222); and his contemporary, Pope Boniface IX., complained of their absolving even impenitent sinners for ridiculously small sums (pro qualibet parva pecuniarum summula, Raynaldus, Ann.
He had become an incurable hypochondriac. He said long after that he had been mad all his life, or at least not perfectly sane; and, in truth, eccentricities less strange than his have often been thought ground sufficient for absolving felons and for setting aside wills.
Immediately after entering England (July 1213) he showed his desire for peace by absolving the king.
It was more and more regarded as the special function of the priest to administer absolution, though as late as the i 6th century we hear of laymen confessing to and absolving one another on the battlefield because no priest was at hand.
The sovereign pontiff never claimed any power of absolving in grievous matters apart from these.
At the Paris Conference Rumania's enforced conclusion of peace with Germany was treated as absolving the Allies from obligations which were admitted in the parallel case of the Italian treaty: and the necessity of a partition on mainly ethnographic lines was from the first admitted.
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