Era
Vol. 1: A seculo VI usque ad 803
Date
3rd of November, 579 (purportedly) or sometime between 572 and 577 (more probably)
Place
Regestum

The acts of the synod of Grado, heavily interpolated by later falsifications, by which the bishops of the ecclesiastical province of Aquileia remain faithful to the Catholic creed as decreed by the Ecumenical Councils of Chalcedon (451), Ephesus (431), Constantinople I (381) and Nicaea (325), refusing to denounce the Three Chapters condemned by the Second Ecumenical Council of Constantinople (552).

Source
The original acts of the synod are lost with only contaminated copies from much later periods existing to this day. The oldest in extenso copies exist in two manuscript traditions: the Venetian chronicle of Andrea Dandolo (copies from mid-14th century onwards) and the "official" Venetian copy registered in the 15th century in the Liber pactorum I. The following edition is based on these manuscripts:
B = Venice, Archivio di Stato di Venezia, Pacta e aggregati, Pactorum liber I, fol. 54r (56 of new numbering) – 56r (58 of new numbering); 15th-century copy registered in a 14th-century codex (see Pozzi's study referenced below);
C = Venice, Biblioteca Marciana, ms. Zanetti lat. 400 (=2028), fols. 40v–42v; 14th-century copy, inserted in Andrea Dandolo’s Chronicle of Venice (the so-called Chronica per extensum descripta of which this is the codex optimus).
Previous Editions
Roberto Cessi (ed.), Documenti relativi alla storia di Venezia anteriori al mille, vol. 1: Secoli V-IX, Testi e documenti di storia e di letteratura latina medioevale 1 (Padua 1940), doc. 6, pp. 7-13 (a highly conjectural reconstructive edition).
Ester Pastorello (ed.), Andreae Danduli ducis Venetiarum Chronica per extensum descripta, Rerum Italicarum scriptores, ser. 2, 12/1 (Bologna 1938-1958), pp. 81-84 (based on C).
FIM Edition
Diplomatic edition based on B with different readings from C reported in the critical apparatus.
Transcription

In nomine domini Iesu Christi, summi ęternia Dei nostri, imperanteb dominoc serenissimo Tiberio Constantino augusto, anno imperii eius quinto, eodem consule, sub die tercio nonarum novembrium, indictione XIIIa.

Cum in civitate Gradensi Elyasd, episcopus sanctę eiusdem novę Aquilegensise ecclesię, una cum Martiano, Leoniano, Petro, Vindemio, Virgilio, Iohanne, Clarissimo, Patricio et reliquis episcopis etf sacerdotibus quorum nomina subscriptiones proprię manifestant in concilium convenissentg et in nova basilica sanctę venerabilis martiris Euphomięh consedissent, sedentibus quoque presbiteris plurimis astantibusi, diaconibus, propositis inj medio sacrosanctis evangeliis, Elyask, primę sedis episcopus, dixit:

“Ineffabilia sunt opera domini nostril Iesu Christi, quibus misericordi benignitate fragilitatem nostram frequentare dignatur, sanctissimi fratres. Nam inter angores quibus Ecclesiam Dominin depressa suspirat et gentium ferocissimas clades que miserę provincię nostrę reliquias quateręo ac devastare non cessant, fateor me non preter spem, sed, utp verius dixerim, supra spem meam ad hunc venerabilem cętumq vestram invitasse sanctissimam caritatem. Angebar enim, ne quid undecumque votis communibus obstitisset. Verum quia, ut prefatus sum, Iesus Christus, verus Deus ac Dominus noster supra quem credidimus etr speravimus, prestitit ut vestras nunct presentia perfruamur, dignum ergo, carissimiu fratres, mansuetudo nostra ducit ex consensu beatissimi apostolicę sedis pape Pelagii, cui iam ante communi nostram intuituv descripsimus necessitatemw. Si vestrę placetx sanctitati hanc civitatem Gradensem nostram perpetuo confirmare metropolim novamque eam vocare Aquilegiamy, quoniam, ut prelibavimus, intervenientibus malis nostris quotidiez hostilea' perpetimur flagellum. Iam pridem ab Athilab', Hunnorum rege, Aquilegia civitas nostra funditus est destructa. Et postea, Gotthorum incessuc' et ceterorum barbarorum quassatad', vix aspirate', sed etiamf' nunc Longobardorumg' nefandę gentis flagella sustinere non valens, ex consensu beatissimi Apostolicę Sedis pape Pelagiih', cui iam antei' nostramj' descripsimus necessitudinem, si vestrę placetk' sanctitati hanc civitatem Gradensem nostram perpetuo confirmare metropolim novamque eam vocare Aquilegienseml'.”

