In the canon law of the Catholic Church, obrogation is the enacting of a contrary law that is a revocation of a previous law. It may also be the partial cancellation or amendment of a law, decree, or legal regulation by the imposition of a newer one.
In the civil law, obrogation is the modification or repeal of a law in whole or in part by issuing a new law.
If decrees are contrary one to another, where specific matters are expressed, the specific prevails over the general; if both are equally specific or equally general, the one later in time obrogates (Latin: obrogat from obrogare) the earlier insofar as it is contrary to it.
This canon incorporates Rule 34 in VI of the Regulae Iuris: "Generi per speciem derogatur" or "The specific derogates from the general."
^Coriden et al., Commentary, pg. 54 (commentary on canon 53).
Caparros, Ernest; Theriault, Michel; Thorn, Jean; Aube, Helene (January 1, 2004) . Code of Canon Law Annotated: Prepared Under the Responsibility of the Instituto Martin De Azpilcueta. Gratianus Series (Hardcover) (2nd ed.). Montréal, Woodridge, Illinois: Midwest Theological Forum. ISBN189017744X.
Coriden, James A., Thomas J. Green, Donald E. Heintschel (editors). The Code of Canon Law: A Text and Commentary (New York: Paulist Press, 1985). Commissioned by the Canon Law Society of America.
Della Rocca, Fernando. Manual of Canon Law (Milwaukee: The Bruce Publishing Company, 1959) translated by Rev. Anselm Thatcher, O.S.B.