Canons on Usury

Canons of the Holy Apostles

Canon XLIV:

Let a bishop, presbyter, or deacon, who takes usury from those who borrow of him, give up doing so, or be deposed.


First Nicea (325)

Canon XVII:

Forasmuch as many enrolled among the Clergy, following covetousness and lust of gain, have forgotten the divine Scripture, which says, “He hath not given his money upon usury,” and in lending money ask the hundredth of the sum [as monthly interest], the holy and great Synod thinks it just that if after this decree any one be found to receive usury, whether he accomplish it by secret transaction or otherwise, as by demanding the whole and one half, or by using any other contrivance whatever for filthy lucre’s sake, he shall be deposed from the clergy and his name stricken from the list.

Ancient Epitome of Canon XVII: If anyone shall receive usury or 150 per cent he shall be cast forth and deposed, according to this decree of the Church.


Laodicaean Council (364)

Canon 4:

Concerning the fact that those who are in priestly orders must not lend out money and take interest and the so-called “half-of-the-whole.” (Ap. c. XLIV.).


Quinisextum (Trullum 692)

Canon X:

A bishop, or presbyter, or deacon who receives usury, or what is called hecatostæ, let him desist or be deposed.