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Dagon - A Philistine deity
Dalmatia - A part of the Kingdom of Croatia according to a convention entered into between Croatia and Hungary
Dalmatic - The outer liturgical vestment of the deacon
Damascus - It is mentioned in the Bible at the time of Abraham ; xv, 2); also on the pylons of Karnak, among the Syrian cities captured by the Pharaoh Touthmes III
Damasus I, Saint, Pope - Damasus, who had to contend with an antipope, condemned Apollinarianism, and persuaded St. Jerome to undertake the revision of the Latin Bible, died in 384
Damasus II, Pope - A native of Bavaria and the third German to be elevated to the See of Peter
Damian and Cosmas, Saints - Short hagiography of these twins, physicians, and martyrs. They died on 27 September, probably in the year 287
Damien, Father (Joseph de Veuster) - Biography of the Belgian missionary priest to the leper colony on Molokai
Dan - The fifth son of Jacob, being the elder of the two sons born to him by Bala, the handmaid of Rachel, and the eponymous ancestor of the tribe bearing the same name
Dance of Death - Originally a species of spectacular play akin to the English moralities. It has been traced back to the middle of the fourteenth century
Dancing - The origin of dancing is from the natural tendency to employ gesture either to supplement or to replace speech
Daniel - The hero and traditional author of the book which bears his name
Daniel, Anthony - Huron missionary, born at Dieppe, in Normandy, 27 May 1601, slain by the Iroquois
Daniel, Book of - In the Hebrew Bible, and in most recent Protestant versions, the Book of Daniel is limited to its proto-canonical portions. In the Septuagint, the Vulgate, and many other ancient and modern translations of the Bible, it comprises both its proto- and its deutero-canonical parts, both of which have an equal right to be considered as inspired, and to be included in a treatment of the Book of Daniel
Daniel and Companions, Saint - Franciscan missionaries and martyrs, d. 10 October, 1227
Dante Alighieri - An annotated (in linked hypertext) biography of the poet
Darboy, Georges - Archbishop of Paris and ecclesiastical writer, b. at Fayl-Billot, near Langres, 1813; killed by Communists at Paris, 24 May, 1871
Dates and Dating - In classical Latin even before the time of Christ it was usual for correspondents to indicate when and where their letters were written
David, Saint - Also known as Dewi or Degui. Biography of this bishop and confessor, the patron saint of Wales
David, King - In the Bible the name David is borne only by the second king of Israel, the great-grandson of Boaz and Ruth
Day of Atonement - A most solemn fast, on which no food could be taken throughout the day, and servile works were forbidden
Deaconesses - Offers history and functions
Deacons - The name means only minister or servant, and is employed in this sense both in the Septuagint (though only in the book of Esther, and in the New Testament
Dead, Prayers for the - Catholic teaching regarding prayers for the dead is bound up inseparably with the doctrine of purgatory and the more general doctrine of the communion of the saints, which is an article of the Apostle's Creed
Dead Sea - The name given to the lake that lies on the south-eastern border of Palestine
Deaf, Education of the - History, aids, and alphabets are discussed
Dean - One of the principal administrative officials of a diocese
Death, Dance of - Originally a species of spectacular play akin to the English moralities. It has been traced back to the middle of the fourteenth century
Death, Preparation for - Includes the steps taken, such as calling a priest, winding up earthly affairs, and confession
Death Penalty - The infliction by due legal process of the penalty of death as a punishment for crime.
