(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "History of Pope Boniface VIII and his times with notes and documentary evidence in six books"

w_m 
C> - 

 - ..... 
o 
 
o -
 
L =- 
- :-D 

 _ 0- 

 =-_ _f'- 

 Ir 

 
 
.." - a 
"' - - 

 = = :ri 
"'- 
I"'- 
ffi 
 
:> 
z- - 
:> . m 


ff 




I 


-- -- -- - 
--, 


q 
... 

 
 .:--- . 
,.,.... ......" 
, 
-- 



 


.. 
,
.. 


\--::- 


1 


\ 

 
t 
l ; \ 
\ 


'" - 


" 


" 



T\'lTE 01<' l!O:\IFU'E \ III, J"- THE L\TIIEIHL\L, FLOHE:\CE, 



HISTOR Y 


OF 


POPE 


BONIFACE 


VIII 


AND HIS TIMES 


WITH 


NOTES AND DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE 


IN SIX BOOKS 


By 
DON LOUIS TOSTI 


BENEDICTINE MONK OF MONTE CASSINO 


TRANSLATED FROM THB ITALIAN 


By RT, REV, lVIGR, EUGENE J, DONNELLY, V.F. 
PASTOR OF ST. MICHAEL'S CHURCH, FLUSHING, L, I., N. Y. 


l""'oÞ . 


... 


. 
. 
A 


.. Entering Alagna, 10 the fleur-de-lis, 
And in his Vicar Christ a captive led r 
I see him mocked a second time j-again 
The vinegar and gal! produced I see; 
And Christ himself 'twixt robbers slain." 
DANTE, Purgat,. canto XX. 


" 



. 


... 
. 


. 
.t. 
.tÞ 
... 
)} 
;. 


2.4997 


-- 
...' 

 ( 
l' 
o( 
.. 



 


. 
. 


NEW YORK 
CHRISTIAN PRESS ASSOCIATION 
PUBLISHING COl\IPA
Y 



1RibU ebetat. 


1Jmprimatur. 


imprimatur. 


REV. REIIUGIUS LAFORT. S.T.L. 



 l\IOST REV. JOHN 1\1. FARLEY, D.D., 
Arcllbislwp of New York. 



 CHARLES EDWARD, 
Bishop of Brooklyn. 


COPYRIGHT, 1911, BY 
EUGENE J. DONNELLY, 



CONTENTS. 


PAGE 


}JEDICATION. 
TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE ......................................... 7 
BOOK I ....... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 
BOOK II . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 99 
BOOK III ..................... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 151 
BOOK IV ..................................................... 216 
BOOK V ..................................................... 266 
BOOK VI ........ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3G2 


NOTES AND DOCUMENTS. 


Brief of Pope Alexander IV in favor of Benedict Gaetani (Extract 
frOnt the archives of the church of Todi).................... 455 
Decree of the Canons of Todi in favor of Benedict Gaetani. . . . . . . . . . 455 
Note relative to the duel between Peter of Aragon and Charles of 
Anjou against the insinuations of Potter. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4:56 
Note relative to the Master of the Court (Dontinus Curiae) a title 
given to Benedict Gaetani by Ptolemy of Lucca............... 460 
Concerning the abdication of Celestine V....... ... ................ 463 
Profession of faith of Benedict Gaetani before his elevation to the 
Papacy ................................................... 465 
Encyclical of Boniface with regard to his Pontificate.. . . . . . . . . . . . . 466 
Letter of Boniface to Philip the Fair......... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 469 
Imprisonment and death of Peter Celestine....................... 469 
His renunciation of the Papacy. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 470 
His return to his cell on Mt. Morone............................. 471 
The search after him........................................... 472 
His flight across the sea........................................ 473 
His capture and confinement in the castle of Fumone. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 474 
His death and miracles thereat.................................. 476 
Letter of Boniface to the Sicilians urging them to return to submis- 
sion to the Church ......................................... 476 
Another letter to Frederick of Aragon to prevail upon him to leave 
Sicily . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 477 
. Letter of Boniface to the provincial of the Friars Minor with regard 
to the conversion of Guy of Montefeltro. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 479 · 
Constitution on the Ecclesiastical immunities; the bull cc ClericiB 
Laicos." ................................................... 480 
Letter of Boniface to Philip the Fair......... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 481 
Division of the fiefs among the Colonnas (From the archives of Con- 
stable Colonna in Patrini, Mon. 19.)......................... 486 
3 



CONTENTS. 


4 


PAGE 


Act appointing James Colonna absolute administrator of the prop- 
erty of the Colonnas (From the Barber'Ïni O1'chires in Pat1'ini 
illo11 , 21).................................................. 48f1 
Proepedings against the Colonnas.......... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4f10 
TIle Colonna Iilwl against Bonifaee. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . , . . . . 4

 
Sentence of Boniface against the Colonnas.... . . . . . . . . 4!)G 
Brid of Boniface entrusting the direction of the "ar against the 
Colonnas to Landolph Colonna............................. !j00 
TIpply of Bonifaee to the Roman ppople. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 500 
Two sermons of Ronifaee XIII. rlplivered at Orvieto, in prf'sencc of 
tl1P f'ardinals, on the oecasion of the C'anonization of Louis IX, 
king of France............................................ 502 
ArLitI'a I dpcision of Bonifaee in thp proceedings pending, betwpen 
Edward of England and Philip t]w Fair..................... 508 
. Thc evil eounsel of Guy of Montefeltro. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .,. 511 
Bull instituting the Jubilep. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 521 
Exclusion of the Rieilians and the f'olonnas from the indulgencp of 
the Jubilpe..,............................................. 522 
The offerings of the Jubilee. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 523 
J.ctter of Ronifaee to Charles II reproving llim for his impudenep. . . 52ï 
Letter of BonifaC'P to Cardinal AC'quasparta charging him to paeify 
Florence . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 528 
Letter to the French clergy relative to the appeal of Charles of Yalois 528 
Letter to Cardinal .:\equasparta, Legate to rpstrain Charles of Valois 530 
JJetter of Boniface to Philip the Fair regarding the Archbishopric of 
Narbonne and tIle county of Maguelonne. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
1 
Letter to Philip the Fair, annexed to the Bull. "A llsc-ulta " . . . . . . . . 533 
On the works of Egidius Colonna. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . - . . .. 53!) 
. Letter to the clergy of France, annexed to the Bull. "Unam Hanctam;' 53ü 
.,. . An observation on the constitution " Una m Hancta 111," and on the hook 
of Dante, De 
lonarehia. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . , . . . . . . . . . . 53!) 
A letter to Albert, king of the Romans. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . - . . Mil 
Constitution of Bonifaee regarding his eonf1iet with Philip the Fair.. 541 
The piety of Boniface. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . - . 542 
Bull of Benedict XI, again-õt the persceutors of Boniface.. . . . . . . . .. 544 
The infamous erasures in the register of the letter of Boniface. . . . 54!) 



DEDICATION. 


To thee, Dante Alighieri, 
'Ve consecrate these books, 
"\Vhich recall to a new life 
The memory of Boniface the Eighth. 
The political sorrows which troubled thee, 
Do not dare to profane thy noble heart; 
And even when the anger of thy mind 
Suggested the strangest conceptions 
Thou remaindest an Italian. 
So in the presence of Boniface 
Whom thou considerest an enemy, 
And whom thou loadest with eternal infamy 
As is eternal the poetry thou mad est, 
Respectfully bow thy head; 
And venerate the Vicar of Jesus Christ. 
Bear to-day, 
That to thy soul freed from anger 
History may present herself 
And speak to thee of a man 
'Vhom thou wouldst raise to the heavens 
If the destinies of thy Florence 
Had been less tempestuous. 
:More on the strength of his virtue 
Than on these pages, 
He rises so high 
As to place himself without blemish before thee. 
He pardons thee. 
And on the volume thou hast written, 
A last refuge 
Of Italian grandeur 
Let them lie 
Reconciled with him, 
The sovereign keys 
As a proof of this union 
'Vhich alone can render fruitful the hopes 
Of mother cmmtry. 



TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE. 


A BACKWARD glance throngh the history of tlIP 
Iiddle 
Ages may show us not a few nlajestic figures among the 
POPl)S, but none so striking and remarkable as that of Bon- 
iface YIII. Rurrounded by stern and simple times lIP ap- 
peals to us with peculiar directness because of the ahno
t 
universal and lasting denunciation of historians, both of his 
own and later tinles. The hi
tory of the Church during 
these times is whony a history of tlIP struggle of the Papacy 
against the supremacy of tllf' hnperial power. Some popes 
more than others are distinguished for tIw bold resistance 
they showed to this unjust assumption, and stro\e to main- 
tain the rights of the Churf'h, among whom are to be partic- 
ularly mentioned Alexander III, Gregory 'TII, Innucent 
III, and Boniface VIII. 
Pope Boniface VIII deser\es to be callf'd the last pope of 
the )liddle Ages. It was during his Pontificate that the 
tempOl'al power of the Holy See was, for the first time, 
attacked by France, and the prestige of the Papacy was 
subjected to the most violent outrages. lIe was a great 
medieval pope. His figure can ùe justly compared with 
that of Innocent III, or Gregory IX. Like them he sol- 
emnly affirmetl the pontifical authority; like them he 
fought princes with a stuhbornness which alone equalled 
the consciousness he had of his own rights. By his sump- 
tuous ceremonies, hy his striking and eloquent Buns, he 
manifested to the wor1rl the grandpnr and power of the 
Papacy. The Pontificate of Bonifac(' VIII is tllf' hpginning- 
of a transition period; it exhihits thp sinking of tll(> pnpal 
power an(l the rising of the secular state-idea hosti1e to 
the Church. The subor(lination of tlIP sprnlnr l1llflpl' thp 

piritnn] order was denied. The Ree of Peter was shaken 
hut not (lestroyed. 
But he i
 the last pope of the 
Iiddle Agf's, because in the 
'1 



8 


TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE. 


combat which he sustained against the enemies of his 
temporal power, he was, in the main, vanquished. He dis- 
appeared at the dawn of the fourteenth century, and as is 
wen known this period marked the decline of the )Iiddle 
Ages. The old Christian republic into which the European 

tateR had resolved thenlselves, had di
appeared. Na- 
tionalities began to assume form; heresies 
ucceeded in im- 
planting themselves, in living, in prospering, for a timf'. 
After the sojourn of the Popes at A yignon. which was a 
kind of a gilded captivity, the Great Schism began to divide 
Christianity into two or eyen three parties who engaged ill 
long and bitter struggles. The faithful were unable to dis- 
tinguish who was the true pope; even the saints themselves 
were beguiled; Councils did nothing el
e hut increase the 
eyil of the situation, and on a11 sides men of courage were 
bewailing the nlisfortunes of the Chure-h. ...\t the same time 
frightful wars harassed the people and epidemics deYa
- 
tated the half of Europe. Boniface YIII had long been 
dead before the
e disasters appeared, but he preceded them 
immediately. His end so sad and gloomy after the outrage 
of Anagni seemed to forebode that e-vils without numl1Pr 
would be visited on the Church; and it was no vain fore- 
boding. This is the reason why we have said that 11e was 
the la
t pope truly medieyal. His grand figure in the last 
daYR of the )Iiddle Ages blazons forth, and his fan precipi- 
tateR that of this stormy epoch. 
One can easily understand how the history of such a pope 
has been the subject of many impassioued and bia
ed workH. 
French writers had studied the rea
ons which led to the 
differences between Boniface and Philip the Fair, and frOln 
the first, thpy are violently hostile to the Pope. One can 1)(' 
convinced of this by reading the work published by Dupuy 
in 165;). Other writers are milder and less bitter in tone, 
but they make no effort to conceal their bias. 
The chief reproaches that are brought against Boniface 
VIII relate to the abdication of Cplestine Y; his own eler- 
tion to the Papacy; the impri
onment of Celestine Y; the 
quarrel that arose between him and the Colonna family, 
and Philip the Fair. But an these charges win be met and 
explained to the reader during hi
 perusal of this history. 
)loreoyer the moral portraits of Boniface and Philip the 
Fair being traced, there is no doubt that approaching then1 



TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE. 


9 


nearer in order to obserY'c their conduct in th
 famous 
quarrel, the truth will be Reen more plainly and more P3!'\iJy. 
Like Gregory YII, who wa
 the foremo!':t man in the 
pontific-atcs of his several predecesson
, on whom they l'e]jp(} 
for !':upport, and who :;;trongly defended the rig-hts of the 
Church, 
o Benedict Gaetani (Boniface YIII), ,,'as the 
great factor and most celebrated per
mnage in the admin- 
istration of the five preceding popes; who was :;;ent on the 
most difficult emba
sies, and was calletl upon to manage 
affairs of great moment and settle the difficulties b('hn:><>n 
the Church and princes. The knowledge of all the evils 
which agitated the Church within his own luemory, togeth(
r 
with oth('rs which for a long time preY'iously h('set 11('1', 
:;;ery('d as generating facts which gave form and character 
to the one thought ,yhich entC'red deeply into his mind, 
namely the Church reduced to servitude not l)y :;;(ìf'I'et 
eIlf'mi('
, but by tho
e who called themsf'hpes hf'r chil<1ren 
and her vassals, anù forceù to work in thi
 humiliating- 
condition. Pnder such circumstances a man Hke Ronifac
, 
on whom nature had lavished her choicest gifts, and who 
was equally skiBed in canon and civil law; wllO
e talents 
and accomplishments fitted hinl to ùe no less a secular 
prince than thp IIead of the Church; who
e strong Sf'nse 
and firmness of charaeter enabled him to fully comprehend 
his mission and his office, and to go straight through with 
whatever business he had in hand, without turning to the 
right or to the left; who surpassed all his predf'c

!':ors in 
talent for affairs, experience of practical life, and who 
was still in the full tiùe and vigor of manhood, must, when 
calling upon the nlemories of Gregory YII and Innocent 
III, have resolved to follow their example in pursuing a 
well-defined policy, and a
suming a" bold and determined 
attitude. The character of the first decre('s is
ued h)' him, 
placed him as a churchman be
ide Innocent III. ...\Hhough 
the vie,,'s entertained by Boniface reg-ar(ling- the relations 
of Church and State, were not precisely tho1';e put forward 
l,y his great predecessors, Grpgol'Y and Innocent, they 
(liffered from them only because the altered dr(,1nustance
 
of his age caned for a corresponding change of ecc1esiasti- 
eal policy. 
ßonifape during all his Pontifirate I';trOVf> to maintain 
the rights of tlw Church and of tllP Holy See as hp had reo 



10 


TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE. 


ceived them from his predecessors. He aimed at nothing 
else but to preserve intact these same rights of the Church, 
not only in the sanctuary, but also in the heart of civil so- 
ciety itself, over the temporal destinies of which he could 
no more cease to preside, than the soul over the purely 
material functions of the body. Philip the Fair was de- 
termined to thwart him, and to exercise his rule with a b- 
solute independency from any spiritual control. 
Th
 resistance with which he opposed all mann
r of 
injustice during bis lifetime, opened a way after his death 
to resentment, which furiously assailpd his memory and 
oppressed it. The tendency of the writers of the tim
 heing 
in favor of either Guelph or Ghibellillc, they portrayed 
the actions of this Pope to suit their own views, and just 
as rumor expressed them. Philip the Fair in France, th
 
Colonnas in Italy, the proud Roman Patriciate, and all 
those who had experienced the strong temperament of 
,Boniface in anger, cast the stone of vituperation upon his 
sepulchre, in addition to a cry of execration and vengeancp. 
Care must be taken so that his character nl'ust not bp 
judged by what French writers say. His character and 
career ought in all fairness to be judged by a contemporary 
instead of a modern standard of ethics and ideas. To 
judge him impartia1Jy one should transport himself to the 
age in which he lived, and take into account the then politi. 
cal institutions, anò the principles of legislation and gov- 
ernment. Both those of his own and those of later thnes, 
wrote under the guidance of unreasonable prejudices, be- 
cause they knew only French facts, or were under the im- 
pression of some mOlnentary quarrel with the Holy See. 
The memory of Boniface has been assailed by Dante, who 
puts him in a poetical hen, but his opinion is vilely prej- 
udiced OIl account of political reasons, and he speaks with 
thp usual license of a poet, and not with the truthful spirit 
of a historian. But after the outrage at Anagni he relented 
at its contenlplation, and forgot his political feeling to give 
vent to his indignation at the insult offered to Christ's 
Vicar in the fonowing verses: 
C C Entering Alagna, 10 the fleur-de-lis, 
And in his vicar, Christ a captive led t 
I see Mm mocked a second time :-again 
The vinegar and gall produced I see; 
And Christ llimself 'twixt robbers slain," 



TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE. 


11 


Petrarch his fellow poet and contemporary calls Boniface 
(merariglia del mondo) the marvel of the world. It has 
bpen the 
ad fate of Boniface VIII to have made many 
enemies. 1'10st Protestant authors have numbered him 
among the wicked popes. 
But he has found some apologists and defenders, and 
amon
 them the first place is to be given to the ('f'lebrated 
Bf'npdietiJle of :Monte Ca
Rino, Dom Louis Tosti. This his- 
torian is alllong thf' foremost of I taly whose various works 
have bef'1l favorably rpceiv(:'d everywhere, and have nmdp 
him renownpd for Rplendid historical attainments. His 
work: ,. The l.ife an<l Tinw8 of Boniface VIII,'. which we 
present to the public in an English drpss, i
 an admirable 
and effectivf' defence of that Pope. In it he breathf'
 the 
true sph'it of a historian; he neither apologizes, nor does 
he advance a proof, without producing docunwntal'Y evi- 
dence from the most approved sources. In the compilation 
of this work Tosti had access to many unpublished docu- 
ments in the Vatican Archives, and to have drawn fronl 
them much information of the greatest value. This huok 
which we pre8f'nt to the English reading puhlic, is not a 
(
ontl'over
ia) work. It has not been wl'ittpn, nor tl'an
- 
lated with the view of rpviving doctrines whieb, ('onfes- 

('d]y, exercised a 
a]utary sway in the :\Iiddle Ages, but 
of which no OIle <lreanls of seeing them pxer('ised in the 
actual state of the world, at this hour, when the (1hurch, 
very far from daÍlning an interference in the temporal 
affairs of states, prefers rather to preserve her incontesta- 
ble spiritual rights. 
To establish in its day truth ob
cured by passions; to 
render to virtue its honor, and to avenge the opprobrium 
of six centuries; to inflict on crime triumphant the repro- 
hation it deserves; to serve also the designs of divine Prov
 
idence, which doC's not defer always the cause of justice to 
the future life, such is the noble purpoRe which Dom Tosti 
had in view, and whieh we also maintain in our work of 
tran8lation. "TlJe History of Boniface VIII and his 
Times," is then 8ol('ly a work of historical reparation, a 
sati8faction ùue morality and sOcÏC'ty. 
If, profiting by the generou
 efforts of othet's before him 
to rp8tOI'C' th(' mplnOI'Y of a pontiff persecuted and out- 
raged ùUl'iug hi::;; life, and calumniated and execrated aftcr 



12 


TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE. 


his death, the illustrious Benedictine has succeeded in de- 
fending it in a nlost complete manner, yet he has not pre- 
tended to have said the last word in this solemn discussion. 
But by furnishing sonle important points of procedure, he 
has contributed to the triumph of his client, of his hero; 
and this service, we confidently believe, will win for hÌIn 
the s.rmpathy not only of Catholics, but also of all those 
honest souls, steadfastly faithful to the sacred principles of 
eq uity. 
Boniface was a man of great and relnarkable qualities. 
In his day, before his ordination, he was known far and 
wide for his knowledge of civil law, and his fame as a 
lawJ 1 er has been preserved and handed down to the present 
day by a collection of laws bearing the title: " The Gaetani 
Code of Laws." TIe became so well-versed in canon law 
that he was consiùered the fir
t canonist of his age, and 
his reputation for learning soon became widespr{'aù. He 
was an a<llllirpr of the fine aI'ts, and a strong and liheral 
proteetor and patron of artists. TIe emhellisheU his be
 
lo,'ed town of Anagni, whpre he fixed his summer r{'sidence, 
and restored its cathedral, in nlemory of which the people 
placed his statue in a niche of the facade, which exists at 
the present time. TIe completed and opened to divine wor- 
ship that beautiful Gothic cathedral of Orvieto. In Ronle 
he rebuilt the church of St. Lawrence in Panisperna. He 
invited tIle celebrated Giotto to Rome, and engaged him 
to decorate the churches of St. Peter, and S1. John Lateran, 
and in the latter there is still to be seen the portrait of 
Boniface drawn by that artist. TIis literary acquirements 
no one disputes. The Sixth Book of the Decretals will 
attest them as long as God's undying Church shall last. 
He elevated to the honors of the altar Louis IX, the grand- 
father of Philip the Fair. lIe increased the solemnity of 
the feasts of the four evangelists; and raised the feasts of 
t he four Latin Dodors, Augustine, Ambrose, Jerome and 
Gregory, a degree higher. lIe l'ompo!sed the h;ymn (( .Lire 
rirgo Gloriosa," and the prayer: " Deus, qui pro redemp- 
tione lllundi;" and he left five orations on the canoniza- 
tion of St. Louis, the purity and elegance of whose Latin 
is still much admired. General science owes to him the 
foundation of thp unin.>rsity of the Rapienza at Rome, as 
well as the unirer
:ity at F'el'l11o. Religion owe
 tJ him the 



TRA...
SLATOR"S PREFACE. 


13 


consoling institution of the Jubilee, the most beautiful con- 
ception of his Pontificate. 
Cardinal 'Yiseman who has written an able defence of 
this Pope says: ,. Accustomed as we have been to hear and 
read so llluch to the disadvantage of Boniface YIII, we 
naturaIJy required some cause, however slight, to turn our 
attention towards a particular exalllination of such griev- 
ous charges. The pencil of Giotto must clainl the luerits, 
such as it is. The portrait of Boniface by him in the 
Lateran Basilica, so different in character from the rep- 
resentations of modern history, awakened in our minds a 
peculiar interest regarding him, and led us to the examina- 
tion of several popular assertions, affecting his llloral and 
ecclesiastical conduct. lIe soon appeared to us in a new 
ligh t; as a pontiff who began his reign with most glorious 
promise, and closed it amid sad calamities; who devoted, 
through it aIJ, the energies of a great mind, cultivated by 
profound learning, aud matured by long experience in the 
mo
t difficult eccle
iastical affairs, to the attainment of a 
truly noble end; and who, throughout his l'al'eer, displayed 
many great virtues, could plead in extenuation of his faultR, 
the convul
ed state of public affairs, the rudene
s of his 
times, and the faithless, violent character of many among 
those with whom he had to ileal. These circum
tances, 
working upon a mind naturally upright and inflexible, led 
to a sternness of manner and severity of conduct, wbich, 
when viewed through the feelings of modern time:o;, may 
appear extreme, and almost unjustifiable. But after study- 
ing the condul't of this great Pope, after searching through 
the pages of his most hostile historians, we are satisfied that 
this is the only point upon which a plausible charge can be 
hrought against him; a charge which bas been much exag- 
gerated, and which the considerations jm,t enumerated 
must sufficientl." repel, or in a great part extenuate." The 
Rame author makes one or two other remarks: " Although 
the character of Boniface wa
 certainly stern and illfiexihh', 
there is not a sign of it having been cruel 01' re,'engeful. 
Throughout the whole of his hi
tory, not an illstanl'e can 
he found of his having punished an enemy witb death. 
1Vhen he wa
 returning to Rome, after his liberation, in a 
tl"il1Jllph never ùefol'p witnessed, Cardinal Stephanesius 
tl'll
 u
, tl1:,t his pdndpal enemy Xogaret, or 8eiarra Col- 



14 


TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE. 


onna, was seized by the people and brought before him, 
that he might deal with him as he plea
ed; he freely par- 
doned him and let him go. So, likewise, when Fra. Jaco- 
pone fen into his hands, he dealt leniently with him, and 
confined him, where others would have treated the offence 
as eapital. These exalnples of forgiveness and gentleness, 
ought surely to have due weight in estinlating the Pope's 
character," 
And so we send forth this work to the English reading 
public, that they might gain a right idea of his character 
as wen hoping that it Illay he able to relllove the ma::;;s of 
error and cahunny that has accumulated around the naIlie 
of Boniface VIII, for the past six centuries, and likewise 
remove the obloquy which stilI rests 011 his lllemory. If 
this end be attained the labor of translation win be re- 
warded, and we shall be amply repaid for having under- 
taken it. 
lay justice and truth prevail regarding this 
great, learned and magnaniulOus Pope, and may he have 
the place he lnerits among the Sovereign Pontiffs, which is 
alllong the highest and the greatest. 
EUGENE J. DONNELLY. 


October 2Gth, 1910. 



BOOK FIRST. 


SUl\IMARY. 


1217 to 1295. 


Classification of human events from the fall of the Roman Empire to our 
own times.----The Pontificate of Boniface is a generating fact.-How 
he personified the separation of the priesthood from the Empire.- 
Reflections on the political ministration of the Papacy.-How the 
civil Pontificate will always live, although the exercise of it ceased 
after Boniface.--Charles of Anjou and the Roman Pontiffs.-
1istakes 
which the latter made.-The trouble they prepared for their suc- 
cessors.-The Sicilian Vespers.--lJ'he birth and education of Benedict 
Gaetani.--JIis first employments in the Church.---'His first embassy to 
Rudolph, at war with Charles, for the possession of Provence.-He 
is created Cardinal.---JAnother embassy to restrain Charles from fighting 
a duel with Peter of Aragon.-Indiscretions of Martin IV,
Naples 
and Sicily under Pope Honorius.-----Dionysius, king of Portugal, trouble- 
some to the Church.--Cardinal Gaetani is sent with other cardinals 
to pass sentence on him.---'He goes to France in the quality of legate 
on affairs relating to the Holy Land, and becomes acquainted with 
Philip the Fair.-He makes every effort for peace, and writes the 
treaty of Tarascon.-Conclave held after the death of NiC"'holas 111.---- 
Divisions and dela)Ts of the Cardinals.--Charles the Lame intrudes 
himself among them and Cardinal Gaetani ejects him.-Peter Morone 
elected Pope.-A description of him.-He accepts the Papacy.-He 
falls altogether under the power of Charles and perverse men.-He is 
(,Towned.-Gaetani is the last one to repair to Aquila.-In what con- 
dition he found things, and how he came to be Lord of the Curia.- 
Peter Celestine exasperates the Cardinals.-They begin to advise him 
to resign.--.He is disposed to do so.-He takes counsel with Cardinal 
Gaetani,-,Artifices of Charles II.-Abdication of St. Celestine.-Dis- 
positions of the Cardinal electors.-Gaetani elected Pope.--Calumnies 
regarding his election.-First measures of Boniface which disturb the 
beginning of his Pontificate.-He repairs to Rome.
An observation.---- 
Ceremonies of the cornonation of the new Pope.-Encyclical of Boni- 
face.-Letter to King Philip the Fair. 


IT was with much agitation of mind that we propof':ed 
to narrate the history of Boniface YIII, for the r(>a
on 
that his name, in many hook:-;, groan
 un(l<.
l' thp wpight of 
15 



1G 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


the greatest abuse and slander. 'Ye shall not now speak 
of the reasons for the almost universal and lasting denun- 
ciations of historians (both of his own and later times), 
nor of their justice, nor their iniquity; these causes are 
very clearly revealed from the facts themselves without 
any effort on the part of the narrator. To prepare the 
mind of the reader, however, we must make known the 
motives which inspired us with courage to publish anew 
the true facts of the history of that Pontiff. 
To form a judgment on past events, and to discover the 
evidence of their nloral right, it does not 
uffice to examine 
them severely and intelligently; the true science of history 
consists in choosing from among theln those which, in the 
order of human events, start up as beginnings and fertile 
cau!':es of great changt's. Upon these as on a high elevation 
the historian places himself in order to view and follow 
the successive devt'lopment of subordinate events which 
lie hidden, and which come forth when eÏrcumstances have 
reached tht'ir maturity. The evpnts which we call gener- 
ators/ are the great social revolutions, always preceded by 
secret caUSeS which prepared the way for them, and al- 
ways followed by consequences which reveal their power. 
'Yhen a fact of this nature strikes the mind of a phil- 
osopher, it there awakens a struggle, more or less pro- 
longed, of two contrary ideas in the breasts of the people, 
and the victory of one of t hell1 over the other. The fact 
that expresses the triumph of the victorious idea, is pre- 
cisely that which is called a revolt, because it allures the 
vanquished idea and causes it to pass under its sway. 
To write a complete history of the human family, it will 
suffice then to discern tlwse generating facts; because frOlll 
a study of thenl every other fact will be revealed, being 
made clear by the light from the generating fact. Hence, 
turning our attention to events which forIn the history of 
society from the fall of the Latin Empire to our own times, 
we find three events which lllerÏt the name of revolutions; 
namely, the terrible invasion of the Barbarians into 
Europe; the quarrel of Philip the Fair with the Holy See; 
and the revolution at the end of the eighteenth century, 
commonly called the French Revolution. 
A government without rule and restraint, which estab- 
Hshes itself on the ruins of the virtue of a people, is of 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


17 


itself alone a. sufficient preparation, and as well a neces- 
sary cause of revolution, internal or external, as the force 
may be which accelerates the turbulent fact; and the strug- 
gle is then between right and force, order or disorder. 
From Augustus to Augustulus this cause unfolded itself, 
and sapped the foundation of the edifice of the ancient civ- 
ilization, which crumbled away when an external force, 
the Barbarians, ruined the Roman Empire. The idea 
of disorder and tyranny having triumphed invisibly, on its 
ruinf' and amiùst the horrors of a boisterous crueHy they 
led Pagan Rom
, a slave, to the feet of Christian Rome, 
and made her thus submissive to thp iùea of justice and 
order. Thf'
r could not personify that idea, because they 
were barbarians; therefore, triumphant, but wandering, 
they walked the earth, but could not vivify it. This task 
was undertaken by the Roman Papacy; and the day on 
which Pope Leo placed the imperial crown on the head of 
CharJelnagne, it seems to us the great revolution was ac- 
complished. Right administered by the pontifical hand 
ruled both princes and people; and as it is the life of 
human society, the Popes penetrated deeply into this so- 
ciety; the
T even took possession of the heart, to revive the 
sources of its life, and equally subservient to them they 
11(' ltl the ruler and the ruled. This was the infancy of the 
rising generations, and it was in peace. But, advancing 
in social life, the princes were the first to be enamored of 
ancient pagan Rome, which in its cold but still dangerous 
ruins concealed the idea of the monarchy of Augustus. 
They declared openly for it, they cleansed it from the ob- 
s
pnities of a Tiberius and a 
 ero, they marked its brow 
with the cross of Christ, they made it sit with them on 
their thrones, and they began to antagonize the Papacy, to 
drive it out not only from civil society, but to consign it 
a gain to the ca tacom bs. 
The Emperors of the house of Hohenstaufen and the 
Popes of their times, were the expression of the great 
struggle between the Church and the Empire, which was 
to prepare another revolution, that is to say, the victory of 
either one of the two powers over the oth
r. As long as 
thp Empire> was personifieù by DIeIl whose strength of mind 

f(uane>d the> gJ'eatnf'ss o
 the ide>a they r
pre
e>nted. tl}(
 
POWl'1' of tl1(' Church, finding in hpr pontiffs a strong anù 



18 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


solid prop, held good and survived. But, on the death of 
Frederick II, the idea of the pagan monarchy was en- 
feebled by reason of its division among many crowned 
heads, and the Pontificate counting on a complete victory, 
moderated that vigor that had been displayed by Innocent 
III, Gregory IX, and Innocent IV. 
The pontifical energy revived however at the excesses of 
King Philip, and it confronted him with the breast of 
Boniface VIII. All the kingdoms were silent spectators 
of the struggle for the principles which these men repre- 
sented. And when they saw the Pope imprisoned, struck, 
fall into the grave, and saw the stone of vituperation 
placed upon this grave by a Christian king, they r<>alized 
that a rcvolution was now completed, the separation of 
the Priesthood from thc Empire. 
'Yhcn the Church was set aside, the right which the 
popes had visibly pxercÏspd over the bcad of kings was re- 
placed by an invisiblc right which the princes invokpd, 
anù by virtue uf which they ventured to reign; this right 
the people did not !';ee and to it they could not appeal. In 
vain did the kings have recourse to the theories of those 
learned in law, to render this right perceptible; how could 
lawyers inspire men with as much respect as the Pontiffs? 
The people often with both hands closed the volume of a 
right which the will of another man could 110t sanctify in 
their eyes; then commenced the fierce struggle of interest!'; 
between the people and the kings, or the fight for liberty 
and for power, for the people in their ignorance did not 
understand how the power can reside in a man. This ina- 
bility was formerly supplied by Faith, and with this there 
was nothing easier to comprehend than the power in the 
'Pope, the representative of Jesus Christ. Now as France 
had accomplished the r<>volution which separated the 
I>riesthood from the Empire, she adlÎevcd also the enù of 
the struggle between monarchy and democrac
y, To France 
belonged this mission; for in her impetuosity to separate 
herself from the sacerdotal principle, not finding in the 
n10narchy the guarantees of the Church, she Inust neces- 
sarily tend to clash indirectly with the principle of democ- 
racy. Ther<>fore all modt'rn history springs from these 
three revolutions, the source and origin of every other 
{'vent, from the barbariflns victorious over the Latin Em- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


19 


pire; from the priesthood excluded throughout France 
from the heart of civil societ
y; and from the monarchy 
overthrown by democracy in France. ' 
From which it appears, that in every revolution, the 
men who represent th
 conquered or the conquering prin- 
ciple should have the spirit so strongly tempered as to 
sustain the terrible conflict in which they are engaged. 
If they be feeble, there will be no struggle, anù if there be 
no struggle, there will not be a revolution. If then they 
represent the conquered principle, they have a right not 
only to be honored by posterity for their courage, but also 
to be venerated by reason of the pains of their martyrdom. 
It is true that to this double dignity only those can aspire, 
who through sufficient personal valor, or by reason of cir- 
cumstances, so closely allied themselves to th
ir great and 
dangerous principle, that their ruin entails that of their 
principle, and soon the struggle disappears to give place 
to the easy and Succf>ssive conquests of the victor. Kow, 
of the three aforesaid revolutions that alone in which the 
Priesthood was excluded from the State, seems to offer the 
wonderful man of whom we speak. In that of the bar- 
barbians, pagan Rome did not have a respl'esentative who 
identified himself with the idea and represented it, and so 
the struggle was rather material than moral. In the 
French Revolution Louis XVI divided with all the 
crowned heads the hazardous charge, and although ma- 
terially he alone nIight be in the hands of the democracy, 
morally he was only a member of the great monarchical 
body, and the king being dead, it cannot be said that the 
principle was dead, but living. 
Boniface alone by the loftiness of his courage, as wen 
as by rf>a
on of his office as head of the Church, in which 
the monarchy is universal, so closely identified himself 
with the principle of the civil priesthood, that it died with 
him. That is what we shall show ,,-hen at the end of this 
history we shaH have related the great revolution in which 
thf> conquered idea was so magnanimously repre
ented by 
tbis Pontiff. Having thus spoken of the moral and politi- 
cal conditions in which Boniface is nece:s
mrily placed, 
when we call uIJon him to render to thl' men of our own 
times an act'ount of his administration, w(' have perhaps 
aroused great anxiety in the soul of those who think (and 



20 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


we are of that number) that the civil minh
try of the 
Roman Pontificate still rontiuues. "Te have said, in fal't, 
that Boniface carried this ministry with him to the tomh; 
it would seem then, that since that time the successors of 
St. Peter have found on his chair only the keys to clo!'\c 
and open heaven, and no longer the sceptre of that power, 
objective in Christianity, subjective in the Papacy, whidl 
secures evt'rything by the reconciliation of the contrary 
elenwnts in the human family. Yet it is not so. The ob- 
jective idea never dies, it is eternal like God. The Papaey 
can lose the exercise of civil power, wl1Îch depends upon 
the mutability of human things, but in itself this power is 
immutable; it will last as long as the Church, always ready 
to resume its influence over civil society, the moment 
Providence commands it or the misery of humanity arouses 
this beneficent power to action. 
In the human individual, life is sustained by reason tem- 
pering the spiritual and corporal forces; so the race is 
kept alive by the reconciliation uf power and liberty de- 
rived from the supreme reason, which is God. This su- 
preme reason presides over the opposing factions, and 
while it unmoved is a spectator of the combat, at times 
it intervenes, and balancing their forces, preserves them 
fr01n death and makes them live. This supreme conciliat. 
ing reason is determined by the Roman Pontificate (we 
speak to Catholics), and through it it is known, and scat- 
ters its benefits among men. And just as human reason 
in the individual, and the supreme in the universe permit 
evil, without losing anything of their power so the author. 
ity of the pontificate, the voice, as we have said, of this 
sovereign reason which conciliates the opposing interests, 
is not changed in nature because of accidental circum. 
stances which may arrest the course of its subjective 
power. We may remark here, that an arbiter who is 
charged with the duty of conciliating two adversaries, 
must be free from their faults; for by identifying himself 
with one of then1 by these faults, and for that reason 
repelling the other, he would become unfit for his office 
of conciJiator. All human history is but the developmt'nt 
of this strup:g-Ie of opposin
 elements viewed by the su- 
preme rea
on, and the revolutions are the victories which 
the opponents gain the one over the other. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


21 


Boniface personified the supreme pontificate in the begin- 
ning of the 14th century. Behinù him lay the infancy of 
human society, or the :JIiùdle Ages; before him this same 
society full-grown, or the Renaissance. It has bpen said of 
a great man that he was seated as arbiter between two 
centurie
; greater than he, Boniface took the position of 
arbitpr between two vast epochs. IIe combated in the l\Iid- 
dIe Ages the tyranny of princes, and in the Renais
ance 
the indocility of the people, who emboldened by youth, 
sought to be freed from a guardianship which they con- 
sidered useless, unbecoming and hurtful to their own 
liberty, and besieged the papal throne with the demand, 
like the prodigal son in the Gospel: " Give nle the portion 
of substance that fal1cth to me." A youthful error this it 
is true, ypt one which wounded sort'ly the fatherly affec- 
tion of the Papacy, and ,yhich recoiled heavily on the 
head of the proud guilty ones. In Boniface the Papacy 
vexed in front by the bold beadng of the nenai
sance, har- 
rassed behind by a force unfrienùly to it and to the peo- 
ple, saw its guardianship cease. It mourned not for itself, 
but for the youthful and oVt'r-confident humanity, and it 
asked pardon for it from Christ, as for him who knows 
not what he does. IIenceforth the time of guardianship 
had passed; and the people became impatient to measure 
their strength with power. But in the tomb of Boniface, 
where the pontifical guardianship lay buried, dwells un- 
changeable tliP right of its conciliating power. )Ien, in 
fact, can refusp it rpcoguition but not destroy it; and in 
the fatigue of the struggle, in the s;terility of the means 
employed by both parties to come to an agreement, the 
consciousness of this holy po,yer will eyer live and rule, 
the preserver of contenùing elements which she concili- 
atps, in ju
tice. 
I t is clear to all how Pope Boniface VIII, viewed in the 
exercise of this suhlime ministry, becomes the subject of a 
most important history. ...\.t the first glance all the faults 
with which he was reproacherl, and upon which alone he 
has hpen judged, become diminished and disappear. Ro 
instead of b<:'ginning by replying to the ac('usations of 
simony, of exce
sive and gross amhition which WPI'e 
hroug-ht againRt him, we sllall conduct the r('ad(,1" to llim 
by another way, in order to haYf:
 t11e reader study hiIn in 



22 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


the very sanctuary of this providential rea80n, into whiclì 
those never penetrate who, arresting their view on the 
nlere surface of human events, obtain but an incomplete 
knowledge upon which they base their invectives and their 
maledictions. 
To rightly estimate the character of the Pontiff, whose 
life we are about to relate, it is neces
mry for us to glance 
rapidly over certain events whirh took place before hi
 
time and which influenced his education. For no OlW can 
doubt that though we owe to nature the endowIJwnt of onl
 
character, the circumstances of the times contribute lnuch 
to form it. That was a wise and 
alutary move on the part 
of the Homan pontiffs, to keep at a distance from their see 
the imperial power, in order to give more space to that of 
the Church which strives, without ceasing-, to extend itself 
to the uttermost limits of the earth. 
Alexander III made the Lonlbard republics his ad- , 
vanceù ramparts, the kingdom of :Kaples and Sicily, which 
Innocent III preserved with so much care for his ward, 
Frederick II, was to serve as the last buhvark and refuge 
in time of danger. But this double conlbination, an in- 
spiration of deep wisdom, failed of its intent. In fact the 
republics, after having use(l their strength against the 
foreigner Barbarossa, turned it against one another, awl 
prepared the way for the domination of lllany masters; on 
his part, Frederick II, fronl a king having beconw em- 
peror, annexed the kingdOlll of Sicily to tlle empire. The 
remedy then increased the evil which the Popes had hoped 
to av(>rt; for the Emperor who formerly had to fear th(> 
Lombards or the :K ormans in Sicily, now settled himself 
there as in Ids own home, and from there, as from a 
eitadeI, thundered against Rome. There was no Illore 
waiting for the German armies to cross the Alps; they 
were camping at the gates of Rome, and the Pope, who, 
up to that time, had been appris('d of the impieties of tlw 
imp(>rial power only by letter or legate, saw them with 
llis o,vn eyes. Innoc(>nt had intended to make Frederick 
only a vassal king of the Holy See; hut Frederick pro- 
claimed llimsplf emperor as if he had heen an indppendent 
soV(
rf'ign. Ro this proximity served to add prominence to 
the struggle between the Priesthood and the Empire, and 
to incr(>a
e the perils of the Papacy. 



HISTORY OF FOPE BONIFACE VIII. 


.,c
 
_..t 


Frederick would perhaps have carried into effect th(' 
terrible imperial idea, and would have himself reduced the 
rights of the Church to that sad state into which they were 
afterwards precipitated by the work of Philip thp Fail' of 
France, if he had tempered the roughness of his German 
nature with the cunning and dissimulation which he per- 
ceived in the southern countries where he was educated, 
and which he made use of more than once in dealing with 
the Roman pontiffs. But he broke out again
t the ('hnreh 
after the n1anner of :x ero, and showed no respect for the 
religious convictionR, which at that time were the Blost 
solemn expression of the religion itf'eIf. These faults be- 
can1e more conspicuous when contrasted with the virtues 
of St. Louis, king of France. Besides, the other prince
, 
not wishing to assume the rôle of vassals, became alarmed 
at the doctrine fabricated by the jurists of Fredprick Bar- 
barossa, which aimed at nothing less than the ref'urreetion 
of the empire of Augustus in the German emperors and to 
establish in their favor a universal monarchy. This is 
the reason why in the fil'
t council of Lyons, Thaddeus of 
Suessia, the defender of Frederick, was received so coldly 
by the as
embl
r, and tlle sf'ntence of excollununication an(l 
the deposition hurled against the emperor by Innocent IV 
was received without objection by the other kings. 
The formidable imperial power so baneful to the Church 
can be said to have died with Frederick, and y(>t tha t 
which seemed to point to a lasting victory for the Church 
prepared its overthrow. The inconstant loyalty of the 
.N eapolitans and the rivalries which sprang up among the 
sons of Frederick relieved the minds of the popes; the easy 
victories over )Ianfred, and the increasing moral deea- 
dence of the itnperial dignity after the death of this em- 
peror, made the popes descend from lofty views which they 
had displayed in their ministry and to which the greatness 
and dignity of the pnem:r whOln they fought had l'ais(>(l 
them. Ther('fore the war which they carried on, in tlH
 
kingdom of Naples, against the la
t remnant of the hou
:e 
of Suabia, excluded from the throne by the sentence of the 
Council of Lyon
, and the results of thiR war, can bp ("on- 

idered as a new period of facts which begins with the 
dpath of Frederick. 
The last will of thi8 en1peror and th(' sovereign dominion 



:!-! 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


of the Pope over this country were the subject of the dis- 
cord. Although it is true the pontiffs defended there with 
the rights and patrimony of the Church their own liberty, 
yet we nlust admit that the contest had diminished and did 
not assume the proportions of the gigantic anù heroic 
comLats of Alexander III and Gregory IX. NevertheleRR 
it is to be equally maintained that the popes, engaged in 
the affairs of the narrow 
pace of the kingdom of Naples 
and Sicily, exercised an influence over all the throneR of 
Europe by making sparkle the royal crown whieh they 
held in their hands, and by looking about to find a prinee 
worthy to wear it. The events which were taking place in 
the kingdom of Naples were as the center whence the 
movement started whkh put the princes in communication 
with one another and with the Church. If:X aples and 
Sicily had been suited for a republican form of govern- 
ment; if for a long time the people had not been taught to 
Jive under monarchical rule by the laws, by the civil in- 
stitutions, and by the manifest splendor of those who up 
to that time had worn the crown, perhaps the popes might 
have preserved a SUpl'enle sovert'ignty over that kingdom; 
a conciliatory protectol'ate, or immediate government by 
some one appointed by them, could have cast in the shade 
those quarrelR always so dangerous to which hereditary 
pretentions are wont to give rise. But even though they 
had desired it, they could not have accomplished it for tlw 
aforesaid reasons; and they had to intrust to others the 
sovereignty wllich they could not without difficulty pre- 
serve among an excited people, who were aroused at first 
by the liberty of t'hoice alllong the parties, and later on 
Ly the nece
sity of defending their own rights. 
Charles of Anjou, summoned by the Pope, came to rule 
over Naples and Sicily. He was a prince poor in worldly 
goods, but of houndless amùition. Seated on an unt'x- 
pf'cted throne, he Rhould have made for himself an in- 
violable law of respecting the rights of the Church and 
thoRe of the people the direction of WhOlll she I1tH1 confided 
to him. He propost'd to violate both, Lecau
e they were 
incompatible with his desire of acquiring unbridled power. 
He made open "yar against the Sicilians; Inlt against the 
Cllurch the adversity of circumstances, and not moderation 
of spirit bound him to secret attacks. lIe had always to 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


,)- 
.....> 


fight in Peter of Aragon and the Sicilian people, two pow- 
erful adversaries who kept him lllanifesting an apparent 
respect for Rome. Rome and justice were powerlf'
s to 
resist him, and he changed his dominion into a t.rl'anny. 
Charles overthro,,'ing the sacred rampart of this double 
authurity, is the entire history that educated the mind of 
Benedict Gaetani, and prepared the pontificate of Boni- 
face VIII. 
To us who judge the canses by the effects, that plan of 
the Popes in calling a foreign prince to rule over the south- 
ern part of Italy, certainly does not appear salutary or 
wise. It resulted in nothing else, but furnishing the 
French against their will with means to increase the evils 
which the Gerlnans had already brought upon the unfortu- 
nate people of Sicily. There is no doubt that thf' Papacy 
needed an armed and po".erful defender; but Alexander III 
had found how to clothe the papal power with a breast- 
plate of iron, by making himself the soul of the Lombard 
League, preferring l'ather to engage as defenders the peo- 
ple whose liberty he had protected rather than the prinl'es 
to whom he had given sovereignties. 
'Yhen the last scion of the house of the Hohenstaufpns, 
the young Conradin, drawn into the kingdom of :Kaples by 
a sort of fatality, had lost his life at the bands of the 
Angevine butcher, Charles aspired to a power which sur- 
passed exceedingly the limits marked out by Clement IV. 
The favor of the Roman See, and the condition of his 
kingdom, furnished him, more than any other prince of his 
time, with the means of gratifying his desire. Northern 
and Central Italy by reason of the sudden overthrow of 
the Ghibellines, offered hÌln in the triumph of .the Guelphs, 
at the head of which he could have placed hiInself as the 
champion of the Church, an aI'lD by which to secure fOl
 
him
elf an Italian prinripality. Thf' sea wl1ich surrounds 
Sicily and so benignly bath('s the vast coast of the 
eapoli- 
tan country, offered him the occa
ion of increa
ing his 
power by a naval force, and of extending his conquests, 
under the pretext of a crusade, along the coa
ts of Africa 
towards the weak Byzantium and the regions of tIlt' 
I...evant. In 1267 by a promise of aid to Baldwin II, Em- 
peror of Constantinople, h(' obtained from him the princi- 
pality of Achaia and all the country which the I.latins still 



2G 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


occupied. Coyeting with an insatiable gaze the very 
throne of Constantine, he gave his daughter Beatrice in 
marriage to Philip the only son of Baldwin. So thanks to 
these matrimonial alliances, bargains familiar to princes, 
he had established a remote right to the throne, which 
made l\Hchael Paleologus fear. If the opportunity was 
great, the knowledge of it and the will to us
 it were no 
less important. He knew it, aud embraced it, whilst the 
popes believed him modestly engaged in studying his di- 
plOlna of investiture. However when in l\Iay 12Gr), 
Charles entered Rome, and haughtily lodged himself with 
his knights in the papal palace of the Lateran without the 
permission of Clement, it was very evident that his eyes 
dazzled by the crown about to descend on his head, saw no 
longer the hand which bestowed it. Clement protested 
forcibly against this want of respect; 1 but his n1ind did 
not penetrate the depth of this audacious proceeding. 
But wl)3t contributed to raise Charlf's the sooner to that 
lwight of power which he reached, was the vacancy in the 
Roman See which lasted two years and six months. Our 
readers would do well to remark here that after the arrival 
of the Count of Anjou, these prolonged vacancies became 
very frequent. In virtue of his office as senator of Rome, 
he exercised the sovereignty in that city and over all the 
patrimony of the Church; moreover he concentrated in 
himself all the indirect power of the popes over the Italian 
cities. Never have factions greater need of a chief than in 
time of prosperity and victory. Now the Guelphs not find- 
ing any longer in the See of St. Peter their natural head, 
all turned to Charles as their assured protector. So great 
was the confidence of Charles that in the diet of Cremona, 
which he had held by the Guelphs of Lombardy, and prf'- 
sided over by his f'nvoys, he humbly requpsted them to 
name him their chief, which word did not sound like lord. 
The principal towns of Lombardy and Piedmont acceded 
to his wishes; but the people of 
Ionferrato openly l'f'- 
fused and said; "that they would receive Charles as a 
Friend, but as a lord never." The ready compliance of so 
many citif's procef'ded from the extinction of that noble 
consciousness of their own liberty which hail been so ex- 
alted during the wars against Barbarossa; then too, the 
1 Raynaldus. Annal. Eccl. Epistola ad Carolum 1265-12. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE ;VIII. 


27 


long prosperity of the Ghibelline party in permitting 
Ezelino da Romano, Albert Pallavacini, and Buoso da 
Doara to exercise sovereign ty over them, had already ac- 
customed their minds to the idea of servitude. Democ- 
racy died with the League, aristocracy was consolidated 
under Frederick II, and from aristocracy to a monarchy 
was an easy passage which Charles tried. 
He did not have to negotiate much with Tuscany; ap- 
pointed by the Pope imperial vicar of this country, by 
virtue of this title he obtained for ten years his sovereignty 
over Florence. This was the reason of the change which 
this; city underwent in its governmental constitution, after 
tllP expulsion of th(> Ghibellines. It increased the nUInùer 
of the advisory conn
els, curtailing thereby the power of 
the nohlemen of the city; it augmented the power of the 
pf'oph>, and, by the over difficult distribution of this power, 
it enkindled in their breasts the fire of lamentable rival- 
rips, the C3URe of cruel broils between the nobles and the 
populacp. These dissensions could have opened to Charles 
a way to sovereignty over the ruins of the republic; but 
the opportunity escaped him, and all the effect of these 
deadly discords was to destroy the Guelph party by di- 
viding it into the "rhites and the Blacks, and as a conse- 
quence to deprive the Roman Pontiff of his greatest sup- 
port, and to remotely prepare the decline of the Florentine 
the elevation of the Guelphs, in order that he as the head 
had for their object the suppression of the Ghibellines, and 
republic. The efforts then of Charles throughout Italy 
of the latter nlight rule ovpr aU Italy. But it was not for 
this purpose that the popes had called l1Îm. 
Finally Theobald Visconti became Pope under the name 
of Gregory X. He was a holy man, and he would have 
nlore willingly passed his days as a crusader in the Holy 
Land, than in the Apostolic See. He saw at first in the 
ambition of Charles no other inconvenipnce than the end- 
le
s duration of the war on account of exasperating the 
Ghibellines; but when he wished to remedy affairs, he 
found this prince a very wicked son of IIoly Church. In 
fact when GI'e
ory. wa
 in Florence to effect a pc>ace be- 
tween the G1.wlpbs and Ghib(llline
, the marRhal of thp 
king threat(lned with death and drove back the pontifical 
legates who wer(l obligpd to depart, lpaying matt('rs in the 



28 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


same condition as they were and Florence under an 
interdict. 
This Pope had dearest to his heart the conquest of the 
Holy Land, and as a consequence the reunion of the schis- 
matic GrpC'ks to the Latin Church. To the attainment of 
this he directed all his energies. During the whole of his 
pontificate Gregory cherished the project of a new crusade, 
and in ordpr to brin
 it and the reunion of the Greek 
Church to the Latin more prominently before the people of 
Christendom, he eonvoked the fourteenth æcumenical 
eouncil, the second of Lyons. Though Charles did not 
interfere with the project directly, he began to obstruct it 
indirectly by his ambitious designs. The peace and good 
win \yhich the Pope ordered his legates to preach in all 
the Italian cities, and the most ardent desire he had of 
numbering among his flock the schismatic l\Iichael Paleo- 
logus, were displeasing to the Angevine. He did not wish 
peace, because it depriyed him of the exaltation of the 
triumphant Guelphs which was useful to him; and by no 
IDPans ùid he wish the conversion of the Greek prince. If 
:Michael returned to the bosOln of the Church, Charles 
could not, without ceasing to be a devoted son of the 
Church, wage that war against him ,yhich he meditated in 
order to usurp the throne of Byzantium. Paleologus, en- 
fJowed with that Slll'C'wtlne8s \yhich distinguishes his coun- 
try-men, perceived this consequent'f', and was forced to 
reenter the fold of ChrÏf;t, and to f-;helter himself behind 
the chair of St. Peter, lllakil1
 nse of it as a rampart apLinst 
the power of Charles. In thp fourth se
sion of tlw Council 
of L.'Tons Gregory shed tpars of jOJ? awl cOll
olati()n oyer 
the conversion of the Greeks; and we eau believe that 
Charles shed tears of grief and madness. Eyery one knows 
how quic
dy this apparent conversion was effe('ted, and 
how in the fifteenth century, the successors of Paleologus, 
made use of this same cunning when they were threatened 
no longer by the Christians, but hy the Turks. 
This Pope in tbp innoc
nce of his design, causpd king 
Charles another vexation, the consequence!'; of whicb he 
was ignorant, and it was the friendly i'elations he e!';tah- 
1i
.dle(1 with HlH10lph of HapsùuI'g, cl'eatpd hy the el
('tor!'; 
king' of the Romans. Requp!';ted h.v the am ha!';
adors to 
confirm this election Gregor.r, after haying received from 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


29 


Rudolph the oath of obedience and fidclity to the Roman 
See, not only confirmed him as king, but even wrote most 
eagerly in his behalf to many prinees and eyen to Charles 
in order to establish friendly relations towards him. 
3Ioreoyer he notified Rudolph by letter to hold himself in 
rcadiness to rcceive the imperial crown; and to repair as 
soon as possible to the place he would designate, where 
they would meet and confer. In fact the Pope and Ru- 
dolph met at Lausanne, and warmly embraced each other. 
Hudolph swore again to preserve all the property of the 
Church, to defend aU her right
 especially those which she 
held over Sicily, and to go as a crusader to the Holy Land. 
The Emperor drew nigh to the Pope, but not tht' Empire 
to the Church. However these friendly feelings went to 
the heart of Charles. He was unwilling to have anyone 
else divide with him the pious office of defender of the 
Holy See, and he did not care to see th(\ imperial power in 
Italy for the reason that it would frustrate his designs. 
N or did he reason wrongly. For the sllbduf'd Ghihellines 
turned to Rudolph, as to a support by which to revive their 
hopes. They rushed to him, and recalled to his mind the 
old theories of the rights of the German Empire over poor 
Italy. "
e do not know whether in the interview at Lau- 

anIle Gregory oppnly nlanifested to the Emperor elect his 
displeasure at the actions of Charle
, nor whethcr he en- 
couraged him to fill his office in tll{' affairs of Kaple::; and 
Sicily; but it is certain that the oath taken to defenù par- 
ticularly the rights of the Church oyer Sicil
r must have 
been engendered from a conversation oyer the insolen('e of 
Charles of Anjou. In a word a great rivalry ensued be- 
tween Charles and Rudolph, whieh would ha,'e heen a 
weapon in the hand of a morc able pontiff to humble the 
oyer-proud Charlf's. 
The pious and peaceful Gregor.r being deaù, fortune COD- 
tinued to smile on the ambitious projects of Charles, and 
the Pontiffs Innocent V, .L\.drian Y, and John XXI, who 
succeeded Gregory, placed no obstacles in hiR way. Under 
the latter he eYen 
aw added to the crown of SiciJy that of 
Jerusalem, Lestowed upon hitn by 
Iaria Eliza beth, daugh- 
ter of Behemond IV, prince of Antioeh. Rannto reJates 
that the greatPf part of tlw papal curia as
i
ted at tll(' act 
of donation to whi('h Jllany eanlinal
 
uh
cril)('a their 



30 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE :VIII. 


names. 2 And this was not an 
mpty title, for he soon took 
possession of Ptolomaïs, through Count Roger of St. Sev- 
erino aided by the Knights Templar. 
In the meanwhile the more he advanced in power, the 
more he oppressed the realm entrusted to him by the 
Church to rule. His victory over Conrad in summoned by 
the despair of the inhabitants, made him bolder, and 

hanged his rule into a unbridled tyranny. Such was his 
conduct from the beginning of his reign and we do not per- 
ceive that any pope made an effort to restrain him. Yet 
the popes should have opened their eyes to this French 
predominance, not only through pity for the oppressed 
people but also because the latter in their fury to relieye 
themselves of the yoke, could involve in one and the same 
ruin as did really happen the rights of the vassal prince, 
aud those of the sovereign Church. In fine the compacts 
swore to ùy 0harles at the time of receivin
 the investiture 
of the kingdom from Clement were formally violated. 
'flw elpv('l' Cardinal Orsini, under the name of Nieholas 
III ascended the papal throne. Less pious than Gregory 
X, he did not oceupy his mind so much with the affairs of 
the Holy Land, as with those which encompassed him at 
home; and so he set out to clip the wings of Charles. 
Amon
 the conditions to which the latter had sworn were 
those of not meddling in the government of Tuscany and 
of Lomhal'dy,9 and of not accepting any office as ruler or 
governor in the states of the Church. The first condition 
he shamefully violated; from the obligation of the other 
he was freed by Clement himself, who was still in such 
fear of the house of Suabia that in order to have Charles 
near him, he created him a senator of Rome. Pope Nicho- 
las wanted to enforce on Charles the observance of these 
two clauses; and being a man skilled in affairs he so 
worked on the minds of Rudolph, king of the Romans, and 
of Charles, that while he was ardently arranging peace 
between them, and striving to unite them also by the bond 
of relationship, he made use of the German prince to hold 
Charles in awe. A war in Italy between them would have 

Lib. 13. c. ]5. Par. 12. 
I" VeJ intromittatis vos ulJo modo de regimine ipsius imperii, vel regni 
Romanorum, seu Theutoniae, aut Lombardiae, seu Tusciae vel majoris 
parti>J earum." 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


31 


been injurious to the Church. A victory for Rudolph 
would revive the fear of the imperial power, and the tri- 
umph of the Ghibellines; his defeat would give Charles 
unlimited power. Peace, on the contrary, by holding the 
two princes in mutual regard, gave an occasion to the Pope 
to continue the pious work of Gregory X, namely the con- 
ci1iation of the factions. In fact, fearing that Nicholas III 
would proceed too far in his friendship for the king of the 
Romans, who through desire for the imperial crown was 
most deferential toward the popes, Charles submitted with 
wonderful docility to the injunction that was laid upon hiIn 
to resign his office of vicar of Tuscany and senator of 
Rome. It seems that Nicholas III was slow to credit such 
docility, for Giordano relates 4 that he sent a cardinal to 
observe what impression this sacrifice made on the mind 
of the king. N ow Charles perfectly dissembled his in- 
terior displeasure by according the pontifical messenger a 
most honorable reception and by addressing him in terms 
most affectionate and well-chosen. So Nicholas, having 
heard this, remarked that Charles received his goodness of 
soul from the house of France, his sagacity from Spain, 
his mother being Blanche of Spain, and his discretion in 
words from his frequent intercourse with the Roman 
Curia. This action of Charles, and this appreciation of 
Nicholas strikingly reveal the character of the two men 
and show that they understood each other. Charles being 
degraded, Nicholas sent the German out of Italy. Yet 
the imperial agents were known to exact still the oath of 
allegiance from the towns comprised in the territory of 
the Church. Nicholas warned Rudolph that according to 
the imperial patents of his; predecessors in favor of the 
papal see this patrimony extended from Rodicofani to 
Ceprano, and that the Romagna, the :l\farches of Ancona, 
the Five CitieR, and all the other land contained in that 
tract of tprritory, were all ecclesiastkal and not German 


4" Rex Carolus privatur officio senatoris, et eodem anno vicaria Tusciae 
per eundem (Nicolaum) . . . Papa misit unum cardinalem, qui patientiam 
regis tentaret super praedictis sibi ablatis: et audito, quod cardinalem 
honorifice recepisset, et modeste respondisset, ait: felicitatem Carolus 
habet a Domo Franciae, ingenii perspicacitatem a regno Hispaniae, dis- 
cretionem verborum a. frequentatione Romanae Curiae." Raynaldus 
1278,69. 



