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Archbishop. The title given to a metropolitan prelate, who superintends the conduct of suffragan bishops in his province, and who exercises episcopal authority in his own diocese. This title was unknown in the primitive Church, and for the first time was applied in the Orient by St. Athanasius, Bishop of Alexandria, to his predecessor, Alexander (fourth century); and in the Occident, to St. Isidore of Seville, who died in 636. However, since the Roman epoch, the prelate residing in the capital of a province, exercised over the bishops of the same province a kind of suzerainty, and it was generally the suzerain bishop who, later on, took the name of archbishop. There is no difference between the bishop and the archbishop as to order and character, but only in regard to privileges and jurisdiction. The archbishop judges, in his metropolitan officiality, the appeals lodged against the sentences rendered by the officials of his suffragans. He possesses the power of convoking and presiding in the provincial synods, superintendence and power of visitation over the bishops of the metropolitan see; the power of enforcing the laws of the Church as well as the canons and constitutions of his province. He has also the right of having the Cross carried before him in his own archiepiscopate, of giving his blessing, etc. See METROPOLITAN; APPEAL.