Contents

HISTORY

of the

CHRISTIAN CHURCH11 Schaff, Philip, History of the Christian Church. This material has been carefully compared, corrected¸ and emended (according to the 1910 edition of Charles Scribner's Sons) by The Electronic Bible Society, Dallas, TX, 1998.

by

PHILIP SCHAFF

Christianus sum. Christiani nihil a me alienum puto

VOLUME VI.

THE MIDDLE AGES

From BONIFACE VIII., 1294 to the Protestant Reformation, 1517

by

DAVID S. SCHAFF, D.D.


PREFACE

This volume completes the history of the Church in the Middle Ages. Dr. Philip Schaff on one occasion spoke of the Middle Ages as a terra incognita in the United States,—a territory not adequately explored. These words would no longer be applicable, whether we have in mind the instruction given in our universities or theological seminaries. In Germany, during the last twenty years, the study of the period has been greatly developed, and no period at the present time, except the Apostolic age, attracts more scholarly and earnest attention and research.

The author has had no apologetic concern to contradict the old notion, perhaps still somewhat current in our Protestant circles, that the Middle Ages were a period of superstition and worthy of study as a curiosity rather than as a time directed and overruled by an all-seeing Providence. He has attempted to depict it as it was and to allow the picture of high religious purpose to reveal itself side by side with the picture of hierarchical assumption and scholastic misinterpretation. Without the mediaeval age, the Reformation would not have been possible. Nor is this statement to be understood in the sense in which we speak of reaching a land of sunshine and plenty after having traversed a desert. We do well to give to St. Bernard and Francis d’Assisi, St. Elizabeth and St. Catherine of Siena, Gerson, Tauler and Nicolas of Cusa a high place in our list of religious personalities, and to pray for men to speak to our generation as well as they spoke to the generations in which they lived.

Moreover, the author has been actuated by no purpose to disparage Christians who, in the alleged errors of Protestantism, find an insuperable barrier to Christian fellowship. Where he has passed condemnatory judgments on personalities, as on the popes of the last years of the 15th and the earlier years of the 16th century, it is not because they occupied the papal throne, but because they were personalities who in any walk of life would call for the severest reprobation. The unity of the Christian faith and the promotion of fellowship between Christians of all names and all ages are considerations which should make us careful with pen or spoken word lest we condemn, without properly taking into consideration that interior devotion to Christ and His kingdom -which seems to be quite compatible with divergencies in doctrinal statement or ceremonial habit.

On the pages of the volume, the author has expressed his indebtedness to the works of the eminent mediaeval historians and investigators of the day, Gregorovius, Pastor, Mandell Creighton, Lea, Ehrle, Denifle, Finke, Schwab, Haller, Carl Mirbt, R. Mueller Kirsch, Loserth, Janssen, Valois, Burckhardt-Geiger, Seebohm and others, Protestant and Roman Catholic, and some no more among the living.

It is a pleasure to be able again to express his indebtedness to the Rev. David E. Culley, his colleague in the Western Theological Seminary, whose studies in mediaeval history and accurate scholarship have been given to the volume in the reading of the manuscript, before it went to the printer, and of the printed pages before they received their final form.

Above all, the author feels it to be a great privilege that he has been able to realize the hope which Dr. Philip Schaff expressed in the last years of his life, that his History of the Christian Church which, in four volumes, had traversed the first ten centuries and, in the sixth and seventh, set forth the progress of the German and Swiss Reformations, might be carried through the fruitful period from 1050–1517.

David S. Schaff.

The Western Theological Seminary,

Pittsburg.

§ 1. Introductory Survey.

The two centuries intervening between 1294 and 1517, between the accession of Boniface VIII. and the nailing of Luther’s Ninety-five Theses against the church door in Wittenberg, mark the gradual transition from the Middle Ages to modern times, from the universal acceptance of the papal theocracy in Western Europe to the assertion of national independence, from the supreme authority of the priesthood to the intellectual and spiritual freedom of the individual. Old things are passing away; signs of a new order increase. Institutions are seen to be breaking up. The scholastic systems of theology lose their compulsive hold on men’s minds, and even become the subject of ridicule. The abuses of the earlier Middle Ages call forth voices demanding reform on the basis of the Scriptures and the common well-being of mankind. The inherent vital energies in the Church seek expression in new forms of piety and charitable deed.

The power of the papacy, which had asserted infallibility of judgment and dominion over all departments of human life, was undermined by the mistakes, pretensions, and worldliness of the papacy itself, as exhibited in the policy of Boniface VIII., the removal of the papal residence to Avignon, and the disastrous schism which, for nearly half a century, gave to Europe the spectacle of two, and at times three, popes reigning at the same time and all professing to be the vicegerents of God on earth.

The free spirit of nationality awakened during the crusades grew strong and successfully resisted the papal authority, first in France and then in other parts of Europe. Princes asserted supreme authority over the citizens within their dominions and insisted upon the obligations of churches to the state. The leadership of Europe passed from Germany to France, with England coming more and more into prominence.

The tractarian literature of the fourteenth century set forth the rights of man and the principles of common law in opposition to the pretensions of the papacy and the dogmatism of the scholastic systems. Lay writers made themselves heard as pioneers of thought, and a practical outlook upon the mission of the Church was cultivated. With unexampled audacity Dante assailed the lives of popes, putting some of St. Peter’s successors into the lowest rooms of hell.

The Reformatory councils of Pisa, Constance, and Basel turned Europe for nearly fifty years, 1409–1450, into a platform of ecclesiastical and religious discussion. Though they failed to provide a remedy for the disorders prevailing in the Church, they set an example of free debate, and gave the weight of their eminent constituency to the principle that not in a select group of hierarchs does supreme authority in the Church rest, but in the body of the Church.

The hopelessness of expecting any permanent reform from the papacy and the hierarchy was demonstrated in the last years of the period, 1460–1517, when ecclesiastical Rome offered a spectacle of moral corruption and spiritual fall which has been compared to the corrupt age of the Roman Empire.

The religious unrest and the passion for a better state of affairs found expression in Wyclif, Huss, and other leaders who, by their clear apprehension of truth and readiness to stand by their public utterances, even unto death, stood far above their own age and have shone in all the ages since.

While coarse ambition and nepotism, a total perversion of the ecclesiastical office and violation of the fundamental virtues of the Christian life held rule in the highest place of Christendom, a pure stream of piety was flowing in the Church of the North, and the mystics along the Rhine and in the Lowlands were unconsciously fertilizing the soil from which the Reformation was to spring forth.

The Renaissance, or the revival of classical culture, unshackled the minds of men. The classical works of antiquity were once more, after the churchly disparagement of a thousand years, held forth to admiration. The confines of geography were extended by the discoveries of the continent in the West.

The invention of the art of printing, about 1440, forms an epoch in human advancement, and made it possible for the products of human thought to be circulated widely among the people, and thus to train the different nations for the new age of religious enfranchisement about to come, and the sovereignty of the intellect.

To this generation, which looks back over the last four centuries, the discovery of America and the pathways to the Indies was one of the remarkable events in history, a surprise and a prophecy. In 1453, Constantinople easily passed into the hands of the Turk, and the Christian empire of the East fell apart. In the far West the beginnings of a new empire were made, just as the Middle Ages were drawing to a close.

At the same time, at the very close of the period, under the direction and protection of the Church, an institution was being prosecuted which has scarcely been equalled in the history of human cruelty, the Inquisition,—now papal, now Spanish,—which punished heretics unto death in Spain and witches in Germany.

Thus European society was shaking itself clear of long-established customs and dogmas based upon the infallibility of the Church visible, and at the same time it held fast to some of the most noxious beliefs and practices the Church had allowed herself to accept and propagate. It had not the original genius or the conviction to produce a new system of theology. The great Schoolmen continued to rule doctrinal thought. It established no new ecclesiastical institution of an abiding character like the canon law. It exhibited no consuming passion such as went out in the preceding period in the crusades and the activity of the Mendicant Orders. It had no transcendent ecclesiastical characters like St. Bernard and Innocent III. The last period of the Middle Ages was a period of intellectual discontent, of self-introspection, a period of intimation and of preparation for an order which it was itself not capable of begetting.

CHAPTER I.

THE DECLINE OF THE PAPACY AND THE AVIGNON EXILE.

a.d. 1294–1377.

§ 2. Sources and Literature.

For works covering the entire period, see V. 1. 1–3, such as the collections of Mansi, Muratori, and the Rolls Series; Friedberg’s Decretum Gratiani, 2 vols., Leipzig, 1879–1881; Hefele-Knöpfler: Conciliengeschichte; Mirbt: Quellen zur Geschichte des Papstthums, 2d ed., 1901; the works of Gregorovius and Bryce, the General Church and Doctrinal Histories of Gieseler, Hefele, Funk, Hergenröther-Kirsch, Karl Müller, Harnack Loofs, and Seeberg; the Encyclopaedias of Herzog, Wetzer-Welte, Leslie Stephen, Potthast, and Chévalier; the Atlases of F. W. Putzger, Leipzig, Heussi and Mulert, Tübingen, 1905, and Labberton, New York. L. Pastor: Geschichte der Papste, etc., 4 vols., 4th ed., 1901–1906, and Mandell Creighton: History of the Papacy, etc., London, 1882–1894, also cover the entire period in the body of their works and their Introductory Chapters. There is no general collection of ecclesiastical author far this period corresponding to Migne’s Latin Patrology.

For §§ 3, 4. Boniface VIII. Regesta Bonifatii in Potthast: Regesta pontificum rom., II., 1923–2024, 2133 sq. – Les Registres de Boniface VIII., ed. Digard, Fauçon et Thomas, 7 Fasc., Paris, 1884–1903. – Hist. Eccles. of Ptolemaeus of Lucca, Vitae Pontif. of Bernardus Guidonis, Chron. Pontif. of Amalricus Augers Hist. rerum in Italia gestarum of Ferretus Vicentinus, and Chronica universale of Villani, all in Muratori: Rerum Ital. Scriptores, III. 670 sqq., X. 690 sqq., XI. 1202 sqq., XIIL 348 sqq. – Selections from Villani, trans. by Rose E. Selfe, ed. by P. H. Wicksteed, Westminster, 1897. – Finke: Aus den Tagen Bonifaz VIII., Münster, 1902. Prints valuable documents pp. i-ccxi. Also Acta Aragonensia. Quellen ... zur Kirchen und Kulturgeschichte aus der diplomatischen Korrespondenz Jayme II, 1291–1327, 2 vols., Berlin, 1908. – Döllinger: Beiträge zur politischen, kirchlichen und Culturgeschichte der letzten 6 Jahrh., 3 vols., Vienna, 1862–1882. Vol. III., pp. 347–353, contains a Life of Boniface drawn from the Chronicle of Orvieto by an eye-witness, and other documents. – Denifle: Die Denkschriften der Colonna gegen Bonifaz VIII., etc., in Archiv für Lit. und Kirchengeschichte des M. A., 1892, V. 493 sqq. – Dante: Inferno, XIX. 52 sqq., XXVII. 85 sqq.; Paradiso, IX. 132, XXVII. 22, XXX. 147. Modern Works. – J. Rubeus: Bonif. VIII. e familia Cajetanorum, Rome, 1651. Magnifies Boniface as an ideal pope. – P Dupuy: Hist. du différend entre le Pape Bon. et Philip le Bel, Paris, 1655. – Baillet (a Jansenist): Hist. des désmelez du Pape Bon. VIII. avec Philip le Bel, Paris, 1718. – L. Tosti: Storia di Bon. VIII. e de’suoi tempi, 2 vols., Rome, 1846. A glorification of Boniface. – W. Drumann: Gesch. Bonifatius VIII. 2 vols., Königsberg, 1862. – Cardinal Wiseman: Pope Bon. VIII. in his Essays, III. 161–222. Apologetic. – Boutaric: La France sous Philippe le Bel, Paris, 1861. – R. Holtzmann: W. von Nogaret, Freiburg, 1898. – E. Renan: Guil. de Nogaret, in Hist. Litt. de France, XXVII. 233 sq.; also Études sur la politique Rel. du règne de Phil. Ie Bel, Paris, 1899. – Döllinger: Anagni in Akad. Vorträge, III. 223–244. – Heinrich Finke (Prof. in Freiburg): as above. Also Papsttum und Untergang des Tempelordens, 2 vols., Münster, 1907. – J. Haller: Papsttum und Kirchenreform, Berlin, 1903. – Rich. Scholz: Die Publizistik zur Zeit Philipps des Schönen und Bonifaz VIII., Stuttgart, 1903. – The Ch. Histt. of Gieseler, Hergenröther-Kirsch 4th ed., 1904, II. 582–598, F. X. Funk, 4th ed., 1902, Hefele 3d ed., 1902, K. Müller, Hefele-Knöpfler: Conciliengeschichte, VI. 281–364. – Ranke: Univers. Hist., IX. – Gregorovius: History of the City of Rome, V. – Wattenbach: Gesch. des röm. Papstthums, 2d ED., Berlin, 1876, pp. 211–226. – G. B. Adams: Civilization during the Middle Ages, New York, 1894, ch. XIV. – Art. Bonifatius by Hauck in Herzog, III. 291–300.

For § 5. Literary Attacks upon the Papacy. Dante Allighiere: De monarchia, ed. by Witte, Vienna, 1874; Giuliani, Florence, 1878; Moore, Oxford, 1894. Eng. trans. by F. C. Church, together with the essay on Dante by his father, R. W. Church, London, 1878; P. H. Wicksteed, Hull, 1896; Aurelia Henry, Boston, 1904. – Dante’s De monarchia, Valla’s De falsa donatione Constantini, and other anti-papal documents are given in De jurisdictione, auctoritate et praeeminentia imperiali, Basel, 1566. Many of the tracts called forth by the struggle between Boniface VIII. and Philip IV. are found in Melchior Goldast: Monarchia S. Romani imperii, sive tractatus de jurisdictione imperiali seu regia et pontificia seu sacerdotali, etc., Hanover, 1610, pp. 756, Frankfurt, 1668. With a preface dedicated to the elector, John Sigismund of Brandenburg; in Dupuy: Hist. du Différend, etc., Paris, 1655, and in Finke and Scholz. See above. – E. Zeck: De recuperatione terrae Sanctae, Ein Traktat d. P. Dubois, Berlin, 1906. For summary and criticism, S. Riezler: Die literarischen Widersacher der Päpste zur Zeit Ludwig des Baiers, pp. 131–166. Leipzig, 1874. – R. L. Poole: Opposition to the Temporal Claims of the Papacy, in his Illustrations of the Hist. of Med. Thought, pp. 256–281, London, 1884. – Finke: Aus den Tagen Bonifaz VIII., pp. 169 sqq., etc. – Denifle: Chartularium Un. Parisiensis, 4 vols. – Haller: Papsttum. – Artt. in Wetzer-Welte, Colonna, III. 667–671, and Johann von Paris, VI. 1744–1746, etc. – Renan: Pierre Dubois in Hist. Litt. de France, XXVI. 471–536. – Hergenröther-Kirsch: Kirchengesch., II. 754 sqq.

For § 6. Transfer Of The Papacy To Avignon. Benedict XI.: Registre de Benoît XI., ed. C. Grandjean. – For Clement V., Clementis papae V. regestum ed. cura et studio monachorum ord. S. Benedicti, 9 vols., Rome, 1885–1892. – Etienne Baluze: Vitae paparum Avenoniensium 1305–1394, dedicated to Louis XIV. and placed on the Index, 2 vols., Paris, 1693. Raynaldus: ad annum, 1304 sqq., for original documents. – W. H. Bliss: Calendar of Entries in the Papal Registries relating to Great Britain and Ireland, I.-IV., London, 1896–1902. – Giovanni and Matteo Villani: Hist. of Florence sive Chronica universalis, bks. VIII. sq. – M. Tangl: Die päpstlichen Regesta von Benedict XII.-Gregor XI., Innsbruck, 1898. Mansi: Concil., XXV. 368 sqq., 389 sqq. – J. B. Christophe: Hist. de la papauté pendant le XIVe siècle, 2 vols., Paris, 1853. – C. von Höfler: Die avignonesischen Päpste, Vienna, 1871. – Fauçon: La Libraire Des Papes d’Avignon, 2 vols., Paris, 1886 sq. – M. Souchon: Die Papstwahlen von Bonifaz VIII.-Urban VI., Braunschweig, 1888. – A. Eitel: D. Kirchenstaat unter Klemens V., Berlin, 1905. – Clinton Locke: Age of the Great Western Schism, pp. 1–99, New York, 1896. – J. H. Robinson: Petrarch, New York, 1898. – Schwab: J. Gerson, pp. 1–7. – Döllinger-Friedrich: Das Papstthum, Munich, 1892. – Pastor: Geschichte der Papste seit dem Ausgang des M. A., 4 vols., 3d and 4th ed., 1901 sqq., I. 67–114. – Stubbs: Const. Hist. of England. – Capes: The English Church in the 14th and 15th Centuries, London, 1900. – Wattenbach: Röm. Papstthum, pp. 226–241. – Haller: Papsttum, etc. – Hefele-Knöpfler: VI. 378–936. – Ranke: Univers. Hist., IX. – Gregorovius: VI. – The Ch. Histt. of Gieseler, Hergenröther-Kirsch, II. 737–776, Müller, II. 16–42. – Ehrle: Der Nachlass Clemens V. in Archiv für Lit. u. Kirchengesch., V. 1–150. For the fall of the Templars, see for Lit. V. 1. p. 301 sqq., and especially the works of Boutaric, Prutz, Schottmüller, Döllinger. – Funk in Wetzer-Welte, XI. 1311–1345. – LEA: Inquisition, III. Finke: Papsttum und Untergang des Tempelordens, 2 vols., 1907. Vol. II. contains Spanish documents, hitherto unpublished, bearing on the fall of the Templars, especially letters to and from King Jayme of Aragon. They are confirmatory of former views.

For § 7. The Pontificate of John XXII. Lettres secrètes et curiales du pape Jean XXII. relative a la France, ed. Aug. Coulon, 3 Fasc., 1900 sq. Lettres communes de p. Jean XXII., ed. Mollat, 3 vols, Paris, 1904–1906. – J. Guérard: Documents pontificeaux sur la Gascogne. Pontificat de Jean XXII., 2 vols., Paris, 1897–1903. – Baluze: Vitae paparum. – V. Velarque: Jean XXII. sa vie et ses aeuvres, Paris, 1883. – J. Schwalm, Appellation d. König Ludwigs des Baiern v. 1324, Riezler: D. Lit. Widersacher. Also Vatikanische Akten zur deutschen Gesch. zur Zeit Ludwigs des Bayern, Innsbruck, 1891. – K. Müller: Der Kampf Ludwigs des Baiern mit der römischen Curie, 2 vols., Tübingen, 1879 sq. – Ehrle: Die Spirituallen, ihr Verhältniss zum Franciskanerorden, etc., in Archiv für Lit. und Kirchengesch., 1885, p. 509 sqq., 1886, p. 106 sqq., 1887, p. 553 sqq., 1890. Also P. J. Olivi: S. Leben und s. Schriften 1887, pp. 409–540. – Döllinger: Deutschlands Kampf mit dem Papstthum unter Ludwig dem Bayer in Akad. Vorträge, I. 119–137. – Hefele: VI. 546–579. – Lea: Inquisition, I. 242–304. – The Artt. in Wetzer-Welte, Franziskanerorden, IV. 1650–1683, and Armut, I. 1394–1401. Artt. John XXII. in Herzog, IX. 267–270, and Wetzer-Welte, VIII. 828 sqq. – Haller: Papsttum, p. 91 sqq. – Stubbs: Const. Hist. of England. – Gregorovius, VI. – PASTOR: I. 80 sqq.

For § 8. The Papal Office Assailed. Some of the tracts may be found in Goldast: Monarchia, Hanover, 1610, e.g. Marsiglius of Padua, II. 164–312; Ockam’s Octo quaestionum decisiones super potestate ac dignitate papali, II. 740 sqq., and Dialogus inter magistrum et discipulum, etc., II., 399 sqq. Special edd. are given in the body of the chap. and may be found under Alvarus Pelagius, Marsiglius, etc., in Potthast: Bibl. med. aevi. – Un trattato inedito di Egidio Colonna: De ecclesiae potestate, ed. G. U. Oxilia et G. Boffito, Florence, 1908, pp. lxxxi, 172. – Schwab: Gerson, pp. 24–28. – Müller: D. Kampf Ludwigs des Baiern. – Riezler: Die Lit. Widersacher der Päpste, etc., Leipzig, 1874. – Marcour: Antheil der Minoriten am Kampf zwischen Ludwig dem Baiern und Johann XXII., Emmerich, 1874. – Poole: The Opposition to the Temporal Claims of the Papacy, in Illust. of the Hist. of Med. Thought, pp. 256–281. – Haller: Papsttum, etc., pp. 73–89. English trans. of Marsiglius of Padua, The Defence of Peace, by W. Marshall, London, 1636. – M. Birck: Marsilio von Padua und Alvaro Pelayo über Papst und Kaiser, Mühlheim, 1868. – B. Labanca, Prof. of Moral Philos. in the Univ. of Rome: Marsilio da Padova, riformatore politico e religioso, Padova, 1882, pp. 236. – L. Jourdan: Étude sur Marsile de Padoue, Montauban, 1892. – J. Sullivan: Marsig. of Padua, in Engl. Hist. Rev., 1906, pp. 293–307. An examination of the MSS. See also Döllinger-Friedrich: Papstthum; Pastor, I. 82 sqq.; Gregorovius, VI. 118 sqq., the Artt. in Wetzer-Welte, Alvarus Pelagius, I. 667 sq., Marsiglius, VIII., 907–911, etc., and in Herzog, XII. 368 370, etc. – N. Valois: Hist. Litt., Paris, 1900, XXIII., 628–623, an Art. on the authors of the Defensor.

For § 9. The Financial System of the Avignon Popes. Ehrle: Schatz, Bibliothek und Archiv der Päpste im 14ten Jahrh., in Archiv für Lit. u. Kirchengesch., I. 1–49, 228–365, also D. Nachlass Clemens V. und der in Betreff desselben von Johann XXII. geführte Process, V. 1–166. – Ph. Woker: Das kirchliche Finanzwesen der Päpste, Nördlingen, 1878. – M. Tangl: Das Taxenwesen der päpstlichen Kanzlei vom 13ten his zur Mitte des 15ten Jahrh., Innsbruck, 1892. – J. P. Kirsch: Die päpstl. Kollektorien in Deutschland im XIVten Jahrh., Paderborn, 1894; Die Finanzverwaltung des Kardinalkollegiums im XIII. u. XIV. ten Jahrh., Münster, 1896; Die Rückkehr der Päpste Urban V. und Gregor XI. con Avignon nach Rom. Auszüge aus den Kameralregistern des Vatikan. Archivs, Paderborn, 1898; Die päpstl. Annaten in Deutschland im XIV. Jahrh. 1323–1360, Paderborn, 1903. – P. M. Baumgarten: Untersuchungen und Urkunden über die Camera Collegii Cardinalium, 1295–1437, Leipzig, 1898. – A. Gottlob: Die päpstl. Kreuzzugsteuern des 13ten Jahrh., Heiligenstadt, 1892; Die Servitientaxe im 13ten Jahrh., Stuttgart, 1903. – Emil Goeller: Mittheilungen u. Untersuchungen über das päpstl. Register und Kanzleiwesen im 14ten Jahrh., Rome, 1904; D. Liber Taxarum d. päpstl. Rammer. Eine Studie zu ihrer Entstehung u. Anlage, Rome, 1906, pp. 106. – Haller: Papsttum u. Kirchenreform; also Aufzeichnungen über den päpstl. Haushalt aus Avignonesischer Zeit; die Vertheilung der Servitia minuta u. die Obligationen der Prälaten im 13ten u. 14ten Jahrh.; Die Ausfertigung der Provisionen, etc., all in Quellen u. Forschungen, ed. by the Royal Prussian Institute in Rome, Rome, 1897, 1898. – C. Lux: Constitutionum apostolicarum de generali beneficiorum reservatione, 1265–1378, etc., Wratislav, 1904. – A. Schulte: Die Fugger in Rom, 1495–1523, 2 vols., Leipzig, 1904. – C. Samarin and G. Mollat: La Fiscalité pontifen France au XIVe siècle, Paris, 1905. – P. Thoman: Le droit de propriété des laïques sur les églises et le patronat laïque au moy. âge, Paris, 1906. Also the work on Canon Law by T. Hinschius, 6 vols., Berlin, 1869–1897, and E. Friedberg, 6th ed., Leipzig, 1903.

For § 10. Later Avignon Popes. Lettres des papes d’Avignon se rappor-tant a la France, viz. Lettres communes de Benoît XII., ed. J. M. Vidal, Paris, 1906; Lettres closes, patentes et curiales, ed. G. Daumet, Paris, 1890; Lettres ... de Clement VI., ed. E. Deprez, Paris, 1901; Excerpta ex registr. de Clem. VI. et Inn. VI., ed. Werunsky, Innsbruck, 1886; Lettres ... de Pape Urbain V., ed. P. Lecacheux, Paris, 1902. – J. H. Albans: Actes anciens et documents concernant le bienheureux Urbain V., ed. by U. Chevalier, Paris, 1897. Contains the fourteen early lives of Urban. – Baluze: Vitae paparum Avenionen-sium, 1693;– Muratori: in Rer. ital. scripp, XIV. 9–728. – Cerri: Innocenzo VI., papa, Turin, 1873. Magnan: Hist. d’ Urbain V., 2d ed., Paris, 1863. – Werunsky: Gesch. karls IV. u. seiner Zeit, 3 vols., Innsbruck, 1880–1892. – Geo. Schmidt: Der Hist. Werth der 14 alten Biographien des Urban V., Breslau, 1907. – Kirsch: Rückkehr der Päpste, as above. In large part, documents for the first time published. – Lechner: Das grosse Sterben in Deutschland, 1348–1351, 1884. – C. Creighton: Hist. of Epidemics in England, Cambridge, 1891. F. A. Gasquet: The Great Pestilence, London, 1893, 2d ed., entitled The Black Death, 1908. – A. Jessopp: The Black Death in East Anglia in Coming of the Friars, pp. 166–261. – Villani, Wattenbach, p. 226 sqq.; Pastor, I., Gregorovius, Cardinal Albornoz, Paderborn, 1892.

For § 11. The Re-Establishment of the Papacy in Rome. The Lives of Gregory XI. in Baluz, I. 426 sqq., and Muratori, III. 2, 645. – Kirsch: Rürkkehr, etc., as above. – Leon Mirot: La politique pontif. et le rétour du S. Siege a Rome, 1376, Paris, 1899. – F. Hammerich: St. Brigitta, die nordische Prophetin u. Ordenstifterin, Germ. ed., Gotha, 1872. For further Lit. on St. Brigitta, see Herzog, III. 239. For works on Catherine of Siena, see ch. III. Also Gieseler, II., 3, pp. 1–131; Pastor, I. 101–114; Gregorovius, VI. Lit. under §10.

§ 3. Pope Boniface VIII. 1294–1303.

The pious but weak and incapable hermit of Murrhone, Coelestine V., who abdicated the papal office, was followed by Benedict Gaetani,—or Cajetan, the name of an ancient family of Latin counts,—known in history as Boniface VIII. At the time of his election he was on the verge of fourscore,22    Drumann, p. 4, Gregorovius, etc. Setting aside the testimony of the contemporary Ferretus of Vicenza, and on the ground that it would be well-nigh impossible for a man of Boniface’s talent to remain in an inferior position till he was sixty, when he was made cardinal, Finke, p. 3 sq., makes Boniface fifteen years younger when he assumed the papacy. but like Gregory IX. he was still in the full vigor of a strong intellect and will. If Coelestine had the reputation of a saint, Boniface was a politician, overbearing, implacable, destitute of spiritual ideals, and controlled by blind and insatiable lust of power.

Born at Anagni, Boniface probably studied canon law, in which he was an expert, in Rome.33    Not at Paris, as Bulaeus, without sufficient authority, states. See Finke, p. 6. He was made cardinal in 1281, and represented the papal see in France and England as legate. In an address at a council in Paris, assembled to arrange for a new crusade, he reminded the mendicant monks that he and they were called not to court glory or learning, but to secure the salvation of their souls.44    Finke discovered this document and gives it pp. iii-vii.

Boniface’s election as pope occurred at Castel Nuovo, near Naples, Dec. 24, 1294, the conclave having convened the day before. The election was not popular, and a few days later, when a report reached Naples that Boniface was dead, the people celebrated the event with great jubilation. The pontiff was accompanied on his way to Rome by Charles II. of Naples.55    There is no doubt about the manifestation of popular joy over the rumor of the pope’s death. Finke, p. 46. At the announcement of the election, the people are said to have cried out, "Boniface is a heretic, bad all through, and has in him nothing that is Christian."

The coronation was celebrated amid festivities of unusual splendor. On his way to the Lateran, Boniface rode on a white palfrey, a crown on his head, and robed in full pontificals. Two sovereigns walked by his side, the kings of Naples and Hungary. The Orsini, the Colonna, the Savelli, the Conti and representatives of other noble Roman families followed in a body . The procession had difficulty in forcing its way through the kneeling crowds of spectators. But, as if an omen of the coming misfortunes of the new pope, a furious storm burst over the city while the solemnities were in progress and extinguished every lamp and torch in the church. The following day the pope dined in the Lateran, the two kings waiting behind his chair.

While these brilliant ceremonies were going on, Peter of Murrhone was a fugitive. Not willing to risk the possible rivalry of an anti-pope, Boniface confined his unfortunate predecessor in prison, where he soon died. The cause of his death was a matter of uncertainty. The Coelestine party ascribed it to Boniface, and exhibited a nail which they declared the unscrupulous pope had ordered driven into Coelestine’s head.

With Boniface VIII. began the decline of the papacy. He found it at the height of its power. He died leaving it humbled and in subjection to France. He sought to rule in the proud, dominating spirit of Gregory VII. and Innocent III.; but he was arrogant without being strong, bold without being sagacious, high-spirited without possessing the wisdom to discern the signs of the times.66    Gregorovius, V. 597, calls Boniface "an unfortunate reminiscence" of the great popes. The times had changed. Boniface made no allowance for the new spirit of nationality which had been developed during the crusading campaigns in the East, and which entered into conflict with the old theocratic ideal of Rome. France, now in possession of the remaining lands of the counts of Toulouse, was in no mood to listen to the dictation of the power across the Alps. Striving to maintain the fictitious theory of papal rights, and fighting against the spirit of the new age, Boniface lost the prestige the Apostolic See had enjoyed for two centuries, and died of mortification over the indignities heaped upon him by France.

French enemies went so far as to charge Boniface with downright infidelity and the denial of the soul’s immortality. The charges were a slander, but they show the reduced confidence which the papal office inspired. Dante, who visited Rome during Boniface’s pontificate, bitterly pursues him in all parts of the Divina Commedia. He pronounced him "the prince of modern Pharisees," a usurper "who turned the Vatican hill into a common sewer of corruption." The poet assigned the pope a place with Nicholas III. and Clement V. among the simoniacs in "that most afflicted shade," one of the lowest circles of hell.77    "Where Simon Magus hath his curst abode
   To depths profounder thrusting Boniface." —Paradiso, xxx. 147 sq.
Its floor was perforated with holes into which the heads of these popes were thrust.

"The soles of every one in flames were wrapt —88    Inferno, xix. 45 sq. 118.

... whose upper parts are thrust below

Fixt like a stake, most wretched soul

* * * * * * * * *

Quivering in air his tortured feet were seen."

Contemporaries comprehended Boniface’s reign in the description, "He came in like a fox, he reigned like a lion, and he died like a dog, intravit ut vulpes, regnavit ut leo, mortuus est sicut canis.

In his attempt to control the affairs of European states, he met with less success than failure, and in Philip the Fair of France he found his match.

In Sicily, he failed to carry out his plans to secure the transfer of the realm from the house of Aragon to the king of Naples.

In Rome, he incurred the bitter enmity of the proud and powerful family of the Colonna, by attempting to dictate the disposition of the family estates. Two of the Colonna, James and Peter, who were cardinals, had been friends of Coelestine, and supporters of that pope gathered around them. Of their number was Jacopone da Todi, the author of the Stabat Mater, who wrote a number of satirical pieces against Boniface. Resenting the pope’s interference in their private matters, the Colonna issued a memorial, pronouncing Coelestine’s abdication and the election of Boniface illegal.99    Dupuy, pp. 225-227. It exposed the haughtiness of Boniface, and represented him as boasting that he was supreme over kings and kingdoms, even in temporal affairs, and that he was governed by no law other than his own will.1010    Super reges et regna in temporalibus etiam presidere se glorians, etc., Scholz, p. 338. The document was placarded on the churches and a copy left in St. Peter’s. In 1297 Boniface deprived the Colonna of their dignity, excommunicated them, and proclaimed a crusade against them. The two cardinals appealed to a general council, the resort in the next centuries of so many who found themselves out of accord with the papal plans. Their strongholds fell one after another. The last of them, Palestrina, had a melancholy fate. The two cardinals with ropes around their necks threw themselves at the pope’s feet and secured his pardon, but their estates were confiscated and bestowed upon the pope’s nephews and the Orsini. The Colonna family recovered in time to reap a bitter vengeance upon their insatiable enemy.

The German emperor, Albrecht, Boniface succeeded in bringing to an abject submission. The German envoys were received by the haughty pontiff seated on a throne with a crown upon his head and sword in his hand, and exclaiming, "I, I am the emperor." Albrecht accepted his crown as a gift, and acknowledged that the empire had been transferred from the Greeks to the Germans by the pope, and that the electors owed the right of election to the Apostolic See.

In England, Boniface met with sharp resistance. Edward I., 1272–1307, was on the throne. The pope attempted to prevent him from holding the crown of Scotland, claiming it as a papal fief from remote antiquity.1111    Tytler, Hist. of Scotland, I. 70 sqq. The English parliament, 1301, gave a prompt and spirited reply. The English king was under no obligation to the papal see for his temporal acts.1212    Edward removed from Scone to Westminster the sacred stone on which Scotch kings had been consecrated, and which, according to the legend, was the pillow on which Jacob rested at Bethel. The dispute went no further. The conflict between Boniface and France is reserved for more prolonged treatment.

An important and picturesque event of Boniface’s pontificate was the Jubilee Year, celebrated in 1300. It was a fortunate conception, adapted to attract throngs of pilgrims to Rome and fill the papal treasury. An old man of 107 years of age, so the story ran, travelled from Savoy to Rome, and told how his father had taken him to attend a Jubilee in the year 1200 and exhorted him to visit it on its recurrence a century after. Interesting as the story is, the Jubilee celebration of 1300 seems to have been the first of its kind.1313    So Hefele VI. 315, and other Roman Catholic historians. Boniface’s bull, appointing it, promised full remission to all, being penitent and confessing their sins, who should visit St. Peter’s during the year 1300.1414    Potthast, 24917. The bull is reprinted by Mirbt, Quellen, p. 147 sq. The indulgence clause runs: non solum plenam sed largiorem immo plenissimam omnium suorum veniam peccatorum concedimus. Villani, VIII. 36, speaks of it as "a full and entire remission of all sins, both the guilt and the punishment thereof." Italians were to prolong their sojourn 30 days, while for foreigners 15 days were announced to be sufficient. A subsequent papal deliverance extended the benefits of the indulgence to all setting out for the Holy City who died on the way. The only exceptions made to these gracious provisions were the Colonna, Frederick of Sicily, and the Christians holding traffic with Saracens. The city wore a festal appearance. The handkerchief of St. Veronica, bearing the imprint of the Saviour’s face, was exhibited. The throngs fairly trampled upon one another. The contemporary historian of Florence, Giovanni Villani, testifies from personal observation that there was a constant population in the pontifical city of 200,000 pilgrims, and that 30,000 people reached and left it daily. The offerings were so copious that two clerics stood day and night by the altar of St. Peter’s gathering up the coins with rakes.

So spectacular and profitable a celebration could not be allowed to remain a memory. The Jubilee was made a permanent institution. A second celebration was appointed by Clement VI. in 1350. With reference to the brevity of human life and also to the period of our Lord’s earthly career, Urban VI. fixed its recurrence every 33 years. Paul II., in 1470, reduced the intervals to 25 years. The twentieth Jubilee was celebrated in 1900, under Leo XIII.1515    Leo’s bull, dated May 11, 1899, offered indulgence to pilgrims visiting the basilicas of St. Peter, the Lateran, and St. Maria Maggiore. A portion of the document runs as follows: "Jesus Christ the Saviour of the world, has chosen the city of Rome alone and singly above all others for a dignified and more than human purpose and consecrated it to himself." The Jubilee was inaugurated by the august ceremony of opening the porta santa, the sacred door, into St. Peter’s, which it is the custom to wall up after the celebration. The special ceremony dates from Alexander VI. and the Jubilee of 1600. Leo performed this ceremony in person by giving three strokes upon the door with a hammer, and using the words aperite mihi, open to me. The door symbolizes Christ, opening the way to spiritual benefits. Leo extended the offered benefits to those who had the will and not the ability to make the journey to Rome.

For the offerings accruing from the Jubilee and for other papal moneys, Boniface found easy use. They enabled him to prosecute his wars against Sicily and the Colonna and to enrich his relatives. The chief object of his favor was his nephew, Peter, the second son of his brother Loffred, the Count of Caserta. One estate after another was added to this favorite’s possessions, and the vast sum of more than 915,000,000 was spent upon him in four years.1616    See Gregorovius, V. 299, 584, who gives an elaborate list of the estates which passed by Boniface’s grace into the hands of the Gaetani. Adam of Usk, Chronicon, 1377-1421, ad ed., London, 1904, p. 259, "the fox, though ever greedy, ever remaineth thin, so Boniface, though gorged with simony, yet to his dying day was never filled." Nepotism was one of the offences for which Boniface was arraigned by his contemporaries.

§ 4. Boniface VIII. and Philip the Fair of France.

The overshadowing event of Boniface’s reign was his disastrous conflict with Philip IV. of France, called Philip the Fair. The grandson of Louis IX., this monarch was wholly wanting in the high spiritual qualities which had distinguished his ancestor. He was able but treacherous, and utterly unscrupulous in the use of means to secure his ends. Unattractive as his character is, it is nevertheless with him that the first chapter in the history of modern France begins. In his conflict with Boniface he gained a decisive victory. On a smaller scale the conflict was a repetition of the conflict between Gregory VII. and Henry IV., but with a different ending. In both cases the pope had reached a venerable age, while the sovereign was young and wholly governed by selfish motives. Henry resorted to the election of an anti-pope. Philip depended upon his councillors and the spirit of the new French nation.

The heir of the theocracy of Hildebrand repeated Hildebrand’s language without possessing his moral qualities. He claimed for the papacy supreme authority in temporal as well as spiritual matters. In his address to the cardinals against the Colonna he exclaimed: "How shall we assume to judge kings and princes, and not dare to proceed against a worm! Let them perish forever, that they may understand that the name of the Roman pontiff is known in all the earth and that he alone is most high over princes."1717    Quomodo presumimus judicare reges et principes orbis terrarum et vermiculum aggredi non audemus, etc.; Denifle, Archiv, etc., V. 521. For these and other quotations, see Finke, Aus den Tagen Bon., etc., p. 152 sqq. The Colonna, in one of their proclamations, charged Boniface with glorying that he is exalted above all princes and kingdoms in temporal matters, and may act as he pleases in view of the fulness of his power—plenitudo potestatis. In his official recognition of the emperor, Albrecht, Boniface declared that as "the moon has no light except as she receives it from the sun, so no earthly power has anything which it does not receive from the ecclesiastical authority." These claims are asserted with most pretension in the bulls Boniface issued during his conflict with France. Members of the papal court encouraged him in these haughty assertions of prerogative. The Spaniard, Arnald of Villanova, who served Boniface as physician, called him in his writings lord of lords—deus deorum.

On the other hand, Philip the Fair stood as the embodiment of the independence of the state. He had behind him a unified nation, and around him a body of able statesmen and publicists who defended his views.1818    Contemporary writers spoke of the modern or recent French nation as opposed to the nation of a preceding period. So the author of the Tractate of 1308 in defence of Boniface VIII., Finke, p. lxxxvi. He said "the kings of the modern French people do not follow in the footsteps of their predecessors"—reges moderni gentis Francorum, etc. The same writer compared Philip to Nebuchadnezzar rebelling against the higher powers.

The conflict between Boniface and Philip passed through three stages: (1) the brief tilt which called forth the bull Clericis laicos; (2) the decisive battle, 1301–1303, ending in Boniface’s humiliation at Anagni; (3) the bitter controversy which was waged against the pope’s memory by Philip, ending with the Council of Vienne.1919    See Scholz, Publizistik, VIII. p. 3 sqq.

The conflict originated in questions touching the war between France and England. To meet the expense of his armament against Edward I., Philip levied tribute upon the French clergy. They carried their complaints to Rome, and Boniface justified their contention in the bull Clericis laicos, 1296. This document was ordered promulged in England as well as in France. Robert of Winchelsea, archbishop of Canterbury, had it read in all the English cathedral churches. Its opening sentence impudently asserted that the laity had always been hostile to the clergy. The document went on to affirm the subjection of the state to the papal see. Jurisdiction over the persons of the priesthood and the goods of the Church in no wise belongs to the temporal power. The Church may make gratuitous gifts to the state, but all taxation of Church property without the pope’s consent is to be resisted with excommunication or interdict.

Imposts upon the Church for special emergencies had been a subject of legislation at the third and fourth Lateran Councils. In 1260 Alexander IV. exempted the clergy from special taxation, and in 1291 Nicolas IV. warned the king of France against using for his own schemes the tenth levied for a crusade. Boniface had precedent enough for his utterances. But his bull was promptly met by Philip with an act of reprisal prohibiting the export of silver and gold, horses, arms, and other articles from his realm, and forbidding foreigners to reside in France. This shrewd measure cut off French contributions to the papal treasury and cleared France of the pope’s emissaries. Boniface was forced to reconsider his position, and in conciliatory letters, addressed to the king and the French prelates, pronounced the interpretation put upon his deliverance unjust. Its purpose was not to deny feudal and freewill offerings from the Church. In cases of emergency, the pope would also be ready to grant special subsidies. The document was so offensive that the French bishops begged the pope to recall it altogether, a request he set aside. But to appease Philip, Boniface issued another bull, July 22, 1297, according thereafter to French kings, who had reached the age of 20, the right to judge whether a tribute from the clergy was a case of necessity or not. A month later he canonized Louis IX., a further act of conciliation.

Boniface also offered to act as umpire between France and England in his personal capacity as Benedict Gaetanus. The offer was accepted, but the decision was not agreeable to the French sovereign. The pope expressed a desire to visit Philip, but again gave offence by asking Philip for a loan of 100, 000 pounds for Philip’s brother, Charles of Valois, whom Boniface had invested with the command of the papal forces.

In 1301 the flame of controversy was again started by a document, written probably by the French advocate, Pierre Dubois,2020    Summaria brevis et compendiosa doctrina felicis expeditionis et abbreviationis guerrarum ac litium regni Francorum. See Scholz, p. 415. which showed the direction in which Philip’s mind was working, for it could hardly have appeared without his assent. The writer summoned the king to extend his dominions to the walls of Rome and beyond, and denied the pope’s right to secular power. The pontiff’s business is confined to the forgiving of sins, prayer, and preaching. Philip continued to lay his hand without scruple on Church property; Lyons, which had been claimed by the empire, he demanded as a part of France. Appeals against his arbitrary acts went to Rome, and the pope sent Bernard of Saisset, bishop of Pamiers, to Paris, with commission to summon the French king to apply the clerical tithe for its appointed purpose, a crusade, and for nothing else. Philip showed his resentment by having the legate arrested. He was adjudged by the civil tribunal a traitor, and his deposition from the episcopate demanded.

Boniface’s reply, set forth in the bull Ausculta fili — Give ear, my son—issued Dec. 5, 1301, charged the king with high-handed treatment of the clergy and making plunder of ecclesiastical property. The pope announced a council to be held in Rome to which the French prelates were called and the king summoned to be present, either in person or by a representative. The bull declared that God had placed his earthly vicar above kings and kingdoms. To make the matter worse, a false copy of Boniface’s bull was circulated in France known as Deum time,—Fear God,—which made the statements of papal prerogative still more exasperating. This supposititious document, which is supposed to have been forged by Pierre Flotte, the king’s chief councillor, was thrown into the flames Feb. 11, 1302.2121    See Scholz, p. 357. The authenticity of the bull Ausculta was once called in question, but is now universally acknowledged. The copy in the Vatican bears the erasure of Clement V., who struck out the passages most offensive to Philip. Hefele gives the copy preserved in the library of St. Victor. Such treatment of a papal brief was unprecedented. It remained for Luther to cast the genuine bull of Leo X. into the fire. The two acts had little in common.

The king replied by calling a French parliament of the three estates, the nobility, clergy and representatives of the cities, which set aside the papal summons to the council, complained of the appointment of foreigners to French livings, and asserted the crown’s independence of the Church. Five hundred years later a similar representative body of the three estates was to rise against French royalty and decide for the abolition of monarchy. In a letter to the pope, Philip addressed him as "your infatuated Majesty,"2222    Sciat maxima tua fatuitas in temporalibus nos alicui non subesse, etc. Hefele, VI. 332, calls in question the authenticity of this document, at the same time recognizing that it was circulated in Rome in 1802, and that the pope himself made reference to it. The original phrase is ascribed to Pierre Flotte, Scholz, p. 357. Flotte was an uncompromising advocate of the king’s sovereignty and independence of the pope. He made a deep impression by an address at the parliament called by Philip, 1302. He was probably the author of the anti-papal tract beginning Antequam essent clerici, the text of which is printed by Dupuy, pp. 21-23. Here he asserts that the Church consists of laymen as well as clerics, Scholz, p. 361, and that taxes levied upon Church property are not extortions. and declined all submission to any one on earth in temporal matters.

The council called by the pope convened in Rome the last day of October, 1302, and included 4 archbishops, 35 bishops, and 6 abbots from France. It issued two bulls. The first pronounced the ban on all who detained prelates going to Rome or returning from the city. The second is one of the most notable of all papal documents, the bull Unam sanctam, the name given to it from its first words, "We are forced to believe in one holy Catholic Church." It marks an epoch in the history of the declarations of the papacy, not because it contained anything novel, but because it set forth with unchanged clearness the stiffest claims of the papacy to temporal and spiritual power. It begins with the assertion that there is only one true Church, outside of which there is no salvation. The pope is the vicar of Christ, and whoever refuses to be ruled by Peter belongs not to the fold of Christ. Both swords are subject to the Church, the spiritual and the temporal. The temporal sword is to be wielded for the Church, the spiritual by it. The secular estate may be judged by the spiritual estate, but the spiritual estate by no human tribunal. The document closes with the startling declaration that for every human being the condition of salvation is obedience to the Roman pontiff.

There was no assertion of authority contained in this bull which had not been before made by Gregory VII. and his successors, and the document leans back not only upon the deliverances of popes, but upon the definitions of theologians like Hugo de St. Victor, Bernard and Thomas Aquinas. But in the Unam sanctam the arrogance of the papacy finds its most naked and irritating expression.

One of the clauses pronounces all offering resistance to the pope’s authority Manichaeans. Thus Philip was made a heretic. Six months later the pope sent a cardinal legate, John le Moine of Amiens, to announce to the king his excommunication for preventing French bishops from going to Rome. The bearer of the message was imprisoned and the legate fled. Boniface now called upon the German emperor, Albrecht, to take Philip’s throne, as Innocent III. had called upon the French king to take John’s crown, and Innocent IV. upon the count of Artois to take the crown of Frederick II. Albrecht had wisdom enough to decline the empty gift. Philip’s seizure of the papal bulls before they could be promulged in France was met by Boniface’s announcement that the posting of a bull on the church doors of Rome was sufficient to give it force.

The French parliament, June, 1308, passed from the negative attitude of defending the king and French rights to an attack upon Boniface and his right to the papal throne. In 20 articles it accused him of simony, sorcery, immoral intercourse with his niece, having a demon in his chambers, the murder of Coelestine, and other crimes. It appealed to a general council, before which the pope was summoned to appear in person. Five archbishops and 21 bishops joined in subscribing to this document. The university and chapter of Paris, convents, cities, and towns placed themselves on the king’s side.2323    The university declared in favor of a general council June 21, 1303, Chartul. Univ. Par. II. 101 sq.

One more step the pope was about to take when a sudden stop was put to his career. He had set the eighth day of September as the time when he would publicly, in the church of Anagni, and with all the solemnities known to the Church, pronounce the ban upon the disobedient king and release his subjects from allegiance. In the same edifice Alexander III. had excommunicated Barbarossa, and Gregory IX., Frederick II. The bull already had the papal signature, when, as by a storm bursting from a clear sky, the pope’s plans were shattered and his career brought to an end.

During the two centuries and a half since Hildebrand had entered the city of Rome with Leo IX., popes had been imprisoned by emperors, been banished from Rome by its citizens, had fled for refuge and died in exile, but upon no one of them had a calamity fallen quite so humiliating and complete as the calamity which now befell Boniface. A plot, formed in France to checkmate the pope and to carry him off to a council at Lyons, burst Sept. 7 upon the peaceful population of Anagni, the pope’s country seat. William of Nogaret, professor of law at Montpellier and councillor of the king, was the manager of the plot and was probably its inventor. According to the chronicler, Villani,2424    VIII. 63. See Scholz, pp. 363-375, and Holtzmann: W. von Nogaret. Nogaret’s parents were Cathari, and suffered for heresy in the flames in Southern France. He stood as a representative of a new class of men, laymen, who were able to compete in culture with the best-trained ecclesiastics, and advocated the independence of the state. With him was joined Sciarra Colonna, who, with other members of his family, had found refuge in France, and was thirsting for revenge for their proscription by the pope. With a small body of mercenaries, 300 of them on horse, they suddenly appeared in Anagni. The barons of the Latium, embittered by the rise of the Gaetani family upon their losses, joined with the conspirators, as also did the people of Anagni. The palaces of two of Boniface’s nephews and several of the cardinals were stormed and seized by Sciarra Colonna, who then offered the pope life on the three conditions that the Colonna be restored, Boniface resign, and that he place himself in the hands of the conspirators. The conditions were rejected, and after a delay of three hours, the work of assault and destruction was renewed. The palaces one after another yielded, and the papal residence itself was taken and entered. The supreme pontiff, according to the description of Villani,2525    VIII. 63. Döllinger, whose account is very vivid, depends chiefly upon the testimony of three eye-witnesses, a member of the curia, the chronicler of Orvieto and Nogaret himself. He sets aside much of Villani’s report, which Reumont, Wattenbach, Gregorovius, and other historians adopt. Dante and Villani, who both condemn the pope’s arrogance and nepotism, resented the indignity put upon Boniface at Anagni, and rejoiced over his deliverance as of one who, like Christ, rose from the dead. Dante omits all reference to Sciarra Colonna and other Italian nobles as participants in the plot. Dante’s description is given in Paradiso, xx. 86 sqq.
   "I see the flower-de-luce Alagna [Anagni] enter,

   And Christ in his own vicar captive made."
received the besiegers in high pontifical robes, seated on a throne, with a crown on his head and a crucifix and the keys in his hand. He proudly rebuked the intruders, and declared his readiness to die for Christ and his Church. To the demand that he resign the papal office, he replied, "Never; I am pope and as pope I will die." Sciarra was about to kill him, when he was intercepted by Nogaret’s arm. The palaces were looted and the cathedral burnt, and its relics, if not destroyed, went to swell the booty. One of the relics, a vase said to have contained milk from Mary’s breasts, was turned over and broken. The pope and his nephews were held in confinement for three days, the captors being undecided whether to carry Boniface away to Lyons, set him at liberty, or put him to death. Such was the humiliating counterpart to the proud display made at the pope’s coronation nine years before!

In the meantime the feelings of the Anagnese underwent a change. The adherents of the Gaetani family rallied their forces and, combining together, they rescued Boniface and drove out the conspirators. Seated at the head of his palace stairway, the pontiff thanked God and the people for his deliverance. "Yesterday," he said, "I was like Job, poor and without a friend. To-day I have abundance of bread, wine, and water." A rescuing party from Rome conducted the unfortunate pope to the Holy City, where he was no longer his own master.2626    Ferretus of Vicenza, Muratori: Scriptores, IX. 1002, reports that Boniface wanted to be removed from St. Peter’s to the Lateran, but the Colonna sent word he was in custody. A month later, Oct. 11, 1303, his earthly career closed. Outside the death-chamber, the streets of the city were filled with riot and tumult, and the Gaetani and Colonna were encamped in battle array against each other in the Campagna.

Reports agree that Boniface’s death was a most pitiable one. He died of melancholy and despair, and perhaps actually insane. He refused food, and beat his head against the wall. "He was out of his head," wrote Ptolemy of Lucca,2727    Extra mentem positus. Ferretus relates that Boniface fell into a rage and, after gnawing his staff and striking his head against the wall, hanged himself. Villani, VIII. 63, speaks of a "strange malady" begotten in the pope so that he gnawed at himself as if he were mad. The chronicler of Orvieto, see Döllinger: Beiträge, etc., III. 353, says Boniface died weighed down by despondency and the infirmities of age, ubi tristitia et senectutis infirmitate gravatus mortuus est. It is charitable to suppose that the pope’s old enemy, the stone, returned to plague him, the malady from which the Spanish physician Arnald of Villanova had given him relief. See Finke, p. 200 sqq. and believed that every one who approached him was seeking to put him in prison.

Human sympathy goes out for the aged man of fourscore years and more, dying in loneliness and despair. But judgment comes sooner or later upon individuals and institutions for their mistakes and offences. The humiliation of Boniface was the long-delayed penalty of the sacerdotal pride of his predecessors and himself. He suffered in part for the hierarchical arrogance of which he was the heir and in part for his own presumption. Villani and other contemporaries represent the pope’s latter end as a deserved punishment for his unblushing nepotism, his pompous pride, and his implacable severity towards those who dared to resist his plans, and for his treatment of the feeble hermit who preceded him. One of the chroniclers reports that seamen plying near the Liparian islands, the reputed entrance to hell, heard evil spirits rejoicing and exclaiming, "Open, open; receive pope Boniface into the infernal regions."

Catholic historians like Hergenröther and Kirsch, bound to the ideals of the past, make a brave attempt to defend Boniface, though they do not overlook his want of tact and his coarse violence of speech. It is certain, says Cardinal Hergenröther,2828    Kirchengesch., II. 597 sq. Boniface called the French "dogs" and Philip garçon, which had the meaning of street urchin. A favorite expression with him was ribaldus, rascal, and he called Charles of Naples "meanest of rascals," vilissimus ribaldus. See Finke, p. 292 sq. Finke’s judgment is based in part upon new documents he found in Barcelona and other libraries. "that Boniface was not ruled by unworthy motives and that he did not deviate from the paths of his predecessors or overstep the legal conceptions of the Middle Ages." Finke, also a Catholic historian, the latest learned investigator of the character and career of Boniface, acknowledges the pope’s intellectual ability, but also emphasizes his pride and arrogance, his depreciation of other men, his disagreeable spirit and manner, which left him without a personal friend, his nepotism and his avarice. He hoped, said a contemporary, to live till "all his enemies were suppressed."

In strong contrast to the common judgment of Catholic historians is the sentence passed by Gregorovius. "Boniface was devoid of every apostolical virtue, a man of passionate temper, violent, faithless, unscrupulous, unforgiving, filled with ambitions and lust of worldly power." And this will be the judgment of those who feel no obligation to defend the papal institution.

In the humiliation of Boniface VIII., the state gained a signal triumph over the papacy. The proposition, that the papal pretension to supremacy over the temporal power is inconsistent with the rights of man and untaught by the law of God, was about to be defended in bold writings coming from the pens of lawyers and poets in France and Italy and, a half century later, by Wyclif. These advocates of the sovereign independence of the state in its own domain were the real descendants of those jurisconsults who, on the pIain of Roncaglia, advocated the same theory in the hearing of Frederick Barbarossa. Two hundred years after the conflict between Boniface and Philip the Fair, Luther was to fight the battle for the spiritual sovereignty of the individual man. These two principles, set aside by the priestly pride and theological misunderstanding of the Middle Ages, belong to the foundation of modern civilization.

Boniface’s Bull, Unam Sanctam.

The great importance of Boniface’s bull, Unam Sanctam, issued against Philip the Fair, Nov. 18, 1302, justifies its reproduction both in translation and the original Latin. It has rank among the most notorious deliverances of the popes and is as full of error as was Innocent VIII.’s bull issued in 1484 against witchcraft. It presents the theory of the supremacy of the spiritual power over the temporal, the authority of the papacy over princes, in its extreme form. The following is a translation: —

Boniface, Bishop, Servant of the servants of God. For perpetual remembrance: —

Urged on by our faith, we are obliged to believe and hold that there is one holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. And we firmly believe and profess that outside of her there is no salvation nor remission of sins, as the bridegroom declares in the Canticles, "My dove, my undefiled, is but one; she is the only one of her mother; she is the choice one of her that bare her." And this represents the one mystical body of Christ, and of this body Christ is the head, and God is the head of Christ. In it there is one Lord, one faith, one baptism. For in the time of the Flood there was the single ark of Noah, which prefigures the one Church, and it was finished according to the measure of one cubit and had one Noah for pilot and captain, and outside of it every living creature on the earth, as we read, was destroyed. And this Church we revere as the only one, even as the Lord saith by the prophet, "Deliver my soul from the sword, my darling from the power of the dog." He prayed for his soul, that is, for himself, head and body. And this body he called one body, that is, the Church, because of the single bridegroom, the unity of the faith, the sacraments, and the love of the Church. She is that seamless shirt of the Lord which was not rent but was allotted by the casting of lots. Therefore, this one and single Church has one head and not two heads,—for had she two heads, she would be a monster,—that is, Christ and Christ’s vicar, Peter and Peter’s successor. For the Lord said unto Peter, "Feed my sheep." "My," he said, speaking generally and not particularly, "these and those," by which it is to be understood that all the sheep are committed unto him. So, when the Greeks or others say that they were not committed to the care of Peter and his successors, they must confess that they are not of Christ’s sheep, even as the Lord says in John, "There is one fold and one shepherd."

That in her and within her power are two swords, we are taught in the Gospels, namely, the spiritual sword and the temporal sword. For when the Apostles said, "Lo, here,"—that is in the Church,—are two swords, the Lord did not reply to the Apostles "it is too much," but "it is enough." It is certain that whoever denies that the temporal sword is in the power of Peter, hearkens ill to the words of the Lord which he spake, "Put up thy sword into its sheath." Therefore, both are in the power of the Church, namely, the spiritual sword and the temporal sword; the latter is to be used for the Church, the former by the Church; the former by the hand of the priest, the latter by the hand of princes and kings, but at the nod and sufferance of the priest. The one sword must of necessity be subject to the other, and the temporal authority to the spiritual. For the Apostle said, "There is no power but of God, and the powers that be are ordained of God;" and they would not have been ordained unless one sword had been made subject to the other, and even as the lower is subjected by the other for higher things. For, according to Dionysius, it is a divine law that the lowest things are made by mediocre things to attain to the highest. For it is not according to the law of the universe that all things in an equal way and immediately should reach their end, but the lowest through the mediocre and the lower through the higher. But that the spiritual power excels the earthly power in dignity and worth, we will the more clearly acknowledge just in proportion as the spiritual is higher than the temporal. And this we perceive quite distinctly from the donation of the tithe and functions of benediction and sanctification, from the mode in which the power was received, and the government of the subjected realms. For truth being the witness, the spiritual power has the functions of establishing the temporal power and sitting in judgment on it if it should prove to be not good.2929    This passage is based almost word for word upon Hugo de St. Victor, De Sacramentis, II. 2, 4. And to the Church and the Church’s power the prophecy of Jeremiah attests: "See, I have set thee this day over the nations and the kingdoms to pluck up and to break down and to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant."

And if the earthly power deviate from the right path, it is judged by the spiritual power; but if a minor spiritual power deviate from the right path, the lower in rank is judged by its superior; but if the supreme power [the papacy] deviate, it can be judged not by man but by God alone. And so the Apostle testifies, "He which is spiritual judges all things, but he himself is judged by no man." But this authority, although it be given to a man, and though it be exercised by a man, is not a human but a divine power given by divine word of mouth to Peter and confirmed to Peter and to his successors by Christ himself, whom Peter confessed, even him whom Christ called the Rock. For the Lord said to Peter himself, "Whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth," etc. Whoever, therefore, resists this power so ordained by God, resists the ordinance of God, unless perchance he imagine two principles to exist, as did Manichaeus, which we pronounce false and heretical. For Moses testified that God created heaven and earth not in the beginnings but "in the beginning."

Furthermore, that every human creature is subject to the Roman pontiff,—this we declare, say, define, and pronounce to be altogether necessary to salvation.

Bonifatius, Episcopus, Servus servorum Dei. Ad futuram rei memoriam.3030    The text is taken from W. Römer: Die Bulle, unam sanctam, Schaffhausen, 1889. See also Mirbt: Quellen, p. 148 sq.

Unam sanctam ecclesiam catholicam et ipsam apostolicam urgente fide credere cogimur et tenere, nosque hanc frmiter credimus et simpliciter confitemur, extra quam nec salus est, nec remissio peccatorum, sponso in Canticis proclamante: Una est columba mea, perfecta mea. Una est matris suae electa genetrici suae [Cant. 6:9]. Quae unum corpus mysticum repraesentat, cujus caput Christus, Christi vero Deus. In qua unus Dominus, una fides, unum baptisma. Una nempe fuit diluvii tempore arca Noë, unam ecclesiam praefigurans, quae in uno cubito consummata unum, Noë videlicet, gubernatorem habuit et rectorem, extra quam omnia subsistentia super terram legimus fuisse deleta.

Hanc autem veneramur et unicam, dicente Domino in Propheta: Erue a framea, Deus, animam meam et de manu canis unicam meam. [Psalm 22:20.] Pro anima enim, id est, pro se ipso, capite simul oravit et corpore. Quod corpus unicam scilicet ecclesiam nominavit, propter sponsi, fidei, sacramentorum et caritatis ecclesiae unitatem. Haec est tunica illa Domini inconsutilis, quae scissa non fuit, sed sorte provenit. [John 19.]

Igitur ecclesiae unius et unicae unum corpus, unum caput, non duo capita, quasi monstrum, Christus videlicet et Christi vicarius, Petrus, Petrique successor, dicente Domino ipsi Petro: Pasce oves meas. [John 21:17.] Meas, inquit, generaliter, non singulariter has vel illas: per quod commisisse sibi intelligitur universas. Sive ergo Graeci sive alii se dicant Petro ejusque successoribus non esse commissos: fateantur necesse est, se de ovibus Christi non esse, dicente Domino in Joanne, unum ovile et unicum esse pastorem. [John 10:16.]

In hac ejusque potestate duos esse gladios, spiritualem videlicet et temporalem, evangelicis dictis instruimur. Nam dicentibus Apostolis: Ecce gladii duo hic [Luke 22:38], in ecclesia scilicet, cum apostoli loquerentur, non respondit Dominus, nimis esse, sed satis. Certe qui in potestate Petri temporalem gladium esse negat, male verbum attendit Domini proferentis: Converte gladium tuum in vaginam. [Matt. 26:52.] Uterque ergo est in potestate ecclesiae, spiritualis scilicet gladius et materialis. Sed is quidem pro ecclesia, ille vero ab ecclesia exercendus, ille sacerdotis, is manu regum et militum, sed ad nutum et patientiam sacerdotis.

Oportet autem gladium esse sub gladio, et temporalem auctoritatem spirituali subjici potestati. Nam cum dicat Apostolus: Non est potestas nisi a Deo; quae autem sunt, a Deo ordinata sunt [Rom. 13:1], non autem ordinata essent, nisi gladius esset sub gladio, et tanquam inferior reduceretur per alium in suprema. Nam secundum B. Dionysium lex dirinitatis est, infima per media in suprema reduci .... Sic de ecclesia et ecclesiastica potestate verificatur vaticinium Hieremiae [Jer. 1:10]: Ecce constitui te hodie super gentes et regna et cetera, quae sequuntur.

Ergo, si deviat terrena potestas, judicabitur a potestate spirituali; sed, si deviat spiritualis minor, a suo superiori si vero suprema, a solo Deo, non ab homine poterit judicari, testante Apostolo: Spiritualis homo judicat omnia, ipse autem a nemine judicatur. [1 Cor. 2:16.] Est autem haec auctoritas, etsi data sit homini, et exerceatur per hominem, non humana, sed potius divina potestas, ore divino Petro data, sibique suisque successoribus in ipso Christo, quem confessus fuit, petra firmata, dicente Domino ipsi Petro: Quodcunque ligaveris, etc. [Matt. 16:19.] Quicunque igitur huic potestati a Deo sic ordinatae resistit, Dei ordinationi resistit, nisi duo, sicut Manichaeus, fingat esse principia, quod falsum et haereticum judicamus, quia, testante Moyse, non in principiis, sed in principio coelum Deus creavit et terram. [Gen. 1:1.]

Porro subesse Romano Pontifici omni humanae creaturae declaramus dicimus, definimus et pronunciamus omnino esse de necessitate salutis.

The most astounding clause of this deliverance makes subjection to the pope an essential of salvation for every creature. Some writers have made the bold attempt to relieve the language of this construction, and refer it to princes and kings. So fair and sound a Roman Catholic writer as Funk3131    In his Kirchengeschichtliche Abhandlungen, I. 483-489. This view is also taken by J. Berchtold: Die Bulle Unam sanctam ihre wahre Bedeutung und Tragweite Staat und Kirche, Munich, 1887. An attempt was made by Abbé Mury, La Bulle Unam sanctam, in Rev. des questions histor. 1879, on the ground of the bull’s stinging affirmations and verbal obscurities to detect the hand of a forger, but Cardinal Hergenröther, Kirchengesch., II. 694, pronounces the genuineness to be above dispute. has advocated this interpretation, alleging in its favor the close connection of the clause with the previous statements through the particle porro, furthermore, and the consideration that the French people would not have resented the assertion that obedience to the papacy is a condition of salvation. But the overwhelming majority of Catholic historians take the words in their natural meaning.3232    So Hergenröther-Kirsch, Hefele-Knöpfler: Kirchengesch., p. 380, and Conciliengesch., VI. 349 sq. Every writer on Boniface VIII. and Philip the Fair discusses the meaning of Boniface’s deliverance. Among the latest is W. Joos: Die Bulle Unam sanctam, Schaffhausen, 1896. Finke: Aus den Tagen Bonifaz VIII., p. 146 sqq., C-CXLVI. Scholz: Publizistik, p. 197 sqq. The expression "every human creature" would be a most unlikely one to be used as synonymous with temporal rulers. Boniface made the same assertion in a letter to the duke of Savoy, 1300, when he demanded submission for every mortal,—omnia anima. Aegidius Colonna paraphrased the bull in these words, "the supreme pontiff is that authority to which every soul must yield subjection."3333    Summus pontifex ... est illa potestas cui omnisanima debet esse subjecta. That the mediaeval Church accepted this construction is vouched for by the Fifth Lateran Council, 1516, which, in reaffirming the bull, declared "it necessary to salvation that all the faithful of Christ be subject to the Roman pontiff."3434    De necessitate esse salutis omnes Christi fideles romani pontifici subesse. The writer in Wetzer-Welte, XII. 229 sqq., pronounces the view impossible which limits the meaning of the clause to temporal rulers.

§ 5. Literary Attacks against the Papacy.

Nothing is more indicative of the intellectual change going on in Western Europe in the fourteenth century than the tractarian literature of the time directed against claims made by the papacy. Three periods may be distinguished. In the first belong the tracts called forth by the struggle of Philip the Fair and Boniface VIII., with the year 1302 for its centre. Their distinguishing feature is the attack made upon the pope’s jurisdiction in temporal affairs. The second period opens during the pontificate of John XXII. and extends from 1320–1340. Here the pope’s spiritual supremacy was attacked. The most prominent writer of the time was Marsiglius of Padua. The third period begins with the papal schism toward the end of the fourteenth century. The writers of this period emphasized the need of reform in the Church and discussed the jurisdiction of general councils as superior to the jurisdiction of the pope.3535    I have followed closely in this chapter the clear and learned presentations of Richard Scholz and Finke and the documents they print as well as the documents given by Goldast. See below. A most useful contribution to the study of the age of Boniface VIII. and the papal theories current at the time would be the publication of the tracts mentioned in this section and others in a single volume.

The publicists of the age of Boniface VIII. and Philip the Fair now defended, now openly attacked the mediaeval theory of the pope’s lordship over kings and nations. The body of literature they produced was unlike anything which Europe had seen before. In the conflict between Gregory IX. and Frederick II., Europe was filled with the epistolary appeals of pope and emperor, who sought each to make good his case before the court of European public opinion, and more especially of the princes and prelates. The controversy of this later time was participated in by a number of writers who represented the views of an intelligent group of clerics and laymen. They employed a vigorous style adapted to make an impression on the public mind.

Stirred by the haughty assertions of Boniface, a new class of men, the jurisconsults, entered the lists and boldly called in question the old order represented by the policy of Hildebrand and Innocent III. They had studied in the universities, especially in the University of Paris, and some of them, like Dubois, were laymen. The decision of the Bologna jurists on the field of Roncaglia was reasserted with new arguments and critical freedom, and a step was taken far in advance of that decision which asserted the independence of the emperor. The empire was set aside as an antiquated institution, and France and other states were pronounced sovereign within their own limits and immune from papal dominion over their temporal affairs. The principles of human law and the natural rights of man were arrayed against dogmatic assertions based upon unbalanced and false interpretations of Scripture. The method of scholastic sophistry was largely replaced by an appeal to common sense and regard for the practical needs of society. The authorities used to establish the new theory were Aristotle, the Scriptures and historic facts. These writers were John the Baptists preparing the way for the more clearly outlined and advanced views of Marsiglius of Padua and Ockam, who took the further step of questioning or flatly denying the pope’s spiritual supremacy, and for the still more advanced and more spiritual appeals of Wyclif and Luther. A direct current of influence can be traced back from the Protestant Reformation to the anti-papal tracts of the first decade of the fourteenth century.

The tract writers of the reign of Philip the Fair, who defended the traditional theory of the pope’s absolute supremacy in all matters, were the Italians Aegidius Colonna, James of Viterbo, Henry of Cremona, and Augustinus Triumphus. The writers who attacked the papal claim to temporal power are divided into two groups. To the first belongs Dante, who magnified the empire and the station of the emperor as the supreme ruler over the temporal affairs of men. The men of the second group were associated more or less closely with the French court and were, for the most part, Frenchmen. They called in question the authority of the emperor. Among their leaders were John of Paris and Peter Dubois. In a number of cases their names are forgotten or uncertain, while their tracts have survived. It will be convenient first to take up the theory of Dante, and then to present the views of papal and anti-papal writings which were evidently called forth by the struggle started by Boniface.

Dante was in nowise associated with the court of Philip the Fair, and seems to have been moved to write his treatise on government, the De monarchia, by general considerations and not by any personal sympathy with the French king. His theory embodies views in direct antagonism to those promulged in Boniface’s bull Unam sanctam, and Thomas Aquinas, whose theological views Dante followed, is here set aside.3636    The date of the De monarchia is a matter of uncertainty. There are no references in the treatise to Dante’s own personal affairs or the contemporary events of Europe to give any clew (sic). Witte, the eminent Dante student, put it in 1301; so also R. W. Church, on the ground that Dante makes no reference to his exile, which began in 1301. The tendency now is to follow Boccaccio, who connected the treatise with the election of Henry VII. or Henry’s journey to Rome, 1311. The treatise would then be a manifesto for the restoration of the empire to its original authority. For a discussion of the date, see Henry: Dante’s de monarchia, XXXII. sqq. The independence and sovereignty of the civil estate is established by arguments drawn from reason, Aristotle, and the Scriptures. In making good his position, the author advances three propositions, devoting a chapter to each: (1) Universal monarchy or empire, for the terms are used synonymously, is necessary. (2) This monarchy belongs to the Roman people. (3) It was directly bequeathed to the Romans by God, and did not come through the mediation of the Church.

The interests of society, so the argument runs, require an impartial arbiter, and only a universal monarch bound by no local ties can be impartial. A universal monarchy will bring peace, the peace of which the angels sang on the night of Christ’s birth, and it will bring liberty, God’s greatest gift to man.3737    Libertus est maximum donum humanae naturae a Deo collatum, I. 14. It is a striking coincidence that Leo XIII. began his encyclical of June 20, 1888, with these similar words, libertas praestantissimum naturae donum, "liberty, the most excellent gift of nature." Democracy reduces men to slavery. The Romans are the noblest people and deserve the right to rule. This is evident from the fine manhood of Aeneas, their progenitor,3838    ii. 3. Dante appeals to the testimony of Virgil, his guide through hell and purgatory. He also quotes Virgil’s proud lines:—
   "Tu regere imperii populos, Romane, memento.

   Haec tibi erunt artes, pacisque imponere morem

   Parcere subjectis et debellare superbos."

   Roman, remember that it was given to thee to rule the nations. Thine it is to establish peace, spare subject peoples and war against the proud.
from the evident miracles which God wrought in their history and from their world-wide dominion. This right to rule was established under the Christian dispensation by Christ himself, who submitted to Roman jurisdiction in consenting to be born under Augustus and to suffer under Tiberius. It was attested by the Church when Paul said to Festus, "I stand at Caesar’s judgment seat, where I ought to be judged," Acts 25:10. There are two governing agents necessary to society, the pope and the emperor. The emperor is supreme in temporal things and is to guide men to eternal life in accordance with the truths of revelation. Nevertheless, the emperor should pay the pope the reverence which a first-born son pays to his father, such reverence as Charlemagne paid to Leo III.3939   ii. 12, 13; iii. 13, 16.

In denying the subordination of the civil power, Dante rejects the figure comparing the spiritual and temporal powers to the sun and moon,4040    This last section of the book has the heading auctoritatem imperii immediate dependere a Deo. and the arguments drawn from the alleged precedence of Levi over Judah on the ground of the priority of Levi’s birth; from the oblation of the Magi at the manger and from the sentence passed upon Saul by Samuel. He referred the two swords both to spiritual functions. Without questioning the historical occurrence, he set aside Constantine’s donation to Sylvester on the ground that the emperor no more had the right to transfer his empire in the West than he had to commit suicide. Nor had the pope a right to accept the gift.4141    iii. 10, Constantinus alienare non poterat imperii dignitatem nec ecclesia recipere. In the Inferno Dante applied to that transaction the oft-quoted lines:4242    xix. 115 sqq. Ahi, Constantin, di quanto mal fu matre,
   Non la tua conversion, ma quella dote

   Che da te prese il primo ricco padre!

   In the Purgatorio, xvi. 106-112, Dante deplores the union of the crozier and the sword.

"Ah, Constantine, of how much ill was cause,

Not thy conversion, but those rich domains

Which the first wealthy pope received of thee."

The Florentine poet’s universal monarchy has remained an ideal unrealized, like the republic of the Athenian philosopher.4343    With reference to the approaching termination of the emperor’s influence in Italian affairs, Bryce, ch. XV., sententiously says that Dante’s De monarchia was an epitaph, not a prophecy. Conception of popular liberty as it is conceived in this modern age, Dante had none. Nevertheless, he laid down the important principle that the government exists for the people, and not the people for the government.4444    Non cives propter consules nec gens propter regem sed e converso consules propter cives, rex propter gentem, iii. 14.

The treatise De monarchia was burnt as heretical, 1329, by order of John XXII. and put on the Index by the Council of Trent. In recent times it has aided the Italian patriots in their work of unifying Italy and separating politics from the Church according to Cavour’s maxim, "a free Church in a free state."

In the front rank of the champions of the temporal power of the papacy stood Aegidius Colonna, called also Aegidius Romanus, 1247–1316.4545    Scholz, pp. 32-129. He was an Augustinian, and rose to be general of his order. He became famous as a theological teacher and, in 1287, his order placed his writings in all its schools.4646    Chartul. Univ. Paris., II. 12. In 1295 he was made archbishop of Bourges, Boniface setting aside in his favor the cleric nominated by Coelestine. Aegidius participated in the council in Rome, 1301, which Philip the Fair forbade the French prelates to attend. He was an elaborate writer, and in 1304 no less than 12 of his theological works and 14 of his philosophical writings were in use in the University of Paris.

The tract by which Aegidius is chiefly known is his Power of the Supreme Pontiff—De ecclesiastica sive de summit pontificis potestate. It was the chief work of its time in defence of the papacy, and seems to have been called forth by the Roman Council and to have been written in 1301.4747    Jourdain, in 1858, was the first to call attention to the manuscript, and Kraus the first to give a summary of its positions in the Oesterr. Vierteljahrsschrift, Vienna, 1862, pp. 1-33. Among Aegidius’ other tracts is the "Rule of Princes,"—De regimine principum —1285, printed 1473. It was at once translated into French and Italian and also into Spanish, Portuguese, English, and even Hebrew. The "Pope’s Abdication"—De renunciatione papae sive apologia pro Bonifacio VIII.—1297, was a reply to the manifesto of the Colonna, contesting a pope’s right to resign his office. For a list of Aegidius’ writings, see art. Colonna Aegidius, in Wetzer-Welte, III. 667-671. See Scholz, pp. 46, 126. It was dedicated to Boniface VIII. Its main positions are the following: —

The pope judges all things and is judged by no man, 1 Cor. 2:15. To him belongs plenary power, plenitudo potestatis. This power is without measure, without number, and without weight. 4848    Aegidius quotes the Wisdom of Solomon 2:21 It extends over all Christians. The pope is above all laws and in matters of faith infallible. He is like the sea which fills all vessels, like the sun which, as the universally active principle, sends his rays into all things. The priesthood existed before royalty. Abel and Noah, priests, preceded Nimrod, who was the first king. As the government of the world is one and centres in one ruler, God, so in the affairs of the militant Church there can be only one source of power, one supreme government, one head to whom belongs the plenitude of power. This is the supreme pontiff. The priesthood and the papacy are of immediate divine appointment. Earthly kingdoms, except as they have been established by the priesthood, owe their origin to usurpation, robbery, and other forms of violence.4949    See Scholz, p. 96 sqq. This author says the de regimine principum of Aegidius presents a different view, and following Aristotle, derives the state from the social principle. In these views Aegidius followed Augustine: De civitate, IV. 4, and Gregory VII. The state, however, he declared to be necessary as a means through which the Church works to accomplish its divinely appointed ends.

In the second part of his tract, Aegidius proves that, in spite of Numb. 18:20, 21, and Luke 10:4, the Church has the right to possess worldly goods. The Levites received cities. In fact, all temporal goods are under the control of the Church.5050    Sub dominio et potestate ecclesiae. As the soul rules the body, so the pope rules over all temporal matters. The tithe is a perpetual obligation. No one has a right to the possession of a single acre of ground or a vineyard without the Church’s permission and unless he be baptized.

The fulness of power, residing in the pope, gives him the right to appoint to all benefices in Christendom, but, as God chooses to rule through the laws of nature, so the pope rules through the laws of the Church, but he is not bound by them. He may himself be called the Church. For the pope’s power is spiritual, heavenly and divine. Aegidius was used by his successors, James of Viterbo, Augustinus Triumphus and Alvarus, and also by John of Paris and Gerson who contested some of his main positions.5151    Scholz, p. 124.

The second of these writers, defending the position of Boniface VIII., was James of Viterbo,5252    See Finke, pp. 163-166; Scholz, pp. 129-153. d. 1308. He also was an Italian, belonged to the Augustinian order, and gained prominence as a teacher in Paris. In 1302 he was appointed by Boniface archbishop of Beneventum, and a few months later archbishop of Naples. His Christian Government—De regimine christiano — is, after the treatise of Aegidius, the most comprehensive of the papal tracts. It also was dedicated to Boniface VIII., who is addressed as "the holy lord of the kings of the earth." The author distinctly says he was led to write by the attacks made upon the papal prerogative.

To Christ’s vicar, James says, royalty and priesthood, regnum et sacerdotium, belong. Temporal authority was not for the first time conferred on him when Constantine gave Sylvester the dominion of the West. Constantine did nothing more than confirm a previous right derived from Christ, when he said, "whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven." Priests are kings, and the pope is the king of kings, both in mundane and spiritual matters.5353    Scholz, pp. 135, 145, 147. These two prerogatives are called potestas ordinis and potestas jurisdictionis. He is the bishop of the earth, the supreme lawgiver. Every soul must be subject to him in order to salvation.5454    Scholz, p. 148. By reason of his fulness of power, the supreme pontiff can act according to law or against it, as he chooses.5555    Potest agere et secundum leges quas ponit et praeter illas, ubi opportunum esse judicaverit. Finke, p. 166.

Henry of Cassaloci, or Henry of Cremona, as he is usually called from his Italian birthplace, d. 1312, is mentioned, contrary to the custom of the age, by name by John of Paris, as the author of the tract, The Power of the Pope—De potestate papae.5656    Finke, pp. 166-170; Scholz, pp. 162-1S6. Finke was the first to use this Tract. Scholz describes two MSS. in the National Library of Paris, and gives the tract entire, pp. 459-471. He was a distinguished authority in canon law and consulted by Boniface. He was appointed, 1302, a member of the delegation to carry to Philip the Fair the two notorious bulls, Salvator mundi and Ausculta fili. The same year he was appointed bishop of Reggio.5757    A contemporary notes that the consistory was reminded that the nominee was the author of the De potestate papae, "a book which proves that the pope was overlord in temporal as well as spiritual matters." Scholz, p. 155. The tract was written, as Scholz thinks, not later than 1301, or earlier than 1298, as it quotes the Liber sextus. The papal defenders were well paid.

Henry began his tract with the words of Matt. 27:18, "All power is given unto me," and declared the attack against the pope’s temporal jurisdiction over the whole earth a matter of recent date, and made by "sophists" who deserved death. Up to that time no one had made such denial. He attempts to make out his fundamental thesis from Scripture, the Fathers, canon law, and reason. God at first ruled through Noah, the patriarchs, Melchizedec, and Moses, who were priests and kings at the same time. Did not Moses punish Pharaoh? Christ carried both swords. Did he not drive out the money-changers and wear the crown of thorns? To him the power was given to judge the world. John 5:22. The same power was entailed upon Peter and his successors. As for the state, it bears to the Church the relation of the moon to the sun, and the emperor has only such power as the pope is ready to confer. Henry also affirms that Constantine’s donation established no right, but confirmed what the pope already possessed by virtue of heavenly gift.5858    Constantinus non dedit sed recognovit ab ecclesia se tenere—confitetur se ab ecclesia illud tenere. See Scholz, p. 467. The pope transferred the empire to Charlemagne, and Innocent IV. asserted the papal supremacy over kings by deposing Frederick II. If in early and later times the persons of popes were abused, this was not because they lacked supreme authority in the earth5959    Non defectus juris, sed potentiae. or were in anywise subject to earthly princes. No emperor can legally exercise imperial functions without papal consecration. When Christ said, "my kingdom is not of this world," he meant nothing more than that the world refused to obey him. As for the passage, "render to Caesar the things which are Caesar’s," Christ was under no obligation to give tribute to the emperor, and the children of the kingdom are free, as Augustine, upon the basis of Matt. 27:26 sq., said.

The main work of another defender of the papal prerogatives, Augustinus Triumphus, belongs to the next period.6060    Four of his smaller tracts are summarized by Scholz, pp. 172-189. See § 8.

An intermediate position between these writers and the anti-papal publicists was taken by the Cardinals Colonna and their immediate supporters.6161    Scholz, pp. 198-207. In their zeal against Boniface VIII. they questioned the absolute power of the Church in temporal concerns, and placed the supreme spiritual authority in the college of cardinals, with the pope as its head.

