor ecclesie in sua culpa disceret qualiter aliis misereri debuisset. Prius itaque ostendit eum sibi, et tunc preposuit ceteris”. Ex quibus verbis colligitur quod Petrus post passionem Domini cuncte ecclesie preferebatur a deo, cum constet deum illud quod de eo disposuerat implevisse. Non autem legitur quod deus pretulerit eum cuncte ecclesie nisi cum dixit ei Christus, “Pasce oves meas”. Ergo illa verba dirigebat ad eum Christus in propria persona, et non in persona aliorum apostolorum.

Blessed Gregory seems to agree with the foregoing when he says upon that text of Mark 16:1, "Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James...", as we find in dist. 50, c. Considerandum [c.53, col.198]: "We should consider why the omnipotent God permitted him whom he had determined to place at the head of the whole Church to fear the voice of a maid servant and to deny him. We know that this was doubtless done by the dispensation of a great love, so that he who was going to be the shepherd of the Church would learn from his own fault how he ought to have mercy on others. And so first he showed him himself, and then he put him in charge of others." We gather from these words that after the Lord's passion Peter was placed by God at the head of the whole Church, since it is certain that God fulfilled what he had ordained for him. We do not read that God placed him at the head of the whole Church, however, except when Christ said to him, "Feed my sheep." Christ directed those words to him, therefore, in his own person and not in the person of the other Apostles.

Item, hoc Ambrosius, ut habetur dist. 50a, c. Fidelior, testari videtur, cum dicit: “Fidelior factus est Petrus postquam se fidem perdidisse deflevit, atque ideo maiorem graciam reperit quam prius amisit. Tamquam bonus enim pastor tuendum gregem accepit”. Ex quibus verbis colligitur quod Petrus, postquam perdidit fidem, pastor gregis Dominici fuit effectus, sed non nisi tunc, vel tunc potissime, quando dixit sibi Christus, “Pasce oves meas”. Ergo tunc factus fuit pastor. Nemo autem fit pastor aut prelatus per verba que in singulari dicuntur alteri. Ergo esto quod Christus fecisset alios apostolos pastores equales Petro, saltem per illa verba que in singulari dixit Petro dicens, “Pasce” — et non “pascete” — “oves meas”, nullus alius apostolus fuit factus pastor ecclesie, neque equalis neque inferior Petro. Ergo illa verba dirigebat Christus ad Petrum in propria persona, non in persona aliorum.

Again, as we read in dist. 50, c. Fidelior [c.54, col.198], Ambrose seems to attest to this when he says, "Peter became more faithful after he wept at his loss of faith and found as a result a greater grace than he earlier let go of. As a good shepherd he received a flock to defend." We gather from these words that after Peter lost his faith he became shepherd of the Lord's flock -- but only, or especially, at the time when Christ said to him, "Feed my sheep." It was at that time, therefore, that he became a shepherd. No one, however, becomes a shepherd or ruler through words that are said in the singular to another person. Even if we grant, therefore, that Christ had made the other Apostles shepherds equal to Peter, at least through those words that he said in the singular to Peter, "Feed thou" - and not feed [plural] - "my sheep", no other apostle became a shepherd of the Church, either equal or inferior to Peter. Therefore Christ directed those words to Peter in his own person and not in the person of others.

Hoc eciam Bernardus ad Eugenium Papam affirmat aperte, sicut postea apparebit. Qui eciam idem sentire videtur in quodam sermone “De septem panibus”, dicens: “Testis est et Petrus, cui post trinam negacionem tocius ecclesie pastoralis cura commissa est”. Sed nonnisi quando dixit sibi Christus, “Pasce oves meas”. Ergo illa verba dirigebat ad eum Christus in persona propria, non in persona aliorum.

Bernard clearly affirms this too, [writing] to Pope Eugenius, as will be evident later. He also seems to think the same thing in a sermon On the seven loaves, where he says, "Peter is also a witness, he to whom pastoral care of the whole Church was committed after his triple denial", but only when Christ said to him, "Feed my sheep". Christ directed those words to him, therefore, in his own person and not in the person of others.

Quod ex canonibus Paschasii pape, Extra, De eleccione, c. Significasti, et Innocencii 3ii, Extra, De maioritate et obediencia, c. Solite, patenter habetur.

This is openly found in the canons of Pope Paschasius (Extra, De electione c. Significasti [c.4, col.49]) and of Innocent III (Extra, De maioritate et obedientia c. Solitae [c.6, col.196]).


Discipulus: Allegasti contra illud in quo prima responsio supra c. 3o recitata fundari videtur. Ideo nunc tracta alia que opinantes illi videntur asserere respondendo, per que argumentum adductum evacuare et suam responsionem declarare nituntur. Et primo incipias ab illo quod dicitur quod Christus tali modo loquendi usus est, quod scilicet aliquando aliqua verba dixit uni et tamen dirigebat ipsa ad illum cui loquebatur in persona aliorum, quod ipse testatur cum dicit, Marci 13o, “Quod vobis dico, omnibus dico”.


Student You have argued against what seems to be the basis of the first reply recorded in chapter 3 above. Deal now, therefore, with the other points that those of that opinion seem to assert in their reply, through which they try to nullify the argument brought forward and to clarify their own reply. First, would you begin with the point that Christ used such a manner of speech, namely that sometimes he spoke words to one person and yet was directing them to the one to whom he spoke in the person of others, as he testifies himself when he says in Mark 13:37, "What I say to you I say to all."

Magister Nonnullis apparet quod, per illa que dicta sunt in precedenti capitulo, intelligentibus patet aperte quomodo illud ad propositum nichil facit, quia verum est quod Christus aliquando tali modo loquendi usus est, quia interdum loquendo uni dirigebat sermonem ad alios, sed hoc non fuit nisi quando fuit eadem racio dicendi aliquid uni et aliis. Quod accidit quando aliquis inducitur ad agendum vel non agendum aliquid, sive ad credendum vel non credendum aliquid, quod alii ita tenentur agere vel non agere, credere vel non credere, sicut ille cui dicitur in singulari et universaliter, ubi ille cui aliquid dicitur et alii consimiliter se habent, et habere debent sive tenentur se habere, ad illud quod dicitur. Quod veritatem habet in illo de quo precesserat sermo Christi cum postea dixit  Marci 13o, “Quod autem uni dico, omnibus dico: vigilate”. Ita enim indiguerunt et indigent alii viatores vigilare quando nesciunt quando Dominus veniet sicut apostoli. Sed quando alii non consimiliter se habent, vel non tenentur consimiliter se habere, ad illud de quo est sermo, tunc quod dicitur uni non propter hoc intelligitur aliis esse dictum. Non enim quando Dominus dixit Petro, “Vade ad mare et mitte hamum”, et cetera, omnes alii discipuli et apostoli qui hoc audierunt currere cum Petro tenebantur ad mare. Sic quando Christus dixit Petro, Iohannis ultimo, “Sequere me”, noluit ut Petrus intelligeret illud eodem modo esse dictum aliis sicut sibi. Propter quod interroganti Petro de Iohanne, “Domine, hic autem quid?” respondit <ei> Iesus, “Sic eum volo manere donec veniam, quid ad te? Tu me sequere”. Sic dico non semper quod dicitur uni intelligitur aliis esse dictum. Quod non videtur veritatem habere quando aliquid dicitur uni ut preficiatur aliis, sicut in proposito fuit.

Master It appears to some that because of what was said in the previous chapter it is quite clear to those with understanding that that point is not relevant to the argument. Because it is true that Christ sometimes used that way of speaking, since sometimes he was directing his speech to others when speaking to one person, but this was only when there was the same reason for saying something to one and to others. This happens when someone is induced to do or not do something or to believe or not believe something which others are bound in the same way to do or not do, to believe or not believe, as in the case of one to whom something is said in the singular and universally where he to whom it is said and others are, and should be or are bound to be, similarly related to what is said. This is true in the matter Christ had been speaking about when afterwards he said in Mark 13:37, "What I say to one I say to all: Keep awake." For just as the Apostles needed to keep awake, so other wayfarers needed and need to keep awake when they do not know when the Lord will come. But when others are not or are not bound to be similarly related to the matter the speech is about, then what is said to one is not for this reason understood to be said to others. For it is not the case that when the Lord said to Peter [Mat. 17:26], "Go to the sea and cast a hook", all the other disciples and Apostles who heard this were bound to run to the sea with Peter. Thus when Christ said to Peter in the last chapter of John [21:22], "Follow me", he did not want Peter to take this to be said to the others in the same way as it was said to him. For this reason when Peter asked him about John, "Lord, what about him?" Jesus replied to him, "If it is my will that he remain until I come, what is that to you? Follow me." So I say that it is not always the case that something said to one person is taken to be said to others. It does not seem to be true when it is said to one person that he should rule others, as it was in the present case.

Per predicta patet, ut videtur quibusdam, falsum esse, quod tamen post recitacionem verborum Christi et glosse dicunt opinantes prefati, quod “ex hoc non aliud convincitur nisi quod ipsum pastorem Christus instituit. Non tamen ex hoc sequitur quod ipsum super reliquos apostolos ad auctoritatem vel dignitatem priorem pretulit. Nec rursum sequitur ex hoc alios apostolos non fuisse institutos pastores”. Errant aperte, quia eciam sequitur quod Christus Petrum pastorem instituit et quod constituit eum priorem auctoritate et dignitate apostolis aliis, quia per verba illa Christus non constituit aliquem alium quam Petrum pastorem, sicut videtur aliquibus demonstrative probatum. Et eciam non distinxit inter oves has Christi et illas, ergo eciam super alios apostolos, qui erant oves Christi, constitutus fuit per illa verba beatus Petrus. 

It is clear from the above, as it seems to some people, that what the holders of that opinion nevertheless say [above], after reporting Christ's words and the gloss, is false, namely: "From this, however, nothing is demonstrated except that Christ established him as the shepherd of his sheep. It does not follow from this, however, that he set him over the other Apostles in superior authority or dignity. Nor does it follow from this that the other Apostles were not established as shepherds." They [the holders of this opinion] are clearly wrong, because it does also follow that Christ established Peter as shepherd and that he set him up as superior in authority and dignity to the other Apostles, because by those words Christ did not set up anyone as shepherd but Peter, as seems to some people to be proved demonstratively. Nor indeed did he distinguish between some of Christ's and others. By these words, therefore, blessed Peter was set over the other Apostles who were Christ's sheep.

Cum autem dicitur “nec rursum sequitur ex hoc alios apostolos non fuisse institutos pastores”, non errant si intelligantur verba sicut prima facie sonant, quia, non obstantibus verbis illis Christi, apostoli fuerunt constituti pastores per alia verba Christi; sed postea per illa verba dicta Petro singulariter, “Pasce oves meas”, subiciebantur Petro, retenta auctoritate et dignitate aliis apostolis ante concessa a Christo.

When it is said, however, "Nor does it follow from this that the other Apostles were not established as shepherds", they are not wrong if they mean the words to be taken at face value, because, notwithstanding those words of Christ, the Apostles were established as shepherds by other words of Christ. But by those later words said separately to Peter, "Feed my sheep", the other Apostles were subjected to Peter but retained the authority and dignity already conceded to them by Christ.


Discipulus: Narrasti quomodo improbatur responsio antescripta. Nunc narra qualiter respondetur ad illa que in responsione eadem allegantur ad probandum equalitatem aliorum apostolorum Petri.


Student You have explained how the earlier reply is rejected. Now explain how it is replied to the arguments in the same reply to prove the equality of the other Apostles with Peter.

Answer to Marsilius' arguments for the equality of the Apostles

Magister Ad evidenciam illarum allegacionum et multarum aliarum primo dicitur esse notandum quod Christus non sic commisit curam pastoralem Petro super apostolos omnes et cunctos fideles ut ea que ipse fecerat circa apostolos revocaret, vel potestatem revocandi, presertim absque causa iusta, Petro concederet, nec sic ut ab omni regimine et cura apostolorum et aliorum fidelium, eciam innotescente fidelibus, abstineret; quinimo voluit quod illa que fecerat servarentur, et fidelibus sepe innotuit ipsum, post ascensionem suam, et postquam fecit Petrum vicarium suum, plura fecisse miraculose et potestative erat fidelis per hoc.

Master To make clear those arguments and many others, it is said first that it should be noted that Christ did not commit to Peter pastoral care over the other Apostles and the rest of the faithful in such a way that he [Christ] revoked, or that he conceded to Peter the power to revoke, especially without just cause, things that he [Christ] himself had done in regard to the Apostles, nor was in such a way that he [Christ] would abstain from all rule and care of the Apostles and other faithful, even abstaining from making things known to the faithful. Nay rather, he wanted those things that he had done to be preserved, and often after his ascension, and after he made Peter his vicar, he [Christ] made known to the faithful that he had done many things miraculously, and through this was faithful in power. [The point seems to be that the Preface Marsilius mentions prays that Christ will continually protect and guide the Church through the Apostles: the answer is that Christ's continued action through agents, such as Peter and the other Apostles, is not inconsistent with Peter's superiority.]

Dicitur ad illud quod allegatur de prefacione que de apostolis legitur et cantatur, quod Christus apostolos in plurali rectores, vicarios et pastores constituit, non tamen per illa verba “Pasce oves meas” sed per alia: omnes tamen subdidit rectori, vicario et pastori supremo, scilicet Petro, quamvis hoc non dicatur in prefacione illa sed ex scriptura canonica, que maioris auctoritatis habetur. 

To the argument from the Preface which is read and sung about the Apostles it is said that Christ established the Apostles, in the plural, as rulers, vicars and shepherds, but he did not [do this] through those words, "Feed my sheep", but by other words. Nevertheless, he subjected everyone to the supreme ruler, vicar and shepherd, namely Peter, even if this is not said in that Preface but in canonical scripture, which is held to be of greater authority.

Aliter dicitur quod deus multa dicitur facere que tamen facit mediantibus aliis. Et ideo cum in prefacione prescripta non dicatur quod Christus nullo modo mediate apostolos constituerit operis sui vicarios, ex ipsa inferri non potest quod non constituerit eos mediante Petro, et per consequens multo minus potest ex ea concludi quod non constituerit eos rectores, vicarios et pastores sub supremo pastore, vicario et rectore, scilicet Petro.

It is said in another way that God is said to do many things which in fact he does through the mediation of others; and therefore when in the Preface quoted above it is not said that Christ did not establish the Apostles as vicars of his work in any way mediately, it can not be inferred from this that he did not establish them through Peter's mediation. As a consequence it is even less possible to conclude from this that he did not establish them as rulers, vicars and shepherds under the supreme shepherd, vicar and ruler, namely Peter.

Ad aliam cum dicitur quod “omnibus Matthei ultimo indifferenter dictum est, ‘Euntes ergo docete omnes gentes’, non dixit Petro, ‘Vade et alios mitte’”, respondetur quod auctoritas docendi data fuit omnibus apostolis immediate a Christo, nec alii apostoli eam habuerunt a Petro; sed ex hoc non sequitur quod non fuerint inferiores Petro. Constat enim quod in potestatibus secularibus multi inferiores imperatore aut rege dignitates obtinent seculares quas tamen ab isto imperatore aut rege minime habuerunt, sed a predecessore receperunt; quo tamen non obstante, isto imperatore aut rege sunt inferiores et eidem sunt subiecti. Sic eciam prelati inferiores nonnulli veras habent ecclesiasticas dignitates, et tamen non a superiori superstite sed a predecessore instituti fuerunt, nec alia institucione postea indiguerunt. Ergo multo forcius poterant apostoli alii auctoritatem docendi habere a Christo et non a Petro et tamen esse inferiores Petro. Et ideo, quamvis per illa verba que dixit Iesus apostolis, “Euntes ergo docete”, et cetera, non possit probari quod Petrus fuit superior aliis apostolis, tamen ex hoc non sequitur quod Petrus non fuit superior sed par, quia superioritas eius ex aliis ostenditur, sicut probatum est. Quamvis ergo Christus non dixerit Petro, “Vade et mitte alios”, scilicet quando dixit apostolis, “Euntes ergo docete”, et cetera, tamen quando dixit sibi, “Pasce oves meas”, implicite dixit, “Mitte saltem alios” quos non misit specialiter Christus, quia, concedendo sive imponendo sibi curam omnium generalem, iniunxit simul ea sine quibus eadem cura salubriter geri non potest, quemadmodum concesso principali omnia accessoria conceduntur, Extra, De officio et potestate iudicis delegati, Preterea. Non ergo cum dixit Christus, “Euntes ergo docete omnes gentes”, significavit in omnibus auctoritatis equalitatem, sed solummodo docendi iniunxit officium, quod equalitatem auctoritatis inter doctores non requirit.

To another argument, which says that, "Go therefore and teach all nations", in the last chapter of Matthew [28:19], was said to all without distinction and that he did not say to Peter, "Go thou and send the others", the reply is that the authority to teach was given to all the Apostles directly by Christ and the other Apostles did not have it from Peter. But it does not follow from this that they were not inferior to Peter. For it is certain that among the secular powers many who are inferior to an emperor or king possess secular dignities which they did not obtain possession of from that emperor or king but received from a predecessor. Notwithstanding this, however, they are inferior and subject to that emperor or king. Thus too, some inferior prelates have true ecclesiastical dignities but were appointed not by their present superior but by his predecessor and did not need to be appointed again later. A fortiori, therefore, the other Apostles could have acquired authority to teach from Christ and not from Peter and yet be inferior to Peter. And although, therefore, it can not be proved through those words which Jesus said to the Apostles, "Go therefore and teach", etc., that Peter was superior to the other Apostles, yet it does not follow from this that Peter was not their superior but their equal, because his superiority is shown from other words, as has been proved. Although, therefore, Christ did not say to Peter, "Go thou and send the others" (that is, when he said to the Apostles, "Go therefore and teach", etc.), yet when he said to him, "Feed my sheep", he did say implicitly, "Send at least those others whom he, Christ, did not send specifically", because in conceding to or imposing on him the general care of everyone he did at the same time enjoin on him those things without which that care can not be advantageously exercised, just as "when the principal is granted all the subordinate matters are granted" (Extra, De officio et potestate iudicis delegati, c. Praeterea [Cf. Gloss, v. ex eo quod causa, col. 330]). It is not the case, therefore, that when Christ said, "Go therefore and teach all nations", he indicated an equality of authority among all, but he enjoined only the duty of teaching which does not require equality of authority among the teachers.

Ad aliam vero, cum dixit Christus apostolis, “Nolite vocari rabbi”, et cetera, multipliciter respondetur. Uno modo quod hoc dixit apostolis et aliis antequam aliquem ex eis preficeret aliis in prelatum, quia hoc dixit ante passionem suam dum ipse et non alius erat prelatus fidelium.

To another argument [based on] Christ's having said to the Apostles, "You are not to be called rabbi", there are many responses. One is that he said this to the Apostles and the others before he set any one of them above the others as ruler, because he said this before his passion while he himself and not another was ruler of the faithful.

Aliter dicitur quod Christus verba sua ibidem de supremo et primo rabbi et magistro volebat intelligi, ut scilicet preter deum seu Christum nullus primus et supremus rabbi, pater et magister fidelium putaretur. Neque enim Christus voluit ut quilibet fidelium eum qui genuit ipsum non haberet pro patre vel ipsum recusaret vocare patrem, sed voluit ut deum superiorem patre carnali pro patre superiori et principaliori haberet. Sic proporcionaliter de rabbi et magistro dicendum videtur. Ad cuius evidenciam dicitur esse sciendum quod sepe moris est scripture aliquid negare ab aliquo cui primo et principalissime seu antonomastice non convenit, licet secundario et non principaliter [seu] antonomastice de ipso dicatur. Sic enim dixit apostolis, Matthei 10o, “Cum autem tradent vos, nolite cogitare quomodo aut quid loquamini”, et post, “Non enim vos estis qui loquimini sed spiritus patris mei qui loquitur in vobis”, scilicet primo et principaliter, qui tamen secundario tamquam moti a principali erant qui loquebantur. Sic eciam dixit Christus, ut habetur Luce 18o, “Nemo bonus nisi solus deus”, scilicet essencialiter et primo, et tamen angeli boni et beati in celo atque iusti omnes sunt boni. Sic dicitur in proposito quod Christus in verbis istis solummodo voluit ut deus et Christus principaliter et quasi antonomastice haberetur pro patre, rabbi et magistro et nullus alius.

