Skip to main content

Chair of Peter

CHAIR OF PETER

As a theological expression, signifies the authority, especially the teaching authority, of the pope. The chair in which a bishop presides over his people was from early times regarded with respect as symbolizing his authority, since it was from his official chair (in which he sat, facing his people) that he gave the homilies by which he instructed his flock in the word of God. Hence the Feast of St. Peter's Chair, whether at Antioch or Rome, commemorated his authority there. Since the teaching power of the pope is not merely that of a bishop but that of the successor of St. Peter, the chair of Peter indicates the authoritative doctrinal power of the pope as the successor of St. Peter. This is the origin of the expression ex cathedra definition; such a papal pronouncement (very rarely made) is one in which the pope infallibly defines a doctrine that is irrevocably binding on all the faithful.

The Feast of the Chair of Peter is an ancient liturgical feast that is celebrated on February 22 in the Church's liturgical year.

[b. forshaw/eds.]

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Chair of Peter." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 14 Nov. 2018 <https://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Chair of Peter." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (November 14, 2018). https://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/chair-peter

"Chair of Peter." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Retrieved November 14, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/chair-peter

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.