Among the advanced writers of the age was William Durante, d. 1381, an advocate of Gallicanism.6262    Scholz, pp. 208-223. He was appointed bishop of Mende before he had reached the canonical age. He never came under the condemnation of the Church. In a work composed at the instance of Clement V. on general councils and the reformation of Church abuses, De modo generalis concilii celebrandi et corruptelis in ecclesiis reformandis, he demanded a reformation of the Church in head and members,6363    Tam in capite quam in membris. Scholz, pp. 211, 220. The tract was reprinted at the time of the Council of Trent and dedicated to Paul III. using for the first time this expression which was so often employed in a later age. He made the pope one of the order of bishops on all of whom was conferred equally the power to bind and to loose.6464    The words Matt. 16:19, were addressed to the whole Church, he says, and not to Peter alone. The bishops are not the pope’s assistants, the view held by Innocent III., but agents directly appointed by God with independent jurisdiction. The pope may not act out of harmony with the canons of the early Church except with the approval of a general council. When new measures are contemplated, a general council should be convened, and one should be called every ten years.6565    Scholz, p. 214.

Turning now to the writers who contested the pope’s right to temporal authority over the nations, we find that while the most of them were clerics, all of them were jurists. It is characteristic that besides appealing to Aristotle, the Scriptures, and the canon law, they also appealed to the Roman law. We begin with several pamphlets whose authorship is a matter of uncertainty.

The Twofold Prerogative—Quaestio in utramque partem — was probably written in 1302, and by a Frenchman.6666    This date is made very probable by Scholz, p. 225 sqq. Riezler, p. 141, wrongly put it down to 1364-1380. Scheffer-Boichorst showed that the author spoke of the canonization of Louis IX., 1297, as having occurred "in our days," and that he quoted the Liber sextus, 1298, as having recently appeared. The tract is given in Goldast: Monarchia, II. 195 sqq. The tract clearly sets forth that the two functions, the spiritual and the temporal, are distinct, and that the pope has plenary power only in the spiritual realm. It is evident that they are not united in one person, from Christ’s refusal of the office of king and from the law prohibiting the Levites holding worldly possessions. Canon law and Roman law recognized the independence of the civil power. Both estates are of God. At best the pope’s temporal authority extends to the patrimony of Peter. The empire is one among the powers, without authority over other states. As for the king of France, he would expose himself to the penalty of death if he were to recognize the pope as overlord.6767    Scholz, p. 239. On Feb. 28, 1302, Philip made his sons swear never to acknowledge any one but God as overlord.

The same positions are taken in the tract,6868    It is bound up in MS. with the former tract and with the work of John of Paris. It is printed in Dupuy, pp. 663-683. It has been customary to regard Peter Dubois as the author, but Scholz, p. 257, gives reasons against this view. The Papal Power,—Quaestio de potestate papae. The author insists that temporal jurisdiction is incompatible with the pope’s office. He uses the figure of the body to represent the Church, giving it a new turn. Christ is the head. The nerves and veins are officers in the Church and state. They depend directly upon Christ, the head. The heart is the king. The pope is not even called the head. The soul is not mentioned. The old application of the figure of the body and the soul, representing respectively the regnum and the sacerdotium, is set aside. The pope is a spiritual father, not the lord over Christendom. Moses was a temporal ruler and Aaron was priest. The functions and the functionaries were distinct. At best, the donation of Constantine had no reference to France, for France was distinct from the empire. The deposition of Childerich by Pope Zacharias established no right, for all that Zacharias did was, as a wise counsellor, to give the barons advice.

A third tract, one of the most famous pieces of this literature, the Disputation between a Cleric and a Knight,6969    Disputatio inter clericum et militem. It was written during the conflict between Boniface and Philip, and not by Ockam, to whom it was formerly ascribed. Recently Riezler, p. 146, has ascribed it to Peter Dubois. It was first printed, 1476, and is reprinted in Goldast: Monarchia, I. 13 sqq. MSS. are found in Paris, Oxford, Cambridge, and Prag. See Scholz, p. 336 sqq. An English translation appeared with the following title: A dialogue betwene a knight and a clerke concerning the Power Spiritual and temporal, by William Ockham, the great philosopher, in English and Latin, London, 1540. was written to defend the sovereignty of the state and its right to levy taxes upon Church property. The author maintains that the king of France is in duty bound to see that Church property is administered according to the intent for which it was given. As he defends the Church against foreign foes, so he has the right to put the Church under tribute.

In the publicist, John of Paris, d. 1306, we have one of the leading minds of the age.7070    Finke, pp. 170-177; Scholz, pp. 275-333. He was a Dominican, and enjoyed great fame as a preacher and master. On June 26, 1303, he joined 132 other Parisian Dominicans in signing a document calling for a general council, which the university had openly favored five days before.7171    Chartul. Univ. Paris., II. 102. His views of the Lord’s Supper brought upon him the charge of heresy, and he was forbidden to give lectures at the university.7272    De modo existendi corporis Christi in sacramento altaris. Chartul. II. 120. He appealed to Clement V., but died before he could get a hearing.

John’s chief writing was the tract on the Authority of the Pope and King, —De potestate regia et papali,7373    First printed in Paris, 1506, and is found in Goldast, II. 108 sqq. For the writings ascribed to John, see Scholz, p. 284 sq. Finke, p. 172, says, ein gesundes beinahe modernes Empfinden zeichnet ihn aus. His tract belongs to 1302-1303. So Scholz and Finke. John writes as though Boniface were still living. He quotes "the opinions of certain moderns" and Henry of Cremona by name. The last chapter of John’s tract is largely made up of excerpts from Aegidius’ De renuntiatione papae. Scholz, p. 291, thinks it probable that Dante used John’s tract. — which almost breathes the atmosphere of modern times.

John makes a clear distinction between the "body of the faithful," which is the Church, and the "body of the clergy."7474    Congregatio fidelium ... congregatio clericorum. The Church has its unity in Christ, who established the two estates, spiritual and temporal. They are the same in origin, but distinguished on earth. The pope has the right to punish moral offences, but only with spiritual punishments. The penalties of death, imprisonment, and fines, he has no right to impose. Christ had no worldly jurisdiction, and the pope should keep clear of "Herod’s old error."7575    Scholz, p. 315. Constantine had no right to confer temporal power on Sylvester. John adduced 42 reasons urged in favor of the pope’s omnipotence in temporal affairs and offers a refutation for each of them.

As for the pope’s place in the Church, the pope is the representative of the ecclesiastical body, not its lord. The Church may call him to account. If the Church were to elect representatives to act with the supreme pontiff, we would have the best of governments. As things are, the cardinals are his advisers and may admonish him and, in case he persists in his error, they may call to their aid the temporal arm. The pope may be deposed by an emperor, as was actually the case when three popes were deposed by Henry III. The final seat of ecclesiastical authority is the general council. It may depose a pope. Valid grounds of deposition are insanity, heresy, personal incompetence and abuse of the Church’s property.

Following Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas, John derived the state from the family and not from murder and other acts of violence.7676    Finke, p. 72; Scholz, p. 324. It is a community organized for defence and bodily well-being. With other jurists, he regarded the empire as an antiquated institution and, if it continues to exist, it is on a par with the monarchies, not above them. Climate and geographical considerations make different monarchies necessary, and they derive their authority from God. Thus John and Dante, while agreeing as to the independence of the state, differ as to the seat where secular power resides. Dante placed it in a universal empire, John of Paris in separate monarchies.

The boldest and most advanced of these publicists, Pierre Dubois,7777    See Renan: Hist. Litt. XXVI. 471-536; Scholz, pp. 374-444. was a layman, probably a Norman, and called himself a royal attorney.7878    Advocatus regalium causarum. As a delegate to the national council in Paris, April, 1302, he represented Philip’s views. He was living as late as 1321. In a number of tracts he supported the contention of the French monarch against Boniface VIII.7979    For these tracts, see Renan, p. 476 sq.; Scholz, p. 385 sqq. France is independent of the empire, and absolutely sovereign in all secular matters. The French king is the successor of Charlemagne. The pope is the moral teacher of mankind, "the light of the world," but he has no jurisdiction in temporal affairs. It is his function to care for souls, to stop wars, to exercise oversight over the clergy, but his jurisdiction extends no farther.

The pope and clergy are given to worldliness and self-indulgence. Boniface is a heretic. The prelates squander the Church’s money in wars and litigations, prefer the atmosphere of princely courts, and neglect theology and the care of souls. The avarice of the curia and the pope leads them to scandalous simony and nepotism.8080    Scholz, p. 398. Constantine’s donation marked the change to worldliness among the clergy. It was illegal, and the only title the pope can show to temporal power over the patrimony of Peter is long tenure. The first step in the direction of reforms would be for clergy and pope to renounce worldly possessions altogether. This remedy had been prescribed by Arnold of Brescia and Frederick II.

Dubois also criticised the rule and practice of celibacy. Few clergymen keep their vows. And yet they are retained, while ordination is denied to married persons. This is in the face of the fact that the Apostle permitted marriage to all. The practice of the Eastern church is to be preferred. The rule of single life is too exacting, especially for nuns. Durante had proposed the abrogation of the rule, and Arnald of Villanova had emphasized the sacredness of the marriage tie, recalling that it was upon a married man, Peter, that Christ conferred the primacy.8181    Contulit conjugato scilicet beato Petro primatum ecclesiae, Finke, p. clxxiii. Arnald is attacking the Minorites and Dominicans for publicly teaching that the statements of married people in matters of doctrine are not to be believed, conjugato non est credendum super veritate divina.

Dubois showed the freshness of his mind by suggestions of a practical nature. He proposed the colonization of the Holy Land by Christian people, and the marriage of Christian women to Saracens of station as a means of converting them. As a measure for securing the world’s conversion, he recommended to Clement the establishment of schools for boys and girls in every province, where instruction should be given in different languages. The girls were to be taught Latin and the fundamentals of natural science, and especially medicine and surgery, that they might serve as female physicians among women in the more occult disorders.

A review of the controversial literature of the age of Philip the Fair shows the new paths along which men’s thoughts were moving.8282    See the summary of Scholz, pp. 444-458. The papal apologists insisted upon traditional interpretations of a limited number of texts, the perpetual validity of Constantine’s donation, and the transfer of the empire. They were forever quoting Innocent’s famous bull, Per venerabilem.8383    It is quoted again and again by Henry of Cremona. See the text in Scholz, p. 464 sq., etc. For the text of the bull, see Mirbt: Quellen, pp. 127-130. On the other hand, John of Paris, and the publicists who sympathized with him, as also Dante, corrected and widened the vision of the field of Scripture, and brought into prominence the common rights of man. The resistance which the king of France offered to the demands of Boniface encouraged writers to speak without reserve.

The pope’s spiritual primacy was left untouched. The attack was against his temporal jurisdiction. The fiction of the two swords was set aside. The state is as supreme in its sphere as the Church in its sphere, and derives its authority immediately from God. Constantine had no right to confer the sovereignty of the West upon Sylvester, and his gift constitutes no valid papal claim. Each monarch is supreme in his own realm, and the theory of the overlordship of the emperor is abandoned as a thing out of date.

The pope’s tenure of office was made subject to limitation. He may be deposed for heresy and incompetency. Some writers went so far as to deny to him jurisdiction over Church property. The advisory function of the cardinals was emphasized and the independent authority of the bishops affirmed. Above all, the authority residing in the Church as a body of believers was discussed, and its voice, as uttered through a general council, pronounced to be superior to the authority of the pope. The utterances of John of Paris and Peter Dubois on the subject of general councils led straight on to the views propounded during the papal schism at the close of the fourteenth century.8484    Scholz, p. 322; Schwab: Life of Gerson, p. 133. Dubois demanded that laymen as well as clerics should have a voice in them. The rule of clerical celibacy was attacked, and attention called to its widespread violation in practice. Pope and clergy were invoked to devote themselves to the spiritual well-being of mankind, and to foster peaceable measures for the world’s conversion.

This freedom of utterance and changed way of thinking mark the beginning of one of the great revolutions in the history of the Christian Church. To these publicists the modern world owes a debt of gratitude. Principles which are now regarded as axiomatic were new for the Christian public of their day. A generation later, Marsiglius of Padua defined them again with clearness, and took a step still further in advance.

§ 6. The Transfer of the Papacy to Avignon.

The successor of Boniface, Benedict XI., 1303–1304, a Dominican, was a mild-spirited and worthy man, more bent on healing ruptures than on forcing his arbitrary will. Departing from the policy of his predecessor, he capitulated to the state and put an end to the conflict with Philip the Fair. Sentences launched by Boniface were recalled or modified, and the interdict pronounced by that pope upon Lyons was revoked. Palestrina was restored to the Colonna. Only Sciarra Colonna and Nogaret were excepted from the act of immediate clemency and ordered to appear at Rome. Benedict’s death, after a brief reign of eight months, was ascribed to poison secreted in a dish of figs, of which the pope partook freely.8585    Ferretus of Vicenza, Muratori, IX. 1013. Villani, VIII. 80. As an example of Benedict’s sanctity it was related that after he was made pope he was visited by his mother, dressed in silks, but he refused to recognize her till she had changed her dress, and then he embraced her.

The conclave met in Perugia, where Benedict died, and was torn by factions. After an interval of nearly eleven months, the French party won a complete triumph by the choice of Bertrand de Got, archbishop of Bordeaux, who took the name of Clement V. At the time of his election, Bertrand was in France. He never crossed the Alps. After holding his court at Bordeaux, Poictiers, and Toulouse, he chose, in 1309, Avignon as his residence.

Thus began the so-called Babylonian captivity, or Avignon exile, of the papacy, which lasted more than seventy years and included seven popes, all Frenchmen, Clement V., 1305–1314; John XXII., 1316–1334; Benedict XII., 1334–1342; Clement VI., 1342–1352; Innocent VI., 1352–1362; Urban V., 1362–1370; Gregory XI., 1370–1378. This prolonged absence from Rome was a great shock to the papal system. Transplanted from its maternal soil, the papacy was cut loose from the hallowed and historical associations of thirteen centuries. It no longer spake as from the centre of the Christian world.

The way had been prepared for the abandonment of the Eternal City and removal to French territory. Innocent II. and other popes had found refuge in France. During the last half of the thirteenth century the Apostolic See, in its struggle with the empire, had leaned upon France for aid. To avoid Frederick II., Innocent IV. had fled to Lyons, 1245. If Boniface VIII. represents a turning-point in the history of the papacy, the Avignon residence shook the reverence of Christendom for it. It was in danger of becoming a French institution. Not only were the popes all Frenchmen, but the large majority of the cardinals were of French birth. Both were reduced to a station little above that of court prelates subject to the nod of the French sovereign. At the same time, the popes continued to exercise their prerogatives over the other nations of Western Christendom, and freely hurled anathemas at the German emperor and laid the interdict upon Italian cities. The word might be passed around, "where the pope is, there is Rome," but the wonder is that the grave hurt done to his oecumenical character was not irreparable.8686    See Pastor, I. 75-80. He calls Clement’s decision to remain in France der unselige Entschluss, "the unholy resolve," and says the change to Avignon had the meaning of a calamity and a fall, die Bedeutung einer Katastrophe, eines Sturzes. Hefele-Knöpfler, Kirchengeschichte, p. 458, pronounces it "a move full of bad omen." Baur, Kirchengesch. d. M. A., p. 265, said, "The transference of the papal chair to Avignon was the fatal turning-point from which the papacy moved on to its dramatic goal with hasty step." See also Haller, p. 23. Pastor, p. 62, making out as good a case as he can for the Avignon popes, lays stress upon the support they gave to missions in Asia and Africa. Clement VI., 1342-1352, appointed an archbishop for Japan.

The morals of Avignon during the papal residence were notorious throughout Europe. The papal household had all the appearance of a worldly court, torn by envies and troubled by schemes of all sorts. Some of the Avignon popes left a good name, but the general impression was bad—weak if not vicious. The curia was notorious for its extravagance, venality, and sensuality. Nepotism, bribery, and simony were unblushingly practised. The financial operations of the papal family became oppressive to an extent unknown before. Indulgences, applied to all sorts of cases, were made a source of increasing revenue. Alvarus Pelagius, a member of the papal household and a strenuous supporter of the papacy, in his De planctu ecclesiae, complained bitterly of the speculation and traffic in ecclesiastical places going on at the papal court. It swarmed with money-changers, and parties bent on money operations. Another contemporary, Petrarch, who never uttered a word against the papacy as a divine institution, launched his satires against Avignon, which he called "the sink of every vice, the haunt of all iniquities, a third Babylon, the Babylon of the West." No expression is too strong to carry his biting invectives. Avignon is the "fountain of afflictions, the refuge of wrath, the school of errors, a temple of lies, the awful prison, hell on earth."8787    Petrarch speaks of it "as filled with every kind of confusion, the powers of darkness overspreading it and containing everything fearful which had ever existed or been imagined by a disordered mind." Robinson: Petrarch, p. 87. Pastor, I. p. 76, seeks to reduce the value of Petrarch’s testimony on the ground that he spoke as a poet, burning with the warm blood of his country, who, notwithstanding his charges, preferred to live in Avignon. But the corruption of Avignon was too glaring to make it necessary for him to invent charges. This ill-fame gives Avignon a place at the side of the courts of Louis XIV. and Charles II. of England.

During this papal expatriation, Italy fell into a deplorable condition. Rome, which had been the queen of cities, the goal of pilgrims, the centre towards which the pious affections of all Western Europe turned, the locality where royal and princely embassies had sought ratification for ambitious plans—Rome was now turned into an arena of wild confusion and riot. Contending factions of nobles, the Colonna, Orsini, Gaetani, and others, were in constant feud,8888    The children did not escape the violence of this mad frenzy. The little child, Agapito Colonna, was found in the church, where it had been taken by the servant, strangled by the Orsini. and strove one with the other for the mastery in municipal affairs and were often themselves set aside by popular leaders whose low birth they despised. The source of her gains gone, the city withered away and was reduced to the proportions, the poverty, and the dull happenings of a provincial town, till in 1370 the population numbered less than 20,000. She had no commerce to stir her pulses like the young cities in Northern and Southern Germany and in Lombardy. Obscurity and melancholy settled upon her palaces and public places, broken only by the petty attempts at civic displays, which were like the actings of the circus ring compared with the serious manoeuvres of a military campaign. The old monuments were neglected or torn down. A papal legate sold the stones of the Colosseum to be burnt in lime-kilns, and her marbles were transported to other cities, so that it was said she was drawn upon more than Carrara.8989    Pastor, p. 78, with note. Her churches became roofless. Cattle ate grass up to the very altars of the Lateran and St. Peter’s. The movement of art was stopped which had begun with the arrival of Giotto, who had come to Rome at the call of Boniface VIII. to adorn St. Peter’s. No product of architecture is handed down from this period except the marble stairway of the church of St. Maria, Ara Coeli, erected in 1348 with an inscription commemorating the deliverance from the plague, and the restored Lateran church which was burnt, 1308.9090    John XXII. paid off the cost incurred for this restoration with the price of silver vessels left by Clement V. for the relief of the churches in Rome. See Ehrle, V. 131. Ponds and débris interrupted the passage of the streets and filled the air with offensive and deadly odors. At Clement V.’s death, Napoleon Orsini assured Philip that the Eternal City was on the verge of destruction and, in 1347, Cola di Rienzo thought it more fit to be called a den of robbers than the residence of civilized men.

The Italian peninsula, at least in its northern half, was a scene of political division and social anarchy. The country districts were infested with bands of brigands. The cities were given to frequent and violent changes of government. High officials of the Church paid the price of immunity from plunder and violence by exactions levied on other personages of station. Such were some of the immediate results of the exile of the papacy. Italy was in danger of succumbing to the fate of Hellas and being turned into a desolate waste.

Avignon, which Clement chose as his residence, is 460 miles southeast of Paris and lies south of Lyons. Its proximity to the port of Marseilles made it accessible to Italy. It was purchased by Clement VI., 1348, from Naples for 80, 000 gold florins, and remained papal territory until the French Revolution. As early as 1229, the popes held territory in the vicinity, the duchy of Venaissin, which fell to them from the domain of Raymond of Toulouse. On every side this free papal home was closely confined by French territory. Clement was urged by Italian bishops to go to Rome, and Italian writers gave as one reason for his refusal fear lest he should receive meet punishment for his readiness to condemn Boniface VIII.9191    See Finke: Quellen, p. 92.

Clement’s coronation was celebrated at Lyons, Philip and his brother Charles of Valois, the Duke of Bretagne and representatives of the king of England being present. Philip and the duke walked at the side of the pope’s palfrey. By the fall of an old wall during the procession, the duke, a brother of the pope, and ten other persons lost their lives. The pope himself was thrown from his horse, his tiara rolled in the dust, and a large carbuncle, which adorned it, was lost. Scarcely ever was a papal ruler put in a more compromising position than the new pontiff. His subjection to a sovereign who had defied the papacy was a strange spectacle. He owed his tiara indirectly, if not immediately, to Philip the Fair. He was the man Philip wanted.9292    Döllinger says Clement passed completely into the service of the king, er trat ganz in den Dienst des Königs. Akad. Vorträge, III. 254. It was his task to appease the king’s anger against the memory of Boniface, and to meet his brutal demands concerning the Knights Templars. These, with the Council of Vienne, which he called, were the chief historic concerns of his pontificate.

The terms on which the new pope received the tiara were imposed by Philip himself, and, according to Villani, the price he made the Gascon pay included six promises. Five of them concerned the total undoing of what Boniface had done in his conflict with Philip. The sixth article, which was kept secret, was supposed to be the destruction of the order of the Templars. It is true that the authenticity of these six articles has been disputed, but there can be no doubt that from the very outset of Clement’s pontificate, the French king pressed their execution upon the pope’s attention.9393    Mansi was the first to express doubts concerning these articles, reported by Villani, VIII. 80. Döllinger: Akad. Vorträge, III. 254, and Hefele, following Bouteric, deny them altogether. Hefele, in a long and careful statement, VI. 394-403, gives reasons for regarding them as an Italian invention. Clement distinctly said that he knew nothing of the charges against the Templars till the day of his coronation. On the other hand, Villani’s testimony is clear and positive, and at any rate shows the feeling which prevailed in the early part of the fourteenth century. Archer is inclined to hold on to Villani’s testimony, Enc. Brit., XXIII. 164. The character of pope and king, and the circumstances under which Clement was elected, make a compact altogether probable. Clement, in poor position to resist, confirmed what Benedict had done and went farther. He absolved the king; recalled, Feb. 1, 1306, the offensive bulls Clericis laicos and Unam sanctam, so far as they implied anything offensive to France or any subjection on the part of the king to the papal chair, not customary before their issue, and fully restored the cardinals of the Colonna family to the dignities of their office.

The proceedings touching the character of Boniface VIII. and his right to a place among the popes dragged along for fully six years. Philip had offered, among others, his brother, Count Louis of Evreux, as a witness for the charge that Boniface had died a heretic. There was a division of sentiment among the cardinals. The Colonna were as hostile to the memory of Boniface as they were zealous in their writings for the memory of Coelestine V. They pronounced it to be contrary to the divine ordinance for a pope to abdicate. His spiritual marriage with the Church cannot be dissolved. And as for there being two popes at the same time, God was himself not able to constitute such a monstrosity. On the other hand, writers like Augustinus Triumphus defended Boniface and pronounced him a martyr to the interests of the Church and worthy of canonization.9494    Dupuy, pp. 448-465. See Finke and Scholz, pp. 198-207. Among those who took sides against the pope was Peter Dubois. In his Deliberatio super agendis a Philippo IV. (Dupuy, pp. 44-47), he pronounced Boniface a heretic. This tract was probably written during the sessions of the National Assembly in Paris, April, 1302. See Scholz, p. 386. In another tract Dubois (Dupuy, pp. 214-19) called upon the French king to condemn Boniface as a heretic. In his zeal against his old enemy Philip had called, probably as early as 1305, for the canonization of Coelestine V.9595    This is upon the basis of a tractate found and published by Finke, Aus den Tagen Bon. VIII., pp. lxix-c, and which he puts in the year 1308. See pp. lxxxv, xcviii. Scholz, p. 174, ascribes this tract to Augustinus Triumphus. A second time, in 1307, Boniface’s condemnation was pressed upon Clement by the king in person. But the pope knew how to prolong the prosecution on all sorts of pretexts. Philip represented himself as concerned for the interests of religion, and Nogaret and the other conspirators insisted that the assault at Avignon was a religious act, negotium fidei. Nogaret sent forth no less than twelve apologies defending himself for his part in the assault.9696    Holtzmann: W. von Nogaret, p. 202 sqq. In 1310 the formal trial began. Many witnesses appeared to testify against Boniface,—laymen, priests and bishops. The accusations were that the pope had declared all three religions false, Mohammedanism, Judaism and Christianity, pronounced the virgin birth a tale, denied transubstantiation and the existence of hell and heaven and that he had played games of chance.

Clement issued one bull after another protesting the innocency of the offending parties concerned in the violent measures against Boniface. Philip and Nogaret were declared innocent of all guilt and to have only pure motives in preferring charges against the dead pope.9797    The tract of 1308 attempts to prove some of the charges against Boniface untrue, or that true sayings attributed to him did not make him a heretic. For example, it takes up the charges that Boniface had called the Gauls dogs, and had said he would rather be a dog than a Gaul. The argument begins by quoting Eccles. 3:19, p. lxx. sqq. The bull, Rex gloriae, 1311, addressed to Philip, stated that the secular kingdom was founded by God and that France in the new dispensation occupied about the same place as Israel, the elect people, occupied under the old dispensation. Nogaret’s purpose in entering into the agreement which resulted in the affair at Anagni was to save the Church from destruction at the hands of Boniface, and the plundering of the papal palace and church was done against the wishes of the French chancellor. In several bulls Clement recalled all punishments, statements, suspensions and declarations made against Philip and his kingdom, or supposed to have been made. And to fully placate the king, he ordered all Boniface’s pronouncements of this character effaced from the books of the Roman Church. Thus in the most solemn papal form did Boniface’s successor undo all that Boniface had done.9898    The condemned clauses were in some cases erased, but Boniface’s friends succeeded in keeping some perfect copies of the originals. See Hefele-Knöpfler, VI. 460. When the Oecumenical Council of Vienne met, the case of Boniface was so notorious a matter that it had to be taken up. After a formal trial, in which the accused pontiff was defended by three cardinals, he was adjudged not guilty. To gain this point, and to save his predecessor from formal condemnation, it is probable Clement had to surrender to Philip unqualifiedly in the matter of the Knights of the Temple.

After long and wearisome proceedings, this order was formally legislated out of existence by Clement in 1312. Founded in 1119 to protect pilgrims and to defend the Holy Land against the Moslems, it had outlived its mission. Sapped of its energy by riches and indulgence, its once famous knights might well have disbanded and no interest been the worse for it. The story, however, of their forcible suppression awakens universal sympathy and forms one of the most thrilling and mysterious chapters of the age. Döllinger has called it "a unique drama in history."9999    Döllinger’s treatment, Akad. Vorträge, III. 244-274, was the last address that distinguished historian made before the Munich Academy of the Sciences. In his zeal to present a good case for the Templars, he suggests that if they had been let alone they might have done good service by policing the Mediterranean, with Cyprus as a base.

The destruction of the Templar order was relentlessly insisted upon by Philip the Fair, and accomplished with the reluctant co-operation of Clement V. In vain did the king strive to hide the sordidness of his purpose under the thin mask of religious zeal. At Clement’s coronation, if not before, Philip brought charges against it. About the same time, in the insurrection called forth by his debasement of the coin, the king took refuge in the Templars’ building at Paris. In 1307 he renewed the charges before the pope. When Clement hesitated, he proceeded to violence, and on the night of Oct. 13, 1307, he had all the members of the order in France arrested and thrown into prison, including Jacques de Molay, the grand-master. Döllinger applies to this deed the strong language that, if he were asked to pick out from the whole history of the world the accursed day,—dies nefastus,—he would be able to name none other than Oct. 13, 1307. Three days later, Philip announced he had taken this action as the defender of the faith and called upon Christian princes to follow his example. Little as the business was to Clement’s taste, he was not man enough to set himself in opposition to the king, and he gradually became complaisant.100100    In the bull Pastoralis praeeminentiae, 1307. Augustinus Triumphus, in his tract on the Templars, de facto Templarorum, without denying the charges of heresy, denied the king’s right to seize and try persons accused of heresy on his own initiative and without the previous consent of the Church. See the document printed by Scholz, pp. 508-516. The machinery of the Inquisition was called into use. The Dominicans, its chief agents, stood high in Philip’s favor, and one of their number was his confessor. In 1308 the authorities of the state assented to the king’s plans to bring the order to trial. The constitution of the court was provided for by Clement, the bishop of each diocese and two Franciscans and two Dominicans being associated together. A commission invested with general authority was to sit in Paris.101101    It consisted of the archbishop of Narbonne, the bishops of Mende, Bayeux, and Limoges and four lesser dignitaries. The place of sitting was put at Paris at the urgency of Philip.

In the summer of 1308 the pope ordered a prosecution of the knights wherever they might be found.102102    In the bull Faciens misericordiam. In this document the pope made the charge that the grand-master and the officers of the order were in the habit of granting absolution, a strictly priestly prerogative. It was to confirm the strict view of granting absolution that Alexander III. provided for the admission of priests to the Military Orders. See Lea’s valuable paper. The Absolution Formula of the Templars. See also on this subject Finke I. 395-397. Funk, p. 1330, saysder Pabst kam von jetzt an dem König mehr und mehr entgegen und nachdem er sich von dem gewaltigsten und rücksichtsiosigsten Fürsten seiner Zeit hatte ungarnen lassen, war ein Entkommen aus seiner Gewalt kaum mehr möglich The charges set forth were heresy, spitting upon the cross, worshipping an idol, Bafomet—the word for Mohammed in the Provençal dialect—and also the most abominable offences against moral decency such as sodomy and kissing the posterior parts and the navel of fellow knights. The members were also accused of having meetings with the devil who appeared in the form of a black cat and of having carnal intercourse with female demons. The charges which the lawyers and Inquisitors got together numbered 127 and these the pope sent through France and to other countries as the basis of the prosecution.

Under the strain of prolonged torture, many of the unfortunate men gave assent to these charges, and more particularly to the denial of Christ and the spitting upon the cross. The Templars seem to have had no friends in high places bold enough to take their part. The king, the pope, the Dominican order, the University of Paris, the French episcopacy were against them. Many confessions once made by the victims were afterwards recalled at the stake. Many denied the charges altogether.103103    These practices have been regarded by Prutz, Loiscleur (La doctrine secrète des Templiers, Paris, 1872) and others as a part of a secret code which came into use in the thirteenth century. But the code has not been forthcoming and was not referred to in the trials. Frederick II. declared that the Templars received Mohammedans into their house at Jerusalem and preferred their religious rites. This statement must be taken with reserve, in view of Frederick’s hostility to the order for its refusal to help him on his crusade. See M. Paris, an. 1244. In Paris 36 died under torture, 54 suffered there at one burning, May 10, 1310, and 8 days later 4 more. Hundreds of them perished in prison. Even the bitterest enemies acknowledged that the Templars who were put to death maintained their innocence to their dying breath.104104    At the trial before the bishop of Nismes in 1309, out of 32, all but three denied the charges. At Perpignan, 1310, the whole number, 26, denied the charges. At Clermont 40 confessed the order guilty, 28 denied its guilt. With such antagonistic testimonies it is difficult, if at all possible, to decide the question of guilt or innocence.

In accordance with Clement’s order, trials were had in Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Cyprus and England. In England, Edward II. at first refused to apply the torture, which was never formally adopted in that land, but later, at Clement’s demand, he complied. Papal inquisitors appeared. Synods in London and York declared the charges of heresy so serious that it would be impossible for the knights to clear themselves. English houses were disbanded and the members distributed among the monasteries to do penance. In Italy and Germany, the accused were, for the most part, declared innocent. In Spain and Portugal, no evidence was forthcoming of guilt and the synod of Tarragona, 1310, and other synods favored their innocence.

The last act in these hostile proceedings was opened at the Council of Vienne, called for the special purpose of taking action upon the order. The large majority of the council were in favor of giving it a new trial and a fair chance to prove its innocence. But the king was relentless. He reminded Clement that the guilt of the knights had been sufficiently proven, and insisted that the order be abolished. He appeared in person at the council, attended by a great retinue. Clement was overawed, and by virtue of his apostolic power issued his decree abolishing the Templars, March 22, 1312.105105    Per viam provisionis seu ordinationis apostolicae is the language of the bull, that is, as opposed to de jure or as a punishment for proven crimes. This bull, Vox clamantis, was found by the Benedictine, Dr. Gams, in Spain, in 1865. See Hefele-Knöpfler, VI. 625 sqq. It is found in Mirbt: Quellen, p. 149 sq. Clement asserts he issued the order of abolition "not without bitterness and pain of heart," non sine cordis amaritudine et dolore. Two other bulls on the Templars and the disposition of their property followed in May. Clement’s reasons were that suspicions existed that the order held to heresies, that many of the Templars had confessed to heresies and other offences, that thereafter reputable persons would not enter the order, and that it was no longer necessary for the defence of the Holy Land. Directions were given for the further procedure. The guilty were to be put to death; the innocent to be supported out of the revenues of the order. With this action the famous order passed out of existence.

The end of Jacques de Molay, the 22d and last grand-master of the order of Templars, was worthy of its proudest days. At the first trial he confessed to the charges of denying Christ and spitting upon the cross, and was condemned, but afterwards recalled his confession. His case was reopened in 1314. With Geoffrey de Charney, grand-preceptor of Normandy, and others, he was led in front of Notre Dame Cathedral, and sentenced to perpetual imprisonment. Molay then stood forth and declared that the charges against the order were false, and that he had confessed to them under the strain of torture and instructions from the king. Charney said the same. The commission promised to reconsider the case the next day. But the king’s vengeance knew no bounds, and that night, March 11, 1314, the prisoners were burned. The story ran that while the flames were doing their grewsome (sic) work, Molay summoned pope and king to meet him at the judgment bar within a year. The former died, in a little more than a month, of a loathsome disease, though penitent, as it was reported, for his treatment of the order, and the king, by accident, while engaged in the chase, six months later. The king was only 46 years old at the time of his death, and 14 years after, the last of his direct descendants was in his grave and the throne passed to the house of Valois.

As for the possessions of the order, papal decrees turned them over to the Knights of St. John, but Philip again intervened and laid claim to 260,000 pounds as a reimbursement for alleged losses to the Temple and the expense of guarding the prisoners.106106    The wealth of the Templars has been greatly exaggerated. They were not richer in France than the Hospitallers. About 1300 the possessions of each of these orders in that country were taxed at 6000 pounds. See Döllinger, p. 267 sq. Thomas Fuller, the English historian, quaintly says, "Philip would never have taken away the Templars’ lives if he might have taken away their lands without putting them to death. He could not get the honey without burning the bees." The Spanish delegation to the Council of Vienne wrote back to the king of Aragon that the chief concern at the council and with the king in regard to the Templars was the disposition of their goods, Finke, I. 360, 374. Finke, I. 111, 115, etc., ascribes a good deal of the animosity against the order to the revelations made by Esquin de Floyran to Jayme of Aragon in 1306. But the charges he made were already current in France. In Spain, they passed to the orders of San Iago di Compostella and Calatrava. In Aragon, they were in part applied to a new order, Santa Maria de Montesia, and in Portugal to the Military Order of Jesus Christ, ordo militiae Jesu Christi. Repeated demands made by the pope secured the transmission of a large part of their possessions to the Knights of St. John. In England, in 1323, parliament granted their lands to the Hospitallers, but the king appropriated a considerable share to himself. The Temple in London fell to the Earl of Pembroke, 1313.107107    In 1609 the benchers of the Inner and Middle Temple received the buildings for a small annual payment to the Crown, into whose possession they had passed under Henry VIII.

The explanation of Philip’s violent animosity and persistent persecution is his cupidity. He coveted the wealth of the Templars. Philip was quite equal to a crime of this sort.108108    Dante and Villani agree that the Templars were innocent. In this judgment most modern historians concur. Funk declares the sentence of innocence to be "without question the right one," p. 1341. Döllinger, with great emphasis, insists that nowhere did a Templar make a confession of guilt except under torture, p. 257. More recently, 1907, Finke (I. p. ix. 326 sq. 337) insists upon their innocence and the untrustworthiness of the confessions made by the Templars. He declares that he who advocates their guilt must accept the appearances of the devil as a tom-cat. Prutz, in his earlier works, decided for their guilt. Schottmüller, Döllinger, Funk, and our own Dr. Lea strongly favor their innocence. Ranke: Univ. Hist., VIII. 622, wavers and ascribes to them the doctrinal standpoint of Frederick II. and Manfred. In France, Michelet was against the order; Michaud, Guizot, Renan and Boutaric for it. Hallam: Middle Ages, I. 142-146, is undecided. He robbed the bankers of Lombardy and the Jews of France, and debased the coin of his realm. A loan of 500,000 pounds which he had secured for a sister’s dowry had involved him in great financial straits. He appropriated all the possessions of the Templars he could lay his hands upon. Clement V.’s subserviency it is easy to explain. He was a creature of the king. When the pope hesitated to proceed against the unfortunate order, the king beset him with the case of Boniface VIII. To save the memory of his predecessor, the pope surrendered the lives of the knights.109109    See Döllinger, p. 255, and Gregorovius. Lea gives as excuse for the length at which he treats the trial and fate of the unfortunate knights, their helplessness before the Inquisition. Dante, in representing the Templars as victims of the king’s avarice, compares Philip to Pontius Pilate.

"I see the modern Pilate, whom avails

No cruelty to sate and who, unbidden,

Into the Temple sets his greedy sails."

Purgatory, xx. 91.

The house of the Templars in Paris was turned into a royal residence, from which Louis XVI., more than four centuries later, went forth to the scaffold.

The Council of Vienne, the fifteenth in the list of the oecumenical councils, met Oct. 16, 1311, and after holding three sessions adjourned six months later, May 6, 1812. Clement opened it with an address on Psalm 111:1, 2, and designated three subjects for its consideration, the case of the order of the Templars, the relief of the Holy Land and Church reform. The documents bearing on the council are defective.110110    Ehrle,Archiv für Lit. und Kirchengesch. IV. 361-470, published a fragmentary report which he discovered in the National Library in Paris. For the best account of the proceedings, see Hefele-Knöpfler, VI. 514-554. In addition to the decisions concerning the Templars and Boniface VIII., it condemned the Beguines and Beghards and listened to charges made against the Franciscan, Peter John Olivi (d. 1298). Olivi belonged to the Spiritual wing of the order. His books had been ordered burnt, 1274, by one Franciscan general, and a second general of the order, Bonagratia, 1279, had appointed a commission which found thirty-four dangerous articles in his writings. The council, without pronouncing against Olivi, condemned three articles ascribed to him bearing on the relation of the two parties in the Franciscan order, the Spirituals and Conventuals.

The council has a place in the history of biblical scholarship and university education by its act ordering two chairs each, of Hebrew, Arabic, and Chaldee established in Paris, Oxford, Bologna, and Salamanca.

While the proceedings against Boniface and the Templars were dragging on in their slow course in France, Clement was trying to make good his authority in Italy. Against Venice he hurled the most violent anathemas and interdicts for venturing to lay hands on Ferrara, whose territory was claimed by the Apostolic See. A crusade was preached against the sacrilegious city. She was defeated in battle, and Ferrara was committed to the administration of Robert, king of Naples, as the pope’s vicar.

All that he could well do, Clement did to strengthen the hold of France on the papacy. The first year of his pontificate he appointed 9 French cardinals, and of the 24 persons whom he honored with the purple, 23 were Frenchmen. He granted to the insatiable Philip a Church tithe for five years. Next to the fulfilment of his obligations to this monarch, Clement made it his chief business to levy tributes upon ecclesiastics of all grades and upon vacant Church livings.111111    Haller, p. 46 sqq. He was prodigal with offices to his relatives. This was a leading feature of his pontificate. Five of his kin were made cardinals, three being still in their youth. His brother he made rector of Rome, and other members of his family received Ancona, Ferrara, the duchy of Spoleto, and the duchy of Venaissin, and other territories within the pope’s gift.112112    Ehrle, V. 139 sq. The administration and disposition of his treasure occupied a large part of Clement’s time and have offered an interesting subject to the pen of the modern Jesuit scholar, Ehrle. The papal treasure left by Clement’s predecessor, after being removed from Perugia to France, was taken from place to place and castle to castle, packed in coffers laden on the backs of mules. After Clement’s death, the vast sums he had received and accumulated suddenly disappeared. Clement’s successor, John XXII., instituted a suit against Clement’s most trusted relatives to account for the moneys. The suit lasted from 1318–1322, and brought to light a great amount of information concerning Clement’s finances.113113    Ehrle, p. 147, calculates that Clement’s yearly income was between 200,000 and 250,000 gold florins, and that of this amount he spent 100,000 for the expenses of his court and saved the remainder, 100,000 or 160,000. Ehrle, p. 149, gives Clement’s family tree.

His fortune Clement disposed of by will, 1312, the total amount being 814,000 florins; 300,000 were given to his nephew, the viscount of Lomagne and Auvillars, a man otherwise known for his numerous illegitimate offspring. This sum was to be used for a crusade; 314,000 were bequeathed to other relatives and to servants. The remaining 200,000 were given to churches, convents, and the poor. A loan of 160,000 made to the king of France was never paid back.114114    Ehrle, pp. 126, 135.

Clement’s body was by his appointment buried at Uzeste. His treasure was plundered. At the trial instituted by John XXII., it appeared that Clement before his death had set apart 70,000 florins to be divided in equal shares between his successor and the college of cardinals. The viscount of Lomagne was put into confinement by John, and turned over 300,000 florins, one-half going to the cardinals and one-half to the pope. A few months after Clement’s death, the count made loans to the king of France of 110,000 florins and to the king of England of 60,000.

Clement’s relatives showed their appreciation of his liberality by erecting to his memory an elaborate sarcophagus at Uzeste, which cost 50,000 gold florins. The theory is that the pope administers moneys coming to him by virtue of his papal office for the interest of the Church at large. Clement spoke of the treasure in his coffers as his own, which he might dispose of as he chose.115115    Clement’s grave is reported to have been opened and looted by the Calvinists in 1568 or 1577. See Ehrle, p. 139.

Clement’s private life was open to the grave suspicion of unlawful intimacy with the beautiful Countess Brunissenda of Foix. Of all the popes of the fourteenth century, he showed the least independence. An apologist of Boniface VIII., writing in 1308, recorded this judgment:116116    Finke: Aus den Tagen Bon. VIII., p. Ixxxviii. "The Lord permitted Clement to be elected, who was more concerned about temporal things and in enriching his relatives than was Boniface, in order that by contrast Boniface might seem worthy of praise where he would otherwise have been condemned, just as the bitter is not known except by the sweet, or cold except by heat, or the good except by evil." Villani, who assailed both popes, characterized Clement "as licentious, greedy of money, a simoniac, who sold in his court every benefice for gold."117117    Chronicle, IX. 59. Villani tells the story that at the death of one of Clement’s nephews, a cardinal, Clement, in his desire to see him, consulted a necromancer. The master of the dark arts had one of the pope’s chaplains conducted by demons to hell, where he was shown a palace, and in it the nephew’s soul laid on a bed of glowing fire, and near by a place reserved for the pope himself. He also relates that the coffin, in which Clement was laid, was burnt, and with it the pope’s body up to the waist.

By a single service did this pope seem to place the Church in debt to his pontificate. The book of decretals, known as the Clementines, and issued in part by him, was completed by his successor, John XXII.

§ 7. The Pontificate of John XXII 1316–1334.

Clement died April 20, 1314. The cardinals met at Carpentras and then at Lyons, and after an interregnum of twenty seven months elected John XXII., 1316–1334, to the papal throne. He was then seventy-two, and cardinal-bishop of Porto.118118    Villani, IX: 81, gives the suspicious report that the cardinals, weary of their inability to make a choice, left it to John. Following the advice of Cardinal Napoleon Orsini, he grasped his supreme chance and elected himself. He was crowned at Lyons. Dante had written to the conclave begging that it elect an Italian pope, but the French influence was irresistible.

Said to be the son of a cobbler of Cahors, short of stature,119119    Villani’s statement that he was the son of a cobbler is doubted. Ferretus of Vicenza says he was "small like Zaccheus." with a squeaking voice, industrious and pedantic, John was, upon the whole, the most conspicuous figure among the popes of the fourteenth century, though not the most able or worthy one. He was a man of restless disposition, and kept the papal court in constant commotion. The Vatican Archives preserve 59 volumes of his bulls and other writings. He had been a tutor in the house of Anjou, and carried the preceptorial method into his papal utterances. It was his ambition to be a theologian as well as pope. He solemnly promised the Italian faction in the curia never to mount an ass except to start on the road to Rome. But he never left Avignon. His devotion to France was shown at the very beginning of his reign in the appointment of eight cardinals, of whom seven were Frenchmen.

The four notable features of John’s pontificate are his quarrel with the German emperor, Lewis the Bavarian, his condemnation of the rigid party of the Franciscans, his own doctrinal heresy, and his cupidity for gold.

The struggle with Lewis the Bavarian was a little afterplay compared with the imposing conflicts between the Hohenstaufen and the notable popes of preceding centuries. Europe looked on with slight interest at the long-protracted dispute, which was more adapted to show the petulance and weakness of both emperor and pope than to settle permanently any great principle. At Henry VII.’s death, 1313, five of the electors gave their votes for Lewis of the house of Wittelsbach, and two for Frederick of Hapsburg. Both appealed to the new pope, about to be elected. Frederick was crowned by the archbishop of Treves at Bonn, and Lewis by the archbishop of Mainz at Aachen. In 1317 John declared that the pope was the lawful vicar of the empire so long as the throne was vacant, and denied Lewis recognition as king of the Romans on the ground of his having neglected to submit his election to him.

The battle at Mühldorf, 1322, left Frederick a prisoner in his rival’s hands. This turn of affairs forced John to take more decisive action, and in 1323 was issued against Lewis the first of a wearisome and repetitious series of complaints and punishments from Avignon. The pope threatened him with the ban, claiming authority to approve or set aside an emperor’s election.120120    See Müller: Kampf Ludwigs, etc., I. 61 sqq. Examinatio, approbatio ac admonitio, repulsio quoque et reprobatio. A year later he excommunicated Lewis and all his supporters.

In answer to this first complaint of 1323, Lewis made a formal declaration at Nürnberg in the presence of a notary and other witnesses that he regarded the empire as independent of the pope, charged John with heresy, and appealed to a general council. The charge of heresy was based on the pope’s treatment of the Spiritual party among the Franciscans. Condemned by John, prominent Spirituals, Michael of Cesena, Ockam and Bonagratia, espoused Lewis’ cause, took refuge at his court, and defended him with their pens. The political conflict was thus complicated by a recondite ecclesiastical problem. In 1324 Lewis issued a second appeal, written in the chapel of the Teutonic Order in Sachsenhausen, which again renewed the demand for a general council and repeated the charge of heresy against the pope.

The next year, 1325, Lewis suffered a severe defeat from Leopold of Austria, who had entered into a compact to put Charles IV. of France on the German throne. He went so far as to express his readiness, in the compact of Ulm, 1326, to surrender the German crown to Frederick, provided he himself was confirmed in his right to Italy and the imperial dignity. At this juncture Leopold died.

By papal appointment Robert of Naples was vicar of Rome. But Lewis had no idea of surrendering his claims to Italy, and, now that he was once again free by Leopold’s death, he marched across the Alps and was crowned, January 1327, emperor in front of St. Peter’s. Sciarra Colonna, as the representative of the people, placed the crown on his head, and two bishops administered unction. Villani121121    X. 55. expresses indignation at an imperial coronation conducted without the pope’s consent as a thing unheard of. Lewis was the first mediaeval emperor crowned by the people. A formal trial was instituted, and "James of Cahors, who calls himself John XXII." was denounced as anti-christ and deposed from the papal throne and his effigy carried through the streets and burnt.122122    The grounds on which John was deposed were his decisions against the Spirituals, the use of money and ships, intended for a crusade, to reduce Genoa, appropriation of the right of appointment to clerical offices, and his residence away from Rome. The document is found in Muratori, XIV., 1167-1173. For a vivid description of the enthronement and character of John of Corbara, see Gregorovius, VI. 153 sqq. John of Corbara, belonging to the Spiritual wing of the Franciscans, was elected to the throne just declared vacant, and took the name of Nicolas V. He was the first anti-pope since the days of Barbarossa. Lewis himself placed the crown upon the pontiff’s head, and the bishop of Venice performed the ceremony of unction. Nicolas surrounded himself with a college of seven cardinals, and was accused of having forthwith renounced the principles of poverty and abstemiousness in dress and at the table which the day before he had advocated.

To these acts of violence John replied by pronouncing Lewis a heretic and appointing a crusade against him, with the promise of indulgence to all taking part in it. Fickle Rome soon grew weary of her lay-crowned emperor, who had been so unwise as to impose an extraordinary tribute of 10,000 florins each upon the people, the clergy, and the Jews of the city. He retired to the North, Nicolas following him with his retinue of cardinals. At Pisa, the emperor being present, the anti-pope excommunicated John and summoned a general council to Milan. John was again burnt in effigy, at the cathedral, and condemned to death for heresy. In 1330 Lewis withdrew from Italy altogether, while Nicolas, with a cord around his neck, submitted to John. He died in Avignon three years later. In 1334, John issued a bull which, according to Karl Müller, was the rudest act of violence done up to that time to the German emperor by a pope.123123    336 sqq., 376 sqq., 406. This fulmination separated Italy from the crown and kingdom—imperium et regnum — of Germany and forbade their being reunited in one body. The reason given for this drastic measure was the territorial separation of the two provinces. Thus was accomplished by a distinct announcement what the diplomacy of Innocent III. was the first to make a part of the papal policy, and which figured so prominently in the struggle between Gregory IX. and Frederick II.

With his constituency completely lost in Italy, and with only an uncertain support in Germany, Lewis now made overtures for peace. But the pope was not ready for anything less than a full renunciation of the imperial power. John died 1334, but the struggle was continued through the pontificate of his successor, Benedict XII. Philip VI. of France set himself against Benedict’s measures for reconciliation with Lewis, and in 1337 the emperor made an alliance with England against France. Princes of Germany, making the rights of the empire their own, adopted the famous constitution of Rense,—a locality near Mainz, which was confirmed at the Diet of Frankfurt, 1338. It repudiated the pope’s extravagant temporal claims, and declared that the election of an emperor by the electors was final, and did not require papal approval. This was the first representative German assembly to assert the independence of the empire.

The interdict was hanging over the German assembly when Benedict died, 1342. The battle had gone against Lewis, and his supporters were well-nigh all gone from him. A submission even more humiliating than that of Henry IV. was the only thing left. He sought the favor of Clement VI., but in vain. In a bull of April 12, 1343, Clement enumerated the emperor’s many crimes, and anew ordered him to renounce the imperial dignity. Lewis wrote, yielding submission, but the authenticity of the document was questioned at Avignon, probably with the set purpose of increasing the emperor’s humiliation. Harder conditions were laid down. They were rejected by the diet at Frankfurt, 1344. But Germany was weary, and listened without revulsion to a final bull against Lewis, 1346, and a summons to the electors to proceed to a new election. The electors, John of Bohemia among them, chose Charles IV., John’s son. The Bohemian king was the blind warrior who met his death on the battlefield of Crécy the same year. Before his election, Charles had visited Avignon, and promised full submission to the pope’s demands. His continued complacency during his reign justified the pope’s choice. The struggle was ended with Lewis’ death a year later, 1347, while he was engaged near Munich in a bear-hunt. It was the last conflict of the empire and papacy along the old lines laid down by those ecclesiastical warriors, Hildebrand and Innocent III. and Gregory IX.

To return to John XXII., he became a prominent figure in the controversy within the Franciscan order over the tenure of property, a controversy which had been going on from the earliest period between the two parties, the Spirituals, or Observants, and the Conventuals. The last testament of St. Francis, pleading for the practice of absolute poverty, and suppressed in Bonaventura’s Life of the saint, 1263, was not fully recognized in the bull of Nicolas III., 1279, which granted the Franciscans the right to use property as tenants, while forbidding them to hold it in fee simple. With this decision the strict party, the Spirituals, were not satisfied, and the struggle went on. Coelestine V. attempted to bring peace by merging the Spiritual wing with the order of Hermits he had founded, but the measure was without success.

Under Boniface VIII. matters went hard with the Spirituals. This pope deposed the general, Raymond Gaufredi, putting in his place John of Murro, who belonged to the laxer wing. Peter John Olivi (d. 1298), whose writings were widely circulated, had declared himself in favor of Nicolas’ bull, with the interpretation that the use of property and goods was to be the "use of necessity,"—usus pauper,—as opposed to the more liberal use advocated by the Conventuals and called usus moderatus. Olivi’s personal fortunes were typical of the fortunes of the Spiritual branch. After his death, the attack made against his memory was, if possible, more determined, and culminated in the charges preferred at Vienne. Murro adopted violent measures, burning Olivi’s writings, and casting his sympathizers into prison. Other prominent Spirituals fled. Angelo Clareno found refuge for a time in Greece, returning to Rome, 1305, under the protection of the Colonna.

The case was formally taken up by Clement V., who called a commission to Avignon to devise measures to heal the division, and gave the Spirituals temporary relief from persecution. The proceedings were protracted till the meeting of the council in Vienne, when the Conventuals brought up the case in the form of an arraignment of Olivi, who had come to be regarded almost as a saint. Among the charges were that he pronounced the usus pauper to be of the essence of the Minorite rule, that Christ was still living at the time the lance was thrust into his side, and that the rational soul has not the form of a body. Olivi’s memory was defended by Ubertino da Casale, and the council passed no sentence upon his person.

In the bull Exivi de paradiso,124124    It is uncertain whether this bull was made a part of the proceedings of the Oecumenical Council of Vienne. See Hefele, VI. 550, who decides for it, and Ehrle, Archiv, 1885, p. 540 sqq. issued 1813, and famous in the history of the Franciscan order, Clement seemed to take the side of the Spirituals. It forbade the order or any of its members to accept bequests, possess vineyards, sell products from their gardens, build fine churches, or go to law. It permitted only "the use of necessity," usus arctus or pauper, and nothing beyond. The Minorites were to wear no shoes, ride only in cases of necessity, fast from Nov. 1 until Christmas, as well as every Friday, and possess a single mantle with a hood and one without a hood. Clement ordered the new general, Alexander of Alessandra, to turn over to Olivi’s followers the convents of Narbonne, Carcassonne and Béziers, but also ordered the Inquisition to punish the Spirituals who refused submission.

In spite of the papal decree, the controversy was still being carried on within the order with great heat, when John XXII. came to the throne. In the decretal Quorumdam exegit, and in the bull Sancta romana et universalis ecclesia, Dec. 30, 1317, John took a positive position against the Spirituals. A few weeks later, he condemned a formal list of their errors and abolished all the convents under Spiritual management. From this time on dates the application of the name Fraticelli125125    Hefele, VI. 581. Ehrle: Die Spiritualen in Archiv, 1885, pp. 509-514. to the Spirituals. They refused to submit, and took the position that even a pope had no right to modify the Rule of St. Francis. Michael of Cesena, the general of the order, defended them. Sixty-four of their number were summoned to Avignon. Twenty-five refused to yield, and passed into the hands of the Inquisition. Four were burnt as martyrs at Marseilles, May 7, 1318. Others fled to Sicily.126126    Ehrle: Archiv, pp. 156-158. He adduces acts of Inquisition against the Spirituals in Umbria, in the vicinity of Assisi, as late as 1341.

The chief interest of the controversy was now shifted to the strictly theological question whether Christ and his Apostles observed complete poverty. This dispute threatened to rend the wing of the Conventuals itself. Michael of Cesena, Ockam, and others, took the position that Christ and his Apostles not only held no property as individuals, but held none in common. John, opposing this view, gave as arguments the gifts of the Magi, that Christ possessed clothes and bought food, the purse of Judas, and Paul’s labor for a living. In the bull Cum inter nonnullos, 1323, and other bulls, John declared it heresy to hold that Christ and the Apostles held no possessions. Those who resisted this interpretation were pronounced, 1324, rebels and heretics. John went farther, and gave back to the order the right of possessing goods in fee simple, a right which Innocent IV. had denied, and he declared that in things which disappear in the using, such as eatables, no distinction can be made between their use and their possession. In 1326 John pronounced Olivi’s commentary on the Apocalypse heretical. The three Spiritual leaders, Cesena, Ockam, and Bonagratia were seized and held in prison until 1328, when they escaped and fled to Lewis the Bavarian at Pisa. It was at this time that Ockam was said to have used to the emperor the famous words, "Do thou defend me with the sword and I will defend thee with the pen"—tu me depfendes gladio, ego te defendam calamo. They were deposed from their offices and included in the ban fulminated against the anti-pope, Peter of Corbara. Later, Cesena submitted to the pope, as Ockam is also said to have done shortly before his death. Cesena died at Munich, 1342 He committed the seal of the order to Ockam. On his death-bed he is said to have cried out: "My God, what have I done? I have appealed against him who is the highest on the earth. But look, O Father, at the spirit of truth that is in me which has not erred through the lust of the flesh but from great zeal for the seraphic order and out of love for poverty." Bonagratia also died in Munich.127127    See Riezler, p. 124.

Later in the fourteenth century the Regular Observance grew again to considerable proportions, and in the beginning of the fifteenth century its fame was revived by the flaming preachers Bernardino of Siena and John of Capistrano. The peace of the Franciscan order continued to be the concern of pope after pope until, in 1517, Leo X. terminated the struggle of three centuries by formally recognizing two distinct societies within the Franciscan body. The moderate wing was placed under the Master-General of the Conventual Minorite Brothers, and was confirmed in the right to hold property. The strict or Observant wing was placed under a Minister-General of the Whole Order of St. Francis.128128    Magister-generalis fratrum minorum conventualium and minister-generalis totius ordinis S. Francesci. The Capuchins, who are Franciscans, were recognized as a distinct order by Paul V., 1619. Among the other schismatic Franciscan orders are the Recollect Fathers of France, who proceeded from the Recollect Convent of Nevers, and were recognized as a special body by Clement VIII., 1602. These monks were prominent in mission work among the Indians in North America. The latter takes precedence in processions and at other great functions, and holds his office for six years.

If the Spiritual Franciscans had been capable of taking secret delight in an adversary’s misfortunes, they would have had occasion for it in the widely spread charge that John was a heretic. At any rate, he came as near being a heretic as a pope can be. His heresy concerned the nature of the beatific vision after death. In a sermon on All Souls’, 1331, he announced that the blessed dead do not see God until the general resurrection. In at least two more sermons he repeated this utterance. John, who was much given to theologizing, Ockam declared to be wholly ignorant in theology.129129    In facultate theologiae omnino fait ignarus. See Müller: Kampf, etc., I. 24, note. This Schoolman, Cesena, and others pronounced the view heretical. John imprisoned an English Dominican who preached against him, and so certain was he of his case that he sent the Franciscan general, Gerardus Odonis, to Paris to get the opinion of the university.

The King, Philip VI., took a warm interest in the subject, opposed the pope, and called a council of theologians at Vincennes to give its opinion. It decided that ever since the Lord descended into hades and released souls from that abode, the righteous have at death immediately entered upon the vision of the divine essence of the Trinity.130130    Mansi, XXV. 982-984. Among the supporters of this decision was Nicolas of Lyra. When official announcement of the decision reached the pope, he summoned a council at Avignon and set before it passages from the Fathers for and against his view. They sat for five days, in December, 1333. John then made a public announcement, which was communicated to the king and queen of France, that he had not intended to say anything in conflict with the Fathers and the orthodox Church and, if he had done so, he retracted his utterances.

The question was authoritatively settled by Benedict XII. in the bull Benedictus deus, 1336, which declared that the blessed dead—saints, the Apostles, virgins, martyrs, confessors who need no purgatorial cleansing—are, after death and before the resurrection of their bodies at the general judgment, with Christ and the angels, and that they behold the divine essence with naked vision.131131   Divinam essentiam immediate, se bene et clare et aperte illis ostendentem. Mansi, XXV. 986. Benedict declared that John died while he was preparing a decision.

The financial policy of John XXII. and his successors merits a chapter by itself. Here reference may be made to John’s private fortune. He has had the questionable fame of not only having amassed a larger sum than any of his predecessors, but of having died possessed of fabulous wealth. Gregorovius calls him the Midas of Avignon. According to Villani, he left behind him 18,000,000 gold florins and 7,000,000 florins’ worth of jewels and ornaments, in all 25,000,000 florins, or $60,000,000 of our present coinage. This chronicler concludes with the remark that the words were no longer remembered which the Good Man in the Gospels spake to his disciples, "Lay up for yourselves treasure in heaven."132132    XI. 20. Another writer, Galvaneus de La Flamma, Muratori, XII. 1009 (quoted by Haller, Papsttum, p. 104), says, John left 22,000,000 florins besides other "unrecorded treasure." This writer adds, the world did not have a richer Christian in it than John XXII. Recent investigations seem to cast suspicion upon this long-held view as an exaggeration. John’s hoard may have amounted to not more than 750,000 florins, or $2,000,000133133    This is the figure reached by Ehrle, Die 25 Millionen im Schatz Johann XXII., Archiv, 1889, pp. 155-166. It is based upon the contents of 15 coffers, opened in the year 1342 at the death of Benedict XII. These coffers contained John’s treasure, and at that time yielded 750,000 florins. But it is manifestly uncertain how far John’s savings had been reduced by Benedict, or whether these coffers were all that were left by John. For example, at his consecration, Benedict gave 100,000 florins to his cardinals, and 150,000 to the churches at Rome, and it is quite likely he drew upon John’s hoard. The gold mitres, rings, and other ornaments which John’s thrift amassed, were stored in other chests. Villani got his report from his brother, a Florentine banker in the employ of the curia at Avignon. It is difficult to understand how, in making his statement, he should have gone so wide of the truth as Ehrle suggests. of our money. If this be a safe estimate, it is still true that John was a shrewd financier and perhaps the richest man in Europe.

When John died he was ninety years old.

§ 8. The Papal Office Assailed.

To the pontificate of John XXII. belongs a second group of literary assailants of the papacy. Going beyond Dante and John of Paris, they attacked the pope’s spiritual functions. Their assaults were called forth by the conflict with Lewis the Bavarian and the controversy with the Franciscan Spirituals. Lewis’ court became a veritable nest of antipapal agitation and the headquarters of pamphleteering. Marsiglius of Padua was the cleverest and boldest of these writers, Ockam—a Schoolman rather than a practical thinker—the most copious. Michael of Cesena134134   Riezler, p. 247 sq. Three of these writings are in Goldast’s Monarchia II., 1236 sqq. Riezler’s work, Die literarischen Widersacher der Päpste is the best treatment of the subject of this chapter. and Bonagratia also made contributions to this literature.

Ockam sets forth his views in two works, The Dialogue and the Eight Questions. The former is ponderous in thought and a monster in size.135135    The Dialogue, which is printed in Goldast, is called by Riezler an almost unreadable monster, ein kaum übersehbares Monstrum It is difficult, if at times possible, to detect the author’s views in the mass of cumbersome disputation. These views seem to be as follows: The papacy is not an institution which is essential to the being of the Church. Conditions arise to make it necessary to establish national churches.136136    Quod non est necesse, ut sub Christo sit unus rector totius ecclesiae sed sufficit quod sint plures diversas regentes provincias. Quoted by Haller, p. 80. The pope is not infallible. Even a legitimate pope may hold to heresy. So it was with Peter, who was judaizing, and had to be rebuked by Paul, Liberius, who was an Arian, and Leo, who was arraigned for false doctrine by Hilary of Poictiers. Sylvester II. made a compact with the devil. One or the other, Nicolas III. or John XXII., was a heretic, for the one contradicted the other. A general council may err just as popes have erred. So did the second Council of Lyons and the Council of Vienne, which condemned the true Minorites. The pope may be pronounced a heretic by a council or, if a council fails in its duty, the cardinals may pronounce the decision. In case the cardinals fail, the right to do so belongs to the temporal prince. Christ did not commit the faith to the pope and the hierarchy, but to the Church, and somewhere within the Church the truth is always held and preserved. Temporal power did not originally belong to the pope. This is proved by Constantine’s donation, for what Constantine gave, he gave for the first time. Supreme power in temporal and spiritual things is not in a single hand. The emperor has full power by virtue of his election, and does not depend for it upon unction or coronation by the pope or any earthly confirmation of any kind.

More distinct and advanced were the utterances of Marsiglius of Padua. His writings abound in incisive thrusts against the prevailing ecclesiastical system, and lay down the principles of a new order. In the preparation of his chief work, the Defence of the Faith,—Defensor pacis,—he had the help of John of Jandun.137137    Müller, I. 368, upon the basis of a note in a MS. copy in Vienna, places its composition before June 24, 1324; Riezler between 1324-1326. John of Jandun’s name is associated with the composition of the book in the papal bulls. However, the first person singular, ego, is used throughout. According to Innocent VI., Marsiglius was much influenced by Ockam, then the leading teacher in France. This is inherently probable from their personal association in Paris and at the emperor’s court and the community of many of their views. See Haller, p. 78. John of Jandun died probably 1328. See Riezler, p. 56. Both writers were clerics, but neither of them monks. Born about 1270 in Padua, Marsiglius devoted himself to the study of medicine, and in 1312 was rector of the University of Paris. In 1325 or 1326 he betook himself to the court of Lewis the Bavarian. The reasons are left to surmisal. He acted as the emperor’s physician. In 1328 he accompanied the emperor to Rome, and showed full sympathy with the measures taken to establish the emperor’s authority. He joined in the ceremonies of the emperor’s coronation, the deposition of John XXII. and the elevation of the anti-pope, Peter of Corbara. The pope had already denounced Marsiglius and John of Jandun138138    See the bull of Oct. 23, 1327, Mirbt, Quellen, p. 152. as "sons of perdition, the sons of Belial, those pestiferous individuals, beasts from the abyss," and summoned the Romans to make them prisoners. Marsiglius was made vicar of Rome by the emperor, and remained true to the principles stated in his tract, even when the emperor became a suppliant to the Avignon court. Lewis even went so far as to express to John XXII. his readiness to withdraw his protection from Marsiglius and the leaders of the Spirituals. Later, when his position was more hopeful, he changed his attitude and gave them his protection at Munich. But again, in his letter submitting himself to Clement VI., 1343, the emperor denied holding the errors charged against Marsiglius and John, and declared his object in retaining them at his court had been to lead them back to the Church. The Paduan died before 1343.139139    In that year Clement spoke of Marsiglius as dead, Riezler, p. 122. With Ockam, Marsiglius defended the marriage of Lewis’ son to Margaret of Maultasch, in spite of the parties being within the bounds of consanguinity forbidden by the Church. His defence is found in Goldast, II. 1383-1391. For Ockam’s tract, see Riezler, p. 254.

The personal fortunes of Marsiglius are of small historical concern compared with his book, which he dedicated to the emperor. The volume, which was written in two months,140140    Riezler, p. 36. It contains 150 folio pages in Goldast. Riezler, 193 sq., gives a list of MS. copies. Several French translations appeared. Gregory XI. in 1376 complained of one of them. An Italian translation of 1363 is found in a MS. at Florence, Engl. Hist. Rev., 1905, p. 302. The work was translated into English under the title The Defence of Peace translated out of Latin into English by Wyllyam Marshall, London, R. Wyer, 1535. was as audacious as any of the earlier writings of Luther. For originality and boldness of statement the Middle Ages has nothing superior to offer. To it may be compared in modern times Janus’ attack on the doctrine of papal infallibility at the time of the Vatican Council.141141    Hergenröther-Kirsch, II. 755, says: Unerhört in der christlichen Welt waren die kühnen Behauptungen die sie zu Gunsten ihres Beschützers aufstellten. Pastor, I. 85, says that Marsiglius’ theory of the omnipotence of the state cut at the root of all individual and Church liberty and surpassed in boldness, novelty, and keenness all the attacks which the position claimed by the Church in the world had been called upon to resist up to that time. Its Scriptural radicalism was in itself a literary sensation.

In condemning the work, John XXII., 1327, pronounced as contrary "to apostolic truth and all law" its statements that Christ paid the stater to the Roman government as a matter of obligation, that Christ did not appoint a vicar, that an emperor has the right to depose a pope, and that the orders of the hierarchy are not of primitive origin. Marsiglius had not spared epithets in dealing with John, whom he called "the great dragon, the old serpent." Clement VI. found no less than 240 heretical clauses in the book, and declared that he had never read a worse heretic than Marsiglius. The papal condemnations were reproduced by the University of Paris, which singled out for reprobation the statements that Peter is not the head of the Church, that the pope may be deposed, and that he has no right to inflict punishments without the emperor’s consent.142142    Chartul. Univ. Paris., II. 301.

The Defensor pacis was a manifesto against the spiritual as well as the temporal assumptions of the papacy and against the whole hierarchical organization of the Church. Its title is shrewdly chosen in view of the strifes between cities and states going on at the time the book was written, and due, as it claimed, to papal ambition and interference. The peace of the Christian world would never be established so long as the pope’s false claims were accepted. The main positions are the following:143143    Mirbt: Quellen, pp. 150-152, presents a convenient summary of Part III. of the Defensor. In this part a resumé is given by the author of the preceding portion of the work. Marsiglius quotes Aristotle and other classic writers, Augustine and other Fathers, Hugo of St. Victor and other Schoolmen, but he ignores Thomas Aquinas, and never even mentions his name.

The state, which was developed out of the family, exists that men may live well and peaceably. The people themselves are the source of authority, and confer the right to exercise it upon the ruler whom they select. The functions of the priesthood are spiritual and educational. Clerics are called upon to teach and to warn. In all matters of civil misdemeanor they are responsible to the civil officer as other men are. They should follow their Master by self-denial. As St. Bernard said, the pope needs no wealth or outward display to be a true successor of Peter.

The function of binding and loosing is a declarative, not a judicial, function. To God alone belongs the power to forgive sins and to punish. No bishop or priest has a right to excommunicate or interdict individual freedom without the consent of the people or its representative, the civil legislator. The power to inflict punishments inheres in the congregation "of the faithful"—fidelium. Christ said, "if thy brother offend against thee, tell it to the Church." He did not say, tell it to the priest. Heresy may be detected as heresy by the priest, but punishment for heresy belongs to the civil official and is determined upon the basis of the injury likely to be done by the offence to society. According to the teaching of the Scriptures, no one can be compelled by temporal punishment and death to observe the precepts of the divine law.144144    Ad observanda praecepta divinae legis poena vel supplicio temporali nemo evangelica scriptura compelli praecipitur, Part III. 3.

General councils are the supreme representatives of the Christian body, but even councils may err. In them laymen should sit as well as clerics. Councils alone have the right to canonize saints.

As for the pope, he is the head of the Church, not by divine appointment, but only as he is recognized by the state. The claim he makes to fulness of power, plenitudo potestatis, contradicts the true nature of the Church. To Peter was committed no greater authority than was committed to the other Apostles.145145    Nullam potestatem eoque minus coactivam jurisdictionem habuit Petrus a Deo immediate super apostolos reliquos, II. 15. This is repeated again and again. Peter can be called the Prince of the Apostles only on the ground that he was older than the rest or more steadfast than they. He was the bishop of Antioch, not the founder of the Roman bishopric. Nor is his presence in Rome susceptible of proof. The pre-eminence of the bishop of Rome depends upon the location of his see at the capital of the empire. As for sacerdotal power, the pope has no more of it than any other cleric, as Peter-had no more of it than the other Apostles.146146    Non plus sacerdotalis auctoritatis essentialis habet Rom. episcopus, quam alter sacerdos quilibet sicut neque beatus Petrus amplius ex hac habuit ceteris apostolis, II. 14.

The grades of the hierarchy are of human origin. Bishops and priests were originally equal. Bishops derive their authority immediately from Christ.

False is the pope’s claim to jurisdiction over princes and nations, a claim which was the fruitful source of national strifes and wars, especially in Italy. If necessary, the emperor may depose a pope. This is proved by the judgment passed by Pilate upon Christ. The state may, for proper reasons, limit the number of clerics. The validity of Constantine’s donation Marsiglius rejected, as Dante and John of Paris had done before, but he did not surmise that the Isidorean decretals were an unblushing forgery, a discovery left for Laurentius Valla to make a hundred years later.

As for the Scriptures, Marsiglius declares them to be the ultimate source of authority. They do not derive that authority from the Church. The Church gets its authority from them. In cases of disputed interpretation, it is for a general council to settle what the true meaning of Scripture is.147147    Interpretatio ex communi concilio fidelium facta, etc., Part III. 1. Obedience to papal decretals is not a condition of salvation. If that were so, how is it that Clement V. could make the bull Unam sanctam inoperative for France and its king? Did not that bull declare that submission to the pope is for every creature a condition of salvation! Can a pope set aside a condition of salvation? The case of Liberius proves that popes may be heretics. As for the qualifications of bishops, archbishops, and patriarchs, not one in ten of them is a doctor of theology. Many of the lower clergy are not even acquainted with grammar. Cardinals and popes are chosen not from the ranks of theologians, but lawyers, causidici. Youngsters are made cardinals who love pleasure and are ignorant in studies.

Marsiglius quotes repeatedly such passages as "My kingdom is not of this world," John 18:36, and "Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s and to God the things which are God’s," Matt. 22:21. These passages and others, such as John 6:15, 19:11, Luke 12:14, Matt. 17:27, Rom. 13, he opposes to texts which were falsely interpreted to the advantage of the hierarchy, such as Matt. 16:19, Luke 22:38, John 21:15–17.

If we overlook his doctrine of the supremacy of the state over the Church, the Paduan’s views correspond closely with those held in Protestant Christendom to-day. Christ, he said, excluded his Apostles, disciples, and bishops or presbyters from all earthly dominion, both by his example and his words.148148    Exclusit se ipsum et app. ac discipulos etiam suos ipsorumque successores, consequenter episcopos seu presbyteros, ab omni principatu seu mundano regimine exemplo et sermone, II. 4. The abiding principles of the Defensor are the final authority of the Scriptures, the parity of the priesthood and its obligation to civil law, the human origin of the papacy, the exclusively spiritual nature of priestly functions, and the body of Christian people in the state or Church as the ultimate source of authority on earth.

Marsiglius has been called by Catholic historians the forerunner of Luther and Calvin.149149    Döllinger: Kirchengesch. II. 259, 2d ed., 1843, says, "In the Defensor the Calvinistic system was in respect to Church power and constitution, already marked out." Pastor, 1. 85, says, "If Calvin depended upon any of his predecessors for his principles of Church government, it was upon the keen writer of the fourteenth century." He has also been called by one of them the "exciting genius of modern revolution."150150    Pastor, I. 84, shifts this notoriety from Huss to Marsiglius. Riezler, p. 232, and Haller, p. 77, compare Marsiglius’ keenness of intellect with the Reformers’, but deny to him their religious warmth. Both of these statements are not without truth. His programme was not a scheme of reform. It was a proclamation of complete change such as the sixteenth century witnessed. A note in a Turin manuscript represents Gerson as saying that the book is wonderfully well grounded and that the author was most expert in Aristotle and also in theology, and went to the roots of things.151151    Est liber mirabiliter bene fundatus. Et fuit homo multum peritus in doctrina Aristoteleia, etc., Enyl. Hist. Rev. p. 298. The Turin MS. dates from 1416, that is, contemporary with Gerson. In this MS, John of Paris’ De potestate is bound up with the Defensor.

The tractarian of Padua and Thomas Aquinas were only 50 years apart. But the difference between the searching epigrams of the one and the slow, orderly argument of the other is as wide as the East is from the West, the directness of modern thought from the cumbersome method of mediaeval scholasticism. It never occurred to Thomas Aquinas to think out beyond the narrow enclosure of Scripture interpretation built up by other Schoolmen and mediaeval popes. He buttressed up the regime he found realized before him. He used the old misinterpretations of Scripture and produced no new idea on government. Marsiglius, independent of the despotism of ecclesiastical dogma, went back to the free and elastic principles of the Apostolic Church government. He broke the moulds in which the ecclesiastical thinking of centuries had been cast, and departed from Augustine in claiming for heretics a rational and humane treatment. The time may yet come when the Italian people will follow him as the herald of a still better order than that which they have, and set aside the sacerdotal theory of the Christian ministry as an invention of man.152152    Compared with Wyclif, a pamphleteer as keen as he, Marsiglius did not enter into the merits of distinctly theological doctrine nor see the deep connection between the dogma of transubstantiation and sacramental penance and papal tyranny as the English reformer did. But so far as questions of government are concerned, he went as far as Wyclif or farther. See the comparison, as elaborated by Poole, p. 275.

Germany furnished a strong advocate of the independent rights of the emperor, in Lupold of Bebenburg, who died in 1363. He remained dean of Würzburg until he was made bishop of Bamberg in 1353. But he did not attack the spiritual jurisdiction of the Apostolic See. Lupold’s chief work was The Rights of the Kingdom and Empire—de juribus regni et imperii,—written after the declarations of Rense. It has been called the oldest attempt at a theory of the rights of the German state.153153    Der älteste Versuch einer Theorie des deutschen Staatsrechts, Riezler, p. 180. Two other works by Lupold have come down to us. See Riezler, pp. 180-192. Lupold appeals to the events of history.

In defining the rights of the empire, this author asserts that an election is consummated by the majority of the electors and that the emperor does not stand in need of confirmation by the pope. He holds his authority independently from God. Charlemagne exercised imperial functions before he was anointed and crowned by Leo. The oath the emperor takes to the pope is not the oath of fealty such as a vassal renders, but a promise to protect him and the Church. The pope has no authority to depose the emperor. His only prerogative is to announce that he is worthy of deposition. The right to depose belongs to the electors. As for Constantine’s donation, it is plain Constantine did not confer the rule of the West upon the bishop of Rome, for Constantine divided both the West and the East among his sons. Later, Theodosius and other emperors exercised dominion in Rome. The notice of Constantine’s alleged gift to Sylvester has come through the records of Sylvester and has the appearance of being apocryphal.

The papal assailants did not have the field all to themselves. The papacy also had vigorous literary champions. Chief among them were Augustinus Triumphus and Alvarus Pelagius.154154    For the papal tracts by Petrus de Palude and Konrad of Megenberg, d. 1374, see Riezler, p. 287 sqq. The works are still unpublished. Konrad’s Planctus ecclesiae is addressed to Benedict in these lines, which make the pope out to be the summit of the earth, the wonder of the world, the doorkeeper of heaven, a treasury of delights, the only sun for the world.
   "Flos et apex mundi, qui totius esse rotundi

   Nectare dulcorum conditus aromate morum

   Orbis papa stupor, clausor coeli et reserator,

   Tu sidus clarum, thesaurus deliciarum

   Sedes sancta polus, tu mundo sol modo solus."
The first dedicated his leading work to John XXII., and the second wrote at the pope’s command. The modern reader will find in these tracts the crassest exposition of the extreme claims of the papacy, satisfying to the most enthusiastic ultramontane, but calling for apology from sober Catholic historians.155155    Pastor, I. 85. Hergenröther-Kirsch, II. 757, complains that these two authors push matters beyond the limits of truth, "making the pope a semi-god, the absolute ruler of the world." See Haller, p. 82 sq. Haller says it is a common thing among the common people in Italy for a devout man to call the pope a god upon earth, un Dio in terra. One of the smaller tracts already referred to is printed by Finke in Aus den Tagen, etc., LXIX-XCIX, and three others by Scholz, Publizistik, pp. 486-516. See Scholz’s criticism, pp. 172-189. Finke, p. 250, is in doubt about the authorship.

Triumphus, an Italian, born in Ancona, 1243, made archbishop of Nazareth and died at Naples, 1328, was a zealous advocate of Boniface VIII. His leading treatise, The Power of the Church,—Summa de potestate ecclesiastica,—vindicates John XXII. for his decision on the question of evangelical poverty and for his opposition to the emperor’s dominion in Italy.156156    For edd. of Triumphus’ tract, see Potthast, Bibl. Hist. under Triumphus. Riezler, p. 286, dates the tract 1324-1328, Haller, p. 83, 1322, Scholz, p. 172, 1320. See Poole, 252 sq. The pope has unrestricted power on the earth. It is so vast that even he himself cannot know fully what he is able to do.157157    Nec credo, quod papa possit scire totum quod potest facere per potentiam suam, 32. 3, quoted by Döllinger, Papstthum, p. 433. His judgment is the judgment of God. Their tribunals are one.158158    This famous passage runs sententia papae sententia Dei una sententia est, quia unum consistorium est ipsius papal et ipsius Dei ... cujus consistorii claviger et ostiarius est ipse papa. See Schwab, Gerson, p. 24. His power of granting indulgences is so great that, if he so wished, he could empty purgatory of its denizens provided that conditions were complied with.159159    Totum purgatorium evacuare potest, 3. 28. Döllinger, p. 451, says of Triumphus’ tract that on almost every page the Church is represented as a dwarf with the head of a giant, that is, the pope.

In spiritual matters he may err, because he remains a man, and when he holds to heresy, he ceases to be pope. Council cannot depose him nor any other human tribunal, for the pope is above all and can be judged by none. But, being a heretic, he ceases, ipso facto, to be pope, and the condition then is as it would be after one pope is dead and his successor not yet elected.

The pope himself may choose an emperor, if he so please, and may withdraw the right of election from the electors or depose them from office. As vicar of God, he is above all kings and princes.

The Spanish Franciscan, Alvarus Pelagius, was not always as extravagant as his Augustinian contemporary.160160    He incorporated into his work entire sections from James of Viterbo, De regimine christiano, Scholz, p. 151. He was professor of law at Perugia. He fled from Rome at the approach of Lewis the Bavarian, 1328, was then appointed papal penitentiary at Avignon, and later bishop of the Portuguese diocese of Silves. His Lament over the Church,—de planctu ecclesiae,161161    Döllinger, p. 433, places its composition in 1329, Riezler, 1331, Haller, between 1330-1332. Alvaras issued three editions, the third at Santiago, 1340. — while exalting the pope to the skies, bewails the low spiritual estate into which the clergy and the Church had fallen. Christendom, he argues, which is but one kingdom, can have but one head, the pope. Whoever does not accept him as the head does not accept Christ. And whosoever, with pure and believing eye, sees the pope, sees Christ himself.162162    Vere papa representat Christum in terris, ut qui videt cum oculo contemplativo et fideli videat et Christum, I. 13. Without communion with the pope there is no salvation. He wields both swords as Christ did, and in him the passage of Jer. 1:10 is fulfilled, "I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms to pluck up and to break down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant." Unbelievers, also, Alvarus asserts to be legally under the pope’s jurisdiction, though they may not be so in fact, and the pope may proceed against them as God did against the Sodomites. Idolaters, Jews, and Saracens are alike amenable to the pope’s authority and subject to his punishments. He rules, orders, disposes and judges all things as he pleases. His will is highest wisdom, and what he pleases to do has the force of law.163163    Apud eum est pro ratione roluntas, et quod ei placet legis habet viogorem, I. 45. Wherever the supreme pontiff is, there is the Roman Church, and he cannot be compelled to remain in Rome.164164    Unum est consistonum et tribunal Christi et papae, I. 29. Ubicunque est papa, ibi est Eccles. Rom .... Non cogitur stare Romae, I. 31. He is the source of all law and may decide what is the right. To doubt this means exclusion from life eternal.

As the vicar of Christ, the pope is supreme over the state. He confers the sword which the prince wields. As the body is subject to the soul, so princes are subject to the pope. Constantine’s donation made the pope, in fact, monarch over the Occident. He transferred the empire to Charlemagne in trust. The emperor’s oath is an oath of fealty and homage.

The views of Augustinus Triumphus and Alvarus followed the papal assertion and practice of centuries, and the assent or argument of the Schoolmen. Marsiglius had the sanction of Scripture rationally interpreted, and his views were confirmed by the experiences of history. After the lapse of nearly 500 years, opinion in Christendom remains divided, and the most extravagant language of Triumphus and Alvarus is applauded, and Marsiglius, the exponent of modern liberty and of the historical sense of Scripture, continues to be treated as a heretic.

§ 9. The Financial Policy of the Avignon Popes.

The most notable feature of the Avignon period of the papacy, next to its subserviency to France, was the development of the papal financial system and the unscrupulous traffic which it plied in spiritual benefits and ecclesiastical offices. The theory was put into practice that every spiritual favor has its price in money. It was John XXII.’s achievement to reduce the taxation of Christendom to a finely organized system.