Sancta synodus dixit:

“Quę vestra proposuit beatitudo omnes pari confirmamus assensu. Si vestrę sanctitati placetm', beatissimi pape Pelagiin' privilegium pero' hacp' intentione ab ipso transmissumq' in medio recitandum deferaturr'.”

Laurentius presbiter, legatus Apostolicę Sedis, representavit privilegium quod suscipiens Epyphanius notarius in medio stans recitavit: [seq. doc. 579_PPG, premite hic ad ostendum]

Pelagius urbis Romę episcopus Elyę Aquilegiensi patriarchę.
Convenit apostolico moderamini pia religione pollentibus benivola compassione succurrere et poscentium animis in hac re devotione impartire consensum. Ex hoc enim, lucri potissimum a Conditore omnium procul dubio promerebimur, si venerabilia loca, opportuno transmutata tempore, nostro fuerint studio ad meliorem sine dubio statum producta.
Igitur, quia petisti a nobis per missionis tuę venerandę fraternitatis brevia, consentientibus in eis suffragraneis tibi episcopis, quatenus Gradense castrum totius Venetię fieri et Istrię metropolim ad regendam scilicet ecclesiam atque cum Dei timore dispensandam, emissa preceptione, concedere deberemus.
Quapropter vesti compatientes meroris necessitudini, immo et iam rabiem furentium perpendentes Longobardorum, inclinati precibus vestris, per huius precepti seriem suprascriptum castrum Gradense totius Venetię fieri cum omnibus vestrę ecclesię pertinentibus etiam Istrię metropolim perpetuo confirmamus, statuentes quapropter apostolica autoritate sub interminatione futuri iudicii nulli licere nostrorum sucessorum vel alii cuilibet hęc quę a nobis decreta sunt pia in quoquam destruere aut convellere quę potius firma stabilitate inconvulsa manere diffinimus, atque sub anathematis vinculo perpetuis temporibus observanda.
Quam ob rem hortor te semper relevare oppressos, semper corripere inquietos ut zizania Dominicam non possit suffocare messem.
Gratia domini nostri Iesu Christi et omnis caritas Dei sit semper vobiscum.
Data XII kalendas maii, imperante Tiberio II Constantino augusto.

Quo perlecto, universi episcopi voce compari:

“Exaudi, Christe, Pelagios' vitam: omnes uno consensu sanctissimi Pelagii preceptionem ett' vestram sequimur confirmantes sententiamu', observandum enim ex apostolica autoritate decernimus hanc Gradensem civitatem vestram metropolim perpetuis temporibus esse. Quicumque vero confirmationis hoc nostrę violare decretum presumpserit sit anathema.”

Sancta sinodus tercio affirmavitv': “Fiat! Fiat! Fiat!”

Elyasw' primę sedis episcopus dixit:

“Si vestrę beatitudini placet, recitentur etiamx' necessarię causę ad Ecclesię statum pertinentes, pro quibus vestram unianimeny' sanctitatem ad nos usque similiter fatigari rogitavimus. Sed, ut magis dispositionum nostrarum determinata iam sedis huius questione rite constet ordiri primordia, reciteturz', Deo gubernante nobis, primum fides sanctorum patrum, quę cuntisa'' actionibus nostris deinceps secuturisb'' velut immobilec'' fundamentum existat de fide catholicad'' sanctorum patrum.”

Sancta synodus respondit: “Iustissimum est recitari quod utillime provenit audiri.”

