ABSTRACT

Sometime in the first years of the fifth century, Hilary and Elpidius, a Spanish bishop and presbyter, journeyed to Rome. They informed its bishop, Innocent I, that some of the 20 canons to address perceived irregularities in the lives of Spanish clergy and lay people, as well as the solution to the Priscillianist crisis, adopted by 19 bishops, including Hilary, 1 at the first Synod of Toledo (ancient Toletum in the province of Carthaginensis) in September 400 were being rejected. The synod had agreed to accept repentant Priscillianist bishops back into communion as bishops, but some Spanish colleagues in Baetica or Carthaginensis disagreed with such leniency and broke off communion. 2 As a consequence of the visit of the two Spanish clerics Innocent wrote his letter Seape me to the 19 bishops who had been in Toledo. 3