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at length the pope, not finding these inquisitors so useful as he had imagined, resolved upon the establishment or fixed and regular courts of inquisition; the first office of which was established in Toulouse, and Dominie became the first regular inquisitor.
Courts of inquisition were also established in several countries; but the Spanish inquisition became the most powerful and dreadful of any. Even the kings of Spain, themselves, though arbitrary in all other respects, were taught to dread the power of the lords of the ininquisition.
This diabolical tribunal takes cognizance of heresy, Judaism, Mahometanism, sodomy, polygamy, witchcraft, &c. Heresy in their view comprises many subdivisions; and upon the suspicion of any of these, the party is immediately apprehended. Advancing an offensive proposition; failing to impeach others who may advance such ; contemning church ceremonies; defacing images ; reading books condemned by the inquisi. tion ; lending such books to others to read; deviating from the ordinary practices of the Roman church ; letting a year pass without going to confession ; eating meat on fast days; neglecting inass ; being present at a sermon preached by a heretic ; contracting a friendship with, or making a present to, or assisting a heretic, &c., are all matters of suspicion, and prosecuted accordingly.
In the countries where this dreadful tribunal is established, the people stand in so much fear of it, that parents deliver up their children, husbands their wives and friends, masters their servants, to its officers ; without daring in the least to murmer or make resistance, The prisoners are kept a long time, till they themselves turn their own accusers, and declare the cause of their imprisonment, for which they are neither told their crime nor confronted with witnesses. As soon as they are imprisoned, their friends go into mourning, and speak of them as dead, not daring to solicit their pardon, lest they should be brought in as accomplices. When there is no shadow of proof against the pretended crimi.
nal, he is discharged, after suffering the most cruel tortures, a tedious and dreadful imprisonment, and the loss of the greater part of his effects. Those who are condemned to death are delivered over to secular power, and perish in the flames.
• Senor Llorente, who was secretary to the inquisition of Madrid about the year 1790, makes the following calculation of the number of victims whom the inquisition has sacrificed ;—that during the three hundred years from 1481 to 1781, 31,912 heretics perished in the flames ; and adding to this period the years up to the present time, 17,639 effigies have been burned, representing such criminals as the inquisition could not catch for more substantial vengeance-and 291,456 have been condemned to severe penances.”**
42. GROSSETESTE, BISHOP OF LINCOLN. ROBERT GROSSETESTE was born about the
year 1175, and was a divine of principal note in the university of Oxford. He associated with both the Mendicant orders, and was the first lecturer in the Franciscan school of that seminary He seems to have been always serious in religion, according to the degree of light which he had.
In the year 1234, he was elected, by the dean and chapter, bishop of Lincoln ; and king Henry III. confirmed their choice. He continued to patronize the friars. These were his most intimate companions, with whom he used to hold conferences on the Scriptures ; and at one time he had thoughts of entering into the Franciscan order himself. Events, however, occurred, which in some measure unfolded to the eyes of the bishop the real character of the friars. In 1247 two English Franciscans were sent into England to extort money for the pope. They applied to the prelates and abbots, but seem, at this time at least, to have met with little success.
Grosseteste was amazed at the insolence
* British Critic.
