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THE FETHA NAGAST
The Law of the Kings
Translated from the Ge’ez
by
ABBA PAULOS TZADUA
LL.D., Dr. Pol. Sc.
Edited
by
PETER L. STRAUSS
Faculty of Law
Haile Sellassi I University
Carolina Academic Press
Durham, North Carolina
Copyright © 2009 by the Faculty of Law,
Addis Ababa University
All rights reserved, including the right to reproduce this book
or portions thereof in any form.
Originally published in 1968 by
the Faculty of Law, Haile Sellassie I University
Second printing, 2009
ISBN 978-1-59460-661-8
LCCN 2008938349
Carolina Academic Press
700 Kent Street
Durham, NC 27701
USA
Telephone (919) 489-7486
Fax (919) 493-5668
www.cap-press.com
Printed in the United States of America
PREFACE TO THE FIRST PRINTING
v
TA B L E O F C O N T E N T S
Preface to the First Printing
Foreword
Translator’s Note
Editor’s Note
Preface to the Second Printing
Abba Paulos Tzadua, Fetha Nägäst
P.H. Sand, Roman Origins of the Ethiopian “Law of the Kings” (Fetha Nagast)
Footnote Conventions
[PREFACE]
v
xv
xxx
xxxii
xxxiii
xxxvii
xxxix
li
1
[ PA RT O N E ]
CHAPTER I: THE CHURCH AND WHAT CONCERNS IT
11
CHAPTER II: THE DIVINE BOOKS WHICH MUST BE ACCEPTED BY THE
HOLY CHURCH AND WHICH ARE EIGHTY-ONE IN NUMBER
13
CHAPTER III: BAPTISM AND THOSE WHO EMBRACE THE FAITH
14
CHAPTER IV: PATRIARCHS
Part I, [taken] from [various] books
Part II, [arrived at] by reasoning
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17
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CHAPTER V: BISHOPS
I. [Before his election and consecration]
II. His consecration
III. After his consecration
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24
27
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CHAPTER VI: PRIESTS
I. The requirements
II. On ordination
III. The rank
IV. The precepts pertinent to him
V. The part which deals with the causes that bring about a priest’s deposition
VI. On one who is not impeded from performing his duties
43
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CHAPTER VII:
Part I.
Part II.
Part III.
Part IV.
Part V.
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DEACONS