32 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


property. As a result of the documents subscribed to by 
the Emperor and the Pope, that which was an ancient 
right became a fact,!') and the Church enjoys all the terri- 
tory she possesses to-day. 
After Charles had been pushed back in the confines of 
his realm, the ecclesiastical patrimony was now clear of 
foreigners, many cities were pacified by the efforts of 
Cardinal Latino, and thus the Chair of St. Peter felt itself 
secure in its own territory and the Pope who occupied it 
thought of gathering from the accrued advantages salu- 
tary fruit for all Italy. If Ptolemy of Lucca, Giordano 
and Platina can be believed, Nicholas and Rudolph medi- 
tated a. design fraught with most serious consequences to 
the future destinies of Italy and an Europe. The Pope 
had conceived the project of dividing the Roman Empire 
into four great sovereignties: that of Germany for Ru- 
dolph and his descendants in hereditary succession; that 
of Dauphiny and a. part of ancient Burgundy for Clemen- 
tia, daughter of Rudolph, and wife of Charles :l\Iartel, 
grandson of the king of Sicily and their descendants; Italy 
was to be divided into two kingdoms, that of Tuscany and 
Lombardy, which were to be given respectively to the two 
nephewR of the Pope, the princes Orsini. 'Ve believe it 
quite possible that such a thought entered the mind of the 
Pope. Affairs in Italy were in such a condition, and the 
mutual interests of Nicholas and Rudolph would thus have 
been so well consulted that it is easy to believe that both 
would have agreed to this project. By making a division 
into four monarchies, namely, Sicily, the States of the 
Church, Tuscany, and Lombardy, Italy would be spared 
the anguish of her republics, and this multitude of Lords 
who raised themselves upon their ruins; her inhabitants 
would present ranks at once doseI' and more united against 
the encroachments of foreign monarchies; in fine they 
would have less to fear from the imperial domination so 
divided. The sudden death of Nicholas frustrated the vast 
design. 
After the death of Nicholas, Charles took new courage. 
Knowing how little he might expect from a pope, shrewd 
and watchful, he wished to create one who would do hi
 
pleasure. A son and vassal of Holy Church, he made bold 
II Raynaldus 1278, 47 et seqq. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


33 


to intrude himself among the cardinals in conclave at 
Viterbo. He east into prison three cardinals who opposerl 
his designs, and kept them there on a diet of bread and 
water, until in sheer desperation they agreed with the othe1. 
Italian cardinals and yoted for a Frenchman as pope, 
Cardinal Rimon de Brie, who took the name of 
Iartin IV. 6 
Charles could not ha'.e found another man more de,.oted 
to his interests. At one stroke all the work of the popes 
from Gregory X to Nicholas was undone. Charles was 
again created a senator of Rome, and the government of 
all pontifical towns was entrusted to Frenchmen, creatures 
of this prince. Paleologus, against whom Charles vigor- 
omdy pushed forward preparations for war, was excom- 
municated. 
No longer were legates seen piously occupied, as had 
been Cardinal Latino, in traveling through Italy to recon- 
cile the Guelphs and the Gbibellines, but in their stead 

inister messengers charged with the destruction of the 
latter. The rude repulse of the ambassadors of the Lal11- 
bertazzi, the fir
t of the Ghibellines of the Romagna to 
present themselves before Pope 
Iartin at Orvieto suing 
for peace, was a cruel action; and equally harsh were those 
censures angrily hurled against Forli, whither the Ghibel- 
lines had retreated. However, those French agents such 
as John of Pà, Count of Romagna, found a 1110st powerful 
obstacle in that eminent warrior, the support of the Ghi- 
belIines, Guy of l\Iontefeltro, who often taught these 
strangers to be a trifle more self-restrained in the land of 
others. Unfortunately, the Italians combined with these 
strangers, because they were Guelphs. 
In the meantime unhappy 8icily was in agony. Charles 
was no longer under any restraint; he was king and pope 
at the one time, and the hour was at hand when the ex- 
cesses of an unrestrained tyranny dro,'e the people to have 
recourse to the most frightful means to end it. Power 
and might pressed hea,'iIy upon them, but buoyant minds 
were meditatin
 a de
ign tu free them. AnlOng the suffer- 
ers was John of Procida, WhOlll we consider unique in the 
history of tho
e who by one stroke have broken the chains 
of an opprpssed ppople. To form domestic conspiracies, to 
complete tlwm hy a thrust of the dagger, is not a rarp 
II Record. Malasp.-John Villani. 



34 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


thing, and the number is great of those who have hurled a 
prince from his throne by a daring blow; but they could 
not prevent a renewal of the tyranny, either in a new prince 
who ascended the vacant throne, or in the frenzy of a dis- 
ordered democracy. But to lay the wires of an immense 
plot which is at once to restore those rights which a de- 
spairing people had lost; to know and employ the chiefs 
to whose hands he must entrust the wires of this vast net- 
work; to remain, despite impatient yearnings, calm and 
iImnovable within the limits of prudence and justice so as 
not to miss his end; to prepare for a people flushed with 
victory new laws of government in the shadow of which it 
could take breath and establish itself; in a word, side by 
side with the tyranny which oppressed it, during a long 
period to make the power of regeneration march in secret 
and bring about its triumph, this was the gigantic labor 
performed by John of Procida to change the lot of Sicily, 
and which entitles him to be regarded as a genius truly 
extraordinary. He sounùed the dispositions of Paleolo- 
gus, dismayed at the warlike preparations of Charles, and 
from him received much gold. He revived in Peter of 
Aragon the right of sovereignty over Sicily which he 
c1aimed by reason of his marriage with Constance, the 
daughter of :Manfred, the last of the Hohenstaufens, and 
from him he received a large quota of soldiers. If certain 
hiRtorians are to be believed, it was he who suggested to 
Nicholas III the grand design of division, and the wrath 
of a people, downtrodden and exasperated, would be joined 
to the indignation which the impieties of Charles caused 
the Pontiff. It is also said that Nicholas flattered John 
of Procida, and expected Sicily to give the blow which the 
arm of a pontiff could not strike. If we do not reject 
absolutely the eurrent rumor, we can by no means adn1Ít 
as certain on mere hearsay this appalling so1idarity; but 
we reject ehietly the reason assigned for it by later writers 
namely, the insolent refusal by Charles to unite the family 
of Anjou with that of the Orsini. 
That Nicholas, jealous and proud of the glory of his 
family, had Rought a royal alliance for it, which the 
Frenchman haughtily opposed, we may be1ieve; but that 
this pope, out of revenge for this insulting rf'fuRal, had 
entered into the conspiracy of John of Procida, nothing is 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


35 


more improbable. To deliver Sicily from the yoke of 
Charles, consecrated by papal investiture, was an act 
heroic in its purpose, which a miserable family pride could 
not have dictated. The death of 
icholas surely must have 
been very distressing to John of Procida, but it did not 
compromise the success of the enterprise. The Sicilians 
found a compensation for this loss in their desperation, 
which was extreme when they saw that )Iartin instead 
of tightening the reins on Charles, only slackened them 
the more. IIowever, the Pope was not ignorant of the 
armamen ts prepared by Peter of Aragon, and suspected 
the end that thp husband of Constance had in view; yet 
fascinated as he was to the interests of Charles, he re- 
mained inactive and took no notice of the clouds which 
were gathering both within and withou t Sicily. 
At length the famous Sicilian Vespf'rs were sounded, 
and there was won by the sword that justice which had 
been implored in vain from the Pope; a diabolical revenge 
for a tyranny still more diabolical. The Sicilians arose to 
a man to drive out the detested Angevine, but they re- 
spected the Church. In fact the inhabitants of Palermo, 
convened in an assembly, gave proof of n10deration and of 
a feeling altogether Roman when they took the resolution 
to govern themselves in comn10n under the protection of 
the Church,7 and all this in presence of a tumultuous peo- 
ple still disgusting from French blood; all this notwith- 
standing the thirst for revenge which devoured them, and 
in the midst of the anxiety which their hearts experience 
on recovering liberty bought by so mueh daring. They 
sl'parated the lost rights of Charles from those of the 
Church; and far from confounding her with this wicked 
prince, they requested her to ratify in some way an act to 
which a sense of natural justiee had borne them, but one 
which the mepkness of her head could not allow her to 
undertake hprself. 1\lost excellent dispositions! _\.ny 
pope other than 
Iartin would have favored them, sparing 
thereby his successors the en1barrassn1ent of many affairs 
difficult to judge. After the bloody Sicilian Vespers 
:Uartin clung more closely to Charles, and this king 
blinded him to the extent of drawing him in bis train into 
those perfidious ways into which his pride precipitated 
7 Barth. de N eocastro C. 14--!Nicol Special. C, I. C. 4. 



36 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


him, and in which he lo
t the Idngdom of Sicily. All the 
island was arom;;ed and united itspJf in an admirable re- 
publican federation under the standard of the HolJ' Keys. 
The heroic defence of 
If'ssina, before whieh the anger of 
(1harles spent itsf'lf, demonstratf'd to the entire world that 
fhe arms of these people were dt>serving of success. The 
Inessengers from Palermo presented themselves before 
:Uartin; they asked forgiveness for the Illeans they had em- 
ployed in securing their freedom, and they implored the 
protection of Holy Church; but their petition being all- 

wered in a harsh and unbecoming ll1anner, they returned 
home, and took up arms not only against Charles, but also 
against the Church. And thus through the fault of this 
pope confounding the rights of St. Peter with that of 
Charles uf Anjou, future popes found themselves burdened 
with the odious task of fighting a high-minded people to 
sustain an unworthy prince, because they could not re- 

OYer otherwise the right of sovereignty whieh the Church 
possessed over Sicily. 
All these things were witnessed by a certain man, Bene- 
dict Gaf'tal1i by name. He was alreaùy a member of the 
Papal Curia, and called to take part in the adminis- 
tration of the lllomentous nlCasures of the times. "There- 
fore one thought entered deeply into his mind, and in- 
structed it by facts that gaye form and character to every 
other thought; this thought was inspired by the spectacle 
of the Church reduced to servitude not by secret enemies, 
hut by those who called thelllselves her children and her 
vassals, the Church obliged to act despite appearances the 
nlOst odious which could be understood only by calm and 
far-removed discerners of the events that went before. 
Anagni, a most ancient city, once the chief seat of the 
Hernici, is situated in that part of Italy that is called the 
Campagna. It has a charming location on thf' summit of 
a hill at the foot of the Apennines which extend towards 
Rome, and embrace, with the mountains of Piperno and of 
Hf'zze, facing the sea-coast of Terracina, the fertile Anagni 
valley. Aftf'r the invasion of the barbarians it was the 
n10st renownf'd city in this Cistiberine part of the Papal 
States which bordered on the kingdom of Naples. At the 
finw in which the events of our history werf' haPPf'ning 
it had a1rpady heen the birthplace of thl'Pf' pontiffs, 1n- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


37 


Docent III, Gregory IX, and Alexander IV, and they con- 
tributed to its splendor. It wa.s also the seat of very 
illustrious families, namely the Ceccani, the Tusculani, 
the Frangipani, the Collemedio, Annibaldeschi, and great- 
est of all the families of the Counts of Segni and the 
Gaetani. s "Thence the latter had come to Anagni, whether 
they were the same family as the Gaetani of Gaeta, to 
which Gelasius II belonged, we do not know; and as; the 
reader cares to learn only of the deeds of Boniface, we 
shall not impose on him a treatise on the origin and descent 
of the family. In the thirteenth century Loffredo Gaetani, 
son of :l\latthias, had been a captain in the army of King 
:l\lanfred; he married one of the Conti family, niece of 
Alexander IV,9 by wbom he had many children, among 
them Benedict, the subject of this history. "'... e do not 
know in what year he was born, but it is certain that his 
birth took place in the thirteenth century about the second 
or third decade. Osius and Rossi aver that he lived 86 
years, basing their opinions upon the fact that in the year 
1255 he accompanied the legate Cardinal Fiesco as secre- 
tary.tO Before this time, in Rome, he exercised the office 
of an advocate. N ow supposing that he exercised this 
office and accompanied the legate in mature age that is 
to say, at thirty or forty years, it is then clear that he 
must have been born in the second or third decade of the 
century. From his childhood he inspired his parents with 
great hopes by the keenness of his dawning intellect and 
by his fiery soul, a possession common to all the Italians of 
those times, who under a rough exterior possessed hearts 
capable of performing noble deeds. Great-souled fathers, 
of a now degenerate race, then begot great-souled sons. 
To be instructed in piety and learning he was sent to a 
monastery of the Friars :l\finor at Velletri, and was en- 
trusted to the care of Friar Leonard Patrasso, his uncle. n 
Benedict Gaetani always remembered these first years of 
J)is life and 
howpd his gratitude both towards the Friars, 
by hpaping favors upon them and by appointing in 1300 a 
cardinal from their order, which he greatly favored, and 


· Cayro. History of the city of Anagni, p. 65. 
· Charles de LeUis. Fam. Gaetani. 10 Rubeus. Life of Boniface VIII. 
U Teuli. History of Velletri. Book 2., chap 5. 



38 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


also towards Velletri itself, of which, when Pontiff, he 
accepted the office of Governor. 12 
In his day Gaetani was known far and wide for his 
knowledge of law, and it is surprising that the writers of 
his day did not hand down to posterity the name of the 
university in which he studied. Du Boulay places him 
among the most illustrious doctors of Paris, stating that 
he passed a long time in the University of that city.13 
This opinion is confirmed by the long stay made in Paris 
by Gaetani, who in a certain Bull says that he had bpen a 
Canon of the Church of Paris; and from hi
 own words it 
clearJy appears that he not only enjoyed the fruits of that 
Canonry, but also exercised the office personaHy.14 
He became so well versed in law, especially ecclesiastical, 
that his reputation for learning soon became widespread. 
This reputation obtained for him many and rich prebends 
in various churches. He was a canon at Anagni; and 
although the canons of Todi could not by law receive any 
one in their chapter unless he was in Holy Orders, yet they 
granted the request of Peter Gaetani, who asked that his 
nephew Benedict, as yet a layman, be received by them as 
canon, on account of his virtues and great erudition. 
Even the canons of Lyons had him for a feUow member. 15 
The lustre of his birth, and more especially his reputation 
for learning soon opened tbe way to ecclesiastical prefer- 
ments. He was raised to the office of Notary Apostolic/ 6 
whose duty in the early ages of the Church was to write 
and preserve the acts of the martyrs, and in later ages the 
Bulls, the decrees of the pontiffs, and the canons of the 
Councils. Gaetani also exercised the office of Consistorial 


12 Borgia. History of the Church and City of Velletri. B. IV., p. 293. 
18 Du Boulay. Hist. Universitatis Paris, Catal. III. Tom. 2., p. 676. 
u". . . . Quod ejusdem Ecclesiae copiosa benignitas nos oHm dum in 
"minoribus ageremus, de ipsius honorabili gremio existentes fovit ac 
tractavit ut filium, maternis fovet et lactavit uberibus." Du Boulay. 
15 In the Bull by which he bestows on Gaetani the Deaconry of St. 
Nicholas-in-chains, Pope Martin IV enumerates all these prebends:" , . . 
ut ecclesias S. Nicolai in carcere Tulliano de Urbe, et de Barro in Lig- 
onensi, et de Piliaco, archidiaconatum in Carnotensi, ac ecclesiaim de 
Thoucester, canonicatus quoque ac praebendas in Ligonensi, Carnotensi, 
Parisiensi, Anagnina, Tuderina, S. Audomari Morinensi, as in Basilica 
S. Petri de Urbe retinere possit." 
18 Bun of Clement V. Rubeus. Life of Boniface VIII, p. 3. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII, 


39 


Advocate an office no less elevated than the first named, 
ina"lliuch as the ConHistorial Advocate, created for the 
first time by Pope St. Gregory the Great,17 were deputed to 
plead the causes of the churches and of the poor. 'Vhat 
an amount of knowledge anù strength of character were 
required in the exercise of this office,18 we can readily 
gather from the words of the pope who placed tlwln in 
office, and also from one of the constitutions of Pope 

Iartin IV", who wished these Advocates to be the very 
personification of wisdom and honesty.- 
We ought to record that Gaetani performed his duty 
well in all these offices, and this convinced the popes that 
lle had a talent and mind fitted for greater things, and 
capable of taking part in the management of the difficult 
issues between the Church and princes. There was a. very 
important task namely of resisting )Ianfred who was furi- 
ously roaming over the kingdom of 
 aples, waging war 
against that part of it belonging to the pope, and nlaking 
himself nlaster of it by force of arms. Pope Alexander 
IV had not the means to resist him, nor could he trust the 
inconstant Neapolitans. He thought of inviting a foreign 
prince, and of investing him with the realm, and thus 
close the gate to anyone whomsoever of the Suabian line, 
lIe dispatched Cardinal Ottobono de Fiesco, who was after- 
wards Adrian V, as legate to Henry, King of England, 
that he might offer in fief the kingdom of Sicily to 
Edmund his son. Benedict Gaetani went with Fiesco on 
this legation, which failed to achieve the desired effect; 
yet in the COIn pacts sworn to by the king for his son, 
the Pope had a solemn testinlony of how by public official 
act the direct and supreme dominion of the Church over 
the kingdom of Sicily had been recognized. Anlong these 
compacts sworn to by the English king was this one, that 
Edmund, being king of Sicily, could not aspire to the 
imperial crown; and if by any chance he took the title of 
emperor, he would lose the royal crown. .A wi
e provision 
this, suggested by the still recent nlemory of Frederick II, 
the vast extent of whose domain occasioned untold vexation 
to the Church. 
It was after the return of Gaetani from England with 
17Vid. Piazza. Opera Pie di Rom., cap. 27, page 288. 
U St. Gregory. Book 4, Inùex 13, cap. G9. 



40 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


Cardinal Fiesco, that Peter, hiR unclp, entreated the Can. 
ons of Todi (1260), to admit him as one of their members. 
These canons, as we stated before, did not have it in their 
power to receive one who was not in major Orders, and 
such was Benedict Gaetani. But wishing to gratify the 
uncle and to honor the nephew, he obtained from Pope 
Alexander IV a Bull granting the nece:ssary dispensation 
in order to favor Benedict,19 and they accordingly received 
11Ïn1 as one of their nunlber. 20 In con
equence Gaetani 
kept Todi ever in fond remembrance when he became 
pope, and entertained a singular affection for it. He 
presented to the Cathedral of Todi the armorial ensign 
representing the Saviour with the Apostles Peter and Paul, 
and the red banner with a white cross and the papal keys; 
he ordered the façade to be built and two bells to be cast, 
one of which was called Boniface; he desired more oyer the 
Canons of Todi to come to Rome every ypar to receive 
Communion on IIoly Thursday. He al
o bestowed benefits 
on the city, by releasing it from the patrimony of St. Peter, 
and declared the t('rritory of Petignano to be subject to it 
and not to Orvieto any longer. In return for all these 
favors there is celebrated to this day in the Cathedral of 
Todi an annual mass for the repose of hi!'; sou1. 21 
In the prologue of this history we remarked how 
jealously Rudolph, I{ing of the Romans, and Charles of 
Anjou, King of Sicil:r, regarded each other, and how skiJ- 
fully Pope Nicholas III restrained them, directing their 
plans not without the advantage of the spiritual and 
temporal rights of the Papal Chair. But it happened that 
a great incentive for war between these princes was 
afforded by Provence. Raymond di Beranger of the house 
of the Counts of Barcelona, the last Count of that house, 
had died without male issue. Of the four daughters which 
Beatrice of Savoy bore to Raymond, all were married, 
three becoming queens; l\Iargaret wedded St. Louis of 
France; Eleanor espoused IIenry, King of England; 
Sanchia becanle the wife of Richard of Cornwall, elected 
King of the Romans; while Beatrice married Charles of 
Anjou. In the year 1261 the wife of Richard died, and in 
1267 that of Charles. Eleanor and )Iargaret were still 
111 See Docum. A. 20 See Docum. B. 
21 From the Archiyes of the Church of Todi. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


41 


living when Charles took absolute po
session of Provence, 
and exacted the oath of fealty frolll the entire province. 
The surviving queens protested, demanding that the ter- 
ritory of Provence be divided into four parts, so as to 
preserve their own and their children's rights. )Iargaret 
was the loudest in her protestations; and expecting little 
or no aid from King Philip, her son, she had reconrse to 
her nephew, Edward I, and to Rudolph, King of the Ro- 
n1ans. Her appeal to the lattpr bore most fruit. In re- 
turn for his investing her with that part of Provence and 
Forcalquier which she clain1ed, she recognizecJ the sover- 
eignty of Rudolph over the ancient kingdom of ArIes. 
This compact was pleasing to Rudolph, and more pleasing 
still was the favorable opportunity for breaking peaceful 
relations with Charles, who lorded over Italy in his placp. 
The Angevine had been weakened by the IORS of the 
vicariate of Tuscany, this having been taken from him by 
Pope Nicholas III who thus stripped him of a great part 
of his sovereignty in Italian affairs; yet seeing himself 
face to face with Rudolph, who was aroused against him 
by 
Iargaret, his sister-in-law, Charles, resolved to resist 
him, so as not to lose his present possession of Provence. 
In the beginning of the year 1279 he dispatched his pldest 
son Charles, Prince of 
alerno, surnamf'ù the Lame, to 
Proven
e, to recall and accentuate by his presence thp fact 
of his possession. The royal son visited the province and 
repairing to the court of his uncle, Philip of France, he 
was accorded a most splendid reeeption. This reception 
convinced 
Iargaret of the dispositions of the King of 
France, her son; he would prefer to see his uncle inde- 
pendent lord of Provence, than Ree his nlother vaHRal of the 
Hapsburg prince. This circulllstance encouraged Charles 
to take a firm stand against Rudolph. 
If Charles and Rudolph flew to arms, Pope Nicholas 
foresaw the ruin of that peace which he had established 
with so much care, and that the war of Provence would 
ßoon extend to Italy. .A just disposition of their rights 
would appease them. IIe turned his eyes to Benedict 
Gaetani, and considered him fitted to accorupli
h the dif- 
fì('ult taRk in company with Cardinal 
Iatthew Acqna- 
Rparta. To h(' ('onsidered worthy of thi
 mi
sion, O:-wtani 
must have previously given sufficient proofs of conRummate 



42 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


diplomacy and his devotion to the Pontiff. This was the 
first time that he had an opportunity to study the bend 
of the princes of his time. Nicholas bishop of Tripoli 
had preceded these two legates in Germany and had the 
ll1atter well under way; it was happily concluded by 
Cardinals Acq uasparta and Gaetani. Thanks to their care, 
Charles and Rudolph canle to terms. The latter retained 
the sovereignty over Provence and Forcalquier, the former 
was left in undisturbed possession of it, receiving feudal 
investiture from Rudolph. The investiture of the fourth 
part of Provence which had been given to :l\Iargaret was re- 
voked. 1\1 utual prOlnises of peace between the two kings 
ratified the treaty. Letters from the Pope appeased the 
troubled mind of the disappointed queen. 
The two princes concluded the treaty by separate docu- 
ments drawn up by the legates. 22 As Gaetani took part: 
in this work, it is well to observe how clearly are reflected 
the profound sentimf'nts of peace and justice which 
animated him and which were to n1ake him so zealous a 
defender of these two virtues during his pontificate. ..As 
a means of closing the way to any dispute whatsoever we 
read in the document of Charles: " If by any misfortune, 
"which may God forbid, there should arise any dispute 
"between us and the King of the Romans, the one win 
"not declare war against the other; neithf'r by himself 
" nor by others will he molest the vassals of the other . . . 
". . . but we will have recourse to the Roman Pontiff; 
"and we and the said King of Romans will a bide by the 
" decision of the Pontiff given in the matter of our dispute, 
" whenever we cannot by ourselves find a means of agrec- 
"ment. Besides these conditions which are to be rigor- 
"ously observed, we absolutely and freely determine by 
" this document to subject ourselves to the Roman Pontiff 
"both as regards spiritual and temporal n1atters. ".. e 
"have come to the express agreement that in reserving to 
" the Roman Pontiff now and hereafter the full and entire 
"right to interpret the clauses herein contained and to 
"make known their meaning, we find ourselves in an 
"especial manner to receive this interpretation an<l 
declaration." . . . . . . 
'Vhen Gaetani had returned from this legation, Nicholas 
23 Raynaldus, 1280. 2. 3. 4. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


43 


III planned to reward him for his services, and accordingly 
he appointed him a cardinal priest of the title of St, 
Sylve
tcr and )Iartin-ai-:\Ionti. 23 To this dignity 
Iartin 
IY afterwards added the Deaconry of St. :Xicholas-in- 
Carcere, permitting him to retain at the same time the 
prebends he enjoyed in many churches. 24 )Iartin sought 
thus to make usp of the knowledge of Gaetani, in calling 
upon him to take part in the difficult administration of 
papal affairs. Unfortunately, by lingering in the clutches 
of Charles, he put the cardinal to the necessity of using 
his talents n10re in repairing the disasters than in increas- 
ing the prosperity of the Apostolic See. 
After the sad Sicilian Vespers, it seemed that the aston- 
ished eyes of all Europe were fixed on that blood-bathed 
island. Charles and Pope :l\Iartin in league used all their 
('ndeavors to lead it back to its former subjection, the one 
by inv('sting it with arn1ed men, the other by terrifying it 
with threatening Bulls and by shrewdly working upon 
their minds through the friendly overtures of a legate, 
Cardinal Parma. The arms of Charles for a time pre- 
vailed, but never the bulls nor the legates. All the anger 
of Sicily was pent up in the breasts of the inhabitants of 

Iessina, who, strongly entrenched in their city, held out 
successfully against Charles. 'VhiJst the fighting was going 
on there, the Sicilians, rebuffed by )Iartin, a pope who was 
too much of a Frenchman, irrevocably entrusted to Peter 
of Aragon the supreme direction of their affairs. This 
Spanish prince reanimated the desperat
 courage of this 
freed people by furnishing them with troops. Thus taking 
shelter under the good services of a king, Sicily becmne 
day by day more formidable to th(' French, and the 
fortunes of war were equaHy oalanced on both sides. The 
strife was no longer between an old king 
ki1ful in thf' art 
of controlling a people by his will, and a people, who, when 
the first intoxication of liberty gained with 
o much eclat 


23 Ciacconi Vita Pont. 
:u" Vt Ecclesias Sti. Nicolai in carcere TulIiano, de Vrbe et Barro in 
Lingonensi et de PiIiaco, archidiaconatum in Carnotensi ac ecclesiam de 
Thouchester, Canonicatus quoque ac Praebendas in Lingonensi, Carnotensi, 
Lugdunensi, Parisiensi, Anagnina, Tudertina, Sti. Audomari, Morincnsi ac 
in Basilica Sti. Petri de Urbe retineri posset." Bun. )Iartin IV apud 
Rubeum Vita Boniface, p. 3. 



44 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


had subsided, would readily allow itself to be enslaved 
again; lmt a king was matched against a king of the stamp 
and character of Peter of Aragon. This latter summoned 
to Sicily, Constance, his wife, and James. his eldest son. 
Although victorious and powerful by reason of the Sicil- 
ians' renewal of the rights which his wife Constance of the 
Suahian House had given over this realm, yet inasmuch 
as he was in pecuniary straits, he sought an opportunity 
in which by stratagem he might overCOllle Charle
t The 
Frenehman that Charles was, and the impetuosity which 
his advanced age did not lessen, soon afforded the oppor. 
tunity. Descending frOlll the height of his throne to the sta- 
tion of a private individual he challenged Peter to a single 
combat, and agreed to leave to the issue of this cOlllbat, the 
settlement of the right of sovereignty over Sicily. Peter 
accepted the challenge, and chose as the place of combat 
the plains of Bordeaux, in Gascony, neutral territory that 
belonged to Edward of England. The writers of the time, 
according as they were Guelphs or Ghibellines, attribute 
to the cunning of Charles or Peter, this expedient whereby 
to put the other at a distance from Sicily. IIaving settled 
the place of encounter, they agreed to meet there on the 
first day of June, 1
83; Edward of England was to be 
referee, or in his stead the governor of the territory. One 
hundred knights were to accOlllpany each prince, and 
prove with hiIl1 their right by skill in arms. The two kings 

m.ore on the Gospel to stand by the agreement, and forty 
barons took the oath for them. The one who failed to 
keep his promise, would be covered forevpr with infamy 
and would lose both the name and honor of king. 
The Papal Curia disturbed by the Sicilian movement 
bebeld with astonishment and sorrow the ill-advised deter- 
mination of Charles to engage in a duel with Peter. To 
entrust one's life to tbe issue of a single combat was wicked, 
unbecoming to a rOJal personage, and hazardous to the 
Church. The absence of Charles would confirm the Sicil- 
ians in their independence, facilitate the conquest already 
commenced in Calabria, and if the I
"'renchman was de- 
feated, all was lost in Sicily for the Pope. Pope :l\Iartin 
was firm as ever in his sad mistake of identifying the 
1"Ïg-hts of Chadps with tllOS(' of the Chul'ch, and thus Iw 
dishonored the Church which he made responsible for tbe 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


45 


tyranny of the Angevine. pprhaps equally solicitou
 for 
the rights of Charles and of St. Petpr, he determined to 
oppose the project and wished to prevent Charles from thf' 
plebeian combat. lIe appointed Gaetani as legate to re- 
strain the enraged Frenchman, and made him bearer of 
a letter full of salutary adyice, disclosing the evils that 
would result were he to persevere in his intentions, and 
declaring the oath he had taken to be of no force, for the 
reason that an unlawful act is not binding on anyone. 
He concluded with these words: "l\Ioreover, because of 
" the singular solicitude and love we have for your person, 
" we wish to provide for the event of failing to persuade 
"you, in which case it would be necessary that some one 
" confirm by spoken word what we would fain have already 
" convinced you by writing. Wherefore with the advice of 
"our brethren we send to you our beloved son Benedict 
" Gaetani, Cardinal Deacon of the title of St. Nicholas-in- 
" Chains, in our opinion a man of profound wisdom, faith- 
"ful, shrewd, re
ourceful, prudent, a warm supporter of 
"your glory and of your royal dignity. Sincp the Church 
"is unable and unwilling to permit the course to which 
" you are committing yourself, he will more clearly make 
" known to you our mind, and with the greatest prudence 
" he will reveal the vast and innumeraùle dangers, which 
"your absence from the kingdom of Sicily in these days 
" cannot but entail, dangers real and not imaginary. He 
"will not neglect to tell you of what rashness you are ac- 
"cusetl, in order to determine you to obey without delay 
"and without contradiction our prayers and our advice 
" and to 
ettle your nlind on the ordpl" we have given. 25 
There is no doubt that the more tIle Pope longed for it, 
with greater ardor did Gaetani Rtrive to bring Charles to 
hi
 
en
e
; but all in vain, for the obstinate princ
 was 
dptermined on fighting the duel. It wa
 well for him that 
the duel was not fought; because the crafty Peter eithpr 
did not conle, or canle in a nlanner so as not to be seen by 
rharle
, who remained with his knights vainly awaiting 
his arrival. Then it was Gaetani learned that when the 
Pope raised his voice evpn in wi
e counsels to the princes 
of th()
e times for their own interests, it had no effect on 
their will: he could l'onclude that the Papacy speaking to 
Z See document C. 



46 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


them in the name of justice would meet with only pride 
and arrogance. He learned this truth beforehand; the 
time to test it was near at hand. 
Pope :Martin himself was also lacking in prudence, for 
his duty was to defend the rights of the Church in Sicily 
without ever making hinlself a minister of the anger of 
Charles. He not only declared Peter a usurper of the 
Sicilian kingdom, but deprived him of the kingdoms of 
Aragon, Valencia and Catalonia, with which he invested 
Charles of Valois, the second son of Philip the Bold of 
France, who was to hold them in Fief for the Holy See. 
This only fanned the war flame which burst into a blaze 
between Peter and Charles of Valois, the reason of which 
was that the former desired to preserve what was his own, 
and the latter to maintain the title of king which he held 
by appointment from the Pope. Some French soldiers 
summoned to Italy strengthened the Guelph party, and 
enabled it to rule the Ohihellines with rod of iron. These 
measures wpre a cause of most grievous injury to the 
Church and to Charles himself, for they aroused anew in 
the hearts of the Sicilians the spirit of revenge and gave 
them the courage of despair; moreover they shook even the 
loyalty of the Neapolitans. In fact the Sicilians, led by 
that most skilful naval commander Roger of Loria, after 
a fierce battle npar :l\ialta, dispersed a fleet of twenty 
galleys, "hich Charles had dispatched from Provence. 26 
:Moreover in the very waters of Naples they utterly de- 
feated the navy of Charles the Lame, and captured him 
with all his barons. 27 In the city of Naples the people 
tllPn began to cry out: "Death to King Charles, long 
live Roger of Loria." However the freedom of Sicily 
which escaped altog-ether from the hands of Charles, the 
surrender forced or voluntary of many cities of Calabria 
and the Basilicata, and the captivity of his son, all these 
misfortunes dealt a death blow to the heart of that prince 
whose every ambitious purpose up to that time had been 
favored by fortunp. He died the seventh of January 
1285, leaving a war to his son, misfortune to his people, 
and to the popes the obligation of rpgaining Sicily for 
the Church, among thorny embarrassments occasioned hy 


28 Nic. Special Rist. Sic. lib. 1 c 26. S. R. I. T. 9, 


111 Ibidem. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


47 


dynastic interests too little sacred. In the same year there 
followed Charles to the grave Pope 
lartin, Philip the 
Bold of France, and Peter of Aragon; the former two were 
succeeded respectively by IIonorius IV and Philip the Fair, 
while Peter's eldest son ...\Jphonsus ascended the throne of 
Aragon, and James, the second-born that of Sicily. Naples 
was reserved for Charles the Lame. 
IIonorius of the Roman family of Savelli ascended the 
Papal throne, confrontf'd by many difficulties in whkh the 
French Pope )Iartin had involved the Papacy. Every 
means which the 
uprellle priesthood in those times 
offered him, he determined to employ, to drive James from 
Sicily, and to place Charles of Valois on the throne of 
Aragon, that is to say, by hurling censures, and by laying 
tithes on the churches. But affairs turned out unfortu- 
natcly both in Spain, whence Pililip of France was forced 
to withdraw and in Hicily where Jalnes was solemnly 
crowned king, although he had been excomn1unicated to- 
gethpr witil his mother Constance. In his trouble the 
pontiff turned his attention to the kingdom of 
aples 
whose affairs were adminh;tercd by the Count of Artois 
and his own legate Gerard of Parma. To appcase tht--' 
lninds of the 
 eapolitan
, em Littered by the wrongs in- 
flicted on them by the IIou
e of Anjou, he wrote an ex- 
cellent constitution of 
OYernnlent entitled: "Pacts of 
Pope Honoriu
." To this document Bpnedict Gaetani 
signed his name together with thirteen other cardinal
. 
In the nleanwhiIe Charles II, havin
 escaped frOll1 the 
fury of the Sicilians who wished to kill him to revenge the 
deaths of )lanfl'ed and Conradin, languished in prison in 
Catalonia. In him were placed the rights of the Church 
over Sicily, because thelSe had become involved with those 
of the family of ...\njou; hence the pontiffs forced to exert 
themselves for his liberation, eould not effect this without 
Home sacrifice of their own interf'sts. TllPre did not appear 
any prospert of spontaneous agreement between him and 
his conquerors, for the war against Aragon, suspended by 
tile death of PhiHp III, had Lf'en resumed hy Philip IV, thp 
Fair, an ally of his u13terual uncle, James, king of )[ajoI'e:l. 
Alphon
us was too 
tuLboI'n to heed rensures, still less the 
peaceful proposition
 of the Pope, espf'cially since the war 
in Aragon was going favorably to him, and in Sicily he 



48 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


llad nothing to fear so long as the terrible Roger of Loria 
lived to command his fleet. The youthful prince Philip 
grieved less over the imprisonment of Chal'le8, as he did 
not aspire to extend his sovereignty in Spain. Only 
Edward of England, bound by the nearest ties of relation- 
ship to these princes and older than they, was moved by 
the heartrending letters of the children of Charlef
,28 and 
prepared to negotiate for his release. He calls to a 
council in Bordeaux the ambassadors of France, of Aragon, 
of Naples, of Sicily and of Castile. In this council he 
suggested, in order to obtain the relpase of Charles, that 
Sicily and the territory in Calabria which they had con- 
quered, be ceded to Aragon; and besides that the Count 
of A\.rtois should renounce his claims to the throne of 
Aragon. Some details of less importance accompanied 
these main clauses of the treaty. Charles longed for his 
release; Alphonsus, although victor, desired peace on 
account of the wearine:-1s displayed by his people and the 
apprl'hensions caused him by Sanchez of Castile, Philip 
was silent on the conditions, but Honorius strongly 
opposed them. 
Imagining these propositions to be a treaty concluded 
and signed by Charles, the Pope wrote energetically to 
hhn in order to annul the treaty. He was unwilling anù 
rightly so, that the sovereignty of the Church over Sicily 
should be bartered for the liberation of Charles. Being 
a vassal of St. Peter, Charles of his own free will could not 
relinquish that kingdom WitllOut the Pope intervening as 
the principal party in the tl'am.;action. The war against 
Aragon was resumed; that against Sicily became more 
fierce, and again in the waters of Naples the admiral 
Roger of Loria conquered and dispersed the French fleet, 
crowning this victory by recovering the city of Augusta. 
"T orn out in their fruitless efforts to adjust the affairs of 
indomitable Sicil
r, the popes of those times ended their 
days, and so in tile like manner IIonorius died. During 
the ten months that tile papal chair remained vacant, 
Edward renewed his efforts for the release of Charles, and 
this was finally accomplished by the treaty of Oleron by 
which Charles obtained his freedom. But Philip the FaÏI 
who had held himself aloof from these agreement
. no 
2
 Rymer, 7, 2, p. 317. 



r
 


Iio 


1\ 


... 


\ 
.
 


-
 


... 


--- 
I> 


- 
-- 


" -. 



 


0\" 



 
.,tb 
"'- 
J 
- 
. " 
\ 
""'I .- ' ..... 
, . 


. 



. 


.. 


:--T.\'ITE Ill<' 1:0'11<' \('E \ 111. 
ET I \; TilE F.\I' \11/: !IF TilE I" \TIIJ:lIIL\I. OF .\:\.\1;:\[. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


49 


sooner saw his uncle liberated, and Alphonsus suing at 
Rome for peace through his legates, than he prosecuted 
vigorously the war that James, king of )Iajorca, waged for 
him against Aragon. 29 . 
The successor of IIonorius, Nicholas IV, whose modera- 
tion made him supposed to be favorable to the Ghibelline 
party, ascended the papal throne at a time in which the 
entire religious edifice of the 
liddle Ages; was crumbling 
day by day. The hope of the liberation of the Holy Land, 
the attainment of which was longed for by so many genera- 
tions, being abandoned by the Christian princes, perished 
on the fallen walls of Ptolemais (Acre) . The priestly 
influence, violently expelled fron1 the heart of civil society, 
could not, on reentering its sanctuary, defend the thresh- 
old against tile tyranny of the princes who followed her 
there. In fine the Church even of Rome had been injured 
in its temporal sovereignty by the loss of Sicily, which the 
sovereigns negotiating peace placed in the scale of the 
agreements as a thing not sacred. Renee, no more were 
seen before tile successur of St. Peter, 1110nurchs respect- 
fully bowing their Ileads, but bold and haughty jurists. Of 
these three eviJs whicll affected tile heart of the Roman 
Pontiff, the usurpation of ecclesiastical rights by princes, 
in virtue of a right created by lawyers, was the most 
terrible. Nicholas felt all the bitterness of it, and with 
him all those wllose advanced age permitted to recaH the 
rpign of Innocent III, or who, by the maturity of their 
judgment and learning foresaw the evil consequences of 
tllis abuse. TI"e think that for this double reason Cardinal 
Oaetani was not the one least distressed; for we find him 
working to repair these evils in his third legation. 
All the princes more or less openly made war on the 
Church, violating in her pos:session and sacred persons her 
rights and her liberty. But Dion,ysius, King of Portugal, 
showed himself more quarl'el
Ollle than others. Alphonsus 
had been a coyetous man himself and passionate, but at 
his death had dpplored the injury he had caused to the 
Church. His ROll DionYRius inherited more the malice 
than the l'epentanre of Ilis father. Clement IV, Gregory 
X, and John XXI had faiJed in their admonitions to his 
father and in tbe ('ensures with which they bad struck 
211 Surita Ann. L. 4 c. 11 OJ Ill. 



50 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE ;VIII. 


him; alike unfortunate, Nicholas beheld the injustices of 
the son without hope of correcting them. Dionysius had 
married St. Elizabeth, daughter of Peter of Aragon, and 
the sanctity of his wife should have chastened him and 
moderated his desires; but unfortunately, the great ones 
of earth were already becoming acquainted with that com- 
pensation system which teaches that without danger to the 
soul a man can unite good works with the usurpation of 
ecclesiastical rights. Dionysius was disturbed in mind 
by the anathema hurled against him by the Pope on 
account of his sins, but he was not turned from his course 
of action; the people on all sides began to make a clamor, 
but he pretended not to notice it. At length he was 
brought to his senses, and he agreed to submit to the judg- 
ment of the Pontiff his disputes with the hierarchy of his 
realm. 
The royal and ecclesiastical procurators arrived in 
Rome. The king was represented by :Martin, chorister of 
the cathedral church of Talavaras, and John, canon of 
Coimbra; the archbishop of Braga, the bishops of Coimbra 
and of Lamea, had charge of the interests of the Portu- 
guese Church. The Pope nmned a COlnmission to hear and 
pass judgment on the affair. It was made up of three 
cardinals, Latino, Bishop of Ostia, Peter, Cardinal of St. 
l\1ark, and Benedict Gaetani: a venerable tribunal, in 
which virtue and talent combined, offered justice the surest 
guarantees, because the first two excelled in sanctity, and 
the third in knowledge of the law. The Portuguese pre- 
lates complained of the oppression of the churches and the 
clergy of the kingdom, which left no vestige of ecclesiastical 
liberty; 30 their complaints were recounted in forty 
articles. The judges decided and the parties submitted 
to the judgment; it repealed the laws of Alphonsus and 
Dionysus; freed the eh urches and clergy frOln laical im- 
pieties, and pronounced penal ties against the offenders. 
'Ve find that after the heads of accusation upon which 
the judgment of the cardinals bore, all the favor that the 
royal procurators obtained was the declaration of the 
innocence of their king in the past, and a promise of faith- 
ful observance of the compacts in the future; for each 
article is constantly followed by formula: "Cp to this 
10 Raynaldus, year 1289, no. 17. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


51 


time the king has not done this," and in "his llame we 
promise that he will not do it."31 However the treaty was 
ratified by public acts and by the papal autl1ority, which 
deputed the Prior of the Friar Preachers of Lisbon to re- 
ceive the oath of the king and absolve him from censures. 32 
The affairs of Portugal being settled, Benedict Gaetani 
was entrusted with another mission, in the performance of 
which he was to acquire a great knowledge of the men and 
things of his time. He was ordered by 
icholas to go as 
legate to France, where the affairs that particularly oc- 
cupied the mind of the Pontiff took a disastrous turn, and 
became more and more entangled. Hopes regarding the 
Holy Land were on the wane; Tripoli had fallen, and 
ptolomais (Acre) alone remained standing, but to become 
the prey of the immense army of Kalaun Elalfi, Sultan of 
Egypt, who was now besieging it. Nicholas alone felt 
truly grieved over the desperate straits to which the faith- 
ful in the Holy Land were reduced; th
 other princes were 
glad because they found occasion to gorge themselves with 
sacred tithes, under the pretext of a prospective crusade. 
The clergy could not always remain impassible to this 
iniquitous collection; but if they resisted, they would be 
at variance with royal ministerR, and they would be losers, 
That which avarice coveted, tyranny extorted. To remedy 
these scandalous abuRe
, it was necessary to urge the 
princes to a crusade and make war on the Sultan, or oblige 
them to restore the tithes, and at last establish peace 
among themselves. Philip was more insolent than others 
to the churches; and as he exhausted the treasury with 
more avidity than the rest, so he was more vigorously 
opposed to peace; because he coveted Aragon, he had no 
intention of tiring himself by a war which others would 
make for him. Gaetani and Gprard of Parma entered 
France, bearing letters of credit the nlost flattering and 
the most honorable. The Pope expressed himself thus:- 
" Full of consideration for your persons, of whose great 
"merits, many virtues, and tried honesty we are not 
" ignorant; knowing that we love peace and amity; that 
"the honor and elevation of the two kings, Charles the 
" Lamp and Alphonsus of Arag-on, are dear to your heart; 
31 Quod rex non fecit hactf'nus haec, et promittunt ejus nomine quod non 
faciet in futurum. 12 Raynaldus, year 1289, no. 17. 



52 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


"wishing to show all our affectionate solicitude for the 
" conclusion of this treaty, we order you, by these apostolic 
"letters, to accept with good grace, on account of respect 
" for God, the burden we impose upon you of entering this 
"country (France). 'Ve regret very nluch separating 
"ourselves from you whose presence is so valuable to us. 
" Exert yourself to treat this affair, and all that which is 
"attached to it, in the manner that your wisdom and 
"prudence win judge most useful for the peace of the 
" world, for the glory of God and the Apostolic See, and for 
"the interests of the Holy Land, which holds the first 
place in our thoughts."- 'Ye do not often find ex- 
pressed in letters of this kind the disquietude felt by the 
pontiff because of the enforced absence of any legate. It 
shows that Gaetani was the very soul of the affairs at the 
papal court. "\Ve find him and Cardinal Gerard sent on 
the greatest and most intricate missions of those times. 
They undertook to
egotiate two grave affairs: the one of 
establishing peace between the Christian princes fighting 
for the usurped Sicily and the disputed Aragon; and the 
other to obtain aid for the Holy Land. 33 
(1290) Hardly had they arrived in Paris, when they 
called together all the prelates of the kingdom to the 
church of St. Genevieve, and there held a synod. 34 They 
turned to the consideration of the complaints of the 
churches oppressed by the royal ministers, especially those 
of Poitiers, of Chartres, and of Lyons, as the Pope had 
indicated to Philip in the letter in which he recommended 
to him the legates. 35 There was question next of taking- 
from the king all the tithes collected for the Holy Land 
by his father, Philip the Bold, anù which had not been 
used for their sacred purpose. N or was there any hope 
that they would be spent by Philip the Fair, for the cru- 
sade for which he had no inclination. This council wa!'; 
probably unfruitful since it was concerned in wresting 
money from the hands of Philip. Entering a little further 
"ithin the court, the legates tried to calm the mind of 
Philip against Edward, King of England. They tried to 
stifle the quarrel, which burst forth as violently and for 
so long a period. N either in this did they succeed in their 
III Raynaldus, 1290, no. 17. .. Vide Council. CoHee. an. 1290. 
· Raynaldus, 1290, no. 19. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


53 


intent. 36 Gaetani sounded Philip and found him bitter 
and savage; he never forgot it. 
The legates now came to the subject of the peace. The 
treaty of Oleron had l'elea!':ed Charles tIle Lame from 
prison, but it did not guarantee the right
 of the Church 
over Sicily. This prinee had ùeen compeIlpf} to cede to 
James, Sicily and Reggio, a city of Calabria, to induce 
Charles of Yalois to renounce his claims OIl Aragon; to 
engage the pontiffs to confirm the terms of the agreement, 
and to remov(' the many censures against the family of 
Aragon; besides fifty thousand marks of gold and 
dlver 
wel.e to be paÏfl b.y him to Alphonsus, and anoth('r twenty 
thousand was to be guaranteed by Edward of England. 
A space of thrpe years was allowed for the fulfihnent of 
the promises, after which time, in case of failure, Charlps 
was to betake himself on foot as a pl'i
oner to the 
Aragonese. 
In the meanwhile as a pledge of the given promise, 
Charles was to deliver up to Alphonsus his three sons 
Louis, Robert and John, and fully sixty of the people of 
Provence. 37 As soon as Charles had made known to Pope 
Kicholas, in the interview they had at Rieti the conditions 
on which he had procured his liberty, he was severely 
reprimanded. The Pope declared them unjust and unlaw- 
ful, because they were agreed to without his consent and 
because they violated the rights of the Church over Sicily.38 
According to this decision it followed that Charles should 
again place bimself in the hands of Alphonsus. But 
Nicholas freed him; II(' rpleased hÏln from hi
 oath, for tbe 
r('a
on that Charles harl not the po\ver to cede' the kingdOll1 
of Ridly which was not his to give, but belonged to tlH
 
Church; and because having been made pri
oner in an 
unjust war he was in no way bound to resume his chains. 39 
To ratify his words, the Pontiff solemnly crowned Charles 
King of 8icily. Yet Charles was nneasy in conscience. 
At the end of the three years, the conditions which he had 
signed were still unfulfilled, and so whilst Aragon was 


118" Qui super negotiis nihil facere potuerunt." Giordano, M. S. Vatie. 
apud Raynaldus 18. 
17 Rymer. Tom. 2, p. 342. as Villani. lib. 7. cap. 130. 
Iv Theqe reasons were explained in the letter: "Si graves," directed to 
AJphonsus, 15 March, 1288. 