Epyphanius notarius ex codice synodali recitavit:

“Sancta magna et universalis synodus quę secundum Dei gratiae'' et sanctionem piissimorum christianissimorumquef'' imperatorum nostrorum Valentiniani et Martiani congregata est apud Calcedoniamg'', metropolim Bithimięh'' provincię, in atrio sanctę et venerabilisi'' Euphimię diffinivitj'' subter annexak''. Dominus noster et salvator Christus noticiam fidei confirmans discipulis suis ait: ‘Pacem meam do vobis, pacem meam relinquo vobis,’1 ne ullus a proximo suo dissonaml'' doctrinam pietatis ostendat. Quoniam vero non quiescit nequissimus suam zizaniamm'' inspargeren'', novi aliquid contra veritatem semper inveniens, ob hoc consuete Dominus noster providens humano generi piissimum et fidelissimum principem ad zelumo'' fideip'' suscitavit. Quiq'' undique sacerdotum principem ad se convocat, quatenus, gratiar'' Domini feliciter imperatas'' ab ovibust'' Christi dogma quidem mendacii submoveret, germen autem pietatis et veritatis pingue efficeret. Quod quidem et fecimus communiu'' decreto dogmatum fugantes erroremv'', integram vero patrumw'' revocantes fidem CCCXVIII patrumx'' simbolumy'' predicantes et tanquamz'' domesticos, quod pietatis huius compositionem receperunt patres ascribentesaa. Qui postea apud Constantinopolibb convenerunt CL qui et ipsi eandem fidem subsignaverunt.”

“Diffinimus igitur ordinem et omnes formamcc fidei conservamus nos omnesdd quoque. Apud Ephesum olim facta est sanctaee synodus cuius pręsules fuerunt sanctę memorię Cęlestinus, Romanę urbis antistes, et Cirillus, Alexandrinęff ecclesię pręsul. Egeregg quidem rectę et immaculate fidei expositionem CCCXVIIIhh patrumii apudjj Niceamkk simulll cummm pię recordationis Constantino principe congregatorum, obtinuere autem etiam quinquaginta et centum sanctorum patrum apud Constantinopolimnn definitam ad interemptionem tunc exortarum heresumoo, confirmationem vero eiusdem catholicę nostrę fidei apud Niceam CCCXVIII patrumpp:”

‘Credimus in unum Deum, Patrem omnipotentem, factorem cęli et terrae, visibilium omnium et invisibilium; et in unum dominumqq Iesumrr Christum, filium Dei unigentium, qui natus est ex Patre ante omnia secula, Deum vero de Deo vero genitum, non factum, consubstantialem Patri, per quem omnia facta sunt, qui propter nos homines et propter nostram salutem descendit et incarnatus est atque humanatus est et passus est et resurrexitss tercia die et ascendit in celum, venturus iudicare vivos et mortuos; et in Spiritum Sanctum. Eos autem qui dicunt »erat aliquando quando non erat,« et »priusquam nascereturtt, non erat,« et quia exinde extantibus factus est aut ex alia subsistentia dicentes esse aut convertibilem aut mutabilem filium Dei, hos anathematiçatuu catholica et apostolica Dei Ecclesia.’2

Elyasvv, sanctę ecclesie Aquilegiensisww episcopus, his gestis subscripsi.
Laurentius presbiter, Apostolicę Sedis legatus, his gestis subscripsi.
Martianus, episcopus sanctę ecclesię Opitergine, his gestis subscripsi.
Leonianus, episcopus sanctę ecclesię Tiborniensis, his gestis subscripsi.xx
Petrus, episcopus sanctę ecclesię Altinatis, his gestis subscripsi.
Vindemiusyy, episcopus sanctę ecclesię Cesensis, his gestis subscripsizz.
Virgilius, episcopus sanctę ecclesię Patavinęaa', his gestis subscripsibb'.
Clarissimus, episcopus sanctę [ecclesię]cc' Celeianę, his gestis subscripsi.
Patricius, episcopus sanctę ecclesię Emoniensis, his gestis subscripsi.
Adrianus, episcopus sanctę ecclesię Polensis, his gestis subscripsi.
Massencinusdd', episcopus sanctę ecclesię Viliensisee', his gestis subscripsi.
Severus, episcopus sanctę ecclesię Triestinę, his gestis subscripsi.
Solatius, episcopus sanctę ecclesię Veronensis, his gestis subscripsi.
Iohannes, episcopus sanctę ecclesię Parentinę, his gestis subscripsiff'.
Aarongg', episcopus sanctę ecclesię Avociensis, his gestis subscripsi.
Martianus, episcopushh', locum faciensii' viri beatissimi Ingenuini, episcopi sanctę ecclesię Sederetięjj', his gestis subscripsikk'.
Virgilius, episcopus sanctę ecclesię Scaravaciensisll', his gestismm' subscripsi.
Superveniens in sancta sinodo his gestis sinus relictis subscripsinn'
Laurentius, presbiter superveniens in sancta sinodo, locum faciens viri beatissimi Frontei, episcopi sanctę ecclesię Feltrinę, his gestis michi relictis subscripsi.
Martianus, episcopus sanctę ecclesię Patenatis, superveniens sancta sinodo, his gestis michi relictis subscripsi.
Laurentius, presbiter, super statutis Deo gratias agens subscripsioo'.
Emerius, presbiter, super statutis Deo gratias agens subscripsi.
Sergiuspp', presbiter, super statutis Deo gratiasqq' agens subscripsi.
Dorotheus, presbiter, super statutis Deo gratiasqq' agens subscripsi.
Laurentius, presbiter, super statutis Deooo' gratias agens subscripsi.
Albinus, presbiter, super statutis gratias Deo agens subscripsi.
Leo, presbiter, super statutis gratias Deooo' agens subscripsi.
Martianus, presbiter, super statutis gratias Deooo' agens subscripsi.
Servancinus, presbiter, super statutis gratias Deooo' agens subscripsi.
Lucillus, presbiter, super statutis gratias Deo agens subscripsi.
Castusrr', presbiter, super statutis gratias Deo agens subscripsi.
Provincialis, presbiterss', super statutis Deo gratiasqq' agens subscripsi.