Another response is to say that Christ wanted his words there to be understood of a supreme and first rabbi and master, that is, so that no one except God or Christ would be thought of as first and supreme rabbi, father and master of the faithful. For Christ did not want any of the faithful not to regard as father the one who begot him or to refuse to call him father, but he wanted them to consider God as superior to their father in the flesh and as their higher and principal father. It seems that the same thing should be said, in proportion, of rabbi and master. To make this clear it is said that it should be known that it is often the custom of scripture to deny something of someone which is not suitable to him primarily and principally or par excellence, although it may be said of him secondarily and not principally [[add seu?]] or par excellence. For he spoke thus to the Apostles in Matthew 10:19-20, "When they hand you over do not worry about how you are to speak or what you are to say, ... For it is not you who speak but the Spirit of my Father speaking through you", that is primarily and principally, although secondarily it was they who spoke, as being moved by a principal. Christ also spoke in this way in Luke 18:19, as we read, "No one is good but God alone", that is, essentially and primarily, and yet the good angels, the blessed in heaven, and all the just are good. Thus it is said in the present case that in those words Christ only meant that God and Christ, and no other, should be considered principally and, as it were, par excellence, as father, rabbi and master.


Discipulus: Numquid potest probari quod verba illa Christi non debent intelligi sicut ipsa predicti opinantes intelligunt?


Student Can it be proved that those words of Christ should not be understood as the holders of that opinion understand them?

Magister Videtur quibusdam quod sic. Dicunt enim quod ista allegacio et consimiles sunt similes illi allegacioni in qua se fundant quidam heretici, dicentes quod nulla ex causa licet iurare propter hoc, quod Christus dixit Matthei 5o, “Ego autem dico vobis, non iurare omnino”. Quia sicut illi dixerunt quod nulli in quocumque casu licet iurare propter predictum preceptum Christi, sic isti videntur dicere quod nullo modo est concedendum Christum instituisse aliquem apostolum superiorem aliis propter predicta verba, quibus eis videtur equalitatem iniungere. Sed sicut, non obstantibus verbis Christi premissis de iuramento, licet in casu iurare, ita, non obstantibus verbis Christi illis quibus equalitatem quamdam fidelibus videtur imponere, licet vocari rabbi et magister et pater.

Master It seems to some people that the answer is 'yes'. For they say that that argument and ones like it are similar to that argument on which certain heretics base themselves when they say that it is not permissible to swear for any reason because of the fact that in Matthew 5:24 Christ says, "But I say to you. Do not swear at all." Just as those people have said that because of that precept of Christ no one is permitted to swear under any circumstances, so in the same way the holders of this opinion seem to say that it should not be granted in any way, because of those words by which he seems to enjoin equality on them, that Christ established any one apostle as superior to the others. But just as in some cases it is permissible to swear, notwithstanding the above words of Christ about swearing, so it is permissible to be called rabbi, master and father, notwithstanding those words of Christ by which he seems to impose a certain equality on the faithful.

Primo igitur ostenditur quod intellectus quem predicti opinantes videntur habere de prefatis verbis Christi non potest stare. Secundo explicabitur verus et catholicus intellectus illorum verborum, ut nonnullis apparet. Quod igitur Christus non intenderit illis quibus loquebatur per illa verba sic equalitatem iniungere ut ab eis, presertim pro futuris temporibus, omnem superioritatem excluderet multis apparet modis. Nam Christus dirigebat verba illa non solum ad apostolos sed eciam ad omnes suos discipulos, immo eciam ad turbas. Sic enim ibidem premittitur, “Tunc locutus est Iesus ad turbas et ad discipulos suos dicens, ‘Super cathedram’”, et cetera; sed non intendebat ab omnibus, saltem pro futuris temporibus, omnem inequalitatem excludere: tunc enim numquam ex ordinacione Christi aliquis inter fideles fuisset superior aliis, et per consequens Petrus per ordinacionem Christi numquam fuisset superior quibuscumque, et ita non fuisset pastor quorumcumque constitutus a Christo, quod eciam opinantes predicti negant. Et ita Christus equalitatem omnimodam auctoritatis nec apostolis nec aliis tunc iniunxit.

First, therefore, it is shown that the understanding that the holders of that opinion seem to have of those words of Christ can not be valid. Second, the true and catholic understanding of those words, as it appears to some, will be explained. Therefore, that Christ did not intend by those words to enjoin on those to whom he was speaking such equality as to exclude them from any superiority, especially in future times, is seen in many ways. For Christ directed those words not only to the Apostles but to all his disciples, indeed even to the crowds (for the following is set down before [those words] there [Matt. 23:1], "Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, 'On the seat ...'"). But he did not intend to exclude all of them from all inequality, at least in future times, for then none of the faithful would ever have been superior to the others by Christ's ordination, and consequently Peter would never have been superior to anyone at all by Christ's ordination, and so he would not have been appointed by Christ as shepherd of anyone at all -- which even the holders of that opinion deny. And so Christ did not at that time enjoin complete equality of authority on the Apostles or on others.

Amplius, si Christus tunc apostolis equalitatem auctoritatis iniunxit, ergo non licuit apostolis postea, contra idem preceptum Christi, nec Petrum nec alium per se superiorem constituere, quod tamen isti negant, dicentes quod apostoli elegerunt et constituerunt Petrum superiorem se. Immo sequitur quod nec quibuscumque Christianis liceret aliquem super se eligere superiorem, cum Christus ibidem non ad solos apostolos sed eciam ad alios discipulos, presentes et futuros, intenderit verba predicta dirigere et utrosque instruere: tunc enim poterat Christus dicere illud quod dixit, Marci 13o, “Quod vobis dico, omnibus dico”.

Further, if Christ did at that time enjoin equality of authority on the Apostles, then it was not right for the Apostles themselves later to appoint either Peter or any other person as their superior, against that precept of Christ's. Yet they [the holders of this opinion] deny this, saying that the Apostles chose and appointed Peter as superior to them. Indeed, it follows that no christians at all would be permitted to choose someone as their superior, since in that place Christ intended to direct those words not to the Apostles alone but also to other disciples, present and future, and to instruct both groups. For then Christ could say what he said in Mark 13:37, "What I say to you I say to all."

Discipulus: Forte dicerent isti quod, licet Christus tunc apostolis iniunxerit equalitatem auctoritatis, non tamen interdixit eis quin ex iusta causa possent postea aliquem super se constituere.

Student Perhaps they would say that although at that time Christ enjoined equality of authority on the Apostles, yet he did not prohibit them from being able, later for some rightful reason, to establish someone above them.

Magister Istud quibusdam non placet. Nam si Christus non interdixit apostolis, et per consequens nec aliis, quin ex causa iusta possent supra se constituere superiorem, multo magis sibi ipsi non imposuit legem quin postea posset unum apostolum preferre aliis. Ergo per illa verba que dixit Matthei 23o non potest ostendi quod postea Christus non pretulit aliis apostolis beatum Petrum, licet posset ostendi quod per illa verba que recitat Matthei 23o non pretulerit eum aliis apostolis, quod conceditur a quibusdam.

Master That is not acceptable to some people. For if Christ did not prohibit the Apostles, and consequently others, from being able, for some rightful reason, to establish a superior over themselves, much more is it the case that he did not impose that law on himself, but rather he was able later to put one apostle over the others. It can not be shown, therefore, by those words in Matthew 13 [rather, Matthew 23:8, "Do not be called Rabbi"] that Christ did not later put blessed Peter over the other Apostles, although it could be shown that by those words which Matthew 23 records he did not put  him over the other Apostles. This is granted by some people. 

Rursus, apostoli verba illa Christi sicut prima facie sonant non servabant quia sentencialiter et vocaliter se vocabant et reputabant se magistros et patres et rabbi. Ait enim Apostolus 1a ad Timotheum 2o, “Veritatem dico, non mencior, doctor gencium”: si autem doctor et magister (unde et 2a ad Timotheum 1o ait, “Ego predicator et apostolus et magister gencium”). Et in eadem epistola vocat Timotheum dilectum filium: si autem Timotheus fuerit filius, ipse reputavit se patrem. Et eidem scribit c. 5o, “Seniorem ne increpaveris sed obsecra ut patrem”: ex quibus verbis colligitur quod licebat Timotheo vocare seniores patres, et tamen Christus dicit, “Patrem nolite vocare vobis super terram”. Et beatus Iohannes, 1a epistola sua, c. 2o, ait, “Scribo vobis, filioli”, et infra, “Et nunc filioli manete in eo”: ex quibus verbis colligitur quod licuit illis quibus scribebat beatus Iohannes vocare eum patrem. Sentencialiter ergo apostoli vocaverunt se magistros et rabbi, quod nequaquam fecissent si Christus interdixisset eis talibus vocabulis se vocare, quia, si “non dubium est committere in legem eum qui verba legis amplexus contra legis nititur voluntatem” (C. de legibus, 1o) , non dubium multo magis committit in legem qui tam mentem quam verba legis transgreditur. Nequaquam igitur Christus omnimodam equalitatem auctoritatis tunc apostolis pro temporibus futuris iniunxit.

Again, the Apostles did not observe those words of Christ as they appear at face value because, both in effect and in so many words, they used to call themselves and regard themselves as masters, fathers and rabbis. For in 1 Tim. 2:7 the Apostle says, "I, a teacher of the gentiles, am telling the truth, I am not lying." If a teacher, however, also a master (whence also in 2 Tim. 1:11 he says, "I am a herald and an apostle and a teacher [magister, master] of the gentiles." And in the same letter (1 Tim. 1:2) he calls Timothy his beloved son: if Timothy was his son, however, he regarded himself as his father. And he writes to him in 1 Tim. 5:1, "Do not speak harshly to an older man, but speak to him as to a father." We gather from these words that Timothy was permitted to call older men fathers, and yet Christ says [Matt. 23:9], "Call no one your father on earth." And blessed John says in 1 John 2:[1, 28], "I write to you little children ... And now little children abide in him." We gather from these words that those to whom blessed John was writing were permitted to call him father. In effect, therefore, the Apostles called themselves masters and rabbis, something that they would not have done if Christ had prohibited them from calling themselves by such names, because if "there is no doubt that a person violates the law if, embracing its words, he works against its intention", (Code, De legibus, 1 [1.14.5]), much more is there no doubt that a person violates the law if he transgresses both its intention and its words. At that time, therefore, Christ did not enjoin complete equality on the Apostles for future times.

Oportet ergo alium quam predictum premissorum verborum Christi querere intellectum. Ad quorum evidenciam dicitur esse notandum quod Christus omnia verba illa, “Nolite vocari rabbi”, “Patrem nolite vobis vocare super terram”, “Nec vocemini magistri”, dixit propter Phariseos et Scribas, qui ambiciosi dignitatum erant et honorum et vehementes inanis glorie amatores, qui propter huiusmodi omnia opera sua fecerunt. De quibus Salvator dicit ibidem, “Omnia vero opera sua faciunt ut videantur ab hominibus”, ubi eos de inani gloria aperte notavit. Quos eciam de ambicione notavit cum dixit, “Amant autem primos recubitus in cenis, et primas cathedras in synagogis, et salutaciones in foro, et vocari ab hominibus rabbi”. Dicitur igitur quod cum Christus, occasione viciorum Phariseorum et Scribarum, scilicet inanis glorie et ambicionis, post verba premissa de Phariseis et Scribis subiunxit, dicens discipulis suis omnibus, “Vos autem nolite vocari rabbi”, et cetera, non equalitatem auctoritatis discipulis suis iniunxit, nec eciam tunc interdixit omnem superioritatem, sed ipsos volens ad humilitatem inducere ambicionem et inanem gloriam dissuasit, prohibendo vel consulendo ne extra casum necessitatis (que eciam utilitatem includit, ut notat glossa Extra, De iureiurando, Et si Christus), magisterium, immo quamcumque prelacionem et superioritatem aut maioritatem, appeterent, vel eciam nominibus importantibus dignitatem aut superioritatem vocari gestirent. Quod non tantum per precedencia in eadem serie sed eciam per sequencia potest patencius declarari, quia non magis interdixit cuilibet eorum omnem auctoritatem et superioritatem per illas negativas, “Nolite vocari rabbi... nec vocemini magistri”, quam interdixerit eis subieccionem que est respectu superioris auctoritate per verba sequencia cum dixit, “Qui maior est vestrum erit minister vester”. Sed per illa verba noluit indicare quod maior inter eos deberet esse subiectus aliis tamquam prelatis. Ergo per alia verba, scilicet per negativas, noluit eis omnimodam equalitatem auctoritatis iniungere, sed ipsos ad humilitatem contra ambicionem et inanem gloriam incitare. Propter quod post omnia verba prescripta subiunxit, “Qui autem se exaltaverit humiliabitur”.

We must therefore look for another meaning of the aforesaid words of Christ besides that one. To make this clear it is said that it should be known that Christ said all those words (Mat. 23:8-10), "You are not to be called rabbi ... Call no one your father on earth ... Nor are you to be called masters", because of the Pharisees and Scribes who were ambitious for dignities and honours and were ardent lovers of empty glory and who carried out all their deeds for reasons of that kind. In the same place the Saviour says of these [Mat. 23:5], "They do all their deeds to be seen by men." Here he has openly censured them for empty glory. He also censured them for ambition when he said [Mat. 23:6-7], "They love to have the place of honour at banquets and the best seats in the synagogues and to be greeted with respect in the market places and to have men call them rabbi." It is said therefore that when Christ, on the occasion of the vices of the Pharisees and Scribes, namely empty glory and ambition, speaking to all his disciples, added after the above words about the Pharisees and Scribes, "But you are not to be called rabbi", etc., he did not enjoin an equality of authority on his disciples and he did not also at that time forbid any superiority, but, wanting to lead them to humility, he dissuaded them from ambition and empty glory by forbidding or advising them, except in a case of necessity (which also includes usefulness, as the gloss on Extra, De iureiurando, c. Et si Christus [col.822] notes), not to desire to be master, or indeed to have any kind of rulership or superiority or greatness, or even to long to be called by names implying dignity or superiority. This can be made more plainly clear not only by what comes before it in the passage but also by what follows, because he no more forbad any of them all authority and superiority by those negatives [Mat. 23:8, 10], "You are not to be called rabbi ... You are not to be called masters", than he forbade them the subjection that is in respect of a superior in authority by the words that follow [Mat. 23:11], "The greatest among you will be your servant." But by those words he did not want to declare that the greatest among them ought to be subject to others as to rulers. By the other words, therefore, that is by those negatives, he did not want to enjoin on them complete equality of authority, but to incite them to humility and against ambition and empty glory. For this reason he added after all the above words [Mat. 23:12], "Whoever exalts himself will be humbled."


Discipulus: Discute secundam responsionem quam sepe dicti asserunt opinantes.

Answer to Marsilius' second objection to the argument from "Feed my sheep": the other Apostles were sheep (as well as shepherds)

Magister: Illa responsio consistit in hoc quod per illa verba, “Pasce oves meas”, specialiter beato Petro, propter sui constanciam, commissus fuit populus Israel, qui dure cervicis fuit versus deum. Sed nonnullis videtur quod hec responsio oppositum illius quod tenet patenter concludit. Nam si per illa verba, “Pasce oves meas”, commissa fuit Petro cura populi Israel, et Christus in illis verbis inter has oves et illas de populo Israel non distinxit nec aliquas oves excepit, ergo omnium ovium Israel fuit cura commissa beato Petro. Inter oves autem Israel precipue fuerunt apostoli. Ergo per illa verba fuit commissa cura reliquorum apostolorum beato Petro.

Discipulus: Forte responderent opinantes predicti quod, licet Christus in illis verbis, “Pasce oves meas”, non distinxerit inter has oves et illas nec aliquas tunc exceperit, tamen alibi distinxit et aliquas, scilicet apostolos, manifeste excepit. Tunc enim videtur apostolos excepisse quando eos misit sicut Petrum et eandem potestatem dedit eis quam dedit Petro, cum dixit omnibus, ut habetur Matthei 18o, “Quecumque alligaveritis super terram”, et cetera; et cum dixit eis, ut habetur Iohannis 20o, “Sicut misit me Pater, et ego mitto vos”, et post, “Accipite Spiritum sanctum: quorum remiseritis peccata, remittuntur eis, et quorum retinueritis, retenta sunt”; et cum omnibus dixit Matthei ultimo, “Euntes ergo docete omnes gentes, baptizantes eos in nomine Patris”, et cetera ; et cum omnibus dixit, ut legitur Marci ultimo, “Euntes in mundum universum predicate evangelium omni creature. Qui crediderit et baptizatus fuerit salvus erit”, et cetera. In omnibus hiis videtur Christus apostolos ab aliis fidelibus ovibus distinxisse et eos a potestate Petri penitus exemisse, quia cum verba illa, “Pasce”, et cetera, dicta Petro fuerint generalia et generali deroget speciale, Extra, De rescriptis, c. 1o, sequitur quod illis verbis generalibus dictis Petro derogatum est specialiter quoad apostolos, quibus Christus dedit specialiter potestatem eandem quam Petro, sicut per predicta patet, ut videtur.

Magister: Hec responsio impugnatur, quod licet Christus dederit ceteris apostolis aliquam potestatem specialem, numquam tamen concessit eis potestatem generalem vel equalem potestati Petri. Verbo enim generaliori usus est in preficiendo Petrum, scilicet verbo pascendi, quod communius est quam verbum docendi vel baptizandi aut aliud tale, qualibus verbis usus est in concedendo potestatem aliis apostolis. Et ideo quamvis aliquando distinxerit Christus inter apostolos et alias oves suas ac ipsos quoad aliquid exemerit aliquo modo a potestate Petri, tamen quando dixit Petro, “Pasce”, et cetera, ipsum preficiendo omnibus, non distinxit inter ipsos et alios. Et ideo ipsos non exemit nec manere exemptos voluit seu liberos a potestate Petri, nisi quantum ad illa que expressit in concedendo eis potestatem specialem. Propter quod non fuerunt exempti a potestate Petri, nisi quantum ad officium predicacionis, baptizandi, ligandi et solvendi a peccatis, et si qua alia Christus expressit quando eis contulit aliquam potestatem. Cum ergo dicis quod mandatum speciale derogat generali, conceditur quantum ad ista que exprimuntur in speciali mandato, non quantum ad alia. Et ideo mandatum datum apostolis de baptizando, predicando, docendo, solvendo et ligando derogabat mandato illi dato Petro, “Pasce oves meas”, quantum ad illa solummodo que Christus iniunxit apostolis. (Et tamen non in casu omni, quia si in huiusmodi excessissent, racione delicti eciam quoad illa fuissent subiecti Petro, quia exempti racione delicti sorciuntur forum, et “privilegium meretur amittere qui permissa sibi abutitur potestate”, Extra, De regularibus, c. Licet, et 11a, q. 3a, Privilegium.)

Discipulus: Ista impugnacio contra veritatem militare videtur, quia apostoli non solum fuerunt predicatores et doctores habentes potestatem baptizandi, ligandi et solvendi, sed eciam fuerunt a deo consitituti pastores, teste Apostolo, qui ad Ephesios 4o, loquens de Christo, ait, “Et ipse dedit quosdam quidem apostolos, quosdam autem prophetas, alios vero evangelistas, alios autem pastores et doctores”. Ex quibus verbis colligitur quod Christus ita constituit alios apostolos pastores sicut Petrum, et per consequens vocaliter vel sentencialiter ita dixit cuilibet alii apostolo, “Pasce oves meas”, sicut Petro. Ex quo concluditur quod omnem potestatem importatam per verbum pascendi dedit aliis sicut Petro, quia talem potestatem nullis magis dedit quam apostolis. Ergo apostoli eandem auctoritatem habuerunt in omnibus cum Petro.