54 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIIt 


invested by James of 
Iajorca on the one side, and on the 
other by Sancho of Castile, and the luinds of all were 
occupied with the war, he seized the opportunity and 
presented himself at the frontier of the realnl, between the 
hills of Pannisar and Jonquire, offering himself (to whonl 
we do not know) as a prisoner of Alphonsus. No one 
was willing to receive because no one understood this offer. 
But in the meanwhile a notary drew up an official docu- 
ment stating that Charles unarmed, with a small nUlnber 
of retainers, had come to tlle confines of Aragon, and that 
Alphonsus had not put in his appearance to claim him 
again as prisoner and restore the hostages :-in a word, 
it was a repetition of the cOluedy which Peter, the father 
of .Alphon
u
, had probahly played on the father of Charles 
in the famous duel of Bordeaux wllich was never fought. 
Thus Charles, through tlw Papal absolutions and his own 
cunning, from a debtor lwcame a creditor, and regarded 
himself legitiInately authorized to enter into war with the 
Aragonese King. nut the latter, who was victorious, 
menaced France; whereby Philip, yielding to the entreaty 
of Charles, was obliged to suspend the war against Aragon, 
and to establish an armistice until the first day of N ovell1- 
bel' of the next year. During this time a definite peace 
could be arranged in an assembly to be convened at 
Tarascon, the Papal legates and those of Edward being 
mediators. 4o 
(1291) Such was the state of affairs, when Gaetani and 
Gerard of ParIna arrived at Tarascon to negotiate peace. 
It was a numerous assembly. There were fully twelve 
ambassadors from Aragon, for it was desired that the 
clergy, the barons, the nobles and the citizens of the realm 
be represented in that assembly. Charles II was present 
in person; four ambassadors of Edward came with the title 
of mediators, but Philip sent no repre
entative. All were 
in favor of peace; but it was difficult to agree on the terms, 
because the conditions exacted by Rome caused the treaty 
of Oleron to be rejpcted, seemed too onerons to Alphonsus; 
and even though hp had accepted tlwm, Charles of Valois 
would have been di
satisfied and deprived of his rights 
over Aragon. Therefore the regrets of the loser
 were to 
be tempered by the substitution of SOlne new acquisition. 
<10 Mariana XIV, 13-G33. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


55 


This was altogether the work of the Papal legates and 
chiefly of Benedict Gaetani, who during his pontificate 
showed so much equity in such lIlatters, when submitted 
to his judgment. In the treaty that was drawn up it was 
agreed: that Alphonsus should surrender all claim to 
Sicily, refusing every aid to his brother James who held it, 
and that he should recall all the Aragone
e and Catalonian 
soldiers from that island; that he should go as a crusader 
to Palestine; that he should pay into the treasury of the 
Church every year thirty ounces of gold, a tribute to which 
his great-grandfather was bound; that he should be 
allowed to remain in peaceful and lawful possession of the 
kingdom of Aragon, and should be acknowledged as king; 
that he should be dispensed, at least for sonle tilDe, frOlD 
the obligation of restoring to the King of l\Iajorca, tIle 
Balearic Islands; that he should be restored to the favor 
of the Church, and ùe pardoned for past trangressions; 
that he should return to Charles, his sons and the Prov- 
ence barons, whom he held as hostages; that Sicily was to 
be given to the conquest of the King of Naples; but that in 
return Charles should cede to the Count of Valois the 
provinces of Anjou and 
Iain, to make up for the> loss of 
his rights over Aragon, and that he should give him in 
marriage, his daughter :Margaret. All partips being per- 
fectly contented, the treaty was signed on the 19th of 
February, 1291. Howe,er the hope of peace was not 
realized. Alpbonsus died, still young, in June of the> saIne 
year,41 and Philip was unwilling to ratify the treaty. 
Having returned from his mission to France, we do not 
find that Gaetani was employed in any particular affair, 
although certainly he must not have been idle in the Papal 
Curia at a time in which the Church was suffering many 
and most grievous misfortunes. Perhaps he was still on 
his way returning from Spain, when in l\Iay all Chri
tian 
domination in the Holy Land pnded with the fall of 
ptolemais (Acre) . Sixty thousand Christians haviug' 
perished by the sword, by fire, and by drowning around its 
walls, sadly announced that the sincere faith of the 
Christians, that generous mover of hearts in the council 
of Clermont, expired in the hearts of the> princes, and in the 
breasts of the people. Vrban II had opened and Nicholas 
Ð Mariana, L. 14, c. 14. 



GG 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


IV had closed the grand period of the Crusaùe:-;. And 
just as the former left in the papal cl1ail' an ardent hope 
as an inheritance to his successors, the latter left sorrows, 
which could not be assuaged b.r the vain and fleeting hopes, 
which, at the 11108t, nourished weak efforts, but did not 
satisfy the desires. Thus Nicholas for another year 
dragged along l1is life in misery, convoking provincial 
councils in order to repair tIle disasters in the Holy Land; 
urging princes to prepare a crusade; striving to convert 
tIle kings of ..\rmenia to the faith and propose to them the 
conque
t of Palestine; and hurling anathemas against 
Sicily, which had stubbornly chosen as King Frederiek, 
tIle son of Janlf's, ''Iho l1ad gone himself to reign in 
Aragon. 
TIle grave being closed over the remains of Nicholas, tlw 
Papacy in a sad and pitiable 8tate remained in the hands of 
twelve cardinals, alllong wl10m was Gaetani. Six were 
Romans, foul' frolll another part of Italy, and two were 
French. Cardinal Latino of Ostia was tile most renowed 
for piety, Cardinal Gaetani for wisdom and learning, whilp 
Cardinal James Colonna, and 
Iatthew Rosso of the Orsini 
rivalled one another in power. Tlw ohsequies o,er the 
dead Pope being ended, they met in concla,e in the palace 
built by Xirholas IV, near the basilica of Rt. :Mary .Major. 

Iemorable conclave! The usual pra
yers ,,-ere recited, and 
the Cardinal of Ostia exhorted thrm to concord. Ste- 
phaneschi, who later became Cardinal of St. George in 
''''elabro, has transmitted to us in verse the words of tIle 
pious Carùinal of Ostia; and touching upon tIle many 
misfortunes that were to bp repairpd on account of the 
ruined state of the affairs of tlle Christians in Syria, and 
tlw usurpation of Sicily, he ended with this Roman 
thought: "And we who" distribute realms, are ourselves 
heset on evel'y side." 42 But scal'eeJy had the hvpJve 
cardinals entered upon serious deliberation, wIlen there 
arosp a great divhdon among them. Their minds were 
fluctuating, and their bodies wpre restless. They changed 
tlwir place of meeting, and prof'epded to the palace of Pope 
Honorius IV at the church of St. Sabina, and afterwaròs 
they went to the church of Rt. )Iary of the :Minerva. 
42 .J acob. S. Georg. Yit. s. V oel. L. X. c. 1: "Et nobis qui regna damus, 
nos undique turhant! "- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


57 


Cardinals Orsini and Colonna \vere con tending, and each 
one drew to himself a part of the electors. The former 
desired a pope who would be friendly to Charles II, the 
latter opposed such an election. 43 On which side Uardinal 
Gaetani arrayed himself we do not know, but it is certain 
that he was neither tl1(1 author nor fomenter of discord; 
ratllPr according- to the t('stimollY of Platina,44 in the 
seYere
t terms he urgf'd the discorùant parties to conlf' to 
a happy agreement by electing a pope. But if we be 
allo\yed to make a conjecture from the friendship which 
bound him at that time to Colonna, by the means of whOin 
he became Pope, we may affirlll that he supported the 
Colonna side. 
That roving conclave held a session for almost three 
months, and nothing resulted from it. In the meantime 
the SUlumer was advanced, the heat was noisome, and 
many fell ill. The French Cardinal Cholet dying on the 
2nd of August, diminished the number of the electors, who, 
heing frightened, desisted from the fruitless deliberations. 
Gerald of Parma, )Iatthew Acquasparta, Peter of St. 
)Iark, and the Frenchman Hugh of St. Sabina betook 
themselves to Rieti; )Iatthew Orsini, James and Peter 
Colonna, and the bishop of Tusculum remained in ROllle; 
Benedict Gaetani repaired alone to Anagni. He was 
worn out by a long and obstinate illness, which came nigh 
causing his death. 45 In October they assembled again in 
the Church of St. :Mary of the )Iinerva more disunited than 
before. 
(1293) The year 1292 elapsed, and as yet no hope ap- 
peared. In the lueantime those quarrels of the nobility fo- 
luented by Colonna and Orsini in the conclave, on account 
of which each of them was stubborn in his opinion concern- 
ing a new pontiff, were deplorably manifC'sted in the elec- 
tion of a new senator. One must be elected; but the 
Or
ini and Colonna families each de
il'ed that this office 
shouhl be accordpd to their own respective families, and a
 
a result they divided the people of Rome into two hlood- 
thirsty factions, whieh, fighting furiously for six months, 
stained the city with blood and rapine. Finally for the 
sake of peace it was deemed necessary to elect two srnatol's, 
ø John Villani, lib. i, c. 150. .. Story of the lives of the Pontiffs. 
411 James St. George in Preface. 



58 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


one from the Orsini and one from the Colonna families. 
These exterior disturbances which arrested the attention 
of the proud patricians, were also the cause of division 
among the Cardinals, who, as St. Antonius observes,46 
seemed to attend to their own interests and not those of 
Christ in the nlatter of that election. 
Summpr returned, nnd they also returned to disagree. 
The Roman Cardinals with .Acquasparta and Gerald went 
to Rieti; three others remained in Rome. Gaetani alone 
retired to yiterbo. This solitude chosen by Gaetani clearly 
shows, that abhorring the scandalous delays which pro- 
longed the widowhood and the perils of the Church, he 
kept aloof from the base' and wearisome intrigues of the 
various parties. But a threatened schism 
mddellly reas- 
sembled them at Perugia. The two Cardinals, Colonna and 

Tohn bishop of Frascati, agreeing in sentiment, believed 
that, because they were dwelling in Rome, they alone could 
elect a pope; and signified to those absent that they should 
come if they wished to select one with them. All were 
aroused by this procedure; they assembled in Perugia, but 
their minds were not changed. Then filled with a noble 
indignation Gaetani began to lash their unfeeling hearts 
most severely, because they had resolved to choose a pope 
in such a manner. \Ye may be sure that the sharp but 
most just rebuke had an effect on the obstinate electors. 
It was towards tbe end of "'inter that Charles, the Lame, 
on his way from France, came to Perugia to meet his son 
Charles :l\lartel, titular king of Hungary. The Cardinals 
had prepared extravagant honors for him. Two of them, 
Napoleon Orsini, and Peter Colonna, with a numerous 
escort went out of the city to nleet him; and the others 
received him at the doors of the Church, and madp him sit 
down among them in the conclave. Nay more, the first 
seat was given to Charles, King of K aples, placing him 
between the first two Cardinal Bishops; the second seat 
was given to his son between the first two Cardinal Dea- 
cons. An unbecoming session and full of danger. They 
were bound by the chains of discord, and they had dpsired 
to be bound also by those of a prince. Charles made a 
speech to the cardinals, exhorting them to elect a pope 
quickly; Cardinal Latino replipd for thpm. All these pro- 
tð P. B. tit. 20, c. 7. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


59 


ceedings Gaetani beheld and heard with great displeasure, 
and indignation. For a princely layman to be seated in 
the first place among the papal electors in the sacred coun- 
cils was an intrusion into affairs which the Church holds 
most dear and which she would not allow a profane hand 
to touch; and the presence of a king among prelates, al- 
ready weakened by dissensions, was a lessening of their 
liberty. Nor is it to be believed that that speech of the king 
advising a quick election was prompted by love for the 
Church and religion. He desired to 
ee a pope elected, 
yet he wanted one according to his own liking and who 
would further his own intei'ests and this action was not a 
suppression of discord but rather a fomenter of it, and 
an impertinence. In fact he was sharply rebuked by 
Gaetani, who himself in a violent manner had tried to 
compel the electors to bring the affair to a termination. 47 
'Ye know not whether it was from these rebukes, or from 
others which Gaetani gave hhll for his impertinent intru- 
sion, arose those sharp words which passed between 
Gaetani and the King. 48 
Iuratori supposes, and we ven- 
ture to hold the same, that the cause of the breach of 
friendly relations betwepn these two personages was, that 
the noble-souled Cardinal had frankly told the King that 
it did not belong to him to designate the time for the elec- 
tion of the pope. But why then had the eminent annalist! 
assigned pride as the cause of the action of Gaetani? That' 
act of his, suppressing the importunities of a prince in the 
affairs of the Church, was most praiseworthy; we do not
 
find that it had its origin in pride, but rather in the con} 
sciousness of his own office, which was that of a cardinal,\ 
during the vacancy of the Apostolic See, to defend the1 
liberty of the Church. 49 Charles the Lame, went away
 
displeased, and" was taught a lesson by Gaetani. 
(1294) But the cUI'Hed discord did not disappear. Fi-} 
nally twenty-seven mouths after the death of Nicholas.A>itJ 


t7 Platina. 
t8 Gordan. M. S. Vatican. Raynaldus. "Dura Quoque verba,- (Carolus>J 
cum domino Benedicto Cajetano habuit, nihil tamen profecit." ptol. Luc. 
Rist. Eccl. cap. 29. "Dura verba habuit cum Domino Benedicto Cajetano.' 
Non proficiens antem, venit in Regnum." Idem Annal. H. R. 1. T. 21, 
1300 . . ." quod Regem Carolum l>erusiis multum exasperasset." 
'" Muratori Annals. 



60 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


happened, that a very young brother of Cardinal :Matthew 
Orsini died, and the Cardinal of Tusl'ulum, John Bocca- 
mazza discoursing with his colleagues injected into their 
minds mournful thoughts that are always productive of 
good. And perceh'ing that these discourses had penetrated 
their guilty consciences: "\Yhy," said he, ., do we not im- 
mediately choose a head for the Church? 'Yhat is the 
"reason of this discord which divides us.! "-" Oh! we 
" wretches!" then broke forth Cardinal Latino )lala- 
" branca all dismayed, (he whom some authors declare is 
" the author of that prophetic and solemn poem, the Dies 
" Irae),5O how terrible is the anger of the Lord, which is 
" raging over our heads, and which before four months will 
" strike us, as has been revealed to a holy man!" "'Yhat, 
" Cardinal," interrupting him, said Gaetani with a slllile, 
" h; this perhaps one of the vh;iuns of Peter of )It. )101'- 
" rune? "-" One of his exactly," replied Latino, "and I 
"have a hotter in which he tplls me that he has received a 
" cOlnmand from God to warn you of these threats." That 
sufficed to fix the thoughts and conversation of all on that 
famous hermit. Then they began to converse about his 
austerities, his miracles and his virtues; and someone even 
proposed hhl1 for supreme pontiff. Cardinal Latino, who 
was most devoted to the Saint of 
lt. )lorrone, took up the 
proposition, and without any further delay strengthened 
it by giving him his vote. At once they were all filled with 
the thought of the wonderful sanctity of the hermit, and 
for that reason alone judged him worthy of the Papal 
Chair. They united in giving thf:'ir suffrage to Peter 
lor- 
rune, and Cardinal Latino, as senior deacon of the conclave, 
recein!d the power to select him in the name of all. Gae- 
tani was among the:se, yet it does not :seem, judging fronl 
his delay in repairing to Aquila to do honlage to the new 
Pope, that in thp interior of his soul he approved of the 
choice. He above all others knew the imnlen
e weight of 
the Homan Pontificate, and could judge whether the shoul- 
ders of a holy, but inexperienced, hermit were able to sup- 
port it. 
The Pontiff elect was a man of most. austere life, who, 
shut up in a narrow cpll alllong the rocks of the high moun- 
tain of )Iajella near Sulmona, s(>pmed to he no longer a 
110 See Cardella J History of the Cardinals, T. 2, cap. II. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


61 


thing of this earth, 
o much had he been 
eparated from 
men. It is the common opinion that he was born at 
Isernia, a city of the eounty of )1olise in the kingdom of 
Xaples, his parents being Anglerius and )1ary. 'Yhile 
still very young he was filled with a great love for solitude, 
and he longed to imitate the ancient dwellers of the desert 
of Thebaïs. At first he became a monk of St. Benedict, 
and afterwards without becoming acquainted with men 
and the things of this earth, lIe repaired to )1ajella, and 
there practised all manner uf austerities. His holiness of 
Hfe, the wonder which his extraordinary austerities excited, 
and the report of the miracles worked by him attracted 
many around him, who wished to imitate his life and ex- 
ample; and in a short time from being a poor lonely hermit 
hf' found himself the head and foundf'r of a congregation 
of religious \\.ho afterwards from the name he took in the 
Papacy were calh'd Celestines. He repaired to Lyons, 
where the council was being held, to have his congregation 
and l'ule approved by Gregory IX. Immediately out of 
compassion for the rigors of these penitents, people re- 
sponded with loyal offerings. Grants of land were gi\en 
them; suddenly churches and monasteries arose, which 
in their splendor made thelll forget the poverty of the be- 
ginnings of the congregation. During the lifetime of the 
Raint, they even acquired a monastery in Rome near St. 
Peter's. From the monks who lived there, Cardinal Latino 
learned the merits of their founder, to whom he displayed 
great love and devotion, gh'ing expression to it by an 
annual gift of alms. Althoug-h the order founded by him 
haù prospered, leaving the government and direction of it 
to others, he thought of nothing else but of attending to his 
own soul; and so to be alone he retired to the rocks uf )101'- 
rOlle, a part of )1ajella, and from which he took his name. 
The holy herlnit Peter was more than seventy-two years 
old, and doubtlessly he pre:-5ented the appearance of one 
bordering' OIl the grave, when at th(' end of a day in July 
the deputies of the conclave arrived in Sulmona, to bear to 
him the honor of the pontifical tiara. They werp the Arch- 
bishop of Lyons, the bishop of Orvieto and the hishop of 
Porto, together with two Ap()
toli(' 
otaries. At the hreak 
of day thpy set out to aSl'pn(l thp mountain; and whi1p \n't 
with ppr
piration and out of breath they were ascpntling 



62 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


by a little narrow path, they see corning near to them and 
overtaking them Cardinal Peter Colonna, who to make 
himself the first bearer of a so joyful message, had come 
quickly fronI Perugia. They arrived at a small enclosure 
surrounded by a wall, the opening to which was a small 
gate, and further on there was a little cell which a wall 
divided into two very narrow rooms. On the outside wall 
there was a window, that would not admit the head of an 
observer, because it had been provided with iron bars, at 
which the Saint placed himself in his infrequent conversa- 
tions with visitors. 
Before this window presented themselves the bearers of 
such great news. In the little cell they saw a vpry old man, 
clothed in rough skins, and disconcerted by the sight of 
them. His beard was wllite and shaggy; his cheeks fur- 
rowed, and his entire person enfeebled by long fasts. From 
out the pallor of his countenance two black e.res, suffused 
with tears, spoke of the sweetness of the soul enamored of 
its God. Although in such squalor, the lwrmit and the cell 
emitted the very air of Paradise. At such a sight struck 
dumb and filled with holy admiration, the prelates un- 
covpred their heads, and falling down reverently kissed the 
ground; the holy hermit did the same. The Archbishop of 
Lyons was the first to break the silence, explaining to Peter 
ho\y he had been chosen Supreme Pontiff. IIe likened the 
Church to a ship tossed to and fro at the mercy of the wind 
and waves, awaiting hhll to unfurl the sails, grasp the 
helm and guide it to the port of safety. And thus speak- 
ing, he displayed to the eJTes of the bewildered hermit the 
sealed papers, which contained the important decree. 
Overwhelmed by the greatness of the office, and the 
honor which they desired to bestow on him, the poor her- 
mit knpw not what to do. Before giving an answer he 
would first interrogate God in prayer, and thry should 
pray with him. lIe tlwn recrived through the window the 
wonderful document, and retired. 51 Prostrating himself 


1\1 The original of this decree, bearing the seals in red wax of the eleven 
cardinals, was preserved in the Abbey of the Holy Spirit at f;ulmona. 
Afterwards by the order of Clement VIII it was placed in the Vatican 
archives, after having passed successively through the hands of Cardinals 
Facchilletto, Bellarmine and Baronius.-Viòe Suppl. Life of St. Peter 
Celestine, by Lelii Marini, ch. 8, apud Boll. )Iaii T. 4. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


U3 


lIe pra
Ted to know the will of God. Shortly afterwards he 
returned to the messengers, telling them that he would ac- 
cept the office of supreme pontiff. Hardly had he finished 
speaking, when tùey cast themselves at his feet and kissed 
them, notwithstanding they were covered with poor and 
coarse shoes. 
As soon as the news of this election had spread, an in- 
credible number of people flocked to 
ee him, and to re- 
ceive the blessing of the invisible hermit, so unexpectedly 
raised to such a high dignity. Charles II, the Lame, with 
his son Charles )Iartel, came with alacrity to see him, not 
only to receive his blessing, but also to enter into his good 
graces, and direct and rule him. The succe
8 of his plan 
was not difficult. Peter had no decision of character, be- 
cause he was old and enfeebled by penances and his mind 
was ill-adapted to perceive the cunning of the children of 
Adam. lie had no knowledge of mankind, because frOlll 
his Jouth he had fled from socipty; his mind ,vas not culti- 
,'ated by study, being 
atisfieù only with that joy of heart 
which he felt in his contt'mplations of nod: and thus de- 
void of human resources, he eould not deIiyer himself from 
the impositions of the royal ty and the common people. 
Charles II troubled him, and the advocates of the Curia 
harafi.;sed him. Ignorant of the la ws, lIe summoned laymen 
and jurists to his support,52 who knowing and adopting the 
bf'st lTIf'ans of ingratiating- themselves in the needful soul 
of the new Pontiff, s(
ttled there. To esta blish tbem
elves 
firmly in that position tlley displayed certain deferences 
to the cardinals and clerics, insOllluch that Peter, con- 
trary to custom, chose a layman as secretary. 53 To Charles 
and the advocates of the Curia wpre added twelve Celes- 


II" Jacob, S, Georg. . . . "laicaeque manus subrepere passim. 
ConsiIiis tentant divi in precordia Patris 
:Eeclesiae. 
am gnarus opes et jurgia mundi 
Temllere, pomposam Juris vitaverat artem. 
. . . . quo faetum est, ut sibi magni 
Crederet hic Laico
, quos Juris iu artc peritos 
Prudentesque ratus.......... 
. . . . dum metuit Peter alulUs fraudibus arctum 
Ingenium vinci Proeerum, dubiique sodales 
Redduntur Fratres, propriulll nc forte Senatus 
Campel1at mutare gr:Hlum." 
151 Ibid. ". . . deet"at fiducia CIeri," 



64 


HISTOR Y OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


tine monks, pions men, but rough and uncultured,54 who 
hedged hhll in, who influenced hiIn, and who would never 
let him leave them. Thus did the holy old nlan all at once 
remain confined in the clutches of Charles, in the cunning 
of the greedy employees of the Curia, and in the small and 
indiscreet ambitious projects of his monks. So that he 
did not act, and did not undertake anything unless at the 
instance of Charles, and by the advice of those around him 
of whonl we have spoken. In the meanwhile the Cardinal 
electors still remained in Perugia expecting the Pope elect 
to come to meet them as they had besought him to do, in a 
Jetter which was attached to the decree of election. But 
instead of seeing the Pope, they received a letter from him, 
in which he announced that he was not able to travel so 
far. Accustomed to the snows of the Abruzzi mountain!':, 
he could not bear the summer heat; heing a very old man 
he had not sufficient strength for the journey, and hence 
they should rather come to bim. The Fathers perceived 
which waJ the wind of )It. l\Iorrone blew, since it is sup- 
posed that they already knew how affairs were directed. 
But they would not yield. They urged their request; he 
should come on a litter; he should leave the kingdom, or 
in ot1Jer words, remove himself frOlll the influence of 
Charles. He was unwilling, because Charles was unwill- 
ing. 55 The hesitation and delay of the Cardinals in com- 
ing were not displeasing to Charles. Time with him was 
precious, and he uRed it admirably. According to Ste- 
pheneschi lIe pPJ'suaded the holy Pope to repair to the grow- 
ing city of Aquila to receive the pontifical insignia,56 and to 
begin immediately to appoint new Cardinals in the choice 
of whom the impertinent prince would show his power. 
Peter entered Aquila triumphantly, but mounted on a 
mule, the two kings on foot holding the hridle. Opinions 
vary concerning that spectacle. Some praised Peter, call- 
ing to mind Christ entering .Jel'USalf'lll; while others would 
rather have seen that humility le
s displayed. 
The cardinals departed from Perugia startled by thi
 
intelligence. Their saddened minds perceived the mis- 
fortunes which in the future would befall the Church under 


14 Ibid. " . non eulta satis, sed rustiea turba." 
M rtol. Lue. ('. 30 "ad instantiam Regis venire recusat." 
M ptolomy Eeel. History C. 29. "Ad instantiam Regis, ('t suorum." 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


65 


the weak rule of the Saint. We know not whether they 
felt regret for having raised him to such a high office, but 
it is certain that Ptolemy of Lucca, a contemporary writer, 
and an eye-witness of the things he relates, assures us that 
Cardinal Latino :\Ialabranca, on the day that he died in 
Perugia, the 10th of August, bore on his soul to eternity 
the weight of that election,57 to which afterwards all the 
other cardinals had agreed. Their manner of going sepa- 
rately to Aquila, proved their little satisfaction; 58 and 
they went more to ward off dangers, than to honor CeleR- 
tine. 59 The latter in the presence of a large concourl'p of 
people received the papal insignia frOlll the hands of K a- 
poleon Orsini, who had come frOln Perugia with Cardinal 
H ugh of St. Sabina. The new Pope took the name of 
Celestine V. 
Benedict Gaetani was the only one who still lingered in 
Perugia. "Te know not with what ardor he acquiescpd in 
the election of the holy hermit, but we are certain that he 
more than the others beheld and foresaw its sad conse- 
quences for the Church. He heard certain rumors of the 
infamous actions and iniquitous practices of the ministers. 
The employees of the Curia were reaping a harvest in the 
Papal Court, abusing the holy seal, by dispensing benefi- 
ces recklessly and with such a great cupidity for gain, that 
often the same gift of prebend was founù to be given to 
many. They had the parchments already stamped with the 
papal seal, so as to be prepared to write that which would 
better satisfy their thirst for gold. The saintly Pope 
neither saw nor heard of these transactions. Charles 
ruled, and swayed the mind of Celestine according to his 
own pleasure, and held him, as it were, a prisoner. In 
fact he was a puppet in his hands. Gaetani heard, and de- 
layed to go and pay his respects to the Pope, temperin
 
his mind through these deplorable facts by feelings of 
noble indignation, which were to break forth in his own 
pontificate. It was said that Gaptani refrained from goin
 
to ...\quiJa, in order not to meet Charl('s, whom he had re- 


117 Ptolemy Eccl. History, c. 30, "in quo totum pondus incumbenat super 
elf'ctrione Caelestini." 18 Ptol. Eccl. Rist., c. 31. "aliqui procedunt ad 
})apam, aliqui subsequuntur versus Aquilam." IIg James st. Georg., c. 175. 
". . . C'elerant ad tanta pericula cursum." 



GG 


HlS1"OltY 01.1' POP'm BuN1FAC:g VIlt. 


buked and wounded deeply in the conclave at Perugia.13O 
But finally with the desire of repairing so much disorder 
by his judgment and good sense, and not to appear disre- 
spectful to the Pontiff, he went to Aquila. 
'Yhen he arriyed there he fOUB(l that the reports were 
n9t exaggerated but true. His heart was fined with g1"Íef 
because of the degradation to which the Papacy had been 
subjected. This f('eling arose not only from holiness of 
heart, but also from strength and nobility of soul, chiefly 
because the outrage on the Apostolic See was committed 
by the enenlY Charles, and by a handful of rascally advo- 
cates of the Curia. IIowpyer for the honor of the Church 
11e set about to take into his own hands tll(' reins of gov- 
ernment, which were held so loo
ely by the hand
 of Celes- 
tine. So great was the authority which his high ability, 
11Ïs skill in nlanagemput of affairs, and his knowledg(' of 
the canons gave him, that he became most powerful, and as 
it were the master of the Papal Curia. Ptolemy of Luera, 
relating how well Gaetani knew how to conduct his own 
affairs, insinuates that he possessed himself of po\Yer, morp 
for his own private interests, than for the good of the 
Church. Yet it must be remembered that this kind of pre- 
ponderance or dominion of Gaetani was in the Papal 
Curia, and not over the Papal Curia. This Curia could 
then be divided into two parts, one composed of Charles, 
the advocates of the Court, the Celestine 
Ionks, and of 
John of Castrocielo, a Cassinese monk, Archbishop of 
Benevento, who had known how to enter into the good 
graces of the Pope, by taking off his dark habit, and put- 
ting on the gray color of the Celestine monks;lH and of 
some French cardinals. The other part was composed of 
all the cardinals who raged against Charles and deplored 
the weakness of the Pope. Gaetal1i could not be the mas- 
ter of both these partips, opposed as thpy were to each . 
otlwr, but it might be said that he was rather tllP leader 
of that party which opposed the artifices of Charles thp 
Lame, with whom he was in such bad fayor. This domi- 
nation was founded in the dependence they had on him, as 


110 Ptolemy Eccl. History, cllapter 31. "et dubitabatur quia non veniret, 
quia Regem verbis offenderat in Perusio." 
111.r ac. S. Georg., c. 77-275. . . . Mon3.chi dimissis vestibus a tris, 
Praesulis induitur habitum, pertingere sperans Jrrubare caput. 



lU5TORY OF POp:e BONIFACE VIII. 


ü7 


a man of singular ability above all the other cardinals. In 
fact eyen after his arrival things were going from bad to 
worse, as it appears from that desire of the Pope to change 
into Celestines an the monks of St. Benedict, and to put 
the monastery of 
Ionte Cassino into a scandalous con- 
fusion by stripping the monks of the (13rk habit; and eR- 
pecialJy that creation of new cardinal
, all the \york of 
Charles. The fact of Gaetani not having taken part in 
that affair sho\ys that he and the king continued to view 
each other askance. In the ember days of September Celes- 
tine created twelve car(1inals, seven of WhOl11 "were French, 
and five Italians all creatures of Charle
. And this is 
how the deed was done. Charles and 1Iugh Sequin, Bishop 
of Ostia, designated a long time ahead tho
e who were to 
be made cardinals, and their names were gin:>n to the 
simple-minded Pope, who in all things did the pleasurp of 
Charles, and these names were kept concealpd from all the 
other cardinals. Only Hugh Sequin was taken into tlte 
secret, as we have said, and two Roman cardinal
, who it 
is almost certain were the two Or
ini, because in the con- 
claye they were ardent parti
ans of Charles. It cannot hf' 
supposed that Gaetani was one of these, because it was rus- 
tomary for Stephaneschi to call only those Roman
, who 
were natives of Rome. In fact amo
g 01(' twelve f'lectf'ù 
,,-as John Gaetani of Anagni and he declares t.hat not onp 
of them was a Roman. 62 Nothing of the secret was al- 
lowed to leak out. On Friday the yigil of their crea tioll 
the names of the elect were made known to the cardinals, 
who were deeply wounded ùJ this proceeding, and with rea- 
son, because the Pope should have consulted them rathpr 
than Charles. Thus that lllastery over the Papal Curia 
which Ptolemy of Lucca affirms, does not appear from 
the fact so important as a notable increase in the collpge 
of the Cardinals; so it remains evident that up to the 18th 
of September Gaetani \yas certainly not alllong the friend:-; 
of CbarleR. 63 
It is true that Charles fearpd him, and ]1(' had good ]'(':1- 
son to fear him from Perugia, and hp]1('p in ord('l' to pJ'P- 
vent a storm which be would have raispc1 amollg tlip oUwr 
a See Note D. 
I! Id. ib . . . nullum, queem subdita sedi Immediata porit tf'llus, f'X 
ordine Patrum Murro dedit. . . . 



G8 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


cardinals because of the royal selection of cardinals, to ap- 
pease hhn and gain his favor, he caused 
John Gaetani, a 
npphpw of Benedict, to be nlade a cardinal. But the slav- 
pry into which the Church was redueed hy Charles would 
not allow the minds of Gaetani and the othpr cardinals to 
be appeased, so greatI
T distressed and desperate were they 
by reason of the bad governnwnt of (1plestinp. Affairs 
reached a climax whpn, the season now having lwcome 
cooler, lwIieving that the Pope should repair to Rome, they 
beheld hiIn most tenacious of his decision to follow tlw 
advice of Charles and go instead to Kaples. 64 The arti- 
fices of Chal'les the Lame, were shmllefnl and barefaced, 
Imt the Saint did not percpive all the evil that they con- 
Ü1Ïnl'd. Thpy were exasperated also by the revival and rp- 
np\vaI whieh Celestine nlade of thp constitution of Greg- 
ory X concerning the holding and the regulation of a con- 
dave. 
This constitution ordains t.hat, ten days havinp; elapspd 
from the fleath of the Pontiff, the l"aI'dinals without wait- 
ing for the abspntees are to asspmble in a place f;trictl.r and 

ecurely locked. Xeither by letter no)' by worel of mouth 
nor b.r any othpf sign are those in conclave to hold int{'r- 
course with an outsider, under pain of anathema to the 
transgressor. They are to remain there untiJ they havp 
chosen a successor. Should, however, more than three days 
elapse before a choice is made, for the next five days their 
fare shall consist of one dish, aftpr which it is rpduced to 
bread and water and wine, which shall be their only nour- 
ishment until their .work is done. TIlP revival and renewal 
of the Gregorian Bull wounded deeplJ. the elector
, so un- 
òisciplineù had they been in the late conclave and so agi- 
tated. This decree was followed by another, releasing- 
Charles from the oath required of him by the car(Hnals, 
not to detain tbem and confine thpm in his kingdom, in 
the event of choosing- the new Pope after the death of Celes- 
tine. So that Charles the I..ame, by this Rull and by thp 
opportune release from his oath, was promising himself to 
hold in his own hands the imprisoned cardinals choosing- 
the new Popp, or in other words. to creat{' him himself. 
Rut we Rhall see later how theRe prp-conceived hopp
 "Van- 
M .Tac. K Georg. .." Subductus Carolo coetuque sequente Par- 
thenopen dC'fle"\.it itf'r. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


69 


ished in smoke. Finally their minds surcharged with in- 
dignation broke out in open and forcible clamors at the 
sight of John of Castrocielo, Benedictine Archbishop of 
Benevento, being suddenly nlade a cardinal by Celestine 
without ev
n the ceremonies of creation. For one evening 
after supper, no sooner was it said, than he transformed 
him into a cardinal. The exasperated prelates gave ex- 
pression to downright disapproval and to such vehement 
denunciation that John was forced to lay aside the irregu- 
larly receiveù dignity, and Celestine had to confer it with 
the usual ceremonies of installation. So raising around 
the Saint, if not a reverent, at least a not unjust telnpest, 
th
y followed him to Naples. 65 
The cardinals in their displeasure and indignation at the 
actions of Celestine, because they openly despaired of any 
amelioration, had commen
ed fl.om the time they were in 
Aquila to broach and whisper words of abdication. In 
spite of the efforts whÜ:h Charles might Inake to dissuadf' 
the Raint from the untowaJ'd tenlptation, undouLtedly thf' 
thought entered the nlÍnd of the good Pontiff. In fact in 
that revived constitution of GregorJ' X, he speaks not only 
of the case of death, hut also of renunciation, a sign that 
the latter was already fixeù in his heart. So the more 
things went wrong-, the lllore openly did some of the cardi- 
nals art, and they began to urge the Saint to resign the 
Papacy, telling him openly, that so long as he remained 
Pontiff, the affairs of the HOlnan Church would be imper- 
illed and be ever in confusion. 66 It ,yould not be unlikely 
to suppose that Gaetani was one of those who urged him 
to resign. Those incentives to re

:;ign, and the charging 
him with the evils of the Church threw the mind of the 
Saint into great constt'rnation; and since he had not cov- 
eted the unexpectea honol's of the Papary, nor after assum- 
ing tbem was he 
lated, he became strongly apprehensive 
of tlJe dangers of his soul. 
Advent approachN1. TIe had always sanctified this sea- 
son by extraordinary austerity, and he did not wish as 


115,Jac. K Georg., cap. 11. 
till Ptolemy of I.ucca. Reel. History, c. 32. "Multum stimulatur ab 
aliquihl1" Cardillali1nH! quod Papatum eedat. quia Eeelesia Romana sub 
ip!'òo periclitabatur, et sub eo eOllfundf'batur." 



70 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


Pope to intermit thf' pious custom. He had caused to be 
built in the papal palace a Iniserable little wooden cell, 
which reminded hinI of the one on 1\lt. 1\lorrone, and in 
this he shut himself up; and he left in the hands of three 
cardinals the chief management of affairs, and all care of 
government, retaining for hiInself only the thought of his 
soul and of God. 'Ve do not know who these delegates 
were. The Bull of this deputation had been already writ- 
ten, when having returned to Rome Orsini withheld him 
from its publication, so that it might not be said that the 
Church was governed not by one, but by three Popes. The 
reader nlay imagine how these three cardinals raged 
against Orsini. These dissensions disturbed the mind of 
Celestine continually, and he was convinced that they hap- 
pened through his own fault. 
These troubles of mind had increased in the solitude in 
which he placed hil1l
elf. Bright visions of the once happy 
Jiff' he had on 3ft. :Morrone, nnintimidated by papal pomp, 
were confidently presented to his mind, and infused into 
his soul pleasures and sweetnesses that worldly bonors do 
not confer. Then he longed most eagerly for the lonely 
rock of :l\1orrone, and his heart was frightened by the fear 
of hell into which he might fall headlong for the evils he 
was known to have brought upon the Church by his short- 
comings. And in this longing for the past, in grief for the 
preí'ent, and in fear for the future, he went for spiritual 
advice to Fra J acopone of Todi, of whom we shall speak 
later, who although not ordained, was yet pious and strong 
in the pursuit of evangelical perfection. He was one of 
the Franciscan friars who were the dearly-beloved of 
Celestine, on account of the singular severity of the life 
they led. The Friar admonished him: that he should take 
care; that the Papacy was for him a terrible experiment, in 
which his sanctity would be tested; that he was a spectacle 
for the eyes of all; that he should consider the Roman 
Curia as a furnace in which gold is tried and separated 
from the ùross; a grf'at unhappiness to lose God for that; 
that he should have been avprse to placing around his neck 
a yoke, thf' af'ceptancc of which could hurl him to eternal 
perdition; fina]],v that JH:
 should :flee the frauds and de>- 
f'l\its of the advocates of tIlC Curia, and of the flatterers 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


71 


intent solely on their own gain. He should look to him- 
self. 67 
Noone can express the consternation which these ad- 
monitions of ,Jacopone produced in the mind of the holy 
old man. IEs eonRcience smote him for the bad ('ondition 
of affairs; he feared the divine punishment; he wished to 
cast far away the enormous burden of tIle pontifirate. In 
the midst of his sigllS he cried out from the depth of his 
anguished heill.t: "Oh, luisel'able-nle! Oh, wretch that I 
" am! They tell me that I have command over souls, and 
" why is it that I have no powpr OYP1" my own, and assure 
"its salvation? And what is this the Lord l1as done? 
" Has He perhaps placed me so high, in order to hurl me 
" down further in the depths below? Every day I have a 
"complaint, a murmur against Ine. I see the carùinals 
"jarring', and quarrelling among thPIDsehTes. . . . 'Yhat 
"shall I do? . . . Is it not better for 111P to break tllP 
" chains which bind me to this most fatal thronp, and to 
" leave it to onp who may know 110W to sit on it. and let 
" mp tllf'n take lJlyself after surh a fo:torm to the port of my 
" little cell."- 
'Yhilst he was revolving theRe tllOughtR in his mind, he 
took by chance in his hand a certain little book containing 
a compendiuln of the ecclesiastical canons, to which he 
was wont to have recourse for advice during his life as a 
hernlit; and turning over the pages, his pyes rested on 
one, which told how a cleric can resign a dignity or bene- 
fice for a just rem::on with the consent of his superior. 
This canon seemed to he his liberator, and be gave the (-'11- 
tire consideration of his mind to it; hut there being nO 
one superior to him, into whose hands he rould resign thp 
Papacy, this fact threw him into a state of grf'at uncer- 
tainty. He wi
hed to i!';
ue from it. Ill' went for conn!,;l'l 
and advice to him, who among aU the cardinals, was the 
most renownpc! for Round judgment and learning, Bpne- 
dict Gaetani. This man entered the smal1, dark cell, being 
called to pas
 judgment on a l11atter, which was to remove 
the papal tiara from the head of Celestine to l1is own. Ancl 
having heard the question. he replied in a manner which 
concealed hi
 interior delight,68 Ulat he could I'f'!';ign, when- 
e7 Book I, Satire XV.-See Bollandists, Ma
' T. V., p. fi23. 
ell" IlJe tamen cautus mf'ntf'm simnl:1.TP." ,Ta('. R. (}porg., f'. 111. 



72 


HISTOR Y OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


ever there was a sufficient reason to do SO; and alleged th(' 
example of another pope who had also resigned. The Saint 
answf'red that a sufficient reason was not wanting. And 
that was all that transpired betwf'en them. 69 But the 
mind of Celestine was not satisfied by that afl\Ïce; and so 
he summoned another counseJ]or. He gave the same opin- 
ion. And as yet not contented, he interrogated some other 
of the cardinals. 
These consultations of the Saint could not be kept so 
spcrpt, as to bf' withheld from the knowledge of those who 
eertainly did not carp to see him retire from the Papacy. 
These were especially those froward Celestine monks, 
whom Stephaneschi insists upon calling rough and un- 
couth men. They wondered greatly at this novelty and they 
sent a pressing remonstrance to the Saint, representing, 
how, if he laid aside the pontifical dignity, they would be 
pxposed to all manner of insults; and his beloved congr{>- 
gation would die at its hirth. They did not rely alone on 
their own remon
trances. They raised a pious tumult 
among the people of N arIes, accustomed to such excite- 
ment, who with irreverent importunity having hroken 
through the outer doors of the papal palace, forced an en- 
trance into the cell of the Saint. There some of the chief 
Inen conjured him in the name of God to dismiss from his 
mind tllP idea of resigning, which would dpprive all the 
Jdngdol11 of so great an honor. Celestine met thpir remon- 
Htrances with a suitable reply, which disguised the unalter- 
ahility of his purpose. 
Having weathered this storm, the Saint set about imme- 
diately to put into effect that which he had for a long time 
contemplated. The cardinals being called together, he 
humbly declared his inability to bear any longer the bur- 
ÙPll of the supreme pontificate, and asked tllf'm publicly 
for their adYice. The cardinals replied, that he should 
allow his desire to mature; that he should shun his evil 
advisprs; and that he should order public prayers in order 
to know the will of God in an affair of so great importancp, 
These public prayers, which the cardinals recommended, 
served as a favorable occasion for Charles to delay the 
pxpcntion of the designs of Celestine. Hp summoned apart 
the clergy of Naples, who if thpy did not regard Celestine 
BP The same author. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


73 


in the same light as Charles, yet considered him a N eapoli- 
tan Pope, and loved and revered him as a saint. Then he 
arranged a procession in which all the priests and friars 
lllar
heù, and together with these as many bishops as he 
eould collect, and they proceeded to the castle in which 
Celestine dwelt. Friar Ptolemy of Lucca, who was pres
nt, 
mentions no cardinal among them. As soon as these sup- 
pliants had arrived at the door of the palace, according to 
custom, they began in a loud voice to entreat Celestine to 
im part to them the papal benediction. Not to show irrev- 
erence to a !';acred ceremony, Celestine came to a window in 
company with three bishops and gave the blessing. Then 
a certain bishop, an agent of the King, besought the Pope 
to listen to them; and as soon as silence reigned, in a loud 
voice that was heard by all those in the procession, he 
cried out: " That they did 110t want him to resign; that he 
should remain for the glory of the kingdom," Then one of 
the aforesaid three bi
hops from abo,?e replied for the Pope. 
"That tlH'Y should quiet their fears; that he would not 
., resign as long as th
re did not appear a reason contrary 
" to his conscience, which directed him." The royal mes- 
senger was satisfied; and as a sign of their joy in the loud- 
est tones they began to sing the Te Deum, and the joyful 
procession marched back to the Cathedra1. 70 
But Celestine was frightened by the fear of losing his 
soul in the Papacy, and seeing the way open by the advice 
of Gaetani and other cardinals, he did not allow himself 
to be overcome either by the procession, or by the cry the 
King made by the mouth of the bishop. For almost eight 
days he spoke not a word of his re!';ignation, in order to 
stifle his feelings, and not be molested. During that time 
going again to Gaetani, he ,,,as instructed by him in all 
lIP would have to do, as he desired to perform the act of 
abdication so that the canonical form would not he want- 
ing, and he made him draw up the act of the great resig- 
nation,71 After this was performed, on th
 13th of Decem- 
ber the feast of St. Lucy, he summoned the cardinals in 
consistory. And being clothed in the red cloak, and all 
the other insig'nia which the POpf" wears in the solemn 
ceremonies, {1elestine entered the> assembly, and seated 
70 Ptolemy of Lucca. Eccl. History, c, 32. 
71 AnonJ"mous. Life of St. Cele"tine. MS. Vatic. Arm. XII. 



74 


HISTORY OF POPE EONIF ACE VIII. 


himself. Under the cloak he carried the act of resignation. 
The cardinals knew of his intended resignation, but they 
did not know when it would take place. He commanded 
theln to remain quiet, and not dare 
ay :1 word; then un- 
folding it, in a clear yuice he read the famous act: "I, 
" Celestine, moved by legitimate reasons, that is to say, for 
"the sake of humility, of a perfect life, and for ease of 
" conscience; on account of weakness of body, of want of 
" knowledge, of grief occa
ioned to the people, and in order 
"to regain the peace of my former state of life, with all 
"my soul, anù freely I surrender the Papacy, and I ex- 
" pressly resign the chair, the dignity, the burden and the 
"bonoI', giving from this instant full and free power to 
" the College of Cardinals to choose and provide, but only 
"in a canonical wa)., a new pastor for the universal 
Church." During the reading of this the cardinals, deeply 
Dloved by the great humility of the Saint, could not re- 
strain their tears. Fearing that the mere assent of the 
College of Cardinals to bis resignation migbt not be suffi- 
cient for the validity of the act, at the instance of )Iatthew 
Orsini, the oldest of the Cardinal deacons, he published a 
special eonstitution covering the ground, in which he de- 
clm.ed a Pope n1ight ahdicate, and that the College of 
Cardinals was competent to receive the act of abdication. 
This was embodied in the Sixth of the Decretals. This 
being- settled, Celestine divested himself in their presence 
of all th
 papal insignia, and having resumed the hairy 
garnwut be wore on l\It. ::\Iorrone, he d
parted from the 
consi
tory. The cardinals accompanied him, and "ith 
many tears recommended to bis prayers the Church de- 
priv(>d of a pa
tor. Thux did Pope Celestine V, after five 
months and nine daJs, leave the papal ('hair, not thrust 
down, not induced, not flec('iv
d, at least by Gaetani. 
Some writers detract from the greatness of that act, and 
bestow on it a vile charact(>r. Among these is the irasci- 
hIe Dante, who in the departure of Celestine from the 
Papaey rabidly <1(>{)lores the entrance into it of the de- 
tested Boniface. But as the possibility of such a resigna- 
tion having arisen solely from the timidity of tbe re- 
nouncer did not entpr their minds, they must then, either 
by conjecture, or by an evil interpretation of circum- 
stances, or from a prejudiced opinion of the natural dispo-. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


75 


sition of Benedict Gaetani, attribute it also to his artifices. 
And let the reader know that the story of these artifices 
began after his elevation to the Papacy; and if Gaetani 
had never heconle Pope, there would have been no mention 
of these artifices impelling the simple old saint Cele8tine 
to re
ign. Other writers extol to the heavens the abdi- 
cation, as the act of an angel and not of a man, claiming, 
that the act of discarding the insignia of St. Peter through 
fear of sin, is such a great spiritual disposition of soul, 
that does not generally fall to the lot of the sons of Adam. 
Among these is the 1l1Oderate Petrarch. 72 But the true 
estimate of him was that given by Clement V in the Bull 
in which be raised Peter Celestine to the honors of the 
altar. Of him be says: ".A man of stupendous simplicity, 
"and unskilled in matters concerning the adrr.:inistration 
" of the universal Churth (for from his boyhood to old age 
" he had not applied himself to worldly affairs, but only 
"to those divine), prudently viewing himself with the 
"closest attention, he freely anù entirely resigned the 
"honors and burden of the Papacy, in order that no evil 
" would be occasionefl to the Universal Church by his gov- 
" ernment of it; and becam
e being freed from the disturb- 
"ing cares. of )Iartha, he could with )Iary stand at the 
" feet of Jesus in the peace and happiness of contempla- 
" tion." 73 
The ten days having elapsed fl'OIl1 the abdication of 
Celestine, the cardinals, according to the approved Consti- 
tution of Pope Gregory X, n1et in conclave. In all there 
were twenty-two. Eight were French, Hugh Billom, 
Bi
hop of Ostia; Bernard de Got; Simon of Beaulieu ; John 
Lemoine; \Yilliam Ferrier; Kicholas Nonancourt, Robert, 
fOl'llWrly abbot of Citeaux; and Rimon, who had been a 
monk of Cluny. All these with the exception of TIugh, 
were created by Celestine, and hence de
iI'ed by Charles of 
X aples. Thomas of Teramo, and Petpr of 
\.quiIa were 
relpstine monks; Landolf Brancaccio and "Tilliam Longo, 
State Chancellor of the I{ing, and Benedict Gaetani, 
Junior, were alRo creatures of Charles. Of these if we ex- 
cept Gaetani, who by rea
on of blood relationship, would 
72 Life of the hermit. Book 2, chap. 18, page 2G6, V, 1. Basilca edition, 
by Sebastian Her.ripetri 1;)
n. 
73 Bull of C
nonization of St. Peter Celestine. 



76 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


naturally favor the election of his uncle, certainly not one 
of the others would care to see him chosen. The fact of the 
Saint calling on Gaetani for counsel, and the weight which 
his opinion and advice must have had on l1is mind on ac- 
count of l1is L'eputation for learning, 
houl<l have closed 
the minds of those devoted to Celestine against every 
thought of creating Benedict Pope. On tlw contrary tlle 
other cardinal
, namely, Gerard of Parma; John ßoccam- 
ozzo; )Iatthew of Acquasparta in Umbria; Peter Pere- 
grosso of )Iilan; ::Uatthew Ro
so Orsini; James Colonna; 
Xapoleon Orsini; Peter Colonna, all Italians and five of 
them Romans, deplored so exceedingly such a Im'ge num- 
ber of Frenchmen admitted to their College and the dan- 
gerous removal of the Papal See to :Kaple
, that they would 
certainly favOJ' the election as Pontiff of one of their col- 
leagues, wllo would be at least an Italian, and who would 
have the courage to tear himself away from the influence 
of Charles the I..ame, and straightway bring back the court 
to Home. 
('harles was not a cardinal, but under Celestine he had 
cardinals created, and for that reason although he did 
not have a vote in the election of the pontiff, tie could have, 
and did have in fact, the desire of the choice of a person 
who would favor his interests. The kings of France have 
sþown later how agrcpable it was to haye in their how..e 
(we refer to the captivity of ...\ vignon) the Boman Pontiff; 
but Charles the Lame had already experienced and for 
that reason let not the reader ask what cardinal he wish
d 
to see elected. Of course it would be a FrendllU<lu. An 
Italian he would not have, much less a Roman. For be- 
sides being pained by the 10RS of libprty and dignity whith 
was inflicted on the Papal See by that exile in a prince's 
house, their love of country was wounded by being (]p- 
prived of that honor. :l\Ioreover more in those tin1f'
 to 
bave a Pope of a vigorous disposition was not the most 
ardent desire of any crowned head. Bence Stephaneschi, 
who was at that tiIne a member of the Papal Curia, and an 
eye-witness of events, informs us that Charles nourished a 
secret hope, which by the mercy of God renlained in em- 
bryo. To whom the rOJal suffrage was given, we know not; 
and to surmi
e would lw to r:h'e full play to the imagination. 
With thes
 feelings tlw twenty-two cardinals shut them- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


77 


selves up in conclave in the royal castle, being menaced in 
their li
erty, inasmuchas Charles had e,en intruded him- 
self there. 74 Each one had his own views, but all were 
dominated by a force that emanated frOlll the conditions 
in which the Church found itself after the brief rule of 
Celestine, and which was impelling thenl to disreg3.rd their 
own interests, for the safety and relief of the Holy Church 
of God. A lllysterious force which not all would recog- 
nize in a

emblies for the election of a Supreme Pontiff; 
because whoIl
y absorbed in the human weaknesses which 
can manifest thems(>lves in that sort of a:--:semblies, they 
will not consider that in the midst of so much humanity 
the will and power of God may rule. Party spirit and 
every other imperfection also can be discovered in these 
meetings, the cardinals not ceasing to ùe hUlnan, even if 
they are in conclave; hut the final r(>slllt is wholly the work 
of God who uses for a good purpose this human nature of 
ours, miserable though it may ever be. Therefore in case 
the minds of the electors had become dissipated by private 
de
ires, one fact would unite them forthwith, namely, the 
renunciation of Celestine, for which it was necessary to 
elect as a Pope a man able to resist the po:-;:-;ibility of a 
threatened schism, and firmly to set out at once for that 
city which alone is the seat of the Papal power. Nay, 
judging from the very 
hort time they had been in conchrve, 
it can be truly said, that already before entering they 
had fixed their minds on Gaetani. Tltpir a
semhling s(>rved 
for no other purpose but to make known their minds; for 
scarcely had a day of the conclave been passed, the holy 
sacrifice having been offered, and the usual prayers were 

aid, when by an overwhelming vote Benedict Gaetani, 
then Cardinal priest of the title of Sts. Sylvester and :Mar- 
tin, was elected Pope. 75 Reading the account of 
J ohn Yil- 
lani,ï6 in which he states that Gaetani made use of bare- 
74 ptol. Luc. Rist. Ecc., c. 34. '15 Jas. St. Georg. The election of Boni- 
face VIn B. I. 
18 Villani S. R. 1. T. 13, page 347. Book 8, c. G. "In the year 1294, 
Cardinal Benedict Gaetani, having by his address and sagacity induced 
Celestine to resign the Papacy, as we have mentioned in the preceding 
C'hapter, followed up his undertaking and worked on the mindo;; of the 
cardinals, and the courier of King Charles, who held the friendship of 
many cardinals, especially the twelve created by Celestine. Being in the 
country of Charlco;; he went to him one night inco
nito with a smaH retinue 



78 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIn. 


faced artifkes to enlist King Charles in his fa,.or, and that 
he did obtain his assistance in his enùeavors to gain pos- 
session of the luuch-desired Keys, the reader will wonder 
at the source and truth of our account. But, thank God, 
we are living to-day in times in which our lnind
, being 
freed from the preponderant influence of the opillion
 of 
others, advance morp freely in the search for truth and 
possess innumerable means of arriving at it. Very many 
writers, following the opinions of Yillani and Dante, and 
without any further inquiry haye charged Gaetani with 
the foul crime of simony. 
Villana arrived in Rome during the year of the Jubilee, 
that is six years after the election of Boniface, and in that 
year he wrote his history. He had not witnessed the resig- 
nation of Celestine and the election of Boniface, So he 
gathered his information of the e,.ents from hearsay, as it 
passed from mouth to mouth. Now we who live in a more 
civilized age know by experience, how and to what extent 
great events still recent, and not lnatured for history, may 
become distorted in character and in circumstances, es- 
pecially if human passions be aroused by them. lIence 
imagine how many opinions exi
ted disputing these two 
facts, the renunciation of Celestine and the election of 
Boniface, in that obscure XllIth century, in which owing 
to the want of printing and the lack of intercourse alllong 
people, they were permitted to intrude them
elves with a 
tyranny and an arrogance which proceeded from the fac- 
tional fights of families and kings. 
When Villani was stopping at Rome, the anger of the 
Colonnas was at fe,'er heat, and it was precisely this family 
that spread the famous libel relative to the election of 
Boniface, which it said was in,'alid because of the invalid- 
ity of the abdication of Celestine. Anyone who kno\ys 


and said to him: "King Charles thy Pope Celestine was willing and 
able to serve thee, only he knew not how; at=! for me if you induce your 
friends the cardinals to elect me Pope, I shall know, and shall be willing, 
and shall be able to set before thee an the power of the Church." Then 
the King trusting him promised it; he ordered his twelve cardinals to 
give him their 'Vote, Matthew Rosso and James Colonna, who were the 
leaders of seven Cardinals perceived what was transpiring, and forthwith 
gave him their votes, :Matthew being the first to vote for him. In this 
manner he was elected Pope in the city of Naples on the vigil of Christ- 
mas in the same year.-" 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


79 


what was the temper of the Roman people at that time, 
and especially under a Pope vigorous and firlll a
 Boni- 
face was, will readily undprstand how greedy it would be 
to seize and propagate forthwith false accounts. 
All admit that Gaetani had a soul so noble and lofty, 
that it went, so to speak, bpyond the limits of virtue, and 
almost degenerated into pride; that in the conrlilye of 
Perugia he made Charles feel it severely, and that after- 
1vards these two personages were not in accord at all re- 
garding the renunciation of Celestine, because Gaetani 
aided him to relinquish the Apostolic See, while on the con- 
trary Charles tried to make him rt"'tain it. Noone who has 
the least bit of sense can believe that at the time of the 
afore
aid proce

ion arranged by Charles, according to 
PtolenlY of Lucca, at a time when the I{ing and Gaetani 
were clashing lllOst yiolpntly, the one could promise tliP 
tiara and tlw other could how the head b('fore the Prince 
and promise fayors. 
or was CharIes such a simpleton as 
to prefer the promises of Gaptani to the profitable and 
aetnal simplicity of Celestine; nor so foolish as to treat 
with Gaetani of his promotion to the Papacy, and at the 
same time impede the departure of Celestine from it. If 
therefore the disputed renunciation and during the time 
the dispute was going on, Gaetani could not have come to 
the shameful agreements with the King, when shall we 
find them conferring and trafficking regarding the place 
belonging to the Son of (Jod '? Is it perhaps when the Pope 
was seen changed into a poor hermit, and Charles was 
foiled in his efforts? \Ye grant that the rem;on of time 
may warrant such an assumption, but not the character of 
the persons. For although ten days may have elapsed 
fronl thp rpsignation of Celestine to t11p holding of the 
('ondayf', a most opportune time for the nightly colloquies 
of Gaetani with I{ing Charles, we cannot imagine how 
these two persons, angry and full of threats as they were, 
conl(1 come to such friendly conferences so suddenly. -n r e 
know that the ambition of both could have calmed on a 
sudden their angry minds, for thf'ir mutual adyantage; but 
this shows us precisely the impo
lõ:ibility of the (lishone.;t 
agreement, since the adyantages were not equal in the eY
8 
of Charles and Gaetani. 
According to the 3ecount of Yïllani, \YP fU'P to hp1i
ve 



80 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


that Gaetani by night accosted Charlf's, and promisptl to 
favor him more than Celestine had done, if he would aiù 
him to ascend the vacant chair, and that Charles with a 
cheerful mind granted his request. Charles promised a 
certain and immediate benefit, and Gaetani a future and 
uncertain favor. Yery unequal promises. And then what 
was the favor? The Dominican friar, Alphonsus Ciac- 
conins 77 affirl1H
, though Yillani says nothing of it, that 
the favor was the recovery of Sicily. But the recovery of 
Ricily would not ha"e been an extraordinary benefit. ...\.ll 
his predecessors in the Papacy had worked strenuously to 
wrest it from the King of Aragon, and place it under the 
authority of Charles, as they demanded the rights of the 
Church be identified with those of the house of Anjou; and 
so to the attainment of this the effort
 of Gaetani would 
be used, as it happened, even without promising it to 
Charles. Charles was promising much, and Gaetani little 
or nothing. Are we then to belie,'e that this Gaptani, the 
n10st renowned among the cardinals for judgment and 
learning, the lord of the Papal Court, who did not flinch 
before the report which, thanks to the infamous artifices 
of tlw Colonnas and the French, accused him of intruding 
himself into the Papacy; who did not flinch in the presence 
of that terrible and brutal Philip the Fair; who did not 
flinch at Anagni before the daggers of Sciarra Colonna, 
and that French ruffian Xogaret, are we to believe, we 
repeat, that he flinched in prespnce of Charles the Lame, 
over WhOlll he had lately triumphed by the renunciation of 
Celestine? 
And even supposing that the excessive ambition of 
Gaetani would at this point have unnerved his courage, 
who will believe that Charles most cunning that he wa
, 
would have relied on the promil"es of Gaetani WllO also 
was considered to be a most crafty man? ""ho will be- 
lieve that Charlp!,: with a college of French [1ardinals most 
docile to him by reason of a common fatherland, wishing 
to have a Pope altogether according to his liking, would 
have leaned towards Gaetani, Roman to the core, the bit- 
terness of whose mind he haeI already tasted? Shall we 
say that perhap
 the reputation for judgment and skin in 
administration enamored rharles of Gaetani, and sati
fied 
'" Vitae Pontif, Rom. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


81 


him with the certainty of favors greater than those which 
resulted from the incapacity of Celestine? But to such a 
conclusion Charles could not come, for he would know, that 
if ambition rendered Gaetani a friend and ã promiseI' of 
favors, this ambition being satisfied, he would return to 
his first disposition, and eyen more severe and more inex- 
orable, as it were, through shame for having prostituted 
his magnanimity; and then his judgment and skill in the 
management of affairs would become very sharp weapons 
with which to wound the King. 
'Ye would not have entered into this discussion if all the 
writers, eye-witnesses of the events, or at least some of 
thenl had mentioned the evil artifices used by Gaetani to 
bcome Pope; but finding the recital in onl;v later writers 
like Yillani, or rabid ones like Dante, we have desired to 
meaiomre tlwse words with them less out of love for Boni- 
face YIlT than for the love of truth. In faet Ptolemy of 
Lueta who was in 
apl(ìs when the {'lection of Oaetani 
took place says absolutely nothing of 
dmoniacal prac- 
t ices. 78 James Stephalleschi, Cardinal of the title of St. 
GeOl'ge in Y.elabro, who not only resided in Naples in those 
times, but al
o was a member of the Papal Curia, having- 
been created by Celestine a Canon of Rt. Peter's, and .A..udi- 
tor of the Rota,79 is altogether silent on the compacts with 
(1harles. But if we be1ieve that he, out of love for Gaetani, 
by whom afterwards he was created Cardinal, had kept 
silent concerning- his simony, we must admit, that if this 
was so, he oug-ht not to have lllel1Ìioned the deception of 
Charles, but haye pa
sed oyer in silence this account as 
likewise the story of the nocturnal conferenf'e relatf'd by 
Yillani. But on the contrary Stephaneschi without any 
artifice of words, hluntly rf'latc
, that Gaetani being elected 
Pope, Charles saw his hopes perish, thanks be to God; and 


78 "Post cessionem autem ad modicum tempus juxta formam decreti ad 
eleetionem alterius procedunt, pracsente Rege C'arolo N eapoli, et in vigilia 
Xativitatis Dominieae in Dominum Benedictum Ga
 tani vota sua diri
unt, 
et in Summum Pontificem as<;ument, et Bonifacius VIII yocatus est." 
Ecel. History, c. 34 . . . "Dictus Caelestinus Papatui cedit, et sua 
resignatio a Cardinalibus acceptatur. Tunc ad electionem procedunt, et 
Dominum Benedictum eligunt, Vocatusque cst Bonifacius octavus, et hoc 
totum Xeapoli est factum, et presente Rege."-Idem Annale.; year 1294. 
---.S. R. I. Tom. XI, pages 1300, 1301. 
n 
ee Cardella, History of e:c Cardinal:;, T. 2. 



