An office of the Roman Curia, which looks into the fitness of candidates for nonconsistorial benefices reserved to the Holy See; composes and expedites the Apostolic letters for the conferring of such benefices; grants exemption from conditions required in conferring a benefice, the collation of which does not pertain to the Ordinary; attends to pensions and burdens imposed by the supreme pontiff when conferring the aforementioned benefices.
The dataria is presided over by the cardinal-datary.
He is assisted by a subdatary, or regent, and several subordinate officials and consultors.
This office dates back to the 13th century.
It used to grant besides concessions pertaining to benefices other graces of the external forum, such as matrimonial dispensations.
Leo XIII gave it a more modern form and Pius X reorganized it completely.
The Code of Canon Law outlines its fupctions as noted above.
New Catholic Dictionary