and pompous appearance of the friars, who assured him that they had the pope's bull, and who earnestly demanded six thousand marks for the contribution of the diocese of Lincoln. “ Friars," answered he," with all reverence be it spoken, the demand is as dishonorable as it is impracticable. The whole body of the clergy and people are concerned in it equally with me. For me, then, to give a definite answer in an instant, to such a demand, before the sense of the kingdom is taken upon it, would be rash and absurd.” The native good sense of the bishop suggested this answer ; but the true antichristian character of the pope was as yet unknown to Grosseteste. The blood of our Saviour was about the same time pretended to be brought into England, and he had the weakness to vindicate the delusion. In 1248 he obtained at a great expense, from Innocent IV., letters to empower him to reform the religious orders. If he had understood at that time the real character of antichrist, he would have foreseen the vanity of all attempts to reform the churches, which were grounded on papal authority. The rectitude, however, of his own mind, was strikingly apparent in the transaction. He saw with grief the waste of large revenues made by the monastic orders ; and being supported by the pope, as he thought, he determined to take into his own hand the rents of the religious houses, most probably with a design to institute and ordain vicarages in his diocese, and to provide for the more general instruction of the people. But the monks appealed to the pope ; and Grosseteste, in his old age, was obliged to travel to Lyons, where Innocent resided. Roman venality was
at its height, and the pope determined the cause against the bishop. Grieved and astonished at so unexpected a decision, Grosseteste said to Innocent, relied on your letters and promises, but am entirely disappointed."-"i What is that to you ?" answered the pope; “ you have done your part, and we are disposed to favour them. Is your eye evil, because I am good ?" With such shameless effrontery can wicked men trifle with scriptural passages. The bishop, in a low tone
but so as to be heard, said with indignation, “0, money, how great is thy power, especially at the court of Rome!” The remark was bold and indignant, but perfectly just. It behooved Innocent to give some answer; and he used the common method of wicked men in such cases, namely, to retort the accusation.
6 You English,” said he, “are always grinding and impoverishing one another. How many feligious men, per
prayer and hospitality, are you striving to depress, that you may sacrifice to your own tyranny and avarice?” So spake the most unprinciples of robbers to a bishop, whose unspotted integrity was admitted by all the world.
The bishop often preached to the people in the course of his perambulation through his diocese ; and he required the neighbouring clergy to attend the sermons. He earnestly exhorted them to be laborious in ministering to their flocks; and the lazy Italians, who by virtue of the pope's letters had been intruded into opulent benefices, and who neither understood the language of the people, nor wished to instruct them, were the objects of his detestation. He would often with indignation cast the papal bulls out of his hands, and absolutely refuse to comply with them, saying that he should be the friend of Satan if he committed the care of souls to foreigners. Innocent, however, persisting in his plan, peremptorily ordered him to admit an Italian, perfectly ignorant of the English language, to a very rich benefice in the diocese of Lincoln; which Grosseteste absolutely refused to obey. Innocent, on receiving this positive denial, was incensed beyond measure ; and “ Who," said he, " is this old dotard, who dares to judge my aetions? By Peter and Paul, if I were not restrained by my generosity, I would make him an example and a spectacle to all mankind. Is not the king of England my vassal and my slave ? and, if I gave the word, would he not throw him into prison, and load him with infamy and disgrace ?"
In the latter end of the summer of 1253, Grossetesto was seized with a mortal disease, at his palace of Buck
den; and he sent for friar John de St. Giles, to converse with him on the state of the church. He blamed Giles, and his brethren the Dominicans, and also the Franciscans, because, though their orders were founded in voluntary poverty, they did not rebuke the vices of the great. “I am convinced,” said he, “ that both the pope, unless he amend his errors, and the friars, except they endeavour to restrain him, will be deservedly exposed to everlasting death." He breathed his last at Buckden, October 9th, 1253. Innocent heard of his death with pleasure ; and said, with exultation, “I rejoice, and let every true son of the Roman church rejoice with me, that my great enemy is removed.” He ordered a letter to be written to king Henry, requiring him to take up the bishop's body, to cast it out of the church, and to burn it. The cardinals, however, opposed the tyrant, and the letter was never sent, probably on account of the decline of Innocent's health, for he died the succeeding year.
43. PETER CELESTINE, THE ROMAN PONTIFT. In the thirteenth century, there was one pòpe who, as Milner, in his Church History, remarks, deserves to be commemorated in the annals of the church of Christ. Peter Celestine was born in Apulia about the year 1221, and lived as a hermit in a little cell. He was admitted into holy orders; but after that he lived five years in a cave on Mount Moroni, near Sulmona. He was molested with internal temptations, which his confessor told him were a stratagem of the enemy that would not hurt him if he despised it. He founded a monastery at Mount Moroni, in 1274. The see of Rome having been vacant two years and three months, Celestine was unanimously chosen pope, on account of the fame of his sanctity. The archbishop of Lyons, presenting him with the instrument of his election, conjured him to submit to the vocation. Peter, in astonishment, prostrated himself on the ground; and after