Apostolic Majesty

Apostolic Majesty

Apostolic Majesty

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His (Royal) Apostolic Majesty was a style used by the Kings of Hungary, in the sense of being latter-day apostles of Christianity.

First creation

The origin of this title dates from about A.D. 1000 when it was conferred by Pope Silvester II upon Saint Stephen I (975–1038), the first Christian king of Hungary, who is supposed to have received it from Pope Sylvester II in recognition of the activity displayed by him in promoting the introduction of Christianity into Hungary and his zeal in seeking the conversion of the heathen. According to tradition, Stephen also received the ecclesiastical title of Apostolic Legate.

Arduin or Hartvik (1097-1103), bishop of Raab (Györ), the biographer of St. Stephen, tells us that the pope hailed the king as a veritable "Apostle" of Christ, with reference to his holy labours in spreading the Catholic faith through Hungary. However the papal bull of Sylvester II, dated 27 March 1000, whereby the pope grants St. Stephen the crown and title of King, returns to him the kingdom he had offered to the Holy See and confers on him the right to have the cross carried before him, with an administrative authority over bishoprics and churches, affords no basis for the granting of this particular title.

Second creation

It was renewed by Pope Clement XIII in 1758 in favor of the Holy Roman Empress Maria Theresia, Queen of Hungary, and her descendants, the later Habsburg Emperors of Austria, bore the title of apostolic king of...
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