82 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


adds a warning that no one should violate the liberty of 
:l\Iother Church in the selection of her spouse; an evident 
proof that Charles was present to turn away the votes from 
Gaetani. 80 Therefore far fronl their having come to any 
compact betwecn them, the Pope elect and the King were 
at war with each other, and the lattcr would most rather 
ban
 pr('fprrcd as Pope, any other Cardinal than Gaetani. 
So hy combining the te8timony of contemporaries with the 
arguments of criticism founded on prior facts, on the cir- 
cumstances of the time, and on the character of the per- 
sons, we know not what foundation of truth there remain8 
to the account of Villani and the poetic fantasies of Dante. 
Finally the ultimrrte confirmation of our statpment is that 
in the famous libel composed by the furious Colonnas, with 
which they 
troYe to show the invalid election of Gaetani, 
we do not find that the sin of simony, hut that the invalid 
ahdieation of Cclestine laid the foundation of his intrusion 
into the Papacy. The Colonnas at that time knew what 
thpy were doing; and as Inembers of the conclave, they were 
not ignorant, if there were 
uch, of the simonical practices 
of Gaetani. The sin of simony alone was sufficient to wrest 
from the hands of Boniface the basely bought Keys of St. 
Peter. 81 


so .James, Carùinal of 
t. George. The coronation of Boniface, Book I. 
c. 1, 2. 


". . . Nam pluriu1<l nomina Fratrum 
In te com-eniunt (alii licet altera fassi) 
o C'ardo B('nedide Sfleer, Levitaque quondam, 
Elig-f'riK: nam ùigna <Iuidem concordia yocum 
_\.ccessii ............................ 
. . . . .. _. _ Caroli spes cepta prccando 
Defeeit, miserante Deo. Sunt ista rclatu 
Digna, quod ct Patri, necnon sibi praestita noscens 
::\Iunera ab Ecclpgia, vuItus avertit et ora. 
.xec Matrern violare licct, quin libera pos::òit 
Desponsare ViTO. Caveallt quicumque sinistris 
Frandibus injectant oculos, ac ipsa Potentum 
l?onnide! subjecta manu::;: sic gloria praestat." 

1 We ha\c found in tIle Yatkan Library a ::\I
. of the "Lrbinate signed 
no. 12;5, the title of which iR: "The life customs and events in the 
Pontificate of Boniface VIII." The anonymous author says in the preface: 
"The most essential part in the life of Boniface will be that which I 
have <1ra\\n from many notices, and from an old book of the years 809, 
1323 and 1294." The la::;t years very strongly support our statement. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


83 


:Now to return to our narrative. As soon as Gaetani 
realized that he was elected Pope, he felt his soul oppresseù 
by the greatness of the office, and he could not refrain frOln 
weeping. IIaving grown old in the Roman Court he knew 
what a Suprelne Pontiff 
hould be; he understood the 
times, and he was not ignorant how cruell.Y care woul(1 
gnaw under the purple. He accepted the burden which 
Heaven imposed on him, and took the name of Bonifacp, 
tlw eighth Pope to bear that name. He seemed to have a 
pre
entiment of a storlll'y future, and wishing Gud to wit- 
ness the dispositions of his heart that He might come to 
his aid, he took, as was the custom of Pontiffs, aH a motto 
for his seal these words of the P
ahl1: " Deus in adjuorium 
meum intende "-" Incline unto m
y aid, 0 God!" 82 
Being raised to the highest place, the Church seemed to 
him torn and shattered by the weak adlninistration of 
C('lestine, or rather by the frauds of those, who taking 3(1- 
vantage of hi
 ig'norance and inexperience, had made the 
holy I-Ierlnit open his heart to grant all luanneI' of conces- 
sions, and had wantonly gathered the fruits of tlH'm. In a 
di
course delivered to the l'ardinals, Boniface referred. to 
the evils brought upon the Church. and to repair them he 
revoked all the favors and concessions which had bepn 
granted by hi.s prcdeces
or, "not in the fullness of his 
power, but in the fullness of his simplicity," as James of 
Voragine remarks. 83 This nleasure scempd to Giordano 84 


The author narrating thE' exaltation of Boniface to the Papacy, far from 
e\en hinting that he owed the place to the work and favor of Charles, 
clearly says that Charles did not want him as Pope. since" the KinJ! of 
Naples, knowing him to be a covetous, avaricious, venomous man and a 
traitor, (although he was learned and fit to manage the I'apacy), never 
wished to have him nominated "-The writer throws of}' all restraint in 
lllalignin
 Boniface. 
8:1 Ciacconius. Lives of the Popes. 6.1 Chronicles, Genu. S. R. 1. T. IX. 
84 Giordanus Yatiean l\I. S. IDGO-" Scd ex hoc factus est fastosus et 
arrogans, omnium comtemptivus: untie factm: Pontifex praedeeessorum 
suorum Xicholai et Caplestini gratias renlcavit." Ra.\ naldus, ;year l2D4, 
no. 23. Stpphanesl'hi doE's not mcntion Xicholas; there was no reason 
to revoke his concessions. 
84" Ad perpetuam rei memoriam. CaE'lcstinus Papa V. seductus in- 
stantia et ambitione plurimorum, conccssit varia minus digna et inor- 
dinata et insolita. Quapropter ipse rccognoscens suam insuffici('ntiam 
et periculam pati ex hoc universam Ecclesiam, renuntiavit Papaptui; et 
humiliter postulavit, et voluit, ut quae per iPSUlll improvida facta fuerunt, 



84 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


to be the effect of a bold and contemptuous mind; but with 
regard to those forged Bulls, which were Papal only in 
name, as Celestine hiIl1self ignored them, we do not know 
why it did not spring frOlll a mind solicitous for the wel- 
fare of the Church, rather than from the low yoice of a 
childish pride.-:Uost certainly this was the first act which 
revealed the strong temper of mind of the new Pope. 85 
On his fir
t ascending the Papal Chair to scatter dis- 
contentment amongst such a great number ,yho were en- 
joying the favors of Celestine, and of which they saw them- 
selves deprived at one stroke, was a striking proof of the 
firm determination of Boniface to observe justice in spite 
of every obstacle. Those good Celestine monks, whom the 
people ren>red as saints, lamented the resignation of their 
fuunder; that crowd of wicked agents of the Curia be- 
wailed the good tiDIes of Celestine. To these malcontents 
were a(lde<l all who were deprived suddenly of their bene- 
fices, and otl1pl' favors so witkedlJ acquired, and all the
e 
joined sides to increase the complaints and hatrf'd for Boni- 
face. IIpnce the readpr may see that on the first appear- 
ance of Boniface to the world as Supreme Pontiff, he did 
not even enjoy that indulgence of a general judgment 
w]lÌch is wont to be accorded princes of a new regime. 
But hatred and revenge furiously gathering about him, 
disturbpd the beginnings of his Pontificate, and engross- 
ing minds, rendered them slow to believe the good that he 
did, and oyer credulous of the evil. 
Hardly having been proclaimed Pope, Boniface, though 
advanced in years and in spite of the vigors of winter, did 
not endure any longer his separation frolli the Roman See. 
He knew from experience what a prolific source of calami- 
ties the exile of a Pope would be to the Church, and with 
what chains that pious imprisonment in the palaces of lay- 
mpn would bind his win. So brooking- no delays, be de- 
parted from N aplp
, though bpfore leaving he exhorted the 
Xpapolitans to remain faithful, anil Charles to exercise a 
benign rule over his people, wearied and worn out by wars. 


futurus ejus successor provide revocaret. Et postquam fuimus ad apicem 
Apostolatus assumpti, nobis, dum adhuc essemus Neapoli, preces fudit, 
revocare quae ipse fecerat curaremus." Register of Boniface :M. S. Vatican. 
an. 1. n. ï 5. 85 James Card. of St. George. The coronation of Boniface 
VIII. Book 1. c. 1. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


85 


Arrived in Capua, he took the way to St. Uernlano, and 
went to pay a visit to the monastery of )Ionte Cassino, 
which perhaps was still in disorder on account of the forced 
reforms of the Celestines; and then fonowing the way to 
Cpprano he descended into the fertile valley of Anagni. 
All the city, which was his birth-place, out of reverence 
for him as Pontiff, and out of domestic love, turned out to 
meet him. Splendid honors were accorded him by com- 
panies of noble knights, and many people bearing in their 
hands palm-branches, and singing and dancing as on a 
feast day. Among those who came to meet him there was 
a large number of Roman Patricians who had b<.>en depu- 
ted to offer to him the dignity of Senator. This offer so 
greatly increased the desire for Rome, that he could not 
remain in domestic joys and so he continued on his way. 
Stephaneschi remarks, that neither the rigors of winter, 
nor the fatigues of the journey caused him any inconveni- 
ence so happy was his soul on recovering liberty.86 Finally 
he appeared before the eternal dty, which lies immense 
and si1ent in a desert country. ...\..bout threp years had 
passed f'ince the city had been deprived of the person of the 
Pontiff; and the deprh"ation was a loss of that soul which 
gave it life, since the ruling spirit of thf' Cæsars had left 
it like a dead body buried under the ruins of its greatnes
. 
So the approach of Boniface filled all Rome with increòihlp 
rejoicing; a splendid welcome was accordpd him by the 
Inilitary and the clergy, who went out to meet hÎIn with 
every sort of pompous offices. Boniface on first arriving 
repaired to the Lateran Basilica to pra,v, and afterwards 
he took up his abode in the Yatican palace. 87 Thus have 
we conducted this Pontiff to Rome, clearing the way of the 
ugly sin of simony, leaving behind his aforesaid enemies 
astonished by his wonderful elevation to the Papal throne, 
but ready to break forth, and combine with subsequent ene- 
mies, powerless to suppress the truth, but yet too power- 
ful by reason of the times to disturb history, its august 
agent. 
",,'ïshing to speak somewhat in (}C'tail of the ceremonies 
and vestm<.>nts used by the Popes at their solenln corona- 
tion in the time of whirl. we speak, it is necessary that we 
ee Nee labor aut algor fessus sumptusve gravare: Tanta quies ani mis, 
libertas reddita cnm sit." 87 James Cardinal of St. George. lb. 



86 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


should anticipate by an ob
prvation, the unp3siness and 
scandal which may ari
e in the Inincl of the reader from 
seeing the 
uccessor of the Fi
herman crowned better than 
emperor, all glittering with gold and precious stones, and 
after thp manner of a ldng-. In this ob
ervation we would 
not spend the time, if we did not know ho,,
 much the minds 
of some may be disturbed by this magnificence and splen- 
dor of ceremonies of the Vicar of Him who had not whereon 
to lay His head. 
'Yhen Christ came on earth to confirm the law of nature 
in the heart of nlen, and to establish the more perfpct law 
of the Go
pel' t1w gates of hell commenced against the 
Church a war, whieh will last as long aR the world, and 
will conduce to nothing but tl'iumphs for the Clu1l'ch. TIlP 
Emperors of Home were its l11illi
ters and satplljÜ"
 and in 
their crupI skin manJ were the tOl'llwnts and tl1p torturp
 
they inflicted in order to eradic-ate and de
troy the Church 
of Christ. But persecuted and not conquered, in the dark 
shades of the Catacombs and in the deserts, the Church fpd 
the faithful with the bread of the word of God, and 
pointed out the way to Heaven by the poverty even of her 
exterior worship. ..And this sufficed for men just out of the 
s('hoo) of the Apostles, and little in ll<.>eil of sensible aid to 
elpvate the spirit. Hence those poor unadorupd robes 
which Linus, Cletus, and Soter wore, were sufficient for 
the Pontifical dignity, because the hour had not as yet 
come, in which the Church strengthened by the blood of 
the luartyrs, was to change the whole asppct of civil so- 
ciety, and direct it not only to its last end, Heaven, but 
also to that of human prosperity by the preservation of 
order. Facts have proved that such has bpen anù ought to 
be the double office of the Church. "
hen the anger of the 
Cæsars had been appeased, and the valor of the first Chris- 
tians had grown weak, the Church had to add to the forms 
of external worship, because it had become urgent upon 
her to speak to and convince the senses, which began little 
by little to prevail oyer the spirit. rhurches arose, and 
were enriched for the nourishment of religion; and the 
Church here below in the outward 
pendor of her forms, 
be
ame an image of that Church triumphant undC'r whose 
fept are silent the storms of this wodd. That i
 why the 
rough robes of tlw fir
t Pontiffs wpre transformed into 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


87 


others of a silken texture', which did not adorn the shoul- 
ders of the Yicar of the Son of 31an, but those of the Vicar 
of Christ the conqueror of death. 
Religion had been up to tha.t time cloistered in the sanc- 
tuary, as it were, in order to complete the work of human 
civilization by heavenly discourses, but now she issued 
fortb as a queen to the civil conquest, dragging after her, 
conquered and bound, anarchy and tyranny, and imprint- 
ing on the foreheads of the successors of Augustus the sign 
of the cross. So whe'n the Church placed herself at the 
head of the people bearing in hand the sta.ndard of the 
cross, all the princes and emperors she met on the way, far 
from opposing her glorious nlarch to true civilization, 
amazed but reverent bent their knee, and together with the 
people they formed but one family, as one was the stand- 
ard, which sanctified every command and suggestion. 
This is the reason why the Popes saw themselves instantly 
borne fronl the depths of the Catacombs to the height of a 
throne, which has for its footstool the thrones of the em- 
perors. And this is the reason why religion having be- 
come the mistress of the world and resplendent by the out- 
ward forms of worship, her Popes should wear a crown, be 
clothed in purple, and adorn the person with predous 
stones. And by reason of these brilliant insignia of uni- 
versal authority, the people were acrustomed to revere the 
Pope not only as the Viral" of Christ, but also as the pre- 
server and champion of civil justice. And from that time 
the voice of the Pontiff was so powerful as to nlake itself 
heard to the confines of the world those words of the Royal 
Psalmist says: a Be yc u:isc, yc judges of the eartll." 
It was a Sunday, the fifth of January. At the break of 
day Boniface with all the College of Cardinals, bishops 
and all the other clergy, repaired to the Vatican Basilica 
for the solemn ceremony of the Papal consecration and 
coronation. )
.s soon as lIP arl'iYl'(l in the Basilica, taking 
off the robes that he worf', he put on the white alb, binding 
it at the waist with a cinctul'P; then a purple stole, anrl a 
dalmatic with sleeves, such as is worn by a deacon, and a 
mantle, or long trailing cope, which two lninisters held up 
at tlw !-:ides, and which was l'ptaÏJwd ill place on the breast 
by a gold clasp, in the cpnt1'p of Wllil'h glistened a beautiful 
carbuncle surrounded by predous stones. On his head 



8
 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


was placed a mitre with two points, signifying the old and 
the new law, covered with gems, which had two pendants 
fal1ing on the shoulders. He covered his hands with gloves 
or chirothecas, and on his finger he wore a ring of price- 
less value. 'Yhen the Pontiff was surrounded by the cardi- 
nals and the bishops, an vested in white, the archdeacon 
organized the procession that conducted the Pontiff to the 
altar of S1. Peter; as he proceeded slowly, he held his hand 
raised imparting continuomdy his LleHsing to the people. 
Having arrived at the choir three cardinal priests ap- 
proached to revest him with the chasuble, and kissed his 
breast with great reverence, he himself receiving theIll 
with that sign of peace. Afterwards he seated himself on 
a faldstool, placed between the altar and the pontifical 
throne. Then the suburban bishops of Albano, of Porto, 
and of Ostia presented themselves before him, and succes- 
sively offered prayers, which we here produce, and which 
seem to us remarkahle and filled with the spirit of God. 
rrhe Bishop of Albano prayed first: " 0 God, who does not 
" despise anyone who devoutly invokes Thee, we heseech 
" Thee to listen to our prayers and bestow the abundance 
" of Thy heavenly benedictions on this Thy seryant Boni- 
" face, whom the common suffrage of Thy people has raised 
" to the Apostolic Throne in order that he may know that 
"it is by Thy grace and favor that he has obtained this 
"high dignity."-The Bishop of Porto then prayed: 
"Onlnipotellt anù Eternal God, answer, according to 
" Thy great mercy, our prayers, and fill with the grace of 
"the Holy Spirit this thy servant Boniface, that he, who 
"by the ministry of our service has been constituted the 
"head of the Church, may be strengthened with the firm- 
"ness of Thy power. "-And finally the Bishop of Ostia 
prayed: "0 God, who hast desired that Thy Apostle 
" Peter should be endowed with the Primacy in preference 
" to anyone of the othpr Apostles, and had entrusted to 
" him the burden of the whole Christian world, we beseech 
" Thee to he propitious to this Thy spryan t Boniface, whom 
" we have raised against his will to the throne of the Prince 
" of the Apostles, that inasmuch as he is Inade greater by 
" 
uch dignity, so lllay he treasure up llwrits of virtue, and 
"thus through thy aid worthily carry the weight of the 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


8!> 


" Uni'rersal Church and receive from Thee, who art happi- 
" ness itself, the merited reward."- 
Boniface advanced with gI.eat solemnity to the altar of 
St. Peter. This was of sculptured marble, at the sides of 
which arose four columns of porphyry, supporting a can
 
opy of silver, blackened by tiIlle, as a precious covering fm" 
the bones of the Apostles, which reposed beneath. 88 'Ye 
believe, following the authority of Page,89 that wben Boni- 
face arrived at the altar of St. Peter, before being conse- 
crated (since he was not bishop) he made that profession 
of faith, wl1ich we find alllong the facts added to Ciac- 
coni us by Augustine Oldoini,90 and which ".e herewith 
translate: "In the name of the Holy and undivided 
" Trinity, in the year of the Incarnation of Our Lord, 1294, 
"the eighth Indiction, I, Benedict Gaetani, Cardinal 
"Priest, and chosen by the grace of God to be the humble 
"minister of tllis Holy Apostolic See, promise to thee 
'
Blessed Peter, prince of the Apostles, to whOln Jesm
 
"Christ Creator and Redeemer of the world, entrustecl 
"the keys of the heavenly kingdom to bind and 100Re in 
" heayen and on earth, saJing: 'Yhatsoever thou shalt bind 
"on earth, it shall be bound in heaven, and whatsoever 
"thou shalt loose on earth, it shall be loosecl in heaven; 
"and I promise to thy Holy Church, which with thy a
- 
"sistance I this day undertake to rulC', that during this 
"miserable life I shall not abandon it, I shan not deny 
" it, I shall never disown it; nor for any reason or occasion 
" of danger or of fear 
hall I abanc10n it or separate myself 
" from it; but even unto death and at the price of my blood 
" I shall strain every nerve to preserve the integrity of the 


88 James Cardinal of St. George. Coronation of Boniface YITI, cl1ap. 2. 
lID Brev. Gest, B. R. P. P. in the life of Boniface YIII, n. 10. 
80 Tom. 2 Co!. 311.-Abraham Bzovio and Raynaldus relate this, (ar- 
pendia to vol. 3) from the Yatican MS. of Cardinal Nicholas of Aragon. 
'Yading and Page declare this formula of proff>ssion of faith to hp 
apocryphal, because in some parts the account of Raynaldus differs from 
that of Page. But the variances are not such ns to make u
 believe it 
apocr,yphal, as Mansi observps. '\Ye know no reason for Ciacconius main- 
taining that Boniface was the first to make a profession of faith before 
becoming Pope. Baronius relates that the Popes of the ninth century dill 
so (year 8û!). sec. 5!)). which we find in the MS. of Anthony Agostini; 
begides it is spoken of in the Diurnal of the Roman Pontifl's (sec. 33 and 
35), which Garner mentions. 



!)O 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIIY. 


"true Faith, whieh I have found in thy Holy Church, 
"Christ its author transmitting it through thee, and the 
"bleHst'tl Apostle Paul, and by thy successors banded it 
" down to me who am nothing."-And so he goes on prom- 
ising to be the pre
erver and defender of all the d()gma
 
approved by the eight Ecumenical Councils, the papal de- 
crees and constitutions, being aided by the advice of the 
eardinals. And he concludes: " I have then with my own 
" hand subscribed to this profession of faith, which I have 
"I13d written by the notary and secretary of the Holy 
" Roman Church, and I sincerely offer it to thee, 0 Blessed 
"Apostle Peter, with a right intention and devout con- 
"science over thy holy body and before thy altar." 91 
Then ]le began the pontifical 
Iass, and having finished 
the Introit he sat on the faldstool, and the prelates and 
priests came forward to kiss his feet; then having gone to 
the altar of 81. Peter he received from the two oldest Car- 
dinal Deacons the white pallium with its black crosse
. 
Then one of them who placed it around tlw neck of tùe 
Pope, pronollnced these words: "Receive the pallium, 
"which signifies the fullness of the pontifical office, for the 
"honor of the omnipotent God, of the GloriouR Yirgin and 
"3Iother of God, 3Iary, of Ble
sed Peter and Paul, and 
of the Holy Roman Church."-After the pallium was fas- 
tened with three gold pins, the Pope arose, incensed the 
altar and seated himself on his throne. The Cardinals 
ad ,ranced to kiss Ids foot and cheek; which homage bping 
finished, the oldest of the cardinal deacons with rod in 
hand, arranged all the assistants in two files, and in a 
loud voice !Said: " Graciously hear us, 0 Christ." At once 
the judges and secretaries exclaimed :-" Long live our 
Lord Boniface, created by God Supreme Pontiff, an uni- 
versal Pope."-The Pope invoked the Saviour of the world 
thrice, the Blessed Yirgin hdce, and a few of the saints 
from the Litany once; the others answered: "0 Lord, aid 
him." This ceremony was called the "Eulogy" of the 
Pontiff. ,yith the usual ceremonies he was anointed antI 
consecrated Bishop and Pope. Then having seated hÎJn- 
splf on his throne before the door of the Basilica of St. 
Peter, in the presence of an immense concour
e of people, 
the oldest of the cardinal deacons, having removed the 
51 See Document F. 



- 


'.. 


... 


Þ> 


'" 



 
 


-
 .. _.
 "- 
-'
. . '\ 


-- 


-=:.::- " 



 


" 

 
" 


'- 


, 

 



 


/ 


--- 


.c 



, 
, 
- 
"- -- , 


"-- 


....... 



 


\. 


" 


-J 


""- 



 i.i 



 


... 



 


= 



 


-< 


- 


::: 


'L 

 
'L 


7- 
-<: 
-
 


, 
, 


7- 

 


:.. 
h 


3 



 
Z 
.... 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


91 


mitre, solemnly placed the tiara on his head, saying: " Re- 
ceiye the tiara, in order to know, that thou art the Father 
" of Princes and of kings, the ruler of the earth, Yicar on 
"earth of Our Saviour Jesus Christ, to whOln glory and 
honor foreyer and eV(Jr."-This tiara r(Jsembled a Phrygian 
biretta, with a simple crown at the base, a sign of royal 
pow(Jr, which Constantine allowed Pope Sylvester to wear, 
as Stephaneschi assert
.92 Boniface de
ired to increase 
this by adding a second crown, as Papebroche relates,93 to 
signify the double power, spiritual and temporal of the 
Pope. 94 On the head of Boniface was placed the tiara with 
two crowns, the texture of which was formed of peacock 
feathers, and at the top was set an imlnense carbuncle, 
below which there .were set round by turns flaming rubies 
and all other kinds of most precious stones, with which 
it had been lately adorned by order of Boniface. 
The solemn cavalcade to the church of St. John Lateran 
followed tIle ceremony of the coronation. The Pope rode a 
white steed, whose back was covereù with a purple cloth, 
the head and brea
t heing hare. The horses whirh the car- 
dinals and prelates rode were covered with white 111aterial, 
and those of the su bùeacons, chaplains and clerks wer(J 
bare. As soon as all were ready to start, the eldest of the 
deacons arranged the cavalcade in this manner: at the 
head of all went the Papal horse richly caparisoned, and 
led by the bridle; afterwards came a subdeacon carrying 
a cross, a custom established by St. Sylvester, as Fivisani 
states. 95 Then twelve standard bearers with scarlet ban- 
ners, and two others carrying a cherub at the point of a 
lance. Then followed two naval prefects (an office which 
no longer exists) ve
ted in copes, the clerks, the advocates, 
the judges, the singer!':, the deacons of the Epistle and 
82 CI1ap. 7. 83 In conatu Chron. ec ad S. Syh-ester n. 5, page 12ft 
IHo Pope Innocent III would llave mitre and tiara mean the same, saJ"ing 
in his sermon on Rt. Sylvester: "R. Pontifex in signum imperii utitur 
Regno, et in signum Pontificii utitur Mitra." And more solemnly else- 
where: "Ecc1esia in signum temporalium dedit mihi Coronam; in signum 
spiritualium contulit mihi l\fitram pro Sacerdotio, Coronam pro Regno: 
Hlius me constituens Vicarium, qui habet in ",-estimento et in femore 
scriptum.-Rex regum et dominus dominantium.---(Rurio Notices Rom. 
Pontiffs, page 579). See also Fioravanti. Denarii Summorum Pontificum 
pages fi6 and 57, letter N. S. 
8Ci De ritu S. Crucis Pontifici praQferendae commentarium Rom. 1502 in 4. 



92 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


Greek Gospel, the country ahùot
, the biHhopr.;, the arch- 
bishops, the city abbots, the patriardu
, the cardinal!';, tlIP 
cardinal deacons, the cardinal priests, and finally the Pope 
on a white horse, attended by a 
ubdeacon who held an 
uwbrella over his head. For a short distance King Charles 
the Lame, and Charles, king elect of Hungary, held the 
bridle of the Pontifical horse, and they were relieved by 
two nobles. No one is to wonder at this part of the cere- 
mony, and judge it a little> unbecoming to royal dignity, 
when we consider that these kings attended and performed 
this humble act both as vassals uf the Church, and fol- 
lowers of the Vicar of Christ.- 
The cavalcade being thus formed, 111arched along the 
street called Papal, tu the church of St. John Lateran, and 
along- the route in certain places some member of the Pope's 
family threw money alllong the people. rpon arriving at 
the portico of the Lateran, the Pope was met hy the canons 
of that Basilica, and having taken off the Tiara, he seated 
himself on the prophyry chair, called the" Stercoraria." 
Hardly was he seated, when some of the cardinals came 
forward and paying hiIn all kinds of honors, raised hÏIl1 
up; and he, standing took three handfuls of llloney and cast 
them among the people, saying: "Gold and silver I have 
not, behold what I have." So in the midst of all those 
honoI's, emblematic of the Papal dignity, by sitting on a 
chair of lowly name, and by scattering a little llloney, he 
signified the hUlnility and poverty of human nature, which 
was not transformed by such a stupendous elevation of 
sta tee 
Having left this seat, he was escorted by the cardinals 
to the altar of the Basilica, where loud voices were heard 
proclaiming him Pope: "St. Peter has chosen Boniface." 
At the altar he prayed and blessed the people, and repairpd 
to a raised marble 
eat and extended his foot to be kissed 
by the Lateran canous. Afterwards he was conducted to 
the palace of Pope Zaehary, at the entrance of which he 
seated himself on a faldstool, and listened to an address 
of praise, as was previously done at the Vatican. He then 
went to the Church of St. Sylvester, and also lingered at 
the entrance, where there were two porphyry seats; he 
seated himself in the one that was on the right, and the 
head canon of the Lateran handed him a crosier as a sign 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


93 


of jurisdiction, as well as the keys of the Basilica and the 
Palace; holding the
e insignia in his hanùs he sat down in 
the chair on the left, and returned thenl to the one who 
had presented them. The head canon placed around the 
Pontiff a red silk cincture, from which hung a purple 
burse containing twelve precious stones, the moss agat
 
seals, And thus arrayed, the Pope extended his foot to 
be kissed by the officials of the palace, and with three 
throws he cast ten pennies of Provence among them say- 
ing: " Dispersit, dedit pauperibus,. justitia ejus 'I1'wnet in 
saeculu1n sacculi," "He hath distributed, he hath given 
to the poor; his justice remaineth forever and ever."- 
Aft
l'wards he visited the chapel of St. I..awrence, and hav- 
ing taken off the pallium and the other vestments, clothed 
witb the Pontifical cloak he retired to his apartments for 
the solemn banquet. 
'Ye are not sure whether the Cardinal of St. George waR 
carried away by the force of imagination in describing in 
verse the hall where the papal banquet was held. But we 
may credit all he says, basing our belief on the greatnesH 
and magnificence of the soul of Boniface. The hall was re- 
splendent with gold; the walls were decorated with the 
richest ornaments; jewelled drinking cups and precious 
dishes covered the bedecked tables; and a very large number 
of nohles by their richne:s:s of dress addeù to the splendor of 
the scene. The Pope sat at a separate table, which was 
raised aùove the others, and had a richer display of orna- 
ments; before him stood the Cardinal Bishop of ()stia with 
two Cardinal Deacons holding a towel while he poured 
water for the Pope to wash his hands. The Pope invoked 
the blessing, seated himself at his own particular table, 
which was at the head of two long rows of other tables. 
At those on the right the Cardinal Bishops and Priests 
,vere sitting; at those on the left the Cardinal Deacons, 
and on each side tIle prelates, barons and other lords were 
arranged. The Pope was attired in mitre and pontifical 
robes; before him were the most illustrious nobles, and 
Kings Charles the Lame, and Charles of Hungary, in royal 
garlnents and wearing crowns, attentive to the commands 
of Boniface, like knights-esquire. The two princes re- 
mained in this oh
equions attitude until the end of the 
first cour
e, and tbell thpy rf'tired to oecupy seats at the 



94 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


first table between the Cardinal Bishops and Cardinal 
Deacons. 'Yhen the feasting was over, the Pope was con- 
ducted to his apartments, and thus the ceremony of the 
solemn coronation was brought to an end. If 'Yadding 
is to be believed, these feasts were disturbed by sad acci- 
dents. On the arrival of Boniface at the Lateran Basilica, 
the day was turned into night by the darkest storm clouds, 
which burst into a raging telnpest, and which extinguish- 
ing the torches and lamps, seemed as if it would prohibit 
an entrance into the Basilica to the Pope who was ap- 
proaching. Besides as Boniface was leaving the Basilica, 
an altercation arose anlong the people, the greatest con- 
fusion followed, and more than forty of the Papal retinue 
were killed. If these facts are true, we do not doubt that 
those sad disorders of the elements and of men were pre- 
cursors of those more terrible disturbances, which would 
later on agitate the chair of the imperturbable Pontiff. 
As soon as Boniface was seated in the Apostolic Chair, 
he wished to announce to the Universal Church his assump- 
tion of the Papacy. The Bull which he addressed to the 
Archbishop of Sens and his suffragans, is a splendid monu- 
nlent of the eloquence, which breathes the very spirit of 
God, and which never became degenerate notwithstanding 
the great and lasting domination of the barbarians inflicted 
on our country. And since the entire soul of Boniface 
appears in the writing, we shall produ
e it in the vernac- 
ular, though we shall not be able to equal the excellen
e 
of the original text,96 which may be found among the docu- 
nlents at the end of this work. "That God wonderful and 
"glorious in his works, who, Leing most bountiful of 
"mer('y, exereises bis compassion in this world full of 
"trials and dissensions, is no less propitious in favoring 
" opportunely his Church, whieh he the maker of all things 
"has founded, and has built with a deep and firm founda- 
" tion on the immovahlp rock of Faith. As her watchful 
" custodian, he is ever at her side, ne,-er sleeping, nor slow 
" in hastening to her in her needs. He is indeed her paci- 
" fieI' in disturbances, her relief in tribulations, and her 
" succor in necessitip
. And therefore his boundless com- 
"pa
sion is chiefly exercised in her favor, when, in a dal'k 
"bour, the storm clouùs of this world rise up against her. 
M See Document B. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


9:5 


" Hence she is fearless in the midst of anguish and affiic- 
"tions, gathering strength in persecution, for she is in- 
" vigora ted in the presence of evils. For fortified by divine 
" aid, she i8 not to be intimidated by the sound of threats, 
" nor overcome by the assault of adversities, but more se- 
"cure in terrors, more constant in misfortune, trampled 
"upon she prevails, suffering she triumphs. This is pre- 
"cisply the Ark, which by the swelling of the waters i8 
" raiRed aloft, and having pas
ed over the summits of the 
., mountains, sails safe and free beating down the waveH 
"of the mighty flood. This is surely that ve
sel, which 
"amid contrary winds is tossed about by the furious mo- 
"tions of a raging sea; yet firm and staunch it is not 
"shattered by the surging billows, nor engulfed by the 
" stormy anger of the sea; but weathpring the risen temp- 
" est, and riding the proudly foaming billows, she triumph- 
"antly pursues her course. The sails of right intention 
"being unfurled on the living tree of the saving Cross 
" ever looking towards Heaven, intrepidly she passes over 
" the stormy sea of this world; because she has with lIeI' a 
"watchful pilot the master of the seas. \Vherefore under 
"his rule and safe direction, and the inspiration of the 
"Holy Ghost, the clouds of adversity being disperHed, 
"victoriously she pursues her course towards the port of 
"the heavenly country, to which she is conducted by a 
"supernatural hand. And although the Church was op- 
"pressed and disturbed by innumerable misfortunes that 
" which opens the deepest and most painful wound in her 
" heart, is to be bereft of a good and provident pastor. . . 
"In truth the Roman Church deprived of its heaò by 
"free and spontaneous resignation that our beloved son 
"and brother Peter l\Iorrone, lately the Roman Pontiff, 
"has nlade for certain reasonable and legitimate causes, 
"in presence of our venerahlf' brethren the hi
hops, and 
"onr heloved sons the Cardinal-priests and deaconR, 
" among whom we werc numbered, on the fea
t day of St. 
"Lucy, Virgin and "Martyr latf'ly passed, this re
ignation 
" being received by the aforesaid cardinals, 
in('e from the 
"acts of the fir
t Pontiffs, and by a constitution he de- 
" clared openly that the thing could be done lawfully, anù 
" the express consent of the same cardinals was addeù for 
" the legitimacy of the act; thp cardinals considering most 



D6 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


." attentively what great evils and manifold calamities 
"would follow from a long vacancy in the Church, and 
"besides wishing most ardently to obviate these dangers 
$' by imnlediate and efficacious remedies, on Thursday, the 
" 23rd of December, after the holy sacrifice was solemnly 
" offered in bonor of the Holy Spirit, and the usual hymn 
"was devoutly sung, shut themselves up in conclave in a 
"certain room of the new Castle situated near Naples, 
"where the same brother Peter, was residing with his 
"family, in order that by the mutual and opportune ex- 
" change of sentiments, the Holy Ghost cooperating, they 
" could the sooner provide for the want of the Church. On 
"Friday the day following the aforesaid cardinals, bav- 
"ing raised their thoughts in prayer to the Lord, who 
" looks with favor on holy desires, proceeded to the elec- 
"tion by way of votes in order to avoid the above men- 
" tioned evils. Finally the divine clemency having pitied 
" the Church, and not wishing to subject it to the dangers 
"of a longer vacancy, the cardinals cast their eyes (at 
"that time a Cardinal-Priest of the title of St. :l\Iartin); 
"and although there were many among them more fitted 
"and more worthy, they canonically selected us as the 
" Supreme Pontiff, placing on our shoulders a burden so 
"very weighty. But after deep and careful meditation 
"considering the difficulties of the pastoral office, the 
"anxieties and continual trials, and the excellence of the 
"Apostolic dignity, which just as it elevates one by the 
" title of the highest honor, so it humbles one by the great- 
" ness of the burden; moreover being mindful of our many 
"imperfections, we strongly feared and hesitated, and a 
"great stupor stunned our mind. . . . . . . . . IIowever 
" lest perhaps we might be thought to impede the work of 
"divine Providence, or not wishing to conform our will 
" to his pleasure; and besides being unwilling to change 
"the unanimity of the electors into disunion by our dis- 
"sent, we submitted to their pleasure by taking on our 
" weak shoulders the yoke they wish us to carry, not that 
"we confide in the strength of our own integrity, but be- 
"cause we hope for clemency frOln Him who never aban- 
" dons tho!'Je who confide in Him; for He is ever propitious 
" to them by suitable helps, and from Ids most high throne 
"in IIeaTen mercifully guards and defends the Church 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


97 


"his spouse, and ceases not to exalt it by abundant gifts 
" of compassion. 
"Therefore truly in need of your prayers and those of 
"others on account of our shortcoluings, with solicitude 
" we exhort you, and confidently ask you, that by diJigent 
"intercession you will aid us before the Eternal King, 
"recommending our lowliness by devout 
mpplication, so 
"that He may condescend to multiply the gifts of hiH 
"grace to us, and pour forth an abundant shower of his 
"heavenly blessings, in order that, devoutly directing our 
" actions to Him, we may rightly rule his Church, which 
"He has been pleased to commit to us, and that we may 
" take due care of the universal flock, which is committed 
"to our vigilance. ".,. e then shall bear strongly in mind 
" to assist your Churches benignly, and promote their in- 
" terests by suitable favors." Gh'en in the Lateran on the 
9th Kalends of February, the first year of our Pontificate. 
"... e have not found in the well-preserved register of the 
letters of this Pontiff, which is in the secret archives of 
the Vatican, any letter directed to Princes, informing 
them of his elevation to the Papacy. Only one is found, 
which is second on tl1e register, and it is written to the 
King of France, Philip the Fair, on this subject,97 whieh 
full of salutary instructions, is a clear manifestation of 
that love which Boniface bore to Philip, with whom he 
bad been acquainted from the time he had been sent as a 
legate into France by Nicholas IY. ""'hich fact recaHing 
with brotherly affection, he proßlises that it would be 
taken as a sign of future pontifical favors. _\.nd continu- 
ing with candor and with a majesty truly Roman, he wrote: 
" "... e beseech and urgently exhort your royal Highl1e
s, 
"and we entreat you in the Lord Jesus Christ, that con- 
"sidering attentively how the honor of the I{ing loves 
" justice, you observe scrupulously the lÎ1nits of this virtue, 
"and that you study to love it sincerely, not abandoning 
" equity, nor omitting clemency, in order that the imnwn
e 
"number of people subject to you may rest in the bOSOlll 
" of sweet peace, and repose in a rich quiet leisure. Jlore- 
"over favor with royal kindneF:s, ana exert yourself to 
" defend valiantly and protect in the fullness of her liberty 
"and her rights, your Holy 
Iother, the Church, and her 
81 See Document H. 



98 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


" prelates, the true Ininisters of our Saviour, and the other 
"ecclesiastical personages consecrated to her service, or 
"rathpr in them honor the King and l\laster of Heaven, 
" through whom thou rulest and art ruled; that acting and 
" behaving towards them, like a blessed and favored son, 
" you may not only be a worthy imitator of your ancestors, 
"who during life showed the greatest reverence and re- 
"spect to that Rame Church, but that you may even Rur- 
"pass them for the praise and glory of God, and for the 
" furtherance of the glory of your own honor and name. 
" Placing then in UR a firm hope and confidence, as in a 
" killÒ and sincere father, who bears towards you a cordial 
" love, and who will not cease to love you, do not hesitate 
" to have recourse to us in Jour own pressing affairs, and 
"those of your kingdom. For on the day that we shall be 
"entreated by your royal person, willingly, and as far 
" as 1ve can with God's help, we shall satisfy your royal 
"ùesires, intending always not only to preserve carefully 
"Jour prosperity and that of your kingdom, but also to 
"promote and increase it by the gift of great favors." 
Such was the kind feeling which Boniface bore towards 
Philip IV, surnan1efl the Fair, when he caIne to rule the 
Christian Church; that Philip, we say, who soon we shall 
see impeIIpd hy an innate pride, by court intrigues and 
jealousies of state, RO that he waged a brutal war against 
him, hurIpd hÎln into his grave, and with incredible rage 
was cruel to his memory, not hesitating to disgrace himself 
by fabricating calumnies against that magnaniInous suc- 
cessor of St. Peter. Angry passions which swayed the 
minds of those of his times, bitter and ullamenable to 
reason, will not suffice to conquer the power of history, 
which as a queen in the midRt of the ages, dispenses praise 
and blame with an iron hand. 



BOOK SECOXD. 


sr:\Il\IARY. 


129:5-1296. 


The mISSIon of Boniface in the Papacy.-The Guelphs and the Ghibel- 
lines; the former allied to the Papacy, and the latter to the Empire.- 
The character of these parties,-It becomes difficult for the Popes to 
govern the degenerate Guelphs.--Some cardinals and the Roman no- 
bility increase the difficulties.-The aid which the Friars brought to 
the Papacy, and their faults.-Boniface unprovided with mean!'! resists 
the Ghibellines, and what enemies he encounters.-He repairs to 
Anagni, and is hospitably entertained by the Colonnas at Zagarolo.- 
How and why the former Pope Celestine disturbed the repose of Boni- 
face.-The flight of Celestine.-The Camerlengo of the Pope is dis- 
patched after him.-He flies and wanders along the sea-shore at Viesta. 
-He is intercepted and conducted to Boniface. -How Boniface re- 
ceived him, and why he shut him up in the castle of Fumone,- 
Opinions formed by people concerning this imprisonment.-Death of 
Celestine.-The frenzy of fanatics at the condition of his skull.- 
Boniface undertakes to be peacemaker among princes; and revives the 
rights of the Church over the kingdom of Naples.-How he hoped to 
bring about peace.-He draws up at Anagni a treaty of peace between 
Aragon, France, and Kaples.-He dispatches a legate to Catalonia to 
attend to it, and the instructions he gives him.-He follows him by 
letters, and clears the way of ob8tacles.-He invites Frederick to an 
inten-iew.-Frederick before proceeding consults the Sicilians, who by 
letters advise him not to take the step,-His meeting with Boniface.- 
What things Boniface promises him, if he will leave Sicily.-Charles 
II being absent, how Boniface provides for the government of Naples. 
-He undertakes to pacify northern Ital)'.-Genoa and Venice.-He 
wishes to disarm these two unfriendly republics, but the Genoese 
frustrate his designs.-Florence always Guelph in her principles, is 
torn by internal dissensions.-Boniface delivers her from a foreign 
governor.-How the factions agitate Romagna, Umbria and the Marches, 
and what the effect of the papal power over these provinces.--Guy of 
Montefeltro and his deeds.-Boniface cares for the government of 
Romagna, and returns to Guy the possession of his estates.-The fire 
of war cannot be extinguished there.-He dispatches 'Villiam Dur- 
ant.-\Vho was this man.-Philip, the Fair,-A description of him.- 
How France feebly opposes him in his tyranny, and how the jurists 
aid him.-He finds the Pontiffs to be an obstacIe.-He dishonors him- 
99 



100 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


self by criminal and base robberies.-A description of Edward of Eng- 
land,-He is at war against Philip.-Both fortify themselves by al- 
liances, which disturb the greater part of Europe.-Why Boniface 
interposes as a peacemaker between them.--tHe dispatches legates 
to bring them to an agreement.-They obtain a truce, but it is soon 
ended by the French resuming hostilities.
I..etters of Boniface to Ed- 
ward.--Other legates are sent to Adolpll, King of tIle Romans, and the 
words by which Boniface addresses him.-Sad effects of the war.- 
Philip the Fair debases tIle public money.-Religious conditions of 
Denmark; the encroachments of the King restrained by the bishops.- 
The kings persevering in their t)'rann)', the bishops resist them.-Eric 
VI of Denmark, imprisons the Archbishop, anù the Provost Lunden,- 
With what h)'pocrisy he justifies his \'iolent t)'ranny.-Escape of tbe 
prisoners; the prudent but vigorous remonstrances of Boniface to the 
Danish King.-Sicilian envoys to James, King of Aragon.--Il'heir grief 
and that of all Sicily at seeing themselves abandoned by him.-Fred- 
erick is proclaimed king.-Boniface sends Calamandrano to Sicily to 
establish peace.-His overtures are furiously rejected by the inhabi- 
tants of 1\Iessina.-But Roger of Loria is detached from Frederick.- 
Boniface creates new cardinals.-He raises the feasts of tIle Evange- 
lists and the four Latin Doctors, Augustine, Ambrose, Jerome and 
Gregory. 