Magister:  Huic obieccioni tue respondetur quod Christus, qui eciam nunc ecclesiam non desinit invisibiliter gubernare secundum Apostolum, quosdam mediante Petro constituit pastores. Nec apostolus dicit quod Christus dedit absque ministerio Petri quosdam pastores, sed quod dedit pastores, quia dedit eos mediante ministerio et auctoritate Petri, quod verum est.


Discipulus: Dic nunc breviter quomodo respondetur ad auctoritatem Apostoli et glosse que adducuntur ad probandum equalitatem specialiter beati Pauli ad Petrum.

Answer to authoritative texts used to support Marsilius' second objection

Magister: Ad omnes illas auctoritates respondetur per ea que dicta sunt  prius, quia licet alii apostoli a beato Petro non fuerint constituti a Christo pastores universalis ecclesie nec super universalem ecclesiam habuerint potestatem eandem quam habuit Petrus, tamen beatus Paulus officium predicacionis habuit immediate a Christo. Quod officium antequam vidisset Petrum vel Petrus sciret ipsum fuisse conversum exercuit, quia de ipso scribitur Actuum 9o, “Surgens baptizatus est, et cum accepisset cibum confortatus est. Fuit autem cum discipulis qui erant Damasci per dies aliquot. Et continuo ingressus Paulus in synagogis predicabat Iesum, quoniam hic est filius dei”. Et quod tunc nullam auctoritatem habuerit predicandi a Petro videtur per illa que sequuntur cum dicitur, “Cum autem venisset in Ierusalem tentabat se iungere discipulis, et omnes timebant eum, non credentes quod esset discipulus. Barnabas autem apprehensum illum duxit ad apostolos, et narravit illis quomodo in via vidisset Dominum, et quia locutus est ei, et quomodo in Damasco fiducialiter egerit in nomine Iesu”.

Quod autem dixit Apostolus sibi creditum esse evangelium prepucii sicut Petro circumcisionis, dicunt quidam hoc non esse dictum ab Apostolo quia Paulus fuerit tantum doctor et predicator gencium, Petrus solummodo Iudeorum, cum hoc scripture canonice repugnare apertissime videatur. Uterque enim auctoritatem et potestatem habuit predicandi tam prepucio quam circumcisioni, hoc est tam gentibus quam Iudeis, et aliquando uterque predicavit utrisque. Et de Paulo quidem manifeste patet Actuum 9o et 13o et 14o quod predicavit Iudeis; quod autem fuerit eciam doctor gencium ipse in epistolis suis asserit, quod eciam de ipso apostolica testatur historia. De Petro eciam patet idem: predicavit enim Iudeis, ut ex multis locis liquet, qui gentibus, scilicet Cornelio et aliis, sicut patet Actuum 10o, predicavit. Sed ideo dicit apostolus sibi creditum esse evangelium prepucii et Petro circumcisionis quia Paulus magis erat intentus conversioni gencium et Petrus conversioni Iudeorum. Ita ut sepe et in diversis provinciis predicaverit dumtaxat Iudeis teste Eusebio in Ecclesiastica historia, qui libro 3o, c. 2o, ait: “Petrus Pontum et Galatiam, Bithyniam, Cappadociam ceterasque confines provincias Iudeis dumtaxat predicans circumisse deprehenditur”. Et tamen sibi licebat gentibus predicare quemadmodum Paulo fuit licitum predicare Iudeis, quod glossa quam predicti opinantes in responsione nunc tractata adducunt asserit manifeste, dicens: “Ita tamen dispensacio distributa est illis ut eciam Petrus gentibus predicaret si causa fecisset et Paulus Iudeis”, quod eciam ex Ecclesiastica historia asserente quod Petrus et Paulus Romanam fundaverunt ecclesiam, sicut  postea  dicetur, colligitur evidenter. Cum autem dicit glossa ista evangelium prepucii “ita principaliter” esse creditum Paulo sicut evangelium circumcisionis Petro, respondetur quod hoc dicit glossa propter hoc, quod Christus immediate credidit Paulo officium predicandi et sine Petro, ita quod officium predicandi non habuit a Petro; et tamen Paulus quodammodo erat subiectus Petro, eciam quantum ad predicacionis officium, quia si in officio sibi a Christo commisso excessisset fuisset corrigendus a Petro.

Cum autem accipitur in responsione prefata quod nec Paulus nec alter sanctus potuerit aliunde assumere populum Iudaicum specialiter et principaliter fuisse Petro commissum nisi ex eo quod Christus illi dixit, “Pasce oves meas”, respondetur quod Paulus plura dixit de Christo et apostolis que ex canonicis novi testamenti scripturis non accepit. Dixit enim 1a ad Corinthios 15o, “Deinde visus est”, scilicet Christus, “plus quam quingentis simul”, et ut legitur Actuum 20o, “Beacius est magis dare quam accipere”, et tamen ista in scripturis novi testamenti prioribus non habentur. Sic eciam potuit dicere de beato Petro, tamquam ille qui gestorum Petri pro magna parte habebat noticiam, quod sibi erat creditum evangelium circumcisionis, quamvis nec ex illo verbo, “Pasce oves meas”, nec ex aliquo alio quod aliquis scripserit ante eum, acceperit.


Discipulus: Quia sicut antea dixi, multi vel omnes tenentes Christum constituisse beatum Petrum caput et principem aliorum apostolorum per illa verba Christi, “Pasce oves meas”, hoc principaliter probare conantur, ideo illa verba volo adhuc amplius discuti, ut melius intelligam veritatem eorum.

A new objection: "Feed" need not imply authority

Videtur igitur primo [see above] quod, sicut alii innuunt, per illa verba probari non potest quod beatus Petrus fuerit constitutus princeps et prelatus quorumcumque, quia verbis et exemplis et eciam subsidio corporali potest quis pascere alios quamvis super eos nullam habeat auctoritatem omnino. Ergo per hoc quod dixit Christus Petro, “Pasce”, et cetera, nullam ei auctoritatem super alios pascendos commisit omnino.

Magister: Videtur quampluribus quod ista responsio minime satisfacit. Nam sicut in concessione beneficii vel privilegii concessio indefinite et simpliciter facta intelligitur generaliter (Extra, De privilegiis, Quia circa), sic eciam commissio potestatis vel officii indefinite et simpliciter facta debet intelligi universaliter — ut scilicet omnia intelligantur esse concessa seu commissa que non sunt prohibita, et de quibus est eadem committendi vel concedendi racio, et de quibus non est verisimile seu probabile quod committens seu concedens ea in speciali minime commisisset seu concessisset; quia qui nichil excipit et potuit excipere totum concessisse seu commisisse videtur, ut sacri canones protestantur. Sed Christus in verbis illis, “Pasce oves meas”, aliquid importatum per verbum pascendi commisit beato Petro et iniunxit. Ista autem commissio seu iniunccio indefinite et simpliciter facta fuit. Ergo omnia intelliguntur esse commissa que non inveniuntur prohibita, et de quibus est eadem racio committendi, de quibus non est verisimile seu probabile quod ipsa committens in speciali minime commisisset.

Sed per verbum pascendi non solum importatur pascere alios verbo et exemplo ac subsidio corporali, sed eciam potestative et cum auctoritate, presertim secundum quod verbum pascendi in scripturis sacris et exposicionibus sanctorum patrum accipitur. Quod copiose posset ostendi, sed sufficiat pauca adducere. Ait itaque Ezechiel, immo Dominus per Ezechielem prophetam, 34o c., dicens: “Ve pastoribus Israel, qui pascebant semetipsos”, et post, “Quod infirmum fuit non consolidastis, et quod egrotum non sanastis, quod confractum non alligastis, et quod abiectum est non reduxistis, et quod perierat non quesistis”. Errantes autem oves ad gregem reducere, perditas querere et reportare inventas spectat ad potestatem habentem super oves. Et veritas ipsa, ut habetur Iohannis 10o, ait: “Qui autem intrat per ostium, pastor est ovium. Huic enim ostiarius aperit, et oves vocem eius audiunt, et proprias oves vocat nominatim, et educit eas. Et cum proprias oves emiserit, ante eas vadit: et oves illum sequuntur”. Ex quibus verbis Christi ac aliis que sequuntur, colligitur quod pastor fidelium Christi pastori ovium irracionabilium quantum ad officium assimilatur. Sed ille ex officio aliquam habet superioritatem et potestatem super oves domini sui. Ergo eciam pastor ovium Christi, que sunt fideles, ex officio potestatem et auctoritatem habet super easdem. Quod in exposicionibus et assercionibus sanctorum patrum tam patenter invenitur quod hoc probare per ipsos videtur omnino superfluum.

 Ergo Christus <sibi> per verba illa, “Pasce oves meas”, aliquam potestatem super oves suas beato Petro commisit: presertim cum non inveniatur prohibuisse sibi omnem penitus potestatem et auctoritatem; fuit eciam eadem racio concedendi sibi auctoritatem aliquam et potestatem super oves et committendi sibi pascere oves Christi bonis verbis et exemplis, quia ita indigebant rectore et potestatem habente super ipsas sicut indigebant edificando eas bonis verbis et exemplis; et ideo non est verisimile nec probabile quod talem potestatem sibi in speciali minime concessisset. Ex quibus relinquitur quod Christus aliquam potestatem per illa verba concessit et commisit beato Petro.


Discipulus: Hic possem allegando ex dictis infirmare quod Christus omnem eciam potestatem, ac plenitudinem potestatis talem qualem pape attribuit prima sentencia supra, primo huius 1o c., recitata, super oves suas commisit Petro, ex quo illa commissio fuit indefinite et simpliciter facta; sed de hoc postea conferam tecum. Ideo ad aliam allegacionem ad probandum quod per illa verba, “Pasce”, et cetera, Christus non constituit Petrum superiorem aliis apostolis me converto.

Another objection: "Feed my sheep" is indefinite; "sheep" may not include the Apostles

 Videtur itaque quod sepe indefinita non equipollet universali, sed potest verificari eciam pro uno singulari. Cum ergo Christus indefinite dixerit, “Pasce”, et cetera, hoc potest intelligi de aliquibus ovibus, absque hoc quod intelligatur de omnibus, et per consequens absque hoc quod intelligatur de apostolis. [see above]. Non ergo per illa verba potest ostendi quod beatus Petrus fuit superior reliquis apostolis.

Magister: Putant quidam quod huic allegacioni potest faciliter responderi. Nam licet tam in iudicativis quam in aliis [scripturis] non semper verbum indefinite prolatum generaliter debeat intelligi, tamen quando alicui committitur potestas super aliquos, verbum indefinite prolatum generaliter debet intelligi, ut nullus tunc intelligatur exceptus nisi per alia possit probari exceptus. Cuius racio assignatur, quia, sicut iudices non debent esse incerti, quia de similibus simile iudicium est habendum, ergo quando committitur potestas seu prelacio alicui super aliquos per verbum indiffinite prolatum, quemadmodum nec procuratores nec tutores nec arbitri (sicut testantur leges tam canonice quam civiles, et racio hoc suadet), ita et prelati et subditi non debent esse incerti; immo omnes quibus idem est commune debent intelligi, nisi aliunde possit ostendi quod aliqui sint excipiendi. Aliter enim subditi in illo casu essent incerti. Ergo per illa verba, “Pasce oves meas”, omnes fideles Christi debent intelligi ne oves pascende a Petro sint incerte, nisi de aliquibus aliunde ostendatur quod sint excepte. Quod de apostolis ostendi non potest, sicut dicunt multi respondentes ad omnes allegaciones quibus ostenditur quod apostoli erant a potestate Petri excepti.



Discipulus: Allegacionem qua probatur quod Petrus fuit superior ceteris apostolis per hoc quod Christus sibi dixit, “Pasce oves meas”, diffuse tractavimus. Ideo ad allegacionem aliam pro assercione eadem te converte.


Student: We have dealt copiously with the argument by which it is proved that Peter was superior to the rest of the Apostles by virtue of the fact that Christ said to him, "Feed my sheep". Turn therefore to another argument for the same assertion.

Second argument for Peter's superiority, from Matthew 16:18-9

Magister: Hoc tali modo probatur.
Christus singulariter dixit Petro, “Et ego dico tibi quia tu est Petrus, et super hanc petram edificabo ecclesiam meam, et porte inferi non prevalebunt adversus eam; et tibi dabo claves regni celorum”, et cetera. Per que verba Christus expresse videtur pronunciasse beatum Petrum futurum caput et fundamentum ecclesie, presertim mortuo Christo.

Master: This is proved as follows. Christ said singly to Peter (Mat. 16:18-9), "I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of Hades will not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven." By these words Christ seems expressly to have pronounced that blessed Peter would be the head and foundation of the Church, especially after Christ was dead. [Cf. Marsilius, II.xxvii.2]

Marsilius' objection to the argument from Matthew 16:18-9

Discipulus: Quidam precedens motivum nituntur repellere eciam ad hoc; tali modo respondent, dicentes
caput et fundamentum ecclesie unicum esse et fuisse ordinacione immediata dei, et hoc Christum, apostolorum vero neminem, eciam in absencia Christi, quemadmodum per scripturam indubie (ut dicunt) convincunt, prout recitatum est supra primo huius c. 3o. Cum igitur dicitur, “Super hanc petram”, et cetera, dicunt secundum glossam et asserunt, “‘Super hanc petram’, id est super Christum, in quem credis”. Ubi glossa interlinearis addit, “‘Tu es Petrus’, id est, a me petra, ita tamen ut michi retineam fundamenti dignitatem”. Petrum autem vocavit eum Christus, id est constantem in fide. Quod isti non negant, qui et dicunt quod esto quod aliis constancior et merito perfeccior, non propter hoc dignitate prior, nisi tempore forte. Quod confirmatur per Augustinum dicentem in libro Retractacionum: “Dixi in quodam loco de apostolo Petro quod in illo tamquam in petra edificata sit ecclesia. Sed scio me postea sepissime sic exposuisse quod a Domino dictum est, ‘Tu es Petrus, et super hanc petram edificabo ecclesiam meam’, ut super hunc intelligeretur quem confessus est Petrus, dicens, ‘Tu es Christus, filius dei vivi’, ac si Petrus ab hac petra appellatus personam ecclesie figuraret que super hanc petram edificatur. Non enim dictum est illi, ‘Tu es petra’, sed ‘Tu es Petrus’. Petra autem erat Christus, quem confessus  est Simon, sicut ei,” Christo scilicet, “tota ecclesia confitetur, dictus est Petrus”. Et potest huius racio assignari secundum scripturam, quoniam Petrus, quamdiu viator extitit, errare potuit et peccare per sui arbitrii libertatem; unde Christum negasse legitur et quandoque ad veritatem evangelii ambulasse non recte. Tale autem non poterat esse fundamentum ecclesie, sed ille solus fuit Christus, ut apparet 1a ad Corinthios 3o, qui aberrare non potuit, eo quod ab instanti sue concepcionis impeccabilis fuerit confirmatus. Unde Apostolus, ubi supra: “Fundamentum enim aliud nemo ponere potest preter id quod positum est, quod est Christus Iesus”.

Student: Some people try to refute the preceding argument even on this point [i.e. the headship after Christ's death]. They reply to it as follows, saying that there is and was a single head and foundation of the Church ordained directly by God and that this is Christ, not indeed any of the Apostles, even in the absence of Christ, as they demonstrate without doubt (they say), from scripture, as was recorded above in the third chapter of the first book of this work [Marsilius refers to Defensor pacis II.xvi and xxii]. When it is said "on this rock", etc., therefore, they say and assert, according to the gloss: "'On this rock', that is on Christ in whom you believe", where the interlinear gloss adds, "'you are Peter', that is, a rock through me, so that I retain for myself the dignity of foundation." And Christ called him Peter, that is steadfast in faith. They do not deny this, but they also say that even if it was the case that he was more steadfast than the others and more perfect in merit, he was not for that reason first in dignity, except perhaps first in time. This is confirmed by what Augustine says in his book Retractations [CCSL, 57, p.62]: "Somewhere I said of the apostle Peter that the Church was built on him as on a rock. But I know that later I most often expounded the Lord's statement, 'You are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church', in such a way that it [rock] referred to the one whom Peter confessed, saying, 'You are the Christ, the son of the living God', and so Peter, named from this rock, was a figure of the Church which is built on this rock. For it was not said to him, 'You are a rock' but 'You are Peter'. However, the rock was Christ, who was acknowledged by Simon, and when Simon confessed this, just as the whole Church confesses to him", i.e. to Christ, "he was named Peter." And a reason can be given for this in accordance with the Scripture, since as long as Peter was a wayfarer he was able through the freedom of his will to err and sin. Whence we read that he denied Christ and sometimes did not walk rightly, according to the truth of the gospel; the Church could not have such a foundation. But Christ alone was that foundation, as is clear in 1 Cor. 3. He cannot go astray, in that he was confirmed as incapable of sin from the moment of conception. Whence the apostle says in the same place (1 Cor. 3:11), "And no one can lay any foundation other than the one that has been laid; that foundation is Jesus Christ." [Marsilius II.xxviii.5]

Et quod addebatur, “Tibi dabo claves regni celorum”, nullam Petro super reliquos apostolos auctoritatem tribuit, quoniam hanc eandem iudiciariam potestatem ceteris apostolis tribuit secundum Ieronimum et Rabanum, quorum glossas alibi inducunt; amplius, quoniam Christus potestatem clavium illi non videtur tradidisse per hec verba. Inquit enim, “Tibi dabo”, quod sonat futurum, non dixit, “do”. Sed Iohannis 20o indifferenter omnibus dixit, “Accipite Spiritum sanctum, et quorum remiseritis peccata”, et cetera. Esto tamen quod Petrus hiis verbis potestatem hanc recepisset, non concluditur ex hoc nisi quod tempore prius fuerit pastor institutus. Et quod illi singulariter has tradidit Christus claves, signare voluit ecclesie unitatem in fide, ad quam fideles invitavit Christus per singularem clavium tradicionem sive promissionem, ut glossa dicit. Vel fortasse quia Christum dei filium esse primum constanter et manifeste confessus est, primum tempore dotatur clavibus et honoratur, aut honorari promittitur, ut sic eciam confitendi Christum palam et constanter per huius premium vel promissum ceteris preberetur exemplum. Non tamen propter hoc convincitur ipsum fuisse ceteris dignitate seu auctoritate priorem, quamvis hoc plures glossatorum dicere videantur a se, non habentes hoc ex scriptura. 

As for what is added (Mat. 16:19), "I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven", this did not bestow on Peter any authority over the rest of the Apostles, because, according to Jerome and Rabanus, whose glosses they [i.e. Marsilius] bring forward elsewhere, it bestowed this same judiciary power on the rest of the Apostles; further, because Christ does not seem to have handed over to him the power of the keys by these words -- for he said, "I will give you", which indicates the future, he did not say, "I give"; but in John 20:22-3 he said to them all without distinction, "Receive the holy spirit. If you forgive the sins of any", etc. But even if Peter had indeed received this power by those words, we can conclude from this only that he was the first in time to be appointed shepherd. As for the fact that Christ handed these keys over to him singly, he wanted to indicate the unity of the Church in faith, and to this unity Christ invited the faithful by the singular handing over or promise of the keys, as the gloss says [quoted by Marsilius in II.xxvii.2]. Or perhaps, because he was the first to confess steadfastly and clearly that Christ was the son of God he is the first in time to be endowed with the keys and honoured (or promised to be honoured), so that by this reward or promise an example of openly and steadfastly confessing Christ in this way would be offered to the rest. It can not be demonstrated from this, however, that he was superior to the rest in dignity or authority, even if many of the glossators seem to say this, getting it from themselves and not from scripture. [Marsilius II.xxviii.6]

Significat autem infallibiliter (ut dicunt) eos verum dicere evangelii series, que habetur Matthei 20o et Luce 22o, ubi Christus, quesitum hoc aperte diffiniens, dixit nullum ipsorum esse superiorem aliis (facta enim erat contencio inter eos quis eorum esset maior). Et idem Matthei 23o, ad quos sic inquit Christus: “Vos autem”, invicem supple, “nolite vocari rabbi; unus est enim magister vester; omnes autem vos fratres estis”. “Omnes autem fratres”, id est equales; non ergo excepit aliquem. Et est mirandum si magis credere debeamus auctoritati glossatoris quam Christi, quicumque fuerit ille glossator, eciam sanctus, et maxime cum hoc non dicat tamquam glossator sed proprio sensu. Series enim scripture tam manifesta est quod glossa non eget in hoc. Amplius, ipsi glossatores oppositum dicunt, exponentes apostolum ad Galatas 2o.

