Archbishopric of Justiniana Prima

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Archbishopric of Justiniana Prima was an Eastern Christian archbishopric established in 535 AD by Emperor Justinian I, in his home-town of Justiniana Prima (today in Leskovac, southern Serbia).

The establishment is mentioned in Justinian's own Novel XI from 535, when he promotes the Metropolitan to an Archbishop, independent from the Archbishop of Thessalonica.[1] The establishment is seen as part of the feud between Justinian and the Archbishop of Eastern Illyricum, who was a papal vicar.

Its last mention is in 602, amid the Slav raids on the Balkans. The Archbishopric of Ochrid was seen as a successor of the old Archbishopric. The bishop John Komnenos, nephew of emperor Alexios I Komnenos, resurrected the title of Archbishop of Justiniana Prima in 1143 for his own use.[2]

It is one of the titular sees listed in the Annuario Pontificio.[3]


Its seat was at Justiniana Prima.

The first Archbishop received the jurisdiction of following provinces (According to Novella 11):[4]

But by 545, in the Novella 131, Macedonia secunda is missing.[4]



  • Catelianus (Catellian), Metropolitan becoming first Archbishop in 535 AD
  • Johannes, fl. 595


  1. ^ OCC, page 100, excerpts from his novella
  2. ^ OCC, page 101: " John Comnenus.. resurrected himself the title of Archbishopric of J-P "
  3. ^ Annuario Pontificio 2013 (Libreria Editrice Vaticana 2013 ISBN 978-88-209-9070-1), p. 904
  4. ^ a b DMMS, page 216