Debbora - Prophetess and judge, wife of Lapidoth and endowed by God with prophetic gifts which secured for her the veneration of the divided Israelitic tribes and gave her great authority over them
Debt - That which is owed or due to another; in general, anything which one person is under an obligation to pay or render to another
Decalogue - The term employed to designate the collection of precepts written on two tables of stone and given by God to Moses on Mount Sinai
Decapolis - Name given in the Bible and by ancient writers to a region in Palestine lying to the east and south of the Sea of Galilee
Decius - Roman Emperor 249-251
Decorations, Pontifical - The titles of nobility, orders of Christian knighthood and other marks of honour and distinction which the papal court confers upon men of unblemished character who have in any way promoted the interests of society, the Church, and the Holy See
Decree - In a general sense, an order or law made by a superior authority for the direction of others. In ecclesiastical use it has various meanings. Any papal Bull, Brief, or Motu Proprio is a decree inasmuch as these documents are legislative acts of the Holy Father
Decretals, Papal - In the wide sense the term decretalis signifies a pontifical letter containing a decretum, or pontifical decision. In a narrower sense it denotes a decision on a matter of discipline. In the strictest sense of the word, it means a rescript, an answer of the pope when he has been appealed to or his advice has been sought on a matter of discipline
Dedication - A term which, though sometimes used of persons who are consecrated to God's service, is more properly applied to the 'setting aside' of places for a special and sacred purpose
Deduction - An argument or reasoning process, that kind of mediate inference by which from truths already known we advance to a knowledge of other truths necessarily implied in the former; the mental product or result of that process. Also a method, the deductive method, by which we increase our knowledge through a series of such inferences
Definitions, Theological - An irrevocable decision, by which the supreme teaching authority in the Church decides a question appertaining to faith or morals, and which binds the whole Church
Deism - Historical survey and critique
Deity - This article is confined to the non-Christian notion of the Deity
Delaware - One of the original thirteen of the United States of America
Delilah - The woman who deceived and betrayed Samson
Deluge - A catastrophe fully described in Genesis
Demetrius - The name of two Syrian kings mentioned in the Old Testament and two other persons in the New Testament
Demiurge - The word means literally a public worker, demioergos, demiourgos, and was originally used to designate any craftsman plying his craft or trade for the use of the public. Soon, however, technítes and other words began to be used to designate the common artisan while demiurge was set aside for the Great Artificer or Fabricator, the Architect of the universe
Democracy, Christian - Article representing Christian democracy as the ensemble of Catholic doctrine, organization, and action in the field of popular social questions
Demon - In Scripture and in Catholic theology this word has come to mean much the same as devil and denotes one of the evil spirits or fallen angels
Demoniacs - Article concerned with the demonic possession in the New Testament
Demonology - The science or doctrine concerning demons
Denis, Saint - Bishop of Paris, martyred along with his deacons Rusticus and Eleutherius in about 275
Denmark - History includes politics, religion, literary, and art
Denunciation - Making known the crime of another to one who is his superior
Denys the Carthusian - Sometimes called the last of the Schoolmen, devoted to prayer, avid reader whose favorite author was Pseudo-Dionysius. Author of commentaries, sermons, and theological and philosophical treatises. He died in 1471
Denzinger, Heinrich Joseph Dominicus - Theologian of the modern Catholic German school and author of the 'Enchiridion' universally used, b. 10 Oct., 1819, at Liege; d. 19 June, 1883
Deo Gratias - An old liturgical formula of the Latin Church to give thanks to God for graces received
Deposition - An ecclesiastical vindictive penalty by which a cleric is forever deprived of his office or benefice and of the right of exercising the functions of his orders
De Profundis - 'Out of the depths'. First words of Psalm 129
Derogation - The partial revocation of a law, as opposed to abrogation or the total abolition of a law
Descartes, René - Philosopher and scientist, born at La Haye France, 31 March, 1596; died at Stockholm, Sweden, 11 February 1650
Desecration - The loss of that peculiar quality of sacredness, which inheres in places and things in virtue of the constitutive blessing of the Church
Desert - The word wilderness, which is more frequently used than desert of the region of the Exodus, more nearly approaches the meaning of the Hebrew
Desertion - Brief explanation of the different situations to which this concept applies in canon law
Desiderius - Benedictine monk, peacemaker, abbot of Monte Cassino, elected to the papacy in 1086, d. 1087
De Smet, Pierre-Jean - Missionary among the North American Indians, b. at Termonde (Dendermonde), Belgium, 30 Jan., 1801; d. at St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.A., 23 May, 1873
Desolation, The Abomination of - Spoken of in St. Matthew, xxiv, 15, and St. Mark, xiii, 14
De Soto, Hernando - Explorer and conqueror, born at Villanueva de la Serena, Badajoz, Spain, 1496 or 1500; died on the banks of the Mississippi the latter part of June, 1542
Despair - The voluntary and complete abandonment of all hope of saving one's soul and of having the means required for that end
Determinism - A name employed by writers, especially since J. Stuart Mill, to denote the philosophical theory which holds, in opposition to the doctrine of free will, that all man's volitions are invariably determined by pre-existing circumstances
Detraction - The unjust damaging of another's good name by the revelation of some fault or crime of which that other is really guilty or at any rate is seriously believed to be guilty by the defamer
Detroit - Diocese established 8 March, 1838. Suffragan of Cincinnati
Deusdedit, Pope Saint - Also known as Pope Adeodatus I, d. 618
Deusdedit, Cardinal - Joined the Benedictine Order and became a zealous promoter of ecclesiastical reforms in the latter half of the eleventh century
Deuteronomy - This term occurs in Deuteronomy 17 and Joshua 8, and is the title of one of the five books of the Pentateuch
Devil - The name commonly given to the fallen angels, who are also known as demons. With the article (ho) it denotes Lucifer, their chief, as in Matthew 25:41, 'the Devil and his angels'
Devil Worship - Fathers and theologians explain the matter as, the fallen angels besides tempting and assailing men in other ways have, by working on their fears or exciting their cupidity, brought them to give worship to themselves under the guise of idols
Devil's Advocate - A title given to an officer of the Sacred Congregation of Rites, established in 1587, by Sixtus V, to deal juridically with processes of beatification and canonization
Devotions, Popular - Brief explanation of the spiritual practices collectively called 'devotions' or 'popular devotions.'
