FABRICA ECCLESIÆ: Literally "a church building," but used as the technical name of that portion of the funds appropriated for the maintenance of the building. At first a part of the general revenue was set aside for this purpose, but later this was kept up only in case of cathedrals and collegiate churches, where a special magister or procurator fabricæ had charge of the fund. The difficulty, however, of obtaining the means necessary to maintain church buildings led to the formation of special fabric-funds in ordinary parishes, which became the object of many rules and regulations according to custom and local law. The provision of church utensils and the requirements of divine service, especially the lighting, were also included. There was no general regulation as to how the fund should be provided; usually it was made up from oblations, tithes, burial-fees, and the like. The fabric-funds have had special importance in France and the adjoining German lands on the left bank of the Rhine, where they were allowed to continue when the church property was confiscated (decree of Apr. 22, 1790) and have occasioned much subsequent legislation. See CHURCH-BUILDING, TAXATION FOR.