Republic within Italy covering about 24 square miles.
Legend attributes the foundation of this republic in the 4th century, to Saint Marinus, a stone-cutter, from Dalmatia, who settled on Monte Titano.
At the beginning it was a religious community on a steep rock; gradually settlements were made around it, the ground was cultivated, and a government organized.
The clergy are under the pastor of the "Pieve," the parish church of the capital.
Franciscans established themselves here in 1361, the Poor Clares built a monastery in 1609, and the first Capuchin house dates from the 18th century.
The College of Belluzzi is the principal institute of learning in the republic.
San Marino comprises ten parishes, eight in the Diocese of Montefeltro, and two in Rimini.
The Code punishes with fine and imprisonment any priest who reads from the pulpit a document from an outside authority, or who censures the acts of the Grand Councilor the Regency, or who refuses to publish an order of the government.
Ecclesiastics are political electors, but are ineligible for civil positions.
They receive no government support, but each parish has its own patrimony.
Religious institutions, corporations, and parishes are forbidden to sell, exchange, or transfer goods without government authority.
Acts of ecclesiastical authority relating to the granting of ecclesiastical goods or the collation of major or minor benefices, and the paying of rents of the benefices, cannot be executed without the consent of the regents on the advice of the State Congress.
New Catholic Dictionary