THE thirteenth century was just ending when Boniface 
assumed the government of the Roman Church. In the 
difficult administration he had been preceded by two great 
popes, Gregory VII and Innocent III, who although the)' 
had used their every endeavor to reestablish the Church of 
God after the disastrous times of the Barbarians, yet they 
had not been able to perpetuate in a way that foresight of 
theirs which would rendpr impossible the return or rather 
the continuation of the causes which promoted clerical di
- 
orders, and imperiled the liberty of the Church. Gregory 
had brought hack the clergy to a consciousness of thpir 
high dignit;y, lifting them out of the mire of human defile- 
ment; Innocent placed the Church on a high throne from 
which she commanded the entire world. \Ve have said, 
in the beginning, that after Innocent up to the epoch of 
which we are narrating the history, the work of these pon- 
tiffs had been without ceasing threatened; and in such a 
state, when Boniface ascended the throne, did he find the 
Church which he swore to preserve free and uncontalni- 
nated. The corruption of morals up to that time had been 
engendered by ignorance, or blindness of mind; the servi- 
tude was that imposed by the German Empire, Knowl- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 101 
edge being propagated in the numerous universities 
founded throughout Europe, and the imperial colossus 
having fallen, it seemed that the times would become 
better. But the tyrants had multiplied on the ruins of 
that empire; and whilst minds wearied themselves in the 
search after the True in the dry fields of law and theology, 
hearts were beating strongly by reason of civil strifes; 
and in the clash of factions human cupidity was aroused, 
and raged furiously when charity for fellow creatures was 
driven out. So while the electors of Germany with the 
imperial crown in their hands did not know to whom to 
offer it after the extinction of the powerful house of 
Buabia; awhiJe Bologna, Padua, Naples, Paris, and 
Cologne, were admiring people of wisdom within their 
walls, the Church was bemoaning a new servitude that was 
imposed on her, she was feeling ashamed on account of the 
disorderly actions of many of her ministers. 
The struggles between the orders of civil society had 
succeeded the rivalries of the great families, and if those 
gigantic catastrophes visited on entire peoples no longer 
occurred, nevertheless men were led to more lasting lamen- 
tation on account of the rahidness of the factions which 
are the results, either of elevation to rank, or descent from 
the same. The princes were contending among themsplves, 
because invested with power, thpy weighed their rip:hts iu 
the scales of justice; the people forced by npcessity, bear- 
ing still the bloody traces of foreign incursions were stimu- 
lated to reø;;tablish themselves and arrive at the difficult 
adjustment of their own rights. The Roman Pontiff could 
still raise himself as the arbiter of justice above kings and 
the people, but the close contact of the Guelphs and Ghiùel- 
line parties to his chair "as a great danger; so ]le was 
seen now and then to wa'\er and to be wanting in that im- 
perturbable firmness so necessary for such an office. For 
this reason Boniface supreme head of the Church, should 
first be considered in the center of the Guelph and Ghibel- 
line factions, from which emanate all his relations with the 
Church, with Italy, and with the world. 
The two factions of tlw Guplphs antI GhibelJines in Italy 
seemed two bran<'hps producti\P only of had fruit, and by 
which was wastpfl a11 the strC'ngth of tlw 01<1 Latin blood 
that was needed to nourish the trunk of that nation and 



102 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
give it new life. Foreign in its origin, God had prepared 
for the people of Italy a family life.. The Barbarians, the 
Italians and the Greeks measured swords to determine for 
the future which one would hold sway over thp Italian 
territory. The Papacy could speak words of peace to all 
of them, because its dominion was not of the earth. It did 
in fact speak to them when it withstood not the nlen in- 
dividually but the errors they personified. It told the 
Barbarians that savage force was not the reason of God; 
it told the Italians that their own country appealed to 
them to live fraternaJIy in the courts of the Lord; it as- 
sured the Greeks that the imperial was not the will of God. 
The Barbarian became Italian the Italian became papal, 
the Greek retired from the shores of Apulia and Calabria; 
because God did not wish even a smalJ corner of Italy to 
divide with the latter the punishment which was to make 
them pass from the corrupted theological disputes of the 
courts of the Constances, of the Zenos and of the Heraclii 
into the mire of Islamism. 
The German emperors came unexpectedly on the scene, 
and their power and the splendor of the imperial mon- 
archy engaged the attention of many, and revived in them 
the memory of the ancient Latin empire. So were men 
divided, who all of one accord looked upon the Roman 
Papacy as a nucleus of a civil reorganization. Sonle 
turned hopefully to Rome, others to Germany. The forlner 
less refined in nlind, but more generous of heart, being 
jealous of liberty consecrated it by entrusting it to the 
Vicar of Christ; the latter nlore active minded in order to 
profit by ancient memories, being anxious for greatness, 
sold their liberty. Strange names, bloody ones of foreign 
factions, were applied to the Papal and imperial parti- 
sans. Guelphs the one, and Ghibellines the other, were 
the names by which they were known. 
In every action there is a principal which individualises 
it, and it is always either really or apparently good. A 
paternal and defensive dOlninion the Guelphs sought from 
the Papacy, the Ghibellines a splendid and a powerful one 
from the Empire. But if the former did not violate jus- 
tice, the latter scorned it by inviting a most powerful 
foreigner into their weak country. The diversity of lan- 

uage and of customs, the seas which separate, and the 



ltISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 103 
mountains which enclose, are the boundaries set by Heaven 
for indicating the individuality of nations, and how each 
may sit protected at the feet of that justice which dis- 
penses to each its own. Hence that overflow from beyond 
the Alps of foreign races summoned for the wedding of 
Italy to the dangerous imperial monarchy was a violation 
of the laws of Providence, a sacrilege against justice, and 
a ravishment of the mother country. 
Therefore the Papacy was called, and by reason of its 
mission, found itReIf at the head of the Guelph faction, 
together with all the clergy; so that it seemed that the 
adhesion of the Guelphs to Rome was an answer to that 
appeal for order which was made by the Vatican to all 
I taly in the times of the Barbarians. 80 long as they did 
not break faith with the Pontiffs, and nobly struggled for 
justice and for the freedom of their country and the 
Church, they were a wonder to the world; it was not in the 
defiles of the mountains, but on the open field of Legnano 
that the Lombards stood united and immovable in face of 
all Germany, and were victorious. But this victory viti- 
ated the minds of the victors, and whilst Alexander III 
blessed their victory, misunderstandings arose alllong 
themselves. Principle was no longer regarded, but men 
hated one another; and all were badly nli
led. Guelphism 
(we mean the idea and not simply the name) had only one 
period, in which it was truly represented in all the purity 
of its idea by the Pope and by the Lombard League. From 
that time deplorable indeed were the reasons why an 
I talian was a Guelph or Ghibelline. Jealousy between 
the nobility and populace, and municipal emulation pos- 
sessed their minds and hearts rather than the grand Papal 
idea; and whilst the Guelphs were smiting their adver- 
saries with their hands, they gazed ,vith threatening eyes 
and hearts upon the people or city against which they were 
more directly waging war. 
The original object being lost sight of, nlinds fluctuated, 
fraternal blood was spilled, and the Italians with their 
own hands were shaping a future, the worthy reconlpense 
of so many fratricides. :Men there were of lofty minds, like 
Dan te, who in Guelphism had placed the higheRt hope8 of 
good; hut lwing confused and plunged in civil discords, 
they could not sacrifice the present necessities for a prin- 



104 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
ciple, which through human perversity resulted in a bar- 
ren Utopia. The character of the factions being changed, 
the Popes could no longer direct that of the Guelphs. They 
changed their tactics and called the French into Italy. 
In this they n1ade a grievous mistake, although their error 
was a necessary consequence of that of the people. But 
they suffered punishment for it in the multiplication of 
duties which they were obliged to fuifil; namely, to put an 
obstacle in the way of the mercenaries who were overrun- 
ning the Empire, to resist the Ghibellines, and to combat 
vigorously the vice that was gnawing the vitals of Guelph- 
ism. So that the work of Alexander III was a solemn 
creation, prolific of incredible hopes; that of Boniface was 
a work of ardent reparation, in which the flowers of hope 
had faded. The former acted with the strength of a vivi- 
fying thought; the latter with the force that symbolized 
the sword of justice. 
The Guelph was the Papal party, and hence no one must 
wonder if the clergy enrolled themselves in it with such 
fervor. 
ay more, as every principle which a body of lnen 
personifies must needs strengthen and su
tain itself on 
the altar of martyrdom, the bitterness and honor of martyr- 
dom belonged altogether to the clergy, especially under 
Frederick II. But being as they were men, and n10l';t tena- 
dous of the idea of a necessary adhesion of the Guelphs to 
the Church, in the general contamination of the holy idea, 
they prevaricated with the others, and the clerical dignity 
was stained with civil cruelties. They should have sur- 
rounded and protected the Papacy like a wall, and obedient 
ministers to its cOlumands should have hastened to its aid, 
and by sanctity of life and meekness of conduct they should 
have calmed the angry minds, should have contained them- 
selves in victory, and should have elevated then1selves to 
the height of the object to which they aspired. But un- 
fortunately they were more Italian than clerics, and divis- 
ions arose alnong them. Of all the clergy that of Rome was 
the most bare- facerl in this fault, and the most injurious to 
the Guelphs and the Papacy. They lnight be called the ec- 
clesiastical aristocracy, on account of their immediate 
service close to the Papal Chair. But what contributed to 
plunge them into the general corruption was the poison 
that was injected into them by the corrupt nobility of those 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 10;:; 
tinIes, to whom the highest ecclesiastical preferments had 
òeen 
hamefully enfeoffed. It appears that the Orsinis, the 
Colonnas, and the Savellis had an aCf} uired right to the 
dignities and the highest offices in the Church, and for that 
reason many cardinals and prelates participated in the 
vices of those families which composed the Roman Patri- 
ciate. .c\.. calamitous patriciate which grafted the ferocity 
of the Barbarians to an dent pride. Like a parasite plant, 
it affiicted the Roman See by robbing the people of the 
nourishment of civil virtues, and by depriving the prince 
of the sinews of government. The pontifical tiara with 
which, so to speak, their families in succession were hon- 
ored, rendered it still more arrogant, and increased the 
boldness of action. The frequent vacancies of the throne 
habituated it to the impieties of anarchy. ,rhen re- 
strained, it grumbled, when unrestrained, it was terrible. 
These patrician families were never truly either Guelphs 
or Ghibellines; but they used these names to express not 
the nobility of a principle, but th
 feuùs of their vile ambi- 
tion. Rivals among themselves, they attacked one another 
in order to supplant one another in turn; and the prelates 
who were members of these ffunilies brought into the papal 
court, and into the offices they held, all the pas
ions of 
their house, and deprived the Papacy of that dignity and 
power which it needed in order to purify Guelphism of 
the vices whieh were corrupting it. 
The institution of the Franciscan and Dominican orders 
was a powprful and salutary remedy for all the evils en- 
gendered by the bad citizens and clerics in the heat of 
those party strifes. The Friars 
Iinor and the Preachers, 
inasmuch as they were not conteluplative and not clois- 
tpred, but out in the very heart of cities which were in a 
fernlent of domestic broils, were tried champions of 
Guelphism. To both clerics and people they seemed mar- 
vellous, and as it were, heavenly beings by reason of their 
poverty of life and austerity of manner, and so they could 
preach to both, holiness and peace. Oftentimes when the 
sworùs were raised in cOIn bat, they were lowered at the 
appparance of a friar; and those feelings of hatred and 
revenge, whieh the influence of charity and reason coult! 
not stiftp, were suhflupd entirely by their words. They 
were accessible to thp people by reason of thpir poor habit 



106 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
and food; and they were sought after by the nobles, who 
in the weariness of their sins, by relieving their poverty 
with a liberal gift of alms, they wished to make then} the 
mediators of their eternal salvation. l\Iany famous for 
misdeeds, when dying, eagerly longed for the rough habit 
of the Frial's :\Iinor. 
The Popes found in these religious an expedient which 
the secular clergy no longer offered. Often a friar was a 
Papal messenger to princes, and to peoples; they were 
raised to the episcopate, and to the honors of the cardinal- 
ate. Exempt from episcopal jurisdiction, they were sub- 
ject only to the Roman See, and they received immediately 
from it the faculty to preach and administer the sacra- 
ments. They were a sacred militia, which free from 
worldly cares, numerous and strongly united. went forth 
at the beck of the Rome Pontiff; and like a balm spread 
itself in the body of the clergy to preserve it from corrup- 
tion. But alas! this remedy ÙeC:lnle such as to losp its 
power. Their contact "dth the people leHsened the old 
reverence the latter had for them; the laxity of some of 
them in the observance of their austere precepts, and their 
haughty disobedience to the Popes fostered schisms among 
them; and the privileges accorded them aroused the jeal- 
ousies of the bishops. The heresy of the Fraticelli (the 
Little Brothers), the result of a disordered zeal; and the 
bold and wild theories of "\Villiam of St. Amour embraced 
by many, wounded grievously the Order of St. Francis; 
and it never regained all that civil mission which it re- 
ceived from the Roman See at its institution. 
'Vherefore as soon as Boniface was seated in the chair 
of St. Peter, híl found things in desperate straits. He must 
oppose Ghibellinism already fallen from a certain nobility 
of principle, which consisted in the delusive hope of reviv- 
ing the Homan Empire, and which was only holding' on to 
existence from the result of that principle, namely the 
unjust exclusion of the Papacy from the bosom of civil 
society; he must prop up Guelphism and purify it, and he 
must check the excesses of the Ronlan nobility. And it 
seems to us that the three enemies tbat he encountered in 
this triple undertaking were PhiJip the Fair, Dante, and 
the Colonnas. By all he was oppressed but not conquered. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 107 
Philip the Fair smote him with the force of the civil law; 
the Colonnas with the law of the Church; and Dante with 
that of opinion.-As soon as the coronation was finished 
and the first months of his pontificate had passed, the air 
of the city grew so bad in the beginning" of SUlllmer that 
Boniface left Home and set out for AnagnÏ. At that time 
the Colonnas had no doubt of his legitimate election to the 
Papacy; and nlOreover they considered themselves his most 
devoted friends. In fact, inasmuch as the road to Anagni 
touched the tcrritory of Zagarolo, a fief of the Colonnas, 
these princes offered the Pope hospitality in their own 
honse. A\JI the Colonnas were round about hinl waiting 
on him with all attention and revcrPllce, and so affection- 
ately that it did not seem that they were entertaining a 
Gactalli, but one of their own familJ r . Boniface, as we 
shall see, remembered this friendly reception.! 
St. Peter :l\Iorroue was the first to diRturb the mind of the 
new Pope. Bonifa('e feared notLing from hinl personally; 
nor did l1e think that the fire of human ambition burned 
nndcr the sackcloth of the hermit, who so willingly had 
laid aside the papal crown. But his sleep was disturbed 
by the lllachinations of those who, displeased at the resig- 
nation of the Saint, could have urged him to reascend the 
chair of St. Peter using the same line of arguments which 
llad induced him to re
ign. In a hypercritical DIanneI' 
they could prelSent theillselves to Peter anù declare to him 
that bis resignation was null and void; anlI for that reason 
llollifaee was Bot a legitimate Pope; the rhul'ch of God 
by his fault was not united in a holy nuuriagp with her 
h'gitimate I'pou
e, but cllained by the wiles of a wicked 
lover; and it is ccrtain that the llermit not from a spirit 
of pride, hut frolH the fear of losing his soul, could have 
hppn induced to raise his weak arms to reassume the re- 
liJlqui
hp(1 key
, and there would not have been wanting- 
t ho
e who would have aided him in the ac('omplishment 
of this undertaking. \Yherefore Bonifac
 wislwd to have 
him brought to himself in Honw, or to 
ome other part of 
his tprl'itory, in urder to remove him from the evil and 
nlalicious machinations of his monk
, and of the people, 


1 
ce the Bull: "!'raet. temporulll." TIaj"nalùus j'car 1
0ï; no 2i. 



108 HISTORY. OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
who were always recounting the repeated miracles wrought 
by Celestine. 2 
Angelarius, Abbot of :l\Ionte Casino, had been deputed 
by Boniface to find him, and bring him to Rome. But in 
the nH
anwhile the Saint suddenly disappeared. He went 
to St. Germanus, and for the night he was hospitably re- 
ceived in the abhatial palace. Here he revealed to a cer- 
tain priest the reason of his flight, beseeching him to keep 
it secret, and from the sallIe he procured a horse, and every 
assistance whereby he could arrive secretly at his cell of 
the Holy Spirit. "Then he arrived at Sulmona there was 
a great festival, and the people met him and welcomed 
him as a wonder worker. He desired only to bury himself 
again in his cell on 1\lt. 
Iorrone. But Boniface, as soon 
as he learned from the Abbot of :M:onte Casino of Celes- 
tine's escape, became greatly apprehensive of the danger 
of a sehisll1, which the aforesaid rendered probable, and 
he forthwith dispatched Theodoric of Orvieto, his Cham- 
berlain, to Sulmona, in order to explore the neighborhood 
in search for Celestine. Theodoric went and found him 
in his cell enjoying a holy peace, and he was already re- 
turning, when other Ines!o\engers from the Pope came has- 
tening with other instructions relative to Celestine. But 
it was too late. For the latter for the second time had 
taken flight. ...\fter wandering for two months he finally 
arrived in ApuIia, where in a wild forest he rested and 
hid hhnself. In the nleanwhile the news of his flight was 
spreading, and the people were on the alert to see the man 
remarkable for miracles, and for his renunciation of the 
Papacy; and in every place through which the fugitive 
passed, the cry was immediately raised: "Here is the 
Saint, here is Brother Peter 1\iorrone." Celestinp Waß flee- 
ing not through fear of the Pope, who, as a prudent meas- 
ure, wished to keep him close to him, but because longing 
for soHtude, and compelled to live in the Papal Court. he 
was deprived of the benefit of his abdication. His follow- 
ers bad chartered a vessel for him, because he wished to 
go beyond the sea; but a storm of long duration having 
prevented his departure, he was finally intf'rcepted a few 


:I James Card. of St. George. In the poem of St. Celestine, Preface of 
Bull, page 440, no 13. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 109 
miles from Yiesta, and was retained in that town until the 
wishes of Boniface in his regard could be learned. 
'Ve do not believe that they waited long to hear theIne 
Charles of Naples, profoundly inclined before the power of 
Boniface, was also himself by means of his ministers on 
the track of the holy hermit, to intercept him. The mem- 
ory of the happy times of Pope Celestine could not have 
been enlbittel'ed in him by a sadder duty. ",Villiam Stend- 
ard, the constable of the kingdom, was charged to conduct 
the Saint well escorted to the boundary of the kingdoln, 
and be consigned him to the Chamberlain of the Pope, who 
in the lniddle of J une, 1
96, presented him to Boniface at 
that time residing in Anagni. 3 The latter well knew the 
danger that beset the Church by leaving Celestine under 
the influence of his monks and of a people captivated with 
wonder by the miracles which were related of him. In 
fact they had already urged him to reascend the Papal 
Chair; 4 which design obtained the support of nlany who 
could not persuade themselves that Boniface was the true 
Pope, holding the abdication of his predece
sor as invalid. 
However Boniface resolved to proceed cautiously in the 
matter of the treatment of 3 saint, as it was easy to wound 
the piety of the people. 'Yhereupon having accol'd('d a 
kindly welcome to Celestine, and having given hin1 a roonl 
in his own palace, he summoned th(' cardinals in consis- 
tory in order to obtain their opinion on what was best to 
be done in the matter. 5 Some thought that without any 
danger, the Saint could be allowed to go free to his cell 
on 1\lt. :l\Iorrone; others advised, that he should be guarded 
with great care, in order that his simplicity might not be 
abused to the detriment of the Church. Boniface adopted 
the latter proposal, and had him shut up in the Castle of 
Fumone, in Campania, where to satisfy thp desire of the 
Saint, he ordered a cPll 
imi1ar to the one on l\It. )Iorrone, 
to he constructed for his habitation. 6 Visits to the recluse 
were forbidden to f'very one; two mon){s of his own oròel', 
were the only ones exempted from this mandate, at the re- 


· Lelius ;\farini. Life of St. Peter CeJestine. apud Bon. chaps X and XI. 
· Ibid. chap. XI. II Petri AJIiaci. Life of St. Peter CeJestine. 
· "Cellam igitur optanti, in castro Fumonis firmo ceJIam, quaJem 
"verosimiliter Sanctus ipse designarat, ad formam ejus, quam in l\Iurrone 
"habuerat, fieri jussit." Ibid. no 118. 



110 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
(InPRt of 
plf'!'\tine. It is related, that not heing able to 
hpar the IUUTOW confinement of the prison they soon 
began to grow ill, and were obliged to depart while others 
took their places in turns. Peter Alliacus states that 
Boniface placed a guard of six soldiers about Celestine, 
and abont thirty other men whom be calls satellites. 7 
Let the reader now imagine llOW the imprisonment of 
a man already venerated as a Saint and a wonder-worker, 
was discussed by the people, by the Cf'lestine monks, and 
by those to whom the elevation of Gaetani was displeasing, 
on sf'eing renloved from their influf'nce their only counter- 
poi
e to the power of Boniface. The narrowness of the 
cpH in the cas1lf' of F1U110ne, and the anstere penances 
Pl'acticeil by Celf'stine, whieh on l\1t. :l\Iorrone had won for 
him the name and veneration of a 
mint, now in the castle 
of Fumone begot for Boniface the name of a tyrant, and 
for Celestine the honors of martyrdom. The armed mf'n 
placed on guard about the castle, and the resolution to 
alJow no one to visit the prison were adjudged acts of the 
most cruel jealousy of authority, and an unnecessary pre- 
caution for the quietude of the Church. To the people 
there did not appear any danger of a schism, but they saw 
only an innocent man of God shut up in the famons castle. 
Thf'rf'fore the blacl;::est calumny against Boniface was 
spread; and woe to anyone when such a thin
 is founded 
on a real or apparent violation of the religious convictions 
of a people, and such a people as was that of the thirteenth 
century. The blame which was heaped npon the head of 
Boniface became something supernatural, a power in the 
hands of his enemies, and only to be removed by the later 
judgment of historians. 
Celestine lived nine months in the castlf' of Fumone. 
In the month of 
Iay there appeared on his right side a 
virulent tumor, which baffling all skill, hrought on death 
on the 1Ûth of the saIne Inonth, in the 70th year of his 
age. 8 Boniface, as soon as he heard of his death, sent im- 
Il1f'diatf'ly to Fllmone {;ardinal Thomas of St. CeciHa, and 
his Chamberlain, who had the obsequies of the Saint held 
in the church of St. Anthony of Ferentino, to which flocked 
a great number of thf' clergy and prf'lates of tlle province 
'I Peter Alliacus. Life of St. Celestine, c. 3, n. 17 apud Boll. 
8 J
elii Marini sup. Vito ('elest. cap. 11, no. ]21. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 1.1 1 
of Campania. Besides in the Vatican Basilica he honoreel 
the dead man with solemn obsequies. The body of the 
Raint rested in the church of St. Anthony until the year 
1327, when it was transferred to Aquila and buried in the 
ehurch of Collemaggio. 
At this time his followers gave loosp rein to tlwir un- 
pl'incipled and depraved imaginations. A llail haying 
pierced the skull of the Saint, they spread the report that 
Boniface had shortened his life by ordering a nail to he 
driven in his head. The nail was found (who had found it 
we know not) ; and blood was still seen on the point of it. 
They inserted it into the little hole, and as it fitted wonder- 
fully, the proof was established that this bad been the 
instrument of his death. From that time this nail was 
preserved as a relic; and in the church of St. 
Iary of 

Iajella they depicted in a certain fresco the martyrdom 
of St. Peter Celestine, representing a nail being driven 
into his head by the order of Boniface, which fact tlwy de- 
clared by an inscription at the bottom. To remoye aU 
douht of his martyrdom they placed palms on his tomb, 
and all those who beheld them knew from those symbols 
that among the persecutors of the Church there was a 
Supreme Pontiff, Boniface VIII. 
Boniface, as soon as he had taken in his bands the 
Church government, thought of securing a true and firm 
peace, for at this tim
 affairs were in a precarious condi- 
tion on account of the state of fec]in
s among the princes, 
and worse things were threatened for the future. But 
peace must not be secured with injury to the rights of 
the Church. He began to refresh his nwmory with a knowl- 
edge of the rights, which he as head of the Church had 
over the ldngdom of Naples. Char]ps I of Anjoll had 
sworn fealty to Clement IV and to John XXI. Clwrles 
the Lame had renewed to "Nicholas I'T the prolnises which 
his father had made, and in a solemn act declared the 
homage which the king of Sicily was bound forever to 
pay, alleging the most ample promises of Charles 1. 9 
Boniface requested Charles II to renew them, renewing at 
the same time the Bull of Nicholas IY; 10 and he confirnled 
the right by deed, absolving Charles from evpry ('ensure 
he may have incurred by not having paid tribute to St. 
· Rayna]dus, year 1289. 1D RarnaJdus, Jcar 1295. 



112 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
Peter. ll The treaty of Tarascon drawn up by himself, 
when he went as legate with Gerard of Parma to negotiate 
peace, and subscribed to at Brignolle the 19th of Febru- 
ary 1291, became worthless by the death of Alphollsus of 
Aragon, who died suddenly, on the 1Dth of June of the 
same year. James had proceeded swiftly to Spain, and 
had seized the crown of Aragon in the city of Saragos
a in 
October; Frederick, his brother, took charge of the govern- 
mf'nt of Sicily, as his vicar; Philip of France finding in 
the death of Alphonsus a just reason for not ratif,ying the 
treaty, pretended to invade Aragon, only for the sake of 
wresting from the Frf'nch clergy ten years of tithes ;12 the 
Sicilians gladly rallif'd around Frederick; and Nicholas 
IV, the Pope at that time, again despaired of the desired 
peace. But since the condition of James on the throne 
of Aragon were similar to those uf Alphonsus, namely, 
with a people tired of bearing, be
ides the weight of ponti- 
fical censures, that of war; with an exhausted treasury, 
and with the danger of losing Aragon to preserve Sicily, 
he was inclined to peace, anù desired to renew the broken 
treaty. In fact Pope Celestine now hoped to obtain the 
happiest results by peace; he proposed another treaty simi- 
lar to that of Tarascon, but none was concluded,13 
'Yhen the report was spread that Boniface had been 
raised to the Papacy, negotiations Wf're quickly renewed, 
and the ambassadors of France and Aragon met to delib- 
erate again. 14 In the meanwhile Frederick hÌIllself made 
advances to Rome, in order perhaps to discover in what 
way the wind was blowing for him. He sent as legates to 
Boniface, :l\Ianfred I.Jancia and Roger Geremia who were 
cordially welcomed and given the most flattering promises. 
The Pope's hopes for peace grew stronger; in fact, Fred- 
erick not being as yet a king, but only the vicar of James, 
the task of driving him out of Sicily seemed easy. For 
that reason Boniface and Charles II undertook to coerce 
James, thinking that having forced him to leavf' Sicily, 
there would be no obstacle in the way of restoring- it to the 
f1ubjection of the Church; but they did not reflect that the 
Sicilian people also had a will in the matter, which 
U Raynaldus, year 1294, epis. 118. 12 Raynaldus, year 1291, 56. 
11 T.-uning, T. 2, n. 63.-Raynaldus, 1294, 15. 
t. Surita, Annl. Arag. Lib. V, c 9. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 113 
although excluded from the treaties was nevertheless 
powerful, because supported by force. Therefore the 
Papal legate urged James to restore Sicily to the Church; 
and the ro
ral repre
entative Bartholomew of Capua urged 
un Charles of Valois to war against Aragon, that he might 

ecure the Papal privilege which gave him the crown. The 
diHcontent among his people, the war in Sicily and the 
threats of the French prince persuaded hiIn to negotiate 
peace. 15 
He summoned a parliament of barons; he declared to 
them how the papal censures annoyed him; that he de- 
sired peace, and to confirm it he was willing to send 
legates to the Pope. Four ambassadors went to seek 
Boniface at _\.nagni. In full consistory they stated the 
reason of the elubassy, and such was the kind welcome ex- 
tended to them that it was clear that the Pope desired 
nothing more than harmony among Christian princes after 
fo;uel1 lasting dissensions. The matters to be treated were 
presented. Besides the Aragonese there were a:-;sembled 
a IHO am bassadOl's from France, the Bishop of Orleans, tlw 
abbot of St. Gerlllain des Prés, Charles of Valois, and Bar- 
t holomew of Capua as the representatiye of Charles II. 
Boniface presided; and most skilful as he was ill negotia- 
tions he conducted the proceeding so well, that on the 5th 
of June he happily dispo
ed the minds of all to abree to 
the following articles, namely: that Charles of Naples 

hould give his daughter Blanche in marriage to James, 
with a dowry of twenty-five thousand marks in silver; that 
James should restore Sicily to him and as lllueh as he had 
8elluiretl there by conquest; the reluctant Sicilians should 
he coelTed by force; that he should release the hostages, 
Robert, Haymond, and John. the 
ons of Charles, with the 
other nobles and the knights of Provence; tl1at he should 
pardon the partisans of the house of ..:\njou; that Charles 
of Yalois should renounce the right over the kingdoms of 
...\ragon and Yalencia and o,'er the province of Barcelona, 
whieh he had acquired by Papal illYef';titure; lllllÌual p
ll.- 
dons and restoration of goods and property were to be 
granted to all those who had followed the fortunes of the 
Aragonian and Angevine parties; the Pope himself was 


II Giann. Stor. Civ. T. III, p. 116. 



11-1 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
to release Aragon fron1 all censures, and bless it anew. 10 
And wherea
 in every treaty the general articles to which 
all agree, are openly declared, the particular ones however 
are kept secret, and are reserved to be arranged privately, 
in order not to injure the main issue, in this treaty some 
secret articles were cared for by Boniface. Secretly he 
appeased the mind of James, by promising to invest him 
with Sardinia and Corsica; James on the other hand ap- 
peased Philip of France by promising him naval aid 
against Edward of England. 17 As to Charles, the better 
to feel sure of the king of Aragon, he asked his daughter 
Yolanda from him for his son Robert, promising in return 
to pay twenty-five thousand silver nlal'ks, which sum he 
<lid not possess, but which Boniface furnished in the forIn 
of a loan; the latter was obliged, by reason of this, to levy 
tithes on the churches of Italy.18 
On the 21st uf J nne Boniface solemnly ratified the 
Íl'eaty, whkh he <lec1ared in a BuH, to which seventeen 
eardinals affixptl their names and whieh he ('onclu(]cù hy 
affirming that JamcR was inve:-;ted by :1 ring with the king- 
dom of Aragon and Valencia; that the Carùinal of St. 
Clement ,vas designated to go as legate to the countries 
beyond the mountains for the execution of the treaty.19 
Peace was proclaimed on the feast of St. John the Baptist, 
the Pope having grantpd the dispen:-;ation of consanguin- 
ityexisting between Janws and Blanche, the daughter of 
Charles, so that a marriage might confirm the peace; and 
punishment was threatened against the violators of the 
peace. On the 27th of the same n10nth, Boniface com- 
municated the SaIne to Freùeriek in Sicily.20 
To draw up a treaty of peace, :1nd to dispose the n1Înds 
to agree to the proposed condition
, is not always difficult; 
but the fulfilment of an agl'e
ment has always been a most 
difficult ta
k. To provide for this Boniface deputed 
William li'errer, Cardinal of the title of St. Clement, who 
before the 21st of June set out fronl ..:\nagni, where the 
Pope was then residing, for Catalonia, bringing with him 


II1l\fariana. De Reb. Hisp. lib, 14, c. 1 i -Epis. BonÏf. lib. I, epist 184 
apud Raynaldum. 17 Surita Annal d'Arag. lib. 5, c. 10. 
18 Rayn. 1295, 24. Ig Ra)'na]dus, year 1293, lib. I, 184, n. 2. 
20 Ra)'naldus, 12!J5, JiL, Epist. DU. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 115 
Blanche, the affianced of James. 21 Boniface gave his 
legate all manner of instructions, and did not leave him 
an instant, being always at his side with letters. It was 
the constant custom of the Roman Pontiffs never to with- 
draw themselves from the immediate direction of affairs; 
for which reason they have left us those stupendous monu- 
ments of their wisdom and integrity of purpose, in the 
Registers, which if fortunately they were published in 
one complete collection, far from obscuring the brilliant 
idea of the Roman pontificate, they would on the contrary 
render it more luminous, and nlore worthy of reyerence 
even in the eyes of those who revile it. Therefore hardly 
was the legate gone, than Boniface was following him with 
letters which bear witness of his prudence and discretion. 
He foresaw the many obstacles that the princes would 
place in the way to an agreement of the articles of the 
trpaty, 
ome of which it had l.>pen impossible to remove by 
word of mouth to Cal'(linal 'YilliaIll, and so on the 30th 
of June he wrote him from Allagni a It-'tter, in which 
amOllg' other things were read: "Tllat if the explanation 
., of that treaty ùecame involved with some other tllings, 
"and place the mind in a state of uncertainty, he should 
,. fix his eyes on the crucifix, and conforlll his conscience to 
" it; that whenever anything arose unforeseen by him, he 
"should behave in such a concilatory and humane man- 
"ner, that tempering severity with mildness, the minds of 
"all might be won over to justice by the sweetest ways." 
The Legate, being sent on his good way, was not left 
alone, but was followed by the most fervent dpsires of 
peacp, and di1'ections for difficulties wllich could not be 
80lved in drawing up the treaty, since the Legates declared 
that they did not have the power of deciding for their 
lords. One of these difficulties was the posse

ion of the 
valley of Arany which formerly was held by the prince of 
4\ragon, but now was in the possession of the King' of 
France, who did not wish to see it included alllong those 

tates, the right over which had ùeen reacquired by I{ing 
tTanH's. The other was tlw possession of tll(> islands úf 
)Iajorca and 
Iinorca, which James would not restore to 
his uncle, also caUed James, who in the war between Valois 

nd '\ ragon had been despoiled of them by the Aragonians, 
21 Epistolae, Bonifac. ad Fredericum apud Rayn'l 34. 



116 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
because he followed the French party. Boniface, to whom 
the attainment of peace was uppermost in lllind, earnestly 
strove to persuade Philip of France 22 frOlll stirring up the 
minds again over the question of that valley of Arany; 
that he would leave it to the judgment of the Legate, until 
it was ascertained at what time it had come under his 
authority, whether before or during the war between 
France and Aragon; if before he should retain it; if in 
time of the war he should restore it, as subject to the 
avowed agreements to restore everything taken froln 
James. The King of Aragon was urged to surrender the 
islands of l\lajorca and l\Iinorca on certain conditions, the 
arbiter of which Blust be the Legate. :\Iatters went ac- 
cording to the mind of Boniface, and peace was estab- 
lished. 
I t did not seem impossible to bind France and Aragon 
to the peace, both because of the weakness of J all1e
 in 
the face of a multitude of enemies, and because of the de- 
sire of CharJes the Lame, a Frenchman, to recovpr the fair 
province of Sicily, But the great difficulty was to per- 
suade Frederick to surrender to another the authority OvP!
 
Sicily, which be was already ruling as the "vicar of his 
brother 
Tames. This difficulty was increased a hundred- 
fold on account of the intense hatred of the Sicilians for 
the Prench, whose blood shed in the unhappy Yespers was 

till warm; and the feelings 9f a people eInboldened by a 
recent victory are not ('asHy controlled by anyone. As the 
report of the treaty had f'pread, Frederick, aroused by the 
chagrin of losing Sicily and urged on by the Sicilians, had 
already begun to protest against the treaty.23 However 
Boniface did not despair of bringing his designs to a suc- 
cessful issue, although it would be a desperate 'work to 
reconcile the interests of the Church in Sicily with the 
contplltment of the Sicilians. He must speak kindly to the 
legates of Frederick whom he should welcome heartily; 
aftprwards he should win over by the softest persua
ion 
Fl'pderick himself, JolIn of Procida, and Roger of Loria, 
the 
mpren1e directors of the sentiments of the SÎcilianH, 
the one the leader of civil, the other of military affairs, 
and with what result every one knowf'. And whereas it 
22 Raynaldus 2G. Epist. 20ft 
21 Epist. Bonif. ad Fred. in ehron. 
\.llony. Sicu. cap. 53. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 117 
would be a loss of time and labor to express in a letter the 
arguments of persua
ion, he considered it better to invite 
the aforesaid to a friendly interview. lIe dispat<-hed 
Bernard of Camel'ino, his chaplain, who broug:ht the lllost 
affectionate letter to Frederick,24 such as a father would 
write to his son, enlarging on the compassion of )Iother 
Church, and bow she is ever inclined to welcome to her 
bosom, whoever having strayed away ,,'ill return to her 
in the sinceritJ Y of his soul. The Pope affixed to the letters 
a safe-conduct for Frederick and the others invited to the 
interview. As soon as Frederick had received the Papal 
Legate and had read the letter, although he knew the 
object of the desired interview was his departure frOin 
Sicily, he yielded to the exhortation of Boniface, by ob- 
serving how the other affairs of James included in the 
treaty of peace had been so adjusted by Boniface that they 
would not suff'f'I' damage or injury; and he did not doubt 
that urged to leave Sicily, he would be recompensed by 
the gift of another seig'lliory. However, he wished to 
know the sentiments of the Sicilians concerning his 
journey to the Pope, and he addressed to the UniYf'rsity 
of Palermo a letter, to which he attached a copy of the 
Iett<:'r of Boniface to him. The people of Palermo an- 
swered the letter of Frederick by another, the bearers of 
whkh were Nicholas of :\layda, Philip of Carastono, 
judges, and Peter Philosopher, which ambassadors of the 
commune should add strength to the letter. In this letter 
there were most fiery worùs to deter Frederick frOln going 
to the Papal interyiew: " lIe should remember," they said, 
" the bad feeling borne towards his ancestor Peter by the 
"Roman Pontiffs, and with what fury thpy had carried 
" on war against themselves, for no other reason than to 
"thrust the sword into his vitals for his final ruin; he 
" should remember how much human blood they had sbed 
" in ratalonia taking sides with Philip of France, unmind- 
"ful of the charity of the Founder of the Church, who 
"desired neither bloodshed nor war. . . . . . . . . Con- 
"sidering th<:,n the manly constancy with which his father 
"Pet<:'r and his brother James maintained possession of 
"the island, they wonùered how he, as it were, degener- 
'" ating from his elders, would desist from his generous 
,. Chron. Sic. Anony. cap. 53. 



118 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
" purpose of protecting unfortunate Sicily; how he would 
"depress on a sudden their raised spirits, and how he 
"would go to repose in the arms of the Pope in an artful 
"interview. He should not be frightened by thp noise of 
" those words which the shrewd Pope threw out to him, in 
"order to deprive him of courage for his noble designs. 
"The work he had undertaken, which his elders had 
"happily effected, would not displease God but be grate- 
" ful to him; that it was the hand of God which up to that 
" day had fought for Sicily, battling against an immense 
"multitude of proud enemies; that it was the .valol
 of 
" Goù by which one against a thousand fought victoriously. 
"Not to fight ngainst, but for God, who take nrIns for 
" his own princp and for the people who have entrusted to 
"the hands of this prince their every hope and dearest 
"destiny. Therefore prostrate at his fept they besought 
"him not to go with the chief men of the island to that 
"sinister intprview, which would be produf'tive of sad 
" consequences both to him and to them; finally that he 
" should think of taking in his own hands the government 
" and protection of Sicily, and they would be most ready 
"to sacrifice for him their lives and goodK" 
This persistent opposition went to the heart of Fred- 
erick, who, born a king, more than others felt the sweetness 
of command, and the fear of the loss of it; yet at the 
authoritative voice of the Pontiff he decided to go. And 
having taken with him as companions John of Procida and 
Roger of Loria, he sailed with a good fleet for Terracina, 
where he disembarked; and with a noble retinue he rode 
as far as Velletri. Boniface was awaiting his arrival in 
the open country, and as soon as he saw hinlself in the 
presence of FredericI{, a boy of tender ypars, altogether 
encased in a heavy armor, he caressed him with both hands, 
and kissed him on the brow; then in wondpr he said to 
him: "So soon, 0 noble youth, are you accustomed to 
arms? "-And fixing his gaze on the terrible Roger of 
Loria: "Are you that terrible enemy of the Church, who 
has massacred so many people?" And he quickly replied: 
" Your predecessors were the cause." 25-Then he took the 
young prince aside, and in the kindest of manners he tried 
to persuade him to leave Sicily; and to compensate him 
2G Franc. Maurolyci. Sicancicae IIi st. 1, 4, apud Burmani. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 119 
for the loss he proposed a marriage for him with Catherine, 
daughter of Philip, and niece of Baldwin II, titular Em- 
peror of Constantinople, and also niece of Charles the 
Lame, which marriage would obtain for him the right to 
ascend the throne of the Grecian Empire; he promised 
besides to furnish him with abundant means to carryon 
the war against Paleologus who had taken it from Philip. 
The youthful prince apart from Roger and John of Pro- 
cida replied that he would consent to the nuptials, if the 
Sicilians would also consent; 26 and with this he parted 
with the Pontiff. 
The intention of Boniface in this matter was not to 
beguile the youth; because as Pope he could not bear with- 
out sorrow that the Sicilians unmindful of the dominion 
of the Church over their islands should transfer it to Fred- 
erick; and from the marriage, which he encouraged Freder- 
ick to contract, there was no little benefit to be derived for 
the Church. The reunion of the Greek and Latin Churches, 
the conquest of the Holy Land, the foremost desires of the 
Roman Pontificate, would have a :firm basis in a Catholic 
prince seated on the throne of Constantinople. Hence in 
the month of June of this year he sent John, Abbot of 
S1. Germain des Prés to Catherine with letters expressing 
to her, how for her own good, and that of the Church, she 
should select as husband Frederick of Aragon; and how it 
should be sworn to by the latter and her grandfather 
Charles II, to conclude the affair by the end of September; 
that John the Abbot would come to conduct her to him 
honorably, and at her earliest convenience. 27 l\Ioreover he 
addressed letters likewise to Philip of France, admonish- 
ing him to exert himself to induce Catherine to consent 
to this marriage. But the expulsion of Andronicus from 
the throne of Bysantium was a difficult undertaking and 
not near at hand, and he could not easily obtain the con- 
sent of Catherine to a marriage of such little benefit. She 
rpplied, that the noble blood of Frederick was pleasing to 
her, but she did not care to marry a prince without a state. 
In the meanwhile the kingdom of Naples was without a 
ruler. Charles was still in France for the conclusion of 
the aforesaid peace, and Cbarle
 his eldest 
on, titular 
king of lIungary, had died in the .June of thi
 
year. Boni- 
28l\Iauroly. Sic. Hist, lib. IV, 199. 27 Epist. 174 an. 1. apud Rayn. 29
 



120 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
face quickly provided for the achllinistl'ation of the king- 
dom as an affair of the Pontiffs, entrusting it to Philip, 
duke of Taranto, another son of Charles, and Landolph, 
Cardinal-Deacon of St. Angelo. But the Neapolitans felt 
aggrieved because Queen :\Ial'garet had been excluded from 
the lnanagement of the puhlic affairs, and thy besought 
the Pontiff to place them under her direction. Boniface 
yielded to these desires, glad to show the supreme (10- 
minion he had over the kingdolll, being able to change 
ru leI's at his own will, and in a most affable letter he 
appointed :l\largaret to fill the place of her absent husband. 
In that letter, having deplored the death of her son Charles, 
and having told how, by that supreme power which came 
to him from on high, he had entrusted to Philip and the 
Legate the direction of affairs, he substituted her in their 
place, prohibiting her from alienating any immoveable 
property of the state, to which prohibition he did not 
doubt, that also her husband Charles would conform with 
good graces himself; and finally he was sure that she 
would rule the kingdom with such prudence and strength 
of mind as to merit afterwards the reward of Heaven and 
praise of Dlen. Here then is an instance of how that 
dominion of Rome over a state bridled the excesses of 
princes and secured the rights of the people. And no one 
better than Boniface could have exercised this salutary 
dominion, if his disposition of mind had not been deemed 
excessive pride in those stormy times. 
Although the affairs of Sicily had occupied much of the 
Pontiff's attention yet they did not possess it so entirely, 
as to prevent him from directing the whole world towards 
the attainment of his great desire of universal peace. 
'Yhilst he was still hoping to pacify Sicily, before Fred- 
erick would make himself king, he turned his attention 
to northern Italy, where affairs were in a much disturbed 
condition owing to the brutal fury of the Guelph and 
Ghibelline factions; the nobles and the populace, state 
against state, city against city were rending themselves 
in fierce wars. But in a particular manner he exercised 
his care over the most powerful dties, with the hope that 
peace once established they would by reason of thpir 
wealth and grandeur be able to show, in thp peaceful and 
good government of their republics, an example of civi- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 12f 
lization to the hundred desolate and warring cities of the 
peninsula. These were Venice and Genoa. The former 
was already powerful in the XIII th century by reason of 
the riches which accrued to it from its maritiIne commerce, 
also by reason of the fortunate conquests in Dahnatia, of 
many islands in the Adriatic, and of the Grecian Archi- 
pelago, and more especially by reaSon of the internal con- 
stitution, which precisely in this age took the firm abiding 
form of that Queen of the Seas. The other rich also like 
Yenice by reason of commerce, but less powerful since the 
conquests had been made by her private citizens, and by 
them retained, rather than by the city; and besides its 
government was not so strongly constituted as to permit 
it to hold in duty, both the populace and the nohleK 
Hence while Venice like an immovable rock in the sea 
opposed its exterior sides to the fury of factions, Genoa 
was ever agitated by internal strifes. Venice was always 
free, Genoa was often the slave of foreigners. 
Through jealousy of trade Genoa at first vented its 
hatred against Pisa, and afterwards against Venice. This 
was always displeasing to the Popes, who desired to n1ake 
use of these powerful republics for the overthrow of the 
infideJ's in the East. Almost two years had passed during 
which the Venetians and Genoese were furiously waging 
war against each other, when Boniface endeavored to 
soften their anger and reconcile the adversaries. l\Iore- 
o,er he wished for peace in order to redeem the fallen for- 
tunes of the Holy Land. But the desperate straits of the 
latter were well known to Boniface, and his apparent de- 
sire concealed bis real desire, which was to di,ert the 
minds from intestine feuds and turn them in view of the 
common good, to the destruction of the Turkish power. 
He admonished the Venetians and Genoese by letter 28 to 
suspend hostilities until the feast of St. John the Baptist 
of the current year, during which time the ambassadors 
of both republics would meet in his. presPllce to agrep on 
a lasting peace. The legates assembled; hut the Opnoese 
caIne in bad faith. For while they rejected every pro- 
posed measure of agreement, justifying themsplves under 
the plea that from their state they had not receiyed the 
right to negotiate, in Genoa they were preparing a mighty 

 Lib. I an I Epist. 117 apud Raynaldum. 



1
2 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
fleet to assail the Venetians while engaged in the treaty of 
peace. The Pope, not wishing that the docility of the 
Yenetians to his paternal instructions be detrimental to 
their republic, released them from the obligation of main- 
taining the truce, which the Genoese faithlessly observed,29 
and encouraged thelu to defend themselves. But that 
which the Venetians could have done against the Genoese 
was done by cruel discord. For in that very fleet there was 
kindled the fire of the factions, the leaders of the Guelph 
being the Grimaldi, and of the Ghibelline the Dorias and 
the Spinolas. They turned their swords against each other 
and many fell in the strife, and returning to Genoa they 
did not desist from blood and fire, until the Guelphs over- 
come by the Ghibellines were driven into exile. It was 
from this time according to Villani, that the decline of 
the Genoese republic began, as if in punishment for that 
fratricidal madness and for their contempt of the paternal 
authority of Boniface. 
In the beginning of this book we discussed the subject 
of Guelphism and Ghibellinislu, and why and how the 
Popes held thelllSelves as the chiefs of the Guelph party; 
and we believ
 no Pope exerted himself so strongly to 
defend it and to combat the opposite party, as Boniface. 
Before he was Pope he was a Ghibelline, because his family 
followed that party,30 and when he becanle Cardinal he 
did not renounce being Ghibelline both because of family 
affection, and because of the great contempt he had for the 
Angevines. 'Yhen he became Pope, he transformed him- 
self into a Guelph by reason of the office which he held. 
The city in which above others the fierce and rabid spirit 
of these factions was displayed was Florence; and for that 
reason from the triumph, or discomfiture of one of these 
in Florence, the civil changes in many other Italian cities 
proceeded. In the thirteenth century this city advanced 
luuch in richness, in splendor of buildings, and in number 
of people; but precisely in this same thirteenth century 
(1215) the cursed feuds began among the citizens, who 
divided themselves into Guelphs and Ghibellines on occa- 
sion of the lnurder of Buondelmonte; and in 1250 the office 
of first captain of the people was created with twelve 
2V Epist. 13 apud Raynaldum 38. 
10 Villani . . . . . . . . di sua K azione Ghibellina. 



lÌISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 12;
 
elders, so much did the power to rule increase during the 
wars against Pisa, Siena, and other powerful citif'
. The 
Florentines were Guelphs by nature, and seeing their 
country prosper under republican institutions, they had 
no love for the Ghibellines who desired a foreign emperor 
as chief. Yet for all that, dissensions existed among them, 
owing to the enmities of the Uberti with the Amodei, so 
that the Ghibellines haying triumphed over the Guelphs 
who at :\Iontaperto, had formed thf' project, happily de- 
feated by Farinato "Gberti, to destroy Florence, as the only 
po

ible way of making it Ghibelline. Just as this tran- 
sient triumph was obtained through the aid of 
Ianfred, 
so through Charles of Anjou, the Guelphs not only re- 
ceived life, but firmly established themselves in Flol'encp 
and secured the entire government of the city; and unùer 
the Guelphs the government exercisf'd by the Priori of 
arts, became entirely democratic (1
8:> ) . The yictories 
gained by the Florentines over Pisa and Arezzo, Ghibel- 
line cities, the internal prosperity of the city in commerce 
and in the arts, should have indueed the Florentines to 
aim at the most holy object, whieh the mind of the Ronlan 
Pontificate contemplated for Italy. They had always 
found the Pontiffs favorable in their defence of Guelpllism, 
but always opposed when under the pretext of party 
opinion, the citizens 1l1easured s"rords with one another, 
and internal dissensions were enkindled. The Popes, 
ahvays Guelphs in their relations with Florence, were 
peacemakers always whenever they did not fight for prin- 
ciple, but for individuals. In fact in the year 1273, the 
Ghibellines reentered Florence only through a peaceful 
agreement effected by Gregory X. This Pope, and others 
with him, looked for peace and justice in Guelphism, 
solely because they could obtain neither the one nor the 
other in Italy whilst the Ghibellines ruled. Florence did 
not lend itself to this most honorable design and far from 
profiting by the power whieh came to her by her victories, 
she turned it to her detriment. The nobles and the people 
hegan to quarrel, and each party enrolled itself undf'r thf' 
Guelph or Ghibelline standard. In 1294 after the expul- 
sion of the daring Giano della Bella and the overthrow 
of the citizpn party, a very great edl threatf'nf'd Florence, 
and perhaps all Tuscany, namely the arrival of foreigners 



124 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
who would have nourished the furious dissensions, weak. 
ened the parties, and obtained dominion over those Italian 
p('oples. Things were in such disorder, that the nobles, in 
ord('r to regulate the public affairs, summoned John Da 
CavigJione, of the house of Burgundy, to make him the 
governor of their city. He came with well-nigh five hun- 
dred Burgundian and German knights, not only to assume 
the office of governor, but also that of imperial Vicar of 
all Tuscany, which he had received from Albert, Duke of 
Austria. 31 This Yicarship was displeasing to the Floren- 
tine nobles, for having made use of him and his people for 
the overthrow of the partisans of Giano dell a Bella, they 
did not wish to be bunlened further with him as their chief 
magistrate, and refused to pay the salaries of his five hun- 
dred knights. The foreigner becalne angry, and having set 
out for Arezzo, he induced that city to take arms with 
him against Florence, the Guelph. This foreign scourge 
could render incurable the domestic wounds; and this was 
the moment when the authority of the Pontiff was needed. 
Boniface met the danger at the earnest entreaty of the 
Florentines, who feared not only the people of Arezzo 
aided by Caviglione, but more especially these forlniùable 
words of right and Empire. The Pope induced the Floren- 
tines to pay twenty thousand florins to the Burgundian, 
who then departed peacefully, and thereby delivered Tus- 
cany from grave dangers. 32 
The care displayed by Boniface in quelling the dissen- 
sions and restoring peace in other states was not less 
ardent in the states of the Church, which were horribly 
convulsed, by reason of the Guelph and Ghibelline fac- 
tions. It is well known how fiercely were rent the cities 
in the Romagna, Umbria, and the l\Iarches, when the other 
cities of Italy became republics. Although these prov- 
inces, after the famous battles of the Papacy with the 
house of Hohenstaufen, had remained subject to the 
Church, yet there was manifested in them a vice which 
was consuming a vast part of Italy, we mean the want of 
a bond which united the dominant to the subdued parties. 
Cardinal legates went to preside over these province
, but 
this was the appearance, not the reality and power of 
government. The cities were governed in common, and 
81 Vi1lani c. x. s. R. J. 32 Dino Com. S. R. T. V, 9.479. D. E. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 125 
the authority entrusted now to the people, now to the 
noùles tended towal'd ruin; because it was not sanctified 
by right; and abOlninable, because it was always dishon- 
ored by the blood of the citizens. In these furious brawls 
the Ghibelline Lambertazzi and the Guelph Geremei were 
engaged a long while in Bologna; the Polenti and the lords 
of Bagnacavallo in Ravenna; the 
Iendoli and the Brizi 
in Imola; the l\[anfreds and the Accarisi in Faenza; the 
Ciambacari and the Amodei in Rimini; the Galbolia and 
the Ordelaffi in Forli; the Righizzi and the people in 
Cesena. The Ghibellines tended to a monarchy or aristo- 
cratic constitution, and for that reason were easily sub- 
servient to the Empire; whereas the Gnelphs, democratic 
in principles, found odious the restraint of the Empire, 
and aceorùingly they were more attached to the Church. 
The people being so divided the Pope had no control of 
them. At one time he was called upon to sit as arbiter to 
confirnl the authority of one of the factions; at another 
time to solkit aid both of money and men for the Guelph 
party, not by reason of command, but by the will of the 
men who revered hiIn as the head of the party, and not as 
the lord of the state. See to what narrow Ihnits the Papal 
juriHdietion had bepn reduced in those cities. This had 
heen further curtailed by the Counts of Romagna, the 
repl'f'
entatives of the imperial right. At the Council of 
Lyons Gregory X took pains to declare and confirm the 
rights of the Church in relation to the Empire, and to 
flptermine the limits of the temporal sovereignty of the 
Popes, which had been overthrown and rendered almost 
invisible b
y the N'aHOnS just given. In that universal 
assen1bly Radicofani and Ceprano were acknowledged the 
extreme limits of the Pontifical States, and these com- 
prised the Exar('hate of Ravenna, thp Five Cities, the 
)Iarches of Ancona, the duchy of Spolf'to, the county of 
Bprtinoro, and the lands donated by the Countess )[atilùa. 
From that time thf're were seen no more in Italy those 
importunate Imperial Vicars and those Counts of Ro- 
magna. The Fathers of the Council of Lyons confirmed 
the right, but the fact, respected indeed by the Empire, 
was always enfeebled by the Ghihelline party. 
The Popes Wf're eager for a dpmorrary confirmed by 
their tlwocracy, the OhiùeHiul's however cle
ired th(' sway 



1
6 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
of a foreign emperor. Although the former had prospered 
by the power of Charles, yet there were not wanting brave 
and valorous men in the opposite party, who constantly 
maintained a lively war. Uguccione della Faggiuola and 
Guy of 
Iontefeltro, terrible warriors belonging to the 
Ghibelline party, arose to great celebrity. Guy especiaJIy 
bad always done very grave damage to the Pontiffs, roan1- 
ing about Romagna with great bravery whenever called 
upon to give battle to the opposing party. His blood was 
truly Gbibelline, as his family had risen to a flourishing 
condition through imperial favors. His grandfather Buon- 
conto, son of :Monfeltrino, received from Frederick II in 
fief the sovereignty of Urbino, being already Count of 
l\Iontefeltro; and his father 
Ionfeltrino II kept that state 
which he left to Guy his eldest son in 1255. Guy surpassed 
his ancestors in his ardent devotion to the Empire and in 
military valor. Intrepid in war, he was too blood-thirsty; 
a mark for papal censures he never seemed disturbed by 
them. When the people of Forli, whose commander he 
was were defeated he bowed his head in submission to the 
wrathful l\Iartin, he delivered up to him his two sons as 
hostages, and underwent exile in Piedmont. 33 But return- 
ing to war when called by the Ghibelline Pisans, more ter- 
ribly than ever did he afflict tbe Guelphs, until the 
Pisans,34 against his will, made peace with the Florentines. 
Then he threw himself at the feet of Pope Celestine, we 
know not whether penitent for his deeds against the 
Church, or weary of his military life, asking pardon for 
having brought on the rebellions of Cesena and Forli, and 
many other evils occasioned to the Church; and he ob- 
tained it from the good Pontiff. 35 The proud spirit of 
Guy was humbled, but the Romagna was far from being 
peaceful, and when Boniface ascended the throne of Peter, 
filled with a strong desire of peace as he was, he wished 
immediately to provide for the good government of that 
province; for the Count of Romagna, Hobert de Corney, 
who was governor of Romagna 'Under Celestine, more 
through appointment of Charles than of the Pope, had 
embittered instead of appea!õ\ing' the minds, insomuch so 


31 Giacch. l\Ialasp. c. 227. 228.
Vi1lani, I. U. c. 107. 
at Villani. L. 8. c, 2. 10 Epist. Bonif. apud Raynaldus 1
4 D. 15. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


127 


that the province was altogether in revolt. 36 Boniface 
di!õ\missed him from office, and appointed in his stead Peter, 
Archbishop of )Ionreale. In the meanwhile fearing that 
the restless Guy uf )Iontefeltro, received in favor by Celes- 
tine, but not placed in pos
e:s:sion of his sovereignties, 
might break the proposals uf peace, he wished to gratify 
hilli, and kf>ep him as a friend. On the 23th of )Iay Guy was 
seen to enter FOl'1i in the company of a papal legate, and 
to receive from the same the possession of all his goods 
and states. The re
toration of Guy removed the danger 
that he would be hurtful to the Guelph party; but it did 
not bring peace. 37 The Archbishop of l\Ionreale did little 
to e!õ\tablish peace in the province and did many imprudent 
tllings. He removed from command in Faenza )Ianghin- 
ardo of Sussiana; he undertook to demolish in Ravenna 
the palaces of Guy of Polenta, and uf his son Lambert, 
and enkindled a terrible war in Faenza between the counts 
of CUl1iu and tIle )Ianfreùs un the une side, and on the 
otllPr 
Iallp:hillarùu, the RauIi and the Accarisi, who were 
defeated and expelled from the city. 
FiualI,v Bonifa(:e turul'd to 'Yilliam Durant, born in 
France' at Puy-Xisson in 1237. lIe had as teachers Henry 
of Sou:
a and Bernard of Parma, men very renowned in 
tho
e times for knowledge of law and skill in affairs. He 
was the auilm' of the work entitled: "Speculum Juris," 
\\'hkh Baldo, and Paul de Cm;tro praised highly, and for 
which lIe received the title of "
peculator." Popes Clem- 
('ut IV, Gregory X, .Kicholas III, )Iartin IV, and Honor- 
ius IV, appointed hinl to diffkult and honorable oftkes 
in which he conducted affairs so skilfuIIy, that he received 
another surname uf " Father of the Practical." He went 
as Papal Legate to the Council of Lyons, and was made 
Bi
hop of :\Icnde by lIonorius IV. In the fourth year of 
his episcopatp he wa
 sUlllmoned to Italy by Boniface, who 
maae him )Ial'quis of the 3Ial'ch of Ancona, and Count of 
Homag;lla, whi<-h office he on('e IH'ltl ull(lpr Honorius. IIis 
honl'sty and Rkill inspirf'<l the Pope with the hope of great 
thillg:-; from him. But in the annuls of Forli we finù no 
re(,01'd of anything {lone hy Durant to ('stabIi
h ppace in 
thp provinces which lIP was caIlpd to gOVl'I'Il, f'X('(lpt caval- 
cades and !õ\om(' parlpying' ",hidl hOl'P no fl'uit. rt is tI'Il.' 
M .A '111. Ca('<;('n. H. H. 1. c. p. 1110. 11 Chron. Forolh-o 
. H. 1. T. 2
. 



