List of Ancien Régime dioceses of France

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

French Ancien Régime Roman Catholic dioceses and ecclesiastical provinces were heirs of Late Roman civitates (themselves created out of Gaulish tribes) and provinces.

Ecclesiastical provinces (colored) and dioceses of France in 1789

Historical sketch[edit]

Most of them were created during the first Christianization of Gaul, in the 3rd to 5th centuries.[citation needed]

But, at several occasions during the Middle Ages or the Ancien Régime, new dioceses were created, replacing older ones or carved out of them. For instance, fighting against the Cathar heresy[neutrality is disputed] entailed the creation of many new dioceses in the early 14th century. All the same, in 1789, on the eve of the French Revolution, the ecclesiastical map of France still very much recalled that of Roman Gaul. This explains why many dioceses and provinces did not coincide with French borders, with their head cities lying in present-day Belgium, Germany or Switzerland.

In 1790, this map was entirely revised to fit the new administrative map: dioceses were now to coincide with départements (the new administrative units). Ancien Régime dioceses all disappeared, then, in 1790. Many former bishoprics remained heads of the new dioceses, but many cities lost their bishop. Even so, in those cities, the former cathedral very often kept its rank as a cathedral church. This explains why many post-Revolutionary episcopal sees bear the name of several cities. For instance, in the département of the Drôme, only the city of Valence retained its bishop, the former episcopal sees of Die and Saint-Paul-Trois-Châteaux being suppressed, but the bishop retained the title of bishop of Valence, Die and Saint-Paul-Trois-Châteaux.

Here follows a list of Ancien Régime dioceses, as of 1789, on the eve of the Revolution. With the exception of those dioceses which were created in the Late Roman period (before the 6th century), whose date of creation generally cannot be established, we provide the date of creation and, when appropriated of suppression of the bishopric. Dioceses whose sees were not within the borders of the kingdom of France are in brackets.

Listing of dioceses by church province[edit]

Province of Aix (Narbonensis Secunda)[edit]

Province of Arles (Viennensis Secunda)[edit]

out of which (1475):

Province of Avignon[edit]

Province of Auch (Novempopulania)[edit]

Province of Besançon (Maxima Sequanorum)[edit]

Province of Bordeaux (Aquitania Secunda)[edit]

Province of Bourges (Aquitania Prima)[edit]

out of which (1678):

Province of Albi[edit]

Province of Embrun (Alpes Maritimæ)[edit]

Province of Genoa[edit]

(Province created in 1133: Northern Corsican sees belonged to this province)

  • Diocese of Mariana — The bishop resides in Bastia
  • Diocese of Nebbio — The bishop resides in Saint-Florent

Province of Lyon (Lugdunensis Prima)[edit]

Province of Mainz (Germania Prima)[edit]

Province of Narbonne (Narbonensis Prima)[edit]

out of which (1317):

Province of Toulouse[edit]

Province of Reims (Belgica Secunda)[edit]

out of which (1559):

Province of Cambrai[edit]

Province of Mechelen/Malines[edit]

Province of Pisa[edit]

(Province created out of the Province of Rome in 1092: central and Southern Corsican sees belonged to this province)

Province of Rouen (Lugdunensis Secunda)[edit]

Province of Tours (Lugdunensis Tertia)[edit]

Some dioceses of this province were part, in the 9th and 10th centuries, of an autonomous but

Short-lived Province of Dol[edit]

Province of Sens (Lugdunensis Quarta)[edit]

out of which (1622):

Province of Paris[edit]

Province of Tarentaise (Alpes Graiæ et Pœninæ)[edit]

Province of Trier (Belgica Prima)[edit]

Province of Vienne (Viennensis Prima)[edit]