Author of early glosses and a Summa on the Decretum of gratian. His work was written before 1148 when it is referred to in the Summa Rolandi, which is of that date. We know practically nothing about him, the dates of his birth and death, his place of origin, etc. It seems certain that he taught at Bologna, where it is possible he had been a student of Gratian. He was responsible for some of the earliest paleae, or additions, to the Decretum of Gratian; the division of parts I and III into distinctiones appears also to be his work. He gives evidence of a good knowledge of Roman law and is a canonist of some competence. His Summa is also characterized by the many historiae or exegesis of passages of Scripture already noted in the Decretum. His work is frequently referred to by canonists after his time. For example, the author of the Summa Parisiensis mentions him by name about 20 times and seems to have had his work constantly before him. From time immemorial Paucapalea has been called "the first decretist." More recently that title has been challenged seriously and perhaps successfully. He now appears to have made use of one or two earlier works on the Decretum that have lately come to the attention of scholars.
Bibliography: Die Summa des Paucapalea über das Decretum Gratiani, ed. j. f. schulte (Giessen 1890). a. vetulani, "Le Décret de Gratien et les premiers décrétistes …," Studia Gratiana 7 (1959) 273–353; "Nouvelles vues sur le Décret de Gratien," La Potogne au Xe Congrès international des sciences historiques à Rome (Warsaw 1955) 83–105. g. fransen, "La date du Décret de Gratien," Revue d'histoire ecclésiastique 51 (1956) 521–531. s. kuttner, Repertorium der Kanonistik (Rome 1937). f. maassen, "Paucapalea: ein Beitrag zur Literargeschichte des canonischen Rechts im Mittelalter," Sitzungberichte der Akademie der Wissenschaften in Wein 31 (1859) 449–516. a. mocci, "Documenti inediti sui canonista Paucapalea," Atti della Reale accademia delle scienze di Torino 40 (1905) 316–326.
[t. p. mclaughlin]