Apparato critico

a) eterni C et undique -e loco -ę.  b) inperante C et saepe sic.  c) domno C.  d) Elias C et saepe -i loco -y.  e) Aquilensis C et saepe sic.  f) om. C.  g) conveniset C.  h) Eufumie C.  i) adstantibus C.  j) in iter. B.  k) Helias C.  lseq. X cancC.  m) ecclesie C.  nseq. circumquaque addC.  osic B; quatere C.  p) velud C.  q) hunc venerabilem cetum] hoc venerabilis cetus C.  r) omnes C.  sal. man. ex vitam corr. B.  tseq. in illo addC.  u) karissimi C.  vex iteritu et postquam introitu corrC.  w) necessitudinem C.  x) placeat C.  y) Acquilegiam C.  z) cottidie C.  a'ex hostilem corr. B.  b') Atila C.  c') incesu C.  d') cassata C.  e') asspirat C.  f') et C.  g') Langobdrdorum C.  h') Pellagii C.  i'seq. comuni addC.  j'seq. intuitu, ex introitu corr., addC.  k') placeat C.  l') Aquilegiam C.  m') placeat C.  n') Pelagi C.  o') pro C.  p'seq. ipsa addC.  q') tramsmissum C.  r') defferatur C.  s') Pellagio C.  t') que C.  u'seq. captum addC.  v') adfirmavit C.  w') Helias C.  x') que C.  y'sic B; umaminem C; pro: unanimen.  z') recitentur C.  a''sic BC: pro cunctis.  b'') exsequentes C.  c'') immobilem C.  d'') catolica C.  e'') gratiam C.  f'') christianorumque C.  g'') Calcedonam C.  h'') Bithinie C.  i''seq. martiris addC.  j'') difinivit C.  k'') adnexa C.  l'') dissonoque in C.  m'') çiçaniam C.  n''seq. que addC.  o'') cellum C.  p''seq. sucis cancC.  q''ex que corrC.  r'') gratiam C.  s'') ipetrante C.  t'') omnibus C.  u'') comuni C.  v'') erorem C.  w''ex partum corrC.  x'') partum C.  y''ex sumbolum corrC.  z'') tamquam C.  aa) adscribentes C.  bbsic B; Constantinopolim C.  cc) forma C.  ddomC.  ee) sancte C.  ffex Alexandridne corrC.  gg) ugere C.  hh) CCCtorum XVIIIto C.  iiseq. sanctorum addC.  jj) aput C et saepe sic.  kk) Nicenam C.  ll) sub, ex si corr., C.  mmomC.  nn) Constantinopoli C.  oo) heresem C.  ppseq. simbolum aput Nicenam trecentorum decem et octo patrum addC.  qqseq. nostrum addC.  rr) Iesum C.  ss) resurexit C.  tt) nascetur C.  uu) annathematiçat C.  vv) Helias C.  ww) Aquilensis C.  xxseq. P. gestis subscripsi addC, fort. per errorem exemplatoris.  yy) Vindeminus C.  zz) his gestis subscripsi iterC.  aa') Patavi C.  bb') his gestis subscripsi] omC.  cc'om. BC.  dd') Maxencinus C.  ee'sic B: pro Iuliensis, sicut C.  ff') subscripsi iterC.  gg') Arom C.  hh'seq. archidiaconus addC.  ii') facias C.  jj'sic BC: pro Secunde Retię.  kk') aliter Sabionensis addC.  ll'seq. superveniens sancta sinodo addC.  mm'seq. sinus relictis addC.  nn') Superveniens—subscripsi] sic B; om. C; ad episcopum Virgilium Scaravaciensem spectat, sicut in C conscriptus est.  oo'omC.  pp') Sercinus C.  qq') Deo gratias] invC.  rr') Gastus C.  ss') epresbiter C.