The papal court had a proper claim for financial support on all parts of the Latin Church, for it ministered to all. This just claim gave way to a practice which made it seem as if Christendom existed to sustain the papal establishment in a state of luxury and ease. Avignon took on the aspect of an exchange whose chief business was getting money, a vast bureau where privileges, labelled as of heavenly efficacy, were sold for gold. Its machinery for collecting moneys was more extensive and intricate than the machinery of any secular court of the age. To contemporaries, commercial transactions at the central seat of Christendom seemed much more at home than services of religious devotion.

The mind of John XXII. ran naturally to the counting-house and ledger system.165165    Haller says, p. 103, the characteristic of John’s pontificate was finance, der Fiskalismus. Tangl, p. 40, compares his commercial instincts to the concern for high ideals which animated Gregory VII., Alexander III., and Innocent III. See vol. V, I., pp. 787, sqq. He came from Cahors, the town noted for its brokers and bankers. Under his favor the seeds of commercialism in the dispensation of papal appointments sown in preceding centuries grew to ripe fruitage. Simony was an old sin. Gregory VII. fought against it. John legalized its practice.

Freewill offerings and Peter’s pence had been made to popes from of old. States, held as fiefs of the papal chair, had paid fixed tribute. For the expenses of the crusades, Innocent III. had inaugurated the system of taxing the entire Church. The receipts from this source developed the love of money at the papal court and showed its power, and, no matter how abstemious a pope might be in his own habits, greed grew like a weed in his ecclesiastical household. St. Bernard, d. 1153, complained bitterly of the cupidity of the Romans, who made every possible monetary gain out of the spiritual favors of which the Vatican was the dispenser. By indulgence, this appetite became more and more exacting, and under John and his successors the exploitation of Christendom was reduced by the curia to a fine art.

The theory of ecclesiastical appointments, held in the Avignon period, was that, by reason of the fulness of power which resides in the Apostolic See, the pope may dispense all the dignities and benefices of the Christian world. The pope is absolute in his own house, that is, the Church.

This principle had received its full statement from Clement IV., 1265.166166    Licet ecclesiarum. See Lib. sextus, III. 4, 2. Friedberg’s ed., II. 102, Lux, p. 5, says romanus pontifex supremus collator, ad quem plenaria de omnibus totius orbis beneficiis eccles. dispositio jure naturo pertinet, etc. Clement’s bull declared that the supreme pontiff is superior to any customs which were in vogue of filling Church offices and conflicted with his prerogative. In particular he made it a law that all offices, dignities, and benefices were subject to papal appointment which became vacant apud sedem apostolicam or in curia, that is, while the holders were visiting the papal court. This law was modified by Gregory X. at the Council of Lyons, 1274, in such a way as to restore the right of election, provided the pope failed to make an appointment within a month.167167    Lux, p. 12; Hefele: Conciliengesch. VI. 151. Boniface VIII., 1295, again extended the enactment by putting in the pope’s hands all livings whose occupants died within two days’ journey of the curia, wherever it might at the time be.168168    Lux, p. 13; Friedberg: Reservationen in Herzog, XVI. 672. Innocent IV. was the first pope to exercise the right of reservation or collation on a large scale. In 1248, out of 20 places in the cathedral of Constance, 17 were occupied by papal appointees, and there were 14 "expectants" under appointment in advance of the deaths of the occupants. In 1255, Alexander IV. limited the number of such expectants to 4 for each church. In 1265, Clement IV forbade all elections in England in the usual way until his commands were complied with, and reserved them to himself. The same pontiff, on the pretext of disturbances going on in Sicily, made a general reservation of all appointments in the realm, otherwise subject to episcopal or capitular choice. Urban IV. withdrew the right of election from the Ghibelline cities of Lombardy; Martin IV. and Honorius IV. applied the same rule to the cathedral appointments of Sicily and Aragon; Honorius IV. monopolized all the appointments of the Latin Church in the East; and Boniface VIII., in view of Philip IV.’s resistance, reserved to himself the appointments to all "cathedral and regular churches" in France. Of 16 French sees which became vacant, 1295–1301, only one was filled in the usual way by election.169169    Lux, p. 17 sqq., and Haller, p. 38, with authorities.

With the haughty assumption of Clement IV.’s bull and the practice of later popes, papal writers fell in. Augustinus Triumphus, writing in 1324, asserted that the pope is above all canon law and has the right to dispose of all ecclesiastical places.170170    Verum super ipsum jus, potest dispensare, etc. Quoted by Gieseler, II. 123. The papal system of appointments included provisions, expectances, and reservations.171171    A provision that is providere ecclesiae de episcopo signified in the first instance a promotion, and afterwards the papal right to supersede appointments made in the usual way by the pope’s own arbitrary appointment. The methods of papal appointment are given in Liber sextus, I. 16, 18; Friedberg’s ed., II. 969. See Stubbs, Const. Hist., III. 320. "Collations" was also used as a general term to cover this papal privilege. The formulas of this period commonly ran de apostol. potestatis plenitudine reservamus. See John’s bull of July 30, 1322, Lux, p. 62 sq. Rogare, monere, precipere are the words generally used by pope Innocent III., 1198-1216, see Hinschius, II. 114 sq. Alexander III. used the expression ipsum commendamus rogantes et rogando mandantes and others like it. Hinschius, III. 116, dates insistence on reservations as a right from the time of Lucius III., 1181-1185.

In setting aside the vested rights of chapters and other electors, the pope often joined hands with kings and princes. In the Avignon period a regular election by a chapter was the exception.172172    Haller, p, 107. The Chronicles of England and France teem with usurped cases of papal appointment. In 1322 the pope reserved to himself all the appointments in episcopal, cathedral, and abbey churches, and of all priors in the sees of Aquileja, Ravenna, Milan, Genoa, and Pisa.173173    Lux, p. 61 sq. This author, pp. 59-106, gives 57 documents not before published, containing reservations by John XXII. and his successors. In 1329 he made such reservation for the German dioceses of Metz, Toul, and Verdun, and in 1339 for Cologne.174174    Kirsch: Kollektorien, p. xxv sq. There was no living in Latin Christendom which was safe from the pope’s hands. There were not places enough to satisfy all the favorites of the papal household and the applicants pressed upon the pope’s attention by kings and princes. The spiritual and administrative qualities of the appointees were not too closely scrutinized. Frenchmen were appointed to sees in England, Germany, Denmark, and other countries, who were utterly unfamiliar with the languages of those countries. Marsiglius complains of these "monstrosities "and, among other unfit appointments, mentions the French bishops of Winchester and Lund, neither of whom knew English or Danish. The archbishop of Lund, after plundering his diocese, returned to Southern France.

To the supreme right of appointment was added the supreme right to tax the clergy and all ecclesiastical property. The supreme right to exercise authority over kings, the supreme right to set aside canonical rules, the supreme right to make appointments in the Church, the supreme right to tax Church property, these were, in their order, the rights asserted by the popes of the Middle Ages. The scandal growing out of this unlimited right of taxation called forth the most vigorous complaints from clergy and laity, and was in large part the cause which led to the summoning of the three great Reformatory councils of the fifteenth century.175175    See Hergenröther-Kirsch, II. 762. K. Müller: Kirchengesch., II. 45. Kirsch: Finanzverwaltung, p. 70. Pastor, in the 1st ed. of his Hist. of the Popes, I. 63, said das unheilvolle System der Annaten, Reservationen und Expektanzen hat seit Johann XXII. zur Ausbildung gelangt.

Popes had acted upon this theory of jurisdiction over the property of the Church long before John XXII. They levied taxes for crusades in the Orient, or to free Italy from rebels for the papal state. They gave their sanction to princes and kings to levy taxes upon the Church for secular purposes, especially for wars.176176    The course of Clement V., in allowing grants to Philip the Fair, Charles of Valois, and other princes, was followed by John. In 1316 he granted to the king of France a tenth and annates for four years, in 1326 a tenth for two years, and in 1333 a tenth for six years. The English king, in 1317, was given a share of the tenth appointed by the Council of Vienne for a crusade and at the same time one-half of the annates. Again, in the years 1319, 1322, 1330, a tenth was accorded to the same sovereign. See Haller, p. 116 sq. In the bull Clericis laicos, Boniface did not mean to call in question the propriety of the Church’s contributing to the necessities of the state. What he demanded was that he himself should be recognized as arbiter in such matters, and it was this demand which gave offence to the French king and to France itself. The question was much discussed whether the pope may commit simony. Thomas Aquinas gave an affirmative answer. Alvarus Pelagius177177    De planctu eccles., II. 14, papa legibus loquentibus de simonia et canonibus solutus est. thought differently, and declared that the pope is exempt from the laws and canons which treat of simony. Augustinus Triumphus took the same ground.178178    V. 3, certum est, summum pontificem canonicam simoniam a jure positivo prohibitam non posse committere, quia ipse est supra jus et eum jura positiva non ligant. The pope is not bound by laws. He is above laws. Simony is not possible to him.

In estimating the necessities of the papal court, which justified the imposition of customs, the Avignon popes were no longer their own masters. They were the creatures of the camera and the hungry horde of officials and sycophants whose clamor filled the papal offices day and night. These retainers were not satisfied with bread. Every superior office in Christendom had its value in terms of gold and silver. When it was filled by papal appointment, a befitting fee was the proper recognition. If a favor was granted to a prince in the appointment of a favorite, the papal court was pretty sure to seize some new privilege as a compensation for itself. Precedent was easily made a permanent rule. Where the pope once invaded the rights of a chapter, he did not relinquish his hold, and an admission fee once fixed was not renounced. We may not be surprised at the rapacity which was developed at the papal court. That was to be expected. It grew out of the false papal theory and the abiding qualities of human nature.179179    Kirsch: Kollektorien, p. xii sq. and other Catholic writers make some defence of John’s financial measures on the ground that the sources of income from the State of the Church dried up when the papacy was transferred to Avignon.

The details governing the administration of the papal finances John set forth in two bulls of 1316 and 1331. His scheme fixed the financial policy of the papacy and sacred college.180180    For the details, see Tangl, p. 20 sqq. The sources from which the papacy drew its revenues in the fourteenth century were: (1) freewill offerings, so called, given for ecclesiastical appointments and other papal favors, called visitations, annates, servitia; and (2) tributes from feudal states such as Naples, Sicily, Sardinia, and England, and the revenues from the papal state in Italy.181181    See vol. V. 1, p. 787 sqq. The moneys so received were apportioned between four parties, the pope, the college of cardinals, and their two households. Under John XXlI. the freewill offerings, so called, came to be regarded as obligatory fees. Every papal gift had its compensation. There was a list of prices, and it remained in force till changed on the basis of new estimates of the incomes of benefices. To answer objections, John XXII., in his bull of 1331, insisted that the prices set upon such favors were not a charge for the grace imparted, but a charge for the labor required for writing the pertinent documents.182182    Non habita consideratione ad valorem beneficii, de quo fiet gratia sed ad laborem scripturae dumtaxat. See Tangl, p. 21. But the declaration did not remove the ill odor of the practice. The taxes levied were out of all proportion to the actual cost of the written documents, and the privileges were not to be had without money.

These payments were regularly recorded in registers or ledgers kept by the papal secretaries of the camera. The details of the papal exchequer, extant in the Archives of the Vatican, have only recently been subjected to careful investigation through the liberal policy of Leo XIII., and have made possible a new chapter in works setting forth the history of the Church in this fourteenth century.183183    Woker took up the study in 1878, and has been followed by a number of scholars such as Tangl, Gottlob, Goeller, Haller, Baumgarten, Schulte, and especially Dr. Kirsch, professor of church history in the Catholic University of Freiburg, Switzerland. See, for a full description, Baumgarten, pp. v-xiii. The subject involves a vast array of figures and commercial briefs of all kinds, and includes the organization of the camera, the system of collection, the graduated scales of prices, the transmission of moneys to Avignon, the division of the receipts between the pope and the cardinals, the values of the numerous coins, etc. Garampi, a keeper of the Vatican Archives, in the eighteenth century arranged these registers according to countries. See Kirsch, Kollektorien, p. vii, and Rückkehr, p. xli-l; Tangl, vi sqq.; Baumgarten, viii, x sqq.

These studies confirm the impression left by the chroniclers and tract-writers of the fourteenth century. The money dealings of the papal court were on a vast scale, and the transactions were according to strict rules of merchandise.184184    Kirsch: Kollektorien, p. vii, note, gives four different headings under which the moneys were recorded, namely: (1) census and visitations; (2) bulls; (3) servitia communia; (4) sundry sources. He also gives the entries under which disbursements were entered, such as the kitchen, books and parchments, palfreys, journeys, wars, etc. Avignon was a great money centre. Spiritual privileges were vouched for by carefully worded and signed contracts and receipts. The papal commercial agents went to all parts of Europe.

Archbishop, bishop, and abbot paid for the letters confirming their titles to their dignities. The appointees to lower clerical offices did the same. There were fees for all sorts of concessions, dispensations and indulgences, granted to layman and to priest. The priest born out of wedlock, the priest seeking to be absent from his living, the priest about to be ordained before the canonical age, all had to have a dispensation, and these cost money.185185    Tangl, 74 sq The larger revenues went directly into the papal treasury and the treasury of the camera. The smaller fees went to notaries, doorkeepers, to individual cardinals, and other officials. These intermediaries stood in a long line with palms upturned. To use a modern term, it was an intricate system of graft. The beneficiaries were almost endless. The large body of lower officials are usually designated in the ledgers by the general term "familiars" of the pope or camera.186186    As an example of the host of these officials who had to be fed, see Tangl, pp. 64-67. He gives a list of the fees paid by agents of the city of Cologne, which was seeking certain bulls in 1393. The title "secretary" does not occur till the reign of Benedict XII., 1338. Goeller, p. 46. The notaries, or copyists, received stipulated sums for every document they transcribed and service they performed. However exorbitant the demands might seem, the petitioners were harried by delays and other petty annoyances till in sheer weariness they yielded.

The taxes levied upon the higher clergy were usually paid at Avignon by the parties in person. For the collection of the annates from the lower clergy and of tithes and other general taxes, collectors and subcollectors were appointed. We find these officials in different parts of Europe. They had their fixed salaries, and sent periodical reckonings to the central bureau at Avignon.187187    One of the allowances made by John XXII. for collectors was 5 gold florins a day. Kirsch: Kollektorien, VII. sqq., XLIX. sqq. Kirsch gives the official ledgers of papal collectors in Basel, pp. 4-32, and other sees of Germany. Sometimes the bishop acted as collector in his diocese, Goeller, p. 71. The transmission of the moneys they collected was often a dangerous business. Not infrequently the carriers were robbed on their way, and the system came into vogue of employing merchant and banking houses to do this business, especially Italian firms, which had representatives in Northern and Central Europe. The ledgers show a great diversity in the names and value of the coins. And it was a nice process to estimate the values of these moneys in the terms of the more generally accepted standards.188188    For elaborate comparisons of the value of the different coins of the fourteenth century, see Kirsch, Kollektorien, LXXVIII. and Rückkehr, p. xli sqq. Gottlob, pp. 133, 174 sq., etc. Baumgarten, CCXI sqq. The silver mark, the gold florin and the pound Tournois were among the larger coins most current. One mark was worth 4 or 6 gold florins, or 8 pounds Tournois. The grossus Turonensis was equal to about 26 cents of our value. See Tangl, 14. For the different estimates of marks in florins, see Baumgarten, CXXI. The gold florin had the face value of $2.50 of our money, or nearly 10 marks German coinage. See Kirsch, Kollektorien, p. Ixx; Rückkehr, p. xlv; Gottlob, Servitientaxe, p. 176; Baumgarten, p. ccxiii; Tangl, 14, etc. Kirsch gives the purchasing price of money in the fourteenth century as four times what it now is, Finanzerverwaltung p. 56. The gold mark in 1370 was worth 62 gold florins the silver mark 5 florins, Kirsch: Rückkehr, p. xlv. Kirsch: Rückkehr, pp. l-lxi, gives a very elaborate and valuable list of the prices of commodities and wages in 1370 from the Vatican ledger accounts. Urban V.’s agents bought two horses for 117 florins gold and two mules for 90 florins. They paid 1 gold florin for 12 pairs of shoes and 1 pair of boots. A salma of wheat—equal to 733 loaves of bread—cost 4 florins, or $10 in our money. The keeper of the papal stables received 120 gold florins a year. The senator of Rome received from Gregory XI. 600 gold florins a month. A watchman of the papal palace, 7 gold florins a month. Carpenters received from 12-18 shillings Provis, or 60-80 cents, 47 of these coins being equal to 1 gold florin.

The offerings made by prelates at their visits to the papal see, called visitationes,189189    Visitationes ad limina apostolorum, that is, visits to Rome. were divided equally between the papal treasury and the cardinals. From the lists, it appears that the archbishops of York paid every three years "300 marks sterling, or 1200 gold florins." Every two years the archbishops of Canterbury paid "300 marks sterling, or 1500 gold florins;" the archbishop of Tours paid 400 pounds Tournois; of Rheims, 500 pounds, Tournois; of Rouen, 1000 pounds Tournois.190190    See Baumgarten, CXXI.; Kirsch: Finanzverwaltung, p. 22 sq. The archbishop of Armagh, at his visitation in 1301, paid 60 silver marks, or 250 gold florins. In 1350 the camera claimed from Armagh back payments for fifty years.191191    Baumgarten, p. cxxii. Presumably no bishop of that Irish diocese had made a visit in that interval. Whether the claim was honored or not, is not known.

The servitia communia, or payments made by archbishops, bishops, and abbots on their confirmation to office, were also listed, according to a fixed scale. The voluntary idea had completely disappeared before a fixed assessment.192192    Gottlob, Servitien, p. 30 sqq., 75-93; Baumgarten, p. xcvii sqq. Such a dignitary was called an electus until he had paid off the tax.193193    Gottlob, p. 130. In certain cases the tax was remitted on account of the poverty of the ecclesiastic, and in the ledgers the entry was made, "not taxed on account of poverty," non taxata propter paupertatem. The amount of this tax seems to have varied, and was sometimes one-third of the income and sometimes a larger portion.194194    Kirsch: Finanzverwaltung, and Baumgarten, p. xcvii, make it one-third. Gottlob, p. 120 says it was sometimes more. In the fourteenth century the following sees paid servitia as follows: Mainz, 5,000 gold florins; Treves, 7, 000; Cologne, 10,000; Narbonne, 10,000. On the basis of a new valuation, Martin V. in 1420 raised the taxation of the sees of Mainz and Treves to 10,000 florins each, or $25,000 of our money, so that they corresponded to the assessment made from of old upon Cologne.195195    Baumgarten, p. cvi, Schulte, p. 97 sq. Cases are also reported of the reduction of the assessment upon a revaluation of the property. In 1326 the assessment of the see of Breslau was reduced from 4, 000 to 1, 786 gold florins. Kirsch: Finanzverwaltung, p. 8. When an incumbent died without having met the full tax, his successor made up the deficit in addition to paying the assessment for his own confirmation.196196    For cases, see Baumgarten, p. cviii. Attempts to get rid of this assessment were unavailing. The bishop of Bamberg, in 1335, left Avignon without a bull of confirmation because he had not made the prescribed payment. The reason is not recorded, but the statement is spread on the ledger entry that episcopal confirmation should not be granted to him till the Apostolic letters pertaining to it were properly registered and delivered by the Apostolic camera. Goeller, p. 69.

The following cases will give some idea of the annoyances to which bishops and abbots were put who travelled to Avignon to secure letters of papal confirmation to their offices. In 1334, the abbot-elect of St. Augustine, Canterbury, had to wait in Avignon from April 22 to Aug. 9 to get his confirmation, and it cost him 148 pounds sterling. John IV., abbot-elect of St. Albans, in 1302 went for consecration to Rome, accompanied by four monks. He arrived May 6, presented his case to Boniface VIII. in person at Anagni, May 9, and did not get back to London till Aug. 1, being all the while engaged in the process of getting his papers properly prepared and certified to.197197    Gesta Abb. monaster. S. Albani, II. 55 sq. See Gottlob, Servitien, p. 174 sqq. for the full list of his expenses. The expense of getting his case through was 2,585 marks, or 10,340 gold florins; or $25,000 of our money. The ways in which this large sum was distributed are not a matter of conjecture. The exact itemized statement is extant: 2,258 marks, or 9,032 florins, went to "the Lord pope and the cardinals." Of this sum 5,000 florins, or 1,250 marks, are entered as a payment for the visitatio, and the remainder in payment of the servitium to the cardinals. The remaining 327 marks, or 1,308 florins, were consumed in registration and notarial fees and gifts to cardinals. To Cardinal Francis of St. Maria in Cosmedin, a nephew of Boniface, a gift was made costing more than 10 marks, or 40 florins.

Another abbot-elect of St. Albans, Richard II., went to Avignon in 1326 accompanied by six monks, and was well satisfied to get away with the payment of 3,600 gold florins. He was surprised that the tax was so reasonable. Abbot William of the diocese of Autun, Oct. 22, 1316, obligated himself to pay John XXII., as confirmation tax, 1,500 gold florins, and to John’s officials 170 more.198198    The contract is printed entire by Kirsch, Finanzerverwaltung, pp. 73-77, and Gottlob, p. 162 sqq.

The fees paid to the lower officials, called servitia minuta, were classified under five heads, four of them going to the officials, familiares of the pontiff, and one to the officials of the cardinals.199199    See Gottlob, pp. 102-118; Schulte, p. 13 sqq. The exact amounts received on account of servitia or confirmation fees by the pope and the college of cardinals, probably will never be known. From the lists that have been examined, the cardinals between 1316–1323 received from this source 234,047 gold florins, or about 39,000 florins a year. As the yield from this tax was usually, though not always, divided in equal shares between the pope and the cardinals, the full sum realized from this source was double this amount.200200    Baumgarten, p. cxx.

The annates, so far as they were the tax levied by the pope upon appointments made by himself to lower clerical offices and livings, went entirely into the papal treasury, and seem to have been uniformly one-half of the first year’s income.201201    John XXII., 1316, Benedict XII, 1335, Clement VI., 1342, and Boniface IX., 1392, issued bulls requiring such appointees to pay one-half the first year’s income into the papal treasury. See, on this subject, Kirsch, Kollektorien, p. xxv sqq. He mentions the papal collector, Gerardus, who gives a continuous list for the years 1343-1360, of such payments of annates, fructus beneficiorum vacantium ad Cameram Apostolicam pertinentes. The annates, or annalia, were originally given to the bishops when livings became vacant, but were gradually reserved for the papal treasury. See Friedberg, Kirchliche Abgaben, in Herzog, I. 95. They were designated as livings "becoming vacant in curia," which was another way of saying, places which had been reserved by the pope. The popes from time to time extended this tax through the use of the right of reservation to all livings becoming vacant in a given district during a certain period. In addition to the annate tax, the papal treasury also drew an income during the period of their vacancy from the livings reserved for papal appointment and during the period when an incumbent held the living without canonical right. These were called the "intermediate fruits"—medii fructus.202202    Kirsch: Kollektorien, p. xxvi. Benedict, 1335, appropriated these payments to the papal treasury.

Special indulgences were an uncertain but no less important source of revenue. The prices were graded according to the ability of the parties to pay and the supposed inherent value of the papal concession. Queen Johanna of Sicily paid 500 grossi Tournois, or about $150, for the privilege of taking the oath to the archbishop of Naples, who acted as the pope’s representative. The bull readmitting to the sacraments of the Church Margaret of Maultasch and her husband, Lewis of Brandenburg, the son of Lewis the Bavarian, cost the princess 2000 grossi Tournois. The king of Cyprus was poor, and secured for his subjects indulgence to trade with the Egyptians for the modest sum of 100 pounds Tournois, but had to pay 50 pounds additional for a ship sent with cargo to Egypt.203203    Tangl, pp. 31, 32, 37 There was a graduated scale for papal letters giving persons liberty to choose their confessor without regard to the parish priests.

To these sources of income were added the taxes for the relief of the Holy Land—pro subsidio terrae sanctae. The Council of Vienne ordered a tenth for six years for this purpose. John XXII., 1333, repeated the substance of Clement’s bull. The expense of clearing Italy of hostile elements and reclaiming papal territory as a preliminary to the pope’s return to Rome was also made the pretext for levying special taxes. For this object Innocent VI. levied a three-years’ tax of a tenth upon the Church in Germany, and in 1366 Urban V. levied another tenth upon all the churches of Christendom.204204    Kirsch: Kollektorien, pp. xx, xxi.

It would be a mistake to suppose that the Church always responded to these appeals, or that the collectors had easy work in making collections. The complaints, which we found so numerous in England in the thirteenth century, we meet with everywhere during the fourteenth century. The resistance was determined, and the taxes were often left unpaid for years or not paid at all.

The revenues derived from feudal states and princes, called census, were divided equally between the cardinals and the pope’s private treasury. Gregory X., in 1272, was the first to make such a division of the tribute from Sicily, which amounted to 8000 ounces of gold, or about $90,000.205205    Kirsch: Finanzverwaltung, p. 3; Rückkehr, p. xv. The payment to Urban V. in 1367 and its division into equal shares is a matter of record. In a ledger account begun in 1317, and now in the Vatican, an ounce of gold was estimated at 5 florins, a pound of gold at 96 florins. See Kirsch, Finanzverwaltung, p. 71; Baumgarten, p. ccxi. In the pontificate of John XXII. there is frequent mention of the amounts contributed by Sicily and their equal partition. The sums varied from year to year, and in 1304 it was 3000 ounces of gold. The tribute of Sardinia and Corsica was fixed in 1297 at the annual sum of 2000 marks, and was divided between the two treasuries.206206    Baumgarten, p. cxlii sq. The papal state and Ferrara yielded uncertain sums, and the tribute of 1000 marks, pledged by John of England, was paid irregularly, and finally abrogated altogether. Peter’s pence, which belongs in this category, was an irregular source of papal income.207207    Baumgarten, CXXVI. sqq.

The yearly income of the papal treasury under Clement V. and John XXII. has been estimated at from 200,000 to 250,000 gold florins.208208    Ehrle: Process über d. Nachlass Klemens V., in Archiv, etc., V. 147. The revenue of Philip the Fair amounted in 1301 to 267,900 pounds. See Gottlob, Servitien, 133. Gottlob, p. 134, says the cardinals received as much more as their share. In 1353 it is known to have been at least 260,000 florins, or more than $600,000 of our money

These sources of income were not always sufficient for the expenses of the papal household, and in cases had to be anticipated by loans. The popes borrowed from cardinals, from princes, and from bankers. Urban V. got a loan from his cardinals of 30, 000 gold florins. Gregory XI. got loans of 30,000 florins from the king of Navarre, and 60, 000 from the duke of Anjou. The duke seems to have been a ready lender, and on another occasion loaned Gregory 40,000 florins.209209    Haller, p. 138. It was a common thing for bishops and abbots to make loans to enable them to pay the expense of their confirmation. The abbot of St. Albans, in 1290, was assessed 1300 pounds for his servitium, and borrowed 500 of it.210210    Walter de Gray, bishop of Worcester, is said to have borrowed 10,000 pounds at his elevation, 1215. Roger de Wendover, as quoted by Gottlob, p. 136. The passage runs obligatus in curia Romana de decem millibus libris, etc. Gottlob understands this to refer to Roman bankers, not to the Roman curia. The habit grew until the time of the Reformation, when the sums borrowed, as in the case of Albrecht, archbishop of Mainz, were enormous.

The transactions of the Avignon chancellory called forth loud complaints, even from contemporary apologists for the papacy. Alvarus Pelagius, in his Lament over the Church, wrote: "No poor man can approach the pope. He will call and no one will answer, because he has no money in his purse to pay. Scarcely is a single petition heeded by the pope until it has passed through the hands of middlemen, a corrupt set, bought with bribes, and the officials conspire together to extort more than the rule calls for." In another place he said that whenever he entered into the papal chambers he always found the tables full of gold, and clerics counting and weighing florins.211211    De planctu eccl. II. 7, quum saepe intraverim in cameram camerarii domni papae, semper ibi vidi nummularios et mensas plenas auro, et clericos computantes et trutinantes florenos. See Döllinger-Friedrich, pp. 86, 420. Of the Spanish bishops he said that there was scarcely one in a hundred who did not receive money for ordinations and the gift of benefices. Matters grew no better, but rather worse as the fourteenth century advanced. Dietrich of Nieheim, speaking of Boniface IX., said that "the pope was an insatiable gulf, and that as for avarice there was no one to compare with him."212212    Insatiabilis vorago et in avaricia nullus ei similis. De schismate, Erler’s ed., p. 119. The sacra auri fames prevailed at Avignon. To effect a cure of the disease, which was a scandal to Christendom, the popes would have been obliged to cut off the great army of officials who surrounded them. But this vast organized body was stronger than the Roman pontiff. The fundamental theory of the rights of the papal office was at fault. The councils made attempts to introduce reforms, but in vain. Help came at last and from an unexpected quarter, when Luther and the other leaders openly revolted against the mediaeval theory of the papacy and of the Church.

§ 10. The Later Avignon Popes.

The bustling and scholastic John XXII. was followed by the scholarly and upright Benedict XII., 1334–1342. Born in the diocese of Toulouse, Benedict studied in Paris, and arose to the dignity of bishop and cardinal before his elevation to the papal throne. If Villani is to be trusted, his election was an accident. One cardinal after another who voted for him did so, not dreaming he would be elected. The choice proved to be an excellent one. The new pontiff at once showed interest in reform. The prelates who had no distinct duties at Avignon he sent home, and to his credit it was recorded that, when urged to enrich his relatives, he replied that the vicar of Christ, like Melchizedek, must be without father or mother or genealogy. To him belongs the honor of having begun the erection of the permanent papal palace at Avignon, a massive and grim structure, having the features of a fortress rather than a residence. Its walls and towers were built of colossal thickness and strength to resist attack. Its now desolated spaces are a speechless witness to perhaps the most singular of the episodes of papal history. The cardinals followed Benedict’s example and built palaces in Avignon and its vicinity.

Clement VI., 1342–1352, who had been archbishop of Rouen, squandered the fortune amassed by John XXII. and prudently administered by Benedict. He forgot his Benedictine training and vows and was a fast liver, carrying into the papal office the tastes of the French nobility from which he sprang. Horses, a sumptuous table, and the company of women made the papal palace as gay as a royal court.213213    Pastor, I. 76, says, "Luxury and fast living prevailed to the most flagrant degree under Clement’s rule." For detailed description of Avignon and the papal palace, see A. Penjon, Avignon, la ville et le palais des papes, pp. 134, Avignon, 1878; F. Digonnet: Le palais des papes en Avignon, Avignon, 1907. Nor were his relatives allowed to go uncared for. Of the twenty-five cardinals’ hats which he distributed, twelve went to them, one a brother and one a nephew. Clement enjoyed a reputation for eloquence and, like John XXII., preached after he became pope. Early in his pontificate the Romans sent a delegation, which included Petrarch, begging him to return to Rome. But Clement, a Frenchman to the core, preferred the atmosphere of France. Though he did not go to Rome, he was gracious enough to comply with the delegation’s request and appoint a Jubilee for the deserted and impoverished city.

During Clement’s rule, Rome lived out one of the picturesque episodes of its mediaeval history, the meteoric career of the tribune Cola (Nicolas) di Rienzo. Of plebeian birth, this visionary man was stirred with the ideals of Roman independence and glory by reading the ancient classics. His oratory flattered and moved the people, whose cause he espoused against the aristocratic families of the city. Sent to Avignon at the head of a commission, 1343, to confer the highest municipal authority upon the pope, he won Clement’s attention by his frank manner and eloquent speech. Returning to Rome, he fascinated the people with visions of freedom and dominion. They invested him on the Capitol with the signiory of the city, 1347. Cola assumed the democratic title of tribune. Writing from Avignon, Petrarch greeted him as the man whom he had been looking for, and dedicated to him one of his finest odes. The tribune sought to extend his influence by enkindling the flame of patriotism throughout all Italy and to induce its cities to throw off the yoke of their tyrants. Success and glory turned his head. Intoxicated with applause, he had the audacity to cite Lewis the Bavarian and Charles IV. before his tribunal, and headed his communications with the magnificent superscription, "In the first year of the Republic’s freedom." His success lasted but seven months. The people had grown weary of their idol. He was laid by Clement under the ban and fled, to appear again for a brief season under Innocent V.

Avignon was made papal property by Clement, who paid Joanna of Naples 80, 000 florins for it. The low price may have been in consideration of the pope’s services in pronouncing the princess guiltless of the murder of her cousin and first husband, Andreas, a royal Hungarian prince, and sanctioning her second marriage with another cousin, the prince of Tarentum.

This pontiff witnessed the conclusion of the disturbed career of Lewis the Bavarian, in 1347. The emperor had sunk to the depths of self-abasement when he swore to the 28 articles Clement laid before him, Sept. 18, 1343, and wrote to the pope that, as a babe longs for its mother’s breast, so his soul cried out for the grace of the pope and the Church. But, if possible, Clement intensified the curses placed upon him by his two predecessors. The bull, which he announced with his own lips, April 13, 1346, teems with rabid execrations. It called upon God to strike Lewis with insanity, blindness, and madness. It invoked the thunderbolts of heaven and the flaming wrath of God and the Apostles Peter and Paul both in this world and the next. It called all the elements to rise in hostility against him; upon the universe to fight against him, and the earth to open and swallow him up alive. It blasphemously damned his house to desolation and his children to exclusion from their abode. It invoked upon him the curse of beholding with his own eyes the destruction of his children by their enemies.214214    This awful denunciation runs: Veniat ei laqueus quem ignorat, et cadat in ipsum. Sit maledictus ingrediens, sit maledictus egrediens. Percutiat eum dominus amentia et caecitate ac mentis furore. Coelum super eum fulgura mittat. Omnipotentis dei ira et beatorum Petri et Pauli ... in hoc et futuro seculo exardescat in ipsum. Orbis terrarum pugnet contra eum, aperiatur terra et ipsum absorbeat vivum. Mirbt: Quellen, p. 153. See Müller: Kampf Ludwigs, etc., II. 214.

During Clement’s pontificate, 1348–1349, the Black Death swept over Europe from Hungary to Scotland and from Spain to Sweden, one of the most awful and mysterious scourges that has ever visited mankind. It was reported by all the chroniclers of the time, and described by Boccaccio in the introduction to his novels. According to Villani, the disease appeared as carbuncles under the armpits or in the groin, sometimes as big as an egg, and was accompanied with devouring fever and vomiting of blood. It also involved a gangrenous inflammation of the lungs and throat and a fetid odor of the breath. In describing the virulence of the infection, a contemporary said that one sick person was sufficient to infect the whole world.215215    Quoted by Gasquet, Black Death, p. 46. The patients lingered at most a day or two. Boccaccio witnessed the progress of the plague as it spread its ravages in Florence.216216    Whitcomb, Source Book of the Renaissance, pp. 15-18, gives a translation. Such measures of sanitation as were then known were resorted to, such as keeping the streets of the city clean and posting up elaborate rules of health. Public religious services and processions were appointed to stay death’s progress. Boccaccio tells how he saw the hogs dying from the deadly contagion which they caught in rooting amongst cast-off clothing. In England all sorts of cattle were affected, and Knighton speaks of 5000 sheep dying in a single district.217217    Knighton’s account, Chronicon, Rolls Series II. 58-65. The mortality was appalling. The figures, though they differ in different accounts, show a vast loss of life.

A large per cent of the population of Western Europe fell before the pestilence. In Siena, 80,000 were carried off; in Venice, 100,000; in Bologna, two-thirds of the population; and in Florence, three-fifths. In Marseilles the number who died in a single month is reported as 57,000. Nor was the papal city on the Rhone exempt. Nine cardinals, 70 prelates, and 17,000 males succumbed. Another writer, a canon writing from the city to a friend in Flanders, reports that up to the date of his writing one-half of the population had died. The very cats, dogs, and chickens took the disease.218218    Quoted by Gasquet, p. 46 sqq. At the prescription of his physician, Guy of Chauliac, Clement VI. stayed within doors and kept large fires lighted, as Nicolas IV. before him had done in time of plague.

No class was immune except in England, where the higher classes seem to have been exempt. The clergy yielded in great numbers, bishops, priests, and monks. At least one archbishop of Canterbury, Bradwardine, was carried away by it. The brothers of the king of Sweden, Hacon and Knut, were among the victims. The unburied dead strewed the streets of Stockholm. Vessels freighted with cargoes were reported floating on the high seas with the last sailor dead.219219    Gasquet, p. 40. Convents were swept clear of all their inmates. The cemeteries were not large enough to hold the bodies, which were thrown into hastily dug pits.220220    Thorold Rogers saw the remains of a number of skeletons at the digging for the new divinity school at Cambridge, and pronounced the spot the plague-pit of this awful time. Six Centuries of Work and Wages, I. 157. The danger of infection and the odors emitted by the corpses were so great that often there was no one to give sepulture to the dead. Bishops found cause in this neglect to enjoin their priests to preach on the resurrection of the body as one of the tenets of the Catholic Church, as did the bishop of Winchester.221221    Gasquet, p. 128. In spite of the vast mortality, many of the people gave themselves up without restraint to revelling and drinking from tavern to tavern and to other excesses, as Boccaccio reports of Florence.

In England, it is estimated that one-half of the population, or 2,500,000 people, fell victims to the dread disease.222222    These are the figures of Jessopp, Coming of the Friars, Gasquet, p. 226, and Cunningham, Growth of English Industries and Commerce, p. 275. Thorold Rogers, however, in Six Centuries of Work, etc., and England before and after the Black Death, Fortnightly Review, VIII. 190 sqq. reduces the number. Jessopp bases his calculations upon local documents and death lists of the diocese of Norwich and finds that in some cases nine tenths of the population died. The Augustinians at Heveringland, prior and canons, died to a man. At Hickling only one survived. Whether this fell mortality among the clergy, especially the orders, points to luxuriant living and carelessness in habits of cleanliness, we will not attempt to say. According to Knighton, it was introduced into the land through Southampton. As for Scotland, this chronicler tells the grewsome story that some of the Scotch, on hearing of the weakness of the English in consequence of the malady, met in the forest of Selfchyrche—Selkirk—and decided to fall upon their unfortunate neighbors, but were suddenly themselves attacked by the disease, nearly 5000 dying. The English king prorogued parliament. The disaster that came to the industries of the country is dwelt upon at length by the English chroniclers. The soil became "dead," for there were no laborers left to till it. The price per acre was reduced one-half, or even much more. The cattle wandered through the meadows and fields of grain, with no one to drive them in. "The dread fear of death made the prices of live stock cheap." Horses were sold for one-half their usual price, 40 solidi, and a fat steer for 4 solidi. The price of labor went up, and the cost of the necessaries of life became "very high."223223    Knighton, II. 62, 65. The effect upon the Church was such as to interrupt its ministries and perhaps check its growth. The English bishops provided for the exigencies of the moment by issuing letters giving to all clerics the right of absolution. The priest could now make his price, and instead of 4 or 5 marks, as Knighton reports, he could get 10 or 20 after the pestilence had spent its course. To make up for the scarcity of ministers, ordination was granted before the canonical age, as when Bateman, bishop of Norwich, set apart by the sacred rite 60 clerks, "though only shavelings" under 21. In another direction the evil effects of the plague were seen. Work was stopped on the Cathedral of Siena, which was laid out on a scale of almost unsurpassed size, and has not been resumed to this day.224224    Gasquet, p. 253. This author, pp. viii, 8, compares the ravages of the bubonic plague in India, 1897-1905, to the desolations of the Black Death. He gives the mortality in India in this period as 3,250,000 persons. He emphasizes the bad effects of the plague in undoing the previous work of the Church and checking its progress.

The Black Death was said to have invaded Europe from the East, and to have been carried first by Genoese vessels.225225    Ralph, bishop of Bath and Wells, in a pastoral letter warned against the "pestilence which had come into a neighboring kingdom from the East." Knighton refers its origin to India, Thomas Walsingham, Hist. Angl., Rolls Series I. 273, thus speaks of it: "Beginning in the regions of the North and East it advanced over the world and ended with so great a destruction that scarcely half of the people remained. Towns once full of men became destitute of inhabitants, and so violently did the pestilence increase that the living were scarcely able to bury the dead. In certain houses of men of religion, scarcely two out of twenty men survived. It was estimated by many that scarcely one-tenth of mankind had been left alive." Its victims were far in excess of the loss of life by any battles or earthquakes known to European history, not excepting the Sicilian earthquake of 1908.

In spite of the plague, and perhaps in gratitude for its cessation, the Jubilee Year of 1350, like the Jubilee under Boniface at the opening of the century, brought thousands of pilgrims to Rome. If they left scenes of desolation in the cities and villages from which they came, they found a spectacle of desolation and ruin in the Eternal City which Petrarch, visiting the same year, said was enough to move a heart of stone. Matthew Villani226226    Muratori, XV. 56. cannot say too much in praise of the devotion of the visiting throngs. Clement’s bull extended the benefits of his promised indulgence to those who started on a pilgrimage without the permission of their superiors, the cleric without the permission of his bishop, the monk without the permission of his abbot, and the wife without the permission of her husband.

Of the three popes who followed Clement, only good can be said. Innocent VI., 1352–1362, a native of the see of Limoges, had been appointed cardinal by Clement VI. Following in the footsteps of Benedict XII., he reduced the ostentation of the Avignon court, dismissed idle bishops to their sees, and instituted the tribunal of the rota, with 21 salaried auditors for the orderly adjudication of disputed cases coming before the papal tribunal. Before Innocent’s election, the cardinals adopted a set of rules limiting the college to 20 members, and stipulating that no new members should be appointed, suspended, deposed, or excommunicated without the consent of two-thirds of their number, and that no papal relative should be assigned to a high place. Innocent no sooner became pontiff than he set it aside as not binding.

Soon after the beginning of his reign, Innocent released Cola di Rienzo from confinement227227    Cola had roamed about till he went to Prag, where Charles IV. seized him and sent him to Avignon in 1352. Petrarch, who corresponded with him, speaks of seeing him in Avignon, attended by two guards. See Robinson, Petrarch, pp. 341-343 sqq. and sent him and Cardinal Aegidius Alvarez of Albernoz to Rome in the hope of establishing order. Cola was appointed senator, but only a few months afterwards was put to death in a popular uprising, Oct. 8, 1354. He dreamed of a united Italy, 500 years before the union of its divided states was consummated, but his name remains a powerful impulse to popular freedom and national unity in the peninsula.

Tyrants and demagogues infested Italian municipalities and were sucking their life-blood. The State of the Church had been parcelled up into petty principalities ruled by rude nobles, such as the Polentas in Ravenna, the Malatestas in Rimini, the Montefeltros in Urbino. The pope was in danger of losing his territory in the peninsula altogether. Soldiers of fortune from different nations had settled upon it and spread terror as leaders of predatory bands. In no part was anarchy more wild than in Rome itself, and in the Campagna. Albernoz had fought in the wars against the Moors, and had administered the see of Toledo. He was a statesman as well as a soldier. He was fully equal to his difficult task and restored the papal government.228228    The full term of Albernoz’ service in Italy extended from 1353-1368. By his code, called the Aegidian Constitutions, he became the legislator of the State of the Church for centuries. For text, see Mansi, XXVI. 299-307. Gregorovius, VI. 430, calls him "the most gifted statesman who ever sat in the college of cardinals," and Wurm, his biographer, "the second founder of the State of the Church."

In 1355, Albernoz, as administrator of Rome, placed the crown of the empire on the head of Charles IV. To such a degree had the imperial dignity been brought that Charles was denied permission by the pope to enter the city till the day appointed for his coronation. His arrival in Italy was welcomed by Petrarch as Henry VII.’s arrival had been welcomed by Dante. But the emperor disappointed every expectation, and his return from Italy was an inglorious retreat. He placed his own dominion of Bohemia in his debt by becoming the founder of the University of Prag.229229    In 1334 Clement had set off the diocese of Prag from the diocese of Mainz and made it an archbishopric. It was he also who, in 1356, issued the celebrated Golden Bull, which laid down the rules for the election of the emperor. They placed this transaction wholly in the hands of the electors, a majority of whom was sufficient for a choice. The pope is not mentioned in the document. Frankfurt was made the place of meeting. The electors designated were the archbishops of Mainz, Treves, and Cologne, the Count Palatine, the king of Bohemia, the Margrave of Brandenburg, and the duke of Saxony.230230    Bryce, ch. XIV., says well that the Golden Bull completed the Germanization of the Holy Roman Empire by separating the imperial power from the papacy. See Mirot, La politique pontificale, p. 2.

Urban V., 1362–1370, at the time of his election abbot of the Benedictine convent of St. Victor in Marseilles, developed merits which secured for him canonization by Pius IX., 1870. He was the first of the Avignon popes to visit Rome. Petrarch, as he had written before to Benedict XII. and Clement VI., now, in his old age, wrote to the new pontiff rebuking the curia for its vices and calling upon him to be faithful to his part as Roman bishop. Why should Urban hide himself away in a corner of the earth? Italy was fair, and Rome, hallowed by history and legend of empire and Church, was the theocratic capital of the world. Charles IV. visited Avignon and offered to escort the pontiff. But the French king opposed the plan and was supported by the cardinals in a body. Only three Italians were left in it. Urban started for the home of his spiritual ancestors in April, 1367. A fleet of sixty vessels furnished by Naples, Genoa, Venice, and Pisa conducted the distinguished traveller from Marseilles to Genoa and Corneto, where he was met by envoys from Rome, who put into his hands the keys of the castle of St. Angelo, the symbol of full municipal power. All along the way transports of wine, fish, cheese, and other provisions, sent on from Avignon, met the papal party, and horses from the papal stables on the Rhone were in waiting for the pope at every stage of the journey.231231    Kirsch: Rückkehr, etc., pp. xii, 74-90. During the stop of five days at Genoa, Urban received timely help in the payment of the feoffal tax of Naples, 8000 ounces of gold. Kirsch, in his interesting and valuable treatment, publishes the ledger entries made in the official registers, deposited in Rome and Avignon and giving in detail the expenses incurred on the visits of Urban and Gregory XI. Gregorovius, VI. 430 sqq., gives an account of Urban’s pilgrimage in his most brilliant style.

At Viterbo, a riot was called forth by the insolent manners of the French, and the pope launched the interdict against the city. The papal ledgers contain the outlay by the apothecary for medicines for the papal servants who were wounded in the melee. Here Albernoz died, to whom the papacy owed a large debt for his services in restoring order to Rome. The legend runs that, when he was asked by the pope for an account of his administration, he loaded a car with the keys of the cities he had recovered to the papal authority, and sent them to him.

Urban chose as his residence the Vatican in preference to the Lateran. The preparations for his advent included the restoration of the palace and its gardens. A part of the garden was used as a field, and the rest was overgrown with thorns. Urban ordered it replanted with grape-vines and fruit trees. The papal ledger gives the cost of these improvements as 6,621 gold florins, or about $15,000. Roofs, floors, doors, walls, and other parts of the palace had to be renewed. The expenses from April 27, 1367, to November, 1368, as shown in the report of the papal treasurer, Gaucelin de Pradello, were 15,559 florins, or $39,000.232232    The accounts are published entire by Kirsch, pp. ix sqq. xxx, 109-165.

During the sixty years that had elapsed since Clement V. fixed the papal residence in France, Rome had been reduced almost to a museum of Christian monuments, as it had before been a museum of pagan ruins. The aristocratic families had forsaken the city. The Lateran had again fallen a prey to the flames in 1360. St. Paul’s was desolate. Rubbish or stagnant pools filled the streets. The population was reduced to 20,000 or perhaps 17,000.233233    Döllinger, The Church and the Churches, Engl. trans., 1862, p. 363, puts the population at 17,000. Gregorovius, VI. 438, makes the estimate somewhat higher The return of the papacy was compared by Petrarch to Israel returning out of Egypt.

Urban set about the restoration of churches. He gave 1000 florins to the Lateran and spent 5000 on St. Paul’s. Rome showed signs of again becoming the centre of European society and politics. Joanna, queen of Naples, visited the city, and so did the king of Cyprus and the emperor, Charles IV. In 1369 John V. Palaeologus, the Byzantine emperor, arrived, a suppliant for aid against the Turks, and publicly made solemn abjuration of his schismatic tenets.

The old days seemed to have returned, but Urban was not satisfied. He had not the courage nor the wide vision to sacrifice his own pleasure for the good of his office. Had he so done, the disastrous schism might have been averted. He turned his face back towards Avignon, where he arrived "at the hour of vespers," Sept. 27, 1370. He survived his return scarcely two months, and died Dec. 19, 1370, universally beloved and already honored as a saint.

§ 11. The Re-establishment of the Papacy in Rome. 1377.

Of the nineteen cardinals who entered the conclave at the death of Urban V., all but four were Frenchmen. The choice immediately fell on Gregory XI., the son of a French count. At 17 he had been made cardinal by his uncle, Clement VI. His contemporaries praised him for his moral purity, affability, and piety. He showed his national sympathies by appointing 18 Frenchmen cardinals and filling papal appointments in Italy with French officials. In English history he is known for his condemnation of Wyclif. His pontificate extended from 1370–1378.

With Gregory’s name is associated the re-establishment of the papacy in its proper home on the Tiber. For this change the pope deserves no credit. It was consummated against his will. He went to Rome, but was engaged in preparations to return to Avignon, when death suddenly overtook him.

That which principally moved Gregory to return to Rome was the flame of rebellion which filled Central and Northern Italy, and threatened the papacy with the permanent loss of its dominions. The election of an anti-pope was contemplated by the Italians, as a delegation from Rome informed him. One remedy was open to crush revolt on the banks of the Tiber. It was the presence of the pope himself.234234    Pastor, Hergenröther-Kirsch, Kirsch, Rückkehr, p. xvii; Mirot, p. viii, 7 sq., and other Catholic historians agree that this was Gregory’s chief motive. Mirot, pp. 10-18, ascribes to Gregory three controlling ideas—the reform of the Church, the re-establishment of peace with the East as a preliminary to a new crusade against the Turks, and the return of the papacy to Rome.

Gregory had carried on war for five years with the disturbing elements in Italy. In the northern parts of the peninsula, political anarchy swept from city to city. Soldiers of fortune, the most famous of whom was the Englishman, John Hawkwood, spread terror wherever they went. In Milan, the tyrant Bernabo was all-powerful and truculent. In Florence, the revolt was against the priesthood itself, and a red flag was unfurled, on which was inscribed the word "Liberty." A league of 80 cities was formed to abolish the pope’s secular power. The interdict hurled against the Florentines, March 31, 1376, for the part they were taking in the sedition, contained atrocious clauses, giving every one the right to plunder the city and to make slaves of her people wherever they might be found.235235    Baluz, I. 435, Gieseler, IV. 1, p. 90 sq., give the bull. Genoa and Pisa followed Florence and incurred a like papal malediction. The papal city, Bologna, was likewise stirred to rebellion in 1376 by its sister city on the Arno.

Florence fanned the flames of rebellion in Rome and the other papal towns, calling upon them to throw off the yoke of tyranny and return to their pristine liberty. What Italian, its manifesto proclaimed, "can endure the sight of so many noble cities, serving barbarians appointed by the pope to devour the goods of Italy?"236236    Quoted by Mirot, p. 48, and Gregorovius, VI. 466 sqq. But Rome remained true to the pope, as did Ancona. On the other hand, Perugia, Narni, Viterbo, and Ferrara, in 1375, raised the banner of rebellion until revolt threatened to spread over the whole of the papal patrimony. The bitter feeling against the French officials was intensified by a detachment of 10,000 Breton mercenaries which the pope sent to crush the revolution. They were under the leadership of Cardinal Robert of Geneva,—afterward Clement VII.,—an iron-hearted soldier and pitiless priest. It was as plain as day, Pastor says, that Gregory’s return was the only thing that could save Rome to the papacy.

To the urgency of these civil commotions were added the pure voices of prophetesses, which rose above the confused sounds of revolt and arms, the voices of Brigitta of Sweden and Catherine of Siena, both canonized saints.

Petrarch, who for nearly half a century had been urging the pope’s return, now, in his last days, replied to a French advocate who compared Rome to Jericho, the town to which the man was going who fell among thieves, and stigmatized Avignon as the sewer of the earth. He died 1374, without seeing the consuming desire of his life fulfilled. Guided by patriotic instincts, he had carried into his appeals the feeling of an Italian’s love of his country. Brigitta and Catherine made their appeals to Gregory on higher than national grounds, the utility of Christendom and the advantage of the kingdom of God. Emerging from visions and ecstatic moods of devotion, they called upon the Church’s chief bishop to be faithful to the obligations of his holy office.

On the death of her husband, St. Brigitta left her Scandinavian home and joined the pilgrims whose faces were set towards Rome in the Jubilee year of 1350.237237    Brigitta was born near Upsala, 1303. See Gardner, St. Catherine of Siena, p. 44 sqq. Döllinger has called attention to the failure of her prophecies to be fulfilled, Fables and Prophecies of the Middle Ages, trans. by Prof. Henry B. Smith, pp. 331, 398. Arriving in the papal city, the hope of seeing both the emperor and the pope once more in that centre of spiritual and imperial power moved her to the devotions of the saint and the messages of the seer. She spent her time in going from church to church and ministering to the sick, or sat clad in pilgrim’s garb, begging. Her revelations, which were many, brought upon her the resentment of the Romans. She saw Urban enter the city and, when he announced his purpose to return again to France, she raised her voice in prediction of his speedy death, in case he persisted in it. When Gregory ascended the throne, she warned him that he would die prematurely if he kept away from the residence divinely appointed for the supreme pontiff. But to her, also, it was not given to see the fulfilment of her desire. The worldliness of the popes stirred her to bitter complaints. Peter, she exclaimed, "was appointed pastor and minister of Christ’s sheep, but the pope scatters them and lacerates them. He is worse than Lucifer, more unjust than Pilate, more cruel than Judas. Peter ascended the throne in humility, Boniface in pride." To Gregory she wrote, "in thy curia arrogant pride rules, insatiable cupidity and execrable luxury. It is the very deepest gulf of horrible simony.238238    Vorago pessima horribilis symoniae, Brigitta’s Revelationes, as quoted by Gieseler, Haller, p. 88, and Gardner, p. 78 sq. Thou seizest and tearest from the Lord innumerable sheep." And yet she was worthy to be declared a saint. She died in 1373. Her daughter Catherine took the body to Sweden.

Catherine of Siena was more fortunate. She saw the papacy re-established in Italy, but she also witnessed the unhappy beginnings of the schism. This Tuscan prophetess, called by a sober Catholic historian, "one of the most wonderful appearances in history,"239239    Pastor, I. 103. wrote letter after letter to Gregory XI. whom she called "sweet Christ on earth," appealing to him and admonishing him to do his duty as the head of the Church, and to break away from his exile, which she represented as the source of all the evils with which Christendom was afflicted. "Be a true successor of St. Gregory," she wrote. "Love God. Do not bind yourself to your parents and your friends. Do not be held by the compulsion of your surroundings. Aid will come from God." His return to Rome and the starting of a new crusade against the Turks, she represented as necessary conditions of efficient measures to reform the Church. She bade him return "swiftly like a gentle lamb. Respond to the Holy Spirit who calls you. I tell you, Come, come, come, and do not wait for time, since time does not wait for you. Then you will do like the Lamb slain, whose place you hold, who, without weapons in his hands, slew our foes. Be manly in my sight, not fearful. Answer God, who calls you to hold and possess the seat of the glorious shepherd, St. Peter, whose vicar you are."240240    Scudder: Letters of St. Catherine, p. 132 sq.; Gardner, pp. 158, 176, etc.

Gregory received a letter purporting to come from a man of God, warning him of the poison which awaited him at Rome and appealing to his timidity and his love of his family. In a burning epistle, Catherine showed that only the devil or one of his emissaries could be the author of such a communication, and called upon him as a good shepherd to pay more honor to God and the well-being of his flock than to his own safety, for a good shepherd, if necessary, lays down his life for the sheep. The servants of God are not in the habit of giving up a spiritual act for fear of bodily harm.241241    Scudder, p. 182 sqq.

In 1376, Catherine saw Gregory face to face in Avignon, whither she went as a commissioner from Florence to arrange a peace between the city and the pope. The papal residence she found not a paradise of heavenly virtues, as she expected, but in it the stench of infernal vices.242242    This was Catherine’s deposition to her confessor. See Mirbt: Quellen, p. 154, in romana curia, ubi deberet paradisus esse caelicarum virtutum, inveniebat faetorem infernalium vitiarum. The immediate object of the mission was not accomplished; but her unselfish appeals confirmed Gregory in his decision to return to Rome—a decision he had already formed before Catherine’s visit, as the pope’s own last words indicate.243243    Mirot, p. 101, is quite sure Catherine had no infuence in bringing Gregory to his original decision. So also Pastor and Gardner.

As early as 1374, Gregory wrote to the emperor that it was his intention to re-establish the papacyon the Tiber.244244    Later biographers tell of a vow made by Gregory at the opening of his pontificate to return to Rome, but no contemporary writer has any reference to it, Mirot, p. 62. A member of the papal household, Bertrand Raffini, was sent ahead to prepare the Vatican for his reception. The journey was delayed. It was hard for the pope to get away from France. His departure was vigorously resisted by his relatives as well as by the French cardinals and the French king, who sent n delegation to Avignon, headed by his brother, the duke of Anjou, to dissuade Gregory from his purpose.

The journey was begun Sept. 13, 1376. Six cardinals were left behind at Avignon to take care of the papal business. The fleet which sailed from Marseilles was provided by Joanna of Naples, Peter IV. of Aragon, the Knights of St. John, and the Italian republics, but the vessels were not sufficient to carry the large party and the heavy cargo of personal baggage and supplies. The pope was obliged to rent a number of additional galleys and boats. Fernandez of Heredia, who had just been elected grand-master of the Knights of St. John, acted as admiral. A strong force of mercenaries was also required for protection by sea and at the frequent stopping places along the coast, and for service, if necessary, in Rome itself. The expenses of this peaceful Armada—vessels, mercenaries, and cargo—are carefully tabulated in the ledgers preserved in Avignon and the Vatican.245245    Kirsch, pp. 169-264, gives a copy of these ledger entries. One set contains the expenses of preparation, one set the expenses from Marseilles to Rome, and a third set, the expenses after arriving in Rome. Still another gives the espenses of repairing the Vatican—the wages of workmen and the prices paid for lumber, lead, iron, keys, etc. On the back of this last volume, which is in the Vatican, are written the words, "Expensae palatii apostolici, 1370-1380." The first entries of expense are for the large consignments of Burgundy and other wines which were to be used on the way, or stored away in the vaults of the Vatican.246246    Kirsch, pp. xviii, 171, Mirot, p. 112 sq., says, Les vins paraissent avoir tenu une grande place dans le rétour, et, à la veille du départ, on s’occupa tant d’assurer le service de la bouteillerie durant le voyage, que de garnir en prévision de l’arrivée, les caves du Vatican. The cost of the journey was heavy, and it should occasion no surprise that the pope was obliged to increase the funds at his control at this time by borrowing 30,000 gold florins from the king of Navarre.247247    Kirsch, p. 184. For other loans made by Gregory, e.g. 30,000 florins in 1374 and 60,000 in 1376, see Mirot, p. 36. The papal moneys, amounting to 85,713 florins, were carried from Avignon to Marseilles in twelve chests on pack horses and mules, and in boats. To this amount were added later 41,527 florins, or, in all, about $300,000 of our present coinage. The cost of the boats and mercenaries was very large, and several times the boatmen made increased demands for their services and craft to which the papal party was forced to accede. Raymund of Turenne, who was in command of the mercenaries, received 700 florins a month for his "own person," each captain with a banner 24 florins, and each lance with three men under him 18 florins monthly. Nor were the obligations of charity to be overlooked. Durandus Andreas, the papal eleemosynary, received 100 florins to be distributed in alms on the journey, and still another 100 to be distributed after the party’s arrival at Rome.248248    Kirsch, pp. xx, xxii, 179.

The elements seemed to war with the expedition. The fleet had no sooner set sail from Marseilles than a fierce storm arose which lasted several weeks and made the journey tedious. Urban V. was three days in reaching Genoa, Gregory sixteen. From Genoa, the vessels continued southwards the full distance to Ostia, anchorage being made every night off towns. From Ostia, Gregory went up the Tiber by boat, landing at Rome Dec. 16, 1377. The journey was made by night and the banks were lit up by torches, showing the feverish expectation of the people. Disembarking at St. Paul’s, the pope proceeded the next day, Jan. 17, to St. Peter’s, accompanied by rejoicing throngs. In the procession were bands of buffoons who added to the interest of the spectacle and afforded pastime to the populace. The pope abode in the Vatican and, from that time till this day, it has continued to be the papal residence.

Gregory survived his entrance into the Eternal City a single year. He spent the warmer months in Anagni, where he must have had mixed feelings as he recalled the experiences of his predecessor Boniface VIII., which had been the immediate cause of the transfer of the papal residence to French soil. The atrocities practised at Cesena by Cardinal Robert cast a dark shadow over the events of the year. An uprising of the inhabitants in consequence of the brutality of his Breton troops drove them and the cardinal to seek refuge in the citadel. Hawkwood was called in, and, in spite of the cardinal’s pacific assurances, the mercenaries fell upon the defenceless people and committed a butchery whose shocking details made the ears of all Italy to tingle. Four thousand were put to death, including friars in their churches, and still other thousands were sent forth naked and cold to find what refuge they could in neighboring towns. But, in spite of this barbarity, the pope’s authority was acknowledged by an enlarging circle of Italian commonwealths, including Bologna. Florence, even, sued for peace.

When Gregory died, March 27, 1378, he was only 47 years old. By his request, his body was laid to rest in S. Maria Nuova on the Forum. In his last hours, he is said to have regretted having given his ear to the voice of Catherine of Siena, and he admonished the cardinals not to listen to prophecies as he had done.249249    So Gerson, De examinatione doctrinarum, I. 16, as quoted by Gieseler, ut caverent ab hominibus sive viris sive mulieribus, sub specie religionis loquentibus visiones ... quia per tales ipse reductus. See Pastor, I. 113. Nevertheless, the monument erected to Gregory at Rome two hundred years later is true to history in representing Catherine of Siena walking at the pope’s side as if conducting him back to Rome. The Babylonian captivity of the papacy had lasted nearly three-quarters of a century. The wonder is that with the pope virtually a vassal of France, Western Christendom remained united. Scarcely anything in history seems more unnatural than the voluntary residence of the popes in the commonplace town on the Rhone remote from the burial-place of the Apostles and from the centres of European life.

CHAPTER II.

THE PAPAL SCHISM AND THE REFORMATORY COUNCILS. 1378–1449.

§ 12. Sources and Literature.

For §§ 13, 14. The Papal Schism.—Orig. documents in Raynaldus: Annal. Eccles.—C.E. Bulaeus, d. 1678: Hist. univer. Parisiensis, 6 vols., Paris, 1665–1673, vol. IV. —Van der Hardt, see § 15.—H. Denifle and A. Chatelain: Chartul. universitatis Paris., 4 vols., Paris, 1889–1897, vols. III., IV., especially the part headed de schismate, III. 552–639.—Theoderich of Nieheim (Niem): de Schismate inter papas et antipapas, Basel, 1566, ed. by Geo. Erler, Leipzig, 1890. Nieheim, b. near Paderborn, d. 1417, had exceptional opportunities for observing the progress of events. He was papal secretary—notarius sacri palatii — at Avignon, went with Gregory XI. to Rome, was there at the breaking out of the schism, and held official positions under three of the popes of the Roman line. In 1408 he joined the Livorno cardinals, and supported Alexander V. and John XXIII.—See H. V. Sauerland: D. Leben d. Dietrich von Nieheim nebst einer Uebersicht über dessen Schriften, Göttingen, 1876, and G. Erler: Dietr. von Nieheim, sein Leben u. s. Schriften, Leipzig, 1887. Adam of Usk: Chronicon, 1377–1421, 2d ed. by E. M. Thompson, with Engl. trans., London, 1904.—Martin de Alpartils: Chronica actitatorum temporibus Domini Benedicti XIII. ed. Fr. Ehrle, S. J., vol. I., Paderborn, 1906.—Wyclif’s writings, Lives of Boniface IX. and Innocent VII. in Muratori, III. 2, pp. 830 sqq., 968 sq.—P. Dupuy: Hist. du schisme 1378–1420, Paris, 1654.—P. L. Maimbourg (Jesuit): Hist. du grand schisme d’ Occident, Paris, 1678.—Ehrle: Neue Materialien zur Gesch. Peters von Luna (Benedict XIII.), in Archiv für Lit. und Kirchengesch., VI. 139 sqq., VII. 1 sqq.—L. Gayet: Le Grand schisme d’Occident, 2 vols., Florence and Berlin, 1889.—C. Locke: Age of the Great Western Schism, New York, 1896.—Paul Van Dyke: Age of the Renascence an Outline of the Hist. of the Papacy, 1377–1527, New York, 1897.—L. Salembier: Le grand schisme d’ Occident, Paris, 1900, 3d ed., 1907. Engl. trans., London, 1907.—N. Valois: La France et le grand schisme d’Occident, 4 vols., Paris, 1896–1901.—E. Goeller: König Sigismund’s Kirchenpolitik vom Tode Bonifaz IX. bis zur Berufung d. Konstanzer Concils, Freiburg, 1902.—M. Jansen: Papst Bonifatius IX. u. s. Beziehungen zur deutschen Kirche, Freiburg, 1904.—H. Bruce: The Age of Schism, New York, 1907.—E. J. Kitts: In the Days of the Councils. A Sketch of the Life and Times of Baldassare Cossa, John XXIII., London, 1908.—Hefele-Knöpfler: Conciliengesch., VI. 727–936.—Hergenröther-Kirsch, II. 807–833.—Gregorovius, VI. 494–611.—Pastor, I. 115–175.—Creighton, I. 66–200.

For §§ 15, 16. The Councils of Pisa and Constance.—Mansi: Concilia, XXVI., XXVII.—Labbaeus: Concilia, XI., XII. 1–259.—Hermann van der Hardt, Prof. of Hebrew and librarian at Helmstädt, d. 1746: Magnum oecumenicum Constantiense Concilium de universali ecclesiae reformatione, unione et fide, 6 vols., Frankfurt and Leipzig, 1696–1700. A monumental work, noted alike as a mine of historical materials and for its total lack of order in their arrangement. In addition to the acts and history of the Council of Constance, it gives many valuable contemporary documents, e.g. the De corrupto statu eccles., also entitled De ruina eccles., of Nicolas Of Clamanges; the De modis uniendi et reformandi eceles. in concilio universali; De difficultate reformationis;and Monita de necessitate reformationis Eccles. in capite et membris,—all probably by Nieheim; and a Hist. of the Council, by Dietrich Vrie, an Augustinian, finished at Constance, 1417. These are all in vol. I. Vol. II. contains Henry of Langenstein’s Consilium pacis: De unione ac reformatione ecclesiae, pp. 1–60; a Hist. of the c. of Pisa, pp. 61–156; Niehelm’s Invectiva in di, ffugientem Johannem XXIII. and de vita Johan. XXIII. usque ad fugam et carcerem ejus, pp. 296–459, etc. The vols. are enriched with valuable illustrations. Volume V. contains a stately array of pictures of the seals and escutcheons of the princes and prelates attending the council in person or by proxy, and the fourteen universities represented. The work also contains biogg. of D’Ailly, Gerson, Zarabella, etc.—Langenstein’s Consilium pacis is also given in Du Pin’s ed. of Gerson’s Works, ed. 1728, vol. II. 809–839. The tracts De difficultate reformationis and Monita de necessitate, etc., are also found in Da Pin, II. 867–875, 885–902, and ascribed to Peter D’Ailly. The tracts De reformatione and De eccles., concil. generalis, romani pontificis et cardinalium auctoritate, also ascribed to D’Ailly in Du Pin, II. 903–915, 925–960.—Ulrich von Richental: Das Concilium so ze Costenz gehalten worden, ed. by M. R. Buck, Tübingen, 1882.—Also Marmion: Gesch. d. Conc. von Konstanz nach Ul. von Richental, Constance, 1860. Richental, a resident of Constance, wrote from his own personal observation a quaint and highly interesting narrative. First publ., Augsburg, 1483. The MS. may still be seen in Constance.—*H. Finke: Forschungen u. Quellen zur Gesch. des Konst. Konzils, Paderborn, 1889. Contains the valuable diary of Card. Fillastre, etc.—*Finke: Actae conc. Constanciensis, 1410–1414, Münster, 1906.—J. L’enfant (Huguenot refugee in Berlin, d. 1728): Hist. du conc. de Constance, Amsterdam, 1714; also Hist. du conc. de Pisa, Amsterdam, 1724, Engl. trans., 2 vols., London, 1780.—B. Hübler Die Konstanzer Reformation u. d. Konkordate von 1418, Leipzig, 1867.—U. Lenz: Drei Traktate aus d. Schriftencyclus d. Konst. Konzils, Marburg, 1876. Discusses the authorship of the tracts De modis, De necessitate, and De difficultate, ascribing them to Nieheim.—B. Bess: Studien zur Gesch. d. Konst. Konzils, Marburg, 1891.—J. H. Wylie: The Counc. of Const. to the Death of J. Hus, London, 1900.—*J. B. Schwab: J. Gerson, Würzburg, 1868.—*P. Tschackert: Peter von Ailli, Gotha, 1877.—Döllinger-Friedrick: D. Papstthum, new ed., Munich, 1892, pp. 154-l64. F. X. Funk: Martin V. und d. Konzil von Konstanz in Abhandlungen u.Untersuchungen, 2 vols., Paderborn, 1897, I. 489–498. The works cited in § 1, especially, Creighton, I. 200–420, Hefele, VI. 992–1043, VII. 1–375, Pastor, I. 188–279, Valois, IV., Salembier, 250 sqq.; Eine Invektive gegen Gregor xii., Nov. 1, 1408, in Ztschr. f. Kirchengesch., 1907, p. 188 sq.

For § 17. The Council Of Basel.—Lives of Martin V. and Eugenius IV. in Mansi: XXVIII. 975 sqq., 1171 sqq.; in Muratori: Ital. Scripp., and Platina: Hist. of the Popes, Engl. trans., II. 200–235.—Mansi, XXIX.-XXXI.; Labbaeus, XII. 454—XIII. 1280. For C. of Siena, MANSI: XXVIII. 1058–1082.—Monum. concil. general. saec. XV., ed. by Palacky, 3 vols., Vienna, 1857–1896. Contains an account of C. of Siena by John Stojkoric of Ragusa, a delegate from the Univ. of Paris. John de Segovia: Hist. gest. gener. Basil. conc., new ed., Vienna, 1873. Segovia, a spaniard, was a prominent figure in the Basel Council and one of Felix V.’s cardinals. For his writings, see Haller’s Introd. Concil. Basiliense. Studien und Quellen zur Gesch. d. Concils von Basel, with Introd. ed. by T. Haller, 4 vols., Basel, 1896–1903. Aeneas Sylvius Piccolomini: Commentarii de gestis concil. Basil., written 1440 to justify Felix’s election, ed. by Fea, Rome, 1823; also Hist. Frederici III., trans. by T. Ilgen, 2 vols., Leipzig. No date. Aeneas, afterward Pius II., "did not say and think the same thing at all times," says Haller, Introd., p. 12.—See Voigt: Enea Sylvio de’ Piccolomini, etc., 3 vols., Berlin, 1856–1863.—Infessura: Diario della cittá di Roma, Rome, 1890, PP. 22–42.—F. P. Abert: Eugenius IV., Mainz, 1884.—Wattenbach: Röm Papstthum, pp. 271–284.—Hefele-Knöpfler, VII. 375–849. Döllinger-Friedrich: Papstthum, 160 sqq.—Creighton, II. 3–273.—Pastor, I. 209—306.—Gregorovius, VI.-VII.—M. G. Perouse: Louis Aleman et la fin du grand schisme, Paris, 1805. A detailed account of the C. of Basel.

For § 18. The Ferrara-Florence Council.—Abram Of Crete: Historia, in Latin trans., Rome, 1521; the Greek original by order of Gregory XIII., Rome, 1577; new Latin trans., Rome, 1612.—Sylv. Syropulos: Vera Hist. unionis non verae inter Graecos et Latinos, ed. by Creyghton, Haag, 1660.—Mansi, XXXI., contains the documents collected by Mansi himself, and also the Acts published by Horatius Justinian, XXXI. 1355–1711, from a Vatican MS., 1638. The Greek and Latin texts are printed side by side. —Labbaeus and Harduin also give Justinian’s Acts and their own collections. —T. Frommann: Krit. Beiträge zur Gesch. d. florentinischen Kircheneinigung, Hale, 1872.—Knöpfler, art. Ferrara-Florenz, in Wetzer-Welte: IV. 1363–1380. Tschackert, art. Ferrara-Florenz, in Herzog, VI. 46 48.—Döllinger-Friedrich: Papstthum, pp. 166–171.

§ 13. The Schism Begun. 1378.

The death of Gregory XI. was followed by the schism of Western Christendom, which lasted forty years, and proved to be a greater misfortune for the Church than the Avignon captivity. Anti-popes the Church had had, enough of them since the days of Gregory VII., from Wibert of Ravenna chosen by the will of Henry IV. to the feeble Peter of Corbara, elected under Lewis the Bavarian. Now, two lines of popes, each elected by a college of cardinals, reigned, the one at Rome, the other in Avignon, and both claiming to be in the legitimate succession from St. Peter.

Gregory XI. foresaw the confusion that was likely to follow at his death, and sought to provide against the catastrophe of a disputed election, and probably also to insure the choice of a French pope, by pronouncing in advance an election valid, no matter where the conclave might be held. The rule that the conclave should convene in the locality where the pontiff died, was thus set aside. Gregory knew well the passionate feeling in Rome against the return of the papacy to the banks of the Rhone. A clash was almost inevitable. While the pope lay a-dying, the cardinals at several sittings attempted to agree upon his successor, but failed.

On April 7, 1378, ten days after Gregory’s death, the conclave met in the Vatican, and the next day elected the Neapolitan, Bartholomew Prignano, archbishop of Bari. Of the sixteen cardinals present, four were Italians, eleven Frenchmen, and one Spaniard, Peter de Luna, who later became famous as Benedict XIII. The French party was weakened by the absence of the six cardinals, left behind at Avignon, and still another was absent. Of the Italians, two were Romans, Tebaldeschi, an old man, and Giacomo Orsini, the youngest member of the college. The election of an Italian not a member of the curia was due to factions which divided the French and to the compulsive attitude of the Roman populace, which insisted upon an Italian for pope.

The French cardinals were unable to agree upon a candidate from their own number. One of the two parties into which they were split, the Limousin party, to which Gregory XI. and his predecessors had belonged, numbered six cardinals. The Italian mob outside the Vatican was as much a factor in the situation as the divisions in the conclave itself. A scene of wild and unrestrained turbulence prevailed in the square of St. Peter’s. The crowd pressed its way into the very spaces of the Vatican, and with difficulty a clearing was made for the entrance of all the cardinals. To prevent the exit of the cardinals, the Banderisi, or captains of the thirteen districts into which Rome was divided, had taken possession of the city and closed the gates. The mob, determined to keep the papacy on the Tiber, filled the air with angry shouts and threats. "We will have a Roman for pope or at least an ltalian."—Romano, romano, lo volemo, o almanco Italiano was the cry. On the first night soldiers clashed their spears in the room underneath the chamber where the conclave was met, and even thrust them through the ceiling. A fire of combustibles was lighted under the window. The next morning, as their excellencies were saying the mass of the Holy Spirit and engaged in other devotions, the noises became louder and more menacing. One cardinal, d’Aigrefeuille, whispered to Orsini, "better elect the devil than die."

It was under such circumstances that the archbishop of Bari was chosen. After the choice had been made, and while they were waiting to get the archbishop’s consent, six of the cardinals dined together and seemed to be in good spirits. But the mob’s impatience to know what had been done would brook no delay, and Orsini, appearing at the window, cried out "go to St. Peter." This was mistaken for an announcement that old Tebaldeschi, cardinal of St. Peter’s, had been chosen, and a rush was made for the cardinal’s palace to loot it, as the custom was when a cardinal was elected pope. The crowd surged through the Vatican and into the room where the cardinals had been meeting and, as Valois puts it, "the pillage of the conclave had begun." To pacify the mob, two of the cardinals, half beside themselves with fright, pointed to Tebaldeschi, set him up on a chair, placed a white mitre on his head, and threw a red cloak over his shoulders. The old man tried to indicate that he was not the right person. But the throngs continued to bend down before him in obeisance for several hours, till it became known that the successful candidate was Prignano.

In the meantime the rest of the cardinals forsook the building and sought refuge, some within the walls of St. Angelo, and four by flight beyond the walls of the city. The real pope was waiting for recognition while the members of the electing college were fled. But by the next day the cardinals had sufficiently regained their self-possession to assemble again,—all except the four who had put the city walls behind them,—and Cardinal Peter de Vergne, using the customary formula, proclaimed to the crowd through the window: "I announce to you a great joy. You have a pope, and he calls himself Urban VI." The new pontiff was crowned on April 18, in front of St. Peter’s, by Cardinal Orsini.

The archbishop had enjoyed the confidence of Gregory XI. He enjoyed a reputation for austere morals and strict conformity to the rules of fasting and other observances enjoined by the Church. He wore a hair shirt, and was accustomed to retire with the Bible in his hand. At the moment of his election no doubt was expressed as to its validity. Nieheim, who was in the city at the time, declared that Urban was canonical pope-elect. "This is the truth," he wrote, "and no one can honestly deny it."250250    Erler’s ed., p. 16. All the cardinals in Rome yielded Urban submission, and in a letter dated May 8 they announced to the emperor and all Christians the election and coronation. The cardinals at Avignon wrote acknowledging him, and ordered the keys to the castle of St. Angelo placed in his hands. It is probable that no one would have thought of denying Urban’s rights if the pope had removed to Avignon, or otherwise yielded to the demands of the French members of the curia. His failure to go to France, Urban declared to be the cause of the opposition to him.

Seldom has so fine an opportunity been offered to do a worthy thing and to win a great name as was offered to Urban VI. It was the opportunity to put an end to the disturbance in the Church by maintaining the residence of the papacy in its ancient seat, and restoring to it the dignity which it had lost by its long exile. Urban, however, was not equal to the occasion, and made an utter failure. He violated all the laws of common prudence and tact. His head seemed to be completely turned. He estranged and insulted his cardinals. He might have made provision for a body of warm supporters by the prompt appointment of new members to the college, but even this measure he failed to take till it was too late. The French king, it is true, was bent upon having the papacy return to French soil, and controlled the French cardinals. But a pope of ordinary shrewdness was in position to foil the king. This quality Urban VI. lacked, and the sacred college, stung by his insults, came to regard him as an intruder in St. Peter’s chair.

In his concern for right living, Urban early took occasion in a public allocution to reprimand the cardinals for their worldliness and for living away from their sees. He forbade their holding more than a single appointment and accepting gifts from princes. To their demand that Avignon continue to be the seat of the papacy, Urban brusquely told them that Rome and the papacy were joined together, and he would not separate them. As the papacy belonged not to France but to the whole world, he would distribute the promotions to the sacred college among the nations.

Incensed at the attack made upon their habits and perquisites, and upon their national sympathies, the French cardinals, giving the heat of the city as the pretext, removed one by one to Anagni, while Urban took up his summer residence at Tivoli. His Italian colleagues followed him, but they also went over to the French. No pope had ever been left more alone. Forming a compact body, the French members of the curia demanded the pope’s resignation. The Italians, who at first proposed the calling of a council, acquiesced. The French seceders then issued a declaration, dated Aug. 2, in which Urban was denounced as an apostate, and his election declared void in view of the duress under which it was accomplished.251251    The document is given by Hefele, VI. 730-734. It asserted that the cardinals at the time were in mortal terror from the Romans. Now that he would not resign, they anathematized him. Urban replied in a document called the Factum, insisting upon the validity of his election. Retiring to Fondi, in Neapolitan territory, the French cardinals proceeded to a new eIection, Sept. 20, 1378, the choice falling upon one of their number, Robert of Geneva, the son of Amadeus, count of Geneva. He was one of those who, four months before, had pointed out Tebaldeschi to the Roman mob. The three Italian cardinals, though they did not actively participate in the election, offered no resistance. Urban is said to have received the news with tears, and to have expressed regret for his untactful and self-willed course. Perhaps he recalled the fate of his fellow-Neapolitan, Peter of Murrhone, whose lack of worldly wisdom a hundred years before had lost him the papal crown. To establish himself on the papal throne, he appointed 29 cardinals. But it was too late to prevent the schism which Gregory XI. had feared and a wise ruler would have averted.

Robert of Geneva, at the time of his election 36 years old, came to the papal honor with his hands red from the bloody massacre of Cesena. He had the reputation of being a politician and a fast liver. He was consecrated Oct. 31 under the name of Clement VII. It was a foregone conclusion that he would remove the papal seat back to Avignon. He first attempted to overthrow Urban on his own soil, but the attempt failed. Rome resisted, and the castle of St. Angelo, which was in the hands of his supporters, he lost, but not until its venerable walls were demolished, so that at a later time the very goats clambered over the stones. He secured the support of Joanna, and Louis of Anjou whom she had chosen as the heir of her kingdom, but the war which broke out between Urban and Naples fell out to Urban’s advantage. The duke of Anjou was deposed, and Charles of Durazzo, of the royal house of Hungary, Joanna’s natural heir, appointed as his successor. Joanna herself fell into Charles’ hands and was executed, 1882, on the charge of having murdered her first husband. The duke of Brunswick was her fourth marital attempt. Clement VII. bestowed upon the duke of Anjou parts of the State of the Church and the high-sounding but empty title of duke of Adria. A portion of Urban’s reward for crowning Charles, 1881, was the lordship over Capria, Amalfi, Fondi, and other localities, which he bestowed upon his unprincipled and worthless nephew, Francis Prignano. In the war over Naples, the pope had made free use of the treasure of the Roman churches.

Clement’s cause in Italy was lost, and there was nothing for him to do but to fall back upon his supporter, Charles V. He returned to France by way of the sea and Marseilles.

Thus the schism was completed, and Western Europe had the spectacle of two popes elected by the same college of cardinals without a dissenting voice, and each making full claims to the prerogative of the supreme pontiff of the Christian world. Each pope fulminated the severest judgments of heaven against the other. The nations of Europe and its universities were divided in their allegiance or, as it was called, their "obedience." The University of Paris, at first neutral, declared in favor of Robert of Geneva,252252    The full documentary accounts are given in the Chartularium, III. 561-575. Valois gives a very detailed treatment of the allegiance rendered to the two popes, especially in vol. II. Even in Sweden and Ireland Clement had some support, but England, in part owing to her wars with France, gave undivided submission to Urban. as did Savoy, the kingdoms of Spain, Scotland, and parts of Germany. England, Sweden, and the larger part of Italy supported Urban. The German emperor, Charles IV., was about to take the same side when he died, Nov. 29, 1378. Urban also had the vigorous support of Catherine of Siena. Hearing of the election which had taken place at Fondi she wrote to Urban: "I have heard that those devils in human form have resorted to an election. They have chosen not a vicar of Christ, but an anti-Christ. Never will I cease, dear father, to look upon you as Christ’s true vicar on earth."

The papal schism which Pastor has called "the greatest misfortune that could be thought of for the Church"253253    Pastor, p. 143 sqq., quotes a German poem which strikingly sets forth the evils of the schism, and Pastor himself says that nothing did so much as the schism to prepare the way for the defection from the papacy in the sixteenth century. soon began to call forth indignant protests from the best men of the time. Western Christendom had never known such a scandal. The seamless coat of Christ was rent in twain, and Solomon’s words could no longer be applied, "My dove is but One."254254    Adam of Usk, p. 218, and other writers. The divine claims of the papacy itself began to be matter of doubt. Writers like Wyclif made demands upon the pope to return to Apostolic simplicity of manners in sharp language such as no one had ever dared to use before. Many sees had two incumbents; abbeys, two abbots; parishes, two priests. The maintenance of two popes involved an increased financial burden, and both papal courts added to the old practices new inventions to extract revenue. Clement VII.’s agents went everywhere, striving to win support for his obedience, and the nations, taking advantage of the situation, magnified their authority to the detriment of the papal power.