128 HISTORY OF: POPE BONIFACE ;VIII. 
he did not remain long in that office, for he died on the 
1st., of November of the following year 1296, and was 
buried in the church of St. :
\laria sopra )Iinerva in Rome, 
where his tomb is seen to this day. 
Boniface had his eyes fixed attentively on the kingdom 
of France, and on him who rul
d it, Philip IY, surnamed 
the Fair. The German Empire no longer caused fear; but 
France occasioned some apprehension to the Papal 11lind. 
And since in those times a people had nothing to distin- 
guish it from its king, for its rights, its will, and its very 
existence were included in that of the prince, Boniface 
in thinking of France, could not but :fix his mind on Philip 
who governed it. He was born in the year 1268, and his 
father Philip III having died on the 5th., of October 1285, 
he was only seventeen years of age when he ascended the 
throne of France. On the sixth day of January 1286 
Peter Barbet, Archbishop of Rheims, anointed him king in 
that city; and Pope Honorins IV congratulated him in a 
Bull containiJ;lg Dlany special favors and indulgences for 
those praying for the happy commencement of his reign. 
As the laws of the kingdom declared that the king attains 
his majority at thirteen years of age, he was accordingly 
free from all tutelage, and he took the reins of government 
into his own hands. Of immature age, alone on the throne, 
and not steadied by the advice of another, he cast his eyes 
upon his subject people, and he saw them bowed before 
him, his youthful mind was immediately intoxicated with 
the idea of supreme dominion. His mind devoid of the sci- 
ence of government, and his heart spoiled by the flattery of 
courtiers, his will alone was the rule of governing and the 
law for the subjects. He took as wife Joanna of Navarre 
who brought him as a dowry this other realm, the counties 
of Champagne and Brie which had belonged to her father, 
Henry of Navarre, and the county of Brigorre, which from 
Simon of l\Iontfort had descended to Theobald II, king of 
Navarre, the material uncle of Joanna. The increased 
territory inspired Philip with thirst for more; rendered 
him jealous of power, and inordinate in the use of it. As 
hiR grandfathpr was surnamed the Saint, and rightly; and 
11is father the Bold, wrongly; he was called the Fair, on 
account of pl1YHkaI beauty. The beauty of his soul was 
marred by an in
atiablp ]u
t for gold anò in order to sat- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 129 
isfy it, he never knew what justice was. IIe plundered the 
people, he robbeù the ehurches. In the distresses of the 
people he was never compalSsionate; and he was a bare- 
faceù yiolatoI' of the rights of the Church. France was 
reduced to such a condition, that far from correcting the 
vices of her king, she encouraged them. The feudal lords 
once formidable to the king, not only were subdued, but 
they did not offer any longer even a selublance of power 
to restrain the monarchy. After Louis IX had humbled 
them, they laid aside their rusty coat of mail and clothed 
themselves in the soft Italian and Flemish cloths; from 
warriors they degenerated into courtiers. The rest of the 
people were slaves. Authority in France was never so 
f'trictly confined in the will of the king, as at this time. In 
despotism and in rapine Philip had worthy and obedient 
ministers. In the former they were the jurisconsults, and 
in the latter two Italians, Biccio and l\Iusciatto, son!õ\ of 
Guy de Franzesi. The lawyers built a bulwark of law, 
upon which they hattled against the enemies of despotism, 
with that strength which arises in a body of men conscious 
of their own individual power in the state, and the support 
which it brings to the kingdom. And as a citadel of refuge 
they instituted the parliament in which injustice was clad 
in healthfulne!õ\s of forms. Being thus fortified, PhiIip 
found no obstacles to his profligacy. Among the orders of 
the State that of the clergy was the only one that annoyed 
him. These were bound together by laws which were not 
the civil laws; they posses!õ\ed rights which were not en- 
graven in the human codices, and for that reason invul- 
nerable by human power; they held a patriIllony conse- 
cra ted by religion to God; they had as their head the Ro- 
man Pontiff. Philip coveted their rights and possessions, 
and he was jealous of the Papal power. A Christian he 
was and his conscience might reproach him for his inordi- 
nate concupiscence of divine things; but his juri!õ\consults 
caused so llluch splC'ndor to shine from the crown, that 
his sight was dazzled, and Philip saw no other God but 
this. And if any struggle was to be foreseen, this assur- 
edly was no other but one with the Pope. 
ßonifaf'f' knew the character of Philip, since although 
inllIlaturp ill years, he had already shown himself ripe for" 
Oppl ession LJ' an act of awful villainy which in Italy, evcn 



130 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
lllore than elsewhere, gave him a vile reputation. The 
Italians at this time were very active in comnwrce. :Many 
of them carried it on in France, and as they were almost 
alone in trading they were very rich. On the night of 
)[ay 1st, 1291, Philip arrested them unexpectedly at the 
instance of his nlinisters and cast all of tbem into dark 
prisons. After some time they learned that they were thus 
punisbed for the sin of usury, and that to make them 
confe
s it they would be subject to cruel torture. These 
unfortunates purchased their life and liberty with their 
riches; and the judges who were to have condemned them 
collected the money and brought it to Philip. The hvo 
Florentines Franzesi advised this robbery; and the juris- 
con
ults palliated anù justified it, not being ashamed of 
their ruffianisln. 38 
In order that we may know how the relations between 
Boniface and Philip began to be strained, it win be neces- 
sary for us to say something about Edward of England, 
for the rem
on that fronl the enmity engendered between 
hiIn and Philip followed the like feelings between Philip 
and Boniface. 
Edward, the first of his name, son of Henry III, was 
fifty-six years old when Boniface assnITwd the Pontificate. 
In person he was tall, hence nicknamed, "Longshanks," 
but well proportioned; the length of his arms gave addi- 
tional force to his stroke; and when he was once placed on 
his saddle, no struggle of his horse, no shock of the enemy 
could di
lodge him fl'Olll his seat. In telnper he was warm 
and irascible, impatient of injury, and reckless of danger: 
hut his angel' mi
ht be disarmed by submission, and his 
temerity seemed to be justified by success. He was not 
hard-hearted; at least not without affection for his own 
family. fIe was in Sicily when he received the first news 
of hi
 father's death; the tears which he shed on that occa- 

don, though they excited the surprise of Charles of 
\njou, 
bore honorable testiInony to the goodness of his heart. 
Inasmuch as he alone had hastened to the declining for- 
tunes of the Holy Land, and had arrested for a time the 
fan of Ptolemais, his name was dear to Christians and to 
Home. He was considered as the champion of Christen- 
dom, the martyr of the cro
s. Returning fr0111 the East his 
'8 Villani, book 7, ch. 14G. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 131 
journey through Italy was a triumphal procession; at 
e"cry city tLe magistrates, clergy and people, came out to 
receive him; and the :l\1ilanese forced on his acceptance 
valuable presents of horses and scarlet cloth. In ambition 
he did not yield to any of his predecessors; but his ambi- 
tion aimed at a very different object. Tiley had exhausted 
their strength in attempting conquests on the continent 
which might be wrested frOlll them at any time by a for- 
tunate neighbor; he aspired to unite in himself tIle sover- 
eignty of the whole island of Great Britain. For that 
reason he set about to subjugate "Tales and ScotJand, and 
incorporate thcm with England. The many wars in which 
he was engaged necessarily involved him in extraordinary 
expenses, and to supply his wants he taxed the churches 
exceedingly. But the barons and bishops of England be- 
ing fortified by the Magna Charta opposed his wishes 
vel1emently, and used force to check him. Edward not 
only was restrained, but was even placed in great danger 
by reason of the taxes. 
Frolll 1284 to the tÏ1ne whereof we speak, Edward had 
conquered by force of al'l11S all the country of \Yalps, and 
was proceeding gradually to obtain sovereignty over Scot- 
land, having in 1293 received the oath of vassalage from 
naliol, to whom by his selection had been given the crown 
of that kingdom. These successes violently excited the 
jealousy of Philip the Fair, but Edward gave him no cause 
to reprove him. As duke of Aquitaine, which he held in 
fi('f from France, among his first acts on ascending the 
English throne, he swore fealty to PhiJip. Edward found 
this yoke heavy, but did not shake it off; Philip 110wen'r 
could not bear the tl10ught of his conquests. Tl1ese two 
princes began to be involved on occasion of a private dis- 
pute. In 1293 two sailors an Englishman and a Nornlan 
quarrelled and fought, and the Norman died from his 
wounds. This was the spa1"l{ tl1at kindled the firp of war 
first between the French and the English, and afterwards 
the sovereigns. In 1293 offences and retaJiation were so 
frequent and warm that the navies of each country took 
part in the quarrel without the customary formal declara- 
tion of war. Fortun{> or valor favored the English, and 
the French were badly beaten. Edward considering the 
fray private and not orùered by him, refursed to accept 



132 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
the part of the booty which was coming to him from the 
battle. 39 He did not desire war; but these precautions 
were not sufficient to prevent Philip from going to a meet- 
ing crowded with his jurisconsults, the omnipotent crea- 
tors of law, who sanctioned Philip's secret design of driv- 
ing Edward from the French continent. 
In that disorderly war it was asserted that the people 
of Bayonne, the subjects of Edward, had attempted to 
surprise the port of Rochelle. Philip as the direct lord of 
Aquitaine ordered Edward's lieutenant to lodge the ac- 
cused in a French prison. He neglected the requisition; 
and for that reason the officials of Philip wished to expel 
from that region the disobedient vassals, but they were 
driven back by arms. Then in consequence Philip sent a 
peremptory summons to Edward, as his vassal, ordering 
him to appear within twenty days, before his parliament, 
and answer for these offences against his sovereign. The 
EngIi
h prince who saw the real object of Philip, endeav- 
ored to appease his resentment. He offered compensation 
to the French sufferers, and to make restitution for injury 
and lo
s; and when this was refused, proposed to refer the 
dispute to an arbitrator of their choice who might be the 
Pope, whoie office it was to preserve concord among 
princes. 
The offers he renewed through his brother Edmund, 
whOln he dispatched as ambassador to France. But Ed- 
mund was a man of simplicity, and was no match for 
Philip and his lawyers. Philip's sole object, he was told, 
was to guard his honor, and to do this a promise was givpn 
that, if Gascony was surrendered to him for forty days in 
1294, it should be at the expiration of that period faith- 
fully restored. A secret treaty to that effect was con- 
cluded. It was 8igned by the eonsort of Philip; Edward 
signified his consent; and the: French monarch, in the 
presence of several witnesses, promised to observe it on 
the worù of a king. The citation against Edward was now 
withdra wn. At the expiration of forty days Ednlllnd re- 
minded Philip of his promise; but was requested to for- 
bear till certain lords of the council would have departed 
from Paris. Some days after he repeated his demand, and 
received a positive refusal. Philip took his seat in his 
1\1 Walsingham 60-481. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 133 
court, rejected the arguments of Edward
s advocate
, and 
although the citation had been withdrawn, condemned him 
as contumacious, and pronounced judgment against him 
by default of appearance. 40 Friendship between the two 
princes was broken. Edward, by the advice of a great 
council, a ppealed to arms to enforce his rights. 
In the coming war, each one of the opponents resolved to 
strengthen his side by alliances with other princes. Philip 
won over to his side Eric, king of 
 orway, enemy of Ed. 
ward, who had excluded him from the throne of Scotland; 
Rudolph, the deposed king of the Romans who hoped to 
supplant his rival Adolphus of Xassau; Hugh of Longivy; 
James of ChatiIlon, lord of Leuse and of Condé; Florence, 
count of Holland; Otto IV, count of Burgundy; and finally 
some cities of Castile, and the communes of Fontara. 
bia, and St. Sebastian. Edward called to his aid Adolphus 
of Nassau, king of the Romans whom Philip deprived of 
the territory of Arles and Burgundy; and Philip of Rich. 
mond, duke of Brittany. But morè vigorous action de. 
volved on them both reciprocally, in stirring up powerful 
enemies as it were in their own houses. Philip concluded 
an alliance offensive and defensive with John Baliol, king 
of Scotland, on whom Edward had imposed a heavy yoke, 
and they promised one another to move their forces against 
Edward if he should invade France or ScotIand. 41 Ed- 
ward from 1294 had concluded a treaty with Guy of Dam- 
piere, Count of Flanders, and vassal of France, wherein 
the latter promised in marriage his daughter Philippa 
with a very rich dowry. But Philip the Fair by charnling 
pretenses knew how to entice Guy and the affianced one to 
Paris, whom he wickedly imprisoned in the tower of 
Louvre. Guy found a way of escape, but his unfortunate 
daughter remained a prisoner until she died, as he said, 
of poison. 42 These acts of violence bound together more 
clm:ply the Flenlish count and Edward, and inspired the 
former with fury with which he later on waged war against 
Philip, 
'Yhilst these princes were acting in this hostile manner, 
Bonif:H'e, who was at this time in Anagni, was entertain- 
ing strong hopes of peace. As he desired sincerely peace, 
4ü Rym. ii 619-ü22. 
 Rymer. Tom. II, p, 695. 
ÐVillani. '.III. 19-Chron. Nangii 1294.-\Valsing 29. 



134 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
he mac1(' l1
e of an the priviJegrs of his office, fiS fatlH'l' 
of the faithful and pracelllaker, to effect a peace betwpen 
Philip and Edward. Claude Flpury obRerves that pr('- 
cisely the action of Boniface in this affair was ill-timed, 
in that he wished to intrude hinlself in othrr affairs, and 
make himself master of thpm. 43 But if the good confessor 
of Louis XIY, to the knowledge of jurisprudence which 
he eminently possessed, had added a little of that which 
is called the philosophy of history, he would have easily 
understood that the Ronlan Pontiff in the time of Boni- 
face, by common consent of the people, was the acknowl- 
edged arbiter in grave controversies, which opinion did 
not prevail any nlore in his time. In fact Edward of his 
own free will suggested to Philip to submit their case to 
the decision of Boniface, because it was his duty to pre- 
serve peare among the faithful. 
Therefore in ord('l' to soothe their angry feelings Boni. 
face entered as mediator between Edward and Philip, and 
their followers, that if blood of the people Iuight not be 
shed nor tIle revenue of the churches appropriated to carry 
on tlw war. It is true however that in all this affair of 
the peare he alwa,ys leaned to the side of Philip the Fair, 
and the issue røm1ted in his favor. In February 12D3 he 
dispatelled as legates to England and I''''rancc, Cardinal 
Bernard, bishop of Albano, and Cardinal Simon, bishop 
of Palestrina, to urge tlwse kings to lay down their arlllS. 
They were ordered to serye tIlose unholy allianc.es; to a b- 
solve the parties from the oath that bound them; to remove 
all obstacles in the way of peace; and they had full power 
to threaten them witIl censures, closing at the same time 
any way of appea1. 44 
In )lay 1293 the legates arrived in Paris; 4
 and froln 
there in July they set out for London. Edward received 
them with all honor and respect, and summoned a great 
parliaIllent at \Yestminster. In this parHament tIle 
legates explainrd the reasons of their embassy, and Ed- 
nlund, the brother of the king, and John Lacy Inade known 
the reasons of their war with France, which at present was 
suspended. Tbe papal projects for peace, although pleas- 
ing to Edward, could not be accepted by llim without tIle 
43 Lib. 89. nUJll. 42, 44 Raynaldus, 1295, 41 Epi. 2. Lib. 1. 
e:! Chr. Guill. Nangii apml Achery, T. 3. 1295, 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 135 


consent of Adolphus, King of the Roman!':, who was in 
league with him. IIe agreed, as God willed, to a ce
!';ation 
of hostilities until Xovember. 46 But alas! in the mid
t of 
these hope
, suddenly the French made a descent on Dover 
and brought it to ruin; as soon as the news of this reached 
Edward, not only did he break the truce, but his anger 
and indignation was increased.- 
In the nleanwhiJe Boniface accompanied from afar his 
legates by letters so as to give strengtl1 and support to 
their proceedings. One dated the 28th of )Iay, 129G, froln 
Yelletri, be addressed to Edward, which lllay have arriveù 
wldle tbe parJianwnt of 'Yestminster was in 
e

ion. In 
this letter he exhorted hinl to dismiss the thought of war, 
as those feats of arms which he practi
ed were a work 
unsuited to his years, verging as he was on old age, and 
tbe body advanced in years being unable to enùure tbem. 
Had he forgotten, that he was bound by now to the 
supreme King, for the rescue of the Holy Land '? -nTas he 
not mindful of the injury he would do to his eternal salva- 
tion, by turning the forces against his fellow Christians, 
which he should rather turn against the infidels? Did he 
not consider the contest unLt'coming a king, and an occa- 
sion of joy to the enelllies of the Cross? He be
ought hitn 
through tile Lord J psus Christ, through reyerence foT' the 
A postolic See, and for the good of his soul to Illake peace 
with PhiIip.47 For the attainment of the SaIne peace 
Boniface f'ìpnt as legates to Adolphus, King of the Romans, 
the Arch ùi
hop of Reggio and the Bishop of Siena. 
Adolphus trusting in Edward hoped to gain lllany advan- 
tages by the war; but his rival Albert who wished to de- 
priye him of the crown, kept hilll uneasy, and rendered 
necessary the good-will of the Pope. 'Vherefore he had 
already sent his messengers to make profes
ion of his de- 
votion to the Roman Church, but they made no mention of 
peace. Boniface returned him thanks for his devotion, 
and signified to him hiH good-win. He exhortf'd bim not 
to bave hi!': actions at variance with bis worùs; he desired 
peace betwepn hint and Philip, and to accomplish it he 
f;ends him as legatps the two aforesaid pl'elates. 48 In 
another letter, reminding him of hi!': unstable sovereignty, 
48 Rymer. Tom. II Pag. li8!). 41 Chron. Vill. Kangii ;-1fatth. Westm. 4- 
Knyghton de Ev. Angli. lib III, page 2503. 48 Raynaldus 1295 Epi. 171. 



136 HISTORY OF POpE BONIFACE VIII. 
he began in a certain way to complain, because at his 
solemn elevation to the Papacy, he did not see the usual 
ambassadors of the King of the Romans: " Are these, my 
son, the laudable beginnings of your greatness? Are these 
" the invitations and the encouragement you give the Ro- 
"man Church to aid you in Jour needs? In fact consid- 
" ering yourself elected, and as it were called by God to 
" strive for the peace and tranquillity of all Christendom, 
" in the very beginning you prepare yourself with all your 
"strength, and gird on your armor with all skin, to involve 
"the world in troubles, to stir up strife among Christian 
"princes, and you use your efforts not without great detri- 
"ment to your honor. Is it perhaps becon1Ïng to you, 
o 
"great and powerful a prince, to be enticed to take up 
"arms, like a common Boldier, by the attraction of some 
" stipend? 49 As a lover of your honor, reputation and 
"advancement I put before you these things."- 
And in order that his words might be supported by a 
more effectual argument, after haYing by letter exhorted 
the bishops of Germany to receive his legates honorably, 
and to consider as valid any censures which they might 
impose upon the contumacious; and after having tried to 
move the mind of Adolphus by means of a certain Diterius, 
a Dominican Friar, of great authority with the king on 
account of his piety,50 he then began to write to the Arch- 
bishop of 
Iainz, that in case Adolphus would not desist 
from the war, he should refuse him aid and subsidies. 
This was taking all power from the king. For when he 
ascended the throne he found that the princes of the Em- 
pire, during the interregnum, had usurped lllany mone- 
tary rights which belonged to the sovereign, and the bene- 
fits pertaining to the German crown; and therefore, the 
income from his paternal states being meagre, it was only 
from the prince electors, and the vassals that he could 
obtain support in money. 
Laudable was that work which Boniface 
et out to per- 
form, to restrain the warlike intentions of these two 


tII And it was true. "Romanorum Rex Adulfus Regi Angliae Eduardo 
pecunia contra Regem Franciae confederatus . . . . . . ." \YilIiam Nangii 
Chron. 1294.
" Rex Angliae misit Regi Romanorum XXX millia Mar- 
corum, ut retulit qui vidit . . . .." Chron. Colmariense, par. 2. 
!IO RaynalduB year 1295-46, 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 137 
princes for the good of their people and of the Church. 
The war could not be carried on without money, and to ob- 
tain it Edward as well as Philip levied many and heavy 
taxes on both the laity and the clergy; so that the former 
were impoverished, and the latter complained of the viola- 
tion of their sacred immunities. Precis
ly in the very 
month of l\Iay that the Papal legates hail arrived in Paris 
for the sake of making peace, Philip di
graced his royal 
dignity, and outraged in the most vile luanneI' the sacred 
rights of his people by that cursed war. He caused to be 
published throughout the kingdom the following scandal- 
ous edict. "The pecuniary distress into which the affairs 
"of the kingdom were placed, made it incumbent on him 
"to coin a money, which would perhaps be wanting in 
"weight and value; and he bound himself and his wife 
"Joanna of Navarre, to make good the loss that anyone 
" would suffer thereby."-This fair promise prevented the 
stupefied French people from crying out immediately, but 
afterwards they did protest and complain when the King 
ahsolved himself from n1aking re
titution.51 
But whilst the heart of Boniface was grieving over his 
fruitless efforts with the English and French prince
, an- 
other Northern prince, laid his hands rudely, not only on 
goods but also on persons consecrated to Goò. This prince 
was Eric IV, king of Denmark. But before speaking of 
his violence towards the Archbishop of Lund, in order to 
understand it better, it will be necessary for us to go 
back a little. After the death of Pope Innocent III, the 
derical immunities and the ecclesiastical patrimonies 
began to be affected greatly, and the secular power with 
little model'ation violated them, in the more civilized 
countries through the pretext of avenged rights, in the leHH 
civilized through impetuosity of power. Among the latter 
were the kings of Denmark, a kingdom whieh comprisea 
the great peninsula of Jutland, and othl'r islands. Al- 
though the light of the Gospel was brought to it in S
6 by 
St. Anscherius, a Benedictine monk frol11 the monastery of 
Corby in France, yet the Danes persevered in piracy, which 
they practised especially to the detriInent of France.t\2 
1I10 r din, of the kings of France T. I, p. 325 . . . . . . , . "Daua la 
quelle il manquera peut etre quelque chose du poid." ou du titre." 
13 Art de Verif. les dates. 



138 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
Piracy having ceased, their rough hahit
 en(lured, and in 
Danish history there are ever to be deplored cruel wars, 
the IllUI"ders of kings, rebeUions of the peoples; in a word, 
little sounùness of justice, llIuch uncontrol1able power 
and sa ,age force. There is no doubt that even the clerics 
Wel"e not an free frOll1 the vices of that people, but it is 
certain that reverence for God and his nlinisters was a 
shield often too weak to witllstand the attacks of the in- 
ordinate power of the Dani
h princes. 'Ye find that frOln 
the year 1257, the bishops were subjected to vexations by 
the violence of the secular power, anù resolved to fortify 
themselves against it by decrees enacted in a national 
council. They cmne together, and in a s
Tnod enacted four 
decrees, which are found among the epistles of Alexander 
IY,53 published by Raynaldus and :Uansi,54 the preface of 
which is the declaration of the reasons for this sacred 
assembly, and which it may be well here to produce. 
"The Danish Church being exposed to such grievous perse- 
"cutions frOln tyrants, who do not even hesitate before 
"the eyes of the King to inflict injuries and threats on 
"the persons of the bishops, who present themselves as a 
"wall of defence to the house of God; which threats are 
" rightly to be feared, since the clergy are deprived of all 
" protection of the secular power, who and the tyrants free 
" in audacity, and unrestrained by royal fear, can proceed 
" to worst excesses, hence the Church has enacted by the 
"authodty of the present Council. . . . . . . .." The 
decrees then foUow, which full of Apostolic liberty of 
judgment, serve as a waU to protect the episcopal imnluni- 
ties against the tyranny even of the king. They decreed 
to interdict the divine offices throughout Denmark, if a 
bishop were hnprisoned, struck, or maltreated by the 
order, consent, or approval of the king. If these evils 
were visited on a bishop by a foreign potentate, under the 
suspicion of being abetted hy the king, or some noble of 
the kingdom, the diocese of the prelate maltreated will 
remain interdicted. The kingdom wiU be interdicted, if 
the king, after being admonished by two bishops or clerics, 
stubbornly refuses to repair the injury within the space 
of six months. Solemn excommunication was hurled 
r>, Lib. 3. Epist. G74, 
M Coll. Max. ConcH. Tom. 23, colum. 945 for ;rear 1257. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


139 


against any priest or chaplain celebrating the divine offices 
in time of interdict, either in public, or in the presence of 
anyone of these potentates. 
I
"'l'Onl the remedies applied for their removal the evils 
hpcolue known, which far from diminishing, only in- 
crease, since the Danish kings could not be persuaded that 
God rules over the churches by His ministers. The blows 
were always directed against the Archbishop of Lund, the 
principal See of Denmark. One year after the aforesaid 
s;ynod, Christopher I cast into prison Jalues Erlander, 
Archbishop of Lund. 'Ye COlue now to the time of Eric 
)lenved, and new disputes with John Grandt, Archbishop 
of Lund. The reason of the dispute was the a
sunlption of 
his see 1.y Grandt before being confirnled in it hy the ap- 
proval of the king. He repaired to Rome to confer with 
the POpf' on the wants of his see, and on his return in 1293 
he held a 
ynod of his suffragans at TIoschihl to guarantee 
the liherty of the bishops wickedly attacked by Eric.5
 
Tl1at whicl1 should have instructed the prince in wisflom 
and prlHlence aggravated him, and deceived by that pesti- 
lential plague wl1Ïch ever besieges thrones, we lllean the 
flattel'ers,56 he became exceedingly violent. .A certain 
Hannon Jonah, the majordomo of Eric's father, Eric Glip- 
ping, had been cast into prison, being accused of the con- 
spiracy against his lord Eric, who was killeù while asleep 
by the blow of a dub in the village of Finorap, near 'Vil- 
burg, in 128(t Under torture he confessed the crime, and 
he paiù the penalty with his life. The deceased Ranon 
was a nephew of the Archbishop of Lund. This relation- 
ship servefl as a good prptext for considering the prelate 
guiItJ", and for judging him accordingly. He ordered his 
1.rother Christopher to hnprison the Archbishop and 
,Jalnes I.angius, provost of the diocese of Lund; and to 
justify the sacrilege, he spreaf1 the report that tlw Arch- 
bishop had been an acconlplice in the 11llll'der of his father 


II
 Joh. Isac. l'ontanus Rerum Damicar. Rist. Edict. ..\mstelodami 1631 
in fol. lib. VII, pag. 378. 
116. . . . . . . Serenitas regia pravis, ut creditur, stimulata sussuris, et 
mendacibus provocata suasibus perversorum, qui mala malis adjicere 
satagunt! (Epi!'lt. 
5R ad Reg. Danic. Bonifac VIII.) And I believe he 
al<;o alluderl to the mother of Eric IV who was regent during the tender 
years of Eric. 



140 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
Eric Glipping, because he was a blood relation of the arch- 
conspirator in the crime; and besides he had assumed the 
See of Lund against his will. After nine years the Danish 
King took notice of the complicity of the Archbishop. 
His innocent relationship with the conspirator was a 
crime, and the exercise of ecclesiastical freedom was a 
fault. But no, the prelate was guilty only of a noble re- 
sistance to the tyranny of an arrogant prince. In fact, in 
order to conceal the true reason of that imprisonment, 
feigning devotion to the Church, the King issued certain 
royal decrees in which he declared, that he undertook the 
defence of the church of Lund deprived of a pastor; that 
he is the vindicator of the rights and liberties of the same. 
. . . . . " We will not allow," said he "holy 
Iother 
" Church, or the clergy of this diocese, now deprived of its 
"pastor, to be oppressed and harassed in their property, 
"rights and liberty by the violent attacks of certain 
" tyrants; as we are specially obliged by the office we hold 
"to provide carefully for their peace and quiet." He 
wished to expel tyrants, and yet making himself Pope, he 
wa
 a wolf in the fold." ri7 
Therefore to the greatest injury and scandal of the 
Church of Lund, the Archbishop and Provogt languished 
in prison for some weeks, and there did not seem to be any 
hope of release. Finally, the Provost escaped from prison, 
in a way known only to God, and went straight to Rome, 
and poured out his complaints to the Papal Court, for 
hp had left Denmark involved in a terrible civil war. 
Boniface listened attentively, as he should to the com- 
plaints of the fugitive Provost, and that the recital of such 
great violations of ecclesiastical immunities went to his 
heart, is not to be doubted. Yet he restrained his just 
indignation, and did not proceed with severity against 
Eric, before everything had been made clear. He sent as 
legate, Isarno, Archpriest of Carcassone, who was to exe- 
cute that which he had expressed in a letter to the Danish 
King. Boniface began by lamenting the evils which en- 
compassed Denmark and says: 58 "His heart was pierced 
"to hear how the kingdom is torn by discords, the 
" whole nation being in revolt; the salvation of souls being 


11 Pontan. D
n. Bist. Lib. VII, p. 380. 


D8 Spis. 358, Raynaldus 50. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 141 
" neglected, as all thought of piety had vanished; and for 
"that reason the waJP was wide open for wicked deeds, 
" for the performance of horrible and nefarious designs, 
"for the stirring up of litigations, and for inciting 
"hatreds. All this was owing to the sacrilegious oppres- 
" sion and imprisonment of his brother John, Primate of 
"Lund, with an affront so great to the Divine :l\lajesty, 
"with contempt for the Apostolic See, and injury to ec- 
" clesiastical liberty; he besought hÏIn through Christ our 
"Lord, and comnutnded hin} to release the Archbishop, 
"and not hindpr hÏIu from coming to Rome, as his im- 
"pri:.-;onnlent was a most grievous offence to the King of 
" Glory, who kept him on his throne; a disturbance in the 
" Church, and a scandal to the faithful. Finally he would 
" send him legatees well instructed in the affair, to make 
"thenlselves understand it more clearly, and who would 
"nutke wholesome and energetic provisions for peace in 
"the kingdom." 
The Archbishop did not await from the king the priv- 
ilege of repairing speedily to HOlne, but through the pious 
artifice of his bearer of food, who had concealed, in a large 
loaf of hread which he carried to him, a file and a silken 
ladder, he possessed at length the means of escape from 
prison. The reader can readily imagine how quickly he 
set out for Rome, and how strongly he complained of the 
persecutions he had undergone. 
The bright hopes which Boniface entertained as a result 
of the interview with Frederick at Velletri vanished. The 
Sicilians abhorred the French yoke, and Frederick him- 
self heard the voice of ambition which called him to the 
throne. The legates dispatched by Boniface could no- 
where find a hearing, as everyone in Sicily was whony 
engaged in certain reports about Janles of Aragon, who 
faithful to the pronlises of peace, set about to fulfil thellL 
to their great despair. It was 
aid that he hail surren- 
dered his rights over Sicily to Charles of X aples. Then 
Constance, the mother of Frederick, having summoned a 
parlianwnt of the chief men of the island, resolved to senl} 
l(>gate
 to .T an1eS to learn the truth of these reports and to 
(li

lUHle hin} from ceding his rights. These who were 
sent "ere Catalio Rusto, Sartorio Bisala, and Hugh 
C3]3('. They l.('pre
entecl not only ('m:
tan("e, but all 



1-12 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
Sicily. 59 \Vhen they arrived at Barbera in Catalonia: on 
the 29th of October,60 they found things just as they had 
been reported in Sicily; they were even witnesses of how 
solemnly peace was proclain1ed between Charles and 
James; and they saw Blanche led as a sponse to him by 
the two legates of Boniface, as \Yilliam Cardinal of St. 
Clempnt, whom the Pope had designated to al:company 
the betrothed, had dieel on the way. Great was the grief 
whkh seized the Sicilian ambassadors; and going before 
James, in the n10st forcible and eloquent IlUtUner they 
strove to dissuade hhn frOlll his purpose, because his re- 
nuneiation of Sicily would cast thPIll headlong into the 
arll1S of the detested French. But although James was 
affected by their words, he renutined faithful to the prOlll- 
ised peace, and with kind words he dismissed the legates. 
Driven to desperation, they burst into tear
 and wailings. 
tparing their garments in token of their unmeasured 
grief; and in presence of the entire court of ...-\.ragon they 
soleuully declared that they would consider themselves 
absolved from all allegiance to James, and free to create 
any king they pleased. They did not wish to depart before 
James had given thenl in writing his renunciation, less as 
a dOCullwnt of the fact, than a Inarvel for posterity. For 
they could not undcl'stand how J êunes, called by them to 
rule over Sicily, now could so cruelly abandon them to 
their ellcluies. And with this document they departed. 
On tl1e journey they showed their anguish in otlwr ways. 
They put 011 long trailing gaI'lnents of lllourning, and 
they painted black the luasts and the sails of the sl1ip on 
which they sailed, that it lllight be apparent to everyone 
that they were the bearers of sad news. 61 
The Sicilians, assured of the truth of the concluded 
peace, and the surrender of James of Aragon of his rigl1ts 
over Sicily into the hands of the Pontiff, the direct lord 
of that island, as appears from the chronicles of the time, 
expressed their surprise and complaints. But there is 
reason to believe that the fact was agreeable to then1; for 
being absolved from all allegiance to Rome and to Charles 


'
Franc. Maurolyci. Sicu Rist. lib. IV F. apud Burill; Fazzelli De 
rebus Sicul. lib. XI cap. 3 ihi. 60 Nic. Speciale Chron. Sicil. c. 52. 
111 Lucii :\Iarinei Siculi de rebus Hispaniae lib. XI, apud Alldream Scot. 
tUlli J Frankfort Hi30. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 143 


by their volition, and from James by his renunciation, 
they felt thenu.:plves free both in body and n1Ïnd to estab- 
li
h a forIll of government, which born of the people 
would create a standard of justice between the people 
and the prince, as a regulator for the 1I1Onarchy and an 
assurance of the prosperity of the subjects. The proposi- 
tion was not displeasing to Frederick, since to an arùent 
and an1bitious 
youth the viceroyalty meant little whereas 
the crown nleant very much, even if offered hy a people 
rebellious to the Holy See. Therefore a parliament was 
hel(1 in Palermo, where, as yet timid, because of the un- 
certainty of the universal choice, the Sicilian raised the 
cry of Frederick as lord and not as king of the island. 

r ore sol(,111n was the assP1Ilbly of Catania which 111et in 
the Church of St. Agatha, where not only the syndics, but 
also the chief Illen of the kingdOlIl united in consultation, 
with one voice proclaimed Frederick kil1g/)
 Roger Loria, 
and Yinciguerra Palizzi, fiery orators, harrangued thpm. 
They would recognize in the people the right of selecting 
1he king, and to justify the act, they did not disavow the 
right of Rome, affirming that James could resign his own 
right over Sicily into the hands of the Church, but that he 
eould not despoil Frederick. In fact James did not resign 
the <.'rown into the hands of the Sicilians, but into those 
of Charles; and in compensation he receiv('d from the 
French king the provinces of ..lnjou and Forcalquer. G3 
To appear 1I1Ore r('a80nablc they should have protested 
more frankly, and have said that, not wi
hing to have the 

overeignty of ROllie reprpsented hy Charles 1 hey had the 
right to elect a king. 

 \s soon as Boniface had heard of the acts of the pal'- 
liament of Palern10, he began to (lespair of bringing the 
Sicilians ba('k to the obedi
nce of the Church by 1uild 
and peaceful measures. I10wever, though he could have 
1nade war, aided by tlle French and the .\..ragonians, ypt 
he suspended hostilities and resorted to peaceful wa
Ys. 
The last efforts, which were abo to prove vain, for the 
reason that a people lately out of scrvitude, and con- 
fident of its own strength and valor, will not allow itself 
to be It,d. The open wounds inllicted by tlle first Charles 
were still hlcp(ling, aud the iutoxicatioll 0\"<.'1' the 1"'],c11('h 
412 
ich. Special. lib. 2 cap. 23-FazzcI. lib, IX c. 2. 411 See ÐOCUIJtPIIL K, 



144 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
Yes pel's was still clouding their minùs. I t is true that 
the Sicilians suffered under the French, and thpir anger 
and abhorrence of their governlnent were just, yet it was 
also true that undc>r Boniface the saUle rascality would 
not be practised with impunity, He was just and power- 
ful. On a former occasion complaints hardly listened to 
in the papal court pl'l'ceded and engendered that terrible 
ren>nge, and now robbed the Sicilians of all confidence 
in Bonifare. The Pontiff knew this, aud in order to dis- 
abuse their lninds of all fear of a foreign tyrant, he pro- 
posed to them hy his legate Boniface Calamandrano, 
Grand l\Iaster of the Knights of St. John, the most just 
conditions, telling them: "That by the treaty of peace 
"with James, Sicily was returned to the full control of 
" the Church; that he, Pope, as father of the family and 
"lord, wished to provide for their safety; that a people 
without a ruler could not sn bsist; that they nlÍght select 
"from the college of Cardinah; one WhOUl they n1ight 
" think was most fit to rule over them; and that he would 
"consent to their choice." :K 0 Frpnchman, nor any 
stranger whosoever was in questiou. Boniface wished 
the Sicilians to be under Italian rule. It was better to 
hold the reins in his own hands than transfer them to 
Charles; nor could the latter complain of Boniface, who 
owing to the intoleran(>e of Sieil
y, which was shaking off 
the Papal yoke, as direct lord could provide measures 
against it, much Letter than the French lord, who was a 
vassal. And Boniface reasoned correctly. For already 
there entered dc>epl
y into his mind the bad faith of James 
eontained in saying to the Sicilian legates, that he left 
them free to choose the king; and also that Frederick was 
a knight and knew what to do. And it was better for the 

icilians to obey the Pope, all" Italian, than an Aragonian. 
For if the Sidlians had been cooler headed, they could 
have expelled Charles, breaking the bond which united 
Rome with Anjou; and in expelling the French they 
would have had a helper, anù not an enelny in Boniface. 
The events wlÜch happened later between the Pope and 
Philip the Fair, would have confirmed Boniface as an 
ally; but they would have no one but Frederick. 
In the strongest manner, but with weak reasons, Boni- 
face again tried to persuade Frederick to leave Sicily. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 145 
ITe returned again to the project of a marriage with 
Catherine, the titular Elnpres
 of Constantinople. 64 But 
Frederick preferred rather to retain Sicily than undergo 
the risk of an uncertain conquest; nor did Catherine wish 
to be married to Frederick, a king without a kingdOlu. 
Yet Boniface was using this argument, enforcing it with 
promises of aid to raise Frederick on the throne of Con- 
stantinople. But Frederick would not leave nor would 
Constance, his mother, accede to the wishes of the Pope. 
The promise
 assured in the letters were made known to 
the people of 
lessina by Calamandrano in a public con- 
ference; and then he unfolded certain parchments all 
white, and provided with the papal seals, saying that their 
every desire, immunity, freedolll and every other thing 
good for their government could be written in these, be- 
cause the Pope would hold them as granted and sacredly 
valid. But their nlinds were unalterably intent on 
Frederick, and were trained not to confide in the Roman 
Court. Thry considrreù those prOlnises as treacherous, 
and they rejected them, replying :-" That they had 
already created Frederick king, and the coronation only 
was wanting, which would soon take place." And Vinci- 
guerra Palizzi, and Roger of Loria electrified the crowd 
with the eloquence of tribunes. .At the same moment 
Peter Anselone broke through the ranks with naked sword 
in hanù, and flourishing it in the face of the legate, who 
still held the parchments unrolled, as
ailed him with these 
words: "The Sicilians do not purchase peace with paper, 
hut with the sword. That he should quickly lea,'e the 
country under penalty of death." The Graud 
Iaster de- 
parted illllnediately, not wishing, as Speciale relates to 
suffer martyrdom. 6ú 
However, although the embassy had failed in persuad- 
ing the minds of the Sicilians, yet the effort of the Grand 
)laster to deprive them of a nlost powerful support, namely 
that ,-aliant naval cOlluuander, Roger of Loria, was not 
unsuccessful. 'Yhile the Sicilians were laboring to free 
them
elyps from the papal jurisdiction, Roger, by his 
skill and power made hilll
clf nmster of two islands lying 
along the African coast, and dirpetly ("ollllwispd in tlH- 
lit Ep. Rnynnldus, an. 2 n. R. 
85 Xic. Speciale, cap. 14, lib. 2-Fazzel1o. eap. 2. 



146 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 

overeignty of Tuni
. He had the intention of keeping 
them for hÍInself and his descendants, and make himself 
a lord. Yet he feared, that the king of Sicily might covet 
them, and deprive him of them. Happily he had recour
e 

ecretly to the Pope. IIe besought hÍIn to use his author- 
ity to confirm him in the possession of that territory, and 
prOlnised in return to raise in those islands churches and 
altars to Christ. There could not have come to Boniface 
a lnore favorable opportunity for detaching this valiant 
captain from the friendship of Frederick. He intrusted 
to Calanlandrano a letter directed to Roger, in which he 
f'xpressed his 
atisfactioll over the conquest, and the hope 
that it might open the way to the light of the Gospel 
for that infidel nation. 'Villingly with the fulness of 
Apostolical authority he grants to hÍIn and his descen- 
dants the possession of the two islands with full jurisdic- 
tion; he nlight hold them as a fief of the Roman Church, 
for which he would pay yearly to the Roman Curia the 
sum of fifty ounces of gold; that from Calamandrano he 
would receive the investiture of the fief, and to the same 
he would swear fidelity to the Roman Church. The Ipttpl. 
of Boniface attained its end, for Roger thereupon entered 
the service of Charles of 
 aples. 
On the ember days in December of the first year of his 
pontificate, Baniface created six cardinals. It is true, 
that the lllind does not always rise to the high dignity of 
the office, especially when it feels itself bound by the 
sweet ties of blood relationship. But the fault grows less, 
if in the hestowal of sacrpd dignities nlerit is united with 
relationship; and this is precisely what we must nlaintain 
in regard to Boniface. Among the six honored with the 
cardinals we find two of the Gaetani family, and one 
Count of Seglli, a cOHsin of the Pope. But they as well 
as the others were remarkab]e for gifts of mind and heart. 
James Thomas Gaetani of Anagni, his nephew, a sister's 
son, was a Friar :Millor, and Bishop of Alatri. 66 He was 
ereated Cardinal of the title of St. Clement, and previ- 
ou
ly exercised the office of legate on many occasions, 
whic 11 in those times were entrusted only to those most 

kilfnl in the management of affairs. He showed his 
great love for art hy eìnhplliRhing the {'hurch of his title 
e6 Wadding. Annal. )Iinor. Tom 5 page 335. 

 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


147 


with most beautiful mosaics. 67 Andrew, of the Counts of 
'8egni, great.grand-nephew of Alexander IV, was pos- 
sessed of such sincere and profound humility, that when 
the honors of the cardinalate were offered to him he 
refused them, so that Conteloro could not find his name in 
the series of cardinals. 68 Finally Francis Gaetani, his 
nephew, was skilled in the science of law, and of great 
goodne
s of life, one who, it is said, assisted in the com- 
pilation of the Sixth of the Decretals, and whom we shall 
find holdly ancl courageously defending the innocence of 
his dead und<<:. Honoratus Gaetani, of the ancient Counts 
of Fondi, kept his memory green by a slab which he placed 
in the portico of the church of St. )lary in Cosmedin, 
from which Francis had taken his title. 69 
The other cardinals created òy Boniface in this first 
year of his pontificate were Francis Napoleon Orsini, 
Peter Yaleriano Duraguerra da Piperno, and James 
Gaetani Stephaneschi; they were of equal merit and 
virtue with the first named. 70 To this Stephaneschi, 
whom SOlue have erroneously called a relative of Boni- 
face, we are indeòted for me1110irs in verse that he had 
left us of his epoch and for many works with which he 
charged Giotto, the father of Renaissance painting. By 
his order Giotto decorated the church of St. George in 
Velaòro,71 frOlll wbich he took his title as Cardinal; and 
Imving written the life of St. George, he had the same 
paintpl' òeautifully illuminate his book. .A. precious 
jewel, which is still preserved in the archives of the 
Canons of St. Peter. Vasari makes no mention of these 
works of Giotto. 
J ames was of the family of Stephaneschi and was born 
in the Trastevere quarter of Rome. 72 He wrote three 
1I10ldin. Add. ad Ciaccon. T. 2. Page 323. 
118 Cardella. History of the Cardinals. Tom. 2. page 5-Wadding ibid. 
lie Idem. '10 Idem. 'T1 Ferriggio. Notti Vatic. p. 163. 
72 This is how he speaks of his birth and his works in certain verses 
With which he prefaces his work on the life of St. Peter Celestine: 
"Crbs mihi principium generis: Jacobus mihi nomen 
Cajetanus erat; fluvii trans Tiberis amnem 
Stephan idem de Rtirpe satus producor ab Ursa. 
1\Iurronem cecini repetentem claustra Monarcham, 
Insertumque polo; Bonifacius utque triumphet 
Urbe sacra diadema ferens, quo Cardine fultus 



148 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
poems on the life of St. Peter Celestine, his canonization, 
and on the coronation of Boniface VIII. He had great 
devotioll to Saint Celestine, which prompted him to write 
these ver
es, which he dedicated to the Abbot and the 
monastery of the Holy Spirit of the Celestine order near 
Sulnlona, As we read in his letter of dedication, he did 
not wish his manuscript to be corrected by a strange hand, 
pron1ising, that when he had time he would himself purge 
it of all faults; and he desired that it should be perpetually 
preserved in that monastery. The
e verses are preceded by 
a summary of the subjects treated in the poeln, and fol- 
lowed by the office of the Saint which he had also com- 
posed. Although he called the manuscript sent to the 
Celestines of the Holy Spirit the original, yet we can not 
bring ourselves to believe that it was the autograph but 
a copy; for we find the characters so greatly marred by 
faults, that it is impossible in many places to understand 
the sense. The same injury was done to all the other 
writings of Stephaneschi. Daniel Papebroch pu bUshed 
these three poems in the grand collection of the Bollan- 
dists, having had at hand the lnanuscript of the monas- 
tery of the Holy Spirit, and another of the Yatican. 
)luratori reproduced thenl in the Lives of the Pontiffs,73 
l)ut he did not correct the verses of Stephaneschi, nor 
nlake the sense clear. "Teare sure these two worthy lllen 
could have improved these editions, if they had in their 
possession a third manu:.-;cript which Labbe calls the 
N audean, and which he places among the manuscripts of 
Paris. 74 
Stephaneschi also wrote a prose work on the jubilee of 
Boniface YIII, followed by two short poems, which Julius 
Rosea first published and annotated; it afterwards was 
reprinted by the Doctors of Cologne in the grand col- 
lection of the Fathers,ï5 Loth in the Cologne edition and 
that of Lyons. 76 Alllong the Roman "Ordo," published 
by )labillon,77 he places a treatise on the ceremonies of 
the Roman Church divided into one hundred and eighteen 


Runc panxi; Coloque patrem metroque 
Centeno, fudique prosa. Deus hinc tibi Laus est." 
Vide. Bollandists. 
laji Tom. V, p, 436.- 
'lI S. R. I. tom. 3. 7' Catalog. Biblio, M. S. S. p. 236. 
11 Tome XIII. 78 Tom. XXV. '17 Musei Italici T. 2, Ordo XIV, p. 241. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. l-!H 
chapters, and with a rea
onaLle foundation he attriLute
 
the work to James Gaetani Stephaneschi, and does not 
hesitate to place his nanle as the author on the title page. 
The three poenlS on the life and canonization of 8t. 
Peter Celestine, and on the coronation of Boniface VIII, 
are precious documents which relate the history of those 
events of "hich Stephaneschi was an eye-witness. In 
them there is great liberty of detail, especially in luatters 
relating to Peter Celestine. For although 8tephaneschi 
shows himself nlost devoted to hÍ1n, yet when he touches 
on the evil which accrued to the Church from his inl"x- 
pprience, he speaks very openly. Owing to the diffieulty 
of the meh'e, and to the errors of those handling them, 
there is much obscurity in his verses; but we are surprised 
that it does not disappear in prose writings; a
 a result 
the treatise on the Jubilee in many places is rather an 
enigma than a narrative. 
James Stepbaneschi died at a very old age in A vignon 
in the 
Tear 1341. His body was brought to Rome where 
it was interred in the Vatican Basilica in the chapel of 
8ts, George and Lawrence which he had built. 
Boniface intended also in the first year of his pon- 
tificate to increase the divine worship. Head of the relig- 
ion of Jesus Christ, and possessed of a spirit so noble as 
to comprehend fully what religion is, the only fructifiel' 
of hunutn genius and the nlother of every holy affection; 
so, being placed so high he could not remove from his 
mind those most distinguished souls who made their minds 
and their eloquence a foundation as it were of the Church. 
1Yorship was given in the Church to the Apostles, the 
Evangelists and to the four Doctors, Amùrose, Augustine, 
Jerome and Gregory the Great, but Boniface wished to in- 
crease this with particular honors. For it did not seem 
ever sufficient, the honor the faitl1fnl could pay to thp 
Apostles, the fir
t preachers of the divine word which 
renewed the face of the earth, to the Evangelists the first 
writers of it, and to those Fathers tIlt' great priests of the 
divine traditions. Seated on th(> c1mÍJ' of Peter he feIt 
Leneath him a certain immovahility, which was not owing 
to human vigor and strength, for be knpw that the Apos- 
tle's anll Fathprs we're the holy foundations, and tllP sup- 
ports of the divine edifice. 'Vherefore he published a 



150 
decree to all the faithful, directed to the Archbishop of 
Rheims and his suffragans, in which he ordered to be 
celebrated with the most solemn rites the feasts of the 
Holy Apo
tles, the Evangelists, and the four greatest 
Doctors, Amhrose, Augustine, Jerome, and Gregory the 
GT"pat, two of whom were Italians. How beautiful are 
]1is words: " The splendid and salutary teachings of these 
"most illustrious Doctors have illustraÌf'd the Church, 
" have adorned it with virtue, and have formed the man- 
"ners of IlPl' childrpn. )Ioreovpr by them, as Inn1Ïnous 
and 
hining lights on canùelabra in the house of the Lord. 
" the darkness of error having- been dissipated, and entire 
"body of the Cbureh sparkles like' the morning star. 
")Ioreover their rich eloquence, watered hy a spring of 
heavenly grace, discloses the n1ysteries of th(' Holy Scrip- 
"tures, loosens the knots, dispels oùseurities, and solves 
"the doubts. And by their profound and magnificent dis- 
"courses the grand f'difice of the Church is resplendent 
"as with glowing gems, and by the singular charIll of 
" their words she is exalted and shines with new glory." 78 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


78" Horum quippe Doctorum Praelucida et salutaria documenta praedic- 
tam illustrarunt Ecclesiam, decorarunt virtutihus, et moribus infonnarunt. 
Per ipsos praeterea, quasi Iuminosas ardentesque luncernas super candela- 
brum, in llomo Domini positas prrorum tenebris protligatis, totius corporis 
EccIesiae tal1quam sydus irradiat matutinum; eorum etiam foecunda 
facundia coelestis irrigui gratia intluente, scripturarum enigmata reserat, 
llecoris eorum sermonibus ampla ipsius Ecclesiae fabriea velut gemmis 
solvit nodos, obscura dilucidat dubiaque declarat. Profoundis quoque ac 
vernantiLus rutilat." Rayn. 129':;-55. 



BOOK THIRD. 


SU
E\IARY. 


1296-1297. 


The coronation of Frederick in Palermo.-Boniface excommunicates him. 
-And creates James of Aragon Gonfalonier of Holy Church to com- 
bat him.-The commotions in Sicily influence those in the Romagna.- 
Boniface wishes to pacify the latter.-He aids Guy of l\Iontefeltro to 
become a Friar.-At the same time Louis, son of Charles the Lame, 
becomes a Friar also.-Pisa entrusts her government to Boniface,-He 
becomes the mediator between Genoa and Venice.-He writes to the 
legates in England, to Philip, and to Adolph.-Haughty reply of 
l'hilip.
Affairs of the church of Pamiers.
Boniface makes tlle city a 
Bishopric, and founds an academy there.:--The layman grieve the 
ChUl'ch.-The famous constitution" Clericis Laicos."-It was neither 
new nor abusive.---'Philip rages and publishes an impertinent edict.- 
The paternal Bull with which Boniface opposes it.-The constitution is 
received in England; firmness of the English clergy,-The FraticeIli, 
and their origin.-Causes of their strifes with the Popes and especially 
with Boniface.-Jacopone da Todi.--SiciIy; and the methods adopted 
by James to make Frederick leave.-Treaty which James made with 
Boniface.-The Roman Patricians.-The Colonnas and their family.- 
How they' became enemies of Boniface.---1l'he Brigandage of Sciarra 
Colonna.-Rebellion of the ColonIlas; and threats of Boniface.-They 
spread the famous libel against him.-Its effect.-The Bull "Lapis 
abscissus" is hurled against them.-They reply with new insolence.- 
Arms are taken up.-Messages of the Roman people to Boniface, and 
his reply.-Crusade against the Colonnas.-Boniface clothes the cardi- 
nals in purple.-He canonizes Louis IX of France. 


'YnE
 tlw Sicilians had violently expelled Calamandro, 
the papal enyoy, it clm;ed the way to all agreenlCut, and 
hy destroJ'ing the bopes of Boniface tho8e of all Sicily 
were reviypd. The whole i8land was agitated as on a feast 
<lay, and in the transports of a liberty which made them 
forgetful of the wounds of the French tyranny, they 
raised to the throne the young Frede1'Ïck, <lading SOIl of 
the beautiful Constan.:,c. They ha<l spen how a sl'eptre 
was obtaiIlpd hy eonqlw8t 01' IJY inheribtul'e, Low it was 
151 



132 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


placed in the hand of a prince by Papal investiture, but 
as yet they did not know what it was to take a crown 
themselves and place it on the head of a king of their own 
creation, On the 25th of 
larch they had experience of 
this; and accordingly the religious and civiJ cerenlonies 
were carried out with incredible pOlllp. Frederick was 
anointed and crowned king in the cathedral Qf Palermo. 
He afterwards rode throngh the dty holding a globe and 
sceptre in his hands. It seen1ed that no other prince as- 
cended the throne with a greater de
dre of the people than 
lIe. Favors and dT'il ordinances followed the fetps. Th(' 
former were nlOst beautiful, beeaw..;e they were di
tribnÜ}tl 
by a new prince; the latter were wise, because they werp 
sanctioned by the people who raised him to the height of 
the throne.! The division of the power between the king 
and an annual parliament in which all the orflers of the 
kingdom were represented was agreeable to the people, who 
submitted willingly to the la\\ys. Charles II and the Pope 
had much to fear from this king, who safe in the posses- 
sion of Sicily might cast yearning eyes on the Neapolitan 
territory, and n1Ïght hope to bring it under his authority 
less by force of arms, than by the allurement of a.:new 
government. Frederick set out immediately for Reggio 
and was threatening Calabria. 
It s.eems that the brandishing of the sword in the face 
of the ambassador, the bearer of peaceful proposals; the 
pointing of it at his loins, and his rude expulsion, had 
always been considered, and for that reason, even in the 
XIII century, a crime against the rights of nations. For 
which reason Boniface, seeing that all hopes of peacp had 
vanished, resolved upon adopting severe measurps. In 
this he was urged on h
r the actions of FrederiC'k with th
 
Ghibellines of Tuscany, of Lombardy, and certain of his 
envoys who were secretly roaming through the kingdom 
of 
 aples exciting the people to rebellion, and to oppose 
these he dispatched Cardinal Landolph to Naples. 2 So on 
Ascension day he wrote and proclaimed in the Basilica 
of St. Peter a solemn admonition against Frederick. 
After calling attention to the censures hurled against 
Peter of Aragon, and his abettors in Sicily by Popes 
1 Nic. Special. lib. 3. c. I-Anonym. Chron. Sie. e. 54. 
:I Raynaldus. ad annum 1296, n. 20. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 1;)3 
:\[artin, Honorius, and Nicholas, the treaties made with 
James, and the insolent expulsion of his legate, he con- 
demns the coronation of Frederick, and his hostile in- 
trigues with the enemies of the Church; he annuls the 
acts of the new government; he commands him to lay 
aside the sceptre, and inlnlediately to refrain fronl exer- 
cising the office of king; he fixes as a peremptory limit the 
octave of the feast of the Apostles, which having expired, 
Frederick and the Sicilians, if contumacious, will incur 
solemn excommunication; he forbids anybody to league 
with them; 3 and deprives them of every privilege and 
right granted to them by the Holy See. The admonitions 
were of no avail. Boniface on the feast of the Dedication 
of the Vatican Basilica hurled against Sicily the threat- 
ened censures. 4 
(1297) Force of arms was necessary, because the Sicil- 
ians felt no remorse; they even set about vigorously to 
make war on the Neapolitan territory. Frederick was 
leader of the army, anù Roger of Loria of the navy. Suc- 
cess attended them. Squillace was taken by force, Catan- 
zar
 surrendered conditionally, and Cotrone and other 
plae.es being captured were plundered.
 Boniface, before 
the oronation of Frederick, had already turned to king 
James by letters of the 20th of January, sending as legate 
to him, Leonard, a Franciscan Friar, to remind him of the 
benefits he had received from the Roman See, of his duty 
to assist her, and invited hiIn to come immediately to 
Rome. And sixteen days having scarcely elapsed on the 
5th of February, he addressed another letter to James,6 
creating hiIn standard-bearer of Holy Church, and sov- 
ereign defender of the same Church against her enemies. 
The letter begins" Redelnptor )lundi," and mentions the 
conditions on which the Pope confers the high office on 
the king of Aragon. .\.nd whereas the chief enemies were 
the Turks, who were overrunning the IToly Land
 the king 
was particulal'ly appointed against these. There is no 
mention of thp Sicilians, because up to February the coro- 
nation of Frederick had not taken place, but it is to be un- 
derstood that it was against thCln that J anles was to set 
about to put his fleet on a war footing well provided with 
· Ra
Tn. 1294. 14. lib. 2 epist. 37. · Rayn. 15. lib. 2 epist. 100. 
II Kic. Spec. lib. IX cap. 3. · Rayn. ad annum 1294, 19. 



