Part Three: The Pelagian Crisis (411–430)
Edited By Frederick Van Fleteren
Article 296: Collectio Carthaginensis
The letters of the African bishops to Boniface and Celestine and the letters of Atticus and Cyril to the African bishops are extant. So too is the letter of the Council of Africa to Celestine added later to Collectio Carthaginensis because it settled the Apiarius affair and the appeals process to Rome. These letters complete the one hundred and thirty-eight articles of Collectio Carthaginensis written as a collection of canons or at least approved and authorized by the Council of Africa (419). According to some scholars this collection is simply a work of one man with no authority and collected a century later. Clearly their reasons are not weighty. Zosimus had sent to the Africans by legates an abridgement of the discipline which he desired Rome to observe with regard to appeals.1 Some scholars believe the African bishops took the occasion to collect the discipline established by their councils and send it to the pope. In the future then the pope might regulate his orders according to their usage and he would have no reason to complain and request what was not permitted by their discipline.
The addition of the last three or four articles and the division of the articles, sometimes rather poorly separated, are not from the council. Dionysius Exiguus admits he is their author.2 Still the abridgers and the copyists have stricken things read in the council and have erred in several other matters. The abridgements and...