1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Liber Diurnus Romanorum Pontificum

LIBER DIURNUS ROMANORUM PONTIFICUM, or “Journal of the Roman Pontiffs,” the name given to a collection of formulae used in the papal chancellery in preparing official documents, such as the installation of a pope, the bestowal of the pallium and the grant of papal privileges. It was compiled between 685 and 751, and was constantly employed until the 11th century, when, owing to the changed circumstances of the Church, it fell into disuse, and was soon forgotten and lost. During the 17th century a manuscript of the Liber was discovered in Rome by the humanist, Lucas Holstenius, who prepared an edition for publication; for politic reasons, however, the papal authorities would not allow this to appear, as the book asserted the superiority of a general council over the pope. It was, however, published in France by the Jesuit, Jean Garnier, in 1680, and other editions quickly followed.

The best modern editions are one by Eugène de Rozière (Paris, 1869) and another by T. E. von Sichel (Vienna, 1889), both of which contain critical introductions. The two existing manuscripts of the Liber are in the Vatican library, Rome, and in the library of St Ambrose at Milan.