There is an infallible sign (they say) that they are stating the truth in a passage of the gospel found in Mat. 20:25-7 and Luke 22:25-7, where Christ, clearly settling this question, said that none of them was superior to the others (for a dispute had arisen among them as to which of them was the greater). And the same is found in Matthew 23:8. Christ spoke to them as follows: "But do not be called Rabbi", understand in relation to one another, "for you have one master and you are all brothers", that is equals. He did not except anyone, therefore. And it is to be marvelled at if we ought to believe the authority of the glossator rather than Christ, whoever that glossator was, even if he was a saint, and especially since he says this not as glossator but according to his own opinion. For the text of scripture is so clear that it does not need a gloss. Further, the glossators themselves say the opposite when expounding Galatians 2. [Marsilius II.xxviii.6]

Hec est priorum responsio. Quam incipe improbare, et qualiter ad motiva que pro se adducit valeat responderi, secundum aliquorum opinionem, studeas enarrare.

This is their reply. Begin to refute it, and take pains to explain how, according to the view of some, reply can be made to the arguments which it brings forward in its support.

Reply to Marsilius: it is presumption to reject the ancient interpretation of Matthew 16:18-19


Magister: Sunt quidam qui predicta opinantes, quoad totam interpretacionem seu exposicionem prescriptorum verborum Christi, specialiter de temeritate et presumpcione nituntur arguere, quia esto (ut dicunt) quod precise per illa verba, “Tu es Petrus”, et cetera, nude intellecta, non posset patenter contra protervos ostendi quod Petrus erat superior aliis apostolis, tamen per ipsa et alia verba scripture canonice et exposiciones seu asserciones probatorum virorum probari potest quod illa verba Christi sic debent intelligi ut credatur per ipsa tunc primatus super omnes fideles fuisse Petro promissus.


Master: There are some people who try to accuse those who hold the above opinion specifically of temerity and presumption in respect of their whole interpretation or exposition of Christ's words written above. Because even if, as they say, it could not clearly be shown against the last-ditch objector precisely by those words "You are Peter", etc., understood by themselves, that Peter was superior to the other Apostles, yet by those and other words of canonical scripture and the expositions or assertions of approved men it can be proved that those words of Christ should be understood in such a way that we should believe that by them Peter was then promised primacy over all the faithful.

Et esto quod non esset necesse credere viris, quantumcumque probatis, post scriptores scripture canonice in hiis que pure sunt sciencie seu pericie, tamen omnino esset temerarium reputandum tam probatis viris, presertim illis qui discipuli apostolorum fuerunt a quibus intellectum scripture canonicum audierunt vel vicini apostolorum operibus extiterunt, absque infallibili probacione contradicere, quoquomodo intellectum contrarium affirmando. Quamvis enim, ut leges civiles astruunt et glossa 24a, q. 1a, super capitulum Pudenda, notat, “Nichil est ita indubitatum quin sollicitam recipiat dubitacionem” et eciam contradiccionem, et ideo contra multorum verborum scripture sacre catholicum sensum multa possunt obici et adduci eciam apparenter (nam secundum beatum Clementem, ut recitatur dist. 37a, c. Relatum, “Sunt multa verba in scripturis divinis que possunt trahi ad eum sensum quem sibi unusquisque presumpserit”), tamen hoc fieri minime debet, quia, ut dicit ibidem beatus Clemens, “Ex ipsis scripturis sensum capere veritatis oportet. Et ideo oportet ab eo scienciam discere scripturarum, qui eam a maioribus secundum veritatem sibi traditam servat, ut et ipse possit eam quam recte suscepit competenter asserere”. [Oportet ergo asserere] intellectum verborum Christi cum dixit, “Tu es Petrus”, et cetera, qui accipi ex scripturis potest ut eas intelligunt precipue viri probati qui eum a maioribus, et precipue ab apostolis, didicerunt. 

And even if it were not necessary in matters purely of knowledge or skill to believe men [who wrote] after the writers of canonical scripture, however much they have been approved, yet it would be considered completely rash to contradict, by asserting any kind of contrary meaning without infallible proof, men who have been so approved, especially those who were the disciples of the Apostles, from whom they heard the meaning of canonical scripture, or those who were close to the works of the Apostles. For although, as the civil laws affirm and the gloss on 24, q. 1, c. Pudenda [col.1401] notes, "Nothing is so certain that it does not admit of very careful doubt", and even contradiction, and against the catholic meaning of many words of sacred scripture, therefore, many things can be objected and brought forward even with plausibility (for according to blessed Clement, as we find in dist. 37, c. Relatum [c.14, col.139], "There are many words in the divine scriptures which can be dragged to the sense that anyone has presumptously invented for himself"), nevertheless this ought not be done, because as blessed Clement says in the same place, "We must take the truthful meaning from those writings, and therefore we must acquire knowledge of the scriptures from him who maintains it according to the truth handed on to him by his predecessors, so that he can assert correspondingly that which he has rightly received." [We must therefore assert] the meaning of Christ's words when he says, "You are Peter", etc., that can be taken from the scriptures as they are understood especially by men who have been approved and who have learnt it from their predecessors, and especially from the Apostles.

Et esto, sicut tactum est, quod non esset simpliciter necessarium credere eis, tamen horribilis et omnino stulta esset temeritas contradicere ipsis, maxime absque infallibili racione que eciam adversarios et viros intelligentes aperte convinceret. Cum autem predicti opinantes contra intellectum memoratorum verborum Christi a viris probatis, eciam aliquibus qui apostolorum discipuli extiterunt et ab eis in scripturis divinis edocti fuerunt.

And even if it were not, as has been suggested, simply necessary to believe them, yet it would be horrible and completely foolish rashness to contradict them, especially without an infallible argument that would clearly convince even opponents and men with understanding. Since, however, those who hold the above opinion [argue] against the understanding of the above words of Christ [acquired] from approved men, even some who were disciples of the Apostles and were taught by them in the divine scriptures, etc. [Some part of this chapter may be lacking.]


Discipulus: Circa responsionem predictam, quam allegando esse temerariam ostendisti, nitaris nunc probare circa intellectum illorum verborum Christi, “Tu es Petrus”, et cetera, quod credere teneamur aliis quam scriptoribus scripture canonice.


Student: Concerning the above reply, which you have shown by argument to be rash, now in connection with the meaning of those words of Christ, "You are Peter" etc, try to demonstrate that we are bound to believe other writers than those of canonical scripture.

We should believe ancient approved interpreters

Magister: Hoc ut quibusdam apparet tali modo probatur. Fide dignis viris omni excepcione maioribus est credendum in hiis que, vocaliter seu sentencialiter, cognovisse se asserunt per se ipsos vel per alios quibus credere tenebantur, seu que dicuntur tamquam a se cognita altero modorum illorum. Talia enim taliter cognita, quamvis ad ea que sciencie sunt valeant pertinere, tamen aliquo modo eciam spectare possunt ad ea que facti sunt, vel saltem cognicio qua asseruntur cognosci inter ea que facti sunt computari potest. In hiis autem que facti sunt fide dignis viris est credendum, ut probatum est 3o huius c. 23o. Aliter enim pro veracibus et fide dignis minime haberentur, quod irreverencia dampnabili non careret. Sed fide digni viri omni excepcione maiores sentencialiter asserunt se, non per raciocinacionem vel studium seu meditacionis virtutem sed per seipsos vel alios quibus credere tenebantur, cognovisse predicta verba Christi, “Tu es Petrus”, et cetera, sic debere intelligi ut per ea intelligatur primatus super apostolos et omnes alios fideles fuisse beato Petro datus vel commissus a Christo. Plures enim fide digni et probatissimi viri qui fuerunt apostolorum discipuli, vel per apostolorum discipulos in literis sacris instructi, predictum intellectum illorum verborum Christi asseruerunt expresse. Omni autem probabilitate carere videtur quod viri studiosi et literati, sacrarum scripturarum indagatores solertissimi, cum beato Petro et aliis apostolis et apostolorum discipulis fuerunt conversati et predictorum verborum Christi verum ab ipsis non didicerunt intellectum, presertim cum verus intellectus ipsorum ad sciendum cui (vel quibus) tamquam prelato (vel prelatis) fideles obedire deberent, et cui tamquam prelato summo instituto a Christo parere tenerentur, fuerit necessarius toti ecclesie Christi. Non enim sunt oves extra periculum ignorantes quem tamquam verum pastorem debeant sequi. Multo autem improbabilius videtur quod huiusmodi viri, apostolorum vel discipulorum ipsorum discipuli, falsum circa predicta verba Christi docuerint intellectum. Et ita debent tenere fideles quod ille est verus intellectus predictorum verborum Christi quem apostolorum discipuli et a discipulis apostolorum edocti firmiter asserebant, quia illum intellectum non acceperunt solummodo per raciocinacionem, ipsum ex verbis illis tantummodo concludendo, sed acceperunt eum ab apostolis, qui eos verum intellectum ipsorum sollicite docuerunt tamquam necessarium toti ecclesie dei. Et ideo dixerunt eum, non tamquam notum eis per viam sciencie seu raciocinacionis, sed tamquam expressum eis et doctum ab apostolis, quibus credere tenebantur, quia apostoli verum intellectum eorundem verborum certissime agnoscebant. Propter quod dicere viros fide dignos et probatos, apostolorum discipulos vel a discipulis apostolorum edoctos, docuisse falsum intellectum illorum verborum est dicere ipsos, non per raciocinacionem sophisticam deceptos, sed scienter fuisse mentitos, quia scienter dixissent intellectum contrarium illi quem ab apostolis didicerunt: quod non est vacuum irreverencia et blasphemia detestanda.

Master: It is seems to some people that this is proved as follows. Men worthy of trust rising above all objection should be believed in matters that, either in effect or in so many words, they assert (1) they have known immediately or (2) have learnt through others whom they were bound to believe, or are said as being known by themselves in one or other of those ways. For even if such things known in such a way can pertain to matters of knowledge, yet they can also pertain in some way to matters of fact, or at least the knowledge by which they are asserted to be known can be reckoned among those things that are matters of fact. In matters of fact, however, men worthy of trust should be believed, as was proved in chapter 22 of [book] 3 of this [tractate]. For otherwise they would not be considered veracious and worthy of trust, which would not be without irreverence worthy of condemnation. But men worthy of trust rising above all objection assert in effect that they have learnt, and not through reasoning or study or meditation but immediately or from others whom they were bound to believe, that those words of Christ, "You are Peter", etc., ought to be understood so that they mean that primacy over the Apostles and all the other faithful was given or committed to blessed Peter by Christ. For many highly approved men worthy of trust, who were disciples of the Apostles or were instructed in sacred letters by the disciples of the Apostles, have expressly asserted that meaning of those words of Christ. It seems to lack all probability, however, that virtuous and learned men, skilled investigators of the sacred scriptures, lived with blessed Peter and the other Apostles and their disciples and did not learn from them the true meaning of those words of Christ, especially since a true understanding of them was necessary for the whole Church of Christ to know whom the faithful were bound to obey as a prelate or prelates and whom they were bound to obey as the highest prelate appointed by Christ. For sheep are not beyond danger if they do not know the one they should follow as their true shepherd. It seems much more improbable, however, that such men, disciples of the Apostles or their disciples, taught a false understanding of those words of Christ. And so the faithful ought to hold that the true meaning of those words of Christ is the one that the disciples of the Apostles and those taught by them firmly asserted, because they did not receive that meaning only by reasoning, merely inferring it from the words themselves, but they received it from the Apostles who carefully taught them their true meaning as necessary for the whole Church of God. And they said it, therefore, not as something known to them by way of knowledge or reasoning but as something expressed and taught to them by the Apostles, whom they were bound to believe because the Apostles most certainly knew the true meaning of those words. For this reason, to say that approved men worthy of trust, disciples of the Apostles or taught by those disciples, taught a false meaning of those words, is to say not that they were deceived by fallacious reasoning but that they knowingly lied, because they knowingly declared a meaning contrary to that which they learnt from the Apostles. This is not devoid of irreverence and should be detested as blasphemy.


Discipulus: Aliquorum fide dignorum et probatorum testimonia qui fuerunt apostolorum discipuli, vel ab eorum discipulis saltem mediate instructi, asserencium sepe dicta verba Christi, “Tu es Petrus”, et cetera, premissum debere intellectum habere audire desidero.


Student: I wish to hear the testimonies of some of those approved men worthy of trust who were disciples of the Apostles or at least were instructed mediately by their disciples and who assert that those often mentioned words of Christ, "You are Peter" etc, should have the meaning set out above.

The testimony of Anacletus

Magister: <Hoc> Anacletus papa — qui fuit apostolorum Discipulus: et ab ipsis apostolis, immo a beato Petro, in divinis scripturis instructus, de quo improbabile omnino videtur quod nesciret an Petrus reputaret se super alios apostolos superioritatem habere et qualiter Petrus intellexerit verba Christi premissa, et de quo nullatenus est credendum quod falsum intellectum eorundem verborum scienter docuerit et in scripturis reliquerit — eundem intellectum verborum illorum patenter astruit et expresse. Qui, ut habetur in decretis, dist. 22a, c. Sacrosancta, ait: “Sacrosancta Romana et apostolica ecclesia non ab apostolis sed ab ipso Domino salvatore nostro primatum obtinuit, sicut beato Petro apostolo dixit, ‘Tu es Petrus’ et reliqua usque ‘soluta sunt in celo’. Adhibita est societas in eadem Romana urbe beatissimi Pauli apostoli, vasis eleccionis, qui uno die unoque tempore cum Petro gloriosa morte coronatus est, et ambo sanctam Romanam ecclesiam consecraverunt, atque aliis urbibus omnibus in universo mundo tam sua presencia quam venerando triumpho pretulerunt”. Et infra, “Inter beatos apostolos quedam fuit discrecio potestatis, et post licet omnes essent apostoli, Petro tamen a Domino concessum est (et ipsi inter se voluerunt id ipsum), ut reliquis omnibus preesset apostolis, et Cephas, id est, caput et principium, teneret apostolatus”. Ex quibus, ut videtur, patenter habetur quod secundum Anacletum, qui fuit papa ante Clementem, ut testatur Ecclesiastica historia, lib. 2o c. 14o, et qui fuit cum Petro apostolo conversatus, Christus illis verbis, “Tu es Petrus”, et cetera, promisit Petro, vel dedit, primatum. Et quod dederit sibi, vel promiserit, primatum non solum super alios fideles sed eciam super apostolos patet cum dicat quod inter apostolos erat “discrecio potestatis”, et quod preerat aliis apostolis non solum de voluntate apostolorum sed eciam de concessione seu ordinacione Domini, cum dicat, “Licet omnes essent apostoli, Petro tamen a Domino concessum est”, et cetera.

Master: Pope Anacletus -- who was a disciple of the Apostles and was instructed in the divine scriptures by them, indeed by blessed Peter, of whom it seems completely improbable that he would not know whether Peter reckoned himself to have superiority over the other Apostles and how Peter understood those words of Christ, and of whom it ought not be believed that he knowingly taught a false understanding of those words and left it in his writings -- clearly and expressly affirmed that understanding of those words. As we find in dist. 22, c. Sacrosancta [c.2, col.73], he says, "The inviolable and apostolic Church of Rome obtained its primacy not from the Apostles but from our Lord and Saviour himself, as he said to blessed Peter the apostle, 'You are Peter ... will be loosed in heaven'. In that same city of Rome the fellowship of the most blessed apostle Paul was brought to him, Paul, that vessel of election, who on the one day and at the one time was crowned with Peter by a glorious death. They both consecrated the holy Roman Church and put it before all other cities in the whole world both by their presence and their revered triumph. ... Among the blessed Apostles there was a certain distinction in power, and afterwards, although all were Apostles, yet the Lord granted it to Peter -- and among themselves they wanted this -- that he should rule over all the rest of the Apostles and that he should hold "Cephas", that is, headship and leadership of the apostolate." It seems that we clearly find in these words that according to Anacletus, who was the pope before Clement, as chapter 14 of book 2 of the Ecclesiastical History attests [Not 2.14 but 3.15; see Eusebius Werke, Bd. 2, Die Kirchengeschichte, Teil 1, ed. E. Schwartz, Leipzig, 1903, pp. 229], and who lived with the apostle Peter, by those words, "You are Peter", etc., Christ promised or gave to Peter primacy. And that he gave or promised him primacy not only over the other faithful but also over the Apostles is clear when he says that there was a distinction of power [[The edition romana of the decretum incudes 'of power' but Friedberg's edition does not.]] among the Apostles and that he had ruled over the other Apostles not only by their will but also by the grant or decree of the Lord, when he says, "Although all were Apostles, yet the Lord granted it to Peter", etc.

Ex prescriptis eciam verbis Anacleti potest accipi alia racio principalis ad probandum quod Petrus de ordinacione Christi prefuit aliis apostolis. Nam sub quo intellectu Christus dixerit Petro, ut habetur Iohannis 1o, “Tu vocaberis Cephas”, Anacletus <hoc> exprimit manifeste cum asserit Petrum fuisse Cephas quia “caput et principium” tenuit “apostolatus”. Cum itaque Anacletus vir fuerit eruditus et sanctus et cum Petro apostolo conversatus, verisimile non videtur quod ignoraverit quomodo Petrus intellexerit illa verba que dixit sibi Christus, “Tu vocaberis Cephas”. Nec est aliquo modo credendum quod mentiretur scienter, et, in hoc quod per seipsum cognoverit, falsum astrueret, licet crederetur quod in hiis que pure sunt sciencie seu racionis decipi posset. Ergo Anacletus illorum verborum intellectum, “Tu vocaberis Cephas”, quem habuit Petrus expressit. Petrus autem illorum verborum verum habuit intellectum. Ergo Anacletus in verbis prescriptis illorum verborum verum protulit intellectum, et per consequens Christus intendebat quod Petrus vocandus erat Cephas, id est caput et principium aliorum apostolorum, et per consequens tunc erat futurus pastor et prelatus eorum.

From Anacletus's words above we can take another chief argument to prove that by Christ's decree Peter ruled the other Apostles. For Anacletus expresses clearly with what meaning Christ said to Peter, "You will be called Cephas", as we find in John 1:42, when he asserts that Peter was Cephas because he held the headship and leadership of the apostolate. And so since Anacletus was an erudite and holy man who lived with the apostle Peter, it does not seem likely that he did not know how Peter understood those words, "You will be called Cephas", which Christ said to him. Nor should it be in any way believed that he would lie knowingly, and that in something he knew himself he would assert a falsehood (though it might be believed that he could be deceived in matters purely of knowledge or reason). Therefore Anacletus expressed the understanding Peter had of those words, "You will be called Cephas". Peter, however, had a true understanding of those words. In his words above, therefore, Anacletus put forth the true meaning of those words. And consequently it was Christ's intention that Peter should be called Cephas, that is head and chief of the other Apostles. And as a consequence he was then  to be their shepherd and prelate.