Dialectic - Greek dialektike (techne or methodos), the dialectic art or method, from dialegomai I converse, discuss, dispute; as noun also dialectics; as adjective, dialectical
Dias, Bartolomeu - A famous Portuguese navigator of the fifteenth century, discoverer of the Cape of Good Hope; died at sea, 29 May, 1500
Diaspora - The name given to the countries (outside of Palestine) through which the Jews were dispersed, and secondarily to the Jews living in those countries
Díaz del Castillo, Bernal - Spanish historian, one of the chief chroniclers of the conquest of Mexico by the Spaniards, b. at Medina del Campo, Spain, c. 1498; d. after 1568
Didache - A short treatise which was accounted by some of the Fathers as next to Holy Scripture
Didascalia Apostolorum - A treatise which pretends to have been written by the Apostles at the time of the Council of Jerusalem (Acts, xv), but is really a composition of the third century
Dies Irae - Name by which the sequence in requiem Masses is commonly known
Dignitary, Ecclesiastical - A member of a chapter, cathedral or collegiate, possessed not only of a foremost place, but also of a certain jurisdiction
Diocesan Chancery - That branch of administration which handles all written documents used in the official government of a diocese
Diocese - The territory or churches subject to the jurisdiction of a bishop
Diocletian - Roman Emperor and persecutor of the Church, b. of parents who had been slaves, at Dioclea, near Salona, in Dalmatia, A.D. 245; d. at Salona, A.D. 313
Diognetus, Epistle to - An apology for Christianity cited by no ancient or medieval writer, and came from a single manuscript which perished in the siege of Strasburg (1870)
Dionysius, Pope Saint - Elected towards the end of a wave of persecution. Dionysius opposed the errors of the Sabellians and Marcionites, and died in 268
Dionysius Exiguus - According to his friend and fellow-student, Cassiodorus, though by birth a Scythian, he was in character a true Roman and thorough Catholic, most learned in both tongues i.e., Greek and Latin, and an accomplished scripturist
Dionysius of Alexandria - Also called Dionysius the Great. Bishop, d. 264 or 265
Dionysius the Pseudo-Areopagite - Article on the identity of the mysterious Pseudo-Areopagite, his writings, and their influence
Dioscorus - Antipope (d. 530)
Diptych - A sort of notebook, formed by the union of two tablets, placed one upon the other and united by rings or by a hinge
Direction, Spiritual - Personal guidance according to individual needs. Criticizes excesses at both ends of the spectrum: heavyhanded directors, and people who think that since they have the Holy Spirit they have no need of human help
Directories, Catholic - Directorium simply means guide, but in the later Middle Ages it came to be specially applied to guides for the recitation of Office and Mass
Discalced - A term applied to those religious congregations of men and women, the members of which go entirely unshod or wear sandals, with or without other covering for the feet
Discernment of Spirits - In the restricted sense, spirits indicate the various spiritual agents which, by their suggestions and movements, may influence the moral value of our acts
Disciple - This term is commonly applied to one who is learning any art or science from one distinguished by his accomplishments
Disciples of Christ - A sect founded in the United States of America by Alexander Campbell
Discipline, Ecclesiastical - Various meanings discussed
Discipline of the Secret - A theological term used to express the custom which prevailed in the earliest ages of the Church, by which the knowledge of the more intimate mysteries of the Christian religion was carefully kept from the heathen and even from those who were undergoing instruction in the Faith
Disparity of Cult - A diriment impediment introduced by the Church to safeguard the sanctity of the Sacrament of Marriage
Disparity of Worship - A diriment impediment introduced by the Church to safeguard the sanctity of the Sacrament of Marriage
Dispensation - An act whereby in a particular case a lawful superior grants relaxation from an existing law
Dispersion of the Apostles - A feast in commemoration of the missionary work of the Twelve Apostles