The following is a list of the popes of the Roman and Avignon lines, and the Pisan line whose legitimacy has now no advocates in the Roman communion.

Roman Line

Urban VI., 1378–1389.

Boniface IX., 1389–1404.

Innocent VII., 1404–1406.

Gregory XII., 1406–1415.

Deposed at Pisa, 1409. d. 1424 Resigned

at Constance, 1415, d. 1417.

Avignon Line

Clement VII., 1378–1394.

Benedict XIII., 1394–1409.

Deposed at Pisa, 1409, and at

Constance, 1417,.

Pisan Line

Alexander V., 1409–1410.

John XXIII., 1410–1415.

Martin V., 1417–1431.

Acknowledged by the whole Latin Church.

The question of the legitimacy of Urban VI.’s pontificate is still a matter of warm dispute. As neither pope nor council has given a decision on the question, Catholic scholars feel no constraint in discussing it. French writers have been inclined to leave the matter open. This was the case with Bossuet, Mansi, Martene, as it is with modern French writers. Valois hesitatingly, Salembier positively, decides for Urban. Historians, not moved by French sympathies, pronounce strongly in favor of the Roman line, as do Hefele, Funk, Hergenröther-Kirsch, Denifle, and Pastor. The formal recognition of Urban by all the cardinals and their official announcement of his election to the princes would seem to put the validity of his election beyond doubt. On the other hand, the declaratio sent forth by the cardinals nearly four months after Urban’s election affirms that the cardinals were in fear of their lives when they voted; and according to the theory of the canon law, constraint invalidates an election as constraint invalidated Pascal II.’s concession to Henry V. It was the intention of the cardinals, as they affirm, to elect one of their number, till the tumult became so violent and threatening that to protect themselves they precipitately elected Prignano. They state that the people had even filled the air with the cry, "Let them be killed," moriantur. A panic prevailed. When the tumult abated, the cardinals sat down to dine, and after dinner were about to proceed to a re-election, as they say, when the tumult again became threatening, and the doors of the room where they were sitting were broken open, so that they were forced to flee for their lives.

To this testimony were added the depositions of individual cardinals later. Had Prignano proved complaisant to the wishes of the French party, there is no reason to suspect that the validity of his election would ever have been disputed. Up to the time when the vote was cast for Urban, the cardinals seem not to have been under duress from fear, but to have acted freely. After the vote had been cast, they felt their lives were in danger.255255    This is the judgment of Pastor, I. 119. If the cardinals had proceeded to a second vote, as Valois has said, Urban might have been elected. The constant communications which passed between Charles V. and the French party at Anagni show him to have been a leading factor in the proceedings which followed and the reconvening of the conclave which elected Robert of Geneva.256256    Valois, I. 144, devotes much space to the part Charles took in preparing the way for the schism, and declares he was responsible for the part France took in it and in rejecting Urban VI. Hergenröther says all the good he can of the Roman line and all the evil he can of the Avignon line. Clement he pronounces a man of elastic conscience, and Benedict XIII., his successor, as always ready in words for the greatest sacrifices, and farthest from them when it came to deeds.

On the other hand, the same body of cardinals which elected Urban deposed him, and, in their capacity as princes of the Church, unanimously chose Robert as his successor. The question of the authority of the sacred college to exercise this prerogative is still a matter of doubt. It received the abdication of Coelestine V. and elected a successor to him while he was still living. In that case, however, the papal throne became vacant by the supreme act of the pope himself.

§ 14. Further Progress of the Schism. 1378–1409.

The territory of Naples remained the chief theatre of the conflict between the papal rivals, Louis of Anjou, who had the support of Clement VII., continuing to assert his claim to the throne. In 1383 Urban secretly left Rome for Naples, but was there held in virtual confinement till he had granted Charles of Durazzo’s demands. He then retired to Nocera, which belonged to his nephew. The measures taken by the cardinals at Anagni had taught him no lesson. His insane severity and self-will continued, and brought him into the danger of losing the papal crown. Six of his cardinals entered into a conspiracy to dethrone him, or at least to make him subservient to the curia. The plot was discovered, and Urban launched the interdict against Naples, whose king was supposed to have been a party to it. The offending cardinals were imprisoned in an old cistern, and afterwards subjected to the torture.257257    Nieheim, p. 91. See also pp. 103 sq., 110, for the further treatment of the cardinals, which was worthy of Pharaoh. Forced to give up the town and to take refuge in the fortress, the relentless pontiff is said to have gone three or four times daily to the window, and, with candles burning and to the sound of a bell, to have solemnly pronounced the formula of excommunication against the besieging troops. Allowed to depart, and proceeding with the members of his household across the country, Urban reached Trani and embarked on a Genoese ship which finally landed him at Genoa, 1386. On the way, the crew threatened to carry him to Avignon, and had to be bought off by the unfortunate pontiff. Was ever a ruler in a worse predicament, beating about on the Mediterranean, than Urban! Five of the cardinals who had been dragged along in chains now met with a cruel end. Adam Aston, the English cardinal, Urban had released at the request of the English king. But towards the rest of the alleged conspirators he showed the heartless relentlessness of a tyrant. The chronicler Nieheim, who was with the pope at Naples and Nocera, declares that his heart was harder than granite. Different rumors were afloat concerning the death the prelates were subjected to, one stating they had been thrown into the sea, another that they had their heads cut off with an axe; another report ran that their bodies were buried in a stable after being covered with lime and then burnt.

In the meantime, two of the prelates upon whom Urban had conferred the red hat, both Italians, went over to Clement VII. and were graciously received.

Breaking away from Genoa, Urban went by way of Lucca to Perugia, and then with another army started off for Naples. Charles of Durazzo, who had been called to the throne of Hungary and murdered in 1386, was succeeded by his young son Ladislaus (1386~1414), but his claim was contested by the heir of Louis of Anjou (d. 1384). The pontiff got no farther than Ferentino, and turning back was carried in a carriage to Rome, where he again entered the Vatican, a few months before his death, Oct. 15, 1389.

Bartholomew Prignano had disappointed every expectation. He was his own worst enemy. He was wholly lacking in common prudence and the spirit of conciliation. It is to his credit that, as Nieheim urges, he never made ecclesiastical preferment the object of sale. Whatever were his virtues before he received the tiara, he had as pope shown himself in every instance utterly unfit for the responsibilities of a ruler.

Clement VII., who arrived in Avignon in June, 1379, stooped before the kings of France, Charles V. (d. 1380) and Charles VI. He was diplomatic and versatile where his rival was impolitic and intractable. He knew how to entertain at his table with elegance.258258    Nieheim, p. 124. The distinguished preacher, Vincent Ferrer, gave him his support. Among the new cardinals he appointed was the young prince of Luxemburg, who enjoyed a great reputation for saintliness. At the prince’s death, in 1387, miracles were said to be performed at his tomb, a circumstance which seemed to favor the claims of the Avignon pope.

Clement’s embassy to Bohemia for a while had hopes of securing a favorable declaration from the Bohemian king, Wenzil, but was disappointed.259259    Valois, II. 282, 299 sqq. The national pride of the French was Clement’s chief dependence, and for the king’s support he was obliged to pay a humiliating price by granting the royal demands to bestow ecclesiastical offices and tax Church property. As a means of healing the schism, Clement proposed a general council, promising, in case it decided in his favor, to recognize Urban as leading cardinal. The first schismatic pope died suddenly of apoplexy, Sept. 16, 1394, having outlived Urban VI. five years.

Boniface IX., who succeeded Urban VI., was, like him, a Neapolitan, and only thirty-five at the time of his election. He was a man of fine presence, and understood the art of ruling, but lacked the culture of the schools, and could not even write, and was poor at saying the services.260260    Nesciens scribere etiam male cantabat, Nieheim, p. 130. He had the satisfaction of seeing the kingdom of Naples yield to the Roman obedience. He also secured from the city of Rome full submission, and the document, by which it surrendered to him its republican liberties, remained for centuries the foundation of the relations of the municipality to the Apostolic See.261261    Gregorovius, VI. 647 sqq.; Valois, II. 162, 166 sqq. Bologna, Perugia, Viterbo, and other towns of Italy which had acknowledged Clement, were brought into submission to him, so that before his death the entire peninsula was under his obedience except Genoa, which Charles VI. had reduced. All men’s eyes began again to turn to Rome.

In 1390, the Jubilee Year which Urban VI. had appointed attracted streams of pilgrims to Rome from Germany, Hungary, Bohemia, Poland, and England and other lands, as did also the Jubilee of 1400, commemorating the close of one and the beginning of another century. If Rome profited by these celebrations, Boniface also made in other ways the most of his opportunity, and his agents throughout Christendom returned with the large sums which they had realized from the sale of dispensations and indulgences. Boniface left behind him a reputation for avarice and freedom in the sale of ecclesiastical concessions.262262    Erat insatiabilis vorago et in avaricia nullus similis ei, Nieheim, p. 119. Nieheim, to be sure, was disappointed in not receiving office under Boniface, but other contemporaries say the same thing. Adam of Usk, p. 269, states that, "though gorged with simony, Boniface to his dying day was never filled." He was also notorious for his nepotism, enriching his brothers Andrew and John and other relatives with offices and wealth. Such offences, however, the Romans could easily overlook in view of the growing regard throughout Europe for the Roman line of popes and the waning influence of the Avignon line.

The preponderant influence of Ladislaus secured the election of still another Neapolitan, Cardinal Cosimo dei Migliorati, who took the name of Innocent VII. He also was only thirty-five years old at the time of his elevation to the papal chair, a doctor of both laws and expert in the management of affairs. The members of the conclave, before proceeding to an election, signed a document whereby each bound himself, if elected pope, to do all in his power to put an end to the schism. The English chronicler, Adam of Usk, who was present at the coronation, concludes the graphic description he gives of the ceremonies263263    Chronicle, p. 262 sqq. This is one of the most full and interesting accounts extant of the coronation of a mediaeval pope. Usk describes the conclave as well as the coronation, and he mentions expressly how, on his way from St. Peter’s to the Lateran, Innocent purposely turned aside from St. Clement’s, near which stood the bust of Pope Joan and her son. with a lament over the desolate condition of the Roman city. How much is Rome to be pitied! he exclaims, "for, once thronged with princes and their palaces, she is now a place of hovels, thieves, wolves, worms, full of desert spots and laid waste by her own citizens who rend each other in pieces. Once her empire devoured the world with the sword, and now her priesthood devours it with mummery. Hence the lines —

" ’The Roman bites at all, and those he cannot bite, he hates.

Of rich he hears the call, but ’gainst the poor he shuts his gates.’ "

Following the example of his two predecessors, Innocent excommunicated the Avignon anti-pope and his cardinals, putting them into the same list with heretics, pirates, and brigands. In revenge for his nephew’s cold-blooded slaughter of eleven of the chief men of the city, whose bodies he threw out of a window, he was driven from Rome, and after great hardships he reached Viterbo. But the Romans soon found Innocent’s rule preferable to the rule of Ladislaus, king of Naples and papal protector, and he was recalled, the nephew whose hands were reeking with blood making public entry into the Vatican with his uncle.

The last pope of the Roman line was Gregory XII. Angelo Correr, cardinal of St. Marks, Venice, elected 1406, was surpassed in tenacity as well as ability by the last of the Avignon popes, elected 1394, and better known as Peter de Luna of Aragon, one of the cardinals who joined in the revolt against Urban VI. and in the election of Clement VII. at Fondi.

Under these two pontiffs the controversy over the schism grew more and more acute and the scandal more and more intolerable. The nations of Western Europe were weary of the open and flagitious traffic in benefices and other ecclesiastical privileges, the fulminations of one pope against the other, and the division of sees and parishes between rival claimants. The University of Paris took the leading part in agitating remedial measures, and in the end the matter was taken wholly out of the hands of the two popes. The cardinals stepped into the foreground and, in the face of all canonical precedent, took the course which ultimately resulted in the reunion of the Church under one head.

Before Gregory’s election, the Roman cardinals, numbering fourteen, again entered into a compact stipulating that the successful candidate should by all means put an end to the schism, even, if necessary, by the abdication of his office. Gregory was fourscore at the time, and the chief consideration which weighed in his choice was that in men arrived at his age ambition usually runs low, and that Gregory would be more ready to deny himself for the good of the Church than a younger man.

Peter de Luna, one of the most vigorous personalities who have ever claimed the papal dignity, had the spirit and much of the ability of Hildebrand and his namesake, Gregory IX. But it was his bad star to be elected in the Avignon and not in the Roman succession. Had he been in the Roman line, he would probably have made his mark among the great ruling pontiffs. His nationality also was against him. The French had little heart in supporting a Spaniard and, at Clement’s death, the relations between the French king and the Avignon pope at once lost their cordiality. Peter was energetic of mind and in action, a shrewd observer, magnified his office, and never yielded an inch in the matter of papal prerogative. Through the administrations of three Roman pontiffs, he held on firmly to his office, outlived the two Reformatory councils of Pisa and Constance, and yielded not up this mortal flesh till the close of the first quarter of the fifteenth century, and was still asserting his claims and maintaining the dignity of pope at the time of his death. Before his election, he likewise entered into a solemn compact with his cardinals, promising to bend every effort to heal the unholy schism, even if the price were his own abdication.

The professions of both popes were in the right direction. They were all that could be desired, and all that remained was for either of them or for both of them to resign and make free room for a new candidate. The problem would thus have been easily settled, and succeeding generations might have canonized both pontiffs for their voluntary self-abnegation. But it took ten years to bring Gregory to this state of mind, and then almost the last vestige of power had been taken from him. Peter de Luna never yielded.

Undoubtedly, at the time of the election of Gregory XII., the papacy was passing through one of the grave crises in its history. There were not wanting men who said, like Langenstein, vice-chancellor of the University of Paris, that perhaps it was God’s purpose that there should be two popes indefinitely, even as David’s kingdom was divided under two sovereigns.264264    Du Pin, II. 821. Yea, and there were men who argued publicly that it made little difference how many there were, two or three, or ten or twelve, or as many as there were nations.265265    Letter of the Univ. of Paris to Clement VII., dated July 17, 1394. Chartul. III. 633, nihil omnino curandum quot papae sint, et non modo duos aut tres, sed decem aut duodecim immo et singulis regnis singulos prefici posse, etc.

At his first consistory Gregory made a good beginning, when he asserted that, for the sake of the good cause of securing a united Christendom, he was willing to travel by land or by sea, by land, if necessary, with a pilgrim’s staff, by sea in a fishing smack, in order to come to an agreement with Benedict. He wrote to his rival on the Rhone, declaring that, like the woman who was ready to renounce her child rather than see it cut asunder, so each of them should be willing to cede his authority rather than be responsible for the continuance of the schism. He laid his hand on the New Testament and quoted the words that "he who exalteth himself shall be abased, and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted." He promised to abdicate, if Benedict would do the same, that the cardinals of both lines might unite together in a new election; and he further promised not to add to the number of his cardinals, except to keep the number equal to the number of the Avignon college.

Benedict’s reply was shrewd, if not equally demonstrative. He, too, lamented the schism, which he pronounced detestable, wretched, and dreadful,266266    Haec execranda et detestanda, diraque divisio, Nieheim, pp. 209-213, gives both letters entire. but gently setting aside Gregory’s blunt proposal, suggested as the best resort the via discussionis, or the path of discussion, and that the cardinals of both lines should meet together, talk the matter over, and see what should be done, and then, if necessary, one or both popes might abdicate. Both popes in their communications called themselves "servant of the servants of God." Gregory addressed Benedict as "Peter de Luna, whom some peoples in this wretched—miserabili — schism call Benedict XIII."; and Benedict addressed the pope on the Tiber as "Angelus Correr, whom some, adhering to him in this most destructive—pernicioso — schism, call Gregory XII." "We are both old men," wrote Benedict. "Time is short; hasten, and do not delay in this good cause. Let us both embrace the ways of salvation and peace."

Nothing could have been finer, but it was quickly felt that while both popes expressed themselves as ready to abdicate, positive as the professions of both were, each wanted to have the advantage when the time came for the election of the new pontiff to rule over the reunited Church.

As early as 1381, the University of Paris appealed to the king of France to insist upon the calling of a general council as the way to terminate the schism. But the duke of Anjou had the spokesman of the university, Jean Ronce, imprisoned, and the university was commanded to keep silence on the subject.

Prior to this appeal, two individuals had suggested the same idea, Konrad of Gelnhausen, and Henry of Langenstein, otherwise known as Henry of Hassia. Konrad, who wrote in 1380,267267    Gelnhausen’s tract, De congregando concilio in tempore schismatis, in Martène-Durand, Thesaurus nov. anecd., II. 1200-1226. and whose views led straight on to the theory of the supreme authority of councils,268268    So Pastor, I. 186. See also, Schwab, Gerson, p. 124 sqq. affirmed that there were two heads of the Church, and that Christ never fails it, even though the earthly head may fail by death or error. The Church is not the pope and the cardinals, but the body of the faithful, and this body gets its inner life directly from Christ, and is so far infallible. In this way he answers those who were forever declaring that in the absence of the pope’s call there would be no council, even if all the prelates were assembled, but only a conventicle.

In more emphatic terms, Henry of Langenstein, in 1381, justified the calling of a council without the pope’s intervention.269269    Consilium pacis de unione et reformatione ecclesiae in concilio universali quaerenda, Van der Hardt, II. 3-60, and Du Pin, Opp. Gerson, II. 810 The institution of the papacy by Christ, he declared, did not involve the idea that the action of the pope was always necessary, either in originating or consenting to legislation. The Church might have instituted the papacy, even had Christ not appointed it. If the cardinals should elect a pontiff not agreeable to the Church, the Church might set their choice aside. The validity of a council did not depend upon the summons or the ratification of a pope. Secular princes might call such a synod. A general council, as the representative of the entire Church, is above the cardinals, yea, above the pope himself. Such a council cannot err, but the cardinals and the pope may err.

The views of Langenstein, vice-chancellor of the University of Paris, represented the views of the faculties of that institution. They were afterwards advocated by John Gerson, one of the most influential men of his century, and one of the most honored of all the centuries. Among those who took the opposite view was the English Dominican and confessor of Benedict XIII., John Hayton. The University of Paris he called "a daughter of Satan, mother of error, sower of sedition, and the pope’s defamer, "and declared the pope was to be forced by no human tribunal, but to follow God and his own conscience.

In 1394, the University of Paris proposed three methods of healing the schism270270    Chartul III. p. 608 sqq. which became the platform over which the issue was afterwards discussed, namely, the via cessionis, or the abdication of both popes, the via compromissi, an adjudication of the claims of both by a commission, and the via synodi, or the convention of a general council to which the settlement of the whole matter should be left. No act in the whole history of this famous literary institution has given it wider fame than this proposal, coupled with the activity it displayed to bring the schism to a close. The method preferred by its faculties was the first, the abdication of both popes, which it regarded as the simplest remedy. It was suggested that the new election, after the popes had abdicated, should be consummated by the cardinals in office at the time of Gregory XI.’s decease, 1378, and still surviving, or by a union of the cardinals of both obediences.

The last method, settlement by a general council, which the university regarded as offering the most difficulty, it justified on the ground that the pope is subject to the Church as Christ was subject to his mother and Joseph. The authority of such a council lay in its constitution according to Christ’s words, "where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." Its membership should consist of doctors of theology and the laws taken from the older universities, and deputies of the orders, as well as bishops, many of whom were uneducated,—illiterati.271271    Chartul., I. 620.

Clement VII. showed his displeasure with the university by forbidding its further intermeddling, and by condemning his cardinals who, without his permission, had met and recommended him to adopt one of the three ways. At Clement’s death the king of France called upon the Avignon college to postpone the election of a successor, but, surmising the contents of the letter, they prudently left it unopened until they had chosen Benedict XIII. Benedict at once manifested the warmest zeal in the healing of the schism, and elaborated his plan for meeting with Boniface IX., and coming to some agreement with him. These friendly propositions were offset by a summons from the king’s delegates, calling upon the two pontiffs to abdicate, and all but two of the Avignon cardinals favored the measure. But Benedict declared that such a course would seem to imply constraint, and issued a bull against it.

The two parties continued to express deep concern for the healing of the schism, but neither would yield. Benedict gained the support of the University of Toulouse, and strengthened himself by the promotion of Peter d’Ailly, chancellor of the University of Paris, to the episcopate. The famous inquisitor, Nicolas Eymericus, also one of his cardinals, was a firm advocate of Benedict’s divine claims. The difficulties were increased by the wavering course of Charles VI., 1380–1412, a man of feeble mind, and twice afflicted with insanity, whose brothers and uncles divided the rule of the kingdom amongst themselves. French councils attempted to decide upon a course for the nation to pursue, and a third council, meeting in Paris, 1398, and consisting of 11 archbishops and 60 bishops, all theretofore supporters of the Avignon pope, decided upon the so-called subtraction of obedience from Benedict. In spite of these discouragements, Benedict continued loyal to himself. He was forsaken by his cardinals and besieged by French troops in his palace and wounded. The spectacle of his isolation touched the heart and conscience of the French people, and the decree ordering the subtraction of obedience was annulled by the national parliament of 1403, which professed allegiance anew, and received from him full absolution.

When Gregory XII. was elected in 1406, the controversy over the schism was at white heat. England, Castile, and the German king, Wenzil, had agreed to unite with France in bringing it to an end. Pushed by the universal clamor, by the agitation of the University of Paris, and especially by the feeling which prevailed in France, Gregory and Benedict saw that the situation was in danger of being controlled by other hands than their own, and agreed to meet at Savona on the Gulf of Genoa to discuss their differences. In October, 1407, Benedict, attended by a military guard, went as far as Porto Venere and Savona. Gregory got as far as Lucca, when he declined to go farther, on the plea that Savona was in territory controlled by the French and on other pretexts. Nieheim represents the Roman pontiff as dissimulating during the whole course of the proceedings and as completely under the influence of his nephews and other favorites, who imposed upon the weakness of the old man, and by his doting generosity were enabled to live in luxury. At Lucca they spent their time in dancing and merry-making. This writer goes on to say that Gregory put every obstacle in the way of union.272272    Nieheim, pp. 237, 242, 274, etc., manifeste impedire modis omnibus conabantur. He is represented by another writer as having spent more in bonbons than his predecessors did for their wardrobes and tables, and as being only a shadow with bones and skin.273273    Vita, Muratori, III., II., 838, solum spiritus cum ossibus et pelle.

Benedict’s support was much weakened by the death of the king’s brother, the duke of Orleans, who had been his constant supporter. France threatened neutrality, and Benedict, fearing seizure by the French commander at Genoa, beat a retreat to Perpignan, a fortress at the foot of the Pyrenees, six miles from the Mediterranean. In May of the same year France again decreed "subtraction," and a national French assembly in 1408 approved the calling of a council. The last stages of the contest were approaching.

Seven of Gregory’s cardinals broke away from him, and, leaving him at Lucca, went to Pisa, where they issued a manifesto appealing from a poorly informed pope to a better informed one, from Christ’s vicar to Christ himself, and to the decision of a general council. Two more followed. Gregory further injured his cause by breaking his solemn engagement and appointing four cardinals, May, 1408, two of them his nephews, and a few months later he added ten more. Cardinals of the Avignon obedience joined the Roman cardinals at Pisa and brought the number up to thirteen. Retiring to Livorno on the beautiful Italian lake of that name, and acting as if the popes were deposed, they as rulers of the Church appointed a general council to meet at Pisa, March 25, 1409.

As an offset, Gregory summoned a council of his own to meet in the territory either of Ravenna or Aquileja. Many of his closest followers had forsaken him, and even his native city of Venice withdrew from him its support. In the meantime Ladislaus had entered Rome and been hailed as king. It is, however, probable that this was with the consent of Gregory himself, who hoped thereby to gain sympathy for his cause. Benedict also exercised his sovereign power as pontiff and summoned a council to meet at Perpignan, Nov. 1, 1408.

The word "council," now that the bold initiative was taken, was hailed as pregnant with the promise of sure relief from the disgrace and confusion into which Western Christendom had been thrown and of a reunion of the Church.

§ 15. The Council of Pisa.

The three councils of Pisa, 1409, Constance, 1414, and Basel, 1431, of which the schism was the occasion, are known in history as the Reformatory councils. Of the tasks they set out to accomplish, the healing of the schism and the institution of disciplinary reforms in the Church, the first they accomplished, but with the second they made little progress. They represent the final authority of general councils in the affairs of the Church—a view, called the conciliary theory—in distinction from the supreme authority of the papacy.

The Pisan synod marks an epoch in the history of Western Christendom not so much on account of what it actually accomplished as because it was the first revolt in council against the theory of papal absolutism which had been accepted for centuries. It followed the ideas of Gerson and Langenstein, namely, that the Church is the Church even without the presence of a pope, and that an oecumenical council is legitimate which meets not only in the absence of his assent but in the face of his protest. Representing intellectually the weight of the Latin world and the larger part of its constituency, the assembly was a momentous event leading in the opposite direction from the path laid out by Hildebrand, Innocent III., and their successors. It was a mighty blow at the old system of Church government.

While Gregory XII. was tarrying at Rimini, as a refugee, under the protection of Charles Malatesta, and Benedict XIII. was confined to the seclusion of Perpignan, the synod was opened on the appointed day in the cathedral of Pisa. There was an imposing attendance of 14 cardinals,—the number being afterwards increased to 24,—4 patriarchs, 10 archbishops, 79 bishops and representatives of 116 other bishops, 128 abbots and priors and the representatives of 200 other abbots. To these prelates were added the generals of the Dominican, Franciscan, Carmelite, and Augustinian orders, the grand-master of the Knights of St. John, who was accompanied by 6 commanders, the general of the Teutonic order, 300 doctors of theology and the canon law, 109 representatives of cathedral and collegiate chapters, and the deputies of many princes, including the king of the Romans, Wenzil, and the kings of England, France, Poland, and Cyprus. A new and significant feature was the representation of the universities of learning, including Paris,274274    Schwab, p. 223 sq. The address which Gerson is said to have delivered and which Mansi includes in the acts of the council was a rhetorical composition and never delivered at Pisa. Schwab, p. 243. Bologna, Oxford and Cambridge, Montpellier, Toulouse, Angers, Vienna, Cracow, Prag, and Cologne. Among the most important personages was Peter d’Ailly, though there is no indication in the acts of the council that he took a prominent public part. John Gerson seems not to have been present.

The second day, the archbishop of Milan, Philargi, himself soon to be elected pope, preached from Judg. 20:7: "Behold, ye are all children of Israel. Give here your advice and counsel," and stated the reasons which had led to the summoning of the council. Guy de Maillesec, the only cardinal surviving from the days prior to the schism, presided over the first sessions. His place was then filled by the patriarch of Alexandria, till the new pope was chosen.

One of the first deliverances was a solemn profession of the Holy Trinity and the Catholic faith, and that every heretic and schismatic will share with the devil and his angels the burnings of eternal fire unless before the end of this life he make his peace with the Catholic Church.275275    Mansi, XXVII. 358.

The business which took precedence of all other was the healing of the schism, the causa unionis, as, it was called, and disposition was first made of the rival popes. A formal trial was instituted, which was opened by two cardinals and two archbishops proceeding to the door of the cathedral and solemnly calling Gregory and Benedict by name and summoning them to appear and answer for themselves. The formality was gone through three times, on three successive days, and the offenders were given till April 15 to appear.

By a series of declarations the synod then justified its existence, and at the eighth session declared itself to be "a general council representing the whole universal Catholic Church and lawfully and reasonably called together."276276    Mansi, XXVII. 366. It thought along the lines marked out by D’Ailly and Gerson and the other writers who had pronounced the unity of the Church to consist in oneness with her divine Head and declared that the Church, by virtue of the power residing in herself, has the right, in response to a divine call, to summon a council. The primitive Church had called synods, and James, not Peter, had presided at Jerusalem.

D’Ailly, in making definite announcement of his views at a synod, meeting at Aix, Jan. 1, 1409, had said that the Church’s unity depends upon the unity of her head, Christ. Christ’s mystical body gets its authority from its divine head to meet in a general council through representatives, for it is written, "where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." The words are not "in Peter’s name," or "in Paul’s name," but "in my name." And when the faithful assemble to secure the welfare of the Church, there Christ is in their midst.

Gerson wrote his most famous tract bearing on the schism and the Church’s right to remove a pope—De auferibilitate papae ab ecclesia — while the council of Pisa was in session.277277    See Schwab, p. 250 sqq. In this elaborate treatment he said that, in the strict sense, Christ is the Church’s only bridegroom. The marriage between the pope and the Church may be dissolved, for such a spiritual marriage is not a sacrament. The pope may choose to separate himself from the Church and resign. The Church has a similar right to separate itself from the pope by removing him. All Church officers are appointed for the Church’s welfare and, when the pope impedes its welfare, it may remove him. It is bound to defend itself. This it may do through a general council, meeting by general consent and without papal appointment. Such a council depends immediately upon Christ for its authority. The pope may be deposed for heresy or schism. He might be deposed even where he had no personal guilt, as in case he should be taken prisoner by the Saracens, and witnesses should testify he was dead. Another pope would then be chosen and, if the reports of the death of the former pope were proved false, and he be released from captivity, he or the other pope would have to be removed, for the Church cannot have more than one pontiff.

Immediately after Easter, Charles Malatesta appeared in the council to advocate Gregory’s cause. A commission, appointed by the cardinals, presented forty reasons to show that an agreement between the synod and the Roman pontiff was out of the question. Gregory must either appear at Pisa in person and abdicate, or present his resignation to a commission which the synod would appoint and send to Rimini.

Gregory’s case was also represented by the rival king of the Romans, Ruprecht,278278    The electors deposed Wenzil in 1400 for incompetency, and elected Ruprecht of the Palatinate. through a special embassy made up of the archbishop of Riga, the bishops of Worms and Verden, and other commissioners. It presented twenty-four reasons for denying the council’s jurisdiction. The paper was read by the bishop of Verden at the close of a sermon preached to the assembled councillors on the admirable text, "Peace be unto you." The most catching of the reasons was that, if the cardinals questioned the legitimacy of Gregory’s pontificate, what ground had they for not questioning the validity of their own authority, appointed as they had been by Gregory or Benedict.

In a document of thirty-eight articles, read April 24, the council presented detailed specifications against the two popes, charging them both with having made and broken solemn promises to resign.

The argument was conducted by Peter de Anchorano, professor of both laws in Bologna, and by others. Peter argued that, by fostering the schism, Gregory and his rival had forfeited jurisdiction, and the duty of calling a representative council of Christendom devolved on the college of cardinals. In certain cases the cardinals are left no option whether they shall act or not, as when a pope is insane or falls into heresy or refuses to summon a council at a time when orthodox doctrine is at stake. The temporal power has the right to expel a pope who acts illegally.

In an address on Hosea 1:11, "and the children of Judah and the children of Israel shall be gathered together and shall appoint themselves one head," Peter Plaoul, of the University of Paris, clearly placed the council above the pope, an opinion which had the support of his own university as well as the support of the universities of Toulouse, Angers, and Orleans. The learned canonist, Zabarella, afterwards appointed cardinal, took the same ground.

The trial was carried on with all decorum and, at the end of two months, on June 5, sentence was pronounced, declaring both popes "notorious schismatics, promoters of schism, and notorious heretics, errant from the faith, and guilty of the notorious and enormous crimes of perjury and violated oaths."279279    Eorum utrumque fuisse et esse notorios schismaticos et antiqui schimatis nutritores ... necnon notorios haereticos et a fide devios, notoriisque criminibus enormibus perjuriis et violantionis voti irretitos, etc., Mansi, XXVI. 1147, 1225 sq. Hefele, VI. 1025 sq., also gives the judgment in full.

Deputies arriving from Perpignan a week later, June 14, were hooted by the council when the archbishop of Tarragona, one of their number, declared them to be "the representatives of the venerable pope, Benedict XIII." Benedict had a short time before shown his defiance of the Pisan fathers by adding twelve members to his cabinet. When the deputies announced their intention of waiting upon Gregory, and asked for a letter of safe conduct, Balthazar Cossa, afterwards John XXIII., the master of Bologna, is said to have declared, "Whether they come with a letter or without it, he would burn them all if he could lay his hands upon them."

The rival popes being disposed of, it remained for the council to proceed to a new election, and it was agreed to leave the matter to the cardinals, who met in the archiepiscopal palace of Pisa, June 26, and chose the archbishop of Milan, Philargi, who took the name of Alexander V. He was about seventy, a member of the Franciscan order, and had received the red hat from Innocent VII. I. He was a Cretan by birth, and the first Greek to wear the tiara since John VII., in 706. He had never known his father or mother and, rescued from poverty by the Minorites, he was taken to Italy to be educated, and later sent to Oxford. After his election as pope, he is reported to have said, "as a bishop I was rich, as a cardinal poor, and as pope I am a beggar again."280280    Nieheim, p. 320 sqq., gives an account of Alexander’s early life.

In the meantime Gregory’s side council at Cividale, near Aquileja, was running its course. There was scarcely an attendant at the first session. Later, Ruprecht and king Ladislaus were represented by deputies. The assumption of the body was out of all proportion to its size. It pronounced the pontiffs of the Roman line the legitimate rulers of Christendom, and appointed nuncios to all the kingdoms. However, not unmindful of his former professions, Gregory anew expressed his readiness to resign if his rivals, Peter of Luna and Peter of Candia (Crete), would do the same. Venice had declared for Alexander, and Gregory, obliged to flee in the disguise of a merchant, found refuge in the ships of Ladislaus.

Benedict’s council met in Perpignan six months before, November, 1408. One hundred and twenty prelates were in attendance, most of them from Spain. The council adjourned March 26, 1409, after appointing a delegation of seven to proceed to Pisa and negotiate for the healing of the schism.

After Alexander’s election, the members lost interest in the synod and began to withdraw from Pisa, and it was found impossible to keep the promise made by the cardinals that there should be no adjournment till measures had been taken to reform the Church "in head and members." Commissions were appointed to consider reforms, and Alexander prorogued the body, Aug. 7, 1409, after appointing another council for April 12, 1412.281281    Creighton is unduly severe upon Alexander and the council for adjourning, without carrying out the promise of reform. Hefele, VI. 1042, treats the matter with fairness, and shows the difficulty involved in a disciplinary reform where the evils were of such long standing.

At the opening of the Pisan synod there were two popes; at its close, three. Scotland and Spain still held to Benedict, and Naples and parts of Central Europe continued to acknowledge the obedience of Gregory. The greater part of Christendom, however, was bound to the support of Alexander. This pontiff lacked the strength needed for the emergency, and he aroused the opposition of the University of Paris by extending the rights of the Mendicant orders to hear confessions.282282    The number of ecclesiastical gifts made by Alexander in his brief pontificate was large, and Nieheim pithily says that when the waters are confused, then is the time to fish. He died at Bologna, May 3, 1410, without having entered the papal city. Rumor went that Balthazar Cossa, who was about to be elected his successor, had poison administered to him.

As a rule, modern Catholic historians are inclined to belittle the Pisan synod, and there is an almost general agreement among them that it lacked oecumenical character. Without pronouncing a final decision on the question, Bellarmin regarded Alexander V. as legitimate pope. Gerson and other great contemporaries treated it as oecumenical, as did also Bossuet and other Gallican historians two centuries later. Modern Catholic historians treat the claims of Gregory XII. as not affected by a council which was itself illegitimate and a high-handed revolt against canon law.283283    Pastor, I. 192, speaks of the unholy Pisan synod—segenslose Pisaner Synode. All ultramontane historians disparage it, and Hergenröther-Kirsch uses a tone of irony in describing its call and proceedings. They do not exonerate Gregory from having broken his solemn promise, but they treat the council as wholly illegitimate, either because it was not called by a pope or because it had not the universal support of the Catholic nations. Hefele, I. 67 sqq., denies to it the character of an oecumenical synod, but places it in a category by itself. Pastor opens his treatment with a discourse on the primacy of the papacy, dating from Peter, and the sole right of the pope to call a council. The cardinals who called it usurped an authority which did not belong to them.

But whether the name oecumenical be given or be withheld matters little, in view of the general judgment which the summons and sitting of the council call forth. It was a desperate measure adopted to suit an emergency, but it was also the product of a new freedom of ecclesiastical thought, and so far a good omen of a better age. The Pisan synod demonstrated that the Church remained virtually a unit in spite of the double pontifical administration. It branded by their right names the specious manoevres of Gregory and Peter de Luna. It brought together the foremost thinkers and literary interests of Europe and furnished a platform of free discussion. Not its least service was in preparing the way for the imposing council which convened in Constance five years later.

§ 16. The Council of Constance. 1414–1418.

At Alexander’s death, seventeen cardinals met in Bologna and elected Balthazar Cossa, who took the name of John XXIII. He was of noble Neapolitan lineage, began his career as a soldier and perhaps as a corsair,284284    Nieheim, in Life of John, in Van der Hardt, II. 339. was graduated in both laws at Bologna and was made cardinal by Boniface IX. He joined in the call of the council of Pisa. A man of ability, he was destitute of every moral virtue, and capable of every vice.

Leaning for support upon Louis of Anjou, John gained entrance to Rome. In the battle of Rocca Secca, May 14, 1411, Louis defeated the troops of Ladislaus. The captured battle-flags were sent to Rome, hung up in St. Peter’s, then torn down in the sight of the people, and dragged in the dust in the triumphant procession through the streets of the city, in which John participated. Ladislaus speedily recovered from his defeat, and John, with his usual faithlessness, made terms with Ladislaus, recognizing him as king, while Ladislaus, on his part, renounced his allegiance to Gregory XII. That pontiff was ordered to quit Neapolitan territory, and embarking in Venetian vessels at Gaeta, fled to Dalmatia, and finally took refuge with Charles Malatesta of Rimini, his last political ally.

The Council of Constance, the second of the Reformatory councils, was called together by the joint act of Pope John XXIII. and Sigismund, king of the Romans. It was not till he was reminded by the University of Paris that John paid heed to the action of the Council of Pisa and called a council to meet at Rome, April, 1412. Its sessions were scantily attended, and scarcely a trace of it is left.285285    Finke: Forschungen, p. 2; Acta conc., p. 108 sqq. After ordering Wyclif’s writings burnt, it adjourned Feb. 10, 1413. John had strengthened the college of cardinals by adding fourteen to its number, among them men of the first rank, as D’Ailly, Zabarella of Florence, Robert Hallum, bishop of Salisbury, and Fillastre, dean of Rheims.

Ladislaus, weary of his treaty with John and ambitious to create a unified Latin kingdom, took Rome, 1413, giving the city over to sack. The king rode into the Lateran and looked down from his horse on the heads of St. Peter and St. Paul, which he ordered the canons to display. The very churches were robbed, and soldiers and their courtesans drank wine out of the sacred chalices. Ladislaus left Rome, struck with a vicious disease, rumored to be due to poison administered by an apothecary’s daughter of Perugia, and died at Naples, August, 1414. He had been one of the most prominent figures in Europe for a quarter of a century and the chief supporter of the Roman line of pontiffs.

Driven from Rome, John was thrown into the hands of Sigismund, who was then in Lombardy. This prince, the grandson of the blind king, John, who was killed at Crécy, had come to the throne of Hungary through marriage with its heiress. At Ruprecht’s death he was elected king of the Romans, 1411. Circumstances and his own energy made him the most prominent sovereign of his age and the chief political figure in the Council of Constance. He lacked high aims and moral purpose, but had some taste for books, and spoke several languages besides his own native German. Many sovereigns have placed themselves above national statutes, but Sigismund went farther and, according to the story, placed himself above the rules of grammar. In his first address at the Council of Constance, so it is said, he treated the Latin word schisma, schism, as if it were feminine.286286    Date operam, the king said, ut ista, nefanda schisma eradicetur. See Wylie, p. 18 When Priscian and other learned grammarians were quoted to him to show it was neuter, he replied, "Yes; but I am emperor and above them, and can make a new grammar." The fact that Sigismund was not yet emperor when the mistake is said to have been made—for he was not crowned till 1433—seems to prejudice the authenticity of the story, but it is quite likely that he made mistakes in Latin and that the bon-mot was humorously invented with reference to it.

Pressed by the growing troubles in Bohemia over John Huss, Sigismund easily became an active participant in the measures looking towards a new council. Men distrusted John XXIII. The only hope of healing the schism seemed to rest with the future emperor. In many documents, and by John himself, he was addressed as "advocate and defender of the Church"287287    See Finke, Forschungen, p. 28. Sigismund gives himself the same title. See his letter to Gregory, Mansi, XXVIII. 3. — advocatus et defensor ecclesiae.288288    Same as fn. above.

Two of John’s cardinals met Sigismund at Como, Oct. 13, 1413, and discussed the time and place of the new synod. John preferred an Italian city, Sigismund the small Swabian town of Kempten; Strassburg, Basel, and other places were mentioned, but Constance, on German territory, was at last fixed upon. On Oct. 30 Sigismund announced the approaching council to all the prelates, princes, and doctors of Christendom, and on Dec. 9 John attached his seal to the call. Sigismund and John met at Lodi the last of November, 1413, and again at Cremona early in January, 1414, the pope being accompanied by thirteen cardinals. Thus the two great luminaries of this mundane sphere were again side by side.289289    Sigismund, in his letter to Charles VI of France, announcing the council, had used the mediaeval figure of the two lights, duo luminaria super terram, majus videlicet minus ut in ipsis universalis ecclesiae consistere firmamentum in quibus pontificalis auctoritas et regalis potentia designantur, unaquae spiritualia et altera qua corporalia regerentur. Mansi, XXVIII. 4. They ascended together the great Torazzo, close to the cathedral of Cremona, accompanied by the lord of the town, who afterwards regretted that he had not seized his opportunity and pitched them both down to the street. Not till the following August was a formal announcement of the impending council sent to the Kaufhaus

Gregory XII., who recognized Sigismund as king of the Romans.290290    There is some evidence that a report was abroad in Italy that Sigismund intended to have all three popes put on trial at Constance, but that a gift of 60,000 gulden from John at Lodi induced him to support that pontiff. Finke: Acta, p. 177 sq. Gregory complained to Archbishop Andrew of Spalato, bearer of the notice, of the lateness of the invitation, and that he had not been consulted in regard to the council. Sigismund promised that, if Gregory should be deposed, he would see to it that he received a good life position.291291    Sigismund’s letters are given by Hardt, VI. 5, 6; Mansi, XXVIII. 2-4. See Finke, Forschungen, p. 23.

The council, which was appointed for Nov. 1, 1414, lasted nearly four years, and proved to be one of the most imposing gatherings which has ever convened in Western Europe. It was a veritable parliament of nations, a convention of the leading intellects of the age, who pressed together to give vent to the spirit of free discussion which the Avignon scandals and the schism had developed, and to debate the most urgent of questions, the reunion of Christendom under one undisputed head."292292    Funk, Kirchengesch., p. 470, calls it eine der grossartigsten Kirchenversammlungen welche die Geschichte kennt, gewissermassen ein Kongress des ganzen Abenlandes

Following the advice of his cardinals, John, who set his face reluctantly towards the North, reached Constance Oct. 28, 1414. The city then contained 5500 people, and the beauty of its location, its fields, and its vineyards, were praised by Nieheim and other contemporaries. They also spoke of the salubriousness of the air and the justice of the municipal laws for strangers. It seemed to be as a field which the Lord had blessed.293293    Hardt, II. 308. As John approached Constance, coming by way of the Tirol, he is said to have exclaimed, "Ha, this is the place where foxes are trapped." He entered the town in great style, accompanied by nine cardinals and sixteen hundred mounted horsemen. He rode a white horse, its back covered with a red rug. Its bridles were held by the count of Montferrat and an Orsini of Rome. The city council sent to the pope’s lodgings four large barrels of Elsass wine, eight of native wine, and other wines.294294    Richental, Chronik, pp. 25-28, gives a graphic description of John’s entry into the city. This writer, who was a citizen of Constance, the office he filled being unknown, had unusual opportunities for observing what was going on and getting the official documents. He gives copies of several of John’s bulls, and the most detailed accounts of some of the proceedings at which he was present. See p. 129.

The first day of November, John attended a solemn mass at the cathedral. The council met on the 5th, with fifteen cardinals present. The first public session was held Nov. 16. In all, forty-five public sessions were held, the usual hour of assembling being 7 in the morning. Gregory XII. was represented by two delegates, the titular patriarch of Constantinople and Cardinal John Dominici of Ragusa, a man of great sagacity and excellent spirit.

The convention did not get into full swing until the arrival of Sigismund on Christmas Eve, fresh from his coronation, which occurred at Aachen, Nov. 8, and accompanied by his queen, Barbara, and a brilliant suite. After warming themselves, the imperial party proceeded to the cathedral and, at cock-crowing Christmas morning, were received by the pope. Services were held lasting eight, or, according to another authority, eleven hours without interruption. Sigismund, wearing his crown and a dalmatic, exercised the functions of deacon and read the Gospel, and the pope conferred upon him a sword, bidding him use it to protect the Church.

Constance had become the most conspicuous locality in Europe. It attracted people of every rank, from the king to the beggar. A scene of the kind on so great a scale had never been witnessed in the West before. The reports of the number of strangers in the city vary from 50,000 to 100,000. Richental, the indefatigable Boswell of the council, himself a resident of Constance, gives an account of the arrival of every important personage, together with the number of his retainers. One-half of his Chronicle is a directory of names. He went from house to house, taking a census, and to the thousands he mentions by name, he adds 5000 who rode in and out of the town every day. He states that 80,000 witnessed the coronation of Martin V. The lodgings of the more distinguished personages were marked with their coats of arms. Bakers, beadles, grooms, scribes, goldsmiths, merchantmen of every sort, even to traffickers from the Orient, flocked together to serve the dukes and prelates and the learned university masters and doctors. There were in attendance on the council, 33 cardinals, 5 patriarchs, 47 archbishops, 145 bishops, 93 titular bishops, 217 doctors of theology, 361 doctors in both laws, 171 doctors of medicine, besides a great number of masters of arts from the 37 universities represented, 83 kings and princes represented by envoys, 38 dukes, 173 counts, 71 barons, more than 1500 knights, 142 writers of bulls, 1700 buglers, fiddlers, and players on other musical instruments. Seven hundred women of the street practised their trade openly or in rented houses, while the number of those who practised it secretly was a matter of conjecture.295295    Offene Huren in den Hurenhäusern und solche, die selber Häuser gemiethet hatten und in den Ställen lagen und wo sie mochten, doren waren über 700 und die heimlichen, die lass ich belibnen. Richental, p. 215. The numbers above are taken from Richental, whose account, from p. 154 to 215, is taken up with the lists of names. See also Van der Hardt, V. 50-53, who gives 18,000 prelates and priests and 80,000 laymen. A later hand has attached to Richental’s narrative the figures 72,460. There were 36,000 beds for strangers. Five hundred are said to have been drowned in the lake during the progress of the council. Huss wrote, "This council is a scene of foulness, for it is a common saying among the Swiss that a generation will not suffice to cleanse Constance from the sins which the council has committed in this city."296296    Workman: Letters of Huss, p. 263.

The English and Scotch delegation, which numbered less than a dozen persons, was accompanied by 700 or 800 mounted men, splendidly accoutred, and headed by fifers and other musicians, and made a great sensation by their entry into the city. The French delegation was marked by its university men and other men of learning.297297    Usk, p. 304; Rymer, Foeder., IX. 167; Richental, p. 34, speaks of the French as die Schulpfaffen und die gelehrten Leute aus Frankreich

The streets and surroundings presented the spectacle of a merry fair. There were tournaments, dances, acrobatic shows, processions, musical displays. But in spite of the congestion, good order seems to have been maintained. By order of the city council, persons were forbidden to be out after curfew without a light. Chains were to be stretched across some of the streets, and all shouting at night was forbidden. It is said that during the council’s progress only two persons were punished for street brawls. A check was put upon extortionate rates by a strict tariff. The price of a white loaf was fixed at a penny, and a bed for two persons, with sheets and pillows, at a gulden and a half a month, the linen to be washed every two weeks. Fixed prices were put upon grains, meat, eggs, birds, and other articles of food.298298    Richental, p. 39 sqq., gives an elaborate list of these regulations. The bankers present were a great number, among them the young Cosimo de’ Medici of Florence.

Among the notables in attendance, the pope and Sigismund occupied the chief place. The most inordinate praise was heaped upon the king. He was compared to Daniel, who rescued Susanna, and to David. He was fond of pleasure, very popular with women, always in debt and calling for money, but a deadly foe of heretics, so that whenever he roared, it was said, the Wyclifites fled.299299    So de Vrie, the poet-historian of the council, Hardt, I. 193. The following description is from the accomplished pen of Aeneas Sylvius, afterwards Pius II: "He was tall, with bright eyes, broad forehead, pleasantly rosy cheeks, and a long, thick beard. He was witty in conversation, given to wine and women, and thousands of love intrigues are laid to his charge. He had a large mind and formed many plans, but was changeable. He was prone to anger, but ready to forgive. He could not keep his money, but spent lavishly. He made more promises than he kept, and often deceived." There can be no doubt that to Sigismund were due the continuance and success of the council. His queen, Barbara, the daughter of a Styrian count, was tall and fair, but of questionable reputation, and her gallantries became the talk of the town.

The next most eminent persons were Cardinals D’Ailly, Zabarella, Fillastre, John of Ragusa, and Hallum, bishop of Salisbury, who died during the session of the council, and was buried in Constance, the bishop of Winchester, uncle to the English king, and John Gerson, the chief representative of the University of Paris. Zabarella was the most profound authority on civil and canon law in Europe, a professor at Bologna, and in 1410 made bishop of Florence. He died in the midst of the council’s proceedings, Sept. 26, 1417. Fillastre left behind him a valuable daily journal of the council’s proceedings. D’Ailly had been for some time one of the most prominent figures in Europe. Hallum is frequently mentioned in the proceedings of the council. Among the most powerful agencies at work in the assemblies were the tracts thrown off at the time, especially those of Diedrich of Nieheim, one of the most influential pamphleteers of the later Middle Ages.300300    Finke, p. 133, calls him the "greatest journalist of the later Middle Ages." The tracts De modisuniendi, De difficultate reformationis, De necessitate reformationis are now all ascribed to Nieheim by Finke, p. 133, who follows Lenz, and with whom Pastor concurs as against Erler.

The subjects which the council was called together to discuss were the reunion of the Church under one pope, and Church reforms.301301    In hoc generali concilio agendum fait de pace et unione perfecta ecclesiae secundo de reformatione illius, Fillastre’s Journal, in Finke, p. 164. Haec synodus ... pro exstirpatione praesentis schismatis et unione ac reformatione ecclesiae Dei in capite et membris is the councils own declaration, Mansi, XXVII. 585 The action against heresy, including the condemnation of John Huss and Jerome of Prag, is also conspicuous among the proceedings of the council, though not treated by contemporaries as a distinct subject. From the start, John lost support. A sensation was made by a tract, the work of an Italian, describing John’s vices both as man and pope. John of Ragusa and Fillastre recommended the resignation of all three papal claimants, and this idea became more and more popular, and was, after some delay, adopted by Sigismund, and was trenchantly advocated by Nieheim, in his tract on the Necessity of a Reformation in the Church.

From the very beginning great plainness of speech was used, so that John had good reason to be concerned for the tenure of his office. December 7, 1414, the cardinals passed propositions binding him to a faithful performance of his papal duties and abstinence from simony. D’Ailly wrote against the infallibility of councils, and thus furnished the ground for setting aside the papal election at Pisa.

From November to January, 1415, a general disposition was manifested to avoid taking the initiative—the noli me tangere policy, as it was called.302302    Apud aliquos erat morbus "noli me tangere," Fillastre’s Journal, p. 164. The ferment of thought and discussion became more and more active, until the first notable principle was laid down early in February, 1415, namely, the rule requiring the vote to be by nations. The purpose was to overcome the vote of the eighty Italian bishops and doctors who were committed to John’s cause. The action was taken in the face of John’s opposition, and followed the precedent set by the University of Paris in the government of its affairs. By this rule, which no council before or since has followed, except the little Council of Siena, 1423, England, France, Italy, and Germany had each a single vote in the affairs of the council. In 1417, when Aragon, Castile, and Scotland gave in their submission to the council, a fifth vote was accorded to Spain. England had the smallest representation. In the German nation were included Scandinavia, Poland, and Hungary. The request of the cardinals to have accorded to them a distinct vote as a body was denied. They met with the several nations to which they belonged, and were limited to the same rights enjoyed by other individuals. This rule seems to have been pressed from the first with great energy by the English, led by Robert of Salisbury. Strange to say, there is no record that this mode of voting was adopted by any formal conciliar decree.303303    See Finke, Forschungen, p. 31. Richental, pp. 50-53, gives a quaint account of the territorial possessions of the five nations.

The nations met each under its own president in separate places, the English and Germans sitting in different rooms in the convent of the Grey Friars. The vote of the majority of the nations carried in the public sessions of the council. The right to vote in the nations was extended so as to include the doctors of both kinds and princes. D’Ailly advocated this course, and Fillastre argued in favor of including rectors and even clergymen of the lowest rank. Why, reasoned D’Ailly, should a titular bishop have an equal voice with a bishop ruling over an extensive see, say the archbishopric of Mainz, and why should a doctor be denied all right to vote who has given up his time and thought to the questions under discussion? And why, argued Fillastre, should an abbot, having control over only ten monks, have a vote, when a rector with a care of a thousand or ten thousand souls is excluded? An ignorant king or prelate he called a "crowned ass." Doctors were on hand for the very purpose of clearing up ignorance.

When the Italian tract appeared, which teemed with charges against John, matters were brought to a crisis. Then it became evident that the scheme calling for the removal of all three popes would go through, and John, to avoid a worse fate, agreed to resign, making the condition that Gregory XII. and Benedict should also resign. The formal announcement, which was read at the second session, March 2, 1415, ran: "I, John XXIII., pope, promise, agree, and obligate myself, vow and swear before God, the Church, and this holy council, of my own free will and spontaneously, to give peace to the Church by abdication, provided the pretenders, Benedict and Gregory, do the same."304304    Hardt, II. 240, also IV. 44; Mansi, XXVII. 568. Also Richental, p. 56. At the words "vow and swear," John rose from his seat and knelt down at the altar, remaining on his knees till he finished the reading. The reading being over, Sigismund removed his crown, bent before John, and kissed his feet. Five days after, John issued a bull confirming his oath.

Constance was wild with joy. The bells rang out the glad news. In the cathedral, joy expressed itself in tears. The spontaneity of John’s self-deposition may be questioned, in view of the feeling which prevailed among the councillors and the report that he had made an offer to cede the papacy for 30,000 gulden.305305    According to a MS. found at Vienna by Finke, Forschungen, p. 148.

A most annoying, though ridiculous, turn was now given to affairs by John’s flight from Constance, March 20. Rumors had been whispered about that he was contemplating such a move. He talked of transferring the council to Rizza, and complained of the unhealthiness of the air of Constance. He, however, made the solemn declaration that he would not leave the town before the dissolution of the council. To be on the safe side, Sigismund gave orders for the gates to be kept closed and the lake watched. But John had practised dark arts before, and, unmindful of his oath, escaped at high noon on a "little horse," in the disguise of a groom, wrapped in a gray cloak, wearing a gray cap, and having a crossbow tied to his saddle.306306    Richental, pp. 62-72, gives a vivid account of John’s flight and seizure. The flight was made while the gay festivities of a tournament, instituted by Frederick, duke of Austria, were going on, and with two attendants. The pope continued his course without rest till he reached Schaffhausen. This place belonged to the duke, who was in the secret, and on whom John had conferred the office of commander of the papal troops, with a yearly grant of 6000 gulden. John’s act was an act of desperation. He wrote back to the council, giving as the reason of his flight that he had been in fear of Sigismund, and that his freedom of action had been restricted by the king.307307    Fillastre; Finke, Forschungen, p. 169, papa dicebat quod pro timore regis Romanorum recesserat.

So great was the panic produced by the pope’s flight that the council would probably have been brought to a sudden close by a general scattering of its members, had it not been for Sigismund’s prompt action. Cardinals and envoys despatched by the king and council made haste to stop the fleeing pope, who continued on to Laufenburg, Freiburg, and Breisach. John wrote to Sigismund, expressing his regard for him, but with the same pen he was addressing communications to the University of Paris and the duke of Orleans, seeking to awaken sympathy for his cause by playing upon the national feelings of the French. He attempted to make it appear that the French delegation had been disparaged when the council proceeded to business before the arrival of the twenty-two deputies of the University. France and Italy, with two hundred prelates, had each only a single vote, while England, with only three prelates, had a vote. God, he affirmed, dealt with individuals and not with nations. He also raised the objection that married laymen had votes at the side of prelates, and John Huss had not been put on trial, though he had been condemned by the University of Paris.

To the envoys who found John at Breisach, April 23, he gave his promise to return with them to Constance the next morning; but with his usual duplicity, he attempted to escape during the night, and was let down from the castle by a ladder, disguised as a peasant. He was soon seized, and ultimately handed over by Sigismund to Louis III., of the Palatinate, for safe-keeping.

In the meantime the council forbade any of the delegates to leave Constance before the end of the proceedings, on pain of excommunication and the loss of dignities. Its fourth and fifth sessions, beginning April 6, 1415, mark an epoch in the history of ecclesiastical statement. The council declared that, being assembled legitimately in the Holy Spirit, it was an oecumenical council and representing the whole Church, had its authority immediately from Christ, and that to it the pope and persons of every grade owed obedience in things pertaining to the faith and to the reformation of the Church in head and members. It was superior to all other ecclesiastical tribunals.308308    Hardt, IV. 89 sq., and Mansi, XXVII. 585-590. The deliverance runs: haec sancta synodus Constantiensis primo declarat ut ipsa synodus in S. Spiritu legitime congregata, generale concilium faciens, Eccles. catholicam militantem representans, potestatem a Christo immediate habeat, cui quilibet cujusmodi status vel dignitatis, etiamsi papalis existat, obedire tenetur in his quae pertinent ad fidem et exstirpationem praesentis schismatis et reformationem eccles. in capite et membris. This declaration, stated with more precision than the one of Pisa, meant a vast departure from the papal theory of Innocent III. and Boniface VIII.

Gerson, urging this position in his sermon before the council, March 23, 1415, said309309    Hardt, II. 265-273; Du Pin, II. 201 sqq. the gates of hell had prevailed against popes, but not against the Church. Joseph was set to guard his master’s wife, not to debauch her, and when the pope turned aside from his duty, the Church had authority to punish him. A council has the right by reason of the vivifying power of the Holy Spirit to prolong itself, and may, under certain conditions, assemble without call of pope or his consent.

The conciliar declarations reaffirmed the principle laid down by Nieheim on the eve of the council in the tract entitled the Union of the Church and its Reformation, and by other writers.310310    Hardt, vol. I., where it occupies 175 pp. Du Pin, II., 162-201. This tract, formerly ascribed to Gerson, Lenz and Finke give reason for regarding as the work of Nieheim. The Church, Nieheim affirmed, whose head is Christ, cannot err, but the Church as a commonwealth,—respublica,—controlled by pope and hierarchy, may err. And as a prince who does not seek the good of his subjects may be deposed, so may the pope, who is called to preside over the whole Church .... The pope is born of man, born in sin—clay of clay—limus de limo. A few days ago the son of a rustic, and now raised to the papal throne, he is not become an impeccable angel. It is not his office that makes him holy, but the grace of God. He is not infallible; and as Christ, who was without sin, was subject to a tribunal, 80 is the pope. It is absurd to say that a mere man has power in heaven and on earth to bind and loose from sin. For he may be a simoniac, a liar, a fornicator, proud, and worse than the devil—pejor quam diabolus. As for a council, the pope is under obligation to submit to it and, if necessary, to resign for the common good—utilitatem communem. A general council may be called by the prelates and temporal rulers, and is superior to the pope. It may elect, limit, and depose a pope—and from its decision there is no appeal—potest papam eligere, privare et deponere. A tali concilio nullus potest appellare.Its canons are immutable, except as they may be set aside by another oecumenical council.

These views were revolutionary, and show that Marsiglius of Padua, and other tractarians of the fourteenth century, had not spoken in vain.

Having affirmed its superiority over the pope, the council proceeded to try John XXIII. on seventy charges, which included almost every crime known to man. He had been unchaste from his youth, had been given to lying, was disobedient to his parents. He was guilty of simony, bought his way to the cardinalate, sold the same benefices over and over again, sold them to children, disposed of the head of John the Baptist, belonging to the nuns of St. Sylvester, Rome, to Florence, for 50,000 ducats, made merchandise of spurious bulls, committed adultery with his brother’s wife, violated nuns and other virgins, was guilty of sodomy and other nameless vices.311311    Hardt, IV. 196-208; Mansi, XXVIII. 662-673, 715. Adam of Usk, p. 306, says, Our pope, John XXIII., false to his promises of union, and otherwise guilty of perjuries and murders, adulteries, simonies, heresy, and other excesses, and for that he twice fled in secret, and cowardly, in vile raiment, by way of disguise, was delivered to perpetual imprisonment by the council. As for doctrine, he had often denied the future life.

When John received the notice of his deposition, which was pronounced May 29, 1415, he removed the papal cross from his room and declared he regretted ever having been elected pope. He was taken to Gottlieben, a castle belonging to the bishop of Constance, and then removed to the castle at Heidelberg, where two chaplains and two nobles were assigned to serve him. From Heidelberg the count Palatine transferred him to Mannheim, and finally released him on the payment of 30,000 gulden. John submitted to his successor, Martin V., and in 1419 was appointed cardinal bishop of Tusculum, but survived the appointment only six months. John’s accomplice, Frederick of Austria, was deprived of his lands, and was known as Frederick of the empty purse—Friedrich mit der leeren Tasche. A splendid monument was erected to John in the baptistery in Florence by Cosimo de’ Medici, who had managed the pope’s money affairs.

While John’s case was being decided, the trial of John Huss was under way. The proceedings and the tragedy of Huss’ death are related in another place.

John XXIII. was out of the way. Two popes remained, Gregory XII. and Benedict XIII., who were facetiously called in tracts and addresses Errorius, a play on Gregory’s patronymic, Angelo Correr,312312    This name is given to Gregory constantly by Nieheim in his De schismate and Maledictus. Gregory promptly resigned, thus respecting his promise made to the council to resign, provided John and Benedict should be set aside. He also had promised to recognize the council, provided the emperor should preside. The resignation was announced at the fourteenth session, July 4, 1415, by Charles Malatesta and John of Ragusa, representing the Roman pontiff. Gregory’s bull, dated May 15, 1414, which was publicly read, "convoked and authorized the general council so far as Balthazar Cossa, John XXIII., is not present and does not preside." The words of resignation ran, "I resign, in the name of the Lord, the papacy, and all its rights and title and all the privileges conferred upon it by the Lord Jesus Christ in this sacred synod and universal council representing the holy Roman and universal Church."313313    The document is given in Hardt, IV. 380. See, for the various documents, Hardt, IV. 192 sq., 346-381; Mansi, XXVII. 733-745. Gregory’s cardinals now took their seats, and Gregory himself was appointed cardinal-bishop of Porto and papal legate of Ancona. He died at Recanati, near Ancona, Oct. 18, 1417. Much condemnation as Angelo Correr deserves for having temporized about renouncing the papacy, posterity has not withheld from him respect for his honorable dealing at the close of his career. The high standing of his cardinal, John of Ragusa, did much to make men forget Gregory’s faults.

Peter de Luna was of a different mind. Every effort was made to bring him into accord with the mind of the councilmen in the Swiss city, but in vain. In order to bring all the influence possible to bear upon him, Sigismund, at the council’s instance, started on the journey to see the last of the Avignon popes face to face. The council, at its sixteenth session, July 11, 1415, appointed doctors to accompany the king, and eight days afterwards he broke away from Constance, accompanied by a troop of 4000 men on horse.

Sigismund and Benedict met at Narbonne, Aug. 15, and at Perpignan, the negotiations lasting till December. The decree of deposition pronounced at Pisa, and France’s withdrawal of allegiance, had not broken the spirit of the old man. His dogged tenacity was worthy of a better cause.314314    Pastor, Hefele, and Hergenröther call it stubbornness, Hartnäckigkeit. Döllinger is more favorable, and does not withhold his admiration from Peter. Among the propositions the pope had the temerity to make was that he would resign provided that he, as the only surviving cardinal from the times before the schism, should have liberty to follow his abdication by himself electing the new pontiff. Who knows but that one who was 80 thoroughly assured of his own infallibility would have chosen himself. Benedict persisted in calling the Council of Constance the "congregation," or assembly. On Nov. 14 he fled to Peñiscola, a rocky promontory near Valencia, again condemned the Swiss synod, and summoned a legitimate one to meet in his isolated Spanish retreat. His own cardinals were weary of the conflict, and Dec. 13, 1415, declared him deposed. His long-time supporter, Vincent Ferrer, called him a perjurer. The following month the kingdom of Aragon, which had been Benedict’s chief support, withdrew from his obedience and was followed by Castile and Scotland.

Peter de Luna was now as thoroughly isolated as any mortal could well be. The council demanded his unconditional abdication, and was strengthened by the admission of his old supporters, the Spanish delegates. At the thirty-seventh session, 1417, he was deposed. By Sigismund’s command the decision was announced on the streets of Constance by trumpeters. But the indomitable Spaniard continued to defy the synod’s sentence till his death, nine years later, and from the lonely citadel of Peñiscola to sit as sovereign of Christendom. Cardinal Hergenröther concludes his description of these events by saying that Benedict "was a pope without a church and a shepherd without sheep. This very fact proves the emptiness of his claims." Benedict died, 1423,315315    Valois, IV. 450 454, gives strong reasons for this date as against 1424. leaving behind him four cardinals. Three of these elected the canon, Gil Sauduz de Munoz of Barcelona, who took the name of Clement VIII. Five years later Gil resigned, and was appointed by Martin V. bishop of Majorca, on which island he was a pope with insular jurisdiction.316316    Mansi, XXVIII. 1117 sqq., gives Clement’s letter of abdication. For an account of Benedict’s two successors and their election, see Valois, IV. 455-478. The fourth cardinal, Jean Carrier, elected himself pope, and took the name of Benedict XIV. He died in prison, 1433.

It remained for the council to terminate the schism of years by electing a new pontiff and to proceed to the discussions of Church reforms. At the fortieth session, Oct. 30, 1417, it was decided to postpone the second item until after the election of the new pope. In fixing this order of business, the cardinals had a large influence. There was a time in the history of the council when they were disparaged. Tracts were written against them, and the king at one time, so it was rumored, proposed to seize them all.317317    Fillastre’s Journal, p. 224. For the tracts hostile to the cardinals, see Finke, Forschungen, p. 81 sq. But that time was past; they had kept united, and their influence had steadily grown.

The papal vacancy was filled, Nov. 11, 1417, by the election of Cardinal Oddo Colonna, who took the name of Martin V. The election was consummated in the Kaufhaus, the central commercial building of Constance, which is still standing. Fifty-three electors participated, 6 deputies from each of the 5 nations, and 23 cardinals. The building was walled up with boards and divided into cells for the electors. Entrance was had by a single door, and the three keys were given, one to the king, one to the chapter of Constance, and one to the council. When it became apparent that an election was likely to be greatly delayed, the Germans determined to join the Italians in voting for an Italian to avoid suspicion that advantage was taken of the synod’s location on German soil. The Germans then secured the co-operation of the English, and finally the French and Spaniards also yielded.318318    Richental, p. 116 sqq., gives a detailed account of the walling up of the Kaufhaus and the election, and of the ceremonies attending Martin’s coronation. He also, p. 123, tells the pretty story that, before the electors met, ravens, jackdaws, and other birds of the sort gathered in great numbers on the roof of the Kaufhaus, but that as soon as Martin was elected, thousands of greenfinches and other little birds took their places and chattered and sang and hopped about as if approving what had been done. The pope-elect was thus the creature of the council.

The Western Church was again unified under one head. But for the deep-seated conviction of centuries, the office of the universal papacy would scarcely have survived the strain of the schism.319319    Catholic historians regard the survival of the papacy as a proof of its divine origin. Salembier, p. 395, says, "The history of the great Schism would have dealt a mortal blow to the papacy if Christ’s promises had not made it immortal." Oddo Colonna, the only member of his distinguished house who has worn the tiara, was a subdeacon at the time of his election. Even more hastily than Photius, patriarch of Constantinople, was he rushed through the ordination of deacon, Nov. 12, of priest, Nov. 13, and bishop, Nov. 14. He was consecrated pope a week later, Nov. 21, Sigismund kissing his toe. In the procession, the bridles of Martin’s horse were held by Sigismund and Frederick the Hohenzollern, lately created margrave of Brandenburg. The margrave had paid Sigismund 250,000 marks as the price of his elevation, a sum which the king used to defray the expenses of his visit to Benedict.

Martin at once assumed the presidency of the council which since John’s flight had been filled by Cardinal Viviers. Measures of reform were now the order of the day and some headway was made. The papal right of granting indulgences was curtailed. The college of cardinals was limited to 24, with the stipulation that the different parts of the church should have a proportionate representation, that no monastic order should have more than a single member in the college, and that no cardinal’s brother or nephew should be raised to the curia so long as the cardinal was living. Schedules and programmes enough were made, but the question of reform involved abuses of such long standing and so deeply intrenched that it was found impossible to reconcile the differences of opinion prevailing in the council and bring it to promptness of action. After sitting for more than three years, the delegates were impatient to get away.

As a substitute for further legislation, the so-called concordats were arranged. These agreements were intended to regulate the relations of the papacy and the nations one with the other. There were four of these distinct compacts, one with the French, and one with the German nations, each to be valid for five years, one with the English to be perpetual, dated July 21, 1418, and one with the Spanish nation, dated May 13, 1418.320320    See Mirbt, art. Konkordat, in Herzog, X. 705 sqq. Hardt gives the concordats with Germany and England, I. 1056-1083, and France, IV. 155 sqq. Mansi, XXVII. 1189 sqq., 1193 sqq. These concordats set forth rules for the appointment of the cardinals and the restriction of their number, limited the right of papal reservations and the collection of annates and direct taxes, determined what causes might be appealed to Rome, and took up other questions. They were the foundation of the system of secret or open treaties by which the papacy has since regulated its relations with the nations of Europe. Gregory VII. was the first pope to extend the system of papal legates, but he and his successors had dealt with nations on the arbitrary principle of papal supremacy and infallibility.

The action of the Council of Constance lifted the state to some measure of equality with the papacy in the administration of Church affairs. It remained for Louis XIV., 16431715, to assert more fully the Gallican theory of the authority of the state to manage the affairs of the Church within its territory, so far as matters of doctrine were not touched. The first decisive step in the assertion of Gallican liberties was the synodal action of 1407, when France withdrew from the obedience of Benedict XIII. By this action the chapters were to elect their own bishops, and the pope was restrained from levying taxes on their sees. Then followed the compact of the Council of Constance, the Pragmatic Sanction adopted at Bourges, 1438, and the concordat agreed upon between Francis I. and Leo X. at the time of the Reformation. In 1682 the French prelates adopted four propositions, restricting the pope’s authority to spirituals, a power which is limited by the decision of the Council of Constance, and by the precedents of the Gallican Church, and declaring that even in matters of faith the pope is not infallible. Although Louis, who gave his authority to these articles, afterwards revoked them, they remain a platform of Gallicanism as against the ultramontane theory of the infallibility and supreme authority of the pope, and may furnish in the future the basis of a settlement of the papal question in the Catholic communion.321321    See art. Gallikanismus, in Herzog, and Der Ursprung der gallikan. Freiheiten, in Hist. Zeitschrift, 1903, pp. 194-215.

In the deliverance known as Frequens, passed Oct. 9, 1417, the council decreed that a general council should meet in five years, then in seven years, and thereafter perpetually every ten years.322322    Creighton, I. 393, after giving the proper citation from Hardt, IV. 1432, makes the mistake of saying that the next council was appointed for seven years, and the succeeding councils every five years thereafter. This action was prompted by Martin in the bull Frequens, Oct. 9, 1417. On completing its forty-fifth session it was adjourned by Martin, April 22, 1418. The Basel-Ferrara and the Tridentine councils sat a longer time, as did also the Protestant Westminster Assembly, 1643–1648. Before breaking away from Constance, the pope granted Sigismund a tenth for one year to reimburse him for the expense he had been to on account of the synod.

The Council of Constance was the most important synod of the Middle Ages, and more fairly represented the sentiments of Western Christendom than any other council which has ever sat. It furnished an arena of free debate upon interests whose importance was felt by all the nations of Western Europe, and which united them. It was not restricted by a programme prepared by a pope, as the Vatican council of 1870 was. It had freedom and exercised it. While the dogma of transubstantiation enacted by the 4th Lateran, 1215, and the dogma of papal infallibility passed by the Vatican council injected elements of permanent division into the Church, the Council of Constance unified Latin Christendom and ended the schism which had been a cause of scandal for forty years. The validity of its decree putting an oecumenical council above the pope, after being disputed for centuries, was officially set aside by the conciliar vote of 1870. For Protestants the decision at Constance is an onward step towards a right definition of the final seat of religious authority. It remained for Luther, forced to the wall by Eck at Leipzig, and on the ground of the error committed by the Council of Constance, in condemning the godly man, John Huss, to deny the infallibility of councils and to place the seat of infallible authority in the Scriptures, as interpreted by conscience.

Note on the Oecumenical Character of the Council of Constance.

Modern Roman Catholic historians deny the oecumenical character and authority of the Council of Constance, except its four last, 42d-45th sessions, which were presided over by Pope Martin V., or at least all of it till the moment of Gregory XII.’s bull giving to the council his approval, that is, after John had fled and ceased to preside. Hergenröther-Kirsch, II. 862, says that before Gregory’s authorization the council was without a head, did not represent the Roman Church, and sat against the will of the cardinals, by whom he meant Gregory’s cardinals. Salembier, p. 317, says, Il n’est devenu oecuménique qu’après la trente-cinquième session, lorsque Grégoire III. eut donné sa démission, etc. Pastor, I. 198 sq., warmly advocates the same view, and declares that when the council in its 4th and 6th sessions announced its superiority over the pope, it was not yet an oecumenical gathering. This dogma, he says, was intended to set up a new principle which revolutionized the old Catholic doctrine of the Church. Philip Hergenröther, in Katholisches Kirchenrecht, p. 344 sq., expresses the same judgment. The council was not a legitimate council till after Gregory’s resignation.

The wisdom of the council in securing the resignation of Gregory and deposing John and Benedict is not questioned. The validity of its act in electing Martin V., though the papal regulation limiting the right of voting to the cardinals was set aside, is also acknowledged on the ground that the council at the time of Martin’s election was sitting by Gregory’s sanction, and Gregory was true pope until he abdicated.

A serious objection to the view, setting aside this action of the 4th and 5th sessions, is offered by the formal statement made by Martin V. At the final meeting of the council and after its adjournment had been pronounced, a tumultuous discussion was precipitated over the tract concerning the affairs of Poland and Lithuania by the Dominican, Falkenberg, which was written in defence of the Teutonic Knights, and justified the killing of the Polish king and all his subjects. It had been the subject of discussion in the nations, and its heresies were declared to be so glaring that, if they remained uncondemned by the council, that body would go down to posterity as defective in its testimony for orthodoxy. It was during the tumultuous debate, and after Martin had adjourned the council, that he uttered the words which, on their face, sanction whatever was done in council in a conciliar way. Putting an end to the tumult, he announced he would maintain all the decrees passed by the council in matters of faith in a conciliar way—omnia et singula determinata et conclusa et decreta in materiis fidei per praesens sacrum concilium generale Constantiense conciliariter tenere et inviolabiliter observare volebat et nunquam contravenire quoquomodo. Moreover, he announced that he sanctioned and ratified acts made in a "conciliar way and not made otherwise or in any other way." Ipsaque sic conciliariter facta approbat papa et ratificat et non aliter nec alio modo. Funk, Martin V. und das Konzil zu Konstanz in Abhandlungen, I. 489 sqq., Hefele, Conciliengesch., I. 62, and Küpper, in Wetzer-Welte, VII. 1004 sqq., restrict the application of these words to the Falkenberg incident. Funk, however, by a narrow interpretation of the words "in matter of faith," excludes the acts of the 4th and 6th sessions from the pope’s approval. Döllinger (p. 464), contends that the expression conciliariter, "in a conciliar way," is opposed to nationaliter, "in the nations." The expression is to be taken in its simple meaning, and refers to what was done by the council as a council.

The only other statement made by Martin bearing upon the question occurs in his bull Frequens, of Feb. 22, 1418, in which he recognized the council as oecumenical, and declared its decrees binding which pertained to faith and the salvation of souls—quod sacrum concilium Constant., universalem ecclesiam representans approbavit et approbat in favorem fidei et salutem animarum, quod hoc est ab universis Christi fidelibus approbandum et tenendum. Hefele and Funk show that this declaration was not meant to exclude matters which were not of faith, for Martin expressly approved other matters, such as those passed upon in the 39th session. There is no record that Martin at any time said anything to throw light upon his meaning in these two utterances.

In the latter part of the fifteenth century, as Raynaldus, an. 1418, shows, the view came to expression that Martin expressly intended to except the action of the 4th and 6th sessions from his papal approval.

Martin V.’s successor, Eugenius IV., in 1446, thirty years after the synod, asserted that its decrees were to be accepted so far as they did not prejudice the law, dignity, and pre-eminence of the Apostolic See — absque tamen praejudicio juris et dignitatis et praeeminentiae Apost. sedis. The papacy had at that time recovered its prestige, and the supreme pontiff felt himself strong enough to openly reassert the superiority of the Apostolic See over oecumenical councils. But before that time, in a bull issued Dec. 13, 1443, he formally accepted the acts of the Council of Basel, the most explicit of which was the reaffirmation of the acts of the Council of Constance in its 4th and 5th sessions.

It occurs to a Protestant that the Council of Constance would hardly have elected Oddo Colonna pope if he had been suspected of being opposed to the council’s action concerning its own superiority. The council would have stultified itself in appointing a man to undo what it had solemnly done. And for him to have denied its authority would have been, as Döllinger says (p. 159), like a son denying his parentage. The emphasis which recent Catholic historians lay upon Gregory’s authorization of the synod as giving it for the first time an oecumenical character is an easy way out of the difficulty, and this view forces the recognition of the Roman line of popes as the legitimate successors of St. Peter during the years of the schism.

§ 17. The council of Basel. 1431–1449.

Martin V. proved himself to be a capable and judicious ruler, with courage enough when the exigency arose. He left Constance May 16, 1418. Sigismund, who took his departure the following week, offered him as his papal residence Basel, Strassburg, or Frankfurt. France pressed the claims of Avignon, but a Colonna could think of no other city than Rome, and proceeding by the way of Bern, Geneva, Mantua, and Florence, he entered the Eternal city Sept. 28, 1420.323323    Richental, pp. 149 sqq. The delay was due to the struggle being carried on for its possession by the forces of Joanna of Naples under Sforza, and the bold chieftain Braccio.324324    Infessura, p. 21. Martin secured the withdrawal of Joanna’s claims by recognizing that princess as queen of Naples, and pacified by investing him with Assisi, Perugia, Jesi, and Todi.

Rome was in a desolate condition when Martin reached it, the prey of robbers, its streets filled with refuse and stagnant water, its bridges decayed, and many of its churches without roofs. Cattle and sheep were herded in the spaces of St. Paul’s. Wolves attacked the inhabitants within the walls.325325    Five large wolves were killed in the Vatican gardens, Jan. 23, 1411. Gregorovius, VI. 618 With Martin’s arrival a new era was opened. This pope rid the city of robbers, so that persons carrying gold might go with safety even beyond the walls. He restored the Lateran, and had it floored with a new pavement. He repaired the porch of St. Peter’s, and provided it with a new roof at a cost of 50,000 gold gulden. Revolutions within the city ceased. Martin deserves to be honored as one of Rome’s leading benefactors. His pontificate was an era of peace after years of constant strife and bloodshed due to factions within the walls and invaders from without. With him its mediaeval history closes, and an age of restoration and progress begins. The inscription on Martin’s tomb in the Lateran, "the Felicity of his Times,"—temporum suorum felicitas,—expresses the debt Rome owes to him.

Among the signs of Martin’s interest in religion was his order securing the transfer to Rome of some of the bones of Monica, the mother of Augustine, and his bull canonizing her. On their reception, Martin made a public address in which he said, "Since we possess St. Augustine, what do we care for the shrewdness of Aristotle, the eloquence of Plato, the reputation of Pythagoras? These men we do not need. Augustine is enough. If we want to know the truth, learning, and religion, where shall we find one more wise, learned, and holy than St. Augustine?"

As for the promises of Church reforms made at Constance, Martin paid no attention to them, and the explanation made by Pastor, that his time was occupied with the government of Rome and the improvement of the city, is not sufficient to exculpate him. The old abuses in the disposition and sale of offices continued. The pope had no intention of yielding up the monarchical claims of the papal office. Nor did he forget his relatives. One brother, Giordano, was made duke of and another, Lorenzo, count of Alba. One of his nephews, Prospero, he invested with the purple, 1426. He also secured large tracts of territory for his house.326326    Pastor, I. 227, Martin’s warm admirer, passes lightly over the pope’s nepotism with the remark that in this regard he overstepped the line of propriety—er hat das Mass des Erlaubten überschritten.

The council, appointed by Martin at Constance to meet in Pavia, convened April, 1423, was sparsely attended, adjourned on account of the plague to Siena, and, after condemning the errors of Wyclif and Huss, was dissolved March 7, 1424. Martin and his successors feared councils, and it was their policy to prevent, if possible, their assembling, by all sorts of excuses and delays. Why should the pope place himself in a position to hear instructions and receive commands? However, Martin could not be altogether deaf to the demands of Christendom, or unmindful of his pledge given at Constance. Placards were posted up in Rome threatening him if he summoned a council. Under constraint and not of free will, he appointed the second council, which was to meet in seven years at Basel, 1431, but he died the same year, before the time set for its assembling.

Eugenius IV., the next occupant of the papal throne, 1431–1447, a Venetian, had been made bishop of Siena by his maternal uncle, Gregory XII., at the age of twenty-four, and soon afterwards was elevated to the curia. His pontificate was chiefly occupied with the attempt to assert the supremacy of the papacy against the conciliar theory. It also witnessed the most notable effort ever made for the union of the Greeks with the Western Church.

By an agreement signed in the conclave which elevated Eugenius, the cardinals promised that the successful candidate should advance the interests of the impending general council, follow the decrees of the Council of Constance in appointing cardinals, consult the sacred college in matters of papal administration, and introduce Church reforms. Such a compact had been signed by the conclave which elected Innocent VI., 1352, and similar compacts by almost every conclave after Eugenius down to the Reformation, but all with no result, for, as soon as the election was consummated, the pope set the agreement aside and pursued his own course.

On the day set for the opening of the council in Basel, March 7, 1431, only a single prelate was present, the abbot of Vezelay. The formal opening occurred July 23, but Cardinal Cesarini, who had been appointed by Martin and Eugenius to preside, did not appear till Sept. 9. He was detained by his duties as papal legate to settle the Hussite insurrection in Bohemia. Sigismund sent Duke William of Bavaria as protector, and the attendance speedily grew. The number of doctors present was larger in comparison to the number of prelates than at Constance. A member of the council said that out of 500 members he scarcely saw 20 bishops. The rest belonged to the lower orders of the clergy, or were laymen. "Of old, bishops had settled the affairs of the Church, but now the common herd does it."327327    Traversari, as quoted by Creighton, I. 128. The most interesting personage in the convention was Aeneas Sylvius Piccolomini, who came to Basel as Cardinal Capranica’s secretary. He sat on some of its important commissions.

The tasks set before the council were the completion of the work of Constance in instituting reforms,328328    Ob reformationem Eccles. Dei in capite et membris specialiter congregatur, Mansi, XXIX. 165, etc. and a peaceful settlement of the Bohemian heresy. Admirable as its effort was in both directions, it failed of papal favor, and the synod was turned into a constitutional battle over papal absolutism and conciliar supremacy. This battle was fought with the pen as well as in debate. Nicolas of Cusa, representing the scholastic element, advocated, in 1433, the supremacy of councils in his Concordantia catholica. The Dominican, John of Turrecremata, took the opposite view, and defended the doctrine of papal infallibility in his Summa de ecclesia et ejus auctoritate. For years the latter writing was the classical authority for the papal pretension.

