Thursday, March 11, 2010

Catholic question...

Settle an argument for me...

Why, exactly, do we refer to the cardinals as "George Cardinal Spinelessmarshmallow" and not "Cardinal Seamless O'Boychaser"?

7 comments:

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Hilary Jane Margaret White said...

Anonymous posts are not allowed. Sorry.

Commbox rules are posted to the left and down a bit.

But as for the "Church of What's Happening Now"...

are you referring to the Church of the Holy Zeitgeist?

I've heard of that one.

Father DeViese said...

From what I understand (though I'm hard-pressed to find documentation at this exact moment), the convention came about as a sign of humility within the College of Cardinals--that a Cardinal be addressed primarily by his Christian name, and only then by his proper title (as opposed to begin to address him by saying something like, "May I present His Lordship William Cardinal of the Holy Roman Church Keeler", one could say in a more humble fashion, "May I present William Cardinal Keeler").

From what I understand, in saying "Cardinal" after the cleric's first name, one makes an unconscious pause, almost as if to correct onself, e.g. George *break* Cardinal Pell.

Hope that helps...

Andrew Cusack said...

I had thought it is because Cardinals are Princes of the Church. One might say Edward, Earl of Wessex; Philip, Duke of Edinburgh; and by extension Edward, Cardinal Egan. Through gradual use the comma is merely implied rather than actually employed.

Hilary Jane Margaret White said...

Actually, I'm with Cusack on this one. This is what I understood too.

Felix said...

I'm with Cusack also

after all, the introduction of Cardinals, Dukes etc antedates the invention of surnames

binks webelf said...

I'm guessing, but p'raps it also has to do with the episcopal custom, for a bishop to be called "+Albert Krakatoa", as a symbol of marriage to the church, and fatherhood of an area under God's care.