Monday, December 18, 2006

Here it is! (2 of 4)

From “Costume of Prelates of the Catholic Church according to Roman Etiquette” by John Abel Nainfa:

Cappa Magna

3. Different Kinds

There are two styles of cappa magna, the one fully displayed, the other curtailed and folded.

The former - the one above described - is the cappa which we are accustomed to see worn by a bishop in his diocese. This cappa is a sign of jurisdiction and authority; therefore, it is worn by the Pope and Cardinals everywhere; by a Metropolitan Archbishop, in his province; by a Bishop, in his diocese. When the Prelate is sitting, the vestment is fully unfolded and gracefully draped around him, “covering the whole person”. Whenever the prelate walks, the train of the cappa must be carried by a train-bearer.

The train-bearer is supposed to be a cleric; he may be a seminarian, a member of the Prelate’s household or even an altar boy, not a “page” in fancy costume, and there should be only one. The Pope having only one train-bearer, no other prelate is entitled to have more. The dress of the train-bearer varies according to the different occasions on which he performs his duties. When accompanying a Cardinal to the papal “chapel”, he vests in a purple cassock of silk, with trimmings and buttons of black velvet; he wears a purple silk cincture and a purple collaro; over the cassock, he puts, on the crocia, a surtout of peculiar shape, made of purple cloth or sage, lined and trimmed with purple silk. When the Pope officiates, the Cardinals vests in the sacred vestments of their order - cope for Cardinal-Bishops, chasuble for Cardinal-Priests and dalmatic for Cardinal-Deacons; the train-bearers then put on a cotta over the crocia, and throw on their shoulders the vimpa, a long humeral veil of light silk with which they hold the Cardinals’ mitres. When a Cardinal officiates outside of the papal “chapels”, his train-bearer does not wear the crocia, but the cotta over his purple cassock; and, when the Cardinal assists in cappa magna at a ceremony, the train-bearer wears over his purple cassock the ferraiolo of black silk. The train-bearer of the diocesan Bishop does not wear the crocia, which is a garment used only at papal “chapels”; but he wears the purple cassock with the black ferraiolo when the Bishop is vested in cappa magna, and the cotta over the purple cassock when the Bishop is dressed in his pontificals. In no case should he wear gloves or a biretta.

The other cappa, curtailed and folded, is worn by bishops and certain Prelates di mantelletta when attending the papal “chapels”, and also by canons, to whom it is conceded by a special indult of the Pope.

The cape of this cappa is similar to that of the other; but the vestment itself is so curtailed that it is reduced to a wide plaited band hanging on the back and ending in a short train. This train, however, is never let down, for the flowing train is a mark of jurisdiction; it is lifted up, twisted and tied with a purple ribbon, with which it is suspended from the left side of the cape. Thus twisted and tied up, this train symbolizes a restricted jurisdiction, or absence of jurisdiction.

Formerly there was no difference between those two styles of cappa; this is why the regulation laid down for the use of the one applies also to the other.


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