The business was performed not by nations but by four committees, each composed of an equal number of representatives from the four nations and elected for a month. When they agreed on any subject, it was brought before the council in public session.

It soon became evident that the synod acknowledged no earthly authority above itself, and was in no mood to hear the contrary principle defended. On the other hand, Eugenius was not ready to tolerate free discussion and the synod’s self-assertion, and took the unfortunate step of proroguing the synod to Bologna, making the announcement at a meeting of the cardinals, Dec. 18, 1431. The bull was made public at Basel four weeks later, and made an intense sensation. The synod was quick to give its answer, and decided to continue its sittings. This was revolution, but the synod had the nations and public opinion back of it, as well as the decrees of the Council of Constance. It insisted upon the personal presence of Eugenius, and on Feb. 15, 1432, declared for its own sovereignty and that a general council might not be prorogued or transferred by a pope without its own consent.

In the meantime Sigismund had received the iron crown at Milan, Nov. 25, 1431. He was at this period a strong supporter of the council’s claims. A French synod, meeting at Bourges early in 1432, gave its sanction to them, and the University of Paris wrote that Eugenius’ decree transferring the council was a suggestion of the devil. Becoming more bold, the council, at its third session, April 29, 1432, called upon the pope to revoke his bull and be present in person. At its fourth session, June 20, it decreed that, in case the papal office became vacant, the election to fill the vacancy should be held in Basel and that, so long as Eugenius remained away from Basel, he should be denied the right to create any more cardinals. The council went still farther, proceeded to arraign the pope for contumacy, and on Dec. 18 gave him 60 days in which to appear, on pain of having formal proceedings instituted against him.

Sigismund, who was crowned emperor in Rome the following Spring, May 31, 1433, was not prepared for such drastic action. He was back again in Basel in October, but, with the emperor present or absent, the council continued on its course, and repeatedly reaffirmed its superior authority, quoting the declarations of the Council of Constance at its fourth and fifth sessions. The voice of Western Christendom was against Eugenius, as were the most of his cardinals. Under the stress of this opposition, and pressed by the revolution threatening his authority in Rome, the pope gave way, and in the decree of Dec. 13, 1433, revoked his three bulls, beginning with Dec. 18, 1431, which adjourned the synod. He asserted he had acted with the advice of the cardinals, but now pronounced and declared the "General Council of Bagel legitimate from the time of its opening." Any utterance or act prejudicial to the holy synod or derogatory to its authority, which had proceeded from him, he revoked, annulled, and pronounced utterly void.329329    Decernimus et declaramus generale concil. Basileense a tempore inchoationis suae legitime continuatum fuisse et esse ... quidquid per nos aut nostro nomine in prejudicium et derogationem sacri concil. Basileensis seu contra ejus auctoritatem factum et attentatum seu assertum est, cassamus, revocamus, irritamus et annullamus, nullas, irritas fuisse et esse declaramus, Mansi, XXIX. 78. At the same time the pope appointed legates to preside, and they were received by the synod. They swore in their own names to accept and defend its decrees.

No revocation of a former decree could have been made more explicit. The Latin vocabulary was strained for words. Catholic historians refrain from making an argument against the plain meaning of the bull, which is fatal to the dogma of papal inerrancy and acknowledges the superiority of general councils. At best they pass the decree with as little comment as possible, or content themselves with the assertion that Eugenius had no idea of confirming the synod’s reaffirmation of the famous decrees of Constance, or with the suggestion that the pope was under duress when he issued the document.330330    So Hergenröther-Kirsch, II. 919, Pastor, I. 288, etc. Funk, Kirchengesch., p. 874, with his, usual fairness, says that Eugenius in his bull gave unconditional assent to the council. So verstand er sich endlich zur unbedingten Annahme der Synode Both assumptions are without warrant. The pope made no exception whatever when he confirmed the acts of the synod "from its opening." As for the explanation that the decree was forced, it needs only to be said that the revolt made against the pope in Rome, May, 1434, in which the Colonna took a prominent part, had not yet broken out, and there was no compulsion except that which comes from the judgment that one’s case has failed. Cesarini, Nicolas of Cusa, Aeneas Sylvius, John, patriarch of Antioch, and the other prominent personages at Basel, favored the theory of the supreme authority of councils, and they and the synod would have resented the papal deliverance if they had surmised its utterances meant something different from what they expressly stated. Döllinger concludes his treatment of the subject by saying that Eugenius’ bull was the most positive and unequivocal recognition possible of the sovereignty of the council, and that the pope was subject to it.

Eugenius was the last pope, with the exception of Pius IX., who has had to flee from Rome. Twenty-five popes had been obliged to escape from the city before him. Disguised in the garb of a Benedictine monk, and carried part of the way on the shoulders of a sailor, he reached a boat on the Tiber, but was recognized and pelted with a shower of stones, from which he escaped by lying flat in the boat, covered with a shield. Reaching Ostia, he took a galley to Livorno. From there he went to Florence. He remained in exile from 1434 to 1443.

In its efforts to pacify the Hussites, the synod granted them the use of the cup, and made other concessions. The causes of their opposition to the Church had been expressed in the four articles of Prag. The synod introduced an altogether new method of dealing with heretics in guaranteeing to the Hussites and their representatives full rights of discussion. Having settled the question of its own authority, the synod took up measures to reform the Church "in head and members." The number of the cardinals was restricted to 24, and proper qualifications insisted upon, a measure sufficiently needed, as Eugenius had given the red hat to two of his nephews. Annates, payments for the pallium, the sale of church dignities, and other taxes which the Apostolic See had developed, were abolished. The right of appeal to Rome was curtailed. Measures of another nature were the reaffirmation of the law of priestly celibacy,331331    De concubinariis, Mansi, XXIX. 101 sq. and the prohibition of theatricals and other entertainments in church buildings and churchyards. In 1439 the synod issued a decree on the immaculate conception, by which Mary was declared to have always been free from original and actual sin.332332    Immunem semper fuisse ab omni originali et actuali culpa, etc., Mansi, XXIX. 183. The interference with the papal revenues affecting the entire papal household was, in a measure, atoned for by the promise to provide other sources. From the monarchical head of the Church, directly appointed by God, and responsible to no human tribunal, the supreme pontiff was reduced to an official of the council. Another class of measures sought to clear Basel of the offences attending a large and promiscuous gathering, such as gambling, dancing, and the arts of prostitutes, who were enjoined from showing themselves on the streets.

Eugenius did not sit idly by while his prerogatives were being tampered with and an utterly unpapal method of dealing with heretics was being pursued. He communicated with the princes of Europe, June 1, 1436, complaining of the highhanded measures, such as the withdrawal of the papal revenues, the suppression of the prayer for the pope in the liturgy, and the giving of a vote to the lower clergy in the synod. At that juncture the union with the Greeks, a question which had assumed a place of great prominence, afforded the pope the opportunity for reasserting his authority and breaking up the council in the Swiss city.

Overtures of union, starting with Constantinople, were made simultaneously through separate bodies of envoys sent to the pope and the council. The one met Eugenius at Bologna; the other appeared in Basel in the summer of 1434. In discussing a place for a joint meeting of the representatives of the two communions, the Greeks expressed a preference for some Italian city, or Vienna. This exactly suited Eugenius, who had even suggested Constantinople as a place of meeting, but the synod sharply informed him that the city on the Bosphorus was not to be considered. In urging Basel, Avignon, or a city in Savoy, the Basel councilmen were losing their opportunity. Two delegations, one from the council and one from the pope, appeared in Constantinople, 1437, proposing different places of meeting.

When the matter came up for final decision, the council, by a vote of 355 to 244, decided to continue the meeting at Basel, or, if that was not agreeable to the Greeks, then at Avignon. The minority, acting upon the pope’s preference, decided in favor of Florence or Udine. In a bull dated Sept. 18, 1437, and signed by eight cardinals, Eugenius condemned the synod for negotiating with the Greeks, pronounced it prorogued, and, at the request of the Greeks, as it alleged, transferred the council to Ferrara.333333    "Transfer" is the word used by the pope—transferendo hoc sacrum concilium in civitatem Ferrarensium, Mansi, XXIX. 166. Reasons for the transfer to an Italian city and an interesting statement of the discussion over the place of meeting are given in Haller, Conc. Bas., I. 141-159.

The synod was checkmated, though it did not appreciate its situation. The reunion of Christendom was a measure of overshadowing importance, and took precedence in men’s minds of the reform of Church abuses. The Greeks all went to Ferrara. The prelates, who had been at Basel, gradually retired across the Alps, including Cardinals Cesarini and Nicolas of Cusa. The only cardinal left at Basel was d’Aleman, archbishop of Arles. It was now an open fight between the pope and council, and it meant either a schism of the Western Church or the complete triumph of the papacy. The discussions at Basel were characterized by such vehemence that armed citizens had to intervene to prevent violence. The conciliar theory was struggling for life. At its 28th session, October, 1437, the council declared the papal bull null and void, and summoned Eugenius within sixty days to appear before it in person or by deputy. Four months later, Jan. 24, 1488, it declared Eugenius suspended, and, June 25, 1439, at its 34th session, "removed, deposed, deprived, and cast him down," as a disturber of the peace of the Church, a simoniac and perjurer, incorrigible, and errant from the faith, a schismatic, and a pertinacious heretic.334334    Eugenium fuisse et esse notorium et manifestum contumacem, violatorem assiduum atque contemptorem sacrorum canonum synodalium, pacis et unitatis Eccles. Dei perturbatorem notorium ... simoniacum, perjurum, incorrigibilem, schismaticum, a fide devium, pertinacem haereticum, dilapidatorem jurium et bonorum ecclesiae, inutilem et damnosum ad administrationem romani pontificii, etc., Mansi, XXIX. 180. Previous to this, at its 33d session, it had again solemnly declared for the supreme jurisdiction of councils, and denied the pope the right to adjourn or transfer a general council. The holding of contrary views, it pronounced heresy.

In the meantime the council at Ferrara had been opened, Jan. 8, 1438, and was daily gaining adherents. Charles VII. took the side of Eugenius, although the French people, at the synod of Bourges in the summer of 1438, accepted, substantially, the reforms proposed by the council of Basel.335335    Mirbt gives it in part, Quellen, p. 160. This action, known as the Pragmatic Sanction, decided for the superiority of councils, and that they should be held every ten years, abolished annates and first-fruits, ordered the large benefices filled by elections, and limited the number of cardinals to twenty-four. These important declarations, which went back to the decrees of the Council of Constance, were the foundations of the Gallican liberties.

The attitude of the German princes and ecclesiastics was one of neutrality or of open support of the council at Basel. Sigismund died at the close of the year 1437, and, before the election of his son-in-law, Albrecht II., as his successor, the electors at Frankfurt decided upon a course of neutrality. Albrecht survived his election as king of the Romans less than two years, and his uncle, Frederick III., was chosen to take his place. Frederick, after observing neutrality for several years, gave his adhesion to Eugenius.

Unwilling to be ignored and put out of life, the council at Basel, through a commission of thirty-two, at whose head stood d’Aleman, elected, 1439, Amadeus, duke of Savoy, as pope.336336    H. Manger, D. Wahl Amadeos v. Savoyen zum Papste, Marburg, 1901, p. 94. Sigismund, in 1416, raised the counts of Savoy to the dignity of dukes. After the loss of his wife, 1435, Amadeus formed the order of St. Mauritius, and lived with several companions in a retreat at Ripaille, on the Lake of Geneva. He was a man of large wealth and influential family connections. He assumed the name of Felix V., and appointed four cardinals. A year after his election, and accompanied by his two sons, he entered Basel, and was crowned by Cardinal d’Aleman. The tiara is said to have cost 30,000 crowns. Thus Western Christendom again witnessed a schism. Felix had the support of Savoy and some of the German princes, of Alfonso of Aragon, and the universities of Paris, Vienna, Cologne, Erfurt, and Cracow. Frederick III. kept aloof from Basel and declined the offer of marriage to Margaret, daughter of Felix and widow of Louis of Anjou, with a dowry of 200,000 ducats.

The papal achievement in winning Frederick III., king of the Romans, was largely due to the corruption of Frederick’s chief minister, Caspar Schlick, and the treachery of Aeneas Sylvius, who deserted one cause and master after another as it suited his advantage. From being a vigorous advocate of the council, he turned to the side of Eugenius, to whom he made a most fulsome confession, and, after passing from the service of Felix, he became secretary to Frederick, and proved himself Eugenius’ most shrewd and pliable agent. He was an adept in diplomacy and trimmed his sails to the wind.

The archbishops of Treves and Cologne, who openly supported the Basel assembly, were deposed by Eugenius, 1446. The same year six of the electors offered Eugenius their obedience, provided he would recognize the superiority of an oecumenical council, and within thirteen months call a new council to meet on German soil. Following the advice of Aeneas Sylvius, the pope concluded it wise to show a conciliatory attitude. Papal delegates appeared at the diet, meeting September, 1446, and Aeneas was successful in winning over the margrave of Brandenburg and other influential princes. The following January he and other envoys appeared in Rome as representatives of the archbishop of Mainz, Frederick III., and other princes. The result of the negotiations was a concordat,—the so-called princes’ concordat,—Fürsten Konkordat,—by which the pope restored the two deposed archbishops, recognized the superiority of general councils, and gave to Frederick the right during his lifetime to nominate the incumbents of the six bishoprics of Trent, Brixen, Chur, Gurk, Trieste, and Pilsen, and to him and his successors the right to fill, subject to the pope’s approval, 100 Austrian benefices. These concessions Eugenius ratified in four bulls, Feb. 5–7, 1447, one of them, the bull Salvatoria, declaring that the pope in the previous three bulls had not meant to disparage the authority of the Apostolic See, and if his successors found his concessions out of accord with the doctrine of the fathers, they were to be regarded as void. The agreement was celebrated in Rome with the ringing of bells, and was confirmed by Nicolas V. in the so-called Vienna Concordat, Feb. 17, 1448.337337    Given in Mirbt, p. 165 sqq.

Eugenius died Feb. 23, 1447, and was laid at the side of Eugenius III. in St. Peter’s. He had done nothing to introduce reforms into the Church. Like Martin V., he was fond of art, a taste he cultivated during his exile in Florence. He succeeded in perpetuating the mediaeval view of the papacy, and in delaying the reformation of the Church which, when it came, involved the schism in Western Christendom which continues to this day.

The Basel council continued to drag on a tedious and uneventful existence. It was no longer in the stream of noticeable events. It stultified itself by granting Felix a tenth. In June, 1448, it adjourned to Lausanne. Reduced to a handful of adherents, and weary of being a synonym for innocuous failure, it voted to accept Nicolas V., Eugenius’ successor, as legitimate pope, and then quietly breathed its last, April 25, 1449. After courteously revoking his bulls anathematizing Eugenius and Nicolas, Felix abdicated. He was not allowed to suffer, much less obliged to do penance, for his presumption in exercising papal functions. He was made cardinal-bishop of Sabina, and Apostolic vicar in Savoy and other regions which had recognized his "obedience." Three of his cardinals were admitted to the curia, and d’Aleman forgiven. Felix died in Geneva, 1451.338338    In his bull Ut pacis, 1449, recognizing the Lausanne act in his favor, Nicolas V. called Amadeus "his venerable and most beloved brother," and spoke of the Basel-Lausanne synod as being held under the name of an oecumenical council, sub nomine generalis concilii, Labbaeus, XII. 663, 665.

The Roman Church has not since had an anti-pope. The Council of Basel concluded the series of the three councils, which had for their chief aims the healing of the papal schism and the reformation of Church abuses. They opened with great promise at Pisa, where a freedom of discussion prevailed unheard of before, and where the universities and their learned representatives appeared as a new element in the deliberations of the Church. The healing of the schism was accomplished, but the abuses in the Church went on, and under the last popes of the fifteenth century became more infamous than they had been at any time before. And yet even in this respect these councils were not in vain, for they afforded a warning to the Protestant reformers not to put their trust even in ecclesiastical assemblies. As for the theory of the supremacy of general councils which they had maintained with such dignity, it was proudly set aside by later popes in their practice and declared fallacious by the Fifth Lateran in 1516,339339    Sess. XI. romanum pontificem tanquam super omnia conciliaauctoritatem habentem, conciliorum indicendorum transferendorum «e dissolvendorum plenum jus et potestatem habere. This council at the same time pronounced the Council of Basel a "little council," conciliabulum, "or rather a conventicle," conventicula. Mansi, XXXII. 967. and by the dogma of papal infallibility announced at the Council of the Vatican, 1870.

§ 18. The Council of Ferrara-Florence. 1438–1445.

The council of Ferrara witnessed the submission of the Greeks to the Roman see. It did not attempt to go into the subject of ecclesiastical reforms, and thus vie with the synod at Basel. After sixteen sessions held at Ferrara, Eugenius transferred the council, February, 1439, to Florence. The reason given was the unhealthy conditions in Ferrara, but the real grounds were the offer of the Florentines to aid Eugenius in the support of his guests from the East and, by getting away from the seaside, to lessen the chances of the Greeks going home before the conclusion of the union. In 1442 the council was transferred to Rome, where it held two sessions in the Lateran. The sessions at Ferrara, Florence, and Rome are listed with the first twenty-five sessions of the council of Basel, and together they are counted as the seventeenth oecumenical council.340340    Hefele-Knöpfler, Kirchengesch., p. 477.

The schism between the East and the West, dating from the middle of the ninth century, while Nicolas I. and Photius were patriarchs respectively of Rome and Constantinople, was widened by the crusades and the conquest of Constantinople, 1204. The interest in a reunion of the two branches of the Church was shown by the discussion at Bari, 1098, when Anselm was appointed to set forth the differences with Greeks, and by the treatments of Thomas Aquinas and other theologians. The only notable attempt at reunion was made at the second council of Lyons, 1274, when a deputation from the East accepted articles of agreement which, however, were rejected by the Eastern churches. In 1369, the emperor John visited Rome and abjured the schism, but his action met with unfavorable response in Constantinople. Delegates appeared at Constance, 1418, sent by Manuel Palaeologus and the patriarch of Constantinople,341341    Richental, Chronik, p. 113, has a notice of their arrival. and, in 1422, Martin V. despatched the Franciscan, Anthony Massanus, to the Bosphorus, with nine articles as a basis of union. These articles led on to the negotiations conducted at Ferrara.

Neither Eugenius nor the Greeks deserve any credit for the part they took in the conference. The Greeks were actuated wholly by a desire to get the assistance of the West against the advance of the Turks, and not by religious zeal. So far as the Latins are concerned, they had to pay all the expenses of the Greeks on their way to Italy, in Italy, and on their way back as the price of the conference. Catholic historians have little enthusiasm in describing the empty achievements of Eugenius.342342    So Hefele-Knöpfler, Kirchengesch., p. 476; Hergenröther-Kirsch, II. 949; Funk, Kirchengesch., p. 377. Pastor, II. 307, says, "Die politische Nothlage brachte endlich die Griechen zum Nachgeben."

The Greek delegation was large and inspiring, and included the emperor and the patriarch of Constantinople. In Venetian vessels rented by the pope, the emperor John VI., Palaeologus reached Venice in February, 1438.343343    An account of the emperor’s arrival and entertainment at Venice is given in Mansi, XXXI. 463 sqq. He was accorded a brilliant reception, but it is fair to suppose that the pleasure he may have felt in the festivities was not unmixed with feelings of resentment, when he recalled the sack and pillage of his capital, in 1204, by the ancestors of his entertainers. John reached Ferrara March 6. The Greek delegation comprised 700 persons. Eugenius had arrived Jan. 27. In his bull, read in the synod, he called the emperor his most beloved son, and the patriarch his most pious brother.344344    Dilectissimus filius noster Romaeorum imperator Cum piissimmo fratre nostro, Josepho Const. patriarcha, Mansi, XXXI. 481. In a public address delivered by Cardinal Cesarini, the differences dividing the two communions were announced as four,—the mode of the procession of the Holy Spirit, the use of unleavened bread in the eucharist, the doctrine of purgatory, and the papal primacy. The discussions exhibit a mortifying spectacle of theological clipping and patchwork. They betray no pure zeal for the religious interests of mankind. The Greeks interposed all manner of dilatory tactics while they lived upon the hospitality of their hosts. The Latins were bent upon asserting the supremacy of the Roman bishop. The Orientals, moved by considerations of worldly policy, thought only of the protection of their enfeebled empire.

Among the more prominent Greeks present were Bessarion, bishop of Nice, Isidore, archbishop of Russian Kief, and Mark Eugenicus, archbishop of Ephesus. Bessarion and Isidore remained in the West after the adjournment of the council, and were rewarded by Eugenius with the red hat. The archbishop of Ephesus has our admiration for refusing to bow servilely to the pope and join his colleagues in accepting the articles of union. The leaders among the Latins were Cardinals Cesarini and Albergati, and the Spaniard Turrecremata, who was also given the red hat after the council adjourned.

The first negotiations concerned matters of etiquette. Eugenius gave a private audience to the patriarch, but waived the ceremony of having his foot kissed. An important question was the proper seating of the delegates, and the Greek emperor saw to it that accurate measurements were taken of the seats set apart for the Greeks, lest they should have positions of less honor than the Latins.345345    So Syrophulos. See Hefele Conciliengesch., VII. 672. The pope’s promise to support his guests was arranged by a monthly grant of thirty florins to the emperor, twenty-five to the patriarch, four each to the prelates, and three to the other visitors. What possible respect could the more high-minded Latins have for ecclesiastics, and an emperor, who, while engaged on the mission of Church reunion, were willing to be the pope’s pensioners, and live upon his dole!

The first common session was not held till Oct. 8, 1438. Most of it was taken up with a long address by Bessarion, as was the time of the second session by a still longer address by another Greek. The emperor did his share in promoting delay by spending most of his time hunting. At the start the Greeks insisted there could be no addition to the original creed. Again and again they were on the point of withdrawing, but were deterred from doing so by dread of the Turks and empty purses.346346    Hergenröther-Kirsch, II. 949, lays stress upon the Greek readiness to accept alms. A commission of twenty, ten Greeks and ten Latins, was appointed to conduct the preliminary discussion on the questions of difference.

The Greeks accepted the addition made to the Constantinopolitan creed by the synod of Toledo, 589, declaring that the Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son, but with the stipulation that they were not to be required to introduce the filioque clause when they used the creed. They justified their course on the ground that they had understood the Latins as holding to the procession from the Father and the Son as from two principles. The article of agreement ran: "The Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son eternally and substantially as it were from one source and cause."347347    Aeternaliter et substantialiter tanquam ab uno principio et causa. The statement ex patre et filio and ex patre per filium were declared to be identical in meaning.

In the matter of purgatory, it was decided that immediately at death the blessed pass to the beatific vision, a view the Greeks had rejected. Souls in purgatory are purified by pain and may be aided by the suffrages of the living. At the insistence of the Greeks, material fire as an element of purification was left out.

The use of leavened bread was conceded to the Greeks.

In the matter of the eucharist, the Greeks, who, after the words, "this is my body," make a petition that the Spirit may turn the bread into Christ’s body, agreed to the view that transubstantiation occurs at the use of the priestly words, but stipulated that the confession be not incorporated in the written articles.

The primacy of the Roman bishop offered the most serious difficulty. The article of union acknowledged him as "having a primacy over the whole world, he himself being the successor of Peter, and the true vicar of Christ, the head of the whole Church, the father and teacher of all Christians, to whom, in Peter, Christ gave authority to feed, govern and rule the universal Church."348348    Diffinimus sanctam apostol. sedem et Romanam pontificem in universum orbem tenere primatum et ipsum pontificem Romanum successorem esse B. Petri principis apostolorum, et verum Christi vicarium, totiusque ecclesiae caput, et omnium Christianorum patrem et doctorem existere, etc. Mansi, XXXI. 1697. This remarkable concession was modified by a clause in the original document, running, "according as it is defined by the acts of the oecumenical councils and by the sacred canons."349349    Quemadmodum et in gestis oecumenicorum conciliorum et in sacris canonibus continetur. The change placed an etiam in the place of the first et, so that the clause ran quemadmodum etiam in gestis, etc. See Döllinger-Friedrich, D. Papstthum, pp. 170, 470 sq. Döllinger says that in the Roman ed. of 1626 the Ferrara council was called the 8th oecumenical. The Latins afterwards changed the clause so as to read, "even as it is defined by the oecumenical councils and the holy canons." The Latin falsification made the early oecumencial councils a witness to the primacy of the Roman pontiff.

The articles of union were incorporated in a decree350350    The document, together with the signatures, is given in Mansi, pp. 1028-1036, 1695-1701. Hefele-Knöpfler, Conciliengesch., VII. 742-753, has regarded it of such importance as to give the Greek and Latin originals in full, and also a German translation. beginning Laetentur coeli et exultat terra, "Let the heavens rejoice and the earth be glad." It declared that the middle wall of partition between the Occidental and Oriental churches has been taken down by him who is the cornerstone, Christ. The black darkness of the long schism had passed away before the ray of concord. Mother Church rejoiced to see her divided children reunited in the bonds of peace and love. The union was due to the grace of the Holy Ghost. The articles were signed July 5 by 115 Latins and 33 Greeks, of whom 18 were metropolitans. Archbishop Mark of Ephesus was the only one of the Orientals who refused to sign. The patriarch of Constantinople had died a month before, but wrote approving the union. His body lies buried in S. Maria Novella, Florence. His remains and the original manuscript of the articles, which is preserved in the Laurentian library at Florence, are the only relics left of the union.

On July 6, 1439, the articles were publicly read in the cathedral of Florence, the Greek text by Bessarion, and the Latin by Cesarini. The pope was present and celebrated the mass. The Latins sang hymns in Latin, and the Greeks followed them with hymns of their own. Eugenius promised for the defence of Constantinople a garrison of three hundred and two galleys and, if necessary, the armed help of Western Christendom. After tarrying for a month to receive the five months of arrearages of his stipend, the emperor returned by way of Venice to his capital, from which he had been absent two years.

The Ferrara agreement proved to be a shell of paper, and all the parade and rejoicing at the conclusion of the proceedings were made ridiculous by the utter rejection of its articles in Constantinople.

On their return, the delegates were hooted as Azymites, the name given in contempt to the Latins for using unleavened bread in the eucharist. Isidore, after making announcement of the union at Of en, was seized and put into a convent, from which he escaped two years later to Rome. The patriarchs of Jerusalem, Antioch, and Alexandria issued a letter from Jerusalem, 1443, denouncing the council of Florence as a synod of robbers and Metrophanes, the Byzantine patriarch as a matricide and heretic.

It is true the articles were published in St. Sophia, Dec. 14, 1452, by a Latin cardinal, but six months later, Constantinople was in the hands of the Mohammedans. A Greek council, meeting in Constantinople, 1472, formally rejected the union.

On the other hand, the success of the Roman policy was announced through Western Europe. Eugenius’ position was strengthened by the empty triumph, and in the same proportion the influence of the Basel synod lessened. If cordial relations between churches of the East and the West were not promoted at Ferrara and Florence, a beneficent influence flowed from the council in another direction by the diffusion of Greek scholarship and letters in the West.

Delegations also from the Armenians and Jacobites appeared at Florence respectively in 1439 and 1442. The Copts and Ethiopians also sent delegations, and it seemed as if the time had arrived for the reunion of all the distracted parts of Christendom.351351    See Mansi, XXXI. 1047 sqq.; Hefele-Knöpfler, VII. 788 sqq. The only meeting since between Greeks and Western ecclesiastics of public note was at the Bonn Conference, 1875, in which Döllinger and the Old-Catholics took the most prominent part. Dr. Philip Schaff and several Anglican divines also participated. See Creeds of Christendom, I. 545-554, and Life of Philip Schaff, pp. 277-280. A union with the Armenians, announced Nov. 22, 1439, declared that the Eastern delegates had accepted the procession of the Holy Spirit from the Son and the Chalcedon Council giving Christ two natures and by implication two wills. The uniate Armenians have proved true to the union. The Armenian catholicos, Gregory IX., who attempted to enforce the union, was deposed, and the Turks, in 1461, set up an Armenian patriarch, with seat at Constantinople. The union of the Jacobites, proclaimed in 1442, was universally disowned in the East. The attempts to conciliate the Copts and Ethiopians were futile. Eugenius sent envoys to the East to apprise the Maronites and the Nestorians of the efforts at reunion. The Nestorians on the island of Cyprus submitted to Rome, and a century later, during the sessions of the Fifth Lateran, 1516, the Maronites were received into the Roman communion.

On Aug. 7, 1445, Eugenius adjourned the long council which had begun its sittings at Basel, continued them at Ferrara and Florence, and concluded them in the Lateran.

CHAPTER III.

LEADERS OF CATHOLIC THOUGHT.

§ 19. Literature.

For § 20. Ockam and the Decay of Scholasticism.—No complete ed. of Ockam’s works exists. The fullest lists are given by Riezler, see below, Little: Grey Friars of Oxford, pp. 226–234, and Potthast: II. 871–873. Goldast’s Monarchia, II. 313–1296, contains a number of his works, e.g. opus nonaginta dierum, Compendium errorum Johannis XXII., De utili dominio rerum Eccles. et abdicatione bonorum temporalium, Super potestatem summi pontificis, Quaestionum octo decisiones, Dial. de potestate papali et imperiali in tres partes distinctus, (1) de haereticis, (2) de erroribus Joh. XXII., (3) de potestate papae, conciliorum et imperatoris (first publ. 2 vols., Paris, 1476).—Other works: Expositio aurea super totam artem veterem, a com. on Porphyry’s Isagoge, and Aristotle’s Elenchus, Bologna, 1496.—Summa logices, Paris, 1488.—Super I V. Iibros sententiarum, Lyons, 1483.—De sacramento altaris, Strassburg, 1491.—De praedestinatione et futuris contingentibus, Bologna, 1496.—Quodlibeta septem, Paris, 1487.—Riezler: D. antipäpstlichen und publizistischen Schriften Occams in his Die literar. Widersacher, etc., 241–277.—Haureau: La philos. scolastique.—Werner: Die Scholastik des späteren M. A., II., Vienna, 1883, and Der hl. Thos. von Aquino, III.—Stöckl: Die Philos. des M. A., II. 986–1021, and art. Nominalismus in Wetzer-Welte, IX.—Baur: Die christl. Kirche d. M. A., p. 377 sqq.—Müller: Der Kampf Ludwigs des Baiern.—R. L. Poole in Dict. of Natl. Biog., XLI. 357–362.—R. Seeberg in Herzog, XIV. 260–280.—A. Dorner; D. Verhältniss von Kirche und Staat nach Occam in Studien und Kritiken, 1886, pp. 672–722.—F. Kropatscheck: Occam und Luther in Beitr. zur Förderung christl. Theol., Gütersloh, 1900.—Art. Nominalismus, by Stöckl in Wetzer-Welte, IX. 423–427.

For § 21. Catherine of Siena.—Her writings. Epistole ed orazioni della seraphica vergine s. Catterina da Siena, Venice, 1600, etc.—Best ed. 6 vols., Siena, 1707–1726.—Engl. trans. of the Dialogue of the Seraphic Virgin Cath. of Siena, by Algar Thorold, London, 1896.—Her Letters, ed. by N. Tommaseo: Le lettere di S. Caterina da Siena, 4 vols., Florence, 1860.—*Eng. trans. by Vida D. Scudder: St. Cath. of Siena as seen in her Letters, London, 1906, 2d ed., 1906.—Her biography is based upon the Life written by her confessor, Raymundo de Vineis sive de Capua, d. 1399: vita s. Cath. Senensis, included in the Siena ed. of her works and in the Acta Sanctt. III. 863–969.—Ital. trans. by Catherine’s secretary, Neri De Landoccio, Fr. trans. by E. Cartier, Paris, 1863, 4th ed., 1877.—An abbreviation of Raymund’s work, with annotations, Leggenda della Cat. da Siena, usually called La Leggenda minore, by Tommaso d’antonio Nacci Caffarini, 1414.—K. Hase: Caterina von Siena, Ein Heiligenbild, Leipzig, 1804, new ed., 1892.—J. E. Butler: Cath. of Siena, London, 1878, 4th ed., 1895.—Augusta T. Drane, Engl. Dominican: The Hist. of Cath. of Siena, compiled from the Orig. sources, London, 1880, 3d ed., 1900, with a trans. of the Dialogue.—St. Catherine of Siena and her Times, by the author of Mademoiselle Mori (Margaret D. Roberts), New York, 1906, pays little attention to the miraculous element, and presents a full picture of Catherine’s age.—*E. G. Gardner: St. Catherine of Siena: A Study in the Religion, Literature, and History of the fourteenth century in Italy, London, 1907.

For § 22. Peter d’ailly.—Paul Tschackert: Peter von Ailli. Zur Gesch. des grossen abendländischen Schismas und der Reformconcilien von Pisa und Constanz, Gotha, 1877, and Art. in Herzog, I. 274–280.—Salembier: Petrus de Alliaco, Lille, 1886.—Lenz: Drei Traktate aus d. Schriftencyclus d. Konst. Konz., Marburg, 1876.—Bess: Zur Gesch. des Konst. Konzils, Marburg, 1891.—Finke: Forschungen und Quellen, etc., pp. 103–132.—For a list of D’Ailly’s writings, See Tschackert, pp. 348–365.—Some of them are given in Van der Hardt and in Du Pin’s ed. of Gerson’s Works, I. 489–804, and the De difficultate reform. eccles., and the De necessitate reform. eccles., II. 867–903.

For § 23. John Gerson.—Works. Best ed. by L. E. Du Pin, Prof. of Theol. in Paris, 5 vols., Antwerp, 1706; 2d ed., Hague Com., 1728. The 2d ed. has been consulted in this work and is pronounced by Schwab "indispensable." It contains the materials of Gerson’s life and the contents of his works in an introductory essay, Gersoniana, I. i-cxlv, and also writings by D’ailly, Langenstein, Aleman and other contemporaries. A number of Gerson’s works are given in Goldast’s Monarchia and Van der Hardt.—A Vita Gersonis is given in Hardt’s Conc. Const., IV. 26–57.—Chartul. Univ. Paris., III., IV., under John Arnaud and Gerson.—J. B. Schwab: Johannes Gerson, Prof. der Theologie und Kanzler der Universität Paris, Würzburg, 1858, an exhaustive work, giving also a history of the times, one of the most thorough of biographies and to be compared with Hurter’s Innocent III.—A. Masson: J. Gerson, sa vie, son temps et ses oeuvres, Lyons, 1894.—A. Lambon: J. Gerson, sa réforme de l’enseigement Theol. et de l’éducation populaire, Paris, 1888.—Bess: Zur Gesch. d. Konstanz. Konzils; art. Gerson in Herzog, VI. 612–617.—Lafontaine: Jehas Gerson, 1363–1429, Paris, 1906, pp. 340.—J. Schwane: Dogmengesch.—Werner: D. Scholastik d. späteren M. A., IV., V.

For § 24. Nicolas of Clamanges.—Works, ed. by J. M. Lydius, 2 vols., Leyden, 1013, with Life.—The De ruina ecclesiae, with a Life, in Van der Hardt: Conc. Constan., vol. I., pt. lII.—Writings not in Lydius are given by Bulaeus in Hist. univ. Paris.—Baluzius: Miscellanea, and D’Achery: Spicilegium.—Life in Du Pin’s Works of Gerson, I., p. xxxix sq.—A. Müntz: Nic. de Clem., sa vie et ses écrits, Strassburg, 1846.—J. Schwab: J. Gerson, pp. 493–497.—Artt. by Bess in Herzog, IV. 138–147, and by Knöpfsler in Wetzer-Welte, IX. 298–306.—G. Schubert: Nic. von Clem. als Verfasser der Schrift de corrupto ecclesiae statu, Grossenhain, 1888.

For § 25. Nicolas of Cusa.—Edd. of his Works, 1476 (place not given), as ed. by Faber Stapulensis, 3 vols., 1514, Basel.—German trans. of a number of the works by F. A. Schrapff, Freiburg, 1862.—Schrapff: Der Cardinal und Bischof Nic. von Cusa Mainz, 1843; Nic. von Cusa als Reformator in Kirche, Reich und Philosophie des 15ten Jahrh., Tübingen, 1871.—J. M. Düx: Der deutsche Card. Nic. von Cusa und die Kirche seiner Zeit, 2 vols., Regensburg, 1847.—J. Uebinger: D. Gotteslehre des Nic. von Cusa, Münster, 1888.—J. Marx: Nik. von Cues und seine Stiftungen au Cues und Deventer, Treves, 1906, pp. 115.—C. Schmitt: Card. Nic. Cusanus, Coblenz, 1907. Presents him as astronomer, geographer, mathematician, historian, homilete, orator, philosopher, and theologian.—Stöckl, III. 23–84.—Schwane, pp. 98–102.—Art. by Funk in Wetzer-Welte, IX. 306–315.

§ 20. Ockam and the Decay of Scholasticism.

Scholasticism had its last great representative in Duns Scotus, d. 1308. After him the scholastic method gradually passed into disrepute. New problems were thrust upon the mind of Western Europe, and new interests were engaging its attention. The theologian of the school and the convent gave way to the practical theological disputant setting forth his views in tracts and on the floor of the councils. Free discussion broke up the hegemony of dogmatic assertion. The authority of the Fathers and of the papacy lost its exclusive hold, and thinkers sought another basis of authority in the general judgment of contemporary Christendom, in the Scriptures alone or in reason. The new interest in letters and the natural world drew attention away from labored theological systems which were more adapted to display the ingenuity of the theologian than to be of practical value to society. The use of the spoken languages of Europe in literature was fitted to force thought into the mould of current exigencies. The discussions of Roger Bacon show that at the beginning of the fourteenth century men’s minds, sated with abstruse metaphysical solutions of theological questions, great and trivial, were turning to a world more real and capable of proof.

The chief survivors of the dialectical Schoolmen were Durandus and William Ockam. Gabriel Biel of Tübingen, who died just before the close of the fifteenth century, is usually called the last of the Schoolmen.352352    Seeberg gives a good deal of attention to Biel in his Dogmengeschichte. Stöckl carries the history of scholasticism down to Cardinal Cajetan, who wrote a commentary on Thomas Aquinas’ Summatheologica, and includes the German mystics, Eck, Luther, etc., who clearly belong in another category. Professor Seth, in art. Scholasticism in the Enc. Brit., and Werner, close the history with Francis Suarez, 1617. The new age had begun a hundred years before that time. Such men as D’Ailly, Gerson and Wyclif, sometimes included under the head of mediaeval scholastics, evidently belong to another class.

A characteristic feature of the scholasticism of Durandus and Ockam is the sharper distinction they made between reason and revelation. Following Duns Scotus, they declared that doctrines peculiar to revealed theology are not susceptible of proof by pure reason. The body of dogmatic truth, as accepted by the Church, they did not question.

A second characteristic is the absence of originality. They elaborated what they received. The Schoolmen of former periods had exhausted the list of theological questions and discussed them from every standpoint.

The third characteristic is the revival and ascendency of nominalism, the principle Roscellinus advocated more than two hundred years before. The Nominalists were also called Terminists, because they represent words as terms which do not necessarily have ideas and realities to correspond to them. A universal is simply a symbol or term for a number of things or for that which is common to a number of things.353353    Terminus prolatus vel scriptus nihil significat nisi secundum voluntariam institutionem. Ockam, as quoted by Stöckl, II. 962. Universality is nothing more than a mode of mental conception. The University of Paris resisted the spread of nominalism, and in 1839 the four nations forbade the promulgation of Ockam’s doctrine or listening to its being expounded in private or public.354354    Chartul. II. 485. Also p. 507, etc. In 1473, Louis XI. issued a mandate forbidding the doctors at Paris teaching it, and prohibiting the use of the writings of Ockam, Marsiglius and other writers. In 1481 the law was rescinded.

Durandus, known as doctor resolutissimus, the resolute doctor, d. 1334, was born at Pourçain, in the diocese of Clermont, entered the Dominican order, was appointed by Fohn XXII. bishop of Limoux, 1317, and was later elevated to the sees of Puy and Meaux. He attacked some of the rules of the Franciscans and John XXII.’s theory of the beatific vision, and in 1333 was declared by a commission guilty of eleven errors. His theological views are found in his commentary on the Lombard, begun when he was a young man and finished in his old age. He showed independence by assailing some of the views of Thomas Aquinas. He went beyond his predecessors in exalting the Scriptures above tradition and pronouncing their statements more authoritative than the dicta of Aristotle and other philosophers.355355    Naturalis philosophiae non est scire quid Aristoteles vel alii philosophi senserunt sed quid habet veritas rerum, quoted by Deutsch, p. 97. Durandus’ commentary on the sentences of the Lombard was publ. Paris, 1508, 1515, etc. See Deutsch, art. Durandus, in Herzog, V. 95-104. All real existence is in the individual. The universal is not an entity which can be divided as a chunk of wood is cut into pieces. The universal, the unity by which objects are grouped together as a class, is deduced from individuals by an act of the mind. That which is common to a class has, apart from the individuals of the class, no real existence.

On the doctrine of the eucharist Durandus seems not to have been fully satisfied with the view held by the Church, and suggested that the words "this is my body," may mean "contained under"—contentum sub hoc. This marks an approach to Luther’s view of consubstantiation. This theologian was held in such high esteem by Gerson that he recommended him, together with Thomas Aquinas, Bradwardine and Henry of Ghent, to the students of the college of Navarre.356356    Schwab: J. Gerson, p. 312.

The most profound scholastic thinker of the fourteenth century was the Englishman, William Ockam, d. 1349, called doctor invincibilis, the invincible doctor, or, with reference to his advocacy of nominalism, venerabilis inceptor, the venerable inaugurator. His writings, which were more voluminous than lucid, were much published at the close of the fifteenth century, but have not been put into print for several hundred years. There is no complete edition of them. Ockam’s views combined elements which were strictly mediaeval, and elements which were adopted by the Reformers and modern philosophy. His identification with the cause of the Spiritual Franciscans involved him in controversy with two popes, John XXII. and Benedict XII. His denial of papal infallibility has the appearance not 80 much of a doctrine proceeding from theological conviction as the chance weapon laid hold of in time of conflict to protect the cause of the Spirituals.

Of the earlier period of Ockam’s life, little is known. He was born in Surrey, studied at Oxford, where he probably was a student of Duns Scotus, entered the Franciscan order, and was probably master in Paris, 1315–1320. For his advocacy of the doctrine of Christ’s absolute poverty he was, by order of John XXII., tried and found guilty and thrown into confinement.357357    It lasted four years, Müller,Ludwig der Baier, p. 208. With the aid of Lewis the Bavarian, he and his companions, Michael of Cesena and Bonagratia, escaped in 1328 to Pisa. from that time on, the emperor and the Schoolman, as already stated, defended one another. Ockam accompanied the emperor to Munich and was excommunicated. At Cesena’s death the Franciscan seal passed into his hands, but whatever authority he possessed he resigned the next year into the hands of the acknowledged Franciscan general, Farinerius. Clement VI. offered him absolution on condition of his abjuring his errors. Whether he accepted the offer or not is unknown. He died at Munich and is buried there. The distinguished Englishman owes his reputation to his revival of nominalism, his political theories and his definition of the final seat of religious authority.

His theory of nominalism was explicit, and offered no toleration to the realism of the great Schoolmen from Anselm on. Individual things alone have factual existence. The universals are mere terms or symbols, fictions of the mind—fictiones, signa mentalia, nomina, signa verbalia. They are like images in a mirror. A universal stands for an intellectual act—actus intelligenda — and nothing more. Did ideas exist in God’s mind as distinct entities, then the visible world would have been created out of them and not out of nothing.358358    Nullum universale est aliqua substantia extra animam existens, quoted by Seeberg, in Herzog, p. 269. Quoddam fictum existens objective in mente. Werner, 115. The expression objective in mente is equivalent to our word subjective.

Following Duns Scotus, Ockam taught determinism. God’s absolute will makes things what they are. Christ might have become wood or stone if God had so chosen. In spite of Aristotle, a body might have different kinds of motion at the same time. In the department of morals, what is now bad might have been good, if God had so willed it.

In the department of civil government, Ockam, advocating the position taken by the electors at Rense, 1338, declared the emperor did not need the confirmation of the pope. The imperial office is derived immediately from God.359359    Imperialis dignitas et potestas est immediate a solo Deo. Goldast, IV. 99, Frankf. ed. See also Dorner, p. 675. The Church is a priestly institution, administers the sacraments and shows men the way of salvation, but has no civil jurisdiction,360360    Kropatscheck, p. 55 sq., Matt. 30:26 sqq. Clement VI. declared Ockam had sucked his political heresies from Marsiglius of Padua. potestas coactiva.

The final seat of authority, this thinker found in the Scriptures. Truths such as the Trinity and the incarnation cannot be deduced by argument. The being of God cannot be proven from the so-called idea of God. A plurality of gods may be proven by the reason as well as the existence of the one God. Popes and councils may err. The Bible alone is inerrant. A Christian cannot be held to believe anything not in the Scriptures.361361    See Riezler, p. 273, and Seeberg, pp. 271, 278, Christianus de necessitate salutis non tenetur ad credendum nec credere quod nec in biblia continetur nec ex solis contentis in biblia potest consequentia necessaria et manifesta inferri.

The Church is the community of the faithful—communitas, or congregatio fidelium.362362    Romana ecclesia est distincta a congregatione fidelium et potest contra fidem errare. Ecclesiae autem universalis errare non potest. See Kropatscheck p. 65 sqq., and also Dorner, p. 696. The Roman Church is not identical with it, and this body of Christians may exist independently of the Roman Church. If the pope had plenary power, the law of the Gospel would be more galling than the law of Moses. All would then be the pope’s slaves.363363    See Werner, III. 120, who quotes Scaliger as saying of Ockam, omnium mortalium subtillissimus, cujus ingenium vetera subvertit, nova ad invictas insanias et incomprehensibiles subtilitates fabricavit et conformavit. The papacy is not a necessary institution.

In the doctrine of the eucharist, Ockam represents the traditional view as less probable than the view that Christ’s body is at the side of the bread. This theory of impanation, which Rupert of Deutz taught, approached Luther’s theory of consubstantiation. However, Ockam accepted the Church’s view, because it was the less intelligible and because the power of God is unlimited. John of Paris, d. 1308, had compared the presence of Christ in the elements to the co-existence of two natures in the incarnation and was deposed from his chair at the University of Paris, 1304. Gabriel Biel took a similar view.364364    See Werner, D. hl. Thomas, III. 111; Harnack, Dogmengesch., III. 494; Seeberg, 276.

Ockam’s views on the authority of the civil power, papal errancy, the infallibility of the Scriptures and the eucharist are often compared with the views of Luther.365365    For example, Kropatscheck, especially p. 66 sqq., and Seeberg, p. 289. The German reformer spoke of the English Schoolman as "without doubt the leader and most ingenious of the Schoolmen"—scholasticorum doctorum sine dubio princeps et ingeniosissimus. He called him his "dear teacher," and declared himself to be of Ockam’s party—sum Occamicae factionis.366366    Weimar, ed. VI. 183, 195, 600, as quoted by Seeberg. The two men were, however, utterly unlike. Ockam was a theorist, not a reformer, and in spite of his bold sayings, remained a child of the mediaeval age. He started no party or school in theological matters. Luther exalted personal faith in the living Christ. He discovered new principles in the Scriptures, and made them the active forces of individual and national belief and practice. We might think of Luther as an Ockam if he had lived in the fourteenth century. We cannot think of Ockam as a reformer in the sixteenth century. He would scarcely have renounced monkery. Ockam’s merit consists in this that, in common with Marsiglius and other leaders of thought, he imbibed the new spirit of free discussion, and was bold enough to assail the traditional dogmas of his time. In this way he contributed to the unsettlement of the pernicious mediaeval theory of the seat of authority.

§ 21. Catherine of Siena, the Saint.

Next to Francis d’Assisi, the most celebrated of the Italian saints is Catherine of Siena—Caterina da Siena—1347–1380. With Elizabeth of Thuringia, who lived more than a century before her, she is the most eminent of the holy women of the Middle Ages whom the Church has canonized. Her fame depends upon her single-hearted piety and her efforts to advance the interests of the Church and her nation. She left no order to encourage the reverence for her name. She was the most public of all the women of the Middle Ages in Italy, and yet she passed unscathed and without a taint through streets and in courts. Now, as the daughter of an humble citizen of Siena, she ministers to the poor and the sick: now, as the prophetess of heaven, she appeals to the conscience of popes and of commonwealths. Her native Sienese have sanctified her with the fragrant name la beata poplana, the blessed daughter of the people. Although much in her career, as it has been handed down by her confessor and biographer, may seem to be legendary, and although the hysterical element may not be altogether wanting from her piety, she yet deserves and will have the admiration of all men who are moved by the sight of a noble enthusiasm. It would require a fanatical severity to read the account of her unwearied efforts and the letters, into which she equally poured the fire of her soul, without feeling that the Sienese saint was a very remarkable woman, the Florence Nightingale of her time or more, "one of the most wonderful women that have ever lived," as her most recent English biographer has pronounced her. Or, shall we join Gregorovius, the thorough student of mediaeval Rome, in saying, "Catherine’s figure flits like that of an angel: through the darkness of her time, over which her gracious genius sheds a soft radiance. Her life is more worthy and assuredly a more human subject for history than the lives of the popes of her age."367367    Gardner, p. vii; Gregorovius, VI. 521 sqq.

Catherine Benincasa was the twenty-third of a family of twenty-five children. Her twin sister, Giovanna, died in infancy. Her father was a dyer in prosperous circumstances. Her mother, Monna Lapa, survived the daughter. Catherine treated her with filial respect, wrote her letters, several of which are extant, and had her with her on journeys and in Rome during her last days there. Catherine had no school training, and her knowledge of reading and writing she acquired after she was grown up.

As a child she was susceptible to religious impressions, and frequented the Dominican church near her father’s home. The miracles of her earlier childhood were reported by her confessor and biographer, Raymund of Capua. At twelve her parents arranged for her a marriage, but to avoid it Catherine cut off her beautiful hair. She joined the tertiary order of the Dominicans, the women adherents being called the mantellate from their black mantles. Raymund declares "that nature had not given her a face over-fair," and her personal appearance was marred by the marks of the smallpox. And yet she had a winning expression, a fund of good spirits, and sang and laughed heartily. Once devoted to a religious life, she practised great austerities, flagellating herself three times a day,—once for herself, once for the living and once for the dead. She wore a hair undergarment and an iron chain. During one Lenten season she lived on the bread taken in communion. These asceticisms were performed in a chamber in her father’s house. She was never an inmate of a convent. Such extreme asceticisms as she practised upon herself she disparaged at a later period.

At an early age Catherine became the subject of visions and revelations. On one of these occasions and after hours of dire temptation, when she was tempted to live like other girls, the Saviour appeared to her stretched on the cross and said: "My own daughter, Catherine, seest thou how much I have suffered for thee? Let it not be hard for thee to suffer for me." Thrilled with the address, she asked: "Where wert thou, Lord, when I was tempted with such impurity?" and He replied, "In thy heart." In 1367, according to her own statement, the Saviour betrothed himself to her, putting a ring on her finger. The ring was ever afterwards visible to herself though unseen by others. Five years before her death, she received the stigmata directly from Christ. Their impression gave sharp pain, and Catherine insisted that, though they likewise were invisible to others, they were real to her.

In obedience to a revelation, Catherine renounced the retired life she had been living, and at the age of twenty began to appear in public and perform the active offices of charity. This was in 1367. She visited the poor and sick, and soon became known as the ministering angel of the whole city. During the plague of 1374, she was indefatigable by day and night, healed those of whom the physicians despaired, and she even raised the dead. The lepers outside the city walls she did not neglect.

One of the remarkable incidents in her career which she vouches for in one of her letters to Raymund was her treatment of Niccolo Tuldo, a young nobleman condemned to die for having uttered words disrespectful of the city government. The young man was in despair, but under Catherine’s influence he not only regained composure, but became joyful in the prospect of death. Catherine was with him at the block and held his head. She writes, "I have just received a head into my hands which was to me of such sweetness as no heart can think, or tongue describe." Before the execution she accompanied the unfortunate man to the mass, where he received the communion for the first time. His last words were "naught but Jesus and Catherine. And, so saying," wrote his benefactress, "I received his head in my hands." She then saw him received of Christ, and as she further wrote, "When he was at rest, my soul rested in peace, in so great fragrance of blood that I could not bear to remove the blood which had fallen on me from him."

The fame of such a woman could not be held within the walls of her native city. Neighboring cities and even the pope in Avignon heard of her deeds of charity and her revelations. The guide of minds seeking the consolations of religion, the minister to the sick and dying, Catherine now entered into the wider sphere of the political life of Italy and the welfare of the Church. Her concern was divided between efforts to support the papacy and to secure the amelioration of the clergy and establish peace. With the zeal of a prophet, she urged upon Gregory XI. to return to Rome. She sought to prevent the rising of the Tuscan cities against the Avignon popes and to remove the interdict which was launched against Florence, and she supported Urban VI. against the anti-pope, Clement VII. With equal fervor she urged Gregory to institute a reformation of the clergy, to allow no weight to considerations of simony and flattery in choosing cardinals and pastors and "to drive out of the sheep-fold those wolves, those demons incarnate, who think only of good cheer, splendid feasts and superb liveries." She also was zealous in striving to stir up the flames of a new crusade. To Sir John Hawkwood, the freelance and terror of the peninsula, she wrote, calling upon him that, as he took such pleasure in fighting, he should thenceforth no longer direct his arms against Christians, but against the infidels. She communicated to the Queen of Cyprus on the subject. Again and again she urged it upon Gregory XI., and chiefly on the grounds that he "might minister the blood of the Lamb to the wretched infidels," and that converted, they might aid in driving pride and other vices out of the Christian world.368368    Scudder, Letters, pp. 100, 121, 136, 179, 184, 234, etc.

Commissioned by Gregory, she journeyed to Pisa to influence the city in his favor. She was received with honors by the archbishop and the head of the republic, and won over two professors who visited her with the purpose of showing her she was self-deceived or worse. She told them that it was not important for her to know how God had created the world, but that "it was essential to know that the Son of God had taken our human nature and lived and died for our salvation." One of the professors, removing his crimson velvet cap, knelt before her and asked for forgiveness. Catherine’s cures of the sick won the confidence of the people. On this visit she was accompanied by her mother and a group of like-minded women.

A large chapter in Catherine’s life is interwoven with the history of Florence. The spirit of revolt against the Avignon regime was rising in upper Italy and, when the papal legate in Bologna, in a year of dearth, forbade the transportation of provisions to Florence, it broke out into war. At the invitation of the Florentines, Catherine visited the city, 1375 and, a year later, was sent as a delegate to Avignon to negotiate terms of peace. She was received with honor by the pope, but not without hesitancy. The other members of the delegation, when they arrived, refused to recognize her powers and approve her methods. The cardinals treated her coolly or with contempt, and women laid snares at her devotions to bring ridicule upon her. Such an attempt was made by the pope’s niece, Madame de Beaufort Turenne, who knelt at her side and ran a sharp knife into her foot so that she limped from the wound.

The dyer’s daughter now turned her attention to the task of confirming the supreme pontiff in his purpose to return to Rome and counteract the machinations of the cardinals against its execution. Seeing her desire realized, she started back for Italy and, met by her mother at Leghorn, went on to Florence, carrying a commission from the pope. Her effort to induce the city to bow to the sentence of interdict, which had been laid upon it, was in a measure successful. Her reverence for the papal office demanded passive obedience. Gregory’s successor, Urban VI., lifted the ban. Catherine then returned to Siena where she dictated the Dialogue, a mystical treatise inculcating prayer, obedience, discretion and other virtues. Catherine declared that God alone had been her guide in its composition.

In the difficulties, which arose soon after Urban’s election, that pontiff looked to Siena and called its distinguished daughter to Rome. They had met in Avignon. Accompanied by her mother and other companions, she reached the holy city in the Autumn of 1378. They occupied a house by themselves and lived upon alms.369369    Gardner, p. 298, says one of the two houses is still shown where they dwelt. Her summons to Urban "to battle only with the weapons of repentance, prayer, virtue and love" were not heeded. Her presence, however, had a beneficent influence, and on one occasion, when the mob raged and poured into the Vatican, she appeared as a peacemaker, and the sight of her face and her words quieted the tumult.

She died lying on boards, April 29, 1380. To her companions standing at her side, she said: "Dear children, let not my death sadden you, rather rejoice to think that I am leaving a place of many sufferings to go to rest in the quiet sea, the eternal God, and to be united forever with my most sweet and loving Bridegroom. And I promise to be with you more and to be more useful to you, since I leave darkness to pass into the true and everlasting light." Again and again she whispered, "I have sinned, O Lord; be merciful to me." She prayed for Urban, for the whole Church and for her companions, and then she departed, repeating the words, "Into thy hands I commit my spirit."

At the time of her death Catherine of Siena was not yet thirty-three years old. A magnificent funeral was ordered by Urban. A year after, her head, enclosed in a reliquary, was sent to her native Siena, and in 1461 she was canonized by the city’s famous son, pope Pius II., who uttered the high praise "that none ever approached her without going away better." In 1865 when Santa Maria sopra Minerva in Rome was reopened, her ashes were carried through the streets, the silver urn containing them being borne by four bishops. Lamps are kept ever burning at the altar dedicated to her in the church. In 1866 Pius IX. elevated the dyer’s daughter to the dignity of patron saint and protectress of Rome, a dignity she shares with the prince of the Apostles. With Petrarch she had been the most ardent advocate of its claims as the papal residence, and her zeal was exclusively religious.

In her correspondence and Dialogue we have the biography of Catherine’s soul. Nearly four hundred of her letters are extant.370370    None of these are in her own hand, but six of them are originals as they were written down at her dictation. Gardner, p. xii., 373 sqq. Not only have they a place of eminence as the revelations of a saintly woman’s thoughts and inner life, but are, next to the letters written by Petrarch, the chief specimens of epistolary literature of the fourteenth century. She wrote to persons of all classes, to her mother, the recluse in the cloister, her confessor, Raymund of Capua, to men and women addicted to the pleasures of the world, to the magistrates of cities, queens and kings, to cardinals, and to the popes, Gregory XI. and Urban VI., gave words of counsel, set forth at length measures and motives of action, used the terms of entreaty and admonition, and did not hesitate to employ threats of divine judgment, as in writing to the Queen of Naples. They abound in wise counsels.

The correspondence shows that Catherine had some acquaintance with the New Testament from which she quotes the greater precepts and draws descriptions from the miracle of the water changed into wine and the expulsion of the moneychangers from the temple and such parables as the ten virgins and the marriage-feast. One of her most frequent expressions is the blood of Christ, and in truly mystical or conventual manner she bids her correspondents, even the pope and the cardinals, bathe and drown and inebriate themselves in it, yea, to clothe and fill themselves with it, "for Christ did not buy us with gold or silver or pearls or other precious stones, but with his own precious blood."371371    Letters, pp. 54, 65, 75, 110, 158, 164, 226, 263, 283, etc.

To Catherine the religious life was a subjection of the will to the will of God and the outgoing of the soul in exercises of prayer and the practice of love. "I want you to wholly destroy your own will that it may cling to Christ crucified." So she wrote to a mother bereft of her children. Writing to the recluse, Bartolomea della Seta, she represented the Saviour as saying, "Sin and virtue consist in the consent of the will, there is no sin or virtue unless voluntarily wrought."

To another she wrote, "I have already seen many penitents who have been neither patient nor obedient because they have studied to kill their bodies but not their wills."372372    Letters, pp. 43, 162, 152, 149.

Her sound religious philosophy showed itself in insisting again and again that outward discipline is not the only or always the best way to secure the victory of the spirit. If the body is weak or fallen into illness, the rule of discretion sets aside the exercises of bodily discipline. She wrote, "Not only should fasting be abandoned but flesh be eaten and, if once a day is not enough, then four times a day." Again and again she treats of penance as an instrument. "The little good of penance may hinder the greater good of inward piety. Penance cuts off," so she wrote in a remarkable letter to Sister Daniella of Orvieto, "yet thou wilt always find the root in thee, ready to sprout again, but virtue pulls up by the root."

Monastic as Catherine was, yet no evangelical guide-book could write more truly than she did in most particulars. And at no point does this noble woman rise higher than when she declined to make her own states the standard for others, and condemned those "who, indiscreetly, want to measure all bodies by one and the same measure, the measure by which they measure themselves." Writing to her niece, Nanna Benincasa, she compared the heart to a lamp, wide above and narrow below. A bride of Christ must have lamp and oil and light. The heart should be wide above, filled with holy thoughts and prayer, bearing in memory the blessings of God, especially the blessing of the blood by which we are bought. And like a lamp, it should be narrow below, "not loving or desiring earthly things in excess nor hungering for more than God wills to give us."

To the Christian virtues of prayer and love she continually returns. Christian love is compared to the sea, peaceful and profound as God Himself, for "God is love." This passage throws light upon the unsearchable mystery of the Incarnate Word who, constrained by love, gave Himself up in all humility. We love because we are loved. He loves of grace, and we love Him of duty because we are bound to do so; and to show our love to Him we ought to serve and love every rational creature and extend our love to good and bad, to all kinds of people, as much to one who does us ill as to one who serves us, for God is no respecter of persons, and His charity extends to just men and sinners. Peter’s love before Pentecost was sweet but not strong. After Pentecost he loved as a son, bearing all tribulations with patience. So we, too, if we remain in vigil and continual prayer and tarry ten days, shall receive the plenitude of the Spirit. More than once in her letters to Gregory, she bursts out into a eulogy of love as the remedy for all evils. "The soul cannot live without love," she wrote in the Dialogue, "but must always love something, for it was created through love. Affection moves the understanding, as it were, saying, ’I want to love, for the food wherewith I am fed is love.’ "373373    Scudder, Letters, pp. 81, 84, 126 sq.; Gardner, Life, p. 377.

Such directions as these render Catherine’s letters a valuable manual of religious devotion, especially to those who are on their guard against being carried away by the underlying quietistic tone. Not only do they have a high place as the revelation of a pious woman’s soul. They deal with unconcealed boldness and candor with the low conditions into which the Church was fallen. Popes are called upon to institute reforms in the appointment of clergymen and to correct abuses in other directions. As for the pacification of the Tuscan cities, a cause which lay so close to Catherine’s heart, she urged the pontiff to use the measures of peace and not of war, to deal as a father would deal with a rebellious son,—to put into practice clemency, not the pride of authority. Then the very wolves would nestle in his bosom like lambs.374374    Letters, p. 133.

As for the pope’s return to Rome, she urged it as a duty he owed to God who had made him His vicar. In view of the opposition on the Rhone, almost holding him as by physical force, she called upon him to "play the man," "to be a manly man, free from fear and fleshly love towards himself or towards any creature related to him by kin," "to be stable in his resolution and to believe and trust in Christ in spite of all predictions of the evil to follow his return to Rome."375375    Letters, pp. 66, 185, 232, etc. To this impassioned Tuscan woman, the appointment of unworthy shepherds and bad rectors was responsible for the rebellion against papal authority, shepherds who, consumed by self-love, far from dragging Christ’s sheep away from the wolves, devoured the very sheep themselves. It was because they did not follow the true Shepherd who has given His life for the sheep. Likening the Church to a garden, she invoked the pope to uproot the malodorous plants full of avarice, impurity and pride, to throw them away that the bad priests and rulers who poison the garden might no longer have rule. To Urban VI. she addressed burning words of condemnation. "Your sons nourish themselves on the wealth they receive by ministering the blood of Christ, and are not ashamed of being money-changers. In their great avarice they commit simonies, buying benefices with gifts or flatteries or gold." And to the papal legate of Bologna, Cardinal d’Estaing, she wrote, "make the holy father consider the loss of souls more than the loss of cities, for God demands souls."

The stress Catherine laid upon the pope’s responsibility to God and her passionate reproof of an unworthy and hireling ministry, inclined some to give her a place among the heralds of the Protestant Reformation. Flacius Illyricus included her in the list of his witnesses for the truth—Catalogus testium veritatis.376376    Döllinger, Fables and Prophecies of the Middle Ages, p. 330, calls attention to the failure of Catherine’s predictions to reach fulfilment. "How little have these longings of the devout maiden of Siena been transformed into history!" With burning warmth she spoke of a thorough-going reformation which was to come upon the Church. "The bride, now all deformed and clothed in rags," she exclaimed, "will then gleam with beauty and jewels, and be crowned with the diadem of all virtues. All believing nations will rejoice to have excellent shepherds, and the unbelieving world, attracted by her glory, will be converted unto her." Infidel peoples would be brought into the Catholic fold,—ovile catholicum,—and be converted unto the true pastor and bishop of souls. But Catherine, admirable as these sentiments were, moved within the limits of the mediaeval Church. She placed piety back of penitential exercises in love and prayer and patience, but she never passed beyond the ascetic and conventual conception of the Christian life into the open air of liberty through faith. She had the spirit of Savonarola, the spirit of fiery self-sacrifice for the well-being of her people and the regeneration of Christendom, but she did not see beyond the tradition of the past. Living a hundred years and more before the Florentine prophet, she was excelled by none in her own age and approached by none of her own nation in the century between her and Savonarola, in passionate effort to save her people and help spread righteousness. Hers was the voice of the prophet, crying in the wilderness, "Prepare ye the way of the Lord."

In recalling the women of the century from 1350 to 1450, the mind easily associates together Catherine of Siena and Joan of Arc, 1411–1431, one the passionate advocate of the Church, the other of the national honor of France. The Maid of Orleans, born of peasant parentage, was only twenty when she was burnt at the stake on the streets of Rouen, 1431. Differing from her Italian sister by comeliness of form and robustness of constitution, she also, as she thought, was the subject of angelic communications and divine guidance. Her unselfish devotion to her country at first brought it victory, but, at last, to her capture and death. Her trial by the English on the charges of heresy and sorcery and her execution are a dark sheet among the pages of her century’s history. Twenty-five years after her death, the pope revoked the sentence, and the French heroine, whose standard was embroidered with lilies and adorned with pictures of the creation and the annunciation, was beatified, 1909, and now awaits the crown of canonization from Rome. The exalted passion of these two women, widely as they differ in methods and ideals and in the close of their careers, diffuses a bright light over the selfish pursuits of their time, and makes the aims of many of its courts look low and grovelling.

§ 22. Peter d’Ailly, Ecclesiastical Statesman.

One of the most prominent figures in the negotiations for the healing of the papal schism, as well as one of the foremost personages of his age, was Peter d’Ailly, born in Compiegne 1350, died in Avignon 1420. His eloquence, which reminds us of Bossuet and other French orators of the court of Louis XIV., won for him the title of the Eagle of France—aquila Francia.377377    Tschackert, Salembier and Finke consider D’Ailly under the three aspects of theologian, philosopher and ecclesiastical diplomatist. Lenz and Bess emphasize the part he played as an advocate of French policy against England..

In 1372 he entered the College of Navarre as a theological student, prepared a commentary on the Sentences of the Lombard three years later, and in 1380 reached the theological doctorate. He at once became involved in the measures for the healing of the schism, and in 1381 delivered a celebrated address in the name of the university before the French regent, the duke of Anjou, to win the court for the policy of settling the papal controversy through a general council. His appeal not meeting with favor, he retired to Noyon, from which he wrote a letter purporting to come from the devil, a satire based on the continuance of the schism, in which the prince of darkness called upon his friends and vassals, the prelates, to follow his example in promoting division in the Church. He warned them as their overlord that the holding of a council might result in establishing peace and so bring eternal shame upon them. He urged them to continue to make the Church a house of merchandise and to be careful to tithe anise and cummin, to make broad the borders of their garments and in every other way to do as he had given them an example.378378    Epistola diaboli Leviathan. Tschackert gives the text, Appendix, pp. 15-21.

In 1384 D’Ailly was made head of the College of Navarre, where he had Gerson for a pupil, and in 1389 chancellor of the university.

When Benedict XIII. was chosen successor to Clement VII., he was sent by the French king on a confidential mission to Avignon. Benedict won his allegiance and appointed him successively bishop of Puy, 1395, and bishop of Cambray, 1397. D’Ailly was with Benedict at Genoa, 1405, and Savona, 1407, but by that time seems to have come to the conclusion that Benedict was not sincere in his profession of readiness to resign, and returned to Cambray. In his absence Cambray had decided for the subtraction of its allegiance from Avignon. D’Ailly was seized and taken to Paris, but protected by the king, who was his friend. Thenceforth he favored the assemblage of a general council.

At Pisa and at Constance, D’Ailly took the position that a general council is superior to the pope and may depose him. Made a cardinal by John XXIII., 1411, he attended the council held at Rome the following year and in vain tried to have a reform of the calendar put through. At Constance, he took the position that the Pisan council? though it was called by the Spirit and represented the Church universal, might have erred, as did other councils reputed to be general councils. He declared that the three synods of Pisa, Rome and Constance, though not one body, yet were virtually one, even as the stream of the Rhine at different points is one and the same. It was not necessary, so he held, for the Council of Constance to pass acts confirming the Council of Pisa, for the two were on a par.379379    These judgments are expressed in the Capita agendorum, a sort of programme for the guidance of the council prepared by D’Ailly, 1414. Finke, Forschungen, pp. 102-132, has no doubt that they proceeded from D’Ailly’s pen, a view confirmed by MSS. in Vienna and Rome. Finke gives a résumé of the articles, the original of which is given by van der Hardt., II. 201 sqq. and Mansi, XXVII. 547.

In the proceedings against John XXIII., the cardinal took sides against him. He was the head of the commission which tried Huss in matters of faith, June 7, 8, 1415, and was present when the sentence of death was passed upon that Reformer. At the close of the council he appears as one of the three candidates for the office of pope, and his defeat was a disappointment to the French.380380    Tschackert, p. 295. He was appointed legate by Martin V., with his residence at Avignon, and spent his last days there.

D’Ailly followed Ockam as a nominalist. To his writings in the departments of philosophy, theology and Church government he added works on astronomy and geography and a much-read commentary on Aristotle’s meteorology.381381    Tschackert gives an estimate of D’Ailly’s writings, pp. 303-335. His work on geography, The Picture of the World,—imago mundi,—written 1410, was a favorite book with Columbus. A printed copy of it containing marginal notes in the navigator’s own hand is preserved in the biblioteca Colombina, Seville. This copy he probably had with him on his third journey to America, for, in writing from Hayti, 1498, he quoted at length the eighth chapter. Leaning chiefly upon Roger Bacon, the author represented the coast of India or Cathay as stretching far in the direction of Europe, so that, in a favorable wind, a ship sailing westwards would reach it in a few days. This idea was in the air, but it is possible that it was first impressed upon the mind of the discoverer of the New World by the reading of D’Ailly’s work. Humboldt was the first to show its value for the history of discovery.382382    See Fiske, Discovery of America, I. 372.

§ 23. John Gerson, Theologian and Church Leader.

In John Gerson, 1363–1429, we have the most attractive and the most influential theological leader of the first half of the fifteenth century. He was intimately identified with the University of Paris as professor and as its chancellor in the period of its most extensive influence in Europe. His voice carried great weight in the settlement of the questions rising out of the papal schism.

Jean Charlier Gerson, born Dec. 14, 1363, in the village of Gerson, in the diocese of Rheims, was the oldest of twelve children. In a letter to him still extant,383383    Schwab, p. 51. his mother, a godly woman, pours out her heart in the prayer that her children may live in unity with each other and with God. Two of John’s brothers became ecclesiastics. In 1377 Gerson went to Paris, entering the College of Navarre. This college was founded by Johanna, queen of Navarre, 1304, who provided for 3 departments, the arts with 20 students, philosophy with 30 and theology with 20 students. Provision was made also for their support, 4 Paris sous weekly for the artists, 6 for the logicians and 8 for the theologians. These allowances were to continue until the graduates held benefices of the value respectively of 30, 40 and 60 pounds. The regulations allowed the theological students a fire, daily, from November to March after dinner and supper for one half-hour. The luxury of benches was forbidden by a commission appointed by Urban V. in 1366. On the festival days, the theologians were expected to deliver a collation to their fellow-students of the three classes. The rector at the head of the college, originally appointed by the faculty of the university, was now appointed by the king’s confessor. The students wore a special dress and the tonsure, spoke Latin amongst themselves and ate in common.

Gerson, perhaps the most distinguished name the University of Paris has on its list of students, was a faithful and enthusiastic son of his alma mater, calling her "his mother," "the mother of the light of the holy Church," "the nurse of all that is wise and good in Christendom," "a prototype of the heavenly Jerusalem," "the fountain of knowledge, the lamp of our faith, the beauty and ornament of France, yea, of the whole world."384384    Schwab, p. 59.

In 1382, at the age of nineteen, he passed into the theological department, and a year later came under the guidance of D’Ailly, the newly appointed rector, remaining under him for seven years. Gerson was already a marked man, and was chosen in 1383 procurator of the French "nation," and in 1387 one of the delegation to appear before Clement VII. and argue the case against John of Montson. This Dominican, who had been condemned for denying the immaculate conception of Mary, refused to recant on the plea that in being condemned Thomas Aquinas was condemned, and he appealed to the pope. The University of Paris took up the case, and D’Ailly in two addresses before the papal consistory took the ground that Thomas, though a saint, was not infallible. The case went against De Montson; and the Dominicans, who refused to bow to the decision, left the university and did not return till 1403.

Gerson advocated Mary’s exemption from original as well as actual sin, and made a distinction between her and Christ, Christ being exempt by nature, and Mary—domina nostra — by an act of divine grace. This doctrine, he said, cannot be immediately derived from the Scriptures,385385    In scriptura sacra neque continetur explicite neque in contentis eadem educitur evidenter, Du Pin’s ed. III. 1350. For sermons on the conception, nativity and annunciation of the Virgin’ vol. III. 1317-1377. Also III. 941, and Du Pin’s Gersoniana, I. cviii. sq. but, as the Apostles knew more than the prophets, so the Church teachers know some things the Apostles did not know.

At D’Ailly’s promotion to the episcopate, 1395, his pupil fell heir to both his offices, the offices of professor of theology and chancellor of the university. In the discussion over the healing of the schism in which the university took the leading part, he occupied a place of first prominence, and by tracts, sermons and public memorials directed the opinion of the Church in this pressing matter. The premise from which he started out was that the peace of the Church is an essential condition to the fulfilment of its mission. This view he set forth in a famous sermon, preached in 1404 at Tarascon before Benedict XIII. and the duke of Orleans. Princes and prelates, he declared, both owe obedience to law. The end for which the Church was constituted is the peace and well-being of men. All Church authority is established to subserve the interests of peace. Peace is so great a boon that all should be ready to renounce dignities and position for it. Did not Christ suffer shame? Better for a while to be without a pope than that the Church should observe the canons and not have peace, for there can be salvation where there is no pope.386386    Potest absque papa mortali stare salus, Du Pin, II. 72. The Tarascon sermon is given by Du Pin Pin, II. 54-72. Schwab’s analysis, pp. 171-178. A general council should be convened, and it was pious to believe that in the treatment of the schism it would not err—pium est credere non erraret. As Schwab has said, no one had ever preached in the same way to a pope before. The sermon caused a sensation.

Gerson, though not present at the council of Pisa, contributed to its discussions by his important tracts on the Unity of the Church—De unitate ecclesiastica— and the Removal of a Pope—De auferbilitate papae ab ecclesia. The views set forth were that Christ is the head of the Church, and its monarchical constitution is unchangeable. There must be one pope, not several, and the bishops are not equal in authority with him. As the pope may separate himself from the Church, so the Church may separate itself from the pope. Such action might be required by considerations of self-defence. The papal office is of God, and yet the pope may be deposed even by a council called without his consent. All Church offices and officials exist for the good of the Church, that is, for the sake of peace which comes through the exercise of love. If a pope has a right to defend himself against, say, the charge of unchastity, why should not the Church have a like right to defend itself? A council acts under the immediate authority of Christ and His laws. The council may pronounce against a pope by virtue of the power of the keys which is given not only to one but to the body—unitati. Aristotle declared that the body has the right, if necessary, to depose its prince. So may the council, and whoso rejects a council of the Church rejects God who directs its action. A pope may be deposed for heresy and schism, as, for example, if he did not bend the knee before the sacrament, and he might be deposed when no personal guilt was chargeable against him, as in the case already referred to, when he was a captive of the Saracens and was reported dead.

At the Council of Constance, where Gerson spoke as the delegate of the French king, he advocated these positions again and again with his voice, as in his address March 23, 1415, and in a second address July 21, when he defended the decree which the synod had passed at its fifth session. He reasserted that the pope may be forced to abdicate, that general councils are above the popes and that infallibility only belongs to the Church as a body or its highest representative, a general council.387387    See Schwab, pp. 520 sqq., 668.

A blot rests upon Gerson’s name for the active part he took in the condemnation of John Huss. He was not above his age, and using the language of Innocent III. called heresy a cancer.388388    In a sermon before the Council of Constance, Du Pin, II. 207. He declares that he was as zealous in the proceedings against Huss and Wyclif as any one could be.389389    Dialog. apologet., Du Pin, II. 387 He pronounced the nineteen errors drawn from Huss’ work on the Church "notoriously heretical." Heresy, he declared, if it is obstinate, must be destroyed even by the death of its professors.390390    Ad punitionem et exterminationem errantium, Du Pin, II. 277. He denied Huss’ fundamental position that nothing is to be accepted as divine truth which is not found in Scripture. Gerson also condemned the appeal to conscience, explicitly assuming the old position of Church authority and canon law as final. The opinions of an individual, however learned he may be in the Scriptures, have no weight before the judgment of a council.391391    See Schwab, pp. 599, 601.

In the controversy over the withdrawal of the cup from the laity, involved in the Bohemian heresy, Gerson also took an extreme position, defending it by arguments which seem to us altogether unworthy of a genuine theology. In a tract on the subject he declared that, though some passages of Scripture and of the Fathers favored the distribution of both wine and bread, they do not contain a definite command, and in the cases where an explicit command is given it must be understood as applying to the priests who are obliged to commune under both kinds so as to fully represent Christ’s sufferings and death. But this is not required of the laity who commune for the sake of the effect of Christ’s death and not to set it forth. Christ commanded only the Apostles to partake of both kinds.392392    Contra heresin de communione laicorum sub utraque specie, Du Pin, I. 457-468. See Schwab, p. 604 sqq. The custom of lay communion was never universal, as is proved by Acts 2:42, 46. The essence of the sacrament of the body and blood is more important than the elements, John 6:54. But the whole Christ is in either element, and, if some of the doctors take a different view, the Church’s doctrine is to be followed, and not they. From time immemorial the Church has given the communion only in one form. The Council of Constance was right in deciding that only a single element is necessary to a saving participation in the sacrament. The Church may make changes in the outward observance when the change does not touch the essence of the right in question. The use of the two elements, once profitable, is now unprofitable and heretical.

To these statements Gerson added practical considerations against the distribution of the cup to laymen, such as the danger of spilling the wine, of soiling the vessels from the long beards of laymen, of having the wine turn to vinegar, if it be preserved for the sick and so it cease to be the blood of Christ—et ita desineret esse sanguis Christi — and from the impossibility of consecrating in one vessel enough for 10,000 to 20,000 communicants, as at Easter time may be necessary. Another danger was the encouragement such a practice would give to the notions that priest and layman are equal, and that the chief value of the sacrament lies in the participation and not in the consecration of the elements.393393    Quod virtus hujus sacramenti non principalius in consecratione quam in sumptione, Du Pin, I. 467. Such are some of the "scandals" which this renowned teacher ascribed to the distribution of the cup to the laity.

A subject on which Gerson devoted a great deal of energy for many years was whether the murder of tyrants or of a traitorous vassal is justifiable or not. He advocated the negative side of the case, which he failed to win before the Council of Constance. The question grew out of the treatment of the half-insane French king, Charles VI. (1880–1422), and the attempt of different factions to get control of the government.

On Nov. 28, 1407, the king’s cousin, Louis, duke of Orleans, was murdered at the command of the king’s uncle, John, duke of Burgundy. The duke’s act was defended by the Franciscan and Paris professor, John Petit,—Johannes Parvus,—in an address delivered before the king March 8, 1408. Gerson, who at an earlier time seems to have advocated the murder of tyrants, answered Petit in a public address, and called upon the king to suppress Petit’s nine propositions.394394    Vol. V. of Gerson’s works is taken up with documents bearing on this subject. Gerson’s addresses, bearing upon it at Constance, are given in vol. II. See Schwab, p. 609 sqq., and Bess, Zur Geschichte, etc. The Chartularium, IV. 261-285, 325 sqq., gives the nine propositions in French, with Gerson’s reply, and other matter pertaining to the controversy. The University of Paris made Gerson’s cause its own. Petit died in 1411, but the controversy went on. Petit’s theory was this, that every vassal plotting against his lord is deserving of death in soul and body. He is a tyrant, and according to the laws of nature and God any one has the right to put him out of the way. The higher such a person is in rank, the more meritorious is the deed. He based his argument upon Thomas Aquinas, John of Salisbury, Aristotle, Cicero and other writers, and referred to Moses, Zambri and St. Michael who cast Lucifer out of heaven, and other examples. The duke of Orleans was guilty of treason against the king, and the duke of Burgundy was justified in killing him.

The bishop of Paris, supported by a commission of the Inquisition and at the king’s direction, condemned Petit and his views. In February, 1414, Gerson made a public address defending the condemnation, and two days later articles taken from Petit’s work were burnt in front of Notre Dame. The king ratified the bishop’s judgment, and the duke of Burgundy appealed the case to Rome.395395    Schwab, p. 620.

The case was now transferred to the council, which at its fifteenth session, July 6, 1415, passed a compromise measure condemning the doctrine that a tyrant, in the absence of a judicial sentence, may and ought to be put to death by any subject whatever, even by the use of treacherous means, and in the face of an oath without committing perjury. Petit was not mentioned by name. It was this negative and timid action, which led Gerson to say that if Huss had had a defender, he would not have been found guilty. It was rumored that the commission which was appointed to bring in a report, by sixty-one out of eighty votes, decided for the permissibility of Petit’s articles declaring that Peter meant to kill the high priest’s servant, and that, if he had known Judas’ thoughts at the Last Supper, he would have been justified in killing him. The duke of Burgundy’s gold is said to have been freely used.396396    Mansi, XXVII. 765, Quilibet tyrannus potest et debet licite et meritorie occidi per quemcumque ... non expectata sententia vel mandato judicis cuiuscumque. For D’Ailly’s part, see Tschackert, pp. 235-247. The party led by the bishop of Arras argued that the tyrant who takes the sword is to be punished with the sword. Gerson, who was supported by D’Ailly replied that then the command "thou shalt not kill" would only forbid such an act as murder, if there was coupled with it an inspired gloss, "without judicial authority." The command means, "thou shalt not kill the innocent, or kill out of revenge." Gerson pressed the matter for the last time in an address delivered before the council, Jan. 17, 1417, but the council refused to go beyond the decree of the fifteenth session.

The duke of Burgundy got possession of Paris in 1418, and Gerson found the doors of France closed to him. Under the protection of the duke of Bavaria he found refuge at Rattenberg and later in Austria. On the assassination of the duke of Burgundy himself, with the connivance of the dauphin, Sept. 10, 1419, he returned to France, but not to Paris. He went to Lyons, where his brother John was, and spent his last years there in monastic seclusion. The dauphin is said to have granted him 200 livres in 1420 in recognition of his services to the crown.

It remains to speak of Gerson as a theologian, a preacher and a patriot.

In the department of theology proper Gerson has a place among the mystics.397397    Gerson’s mysticism is presented in such tracts as De vita spirituali animae and De monte contemplationis, Du Pin, III. 1-77, 541-579. Mysticism he defines as "the art of love," the "perception of God through experience." Such experience is reached by humility and penance more than through the path of speculation. The contemplative life is most desirable, but, following Christ’s example, contemplation must be combined with action. The contemplation of God consists of knowledge as taught in John 17:3, "This is life eternal, to know Thee and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent." Such knowledge is mingled with love. The soul is one with God through love. His mysticism was based, on the one hand, on the study of the Scriptures and, on the other, on the study of Bonaventura and the St. Victors. He wrote a special treatise in praise of Bonaventura and his mystical writings. Far from having any conscious affinity with the German mystics, he wrote against John of Ruysbroeck and Ruysbroeck’s pupil, John of Schönhofen, charging them with pantheism.