154 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
arms and men and military stores sufficient for fully 
sixty galleys, the Church was to pay as much money as 
was sufficient for the armament and maintenence of the 
vessels: the supreme commander was to be James, who at 
the beck of the Pope was to be ready to move against 
the Turks, or any other enemies and reùels of the Church; 
the spoils taken froln the enemy were to be divided into 
two parts, one to be given to the King, and the other to 
remain in the custody of the Pope for the lwnefit of the 
Holy Land; the territory to be conquered, if it previously 
belonged to a Catholic prince, was to be reRtorea to him, 
but if to an infidel it was to rf'main in custody of the 
Church until the Pope disposed of it; the titllP
 of Aragon 
for three 
real's were to be given to the King if he re- 
sponded to the call to wage war for the Holy 
ee; and his 
states during his absence in the service of the same, were 
to remain under the protection of St, Peter. Tl1ese were 
the chief conditions under which Boniface appointed 
James to the office of Standard-bearer of tl1e IToly Churcl1. 
fIe followed this up with a letter dated the Gth of Febru- 
ary, in which he urges him strongly to COlne. But James 
did not come for a year after. In the meanwhile Boniface 
was doubting of his faith. Then he urged Charles to the 
defence; he was willing, but powerless owing to tl1e lack 
of money, as he had spent so much in purchasing peace 
fI'om Jaules. But Boniface caIne to his a
8istance Illan- 
fully. He filled his treasury with five thousand ounces of 
gold,7 anfl as he was about to wage war against the: ene- 
mies of the Church, he granted hiIn the privilege of col- 
lecting subsidies frOln the sacred patrimonies without the 
papal permission. 8 He cOIllll1anded the bishop of :Mar- 
seilles to aid Charles by the ecclesiastical tithes to forlll a 
navy. 
These commotions in Sicily were incentives to the dis- 
sensions prevailing in the Italian mainland. The cities 
and people were divided into Guelphs and Ghibellines, and 
the rise or decline of the French royalists in Italy was a 
grave cause of agitation, as the house of Anjou was at that 
time the heart and support of Guelphism, since the Popes, 
either because of their love for France, or because of lax- 
ity of spirit, allowed the control of the Guelph party to 
7 Lib. 2 ep. 18 Rn,yn. 15. 8 Ra:yn. lib. 2 epist. 5ï6, 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 1;)5 
pass from their hands. As we have seen before, "Tillialn 
Durant was Count of Romagna, being appointed governor 
of that province and of the 
Iarches by Boniface. And 
when in the year previous he undertook the government 
of those regions, Azzo YIII, 
Iarquis of Este, through am- 
bitious motives enkindled lllore intensely the fire of dissen- 
sion between the opposing factions. This proud lord 
wanted to llulke hiIllself Inaster of Parma, which in Decem- 
ber had been the theatre of intestine strifes. lie welcomerl 
the return of the banished San vitale, that he might have 
an occasion for invading their native country. Parma 
resisted him, aided by .\Iilan, Bologna, and the lord of 
Piacenza, Al hert Scotto. In this year as the Parmesans 
and the Bolognese were fortifying thelllSelves, having as 
allies the people of Brescia, and the exiles of Reggio and 
:\Ioc1ena,9 so Azzo YIII turns for assistance to the Ghibel- 
lines of the llomagna. He gathered about him the most 
})owerful Ghibellines in the
e provinces. ::\laghinardo da 
Snsiana with the nlen froln Faenza; Scarpetta Ordelaffi, 
with thpse from ForIi and Cesena; and the fmuous Uguc- 
cione of Faggiuola with all the Ghibellines banished from 
Bologna, Rimini, Ra venna, and other cities. These men 
assembled in council with Este at Argenta, and decided 
to take Imola from Bologna. 1o As soon as Durant, Count 
of Romagna, heard of that intention he called the Bolog- 
nese to arms; but having encountered on the banks of the 
river Santerno the hostile GhibeUines under the leader- 
ship of Azzo, the latter were victorious and took posses- 
sion of hllola. ll In April of the same year, \Yilliam Du- 
rant, as a punishment for their going in league with the 
Uhibelline Âzzo of Ferrara, deprived the cities of Ce8ena, 
FOJ'li, Faenza and Imola, of all their privileges, honors 
and dignities, .A weak and senseless revenge which did 
not indeed calm, but rather embittered their feelings the 
more. 
Pope Boniface tried another way to put an end to these 
tragic scalHlals. IIe would obtain peace without resort- 
ing to war. lIe would have each one state his case to a 
judge, whose decision would take the place of victorious 
hattlps and stifled revenge. Anyone who studies those 
III 'hron. Pa rmen, S. n. I. tom. fL 10 Chron. Esten. ib. 
l1l\fat. ùe Griff. Annal. Ronon. T. 18 S. R. I.-Chr, Foroliv. T. 22. 



156 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


times, and preceives that confidence was wanting every- 
where, will admit, that Boniface, on account of his wis- 
dOlll and by reason of the office of Pontiff which he exer- 
cised, and because he alone was revered and respected, was 
the only one capable to preside as judge over these stormy 
suits. The sequpnce of this history will prove this better. 
Therefore with a peaceful pacifying intention, whilst af- 
fairs, as we have said, were in a badly disturbed state in 
the territory between Rimini and Parma, he appointed as 
ppacemaker the bishop of Pavia and wrote letters to Guy 
of 
lontefeltro the nlost influential man in the Ghibelline 
party, urging hinl to appear with other nobles before the 
Papal curia, that they might come to a friendly under- 
standing in those things which caused such dissensions 
between the two parties,12 
Guy had previously submitted to Celestine and Boni- 
faee that he might be absolved from censures, and now 
tired of the adventurcs of war, weakened by old age, he 
was engaged with the thought of death, and wished to 
make a solelnn expiation of his sins. Guy betook himself 
to Boniface: instead of treating of the affairs for which 
hp was snnulloned, he confessed to him that he came for no 
othpr purpo
e but that of his soul; that he heard a voice 
deep in his hp3rt whieh was calling on him to bceome 
eHhpr a kuight iu 
omc military order or a Franciscan 
Friar; and he, t11at terrible Ghibelline, humbly Lesought 
Boniface to give biIn 
piritual direction. This scene was a 
beautiful subject for an artist"s pencil. The Pope gra- 
dou
ly complied with the desire of Guy and favored it, 
not onl
y as the pious resolution of a converted sinner, but 
also as a Ineaus that would well contribute to bring about 
peaee ill his provinces. He replied, that he would ass:ist 
him whpther he wished to be a friar, or a knight. But 
aftprwards on reflection, thinking that to hold that energy 
tl1(>rt:' would be needed well-tempered steel, he would ad- 
vise him to choose the rough habit of St. Francis rather 
than the sword of a knight. Guy consenting, he wrote a 


12 Lib. 2. Ep. I ". . . . . , Vt te ac aIiis nobiIibus personis hujus- 
moùi in curia nostra praesentibus, nos per te ac iIlos, de praedictarum 
partium conditionibus informati, tractare, ordinare, disponere, et provi- 
dere possimus ea, quae ad vestrum et aliorum ipsarum partium bona, 
statum, tranquillitatem et pacem yiùerimus expedire." 




 
.- 
-<: 
.... 

 


/: 
:..: 


- 


::- 


- 


".' 
::; 
.-; 

 
-<: 


, 


f 
.; 


\0 


".... 


J. 
'" .1: 


:.. 


.. 



 
7. 



 


-- 
\ 


7 


12 


.... 



 


!:. 


"\
 


J_ 


;;: 

 


;..- 



 

 
:.. 

 




HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 157 
letter to the :\1inister of the Friars :Uinor of the province 
of Ancona, telling him that his noble and beloved son Guy, 
Count of )Iontefeltro, touched by the hand of Goù, and 
repentant of all the evil done to )Iother Church, had ex- 
pressed the desire of doing penance, and dying among the 
friars in holy service, his wife consenting, who would also 
take herself a vow of chastity. He then arranged that 
after taking their vows together, they would also make 
their solemn act of separation. Of movaùle property Guy 
would take some to rewarcl his courtiers; of the hnlllovable 
goods there would be assigned an annual stipend of one 
hundred lire of Ravenna for the support of his wife, who 
on account of old age was allowed to remain at home and 
not enter a convent; and what remained of his wealth, 
was to be entrusted to an honest per:son and kept in a safe 
place, until the Pope would provide as to its use. 13 Guy 
became a friar in the monastery of Ancona, and after two 
years of a nlost edifying life of prayer and good works, he 
renclered his soul unto God. H Such was the end of Guy, a 
man, to use the words of the ehronicle of A\..sti, the most 
wise of men, hrave, generous, 11lOSt skilful in war, an(1 
who had not his equal in that he entered anlong the 
Franciscan friars.] 5 
Another person of distinction in this same year also 
wished to become a Friar of St. Francis. If he was not 
famous for great deeds like Guy, he was illustrious by the 
splendor of his birth. This was Louis, son of Charles the 
Lame, who, as we have seen, had been a hostage in Catal- 
onia with two other hrothers. As he was returning with 
his father from Catalonia after peace was conelucled with 
James, he expressed the wish to lead the life of a Friar 
)finor. Passing through )Iontpellier, he first made known 
hi
 desire to the frhu's there. Bnt they refuseù to gratify 
him, fearing that if they received hhn and invested hinl in 
t he holy habit they would incur the displeasure of his 
fattier. 'Yhen he arrived in Italy he nlet his mother, 


18 Ep. Bon. l\IÍnistro provo Ord. Min. )Iarcbiae apud Wading T. X, p. 349. 
14 Epist. Bonif. apud Wading. 
111 Chron, Asten, cap. 23, S. R. I, T. XI col. 189. "Sapientissimus vir- 
oruJU fortis et largus, et callidissirnus in bellando . . . . . . . . . 
poenitentia ductus, burnilis et contritus, de quo vere dici potest: non est 
Í111:entu8 similis illi: ordincllt FratrUln .Uinorum. intravit." 



138 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
:Mary of Hungary, with her other son, Charles 
Iartel, and, 
as she had not seen him for a long time, with a heart full 
of joy and by the impulse of maternal love she threw h('1' 
arms around hi
 neck to embrace and kiss him. But the 
holy youth. nlOst careful of his purity, turner} his face 
away refusing to be kis
ed. Astonished at his conduct 
his nlOther asked: "'''"hat could there be sinful in that 
eJnbrace?" "Tith bowed head and his face suffused with 
blushes, he I'f'plied: " I know very well you are my Jllother, 
" but moreover yon are a woman, whom a servant of God 
"is not allowed to kiss."-He was enrolled among the 
clerics, and raised to the subdiaconate at Rome; after- 
war(ls he was; ordained deacon and priest at :Kaples in the 
Church of St. Lawrence 
Iajor. lie dwelt in a suburban 
nlonastery with tile Friars :Minor, applying his mind to 
spiritual things and the acquisition of ecclesiastical sci- 
ences, until, the see of Toulouse having becOJlle vacant by 
the death of H ugh 
Iascerio, Boniface knowing- Louis to 
be of mature judgment and sense, appointed hÍlu the 
Bishop uf that see. Tile royal youth would not accept the 
office unless he was allowed to wear the habit of St. 
Francis. The privilege was granted, and he was conse- 
crated bishop by Boniface, being at the most twenty years 
01(1. 16 St. Antoninus narrates his virtues while bishop, 
which were great aud Jnany,t7 though of short duration, as 
the holy young Ulan died two years afterwards. 
On April 17th, the Pope sent Peter Cardinal of St. 

laI'ia Xuova, with full authority to readjust affairs in the 
Italian provinces, and aid the efforts of the Bishop of 
Pavia, sent on the sanle errand in January.I8 These cares 
of Boniface, and the departure of Guy of .Montefeltro, the 
conllnander of their armies, induced the Pisans, as the 
Guelph party was in the ascendancy, to place all their 
confidence in the Pope: a sure sign of the certainty they 
had of the honesty of his mind. And although inflicted 
with censures by him for the irreverent things done to 
the churches, yet they did not hesitate to entrust the gov- 
ernnlent of their city to Boniface, proffering him four 
thousand livres of gold wherewith to pay the magistrates 
he might appoint. To an ambitious man and one covetous 
111 \Vading. Anna1. :\Tinor, 
d annum 1290 n. IV. V. VI. 
17 Chron. 3, p. 58.), 24, cap. 4. 18 Liù. 2. Epist. 43. RaJ'n. 1. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 159 
of the property of others, thelSe offers would not have been 
made. Boniface absolved the Pisans from censures and 
accepted the care of govC'rning their city. As his vicar in 
the government of Pisa, he appointed Elias,19 Count of Val 
d'Elsa. lie ordained that he should repair to the city and 
begin his office of governing it in September, which office 
he would hold for a year. His salary was to be four thou- 
sand livres. He was allowed to maintain with him four 
soldiers, as ll1any judges, and twelve horses, of which at 
least six should be war horses. He urged him to use pru- 
dence, that he might be successful in governing. 'The pro- 
vost of Venza accompanied the Count in order to absolve 
the Pisans from the interdict, and receive the five hundred 
marks in reparation for their office. 
Venice was born a mature republic, and for that reason 
she had escaped those foolish party contests of the Guelphs 
and Ghibellines, a sure sign of civilization being in its in- 
fancy among people who practised them. But firmly es- 
tablished by reason of a strong republican constitution, it 
was Guelph in principle, and like every other Italian peo- 
ple jealous of its independence, was a deadly enemy of the 
Ghibellines. For which reason the eternal emulation with 
Genoa, which was cruelly torn by factions, enkindled the 
flames of war! which burst forth more or less violently 
according as the G hibelline faction becalne more or less 
predominent. N ow it happened on the 30th of December 
of the same year that the Grimalùi and Fieschi the leaders 
of the Guelph party were involveù in an unfortunate civil 
contest with the Doria's and the Spinola's, the chieftains 
of the Ghibellines. 'Vith such fury did they fight, that 
forgetting they were in their own country, they laid it 
waste by fire alHl sword. The sanctity of the churches was 
not respected. For the Grimaldi having taken refuge and 
fortified themselvelS in the tower of the Church of St. Law- 
rence tlwy were besieged by their opponents, and in the 
Rtorming of it the roof took fire. 20 :l\Ioreovcr frOlll Lom- 
haI'lly auxiliaries arrived who increased the flame of those 
Rf'anda]ons contests, until having conqucl'l'd and ex]w]]('d 
the (hH'I])h party on the 7th of February, Conrad Doria, 
and Conl'ad Rpinola rei
nl'ù HUln.l'me in Genoa. ...\..fter 
18 Lib. 2, ep. II Haynaldus 4. 
:IOGeorg. Stella Ann. Gen. cap. VIlIS. H. I. t. 11. 



160 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE :VIII. 
these domestic strifes a war with Guelph Venice ensued; 
or rather, the damages done by Venice to the possessions 
of Genoa in the East, namely the burning of her ships, 
and the eapture and sacking of the city of Caffa in the 
Crimea. 21 A detailed account of this is contained in the 
chronicles of Andrew Dandolo,22 In the midst of these 
insane strifes Pope Boniface wished to interpose himself, 
and as we have seen in the previous year he made use of 
every effort to unite them in peace, but in vain. In this 
year he renewed his efforts for the same end. He wrote to 
the Genoese 23 and Yenetians to send their legates to him 
that he n1Ïght end the war between them and establish an 
alliance. In the severest terms he particularly com- 
manded the Genoese, who in fact acted Inore scandalously 
than the Yenetians, to respect a truce until Easter. But 
they would not listen to him. 
'Ye return to the quarrels between the Kings of France 
and England. Edward, constantly annoyed by the 
1Velsb and kept on his guard by the Scotch, truly desired 
peace with Philip. He tried to obtain it sOluehow. In 
December, 1295, 
Iargaret of Provence, widow of 8t. Louis, 
the grandmother of Philip, and his own aunt, had died. 
Under such circunlstances it was utterly unbecoming for 
persons so closely related to be at war, and so Edward 
wrote to all the biHhops of his kingdom that they might 
pray for the soul of his aunt, the Queen of France,24 which 
merciful solicitude he fanded would persuade Philip to 
make peace with hiIn. And so much did he flatter himself 
on the feasibility of the thing, that on the 1st of January 
he gave the fullest power to two legates of Boniface, to the 
Dukes of Brabant, to the Earl of Pembroke, to the Counts 
of Savoy, of Bar, and of Holland, and to fourteen of the 
Chief men if his kingdom, to negotiate at Cmnbrai a truce 
with Philip.25 Philip turned a deaf ear to the peaceful 
proposals, and persevered in the slow but exterminating 
war in unhappy Gascony 26 with tIle worst results for 
Edward. But Ed,yard was compensated well for what- 
ever damage was done him by the victory he obtained 
21 Cont. Dandol. S. R. I. 12, col. 406. 23 Ibidem. 23 Lib, 2, epist, 38. 39, 
Raynaldus 5. 310 Chron. Nangii 1295-Rymer T. I. page 705. 
26 Rymer. Tom. II, p. 702. 703. 
. Chron. Guill. Nangii, 1296-H de Knyghton lib. III. p. 1509. 



HISTORY OF" POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


161 


under the walls of Dun bar over the Scotch. Forsaken by 
Philip, they lost their king Balliol, who was cast a pris- 
oner into the towel' of London, and their liberty, becoming 
fronl that time vassals of Edward. 27 He continued his 
conquest of Scotland, yet he diù not cease through papal 
legates and the other deputies to negotiate a truce with 
Philip until Christmas, according to the wish of Boniface. 
The subjugation of Scotland displeased Boniface, because 
over that kingdom, as will be said, the Church believed she 
possessed sonIC rights of dominion; he was also displeased 
at the little success of his legates. 3Ioreover Guy, Count 
of Flanders, whose daughter, as we narrated, had been 
wickedly imprisoned by Philip while on her way to her 
husband, was asking for justice and aid against oppres- 
sion by French arms. 29 In the strongest terms by letters 
Boniface exhorted his legates to obtain a truce, if not 
peace; to restrain the angry princes frOln shedding blood, 
and from exhausting the holy patrimonies. They should 
make known the views of the Pontiff, and his desire to 
cross the nloul1Íains to make peace aillong those at vari- 
ance; that the college of Cardinals could not come, he- 
cau
e many were advanced in years; that Italy being con- 
vulsed, and Sicily in a furious war against Charles, de- 
manded his presence; and that they should counsel the 
princes to send representatives, and to be satisfied to suù- 
mit to his judgment the reasons of their dissensions. 30 
The admonitions to his legates he followed by a Bull dated 
the 13th of August,31 which inflicted excommunication on 
anyone who would violate the truce of two years. 
He adùressed also urgent letters to Eùwal'd, Philip ana 
Adolph, in which he reconlmended them to leave in his 
hands the settlement of their disputes. " 'Y e pa
s the 
night lying awake," he wrote to Adolph, King of the 
Romans, "in order that between you and Edward King 
"of England tlnd Philip of France, our most dear sons in 
"Christ, we may be able by a peace or truce, to prepare 
"and establish quiet and peace in Christendom, whereby 
"the faithful chieftains and their fonowers win not turn 
"against one another those swords which should be nll- 
27 Nicol. Trivet Chr. p. 217-H de Knyghton lib. III. p. 1581. 
38 Rymer. Tom. II, p. 709-710-716. ZI Spond. anno 129G. 
10 R3J'1l31ùus 
l. 11 Idem 2!J-12D6. 



lü2 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE :VIII. 
" sheathed against the enemies of the Cross and the Faith 
"for the recovery of the Holy Land. 'Vherefore with 
"lllost fervent admonitions, exhortations and prayers we 
" beseech you by Christ's Precious Blood, not to wage war 
"against Philip, King of France, and his kingdom; and 
" incline your soul and suùmit to a peace or at least a long 
" truce, during which you can effectually in our presence 
"negotiate for peace with the representatives of your ad- 
" versaries." 32 From a letter of Boniface to Philip 33 it 
is evident that Edward and Adolph had sent represent- 
atives to the Roman Court to submit to the judgment of 
the Pontiff their reasons. But Philip the Fair, when the 
papal wishes concerning the truce, and the threatened 
censures were disclosed to him, became enraged; he re- 
jected them, find haughtily replied: "The kingdom was 
" his own; in temporal affairs he recognized no superior, 
" to no one on earth was he subject; and he was prepared 
" to ùo the will of the Pope only in spiritual things." The 
benign Bossuet extols to the skies this answer of Philip. 
But he was too luuch attached to the greatness of Louis 
XIV, to be aùle to view in the right light this apparent in- 
trusion of Boniface into the affairs of France. 34 'Yithout 
entering into an examination of the indirect power which 
the Pope could have in those tÏIlles in the civil affairs of a 
state which heing Catholic was spiritually suùject to him, 
we can linger over the fact of the many misfortunes which 
befe! the people precisely because princes returned these 
haughty answers to the Pontiffs. 
Up to now one can easily believe that Boniface truly 
loved Philip the Fair. The letters he sent him announc- 
ing his elevation to the Pontificate; the strong pressure he 
brought upon Eùward and Adolph, that they should not 
disturb Ilim in the posession of Gascony and Burgundy; 
the privilege bestowed on him, his wife and children, that 
they could not he excomn1unicated by anyone without the 
express permission of the IToly See,35 and his efforts to 
maintain CharleH, a Frenchman on the Sicilian throne, 
were certainly unmistakable signs of his love and benevo- 
lence. But love should not blind the Pontiff to such a de- 


3
 Raynaldus 12!)(j-18. 81 Ibi. "crebris, rumoribus." 
d
 See Bianchi, "The Indirect power of the Church ", T. 2 Book 6 V, 
page 454. Ii Regesta Vaticana, Ep. 159. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. ' 1..3 
gree as to make him overlook jUl'tic
, especially when the 
defence of it is demanded for chul-ches, anù cOllsecrateù 
persons who had no other refuge hut the see of St. Peter. 
Philip was entirely ignorant of thh.;, hecau
e in the intoxi- 
cation of power his intellect was clouded. The reader will 
observe that we now begin to touch upon the remote causes 
of the great quarrel between Philip and the Pope, which 
afterwards assumeù gigantic proportion to the great 
scandal of the faithful. 'Ve begin with the affair of the 
church of PaIuiers, in which the sparks of the great confla- 
gration began to be lighted. Palniers was a city in 
France,36 in the county of Foix, its name fOl'lnerly was 
Fredelac and afterwards Pamiers, from the castle of this 
name in the diocese of Toulouse. In the 8th century the 
Counts of Carcassonlle built there the abbey of St. Anton- 
inns, which was given as a dwelling to the Canons Hegular 
of St. Augustine. Roger Bernard, Count of Foix, in 1149 
or thereabouts, gave the city of Fl'edelac, with the castle of 
Pamiers to the Abbey. Rut as often happened in those 
barbarous time
, and because the piety of the benefactors 
grew wearied, and that of the receivers of the gift grew 
cold in the midst of richps, robbery followpd the pious of- 
ferings, and for that reason frequent wars \vere waged 
between the Counts of Foix and the Abbots of St. An- 
toninus 37 to the detriment of the latter, who lost p(J

e
- 
sion of Pamiers; for we find that Bernard III in 12G5 
restored to it the Abbey, consoling th('rehy Alnanien 
d'Armagnac, Archbil'hop of Auch, his tutor. 38 
'Ve believe that the Count made this restitution by order 
of St. Louis IX. Pope ClenlPut IV had requel'tp(l him to 
take the city of Pamiers under his protpction for the 
honor of Holy Chul'('h, and to shield it frOlll the violpnce 
of the Counts of Foix, hy plating it undpl' the gual'ùian- 
ship of the Ahhot of the 11l0lulstery of St. Antonillus. Rt. 
Louis complied and he Pl'oilliseù that at a statef] time he 
would lpavp it under the full control of the aforesaid 
Abhot. Philip the Bold did the same. But thp time had 
arrived when Pamiers should pass fronl the royal control 
to that of the Abbot, yet Philip the Fair would not sur- 


38 See Hadr. Valesii Notit. Galliae ad vocem " Apamiae."- 
17 The great dictionary of Moreri & Pamiers. 
as Gall. Christ, D. Sainte Marth. Tom. I, col. 993, "Eee1. Am
ciensis. 



lG4 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
render it. :Kay, importuned ùy Roger Bernard III, Count 
of Foix, he wrote letters to the 8enpschal of Carcasonne 
telling him to extend a strong hand to the Count and aid 
him in obtaining the mastery over Pamiers. This was a 

hmneful ,'iolatioll of the rights of that ehul'ch. The 
rount entered the city as all eUPluy, and extorted an oath 
of f('al(y from the officials of the Ahbot. Ina
much as 
this act was done at the instance of Philip, it was all 
usurpation of the sacred patrimony, contempt was shown 
for the provisions of Clement IV, and liluch scandal was 
given. 
Down to our own days Boniface has been generally con- 
demned by all historians as a man of irascible and disdain- 
ful telnperament; but in his letters we find such control of 
temper, and such a mild dedaration of rigl1ts, that consid- 
ering l1is natural ùisposition of being prouùly intolerant 
of evel'Y injustice, it seenIS to us marvellous. In fact, the 
dishonorable invasion of the sacred patrhnony of the 
Abhey of St. Antoninus by Pl1ilip through the Count of 
Foix, he answpred with a fatl1erly exhortation to repair 
the evil deed, restoring that ,vhich was seized to the Abbot, 
and remenlbering how his grandfather and faiher 're- 
spected the rights of the Abbey, he should pre
('rve and 
guard them. There were no threats, nor severity of lan- 
guage. 39 However Philip would not obey the Pontiff, nor 
would the Count, who was under the protection of the 
I
ing. The Count threatened with censurf'S hecanle con- 
tumacious, and the censures passed into effpf't; Philip, 
hf'l'anse llf' was King, was not even threatened, and he per- 
f'evf>rpd in his obstinacy. Then Boniface to Inake the 
cl1nrch of Pamiers more venerable, erected it into a Bish- 
opl'Ïc, tl1erehy hoping that if the personalit
y of an Abbot 
wus not sufficient to restrain the rapacity of the prince, 
the dignity of a Bishop nlÏght be able to do so. For this 
purpose he pu blisl1ed the Bull" ROll1anUS Pontifpx " dated 
at Á\nag-ni, the 23rd of July, in which separating the city 
of Pamiel's fl'om tIle vast diocese of Toulou
e he made it 
a new Episcopal 8ee. 40 The secret lllutive of this ordi- 
nance wa
 the present act of violence, but the ostensible 


,I
 Epist. ad Philip. RaJTnaldus 52. 
40 Bullarum, Diplom. amplis. Collect. Caroli Cocquelines. Ed. Romae 
li41. T. III, p. ïÛ.-\Yilliam Kangius. ad annum 1290. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 165 


reasons for it were the immense size of the diocese of 
Toulouse, which, owing to the difficulty and slowness of 
the Bishops in visiting the entire diocese, was a grievous 
detrin1ent to souls. He designated as cathedral, the 
Church of St. l\lartin, where the body of Rt. Antoninus 
reposed. The Abbot Bernard Saisset he made the first 
bishop; he defined the limits of the new diocese, and as- 
signed it a revenue. And in order that Pamiers as a city 
might correspond to the new honors granted it as a Bishop- 
ric, Boniface founded there an Academy.41 These provis- 
ions however Philip believed to be infringements on his 
power, and were occasions of more burning hatred, which 
increased in violence more and more. 
Strength and vigor to preserve the ecclesiastical in1n1u- 
nities were necessary in these times, when conspiracy to 
plunder and outrage the rights of churches was almost 
universal. The care and anxiety for the goods of the 
Church were not wanting in Boniface. Ever watchful 
over all the churches, he saw the snares and evils which 
beset them; and there was no church no n1atter how 
distant, nor violator of its rights, that ever e::;capeù his 
notice. He wrote to the Arch bishop of ArIes, and the 
Bishop of 
Ial.seilles, 42 urging them to resist a certain law 
passed by the people of )larseilles, forbidùing donations 
to be given to derics not belonging to their city.43 He ex- 
communicated the Duke of Carinthia, the proud violator 
of the rights of the church of Trent. 44 He cited to judg- 
ment the magistrates of Lucania, for oppressing the 
Church; anù summoned to Rome the Bishop because of 
his heedlessness of laical hnpertinence. Thp Pisans and 
Orvietans, guilty of the Saine fault, he loaded with cen- 
suresY' He waged a terrible war against vice which is a 
pest in every civil community. Being told of the grievous 
usuries which had been practised by a certain man now 
deceased, he wrote to the Bishop of 
Ietz, cOIDlnanding 


C1 Epist. 658. Raynaldus 53.- 
Ð See, Reg. Vatic. M. S. an. 1 Epist. ad Arch. Remensi. "Ut procedat 
contra injuriam allatam Ecclcsiae Laudunensi." Epist. 355 Ad Philippem 
Regem, quod faciat justitiam eidem Ecclesiae. Epist. 356. Eidem quod 
non molestet Episcopum Lingonensem. Epist. 546, etc. 

I Epistola 223 Raynaldus 64, 

 Epist. 151 Rayn. Ibi. "Epist. 146-150. Tay. ibi. 



lG6 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
hÎIn, as an example to others, to dhdnter the hody of that 
wicked usurer and cast it out of the consecrated ground. 46 
He knew well that the hOSOlll of the Church should be 
closed against those who had shut their hearts to pity and 
justice. :Moreover it appears that he labored strenously 
to exterminate this pestiferous race of man, for we find 
in a letter which he wrote to the Bishop of Autun that he 
imposed on him the obligation of expelling from his dio- 
cese all those guilty of usury. 
The clerical a<llllinistrators of the sacred patrimonies 
were in a dilelnma. On the one side was the rapacity of 
princes, and on the other were the threats and prohibi- 
tions of the Popes. At first with the pel'mission of the 
Bishop they could of their own will assist laymen red nced 
to dire straits; but there were censures for laymen com- 
pelling thelll to do so, though not for clerics donating the 
sacred patrimony; so that often not forced by fear, but 
with a desire to please the princes, it happened that they 
enriched the princes with the sacred gifts of the faithful 
to God on the altar. Boniface however erected defensive 
barriers around the goods of the Church, as Councils and 
former Popes had done. The permission to make these 
donations he reserved to the will of the Pope alone, and 
by censures he restrained the cleric
 from offering them, 
in the san1e manner as already the violent laymen had 
been restrained from seeking them. 47 For this reason he 
wrote and published that famous constitution "Clericis 
Laicos ", which replete with the 
acredness of the rights 
of the Church, sounded unplea
antly in the courts of 
princes, and was a scandal to the proud, just as the au- 
thor hÎInself of j.ustice was and ever will be to the wicked. 
The constitution thus begins: "Antiquity shows us the 
" enmity of laymen against the clergy, and our experience 
"in the pre
ent time nlanife
tly supports that teaf'hing, 
"since without considering that they lmve no power over 
"the persons or property of ecclesiastics, the laity lay 
"ÎIllPOSts on the prelates and clergy, hoth regular and 
" secular; and we grieve to say, that some prelates and 
"other ecclesiastics, having- more fear of the temporal 
"majesty than of the eternal, acquiesce in that abuse. 
6e Regest. M. s. Vatic. an I Ep. 50S. 
t7 Regest. M. S. Vatic. Anni II Epist. 59. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 167 
" That we may obviate this, we ordain that all the prelates 
"and ecclesiastics, regular and secular, who pay to lay- 
" men tithes or any other portion of their revenues, under 
"the name of aid, subvention, or any other, without the 
"authority of the Holy See, and the kings, princes and 
"magistrates and all others who sllall illlpose sl1<'11 
"burdens, or who shall give aid or consent thereto, shall 
"incur excommunication, absolution from which is re- 
"served to the Holy Spe, notwithstanding any privilege."- 
In this Decretal, whidl BOSRlwt blindly calls an inRti- 
gator of hatred,48 many see the hidden spark of that fire 
of wrath that broke out between Philip and Boniface; and 
for that reason on tIle head of the latter rests the entire 
blame for the scandals which followed. But here it is 
necessary to explain clearly this affair, because not agree- 
ing with the opinion of Bossuet and Fleury and all that 
set of hnvyers (a race of men who by their subtlety 
adapted themselves to every kind of government, and for 
that reason willing tools of tbp profligacy of the people, 
and the best counsellors of oppression), if facts related 
were not cleanRed from the foulne
s with which they were 
defiled by courtiers, we would be unfaithful to our office 
of historian. 
Now first of all it is to be observed that Boniface did 
not fabricate by hhnself a new constitution, but rather 
reproduced and confirmed those solemn decrees, which 
Councils and former popes had published, in order to bind 
the hands of the laity attacking the property of the 
churches. The XIXth Canon of the third Council of 
Lateran slnites with censures laymen who impose taxes 
on the goods of the churches ;and tllC XLIYth Canon of 
the fourth Council of Lateran, ùesides confirming these 
censures, further adds that subsidies even in case of npcps- 
sity cannot be drawn from the chnrcllPR without the per- 
mission of tIle Pope. 49 Pope Alexander IV renew{}d these 
censureR particularly tllroughout France. 5o It cannot he 
said that the decretal of Alexander and the prohibition of 
Boniface werc something' new in France. For the learned 


48 Defen. Declaration. Cler. Gallic. T. I, p. 2, book 7 c. 23 page 286, col 2, 
in fin. 48 Sext. Decr. de Eccl. immuni. Cap. III on minus, and under the 
Bame title cap. Adversus. 10 lb. Lib 3, tit. 23, cap. 1. 



168 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
Tomassinus 51 with the clearest proof declares that never 
had the kings of France in the excess of their power 
wrested anything from the clergy, without the permission 
of the Pope and in the case of supreme necessity. There- 
fore the present Constitution was not new, nor was it 
issued particularly against Philip; it was not untimely in 
those ages when the princes, and especially the French 
king, the shameful debaser of the coins, were unrestrain- 
edly usurping ecclesiastical property; it was not importu- 
nate inasmuch as these canons had been generally received 
in the Christian kingdoms, and especially in France. And 
let the reader remember that the rights of the Church in 
those times were strong and vigorous, and not like to-day 
adjusted to the times by a Concordat which a discreet 
fear prefers to something wor
e; anù for this rea
on to 
judge the facts of that age the reader mu
t abstract from 
present conditions, and so will not wonder that Boniface 
in this Constitution nlade the thunder of censures resound 
in the ears of kings and Emperors. 
Although in the said decretal there was nothing singu- 
lar, or any departure from the usual forms with which 
the Popes always clothed their decrees, and there was not 
one syllable that pointed expressly to France, yet it raised 
the greatest storm in the court of Philip. A hornet's nest 
of courtier doctors gathered round the haughty prince, 
complaining hypocritically of Papal tyranny which they 
declared lay hidden in this decretal of Boniface, And 
they pretended they were busily striving to retain on his 
head the royal crown, of which, as they wickedly affirmed, 
the ambitious Pope wished to deprive him. Everyone 
knows how quickly the n1ind of a beguiled prince is pre- 
vailed upon when he is urged by flatterers to that to which 
he is inclined. Philip, haughty of spirit and touched to 
the quick, wben he saw the abundant source of wealth 
from the patrimony of the churches was closed to him, 
flew into a passion, and published an edict forhidding both 
the laity and the clerics, his subjects, to send Illoney out of 
the kingdom, even to the Holy See for pious reasons, He 
could pass laws relating to the goods of laymen, and also 
to thosp of the clerics, over whom, as vassals, he as princ
 
iiI Tomassinus. De vet. et novo Eccl. discipI. in Benef. par. 3. lib. 1, 
cap. 43 n. 9. in fin. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 169 
could exercise his power; but tithes, the offerings, and 
private goods which the faithful had left to the churches 
for the good of their souls, he could not touch, nor even 
desire. In those times there did not exist those rights 
called " Regalia" ; and the prince according to the canons, 
which wpre accepted by all, enjoyed no other privilege but 
that of guarding the vacant benefices, preserving their 
revenue for the succesRor, and (when the title was of royal 
patronage) choosing the person to fill the vacancy. Now 
the law forbidding the donation of money from the reve- 
nue of the churches, was an open violation of the canons 
which forbade laymen intruding themselves in the adnIin- 
istration and the expenditure of the sacred revenues; and 
was a tyrannical destruction of ecclesiastical liberty. Nay 
more, this edict savored of downright robbery. Engaged 
in church service there were many French beneficiaries 
residing outside of the kingdom, and the annual stipend 
was held back from these, as they could not receive it on 
account of the royal edict. The first among these bene- 
ficiaries was the Pope himself, to whom from France came 
the offerings which the pious faithful gave for the recovery 
of the Holy Land, and also the revenues from the bene- 
fices which belonged to the Holy See. Therefore this edict 
was unjust and outrageous to the Pontiff. 
Let us observe the conduct of Boniface, who was reputed 
to be a most proud man, and prone to anger. He certainly 
could not wish evil to the fanlily of France, without en- 
dangering his own interests thereby; and the constancy 
with which he upheld the fortunes of Charles of Anjou in 
the kingdonl of Xaples, and the many things he did for the 
benefit of Philip, are certain arguments which go to prove, 
that like his predecessors, in the struggles of the Italian 
factions, he made use of the royal house of France as a 
prop for his throne. In fact so far removed fronl his 
thought was king Philip when he wrote the Constitution 
about ecclesiastical immunities, that at that very time he 
was revolving schemes to advance the interests of that 
king. On the sanIe day the 18th of August, on which he 
published the Constitution, he wrote to Philip ÍInploring 
him to send to Rome Charles of Valois, his brother, that 
they lnight consult together on important and secret 



170 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
matters. It was rumored, as Spondano 52 aSRerts, that the 
interview concerned the elevation of Charles as Honlan 
Emperor, that he Il1ight lead the expedition for the relief of 
the Holy Land. Finally Boniface published the celebrated 
Bull "Ineffahilis" 53 as a reply to the insolent edict. 
This Bull was couched in ternlS of the noblest inrlulgence 
and most touching kindness. "The thlle i
 ill-suited," 
wrote the Pope, " to the provocation of a dispute with the 
"Vicar of Jesus Christ, since from the mOlnent of our 
"accession we have not ceased to watch with heart-felt 
" earnestness over your interests, and endeavored to effect 
"an honorable reconciliation between France and Eng- 
"land. \Ye have not decreed that ecclesiastics should not 
" contribute to the defense and wants of the kingdom, but 
" that our leave is necessary in such subsidies, in order to 
"put a stop to the unhearable exactions of your agents 
"oyer the clergy. In cases of need we would rather sell 
"the sacred vessels and crosses of the churches than ex- 
" pose to the least a kingdom such as Francf', always so 
dear and so devotf'd to the Holy Sef'." These nohle words 
were powerless with Philip; his pride would yield to no 
concession. 
'Ve do not find that the French clergy r-xulted over the 
pn blication of this constitution which defended their lib- 
f'rty against the preponùerance of Philip, nor that they 
were distressed because of his hnpertinence to the Pontiff. 
In England, on the contrary, we find that both the one and 
the other sentiment were manifested by the clergy under. 
the leadership of the brave Robert of Winchelsea, who had 
succeeded not only to the chair of the martyred S1. Thomas 
à Becket, hut also to that manly valor which prevails only 
in the sanctuary of Faith. He had received the constitu- 
tion of which we speak; and he addressed a letter to Rich- 
ard, Bishop of London, dated the 5th of January of this 
saIne year 1296, in which he transcrihed th(> entire consti- 
tution " Clericis ", and the worùs of the two l(>gates, Cardi- 
nals of Palestrina and ...\.lhano, cOlnmanding the saIne to he 
prOlnulgated iUllnediately.54 :Moreover in anotlwr letter 




 Ad. an. 129G. n. 2. 
. See Bull at end of t11e work. 
M Concil. l\Iagnae Britanniae et. Hiberniae, Vol. II, pag. 224 . . . . 
patenter ac diligenter in omnibus exequamini, sue exequi faciatis, et ea 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


171 


dated the 17th of February of this same year he began by 
stating that the ancient cu
tonl of the Church was to pro- 
nounce excommunication against the violators of her 
liberty, and he cOllfirnlCd the same according to the recent 
constitution of Boniface. Le
s ohstinate in wrong doing 
than Philip, Edward of England surpassed hinl in his 
brutality to the clergy. I-Iaving brought to a successful 
termination the war against John BaHol of Scotland, and 
being on the point of declaring war against Philip, he op- 
pressed the churches with heavy exactions. He did not 
obey the constitution "Clericis Laicos", and began to 
object and fume more furiously than Philip. lIe de- 
manded nlOney from the clergy and was positively refused. 
The threats of Boniface deterred thenl. Then when the 
allotted time, which had heen given to the clergy wherein 
they were to decide, had passed, and they still refused to 
comply with the request of Edward, in the most ruthless 
luanneI' he sealed up the doors of the clerical granary. In 
return RoLf'rt, Archbishop of Canterbury, ordered that, as 
long as he had affixed the royal seals to their granaries, 
they should publish the constitution of Boniface in all 
the cathedral churches. And inasmuch as it was neces- 
sary to strengthen the minds in their just resolutions, and 
to display a strong and united resistance, he summoned a 
council of all his suffragans to Iueet in St. Paul's Church, 
London. The convocation nlet on "Laetare" Sunday. 
Edward becalne alarnled, and before they began their de- 
liberation he wrote to the m
senlhled pl'l'lates fOl'hiflding 
thenl under the seyerest threats to proceed to any measure 
prejudiciál to the rights of the crown, or to pronounce any 
censure against persons employed in the kin
's service, or 
su('h as had already suhlnitted to his will. 55 For eight 
days, discussion was held on the royal petition, when of 
one accord the recent ordinances of Boniface were upheld. 
There was no entertainment of the contrary opinion of 


singula, quatenu8 ad vos pertinent, obscrvetis ac faciatis inviolabilda 
observarL" 
r.I Ibidem.-" N ous defendons a YOUR touz et a chaseun devous . . . . 
ne nul de YOU!'! nulz ehoses ne ordeins, nc facies, ne assente a nul ordenance 
a la dit assemble, qui puissont turner a prl'judice ou a gricVaIlC'e de nous 
ou de lIul nos ministrers, on de ceus, que sont a nostre peax, et a nostre 
fo
., et a llostre pretectiol1, On de 1108 adherents, on a nul d'eux." 



172 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
the clerical courtiers and curials, who unmindful of their 
high dignity and their sacred office, had been the coun- 
sellors and abettors of the king in his impious cupidity; 
when they departed their consciences were laden with 
these dry words of the Arch bishop: " Let each one attend 
to the salvation of his soul." The decision of the Council 
was brought to the King by certain bishops anù other mes- 
sengers, and the knowleùge of it made him furious. 
Hardly had he seen the bishops coming than he licensed 
his courtiers to unhorse them, and seize upon their horses. 
He forbade all lawyers to plead for the clergy before any 
tribunal whatsoever. He broke out into open war against 
them; and with a semblance of a real thief he commanded 
the ordained clergy either to cede to him a fifth part of 
their revenues, or pay the penalty for their contempt of 
the royal authority. And he spoke the truth, for with the 
exception of certain weak prelates who accorded to the 
demands of the king, the others remained resolute and all 
their real and personal property was confiscated. In 
order that the royal pleasure might go into inlmediate 
effect, the sacred property was put up at auction; thus 
the sacrilegeous buyers might de lay in taking posseRsion 
of it. So much with regard to their property. :N either 
were the persons of the clergy secure. The King having 
allowed the soldiers to injure the clergy, the latter never 
dared to ride singly, but together in a great number. 56 
But Robert, Archbishop of Canterbury, was an almost in- 
credible example of Christian constancy. On him more 
than others the king vented his fury, anù he more than 
others by an invincible fortitude wlthstooà the anger of 
the powerful monarch. He was deprived of all his posses- 
sions, abandoned by his servants, drh-en from his home, 
and every friendly door closed against him by royal com- 
mand; the illustrious prelate led a n1Íserable life, begging 
a morsel of bread and a place to rest. lIe endured all this 
invincibly for the liberty of the Church. 'Voult! that 
there had been nlany similar prelates to support the arm 
of Boniface in his laborious administration of the Chris- 
tian Church for their own good and that of the faithfuI.57 
And hehold, a scandalous persecution in the English 
M Henry Knighton. Can. Levcest. de Event. Angliae Lib. 3 cap. V. col. 
24{)2. IT Westmonast. Plor. Hist. anno 12!)G, 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 173 
Church, the like of which woulù not have happened in 
pagan times. Now the reader can learn what sort of peo- 
ple Boniface had to deal with, and let him reflect if to the 
fettf'rs of excommunication some other punishment could 
reasonably have been added. Afterwards as we shall re- 
late, Edward repented of his evil deeds, but Philip never 
gave this consolation to the Church. 
Even in Germany we find that the constitution which 
was offensive to Philip was reverently received and pro- 
mulgated. In the collection of the councils of Gernlany 
compiled by John Frederick Schannat we read, that at the 
synod of Cambrai the Constitution of Boniface was or- 
dered to be read in the vernacular four times a year to the 
people. 68 
These acts of open violence afflicted Boniface, and 
whilst his heart was grieved thereby, his care and anxiety 
for the internal order of the Church, and for the extinc- 
tion of error, were not diminished. The actions of certain 
bad men did not escape his vigilance, who under the false 
garb of evangelical perfection were spreading themselves 
like a pestilence to poil5on weak and uncultured minds. 
In this century the Franciscan Order was a great help to 
the Roman See, and there is no dou ht that in the stormy 
Pontificates of Gregory VII aud Innocent III, it was a 
singular bulwark. It was yet in a flourishing condition, 
hut just as in a healthy body sickly humors are engen- 
dered, so in this Order still young, wicked men were be- 
gotten and emanated from it. Corruption of heart and 
pride of spirit are the first causes of hUlnan folly and wick- 
edness. The depravity of certain friars of St. Francis 
was the result of these. The Orùer had hardly existed fOI" 
a century as yet, and already SOllie of its luem bel's were 
descending from the height of perff'ct evangelical poverty. 
This fact aroused the zeal of certain friars, who holding 
tenaciously to thp observance of the rule of their founder, 
hegan to separate themselves from the others as pure ob- 
servers of it. The ehief one among these was said to be 
Friar Peter John Oliva, concerning whom there is a differ- 


158 Item constitutionem ss. Patris Domini Bonifacii VIII. Eodem Modo 
praecipimus ab omnibus presbyteris, vel eorum vices gerentibus, saltern 
quater in anno in facie Ecc1esiarum suarum in lingua materna nunciari et 
exponi. Tom. IV, p. 84, 



174 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


ence of opinion. Some considered him a heretic, while 
others revered him as a Saint. He was born at Serignan 
in the diocese of Beziers, and entered the Franciscan Order 
at the age of twelve years. Thus having been early edu- 
cated in the severe discipline of that order, he conceived 
the highest esteem for the rigid poverty of St. Francis; and 
since his fellow friars began to relax in the observance of 
this evangelical virtue, he took it upon himself to retain 
them in the ancient observance. Sharp-witted, and so 
well versed in the sacred science as to merit the degree of 
bachelor in the Paris University, he strongly censured 
by word and writing the departure from thp rule of St. 
Francis in that matter which he considered the only ladder 
by which Heaven could be reached. As usual, some, 
though few, ardently followed him; whereas the other 
friars opposed him. Whether his impetuosity for refornl 
led him into errors, or his opponents maliciously accused 
hiIll of the saIne, we know not. 'Vading 59 cleanses him 
from all stain, and venerates him as st. Oliva; but Pope 
John XXII condemned his commentaries on the Book of 
the Apocalypse as baneful and teeming with heresies. 60 It 
is true that John, Canon of st. Victor, and Bernard Guido 
in the life of Pope tJ ohn XXII agree in asserting that 
Oliva was the head of the Beguini. 61 St. Antoninus,62 and 
Nicholas Eymerich 63 state the same. About the year 1278 
he wrote the offensive commentary on the Apocalypse; 6-1 
ana therefore Oliva preceded other zealous Italian friars 
who caused a schism in the Seraphic Order through love 
of poverty, namely Conrad of Offida, Peter of .Monticulo, 
Thomas of Trevi
o, Conrad of Spoleto, and J acopone of 


M Annal. Min. T. 2. ad annos 1282-1292-1297. 
60John St. Victor, Vita Joan XXII apud Baluz. Vitae Papar. Avenion. 
col. 117.-Bernar. Guid. ap. Baluz ib. Co!. 140. 167. 
61" Habuit autem ortum haec haeres is ex doctrina cujusdam fratris 
minoris, qui Petrus Joannis Biterrensis dicebatur, qui quandam postillam 
composuit super Apocal
'sim . . . . . . J oannes St. Victor ib.- 
Condemnavit quamdam pcstiferam postillam fratris Petri Joannis de 
Serinhano dioecesis Biterrcnsis de ordine fratrum minorum . . , . . . 
a qua sumebat fomentum secta illa pestifcra illorum, qui Beguini vulgari- 
ter, qui se fratres pauperes de tertio online S. Francisci communiter 
nominabant. . . . ." Bernard Guido ib. 
6
 I). E. tit. 24, c. 9. q n. 61 Direct. Il1quis. par. 2. quaest. 15. 
66 Oudin, Comment. de script. Eccl. Tom. III, sec. XIII. Co!. 586. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 17:; 
Todi. It can be inferred that like Oliva in France, these 
latter in Italy, gave without meaning it, a beginning to 
the Fraticelli (the little friars). These friars laid aside 
the yoke of obedience ÏInposed on them by their superiors; 
they separated from their brethren and went about preach- 
ing to the people a doctrine inspired by an evil mind and 
a heart without charity. It was rather the tares than the 
grain that they sowed. 65 The waÍl:hful eyes of the Pon- 
tiff
, fearing the worst, were on these wilful beings. St. 
Celestine was Pope at this time, and they both knew his 
weakness and understood how to profit by it. They sent 
two of their fellow friars Liberatus and Peter of )[acerata 
to Celestine, beseeching hinl to allow them to lh'e accord- 
ing to the rule of St. Francis in all its vigor, free from con- 
tradiction and free to choose any dwelling they saw fit. 
Celestine granted their request, and wished them to call 
themselves no longer Friars l\Iinor, but Poor Hermits, or 
Celestine recluses. The bad fruits of these zealots were 
not slow in manifesting themselves. They transformed 
themselves into a sect at the head of whieh in Italy, were 
Peter of :\Iacerata, and Peter of FossOlubrone,66 bf'ing 
called Fraticelli, Spiritual Friars, and alRo Beguardi, and 
Bf'guini. Their number was increased by the outcasts of 
monasteries, by malcontent and apostate friars, who were 

candalized by the license given by Pontiffs to certain 
Franciscians, afterwards callerl Conventuals, to possess 
property. These sectaries begun by denying the right of 
the Pope to interpret the rule of St. Francis declaring the 
Pontifical power had ceased, and that the priesthood and 
the true Church were to be found only among themselves. 67 
Poverty of life, a certain apparent austprity of morals HO 
deceived many as to influence thenl to follow these fan- 
atics; and even the women flocked to thpm. The subse- 
quent actions of this almormal asselnbly of friars and 
womPll are well told in the Constitution of Boniface, who 
no Rooner learned of their deeùs, than he visited on them 
all the force of the Papal authority. The Constitution de- 
clarp
 that these headstrong men and women without any 
sa('rt><1 mission, venture to forgive anù retain sin; to hold 
ell Wading annal. ord. Min. anno 1:117. 
ee Giordano MS. Vaticano n. 1!}(jO; Raronio F;ylva MS. p. 400. apud 
Raynaldum. e7 s. Antoninw
 3. par. tit. 24 cap, !} q II. 



176 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
daily and nightly conventicles to be instructed in those 
errors which afterwards they are to disseminate; to im- 
pose hands with the belief of communicating the Holy 
Spirit; that they are to show reverence to God alone; that 
they maintain the most efficacious prayers are those made 
whilst the body is in a state of nudity; that they condemn 
manual labor as a means of support; that it is lawful for 
women to indulge in betrothals with other women; and 
that men shamelessly naked may expose themselves to the 
gaze of women. Boniface declared them heretics, ordered 
the prelates to seek these wretches; and he wished also to 
revive in all their vigor against then1 those civil laws which 
the Emperor Frederick had proclaimed against heretics. 58 
"",Y e would not prolong the description of this impure 
sect, were it not that from their history much light is 
thrown on the Illotives of the dark portraits left us by the 
writers of this age of Pope Boniface, and why his name 
has heen handed down to us loaded with petulant infamy. 
The heresies which harassed the Church in the thirteenth 
century, and which we may collate under that of the Albi- 
genses, were founded on a certain mystical theology de- 
rived from the )Ianicheans, which the French first learned 
through their association with these heretics in their vari- 
ous crusades in the Holy Land. These baneful theories 
taken from the East, became visible in the ""est under 
those forms to which the ten1per of the public mind more 
inclined owing to the condition of the Roman Pontificate. 
In these times the Papacy, by its snpren1acy over the civil 
power and by its great wealth, was at the sumlnit of its 
grandeur. 'Yherefore hatred for the political authority 
of the Church, love of 1110st austere povertJ Y , and obedience 
to God alone were preceded by the Petrobusian and Henri- 
cian 69 heretics, and into then1 was fused the sect of the 
Albigenses, a terrible and a much combated heresy. It is 
evident that these bodies of men wished to reform the 
Church, and under the name of reformers they disturbed 
both state and Church. In this respect they resembled 
the later reformers of Germany; but the times being dark, 
civilization youthful, and nlÏnds unrefined, they differed 
from them in that they indulged in filthy and brutal prac- 
118 Bull" Kuper ad audientiam". Bernin, sec. XIII. cap. XVI. p. 410. 
IIg Bernini. Histor:r of heres
Y, sec. XII cap. 10 Tom. 3 p. 224. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 177 
tices. 70 So strongly were the minds of the Waldenses 
possessed of contempt for worldly things and love for 
poverty, that they even called thenlsplves the Poor 
Ien of 
Lyons and the 
Iortified. Princes and Popes with all 
their power and strength fought the Albigenses; and every- 
one knows what trouble they gave during the pontificate of 
Innocent III. But the fury of the just persecution, and 
the death of their protector, John Count of Toulouse, were 
the cause of their rapid spread in many parts of Europe, 
especially in Italy, namely Piedmont, Sicily, Apulia and 
e,Ten in Rome and its environs. 71 Gregory IX pursued 
them with great ardor, and even imprisoned some of them 
in )Ionte Casino. 72 As these heretics led by an evil spirit 
were proclaiming reforln and were striving to effect the 
same in themselves by their cynieal poverty and contempt 
for all earthly goods, so St. Francis led by the spirit God, 
as an antidote for the decline of the nlonastic orders, prac- 
tised poverty which their riches forbade. The Friars 

Iinor and the heretics at this ppoch had one common ob- 
ject; the fornler tended to it by sanctity, the latter by re- 
hellion. For which reason, if there was dissension in a 
body of the friars, thof'::e who caused the disorder and be- 
came wicked could necessarily border on heresy without 
leaving the community. And just as heretics are ever in 
bad repute, and as no monk though sharing their senti- 
ments would wish to be contaminated by association with 
thenl, so it could happen that rebellious friars, persevering 
in their obstinacy could institute a new distinctive sect, 
different in name from those mentioned above but the same 
in nature. This is the reason why there is such disagree- 
ment among writers concerning the true founder of the 
spct of the Fraticelli, since it was not instituted by a man, 
but was founded on a fact. This fact was the dissensions 
created in the Franciscan Order by those over-zealous 
friars, who, scandalized because the primitive severity of 
rule was relaxed, rebelled against their It.'gitimate super- 
ior
, and prouù of being the true sons of St. I."'rancis, they 
left their monasteries, apostatizing or instituting new 80- 
rietif's. These f'xilf's untractahle to their superiors and to 
thf' Popes spcured the protection of Pope Celestine V, as 
10 B('noi
t. lli<;tory of the Albigensian heresy. Book J. 'T1 Benoist. History 
of the Waldensians. T.I Richard a St. Germain. Chron, year 1251. 