Allegacio suprascripta taliter confirmatur. Moris erat apostolorum et discipulorum ipsorum mox, cum contra veritatem aliqui insurrexerunt errores, ipsos comprimere et publice confutare, ita ut cuicumque in hoc parcendum minime reputarent: unde et beatus Paulus Petrum, cum non ambularet recte ad evangelii veritatem, reprehendit, ut legitur ad Galatas 2o. Sed in nulla invenitur historia vel cronica que a catholicis habeatur quod aliquis apostolus vel Discipulus: apostolorum super predicta assercione reprehenderit Anacletum, quorum tamen tunc temporis plurimi erant heresum et errorum oriencium vigilantissimi et acutissimi correctores et correptores, quorum gesta et scripta ad nostra tempora pervenerunt. Ergo omni versimilitudine caret quod beatus Anacletus in hoc erraverit et errare induxerit orthodoxos.

The above argument is confirmed as follows. It was the custom of the Apostles and their disciples, as soon as any errors arose against the truth, to curb them and to disprove them publicly, in such a way that they would not consider that anyone should be spared in this matter. Whence blessed Paul even censured Peter when he was not walking rightly according to the truth of the gospel, as we read in Galatians 2. But we do not find in any history or chronicle possessed by catholics that any apostle or disciple of the Apostles censured Anacletus about the above assertion. Yet at that time very many of these were the most vigilant and keen correctors and censurers of heresies and errors that were arising, and their deeds and writings have come down to our own time. It lacks all likelihood, therefore, that blessed Anacletus erred in this and induced the orthodox to err.


Discipulus: Aliquorum aliorum, sed paucorum, testimonia adducas ad probandum quod predictus fuerit intellectus illorum verborum Christi, “Tu es Petrus” et cetera.


Student: Would you bring forward the testimonies of some few others to prove that the above [meaning] was the meaning of those words of Christ, "You are Peter" etc?

The testimony of Marcellus and Cyprian

Magister: Hoc sentit Marcellus, papa et martyr, qui propter propinquitatem temporis apostolorum vel discipulorum ipsorum absque omni dubitacionis scrupulo poterat scire quomodo apostoli et ipsorum discipuli intellexerunt verba illa Christi. Ait enim, ut habetur in decretis, 24a, q. 1a, c. Rogamus: “Rogamus vos, fratres dilectissimi, ut non aliud doceatis neque senciatis quam quod a beato Petro apostolo et reliquis apostolis et patribus accepistis. Ipse enim est caput tocius ecclesie, cui ait Dominus, ‘Tu es Petrus, et super hanc petram edificabo ecclesiam meam’”.

Master: Marcellus, pope and martyr, thinks this, and because of his closeness to the time of the Apostles or their disciples he was able to know without any shadow of doubt how the Apostles and their disciples understood those words of Christ. For, as we read in 24, q. 1, c. Rogamus [c.15, col.970], he says, "We ask you, dearest brothers, not to teach or think anything other than what you received from the blessed apostle Peter and the fathers. For he is the head of the whole Church. The Lord said to him, 'You are Peter and upon this rock I will build my Church.'"

Idem eciam videtur sentire Cyprianus, martyr, qui eciam propter similem propinquitatem ad tempora apostolorum non videtur ignorasse quomodo apostoli intellexerunt verba illa Christi. Ait enim, ut habetur 24a, q. 1a, c. Loquitur, “Loquitur Dominus ad Petrum, ‘Ego dico tibi quia tu es Petrus, et super hanc petram edificabo ecclesiam meam’. Super unum edificat ecclesiam, et quamvis apostolis omnibus post resurreccionem suam parem potestatem tribuat, et dicat, ‘Sicut misit me Pater, et ego mitto vos. Accipite Spiritum sanctum’, tamen ut unitatem manifestaret unitatis eiusdem originem ab uno incipientem sua auctoritate disposuit”.

Cyprian the martyr also seems to think the same. Because of a similar closeness to the times of the Apostles he too does not seem to have been ignorant of how the Apostles understood those words of Christ. For, as we read in 24, q. 1, c. Loquitur [c.18, col.971], he says, "The Lord says to Peter, 'I say to you that you are Peter and upon this rock I will build my Church.' He builds the Church upon one man, and although he bestows equal power on all his Apostles after his resurrection and says, 'As the father sent me, so I send you. Receive the holy spirit,' yet, in order to show unity clearly, he arranged by his authority that the origin of that unity should begin with one man."

Ex hiis aliisque quampluribus colligitur quod probatissimi et literatissimi viri, de vero intellectu scripture sacre maximam curam habentes, qui per dicta aut scripta apostolorum aut discipulorum ipsorum verum intellectum predictorum verborum Christi certitudinaliter accipere potuerunt, eadem verba Christi intellexerunt modo predicto. Quare absque temeritate idem intellectus negari non potest, presertim cum nullus inveniatur apostolorum discipulus, aut qui vicinus fuerit eorum temporibus, qui intellectum illum neget aut affirmet contrarium.

We gather from these and very many other [authorities] that the most approved and learned men, who had the greatest care for the true meaning of sacred scripture, who could have learnt with certainty the true meaning of those words of Christ through the sayings or writings of the Apostles or their disciples, understood those words of Christ in the above way. That meaning can not be denied without rashness, therefore, especially since no disciple of the Apostles or anyone whose time was near theirs is found who denies that meaning or affirms the contrary.


Discipulus: Antequam procedas ulterius dic secundum aliquam opinionem per que verba inter illa que dixit Christus Petro cum dixit, “Tu es Petrus”, et cetera, sibi primatum super apostolos et omnes fideles promisit.


Student: Before you proceed further, explain, according to any opinion, by which words, among those which Christ uttered when he said to Peter, "You are Peter", etc., he promised him primacy over the Apostles and all the faithful.

Magister: Una est opinio dicens quod Petrus, sicut et quilibet successor, duplicem habuit potestatem, unam scilicet racione ordinis et aliam racione administracionis. Hanc duplicem potestatem ponit glossa dist. 21a, super capitulum In novo. Prima potestas promissa fuit Petro per illa verba, “Tibi dabo claves regni celorum, et quodcumque ligaveris”, et cetera. Secunda promissa fuit sibi per illa verba, “Super hanc petram edificabo ecclesiam meam”. Primam autem recepit ante secundam, quia primam recepit simul cum aliis apostolis, quando Christus dixit sibi et aliis apostolis, “Accipite Spiritum sanctum; quorum remiseritis peccata”, et cetera; tunc enim omnes illi potestatem ligandi atque solvendi receperunt, quia potestas retinendi vel remittendi peccata est potestas ligandi et solvendi. Secundam autem potestatem recepit quando Christus dixit sibi, “Pasce oves meas”, et licet ista potestas pascendi fuerit data Petro post potestatem ligandi atque solvendi, tamen absque ipsa potest inveniri. Istam enim potestatem habet quilibet electus in summum pontificem quamvis non sit sacerdos (qui solus habet potestatem ligandi et solvendi), et est tunc verus papa quantum ad hanc potestatem (dist. 23a, In nomine). Et per istam potestatem, quam ultimo percepit Petrus, factus fuit Petrus ceteris omnibus superior et prelatus; et ideo per illa verba, “Super hanc petram edificabo ecclesiam meam”, fuit primatus Petro promissus.

Master: There is one opinion that says that Peter, like any successor of his, had a double power, namely one by reason of order and the other by reason of administration. The gloss on dist. 21, c. In novo [c.2, col.95] sets down this double power. The first power was promised to Peter by the words, "I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven and whatever you bind", etc. The second was promised to him by the words, "On this rock I will build my Church." He received the first before the second, however, because he received the first at the same time as the other Apostles when Christ said to him and them, "Receive the holy spirit. If you forgive the sins of any", etc. For at that time they all received the power of binding and loosing, because the power of retaining or forgiving sins is the power of binding and loosing. He received the second power, however, when Christ said to him, "Feed my sheep", and although that power of feeding was given to Peter after the power of binding and loosing, yet it can be found without that [power of binding and loosing]. For anyone elected to the highest pontificate has that power [of feeding], even if he is not a priest (who alone has the power of binding and loosing), and is at that time a true pope with respect to this power (dist. 23, In nomine [c.1, col.77]). And by that power which Peter received last he was made superior to and prelate over all the rest. And therefore by those words, "On this rock I will build my Church", primacy was promised to Peter.


Discipulus: Intellexi quomodo improbatur responsio suprascripta. Nunc indica qualiter respondetur ad motiva quibus se munire conatur.


Student: I have understood how the above reply is disproved. Indicate now how reply is made to the arguments by which it tries to fortify itself.

Answers to Marsilius' arguments concerning Matthew 16:18-9: The Church was founded on the Apostles, Peter especially

Magister: Ad primum, cum accipiunt ut adductum est supra, c. 12o, “caput et fundamentum ecclesie unicum esse et fuisse ordinacione immediata dei, et hoc Christum, apostolorum vero neminem”, et cetera, respondetur quod hoc tam scripture canonice quam expositoribus approbatis scripturarum sanctarum aperte repugnat. Apocalypsis vero 21o sic habetur, “Murus civitatis habens fundamenta duodecim, et in ipsis duodecim nomina duodecim apostolorum”. Ex quibus verbis colligitur quod apostoli fuerunt aut sunt fundamenta militantis ecclesie vel triumphantis: civitas enim illa vel est ecclesia militans vel triumphans, et si quidem est militans, habetur intentum; si quidem est triumphans, sequitur quod apostoli multo forcius fuerunt fundamenta ecclesie militantis, quia non magis est solus Christus fundamentum ecclesie militantis quam triumphantis. Dicere ergo quod nullo modo fuit aliquis apostolus fundamentum ecclesie aperte sacre scripture repugnat. Hoc eciam assercionibus sanctorum patrum asserencium beatum Petrum fuisse fundamentum ecclesie et ecclesiam super ipsum fuisse fundatam et edificatam obviat manifeste. Ait enim Augustinus in sermone “De cathedra sancti Petri”: “Recte ergo ecclesie natalem sedis illius colunt quam apostolus pro ecclesiarum salute suscepit, dicente Domino, ‘Tu es Petrus et super hanc petram edificabo ecclesiam meam.’ Petrum itaque fundamentum ecclesie Dominus nominavit. Et ideo digne hoc fundamentum ecclesia colit supra quod ecclesiastici edificii altitudo consurgit. Unde convenienter psalmus qui lectus est dicit, ‘Exaltent eum in ecclesia plebis, et in cathedra seniorum laudent eum’. Bene autem eum Dominus in ecclesia exaltari precepit, quia dignum est ut fundamentum hoc in ecclesia honoretur per quod ad celum ascenditur”. Ecce quod tribus vicibus Augustinus nominat Petrum fundamentum ecclesie.

Master: To the first when they take [as a premise], as was brought forward in chapter 12 above, "that there is and has been a single head and foundation of the Church ordained directly by God and that this is Christ, not indeed any of the Apostles" etc, the reply is that this openly conflicts with canonical scripture and with the approved expositors of the holy scriptures. For we find the following in Revelations 21:14, "The wall of the city has twelve foundations ... the names of the Apostles." We gather from these words that the Apostles were or are the foundations of the Church, militant or triumphant. [Church "militant": on active service, in this world. Church "triumphant": in heaven.] For that city is either the Church militant or the Church triumphant. If in truth it is [the Church] militant, the point is made. If, however, it is [the Church] triumphant, it follows that the Apostles were even more the foundations of the Church militant, because Christ alone is no more the foundation of the Church militant than of the Church triumphant. To say, therefore, that no apostle was in any way a foundation of the Church openly conflicts with sacred scripture. It is also clearly opposed to the assertions of the holy fathers, when they assert that blessed Peter was the foundation of the Church and that the Church was founded and built on him. For in a sermon On the seat of St. Peter [PL, 39, col. 2100] Augustine says, "Rightly therefore do they reverence the anniversary of that see of the Church which the apostle received for the salvation of Church when the Lord said, 'You are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church.' And so the Lord named Peter as the foundation of the Church. Appropriately therefore does the Church venerate this foundation upon which the height of the ecclesiastical edifice rises. Whence the psalm (107:32) that has been read says fitly, 'Let them extol him in the congregation of the people, and praise him in the assembly of the elders'. Well did the Lord order him to be extolled in the Church, because it is fitting that this foundation through we ascend to heaven be honoured in the Church." Notice that on three occasions Augustine names Peter as the foundation of the Church.

Item, Ieronimus super illud Matthei 16o, “Venit Iesus in partes Cesaree Philippi”: “Quid est hoc quod ait: ‘Et ego dico tibi’? Quia tu michi dixisti, ‘Tu es Christus filius dei vivi, et ego dico tibi’, non sermone casso et nullum habente opus, sed ‘dico tibi’ quia meum dixisse fecisse est. ‘Quia tu es Petrus, et super hanc petram edificabo ecclesiam meam’. Sicut ipse lumen apostolis donavit ut lumen mundi appellarentur, et cetera que ex Domino sortiti vocabula sunt; ita et Simoni, qui credebat in petram Christum, Petri largitus est nomen, ac secundum metaphoram petre recte dicitur ei, ‘edificabo ecclesiam meam’ super te”. Ecce quod secundum Ieronimum Christus dixit Petro, “edificabo ecclesiam meam” super te. Ergo ecclesia Christi fuit edificata super Petrum. Ille autem super quem edificatum erat edificium ecclesie potest fundamentum ecclesie appellari, quia fundamentum est illud super quod erigitur edificium.

Again, Jerome, on Matthew 16:18 [CCSL 77, p. 141], "Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi", [says], "Why does he say this, 'And I say to you'?. Because you have said to me, 'You are the Messiah, the son of the living God', I also say to you, not in vain words of no effect, but I say to you because my having said it is to have done it,  that 'You are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church'. Just as he endowed the Apostles with light so that they would be called the light of the world, and so also with the rest of the words the Lord chose, so the Lord bestowed the name of Peter on Simon who believed in Christ the rock. And it is rightly said to him, in accord with the metaphor of 'rock', 'I will build my Church on you'." See that according to Jerome, Christ said to Peter, "I will build my Church on you." The Church of Christ, therefore, has been built on Peter. That one, however, upon whom the edifice of the Church has been built can be called the foundation of the Church, because the foundation is that upon which the edifice is erected.

Item, beatus Leo papa, in sermone de festo apostolorum qui incipit, “Omnium quidem sanctorum”, ait, loquens de beato Petro, “Iam Anthiochenam ecclesiam, ubi primum Christiani nominis dignitas est exorta, fundaveras”. Fuit igitur beatus Petrus fundamentum ecclesie Anthiochene, et eadem racione Romane.

Again blessed Pope Leo in his sermon 'On the feast of the Apostles' which begins Omnium quidem sanctorum [ccsl. vol.138a, p.508], says about blessed Peter, "You had already founded the Church at Antioch where the dignity of the name 'christian' first arose." Blessed Peter was therefore the foundation of the Church of Antioch and, by the same argument, of Rome.

Item, beatus Maximus in sermone qui incipit “Gloriosissimos” ait, “Hic est Petrus, cui Christus Dominus communionem sui nominis libenter indulsit. Ut enim, sicut Apostolus docuit, petra erat Christus, ita per Christum Petrus factus est petra, dicente ei Domino, ‘Tu es Petrus, et super hanc petram edificabo ecclesiam meam’. Nam sicut in deserto, Dominico sicienti populo, aqua fluxit e petra, ita, universo mundo perfidie ariditate lassanti, de ore Petri fons salutifere confessionis emersit”. Ex quibus verbis colligitur quod non solum Christus, sed eciam Petrus, erat petra illa super quam Christus suam erat fundaturus ecclesiam. Quare aliquo modo concedi debet quod Petrus erat fundamentum ecclesie.

Again blessed Maximus in a sermon which begins Gloriosissimos [PL.57, col.392] says, "This is Peter to whom Christ the Lord freely granted participation in his name. For just as Christ was the rock, as the Apostle taught, so Peter was made the rock by Christ when the Lord said to him, 'You are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church.' For, just as in the desert water flowed from a rock when the Lord's people were thirsty, so with the whole world weary from the dryness of faithlessness, a spring of healing confession came forth from Peter's mouth." We gather from these words that not only Christ but also Peter was that rock on which Christ was going to found his Church. It should be granted in some way, therefore, that Peter was the foundation of the Church.

Item, hoc dicit Gregorius qui, ut habetur dist. 12a, c. Preceptis, ait: “Cuius auctoritatis sanccionem omnes teneant sacerdotes qui nolunt ab apostolice petre, supra quam Christus universalem ecclesiam fundavit, soliditate divelli”. Super apostolicam ergo petram, id est super Petrum apostolum, fundata est universalis ecclesia.

Gregory also says this, stating, as we find in dist. 12, c. Praeceptis [c.2, col.27], "Let all priests who do not want to be separated from the strength of the apostolic rock on which Christ founded his universal Church maintain the law of his authority." It is on the apostolic rock, therefore, that is on the apostle Peter, that the universal Church was founded.

Item, Eusebius Cesariensis, in Ecclesiastica historia, lib. 3o, c. 4o, asserit manifeste apostolos fundasse ecclesias, dicens: “Si qui constantes in fide et emulatores verbi dei reperti sunt, eciam regendas ecclesias quas apostoli fundaverunt susceperunt”.

Eusebius of Caesarea in book 3, chapter 4 of his Ecclesiastical History also asserts clearly that the Apostles founded the Churches. He says, "If some were found who were constant in faith and zealous for the word of God, they also received rule of the Churches that the Apostles founded." [Rufinus, in Eusebius Werke, Bd. 2, Die Kirchengeschichte, Teil 1, ed. E. Schwartz, Leipzig, 1903, p. 193]

Item, Nicolaus papa, ut habetur Extra, De verborum significacione, c. Exiit, hoc idem asserit manifeste cum dicit, volens de apostolis facere mencionem: “Primi fundatores militantis ecclesie, prout ab ipso fonte”, scilicet Christo, “hauserant, in volentes perfecte vivere, per doctrine in ipsorum alveos derivarunt”. Fuerunt ergo apostoli et non solum Petrus fundamenta ecclesie et eciam fundatores.

Again, Pope Nicholas too clearly asserts the same thing, as we find in Extra, De verborum significatione, c. Exiit {c.3, col.1109] when, wanting to make mention of the Apostles, he says, "Just as the first founders of the Church militant had drawn it from the fountainhead itself" namely Christ, "they distributed it through the channels of their teaching to those wishing to live perfectly" The Apostles, therefore, and not only Peter, were the foundations of the Church and also its founders.


Discipulus: Qualiter respondetur ad motiva opinancium predictorum quibus probare nituntur quod solus Christus erat fundamentum ecclesie?


Student: How is reply made to the arguments by which those who hold the above opinion try to prove that Christ alone was the foundation of the Church?

Answer to Marsilius' auxiliary arguments

Magister: Ad primum eorum, cum adducitur  glossa interlinearis qua videtur quod Christus sibi videtur retinuisse fundamenti dignitatem, respondetur per distinccionem de fundamento: quod quoddam est fundamentum ecclesie primarium et principale, absque quo nulla potest fundari ecclesia, et illud fundamentum est solus deus sive Christus; aliud est fundamentum ecclesie secundarium, sine quo poterat fundari ecclesia, sine quo tamen non fuit de facto fundata, et tale fundamentum non est solus deus nec solus Petrus — immo omnes apostoli sic fuerunt fundamenta ecclesie, inter quos tamen quodammodo principalius et universalius fundamentum fuit beatus Petrus. Glossa autem loquitur de fundamento primo modo dicto et non de fundamento secundo modo dicto.

Master: To the first of them, when the interlinear gloss is brought forward in which it seems that Christ seems to have retained the dignity of foundation for himself, the reply is by a distinction of [the word] 'foundation', because there is a certain primary and principal foundation of the Church without which no Church can be founded. And that foundation is only God or Christ. There is another secondary foundation of the Church, without which the Church could be founded, yet without which it has not in fact been founded, and that foundation is neither God alone nor Peter alone; rather, in this way all the Apostles were the foundations of the Church, although among them blessed Peter was in a certain manner the more principal and universal foundation. The gloss, however, speaks of foundation in the first way, not in the second way.

