People of Medieval Scotland
1093 - 1371

Document 2/137/23 (Dip. Norv., vii, no. 4)

Pope Innocent III takes Abbot Celestine and the brethren of the monastery of St. Columba on the Island of Iona into his protection; all the possessions and goods which they have or may acquire by papal permission, by the liberality of kings or the gifts of the faithful, may remain with the abbot and his successors, including the place where the monastery is situated and the churches of Innse Gall (i.e., the Hebrides), Mull (ARG), Colonsay (ARG), ‘Cheldubsenaig’ (poss. Killunaig, Coll, ARG) ‘Chelcenneg’ (poss. Kilkenzie, in Kintyre, ARG), and Islay (ARG), the islands of Iona (ARG), Mull (ARG), Colonsay (ARG), Oronsay (ARG), Canna (INV)and Calve (ARG), the lands of ‘Magenburg’, ‘Mangecheles’, ‘Herilnean’ (all on Islay, ARG), Sotesdal (on Coll, ARG), and the lands of ‘Abberade in Yle’ (on Islay), Muckairn (ARG) and ‘Camusnanesre’ (Kames, Melfort ph., ARG). Everyone is debarred from presuming to exact teinds, in respect of fallow lands or of food for their animals. Burial will be unimpeded, except for those excommunicated or under interdict, saving justice to the church where they are buried. On the death of the abbot, or his successors, no one may be advanced to that office by deceit or violence, unless the brothers by common consent, or a majority of them, shall provide that the abbot be elected in accordance with the Benedictine rule. For this protection they shall pay 2 bezants of gold yearly to the apostolic see. The pope directs that no man is permitted to disturb the church or carry away its possessions; saving to the bishop canonical justice and reverence and the authority of the apostolic see. Should any secular person attempt to go against this, after three warnings if he should not make amends, he may lost his honour and be liable to divine justice, and subject himself to retribution.
Firm date
9 December 1203
Dating Notes
5 id. Dec., 1203, pontifical year 6
Place date (modern)
Place date (document)
Related Place
Source for Data Entry
Diplomatarium Norvegicum: oldbreve til kundskab om Norges indre og ydre forholde, sprog, slægter, sæder, lovgivning og rettergang i middelalderen, vol. 7, ed. G. Storm (Christiania, 1898), no. 4 (online at [ id. Dec., 1203, pontifical year 6lomvisetekst.prl?b=6542&s=n&str])
Trad. ID
Dip. Norv., vii, no. 4
Calendar number
Charter type
Papal privilege: general confirmation

Total number of associated factoids: 5

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Date Short Summary Primary Witnesses
9 Dec. 1203 Confirmation of possessions of Iona Abbey yes

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Date Short Summary Title Holder
9 Dec. 1203 subdeacon (papal) John, subdeacon and notary
9 Dec. 1203 notary John, subdeacon and notary
9 Dec. 1203 pope Innocent III, pope (d.1216)
9 Dec. 1203 abbot of Iona Cellach (Celestine), abbot of Iona (fl.1203-04)