While Gerson emphasized the religious feelings, he was far from being a religious visionary and wrote treatises against the dangers of delusion from dreams and revelations. As coins must be tested by their weight, hardness, color, shape and stamp, so visions are to be tested by the humility and honesty of those who profess to have them and their readiness to teach and be taught. He commended the monk who, when some one offered to show him a figure like Christ, replied, "I do not want to see Christ on the earth. I am contented to wait till I see him in heaven."

When the negotiations were going on at the Council of Constance for the confirmation of the canonization of St. Brigitta, Gerson laid down the principle that, if visions reveal what is already in the Scriptures,398398    In his De probatione spirituum, Du Pin, I. 37-43; and De distinctione verarum visionum a falsis, Du Pin, I. 43-59. then they are false, for God does not repeat Himself, Job 33:14. People have itching ears for revelations because they do not study the Bible. Later he warned399399    De examinatione doctrinarum. Du Pin, I. 7-22. against the revelations of women, as women are more open to deception than men.

The Scriptures, Gerson taught, are the Church’s rule and guide to the end of the world. If a single statement should be proved false, then the whole volume is false, for the Holy Spirit is author of the whole. The letter of the text, however, is not sufficient to determine their meaning, as is proved from the translations of the Waldenses, Beghards and other secretaries.400400    Si propositio aliqua J. scripturae posita assertive per auctorem suum, qui est Sp. sanctus, esset falsa. tota s. scripturae vacillaret auctoritas, quoted by Schwab, p. 314. The text needs the authority of the Church, as Augustine indicated when he said, "I would not believe the Gospel if the authority of the Church did not compel me."

Great as Gerson’s services were in other departments, it was, to follow his sympathetic and scholarly biographer, Schwab, from the pulpit that he exercised most influence on his generation.401401    Gerson hatte seine einflussreiche Stellung vorzugsweise dem Rufe zu danken den er als Prediger genoss, Schwab, p. 376. He preached in French as well as Latin, and his sermons had, for the most part, a practical intent, being occupied with ethical themes such as pride, idleness, anger, the commandments of the Decalogue, the marital state. He held that the ordinary priest should confine himself to a simple explanation of the Decalogue, the greater sins and the articles of faith.

During the last ten years of his life, spent in seclusion at Lyons, he continued his literary activity, writing more particularly in the vein of mystical theology. His last work was on the Canticles.

The tradition runs that the great teacher in his last years conducted a catechetical school for children in St. Paul’s at Lyons, and that he taught them to offer for himself the daily prayer, "God, my creator, have pity upon Thy poor servant, Jean Gerson"—Mon Dieu, mon Createur, ayez pitié de vostre pauvre serviteur, Jean Gerson.402402    See Schwab, p. 773, who neither accepts nor rejects the tradition. Dr. Philip Schaff used to bring the last literary activity of President Theodore D. Wolsey, of Yale College, into comparison with the activity of Gerson. In his last years Dr. Wolsey wrote the expositions of the Sunday school lessons for the Sunday School Times. It was for young boys and perhaps for boys spending their first years in the university that he wrote his tractate entitled Leading Children to Christ.403403    De parvulis ad Christum trahendis, written according to Schwab, 1409-1412, Du Pin, III. 278-291. It opens with an exposition of the words, "Suffer little children to come unto me" and proceeds to show how much more seemly it is to offer to God our best in youth than the dregs of sickly old age. The author takes up the sins children should be admonished to avoid, especially unchastity, and holds up to reprobation the principle that vice is venial if it is kept secret, the principle expressed in the words si non caste tamen caute.

In a threefold work, giving a brief exposition of the Ten Commandments, a statement of the seven mortal sins and some short meditations on death and the way to meet it, Gerson gives a sort of catechism, although it is not thrown into the form of questions and answers. As the author states, it was intended for the benefit of poorly instructed curates who heard confessions, for parents who had children to instruct, for persons not interested in the public services of worship and for those who had the care of the sick in hospitals.404404    Opusculum tripartitum: de preceptis decalogi, de confessione, et de arte moriendi, Du Pin, I., 425-450. Bess, in Herzog, VI. 615, calls it "the first catechism."

The title, most Christian doctor—doctor christianissimus — given to John Gerson is intended to emphasize the evangelical temper of his teaching. To a clear intellect, he added warm religious fervor. With a love for the Church, which it would be hard to find excelled, he magnified the body of Christian people as possessing the mind and immediate guidance of Christ and threw himself into the advocacy of the principle that the judgment of Christendom, as expressed in a general council, is the final authority of religious matters on the earth.

He opposed some of the superstitions inherited from another time. He emphasized the authority of the sacred text. In these views as in others he was in sympathy with the progressive spirit of his age. But he stopped short of the principles of the Reformers. He knew nothing of the principles of individual sovereignty and the rights of conscience. His thinking moved along churchly lines. He had none of the bold original thought of Wyclif and little of that spirit which sets itself against the current errors of the times in which we live. His vote for Huss’ burning proves sufficiently that the light of the new age had not dawned upon his mind. He was not, like them, a forerunner of the movement of the sixteenth century.

The chief principle for which Gerson contended, the supremacy of general councils, met with defeat soon after the great chancellor’s death, and was set aside by popes and later by the judgment of a general council. His writings, however, which were frequently published remain the chief literary monuments in the department of theology of the first half of the fourteenth century.405405    The first complete edition of Gerson’s writings appeared from the press of John Koelhoff. 4 vols. Cologne, 1483, 1484. The celebrated preacher, Geiler of Strassburg, edited a second edition 1488. Separated from the Schoolmen in spirit and method, he stands almost in a class by himself, the most eminent theologian of his century. This judgment is an extension of the judgment of the eminent German abbot and writer, Trithemius, at the close of the fifteenth century: "He was by far the chief divine of his age"406406    Schwab, p. 779, note. Theologorum sui temporis longe princeps.

§ 24. Nicolas of Clamanges, the Moralist.

The third of the great luminaries who gave fame to the University of Paris in this period, Nicolas Poillevillain de Clamanges, was born at Clamengis,407407    The spelling given by Denifle in the Chartularium. Champagne, about 1367 and died in Paris about 1437. Shy by nature, he took a less prominent part in the settlement of the great questions of the age than his contemporaries, D’Ailly and Gerson. Like them, he was identified with the discussions called forth by the schism, and is distinguished for the high value he put on the study of the Scriptures and his sharp exposition of the corruption of the clergy. He entered the College of Navarre at twelve, and had D’Ailly and Gerson for his teachers. In theology he did not go beyond the baccalaureate. It is probable he was chosen rector of the university 1393. With Peter of Monsterolio, he was the chief classical scholar of the university and was able to write that in Paris, Virgil, Terence and Cicero were often read in public and in private.408408    Chartul. III. pp. 5, xi. In the Chartularium Clamanges always appears as a member of the faculty of the arts, III. 606, etc.

In 1394, Clamanges took a prominent part in preparing the paper, setting forth the conclusions of the university in regard to the healing of the schism.409409    Chartul., III 617-624. It was addressed to the "most Christian king, Charles VI., most zealous of religious orthodoxy by his daughter, the university." This, the famous document suggesting the three ways of healing the schism,—by abdication, arbitration and by a general council,—is characterized by firmness and moderation, two of the elements prominent in Clamanges’ character. It pronounced the schism pestiferous, and in answer to the question who would give the council its authority, it answered: "The communion of all the faithful will give it; Christ will give it, who said: ’Where two or three are gathered together in my name there am I in the midst of them.’ "

The Paris professor was one of the men whom the keen-eyed Peter de Luna picked out, and when he was elected pope, Clamanges supported him and wrote appealing to him, as the one who no longer occupied the position of one boatman among others, but stood at the rudder of the ship, to act in the interest of all Christendom. He was called as secretary to the Avignon court, but became weary of the commotion and the vices of the palace and the town.410410    Taedebat me vehementer curiae, taedebat turbae, taedebat tumultus, taedebat ambitionis et morum in plerisque vitiosorum, he wrote. Quoted by Knöpfler. In 1406, he seems to have withdrawn from Benedict at Genoa and retired to Langres, where he held a canon’s stall. He did not, however, break with the pope, and, when Benedict in 1408 issued the bull threatening the French court with excommunication, Clamanges was charged with being its author. He denied the charge, but the accusation of want of patriotism had made a strong impression, and he withdrew to the Carthusian convent, Valprofonds, and later to Fontaine du Bosc. His seclusion he employed in writing letters and treatises and in the study of the Bible which he now expressed regret for having neglected in former years for classical studies.

To D’Ailly he wrote on the advantages of a secluded life.—De fructu eremi. In another tract—De fructu rerum adversarum — he presented the advantages of adversity. One of more importance complained of the abuse of the Lord’s Day and of the multiplication of festivals as taking the workman from his work while the interests of piety were not advanced. In still another tract—De studio theologico — addressed to a theologian at Paris who had inquired whether it was better for him to continue where he was or to retire to a pastorate, he emphasized the importance and delicacy of caring for souls, but advised the inquirer to remain at the university and to concern himself chiefly with the study of the Scriptures. He ascribed the Church’s decline to their neglect, and pronounced the mass, processionals and festivals as of no account unless the heart be purified by faith.

During the sessions of the Council of Constance, which he did not attend, Clamanges sent a letter to that body urging unity of thought and action. He expressed doubt whether general councils were always led by the Holy Spirit. The Church, which he defined as infallible, is only there where the Holy Spirit is, and where the Church is, can be only known to God Himself. In 1425 he returned to Paris and lectured on rhetoric and theology.

Clamanges’ reputation rests chiefly upon his sharp criticism of the corrupt morals of the clergy. His residence in Avignon gave him a good opportunity for observation. His tract on the prelates who were practising simony—De praesulibus simoniacis — is a commentary on the words, "But ye have made it a den of thieves," Matt. 21:13. A second tract on the downfall of the Church—De ruina ecclesiae — is one of the most noted writings of the age. Here are set forth the simony and private vices practised at Avignon where all things holy were prostituted for gold and luxury. Here is described the corruption of the clergy from the pope down to the lowest class of priests. The author found ideal conditions in the first century, when the minds of the clergy were wholly set on heavenly things. With possessions and power came avarice and ambition, pride and luxury. The popes themselves were guilty of pride in exalting their authority above that of the empire and by asserting for themselves the right of appointing all prelates, yea of filling all the benefices of Christendom. The evils arising from annates and expectances surpass the power of statement. The cardinals followed the popes in their greed and pride, single cardinals having as many as 500 livings. In order to perpetuate their "tyranny," pope and curia had entered into league with princes, which Clamanges pronounces an abominable fornication. Many of the bishops drew large incomes from their sees which they administered through others, never visiting them themselves. Canons and vicars followed the same course and divided their time between idleness and sensual pleasure. The mendicant monks corresponded to the Pharisees of the synagogue. Scarcely one cleric out of a thousand did what his profession demanded. They were steeped in ignorance and given to brawling, drinking, playing with dice and fornication. Priests bought the privilege of keeping concubines. As for the nuns, Clamanges said, he dared not speak of them. Nunneries were not the sanctuaries of God, but shameful brothels of Venus, resorts of unchaste and wanton youth for the sating of their passions, and for a girl to put on the veil was virtually to submit herself to prostitution.411411    Quid aliud sunt hoc tempore puellarum monasteria, nisi quaedam, non dico Dei sanctuaria sed execranda prostibula Veneris ... ut idem hodie sit puellam velare quod ad publice scortandum exponere, Hardt, I. 38. The Church was drunken with the lust of power, glory and pleasures. Judgment was sure to come, and men should bow humbly before God who alone could rectify the evils and put an end to the schism. Descriptions such as these must be used with discrimination, and it would be wrong to deduce from them that the entire clerical body was corrupt. The diseases, however, must have been deep-seated to call forth such a lament from a man of Clamanges’ position.

The author did not call to open battle like the German Reformer at a later time, but suggested as a remedy prayers, processions and fasts. His watchword was that the Church must humble itself before it can be rebuilt.412412    Eccles. prius humilianda quam erigenda. The authorship of the De ruina has been made a matter of dispute. Müntz denied it to Clamanges chiefly on the ground of its poor Latin and Knöpfler is inclined to follow him. On the other hand Schuberth and Schwab, followed somewhat hesitatingly by Bess, accept the traditional view, Schwab brings out the similarity between the De ruina and Clamanges’ other writings and takes the view that, while the tract was written in 1401 or 1402, it was not published till 1409. It was, however, a bold utterance and forms an important part of that body of literature which so powerfully moulded opinion at the time of the Reformatory councils.

The loud complaints against the state of morals at the papal court and beyond during the Avignon period increased, if possible, in strength during the time of the schism. The list of abuses to be corrected which the Council of Constance issued, Oct. 30, 1417, includes the official offences of the curia, such as reservations, annates, the sale of indulgences and the unrestricted right of appeals to the papal court. The subject of chastity it remained for individual writers to press. In describing the third Babylon, Petrarch was even more severe than Clamanges who wrote of conditions as they existed nearly a century later and accused the papal household of practising adultery, rape and all manners of fornication.413413    Mitto stuprum, raptus, incestus, adulteria, qui jam pontificalis lasciviae ludi sunt, quoted by Lea. Sacerd. Celibacy, I. 426. Gillis li Muisis, abbot of St. Martin di Tournai, d. 1352, in the Recollections of his Life written a year before his death, speaks of good wines, a good table, fine attire and above all holidays as in his day the chief occupations of monks. Curés and chaplains had girls and women as valets, a troublesome habit over which there was murmuring, and it had to be kept quiet. See C. V. Langois, La vie en France au moyen âge d’après quelques moralistes du temps, Paris, 1908, pp. 320, 336, etc. Clamanges declared that many parishes insisted upon the priests keeping concubines as a precaution in defence of their own families. Against all canonical rules John XXIII. gave a dispensation to the illegitimate son of Henry IV. of England, who was only ten years old, to enter orders.414414    Jan. 16, 1412. Under the name of E. Leboorde. For the document, see English Historical Review, 1904, p. 96 sq. The case of John XXIII. was an extreme one, but it must be remembered, that in Bologna where he was sent as cardinal-legate, his biographer, Dietrich of Nieheim, says that two hundred matrons and maidens, including some nuns, fell victims to the future pontiff’s amours. Dietrich Vrie in his History of the Council of Constance said: "The supreme pontiffs, as I know, are elected through avarice and simony and likewise the other bishops are ordained for gold. The old proverb; ’Freely give, for freely ye have received’ is now most vilely perverted and runs ’Freely I have not received and freely I will not give, for I have bought my bishopric with a great price and must indemnify myself impiously for my outlay.’ ... If Simon Magus were now alive he might buy with money not only the Holy Ghost but God the Father and Me, God the Son."415415    Hardt, I. 104 sqq. The lament is put into the mouth of Christ. But bad as was the moral condition of the hierarchy and papacy at the time of the schism, it was not so bad as during the last half century of the Middle Ages. The Reformatory councils are the best, though by no means the only, proof that a deep moral vitality existed in the Church. Their very summons and assembling were a protest against clerical corruption and hypocrisy "in head and members,"—from the pope down to the most obscure priest,—and at the same time a most hopeful sign of future betterment.

§ 25. Nicolas of Cusa, Scholar and Churchman.

Of the theologians of the generation following Gerson and D’Ailly none occupies a more conspicuous place than the German Nicolas of Cusa, 1401–1464. After taking a prominent part in the Basel council in its earlier history, he went into the service of Eugenius IV. and distinguished himself by practical efforts at Church reform and by writings in theology and other departments of human learning.

Born at Cues near Treves, the son of a boatman, he left the parental home on account of harsh treatment. Coming under the patronage of the count of Manderscheid, he went to Deventer, where he received training in the school conducted by the Brothers of the Common Life. He studied law in Padua, and reached the doctorate, but exchanged law for theology because, to follow the statement of his opponent, George of Heimburg, he had failed in his first case. At Padua he had for one of his teachers Cesarini, afterwards cardinal and a prominent figure in the Council of Basel.

In 1432 he appeared in Basel as the representative of Ulrich of Manderscheid, archbishop-elect of Treves, to advocate Ulrich’s cause against his rivals Rabanus of Helmstatt, bishop of Spires, whom the pope had appointed archbishop of the Treves diocese. Identifying himself closely with the conciliar body, Nicolas had a leading part in the proceedings with the Hussites and went with the majority in advocating the superiority of the council over the pope. His work on Catholic Unity,—De concordantia catholica,—embodying his views on this question and dedicated to the council 1433, followed the earlier treatments of Langenstein, Nieheim and Gerson. A general council, being inspired by the Holy Spirit, speaks truly and infallibly. The Church is the body of the faithful—unitas fidelium — and is represented in a general council. The pope derives his authority from the consent of the Church, a council has power to dethrone him for heresy and other causes and may not be prorogued or adjourned without its own consent. Peter received no more authority from Christ than the other Apostles. Whatever was said to Peter was likewise said to the others. All bishops are of equal authority and dignity, whether their jurisdiction be episcopal, archiepiscopal, patriarchal or papal, just as all presbyters are equal.416416    John of Turrecremata, d. 1468, whose tract on the seat of authority in the Church—Summa de Eccles. et ejus auctoritate —1450 has already been referred to, took the extreme ultramontane position. The papal supremacy extends to all Christians throughout the world and includes the appointment of all bishops and right to depose them, the filling of all prelatures and benefices whatsoever and the canonizing of saints. As the vicar of Christ, he has full jurisdiction in all the earth in temporal as well as spiritual matters because all jurisdiction of secular princes is derived from the pope quod omnium principum saecularum jurisdictionalis potestas a papa in eos derivata sit. Quoted from Gieseler, III. 5, pp. 219-227.

In spite of these views, when the question arose as to the place of meeting the Greeks, Nicolas sided with the minority in favor of an Italian city, and was a member of the delegations appointed by the minority which visited Eugenius IV. at Bologna and went to Constantinople. This was in 1437 and from that time forward he was a ready servant of Eugenius and his two successors. Aeneas Sylvius, afterwards Pius II., called him the Hercules of the Eugenians. Aeneas also pronounced him a man notable for learning in all branches of knowledge and on account of his godly life.417417    Hist. of Fred. III., 409, Germ. transl. II. 227.

Eugenius employed his new supporter as legate to arrange terms of peace with the German Church and princes, an end he saw accomplished in the concordat of Vienna, 1447. He was rewarded by promotion to the college of cardinals, and in 1452 was made bishop of Brixen in the Tyrol. Here he sought to introduce Church reforms, and he travelled as the papal legate in the same interest throughout the larger part of Germany.

By attempting to assert all the mediaeval feoffal rights of his diocese, the bishop came into sharp conflict with Siegmund, duke of Austria. Even the interdict pronounced by two popes did not bring the duke to terms. He declared war against the bishop and, taking him prisoner, forced from him a promise to renounce the old rights which his predecessors for many years had not asserted. Once released, the bishop treated his oath as null, on the ground that it had been forced from him, and in this he was supported by Pius II. In 1460 he went to Rome and died at Todi, Umbria, a few years later.

Nicolas of Cusa knew Greek and Hebrew, and perhaps has claim to being the most universal scholar of Germany up to his day since Albertus Magnus. He was interested in astronomy, mathematics and botany, and, as D’Ailly had done before, he urged, at the Council of Basel, the correction of the calendar. The literary production on which he spent most labor was a discussion of the problems of theology—De docta ignorantia. Here he attacked the scholastic method and showed the influence upon his mind of mysticism, the atmosphere of which he breathed at Deventer. He laid stress upon the limitations of the human mind and the inability of the reason to find out God exhaustively. Faith, which he defined as a state of the soul given of God’s grace, finds out truths the intellect cannot attain to.418418    Fides est habitus bonus, per bonitatem data a deo, ut per fidem restaurentur illae veritates objectivae, quas intellectus attingere non potest, quoted by Schwane, p. 100. His views had an influence upon Faber Stapulensis who edited the Cusan’s works and was himself a French forerunner of Luther in the doctrine of justification by faith.

His last labors, in connection with the crusade against the Turks pushed by Pius II., led him to studies in the Koran and the preparation of a tract,—De cribatione Alcoran,—in which he declared that false religions have the true religion as their basis.

It is as an ecclesiastical mediator, and as a reformer of clerical and conventual abuses that the cardinal has his chief place in history. He preached in the vernacular. In Bamberg he secured the prohibition of new brotherhoods, in Magdeburg the condemnation of the sale of indulgences for money. In Salzburg and other places he introduced reforms in convents, and in connection with other members of his family he founded the hospital at Cues with beds for 33 patients. He showed his interest in studies by providing for the training of 20 boys in Deventer. He dwelt upon the rotation of the earth on its axis nearly a century before Copernicus. He gave reasons for regarding the donation of Constantine spurious, and he also called in question the genuineness of other parts of the Isidorian Decretals.

On the other hand, the cardinal was a thorough churchman and obedient child of the Church. As the agent of Nicolas V. he travelled in Germany announcing the indulgence of the Jubilee Year, and through him, it is said, indulgences to the value of 200,000 gulden were sold for the repair of St. Peter’s.

This noble and many-sided man has been coupled together with Gutenberg by Janssen,—the able and learned apologist of the Catholic Church in the closing years of the Middle Ages,—the one as the champion of clerical and Church discipline, the other the inventor of the printing-press. It is no disparagement of the impulses and work of Nicolas to say that he had not the mission of the herald of a new age in thought and religion as it was given to Gutenberg to promote culture and civilization by his invention.419419    Janssen, I. 2-6. Here we come for the first time into contact with this author whose work has gone through 20 editions and made such a remarkable sensation. Its conclusions and methods of treatment will be referred to at length farther on. Here it is sufficient to call attention to the seductive plausibility of the work, whose purpose it is to show that an orderly reformation was going on in the Church in Germany when Luther appeared and by his revolutionary and immoral tendency brutally rived the unity of the Church and checked the orderly reformation. Such a conclusion is a result of the manipulation of historic materials and the use of superlatives in describing men and influences which were like rills in the history of the onward progress of religion and civilization. The initial comparison between Gutenberg and Nicolas of Cusa begs the whole conclusion which Janssen had in view in writing his work. Of the permanent consequence of the work of the inventor of the printing-press, no one has any doubt. The author makes a great jump when he asserts a like permanent influence for Nicolas in the department of religion. He did not possess the gift of moral and doctrinal conviction and foresight which made the monk of Wittenberg the exponent and the herald of a radical, religious reformation whose permanent benefits are borne witness to by a large section of Christendom.

§ 26. Popular Preachers.

During the century and a half closing with 1450, there were local groups of preachers as well as isolated pulpit orators who exercised a deep influence upon congregations. The German mystics with Eckart and John Tauler at their head preached in Strassburg, Cologne and along the Rhine. D’Ailly and Gerson stood before select audiences, and give lustre to the French pulpit. Wyclif, at Oxford, and John Huss in Bohemia, attracted great attention by their sermons and brought down upon themselves ecclesiastical condemnation. Huss was one of a number of Bohemian preachers of eminence. Wyclif sought to promote preaching by sending out a special class of men, his "pore preachers."

The popular preachers constitute another group, though the period does not furnish one who can be brought into comparison with the field-preacher, Berthold of Regensburg, the Whitefield of his century, d. 1272. Among the popular preachers of the time the most famous were Bernardino and John of Capistrano, both Italians, and members of the Observant wing of the Franciscan order, and the Spanish Dominican, Vincent Ferrer. To a later age belong those bright pulpit luminaries, Savonarola of Florence and Geiler of Strassburg.

Bernardino of Siena, 1380–1444, was praised by Pius II. as a second Paul. He made a marked impression upon Italian audiences and was a favorite with pope Martin V. His voice, weak and indistinct at first, was said to have been made strong and clear through the grace of Mary, to whom he turned for help. He was the first vicar-general of the Observants, who numbered only a few congregations in Italy when he joined them, but increased greatly under his administration. In 1424 he was in Rome and, as Infessura the Roman diarist reports,420420    Diario, p. 25. For Bernardino, see Thureau-Dangin, St. Bernardin de Sienne. Un prédicateur populaire Paris, 1896. Several edd. of his sermons have appeared, including the ed. of Paris, 1650, 5 vols., by De la Haye. so influenced the people that they brought their games and articles of adornment to the Capitol and made a bonfire of them. Wherever he went to preach, a banner was carried before him containing the monogram of Christ, IHS, with twelve rays centring in the letters. He urged priests to put the monogram on the walls of churches and public buildings, and such a monogram may still be seen on the city building of Siena.421421    See Pastor, I. 231-233. The Augustinians and Dominicans and also Poggio attacked him for this practice. In 1427, he appeared in Rome to answer the charges. He was acquitted by Martin V., who gave him permission to preach everywhere, and instructed him to hold an eighty-days’ mission in the papal city itself. In 1419, he appeared in the Lombard cities, where the people were carried away by his exhortations to repentance, and often burned their trinkets and games in the public squares. His body lies in Aquila, and he was canonized by Nicolas V., 1450.

John of Capistrano, 1386–1456, a lawyer, and at an early age intrusted with the administration of Perugia, joined the Observants in 1416 and became a pupil of Bernardino. He made a reputation as an inquisitor in Northern Italy, converting and burning heretics and Jews. No one could have excelled him in the ferocity of his zeal against heresy. His first appointment as inquisitor was made in 1426, and his fourth appointment 23 years later in 1449.422422    Jacob, I. 30 sq. For John’s life, see E. Jacob, John of Capistrano. His Life and Writings, 2 vols., Breslau, 1906, 1907. Pastor, I. 463-468, 691-698; Lempp’s art. in Herzog, III. 713 sqq.; Lea, Inquisition, II 552 sqq.

As a leader of his order, he defended Bernardino in 1427, and was made vicar-general in 1443. He extended his preaching to Vienna and far up into Germany, from Nürnberg to Dresden, Leipzig, Magdeburg and Breslau, making everywhere a tremendous sensation. He used the Latin or Italian, which had to be interpreted to his audiences. These are reported to have numbered as many as thirty thousand.423423    Yea, 60,000 at Erfurt. Jacob, I. 74. He carried relics of Bernardino with him, and through them and his own instrumentality many miracles were said to have been performed. His attendants made a note of the wonderful works on the spot.424424    See Jacob, I. 50 sqq., etc. Aeneas Sylvius said he had not seen any of John’s miracles, but would not deny them. In Jena alone John healed thirty lame persons. Jacob, I. 69. The spell of his preaching was shown by the burning of pointed shoes, games of cards, dice and other articles of pleasure or vanity. Thousands of heretics are also reported to have yielded to his persuasions. He was called by Pius II. to preach against the Hussites, and later against the Turks. He was present at the siege of Belgrade, and contributed to the successful defence of the city and the defeat of Mohammed II. He was canonized in 1690.

The life of Vincent Ferrer, d. 1419, the greatest of Spanish preachers, fell during the period of the papal schism, and he was intimately identified with the controversies it called forth. His name is also associated with the gift of tongues and with the sect of the Flagellants. This devoted missionary, born in Valencia, joined the Dominican order, and pursued his studies in the universities of Barcelona and Lerida. He won the doctorate of theology by his tract on the Modern Schism in the Church—De moderno ecclesiae schismate. Returning to Valencia, he gained fame as a preacher, and was appointed confessor to the queen of Aragon, Iolanthe, and counsellor to her husband, John I. In 1395, Benedict XIII. called him to be chief penitentiary in Avignon and master of the papal palace. Two years later he returned to Valencia with the title of papal legate. He at first defended the Avignon obedience with great warmth, but later, persuaded that Benedict was not sincere in his professions looking to the healing of the schism, withdrew from him his support and supported the Council of Constance.

Ferrer’s apostolic labors began in 1399. He itinerated through Spain, Northern Italy and France, preaching two and three times a day on the great themes of repentance and the nearness of the judgment. He has the reputation of being the most successful of missionaries among the Jews and Mohammedans. Twenty-five thousand Jews and eight thousand Mohammedans are said to have yielded to his persuasions. Able to speak only Spanish, his sermons, though they were not interpreted, are reported to have been understood in France and Italy. The gift of tongues was ascribed to him by his contemporaries as well as the gift of miracles. Priests and singers accompanied him on his tours, and some of the hymns sung were Vincent’s own compositions. His audiences are given as high as 70,000, an incredible number, and he is said to have preached twenty thousand times. He also preached to the Waldenses in their valleys and to the remnant of the Cathari, and is said to have made numerous converts. He himself was not above the suspicion of heresy, and Eymerich made the charge against him of declaring that Judas Iscariot hanged himself because the people would not permit him to live, and that he found pardon with God.425425    Lea: Inquisition. II. 156, 176, 258, 264. He was canonized by Calixtus III., 1455. The tale is that Ferrer noticed this member of the Borgia family as a young priest in Valencia, and made the prediction that one day he would reach the highest office open to mortal man.426426    Razanno, a fellow-Dominican, wrote the first biography of Ferrer, 1466. The Standard Life is by P. Fages, Hist. de s. Vinc. Ferrer apôtre de l’Europe, 2 vols., 2d ed., Louvain, 1901. The best life written by a Protestant is by L. Heller, Berlin, 1830. It is commended in Wetzer-Welte, XII. 978-983.

On his itineraries Ferrer was also accompanied by bands of Flagellants. He himself joined in the flagellations, and the scourge with which he scourged himself daily, consisting of six thongs, is said still to be preserved in the Carthusian convent of Catalonia, scala coeli. Both Gerson and D’Ailly attacked Ferrer for his adoption of the Flagellant delusion. In a letter addressed to the Spanish preacher, written during the sessions of the Council of Constance, Gerson took the ground that both the Old Testament and the New Testament forbid violence done to the body, quoting in proof Deut. 14:1, "Ye shall not cut yourselves." He invited him to come to Constance, but the invitation was not accepted.427427    For German preaching in the fourteenth century, other than that of the mystics, see Linsenmeyer, Gesch. der Predigt in Deutschland his zum Ausgange d. 14ten Jahrh., Munich, 1886, pp. 301-470; Cruel:Gesch. d. deutschen Predigt im M A., p. 414 sqq.; A. Franz: Drei deutsche Minoritenprediger des XIIten und XIVten Jahrh., Freiburg, 1907, pp. 160. The best-known German preachers were the Augustinians Henry of Frimar, d. 1340, and Jordan of Quedlinburg, d. about 1375. See for the fifteenth century, ch. IX.

CHAPTER IV.

THE GERMAN MYSTICS.

§ 27. Sources and Literature.

General Works.—*Franz Pfeiffer: Deutsche Mystiker, 2 vols., Leipzig, 1857, 2d ed of vol. I., Göttingen, 1906.—*R. Langenberg: Quellen und Forschungen zur Gesch. der deutschen Mystik, Bonn, 1902.—F. Galle: Geistliche Stimmen aus dem M. A., zur Erbauung, Halle, 1841.—Mrs. F. Bevan: Three Friends of God, Trees planted by the River, London.—*W. R. Inge: Light, Life and Love, London, 1904. Selections from Eckart, Tauler, Suso, Ruysbroeck, etc.—The works given under Eckart, etc., in the succeeding sections. R. A. Vaughan: Hours with the Mystics. For a long time the chief English authority, offensive by the dialogue style it pursues, and now superseded.—W. Preger: Gesch. der deutschen Mystik im Mittelalter, 3 vols., Leipzig, 1874–1893.—G. Ullmann: Reformatoren vor der Reformation, vol. II., Hamburg, 1841.—*Inge: Christian Mysticism. pp. 148 sqq., London, 1899. — Eleanor C. Gregory: An Introd. to Christ. Mysticism, London, 1901.—W. R. Nicoll: The Garden of Nuts, London, 1905. The first four chapp. give a general treatment of mysticism.—P. Mehlhorn: D. Blüthezeit d. deutschen Mystik, Freiburg, 1907, pp. 64.—*S. M. Deutsch: Mystische Theol. in Herzog, XIX. 631 sqq.—Cruel: Gesch. d. deutschen Predigt im M. A., pp. 370–414. A. Ritschl: Gesch. d. Pietismus, 3 vols., Bonn, 1880–1886.—Harnack: Dogmengesch., III. 376 sqq.—Loofs: Dogmengesch., 4th ed., Halle, 1906, pp. 621–633.—W. James: The Varieties of Relig. Experience, chs. XVI., XVII.

For § 29. Meister Eckart.—German Sermons bound in a vol. with Tauler’s Sermons, Leipzig, 1498, Basel, 1521.—Pfeiffer: Deutsche Mystiker, etc., vol. II., gives 110 German sermons, 18 tracts, and 60 fragments.—*Denifle: M. Eckehart’s Lateinische Schriften und die Grundanschauung seiner Lehre, in Archiv für Lit. und Kirchengesch., II. 416–652. Gives excerpts from his Latin writings.—F. Jostes: M. Eckehart und seine Jünger, ungedruckte Texte zur Gesch. der deutschen Mystik, Freiburg, 1895.—*H. Büttner: M. Eckehart’s Schriften und Predigten aus dem Mittelhochdeutschen übersetzt, Leipzig, 1903. Gives 18 German sermons and writings.—G. Landauer: Eckhart’s mystische Schriften in unsere Sprache übertragen, Berlin, 1903.—H. Martensen: M. Eckart, Hamburg, 1842.—A. Lasson: M. E. der Mystiker, Berlin, 1868. Also the section on Eckart by Lasson in Ueberweg’s Hist. of Phil.—A. Jundt: Essai sur le mysticisme spéculatif d. M. E., Strassburg, 1871; also Hist. du pathéisme populaire au moyen âge, 1876. Gives 18 of Eckart’s sermons. Preger, I. 309–458.—H. Delacroix: Le mysticisme spéculatif en Allemagne au 14e siècle, Paris, 1900.—Deutsch’s art. Eckart in Herzog, V. 142–154.—Denifle: Die Heimath M. Eckehart’s in Archiv für Lit. und K. Gesch. des M. A., V. 349–364, 1889.—Stöckl: Gesch. der Phil., etc., III. 1095–1120.—Pfleiderer: Religionsphilosophie, Berlin, 2d ed., 1883, p. 3 sqq.—INGE.—L. Ziegler: D. Phil. und relig. Bedeutung d. M. Eckehart in Preuss. Jahrbücher, Heft 3, 1904.—See a trans. of Eckart’s sermon on John 6:44, by D. S. Schaff, in Homiletic Rev., 1902, pp. 428–431

Note.—Eckart’s German sermons and tracts, published in 1498 and 1521, were his only writings known to exist till Pfeiffer’s ed., 1867. Denifle was the first to discover Eckart’s Latin writings, in the convent of Erfurt, 1880, and at Cusa on the Mosel, 1886. These are fragments on Genesis, Exodus, Ecclesiastes and the Book of Wisdom. John Trithemius, in his De Scripp. Eccles., 1492, gives a list of Eckart’s writings which indicates a literary activity extending beyond the works we possess. The list catalogues four books on the Sentences, commentaries on Genesis, Exodus, the Canticles, the Book of Wisdom, St. John, on the Lord’s Prayer, etc.

For § 30. John Tauler.—Tauler’s Works, Leipzig, 1498 (84 sermons printed from MSS. in Strassburg); Augsburg, 1508; Basel, 1521 (42 new sermons) and 1522; Halberstadt, 1523; Cologne, 1543 (150 sermons, 23 being publ. for the first time, and found in St. Gertrude’s convent, Cologne); Frankfurt, 1565; Hamburg, 1621; Frankfurt, 3 vols., 1826 (the edition used by Miss Winkworth); ed. by J. Hamberger, 1864, 2d ed., Prag, 1872. The best. Hamberger substituted modern German in the text and used a Strassburg MS. which was destroyed by fire at the siege of the city in 1870; ed. by Kuntze und Biesenthal containing the Introdd. of Arndt and Spener, Berlin, 1842.—*Engl. trans., Susanna Winkworth: The History and Life of Rev. John Tauler with 25 Sermons, with Prefaces by Canon Kingsley and Roswell D. Hitchcock, New York, 1858.—*The Inner Way, 36 Sermons for Festivals, by John Tauler, trans. with Introd. by A. W. Huttons London, 1905.—C. Schmidt: J. Tauler von Strassburg, Hamburg, 1841, and Nicolas von Basel, Bericht von der Bekehrung Taulers, Strassburg, 1875.—Denifle: D. Buch von geistlicher Armuth, etc., Munich, 1877, and Tauler’s Bekehrung, Münster, 1879.—A Jundt: Les amis de Dieu au 14e siècle, Paris, 1879.—Preger, III. 1–244.—F. Cohrs: Art. Tauler in Herzog, XIX. 451–459.

Note.—Certain writings once ascribed to Tauler, and printed with his works, are now regarded as spurious. They are (1) The Book of Spiritual Poverty, ed. by Denifle, Munich, 1877, and previously under the title Imitation of Christ’s Life of Poverty, by D. Sudermann, Frankfurt, 1621, etc. Denifle pointed out the discord between its teachings and the teachings of Tauler’s sermons. (2) Medulla animae, consisting of 77 chapters. Preger decides some of them to be genuine. (3) Certain hymns, including Es kommt ein Schiff geladen, which even Preger pronounces spurious, III. 86. They are publ. by Wackernagel.

For § 31. Henry Suso,—Ed. of his works, Augsburg, 1482, and 1512.—*M. Diepenbrock: H. Suso’s, genannt Amandus, Leben und Schriften, Regensburg, 1829, 4th ed., 1884, with Preface by J. Görres.—H. Seuse Denifle: D. deutschen Schriften des seligen H. Seuse, Munich, 1880.—*H. Seuse: Deutsche Schriften, ed. K. Bihlmeyer, Stuttgart, 1907. The first complete edition, and based upon an examination of many MSS.—A Latin trans. of Suso’s works by L. Surius, Cologne, 1555. French trans. by Thirot: Ouvages mystiques du bienheureux H. Suso, 2 vols., Paris, 1899. Engl. extracts in Light, Life and Love, pp. 66–100.—Preger: D. Briefe H. Suso’s nach einer Handschrift d. XV. Jahrh., Leipzig, 1867.—C. Schmidt: Der Mystiker, H. Suso in Stud. und Kritiken, 1843, pp. 835 sqq.—Preger: Deutsche Mystik, II. 309–419.—L. Kärcher: H. Suso aus d. Predigerorden, in Freiburger Diöcesenarchiv, 1868, p. 187 sqq.—Cruel: Gesch. d. deutschen Predigt, 396 sqq.—Art. in Wetzer- Welte, H. Seuse, V. 1721–1729.

For § 32. The Friends of God.—The works of Eckart, Tauler, Suso, Ruysbroeck.—Jundt: Les Amis de Dieu, Paris, 1879.—Kessel: Art. Gottesfreunde in Wetzer-Welte, V. 893–900.—The writings of Rulman Merswin: Von den vier Jahren seines anfahenden Lebens, ed. by Schmidt, in Reuss and Cinitz, Beiträge zu den Theol. Wissenschaften, V., Jena, 1854.—His Bannerbüchlein given in Jundt’s Les Amis.—Das Buch von den neun Felsen, ed. from the original MS. by C. Schmidt, Leipzig, 1859, and in abbreviated form by Preger, III. 337–407, and Diepenbrock: Heinrich Suso, pp. 505–572.—P. Strauch: Art. Rulman Merswin in Herzog, XVII. 20–27.—For the "Friend of God of the Oberland" and his writings. K. Schmidt: Nicolas von Basel: Leben und ausgewählte Schriften, Vienna, 1866, and Nic. von Basel, Bericht von der Bekehrung Taulers, Strassburg, 1876.—F. Lauchert: Des Gottesfreundes im Oberland Buch von den zwei Mannen, Bonn, 1896.—C. Schmidt: Nic. von Basel und die Gottesfreunde, Basel, 1856.—Denifle: Der Gottesfreund im Oberland und Nic. von Basel. Eine krit. Studie, Munich, 1875.—Jundt: Rulman Merswin et l’Ami de Dieu de l’Oberland, Paris, 1890.—Preger, III. 290–337.—K. Rieder: Der Gottesfreund vom Oberland. Eine Erfindung des Strassburger Johanniterbruders Nicolaus von Löwen, Innsbruck, 1905.

For § 33. John Of Ruysbroeck.—Vier Schriften, ed. by Arnswaldt, with Introd. by Ullmann, Hanover, 1848.—Superseded by J. B. David (Prof. in Louvaine), 6 vols., Ghent, 1857–1868. Contains 12 writings.—Lat. trans. by Surius, Cologne, 1549.—*F. A. Lambert: Drei Schriften des Mystikers J. van Ruysb., Die Zierde der geistl. Hochzeit, Vom glanzenden Stein and Das Buch uon der höchsten Wahrheit, Leipzig. No date; about 1906. Selections from Ruysbroeck in Light, Life and Love, pp. 100–196.—*J. G. V. Engelhardt: Rich. von St. Victor u. J. Ruysbroeck, Erlangen, 1838.—Ullmann: Reformatoren, etc., II. 35 sqq.—W. L. de Vreese: Bijdrage tot de kennis van het leven en de werken van J. van Ruusbroec, Ghent, 1896.—*M. Maeterlinck: Ruysbr. and the Mystics, with Selections from Ruysb., London, 1894. A trans. by Jane T. Stoddart of Maeterlinck’s essay prefixed to his L’Ornement des noces spirituelles de Ruysb., trans. by him from the Flemish, Brussels, 1891.—Art. Ruysbroeck in Herzog, XVII. 267–273, by Van Veen.

For § 34. Gerrit de Groote and the Brothers of the Common Life.—Lives of Groote, Florentius and their pupils, by Thomas À Kempis: Opera omnia, ed, by Sommalius, Antwerp, 1601, 3 vols., Cologne, 1759, etc., and in unpubl. MSS.— J. Busch, d. 1479: Liber de viris illustribus, a collection of 24 biographies of Windesheim brethren, Antwerp, 1621; also Chronicon Windeshemense, Antwerp, 1621, both ed. by Grube, Halle, 1886.—G. H. M. Delprat Verhandeling over de broederschap van Geert Groote en over den involoed der fraterhuizen, Arnheim, etc., 1856.—J. G. R. Acquoy (Prof. in Leyden): Gerhardi Magni epistolae XIV., Antwerp, 1857. G. Bonet-Maury:: Gerhard de Groot d’après des documents onédites. Paris 1878.—*G. Kettlewell: Thomas à Kempis and the Brothers of the Common Life, 2 vols, New York, 1882.—*K. Grube: Johannes Busch, Augustinerpropst in Hildesheim. Ein kathol. Reformator in 15ten Jahrh., Freiburg, 1881. Also G. Groote und seine Stiftungen, Cologne, 1883.—R. Langenberg: Quellen and Forschungen, etc., Bonn, 1902.—Boerner: Die Annalen und Akten der Brüder des Gemainsamen Lebens im Lichtenhofe zu Hildesheim, eine Grundlage der Gesch. d. deutschen Brüderhäuser und ein Beitrag zur Vorgesch. der Reformation, Fürstenwalde, 1905.—The artt. by K. Hirsche in Herzog, 2d ed., II. 678–760 and L. Schulze, Herzog, 3rd ed., III., 474–507, and P.A. Thijm in Wetzer-Welte, V. 1286–1289.—Ullmann: Reformatoren, II. 1–201.—Lea: Inquisition, II. 360 sqq.—Uhlhorn: Christl. Liebesthätigkeit im M. A., Stuttgart, 1884, pp. 350–375.

Note.—A few of the short writings of Groote were preserved by Thomas à Kempis. To the sermons edited by Acquoy, Langenberg, pp. 3–33, has added Groote’s tract on simony, which he found in the convent of Frenswegen, near Nordhorn. He has also found Groote’s Latin writings. The tract on simony—de simonia ad Beguttas — is addressed to the Beguines in answer to the question propounded to him by some of their number as to whether it was simony to purchase a place in a Beguine convent. The author says that simony "prevails very much everywhere," and that it was not punished by the Church. He declares it to be simony to purchase a place which involves spiritual exercises, and he goes on to apply the principle to civil offices pronouncing it simony when they are bought for money. The work is written in Low German, heavy in style, but interesting for the light it throws on practices current at that time.

For § 35. The Imitation of Christ.—Edd. of À Kempis’ works, Utrecht, 1473 (15 writings, and omitting the Imitation of Christ); Nürmberg, 1494 (20 writings), ed. by J. Badius, 1520, 1521, 1528; Paris, 1549; Antwerp, 1574; Dillingen, 1676; ed. by H. Sommalius, 3 vols., Antwerp, 1599, 3d ed. 1615; ed. by M. J. Pohl, 8 vols. promised; thus far 5 vols, Freiburg im Br., 1903 sqq. Best and only complete ed.—Thomas à Kempis hymns in Blume and Dreves: Analecta hymnica, XLVIII. pp. 475–514.—For biograph. and critical accounts.—Joh. Busch: Chron. Windesemense.—H. Rosweyde: Chron. Mt. S. Agnetis, Antwerp, 1615, and cum Rosweydii vindiciis Kempensibus, 1622.—J. B. Malou: Recherches historiq. et critiq. sur le véritable auteur du livre de l’Imitat. de Jesus Chr., Tournay, 1848; 3d ed., Paris 1856.—*K. Hirsche: Prologomena zu einer neuen Ausgabe de imitat. Chr. (with a copy of the Latin text of the MS. dated 1441), 1873, 1883, 1894.—C. Wolfsgruber: Giovanni Gersen sein Leben und sein Werk de Imitat. Chr., Augsburg, 1880.—*S. Kettlewell: Th. à Kempis and the Brothers of the Common Life, 2 vols., London, 1882. Also Authorship of the de imitat, Chr., London, 1877, 2d ed., 1884.—F. R. Cruise: Th. à Kempis, with Notes of a visit to the scenes in which his life was spent, with some account of the examination of his relics, London, 1887.—L. A. Wheatley: Story of the Imitat. of Chr., London, 1891.—Dom Vincent Scully: Life of the Venerable Th. à Kempis, London, 1901.—J. E. G. de Montmorency: Th. à Kempis, His Age and Book, London, 1906—*C. Bigg in Wayside Sketches in Eccle. Hist., London, 1906, pp. 134–154.—D. B. Butler, Thos. à Kempis, a Rel. Study, London, 1908.—Art. Thos. à Kempis in London Quarterly Review, April, 1908, pp. 254–263.

First printed ed. of the Latin text of the Imitat. of Christ, Augsburg, 1472. Bound up with Jerome’s de viris illust. and writings of Augustine and Th. Aquinas.—Of the many edd. in Engl. the first was by W. Atkynson, and Margaret, mother of Henry VII., London, 1502, reprinted London, 1828, new ed. by J. K. Ingram, London, 1893.—The Imitat. of Chr., being the autograph MS. of Th. à Kempis de Imitat. Chr. reproduced in facsimile from the orig. in the royal libr. at Brussels. With Introd. by C. Ruelens, London, 1879.—The Imitat. of Chr. Now for the first time set forth in Rhythm and Sentences. With Pref. by Canon Liddon, London, 1889.—Facsimile Reproduction of the 1st ed. of 1471, with Hist. Introd. by C. Knox-Little, London, 1894.—The Imitat. of Chr., trans. by Canon W. Benham, with 12 photogravures after celebrated paintings, London, 1905.—An ed. issued 1881 contains a Pref. by Dean Farrar.—R. P. A. de Backer: Essai bibliograph. sur le livre de imitat. Chr., Liège, 1864.—For further Lit. on the Imitat. of Chr., see the Note at the end of § 35.

§ 28. The New Mysticism.

In joy of inward peace, or sense

Of sorrow over sin,

He is his own best evidence

His witness is within.

—Whittier, Our Master.

At the time when the scholastic method was falling into disrepute and the scandals of the Avignon court and the papal schism were shaking men’s faith in the foundations of the Church, a stream of pure pietism was watering the regions along the Rhine, from Basel to Cologne, and from Cologne to the North Sea. North of the Alps, voices issuing from convents and from the ranks of the laity called attention to the value of the inner religious life and God’s immediate communications to the soul.

To this religious movement has recently been given the name, the Dominican mysticism, on account of the large number of its representatives who belonged to the Dominican order. The older name, German mysticism, which is to be preferred, points to the locality where it manifested itself, and to the language which the mystics for the most part used in their writings. Like the Protestant Reformation, the movement had its origin on German soil, but, unlike the Reformation, it did not spread beyond Germany and the Lowlands. Its chief centres were Strassburg and Cologne; its leading representatives the speculative Meister Eckart, d. 1327, John Tauler, d. 136l, Henry Suso, d. 1366, John Ruysbroeck, d. 1381, Gerrit Groote, d. 1384, and Thomas à Kempis, d. 1471. The earlier designation for these pietists was Friends of God. The Brothers of the Common Life, the companions and followers of Groote, were of the same type, but developed abiding institutions of practical Christian philanthropy. In localities the Beguines and Beghards also breathed the same devotional and philanthropic spirit. The little book called the German Theology, and the Imitation of Christ, were among the finest fruits of the movement. Gerson and Nicolas of Cusa also had a strong mystical vein, but they are not to be classed with the German mystics. With them mysticism was an incidental, not the distinguishing, quality.

The mystics along the Rhine formed groups which, however, were not bound together by any formal organization. Their only bond was the fellowship of a common religious purpose.

Their religious thought was not always homogeneous in its expression, but all agreed in the serious attempt to secure purity of heart and life through union of the soul with God. Mysticism is a phase of Christian life. It is a devotional habit, in contradistinction to the outward and formal practice of religious rules. It is a religious experience in contrast to a mere intellectual assent to tenets. It is the conscious effort of the soul to apprehend and possess God and Christ, and expresses itself in the words, "I live, and yet not I but Christ liveth in me." It is essentially what is now called in some quarters "personal religion." Perhaps the shortest definition of mysticism is the best. It is the love of God shed abroad in the heart.428428    See Inge, Engl. Mystics, p. 37. This author, in his Christian Mysticism, p. 5, gives the definition that mysticism is "the attempt to realize in the thought and feeling the immanence of the temporal in the eternal and of the eternal in the temporal." His statements in another place, The Inner Way, pp. xx-xxii, are more simple and illuminating. The mystical theology is that knowledge of God and of divine things which is derived not from observation or from argument but from conscious experience. The difficulty of giving a precise definition of mysticism is seen in the definitions Inge cites, Christian Mysticism, Appendix A. Comp. Deutsch, p. 632 sq The element of intuition has a large place, and the avenues through which religious experience is reached are self-detachment from the world, self-purgation, prayer and contemplation.

Without disparaging the sacraments or disputing the authority of the Church, the German mystics sought a better way. They laid stress upon the meaning of such passages as "he that believeth in me shall never hunger and he that cometh unto me shall never thirst, " "he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father "and "he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness." The word love figures most prominently in their writings. Among the distinctive terms in vogue among them were Abgeschiedenheit, Eckart’s word for self-detachment from the world and that which is temporal, and Kehr, Tauler’s oft-used word for conversion. They laid stress upon the new birth, and found in Christ’s incarnation a type of the realization of the divine in the soul.

German mysticism had a distinct individuality of its own. On occasion, its leaders quoted Augustine’s Confessions and other works, Dionysius the Areopagite, Bernard and Thomas Aquinas, but they did not have the habit of referring back to human authorities as had the Schoolmen, bulwarking every theological statement by patristic quotations, or statements taken from Aristotle. The movement arose like a root out of a dry ground at a time of great corruption and distraction in the Church, and it arose where it might have been least expected to arise. Its field was the territory along the Rhine where the heretical sects had had representation. It was a fresh outburst of piety, an earnest seeking after God by other paths than the religious externalism fostered by sacerdotal prescriptions and scholastic dialectics. The mystics led the people back from the clangor and tinkling of ecclesiastical symbolisms to the refreshing springs of water which spring up into everlasting life.

Compared with the mysticism of the earlier Middle Ages and the French quietism of the seventeenth century, represented by Madame Guyon, Fénelon and their predecessor the Spaniard Miguel de Molinos, German mysticism likewise has its own distinctive features. The religion of Bernard expressed itself in passionate and rapturous love for Jesus. Madame Guyon and Fénelon set up as the goal of religion a state of disinterested love, which was to be reached chiefly by prayer, an end which Bernard felt it scarcely possible to reach in this world.

The mystics along the Rhine agreed with all genuine mystics in striving after the direct union of the soul with God. They sought, as did Eckart, the loss of our being in the ocean of the Godhead, or with Tauler the undisturbed peace of the soul, or with Ruysbroeck the impact of the divine nature upon our nature at its innermost point, kindling with divine love as fire kindles. With this aspiration after the complete apprehension of God, they combined a practical tendency. Their silent devotion and meditation were not final exercises. They were moved by warm human sympathies, and looked with almost reverential regard upon the usual pursuits and toil of men. They approached close to the idea that in the faithful devotion to daily tasks man may realize the highest type of religious experience.

By preaching, by writing and circulating devotional works, and especially by their own examples, they made known the secret and the peace of the inner life. In the regions along the lower Rhine, the movement manifested itself also in the care of the sick, and notably in schools for the education of the young. These schools proved to be preparatory for the German Reformation by training a body of men of wider outlook and larger sympathies than the mediaeval convent was adapted to rear.

For the understanding of the spirit and meaning of German mysticism, no help is so close at hand as the comparison between it and mediaeval scholasticism. This religious movement was the antithesis of the theology of the Schoolmen; Eckart and Tauler of Thomas Aquinas, the German Theology of the endless argumentation of Duns Scotus, the Imitation of Christ of the cumbersome exhaustiveness of Albertus Magnus. Roger Bacon had felt revulsion from the hairsplitting casuistries of the Schoolmen, and given expression to it before Eckart began his activity at Cologne. Scholasticism had trodden a beaten and dusty highway. The German mystics walked in secluded and shady pathways. For a catalogue of dogmatic maxims they substituted the quiet expressions of filial devotion and assurance. The speculative element is still prominent in Eckart, but it is not indulged for the sake of establishing doctrinal rectitude, but for the nurture of inward experience of God’s operations in the soul. Godliness with these men was not a system of careful definitions, it was a state of spiritual communion; not an elaborate construction of speculative thought, but a simple faith and walk with God. Not processes of logic but the insight of devotion was their guide.429429    It is quite in keeping with this contrast that Pfleiderer, in his Religionsphilosophie, excludes the German mystics from a place in the history of German philosophy on the ground that their thinking was not distinctly systematic. He, however, gives a brief statement to Eckart, but excludes Jacob Boehme. As Loofs has well said, German mysticism emphasized above all dogmas and all external works the necessity of the new birth.430430    Dogmengesch., p. 631. It also had its dangers. Socrates had urged men not to rest hopes upon the Delphian oracle, but to listen to the voice in their own bosoms. The mystics, in seeking to hear the voice of God speaking in their own hearts, ran peril of magnifying individualism to the disparagement of what was common to all and of mistaking states of the overwrought imagination for revelations from God.431431    Nicoll, Garden of Nuts, p. 31, says, "We study the mystics to learn from them. It need not be disguised that there are great difficulties in the way. The mystics are the most individual of writers," etc.

Although the German mystical writers have not been quoted in the acts of councils or by popes as have been the theologies of the Schoolmen, they represented, if we follow the testimonies of Luther and Melanchthon, an important stage in the religious development of the German people, and it is certainly most significant that the Reformation broke out on the soil where the mystics lived and wrought, and their piety took deep root. They have a perennial life for souls who, seeking devotional companionship, continue to go back to the leaders of that remarkable pietistic movement.

The leading features of the mysticism of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries may be summed up in the following propositions.

1. Its appeals were addressed to laymen as well as to clerics.

2. The mystics emphasized instruction and preaching, and, if we except Suso, withdrew the emphasis which had been laid upon the traditional ascetic regulations of the Church. They did not commend buffetings of the body. The distance between Peter Damiani and Tauler is world-wide.

3. They used the New Testament more than they used the Old Testament, and the words of Christ took the place of the Canticles in their interpretations of the mind of God. The German Theology quotes scarcely a single passage which is not found in the New Testament, and the Imitation of Christ opens with the quotation of words spoken by our Lord. Eckart and Tauler dwell upon passages of the New Testament, and Ruysbroeck evolves the fulness of his teaching from Matthew 25:6, "Behold the Bridegroom cometh, go ye out to meet him."

4. In the place of the Church, with its sacraments and priesthood as a saving institution, is put Christ himself as the mediator between the soul and God, and he is offered as within the reach of all.

5. A pure life is taught to be a necessary accompaniment of the higher religious experience, and daily exemplification is demanded of that humility which the Gospel teaches.

6. Another notable feature was their use of the vernacular in sermon and treatise. The mystics are among the very earliest masters of German and Dutch prose. In the Introduction to his second edition of the German Theology, Luther emphasized this aspect of their activity when he said, "I thank God that I have heard and find my God in the German tongue as neither I nor they [the adherents of the old way] have found Him in the Latin and Hebrew tongues." In this regard also the mystics of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries were precursors of the evangelical movement of the sixteenth century. Their practice was in plain conflict with the judgment of that German bishop who declared that the German language was too barbarous a tongue to be a proper vehicle of religious truth.

The religious movement represented by German and Dutch mysticism is an encouraging illustration that God’s Spirit may be working effectually in remote and unthought-of places and at times when the fabric of the Church seems to be hopelessly undermined with formalism, clerical corruption and hierarchical arrogance and worldliness. It was so at a later day when, in the little and remote Moravian town of Herrnhut, God was preparing the weak things of the world, and the things which were apparently foolish, to confound the dead orthodoxy of German Protestantism and to lead the whole Protestant Church into the way of preaching the Gospel in all the world. No organized body survived the mystics along the Rhine, but their example and writings continue to encourage piety and simple faith toward God within the pale of the Catholic and Protestant churches alike.

A classification of the German mystics on the basis of speculative and practical tendencies has been attempted, but it cannot be strictly carried out.432432    See Preger, I. 8, and Ullmann, Reformatoren, II. 203. Harnack goes far when he denies all originality to the German mystics. Of Eckart he says, Dogmengesch. III. 378, "I give no extracts from his writings because I do not wish to seem to countenance the error that the German mystics expressed anything we cannot read in Origen, Plotinus, the Areopagite, Augustine, Erigena, Bernard and Thomas Aquinas, or that they represented a stage of religious progress." The message they announced was certainly a fresh one to their generation, even if all they said bad been said before. They spoke from the living sources of their own spiritual experience. They were not imitators. Harnack, however, goes on to give credit to the German mystics for fulfilling a mission when he says they are of invaluable worth for the history of doctrine and the church history of Germany. In the same connection he denies the distinction between mysticism and scholastic theology." Mysticism," he asserts, "cannot exist in the Protestant Church, and the Protestant who is a mystic and does not become a Roman Catholic is a dilettante." This condemnation is based upon the untenable premise that mysticism is essentially conventual, excluding sane intellectual criticism and a practical out-of-doors Christianity. In Eckart and Ruysbroeck, the speculative element was in the ascendant; in Tauler, the devotional; in Suso, the emotional; in Groote and other men of the Lowlands, the practical.

§ 29. Meister Eckart.

Meister Eckart, 1260–1327, the first in the line of the German mystics, was excelled in vigor of thought by no religious thinker of his century, and was the earliest theologian who wrote in German.433433    Eckart’s name is written in almost every conceivable way in the documents. See Büttner, p. xxii, as Eckardus, Eccardus, Egghardus; Deutsch and Delacroix, Eckart; Pfeiffer, Preger, Inge and Langenberg, Eckhart; Denifle and Büttner, Eckehart. His writings give us scarcely a single clew to his fortunes. Quiétif-Echard was the first to lift the veil from portions of his career. See Preger, I. 325. The philosophical bent of his mind won for him from Hegel the title, "father of German philosophy." In spite of the condemnation passed upon his writings by the pope, his memory was regarded with veneration by the succeeding generation of mystics. His name, however, was almost forgotten in later times. Mosheim barely mentions it, and the voluminous historian, Schroeckh, passes it by altogether. Baur, in his History of the Middle Ages, devotes to Eckart and Tauler only three lines, and these under the head of preaching, and makes no mention at all of German mysticism. His memory again came to honor in the last century, and in the German church history of the later Middle Ages he is now accorded a place of pre-eminence for his freshness of thought, his warm piety and his terse German style.434434    Deutsch, Herzog, V. 149, says that parts of Eckart’s sermons might serve as models of German style to-day. With Albertus Magnus and Rupert of Deutz he stands out as the earliest prominent representative in the history of German theology.

During the century before Eckart, the German church also had its mystics, and in the twelfth century the godly women, Hildegard of Bingen and Elizabeth of Schoenau, added to the function of prophecy a mystical element. In the thirteenth century the Benedictine convent of Helfta, near Eisleben, Luther’s birthplace, was a centre of religious warmth. Among its nuns were several by the names of Gertrude and Mechthild, who excelled by their religious experiences, and wrote on the devotional life. Gertrude of Hackeborn, d. 1292, abbess of Helfta, and Gertrude the Great, d. 1302, professed to have immediate communion with the Saviour and to be the recipients of divine revelations. When one of the Mechthilds asked Christ where he was to be found, the reply was, "You may seek me in the tabernacle and in Gertrude’s heart." From 1293 Gertrude the Great recorded her revelations in a work called the Communications of Piety—Insinuationes divinae pietatis. Mechthild of Magdeburg, d. 1280, and Mechthild of Hackeborn, d. 1310, likewise nuns of Helfta, also had visions which they wrote out. The former, who for thirty years had been a Beguine, Deutsch calls " one of the most remarkable personalities in the religious history of thirteenth century." Mechthild of Hackeborn, a younger sister of the abbess Gertrude, in her book on special grace,—Liber specialis gratiae,—sets forth salvation as the gift of grace without the works of the law. These women wrote in German.435435    Flacius Illyricus includes the second Mechthild in his Catal. veritatis. For the lives of these women and the editions of their works, see Preger, I. 71-132, and the artt. of Deutsch and Zöckler in Herzog. Some of the elder Mechthild’s predictions and descriptions seem to have been used by Dante. See Preger, p. 103 sq. Mechthild v. Magdeburg: D. fliessende Licht der Gottheit, Berlin, 1907.

David of Augsburg, d. 1271, the inquisitor who wrote on the inquisition,—De inquisitione haereticorum,—also wrote on the devotional life. These writings were intended for monks, and two of them436436    Die sieben Vorregeln der Tugend andder Spiegel der Tugend, both given by Pfeiffer, together with other tracts, the genuineness of some of which is doubted. See Preger, I. 268-283, and Lempp in Herzog, IV. 503 sq. are regarded as pearls of German prose.

In the last years of the thirteenth century, the Franciscan Lamprecht of Regensburg wrote a poem entitled "Daughter of Zion" (Cant. III. 11), which, in a mystical vein, depicts the soul, moved by the impulse of love, and after in vain seeking its satisfaction in worldly things, led by faith and hope to God. The Dominicans, Dietrich of Freiburg and John of Sterngassen, were also of the same tendency.437437    Denifle, Archiv, etc., II. 240, 529. The latter labored in Strassburg.

Eckart broke new paths in the realm of German religious thought. He was born at Hochheim, near Gotha, and died probably in Cologne.438438    Till the investigations of Denifle, his place of birth was usually given as Strassburg. See Denifle, p. 355. In the last years of the thirteenth century he was prior of the Dominican convent of Erfurt, and provincial of the Dominicans in Thuringia, and in 1300 was sent to Paris to lecture, taking the master’s degree, and later the doctorate. After his sojourn in France he was made prior of his order in Saxony, a province at that time extending from the Lowlands to Livland. In 1311 he was again sent to Paris as a teacher. Subsequently he preached in Strassburg, was prior in Frankfurt, 1320, and thence went to Cologne.

Charges of heresy were preferred against him in 1325 by the archbishop of Cologne, Henry of Virneburg. The same year the Dominicans, at their general chapter held in Venice, listened to complaints that certain popular preachers in Germany were leading the people astray, and sent a representative to make investigations. Henry of Virneburg had shown himself zealous in the prosecution of heretics. In 1322, Walter, a Beghard leader, was burnt, and in 1325 a number of Beghards died in the flames along the Rhine. It is possible that Eckart was quoted by these sectaries, and in this way was exposed to the charge of heresy.

The archbishop’s accusations, which had been sent to Rome, were set aside by Nicolas of Strassburg, Eckart’s friend, who at the time held the position of inquisitor in Germany. In 1327, the archbishop again proceeded against the suspected preacher and also against Nicolas. Both appealed from the archbishop’s tribunal to the pope. In February, Eckart made a public statement in the Dominican church at Cologne, declaring he had always eschewed heresy in doctrine and declension in morals, and expressed his readiness to retract errors, if such should be found in his writings.439439    Ego magister Ekardus, doctor sac. theol., protestor ante omnia, quod omnem errorem in fide et omnem deformitatem in moribus semper in quantum mihi possibile fuit, sum detestatus, etc. Preger, I. 475-478. Preger, I. 471 sqq., gives the Latin text of Eckart’s statement of Jan. 24, 1327, before the archiepiscopal court, his public statement of innocence in the Dominican church and the document containing the court’s refusal to allow his appeal to Rome.

In a bull dated March 27, 1329, John XXII. announced that of the 26 articles charged against Eckart, 15 were heretical and the remaining 11 had the savor of heresy. Two other articles, not cited in the indictment, were also pronounced heretical. The papal decision stated that Eckart had acknowledged the 17 condemned articles as heretical. There is no evidence of such acknowledgment in the offenders extant writing.440440    The 26 articles, as Denifle has shown, were based upon Eckart’s Latin writings. John’s bull is given by Preger, I. 479-482, and by Denifle, Archiv, II. 636-640. Preger, I. 365 sqq., Delacroix, p. 238 and Deutsch, V. 145, insist that Eckart made no specific recantation. The pope’s reference must have been to the statement Eckart made in the Dominican church, which contained the words, "I will amend and revoke in general and in detail, as often as may be found opportune, whatever is discovered to have a less wholesome sense, intellectum minus sane.

Among the articles condemned were the following. As soon as God was, He created the world.—The world is eternal.—External acts are not in a proper sense good and divine.—The fruit of external acts does not make us good, but internal acts which the Father works in us.—God loves the soul, not external acts. The two added articles charged Eckart with holding that there is something in the soul which is uncreated and uncreatable, and that God is neither good nor better nor best, so that God can no more be called good than white can be called black.

Eckart merits study as a preacher and as a mystic theologian.

As a Preacher.—His sermons were delivered in churches and at conferences within cloistral walls. His style is graphic and attractive, to fascination. The reader is carried on by the progress of thought. The element of surprise is prominent. Eckart’s extant sermons are in German, and the preacher avoids dragging in Latin phrases to explain his meaning, though, if necessary, he invents new German terms. He quotes the Scriptures frequently, and the New Testament more often than the Old, the passages most dwelt upon being those which describe the new birth, the sonship of Christ and believers, and love. Eckart is a master in the use of illustrations, which he drew chiefly from the sphere of daily observation,—the world of nature, the domestic circle and the shop. Although he deals with some of the most abstruse truths, he betrays no ambition to make a show of speculative subtlety. On the contrary, he again and again expresses a desire to be understood by his hearers, who are frequently represented as in dialogue with himself and asking for explanations of difficult questions. Into the dialogue are thrown such expressions as "in order that you may understand," and in using certain illustrations he on occasion announces that he uses them to make himself understood.441441    Büttner, p. 14; Pfeiffer, p. 192, etc.

The following is a resumé of a sermon on John 6:44, "No man can come unto me except the Father draw him."442442    Pfeiffer, 216. In drawing the sinner that He may convert him, God draws with more power than he would use if He were to make a thousand heavens and earths. Sin is an offence against nature, for it breaks God’s image in us. For the soul, sin is death, for God is the soul’s true life. For the heart, it is restlessness, for a thing is at rest only when it is in its natural state. Sin is a disease and blindness, for it blinds men to the brief duration of time, the evils of fleshly lust and the long duration of the pains of hell. It is bluntness to all grace. Sin is the prison-house of hell. People say they intend to turn away from their sins. But how can one who is dead make himself alive again? And by one’s own powers to turn from sin unto God is much less possible than it would be for the dead to make themselves alive. God himself must draw. Grace flows from the Father’s heart continually, as when He says, "I have loved thee with an everlasting love."

There are three things in nature which draw, and these three Christ had on the cross. The first was his fellow-likeness to Us. As the bird draws to itself the bird of the same nature, so Christ drew the heavenly Father to himself, so that the Father forgot His wrath in contemplating the sufferings of the cross. Again Christ draws by his self-emptiness. As the empty tube draws water into itself, so the Son, by emptying himself and letting his blood flow, drew to himself all the grace from the Father’s heart. The third thing by which he draws is the glowing heat of his love, even as the sun with its heat draws up the mists from the earth.

The historian of the German mediaeval pulpit, Cruel, has said,443443    p. 384. "Eckart’s sermons hold the reader by the novelty and greatness of their contents, by their vigor of expression and by the genial frankness of the preacher himself, who is felt to be putting his whole soul into his effort and to be giving the most precious things he is able to give." He had his faults, but in spite of them "he is the boldest and most profound thinker the German pulpit has ever had,—a preacher of such original stamp of mind that the Church in Germany has not another like him to offer in all the centuries."

Eckart as a Theological Thinker.—Eckart was still bound in part by the scholastic method. His temper, however, differed widely from the temper of the Schoolmen. Anselm, Hugo of St. Victor, Thomas Aquinas and Bonaventura, who united the mystical with the scholastic element, were predominantly Schoolmen, seeking to exhaust every supposable speculative problem. No purpose of this kind appears in Eckart’s writings. He is dominated by a desire not so much to reach the intellect as to reach the soul and to lead it into immediate fellowship with God. With him the weapons of metaphysical dexterity are not on show; and in his writings, so far as they are known, he betrays no inclination to bring into the area of his treatment those remoter topics of speculation, from the constitution of the angelic world to the motives and actions which rule and prevail in the regions of hell. God and the soul’s relation to Him are the engrossing subjects.444444    Denifle lays down the proposition that Eckart is above all a Schoolman, and that whatever there is of good in him is drawn from Thomas Aquinas. These conclusions are based upon Eckart’s Latin writings. Deutsch, V. 15, says that the form of Eckart’s thought in the Latin writings is scholastic, but the heart is mystical. Delacroix, p. 277 sqq., denies that Eckart was a scholastic and followed Thomas. Wetzer-Welte, IV. 11, deplores as Eckart’s defect that he departed from "the solid theology of Scholasticism" and took up Neo-Platonic vagaries. If Eckart had been a servile follower of Thomas, it is hard to understand how he should have laid himself open in 28 propositions to condemnation for heresy. The authorities upon whom Eckart relied most, if we are to judge by his quotations, were Dionysius the Areopagite, and St. Bernard, though he also quotes from Augustine, Jerome and Gregory the Great, from Plato, Avicenna and Averrhoes. His discussions are often introduced by such expressions as "the masters say," or "some masters say." As a mystical thinker he has much in common with the mystics who preceded him, Neo-Platonic and Christian, but he was no servile reproducer of the past. Freshness characterizes his fundamental principles and his statement of them. In the place of love for Jesus, the precise definitions of the stages of contemplation emphasized by the school of St. Victor and the hierarchies and ladders and graduated stairways of Dionysius, he magnifies the new birth in the soul, and sonship.445445    Harnack and, in a modified way, Delacroix and Loofs, regard Eckart’s theology as a reproduction of Erigena, Dionysius and Plotinus. Delacroix, p. 240, says, sur tous les points essentiels, il est d’accord avec Plotin et Proclus. But, in another place, p. 260, he says Eckart took from Neo-Platonism certain leading conceptions and "elaborated, transformed and transmuted them." Loofs, p. 630, somewhat ambiguously says, Die ganze Eckehartsche Mystik ist verständlich als eine Erfassung der thomistischen und augustinischen Tradition unter dem Gesichtswinkel des Areopagiten.

As for God, He is absolute being, Deus est esse. The Godhood is distinct from the persons of the Godhead,—a conception which recalls Gilbert of Poictiers, or even the quaternity which Peter the Lombard was accused of setting up. The Trinity is the method by which this Godhood reveals itself by a process which is eternal. Godhood is simple essence having in itself the potentiality of all things.446446    Pfeiffer, pp. 254, 540. God has form, and yet is without form, is being, and yet is without being. Great teachers say that God is above being. This is not correct, for God may as little be called a being, ein Wesen, as the sun may be called black or pale.447447    Pfeiffer, p. 268. The following page is an instance of Eckart’s abstruseness in definition. He says God’s einveltigin Natur ist von Formen formelos, von Werdenen werdelos, von Wesenen weselos und ist von Sachen sachelos. Pfeiffer, p. 497.

All created things were created out of nothing, and yet they were eternally in God. The master who produces pieces of art, first had all his art in himself. The arts are master within the master. Likewise the first Principle, which Eckart calls Erstigkeit, embodied in itself all images, that is, God in God. Creation is an eternal act. As soon as God was, He created the world. Without creatures, God would not be God. God is in all things and all things are God—Nu sint all Ding gleich in Gott und sint Got selber.448448    Pfeiffer, pp. 282, 311, 579. Thomas Aquinas made a clear distinction between the being of God and the being of created things. Eckart emphasized their unity. What he meant was that the images or universals exist in God eternally, as he distinctly affirmed when he said, "In the Father are the images of all creatures."449449    In dem Vater sind Bilde allerCreaturen, Pfeiffer, pp. 269, 285, etc.

As for the soul, it can be as little comprehended in a definition as God Himself.450450    Die Seele in ihrem Grunde ist so unsprechlich als Gott unsprechlich ist. Pfeiffer, p. 89. The soul’s kernel, or its ultimate essence, is the little spark, Fünkelein, a light which never goes out which is uncreated and uncreatable.451451    pp. 39, 113, 193, 286, etc. Pfleiderer, p. 6, calls this the soul’s spirit,—der Geist der Seele,—and Deutsch, p. 152, der innerst Seelengrund Notwithstanding these statements, the German theologian affirms that God created the soul and poured into it, in the first instance, all His own purity. Through the spark the soul is brought into union with God, and becomes more truly one with Him than food does with the body. The soul cannot rest till it returns to God, and to do 80 it must first die to itself, that is, completely submit itself to God.452452    pp. 113, 152, 286 487, 530. Eckart’s aim in all his sermons, as he asserts, was to reach this spark.

It is one of Eckart’s merits that he lays so much stress upon the dignity of the soul. Several of his tracts bear this title.453453    Die Edelkeit der Seele, Von der Würdgkeit der Seele, Von dem Adel der Seele. Pfeiffer, pp. 382-448. This dignity follows from God’s love and regenerative operation.

Passing to the incarnation, it is everywhere the practical purpose which controls Eckart’s treatment, and not the metaphysical. The second person of the Trinity took on human nature, that man might become partaker of the divine nature. In language such as Gregory of Nyssa used, he said, God became man that we might become God. Gott ist Mensch worden dass wir Gott wurden. As God was hidden within the human nature so that we saw there only man, so the soul is to be hidden within the divine nature, that we should see nothing but God.454454    p. 540. As certainly as God begets the Son from His own nature, so certainly does He beget Him in the soul. God is in all things, but He is in the soul alone by birth, and nowhere else is He so truly as in the soul. No one can know God but the only begotten Son. Therefore, to know God, man must through the eternal generation become Son. It is as true that man becomes God as that God was made man.455455    pp. 158, 207, 285, 345.

The generation of the eternal Son in the soul brings joy which no man can take away. A prince who should lose his kingdom and all worldly goods would still have fulness of joy, for his birth outweighs everything else.456456    pp. 44, 478-488. God is in the soul, and yet He is not the soul. The eye is not the piece of wood upon which it looks, for when the eye is closed, it is the same eye it was before. But if, in the act of looking, the eye and the wood should become one, then we might say the eye is the wood and the wood is the eye. If the wood were a spiritual substance like the eyesight, then, in reality, one might say eye and wood are one substance.457457    Pfeiffer, p. 139. The fundament of God’s being is the fundament of my being, and the fundament of my being is the fundament of God’s being. Thus I live of myself even as God lives of Himself.458458    Hier ist Gottes Grund mein Grund und mein Grund Gottes Grund. Hier lebe ich aus meinem Eigenen, wie Gott aus seinem Eigenen lebt. Büttner, p. 100 This begetment of the Son of God in the soul is the source of all true life and good works.

One of the terms which Eckart uses most frequently, to denote God’s influence upon the soul, is durchbrechen, to break through, and his favorite word for the activity of the soul, as it rises into union with God, is Abgeschiedenheit, the soul’s complete detachment of itself from all that is temporal and seen. Keep aloof, abgeschieden, he says, from men, from yourself, from all that cumbers. Bear God alone in your hearts, and then practise fasting, vigils and prayer, and you will come unto perfection. This Abgeschiedenheit, total self-detachment from created things,459459    Lautere, alles Erschaffenen ledige Abgeschiedenheit. For the sermon, see Büttner, p 9 sqq. he says in a sermon on the subject, is "the one thing needful." After reading many writings by pagan masters and Christian teachers, Eckart came to consider it the highest of all virtues,—higher than humility, higher even than love, which Paul praises as the highest; for, while love endures all things, this quality is receptiveness towards God. In the person possessing this quality, the worldly has nothing to correspond to itself. This is what Paul had reference to when he said, "I live and yet not I, for Christ liveth in me." God is Himself perfect Abgeschiedenheit.

In another place, Eckart says that he who has God in his soul finds God in all things, and God appears to him out of all things. As the thirsty love water, so that nothing else tastes good to them, even so it is with the devoted soul. In God and God alone is it at rest. God seeks rest, and He finds it nowhere but in such a heart. To reach this condition of Abgeschiedenheit, it is necessary for the soul first to meditate and form an image of God, and then to allow itself to be transformed by God.460460    Pfeiffer, II. 484.

What, then, some one might say, is the advantage of prayer and good works? In eternity, God saw every prayer and every good work, and knew which prayer He could hear. Prayers were answered in eternity. God is unchangeable and cannot be moved by a prayer. It is we who change and are moved. The sun shines, and gives pain or pleasure to the eye, according as it is weak or sound. The sun does not change. God rules differently in different men. Different kinds of dough are put into the oven; the heat affects them differently, and one is taken out a loaf of fine bread, and another a loaf of common bread.

Eckart is emphatic when he insists upon the moral obligation resting on God to operate in the soul that is ready to receive Him. God must pour Himself into such a man’s being, as the sun pours itself into the air when it is clear and pure. God would be guilty of a great wrong—Gebrechen — if He did not confer a great good upon him whom He finds empty and ready to receive Him. Even so Christ said of Zaccheus, that He must enter into his house. God first works this state in the soul, and He is obliged to reward it with the gift of Himself. "When I am blessed, selig, then all things are in me and in God, and where I am, there is God, and where God is, there I am."461461    Pfeiffer, pp. 27, 32, 479 sq., 547 sq.

Nowhere does Eckart come to a distinct definition of justification by faith, although he frequently speaks of faith as a heavenly gift. On the other hand, he gives no sign of laying stress on the penitential system. Everywhere there are symptoms in his writings that his piety breathed a different atmosphere from the pure mediaeval type. Holy living is with him the product of holy being. One must first be righteous before he can do righteous acts. Works do not sanctify. The righteous soul sanctifies the works. So long as one does good works for the sake of the kingdom of heaven or for the sake of God or for the sake of salvation or for any external cause, he is on the wrong path. Fastings, vigils, asceticisms, do not merit salvation.462462    Pfeiffer, II. 546, 564, 633, Niht endienent unserin were dar zuo dass uns Got iht gebe oder tuo. There are places in the mystic’s writings where we seem to hear Luther himself speaking.

The stress which Eckart lays upon piety, as a matter of the heart and the denial to good works of meritorious virtue, gave plausible ground for the papal condemnation, that Eckart set aside the Church’s doctrine of penance, affirming that it is not outward acts that make good, but the disposition of the soul which God abidingly works in us. John XXII. rightly discerned the drift of the mystic’s teaching.

In his treatment of Mary and Martha, Eckart seems to make a radical departure from the mediaeval doctrine of the superior value of pure contemplation. From the time of Augustine, Rachel and Mary of Bethany had been regarded as the representatives of the contemplative and higher life. In his sermon on Mary, the German mystic affirmed that Mary was still at school. Martha had learned and was engaged in good works, serving the Lord. Mary was only learning. She was striving to be as holy as her sister. Better to feed the hungry and do other works of mercy, he says, than to have the vision of Paul and to sit still. After Christ’s ascension, Mary learned to serve as fully as did Martha, for then the Holy Spirit was poured out. One who lives a truly contemplative life will show it in active works. A life of mere contemplation is a selfish life. The modern spirit was stirring in him. He saw another ideal for life than mediaeval withdrawal from the world. The breath of evangelical freedom and joy is felt in his writings.463463    Es geht ein Geist evangelischer Freiheit durch Eckart’s Sittenlehre welcher zugleich ein Geist der Freudigkeit ist, Preger, I. 452. See the sermon on Mary, Pfeiffer, pp. 47-53. Also pp. 18-21, 607.

Eckart’s speculative mind carried him to the verge of pantheism, and it is not surprising that his hyperbolical expressions subjected him to the papal condemnation. But his pantheism was Christian pantheism, the complete union of the soul with God. It was not absorption in the divine being involving the loss of individuality, but the reception of Godhood, the original principle of the Deity. What language could better express the idea that God is everything, and everything God, than these words, words adopted by Hegel as a sort of motto: "The eye with which I see God is the same eye with which God sees me. My eye and God’s eye are the same, and there is but one sight, one apprehension, one love."464464    Das Auge das da inne ich Gott sehe, das ist selbe Auge da inne mich Gott sieht. Mein Auge und Gottes Auge, das ist ein Auge, und ein Erkennen und ein Gesicht und ein Minnen, Pfeiffer, p. 312. And yet such language, endangering, as it might seem, the distinct personality of the soul, was far better than the imperative insistence laid by accredited Church teachers on outward rituals and conformity to sacramental rites.

Harnack and others have made the objection that the Cologne divine does not dwell upon the forgiveness of sins. This omission may be overlooked, when we remember the prominence given in his teaching to regeneration and man’s divine sonship. His most notable departure from scholasticism consists in this, that he did not dwell upon the sacraments and the authority of the Church. He addressed himself to Christian individuals, and showed concern for their moral and spiritual well-being. Abstruse as some of his thinking is, there can never be the inkling of a thought that he was setting forth abstractions of the school and contemplating matters chiefly with a scientific eye. He makes the impression of being moved by strict honesty of purpose to reach the hearts of men.465465    This is well expressed by Lasson in Ueberweg, I. 471. Inge says, p. 150, Eckart’s transparent honesty and his great power of thought, combined with deep devoutness and purity of soul, make him one of the most interesting figures in the history of Christian philosophy. His words glow with the Minne, or love, of which he preached so often. In one feature, however, he differed widely from modern writers and preachers. He did not dwell upon the historical Christ. With him Christ in us is the God in us, and that is the absorbing topic. With all his high thinking he felt the limitations of human statement and, counselling modesty in setting forth definitions of God, he said, "If we would reach the depth of God’s nature, we must humble ourselves. He who would know God must first know himself."466466    Pfeiffer, II. 155, 390. Not a popular leader, not professedly a reformer, this early German theologian had a mission in preparing the way for the Reformation. The form and contents of his teaching had a direct tendency to encourage men to turn away from the authority of the priesthood and ritual legalism to the realm of inner experience for the assurance of acceptance with God. Pfleiderer has gone so far as to say that Eckart’s "is the spirit of the Reformation, the spirit of Luther, the motion of whose wings we already feel, distinctly enough, in the thoughts of his older German fellow-citizen."467467    p. 7. Preger concludes his treatment of Eckart by saying, I. 458, that it was he who really laid the foundations of Christian philosophy. Er erst hat die christliche Philosophie eigentlich begründet Although he declared his readiness to confess any heretical ideas that might have crept into his sermons and writings, the judges at Rome were right in principle. Eckart’s spirit was heretical, provoking revolt against the authority of the mediaeval Church and a restatement of some of the forgotten verities of the New Testament.