Consimiliter dicitur ad auctoritatem Augustini sumptam ex libro Retractacionum quod Augustinus non reprobat dictum suum de apostolo Petro quo asseruit quod in illo tamquam in petra edificata fuit ecclesia, sed dicit se aliter sepe exposuisse, ut scilicet per petram intelligatur Christus; et utrumque istorum est verum, quia et per petram ibi cum dicitur, “Super hanc petram edificabo ecclesiam meam”, intelligitur Christus tamquam petra principalis, super quem principaliter edificata est ecclesia. Non enim in fundamento edificii materialis ponitur semper unica petra, sed sepe plures et una super aliam. Et ita per distinccionem talem petre concordantur auctoritates sanctorum patrum que repugnare videntur. Nequaquam igitur Augustinus dictum suum reprobat aut revocat vel corrigit, sed declarat et asserit quod locus scripture quem volebat exponere alium potest habere sensum qui priori sensui minime contradicit. Sed per distinccionem predictam unus est cum alio concordandus. Non enim Augustinus semper reprobat aut corrigit que retractat, sed aliqua dicitur retractare quia iterum ipsa tractat, declarando ipsa et cum aliis concordando.

Similarly, to the text of Augustine taken from his book, Retractations, it is said that Augustine does not reject his remark about the apostle Peter in which he asserted that the Church was built on him as on a rock, but he says that he had often expounded it otherwise, namely, so that, by "rock" is understood Christ; and both of these are true, because at that place where it is said, "On this rock I will build my Church", Christ is understood by "rock" as the principal rock on whom the Church is principally built (for it is not the case that a single rock is always placed in the foundation of a material building, but often more, and one upon another). And so by such a distinction concerning "rock" the texts of the holy fathers which seem to conflict are harmonised. It is not the case, therefore, that Augustine rejects, revokes or corrects what he said, but he declares and asserts that the place in scripture that he wanted to expound can have another sense, which does not contradict the earlier sense. But by the above distinction one should be harmonised with the other. For Augustine does not always reject or correct what he "re-treats" (retractat),  but he is said to re-treat some things because he treats them again by making them clear and by harmonising them with others.

Ad racionem qua sepe dicti opinantes probare nituntur quod beatus Petrus non fuit fundamentum ecclesie quia fundamentum ecclesie non potest errare nec peccare, respondetur quod principale fundamentum ecclesie, sine quo totum edificium rueret, immo sine quo nullo modo construi posset, nec peccare nec errare potest aut potuit, et illud fuit Christus non Petrus. Sed secundarium fundamentum, sine quo poterat erigi totum edificium ecclesie, potuit errare et peccare, quamvis inquantum fuit fundamentum actualiter fundando non potuerit errare nec peccare. Quando enim Petrus negavit Christum, et quando postea ad veritatem evangelii non recte ambulavit, non actu fundavit ecclesiam, sed quando primo post Christum predicando veritatem populos ad veram fidem convertit, tunc novellam fundavit ecclesiam.

To the argument by which those who hold the oft-mentioned opinion try to prove that blessed Peter was not the foundation of the Church because the foundation of the Church can not err or sin, the reply is that the principal foundation of the Church without which the whole edifice would fall down, indeed without which it could in no way be constructed, can not or could not either sin or err, and that was Christ, not Peter. But the secondary foundation, without which the whole edifice of the Church could be erected, could have erred and sinned, although in so far as he was the foundation actually founding he could not have erred or sinned. For when Peter denied Christ and when afterwards he did not walk rightly according to the truth of the gospel, he did not actually found the Church, but when after Christ he first converted people to the true faith by preaching the truth, then he founded the new Church.

Ad auctoritatem autem Apostoli 1a ad Corinthios 3o, respondetur quod Apostolus ibi locutus est de principali fundamento ecclesie non de secundario. Et certe fundamentum principale nemo aliud ponere potest preter id quod positum est, quod est Christus Iesus. Est autem sciendum, secundum quosdam, sicut dictum est prius, quod modus scripture sepe est negare aliquid ab illis quibus non competit principaliter quamvis secundario competat. Sic enim dixit Christus Luce 18o, “Nemo bonus nisi solus deus”. Sic eciam de Iohanne Baptista dicitur, “Non erat ille lux”, Iohannis 1o, et tamen sicut apostoli erant lux, dicente eis Christo, Matthei 5o, “Vos estis lux mundi”, sic et Iohannes Baptista fuit lux: fuit enim “lucerna ardens et lucens” (Iohannis 5o).

To the text of the apostle from 1 Cor. 3:11, however, the reply is that the apostle there spoke about the principal foundation of the Church, not about the secondary one. And certainly no one can lay another principal foundation besides that which has been laid, which is Christ Jesus. According to some people, however, as has been said before, it should be known that scripture's way is often to deny something to those to whom it is not principally appropriate, even if it is secondarily appropriate. For thus Christ said in Luke 18:19, "No one is good but God alone." So also it is said of John the Baptist in John 1 that "He was not the light", and yet just as the Apostles were a light, for Christ said to them in Matthew 5:14, "You are the light of the world", so also John the Baptist was a light. For he was "a burning and shining lamp" (John 5:35).

Cum vero dicitur quod Christus potestatem clavium non videtur Petro tradidisse per hec verba, “Tu es Petrus”, et cetera, respondetur quod tunc Christus non tradidit Petro potestatem clavium, sed promisit. Nec eciam tunc prefecit eum reliquis apostolis, sed promisit. Et ideo qualiter et quibus prefecit eum ex istis verbis, “Tu es Petrus”, ultimate nequaquam colligi potest nisi referendo ad ipsa verba quibus postea prefecit eum, scilicet illa, “Pasce oves meas”. Et tamen ex istis verbis, “Super hanc petram edificabo ecclesiam meam”, potest ostendi aliquo modo quod promisit sibi primatum super omnes, ex quo indefinite dixit ‘ecclesiam meam’, non distinguendo inter hanc ecclesiam particularem et illam. An autem Christus eandem potestatem clavium tribuerit aliis apostolis postea poteris, si tibi placebit, inquirere.

Now when it is said that Christ does not seem to have handed over to Peter the power of the keys by these words, "You are Peter", the reply is that at that time Christ did not hand over to Peter the power of the keys but promised it. And at that time too he did not put him in authority over the rest of the Apostles but promised him this. And therefore how and whom he put him in authority over with those words, "You are Peter", can not ultimately be gathered except by referring to those words by which he later put him in authority, that is, "Feed my sheep." Yet from those words, "On this rock I will build my Church", it can be shown in some way that he promised him primacy over everyone, because he said "my Church" indefinitely, not distinguishing between this particular Church and that. Whether Christ bestowed the same power of the keys on the other Apostles, however, you can ask later if you wish to.

Cum autem dicitur quod Christus potestatem clavium non tradidit per hec verba, “Tu es Petrus”, sed Iohannis 20o, quando indifferenter omnibus dixit, “Accipite Spiritum sanctum et quorum remiseritis”, et cetera, respondetur iuxta premissa supra c. 17o, quod potestatem clavium que competit racione ordinis accepit Petrus simul cum aliis apostolis per verba prescripta Iohannis 20o, aliam tamen potestatem accepit super apostolos cum Christus sibi dixit, “Pasce oves meas”.

When it is said, however, that Christ did not hand over the power of the keys by these words, "You are Peter", but when he said to all without distinction in John 20:23, "Receive the holy spirit and if you forgive" etc, the reply is, according to what was set down in chapter 17 above, that Peter received that power of the keys that belongs by reason of order at the same time as the other Apostles by the above words from John 20, yet he received another power over the Apostles when Christ said to him, "Feed my sheep."

Cum vero dicitur, “Esto quod Petrus hiis verbis potestatem hanc recepisset, non concluditur ex hoc nisi quod tempore prius fuerit pastor institutus”, respondetur quod si Petrus illis verbis, “Tu es Petrus”, et cetera, potestatem aliquam recepisset, illam potestatem recepisset super omnes qui erant de ecclesia Christi. Quia, sicut tactum est prius, in collacione potestatis super aliquos certi debent esse super quos confertur potestas, quia sicut prelatus debet esse certus ita subditi debent esse certi. Cum ergo nec per illa verba nec per quecumque precedencia vel subsequencia appareat quod Christus aliquos de ecclesia sua specialiter exceperit seu exemerit, si Petrus per illa verba recepisset super aliquos de ecclesia Christi, eandem recepisset super omnes potestatem. Et ideo Christus per illa verba non solum “signare voluit ecclesie unitatem in fide”, sed eciam unitatem capitis preficiendi ecclesie universe. Nec tantummodo tempore prius “dotatur clavibus et honoratur, aut honorari promittitur” (ut isti dicunt, sibimet ipsis in hoc eciam contradicendo, quia secundum eos simul tempore omnibus apostolis Christus contulit clavium potestatem), sed per illa verba, “Tu es Petrus”, et cetera, ultra clavium potestatem communem sibi et aliis apostolis, que eis racione ordinis competebant, alia fuit sibi promissa potestas super omnes. 

Now when it is said that "even if Peter had indeed received this power by those words, we can conclude from this only that he was the first in time to be appointed shepherd", the reply is that if he had received some power by those words, "You are Peter" etc, he would have received that power over everyone who was of the Church of Christ because, as was alluded to above, in the bestowing of power over people it should be certain over whom the power is conferred (because just as the prelate should be certain, so the subjects should be certain): since it is clear, therefore, that neither by those words nor by any that precede or follow did Christ particularly except or exempt any members of his Church then, if by those words Peter had received power over some members of Christ's Church, he would have received the same power over all of them. And by those words, therefore, Christ wanted not only "to indicate the unity of the Church in faith" [above], but also the unity of the head who was to be set in authority over the universal Church. And it is not only that "he is the first in time to be endowed with the keys and honoured (or promised to be honoured)" [above], -- as they say, actually contradicting themselves in this, because, according to them, Christ conferred the power of the keys on all the Apostles at the same time -- but by those words, "You are Peter" etc, besides the common power of the keys promised to him and the other Apostles, [keys] that belonged to them by reason of order, another power over everyone was promised to him. 

Et ideo per illa verba, “Tu es Petrus”, et cetera, intellecta ut ea intellexerunt apostoli et eorum discipuli, aperte “convincitur Petrum fuisse ceteris dignitate sive auctoritate superiorem”. Et ideo glossatores hoc dicentes non acceperunt hoc “a se” sed a scriptura intellecta ut eam intellexerunt apostoli: qui intellectus ab ipsis apostolis usque ad ipsos serie tractatorum et scriptorum catholicorum sibimet succedencium et asserencium ipsum pervenit. And therefore by those words, "You are Peter" etc, understood as the Apostles and their disciples understood them, we can clearly conclude that Peter was superior to the rest in dignity and authority. And the glossators who say this, therefore, did not get this "from themselves" [above] but took it from scripture understood the way the Apostles understood it. This understanding came down to those glossators from the Apostles themselves through a series of commentators and catholic writers succeeding one another and asserting it.


Discipulus: Narra qualiter respondetur ad allegacionem sequentem.


Student: Explain how reply is made to the following argument.

Magister: : Ad illam allegacionem, cum accipitur quod series evangelii que habetur Matthei 20o et Luce 22o, ubi Christus hanc questionem diffinivit, cum contencio esset inter eos quis eorum esset maior, et Matthei 23o, cum dixit Christus, “Nolite vocari rabbi”, ostendit nullum fuisse superiorem aliis, respondetur dupliciter. Uno modo, quod omnia illa verba Christi intelligenda sunt pro tempore illo quo dicta fuerunt a Christo et pro tempore ante exaltacionem Petri super reliquos apostolos; tunc enim solus Christus fuit prelatus omnium et nullus apostolus fuit tunc prelatus sed solummodo apostolus. 

Master: To that argument, when it is taken [as a premise] that the gospel passage found in Matthew 20 and Luke 22, where Christ determined the question when there was a dispute among them as to which of them was the greater, and in Matthew 23:8 when Christ said, "You are not to be called rabbi", shows that no one was superior to the others, reply is made in two ways. The first reply is that all those words of Christ should be understood for the time when they were said by him and for the time before the raising up of Peter above the rest of the Apostles. For at that time Christ alone was the prelate of all and no apostle was a prelate but only an apostle. 

Aliter dicitur quod Christus non intendebat imponere eis equalitatem excludentem superioritatem prelacionis, saltem pro tempore futuro, sed, ipsos ad humilitatem exhortans, imponebat eis omnem equalitatem excludentem omnem superioritatem superbie, iniuste, aspere et tyrannice potestatis, quemadmodum sapiens Ecclesiastici 32o rectori superioritatem concedit et quamdam equalitatem iniungit, cum dicit, “Rectorem te posuerunt? Noli extolli. Esto in illis quasi unus ex ipsis”, sicut eciam 3o c. maiori non solum equalitatem sed eciam quamdam inferioritatem inducit dicens, “Quanto magnus es, humilia te in omnibus” — humilitas enim quamdam inferioritatem importat. Sic eciam Christus exemplo sui, qui maior existens se minorem exhibuit, maioribus non solum equalitatem sed eciam minoritatem quamdam suasit, dicens Luce 22o, “Qui maior est in vobis, fiat sicut minor, et qui precessor est, sicut ministrator. Nam quis maior est, qui recumbit, an qui ministrat? Nonne qui recumbit? Ego autem in medio vestrum sum, sicut qui ministrat”. Christus igitur nec Matthei 20o nec Luce 22o nec Matthei 23o omnem superioritatem prelacionis apostolis interdixit, sed, ipsos ad humilitatem inducens, omnem superioritatem iniustam et illicitam ac modum regendi fastuosum et iniquum amovit. 

The other reply says that Christ was not intending to impose on them an equality that excluded the superiority of a prelacy, at least at some future time, but, exhorting them to humility, he imposed on them a complete equality which excluded all superiority of pride, of unjust, harsh and tyrannical power, just as the wise man in Ecclesiasticus 32:1 grants superiority to a ruler and enjoins a certain equality when he says, "Have they made you a ruler? Do not exalt yourself. Be among them as one of them." In Ecclesiasticus 3:20 he also recommends to one who is greater not only equality but even a certain inferiority, when he says, "The greater you are the more you must humble yourself in everything." For humility implies a certain inferiority. So too by his own example Christ, who though greater presented himself as lesser, recommended to those who are greater not only equality but even a certain lowliness, when he said in Luke 22:26-7, "The greatest of you must become like the lesser, and the leader like one who serves. For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one at the table? But I am among you as one who serves." Christ did not, therefore, in Matthew 20, Luke 22 or Matthew 23 forbid the Apostles all superiority of prelacy but, to lead them towards humility, he took away from them any unjust and illicit superiority and a haughty and iniquitous way of ruling. 
Nec movere debet quod Christus dixit Matthei 23o, “Omnes autem vos fratres estis”, quasi omnem equalitatem inter eos esse tenendam insinuans: nam nec eciam inter fratres est omnimoda equalitas observanda, sed sepissime expedit ut unus aliis preferatur, quemadmodum sepe a deo et sanctis viris in scripturis divinis legimus fuisse factum. Nor ought it persuade us that Christ said in Matthew 23:8, "And you are all brothers", as though urging that complete equality be maintained among them. For not even among brothers should equality of every kind be observed, but very often it is appropriate that one be promoted over the others, as we read in the divine scriptures was often done by God and holy men.

Cum vero accipitur quod “mirandum est si magis credere debeamus auctoritati glosse quam Christi”, respondetur quod nemo magis debet credere cuiquam glosse vel sancto quam Christo, tamen sepe per viros sanctos qui glossas vel scripta alia ediderunt, et precipue per illos qui ab apostolis instructi fuerunt vel vicini apostolorum temporibus extiterunt, quis sit catholicus intellectus verborum Christi addiscimus. Et ideo, quandoque verba Christi possunt esse ambigua, plectenda est temeritas ab assercionibus et exposicionibus huiusmodi virorum recedere et interpretacioni seu exposicioni proprie adherere.

Now when it is said that "it is to be marvelled at if we ought to believe the text of the gloss rather than Christ", [above] the reply is that no one ought to trust any gloss or holy man at all rather than Christ. Nevertheless, from holy men who have produced glosses or other writings, and especially from those who were instructed by the Apostles or lived at a time near theirs, we often learn what is the catholic understanding of the words of Christ. And whenever the words of Christ can be ambiguous, therefore, the rashness of abandoning the assertions and expositions of men of this kind and clinging to one's own interpretation or exposition should be punished.

Discipulus: Forte dicerent isti quod verba Christi que adducunt non possunt esse ambigua; “ubi autem verba non sunt ambigua non est locus interpretacioni”, ut notat glossa, Extra, De consuetudine, Cum dilectus.

Student: Perhaps they would say that the words of Christ which they are adducing can not be ambiguous. "Where words are not ambiguous, however, there is no place for interpretation", as the gloss on Extra, De consuetudine, Cum dilectus notes [v. iuri communi, col. 94].

Magister: Multis apparet quod istud sit irracionabiliter dictum. Nam multa verba Christi que aperciora videntur possunt esse ambigua, ergo et ista possunt esse ambigua. Et per predicta constat quod possunt esse ambigua, cum predicti opinantes aliter ipsa intelligant quam multi alii literati viri et intelligentes et qui exposicionem per similia et multos alios modos ostendunt.

Master: It seems to many people that it would be unreasonable to say that. For many of Christ's words which seem quite clear can be ambiguous. Therefore these too can be ambiguous. And it is certain from the above that they can be ambiguous, since those who hold the above opinion understand them differently from many other learned men with understanding who demonstrate their exposition through analogies and in many other ways.

Discipulus: Quid dicitur ad hoc quod isti dicunt multos glossatores dicere oppositum?

Student: What is said to their claim that many glossators say the opposite?

Magister: Respondetur quod glossatores nusquam dicunt oppositum, si intelligantur sane.

Master: The reply is that if they are understood soundly, the glossators nowhere say the opposite.


Discipulus: Aliam allegacionem pro prelacione Petri adducas.


Student: Would you bring forward another argument for Peter's prelacy?

Third argument for Peter's superiority, from Luke 22:32

Magister: Hoc ostenditur  Luce 22o,
cum ad ipsum specialiter Christus dixit: “Ego autem rogavi pro te, Petre, ut non deficiat fides tua, et tu aliquando conversus confirma fratres tuos”. Apostolorum ergo et aliorum fidelium prima cura pastoralis et confirmacio beato Petro commissa fuit propter sue fidei firmitatem, pro qua, ne deficeret, specialiter Christus orasse videtur, ne deficeret in ipso neque in ipsius aliquo successore. Ubi glossa: “‘Confirma fratres tuos’, cum te principem apostolorum constituerim. Hoc autem non solum intelligendum de apostolis qui tunc erant, ut roborarentur a Petro, sed et de omnibus fidelibus”. Et parum infra subdit: “Per penitenciam obtinuit”, Petrus scilicet, “ut esset antistes mundi”.

Master: It is shown by Luke 22:32 where Christ said particularly to him, "But I have prayed for you, Peter, that your own faith may not fail; and you, when once you have turned back, strengthen your brothers." The primary pastoral care and strengthening of the Apostles and other faithful, therefore, was committed to blessed Peter because of the strength of his own faith; that his faith should not fail Christ seems to have prayed particularly, that faith would not fail in him nor in any of his successors. Here the gloss says: "'Strengthen your brothers', since I have appointed you chief of the Apostles. This should be understood, however, not only of the Apostles then existing, that they should be strengthened by Peter, but also of all the faithful". And a little further on it adds: "By his repentance he", that is Peter, "obtained the chief priesthood of the world". [Cf. Marsilius, II.xxvii.2]

Marsilius' reply to the argument from Luke 22:32

Discipulus: Responsionem precedencium opinancium ad istam allegacionem recitabo. Dicunt itaque quod ex verbis Christi inferri non potest quod Christus Petrum reliquorum apostolorum prelatum fecerit. Quod probatur per scripturam, quia Paulus contulit Petro in evangelio, non econtra. Hoc autem per glossam probatur, ibidem, que ait,
“Sicut ego te orando protexi ne deficeres, sic tu infirmiores fratres confirma, ne de venia desperent”, intelligens per “fratres” indifferenter fideles. Quod eciam dicens Petro fecit alios apostolos intelligere facturos. Unde Marci 13o: “Quod uni dico”, vel secundum aliam literam, sensum tamen eundem, “quod vobis dico, omnibus dico”. Aut fortasse id Petro singulariter dixit, sicut eciam glossa sentire videtur, quoniam presciebat Christus Petrum se negaturum. Unde: “Tu conversus aliquando”, id est “exemplo tue penitencie”, eo quod verbo et sui exemplo, qui veniam meruerat, infirmos in fide singularius confortare seu confirmare valebat.
Hec est eorum responsio, de qua cupio scire an omnibus opinantibus contrarium appareat non valere.