Distraction - Distraction (Lat. distrahere, to draw away, hence to distract) is here considered in so far as it is wont to happen in time of prayer and in administering the sacraments
Dives - Latin for rich. The word is not used in the Bible as a proper noun; but in the Middle Ages it came to be employed as the name of the rich man in the parable of the rich man and Lazarus, Luke 16:19-31
Divination - The seeking after knowledge of future or hidden things by inadequate means
Divine Attributes - In order to form a more systematic idea of God, and as far as possible, to unfold the implications of the truth, God is All-Perfect, this infinite Perfection is viewed, successively, under various aspects, each of which is treated as a separate perfection and characteristic inherent to the Divine Substance, or Essence. A certain group of these, of paramount import, is called the Divine Attributes
Divine Nature and Attributes, The - Covered as natural reason and faith
Divine Office - Brief essay on the historical development of the Liturgy of the Hours
Divine Word, Society of the - The first German Catholic missionary society established. It was founded in 1875 during the period of the Kulturkampf at Steyl, near Tegelen, Holland, by a priest, Rev. Arnold Janssen (d. 15 January, 1909), for the propagation of the Catholic religion among pagan nations
Divorce (in Moral Theology) - The subject is treated here under two distinct heads: First, divorce in moral theology; second, divorce in civil jurisprudence
Divorce (in Civil Jurisprudence) - Defined in jurisprudence as 'the dissolution or partial suspension by law of the marriage relation'
Docetæ - Docetism, from the Greek 'dokeo' (to seem, to appear) was the contention that Christ merely seemed to be human and only appeared to be born, to suffer, and to die. Already in New Testament times, the Gospel of John opposes Docetism, and so do Ignatius, Irenaeus, and other Fathers
Doctor - The title of an authorized teacher
Doctors, Surnames of Famous - Lists the principal surnames with the dates of death
Doctors of the Church - Certain ecclesiastical writers have received this title on account of the great advantage the whole Church has derived from their doctrine
Doctrine, Christian - The word katechesis means instruction by word of mouth, especially by questioning and answering. The Apostle insists upon 'doctrine' as one of the most important duties of a bishop
Dogma - Signifies, in the writings of the ancient classical authors, sometimes, an opinion or that which seems true to a person; sometimes, the philosophical doctrines or tenets, and especially the distinctive philosophical doctrines, of a particular school of philosophers, and sometimes, a public decree or ordinance, as dogma poieisthai
Dogmatic Fact - Any fact connected with a dogma and on which the application of the dogma to a particular case depends
Dogmatic Theology - That part of theology which treats of the theoretical truths of faith concerning God and His works
Dogmatic Theology, History of - Detailed article broken into time periods
Döllinger, Johann Joseph Ignaz von - Historian and theologian (1799-1890)
Dolphin - The use of the dolphin as a Christian symbol is connected with the general ideas underlying the more general use of the fish. The particular idea is that of swiftness and celerity symbolizing the desire with which Christians, who are thus represented as being sharers in the nature of Christ the true Fish, should seek after the knowledge of Christ
Dome - An architectural term often used synonymously with cupola
Domicile - The canon law has no independent and original theory of domicile; both the canon law and all modern civil codes borrowed this theory from the Roman law; the canon law, however, extended and perfected the Roman theory by adding thereto that of quasi-domicile
Dominic, Saint - Biography of the founder of the Order of Preachers, d. 1221
Dominic of the Mother of God - A member of the Passionist Congregation and theologian, b. near Viterbo, Italy, 22 June, 1792; d. near Reading, England, 27 August, 1849
Dominicans - An extensive article about several branches of the Dominicans, including their history
Dominus Vobiscum - An ancient form of devout salutation, incorporated in the liturgy of the Church, where it is employed as a prelude to certain formal prayers
