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INCREASE OF HERESY. 381.
was excommunicated, with torches and bells, because he would not bestow the abundant revenues of his Church on persons from beyond the Alps; but for all this “he was blessed by the people.” The archbishopric of Canterbury was held, A.D. 1241, by Boniface of Savoy, to whom had been granted by the pope the first-fruits of all the benefices in his province. His rapacity was boundless. From all the ecclesiastics and ecclesiastical establishments under his control he extorted enormous sums. Some, who, like the Dean of St. Paul’s, resisted him, were excommunicated; some, like the aged Sub-prior of St. Bartholomew’s, were knocked down by his own hand. Of a military turn-he often wore a cuirass under his robes-he joined his brother, the Archbishop of Lyons, who was besieging Turin, and wasted the revenues of his see in England in intrigues and petty military enterprises against his enemies in Italy. Not among the laity alone was there indignation against such a state of things. Mutiny broke out in the ranks of the Church. It was not that among the humbler classes the sentiment of piety had become diminished. The Shepherds, under the leadership of the Master of Hungary, passed by tens of thousands through France to excite the clergy to arouse for the rescue of good King Louis, in bondage to the Mussulmen. They asserted that they were commissioned by the Virgin, and were fed miraculously by the Master. Originating in Italy, the Flagellants also passed, two by two, through every city, scourging themselves for thirty-three days in memory of the years of our Lord. These dismal enthusiasts emulated each other, and were rivals of the mendicant friars in their hatred of the clergy. The mendicants were beginning to justify that hesitation which Innocent displayed when he was first importuned to authorize them. The papacy had reaped from these orders much good; it was now to gather a fearful evil. They had come to be learned men instead of ferocious bigots. They were now, indeed, among the most learned men of their times. They had taken possession of many of the seats of learning. In the University of Paris, out of twelve chairs of theology, three only were occupied by the regular clergy. The mendicant friars had entered into the dangerous paths of heresy. They became involved in that fermenting leaven that had come from Spain, and among them revolt broke out. With an unerring instinct, Rome traced the insurrection to its true source. We have only to look at the measures taken by the popes to understand their opinion. Thus Innocent III., A.D. 1215, regulated, by his legate, the schools of Paris, permitting the study of the Dialectics of Aristotle, but forbidding his physical and metaphysical works and their commentaries. These had come through an Arabic channel. A rescript of Gregory XI., A.D. 1231, interdicts those on natural philosophy until they had been purified by the theologians of the Church. These regulations were confirmed by Clement IV., A.D. 1265.
382 THE AGE OF FAITH IN THE WEST.
CHAPTER XVII. THE AGE OF FAITH IN THE WEST -(Continued). OVERTHROW OF THE ITALIAN SYSTEM BY THE COMBINED INTELLECTUAL AND MORAL ATTACK.
Progress of Irreligion among the mendicant Orders.-Publication of heretical Books. The Everlasting Gospel and the Comment on the Apocalypse. Conflict between Philip the Fair and Boniface VIII.-Outrage upon and death of the Pope. The French King removes the Papacy from Rome to Avignon.-Post-mortem Trial of the Pope for Atheism and Immorality.-Causes and Consequences of the Atheism of the Pope. The Templars fall into Infidelity.-Their Trial, Conviction, and Punishment. Immoralities of the Papal Court at Avignon.-Its return to Rome. Causes of the great Schism. -Disorganization of the Italian System.-IDecomposition of the Papacy.-Three Popes. The Council of Constance attempts to convert the papal Autocracy into a constitutional Monarchy. t murders John Huss and Jerome of Prague.-Pontificate of Nicolas V. End of the intellectual influence of the Italian System.
ABOUT the close of the twelfth century appeared among the mendicant friars that ominous work, which, under the title of “The Everlasting Gospel,” struck terror into the Latin hierarchy. It was affirmed that an angel had brought it from heaven, engraven on copper plates, and had given it to a priest called Cyril, who delivered it to the Abbot Joachim. The abbot had been dead about fifty years, when there was put forth, A.D. 1250, a true exposition of the tendency of his book, under the form of an introduction, by John of Parma, the general of the Franciscans, as was universally suspected or alleged. Notwithstanding its heresy, the work displayed an enlarged and masterly conception of the historical progress of humanity. In this introduction, John of Parma pointed out that the Abbot Joachim, who had not only performed a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, but had been reverenced as a prophet, received as of unimpeachable orthodoxy, and canonized, had accepted as his fundamental position that Roman Christianity had done its work, and had now come to its inevitable termination. He proceeded to show that there are epochs or ages in the Divine government of the world; that, during the Jewish dispensation, it had been under the immediate influence of God the Father; during the Christian dispensation, it had been under that of God the Son; and that the time had now arrived when it would be under the influence of God the Holy Ghost; that, in the coming ages, there would be no longer any need of faith, but that all things would be according to wisdom and reason. It was the ushering in of a new time. So spake, with needful obscurity, the Abbot Joachim, and so, more plain-
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