Student: I will relate the reply to that argument made by those who hold the above opinion. They say, then, that it can not be inferred from these words of Christ that Christ made Peter prelate over the rest of the Apostles. This is proved from scripture because Paul "contributed to" Peter concerning the gospel and not vice versa. This is proved by the gloss on the same place, which says, "Just as I have protected you by praying that you do not fail, so you should strengthen your weaker brothers, so that they do not despair of forgiveness", understanding by "brothers" the faithful without distinction. In saying this to Peter he made the other Apostles understand that they were to do it too. Whence Mark 13:37 [says], "What I say to one" (or, according to another version, yet with the same sense, "What I say to you") "I say to all." Or perhaps he said this to Peter particularly, as also the gloss seems to think he did, because Christ foreknew that Peter would deny him. Whence [he said] : "You, when once you have turned back", that is "by the example of your repentance", in that more especially by the word and example of him who had merited forgiveness he was able to comfort or strengthen those who were weak in the faith. [Cf. Marsilius II.xxviii.7] This is their reply, concerning which I want to know whether it seems invalid to all who hold the opposite opinion.

Magister: Videtur quibusdam apparencia non carere, quia (ut videtur) per illa verba Christi precise non posset ostendi quod Christus fecerit beatum Petrum prelatum et principem aliorum. Et ideo si inveniantur sancti exponere verba illa de primatu Petri, tenendum est quidem quod sensus ille est verus, non tamen tamquam sensus literalis verborum illorum Christi sed tamquam sensus misticus, cuius veritas ex aliis verbis Christi literaliter intellectis potest sufficienter ostendi.

Master: To some it seems not to lack plausibility, because (it seems) by those words of Christ alone it could not be shown that Christ made blessed Peter prelate over and chief of the others. And therefore if saints are found to expound those words in connection with the primacy of Peter it should indeed be held that that is their true meaning, yet not as if that were the literal meaning of those words of Christ but their mystical meaning, whose truth can be adequately shown from other words of Christ understood literally.


Discipulus: Adhuc aliquas, sed paucas, allegaciones adducas ad probandum superioritatem Petri respectu aliorum apostolorum.

Fourth argument for Peter's superiority: constant belief from ancient times

Magister: Hoc tali modo probatur. Quod a temporibus apostolorum usque ad tempora nostra prelati et doctores ecclesie sibi continua serie succedentes et populi eis subiecti senserunt ab omnibus catholicis est tenendum firmiter. Hec auctoritate Augustini in libro contra Manicheos, et habetur in decretis dist. 11a, c. Palam, videtur aperte posse probari, cum dicit: “Palam est quod in re dubia ad fidem valeat auctoritas ecclesie catholice, que ab ipsis fundatissimis sedibus apostolorum usque ad hodiernum diem succedencium sibimet episcoporum serie et tot populorum consensione confirmatur”.

Que nichilominus, quia quidam dicunt, ut patet supra, auctoritates aliorum quam scriptorum scripture canonice et generalium conciliorum non esse recipiendas, racione probatur. Nam eciam secundum contrarios universalis ecclesia errare non potest; quare quod sensit et sentit universalis ecclesia firmiter est tenendum. Universalis autem ecclesia solummodo comprehendit prelatos ecclesie et populos sibi subiectos; quare quod prelati ecclesie sibi continua serie succedentes et populi sibi subiecti a temporibus apostolorum usque ad tempora nostra senserunt firmiter est credendum. 

Sed prelati ecclesie ab ipsis apostolis usque ad hec tempora cum populis sibi subiectis tenuerunt et senserunt Petrum fuisse superiorem aliis apostolis. Hoc tenuit Anacletus papa, ut allegatum est supra, qui in hoc veritatem non potuit ignorare. Beatus eciam Clemens papa, apostolorum discipulus, idem sensit, qui, ut habetur dist. 80a, c. In illis, ait: “Nec inter ipsos apostolos par fuit institucio, sed unus prefuit omnibus”, et non alius quam Petrus. Hoc eciam sentit Eusebius Cesariensis, qui, quia in doctrinis, tradicionibus et scripturis illorum qui fuerunt discipuli apostolorum et a discipulis eisdem edocti fuit imbutus, quid precedentes senserint minime ignoravit, de quo nullo modo presumendum est quod falsum scienter docuerit, cui nullus prelatorum ecclesie aut doctorum postea contradixit, et per consequens omnes tacendo consenserunt eidem. Ait itaque in Ecclesiastica historia, quam transtulit beatus Ieronimus, lib. 2o, c. 14o, “Claudii temporibus clemencia divine providencie probatissimum omnium apostolorum et maximum, fidei magnificencia et virtutum merito primorum principem, Petrum, ad urbem Romam, velut adversum humani generis communem perniciem repugnaturum, deducit: ducem quemdam et magistrum milicie sue, scientem divina prelia gerere et virtutum castra ductare”. Hoc sentit beatus Ieronimus, beatus Ambrosius, beatus Augustinus, beatus Marcellus papa, beatus Cyprianus, sicut per auctoritates ipsorum in locis diversis superius allegatas patet expresse. Ab omni autem verisimilitudine alienum videtur quod predicti viri — scripturarum canonicarum, historiarum, cronicarum, gestorum, consuetudinum et tradicionum universalis ecclesie diligentissimi scrutatores — nescierint quid circa rem tam necessariam toti ecclesie Christi senserint apostoli et discipuli eorundem, de quibus eciam est nullatenus presumendum quod scienter falsum docuerint. Quare tenendum est quod assercio supradicta ab ipsis apostolis per cronicas et historias fide dignas, quarum nos fortassis aliquas non habemus, et per tradicionem et consuetudinem universalis ecclesie usque ad ipsos continuatam ad eosdem pervenit. Assercionem autem suprascriptam tenuerunt omnes alii prelati et doctores ecclesie a tempore beati Silvestri usque ad tempora nostra, sicut multipliciter posset ostendi. Premissis autem prelatis et doctoribus in eadem assercione catholici populi consenserunt, quia nullus inventus est populus catholicus qui contradiceret eis. Ergo hec assercio est universali ecclesie ascribenda, et per consequens firmiter est tenenda.

Discipulus: Forte dicent aliqui quod non omnes populi Christiani hoc senserunt. Nam fertur quod Greci, qui fuerunt Christiani et catholici antequam Romani, hoc non tenent, et ita non omnes populi Christiani hoc usque ad tempora nostra crediderunt.

Magister: Hec responsio ab aliis impugnatur. Nam Greci, dum erant catholici, doctorum catholicorum sequentes doctrinam, in hoc consenserunt. Non enim legitur, nec videtur probabile, quod populus Grecorum antequam divideretur a Romana ecclesia secutus non fuerit doctrinam catholicorum doctorum grecorum. Doctores autem ipsorum assercionem predictam publice docuerunt et reliquerunt in scriptis. Eusebius enim Cesariensis, qui Grecus fuit et in scriptis omnium doctorum Grecorum peritus, ut ex Ecclesiastica historia quam composuit liquido patet, hoc docuit et scripsit, ut ex supradictis patet. Ergo Greci dum erant Catholici predictam sentenciam tenuerunt. Errores autem ipsorum postquam se a Romana ecclesia diviserunt allegacionem predictam nullo modo impediunt. Quare secundum Latinos tenendum est quod Petrus omnibus aliis erat superior.

Discipulus: Aliter forte aliqui responderent ad allegacionem predictam dicentes quod, quamvis omnes populi Christiani consenserint prelatis et doctoribus in assercione prescripta, non tamen omnes de populo; potest autem veritas fidei salvari in paucis de populo; ergo allegacio antescripta non procedit.

Magister: Ista responsio per hoc refellitur, quia secundum Apostolum ad Romanos 10o, “Corde creditur ad iusticiam, ore autem confessio fit ad salutem”, quando scilicet periclitatur fides. Non suffecisset aliquibus paucis de populo corde tenuisse assercionem contrariam, si esset catholica, nisi eciam ipsam ore publice contradicendo errantibus confessi fuissent. Cum ergo non legatur quod a temporibus apostolorum vel discipulorum eorundem usque ad tempora patrum nostrorum quicumque, eciam pauci, de populis Christianis assercioni publice contradixerunt memorate, tenendum est quod eadem assercio universali ecclesie debet ascribi. Universalis autem ecclesia nullo tempore eciam parvo errare potest contra fidem et in hiis que iuris sunt pertinencia ad fidem vel bonos mores, licet secundum quosdam in hiis que facti sunt (scilicet habendo aliquem pro papa vel bono viro licet non sit et in consimilibus) possit errare. Ergo predicta assercio firmiter est credenda.



Discipulus: Adhuc per racionem, fundatam tamen in hiis que sunt fidei et morum, conare probare quod Petrus fuit ceteris apostolis ex ordinacione Christi superior.


Student Again try to prove, but through argument founded on matters of faith and morals, that Peter was by Christ's decree superior to the rest of the Apostles.

Fifth argument for Peter's superiority: Christ would not have left the Church headless

Magister Videtur quibusdam quod hoc potest tali modo racione probari. Christus ab apostolis et ecclesia corporaliter recessurus instituit caput et rectorem ecclesie universalis, qui secundum optimum modum regiminis ecclesiam gubernaret. Christus enim, qui ecclesie sue in necessariis non defecit, ecclesiam suam acephalam non reliquit, nam habere caput est inter cetera maxime necessarium ecclesie; ergo Christus aliquod caput dedit ecclesie. Non autem instituit caput ecclesie seu rectorem secundum debiliorem seu minus perfectum modum regiminis, ne facto videretur precepisse ecclesie quod caput secundum optimum modum regiminis minime sustineret, cum omnis Christi accio sit nostra instruccio. Optimus autem modus regiminis est regimen unius, ut unus omnes alios regat, quia talis modus regendi maxime principatui regali, qui est optimus secundum philosophos, in hoc non errantes, et principatui paterno, qui est naturalis, assimilatur; ergo Christus unum caput dedit universali ecclesie, et non plura — non autem alium quam Petrum, quia numquam aliquis catholicus tenuit quod aliquis alius apostolus vel non apostolus fuit caput et princeps aliorum apostolorum. Petrus ergo fuit institutus a Christo caput universalis ecclesie, et per consequens aliorum apostolorum.

Master It seems to some people that this can be proved by argument as follows. As he was about to withdraw bodily from the Apostles and the Church, Christ established a head and ruler of the universal Church who would govern the Church in accord with the best way of ruling. For Christ, who did not fail his Church in anything necessary, did not leave it without a head. For, among other things, it is especially necessary for the Church to have a head. Christ, therefore, gave the Church some head. He did not, however, establish a head or ruler of the Church in accord with a weaker or less perfect way of rule, lest in doing so he would seem to have ordered the Church that it not maintain a head in accord with the best way of rule, since every action of Christ's is an instruction for us. The best way of rule, however, is the rule of one person, so that one person rules all the others, because such a way of ruling is especially like royal government, which is the best according to the philosophers, who are not mistaken in this matter, and like paternal government, which is natural. Christ therefore gave the universal Church one head and not many, and this one was no one but Peter, because no catholic has ever held that any other apostle or non-apostle was the head and chief of the other Apostles. Therefore Peter was appointed by Christ head of the universal Church and consequently of the other Apostles.

Hec allegacio confirmatur, quia Christus fecit apostolos capita, pastores et rectores aliorum fidelium, et secundum adversarios, sicut per prefacionem apostolorum quam allegant aperte patet. Aut ergo prefecit aliquod caput collegio apostolorum, et habetur intentum, quia nullum alium prefecit illi quam Petrum; aut nullum caput prefecit apostolorum collegio, quod absurdum videtur, quia ex hoc plures absurditates sequerentur. Quarum prima est quod Christus collegium apostolorum reliquisset acephalum. Secunda est quod universalem ecclesiam non secundum disposicionem optimam ordinasset, quia tunc solummodo est aliqua societas seu communitas optime ordinata quando habet unum caput et regitur ab uno et non a pluribus, eo quod simpliciter melius est regi ab uno quam a pluribus eciam optimis, quemadmodum principatus regalis secundum philosophum est principatui aristocratico preferendus. Tercia est quod Christus ex hoc docuisset ecclesiam nec uni prelato nec uni collegio debere subesse, quia Christus non prefecit apostolos aliis fidelibus tamquam collegium sed tamquam singulares personas: dispergendi enim erant apostoli in universum orbem, ad regendum fideles minime congregandi, et ideo tamquam collegium non regebant; quando enim aliqui aliquid faciunt tamquam collegium, simul esse debent. Si ergo Christus Petrum non prefecit universali ecclesie, et multominus aliquem alium apostolum, sed solummodo prefecit apostolos tamquam singulares personas, exemplum dedit ecclesie ut nec uni prelato nec uni collegio obediret.

This argument is confirmed, because even according to the opponents, Christ made the Apostles heads, shepherds and rulers of the other faithful, as is quite clear from the preface of the Apostles which they bring forward. [See above.] Either he appointed some head for the college of Apostles, therefore -- and then the point is won, since he did not appoint any other head for it except Peter; or he appointed no head for the college of Apostles -- and this seems absurd, because many absurdities would follow from it. The first of these is that Christ would have left the college of Apostles without a head. The second is that he would not have regulated the universal Church according to the best arrangement, because then only is any society or community best regulated when it has one head and is ruled by one person and not by many, in that it is simply best to be ruled by one rather than by many, even by the best, just as according to the philosopher royal government should be preferred to aristocratic government. The third is that by this means Christ would have taught the Church that it should not be under one prelate or one college, because Christ did not place the Apostles in authority over the other faithful as a college but as individual persons. For the Apostles were going to be scattered throughout the whole world, not gathered together to rule the faithful, and therefore they did not rule as a college. For when some do something as a college they ought to be together. If Christ did not place Peter in authority over the universal Church, therefore, and much less any other apostle, but only placed the Apostles in authority as individual persons, he gave an example to the Church so that it would obey neither one prelate nor one college.

Objections to the fifth argument


Discipulus: Predicta forte aliqui impugnarent. Primo quia, licet regimen unius de se sit optimum, tamen aliquando per accidens et in casu non est optimum, quia quando sunt plures equales, vel nullus omnes alios meritis et sapiencia excedit, non expedit ut unus omnibus aliis presit. Hoc, ut quibusdam videtur, ex multis que allegata sunt secundo huius potest aperte probari. Petrus autem meritis et sapiencia omnes alios nullatenus precellebat. Sapiencia enim videtur minor fuisse Paulo, meritis autem Iohanne videtur fuisse inferior. Ergo communitas fidelium non fuerit optime ordinata si Petrus fuisset a Christo caput ceterorum apostolorum et omnium fidelium institutus.


Student Perhaps some people would oppose the above [argument], firstly because although the rule of one person is best in itself, yet sometimes, accidentally and in a particular case, it is not best, because when many are equal or none excels all the others in merits and wisdom it is not appropriate that one be in command of all the others. It seems to some people that this can be clearly proved by many [arguments] which were brought forward in the second [book] of this [tractate]. Peter, however, did not excel all the others in merits and wisdom, for he seems to have been inferior to Paul in wisdom and to John in merits. The community of the faithful would not have been best ordered, therefore, if Peter had been appointed by Christ as head of the rest of the Apostles and all the faithful.

Amplius, Christus, recedens corporaliter ab ecclesia, ipsam in optima condicione reliquit quantum permittit hec vita; sed melius est ut ecclesia habeat potestatem mutandi modum regendi quandoque expedit quam quod alligetur determinato modo regendi, eo quod quilibet modus regendi in pluribus casibus potest esse nocivus vel minus utilis, quemadodum principatus regalis, qui est unius, quamvis de se sit optimus, tamen in multis casibus magis expedit quod plures principentur aristocratice quam unus regaliter. Christus ergo non dedit unum caput ecclesie, nec Petrum, nec alium, sed dedit ecclesie potestatem instituendi sibi unum caput vel plura secundum quod ei expedire videtur.

Further, when Christ withdrew bodily from the Church he left it in the best condition which this life permits. But it is best that the Church should have the power of changing its way of ruling whenever it is expedient to do so than that it be bound to a prescribed way of ruling, because any way of ruling can be harmful or less useful in many cases, just as although royal government, which is rule of one, is in itself the best, yet it is in many cases more expedient that several should rule aristocratically than one royally. Christ did not give the Church one head, therefore, neither Peter nor any other, but gave the Church the power of establishing for itself one head or many according to what seems advantageous for it.

Replies to objections to fifth argument

Magister Ad primum istorum respondetur quod, licet regulariter non expediat ut unus principetur pro tota vita sua sibi equalibus, nec principatus unius in tali casu sit regulariter optimus, tamen casualiter potest principatus unius esse optimus, in tali casu, scilicet, si equales sint tales quod de eis probabiliter presumatur quod prompte ac sponte seu voluntarie in omnibus iustis et licitis, prout expedit, velint obedire uni, licet eciam sit meritis et sapiencia minor. Causa enim secundum aliquos quare non expedit ut aliquis principetur sibi similibus et equalibus est ne subiecti valeant dicere colorate iniustum est equalem eis dominari et ipsos subesse; hec autem causa locum non habet si equales vel maiores, ex humilitate vel obediencia aut amore rei publice vel communis utilitatis, prompte et sponte velint subesse. Apostoli autem, scientes ordinacionem Christi, ex humilitate et obediencia promptissimi erant obedire Petro pro toto tempore vite sue. Et ideo, licet apostoli, eciam omnes, fuissent equales vel maiores Petro, melius fuit ut ipse preesset aliis apostolis et universis fidelibus quam ut preessent plures. De aliis enim ab apostolis, et maxime illis qui proni erant ad dissensionem et inobedienciam, planum apparet quod Petrus meritis et sapiencia precessit eos, et ideo debuerunt racionabiliter esse subiecti.

Master The reply to the first of these is that although it is not as a rule advantageous that for the whole of his life one man should rule those who are his equals, and the government of one man is not as a rule best in such a case, yet on occasion the government of one man can be best, namely in the following case: if the equals are such that it may probably be presumed of  them that they would be willing readily and willingly or voluntarily to obey one man, even if he is inferior to them in merits and wisdom, in everything that is permitted and just, as is useful. For, according to some people, the reason why it is not appropriate that someone rule those who are similar and equal to him is lest the subjects can plausibly say that it is unjust for their equal to rule them and for them to be subordinate. This reason is not relevant, however, if out of humility or obedience or love of the republic or the common advantage, those who are equal or greater readily and willingly want to be subordinate. Knowing Christ's decree, however, the Apostles were very ready out of humility and obedience to obey Peter for the whole of his life. And therefore, even if every one of the Apostles had bee equal to or greater than Peter, it was better that he should be in authority over the other Apostles and all the faithful than that many of them should be in authority. For it is quite clear about the others apart from the Apostles, especially those who were prone to dissension and disobedience, that Peter surpassed them in merits and wisdom, and therefore it was reasonable that they ought to be his subjects.

