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The principle that imperial decrees and charters must be "dated" as a condition of validity, i.e.
But even the bulls of such a pontiff as Innocent III are not unfrequently at fault, and as Léopold Delisle has shown, an erroneous calculation of the indiction may be perpetuated through a whole series of authentic documents (Bib. The point of main interest in this connection is to determine the source and period of the introduction of our present system of dating by the Christian Era.
Although, as explained in the article GENERAL CHRONOLOGY, the monk known as Dionysius Exiguus, when resident in Rome, c.
"Those who have seen it say that the document which John brought does not bear the day or the indiction . Even down to the beginning of the twelfth century not only royal and imperial letters but even charters (), properly so called, were occasionally through the carelessness of officials sent out without a date.
(Bresslau, Handbuch, I, 891.) In this matter the Italian chancery officials seem to have been much more careful than those of the rest of Europe.