1) Vulg. Ioh. 14, 27.
2) Acta Concilii Chalcedonensis, actum sub die VIII kalendas novembris (25.X.) 451; cf. Edward Schwartz (ed.), Acta conciliorum oecumenicorum: Concilium Universale Chalcedonense: Rerum Chalcedonensium collectio Vaticana: Canones et symbolum (Berlin-Leipzig 1936), pp. 15-16.

Medieval Recollections

"Temporibus Tyberii Constantini augusti, Helias patriarcha Aquileiensis in Gradensi castro ecclesiam sancte Eufemie fabricari precepit, ibique synodum congregavit, in qua synodo quicquid de Calcedonense concilio dubitabatur, pulsa dubietate, confirmatum est, ibique statuit ecclesiam Gradensem caput et metropolim totius provincie Histriensium et Venetiarum, cuius Venecie terminus a Pannonia usque ad Adam fluvium protelatur, ępistolamque pro his statutis accepit a beatissimo papa Pelagio, consentientibus universis episcopis iam dictarum provinciarum." [om.]
"Cui [patriarchae Probino] succedens memoratus Helyas patriarcha, hec quę supra scripta sunt ordinavit, et iam dicta corpora sanctorum in miro ordine locavit, domumque sibi a fundamentis fabricari precepit, asserens in synodo supra statuta: 'Karissimi fratres, intervenientibus malis nostris cottidie hostile perpetimur flagellum; et iam pridem ab Atila Unorum rege Aquileia civitas nostra funditus destructa est, et postea Gothorum incessu et ceterorum barbarorum cassata, vix aspirans, sed et nunc Longobardorum nefandę gentis flagella sustinere non potest; quapropter dignum ducit mansuetudo nostra, si vestrę placet sanctitati, in hoc castro Gradensi nostram confìrmare metropolim.' Quo dicto omnibus placuit episcopis, et facto libello statutę suę, id est de memorata Calcidonensi synodo et de hac ipsa sede, subter manibus suis conscripserunt, id est primus Helias patriarcha, id est deinde Marcianus episcopus sanctę ęcclesię Opetergine, Leonianus episcopus Tyborniensis, Petrus episcopus Altinatis, Vindemius episcopus Cessensis, Burgullus episcopus Patavine ęcclesię, Ioannes episcopus Celeiane, Clarissimus episcopus Concordiensis, Patricius episcopus Emonensis, Adrianus episcopus Polensis, Maxencius episcopus luliensis, Severus episcopus Tergestinus, Solacius episcopus Veronensis, lohannes episcopus Parentinę ęcclesię, Aaron episcopus Avonciensis, Ingenuus episcopus secunde Retię, Agnellus episcopus Tridentinus, Vigilius episcopus Scaravaciensis, Fontegius episcopus Feltrensis, Marcianus episcopus Petenatis, Laurentius presbiter et Martinus presbiter atque Emerius presbiter, provinciales et presbiteri ceteri, tam metropolitani quam et plebani; omnes isti suprascripti consentierunt, et omnia in eodem loco confirmaverunt." - Cronica de singulis patriarchis Nove Aquileie (ed. Monticolli, Cronache veneziane antichissime, vol. 1 (Rome 1890), pp. 5-8).

