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The Papal Encyclicals: 1740–1981 (5 vols.)


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For nearly 2,000 years, the bishops of Rome have addressed theological topics of especially timely concern through the circulation of papal letters. These letters became known as encyclicals, and since the later eighteenth century, they have become increasingly important in the popes’ exercise of their teaching office. In the mid-nineteenth century, the encyclical letter began to take on its contemporary form as a theological treatise applying Christian teaching to immediate circumstances. And in the twentieth century, papal encyclicals emerged as some of the most important theology produced worldwide.

The Papal Encyclicals: 1740–1981 (5 vols.) presents 280 encyclicals in English from Benedict XIV to John Paul II. These letters approach matters of faith and morals and answer important questions on dogmatics and on the social and ethical issues of the society in which they were composed. For the student, scholar, or layperson, this collection is essential for studying and searching the papal teaching of the past 250 years.

With the Logos edition, all Scripture passages in the encyclicals are tagged and appear on mouse-over. What's more, references to important works, such as the decrees of Vatican II, Trent, or the writings of the Church Fathers, are tagged. This makes these texts more powerful and easier to access than ever before for scholarly work or personal study. With the advanced search features of Logos Bible Software, you can perform powerful searches by topic or Scripture reference—finding, for example, every mention of “mercy” or “Eucharist.”

Resource Experts
  • Contains all the encyclicals written between 1740 to 1981 in chronological order
  • Lists references at the end of each encyclical
  • Includes 110 encyclicals translated into English specifically for this edition
  • Provides an introduction, chronological list of encyclicals, and a comprehensive index of 2,500+ subjects, as well as brief biographies of each pontiff
This edition will remain for decades to come a standard reference that has put all students of the papacy in the editor's debt.

Catholic Historical Review

One of the most prodigious ventures in Catholic publishing and surely one of the most historically important. It would be difficult to imagine that any Catholic library at educational institutions, chanceries, or parishes could be without it.

The Catholic Standard

Catholics and non-Catholics alike will be grateful . . . for . . . the entire corpus of . . . encyclicals . . . even professional scholars will find this monumental collection of papal documents absolutely indispensable. . . .

—National Catholic News Service

  • Title: The Papal Encyclicals: 1740–1981
  • Editor: Claudia Carlen, IHM
  • Publisher: Pierian Press
  • Volumes: 5
  • Pages: 2,358
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Claudia Carlen is the preeminent authority on papal documents. She has authored and edited numerous other works on papal pronouncements including the Guide to the Documents of Pius XII. She is also the recipient of four honorary doctorates that specifically recognize her work in this area.


2 ratings

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  1. Nicholas A. B. Hall
    Great resource, but the linking is poor - even the Vatican II documents don't link to it. Some kind of encyclical dataset would be useful as well, or at least whatever is required for Logos to recognise the encyclicals individually. If you don't know the exact date of the encyclical, google still outperforms Logos on these
  2. Faithlife User
  3. Michael Maria Waldstein


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