§ 30. John Tauler of Strassburg.

To do Thy will is more than praise,

As words are less than deeds;

And simple trust can find Thy ways

We miss with chart of creeds.

– Whittier. Our Master.

Among the admirers of Eckart, the most distinguished were John Tauler and Heinrich Suso. With them the speculative element largely disappears and the experimental and practical elements predominate. They emphasized religion as a matter of experience and the rule of conduct. Without denying any of the teachings or sacraments of the Church, they made prominent immediate union with Christ, and dwelt upon the Christian graces, especially patience, gentleness and humility. Tauler was a man of sober mind, Suso poetical and imaginative.

John Tauler, called doctor illuminatus, was born in Strassburg about 1300, and died there, 1361. Referring to his father’s circumstances, he once said, "If, as my father’s son, I had once known what I know now, I would have lived from my paternal inheritance instead of resorting to alms."468468    Preger, III. 131. The oldest Strassburg MS. entitles Tauler erluhtete begnodete Lerer. See Schmidt, p. 159. Preger, III. 93, gives the names of a number of persons by the name of Taweler, or Tawler, living in Strassburg. Probably as early as 1315, he entered the Dominican order. Sometime before 1330, he went to Cologne to take the usual three-years’ course of study. That he proceeded from there to Paris for further study is a statement not borne out by the evidence. He, however, made a visit in the French capital at one period of his career. Nor is there sufficient proof that he received the title doctor or master, although he is usually called Dr. John Tauler.

He was in his native city again when it lay under the interdict fulminated against it in 1329, during the struggle between John XXII. and Lewis the Bavarian. The Dominicans offered defiance, continuing to say masses till 1339, when they were expelled for three years by the city council. We next find Tauler at Basel, where he came into close contact with the Friends of God, and their leader, Henry of Nördlingen. After laboring as priest in Bavaria, Henry went to the Swiss city, where he was much sought after as a preacher by the clergy and laymen, men and women. In 1357, Tauler was in Cologne, but Strassburg was the chief seat of his activity. Among his friends were Christina Ebner, abbess of a convent near Nürnberg, and Margaret Ebner, a nun of the Bavarian convent of Medingen, women who were mystics and recipients of visions.469469    Christina wrote a book entitled Von der Gnaden Ueberlast, giving an account of the tense life led by the sisters in her convent. She declared that the Holy Spirit played on Tauler’s heart as upon a lute, and that it had been revealed to her in a vision that his fervid tongue would set the earth on fire. See Strauch’s art. in Herzog, V. 129 sq. Also Preger, II. 247-251, 277 sqq. Tauler died in the guest-chamber of a nunnery in Strassburg, of which his sister was an inmate.

Tauler’s reputation in his own day rested upon his power as a preacher, and it is probable that his sermons have been more widely read in the Protestant Church than those of other mediaeval preachers. The reason for this popularity is the belief that the preacher was controlled by an evangelical spirit which brought him into close affinity with the views of the Reformers. His sermons, which were delivered in German, are plain statements of truth easily understood, and containing little that is allegorical or fanciful. They attempt no display of learning or speculative ingenuity. When Tauler quotes from Augustine, Gregory the Great, Dionysius, Anselm or Thomas Aquinas, as he sometimes does, though not as frequently as Eckart, he does it in an incidental way. His power lay in his familiarity with the Scriptures, his knowledge of the human heart, his simple style and his own evident sincerity.470470    Specklin, the Strassburg chronicler, says Tauler spoke "in clear tones, with real fervor. His aim was to bring men to feel the nothingness of the world. He condemned clerics as well as laymen." He was a practical every-day preachers intent on reaching men in their various avocations and trials.

If we are to follow the History of Tauler’s Life and Conscience, which appeared in the first published edition of his works, 1498, Tauler underwent a remarkable spiritual change when he was fifty.471471    A translation of the book is given by Miss Winkworth, pp. 1-73. It calls Tattler’s monitor der grosse Gottesfreund im Oberlande. See § 32. Under the influence of Nicolas of Basel, a Friend of God from the Oberland, he was then led into a higher stage of Christian experience. Already had he achieved the reputation of an effective preacher when Nicolas, after hearing him several times, told him that he was bound in the letter and that, though he preached sound doctrine, he did not feel the power of it himself. He called Tauler a Pharisee. The rebuked man was indignant, but his monitor replied that he lacked humility and that, instead of seeking God’s honor, he was seeking his own. Feeling the justice of the criticism, Tauler confessed he had been told his sins and faults for the first time. At Nicolas’ advice he desisted from preaching for two years, and led a retired life. At the end of that time Nicolas visited him again, and bade him resume his sermons. Tauler’s first attempt, made in a public place and before a large concourse of people, was a failure. The second sermon he preached in a nunnery from the text, Matt. 25:6, "Behold the bridegroom cometh, go ye out to meet him," and so powerful was the impression that 50 persons fell to the ground like dead men. During the period of his seclusion, Tauler had surrendered himself entirely to God, and after it he continued to preach with an unction and efficiency before unknown in his experience.

Some of Tauler’s expressions might give the impression that he was addicted to quietistic views, as when he speaks of being "drowned in the Fatherhood of God," of "melting in the fire of His love," of being "intoxicated with God." But these tropical expressions, used occasionally, are offset by the sober statements in which he portrays the soul’s union with God. To urge upon men to surrender themselves wholly to God and to give a practical exemplification of their union with Him in daily conduct was his mission.

He emphasized the agency of the Holy Spirit, who enlightens and sanctifies, who rebukes sin and operates in the heart to bring it to self-surrender.472472    One of the sermons, bringing out the influence of the Spirit, based on John 16:7-11, is quoted at length by Archdeacon Hare in his Mission of the Comforter. See also Miss Winkworth, pp. 350 358. The change effected by the Spirit, which he called Kehr — conversion—he dwelt upon continually. The word, which frequently occurs in his sermons, was almost a new word in mediaeval sermonic vocabulary. Tauler also insisted upon the Eckartian Abgeschiedenheit, detachment from the world, and says that a soul, to become holy, must become "barren and empty of all created things," and rid of all that "pertains to the creature." When the soul is full of the creature, God must of necessity remain apart from it, and such a soul is like a barrel that has been filled with refuse or decaying matter. It cannot thereafter be used for good, generous wine or any other pure drink.473473    Inner Way, pp. 81, 113, 128, 130.

As for good works, if done apart from Christ, they are of no avail. Tauler often quoted the words of Isaiah 64:6. "All our righteousnesses are as a polluted garment." By his own power, man cannot come unto God. Those who have never felt anxiety on account of their sins are in the most dangerous condition of all.474474    Miss Winkworth, pp. 353, 475, etc.

The sacraments suffer no depreciation at Tauler’s hands, though they are given a subordinate place. They are all of no avail without the change of the inward man. Good people linger at the outward symbols, and fail to get at the inward truth symbolized. Yea, by being unduly concerned about their movements in the presence of the Lord’s body, they miss receiving him spiritually. Men glide, he says, through fasting, prayer, vigils and other exercises, and take so much delight in them that God has a very small part in their hearts, or no part in them at all.475475    Inner Way, p. 200. Miss Winkworth, pp. 345, 360 sqq.

In insisting upon the exercise of a simple faith, it seems almost impossible to avoid the conclusion that Tauler took an attitude of intentional opposition to the prescient and self-confident methods of scholasticism. It is better to possess a simple faith—einfaltiger Glaube — than to vainly pry into the secrets of God, asking questions about the efflux and reflux of the Aught and Nought, or about the essence of the soul’s spark. The Arians and Sabellians had a marvellous intellectual understanding of the Trinity, and Solomon and Origen interested the Church in a marvellous way, but what became of them we know not. The chief thing is to yield oneself to God’s will and to follow righteousness with sincerity of purpose. "Wisdom is not studied in Paris, but in the sufferings of the Lord," Tauler said. The great masters of Paris read large books, and that is well. But the people who dwell in the inner kingdom of the soul read the true Book of Life. A pure heart is the throne of the Supreme Judge, a lamp bearing the eternal light, a treasury of divine riches, a storehouse of heavenly sweetness, the sanctuary of the only begotten Son.476476    Preger, III. 132; Miss Winkworth, p. 348.

A distinctly democratic element showed itself in Tauler’s piety and preaching which is very attractive. He put honor upon all legitimate toil, and praised good and faithful work as an expression of true religion. One, he said, "can spin, another can make shoes, and these are the gifts of the Holy Ghost; and I tell you that, if I were not a priest, I should esteem it a great gift to be able to make shoes, and would try to make them so well as to become a pattern to all." Fidelity in one’s avocation is more than attendance upon church. He spoke of a peasant whom he knew well for more than forty years. On being asked whether he should give up his work and go and sit in church, the Lord replied no, he should win his bread by the sweat of his brow, and thus he would honor his own precious blood. The sympathetic element in his piety excluded the hard spirit of dogmatic complacency. "I would rather bite my tongue," Tauler said, "till it bleed, than pass judgment upon any man. Judgment we should leave to God, for out of the habit of sitting in judgment upon one’s neighbor grow self-satisfaction and arrogance, which are of the devil."477477    Preger, III. 131; Miss Winkworth, p. 355.

It was these features, and especially Tauler’s insistence upon the religious exercises of the soul and the excellency of simple faith, that won Luther’s praise, first in letters to Lange and Spalatin, written in 1516. To Spalatin he wrote that he had found neither in the Latin nor German tongue a more wholesome theology than Tauler’s, or one more consonant with the Gospel.478478    Köstlin, Life of M. Luther, I. 117 sq., 126. Melanchthon, in the Preface to the Franf. ed. of Tauler said: "Among the moderns, Tauler is easily the first. I hear, however, that there are some who dare to deny the Christian teaching of this, highly esteemed man." Beza was of a different mind, and called Tauler a visionary. See Schmidt, p. 160. Preger, III. 194, goes so far as to say that Tauler clearly taught the evangelical doctrine of justification.

The mood of the heretic, however, was furthest from Tauler. Strassburg knew what heresy was, and had proved her orthodoxy by burning heretics. Tauler was not of their number. He sought to call a narrow circle away from the formalities of ritual to close communion with God, but the Church was to him a holy mother. In his reverence for the Virgin, he stood upon mediaeval ground. Preaching on the Annunciation, he said that in her spirit was the heaven of God, in her soul His paradise, in her body His palace. By becoming the mother of Christ, she became the daughter of the Father, the mother of the Son, the Holy Spirit’s bride. She was the second Eve, who restored all that the first Eve lost, and Tauler does not hesitate to quote some of Bernard’s passionate words pronouncing Mary the sinner’s mediator with Christ. He himself sought her intercession. If any one could have seen into her heart, he said, he would have seen God in all His glory.479479    The Inner Way, p. 57 sqq. 77 sqq.

Though he was not altogether above the religious perversions of the mediaeval Church, John Tauler has a place among the godly leaders of the Church universal, who have proclaimed the virtue of simple faith and immediate communion with God and the excellency of the unostentatious practice of righteousness from day to day. He was an expounder of the inner life, and strikes the chord of fellowship in all who lay more stress upon pure devotion and daily living than upon ritual exercises. A spirit congenial to his was Whittier, whose undemonstrative piety poured itself out in hearty appreciation of his unseen friend of the fourteenth century. The modern Friend represents the mysterious stranger, who pointed out to Tauler the better way, as saying:—

What hell may be, I know not. This I know,

I cannot lose the presence of the Lord.

One arm, Humility, takes hold upon

His dear humanity; the other, Love,

Clasps His divinity. So where I go

He goes; and better fire-walled hell with Him

Than golden-gated Paradise without.

Said Tauler,

My prayer is answered. God hath sent the man,

Long sought, to teach me, by his simple trust,

Wisdom the weary Schoolmen never knew.

§ 31. Henry Suso.

Henry Suso, 1295?-1366, a man of highly emotional nature, has on the one hand been treated as a hysterical visionary, and on the other as the author of the most finished product of German mysticism. Born on the Lake of Constance, and perhaps in Constance itself, he was of noble parentage, but on the death of his mother, abandoned his father’s name, Berg, and adopted his mother’s maiden name, Seuse, Suso being the Latin form.480480    Bihlmeyer, p. 65, decides for 1295 as the probable date of Suso’s birth. Other writers put it forward to 1300. At thirteen, he entered the Dominican convent at Constance, and from his eighteenth year on gave himself up to the most exaggerated and painful asceticisms. At twenty-eight, he was studying at Cologne, and later at Strassburg.

For supporting the pope against Lewis the Bavarian, the Dominicans in Constance came into disfavor, and were banished from the city. Suso retired to Diessehoven, where he remained, 1339–1346, serving as prior. During this period, he began to devote himself to preaching. The last eighteen years of his life were spent in the Dominican convent at Ulm, where he died, Jan. 25, 1366. He was beatified by Gregory XVI., 1831.

Suso’s constitution, which was never strong, was undermined by the rigorous penitential discipline to which he subjected himself for twenty-two years. An account of it is given in his Autobiography. Its severity, so utterly contrary to the spirit of our time, was so excessive that Suso’s statements seem at points to be almost incredible. The only justification for repeating some of the details is to show the lengths to which the penitential system of the Mediaeval Church was carried by devotees. Desiring to carry the marks of the Lord Jesus, Suso pricked into his bare chest, with a sharp instrument, the monogram of Christ, IHS. The three letters remained engraven there till his dying day and, "Whenever my heart moved," as he said, "the name moved also." At one time he saw in a dream rays of glory illuminating the scar.

He wore a hair shirt and an iron chain. The loss of blood forced him to put the chain aside, but for the hair shirt he substituted an undergarment, studded with 150 sharp tacks. This he wore day and night, its points turned inwards towards his body. Often, he said, it made the impression on him as if he were lying in a nest of wasps. When he saw his body covered with vermin, and yet he did not die, he exclaimed that the murderer puts to death at one stroke, "but alas, O tender God, — zarter Gott,—what a dying is this of mine!" Yet this was not enough. Suso adopted the plan of tying around his neck a part of his girdle. To this he attached two leather pockets, into which he thrust his hands. These he made fast with lock and key till the next morning. This kind of torture he continued to practise for sixteen years, when he abandoned it in obedience to a heavenly vision. How little had the piety of the Middle Ages succeeded in correcting the perverted views of the old hermits of the Nitrian desert, whose stories this Swiss monk was in the habit of reading, and whose austerities he emulated!

God, however, had not given any intimation of disapproval of ascetic discipline, and so Suso, in order further to impress upon his body marks of godliness, bound against his back a wooden cross, to which, in memory of the 30 wounds of Christ, he affixed 30 spikes. On this instrument of torture he stretched himself at night for 8 years. The last year he affixed to it 7 sharp needles. For a long time he went through 2 penitential drills a day, beating with his fist upon the cross as it hung against his back, while the needles and nails penetrated into his flesh, and the blood flowed down to his feet. As if this were not a sufficient imitation of the flagellation inflicted upon Christ, he rubbed vinegar and salt into his wounds to increase his agony. His feet became full of sores, his legs swelled as if he had had the dropsy, his flesh became dry and his hands trembled as if palsied. And all this, as he says, he endured out of the great inner love which he had for God, and our Lord Jesus Christ, whose agonizing pains he wanted to imitate. For 25 years, cold as the winter might be, he entered no room where there was a fire, and for the same period he abstained from all bathing, water baths or sweat baths—Wasserbad und Schweissbad. But even with this list of self-mortifications, Suso said, the whole of the story was not told.

In his fortieth year, when his physical organization had been reduced to a wreck, so that nothing remained but to die or to desist from the discipline, God revealed to him that his long-practised austerity was only a good beginning, a breaking up of his untamed humanity,—Ein Durchbrechen seines ungebrochenen Menschen,—and that thereafter he would have to try another way in order to "get right." And so he proceeded to macerations of the inner man, and learned the lessons which asceticisms of the soul can impart.

Suso nowhere has words of condemnation for such barbarous self-imposed torture, a method of pleasing God which the Reformation put aside in favor of saner rules of piety.

Other sufferings came upon Suso, but not of his own infliction. These he bore with Christian submission, and the evils involved he sought to rectify by services rendered to others. His sister, a nun, gave way to temptation. Overcoming his first feelings of indignation, Suso went far and near in search of her, and had the joy of seeing her rescued to a worthy life, and adorned with all religious virtues. Another cross he had to bear was the charge that he was the father of an unborn child, a charge which for a time alienated Henry of Nördlingen and other close friends. He bore the insinuation without resentment, and even helped to maintain the child after it was born.

Suso’s chief writings, which abound in imagery and comparisons drawn from nature, are an Autobiography,481481    It contains 53 chapters. Diepenbrock’s ed., pp. 137-306; Bihlmeyer’s ed., pp. 1-195. Diepenbrock’s edition has the advantage for the modern reader of being transmuted into modern German. and works on The Eternal Wisdom—Büchlein von der ewigen Weisheit — and the Truth—Büchlein von der Wahrheit. To these are to be added his sermons and letters.

The Autobiography came to be preserved by chance. At the request of Elsbet Staglin, Suso told her a number of his experiences. This woman, the daughter of one of the leading men of Zürich, was an inmate of the convent of Tosse, near Winterthur. When Suso discovered that she had committed his conversations to writing, he treated her act as "a spiritual theft," and burnt a part of the manuscript. The remainder he preserved, in obedience to a supernatural communication, and revised. Suso appears in the book as "The Servant of the Eternal Wisdom."

The Autobiography is a spiritual self-revelation in which the author does not pretend to follow the outward stages of his career. In addition to the facts of his religious experience, he sets forth a number of devotional rules containing much wisdom, and closes with judicious and edifying remarks on the being of God, which he gave to Elsbet in answer to her questions.482482    A translation of these definitions is given by Inge, in Light,Life and Love, pp. 66-82..

The Book of the Eternal Wisdom, which is in the form of a dialogue between Christ, the Eternal Wisdom, and the writer, has been called by Denifle, who bore Suso’s name, the consummate fruit of German mysticism. It records, in German,483483    Suso made a revision of his work in Latin under the title Horologium eternoe sapientiae, a copy of which Tauler seems to have had in his possession. Preger, II. 324 meditations in which use is made of the Scriptures. Here we have a body of experimental theology such as ruled among the more pious spirits in the German convents of the fourteenth century.

Suso declares that one who is without love is as unable to understand a tongue that is quick with love as one speaking in German is unable to understand a Fleming, or as one who hears a report of the music of a harp is unable to understand the feelings of one who has heard the music with his own ears. The Saviour is represented as saying that it would be easier to bring back the years of the past, revive the withered flowers or collect all the droplets of rain than to measure the love—Minne — he has for men.

The Servant, after lamenting the hardness of heart which refuses to be moved by the spectacle of the cross and the love of God, seeks to discover how it is that God can at once be so loving and so severe. As for the pains of hell, the lost are represented as exclaiming, "Oh, how we desire that there might be a millstone as wide as the earth and reaching to all parts of heaven, and that a little bird might alight every ten thousand years and peck away a piece of stone as big as the tenth part of a millet seed and continue to peck away every ten thousandth year until it had pecked away a piece as big as a millet seed, and then go on pecking at the same rate until the whole stone were pecked away, so only our torture might come to an end; but that cannot be."

Having dwelt upon the agony of the cross and God’s immeasurable love, the bliss of heaven and the woes of hell, Suso proceeds to set forth the dignity of suffering. He had said in his Autobiography that "every lover is a martyr,"484484    Bihlmeyer’s ed., p. 13. and here the Eternal Wisdom declares that if all hearts were become one heart, that heart could not bear the least reward he has chosen to give in eternity as a compensation for the least suffering endured out of love for himself .... This is an eternal law of nature that what is true and good must be harvested with sorrow. There is nothing more joyous than to have endured suffering. Suffering is short pain and prolonged joy. Suffering gives pain here and blessedness hereafter. Suffering destroys suffering—Leiden tödtet Leiden. Suffering exists that the sufferer may not suffer. He who could weigh time and eternity in even balances would rather he in a glowing oven for a hundred years than to miss in eternity the least reward given for the least suffering, for the suffering in the oven would have an end, but the reward is forever.

After dwelling upon the advantages of contemplation as the way of attaining to the heavenly life, the Eternal Wisdom tells Suso how to die both the death of the body and the soul; namely, by penance and by self-detachment from all the things of the earth—Entbrechen von allen Dingen. An unconverted man is introduced in the agonies of dying. His hands grow cold, his face pales, his eyes begin to lose their sight. The prince of terrors wrestles with his heart and deals it hard blows. The chill sweat of death creeps over his body and starts haggard fears. "O angry countenance of the severe Judge, how sharp are thy judgments!" he exclaims. In imagination, or with real sight, he beholds the host of black Moors approaching to see whether he belongs to them, and then the beasts of hell surrounding him. He sees the hot flames rising up above the denizens of purgatory, and hears them cry out that the least of their tortures is greater than the keenest suffering endured by martyr on the earth. And that a day there is as a hundred years. They exclaim, "Now we roast, now we simmer and now we cry out in vain for help." The dying man then passes into the other world, calling out for help to the friends whom he had treated well on the earth, but in vain.

The treatise, which closes with excellent admonitions on the duty of praising God continually, makes a profound spiritual impression, but it presents only one side of the spiritual life, and needs to be supplemented and expurgated in order to present a proper picture. Christ came into the world that we might have everlasting life now, and that we might have abundance of life, and that his joy might remain in us and our joy might be full. The patient endurance of suffering purifies the soul and the countenance, but suffering is not to be counted as always having a sanctifying power, much less is it to be courted. Macerations have no virtue of themselves, and patience in enduring pain is only one of the Christian virtues, and not their crown. Love, which is the bond of perfectness, finds in a cheerful spirit, in hearty human fellowships and in well-doing also, its ministries. The mediaeval type of piety turned the earth into a vale of tears. It was cloistral. For nearly 30 years, as Suso tells us, he never once broke through the rule of silence at table.485485    Autobiog., ch. XIV, Bihlmeyer’s, ed., p. 38 Innocent III. could write, just before becoming world-ruler, a treatise on the contempt of the world. The piety of the modern Church is of a cheerful type, and sees good everywhere in this world which God created. Suso’s piety was what the Germans have called the mysticism of suffering—die Mystik des Leidens. His way of self-inflicted torture was the wrong way. In going, however, with Suso we will not fail to reach some of the heights of religious experience and to find nearness to God.

Suso kept company with the Friends of God, and acknowledged his debt to Eckart, "the high teacher," "his high and holy master," from whose "sweet teachings he had taken deep draughts." As he says in his Autobiography, he went to Eckart in a time of spiritual trial, and was helped by him out of the hell of distress into which he had fallen. He uses some of Eckart’s distinctive vocabulary, and after the Cologne rnystic’s death, Suso saw him "in exceeding glory" and was admonished by him to submission. This quality forms the subject of Suso’s Book on the Truth, which in part was meant to be a defence of his spiritual teacher.

A passage bearing on the soul’s union with Christ will serve as a specimen of Suso’s tropical style, and may fitly close this chapter. The soul, so the Swiss mystic represents Christ as saying—

"the soul that would find me in the inner closet of a consecrated and self-detached life,—abgeschiedenes Leben,—and would partake of my sweetness, must first be purified from evil and adorned with virtues, be decked with the red roses of passionate love, with the beautiful violets of meek submission, and must be strewn with the white lilies of purity. It shall embrace me with its arms, excluding all other loves, for these I shun and flee as the bird does the cage. This soul shall sing to me the song of Zion, which means passionate love combined with boundless praise. Then I will embrace it and it shall lean upon my heart."486486    Von der ewigen Weisheit, Bihlmeyer’s ed., p. 296 sq.

§ 32. The Friends of God.

The Friends of God attract our interest both by the suggestion of religious fervor involved in their name and the respect with which the prominent mystics speak of them. They are frequently met within the writings of Eckart, Tauler, Suso, and Ruysbroeck, as well as in the pages of other writers of the fourteenth century. Much mystery surrounds them, and efforts have failed to define with precision their teachings, numbers and influence. The name had been applied to the Waldenses,487487    Preger, III. 370; Strauch, p. 205. but in the fourteenth century it came to be a designation for coteries of pietists scattered along the Rhine, from Basel to Strassburg and to the Netherlands, laymen and priests who felt spiritual longings the usual church services did not satisfy. They did not constitute an organized sect. They were addicted to the study of the Scriptures, and sought close personal fellowship with God. They laid stress upon a godly life and were bent on the propagation of holiness. Their name was derived from John 16:15, "Henceforth I call you not servants, but I have called you friends." Their practices did not involve a breach with the Church and its ordinances. They had no sympathy with heresy, and antagonized the Brethren of the Free Spirit. The little treatise, called the German Theology, at the outset marks the difference between the Friends of God and the false, free spirits, especially the Beghards.488488    See Rulman Merswin’s condemnation of the Beguines and Beghards in the Nine Rocks, chs. XIII., XIV.

A letter written by a Friend to another Friend489489    As printed by Preger, III. 417 sq. represents as succinctly as any statement their aim when it says, "The soul that loves God must get away from the world, from the flesh and all sensual desires and away from itself, that is, away from its own self-will, and thus does it make ready to hear the message of the work and ministry of love accomplished by our Lord Jesus Christ." The house which Rulman Merswin founded in Strassburg was declared to be a house of refuge for honorable persons, priests and laymen who, with trust in God, choose to flee the world and seek to improve their lives. The Friends of God regarded themselves as holding the secret of the Christian life and as being the salt of the earth, the instructors of other men.490490    See the last chapter of R. Merswin’s Nine Rocks.

Among the leading Friends of God were Henry of Nördlingen, Nicolas of Löwen, Rulman Merswin and "the great Friend of God from the Oberland." The personality of the Friend of God from the Oberland is one of the most evasive in the religious history of the Middle Ages. He is presented as leader of great personal power and influence, as the man who determined Tauler’s conversion and wrote a number of tracts, and yet it is doubtful whether such a personage ever lived. Rulman Merswin affirms that he had been widely active between Basel and Strassburg and in the region of Switzerland, from which he got his name, the Oberland. In 1377, according to the same authority, he visited Gregory XI. in Rome and, like Catherine of Siena, petitioned the pontiff to set his face against the abuses of Christendom. Rulman was in correspondence with him for a long period, and held his writings secret until within four years of his (Rulman’s) death, when he published them. They were 17 in number, all of them bearing on the nature and necessity of a true conversion of heart.491491    The two leading writings are Das Buch ron den zwei Mannen, an account of the first five years immediately succeeding the author’s conversion, and given in Schmidt’s Nic. von Basel, pp. 205-277, and Das Buch von den fünf Mannen, in which the Oberlander gives an account of his own life and the lives of his friends. For the full list of the writings, see Preger, III. 270 sqq., and Strauch, p. 209 sqq.

This mystic from the Oberland, as Rulman’s account goes, led a life of prayer and devotion, and found peace, performed miracles and had visions. He is placed by Preger at the side of Peter Waldo as one of the most influential laymen of the Middle Ages, a priest, though unordained, of the Church. After Rulman’s death, we hear no more of him.

Rulman Merswin, the editor of the Oberland prophet’s writings, was born in Stra6sburg, 1307, and died there, 1382. He gave up merchandise and devoted himself wholly to a religious life. He had undergone the change of conversion—Kehr. For four years he had a hard struggle against temptations, and subjected himself to severe asceticisms, but was advised by his confessor, Tauler, to desist, at least for a time. It was towards the end of this period that he met the man from the Oberland. After his conversion, he purchased and fitted up an old cloister, located on an island near Strassburg, called das grüne Wört, to serve as a refuge for clerics and laymen who wished to follow the principles of the Friends of God and live together for the purpose of spiritual culture. In 1370, after the death of his wife, Rulman himself became an inmate of the house, which was put under the care of the Knights of St. John a year later. Here he continued to exhort by pen and word till his death. He lies buried at the side of his wife in Strassburg.

Merswin’s two chief writings are entitled Das Bannerbüchlein, the Banner-book, and Das Buch von den neun Felsen, the Nine Rocks. The former is an exhortation to flee from the banner of Lucifer and to gather under the blood-red banner of Christ.492492    See Preger, III. 349 sqq. C. Schmidt gives the test, as does also Diepenbrock, H Suso, pp. 505-572 The Nine Rocks, written in the form of a dialogue, 1352, opens with a parable, describing innumerable fishes swimming down from the lakes among the hills through the streams in the valleys into the deep sea. The author then sees them attempting to find their way back to the hills. These processes illustrate the career of human souls departing from God into the world and seeking to return to Him. The author also sees a "fearfully high mountain," on which are nine rocks. The souls that succeed in getting back to the mountain are so few that it seemed as if only one out of every thousand reached it. He then proceeds to set forth the condition of the eminent of the earth, popes and kings, cardinals and princes; and also priests, monks and nuns, Beguines and Beghards, and people of all sorts and classes. He finds the conditions very bad, and is specially severe on women who, by their show of dress and by their manners, are responsible for men going morally astray and falling into sin. Many of these women commit a hundred mortal sins a day.

Rulman then returns to the nine rocks, which represent the nine stages of progress towards the source of our being, God. Those who are on the rocks have escaped the devil’s net, and by climbing on up to the last rock, they reach perfection. Those on the fifth rock have gained the point where they have completely given up their own self-will. The sixth rock represents full submission to God. On the ninth the number is so small that there seemed to be only three persons on it. These have no desire whatever except to honor God, fear not hell nor purgatory, nor enemy nor death nor life.

The Friends of God, who are bent on something more than their own salvation, are depicted in the valley below, striving to rescue souls from the net in which they have been ensnared. The Brethren of the Free Spirit resist this merciful procedure.

The presentation is crude, and Scripture is not directly quoted. The biblical imagery, however, abounds, and, as in the case of the ancient allegory of Hermas, the principles of the Gospel are set forth in a way adapted, no doubt, to reach a certain class of minds, even as in these modern days the methods of the Salvation Army appeal to many for whom the discourses of Bernard or Gerson might have little meaning. 493493    l Strauch, p. 208, and others regard Merswin’s works as in large part compilations from Tauler and other writers. Strauch pronounces their contents garrulous—geschwätzig. The Nine Rocks used to be printed with Suso’s works. Merswin’s authorship was established by Schmidt.

Rulman Merswin is regarded by Denifle, Strauch and other critics as the author of the works ascribed to the Friend of God from the Oberland, and the inventor of this fictitious personage.494494    Rulman hat den Gottesfreund einfach erfunden. Strauch, p. 217. The reason for this view is that no one else knows of the Oberlander and that, after Rulman’s death, attempts on the part of the Strassburg brotherhood to find him, or to find out something about him, resulted in failure. On the other hand, it is difficult to understand why Rulman did not continue to keep his writings secret till after his own death, if the Oberlander was a fictitious character.495495    Preger and Schmidt are the chief spokesmen for the historic personality of the man from the Oberland. Rieder has recently relieved Rulman from the stain of forgery, and placed the responsibility upon Nicolas of Löwen, who entered das grüne Wört in 1366. The palaeographic consideration is emphasized, that is, the resemblance between Nicolas’ handwriting and the script of the reputed Oberlander.

Whatever may be the outcome of the discussion over the historic personality of the man from the Oberland, we have in the writings of these two men a witness to the part laymen were taking in the affairs of the Church.

§ 33. John of Ruysbroeck.

Independent of the Friends of God, and yet closely allied with them in spirit, was Jan von Ruysbroeck, 1293–1381. In 1350, he sent to the Friends in Strassburg his Adornment of the Spiritual Marriage—Chierheit der gheesteleker Brulocht. He forms a connecting link between them and the Brothers of the Common Life. The founder of the latter brotherhood, de Groote, and also Tauler, visited him. He was probably acquainted with Eckart’s writings, which were current in the Lowlands.496496    The extent to which Eckart influenced the mystics of the Lowlands is a matter of dispute. The clergy strove to keep his works from circulation. Langenberg, p. 181, quotes Gerherd Zerbold von Zütphen’s, d. 1398, tract, De libris Teutonicalibus which takes the position that, while wholesome books might be read in the vulgar tongue, Eckart’s works and sermons were exceedingly pernicious, and not to be read by the laity. Langenberg, pp. 184-204, gives descriptions and excerpts from four MSS. of Eckart’s writings in Low German, copied in the convent of Nazareth, near Bredevoorde, and now preserved in the royal library of Berlin, but they do not give Eckart as the author.

The Flemish mystic was born in a village of the same name near Brussels, and became vicar of St. Gudula in that city. At sixty he abandoned the secular priesthood and put on the monastic habit, identifying himself with the recently established Augustinian convent Groenendal,—Green Valley,—located near Waterloo. Here he was made prior. Ruysbroeck spent most of his time in contemplation, though he was not indifferent to practical duties. On his walks through the woods of Soignes, he believed he saw visions and he was otherwise the subject of revelations. He was not a man of the schools. Soon after his death, a fellow-Augustinian wrote his biography, which abounds in the miraculous element. The very trees under which he sat were illuminated with an aureole. At his passing away, the bells of the convent rang without hands touching them, and perfume proceeded from his dead body.

The title, doctor ecstaticus, which at an early period was associated with Ruysbroeck, well names his characteristic trait. He did not speculate upon the remote theological themes of God’s being as did Eckart, nor was he a popular preacher of every-day Christian living, like Tauler. He was a master of the contemplative habit, and mused upon the soul’s experiences in its states of partial or complete union with God. His writings, composed in his mother-tongue, were translated into Latin by his pupils, Groote and William Jordaens. The chief products of his pen are the Adornment of the Spiritual Marriage, the Mirror of Blessedness and Samuel, which is a defence of the habit of contemplation, and the Glistening Stone, an allegorical meditation on the white stone of Rev. 2:17, which is interpreted to mean Christ.

Ruysbroeck laid stress upon ascetic exercises, but more upon love. In its highest stages of spiritual life, the soul comes to God "without an intermediary." The name and work of Christ are dwelt upon on every page. He is our canon, our breviary, our every-day book, and belongs to Laity and clergy alike. He was concerned to have it understood that he has no sympathy with pantheism, and opposed the heretical views of the Brethren of the Free Spirit and the Beghards. He speaks of four sorts of heretics, the marks of one of them being that they despise the ordinances and sacraments of the Catholic Church, the Scriptures and the sufferings of Christ, and set themselves above God himself. He, however, did not escape the charge of heresy. Gerson, who received a copy of the Spiritual Marriage from a Carthusian monk of Bruges, found the third book teaching pantheism, and wrote a tract in which he complained that the author, whom he pronounced an unlearned man, followed his feelings in setting forth the secrets of the religious life. Gerson was, however, persuaded that he had made a mistake by the defence written by John of Schoenhofen, one of the brethren of Groenendal. However, in his reply written 1408, he again emphasized that Ruysbroeck was a man without learning, and complained that he had not made his meaning sufficiently clear.497497    Engelhardt, pp. 265-297, gives a full statement of the controversy. For Gerson’s letters to Bartholomew and Schoenhofen and Schoenhofen’s letter, see Du Pin, Works of Gerson, pp. 29-82. Maeterlinck, p. 4, refers to the difficulty certain passages in Ruysbroeck’s writings offer to the interpreter.

The Spiritual Marriage, Ruysbroeck’s chief contribution to mystical literature, is a meditation upon the words of the parable, "Behold, the bridegroom cometh, go ye out to meet him." It sets forth three stages of Christian experience, the active, the inner and the contemplative. In the active stage the soul adopts the Christian virtues and practises them, fighting against sin, and thus it goes out "to meet the bridegroom." We must believe the articles of the Creed, but not seek to fully understand them. And the more subtle doctrines of the Scripture we should accept and explain as they are interpreted by the life of Christ and the lives of his saints. Man should study nature, the Scriptures and all created things, and draw from them profit. To understand Christ he must, like Zaccheus, run ahead of all the manifestations of the creature world, and climb up the tree of faith, which has twelve branches, the twelve articles of the Creed.

As for the inner life, it is distinguished from the active by devotion to the original Cause and to truth itself as against devotion to exercises and forms, to the celebration of the sacrament and to good works. Here the soul separates itself from outward relations and created forms, and contemplates the eternal love of God. Asceticism may still be useful, but it is not essential.

The contemplative stage few reach. Here the soul is transferred into a purity and brightness which is above all natural intelligence. It is a peculiar adornment and a heavenly crown. No one can reach it by learning and intellectual subtlety nor by disciplinary exercises. In order to attain to it, three things are essential. A man must live virtuously; he must, like a fire that never goes out, love God constantly, and he must lose himself in the darkness in which men of the contemplative habit no longer find their way by the methods known to the creature. In the abyss of this darkness a light incomprehensible is begotten, the Son of God, in whom we "see eternal life."

At last the soul comes into essential unity with God, and, in the fathomless ocean of this unity, all things are seized with bliss. It is the dark quiet in which all who love God lose themselves. Here they swim in the wild waves of the ocean of God’s being.498498    I have followed the German text given by Lambert, pp. 3-160. Selections, well translated into English, are given in Light, Life and Love.

He who would follow the Flemish mystic in these utterances must have his spirit. They seem far removed from the calm faith which leaves even the description of such ecstatic states to the future, and is content with doing the will of God in the daily avocations of this earthly life. Expressions he uses, such as "spiritual intoxication,"499499    See Lambert, pp. 62, 63, etc. are not safe, and the experiences he describes are, as he declares, not intended for the body of Christian people to reach here below. In most men they would take the forms of spiritual hysteria and the hallucinations of hazy self-consciousness. It is well that Ruysbroeck’s greatest pupil, de Groote, did not follow along this line of meditation, but devoted himself to practical questions of every-day living and works of philanthropy. The ecstatic mood is characteristic of this mystic in the secluded home in Brabant, but it is not the essential element in his religious thought. His descriptions of Christ and his work leave little to be desired. He does not dwell upon Mary, or even mention her in his chief work. He insists upon the works which proceed from genuine love to God. The chapter may be closed with two quotations:—

"Even devotion must give way to a work of love to the spiritual and to the physical man. For even should one rise in prayer higher than Peter or Paul, and hear that a poor man needed a drink of water, he would have to cease from the devotional exercise, sweet though it were, and do the deed of love. It is well pleasing to God that we leave Him in order to help His members. In this sense the Apostle was willing to be banished from Christ for his brethren’s sake."

"Always before thou retire at night, read three books, which thou oughtest always to have with thee. The first is an old, gray, ugly volume, written over with black ink. The second is white and beautifully written in red, and the third in glittering gold letters. First read the old volume. That means, consider thine own past life, which is full of sins and errors, as are the lives of all men. Retire within thyself and read the book of conscience, which will be thrown open at the last judgment of Christ. Think over how badly thou hast lived, how negligent thou hast been in thy words, deeds, wishes and thoughts. Cast down thy eyes and cry, ’God be merciful to me a sinner.’ Then God will drive away fear and anxious concern and will give thee hope and faith. Then lay the old book aside and go and fetch from memory the white book. This is the guileless life of Christ, whose soul was pure and whose guileless body was bruised with stripes and marked with rose-red, precious blood. These are the letters which show his real love to us. Look at them with deep emotion and thank him that, by his death, he has opened to thee the gate of heaven. And finally lift up thine eyes on high and read the third book, written in golden script; that is, consider the glory of the life eternal, in Comparison with which the earthly vanishes away as the light of the candle before the splendor of the sun at midday."500500    Quoted by Galle, pp. 184-224.

§ 34. Gerrit de Groote and the Brothers of the Common Life.

It was fortunate for the progress of religion, that mysticism in Holland and Northwestern Germany did not confine itself to the channel into which it had run at Groenendal. In the latter part of the fourteenth century, and before Ruysbroeck’s death, it associated with itself practical philanthropic activities under the leadership of Gerrit Groote, 1340–1384, and Florentius Radewyn, 1350–1400, who had finished his studies in Prag. They were the founders of the Windesheim Congregation and the genial company known as the Brothers of the Common Life, called also the Brothers of the New Devotion. To the effort to attain to union with God they gave a new impulse by insisting that men imitate the conduct of Christ. 501501    See Grube, Gerh. Groot, p. 9; Langenberg, p. ix; Pastor, I. 150. The Latin titles of the brotherhood were fratres vitae communis, fratres modernae devotionis, fratres bonae voluntatis, with reference to Luke 11:14, and fratres collationari with reference to their habit of preaching. Groote’s name is spelled Geert de Groote, Gherd de Groet (Langenberg, p. 3), Gerhard Groot (Grube), etc. Originating in Holland, they spread along the Rhine and into Central Germany.

Groote was born at Deventer, where his father had been burgomaster. After studying at Paris, he taught at Cologne, and received the appointment of canon, enjoying at least two church livings, one at Utrecht and one at Aachen. He lived the life of a man of the world until he experienced a sudden conversion through the influence of a friend, Henry of Kolcar, a Carthusian prior. He renounced his ecclesiastical livings and visited Ruysbroeck, being much influenced by him. Thomas à Kempis remarks that Groote could say, after his visits to Ruysbroeck, "Thy wisdom and knowledge are greater than the report which I heard in my own country."

At forty he began preaching. Throngs gathered to hear him in the churches and churchyards of Deventer, Zwolle, Leyden and other chief towns of the Lowlands.502502    The title, hammer of the heretics,—malleus hereticorum,—was applied to him for his defence of the orthodox teaching. For the application of this expression, see Hansen, Gesch. des Hexenwahns, p. 361. On Groote’s fame as a preacher, see Grube, p. 14 sqq., 23. Thomas à Kempis vouches for Groote’s popularity as a preacher. See Kettlewell, I. 130-134. Among his published sermons is one against the concubinage of the clergy—de focaristis. For a list of his printed discourses, see Herzog, VII., 692 sqq., and Langenberg, p. 35 sqq. Often he preached three times a day. His success stirred up the Franciscans, who secured from the bishop of Utrecht an inhibition of preaching by laymen. Groote came under this restriction, as he was not ordained. An appeal was made to Urban VI., but the pope put himself on the side of the bishop. Groote died in 1384, before the decision was known.

Groote strongly denounced the low morals of the clergy, but seems not to have opposed any of the doctrines of the Church. He fasted, attended mass, laid stress upon prayer and alms, and enforced these lessons by his own life. To quote an old writer, he taught by living righteously—docuit sancte vivendo. In 1374, he gave the house he had inherited from his father at Deventer as a home for widows and unmarried women. Without taking vows, the inmates were afforded an opportunity of retirement and a life of religious devotion and good works. They were to support themselves by weaving, spinning, sewing, nursing and caring for the sick. They were at liberty to leave the community whenever they chose. John Brinkerinck further developed the idea of the female community.

The origin of the Brothers of the Common Life was on this wise. After the inhibition of lay preaching, Groote settled down at Deventer, spending much time in the house of Florentius Radewyn. He had employed young priests to copy manuscripts. At Radewyn’s suggestion they were united into a community, and agreed to throw their earnings into a common fund. After Groote’s death, the community received a more distinct organization through Radewyn. Other societies were established after the model of the Deventer house, which was called "the rich brother house,"—het rijke fraterhuis,—as at Zwolle, Delft, Liége, Ghent, Cologne, Münster, Marburg and Rostock, many of them continuing strong till the Reformation.503503    See Grube, p. 88, and Schulze, p. 492 sqq., who gives a succinct history of 18 German houses and 20 houses in the Lowlands. The last to be established was at Cambray, 1505.

A second branch from the same stock, the canons Regular of St. Augustine, established by the influence of Radewyn and other friends and pupils of Groote, had as their chief houses Windesheim, dedicated 1387, and Mt. St. Agnes, near Zwolle. These labored more within the convent, the Brothers of the Common Life outside of it.

The Brotherhood of the Common Life never reached the position of an order sanctioned by Church authority. Its members, including laymen as well as clerics, took no irrevocable vow, and were at liberty to withdraw when they pleased. They were opposed to the Brethren of the Free Spirit, and were free from charges of looseness in morals and doctrine. Like their founder, they renounced worldly goods and remained unmarried. They supported the houses by their own toil.504504    Writing of Radewyn, Thomas à Kempis, Vita Florentii, ch. XIV., says that work was most profitable to spiritual advancement, and adapted to hold in check the lusts of the flesh. One brother who was found after his death to be in possession of some money, was denied prayer at his burial.

To gardening, making clothes and other occupations pertaining to the daily life, they added preaching, conducting schools and copying manuscripts. Groote was an ardent lover of books, and had many manuscripts copied for his library. Among these master copyists was Thomas à Kempis. Classical authors as well as writings of the Fathers and books of Scripture were transcribed. Selections were also made from these authors in distinct volumes, called ripiaria — little river banks. At Liege they were so diligent as copyists as to receive the name Broeders van de penne, Brothers of the Quill. Of Groote, Thomas à Kempis reports that he had a chest filled with the best books standing near his dining table, so that, if a course did not please him, he might reach over to them and give his friends a cup for their souls. He carried books about with him on his preaching tours. Objection was here and there made to the possession of so many books, where they might have been sold and the proceeds given to the poor.505505    Uhlhorn, p. 373, gives the case of such an objector, a certain man by the name of Ketel of Deventer. Also Langenberg, p. x. Translations also were made of the books of Scripture and other works. Groote translated the Seven Penitential Psalms, the Office for the Dead and certain Devotions to Mary. The houses were not slow in adopting type, and printing establishments are mentioned in connection with Maryvale, near Geissenheim, Windesheim, Herzogenbusch, Rostock, Louvaine and other houses.

The schools conducted by the Brothers of the Common Life, intended primarily for clerics, have a distinguished place in the history of education. Seldom, if ever before, had so much attention been paid to the intellectual and moral training of youth. Not only did the Brothers, have their own schools. They labored also in schools already established. Long lists of the teachers are still extant. Their school at Herzogenbusch had at one time 1200 scholars, and put Greek into its course at its very start, 1424. The school at Liége in 1524 had 1600 scholars.506506    See Schmid, Gesch. d. Erziehung vom Anfang his auf unsere Zeit, Stuttgart, 1892, II. 164-167; Hirsche in Herzog, II 759; Pastor’s high tribute, I. 152; and Langenberg, p. ix. The school at Deventer acquired a place among the notable grammar schools of history, and trained Nicolas of Cusa, Thomas à Kempis, John Wessel and Erasmus, who became an inmate of the institution, 1474, and learned Greek from one of its teachers, Synthis. Making the mother-tongue the chief vehicle of education, these schools sent out the men who are the fathers of the modern literature of Northwestern Germany and the Lowlands, and prepared the soil for the coming Reformation.

Scarcely less influential was the public preaching of the Brethren in the vernacular, and the collations, or expositions of Scripture, given to private circles in their own houses. Groote went to the Scriptures, so Thomas à Kempis says, as to a well of life. Of John Celle, d. 1417, the zealous rector of the Zwolle school, the same biographer writes: "He frequently expounded to the pupils the Holy Scriptures, impressing upon them their authority and stirring them up to diligence in writing out the sayings of the saints. He also taught them to sing accurately, and sedulously to attend church, to honor God’s ministers and to pray often."507507    Kettlewell, I. 111. Celle himself played on the organ.

The central theme of their study was the person and life of Christ. "Let the root of thy study," said Groote, "and the mirror of thy life be primarily the Gospel, for therein is the life of Christ portrayed."508508    Thos. à Kempis, Vita Gerard. XVIII. 11; Kettlewell I. 166. A life of a cleric he declared to be the people’s Gospel—vita clerici evangelium populi. A period of each day was set apart for reflection on some special religious subject,—Sunday on heaven, Monday on death, Tuesday on the mercies of God, Wednesday on the last judgment, Thursday on the pains of hell, Friday on the Lord’s passion and Saturday on sins. They laid more stress upon inward purity and rectitude than upon outward conformities to ritual.509509    See Langenberg, p. 51.

The excellent people joined the other mystics of the fourteenth century in loosening the hold of scholasticism and sacerdotalism, those two master forces of the Middle Ages.510510    See Ullman, II. 82, 115 sq. Schulze, p. 190, is not so clear on this point. Kettlewell, II. 440 says that the Brothers were "the chief agents in pioneering the way for the Reformation." They gave emphasis to the ideas brought out strongly from other quarters,—the heretical sects and such writers as Marsiglius of Padua,—the idea of the dignity of the layman, and that monastic vows are not the condition of pure religious devotion. They were the chief contributors to the vigorous religious current which was flowing through the Lowlands. Popular religious literature was in circulation. Manuals of devotion were current, cordials and praecordials for the soul’s needs. Written codes of rules for laymen were passed from hand to hand, giving directions for their conduct at home and abroad. Religious poems in the vernacular, such as the poem on the wise and foolish virgins, carried biblical truth.

Van viff juncfrou wen de wis weren

Unde van vif dwasen wilt nu hir leren.

Some of these were translations from Bernard’s Jesu dulcis memoria, and some condemned festivities like the Maypole and the dance.511511    See Langenberg. The poem he gives on the dance, 68 sqq., begins—
   Hyr na volget eyn lere schone

   Teghen dantzen unde van den meybome.

   Here follows a nice teaching against dancing and the May tree. One reason given against dancing was that the dancers stretched out their arms, and so showed disrespect to Christ, who stretched out his arms on the cross. One of the documents is a letter in which a monk warns his niece, who had gone astray, against displays of dress and bold gestures, intended to attract the attention of young men, especially on the Cathedral Square. With the letter he sent his niece a book of devotional literature.

Eugene IV., Pius II., and Sistus IV. gave the Brothers marks of their approval, and the great teachers, Cardinal Cusa, D’Ailly and John Gerson spoke in their praise. There were, however, detractors, such as Grabon, a Saxon Dominican who presented, in the last days of the Council of Constance, 1418, no less than twenty-five charges against them. The substance of the charges was that the highest religious life may not be lived apart from the orders officially sanctioned by the Church. A commission appointed by Martin V., to which Gerson and D’Ailly belonged, reported adversely, and Grabon was obliged to retract. The commission adduced the fact that there was no monastic body in Jerusalem when the primitive Church practised community of goods, and that conventual walls and vows are not essential to the highest religious life. Otherwise the pope, the cardinals and the prelates themselves would not be able to attain to the highest reach of religious experience.512512    Van der Hardt, Conc. Const., III. 107-121, gives Grabon’s charges, the judgments of D’Ailly and Gerson and the text of Grabon’s retraction.

With the Reformation, the distinct mission of the Brotherhood was at an end, and many of the communities fell in with the new movement. As for the houses which maintained their old rules, Luther felt a warm interest in them. When, in 1532, the Council of Hervord in Westphalia was proposing to abolish the local sister and brother houses, the Reformer wrote strongly against the proposal as follows: "Inasmuch as the Brothers and Sisters, who were the first to start the Gospel among you, lead a creditable life, and have a decent and well-behaved community, and faithfully teach and hold the pure Word, such monasteries and brother-houses please me beyond measure." On two other occasions, he openly showed his interest in the brotherhood of which Groote was the founder.513513    De Wette, Luther’s Letters, Nos. 1448, 1449, vol. IV., pp. 358 sqq.

§ 35. The Imitation of Christ. Thomas à Kempis.

... mild saint

À Kempis overmild.

—Lanier.

The pearl of all the mystical writings of the German-Dutch school is the Imitation of Christ, the work of Thomas à Kempis. With the Confessions of St. Augustine and Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress it occupies a place in the very front rank of manuals of devotion, and, if the influence of books is to be judged by their circulation, this little volume, starting from a convent in the Netherlands, has, next to the Sacred Scriptures, been the most influential of all the religious writings of Christendom. Protestants and Catholics alike have joined in giving it praise. The Jesuits introduced it into their Exercises. Dr. Samuel Johnson, once, when ill, taught himself Dutch by reading it in that language, and said of its author that the world had opened its arms to receive his book.514514   Art. The Worldly Wisdom of Thos. à Kempis, in Dublin Review, 1908, pp. 262-287. It was translated by John Wesley, was partly instrumental in the conversion of John Newton, was edited by Thomas Chalmers, was read by Mr. Gladstone "as a golden book for all times" and was the companion of General Gordon. Dr. Charles Hodge, the Presbyterian divine, said it has diffused itself like incense through the aisles and alcoves of the Universal Church.515515    System. Theol., I. 79. For Gladstone’s judgment, see Morley, II. 186. Butler, p. 191, gives a list of 33 English translations from 1502-1900. De Quincey said: "The book came forward in answer to the sighing of Christian Europe for light from heaven. Excepting the Bible in Protestant lands, no book known to man has had the same distinction. It is the most marvellous biblical fact on record." Quoted by Kettlewell, I.

The number of counted editions exceeds 2000. The British Museum has more than 1000 editions on its shelves.516516    Backer, in his Essai bibliogr., enumerates 545 Latin editions, and about 900 editions in French. There are more than 50 editions belonging to the fifteenth century. See Funk, p. 426. The Bullingen collection, donated to the city library of Cologne, 1838, contained at the time of the gift 400 different edd. Montmorenci, p. xxii sq., gives the dates of 29 edd., 1471-1503, with places of issue.

Originally written in the Latin, a French translation was made as early as 1447, which still remains in manuscript. The first printed French copies appeared in Toulouse, 1488. The earliest German translation was made in 1434 and is preserved in Cologne, and printed editions in German begin with the Augsburg edition of 1486. Men eminent in the annals of German piety, such as Arndt, 1621, Gossner, 1824, and Tersteegen, 1844, have issued editions with prefaces. The work first appeared in print in English, 1502, the translation being partly by the hand of Margaret, the mother of Henry VII. Translations appeared in Italian in Venice and Milan, 1488, in Spanish at Seville, 1536, in Arabic at Rome, 1663, in Arminian at Rome, 1674, and in other languages.517517    Corneille produced a poetical translation in French, 1651. A polyglot edition appeared at Sulzbach, 1837, comprising the Latin text and translations in Italian, French, German, Greek and English.

The Imitation of Christ consists of four books, and derives its title from the heading of the first book, De imitatione Christi et contemptu omnium vanitatum mundi, the imitation of Christ and the contempt of all the vanities of the world. It seems to have been written in metre.518518    Hirsche discovered the rhythm and made it known, 1874. The four books are not found in all the manuscripts nor invariably arranged in the same order, facts which have led some to suppose that they were not all written at the same time. The work is a manual of devotion intended to help the soul in its communion with God. Its sententious statements are pitched in the highest key of Christian experience. Within and through all its reflections runs the word, self-renunciation. Its opening words, "whoso followeth me, shall not walk in darkness but shall have the light of life," John 8:12, are a fitting announcement of the contents. The life of Christ is represented as the highest study it is possible for a mortal to take up. He who has his spirit has found the hidden manna. What can the world confer without Jesus? To be without him is the direst hell; to be with him, the sweetest paradise.

Here are counsels to read the Scriptures, statements about the uses of adversity and advice for submission to authority, warnings against temptations, reflections upon death, the judgment and paradise. Here are meditations on Christ’s oblation on the cross and the advantages of the communion, and also admonitions to flee the vanities and emptiness of the world and to love God, for he that loveth, knoweth God. Christ is more than all the wisdom of the schools. He lifts up the mind in a moment of time to perceive more reasons for eternal truth than a student might learn over books in ten years. He teaches without confusion of words, without the clashing of opinions, without the pride of reputation,—sine fastu honoris,—the contention of arguments. The concluding words are: "My eyes are unto Thee. My God, in Thee do I put my trust, O Thou Father of mercies. Accompany thy servant with Thy grace and direct him by the path of peace to the land of unending light—patriam perpetuae claritatis."

The plaintive minor key, the gently persuasive tone of the work are adapted to attract serious souls seeking the inner chamber of religious peace and purity of thought, but especially those who are under the shadow of pain and sorrow. The praise of Christ is so unstinted, and the dependence upon him so unaffected, that one cannot help but feel, in reading this book, that he is partaking of the essence of the Gospel. The work, however, presents only one side of the Christian life. It commends humility, submission, gentleness and the passive virtues. It does not emphasize the manly virtues of courage and loyalty to the truth, nor elaborate upon Christian activities to be done to our fellow-men. To fall in completely with the spirit of Thomas à Kempis, and to abide there, would mean to follow the best cloistral ideal of the Middle Ages, or rather of the fourteenth century. Its counsels and reflections were meant primarily for those who had made the convent their home, not for the busy traffickers in the marts of the world, and in association with men of all classes. It leans to quietism, and is calculated to promote personal piety for those who dwell much alone rather than to fit men for engaging in the public battles which fall to men’s usual lot. Its admonitions are adapted to help men to bear with patience rather than to rectify the evils in the world, to be silent rather than to speak to the throng, to live well in seclusion rather than set an example of manly and womanly endeavor in the shop, on the street and in the family. The charge has been made, and not without some ground, that the Imitation of Christ sets forth a selfish type of religion.519519    This is Milman’s judgment. Hist. of Lat. Christ., Bk. XIV., 3, Milman said, "The book’s sole, single, exclusive object is the purification, the elevation of the individual soul, of the man absolutely isolated from his kind, of the man dwelling alone in the heritage of his thoughts." Its soft words are fitted to quiet the soul and bring it to meek contentment rather than to stir up the combatant virtues of courage and of assistance to others. Its message corresponds to the soft glow of the summer evening, and not to the fresh hours filled with the rays of the morning sun. This plaintive note runs through Thomas’ hymns, as may be seen from a verse taken from "The Misery of this Life" :—

Most wonderful would it be

If one did not feel and lament

That in this world to live

Is toil, affliction, pain.520520    Mirum est, si non lugeat
   Experimento qui probat

   Quod vivere in soeculo

   Labor, dolor, afflictio

   Blume and Dreves: Analecta hymnica, XLVIII. 503. Thomas à Kempis’ hymns are given Blume and Dreves, XLVIII. 475-514.

Over the pages of the book is written the word Christ. It is for this reason that Protestants cherish it as well as Catholics. The references to mediaeval errors of doctrine or practice are so rare that it requires diligent search to find them. Such as they are, they are usually erased from English editions, so that the English reader misses them entirely. Thomas introduces the merit of good works, transubstantiation, IV. 2, the doctrine of purgatory, IV. 9, and the worship of saints, I. 13, II. 9, II. 6, 59. But these statements, however, are like the flecks on the marbles of the Parthenon.

The author, Thomas à Kempis, 1380–1471, was born in Kempen, a town 40 miles northwest of Cologne, and died at Zwolle, in the Netherlands. His paternal name was Hemerken or Hämmerlein, Little Hammer. He was a follower of Groote. In 1395, he was sent to the school of Deventer, under the charge of Florentius Radewyn and the Brothers of the Common Life. He became skilful as a copyist, and was thus enabled to support himself. Later he was admitted to the Augustinian convent of Mt. St. Agnes, near Zwolle, received priest’s orders, 1413, and was made sub-prior, 1429. His brother John, a man of rectitude of life, had been there before him, and was prior. Thomas’ life seems to have been a quiet one, devoted to meditation, composition and copying. He copied the Bible no less than four times, one of the copies being preserved at Darmstadt. His works abound in quotations of the New Testament. Under an old picture, which is represented as his portrait, are the words, "In all things I sought quiet, and found it not save in retirement and in books."521521    In omnibus requiem quaesivi et non inveni nisi in een huechsken met een buexken. Franciscus Tolensis is the first to ascribe the portrait to à Kempis. Kettlewell’s statements about à Kempis’ active religious services are imaginary, I. 31, 322, etc. See Lindsay’s statement, Enc. Brit., XIV. 32. They fit well the author of the famous Imitation of Christ, as the world thinks of him. He reached the high age of fourscore years and ten. A monument was dedicated to his memory in the presence of the archbishop of Utrecht in St. Michael’s Church Zwolle, Nov. 11, 1897. The writings of à Kempis, which are all of a devotional character, include tracts and meditations, letters, sermons, a Life of St. Lydewigis, a steadfast Christian woman who endured a great fight of afflictions, and the biographies of Groote, Florentius and nine of their companions. Works similar to the are his prolonged meditation upon the Incarnation, and a meditation on the Life and Blessings of the Saviour,522522    Pohl’s ed., II. 1-59; V. 1-363. both of which overflow with admiration for Christ.

In these writings the traces of mediaeval theology, though they are found, are not obtrusive. The writer followed his mediaeval predecessors in the worship of Mary, of whom he says, she is to be invoked by all Christians, especially by monastics.523523    De disciplina claustralium, Pohl’s ed., II. 313. For prayers to Mary III. 355-368 and sermons on Mary, VI. 218-238. He prays to her as the "most merciful," the "most glorious" mother of God, and calls her the queen of heaven, the efficient mediatrix of the whole world, the joy and delight of all the saints, yea, the golden couch for all the saints. She is the chamber of God, the gate of heaven, the paradise of delights, the well of graces, the glory of the angels, the joy of men, the model of manners, the brightness of virtues, the lamp of life, the hope of the needy, the salvation of the weak, the mother of the orphaned. To her all should flee as sons to a mother’s bosom.524524    Pohl, III. 357; VI. 219, 235 sq.

From these tender praises of Mary it is pleasant to turn away to the code of twenty-three precepts which the Dutch mystic laid down under the title, A Small Alphabet for a Monk in the School of God.525525    III. 317-322. Here are some of them. Love to be unknown and to be reputed as nothing. Love solitude and silence, and thou wilt find great quiet and a good conscience. Where the crowd is, there is usually confusion and distraction of heart. Choose poverty and simplicity. Humble thyself in all things and under all things, and thou wilt merit kindness from all. Let Christ be thy life, thy reading, thy meditation, thy conversation, thy desire, thy gain, thy hope and thy reward. Zaccheus, brother, descend from the height of thy secular wisdom. Come and learn in God’s school the way of humility, long-suffering and patience, and Christ teaching thee, thou shalt come at last safely to the glory of eternal beatitude.

NOTE. – The Authorship of the Imitation of Christ. This question has been one of the most hotly contested questions in the history of pure literature. National sentiments have entered into the discussion, France and Italy contending for the honor of authorship with the Lowlands. The work is now quite generally ascribed to Thomas à Kempis, but among those who dissent from this opinion are scholars of rank.

Among the more recent treatments of the subject not given in the Literature, § 27, are V. Becker: L’auteur de l’Imitat. et les documents néerlandais, Hague, 1882. Also Les derniers travaux sur l’auteur de l’Imitat., Brussels, 1889.—Denifle: Krit. Bemerk. zur Gersen-Kempis Frage, Zeitung für kath. Theol., 1882 sq.—A. O. Spitzes: Th. à K. als schrijver der navolging, Utrecht, 1880. Also Nouvelle défense en réponse du Denifle, Utrecht, 1884.—L. Santini: I diritti di Tommaso da Kemp., 2 vols., Rome, 1879–1881.—F. X. Funk: Gerson und Gersen and Der Verfasser der Nachfolge Christi in his Abhandlungen, Paderborn, 1899, II. 373–444.—P. E. Puyol: Descript. bibliogr. des MSS. et des princip. edd. du livre de imitat., Paris, 1898. Also Paléographie, classement, généalogie du livre de imitat., Paris, 1898. Also L’auteur du livre de imitat., 2 vols., Paris, 1899.—Schulze’s art. in Herzog.—G. Kentenich: Die Handschriften der Imitat. und die Autorschaft des Thomas, in Brieger’s Zeitschrift, 1902, 18 sqq., 1903, 594 sqq.

Pohl gives a list of no less than 35 persons to whom with more or less confidence the authorship has been ascribed. The list includes the names of John Gerson, chancellor of the University of Paris; John Gersen, the reputed abbot of Vercelli, Italy, who lived about 1230; Walter Hylton, St. Bernard, Bonaventura, David of Augsburg, Tauler, Suso and even Innocent III. The only claimants worthy of consideration are Gerson, Gersen, and Thomas à Kempis, although Montmorency is inclined to advance the claim of Walter Hylton. The uncertainty arises from the facts (1) that a number of the MSS. and printed editions of the fifteenth century have no note of authorship; (2) the rest are divided between these, Gerson, Gersen, à Kempis, Hylton, and St. Bernard; (3) the MSS. copies show important divergencies. The matter has been made more difficult by the forgery of names and dates in MSS. since the controversy began, these forgeries being almost entirely in the interest of a French or Italian authorship. A reason for the absence of the author’s name in so many MSS. is found in the desire of à Kempis, if he indeed be the author, to remain incognito, in accordance with his own motto, ama nesciri, "love to be unknown."

Of the Latin editions belonging to the fifteenth century, Pohl gives 28 as accredited to Gerson, 12 to Thomas, 2 to St. Bernard, and 6 as anonymous. Or, to follow Funk, p. 426, 40 editions of that century were ascribed to Gerson, 11 to à Kempis, 2 to Bernard, 1 to Gersen, and 2 are anonymous. Spitzen gives 16 as ascribed to à Kempis. Most of the editions ascribing the work to Gerson were printed in France, the remaining editions being printed in Italy or Spain. The editions of the sixteenth century show a change, 37 Latin editions ascribing the authorship to à Kempis, and 25 to Gerson. As for the MSS. dated before 1460, and whose dates may be said to be reasonably above suspicion, all were written in Germany and the Lowlands. The oldest, included in a codex preserved since 1826 in the royal library of Brussels, probably belongs before 1420. The codex contains 9 other writings of à Kempis besides the Imitation, and contains the note, Finitus et completus MCCCCXLI per manus fratris Th. Kempensis in Monte S. Agnetis prope Zwollis (finished and completed, 1441, by the hands of brother Thomas à Kempis of Mount St. Agnes, near Zwolle). See Pohl, II. 461 sqq. So this is an autographic copy. The text of the Imitation, however, is written on older paper than the other documents, and has corrections which are found in a Dutch translation of the first book, dating from 1420. For these reasons, Funk, p. 424, and others, puts the MS. back to 1416–1420.

The literary controversy over the authorship began in 1604, when Dom Pedro Manriquez, in a work on the Lord’s Supper issued at Milan, and on the alleged basis of a quotation by Bonaventura, declared the Imitation to be older than that Schoolman. In 1606, Bellarmin, in his Descript. eccles., was more precise, and stated it was already in existence in 1260. About the same time, the Jesuit, Rossignoli, found in a convent at Arona, near Milan, a MS. without date, but bearing the name of an abbot, John Gersen, as its author; the house had belonged to the Benedictines once. In 1614 the Benedictine, Constantius Cajetan, secretary of Paul V., issued his Gersen restitutus at Rome, and later his Apparatus ad Gersenem restitutum, in which he defended the Italian’s claim. This individual was said to have been a Benedectine abbot of Vercelli, in Piedmont, in the first half of the thirteenth century. On the other hand, the Augustinian, Rosweyde, in his vindiciae Kempenses, Antwerp, 1617, so cogently defended the claims of à Kempis that Bellarmin withdrew his statement. In the nineteenth century the claims of Gersen were again urged by a Piedmontese nobleman, Gregory, in his Istoria della Vercellese letteratura, Turin, 1819, and subsequent publications, and by Wolfsgruber of Vienna in a scholarly work, 1880. But Hirsche and Funk are, no doubt, right in pronouncing the name Gersen a mistake for Gerson, and Funk, after careful criticism, declares the Italian abbot a fictitious personage. The most recent Engl. writer on the subject, Montmorency, p. xiii. says, "there is no evidence that there was ever an abbot of Vercelli by the name of Gersen."

The claims of John Gerson are of a substantial character, and France was not slow in coming to the chancellor’s defence. An examination of old MSS., made in Paris, had an uncertain issue, so that, in 1640, Richelieu’s splendid edition of the Imitation was sent forth without an author’s name. The French parliament, however, in 1652, ordered the book printed under the name of à Kempis. The matter was not settled and, at three gatherings, 1671, 1674, 1687, instituted by Mabillon, a fresh examination of MSS. was made, with the result that the case went against à Kempis. Later, Du Pin, after a comparison of Gerson’s writings with the Imitation, concluded that it was impossible to decide with certainty between these two writers and Gersen. (See his 2d ed. of Gerson’s Works, 1728, I. lix-lxxxiv) but in a special work. Amsterdam, 1706, he had decided in favor of the Dutchman. French editions of the Imitation continued to be issued under the name of Gerson, as, for example, those of Erhard-Mezler, 1724, and Vollardt, 1758. On the other hand, the Augustinian, Amort, defended the à Kempis authorship in his Informatio de statu controversiae, Augsburg, 1728, and especially in his Scutum Kempense, Cologne, 1728. After the unfavorable statement of Schwab, Life of Gerson, 1858, pp. 782–786, declaring that the Imitation is in an altogether different style from Gerson’s works, the theory of the Gerson authorship seemed to be finally abandoned. The first collected edition of Gerson’s Works, 1483, knows nothing about the Imitation. Nor did Gerson’s brother, prior of Lyons, mention it in the list he gave of the chancellor’s works, 1423. The author of the Imitation was, by his own statements, a monk, IV. 5, 11; III., 56. Gerson would have been obliged to change his usual habit of presentation to have written in the monastic tone.

After the question of authorship seemed to be pretty well settled in favor of à Kempis, another stage in the controversy was opened by the publications of Puyol in 1898, 1899. Puyol gives a description of 548 manuscripts, and makes a sharp distinction between those of Italian origin and other manuscripts. He also annotates the variations in 57, with the conclusion that the Italian text is the more simple, and consequently the older and original text. He himself based his edition on the text of Arona. Puyol is followed by Kentenich, and has been answered by Pohl and others.

Walter Hylton’s reputed authorship of the Imitation is based upon three books of that work, having gone under the name De musica ecclesiastica in MSS. in England and the persistent English tradition that Hylton was the author. Montmorency, pp. xiv, 138–170, while he pronounces the Hylton theory of authorship untenable, confesses his inability to explain it.

The arguments in favor of the à Kempis authorship, briefly stated, are as follows:—

1. External testimony. John Busch, in his Chronicon Windesemense, written 1464, seven years before à Kempis’ death, expressly states that à Kempis wrote the Imitation. To this testimony are to be added the testimonies of Caspar of Pforzheim, who made a German translation of the work, 1448; Hermann Rheyd, who met Thomas, 1454, and John Wessel, who was attracted to Windesheim by the book’s fame. For other testimonies, see Hirsche and Funk, pp. 432–436.

2. Manuscripts and editions. The number of extant MSS. is about 500. See Kentenich, p. 294. Funk, p. 420, gives 13 MSS. dated before 1500, ascribing the Imitation to à Kempis. The autograph copy, contained in the Brussels codex of 1441, has already been mentioned. It must be said, however, the conclusion reached by Hirsche, Pohl, Funk, Schulze and others that this text is autographic has been denied by Puyol and Kentenich, on the basis of its divergences from other copies, which they claim the author could not have made. A second autograph, in Louvaine (see Schulze, p. 730), seems to be nearly as old, 1420, and has the note scriptus manibus et characteribus Thomae qui est autor horum devotorum libellorum, "written by the hand of Thomas," etc. (Pohl, VI. 456 sq.). A third MS., stating that Thomas is the author, and preserved in Brussels, is dated 1425.—As for the printed editions of the fifteenth century, at least 13 present Thomas as the author, from the edition of Augsburg, 1472, to the editions of Paris, 1493, 1500.

3. Style and contents. These agree closely with à Kempis’ other writings, and the flow of thought is altogether similar to that of his Meditation on Christ’s Incarnation. Spitzen seems to have made it at least very probable that the author was acquainted with the writings of Ruysbroeck, John of Schoenhoven, and other mystics and monks of the Lowlands. Funk has brought out references to ecclesiastical customs which fit the book into the time between the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. Hirsche laid stress on Germanisms in the style.

Among recent German scholars, Denifle sets aside à Kempis’ claims and ascribes the work to some unknown canon regular of the Lowlands. Karl Müller, in a brief note, Kirchengesch., II. 122, and Loof’s Dogmengesch., 4th ed., p. 633, pronounce the à Kempis authorship more than doubtful. On the other hand, Schwab, Hirsche, Schulze and Funk agree that the claims of Thomas are almost beyond dispute. It is almost impossible to give a reason why the Imitation should have been ascribed to the Dutch mystic, if he were not indeed its author. The explanation given by Kentenich, p. 603, seems to be utterly insufficient.

§ 36. The German Theology.

The evangelical teachings of the little book, known as The German Theology, led Ullmann to place its author in the list of the Reformers before the Reformation.526526    The best German ed., Stuttgart, 1858. The text is taken from Pfeiffer’s ed., Strassburg, 1851, 3d ed. unchanged; Gütersloh, 1875, containing Luther’s Preface of 1518 and the Preface of Joh. Arndt, 1632. Pfeiffer used the MS. dated 1497, the oldest in existence. The best Engl. trans., by Susannah Winkworth, from Pfeiffer’s text, London, 1854, Andover, 1856. The Andover ed. contains an Introd. by Miss Winkworth, a Letter from Chevalier Bunsen and Prefaces by Canon Kingsley and Prof. Calvin E. Stowe. The author was one of the Friends of God, and no writing issuing from that circle has had a more honorable and useful career. Together with the Imitation of Christ, it has been the most profitable of the writings of the German mystics. Its fame is derived from Luther’s high praise as much as from its own excellent contents. The Reformer issued two editions of it, 1516, with a partial text, and 1518, in the second edition giving it the name which remains with it to this day, Ein Deutsch Theologia — A German treatise of Theology.527527    Luther’s full title in the edition. of 1518 is Ein Deutsch Theologia, das ist ein edles Büchlein vom rechten Verstande was Adam und Christus sei und wie Adam in uns sterben und Christus in uns erstehen soll. A German theology, that is, a right noble little book about the right comprehension of what Adam and Christ are, and how Adam is to die in us and Christ is to arise. Cohrs in Herzog, XIX. 626, mentions 28 editions as having appeared in High German previous to 1742. Luther’s Prefaces are given in the Weimar ed. of his Works, pp. 153, 376-378. Luther designated as its author a Frankfurt priest, a Teutonic knight, but for a time it was ascribed to Tauler. The Preface of the oldest MS., dated 1497, and found in 1850, made this view impossible, for Tauler is himself quoted in ch. XIII. Here the author is called a Frankfurt priest and a true Friend of God.

Luther announced his high obligation to the teachings of the manual of the way of salvation when he said that next to the Bible and St. Augustine, no book had come into his hands from which he had learnt more of what God and man and all things are and would wish to learn more. The author, he affirmed, was a pure Israelite who did not take the foam from the surface, but drew from the bed of the Jordan. Here, he continued, the teachings of the Scriptures are set forth as plain as day which have been lying under the desk of the universities, nay, have almost been left to rot in dust and muck. With his usual patriotism, he declared that in the book he had found Christ in the German tongue as he and the other German theologians had never found him in Greek, Latin or Hebrew.

The German Theology sets forth man’s sinful and helpless condition, Christ’s perfection and mediatorial work and calls upon men to have access to God through him as the door. In all its fifty-four chapters no reference is made to Mary or to the justifying nature of good works or the merit of sacramental observances.528528    Dr. Calvin E. Stowe said "the book sets forth the essential principle of the Gospel in its naked simplicity," Winkworth’s ed., p. v. It abounds as no other writing of the German mystics did in quotations from the New Testament. In its pages the wayfaring man may find the path of salvation marked out without mystification.

The book, starting out with the words of St. Paul, "when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away," declares that that which is imperfect has only a relative existence and that, whenever the Perfect becomes known by the creature, then "the I, the Self and the like must all be given up and done away." Christ shows us the way by having taken on him human nature. In chs. XV.-LIV., it shows that all men are dead in Adam, and that to come to the perfect life, the old man must die and the new man be born. He must become possessed with God and depossessed of the devil. Obedience is the prime requisite of the new manhood. Sin is disobedience, and the more "of Self and Me, the more of sin and wickedness and the more the Self, the I, the Me, the Mine, that is, self-seeking and selfishness, abate in a man, the more doth God’s I, that is, God Himself, increase." By obedience we become free. The life of Christ is the perfect model, and we follow him by hearkening unto his words to forsake all. This is nothing else than saying that we must be in union with the divine will and be ready either to do or to suffer. Such a man, a man who is a partaker of the divine nature, will in sincerity love all men and things, do them good and take pleasure in their welfare. Knowledge and light profit nothing without love. Love maketh a man one with God. The last word is that no man can come unto the Father but by Christ.

In 1621 the Catholic Church placed the Theologia Germanica on the Index. If all the volumes listed in that catalogue of forbidden books were like this one, making the way of salvation plain, its pages would be illuminated with ineffable light.529529    Stöckl and other Catholics, though not all, are bitter against the Theologia and charge it with pantheism. Bunsen ranked it next to the Bible. Winkworth’s ed., p. liv.

§ 37. English Mystics.

England, in the fourteenth century, produced devotional writings which have been classed in the literature of mysticism. They are wanting in the transcendental flights of the German mystics, and are, for the most part, marked by a decided practical tendency.

The Ancren Riwle was written for three sisters who lived as anchoresses at Tarrant Kaines, Dorsetshire.530530    The Ancren Riwle, ed. by J. Morton, Camden series, London, 1853. See W. R. Inge, Studies in Engl. Mystics, London. 1906. p. 38 sqq. It was the custom in their day in England for women living a recluse life to build a room against the wall of some church or a small structure in a churchyard and in such a way that it had windows, but no doors of egress. This little book of religious counsels was written at the request of the sisters, and is usually ascribed to Simon of Ghent, bishop of Salisbury, d. 1315. The author gives two general directions, namely, to keep the heart "smooth and without any scar of evil," and to practise bodily discipline, which "serveth the first end, and of which Paul said that it profiteth little." The first is the lady, the second the handmaid. If asked to what order they belonged, the sisters were instructed to say to the Order of St. James, for James said, "Pure religion and undefiled before our God and Father is this: to visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction and to keep one’s self unspotted from the world." It is interesting to note that they are bidden to have warm clothes for bed and back, and to wash "as often as they please." They were forbidden to lash themselves with a leathern thong, or one loaded with lead except at the advice of their confessor. Richard Rolle, d. 1349, the author of a number of devotional treatises, and also translations or paraphrases of the Psalms, Job, the Canticles and Jeremiah, suddenly left Oxford, where he was pursuing his studies, discontented with the scholastic method in vogue at the university, and finally settled down as a hermit at Hampole, near Doncaster. Here he attained a high fame for piety and as a worker of miracles. He wrote in Latin and English, his chief works being the Latin treatises, The Emendation of Life and The Fervor of Love. They were translated in 1434, 1435, by Rich Misyn. His works are extant in many manuscript copies. Rolle exalted the contemplative life, indulged in much dreamy religious speculation, but also denounced the vice and worldliness of his time. In the last state of the contemplative life he represents man as "seeing into heaven with his ghostly eye."531531    C. Horstman, Richard Rolle of Hampole, 2 vols. The Early Engl. Text Soc. publ. the Engl. versions of Misyn, 1896. G. G. Perry edited his liturgy in the vol. giving the York Breviary, Surtees Soc. The poem, Pricke of Conscience, was issued by H. B. Bramley, Oxford, 1884. See Stephen, Dict. Natl. Biog. XLIX. 164-165.

Juliana of Norwich, who died 1443, as it is said, at the age of 100, was also an anchoress, having her cell in the churchyard of St. Julian’s church, Norwich. She received 16 revelations, the first in 1373, when she was 30 years old. At that time, she saw "God in a point." She laid stress upon love, and presented the joyful aspect of religion. God revealed Himself to her in three properties, life, light and love. Her account of her revelations is pronounced by Inge "a fragrant little book."532532    The Revelations of Divine Love has been ed. by R. F. S. Cressy, London, 1670, reprinted 1843; by H. Collins, London, 1817, and by Grace Warrack. 3d ed. Lond., 1909. See Inge and Dict. of Natl. Biog.

The Ladder of Perfection, written by Walter Hylton, an Augustinian canon of Thurgarton, Nottinghamshire, who died 1396,533533    Written in English, the Ladder was translated by the Carmelite friar, Thomas Fyslawe, into Latin. Hylton’s death is also put in 1433. depicts the different stages of spiritual attainment from the simple knowledge of the facts of religion, which is likened to the water of Cana which must be turned into wine, to the last stages of contemplation and divine union. There is no great excellency, Hylton says, "in watching and fasting till thy head aches, nor in running to Rome or Jerusalem with bare feet, nor in building churches and hospitals." But it is a sign of excellency if a man can love a sinner, while hating the sin. Those who are not content with merely saving their souls, but go on to the higher degrees of contemplation, are overcome by "a good darkness," a state in which the soul is free and not distracted by anything earthly. The light then arises little by little. Flashes come through the chinks in the walls of Jerusalem, but Jerusalem is not reached by a bound. There must be transformation, and the power that transforms is the love of God shed abroad in the soul. Love proceeds from knowledge, and the more God is known, the more is He loved. Hylton’s wide reputation is proved by the ascription of Thomas à Kempis’ Imitation to him and its identification in manuscripts with his De musica ecclesiastica.534534    The Ladder of Perfection was printed 1494, 1506, and has been recently ed. by R. E. Guy, London, 1869, and J. B. Dalgairns, London, 1870. See Inge, pp. 81-124; Montmorency, Thomas à Kempis, etc., pp. 138-174; and Dict. of Natl. Biog., XXVI. 435 sqq.

These writings, if we except Rolle, betray much of that sobriety of temper which characterizes the English religious thought. They contain no flights of hazy mystification and no rapturous outbursts of passionate feeling. They emphasize features common to all the mystics of the later Middle Ages, the gradual transformation through the power of love into the image of God, and ascent through inward contemplation to full fellowship with Him. They show that the principles of the imitation of Christ were understood on the English side of the channel as well as by the mystics of the Lowlands, and that true godliness is to be reached in another way than by the mere practice of sacramental rites.

These English pietists are to be regarded, however, as isolated figures who, so far as we know, had no influence in preparing the soil for the seed of the Reformation that was to come, as had the Pietists who lived along the Rhine.535535    Montmorency, p. 69, makes a remark for which, so far as I know, there is no corroborative testimony in the writings of the English Reformers, that "in this English mystical movement—of which a vast unprinted literature survives—is to be found the origin of Lollardism and of the Reformation in England."

CHAPTER V.

REFORMERS BEFORE THE REFORMATION.

§ 38. Sources and Literature.

For § 39. Church and Society in England, etc.—Thomas Walsingham: Hist. Anglicana, ed. by Riley, Rolls Ser., London, 1869.—Walter de Heimburgh: Chronicon, ed. by Hamilton, 2 vols., 1848 sq.—Adam Merimuth: Chronicon, and Robt. de Avesbury: De gestis mirabilibus Edwardi III., ed. by Thompson with Introd., Rolls Ser., 1889.—Chron. Angliae (1326–1388), ed. by Thompson, Rolls Ser., 1874.—Henry Knighton: Chronicon, ed. by Lumby, Rolls Ser., 2 vols., 1895.—Ranulph Higden, d. bef. 1400: Polychronicon, with trans. by Trevisa, Rolls Ser., 9 vols., 1865–1886.—Thos. Rymer, d. 1713: Foedera, Conventiones et Litera, London, 1704–1715.—Wilkins: Concilia.—W. C. Bliss: Calendar of Entries in the Papal Registers relating to G. Britain and Ireland, vols. II.-IV., London, 1897–1902. Vol. II. extends from 1305–1342; vol. III., 1342–1362; vol. IV., 1362–1404. A work of great value.—Gee and Hardy: Documents, etc.—Haddan and Stubbs: Councils and Eccles. Doc’ts.—Stubbs: Constit. Hist. of Engl., III. 294–387.—The Histt. of Engl., by Lingard, bks. III., IV., and Green, bk. IV.—Capes: The Engl. Ch. in the 14th and 15th Centt., London, 1900.—Haller: Papsttum und Kirchenreform, pp. 375–465.—Jessopp: The Coming of the Friars.—Creighton: Hist. of Epidemics in England.—Gasquet: The Great Pestilence, 1893.—Rashdall and others: Histt. of Oxford and Cambridge.—The Dict. of Nat. Biog.—Also Thos. Fuller’s Hist. of Gr. Brit., for its general judgments and quaint statements.—Loserth: Studien zur Kirchenpolitik Englands im 14 Jahrh. in Sitzungsberichte d. kaiserl. Akademie d. Wissenschaften in Wien, Vienna, 1897.—G. Kriehn: Studies in the Sources of the Social Revol. of 1381, Am. Hist. Rev., Jan.-Oct., 1902.—C. Oman: The Great Revolt in 1381, Oxford, 1906.—Traill: Social Engl., vol. II., London, 1894.—Rogers: Six Centt. of Work and Wages.—Cunningham: Growth of Engl. Industry.