"Mortuo vero apud Aquilegiam patriarcha Probino, qui ecclesiam uno rexerat anno, idem ecclesie sacerdos Helyas preficitur, qui hec que super scripta sunt ordinavit, domumque sibi a fundamentis edificavit et iam dicta corpora sanctorum miro modo collocavit, asserens in synodo supra statutum: 'Karissimi fratres, intervenientibus malis nostris, cottidie hostile perpetimur flagellum. Et iam pridem ab Atila Unorum rege Aquilegia civitas nostra funditus distructa est et postea Gothorum incessu et ceterorum barbarorum cassata, vix aspirans. Sed et nunc Langobardorum infande gentis flagella sustinere non potest; quapropter dignum ducit mansuetudo nostra, si vestre placet sanctitati, in hunc castrum Gradensem nostram confirmare metropolym.' Quo dicto omnibus placuit episcopis, et facto libello statute sue, id est de memorato Calcedonense synodo et de ac ipsa sede, subter manibus suis conscripserunt, id est primus Helyas patriarcha, deinde Marcianus, episcopus sancte ecclesie Opetergine, Leonianus, episcopus Tyborniensis, Petrus, episcopus Altinatis, Vindemius, episcopus Cessensis, Bergullus, episcopus Patavine ecclesie, Iohannes, episcopus Celeiane, Clarissimus, episcopus Concordiensis, Patricius, episcopus Emonensis, Adrianus, episcopus Polensis, Maxentius, episcopus Iuliensis, Severus, episcopus Tergestine ecclesie, Solatius, episcopus Veronensis, Iohannes, episcopus Parentine ecclesie, Aaron, episcopus Avonciensis, Ingenuus, episcopus secunde Recie, Agnellus, episcopus Tridentine, Vigilius, episcopus Scaravaciensis, Fontegius, episcopus Feltrensis, Martianus, episcopus Petenatis, Laurentius presbyter et Marinus presbyter atque Emerius presbyter provinciales, et ceteri presbyteri tam metropolitani quamque et plebani. Omnes isti suprascripti consentierunt et omnia in eodem loco confirmaverunt." - John the Deacon, Istoria Veneticorum (ed. Luigi Andrea Berto (Bologna 1999), p. 62).

Selected Bibliography
Roberto Cessi, "Nova Aquileia," Atti del Reale Istituto Veneto di Scienze, Lettere ed Arti 88/2 (1928-1929): pp. 543-94.
Giuseppe Cuscito, "La fede calcedonese e i concili di Grado (579) e di Marano (591)," in Antichità Altoadriatiche, vol. 17: Grado nella storia e nell'arte (Trieste 1980), pp. 207-30.
Lujo Margetić, "Il sinodo di Grado di Elia (572-577)," in Lujo Margetić, Histrica et Adriatica: Raccolta di saggi storico-giuridici e storici (Trieste 1983), pp. 135-40.
Marco Pozza, "I Libri Pactorum del comune di Venezia," in Atti della Società Ligure di Storia Patria, n.s., 42/1: Comuni e memoria storica: Alle origini del comune di Genova (2002): p. 203.
Editor's Notes

The preserved acts of the Synod of Grado present considerable difficulties in their interpretation. The oldest surviving parts of the acts are preserved extremely partially in the acts of the Synod of Mantua from 827 (see the document here) and in two 11th-century Venetian chronicles: John the Deacon's Istoria Veneticorum and the Cronica de singulis patriarchis Nove Aquileie written by an anonymous author. The two chronicles, however, report an already falsified part of the acts, namely the official transfer of the patriarchal see from Aquileia to Grado, the "New Aquileia." Cessi argued that these falsifications come in four layers, the oldest one dating from the beginning of the 9th century, the youngest from the mid-11th. Thus, Cessi tried to "peel off" these later layers in order to uncover the putative "authentic core" of these acts; by doing so, he came up with a speculative edition published in the editions referenced above. According to Cessi, the dating, the subscriptions, and only the last part, the one referring to the upholding of Nicaean creed and the symbol of faith, would indeed be authentic parts of the original acts; everything regarding Grado as the "New Aquileia" and the transfer of seat from Aquileia to Grado, including the papal charter from 579, would be later forgeries.