Domitian - Roman emperor and persecutor of the Church, son of Vespasian and younger brother and successor of the Emperor Titus; b. 24 Oct., A.D. 51, and reigned from 81 to 96
Domitilla and Pancratius, Nereus and Achilleus, Saints - Roman martyrs who shared a feast day on 12 May
Don Bosco - Commonly called Don Bosco or John Bosco. Founder of the Salesians, d. 1888
Donatello Di Betto Bardi - One of the great Tuscan sculptors of the Renaissance, born at Florence, c. 1386; died there, 13 Dec., 1466
Donation of Constantine - By this name is understood, since the end of the Middle Ages, a forged document of Emperor Constantine the Great, by which large privileges and rich possessions were conferred on the pope and the Roman Church
Donatists - The Donatist schism in Africa began in 311 and flourished just one hundred years, until the conference at Carthage in 411, after which its importance waned
Donus, Pope - Son of a Roman called Mauricius; he was consecrated Bishop of Rome 2 Nov., 676, to succeed Adeodatus II, after an interval of four months and seventeen days; d. 11 April, 678
Doorkeeper - A minor order also called "doorkeeper"
Doria, Andrea - Genoese admiral and statesman, b. at Oneglia, Italy, 1468; d. at Genoa, 1560
Douai - The town of Douai, in the department of Nord, France, is on the River Scarpe, some twenty miles south of Lille
Douay Bible - The original Douay Version, which is the foundation on which nearly all English Catholic versions are still based, owed its existence to the religious controversies of the sixteenth century
Doubt - A state in which the mind is suspended between two contradictory propositions and unable to assent to either of them
Dove - In Christian antiquity the dove appears as a symbol and as a Eucharistic vessel
Dower - A provision for support during life accorded by law to a wife surviving her husband
Doxology - The doxology in the form in which we know it has been used since about the seventh century all over Western Christendom, except in one corner
Drachma - A Greek silver coin
Dreams, Interpretation of - Theologians continue to admit the possibility of dreams supernatural in their origin, and consequently the possibility of dream-interpretation depending on supernatural communications
Drexel, Francis Anthony - Banker, b. at Philadelphia, U.S.A., 20 June, 1824; d. there 15 Feb., 1885
Druidism - Probably the best-substantiated derivation of the word is from the root vid, 'to know', and the intensive prefix dru. According to this etymology, the druids would be the 'very wise and learned ones'
Drusilla - Daughter of Herod Agrippa I
Dryden, John - Introductory biography of the poet and dramatist
Dualism - Denotes the religious or theological system which would explain the universe as the outcome of two eternally opposed and coexisting principles
Dublin - Archdiocese; occupies about sixty miles of the middle eastern coast of Ireland, and penetrates inland, about forty-six miles, including all the County of Dublin, nearly all of Wicklow, and parts of Kildare and Wexford, with three suffragans: Kildare and Leighlin, Ferns, and Ossory
Duccio di Buoninsegna - Painter, and founder of the Sienese School, b. about 1255 or 1260, place not known; d. 3 August, 1319
Duchesne, Philippine-Rose - Admiring biographical essay
Duel - This word, as used both in the ecclesiastical and civil criminal codes, generally signifies every contest with deadly weapons which takes place by agreement between two persons on account of some private quarrel
Dulia - A theological term signifying the honour paid to the saints, while latria means worship given to God alone, and hyperdulia the veneration offered to the Blessed Virgin Mary
Duns Scotus, Blessed John - Called 'Doctor Subtilis,' Franciscan, philosopher, d. 1308
Dunstan, Saint - Long biographical essay on this tenth-century Anglo-Saxon archbishop and confessor
Durango - Archdiocese located in northwestern Mexico
Dürer, Albrecht - German artist (1471-1528)
Durham Rite - The earliest document giving an account of liturgical services in the Diocese of Durham is the so-called 'Rituale ecclesiae Dunelmensis'
Duty - The definition of the term duty given by lexicographers is: 'something that is due', 'obligatory service'; 'something that one is bound to perform or to avoid'
Dymphna, Saint - Virgin and martyr, venerated since at least the thirteenth century
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