Ad secundum respondetur quod Christus, instituendo Petrum caput omnium fidelium, ecclesiam suam in optima disposicione quoad genus regendi reliquit, quia, eligendo et preficiendo unum cunctis fidelibus, facto docuit ecclesiam quod optimum genus regendi, ut scilicet unus sit caput et rector omnium, debet omnino servare, si potest absque detrimento boni communis. Plus autem profuit ecclesie quod Christus, qui scivit certissime quis esset magis idoneus ad regendum, prefecit Petrum quam si ecclesia, que non nisi per coniecturam scire potuit maiorem idoneitatem ipsius, elegisset eundem. Christus itaque, secundum quosdam, preficiendo unum alligavit ecclesiam suam optimo generi regiminis extra casum manifeste necessitatis vel utilitatis. Preficiendo autem non quemcumque unum sed Petrum, qui vel erat simpliciter optimus inter omnes vel optimus et maxime idoneus ad regendum, innuit facto quod non taliter ecclesiam suam optimo generi regiminis obligavit quin in casu manifeste necessitatis vel utilitatis posset modum illum regendi omittere vel mutare, nullum scilicet eligendo vel eligendo plures, si unum vel alterum manifeste communitati fidelium expediret, vel aliquod illorum facere cogeretur, sicut aliquando oportuit fideles permittere per plures annos vacare apostolicam sedem (unde, sicut legitur in legenda sancti Marcellini pape et martyris, temporibus Diocleciani et Maximiniani imperatorum, post mortem predicti Marcellini pape, propter severitatem persecucionis per prefatos imperatores in Christianos agitate, vacavit sedes apostolica annis septem mensibus sex diebus viginti quinque). Cessante tamen necessitate vel utilitate, ad optimum modum regendi, ut scilicet unus sit caput universalis et rector, redire tenentur. Et ideo Christus, preficiendo Petrum omnibus, ecclesiam suam quoad genus regiminis in optima disposicione reliquit.

The reply to the second is that by appointing Peter as head of all the faithful Christ bequeathed to his Church the best arrangement with respect kind of rule, because, by choosing and putting one in charge of all the faithful, he taught the Church by that act that, if it can do so without detriment to the common good, it should wholly preserve the best kind of rule, namely that one should be head and ruler of all. It was more beneficial to the Church, however, that Christ, who most certainly knew who would be more suitable for ruling, set Peter in authority than if the Church, which could have known his greater suitability only by guessing, had elected him. And so some people say that by setting up one man in authority Christ bound his Church to the best kind of rule except in a case of manifest necessity or advantage. By setting up in authority, however, not just anyone at all, but Peter, who was either simply the best of all or the best and most suitable for ruling, he indicated by that deed that he did not bind his Church to the best kind of rule in such a way that it could not, in a case of manifest necessity or advantage, give up or change that way of ruling, namely by choosing no one or by choosing many men, if it were clearly advantageous to the community of the faithful or if it were forced to do one of those things, as it has sometimes been fitting for the faithful to allow the apostolic see to be vacant for many years. [How did Christ by choosing Peter indicate that the Church might sometimes have no head or several heads? Perhaps the point is that Christ chose the best person, and not just anyone at all for the sake of having a head, any head -- suggesting that when no one person is best or good enough no single person should be chosen as head.] Whence, as we read in the Legend of St. Marcellin, Pope and Martyr, after the death of that pope, Marcellin, in the times of the emperors Diocletian and Maximianus, because of the severity of the persecution conducted by those emperors against christians, the apostolic see was vacant for seven years six months and twenty five days. When the necessity or advantage comes to an end, however, they are bound to return to the best way of ruling, namely that one man should be universal head and ruler, and therefore by setting Peter in authority over everyone Christ bequeathed to his Church the best arrangement with respect to kind of rule.


Discipulus: Puto quod si predicta quibus ostenditur quod Petrus fuisset superior aliis apostolis possent solvi, omnia alia que pro eodem allegari possunt de facili refelli valerent; ideo, causa brevitatis omissis aliis, qualiter ista assercio ad allegaciones que supra 1o c. huius quarti sunt inducte respondeat non differas indicare.


Student I think that if the above [arguments] by which it is shown that Peter was superior to the other Apostles could be refuted, every other [argument] that can be brought forward for the same [conclusion] would be able to be disproved easily. Leaving aside the others for the sake of brevity, therefore, do not hesitate to indicate how that assertion replies to the arguments brought forward above in the first chapter of this fourth book.

Reply from the standpoint of those who assert Peter's superiority to the arguments in favour of Marsilius' opinion

Magister Ad primam illarum, que de potestate conficiendi corpus Christi procedit, respondetur quod potestas conficiendi corpus Christi omnibus apostolis quos Christus ante passionem suam elegit data fuit immediate a Christo, quia ipse eos sacerdotes ordinaverit, et quantum ad hanc potestatem omnes apostoli erant pares, quemadmodum nunc omnes sacerdotes in hoc sunt apostolico pares, licet ex causa valeat apostolicus sacerdotibus interdicere execucionem huius potestatis.

Master To the first of them, which is derived from the power of making the body of Christ, the reply is that the power of making the body of Christ was given directly by Christ to all the Apostles whom Christ chose before his passion, because he ordained them priests, and with respect to this power all the Apostles were equal, just as now all priests are equal in this to the apostolic [i.e., the pope], although for a reason the pope can forbid priests the exercise of this power.

Ad aliam, de potestate clavium, dicitur a quibusdam quod apostoli omnes ex speciali privilegio Christi fuerunt pares beato Petro, inquantum claves peccata specialiter in foro penitenciali respiciunt. In aliis autem fuerunt inferiores eo. Christus, igitur, quando dixit omnibus apostolis, “Sicut misit me Pater”, et cetera, tamquam prelatus et superior Petro, omnes eciam misit et omnibus potestatem dedit super peccata; quos tamen postea beato Petro subiecit, absque tamen revocacione illorum que eis in speciali concesserat. Et ideo, quamvis tunc non dixerit Petro, “Mitto te et tu alios mitte”, quia tunc non fecit eum prelatum aliorum, tamen postea, quando dixit, “Pasce oves meas”, dedit ei potestatem mittendi alios qui non erant specialiter missi a Christo, quos tamen ex causa iusta et necessaria posset certis provinciis deputare.

To another [argument], about the power of the keys, it is said by some people that because of a particular privilege from Christ all of the Apostles were equal with blessed Peter, in as much as the keys relate to sins, particularly in the penitential forum. In other matters, however, they were inferior to him. When Christ said to all the Apostles, therefore, "As the father sent me" etc, he as the prelate and superior of Peter also sent them all and gave them power over sins. He later subjected them to blessed Peter, yet without revoking those [powers] which he had granted to them in particular. And therefore although he did not say to Peter at that time, "I send you and you send the others", because at that time he did not make him prelate of the others, yet afterwards when he said, "Feed my sheep", he did give him the power of sending others who had not been particularly sent by Christ and whom he could for a just and necessary reason allot to certain provinces.

Ad aliam allegacionem, sumptam ex verbis Pauli ad Galatas 2o, respondetur quod intencio Pauli cum dicit, “Michi enim qui videbantur aliquid esse nichil contulerunt”, et cetera, fuit quod Paulus quantum ad doctrinam non fuit inferior Petro, quia doctrinam suam non habuit neque a Petro neque a reliquis apostolis, nec fuit primo missus ad predicandum a Petro, quia antea predicavit tamquam immediate missus a Christo; cum quo tamen stat quod in aliis fuit inferior Petro. Et ideo conceditur quod officium predicandi sive apostolatus Paulus non suscepit a Petro, sed ex hoc non sequitur quod Petrus non fuit prelatus eius, sicut multi religiosi predicatores verbi dei tempore Clementis pape 5i vel Bonifacii 8i non habuerunt officium predicandi a Bonifacio papa vel Clemente, et tamen Bonifacius papa aut Clemens fuit prelatus eorum, quia habuerunt officium predicandi a predecessore vel predecessoribus. Sic Paulus recepit officium predicandi a predecessore Petri, scilicet Christo.

To another argument, taken from the words of Paul in Galatians 2:6, the reply is that Paul's intention when he says, "For those who seemed to be something contributed nothing to me" etc, was that he was not inferior to Peter in respect of his teaching, because he received his teaching neither from Peter nor from the rest of the Apostles, and he was not first sent out to preach by Peter, because before that he preached as sent directly by Christ. Yet it is consistent with this that in other matters he was inferior to Peter. And it is granted, therefore, that Paul did not receive the office of preaching or of the apostolate from Peter. But it does not follow from this that Peter was not his prelate, just as many religious preachers of the word of God in the time of Pope Clement V or Boniface VIII did not receive their office of preaching from Pope Boniface or Clement, and yet Pope Boniface or Clement was their prelate, because they received their office of preaching from his predecessor or predecessors. In the same way Paul received his office of preaching from Peter's predecessor, namely Christ.

Ad auctoritatem ibidem adductam secundum Augustinum, respondetur quia secundum Augustinum Petrus et alii apostoli qui fuerunt cum Domino nichil contulerunt, id est addiderunt, Paulo quantum ad doctrinam evangelicam, et ideo in doctrina non fuit inferior Petro et aliis apostolis, quia a Domino fuit ita perfectus in doctrina quod perfeccioni sue doctrine nichil addere potuerunt: qui tamen quoad multa alia sibi addere valuerunt, sicut et de facto addiderunt cum dederunt sibi dextras et Barnabe societatis. Inferioritas ergo quam negat Augustinus a Paulo est solummodo inferioritas doctrine evangelice, de qua loquitur ibi Paulus. Et ideo conceditur illud quod isti concludunt, quod quodammodo “eque principaliter missus fuit Paulus quemadmodum et Petrus,” scilicet ad predicandum, quia quando primo fuit missus ad predicandum non fuit missus neque a Petro neque ab aliquo alio homine. Et hoc intendit Apostolus cum dicit 1o c., “Paulus apostolus, non ab hominibus neque per hominem”, et cetera.

To the text of Augustine brought forward there, the reply is that according to Augustine Peter and the other Apostles who were with the Lord contributed, that is added, nothing to Paul in regard to the teaching of the gospel. And therefore he was not inferior to Peter and the other Apostles in teaching, because he was made so perfect in teaching by the Lord that they could have added nothing to the perfection of his teaching. Yet in respect of many other things they could add to him, as in fact they did add to him when they gave the right hand of fellowship to him and Barnabas [Gal. 2:9]. The inferiority, therefore, which Augustine denies of Paul is only the inferiority in the teaching of the gospel about which Paul is speaking in that place. And what they conclude, therefore, is granted, that in a certain way "Paul was sent equally principally as Peter" [see above], namely to preach, because when he was first sent to preach he was sent neither by Peter nor by any other man. And the apostle means this when he says in Galatians 1:1, "Paul an apostle, sent neither by human commission nor from human authorities", etc.

Et sic dicitur intelligenda glossa Ambrosii ibidem allegata, quia tunc Apostolus non fuit missus ab Anania nec ab aliquo alio puro homine. Ex qua glossa notatur quod Apostolus loquitur ibidem de sua prima missione, quando aliqui poterant putare eum missum fuisse ab Anania, a quo tunc extitit baptizatus. Et sic eciam de prima missione dicitur intelligenda glossa que ibidem secundum Augustinum consequenter adducitur, quia Paulus tunc non fuit missus ab aliquo homine mortali sicut ceteri apostoli, sed a Christo, qui tunc extitit immortalis, et secundum hoc habuit quamdam prerogativam supra alios apostolos, quorum tamen non erat prelatus. Et ideo, sicut ex verbis Augustini non potest ostendi quod Paulus auctoritate fuit superior Petro, quamvis dicat quod Paulus fuerat dignior, ita ex eodem non potest ostendi quod non fuerit inferior auctoritate. Quare, a simili, licet inveniatur dictum a sanctis quod Paulus fuerit par Petro, non potest tamen inveniri quod Paulus fuerit par Petro quantum ad prelacionem, quia sufficit quod fuerit par quantum ad aliqua alia, puta quantum ad doctrinam et auctoritatem predicandi (in hoc quod non habuit primo auctoritatem predicandi a Petro nec mediate nec immediate sed a Christo) et quoad alia plura: quia, sicut non omnes qui dicuntur similes sunt similes in omnibus, sic nec omnes qui dicuntur pares sunt pares in omnibus.

And it is said that the gloss by Ambrose brought forward there should be understood in that way, because at that time the Apostle was sent neither by Ananias nor by anyone else who was purely a man. The gloss notes that at that point the Apostle is talking about his first mission, when some men could have thought that he had been sent by Ananias by whom he had at that time been baptised. And in the same way it is said too that it is about his first mission that the gloss taken from Augustine, consequently brought forward at that place, should be understood, because at the time Paul was not sent by any mortal man, as the rest of the Apostles were, but by Christ who was then immortal, and for this reason he had a certain privilege above the other Apostles, yet without being their prelate. And therefore, just as it can not be shown from Augustine's words that Paul was superior in authority to Peter, even if he says that Paul had been worthier, so it can not be shown from that same [text] that he was not inferior in authority. Arguing by analogy, therefore, although the saints are found to have said that Paul was equal to Peter, nevertheless we can not find that Paul was equal to Peter with respect to his prelacy, because it is enough that he was equal with respect to some other matters, such as with respect to teaching and to his authority to preach -- in that he did not originally receive his authority to preach from Peter, either directly or indirectly, but from Christ -- and with respect to many other matters, because, just as not all people who are said to be similar are similar in everything, so not all people who are said to be equal are equal in everything.

Et eodem modo respondetur ad aliam auctoritatem Apostoli cum dicit, “Notum vobis facio evangelium”, et cetera, quia ex hoc sequitur quod Paulus fuit immediate missus a Christo, quem nec Petrus nec alius apostolus tunc elegit, nam Christus tantum misit aut iniunxit Paulo ministerium evangelii. Sed ex hoc non sequitur quod non fuit subiectus Petro, quemadmodum ex hoc quod deus immediate sepe misit Esaiam et alios prophetas ad predicandum et increpandum idolatras et alios impios inferri non potest quod non fuerint auctoritate inferiores summo pontifice aut supremo rectore populi Israelitici. Qualem autem potestatem et in quibus habuerit Petrus super Paulum et alios apostolos postea valebis inquirere.

And the same kind of response is made to another text of the apostle when he says [Gal. 1:11], "I want you to know that the gospel" etc, because it follows from this that Paul was sent directly by Christ and that neither Peter nor another apostle at that time chose him, for it was Christ alone who sent Paul or enjoined the service of the gospel on him, but it does not follow from this that he was not subject to Peter, just as from the fact that God often directly sent Isaiah and other prophets to preach and to rebuke idolaters and other impious men it can not be inferred that they were not inferior in authority to the high priest or the supreme ruler of the Israelite people. What kind of power, however, Peter had over Paul and the other Apostles and in what matters you can ask later.

Ad aliam allegacionem, que in hoc consistit quod non invenitur in scriptura Petrum sibi assumpsisse aliquam potestatem super ceteros apostolos sed magis cum ipsis equalitatem servasse, respondetur quod multa fecerunt apostoli que non reperiuntur in biblia, quorum tamen multa, licet non omnia, ad nos per scripturas discipulorum apostolorum et aliorum fidelium pervenerunt. Et ideo, licet ex scripturis canonicis vel contra protervos, vel veraciter, non posset convinci quod Petrus usus fuit auctoritate sibi concessa super apostolos, sed magis de facto equalitatem servavit, non tamen propter hoc esset dicendum ipsum non fuisse usum huiusmodi potestate. Nec ex hoc quod legitur aliquando ipsum servasse equalitatem cum aliis potest inferri quod numquam sua fuerit usus auctoritate seu potestate, quia sancti prelati sepe, exemplo Christi, qui prelatus existens venit ministrare, suam potestatem nequaquam exercent, sed tamquam servos, vel eciam inferiores, se exhibent sibi subiectis. An autem assumpserit sibi auctoritatem determinandi illa que erant dubia circa evangelium vel voluerit in hoc deferre Iacobo aut toti collegio cuius erat pars, postea investigare poterimus: quod enim saltem toti collegio fidelium potuerit in hoc deferre, aut eciam tenebatur, multi tenentes prelatum fuisse universorum concedunt, quia, ut multi dicunt, in causa fidei summus prelatus fidelium est inferior universali ecclesia et eciam concilio generali.

To another argument, which consists in this, that we do not find in scripture that Peter assumed any power over the rest of the Apostles but rather preserved equality with them, the reply is that the Apostles did many things which are not found in the Bible, many of which, although not all, have reached us through the writings of the disciples of the Apostles and others of the faithful. And therefore although it could not be demonstrated from the canonical scriptures against the last-ditch objector, or indeed truly, that Peter used the authority granted to him over the Apostles but rather in fact he preserved equality, nevertheless it should not on this account be said that he did not use this power. Nor can it be inferred from the fact that we read that he sometimes preserved equality with others that he never used his authority or power, because holy rulers, following the example of Christ who despite being ruler came to serve, often do not exercise their power but present themselves to their subjects as servants or even as inferiors. Later we can investigate, however, whether he assumed to himself the authority to determine doubtful questions about the gospel or whether in this matter he wanted to defer to James and the whole college of which he was part (for many people who hold that he was everyone's prelate grant at least that he could have deferred to the whole college of the faithful in this matter -- or was even bound to do so -- because, as many say, on an issue of faith the highest prelate of the faithful is inferior to the whole Church and even to a general council).


Discipulus: Dic an videatur aliquibus quod in aliquo authentico valeat reperiri quod Petrus aliquando fuerit usus potestate sua super alios apostolos.


Student Tell me whether it seems to some people that we can find in any authentic [writing] that Peter sometimes used his power over the other Apostles.

Magister: Nonnullis apparet quod hoc ex verbis beati Clementis, qui gesta beati Petri minime ignoravit, colligitur evidenter, qui, ut habetur dist. 80a, c. In illis, ait: “In illis civitatibus vero in quibus olim apud ethnicos primi flamines eorum atque primi legis doctores erant, episcoporum primates vel patriarchas poni beatus Petrus precepit, qui reliquorum episcoporum causas et maiora negocia in fide agitarent. In illis autem, in quibus dudum apud ethnicos predictos erant eorum archiflamines, quos tamen minores tenebant quam memoratos primates, archiepiscopos institui precepit. In singulis vero reliquis civitatibus singulos, et non plures, episcopos constitui precepit, qui episcoporum tantum vocabula potirentur”. Ex quibus verbis habetur quod beatus Petrus de facto disposuit non solum de episcopis et archiepiscopis sed eciam de supremis primatibus et patriarchis qui erant in ecclesia dei. Supremi autem et primi primates seu patriarche (quibus vocabulis idem importatur, ut eodem loco habetur) successores sunt apostolorum. Nam, ut ait Lucius papa, et recitatur eadem dist. 80a, c. Urbes, “In ipsis vero urbibus apostoli et eorum successores patriarchas et primates posuerunt”. In quibus verbis Lucius papa patriarchas et primates apostolorum successores appellat. Patet igitur ex supradictis quod beatus Petrus aliquando fuit usus sua auctoritate in alios apostolos.

Master: It seems to some people that we gather this clearly from the words of Clement, who was not ignorant of the deeds of blessed Peter and who says, as we find in dist. 80, c. In illis [c.2, col.280], "Indeed in those cities in which formerly among the pagans were their first priests and the first teachers of the law, blessed Peter ordered that the primates or patriarchs of bishops should be placed who would deliberate upon the cases of the remaining bishops and the more important matters of faith. In those [cities], however, in which the high priests of the pagans used formerly to be, he ordered archbishops to be established, who were held as less important than the aforesaid primates. [[Despite word order this adjectival clause surely goes with bishops not flamens]] In each of the remaining cities he ordered that a single bishop, not many bishops, be appointed and these received only the name of bishop." We know from these words that blessed Peter in fact arranged not only for the bishops and archbishops but also for the supreme primates and patriarchs who were in the Church of God. But the supreme and first primates or patriarchs (their names imply the same thing, as is said in the passage just quoted ["primates or patriarchs"]) are the successors of the Apostles, for as Pope Lucius says (as is reported in the same dist. 80, c. Urbes [c.1, col.279]), "Indeed in those towns the Apostles established their successors, the patriarchs and primates" -- in these words Pope Lucius calls the patriarchs and primates the successors of the Apostles. It is clear from the above, therefore, that blessed Peter sometimes used his authority over the other Apostles.

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