Further criticism, however, put a question mark even on the dating of the synod. Namely, the acts of the Synod of Mantua from 827 (preserved only as 15th-century copy, but exhibiting no signs of contaminations) mention a Flaminius as the bishop of Trento during the Synod of Grado (cf. the acts here) and not Agnellus as do the contaminated acts of the Synod of Grado hereby edited. The fragment written by Secundus of Trento in 580, a document whose authenticity is unquestionable, reports that the year 580 was Agnellus' third year as the bishop of Trento (the document is edited in extenso, annotated, and translated in Lieve Van Hoof and Peter Van Nuffelen (eds.), The Fragmentary Latin Histories of Late Antiquity (AD 300-620): Edition, Translation and Commentary (Cambridge 2020), pp. 242-45). Thus, since Agnellus was the bishop of Trento from 577, that would mean, if one chooses to give more faith to the non-contaminated acts of the Synod of Mantua, that the original Synod of Grado must have taken place before 577, during the time of Bishop Flaminius, Agnellus' predecessor. Since Helias became the patriarch of Aquileia in 572, the relative dating of "between 572 and 577" is reached (proposed already by Johann Friedrich, "Die ecclesia Augustana in dem Schreiben der istrischen Bischöfe an Kaiser Mauritius vom Jahre 591 und die Synode von Gradus zwischen 572 und 577," Sitzungsberichte der philosophisch-philologische und historische Klasse der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften München (1906): p. 348). Therefore, the dating "imperante domino serenissimo Tiberio Constantino augusto, anno imperii eius quinto, eodem consule, sub die tercio nonarum novembrium, indictione XIIIa," first reported in Dandolo's Chronica per extensum descripta and later transcribed in the Liber pactorum, would be entirely made up by Andrea Dandolo (the dating elements indeed do not concur with each other).

Finally, Lujo Margetić even endeavoured to interpret the profession of creed as a later falsification, also done by Andrea Dandolo and his scribe on the basis of descriptions of the Synod of Grado offered in Cronica de singulis patriarchis Nove Aquileie: "quicquid de Calcedonense concilio dubitabatur, pulsa dubie­tate, confirmatum est." This line, argues Margetić, inspired Andrea Dandolo to invent an additional part of his entirely fictitious acts and insert the symbol of faith as the last part of the acts, right before the subscriptions. However, this symbol, argues Margetić, is anachronical to late 6th-century theology as it stems from the Council of Nicaea, and this is the main argument for denouncing the entire part as a later forgery: "La presunta ‘presa di posizione’ del sinodo gradense non è affatto scismatica né ortodossa, ma semplicemente antiquata e veramente inimmaginabile nella seconda metà del secolo VI." (Margetić, "Il sinodo gradense di Elia," p. 139). Therefore, Margetić concludes, the only authentic parts concerning the Synod of Grado are those few lines reported in the acts of the Synod of Mantua; everything else, the entire document copied by Andrea Dandolo (and subsequently the one copied in the Liber pactorum) must be interpreted as wholly spurious.

Margetić's criticism is not warranted. Namely, the profession of creed featured in the acts of the Synod of Grado follows almost verbatim the one featured in the acts of the Ecumenical Council of Chalcedon (Edward Schwartz (ed.), Acta conciliorum oecumenicorum: Concilium Universale Chalcedonense: Rerum Chalcedonensium collectio Vaticana: Canones et symbolum (Berlin-Leipzig 1936), pp. 15-16; Edward Schwartz (ed.), Edward Schwartz (ed.), Acta conciliorum oecumenicorum: Concilium Universale Constantinopolitanum sub Iustiniano habitum, vol. 2: Iohannis Maxentii libelli - Collectio codicis Novariensis XXX - Collectio codicis Parisini 1682 - Procli tomus ad Armenios - Iohannis Papae II epistula ad viros illustres (Strasbourg 1914), pp. 138-41). Therefore, it seems far more likely that the bishops and clergy united in Grado read the entire profession of creed as defined by the Council of Chalcedon, but that the copyist, copying the acts of the Synod of Grado sometime between the 6th and the 14th century, only transcribed the beginning.

The crux of the Synod, however, remains the same whether one chooses to follow either Cessi or Margetić: the bishops solemnly refused to condemn the Three Chapters, refused to accept the conclusions of the Second Council of Constantinople, professed fealty to the Council of Chalcedon and persevered in their "schism". See more about the Schism of Three Chapters here.

How to Cite
First citation: Josip Banic (ed.), Fontes Istrie medievalis, vol. 1: A seculo VI usque ad 803, doc. 579_SG, fontesistrie.eu/579_SG (last access: date).
Subsequent citations: FIM, 1: doc. 579_SG.
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