For §§ 40–42. John Wyclif.—I. The publication of Wyclif’s works belongs almost wholly to the last twenty-five years, and began with the creation of the Wyclif Society, 1882, which was due to a summons from German scholars. In 1858, Shirley, Fasc., p. xlvi, could write, "Of Wyc’s Engl. writings nothing but two short tracts have seen the light," and in 1883, Loserth spoke of his tractates "mouldering in the dust." The MSS. are found for the most part in the libraries of Oxford, Prag and Vienna. The Trialogus was publ. Basel, 1525, and Wycliffe’s Wycket, in Engl., Nürnberg, 1546. Reprinted at Oxford, 1828.—Latin Works, ed. by the Wyclif Soc., organized, 1882, in answer to Buddensieg’s appeal in the Academy, Sept. 17, 1881, 31 vols., London, 1884–1907.—De officia pastorli, ed. by Lechler, Leipzig, 1863.—Trialogus, ed. by Lechler, Oxford, 1869.—De veritate sac. Scripturae, ed. by Rudolf Buddensieg, 3 vols., Leipzig, 1904.—De potestate papae, ed. by Loserth, London, 1907.—Engl. Works: Three Treatises, by J. Wyclffe, ed. by J. H. Todd, Dublin, 1851.—*Select Engl. Works, ed. by Thos. Arnold, 3 vols., Oxford, 1869–1871.—*Engl. Works Hitherto Unprinted, ed. by F. D. Matthew, London, 1880, with valuable Introd.—*Wyclif’s trans. of the Bible, ed. by Forshall and Madden, 4 vols., Oxford, 1850.—His New Test. with Introd. and Glossary, by W. W. Skeat, Cambridge, 1879.—The trans. of Job, Pss., Prov., Eccles. and Canticles, Cambridge, 1881.—For list of Wyclif’s works, see Canon W. W. Shirley: Cat. of the Works of J. W., Oxford, 1865. He lists 96 Latin and 65 Engl. writings.—Also Lechler in his Life of Wiclif, II. 559–573, Engl. trans., pp. 483–498.—Also Rashdall’s list in Dict. of Nat. Biog.—II. Biographical.—Thomas Netter of Walden, a Carmelite, d. 1430: Fasciculi zizaniorum Magistri Joh. Wyclif cum tritico (Bundles of tares of J. Wyc. with the wheat), a collection of indispensable documents and narrations, ed. by Shirley, with valuable Introd., Rolls Ser., London, 1858.—Also Doctrinale fidei christianae Adv. Wicleffitas et Hussitas in his Opera, Paris, 1532, best ed., 3 vols., Venice, 1757. Walden could discern no defects in the friars, and represented the opposite extreme from Wyclif. He sat in the Council of Pisa, was provincial of his order in England, and confessor to Henry V.—The contemporary works given above, Chron. Angliae, Walsingham, Knighton, etc.—England in the Time of Wycliffe in trans. and reprints, Dept. of Hist. Univ. of Pa., 1895.—John Foxe: Book of Martyrs, London, 1632, etc.— John Lewis: Hist. of the Life and Sufferings of J. W., Oxford, 1720, etc., and 1820.—R. Vaughan: Life and Opinions of J. de Wycliffe, 2 vols., London, 1828, 2d ed., 1831.—V. Lechler: J. von Wiclif und die Vorgesch. der Reformation, 2 vols., Leipzig, 1873.—*Engl. trans., J. W. and his Engl. Precursors, with valuable Notes by Peter Lorimer, 2 vols., London, 1878, new edd., 1 vol., 1881, 1884.—*R. Buddensieg: J. Wiclif und seine Zeit, Gotha, 1883. Also J. W. as Patriot and Reformer, London, 1884.—E. S. Holt: J. de W., the First Reformer, and what he did for England, London, 1884.—V. Vattier: J. W., sa vie, ses oeuvres et sa doctrine, Paris, 1886.—*J. Loserth: Hus und Wiclif, Prag and Leipzig, 1883, Engl. trans., London, 1884. Also W.’s Lehre v. wahrem u. falschem Papsttum, in Hist. Zeitschrift, 1907, p. 237 sqq.—L. Sergeant: John Wyclif, New York, 1893.—H. B. Workman: The Age of Wyclif, London, 1901.—Geo. S. Innes: J. W., Cin’ti.—J. C. Carrick: Wyc. and the Lollards, London, 1908.—C. Bigg, in Wayside Sketches in Eccles. Hist., London, 1906.—For other Biogg., see Shirley: Fasciculus, p. 531 sqq.—III. J. L. Poole: W. and Movements for Reform, London, 1889, and W.’s Doctr. of Lordship in Illustr. of Med. Thought, 1884.—Wiegand: De Eccles. notione quid Wiclif docuerit, Leipzig, 1891.—*G. M. Trevelyan: Engl. In The Age Of W., London, 2d ed., 1899.—Powell and Trevelyan: The Peasants’ Rising and the Lollards, London, 1899.—H. Fürstenau: J. von W.’s Lehren v. d. Stellung d. weltl. Gewalt, Berlin, 1900.—Haddan and Stubbs: Councils and Eccles. Docts.—Gee and Hardy.—Stubbs: Constit. Hist., III. 314–374.—The Histt. of Capes, Green and Lingard, vol. IV.—The Histt. of the Engl. Bible, by Eadie, Westcott, Moulton, Stoughton, Mombert, etc.—Matthew: Authorship of the Wycliffite Bible, Engl. Hist. Rev., January, 1895.—Gasquet: The Eve of the Reformation, new ed., London, 1905; The Old Engl. Bible and Other Essays, London, 1908.—R. S. Storrs: J. Wyc. and the First Engl. Bible in Sermons and Addresses, Boston, 1902. An eloquent address delivered in New York on the 500th anniversary of the appearance of Wyclif’s New Test.—Rashdall in Dict. of Natl. Biog., LXIII. 202–223.—G. S. Innis: Wycliffe Cinti.

For § 43. Lollards.—The works noted above of Knighton, Walsingham, Rymer’s Foedera, the Chron. Angliae, Walden’s Fasc. ziz., Foxe’s Book of Martyrs. Also Adam Usk: Chronicle.—Thos. Wright: Polit. Poems and Songs, Rolls Ser., 2 vols., London, 1859.—Fredericq: Corp. inquis. Neerl., vols. I.-III.—Reginald Pecock: The Repressor of overmuch Blaming of the Clergy, ed. by Babington, Rolls Ser., 2 vols., London, 1860.—The Histt. of Engl. and the Church of Engl.—A. M. Brown: Leaders of the Lollards, London, 1848.—W. H. Summers: Our Lollard Ancestors, London, 1904.—*James Gairdner: Lollardy and the Reform. in Engl., 2 vols., London, 1908.—E. P. Cheyney: The Recantations of the Early Lollards, Am. Hist. Rev., April, 1899.—H. S. Cronin: The Twelve Conclusions of the Lollards, Engl. Hist. Rev., April, 1907.—Art. Lollarden, by Buddensieg in Herzog, XI. 615–626.—The works of Trevelyan and Forshall and Madden, cited above, and Oldcastle, vol. XLII. 86–93, and other artt. in Dict. of Nat. Biog.

For §§ 44–46. John Huss. — Hist. et monumenta J. Hus atque Hieronymi Pragensis, confessorum Christi, 2 vols., Nürnberg, 1558, Frankfurt, 1715. I have used the Frankfurt ed.—W. Flajshans: Mag. J. Hus Expositio Decalogi, Prag, 1903; De corpore Christi: De sanguine Christi, Prag, 1904; Sermones de sanctis, Prag, 1908; Super quatuor sententiarum, etc.—*Francis Palacky: Documenta Mag. J. Hus, vitam, doctrinam, causam in Constantiensi actam consilio illustrantia, 1403–1418, pp. 768, Prag, 1869. Largely from unpublished sources. Contains the account of Peter of Mladenowitz, who was with Huss at Constance.—K. J. Erben (archivarius of Prag): Mistra Jana Husi sebrané spisy Czeske. A collection of Huss’ Bohemian writings, 3 vols., Prag, 1865–1868.—Trans. of Huss’ Letters, first by Luther, Wittenberg, 1536 (four of them, together with an account by Luther of Huss’ trial and death), republ. by C. von Kügelgen, Leipzig, 1902.—Mackenzie: Huss’ Letters, Edinburgh, 1846.—*H. B. Workman and B. M. Pope: Letters of J. Hus with Notes.—For works on the Council of Constance, see Mansi, vol. XXVIII., Van der Hardt, Finke, Richental etc., see § 12.—C. von Höfler: Geschichtsschreiber der hussitischen Bewegung, 3 vols., Vienna, 1856–1866. Contains Mladenowitz and other contemporary documents.—*Palacky, a descendant of the Bohemian Brethren, d. 1876: Geschichte von Böhmen, Prag, 1836 sqq., 3d ed., 5 vols., 1864 sqq. Vol. III. of the first ed. was mutilated at Vienna by the censor of the press (the office not being abolished till 1848), on account of the true light in which Huss was placed. Nevertheless, it made such an impression that Baron Helfert was commissioned to write a reply, which appeared, Prag, 1867, pp. 287. In 1870, Palacky publ. a second ed. of vol. III., containing all the excerpted parts.—Palacky: Die Vorlaeufer des Hussitenthums in Böhmen, Prag, 1869.—L. Köhler: J. Hus u. s. Zeit, 3 vols., Leipzig, 1846.—E. H. Gillett, Prof. in New York Univ., d. New York, 1876: Life and Times of J. Huss, 2 vols., Boston, 1863, 3d ed., 1871.—W. Berger: J. Hus u. König Sigismund, Augsburg, 1871.—Bonnechose: J. Hus u. das Concil zu Kostnitz, Germ. trans., 3d ed., Leipzig, 1870.—F. v. Bezold: Zur Gesch. d. Husitenthums, Munich, 1874.—E. Denis: Huss et la guerre des Hussites, Paris, l878.—A. H. Wratislaw: J. Hus, London, 1882.—*J. Loserth: Wiclif and Hus, also Beiträge zur Gesch. der Hussit. Bewegung, 5 small vols., 1877–1895, reprinted from magazines. Also Introd. to his ed. of Wiclif’s De ecclesia. Also art. J. Huss in Herzog, Encyc., VIII. 473–489.—Lechler: J. Hus, Leipzig, 1890.—*J. H. Wylie: The Counc. of Constance to the Death of J. Hus, London, 1900.—*H. B. Workman: The Dawn of the Reformation, The Age of Hus, London, 1902.—Lea: Hist. of the Inquis., II. 431–566.—Hefele, vol. VII.—*J. B. Schwab: J. Gerson, pp. 527–609.—Tschackert: Von Ailli, pp. 218–235.—W. Faber and J. Kurth: Wie sah Hus aus? Berlin, 1907.—Also J. Huss by Lützow, N. Y., 1909, and Kuhr, Cinti.

For § 47. The Hussites.—Mansi, XXVII, XXIX.—Haller: Concil. Basiliense.—Bezold: König Sigismund und d. Reichskriege gegen d. Husiten, 3 vols., Munich, 1872–1877.—*Jaroslav Goll: Quellen und Untersuchungen zur Gesch. der Böhmischen Brüder, 2 vols., Prag, 1878–1882.—*L. Keller: Die Reformation und die aelteren Reformparteien, Leipzig, 1885.—W. Preger: Ueber das Verhältniss der Taboriten zu den Waldesiern des 14ten Jahrh., 1887.—Haupt: Waldenserthum und Inquisition im südöstlichen, Deutschland, Freiburg i. Br., 1890.—H. Herre: Die Husitenverhandlungen, 1429, in Quellen u. Forschungen d. Hist. Inst. von Rom, 1899.—*E. Müller: Böhm. Brüder, Herzog, III. 445–467.—E. De Schweinitz: The Hist. of the Church known as the Unitas Fratrum, Bethlehem, 1885.—Also Hergenröther-Kirsch: Kirchengesch., II. 886–903.

§ 39. The Church in England in the Fourteenth Century.

The 14th century witnessed greater social changes in England than any other century except the 19th. These changes were in large part a result of the hundred years’ war with France, which began in 1337, and the terrible ravages of the Black Death. The century was marked by the legal adoption of the English tongue as the language of the country and the increased respect for parliament, in whose counsels the rich burgher class demanded a voice, and its definite division into two houses, 1341. The social unrest of the land found expression in popular harangues, poems, and tracts, affirming the rights of the villein and serf class, and in the uprising known as the Peasants’ Revolt.

The distinctly religious life of England, in this period, was marked by obstinate resistance to the papal claims of jurisdiction, culminating in the Acts of Provisors, and by the appearance of John Wyclif, one of the most original and vigorous personalities the English Church has produced.

An industrial revolution was precipitated on the island by the Great Pestilence of 1348. The necessities of life rose enormously in value. Large tracts of land passed back from the smaller tenants into the hands of the landowners of the gentry class. The sheep and the cattle, as a contemporary wrote, "strayed through the fields and grain, and there was no one who could drive them." The serfs and villeins found in the disorder of society an opportunity to escape from the yoke of servitude, and discovered in roving or in independent engagements the joys of a new-found freedom. These unsettled conditions called forth the famous statutes of Edward III.’s reign, 1327–1377, regulating wages and the prices of commodities.

The popular discontent arising from these regulations, and from the increased taxation necessitated by the wars with France, took the form of organized rebellion. The age of feudalism was coming to an end. The old ideas of labor and the tiller of the soil were beginning to give way before more just modes of thought. Among the agitators were John Ball, whom Froissart, with characteristic aristocratic indifference, called "the mad priest of Kent," the poet Longland and the insurgent leader, Watt Tyler. In his harangues, Ball fired popular feeling by appeals to the original rights of man. By what right, he exclaimed, "they, who are called lords, greater folk than we? On what grounds do they hold us in vassalage? Do not we all come from the same father and mother, Adam and Eve?" The spirit of individual freedom breathed itself out in the effective rhyme, which ran like wildfire, —

When Adam delved and Eve span

Who was then the gentleman?

The rhymes, which Will Longland sent forth in his Complaint of Piers Ploughman, ventilated the sufferings and demands of the day laborer and called for fair treatment such as brother has a right to expect from brother. Gentleman and villein faced the same eternal destinies. "Though he be thine underling," the poet wrote, "mayhap in heaven, he will be worthier set and with more bliss than thou." The rising sense of national importance and individual dignity was fed by the victory of Crécy, 1346, where the little iron balls, used for the first time, frightened the horses; by the battle of Poictiers ten years later; by the treaty of Brétigny, 1360, whereby Edward was confirmed in the possession of large portions of France, and by the exploits of the Black Prince. The spectacle of the French king, John, a captive on the streets of London, made a deep impression. These events and the legalization of the English tongue, 1362,536536    Mandeville composed his travels in 1356 in French, and then translated out of French into English, that every man of his nation might understand. Trevisa, writing in 1387, said that all grammar schools and English children "leaveth French and construeth and learneth English." contributed to develop a national and patriotic sentiment before unknown in England.

The uprising, which broke out in 1381, was a vigorous assertion of the popular demand for a redress of the social inequalities between classes in England. The insurgent bands, which marched to London, were pacified by the fair promises of Richard II., but the Kentish band led by Watt Tyler, before dispersing, took the Tower and put the primate, Sudbury, to death. He had refused to favor the repeal of the hated decapitation tax. The abbeys of St. Albans and Edmondsbury were plundered and the monks ill treated, but these acts of violence were a small affair compared with the perpetual import of the uprising for the social and industrial well-being of the English people. The demands of the insurgents, as they bore on the clergy, insisted that Church lands and goods, after sufficient allowance had been made for the reasonable wants of the clergy, should be distributed among the parishioners, and that there should be a single bishop for England. This involved a rupture with Rome.537537    See Kriehn, AmHist. Rev., pp. 480, 483.

It was inevitable that the Church should feel the effects of these changes. Its wealth, which is computed to have covered one-third of the landed property of the realm, and the idleness and mendicancy of the friars, awakened widespread murmur and discontent. The ravages made among the clergy by the Black Death rendered necessary extraordinary measures to recruit its ranks. The bishop of Norwich was authorized to replace the dead by ordaining 60 young men before the canonical age. With the rise of the staples of living, the stipends of the vast body of the priestly class was rendered still more inadequate. Archbishop Islip of Canterbury and other prelates, while recognizing in their pastorals the prevalent unrest, instead of showing proper sympathy, condemned the covetousness of the clergy. On the other hand, Longland wrote of the shifts to which they were put to eke out a living by accepting secular and often menial employment in the royal palace and the halls of the gentry class.

Parson and parish priest pleyned to the bishop,

That their parishes were pore sith the pestilence tym,

To have a license and a leve at London to dwelle

And syngen there for symonye, for silver is swete.

There was a movement from within the English people to limit the power of the bishops and to call forth spirituality and efficiency in the clergy. The bishops, powerful as they remained, were divested of some of their prestige by the parliamentary decision of 1370, restricting high offices of state to laymen. The first lay chancellor was appointed in 1340. The bishop, however, was a great personage, and woe to the parish that did not make fitting preparations for his entertainment and have the bells rung on his arrival. Archbishop Arundel, Foxe quaintly says, "took great snuff and did suspend all such as did not receive him with the noise of bells." Each diocese had its own prison, into which the bishop thrust refractory clerics for penance or severer punishment.

The mass of the clergy had little learning. The stalls and canonries, with attractive incomes, where they did not go to foreigners, were regarded as the proper prizes of the younger sons of noblemen. On the other hand, the prelates lived in abundance. The famous bishop of Winchester, William of Wykeham, counted fifty manors of his own. In the larger ones, official residences were maintained, including hall and chapel. This prelate travelled from one to the other, taking reckonings of his stewards, receiving applications for the tonsure and ordination and attending to other official business. Many of the lower clergy were taken from the villein class, whose sons required special exemption to attend school. The day they received orders they were manumitted.

The benefit of clergy, so called, continued to be a source of injustice to the people at large. By the middle of the 13th century, the Church’s claim to tithes was extended not only to the products of the field, but the poultry of the yard and the cattle of the stall, to the catch of fish and the game of the forests. Wills almost invariably gave to the priest "the best animal" or the "best quick good." The Church received and gave not back, and, in spite of the statute of Mortmain, bequests continued to be made to her. It came, however, to be regarded as a settled principle that the property of Church and clergy was amenable to civil taxation, and bishops, willingly or by compulsion, loaned money to the king. The demands of the French campaigns made such taxation imperative.

Indulgences were freely announced to procure aid for the building of churches, as in the case of York Cathedral, 1396, the erection of bridges, the filling up of muddy roads and for other public improvements. The clergy, though denied the right of participating in bowling and even in the pastime of checkers, took part in village festivities such as the Church-ale, a sort of mediaeval donation party, in which there was general merrymaking, ale was brewed, and the people drank freely to the health of the priest and for the benefit of the Church. As for the morals of the clergy, care must always be had not to base sweeping statements upon delinquencies which are apt to be emphasized out of proportion to their extent. It is certain, however, that celibacy was by no means universally enforced, and frequent notices occur of dispensations given to clergymen of illegitimate birth. Bishop Quevil of Exeter complained that priests with families invested their savings for the benefit of their marital partners and their children. In the next period, in 1452, De la Bere, bishop of St. David’s, by his own statement, drew 400 marks yearly from priests for the privilege of having concubines, a noble, equal in value to a mark, from each one.538538    Gascoigne, as quoted by Gairdner: Lollardy and the Reform., I. 262. Glower, in his Vox clamantis, gave a dark picture of clerical habits, and charges the clergy with coarse vices such as now are scarcely dreamed of. The Church historian, Capes, concludes that "immorality and negligence were widely spread among the clergy."539539    p. 253 The decline of discipline among the friars, and their rude manners, a prominent feature of the times, came in for the strictures of Fitzralph of Armagh, severe condemnation at the hands of Wyclif and playful sarcasm from the pen of Chaucer. The zeal for learning which had characterized them on their first arrival in England, early in the 13th century, had given way to self-satisfied idleness. Fitzralph, who was fellow of Balliol, and probably chancellor of the University of Oxford, before being raised to the episcopate, incurred the hostility of the friars by a series of sermons against the Franciscan theory of evangelical poverty. He claimed it was not scriptural nor derived from the customs of the primitive Church. For his temerity he was compelled to answer at Avignon, where he seems to have died about the year 1360.540540    His Defensio curatorum contra eos qui privilegatos se dicunt is printed in Goldast, II. 466 sqq. See art. Fitzralph, by R. L. Poole, Dict. of Nat. Biog., XIX. 194-198. Four books of Fitzralph’s De pauperie salvatoris were printed for the first time by Poole in his ed. of Wyclif’s De dominio, pp. 257-477. As for libraries, Fitzralph says that in every English convent there was a grand library. On the other hand, the author of the Philobiblion, Rich. de Bury, charges the friars with losing their interest in books. Of the four orders of mendicants, the Franciscans, Dominicans, Carmelites and Augustinians, Longland sang that they

Preached the people for profit and themselve

Glosed the Gospel as them good lyked,

For covetis of copis construed it as they would.

Of the ecclesiastics of the century, if we except Wyclif, probably the most noted are Thomas Bradwardine and William of Wykeham, the one the representative of scholarly study, the other of ecclesiastical power. Bradwardine, theologian, phiIosopher, mathematician and astronomer, was a student at Merton College, Oxford, 1325. At Avignon, whither he went to receive consecration to the see of Canterbury, 1349, he had a strange experience. During the banquet given by Clement VI. the doors were thrown open and a clown entered, seated on a jackass, and humbly petitioned the pontiff to be made archbishop of Canterbury. This insult, gotten up by Clement’s nephew Hugo, cardinal of Tudela, and other members of the sacred college, was in allusion to the remark made by the pope that, if the king of England would ask him to appoint a jackass to a bishopric, he would not dare to refuse. The sport throws an unpleasant light upon the ideals of the curia, but at the same time bears witness to the attempt which was being made in England to control the appointment of ecclesiastics. Bradwardine enjoyed such an enviable reputation that Wyclif and other English contemporaries gave him the title, the Profound Doctor—doctor profundus.541541    Wyclif: De verit. scr., I. 30, 109, etc. In his chief work on grace and freewill, delivered as a series of lectures at Merton, he declared that the Church was running after Pelagius.542542    De causa Dei contra Pelagium et de virtute causarum ad suos Mertinenses, ed. by Sir Henry Saville, London, 1618. For other works, see Seeberg’s art. in Herzog, III. 350, and Stephens in Dict. of Nat. Biog., VI. 188 sq. Also S. Hahn, Thos. Bradwardinus, und seine Lehre von d. menschl. Willensfreiheit, Münster, 1905. In the philosophical schools he had rarely heard anything about grace, but all day long the assertions that we are masters of our own wills. He was a determinist. All things, he affirmed, which occur, occur by the necessity of the first cause. In his Nun’s Tale, speaking of God’s predestination, Chaucer says:—

But he cannot boult it to the bren

As can the holie doctour, S. Austin,

Or Boece (Boethius), or the Bishop Bradwardine.

Wykeham, 1324–1404, the pattern of a worldly and aristocratic prelate, was an unblushing pluralist, and his see of Winchester is said to have brought him in £60,000 of our money annually. In 1361 alone, he received prebends in St. Paul’s, Hereford, Salisbury, St. David’s, Beverley, Bromyard, Wherwell Abergwili, and Llanddewi Brewi, and in the following year Lincoln, York, Wells and Hastings. He occupied for a time the chief office of chancellor, but fell into disrepute. His memory is preserved in Winchester School and in New College, Oxford, which he founded. The princely endowment of New College, the first stones of which were laid in 1387, embraced 100 scholarships. These gifts place Wykeham in the first rank of English patrons of learning at the side of Cardinal Wolsey. He also has a place in the manuals of the courtesies of life by his famous words, "Manners makyth man."543543    See art. by Tait in Dict. of Nat. Biog., LXIII. 225-231.

The struggles of previous centuries against the encroachment of Rome upon the temporalities of the English Church was maintained in this period. The complaint made by Matthew Paris544544    Rolls Series, IV. 559. that the English Church was kept between two millstones, the king and the pope, remained true, with this difference, however, the king’s influence came to preponderate. Acts of parliament emphasized his right to dictate or veto ecclesiastical appointments and recognized his sovereign prerogative to tax Church property. The evident support which the pope gave to France in her wars with England and the scandals of the Avignon residence were favorable to the crown’s assertion of authority in these respects. Wyclif frequently complained that the pope and cardinals were "in league with the enemies of the English kingdom"545545    De eccles., p. 332 and the papal registers of the Avignon period, which record the appeals sent to the English king to conclude peace with France, almost always mention terms that would have made France the gainer. At the outbreak of the war, 1339, Edward III. proudly complained that it broke his heart to see that the French troops were paid in part with papal funds.546546    Walsingham, Hist. Angl., I. 200 sqq., and the pope’s reply, p. 208 sqq. Benedict showed his complete devotion to the French king when he wrote that, if he had two souls, one of them should be given for him. Quoted by Loserth, Stud. Zur Kirchenpol., p. 20.

The three most important religious acts of England between John’s surrender of his crown to Innocent III. and the Act of Supremacy, 1534, were the parliamentary statutes of Mortmain, 1279, of Provisors, 1351, and for the burning of heretics, 1401. The statute of Mortmain or Dead-hand forbade the alienation of lands so as to remove them from the obligation of service or taxation to the secular power. The statute of Provisors, renewed and enlarged in the acts of Praemunire, 1353, 1390 and 1393, concerned the subject of the papal rights over appointments and the temporalities of the English Church. This old bone of contention was taken up early in the 14th century in the statute of Carlyle, 1307,547547    Gee and Hardy, pp. 92-94. which forbade aliens, appointed to visit religious houses in England, taking moneys with them out of the land and also the payment of tallages and impositions laid upon religious establishments from abroad. In 1343, parliament called upon the pope to recall all "reservations, provisions and collations" which, as it affirmed, checked Church improvements and the flow of alms. It further protested against the appointment of aliens to English livings, "some of them our enemies who know not our language." Clement VI., replying to the briefs of the king and parliament, declared that, when he made provisions and reservations, it was for the good of the Church, and exhorted Edward to act as a Catholic prince should and to permit nothing to be done in his realm inimical to the Roman Church and ecclesiastical liberty. Such liberty the pope said he would "defend as having to give account at the last judgment." Liberty in this case meant the free and unhampered exercise of the lordly claims made by his predecessors from Hildebrand down.548548    For the text of the parliamentary brief and the king’s letter, which was written in French, see Merimuth, p. 138 sqq., 153 sqq., and for Clement’s reply, Bliss, III., 9 sqq. Thomas Fuller was close to the truth, when, defining papal provisions and reservations, he wrote, "When any bishopric, abbot’s place, dignity or good living (aquila non capit muscas — the eagle does not take note of flies) was like to be void, the pope, by a profitable prolepsis to himself, predisposed such places to such successors as he pleased. By this device he defeated, when he so pleased, the legal election of all convents and rightful presentation of all patrons."

The memorable statute of Provisors forbade all papal provisions and reservations and all taxation of Church property contrary to the customs of England. The act of 1353 sought more effectually to clip the pope’s power by forbidding the carrying of any suit against an English patron before a foreign tribunal.549549    See the texts of these statutes in Gee and Hardy, 103 sqq., 112-123. With reference to the renewal of the act in 1390, Fuller quaintly says: "It mauled the papal power in the land. Some former laws had pared the pope’s nails to the quick, but this cut off his fingers."

To these laws the pope paid only so much heed as expediency required. This claim, made by one of his predecessors in the bull Cupientes, to the right to fill all the benefices of Christendom, he had no idea of abandoning, and, whenever it was possible, he provided for his hungry family of cardinals and other ecclesiastics out of the proverbially fat appointments of England. Indeed, the cases of such appointments given by Merimuth, and especially in the papal books as printed by Bliss, are so recurrent that one might easily get the impression that the pontiff’s only concern for the English Church was to see that its livings were put into the hands of foreigners. I have counted the numbers in several places as given by Bliss. On one page, 4 out of 9 entries were papal appointments. A section of 2½ pages announces "provisions of a canonry, with expectation of a prebend" in the following churches: 7 in Lincoln, 5 in Salisbury, 2 in Chichester, and 1 each in Wells, York, Exeter, St. Patrick’s, Dublin, Moray, Southwell, Howden, Ross, Aberdeen, Wilton.550550    II. 345; III. 54 sq. Prebend has reference to the stipend, canonry to the office. From 1342–1385 the deanery of York was held successively by three Roman cardinals. In 1374, the incomes of the treasurer, dean and two archdeaneries of Salisbury went the same way. At the close of Edward III.’s reign, foreign cardinals held the deaneries of York, Salisbury and Lichfield, the archdeanery of Canterbury, reputed to be the richest of English preferments, and innumerable prebends. Bishops and abbots-elect had to travel to Avignon and often spend months and much money in securing confirmation to their appointments, and, in cases, the prelate-elect was set aside on the ground that provision had already been made for his office. As for sees reserved by the pope, Stubbs gives the following list, extending over a brief term of years: Worcester, Hereford, Durham and Rochester, 1317; Lincoln and Winchester, 1320; Lichfield, 1322; Winchester, 1328; Carlisle and Norwich, 1825; Worcester, Exeter and Hereford, 1827; Bath, 1829; Durham, Canterbury, Winchester and Worcester, 1334. Provisions were made in full recognition of the plural system. Thus, Walter of London, the king’s confessor, was appointed by the pope to the deanery of Wells, though, as stated in the papal brief, he already held a considerable list of "canonries and prebends," Lincoln, Salisbury, St. Paul, St. Martin Le Grand, London, Bridgenorth, Hastings and Hareswell in the diocese of Salisbury.551551    Bliss, II. 521. Cases of the payment of large sums for appointments to the pope and of the disappointed ecclesiastics-elect are given in Merimuth, pp. 31, 57, 59, 60, 61, 71, 120, 124, 172, etc., Bliss and others. Merimuth, p. 67, etc., refers constant]y to the bribery used by such expressions as causa pecunialiter cognita, and non sine magna pecuniae quantitate. In cases, the pope renounced the right of provision, as Clement V., in 1308, the livings held in commendam by the cardinal of St. Sabina, and valued at 1000 marks. See Bliss, II. 48. For the cases of agents sent by two cardinals to England to collect the incomes of their livings, and their imprisonment, see Walsingham, I. 259 By the practice of promoting bishops from one see to another, the pope accomplished for his favorites what he could not have done in any other way. Thus, by the promotion of Sudbury in 1874 to Canterbury, the pope was able to translate Courtenay from Hereford to London, and Gilbert from Bangor to Hereford, and thus by a single stroke he was enriched by the first-fruits of four sees.

In spite of legislation, the papal collectors continued to ply their trade in England, but less publicly and confidently than in the two preceding centuries. In 1379, Urban VI. sent Cosmatus Gentilis as his nuncio and collector-in-chief, with instructions that he and his subcollectors make speedy returns to Rome, especially of Peter’s pence.552552    Bliss IV. 257. In 1375, Gregory XI. had called upon the archbishops of Canterbury and York to collect a tax of 60,000 florins for the defence of the lands of the Apostolic see, the English benefices, however, held by cardinals being exempted. The chronicler Merimuth, in a noteworthy paragraph summing up the curial practice of foraging upon the English sees and churches, emphasizes the persistence and shrewdness with which the Apostolic chair from the time of Clement V. had extorted gold and riches as though the English might be treated as barbarians. John XXII. he represents as having reserved all the good livings of England. Under Benedict XII., things were not so bad. Benedict’s successor, Clement VI., was of all the offenders the most unscrupulous, reserving for himself or distributing to members of the curia the fattest places in England. England’s very enemies, as Merimuth continues, were thus put into possession of English revenues, and the proverb became current at Avignon that the English were like docile asses bearing all the burdens heaped upon them.553553    Inter curiales vertitur in proverbium quod Anglici sunt boni asini, omnia onera eis imposita et intolerabilia supportantes. Merimuth, p. 175. To these burdens imposed upon England by the papal see were added, as in Matthew Paris’ times, severe calamities from rain and cold. Merimuth tells of a great flood in 1339, when the rain fell from October to the first of December, so that the country looked like a continuous sea. Then bitter cold setting in, the country looked like one field of ice. This prodigal Frenchman threatened Edward III. with excommunication and the land with interdict, if resistance to his appointments did not cease and if their revenues continued to be withheld. The pope died in 1353, before the date set for the execution of his wrathful threat. While France was being made English by English arms, the Italian and French ecclesiastics were making conquest of England’s resources.

The great name of Wyclif, which appears distinctly in 1366, represents the patriotic element in all its strength. In his discussions of lordship, presented in two extensive treatises, he set forth the theory of the headship of the sovereign over the temporal affairs of the Church in his own dominions, even to the seizure of its temporalities. In him, the Church witnessed an ecclesiastic of equal metal with Thomas à Becket, a man, however, who did not stoop, in his love for his order, to humiliate the state under the hand of the Church. He represented the popular will, the common sense of mankind in regard to the province of the Church, the New Testament theory of the spiritual sphere. Had he not been practically alone, he would have anticipated by more than two centuries the limitation of the pope’s power in England.

§ 40. John Wyclif.

"A good man was there of religioun

That was a pore Persone of a town;

But rich he was of holy thought and werk;

He was also a lerned man, a clerk,

That Christes gospel trewly wolde preche.

* * * * * * *

This noble ensample to his shepe he gaf,

That first he wrought and after that he taught.

* * * * * * *

A better priest I trow that nowhere non is,

He waited after no pompe ne reverence;

Ne maked him no spiced conscience,

But Christes lore and his apostles twelve

He taught, but first he folwed it himselve."554554    Often supposed to be a description of Wyclif.

Chaucer.

The title, Reformers before the Reformation, has been aptly given to a group of men of the 14th and 15th centuries who anticipated many of the teachings of Luther and the Protestant Reformers. They stand, each by himself, in solitary prominence, Wyclif in England, John Huss in Bohemia, Savonarola in Florence, and Wessel, Goch and Wesel in Northern Germany. To these men the sculptor has given a place on the pedestal of his famous group at Worms representing the Reformation of the 16th century. They differ, if we except the moral reformer, Savonarola, from the group of the German mystics, who sought a purification of life in quiet ways, in having expressed open dissent from the Church’s ritual and doctrinal teachings. They also differ from the group of ecclesiastical reformers, D’Ailly, Gerson, Nicolas of Clamanges, who concerned themselves with the fabric of the canon law and did not go beyond the correction of abuses in the administration and morals of the Church. Wyclif and his successors were doctrinal reformers. In some views they had been anticipated by Marsiglius of Padua and the other assailants of the papacy of the early half of the 14th century.

John Wyclif, called the Morning Star of the Reformation, and, at the time of his death, in England and in Bohemia the Evangelical doctor,555555    Fasciculi, p. 362. was born about 1324 near the village of Wyclif, Yorkshire, in the diocese of Durham.556556    Leland’s Itinerary placed Wyclif’s birth in 1324. Buddensieg and Rashdall prefer 1330. Leland, our first authority for the place of birth, mentions Spresswell (Hipswell) and Wyclif-on-Tees, places a half a mile apart. Wyclif’s name is spelled in more than twenty different ways, as Wiclif, accepted by Lechler, Loserth, Buddensieg and German scholars generally; Wiclef, Wicliffe, Wicleff, Wycleff. Wycliffe, adopted by Foxe, Milman, Poole, Stubbs, Rashdall, Bigg; Wyclif preferred by Shirley, Matthew, Sergeant, the Wyclif Society, the Early English Text Society, etc. The form Wyclif is found in a diocesan register of 1361, when the Reformer was warden of Balliol College. The earliest mention in an official state document, July 26, 1374, gives it Wiclif. On Wyclif’s birthplace, see Shirley, Fasciculi, p. x sqq. His own writings give scarcely a clew to the events of his career, and little can be gathered from his immediate contemporaries. He was of Saxon blood. His studies were pursued at Oxford, which had six colleges. He was a student at Balliol and master of that hall in 1361. He was also connected with Merton and Queen’s, and was probably master of Canterbury Hall, founded by Archbishop Islip.557557    A Wyclif is mentioned in connection with all of these colleges. The question is whether there were not two John Wyclifs. A John de Whyteclyve was rector of Mayfield, 1361, and later of Horsted Kaynes, where he died, 1383. In 1365 Islip, writing from Mayfield, appointed a John Wyclyve warden of Canterbury Hall. Shirley, Note on the two Wiclifs, in the Fasciculi, p. 513 sqq., advocated the view that this Wyclif was a different person from our John Wyclif, and he is followed by Poole, Rashdall and Sergeant. Principal Wilkinson of Marlborough College, Ch. Quart. Rev., October, 1877, makes a strong statement against this view; Lechler and Buddensieg, the two leading German authorities on Wyclif’s career, also admit only a single Wyclif as connected with the Oxford Halls. He was appointed in succession to the livings of Fillingham, 1363, Ludgershall, 1368, and by the king’s appointment, to Lutterworth, 1374. The living of Lutterworth was valued at £26 a year.

Wyclif occupies a distinguished place as an Oxford schoolman, a patriot, a champion of theological and practical reforms and the translator of the Scriptures into English. The papal schism, occurring in the midst of his public career, had an important bearing on his views of papal authority.

So far as is known, he confined himself, until 1366, to his duties in Oxford and his parish work. In that year he appears as one of the king’s chaplains and as opposed to the papal supremacy in the ecclesiastial affairs of the realm. The parliament of the same year refused Urban V.’s demand for the payment of the tribute, promised by King John, which was back 33 years. John, it declared, had no right to obligate the kingdom to a foreign ruler without the nation’s consent. Wyclif, if not a member of this body, was certainly an adviser to it.558558    So Lechler, who advances strong arguments in favor of this view. Loserth, who is followed by Rashdall, brings considerations against it, and places Wyclif’s first appearance as a political reformer in 1376. Studien zur Kirchenpol., etc., pp. 1, 32, 35, 44, 60. A serious difficulty with this view is that it crowds almost all the Reformer’s writings into 7 years.

In the summer of 1374, Wyclif went to Bruges as a member of the commission appointed by the king to negotiate peace with France and to treat with the pope’s agents on the filling of ecclesiastical appointments in England. His name was second in the list of commissioners following the name of the bishop of Bangor. At Bruges we find him for the first time in close association with John of Gaunt, Edward’s favorite son, an association which continued for several years, and for a time inured to his protection from ecclesiastical violence.559559    John of Gaunt, duke of Lancaster, was the younger brother of the Black Prince. The prince had returned from his victories in France to die of an incurable disease.

On his return to England, he began to speak as a religious reformer. He preached in Oxford and London against the pope’s secular sovereignty, running about, as the old chronicler has it, from place to place, and barking against the Church.560560    Chron. Angl., p. 115 sq. It was soon after this that, in one of his tracts, he styled the bishop of Rome "the anti-Christ, the proud, worldly priest of Rome, and the most cursed of clippers and cut-purses." He maintained that-he "has no more power in binding and loosing than any priest, and that the temporal lords may seize the possessions of the clergy if pressed by necessity." The duke of Lancaster, the clergy’s open foe, headed a movement to confiscate ecclesiastical property. Piers Ploughman had an extensive public opinion behind him when he exclaimed, "Take her lands, ye Lords, and let her live by dimes (tithes)." The Good Parliament of 1376, to whose deliberation Wyclif contributed by voice and pen, gave emphatic expression to the public complaints against the hierarchy.

The Oxford professor’s attitude had become too flagrant to be suffered to go unrebuked. In 1377, he was summoned before the tribunal of William Courtenay, bishop of London, at St. Paul’s, where the proceedings opened with a violent altercation between the bishop and the duke. The question was as to whether Wyclif should take a seat or continue standing in the court. Percy, lord marshal of England, ordered him to sit down, a proposal the bishop pronounced an unheard-of indignity to the court. At this, Lancaster, who was present, swore he would bring down Courtenay’s pride and the pride of all the prelates in England. "Do your best, Sir," was the spirited retort of the bishop, who was a son of the duke of Devonshire. A popular tumult ensued, Wyclif being protected by Lancaster.

Pope Gregory XI. himself now took notice of the offender in a document condemning 19 sentences from his writings as erroneous and dangerous to Church and state. In fact, he issued a batch of at least five bulls, addressed to the archbishop of Canterbury, the bishop of London, the University of Oxford and the king, Edward III. The communication to Archbishop Sudbury opened with an unctuous panegyric of England’s past most glorious piety and the renown of its Church leaders, champions of the orthodox faith and instructors not only of their own but of other peoples in the path of the Lord’s commandments. But it had come to his ears that the Lutterworth rector had broken forth into such detestable madness as not to shrink from publicly proclaiming false propositions which threatened the stability of the entire Church. His Holiness, therefore, called upon the archbishop to have John sent to prison and kept in bonds till final sentence should be passed by the papal court.561561    Gee and Hardy, p. 105 sqq. It seems that the vice-chancellor of Oxford at least made a show of complying with the pope’s command and remanded the heretical doctor to Black Hall, but the imprisonment was only nominal.

Fortunately, the pope might send forth his fulminations to bind and imprison but it was not wholly in his power to hold the truth in bonds and to check the progress of thought. In his letter to the chancellor of Oxford, Gregory alleged that Wyclif was vomiting out of the filthy dungeon of his heart most wicked and damnable heresies, whereby he hoped to pollute the faithful and bring them to the precipice of perdition, overthrow the Church and subvert the secular estate. The disturber was put into the same category with those princes among errorists, Marsiglius of Padua and John of Jandun.562562    Fasc., pp. 242-244.

The archbishop’s court at Lambeth, before which the offender was now cited, was met by a message from the widow of the Black Prince to stay the proceedings, and the sitting was effectually broken up by London citizens who burst into the hall. At Oxford, the masters of theology pronounced the nineteen condemned propositions true, though they sounded badly to the ear. A few weeks later, March, 1878, Gregory died, and the papal schism broke out. No further notice was taken of Gregory’s ferocious bulls. Among other things, the nineteen propositions affirmed that Christ’s followers have no right to exact temporal goods by ecclesiastical censures, that the excommunications of pope and priest are of no avail if not according to the law of Christ, that for adequate reasons the king may strip the Church of temporalities and that even a pope may be lawfully impeached by laymen.

With the year 1378 Wyclif’s distinctive career as a doctrinal reformer opens. He had defended English rights against foreign encroachment. He now assailed, at a number of points, the theological structure the Schoolmen and mediaeval popes had laboriously reared, and the abuses that had crept into the Church. The spectacle of Christendom divided by two papal courts, each fulminating anathemas against the other, was enough to shake confidence in the divine origin of the papacy. In sermons, tracts and larger writings, Wyclif brought Scripture and common sense to bear. His pen was as keen as a Damascus blade. Irony and invective, of which he was the master, he did not hesitate to use. The directness and pertinency of his appeals brought them easily within the comprehension of the popular mind. He wrote not only in Latin but in English. His conviction was as deep and his passion as fiery as Luther’s, but on the one hand, Wyclif’s style betrays less of the vivid illustrative power of the great German and little of his sympathetic warmth, while on the other, less of his unfortunate coarseness. As Luther is the most vigorous tract writer that Germany has produced, so Wyclif is the foremost religious pamphleteer that has arisen in England; and the impression made by his clear and stinging thrusts may be contrasted in contents and audience with the scholarly and finished tracts of the Oxford movement led by Pusey, Keble and Newman, the one reaching the conscience, the other appealing to the aesthetic tastes; the one adapted to break down priestly pretension, the other to foster it.

But the Reformer of the 14th century was more than a scholar and publicist. Like John Wesley, he had a practical bent of mind, and like him he attempted to provide England with a new proclamation of the pure Gospel. To counteract the influence of the friars, whom he had begun to attack after his return from Bruges, he conceived the idea of developing and sending forth a body of itinerant evangelists. These "pore priests," as they were called, were taken from the list of Oxford graduates, and seem also to have included laymen. Of their number and the rules governing them, we are in the dark. The movement was begun about 1380, and on the one side it associates Wyclif with Gerrit de Groote, and on the other with Wesley and with his more recent fellow-countryman, General Booth, of the Salvation Army.

Although this evangelistic idea took not the form of a permanent organization, the appearance of the pore preachers made a sensation. According to the old chronicler, the disciples who gathered around him in Oxford were many and, clad in long russet gowns of one pattern, they went on foot, ventilating their master’s errors among the people and publicly setting them forth in sermons.563563    Chron. Angl., p. 395; also Knighton, II. 184 sq. They had the distinction of being arraigned by no less a personage than Bishop Courtenay "as itinerant, unauthorized preachers who teach erroneous, yea, heretical assertions publicly, not only in churches but also in public squares and other profane places, and who do this under the guise of great holiness, but without having obtained any episcopal or papal authorization."

It was in 1381, the year before Courtenay said his memorable words, that Walden reports that Wyclif "began to determine matters upon the sacrament of the altar."564564    Fasc., p. 104. To attempt an innovation at this crucial point required courage of the highest order. In 12 theses he declared the Church’s doctrine unscriptural and misleading. For the first time since the promulgation of the dogma of transubstantiation by the Fourth Lateran was it seriously called in question by a theological expert. It was a case of Athanasius standing alone. The mendicants waxed violent. Oxford authorities, at the instance of the archbishop and bishops, instituted a trial, the court consisting of Chancellor Berton and 12 doctors. Without mentioning Wyclif by name, the judges condemned as pestiferous the assertions that the bread and wine remain after consecration, and that Christ’s body is present only figuratively or tropically in the eucharist. Declaring that the judges had not been able to break down his arguments, Wyclif went on preaching and lecturing at the university. But in the king’s council, to which he made appeal, the duke of Lancaster took sides against him and forbade him to speak any more on the subject at Oxford. This prohibition Wyclif met with a still more positive avowal of his views in his Confession, which closes with the noble words, "I believe that in the end the truth will conquer."

The same year, the Peasants’ Revolt broke out, but there is no evidence that Wyclif had any more sympathy with the movement than Luther had with the Peasants’ Rising of 1525. After the revolt was over, he proposed that Church property be given to the upper classes, not to the poor.565565    See Trevelyan, p. 199; Kriehn, pp. 254-286, 458-485. The principles, however, which he enunciated were germs which might easily spring up into open rebellion against oppression. Had he not written, "There is no moral obligation to pay tax or tithe to bad rulers either in Church or state. It is permitted to punish or depose them and to reclaim the wealth which the clergy have diverted from the poor?" One hundred and fifty years after this time, Tyndale said, "They said it in Wyclif’s day, and the hypocrites say now, that God’s Word arouseth insurrection."566566    Pref. to Expos. of St. John, p. 225, Parker Soc. ed.

Courtenay’s elevation to the see of Canterbury boded no good to the Reformer. In 1382, he convoked the synod which is known in English history as the Earthquake synod, from the shock felt during its meetings. The primate was supported by 9 bishops, and when the earth began to tremble, he showed admirable courage by interpreting it as a favorable omen. The earth, in trying to rid itself of its winds and humors, was manifesting its sympathy with the body ecclesiastic.567567    Sicut in terrae visceribus includuntur aëret spiritus infecti et ingrediuntur in terrae motum, Fasc., p. 272. Wyclif, who was not present, made another use of the occurrence, and declared that the Lord sent the earthquake "because the friars had put heresy upon Christ in the matter of the sacrament, and the earth trembled as it did when Christ was damned to bodily death."568568    Select Engl. Works, III. 503.

The council condemned 24 articles, ascribed to the Reformer, 10 of which were pronounced heretical, and the remainder to be against the decisions of the Church.569569    Gee and Hardy, pp. 108-110. The 4 main subjects condemned as heresy were that Christ is not corporally present in the sacrament, that oral confession is not necessary for a soul prepared to die, that after Urban VI.’s death the English Church should acknowledge no pope but, like the Greeks, govern itself, and that it is contrary to Scripture for ecclesiastics to hold temporal possessions. Courtenay followed up the synod’s decisions by summoning Rygge, then chancellor of Oxford, to suppress the heretical teachings and teachers. Ignoring the summons, Rygge appointed Repyngdon, another of Wyclif’s supporters, to preach, and when Peter Stokys, "a professor of the sacred page," armed with a letter from the archbishop, attempted to silence him, the students and tutors at Oxford threatened the Carmelite with their drawn swords.

But Courtenay would permit no trifling and, summoning Rygge and the proctors to Lambeth, made them promise on their knees to take the action indicated. Parliament supported the primate. The new preaching was suppressed, but Wyclif stood undaunted. He sent a Complaint of 4 articles to the king and parliament, in which he pleaded for the supremacy of English law in matters of ecclesiastical property, for the liberty for the friars to abandon the rules of their orders and follow the rule of Christ, and for the view that on the Lord’s table the real bread and wine are present, and not merely the accidents.570570    Select Engl. Writings, III. 507-523.

The court was no longer ready to support the Reformer, and Richard II. sent peremptory orders to Rygge to suppress the new teachings. Courtenay himself went to Oxford, and there is some authority for the view that Wyclif again met the prelate face to face at St. Frideswides. Rigid inquisition was made for copies of the condemned teacher’s writings and those of Hereford. Wyclif was inhibited from preaching, and retired to his rectory at Lutterworth. Hereford, Repyngdon, Aston and Bedeman, his supporters, recanted. The whole party received a staggering blow and with it liberty of teaching at Oxford.571571    Fasc., pp. 272-333. See Shirley, p. xliv.

Confined to Lutterworth, Wyclif continued his labors on the translation of the Bible, and sent forth polemic tracts, including the Cruciata,572572    Latin Works, II. 577 sqq. a vigorous condemnation of the crusade which the bishop of Norwich, Henry de Spenser, was preparing in support of Urban VI. against the Avignon pope, Clement VII. The warlike prelate had already shown his military gifts during the Peasants’ Uprising. Urban had promised plenary indulgence for a year to all joining the army. Mass was said and sermons preached in the churches of England, and large sums collected for the enterprise. The indulgence extended to the dead as well as to the living. Wyclif declared the crusade an expedition for worldly mastery, and pronounced the indulgence "an abomination of desolation in the holy place." Spenser’s army reached the Continent, but the expedition was a failure. The most important of Wyclif’s theological treatises, the Trialogus, was written in this period. It lays down the principle that, where the Bible and the Church do not agree, we must obey the Bible, and, where conscience and human authority are in conflict, we must follow conscience.573573    Fasc., p. 341 sq.; Lechler-Lorimer, p. 417, deny the citation. The reply is hardly what we might have expected from Wyclif, confining itself, as it does, rather curtly to the question of the pope’s authority and manner of life. Luther’s last treatment of the pope, Der Papst der Ende-Christ und Wider Christ, is not a full parallel. Wyclif was independent, not coarse.

Two years before his death, Wyclif received a paralytic stroke which maimed but did not completely disable him. It is possible that he received a citation to appear before the pope. With unabated rigor of conviction, he replied to the supreme pontiff that of all men he was most under obligation to obey the law of Christ, that Christ was of all men the most poor, and subject to mundane authority. No Christian man has a right to follow Peter, Paul or any of the saints except as they imitated Christ. The pope should renounce all worldly authority and compel his clergy to do the same. He then asserted that, if in these views he was found to err, he was willing to be corrected, even by death. If it were in his power to do anything to advance these views by his presence in Rome, he would willingly go thither. But God had put an obstacle in his way, and had taught him to obey Him rather than man. He closed with the prayer that God might incline Urban to imitate Christ in his life and teach his clergy to do the same.

While saying mass in his church, he was struck again with paralysis, and passed away two or three days after, Dec. 29, 1384, "having lit a fire which shall never be put out."574574    2 The most credible narrative preserved of Wyclif’s death comes from John Horn, the Reformer’s assistant for two years, and was written down by Dr. Thomas Gascoigne upon Horn’s sworn statement. Walden twice makes the charge that disappointment at not being appointed bishop of Worcester started Wyclif on the path of heresy, but there is no other authority for the story, which is inherently improbable. Lies were also invented against the memories of Luther, Calvin and Knox, which the respectable Catholic historians set aside. Fuller, writing of his death, exclaims, "Admirable that a hare, so often hunted with so many packs of dogs, should die quietly sitting in his form."

Wyclif was spare, and probably never of robust health, but he was not an ascetic. He was fond of a good meal. In temper he was quick, in mind clear, in moral character unblemished. Towards his enemies he was sharp, but never coarse or ribald. William Thorpe, a young contemporary standing in the court of Archbishop Arundel, bore testimony that "he was emaciated in body and well-nigh destitute of strength, and in conduct most innocent. Very many of the chief men of England conferred with him, loved him dearly, wrote down his sayings and followed his manner of life."575575    Bale, in his account of the Examination of Thorpe, Parker Soc. ed., I. 80-81. The biographies of Lewis, Vaughan, Lorimer and Sergeant give portraits of Wyclif. The oldest, according to Sergeant, pp. 16-21, is taken from Bale’s Summary, 1548. There is a resemblance in all the portraits, which represent the Reformer clothed in Oxford gown and cap, with long beard, open face, clear, large eye, prominent nose and cheek bones and pale complexion.

The prevailing sentiment of the hierarchy was given by Walsingham, chronicler of St. Albans, who characterized the Reformer in these words: "On the feast of the passion of St. Thomas of Canterbury, John de Wyclif, that instrument of the devil, that enemy of the Church, that author of confusion to the common people, that image of hypocrites, that idol of heretics, that author of schism, that sower of hatred, that coiner of lies, being struck with the horrible judgment of God, was smitten with palsy and continued to live till St. Sylvester’s Day, on which he breathed out his malicious spirit into the abodes of darkness."

The dead was not left in peace. By the decree of Arundel, Wyclif’s writings were suppressed, and it was so effective that Caxton and the first English printers issued no one of them from the press. The Lateran decree of February, 1413, ordered his books burnt, and the Council of Constance, from whose members, such as Gerson and D’Ailly, we might have expected tolerant treatment, formally condemned his memory and ordered his bones exhumed from their resting-place and "cast at a distance from the sepulchre of the church." The holy synod, so ran the decree, "declares said John Wyclif to have been a notorious heretic, and excommunicates him and condemns his memory as one who died an obstinate heretic."576576    A part of the sentence rans, Sancta synodus declarat diffinit et sententiat eumdem J. Wicleff fuisse notorium haereticum pertinacem et in haeresi decessisse ... ordinat corpus et ejus ossa, si ab aliis fidelibus corporibus discerni possint exhumari et procul ab ecclesiae sepultura jactari. Mansi, XXVII. 635. In 1429, at the summons of Martin IV., the decree was carried out by Flemmyng, bishop of Lincoln.

The words of Fuller, describing the execution of the decree of Constance, have engraven themselves on the page of English history. "They burnt his bones to ashes and cast them into Swift, a neighboring brook running hardby. Thus this brook hath conveyed his ashes into Avon, Avon into Severn, Severn into the narrow seas, they into the main ocean. And thus the ashes of Wicliffe are the emblem of his doctrine, which now is dispersed the world over."

In the popular judgment of the English people, John Wyclif, in company with John Latimer and John Wesley, probably represents more fully than any other English religious leader, independence of thought, devotion to conscience, solid religious common sense, and the sound exposition of the Gospel. In the history of the intellectual and moral progress of his people, he was the leading Englishman of the Middle Ages.577577    2 Green, in his Hist. of the Engl. People, passes a notable encomium on the "first Reformer," and the late Prof. Bigg, Wayside Sketches, p.131, asserts "that his beliefs are in the main those of the great majority of Englishmen to-day, and this is a high proof of the justice, the clearness and the sincerity of his thoughts." The Catholic historian of England, Lingard, IV. 192, after speaking of Wyclif’s intellectual perversion, refers to him, "as that extraordinary man who, exemplary in his morals, declaimed against vice with the freedom and severity of an Apostle."

§ 41. Wyclif’s Teachings.

Wyclif’s teachings lie plainly upon the surface of his many writings. In each one of the eminent rôles he played, as schoolman, political reformer, preacher, innovator in theology and translator of the Bible, he wrote extensively. His views show progress in the direction of opposition to the mediaeval errors and abuses. Driven by attacks, he detected errors which, at the outset, he did not clearly discern. But, above all, his, study of the Scriptures forced upon him a system which was in contradiction to the distinctively mediaeval system of theology. His language in controversy was so vigorous that it requires an unusual effort to suppress the impulse to quote at great length.

Clear as Wyclif’s statements always are, some of his works are drawn out by much repetition. Nor does he always move in a straight line, but digresses to this side and to that, taking occasion to discuss at length subjects cognate to the main matter he has in hand. This habit often makes the reading of his larger works a wearisome task. Nevertheless, the author always brings the reader back from his digression or, to use a modern expression, never leaves him sidetracked.

I. As a Schoolman.—Wyclif was beyond dispute the most eminent scholar who taught for any length of time at Oxford since Grosseteste, whom he often quotes.578578    Op. evang., p. 17, etc., De dom. div., p. 215, etc., De dom. civ., 384 sqq., where the case of Frederick of Lavagna is related at length. He was read in Chrysostom, Augustine, Jerome and other Latin Fathers, as well as in the mediaeval theologians from Anselm to Duns Scotus, Bradwardine, Fitzralph and Henry of Ghent. His quotations are many, but with increasing emphasis, as the years went on, he made his final appeal to the Scriptures. He was a moderate realist and ascribed to nominalism all theological error. He seems to have endeavored to shun the determinism of Bradwardine, and declared that the doctrine of necessity does not do away with the freedom of the will, which is so free that it cannot be compelled. Necessity compels the creature to will, that is, to exercise his freedom, but at that point he is left free to choose.579579    Hergenröther, II. 881, speaks of Wyclif’s system as pantheistic realism and fatalism, D. Lehrsystem des Wiclif ist krasser, pantheistischer Realismus, Fatalismus u. Predestianismus.

II. As a Patriot.—In this role the Oxford teacher took an attitude the very reverse of the attitude assumed by Anselm and Thomas à Becket, who made the English Church a servant to the pope’s will in all things. For loyalty to the Hildebrandian theocracy, Anselm was willing to suffer banishment and à Becket suffered death. In Wyclif, the mutterings of the nation, which had been heard against the foreign regime from the days of William the Conqueror, and especially since King John’s reign, found a stanch and uncompromising mouthpiece. Against the whole system of foreign jurisdiction he raised his voice, as also against the Church’s claim to hold lands, except as it acknowledged the rights of the state. He also opposed the tenure of secular offices by the clergy and, when Archbisbop Sudbury was murdered, declared that he died in sin because he was holding the office of chancellor.

Wyclif’s views on government in Church and state are chiefly set forth in the works on Civil and Divine Lordship—De dominio divino, and De dominio civili — and in his Dialogus.580580    The De dom. civ. and the De dom. div., ed. for the Wyclif Soc. by R. L. Poole, London, 1885, 1890. See Poole’s Prefaces and his essay on Wyclif’s Doctrine of Lordship in his Illustrations, etc., pp. 282-311. TheDialogus, sive speculum ecclesiae militantis, ed. by A. W. Pollard, 1886. The Divine Lordship discusses the title by which men hold property and exercise government, and sets forth the distinction between sovereignty and stewardship. Lordship is not properly proprietary. It is stewardship. Christ did not desire to rule as a tenant with absolute rights, but in the way of communicating to others.581581    Salvator noster noluit esse proprietarie dominans, sed communicative, p. 204. As to his manhood, he was the most perfect of servants.

The Civil Lordship opens by declaring that no one in mortal sin has a right to lordship, and that every one in the state of grace has a real lordship over the whole universe. All Christians are reciprocally lords and servants. The pope, or an ecclesiastical body abusing the property committed to them, may be deprived of it by the state. Proprietary right is limited by proper use. Tithes are an expedient to enable the priesthood to perform its mission. The New Testament does not make them a rule.

From the last portion of the first book of the Civil Lordship, Gregory XI. drew most of the articles for which Wyclif had to stand trial. Here is found the basis for the charge ascribing to him the famous statement that God ought to obey the devil. By this was meant nothing more than that the jurisdiction of every lawful proprietor should be recognized.

III. As a Preacher.—Whether we regard Wyclif’s constant activity in the pulpit, or the impression his sermons made, he must be pronounced by far the most notable of English preachers prior to the Reformation.582582    Loserth, Introd. to Lat. sermones, II., p. xx, pronounce their effect extraordinary. The Engl. sermons have been ed. by Arnold, Select Engl. Works, vols, I, II, and the Lat. sermons by Loserth, in 4 vols. 294 of his English sermons and 224 of his Latin sermons have been preserved. To these discourses must be added his English expositions of the Lord’s prayer, the songs of the Bible, the seven deadly sins and other subjects. With rare exceptions, the sermons are based upon passages of the New Testament.

The style of the English discourses is simple and direct. No more plainly did Luther preach against ecclesiastical abuses than did the English Reformer. On every page are joined with practical religious exposition stirring passages rebuking the pope and worldly prelates. They are denounced as anti-christ and the servants of the devil—the fiend—as they turn away from the true work of pasturing Christ’s flock for worldly gain and enjoyment. The preacher condemns the false teachings which are nowhere taught in the Scriptures, such as pilgrimages and indulgences. Sometimes Wyclif seems to be inconsistent with himself, now making light of fasting, now asserting that the Apostles commended it; now disparaging prayers for the dead, now affirming purgatory. With special severity do his sermons strike at the friars who preach out of avarice and neglect to expose the sins of their hearers. No one is more idle than the rich friars, who have nothing but contempt for the poor. Again and again in these sermons, as in his other works, he urges that the goods of the friars be seized and given to the needy classes. Wyclif, the preacher, was always the bold champion of the layman’s rights.

His work, The Pastoral Office, which is devoted to the duties of the faithful minister, and his sermons lay stress upon preaching as the minister’s proper duty. Preaching he declared the "highest service," even as Christ occupied himself most in that work. And if bishops, on whom the obligation to preach more especially rests, preach not, but are content to have true priests preach in their stead, they are as those that murder Jesus. The same authority which gave to priests the privilege of celebrating the sacrament of the altar binds them to preach. Yea, the preaching of the Word is a more precious occupation than the ministration of the sacraments.583583    Evangelizatio verbi est preciosior quam ministratio alicujus ecclesiastici sacramenti, Op. evang., I. 375. Predicatio verbi Dei est solemnior quam confectio sacramenti, De sac. scr., II. 156. See also Arnold, Engl. Works, III. 153 sq., 464;Serm. Lat., II. 115;De scr. sac., II. 138.

When the Gospel was preached, as in Apostolic times, the Church grew. Above all things, close attention should be given to Christ’s words, whose authority is superior to all the rites and commandments of pope and friars. Again and again Wyclif sets forth the ideal minister, as in the following description:—

"A priest should live holily, in prayer, in desires and thought, in godly conversation and honest teaching, having God’s commandments and His Gospel ever on his lips. And let his deeds be so righteous that no man may be able with cause to find fault with them, and so open his acts that he may be a true book to all sinful and wicked men to serve God. For the example of a good life stirreth men more than true preaching with only the naked word."

The priest’s chief work is to render a substitute for Christ’s miracles by converting himself and his neighbor to God’s law.584584    Debemus loco miraculorum Christi nos et proximos ad legem Dei convertere. De ver., I. 90; Op. evang., I. 368. The Sermon on the Mount, Wyclif pronounced sufficient for the guidance of human life apart from any of the requirements and traditions of men.

IV. As a Doctrinal Reformer.—Wyclif’s later writings teem with denials of the doctrinal tenets of his age and indictments against ecclesiastical abuses. There could be no doubt of his meaning. Beginning with the 19 errors Gregory XI. was able to discern, the list grew as the years went on. The Council of Constance gave 45, Netter of Walden, fourscore, and the Bohemian John Lücke, an Oxford doctor of divinity, 266. Cochlaeus, in writing against the Hussites, went beyond all former computations and ascribed to Wyclif the plump sum of 303 heresies, surely enough to have forever covered the Reformer’s memory with obloquy. Fuller suggests as the reason for these variations that some lists included only the Reformer’s primitive tenets or breeders, and others reckoned all the younger fry of consequence derived from them.

The first three articles adduced by the Council of Constance585585    See Mansi, XXVII., 632-636, and Mirbt, p. 157 sq. had respect to the Lord’s Supper, and charged Wyclif with holding that the substance of the bread remains unchanged after the consecration, that Christ is not in the sacrament of the altar in a real sense, and the accidents of a thing cannot remain after its substance is changed. The 4th article accuses him with declaring that the acts of bishop or priest in baptizing, ordaining and consecrating are void if the celebrant be in a state of mortal sin. Then follow charges of other alleged heresies, such as that after Urban VI. the papacy should be abolished, the clergy should hold no temporal possessions, the friars should gain their living by manual toil and not by begging, Sylvester and Constantine erred in endowing the Church, the papal elections by the cardinals were an invention of the devil, it is not necessary to salvation that one believe the Roman church to be supreme amongst the churches and that all the religious orders were introduced by the devil.

The most of the 45 propositions represent Wyclif’s views with precision. They lie on the surface of his later writings, but they do not exhaust his dissent from the teachings and practice of his time. His assault may be summarized under five heads: the nature of the Church, the papacy, the priesthood, the doctrine of transubstantiation and the use of the Scriptures.

The Church was defined in the Civil Lordship to be the body of the elect,—living, dead and not yet born,—whose head is Christ. Scarcely a writing has come down to us from Wyclif’s pen in which he does not treat the subject, and in his special treatise on the Church, written probably in 1378, it is defined more briefly as the body of all the elect—congregatio omnium predestinatorum. Of this body, Christ alone is the head. The pope is the head of a local church. Stress is laid upon the divine decree as determining who are the predestinate and who the reprobate.586586    De dom. civ., I. 358. Ecclesia cath. sive Apost. est universitas predestinatorum. De eccles., ed. by Loserth, pp. 2, 5, 31, 94, Engl. Works, III. 339, 447, etc.

Some persons, he said, in speaking of "Holy Church, understand thereby prelates and priests, monks and canons and friars and all that have the tonsure,—alle men that han crownes,—though they live ever so accursedly in defiance of God’s law." But so far from this being true, all popes cardinals and priests are not among the saved. On the contrary, not even a pope can tell assuredly that he is predestinate. This knows no one on earth. The pope may be a prescitus, a reprobate. Such popes there have been, and it is blasphemy for cardinals and pontiffs to think that their election to office of itself constitutes a title to the primacy of the Church. The curia is a nest of heretics if its members do not follow Christ, a fountain of poison, the abomination of desolation spoken of in the sacred page. Gregory XI. Wyclif called a terrible devil—horrendus diabolus. God in His mercy had put him to death and dispersed his confederates, whose crimes Urban VI. had revealed.587587    De eccles., 5, 28 sq., 63, 88, 89, 355, 358, 360.

Though the English Reformer never used the terms visible and invisible Church, he made the distinction. The Church militant, he said, commenting on John 10:26, is a mixed body. The Apostles took two kinds of fishes, some of which remained in the net and some broke away. So in the Church some are ordained to bliss and some to pain, even though they live godly for a while.588588    Engl. Works., I. 50. It is significant that in his English writings Wyclif uses the term Christen men—Christian men—instead of the term the faithful.

As for the papacy, no one has used more stinging words against individual popes as well as against the papacy as an institution than did Wyclif. In the treatises of his last years and in his sermons, the pope is stigmatized as anti-Christ. His very last work, on which he was engaged when death overtook him, bore the title, Anti-christ, meaning the pope. He went so far as to call him the head-vicar of the fiend.589589    The condemnatory epithets and characterizations are found in the Engl. Works, ed. by Matthew, De papa, pp. 458-487, and The Church and her Members, and The Schism of the Rom. Pontiffs, Arnold’s ed., III. 262 sqq., 340 sqq., the Trialogus, Dialogus, the Latin Sermons, vol. II., and especially the Opus evangelicum, parts of which went under the name Christ and his Adversary, Antichrist. See Loserth’s introductions to Lat. Serm., II. p. iv sq., and Op. evang., vol. II.; also his art. Wiclif’s Lehre, vom wahren, undfalschen Papsttum, Hist Ztschrift, 1907, and his ed. of the De potestate papae. In these last works Loserth presents the somewhat modified view that when Wyclif inveighed against the papacy it was only as it was abused. The De potestate was written perhaps in 1379. His later works show an increased severity. He saw in the papacy the revelation of the man of sin. The office is wholly poisonous—totum papale officium venenosum. He heaped ridicule upon the address "most holie fadir." The pope is neither necessary to the Church nor is he infallible. If both popes and all their cardinals were cast into hell, believers could be saved as well without them. They were created not by Christ but by the devil. The pope has no exclusive right to declare what the Scriptures teach, or proclaim what is the supreme law. His absolutions are of no avail unless Christ has absolved before. Popes have no more right to excommunicate than devils have to curse. Many of them are damned—multi papae sunt dampnati. Strong as such assertions are, it is probable that Wyclif did not mean to cast aside the papacy altogether. But again and again the principle is stated that the Apostolic see is to be obeyed only so far as it follows Christ’s law.590590    Lat. Serm., IV. 95; De dom. civ., 366-394; De ver. scr., II. 56 sqq.; Dial., p. 25; Op. evang., I. 38, 92, 98, 382, 414, II. 132, III. 187; Engl. Works, II. 229 sq., etc.

As for the interpretation of Matthew 16:18, Wyclif took the view that "the rock" stands for Peter and every true Christian. The keys of the kingdom of heaven are not metal keys, as popularly supposed, but spiritual power, and they were committed not only to Peter, but to all the saints, "for alle men that comen to hevene have these keies of God."591591    Op. evang., II. 105 sq.; Engl. Works, I. 350 sq. Towards the pope’s pretension to political functions, Wyclif was, if possible, more unsparing. Christ paid tribute to Caesar. So should the pope. His deposition of kings is the tyranny of the devil. By disregarding Peter’s injunction not to lord it over God’s heritage, but to feed the flock, he and all his sect—tota secta — prove themselves hardened heretics.

Constantine’s donation, the Reformer pronounced the beginning of all evils in the Church. The emperor was put up to it by the devil. It was his new trick to have the Church endowed.592592    De ver., I. 267; Engl. Works, III. 341 sq.; De Eccles., 189, 365 sqq.; Op. Evang., III. 188. Chapter after chapter of the treatise on the Church calls upon the pope, prelates and priests to return to the exercise of spiritual functions. They had become the prelates and priests of Caesar. As the Church left Christ to follow Caesar, so now it should abandon Caesar for Christ. As for kissing the pope’s toe, there it; no foundation for it in Scripture or reason.

The pope’s practice of getting money by tribute and taxation calls forth biting invective. It was the custom, Wyclif said, to solemnly curse in the parish churches all who clipped the king’s coins and cut men’s purses. From this it would seem, he continued, that the proud and worldly priest of Rome and all his advisers were the most cursed of clippers and out-purses,—cursed of clipperis and purse-kerveris,—for they drew out of England poor men’s livelihoods and many thousands of marks of the king’s money, and this they did for spiritual favors. If the realm had a huge hill of gold, it would soon all be spent by this proud and worldly priest-collector. Of all men, Christ was the most poor, both in spirit and in goods and put from him all manner of worldly lordship. The pope should leave his authority to worldly lords, and speedily advise his clergy to do the same. I take it, as a matter of faith, that no man should follow the pope, nor even any of the saints in heaven, except as they follow Christ.593593    Engl. Works, III. 320. Letter to Urban VI., Fasc. ziz., p. 341; Engl. Works, III. 504-506.

The priests and friars formed another subject of Wyclif’s vigorous attack. Clerics who follow Christ are true priests and none other. The efficacy of their acts of absolution of sins depends upon their own previous absolution by Christ. The priest’s function is to show forgiveness, already pronounced by God, not to impart it. It was, he affirmed, a strange and marvellous thing that prelates and curates should "curse so faste," when Christ said we should bless rather than reprove. A sentence of excommunication is worse than murder.

The rule of auricular confession Wyclif also disparaged. True contrition of heart is sufficient for the removal of sins. In Christ’s time confession of man to man was not required. In his own day, he said, "shrift to God is put behind; but privy (private) shrift, a new-found thing, is authorized as needful for the soul’s health." He set forth the dangers of the confessional, such as the unchastity of priests. He also spoke of the evils of pilgrimages when women and men going together promiscuously were in temptation of great "lecherie."594594    His De eucharistia et poenitentia sive de confessione elaborates this subject. See also Engl. Works, I. 80, III. 141, 348, 461. Clerical celibacy, a subject the Reformer seldom touched upon, he declared, when enforced, is against Scripture, and as under the old law priests were allowed to marry, so under the new the practice is never forbidden, but rather approved.

Straight truth-telling never had a warmer champion than Wyclif. Addressing the clergy, he devotes nearly a hundred pages of his Truth of Scripture to an elaboration of this principle. Not even the most trifling sin is permissible as a means of averting a greater evil, either for oneself or one’s neighbor. Under no circumstances does a good intention justify a falsehood. The pope himself has no right to tolerate or practice misrepresentation to advance a good cause. To accomplish a good end, the priest dare not even make a false appeal to fear. All lying is of itself sin, and no dispensation can change its character.595595    De eccles., p. 162; De ver. scr., II. 1-99. Omne mendacium est per se peccatum sed nulla circumstantia potest rectificare, ut peccatum sit non peccatum, De ver., II. 61.

The friars called forth the Reformer’s keenest thrusts, and these increased in sharpness as he neared the end of his life. Quotations, bearing on their vices, would fill a large volume. Entire treatises against their heresies and practices issued from his pen. They were slavish agents of the pope’s will; they spread false views of the eucharist; they made merchandise of indulgences and letters of fraternity which pretended to give the purchasers a share in their own good deeds here and at the final accounting. Their lips were full of lies and their hands of blood. They entered houses and led women astray; they lived in idleness; they devoured England.596596    Engl. Works, III. 420 sqq.; Op. evang., II. 40; Lat. serm., IV. 62, 121, etc.

The Reformer had also a strong word to say on the delusion of the contemplative life as usually practised. It was the guile of Satan that led men to imagine their fancies and dreamings were religious contemplation and to make them an excuse for sloth. John the Baptist and Christ both left the desert to live among men. He also went so far as to demand that monks be granted the privilege of renouncing the monkish rule for some other condition where they might be useful.597597    See the tract Of Feigned Contemplative Life in Matthew, pp. 187, 196; De eccles., p. 380; Lat. Serm., II. 112.

The four mendicant orders, the Carmelites, Augustinians, Jacobites or Dominicans, and Minorites or Franciscans gave their first letters to the word Caim, showing their descent from the first murderer. Their convents, Wyclif called Cain’s castles. His relentless indignation denounced them as the tail of the dragon, ravening wolves, the sons of Satan, the emissaries of anti-christ and Luciferians and pronounced them worse than Herod, Saul and Judas. The friars repeat that Christ begged water at the well. It were to their praise if they begged water and nothing else.598598    Lat. serm., II. 84; Trial., IV. 33; Engl. Works, III. 348; Dial., pp. 13, 65, etc.

With the lighter hand of ridicule, Chaucer also held up the mendicants for indictment. In the Prologue to his Canterbury Tales he represents the friar as an—

... easy man to yeve penaunce,

Ther as he wiste to have a good pitaunce

For unto a powre order for to give

Is signe that a man is well y-shrive.

* * * * * * *

His wallet lay biforn him in his lappe

Bretful of pardoun come from Rome all hoot,

A voys he hadde as smal as hath a goot

Ne was ther swich another pardonour

For in his male he hadde a pilwe-beer [pillow]

Which that, he seyde, was our Lady’s veyl:

And in a glas he hadde a pigges bones.

Skeat’s ed., 4:7, 21.

If it required boldness to attack the powerful body of the monks, it required equal boldness to attack the mediaeval dogma of transubstantiation. Wyclif himself called it a doctrine of the moderns and of the recent Church—novella ecclesia. In his treatise on the eucharist, he praised God that he had been delivered from its laughable and scandalous errors.599599    Ab isto scandaloso et derisibili errore de quidditate hujus sacramenti, pp. 52, 199. The dogma of the transmutation of the elements he pronounced idolatry, a lying fable. His own view is that of the spiritual presence. Christ’s body, so far as its dimensions are concerned, is in heaven. It is efficaciously or virtually in the host as in a symbol.600600    Corpus Chr. est dimensionaliter in coelo a virtualiter in hostia ut in signo. De euchar., pp. 271, 303. Walden, Fasc. ziz., rightly represents Wyclif as holding that "the host is neither Christ nor any part of Christ, but the effectual sign of him." This symbol "represents"—vicarius est—the body.

Neither by way of impanation nor of identification, much less by way of transmutation, is the body in the host. Christ is in the bread as a king is in all parts of his dominions and as the soul is in the body. In the breaking of the bread, the body is no more broken than the sunbeam is broken when a piece of glass is shattered: Christ is there sacramentally, spiritually, efficiently—sacramentaliter, spiritualiter et virtualiter. Transubstantiation is the greatest of all heresies and subversive of logic, grammar and all natural science.601601    De euchar., p. 11; Trial., pp. 248, 261.

The famous controversy as to whether a mouse, partaking of the sacramental elements, really partakes of Christ’s body is discussed in the first pages of the treatise on the eucharist. Wyclif pronounces the primary assumption false, for Christ is not there in a corporal manner. An animal, in eating a man, does not eat his soul. The opinion that the priest actually breaks Christ’s body and so breaks his neck, arms and other members, is a shocking error. What could be more shocking,—horribilius,—he says, than that the priest should daily make and consecrate the Lord’s body, and what more shocking than to be obliged to eat Christ’s very flesh and drink his very blood. Yea, what could be thought of more shocking than that Christ’s body may be burned or eructated, or that the priest carries God in bodily form on the tips of his fingers. The words of institution are to be taken in a figurative sense. In a similar manner, the Lord spoke of himself as the seed and of the world as the field, and called John, Elijah, not meaning that the two were one person. In saying, I am the vine, he meant that the vine is a symbol of himself.

The impossibility of the miracle of elemental transmutation, Wyclif based on the philosophical principle that the substance of a thing cannot be separated from its accidents. If accidents can exist by themselves, then it is impossible to tell what a thing is or whether it exists at all. Transubstantiation would logically demand transaccidentation, an expression the English Reformer used before Luther. The theory that the accidents remain while the substance is changed, he pronounced "grounded neither in holy writt ne reson ne wit but only taughte by newe hypocritis and cursed heretikis that magnyfyen there own fantasies and dremes."602602    De euch., pp. 78, 81, 182; Engl. Works, III. 520.

Another proof of Wyclif’s freedom of mind was his assertion that the Roman Church, in celebrating the sacrament, has no right to make a precise form of words obligatory, as the words of institution differ in the different accounts of the New Testament. As for the profitable partaking of the elements, he declared that the physical eating profits nothing except the soul be fed with love. Announcing it as his expectation that he would be set upon for his views, he closed his notable treatise on the eucharist with the words, The truth of reason will prevail over all things.

Super omnia vincit veritas rationis.

In these denials of the erroneous system of the mediaeval Church at its vital points, Wyclif was far in advance of his own age and anticipated the views of the Protestant Reformers.

§ 42. Wyclif and the Scriptures.

Wyclif’s chief service for his people, next to the legacy of his own personality, was his assertion of the supreme authority of the Bible for clergy and laymen alike and his gift to them of the Bible in their own tongue. His statements, setting forth the Scriptures as the clear and sufficient manual of salvation and insisting that the literal sense gives their plain meaning, were as positive and unmistakable as any made by Luther. In his treatise on the value and authority of the Scriptures, with 1000 printed pages,603603    De veritate Scripturae, ed. by Buddensieg, with Introd., 3 vols., Leip., 1904. The editor, I. p. xci, gives the date as 1387, 1388. Wyclif starts out by quoting Augustine at length, I. 6-16. The treatise contains extensive digressions, as on the two natures of Christ, I. 179 sqq., the salutation of Mary, I. 282 sqq., lying, II. 1-99, Mohammedanism, II. 248-266, the functions of prelates and priests, III. 1-104, etc. more is said about the Bible as the Church’s appointed guide-book than was said by all the mediaeval theologians together. And none of the Schoolmen, from Anselm and Abaelard to Thomas Aquinas and Duns Scotus, exalted it to such a position of preëminence as did he. With one accord they limited its authority by coördinating with its contents tradition, that is, the teachings of the Church. This man, with unexcelled precision and cogency, affirmed its final jurisdiction, as the law of God, above all authorities, papal, decretist or patristic. What Wyclif asserts in this special treatise, he said over again in almost every one of his works, English and Latin. If possible, he grew more emphatic as his last years went on, and his Opus evangelicum, probably his very last writing, abounds in the most positive statements language is capable of.

To give the briefest outline of the Truth of Scripture will be to state in advance the positions of the Protestant Reformers in regard to the Bible as the rule of faith and morals. To Wyclif the Scriptures are the authority for every Catholic tenet. They are the Law of Christ, the Law of God, the Word of God, the Book of Life—liber vitae. They are the immaculate law of the Lord, most true, most complete and most wholesome.604604    lex domini immaculata ... verissima, completissima et saluberrima, I. 156. All things necessary to belief for salvation are found in them. They are the Catholic faith, the Christian faith,—fides christiana,—the primal rule of human perfection, the primal foundation of the Christian proclamation.

This book is the whole truth which every Christian should study.605605    Illum librum debet omnis christianus adiscere cum sit omnis veritas, I. 109, 138. It is the measure and standard of all logic. Logic, as in Oxford, changes very frequently, yea, every twenty years, but the Scriptures are yea, yea and nay, nay. They never change. They stand to eternity.606606   I. 54. Aliae logicae saepissime variantur ... logica scripturae in eternum stat. All logic, all law, all philosophy and all ethic are in them. As for the philosophy of the pagan world, whatever it offers that is in accord with the Scriptures is true. The religious philosophy which the Christian learns from Aristotle he learns because it was taught by the authors of Scripture.607607    I. 22, 29, 188. Christianus philosophiam non discit quia Aristotelis sed quia autorum scripturae sac. et per consequens tamquam suam scientiam quo in libris theologiae rectius est edocta. The Greek thinker made mistakes, as when he asserted that creation is eternal. In several places Wyclif confesses that he himself had at one time been led astray by logic and the desire to win fame, but was thankful to God that he had been converted to the full acceptance of the Scriptures as they are and to find in them all logic.

All through this treatise, and in other works, Wyclif contends against those who pronounced the sacred writings irrational or blasphemous or abounding in errors and plain falsehoods. Such detractors he labelled modern or recent doctors—moderni novelli doctores. Charges such as these would seem well-nigh incredible, if Wyclif did not repeat them over and over again. They remind us of the words of the priest who told Tyndale, 150 years later, "It were better to be without God’s laws than to be without the pope’s." What could be more shocking,—horribilius,—exclaimed Wyclif, than to assert that God’s words are false.608608    I. 151, 200, 394, 408; Lat. serm., 179; De eccles., 173, 318, etc.

The supreme authority of the Scriptures appears from their contents, the beneficent aim they have in view, and from the witness borne to them by Christ. God speaks in all the books. They are one great Word of God. Every syllable of the two Testaments is true, and the authors were nothing more than scribes or heralds.609609    Tota scrip. est unum magnum Verbum Dei., I. 269. Autores nisi scribae vel precones ad scrib. Dei legem. I. 392. Also I. 86, 156, 198, 220 sqq., III. 106 sqq., 143. If any error seem to be found in them, the error is due to human ignorance and perverseness. Nothing is to be believed that is not founded upon this book, and to its teachings nothing is to be added.610610    Falsitas in proposito est in false intelligente et non in Scrip. sac., p. 193. Nulli alii in quoquam credere nisi de quanto se fundaverit ex script. I. 383. De civ. dom., p. 394.

Wyclif devotes much time to the principles of biblical exposition and brushes away the false principles of the Fath-ers and Schoolmen by pronouncing the "literal verbal sense" the true one. On occasion, in his sermons, he himself used the other senses, but his sound judgment led him again and again to lay emphasis upon the etymological meaning of words as final. The tropological, anagogical and allegorical meanings, if drawn at all, must be based upon the literal meaning. Wyclif confessed his former mistake of striving to distinguish them with strict precision. There is, in fact, only one sense of Scripture, the one God himself has placed in it as the book of life for the wayfaring man.611611    De ver., 114, 119, 123. Sensus literalis script. est utrobique verus, p.