In 385 Pope Siricius (384–99) sent a letter to Himerius of Tarragona in response to issues on which the bishop of Tarragona had sent to Rome seeking guidance. Himerius’ letter had been sent to Pope Damasus, who did not respond due to his untimely death. Although we do not have the letter that Himerius wrote, the detailed response by Pope Siricius allows us to ascertain its content. 1 The pope considered the matter so pressing that he convened a synod in Rome rather than unilaterally responding. The letter has not gone unnoticed in contemporary scholarship for several reasons. One, since it is the first papal ‘decretal’, it has received considerable attention by scholars of the papacy. 2 Two, it is the earliest extant letter to Hispania from a bishop of Rome. Therefore for the history of papal relations with Hispania it is significant and a number of modern studies have considered its content. 3 This brief study will focus on specific questions regarding this papal letter. It also forms in part a comprehensive study that I am carrying out on the relationship of the bishops of Rome with the church in Hispania from Pope Siricius up to the Muslim invasion of 711.