La giustizia penale ecclesiastica nell’Italia del Seicento: linee di tendenza
N. 4, OTTOBRE-DICEMBRE
Ecclesiastical criminal justice in seventeenth-century Italy: trends and characteristics
The Council of Trent’s legislation regarding ecclesiastical criminal justice led during subsequent decades to a significant increase in the activity of Episcopal criminal tribunals and the Apostolic nunciatures, while both were coordinated by central authorities in Rome. The developments of the seventeenth century are much less understood, however: a kind of «normalization» followed the dynamism of the late sixteenth century, and its characteristics cannot be easily deciphered. The most important developments appear to be the institution by Urban VIII in 1626 of a new Congregation dedicated to the defence of ecclesiastical immunity, and the moralizing tension produced by the «Innocenzian turn» of the 1670s and ’80s. At the same time, the corporative nature of ecclesiastical justice created conflicts with civil authorities that became increasingly frequent over the course of the century.