Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction (1857–1868)


As exp­lai­ned in the sec­tion “norms, the Con­cordat of 1855 trans­fer­red the juris­dic­tion in matri­mo­ni­al affairs back to the Catho­lic Church. In the arch­du­chy Aus­tria below the Enns the mar­ria­ge pro­cee­dings had to be filed eit­her at the court of the arch­dio­ce­se of Vien­na or at the court of the dio­ce­se of St. Pöl­ten.

In con­trast to the secu­lar juris­dic­tion, here divorce pro­cee­dings once again requi­red a com­p­lai­ning par­ty. After the “Law on the mar­ria­ge of Catho­lics in the Empi­re of Aus­tria” had come into effect in 1857, uncon­tested divorces were no lon­ger pos­si­ble. Moreo­ver, the Catho­lic mar­ria­ge courts could again restrict the sepa­ra­ti­on to a limi­ted time peri­od.

The archi­ve of the Vien­nese metro­po­li­tan court could find files only from the mar­ria­ge pro­cee­dings from the last quar­ter of 1867. In the archi­ve of the St. Pöl­ten dio­ce­san court, howe­ver, the files of the mar­ria­ge pro­cee­dings bet­ween 1857, 1868 and 1872 respec­tively are stored in 23 boxes. Fur­ther­mo­re, for the ent­i­re peri­od the­re are two books of the hea­rings avail­ab­le.

While we were able to exami­ne the court prac­tice of the Metro­po­li­tan Court in Vien­na only at the end of its juris­dic­tion, the den­se source trans­mis­si­on of the St. Pöl­ten court made it pos­si­ble to exami­ne the court prac­tice at the begin­ning (Janu­a­ry 1857 to June 1857) and at the end (Sep­tem­ber to Decem­ber 1867) of its juris­dic­tion.

Andrea Grie­seb­ner / Isa­bel­la Pla­ner, trans­la­ti­on Jen­ni­fer Blaak

fur­ther: Claims of the Main Pro­cee­dings