Gallia Christiana

Gallia Christiana

Gallia Christiana

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The Gallia Christiana, a type of work of which there have been several editions, is a documentary catalogue or list, with brief historical notices, of all the Catholic dioceses and abbeys of France from the earliest times, also of their occupants.

First efforts

In 1621 Jean Chenu, an avocat at the Parlement of Paris, published Archiepiscoporum et episcoporum Galliæ chronologica historia. Nearly a third of the bishops are missing, and the episcopal succession as given by Chenu was very incomplete. In 1626, Claude Robert, a priest of Langres, published with the approbation of Baronius, a Gallia Christiana. He entered a large number of churches outside of Gaul, and gave a short history of the metropolitan sees, cathedrals, and abbeys.

The Samarthani

Two brothers de Sainte-Marthe, Scévole (1571–1650) and Louis (1571–1656), appointed royal historiographers of France in 1620, had assisted Chenu and Robert. At the assembly of the French Clergy in 1626, a number of prelates commissioned these brothers to compile a more definitive work. They died before the completion of their work, and it was issued in 1656 by the sons of Scévole de Sainte-Marthe, Pierre de Sainte-Marthe (1618–90), himself historiographer of France, Abel de Sainte-Marthe (1620–71), theologian, and later general of the Oratory, and Nicolas-Charles de Sainte-Marthe (1623–62), prior of Claunay. On 13 September 1656, the Sainte-Marthe brothers were presented to the assembly of the French Clergy, who...
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