178 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


we have seen, and already in 1296 there was in Palestrina 
a monastery of these Celestine Hermits, or Franciscans of 
strict observance, among whom was Friar J acopone of 
Todi. 73 1\
hen Pope Boniface withdrew all the privileges 
of his predecessor and these hernlits were suppressed, they 
began to bear resentment against Boniface, as we shall 
see when we shall speak of J acopone. The other zealots 
among the friars devoted themselves to preaching danger- 
ous and faulty doctrine, and to the formation of a sect, 
which was called the Fraticelli, (the Little Brothers), as 
it were the more bumble friars; and the Brothers of the 
free Spirit, signifying that they were free to practise per- 
fect poverty without any opposition; in Italy, France, 
Germany and Flanders they are known also by other 
names, which always indicated some virtue of St. Francis 
travestied and disfigured by them. In fact that shameful 
act of appearing naked, and declaring that the best prayers 
are those said while in that state, were a corrupt reminis- 
cence, a parody of the action attributed to St. Francis, 
who through humility went out naked into the street to 
preach with Friar Juniper. 74 So although the Irish Fran- 
ciscan Anthony Hickey, highly praised by 'Vading,7Õ ex- 
erted himself strenuously to prove in a book entitled 76 
(( l\-itela Franciscanae Religionis,JJ that no FranciRcan was 
the founder of the Fraticelli sect, yet we luust adluit that 
the revolt of these zealous, but unruly and disobedient 
friars, gave rise to this heresy. 
N ow the 
chism having arisen in the Franciscan Order, 
it begot two kinds of enemies for Boniface, the devotees, 
or Celestine Hermits, and the Fraticelli. The enmity of 
the first to Boniface was personal, because he compelled 
them to discontinue their singular and dangerous manner 
of living; and the enmity of the others was directed 
against the Papacy, because it pursued them vigorously, 
and declared them extinct. 77 The former, reputed as per- 


73 Marini. Memor. of Palestrina year 1294. 7t Fioretti di S. Franc. 
(Flosculi) 75 The writers of the Franciscan Order page 13, Roman 
edition, 1630. 78 Lyons 1627. sumpt. Claude Landry. . 
77 St. Antoninus Chron. Par. 3 tit. 21 c. 5, & I " Constituentes sibi Papam, 
vel potius Antichristum, Episcopos et sacerdotes, etc." AHd Sander, 
Hersey 180 declares them to say: "NuIIum fuisse POlltificem vere Vicar- 
ium Christi, nisi eos qui paupertatem Christi imitati sunt, For that 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 179 
feet friars by the people in general, had supreme sway over 
them; and the latter had the saIne power over the large 
number of their followers and abettors. VHe slanderers 
of Boniface, they found a reason for their slanders that 
doubt which was cast over the legitimacy of his 
]
vation 
to the Papacy, on account of the peculiar abdication of 
Pope Celestine; and the
Y' succeeded lnal'vellousl
v in con- 
verting into a certainty that which was pending in the 
changeable nlinds of the people. And if Boniface had 
such formidahle enemies, they were these insolent friars 
and those impure Fraticelli, who aroused puhlic opinion 
against Boniface in the very beginning of his Pontificate, 
heing urged on by the Ghibellines, in thp same nlanner 
tho:-;p seditions Colonnas incited against Boniface the 
higher classes of cities and courts, of wlimn we 
hall sppak 
latpr. Therefore it is no wondpr that the IlalllP of this 
Pope had been handed down to us loaded with such in- 
famy, since he has not had time to triumph over the false 
opinions, and he present
d in his true character. 
From these details it appears to us that these ÏInpru- 
dent]
r zealous friars, who called thenlselves Celpstine 
HprmÏts should be carefully distinguished from the 
heretieal FratÏcelli. 1Ye say this because we do not wish 
to bring disgrace on the blessed menlory of Friar J aco- 
pone, who was one of the forlner, anù of whom it may be 
well for us to say something, inasmuch as he was one of 
the greatest and most powerful enemies of Boniface. 
Jacopo, or James, afterwards called Jacopone in tlcrhdoll, 
was horn in the city of Todi, of the nohle falnHy Bcnedet- 
tonÏ. 'Yell edncat
d in the science of law, he adopted the 
profession of a lawyer, and being very skilful in legal pro- 
ceedings, he became very fmnous, and was much sought 
after. In fact he enjoyed to the full the favors of fortune 
and the pleasures of this miserable world. He espoused a 
young lady, who by nobility of race and pprfection of 
Ininù and body, was in herself of priceless worth; but to 
hiln also she was truly a treasure for thp betterment of his 

ouL But although she was wont to appear outwardly 
reason they declared themselves the only true poor of Christ, and five 
Fraticelli priests and thirteen Beguins created Pope a certain Friar from 
J>rovince Dodecis.-Bernini, History of the Heresies of the XIII century, 
chapter XVI Tom. 3, page 409. 



180 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII, 
a woman of the world so as not to displease Jacopone who 
was all engrossed in worldly things, yet she bore in her 
bosonl a heart entirely devoted to God. N ow it happened 
one day that being invited by SOllle ladies to go to an 
entertainment, to please her husband she consented; but 
secretly she resolved to avoid certain pitfalls, which are 
always to be feared by virtuous matrons under such cir- 
cumstances, And lo! when the entertainment was at its 
height, the floor suddenly gave way and there was not one 
among that group of matrons who was not seriously 
injured and unconscious. At the sad news Jacopone hur- 
ried to the spot and found his wife. She was not dead; she 
still breathed. Hoping to revive her he began to loosen her 
clothing; she resisted with her hands, though she could 
not speak; she did not wish to be pxposed to public view. 
Then raising her in his arnlS he bore her to a room near 
by, and removing the rich garments he found she wore 
underneath a rough hairshirt. This sight, together with 
the death of his beloved wife filled the afflicted mind of 
J acopone with such a vivid realization of the transitory 
nature of all parthly things, that he almost lost his senses. 
Then comforted by the example of his holy wife, he gave 
himself wholly to God; and as fornlerIy he had eagerly 
sought for bodily pleasures and for human applause, he 
now determined to chastise his body and to accept all 
contempt in order to stifle within him the lust for vain- 
glory. So intent was his mind on this resolution, that 
dispossessing himself of his goods, he gave them to the 
poor and went on the streets feigning himself a fool for 
the love of Christ; for which he was mocked and derided 
by children, and from that time he was no longer called 
J acopo (James) but J acopone (silly James) . At one time 
he appeared to the populace assembled for a public exhibi- 
tion, nude to the waist, walking on all fours, with a bit in 
his mouth and a saddle on his back like a horse. On an- 
other occasion after besnlearing his naked body with honey 
and then rolling in feathers so as to cover his entire body 
with them, he suddenly rushed in like a wild beast among 
a company of nohles celebrating the nuptials of his niece; 
they admiring his hlunility could not but believe he was a 
saint, and not a madman,78 He entered the Order of St.. 
78 Wading Annals of Friars Minor Vol. 3, pages 408, 409. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 181 
Francis, and to convince the friars that he was not really 
foolish, he wrote and delivered a treatise on contempt of 
the world, which proved that he was in his right mind. 
He suffered much from the friars and bore it all for the 
love of God. He had a fiery soul capahle of great affec- 
tion. His mind was acute, and his ÏIllagination lively. 
In a word he was a man who, if he had lived in the time 
of the Council of Clermont, could by himseH have aroused 
a Crusade. Hence his poenu
 are fervent though crude; 
his verses are harsh and irreverent, and his ascetical 
works are mystical and at times obscure. Hitherto Jaco- 
pone had been acknowleùged a gooù friar and one of the 
founders of the Italian language, but from a close inspec- 
tion of his writings, it seems to us that he was among that 
number of distinguished men who solelllllly gave exprps- 
sion to our Catholic religion in those first movcmpnts of 
an age advancing in civilization. St. Thonlas, preelninent 
for his angelic intellect; Dante for his creative power of 
imagination; Giotto and Blessed Angelico for their knowl- 
edge of the beautiful, who transcending the roughness of 
forms appeared more heavenly than earthly; and J aco- 
pone for his warm language of the heart, had forcibly 
and simply outlined religion for future ages, and lwd 
shown it could be the niother of wonders, when the mind 
and its conceptions were vivified by our holy religion. 
Having spoken of Jacopone, we shall now return to the 
stormy tÏInes of Boniface. 
A people who has just heen delivered fr0111 a hateful 
suhjection is always high-spirited and courageous; unity 
of sentÏInent adds strength, and the fear of the evil fr01u 
which they escaped gives constancy. And such were the 
Sicilians; in the transports of a liherty they believed they 
had found, they desired, more than Frederick him:self, the 
preservation of his crown, which to him too was 80 dear. 
Their army was very powerful, because like melnbers 
closely united in the sanle body, prince and people had 
but one heart, but one a1'ln, but one impulse to repel the 
common enclll
Y; and besides they were skilfully led; 
Roger of Loria, the first captain of the age in the knowl- 
edge of the war was still in the service of Frederick. To 
oppose tIle Siciliam
 Charlf's II dÜl not have a people who 
like thpßl were aroused by hope or fear; Boniface having 



1
2 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
exham
ted against the enemy the spiritual arms, which 
they despised, had no one else to depend on but J allIes of 
Aragon. "The affairs of Charles were in a bad condition, 
and the Pontiff was vainly pressing James to come to 
Italy. Annoyed by troubles in :l\Iurcia and Castile, and 
deterred by the perplexity of the situation in which he 
was placed, on the one hand by the offel's of Boniface, anù 
on the other by the great advantage it would be to Aragon 
to maintain Frederick on the throne of Sicily, James 
could not conle to a decision. 'Ye do not say that some 
interior voice of relationship reRtrained hiIn from waging 
war on Frederick, for this voice to a mind inurpd to the 
ever present desires of unrestrained ambition is like a 
gentle zephyr directed against a rock. However, although 
he did not appear in Italy, still secretly and by embaRsies 
he advised his brother to leave Sicily and the Sicilians to 
withdraw their support frOlll him. From the beginning 
of the autumn of 1296 Friar Peter of CorhelIes, a Domi- 
nican nlonk, was sent as legate by James to Frederick, 
bearing mild and harsh messages; nalnely urged thE' king 
to make peace with )lother Church, who had so exalted 
the house of Aragon by creating James the Stanòard 
Bearer and Admiral; to agref' to an interview with his 
hrother in the island of Ischia; to follow his advice, for 
if he reluained obstinate, a sign from the Pope would 
suffice to declare war, and make it terribly effective 
against the enemies of the Holy See. The nobleR who sur- 
rounded the young king looked dubiously upon the pro- 
ject of an interview with his hrother, to which opinion 
Frederick also agreed. He dismissed the lpgate, and sub- 
mitted the matter to a parliament which he summoned 
to meet in Piazza. 79 
Friar Peter had come openly as a messenger, others 
came with a secret mission to tempt the scornful mind of 
Roger of Loria and the maternal heart of Constance. 
Other private envoys had heen sent to Frederick and to 
the principal cities of the Island, but they acrOlnplished 
nothing; yet it was more than a victory to have disengaged 
Roger from Frederick and to have convertpd Com
tance 
to the side of Rmne. In the parliament of Piazza as soon 
as the propositions of James were disclosed, they were 
'N Special. Book 3, chaps. 12, 13, 14. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


183 


rejected, and the departure of Frelkriek would not he <.'11- 
tertained. The contrary opinion of Hoger of Loria difl 
nothing more than to cOllfol'nl them in their opi11ion, that 
he was already whol1y devoted to Aragon. 
The winter having passed in uReleHs diHcussion, towards 
the end of )larch the expected James of _\ragon finally 
arrived in Rome. He came full of hopes, as Boniface had 
enticed him by munificent promises. Boniface recehoed 
him cordially; his welcome was a magnificent one. The 
arrival of the king in Rome I)rong-lit also Charles II of 
Naples, and the good Constance, the last deRcendant of 
the TIouse of Buabia, whose heart nlnst have been divided, 
seeing herself situated between her two beloved sons bent 
upon waging a war against each other. There appeared 
also those two famous nlen, John of ProPida anrl Roger of 
Loria. Having left the service of Frederick, they canle 
to Rome to bow their proud heads to BonifacE', who re- 
moved the censures they had incurred. Frederick also 
was invited but he refused to come. It was a great meet- 
ing of distinguished persons, and great was the lnatter 
they were cal1ed upon to discuss. Boniface rejoiced when 
he saw at his feet the father of the Sicilian revolution, and 
the terrible Roger of Loria who confirmed it by his valor. 
Hf' beheld Constance who was mother, and he made URe of 
her maternal influence to move the hearts of James and 
Frederick. lIe bf'beld the Aragonese and Angevine 
princes, and with all tbe strength of the Papal power he 
f'ndeavored to urge and enjoin them to reconquer Sicily 
for the Church. He opened his mind to those assemhled. 
The hatred between France and _\.ragon was of long- 
standing. The AragoneRe prince was the one who bad 
received the crown of Sicily after the bloody Y.pspers. 
Boniface in the fir8t place wished to reconcile James with 
Charle8 by a relationship hy marriage. J olanda, the 
iHter 
of Jêunes, was given in nlarriage to Rohert, the son of 
Chal'les. Royal nuptials, and equally magnificent l'o
.al 
feastings were celeùrated in the Papal palace, Then they 
pl'oceedf'd to more important affairs; and the Pontiff dealt 
generously with James by bestowing an manner of favors 
on him. 
On the last day of Decemlwl', 129G/
u he had aùdre

ed 
80 Raynaldus year 12!J7 no. 2 and following. 



184 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
to him letters expressing certain projects which he had 
formed in his favor and which were to go into effeet in 
this year, James being present. It was a magnificent 
treaty, which Surita also relates,8! by which James was to 
hecome king over other lands, and more closely united, 
and as it were, one with the Pontiff. This is the substance 
of it. The Popes claimed Corsica and Sardinia as belong- 
ing to them. This claim, however, was disputed in the 
year 1238, when Frederick II made his illegitimate son 
Enzio king of those islands, espousing him to Adelaide, 
the heiress of the two domains of Torre and Gallura. 
ROlne protested vehemently, 
ret Sardinia was not de- 
tached from the Enlpire. But R1Hlolph, King of the Ro- 
mans, in the year 1275, wishing to ùe anointed and crowned 
Emperor by Pope Gregory X, presented himself to hiIn in 
the church of Lausanne,82 and promised under a solemn 
oath to restore to the Church the ROlnagna and the exar- 
chate of Ravenna, to defend her claiIn to Sicily, to respect 
her rights, to be most ohedient to her, anù finally he 
aeknowledged in the same solemn Inanner her dominion 
not only over Sicily, but also over Sardinia and Corsica. 83 
Therefore without difficult
r Boniface could dispose of 
these islands in the present 
year, anù he solemnly invested 
Jmnes and his descendants with the golden cup (per 
cuppam aureant). The conditions on which the king 
bound himself to ROlne were: that he ,vas to pay homage 
to the Church as her vassal; to nlaintain in Italy at his 
own expense in the service of the Pope one hundred well 
equipped knights, each one having besides an armored 
horse at least two other animals to ride; five hundred foot 
soldiers well provided with arms, of whom a hundred at 
least should be archers, all to ùe either Catalans, or 
Aragonese; and their service was to last three nlonths, 
counting the time from the day on which they set foot in 
I taly. And in case there would ùe need of a fleet instead 
of an army, he could require instead of the soldiers five 


81 Sur ita. An. Book 2. 82 Annals. Colmar. year 1275-ptolemy of 
Lucca. Church History, book 13, chap. 4. 
83" Adjutores erimus ad retinendum et defendendum Ecclesiae Romanae 
Regnum Siciliae cum omnibus ad earn spectatibus, turn citra farum, quam 
ultra; necnon Corsicam et Sardiniarn, ac caetera jura quae ad earn pertinere 
noscuntur." Raynaldus year 1275 no. 38. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 185 
gaHeys weH equipped with men and ammunition; whether 
the fQl'ce wa!'! to be a land or naval one, the king would be 
obliged to send it at once at a eommand from the Pope 
every year for a three-months service. He and his succes- 
sors were to pay forever to the Pope an annual tribute of 
two thousand silver marks of good and honest Inoney. He 
or any heir delaying or refusing to pay, the following 
punishment was without delay to be inflicted: the Prince 
would be excommunicated, then an interdict would be 
placed on the kingdom, and finally he would be deprived 
of his fief. Sardinia was never to be separated from 
Aragon; and if the king should become Emperor of Ger- 
many, it was to revert immediately to the Church. The 
king was to preserve the liberty and the immunities of the 
new kingdom; he was not to ('lose the way of appeal to the 
Papal Curia; he was not to tax the churches; he was not 
to interfere in the election of bishops; upon the discovery 
of laws detrimental to the Church he was to annul them; 
he was not to think of taking any office in ROllle, or in any 
territory whatsoever subject to the Roman See; he was to 
acknowledge always that Sardinia came to him in fief 
through the liùerality of the Pope; and he was to under- 
stand that any doubt arising regarding his new posses- 
sions was to be solved exclusively ùy the Pope. Finally 
Boniface bound James by a solemn oath to observe the 
said conditions, and the king whoever he might be should 
renew theIll to each new Pontiff. 
It was thus that Boniface enlarged the power of James, 
and Rtipulated that he was not to overstep the 1imits 
marked out. It was a wise provision to reserve the return 
of Sardinia to the Holy See in case the king should ever 
beconle Emperor. For the presence of an emperor, 
already powerful in Germany, would appear ÏIllproper 
and as well full of dangers in an island close to Italy. 
Besides, by prohihiting James and his descendants, in 
their quality as kings of Sardinia, from holding any office 
whatsoever in Home, and in the Roman territory, he closed 
the way to a repetition of those very recent ambitious 
projects of Charles I of Anjou, who was senator of Rome, 
the c1angers and the Rad effects of which were too weH 
known to him. In a 'YOI'd, to use a comparison, he capari- 
soned the horse well, but he held the reins in his o"n 



lR6 HISTORY OF POPE) BONIFACE VIII. 
hands to direct him. In fact the subsidies prOluised by 
J ames were certain, since he was to furnish them without 
conditions; and likewise certain were his obligations 
regarding Sicily; but the sovereignty over Sardinia was 
uncertain, not by right but in fact, for before enjoying it, 
he had to conquer thf' Pisans,84 Boniface stipulated by 
another act that he could withhold the grant of Sardinia 
until the feast of All Saints. 85 It was clear by this that 
he wanted to assure himself that James acted sincerely, 
so that the crown of Sardinia would be su
pended over his 
head. For if he would be a good servant of the lloly Ree, 
he was to have the crown, if not, the Pope was to with- 
draw it. And afterwards if James was victorious over 
Frederick, the Pope did not care to see Sicily fall again 
into his hands, for thereby a way would be open to James 
to negotiate, or to threaten, that the Pope must give up 
either Sicily or else Sardinia and Corsica. Boniface 
knew how to draw up a treaty, and how not to lose by it. 
In this treaty, as well as in the Bull by which he created 
James Gonfalonier and Admiral of the Holy See, the 
matter of the lloly Land was lnentioned, so that the Pope 
might seem to have James in readiness only for the libera- 
tion of the Holy Sepulcher. :Many, following the opinion 
of Surita,86 perceive in this provision an artifice of Boni- 
face to draw all attention to the East, whilst his whole 
mind and efforts were directed towards Sicily. But this 
was not a secret artifice; he worked openly against Sicily, 
and so he could not be accused of covert actions. It is 
true his eyes were turned towards the East, but owing to 
the unsettled condition of Sicily, his first wish was to 
obtain possession of that island, and afterwards to attack 
the Turks, which present and future undertakings he en- 
trusted to James of Aragon, when he made him the chanl- 
pion of the Church. Therefore after all things were 
settled, each one departed to assume the respective offices 
to which they were assigned. James went to Catalonia 
to prepare the army; ranged under the standard of 
Charles, and contented with lands and the castle of Ad, 
which the Pope had given him in fief, Roger de Loria went 
to resume, in the waters of Naples, the sceptre of the 
M Villani, Book 8, c. 18. iii Raynaldus, D. 17. 
ill Surita, Annals, book 5, chap. 35. 



HISTORY OF POPE) BONIFACE VIII. 181 
sea; 81 John of Procida, whose lands in the kingdom of 
:x aples were restored to him, remained in Rome with the I 
disconsolate Constance, who is said to have died there. 
Some others hold that five years later she died in Barce- 
lona, and was buried there in the Franciscan church. 
"Thile Boniface was striving to overturn the throne of 
Frederick, the latter was busy in arousing enemies against 
him by hidden means. He knew how very powerful the 
Roman patriciate was, and how troublesome they were 
always to the Pontiffs. He remembered how turbulent 
and quarrelsome the Frangipanni were when Henry VIII 
attacked Rome. He remembered well how devoted the 
FI"angipanni and the Colonnas were to Frederick II in 
fomenting intestine calamity of the Church. He knew 
how in times of grpat danger a mortal blow could be given 
a Prince by one of his own countrymen. Therefore he set 
about to ascertain how many of these Roman nobles he 
could lead over to his cause and urge to assail Boniface. 
The Gaetani, the Savelli, the Orsini, the Colonna, and 
other very powerful families, whose towers and castles in 
the neighborhood of Rome were always offensive and a 
menace to the Popes, were proud-minded, and ready for 
every feat of arms, whether in defence of themselves when 
summoned to justice by the Popes, or when the desire of 
fanle impelled them to break the peace. These barons 
were avaricious of whatever benefit could be derived from 
a feudal posses
ion in the l\Iiddle Ages. They had vassals 
who were engaged not in peaceful agricultural pursuits, 
but in those inglorious and barbarous tournaments. On 
their roving through the state they became the seducers 
of the pf'ople, whom they made serve as instruments for 
gaining power or possessions; and they were also hostile 
to the Popes. Every prince, who was an honest dispenser 
of justice, could in time of a foreign war shut himself up 
within the confines of his own state and there quietly 
and securely ooserve the course of events; but the Pope, 
exposed to conlplications from without, had moreover 
al ways rea
on to fear fronl those within. In fact this was 
the rem
on why Boniface dwelt for a time at Anagni, then 
at Orvil'to, and tllPn at Vellptri; he was always on llis 
guarù again
t thesp powerful forces who could at any 
87 Special. Book 3, chap. 20-21-22. 



188 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
time, like the wind, arouse the people against him. Among 
these powerful families, the Colonnas stood preeminent, 
for on account of the excessive favors heaped upon them 
by :Kicholas IV, a Colonna, they were advanced to the 
highest offices of the state, and were supported by Peter 
and James Colonna, Cardinals of Holy Church. But that 
we nlay proceed with order to relate the occurrences that 
passed between Boniface and the Colonnas, it will be well 
to start from the beginning of the trouble. 
In the year 1201 the leading nlembers of the Colonna 
family were Giordano and Oddone, whom we shall call 
Oddone II, to distinguish him from others of the same 
name. They were perhaps sons of Oddone, lord of Pales- 
trina, and they were masters of this place and also of 
Colonna, Zagarolo, Gallicano, and of the territory of St. 
Constance and St. John in Camporario, which were in- 
habited in those days.88 Giordano had a son Peter, the 
other had a son called Oddone III. These sons being 
cousins and enjoying the inheritance conjointly, began to 
quarrel over their patrimony. In the year 1252,89 the 
Prefect of Home undertook to pacify them, assigning to 
each one his proper portion; but they were not satisfied, 
and shamefully renewed the quarrel. Finally a certain 
John, a Dominican Friar and a relative, was chosen ar- 
biter, and sat in judgment and divided the lands, To 
Peter he awardeù the territory of Gallicano, St. Cesarius, 
and Camporario; to Oddone that of Palestrina, Capranica, 
Colonna and other fiefs. This is taken from a document 
published by Patrini, which was found in the archives 
of the Constable Colonna. It is evident that the most 
powerful Colonnas were those of Palestrina, whose head 
was Oddone III, and it is the deeùs of his descendants 
that shall be subject of our present narrative. Giordano, 
son of Oddone III, had five sons, the eldest of whom was 
James, now a Cardinal, the second John, the third Od- 
done, the fourth ::\latthew, and the fifth Landolph, and 
they were the possessors of rieh lands, named Palestrina. 
::\lount Capranica, Colonna, Zagarola, besides the half of 
the villa of Pietraporto, aud the estate of .AJgido. In 
order to bring things to a peaceful solution these brothers 
88 Patrini. Mem. Palestrina year 1201, page 132. 
811 Patrini. Mem. Palestrina year 1252, page 135. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 189 
by mutual consent appointed James, the Cardinal, ad- 
Ininistrator of their property in an attested instrument 
dated the 28th of Âpril, 1252,90 which Patrini found in the 
Barherini archives. In the period between 1292 and 1297 
John Colonna, the second son, died, leaving his posses- 
sions to his six sons, Peter, a Cardinal, Stephen, John, 
James, nicknamed Sciarra, Odd one, and Aga pitus. 
 ow 
it happened that James the Cardinal, by the authority 
which his brothers had given him for the administration 
of the common inheritance, had made himself more than 
master of it, and uniting the interests of his nephews 
with those of his own, robbed his brothers of their prop- 
erty and reduced theln almost to poverty.91 Therefore 
thiR JameR, the wicked usurper, and his nephews, the sons 
of John, were the sole nU1Rters of the Colonna fiefs, 
and for that reason masters of Palestrina alRo, and were 
those whom we shall soon see who came to a strife with the 
present Pontiff. 
One can clearly see how and why bad feelings were en- 
gendered between Boniface and the Colonnas; and we 
hardly know what to saJT about those very divergent opin- 
ions of various writers concerning the cause of this quar- 
rel. "1' e know however that a strong attachment to a 
party is most hostile to the truth of an historical narra- 
tion. For if the truth be displeasing it is made oLscure, 
it is so dh;;torted that it beconws inaccurate; or it is al- 
lowed Inaliciously to wander in the maze of conjecture, in 
OJ'der that an opinion luay be formed according to the 
writer's wish. 
Iany historians have aeted in this man- 
ner through malice and luany others have blindly followed 
them in their description of the famous quarrel between 
Boniface and tile Colonnas. Ferrettus of Vicenza, and 
Pipin, most ardent Ghibellines, whose opinion many 
others follow who glory in defaming a Pontiff, declare that 
Boniface fostered in his heart the strongest hatred against 
the Colonna family, because James and his nephew Peter 
Colonna, had not given him their votes in his election to 
thp. Papacy. On the contrary St. Antoninus 92 relates that 
the two Colonna Cardinals were the first to give Bonifacp 
their votes. This is the truf' opinion and it is RUPPol'ted 
so See document at end of book. 111 See document at end of book. 
82 Chronicles. Year 1295, par. 3, title 20. 



190 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
by a fact. For if from that time an enmity had existed he- 
tween Boniface and the two Colonnas, the former would 
not have put himself in the hands of his enmnies, when 
after his election to the Papacy, on his way to Rome, he 
accepted the hospitality of James at Zagarolo, and James 
would not have cordially entertained him. 93 
or is there 
any proof that a jealousy existed between the Gaetani and 
the Colonna family in those times, and afterwards tyranni- 
cally prosecuted by Boniface. There is no truth in the 
statement of Benvenuto of Imola, who commenting on the 
twent:r-seventh canto of the Inferno, declares that the fire 
of hatred between the Colonnas and Boniface was en- 
kindled by the snares that were laid to seduce the wife of 
J ames, Sciarra Colonna, by a nephew of Boniface. This 
villainy of a Gaetani, if there was any truth in it, would 
not have been passed over in silence by the infuriated 
Colonnas, at a time when they flooded all Europe with 
calumnies against Boniface and his family. Their silence 
on this point proves the falsity of the above statements. 
But examining closely the documents of that time, it 
appears to us, that despite the expressed opinion that the 
first cause of these terrible differences originated with 
Boniface, yet from these records it is made clear that the 
first :scandal arose from the Colonnas. And in fact al- 
though peaceful and even friendly relations had existed 
between Boniface and the two Colonna Cardinals, because 
of the influence they exercised on the other cardinals to 
elect hÏIll Pope, yet aillong the Colonnas themselves there 
was a silent war which did not break out in open violence 
owing to the weakness of one of the parties and the great 
strength of the other. We have seen how James Colonna, 
Cardinal of the title of St. )laria in Via I.lata, in league 
with his five nephews, and abusing the confidence placed 
in him by his brothers, when they confided to him the 
administration of their patrimony, robbed them of that 
which he should have preserved, anù reduced them to dire 
poverty. N ow these family injustices could not be com- 
mitted so secretly as to escape the knowledge of Boniface, 


113" Et post electionem . . . . . . in castro tunc ipsorum (Colum- 
nf'nRium) quod Zagarolum dicitur, et quod per dictum Jacobum tunc 
temporiR tenebatur . . . . hospitati fuerimus confidenter. Bull, Ray- 
naldus, year 1297, no. 39. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


lül 


for the reáson that the Colonna fanÜly was very prom- 
inent, and he was a severe upholder of justice. We know 
not whether the aggrieved hrothers appealed to the Papal 
Court, but it is certain that the Pope interposed his pa- 
ternal offices to end the tyranny of the Cardinal and their 
mi
erJ. lIe decreed that each one should receive his por- 
tion of the patrÏIllony; that the administration of it ùy 
James Rhould ceaRe; and SOllIe assignn1ent, over and aùove 
what was due, was to he made to the nephews, so as to dis- 
pose thenl to resign what they had usurped. These com- 
mands Boniface made to the Cardinal and his nephews in 
his presence, hut instead of recognizing in these orders the 
love of justice or the infan1Y of their injustice, they by no 
means were disposed to surrender their plunder; and spite- 
ful and furious with rage, they left the presence of the 
Pontiff, anù never again did they see the face of Boniface. 94 
Among the nephews of the angry Cardinal James, there 
was another James, nk knanlPd Sciarra ( Quarrelsome) . 
lip was a man hrutal and pa

ionate who perhaps more 
than others was ('nraged at sf>eing the goods of his uncles 
HlIatdled from him. Breathing vengeance on the Pontiff, 
who had regulated the matter so justly, and not feeHng 
aHhamed, nohleman ùy ùirth as he was, to enlulaìt
 the ac- 
tions of the nwst harcfac('(l rohLpl'. in c0111pany with satel- 
Hte
, who in tho
e times werc always at hand for the 
t'mploy of these violent Jor(IH, he lay in wait to steal thc 
rich tremmre of the Pope as it was being brought frOlll 
A nag-ni to HOllW. I t con
iRÍl'cl of a large sum of gold and 
Hiln'r. 95 The attack was wPlI-tim<,d, for the Papal gooùs 
came into his pos
e
sion and he ùrought then1 to his own 
hom
e. This wicked dec(I,9G the truth of which no one 


D4 Haynalùlls, year 12f1ï. no. 26. !IIi Chronicles Foroliv. 
11ft . . . . . . "quod Stefanus ùe Columna suum thesaurum fuerat 
ùeprcùatus; propter quod inter ipsum Bonifacium, et dictos Column ens os 
f;umma discorùia extitit suscitata." Amalaricus S. R. I. T. 3, p. 435.-" In 
Rome there was the greatest division and war Letween Boniface VIII and 
the Colonnas, because the Colollnas had stolen a rich treasure from the 
Pope." Chronicles of Bologna S. R. I. T. lR, pag-e 301.-" Eoùem anno 
Columnenses Romani acccsserunt ct ù('ruhayerunt magnum thesaurum 
auri et arg('nti Domno Papa(' llonifacio.-" Chronic. Estcns. tim. 1;;, 
page 344-" KoLilcs etim de Columna inimicos habeLat, contra quos pro- 
cess it, quia Stephanu3 ùe ('oluHma irsiu!'l Papae fuerat proellatu3 the- 
lSaurum."-(George Stella, Aunals of Genoa, Hook 2, tom, 18, p. 1020.) 



- 
lû2 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
denies, was done not by a man reduced to desperate straits, 
nor one who pursued the ways of a highwa
yman, but by 
a noble and very rich lord unaccustolued to robber
Y. 
Hence revenge, which blinded and covered Colonna with 
such infamy, prompted him to commit this wicked deed. 
I t is well to renlark that the Pope made no mention of this 
grievous injury in the Bull, " Praeteritorum temporum," 97 
where he complains of all the evil deeds of the Colonnas, 
as it were to show that he minded, not what was done to 
him privately, but the evil done to the Church. 98 
V\Therefore having seen the bad disposition of the two 
Cardinals, James and his nephew Peter, and of the other 
nephews, and having been convinced by the robbery at 
Anagni that this was a family that it would be well not 
to leave unwatched at a time when through Rome envoys 
of Frederick of Sicily were roaming intent upon tempting 
the fidelity of his subjects, Boniface determined to watch 
them and provide against the consequences. IIe watched 
their movements attentively, and saw how well they re- 
ceived the messengers of Frederick, how they fraternized 
with them and how they favored them. He was unwilling 
to exasperate them by inflicting condign punishment, and 
so tried persuasion, entreaty and threats; but they fol- 
lowed their own will, and with the enemies of the Church 
plotted against her. J ames of Aragon was far a way and 
was slow of action; Charles of Naples was powerless; the 
Ghibellines throughout Italy were in commotion as a con- 
sequence of the actions of the Sicilians and the machina- 
tions of Frederick; the Pontiff was threatened in Ronle 
itself; then Boniface followed a course of action that any 
prudent nlan would in similar circumstances. He re- 
quested the Cardinals James and Peter Colonna to throw 
open the gates of Palestrina and Zagarolo, and allow the 
soldiers of the state to occupy the castles of those strong- 
holds so as to keep out enemies of the Church. This was a 
very mild request, which any prince had a right to make in 
times of public danger. The two Cardinals outwardly 
pretended to acceùe to the request, but secretly they en- 
couraged and assisted their nephews who answered the 
87 See Bull at end of book. 
88 John Villani, Book 8th, chap. 21-Ptolemy of Lucca, Short annals 
So R. I. T. XI.-Chronicles Foroliv. S. R. T. Tom. 22. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 193 
Papal )'eque
t with a downright refusal. The mild meas- 
u res of Boniface ha viug failed to bring the two Cardinals 
to a right way of acting, their perfidy obliged him to have 
recourse to severer measures. After mature deliùeration 
he determined to punish them, but at the same time he 
l'psolved to go slowly, and wait for developments. He 
hpard that the Colonnas were aroused to indescribable 
anger, and had vowed the nlost desperate vengeance on 
him; that the Cardinal Peter having laid aside all re- 
straint, was eagerly engaged in circulating the invalidity 
of the ahdication of Pope Celestine and hence the invalid- 
ity ahm of his own election to the Papacy. These were 
poisonous tares which could bring fruit of immense evil 
to the Church. He feared the sad consequences of a 
sehif'lll, knowing that, by the presence of the enemy Fred- 
erick of Sicily, the fury of the GhibelIine party, and the 
intolerance of the Princes of his rigorous defence of the 
liberty of the Church, the fuel was well disposed to receive 
the first sparks of a schisnl. Still he refrained from pun- 
ishmpnt. (Observe his moderation and forbearance.) On 
tile fourth day of 3Iay hp sent John of Palestrina, the 
major-dulllo, to Cardinal Peter, to ten him to corne on the 
evening of this same day, to declare in presence of some 
Carùinals, if he ùeIieved him to be truly Pope. Peter per- 
ceived that this was pvidently to draw him out in order 
the better to convict him, and he refused to obey.99 )lore- 
over considering hinlself unsafe, he departed from Rome 
with his uncle James and some of his brothers, full of 
threats and ready to perform wicked deeds. X ow was the 
time to proceéd to punishment; his office of Pope and 
prince demanded it. IIe held a consistory on the 4th, of 
)Ia
r. He made known the faults of the Colonnas, their 
stubbornness and obduracy to an his admonitions and en- 
treaties; and after taking counsel with the Cardinals, he 
passed sentence, to wit: that James Colonna, Cardinal of 
the title of Rt. 31aria in Yia Lata, and Peter, of the title of 
Rt. Eustachio, Cardinal-Deacons, would be deprived of 
the dignity of Cardinal, of the priestly office, and would 
incur I'olemn excommunication, if at the end of ten days 
they did not appear hefore the Papal See and submit to 
II Histoire du diff. ent. Bonif, VIII et Philip. p. 33. Appendi"L tom. 
VIII. 



194 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
its will; all their real and personal property in the Nea- 
politan kingdom as well as in the States of the Church 
would he seized; the descendants of John and Oddone 
nephews of the Cardinals as far as the fourth generation 
would be excluded from the priesthood; this same excom- 
munÏeation would he incurred hy anyone taking' sides with 
Cardinals James and Peter; and if anyone, whether Car- 
dinal or of any othpr dignity, dared to ùe their abettor of 
thPlll in felony and schism, they would be deprived of 
their office and property; and those countries would be 
interdicted that would receive them. 10o 
To some reader these punishments lllay seem exceedingly 
har
h, and he lIlay suppose that cahn reason in the Illind of 
the Pope had been displaced by a hasty exuberance of 
anger. But in the course of this narrative we shall know 
llettl'r what was the true t:h..1I.acter of the Colonnas. Roni- 
face alrpady fulIy understood them. IIis object was not 
to hUlllhle the pride of a Cardinal only, Imt that of an en- 
tire family very powerful and insolent, on account of 
their grpat wealth and the strong castles they possessed 
at the very gates 'of HOlne. Their actions under similar 
d ITum
1ïlnc('s were st ill fre
h in the nlemory of the pu hUc. 
1 t was only seventy years since the perilous felony of an- 
other Cardinal of the fmnily, John Colonna, who r('ceived 
in Palestrina a garrison frOlll a prince of SuaLia, and had 
thereLy caused llluch vexation to Pope Gregory IX. FrOlll 
that time, strongly attached as they were to the Ghihel- 
line party, the Colonnas had not changed their spirit. 
And Lesides, that scandalous libel they spread among the 
faithful t:01u:erning the validity of the election of Boniface 
to the Papacy, showed a disposition on their part to plot 
against the Church. 
Haying learned of the terrible consistory, the Colonnas 
on the same day, the tenth of }[ay, convoked a wicked 
t:ount:il against the Pope in the Lunghezza, a territory be- 
longing to the Conti family. John of Gallkano, an apos- 
tolic writer; DonlÏnic Leonarù of Palestrina, a notary; 
and two Friars l\Iinor, Diodatus Hocci of 
It. Prenestino 
and J acopon(' of To(U, took part in this conneil. For what 
reason the former two came to this conventicl(', we know 
not, unle

 lnollcy lllay have f'nticed them. 'Y(:> are sur- 
1UO Hull of Boniface. Raynaldus, year 1297, no. 27. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


1!13 


prised at J acopone and thp oth(>r Friar; but it i
 not an 
idle conjPttul'C for us to say that bel"anse Boniface would 
not appl'o,'e of that npw onh'>l' of Cpl(>stine Rt'chlSf'S, of 
which these friars were lliPlllhers, and to which tllf'Y were 
much attar-hed, they were prevailed npon to enter this 
schismatical company. So in this council the Colonnas, 
fun1Ïng with rage decided that I..Iponard, the notary, sbould 
draw up a document, in which he would declare tbat Car- 
dinal Colonna had not wished to appeal' before Bonifiu'p 
through fear of violence; and to the request of the i'laster 
of the Camera, he replied that Boniface was not Popp, 
Loth because Celestine tould not ahdicate, and because hiR 
aLdication had Leen wrung fronl him Ly 3rtifice. 101 Oderic 
Ra.ynaldus had in l1is possession this fanlons libel, which 
he found in tlw Ayignon 3rchi"\'es in the Yatican, and 
whif'h he published in the appendix to the third VOIUlllP 
of his ...\nnals.lo2 This dOClnnent we shall briefly revipw. 
The first part contains the greetings of Cardinals ,TanIes, 
of the 81. .Maria in Yia Lata, and Peter, of the title of Rt. 
Eustachius, to all the readers of this puLlic instrument. 
Then they begin by referring- to Boniface. To the last 
words of his rescript they frankly reply hy declaring that 
he is not the legitimate Pope. This fact they announce to 
the college of Cardinals, and they req nest thenl to relllPdy 
the evil, so that a fal
e Pope, may not uHurp the plaee of 
Christ, for the Church would thus suffer hy an iBir-it atHI 
inyalid administration of the Sacraments, which would 
take place thl'ough an iHpgitimatp and falsp ministf'r. 
Tlwy justify their attitude in the stateUlPnt: " Jlany tinws 
" we haye heard from pers;ons of rC'pute hoth layuwn and 


101 It is well to remark here that the enemies of Boniface eitller inad- 
vertently or maliciously disarrangpd the chronology of facts, and said 
that Boniface was the first to display harshness in the Bull: H Praeteri- 
tor urn temporum." The Colonnas had already declared Boniface antipope, 
for which he sent to them his l\Iaster of Camera to ascertain the truth of 
this declaration. The envoy was sent on the 4th of May, and the Bull 
issued on the Tenth day of l\Iay, when after being summoned to appear, 
they refused, and fled from Rome. Then the Bull was published against 
them not as criminals, but as contumacious schismatics. They replied to 
the Bull by the famous Libel. The mind must follow closdy the chron- 
ology, otherwise the facts change in appearance. In truth if the Bull 
"Praeteritorum temporum" may seem harsh again:-;t rebels, it is not so 
against schismatics. ItU Year 12U7, no. 34, verso XI. 



196 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


"ecclesiastics, a certain doubt with sonle foundation 
" cast 103 upon the audication lnade by Pope Celestine V 
" of blessed InemOI'Y, whether it was done legitimately and 
" according to the canons. Now it seems most likely it was 
,. not, because that which is entrusted hy OmI, or any other 
" superior personage, cannot he taken away by any infe- 
"rior person. And whereas the spiritual power which 
"one cannot confer, cannot he reilloved by him; so the 
"papal power conferred uy God alone can be taken away 
" by God alone. But if the abdication was valid, the papal 
" power could be taken away by a man; therefore the ab- 
" dication cannot Le madf\.104 
After syllogizing in this luanneI' closely and carefully 
ill thirteen articles they close the daring discus
ion by 
passing judgment on Boniface, declaring him deposed 
from the Papacy, and appealing to a future Council. Tht' 
foundation of the argument was the work of both the 
enraged two Cardinals, but we believe that it was Jaco- 
pone who put it in this Aristotelian form. And it is easy 
to prove how and why the infuriated Colonna framed his 
argument against the validity of the election of Boniface. 
The ground of the reasonable douht (vcrosimilitrr ,zubi- 
tari), is to be found in the abdication of Celestine, whieh 
they contend could not be nlade. T\Te do not believe it 
likely that a doubt entered the Inind of anyone through 
any defect in the lllanner of election of Boniface, but 
through the unusual abdication of Celestine. .A solemn 
renunciation of the Papacy ,vas an unheard-of thing. 
It excited the greatest wonder and engaged the atten- 
tion of many in those times. Some could not make 
themselves believe that the dignity almost divine of 
the Papacy, once assnnled, could be relinquished. This 
difficulty was increased by the followers of Ce]estÏ1w; th(1se 
monks were holy in the e
1es of the people by reason of 
reform, and therefore of authority. Ilenee attpntion was 
fixed nlore on Celestine who had left the chair, than Boni- 
face who sat in it. In fact before the Colonnas had en- 
gaged in this proud rebellion, we do not find that anyone 
had questioned the validity of the elpction of Boniface to 
the Papacy. If anyone did so, it was aftpr the two Car- 
103 .. Dubitari verosimiliter ". 
lot See this document in full at the end of this book.- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 197 
dinals haù ùra wn attention from Celestine to Boniface; 
and from the former's abdication, which they said could 
not be made, they asserted as illegitimate the elevation of 
the latter to the ROlnan Pontificate. 
It is certain that the Colonna libel was productive of its , 
desired effects. I t disturbed weak minds by inspiring 
doubt; the enemies were delighted, pretending to have 
certainty. This is clear from the facts which we shall 
relate, and by the ardor displayed by the nlost learned 
canonists in refuting the libel. Peter of the l\larches re- 
duced to two heads the objections of the Colonnas, and 
ably refuted them. 105 John Andrew of Bologna, a famous 
lawyer, did likewise. lo6 Egidius of Colonna, Archbishop 
of Bourges, with wonderful erudition, and with sound 
rea
on defended Boniface against the attacks of the Colon- 
nas. 107 And when he came to the refutation of the false 
charge, which is contained in the twelfth and last article 
of the libel, namely that Boniface by artifice induced Cel- 
estine to abdication, casting aside every other argument, 
he appealed to the testimony of the living witnesses, who 
declared that Cardinal Gaetani had urged Celestine to re- 
tain the Papacy, instead of renouncing it, alleging that his 
sanctity of life more than compensated for his ignorance 
of governing. los It may be well to remind the reader that 
at the time the Colonnas compiled the diabolical libel, 
Celestine had been dead already one year. Xow if Boni- 
face was not the true Pope because of the invalid abdica- 
tion of Celestine, there could be no longer any doubt as 
to his claim to the Papacy after the death of his predeces- 
sor. And although Boniface might have been a false Pope 
up to June, 1296, when Celestine died, yet after that time 
he was true Pope by the consent of the Cardinals and all 
Christendom, who acknowledged him as -such; which ac- 
knowledgments meant more than an election. Finally, 
these two Colonna Cardinals who were present and took 
part in the election, and who wished to dethrone Boniface, 
llad no other proof for the defence of their position, than to 


105 De cause immediata Ecclesiasticae potestatis. Paris 1506. 
108 Lecture on the rules of 6th, book of the Decretals. 
101 De Renunciation Papae, and especially in chapter 23. 
108 . . . . . . . . "quia 8ufficiebat collegio quod nomen Buae 
lIanctitatis invocaretur super eos." 



198 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
say that the ahdication of Celestine was null. A poor and 
weak argulllellt. :x ow what Hhall we 
ay to them, and e
pe- 
dally of Dante, who irreverently accu
e<1 Boniface of 
sinlOny, and of having ùought the onice of Pope? If 
there had ùeen any Ìl'uth to this sacrilegious hargain, the 
Colonnas would have made use of it aR a two-edged sW01'd 
to wound their adversar
y, and thel'e would have been no 
need to weary thplllselve::s in forming RynogiRm
. The Rin 
of simony was sufficient to deprive Boniface of the Keys 
of Peter which he iniquitously IH-'l(l in his powpr. In the 
fanlOm
 Colonna lihpl thf're is no mention of sÏIllony. 
After having compiled the libel the Colonnas were guilty 
of an act of 11l0St dal'Ìng insolence, in that they had the 
base effrontery to affix a copy of the shameful "Titing not 
only to the door, but also to the high altar of St. Peter's 
church. 109 Everyone wondered at such audacity, but no 
one sanctioned the action of these schismatics. Boniface 
then took measureS against them. On the feast of the 
Ascension, which in that year f(:ll on the 23rd of 
lay, as 
there was only one course to !Jursup, he confirmed the 
sentence pws:sed upon the Colonna::s in the null of 
Iay 
10th, in another that he publi
hed whkh began" Lapis 
ahRCÍssuS." 110 In this Bull Rlwaking of that famous liLel 
and the attaching a cop
r of it to the doors antI altar of 
St. Peter's church, and of the contumacy in retaining the 
dignity of Cardinal and using the ring and red hat, he 
briefly nlentions his right to the Papaey. lie relates how 
suddenly and without fouIHlation these douhts arose in 
their minds; how for three years they had heen accustonwd 
to obey and reRppct hinl as the true Pope; how thpy had 
participated with him in the holy mysterieR; how they 
had been his ministers at the altar, his aRsociates in con- 
sultation, in coup.sels, and in solemn definitions; tllat they 
had been, in a word, always with him never doubting his 
true dignity; bow with the other Cardinals that had raiRed 
him to the Apostolic See, and had done this willingly and 
without fear, inasmuch as he could not excite fear Lefol'e 
he was Pope; and that their good will was shown l)y the 
kind and warJn reception accorded him at the'ir home', 
and especially by JameR in Zagarolo, and all thoRe other 
101 Bun of Boniface. RaynaIdus, year 12!)7-Hist. du Diff. P. 34. 
no See this Bull at the end of the book. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 199 
marks of homage and respect they had shown him aR Pope. 
Then he t'onfiscates all the possession
 of Jamf'S and Pet
r 
and the nephews; he ùanishes them from the state; he for- 
hids anyone to ret'eive thl'Ill, or hold l'elation
 with them; 
h(' renders them ÏIwligiùle to public office, and strikes them 
with the major excommunÏeation. Thi
 tC'rrihle ('ou
titu- 
tion he plaecd among' the ÐpcretalR,111 as a pprpetual I'e- 
mindpl' of their infamy. Spoß(]ano l'platps, and gh'C'R the 
source of hiR inforulation,112 how the roHep:e of rardinalR, 
lnoved to indignation ùy the infamous liùel, puhlished 
letters in which they refuted the false charges and certi- 
fied to the legitimate authority of Boniface. 
As the severity of the pnnishulent increased, the minds 
of the ColonnaR became more emhittered, and they had 
ret'onrse to violent measure
. They aR
emhl('d their forces 
in Palestrina, that Boniface might hear thf' sounds of 
arms. And as if that illfanlOu
 lihf'l difl not 
uffice to give 
vent to their fury, they pnhlishe{] oth('r dOeUmf'lltR, in 
which they ù(,
Illil'(:hed the nam(' of ßouifacf'. They ac- 
('u
eù billi of heing a mOll
tpr of amùition, of avarice and 
of arrogance. They scatterf'ù theRC' doclunents among the 
Iwople and in the courts of princes. The latter especiaHy 
read them with much avidity and fondly preserve(] then1. 
Groaning under the power of the Pope, and impatient to 
break the yoke, they saw thel'e an arsenal from whith they 
could take arnlS at an opporhuw tinw. The plaee in which 
more than any uther the news of these affronts was agree- 
ably rel:eived was France, a kingdoni whieh Philip ruled 
absolutely. On account of the Constitution "Clericis 
Laicos," he was still disflainful, and hf' felt his courage 
revive Ly the di
putes which the Doctors of the Rorhollnp 
were hol(ling concerning the legitimacy of BOllifac'e's claim 
to the Papaey. Froni the time .of the aùdication of Celes- 
tine, for reasons Inentioned ùefore the rnh'ersity was 
awakenpd to the fact, and struek hy the no,'elty of it, 
wished to know for itself if it could he madl', an.! hpnce 
if Boniface was really POpf'. Cprtainl
y no re
traint was 
place(l on tlwsp Doctors in tlwir tl('batf'
. For the
f' dis- 
putC's were of that kind which luakp no n()i
e, and arp even 
necessary in Acadpmies for prartite awl l'mploymellt of 
111 Shth Decretal, chapter Ad succidendos. 
112 Collect. Archiep. Auxitani Collegii Fuxensis Tolosani foJ. 211. 



200 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
time. The two Colonna Carùinal
 in the circulation of 
those libels could not forget the Sorbonne. In fact a 
letter dated the 15th of June was :sent by them contain- 
ing the aforesaid sylloghnlls, which if it was read at a 
meeting of the Doctors 113 must assuredly have occasioned 
a warm debate, and considering the fact that these aca- 
demicians were always courtiers, one could unquestion- 
ably conelude, that the.r extolled to the skips this work of 
the Colonnas. And just as these writings brimful of can- 
onical lore passed into the hands of Princes and Doctors, 
so as to arouse the more cultured mind
, other
 of a differ- 
ent nature were circulated among the people. J acopone 
wrote his verses in the vernacular, by means of which he 
crudely scored the Pope. In these verses there is nnlch 
roughness of speech, which arose not only frolll the fact 
that the language was yet in its infancy, but also fronI a 
certain artifice of the Friar to nlake it penetrate deeply 
into the Iuinds of the people. Thus this Celestine recluse 
who was scrupulous with regard to poverty, rushed head- 
long to enkindle the fire of schislll. 'Yho will ever be able 
to explain fully and well, the lllysteries of that book which 
is called the human heart? Although Boniface had dealt 
the Colonnas mortal blows, yet his rest was disturbed by 
the fear of the Roman People, who, very fickle and con- 
trolled by the nobles, could be very troublesome to him. If 
Saintly Popes had feared and suffered much frOln the same 
source, Pope Boniface could not consider himself safe. So 
he retired to Orvieto. In that place he set about to make 
provision to subdue the pride of the schismatics with the 
sword. He enlisted soldiers and gave the command of 
them to Landolph Colonna, a cousin of the rebels. He 
joined to his force, Inghirano, Count of Bizenzo with the 
Florentine soldiers; as is evident from the letter sent by 
the Pope to Landolph from Orvieto on the 14th of Septem- 
her which Petrini published from the original in the ar- 
chives of Castle San Angelo. 
As soon as the news of these warlike preparations and 
of the intention of Boniface to fight had spread, the pro- 
spective war caused grave apprehensions to arise ill the 
minds of the Romans. Pandolph Savelli, a man of civic 
virtue was a senator of Rome. This rupture of peaceful 
118 MS. in Vatican Archives, Raynaldus. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 201 
relations was not plemÜng to him. For by reason of the 
strength of the rebels, and the rigor of the Pope, Rome 
would have been plunged into the horrors of a civil war. 
He summoned the senate in council in the Capitol; and 
having debated the question, they resolved to send messen- 
gers to the Colonnas in Palestrina, to induce tllPm to 
humble themselves, and submit to the Pontiff. It was 
done accordingly, and they made fail' promises. Then en- 
voys were sent to Boniface in Orvieto, ùearing witnpss of 
the docility of the rebels, and entreating hinl to allay his 
anger by restoring to his favor these penitent
, and to he 
willing to return without fear to Rome in the following 
spring. These things they repreHented Ly word of nlolIth 
and hy letters, to which the cautious Pontiff inu11efliately 
replipd also by letters to thp Senator Savelli and the Ronlan 
People. "Health and Apostolic ßenedic,tion to our be- 
"loved son Palldolph 
avelli, Senator, and to the Roman 
" People who of all others are ùearpst to our heart. "'ïth 
" paternal kindness we have receh'pfl your numerous f'IIl- 
"bassy, and we have listened attentively to wllat they 
"have brought us by word and letters, namely, how the 
"Colonnas being induced by nlessengers to yield to us, 
" have promised to come to us, prepared to obey the ('0111- 
" mands of the Roman Church, and how we were entreated 
" to pardon theln. Holding the place of Him, "Tho has not 
"made death, nor ùelights in the loss of the living; and 
"'Yho, as often as His wandering children return to HiIn 
"humbl<"' and penitent, pardons thenl; so whpnever these 
"schismatics and rebels will hecome rppentant, and will 
"confess thpir misdeeds, if they come to us personally 
"without d('lay, awl will surreß(ler thelllseives and thpir 
" castles into our hands, our heart win he open to receive 
" them ana treat them kindly, that the work of mercy will 
" he agreeable to God, honoraùle to themseh.ps and to the 
"Church, and he handed down to posterity as a laudable 
" exanlple of eIelnency. ".,. e do not wish in the meantime 
"to be led astray a
d be deceived by fail' promises, and 
" thus be d('layed from proceeding against the rebels and 
"their abettors. :\Iost grateful for the request made to 
" us to return to HOlue in the spring time and to fix our 
"dwelling there, let it he known that wp love lllOst to 
" dwell there wher(' the Apostolic See has ùeen pstabIishpd, 



202 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
"in which not only during life ùut also death we wish to 
" remain; for we haye huilt in the church of the Prince 
" of the Apostles a chapel in whieh there is a tomb wh('re 
" our body win repose. 'Ye hold in suspe>nse the qnestion 
"of our return until we see if the prOlllises will he ful- 
" fiHeò. 1l4 
But the proinises of the Colonnas Wf're only a ruse>, and 
an artifice to gain time. They did not go to nwet the Pope', 
and they were guilt
r of worse' actions. Tlu'y welcomed 
to Palestrina, Francis (1rescenzi and Kieholas Pord, the 
en\'oys of Frederick, the avowed f'nf'mies of Boniface, and 
entered into plots with them against the State. For this 
reason he puhlishefl '.hat terril,le Bun, in which confirm- 
ing the former punishlllenÜ" he proclaimed a crusade 
against the Colonl1as, as against contumacious schismatics 
and disturùers of the unity of the Church. 1l5 The inquisi- 
tors were oròered to pursue them and their followers; the 
people were called to arms, and indulgences were prom- 
ised to those who would respond to this appeal. )Iatthew 
rolonna, Proyost of the ehurch of St. Orner in the diocese 
of 
Iaurienne took thr cross. The papal inòulgences were 
published throughout Italy by thp legatf' Cardinal :Mat- 
thew of Acquasparta, who diligently encouraged the people 
to entpr the cl'usade anò suhdue thf' Colonnas. 
The deposition, excol1l1nullication and the war pro- 
claimed against the two Cardinals of Holy Church were 
decrepd by the Pope for a legÏtiIuate cause, yet Boniface 
felt that the nlagnitude of the punishnwnt might lessen 
the esteem and reverence du(> from the ppoplp to tllf' (101- 
lege of Cardinals, bef'ause thf'Y are the companions and 
counsellors of the Pope in tllp gOYPI'nment of the (1hurch, 
and eligible themselves to the Papacy. To remove the 
impression of abasement into which the College may ha\'e 
fallen after such thunderbolts of censures ag'ainst two of 
their number, Boniface published a Constitution in which 
the severest penalties were threatened on those who 11l0- 
Jested or laid violent hands on a Caròina1. He specified 
the infamy of such irrpverent beings: they would l)e de- 
prived of their benefices if they possessed any, their goods 
would be confiscated, and their houses drmolished. Thi:s 


114 See document at enù of the Book. 115 Raynaldus, J'par 12!"J7, no. 41. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 203 
constitution he placed later in the sixth Decretal. 116 :àlore- 
o"er to cleanse the veneraùle College from any foul stain 
with which the nlisdeeds of the Colonna Cardinals may 
haye tainted it, he decreed that the Cardinals should ap- 
pear dressed in purple like Kings. This privilege was 
fornwrly enjoyed only hy Cardinal Legates "a Latere" 
to 
ome princely courts,t 17 as it were, to denote that he 
who deputed, not only wore, but also distrilmted thm;e 
ro;\'al em blems. 
1
!)7.-noniface with all his court was in Orvieto when 
he finished the process of the canonization of Louis IX, 
King of Franee, and grandfather of Philip the Fair. Louis 
had excited the won(ler of all contemporaries hy his self- 
restraint in the government of France in times when the 
ppople remained silent, and when relip;ion was losing llllH.:h 
of its force, hy reason of its ùeing involved in groHs super- 
stitioll. Koone more than he had loyed amI practiReù 
ju
iice towards his subjects. They found in his hOllPsty 
an(l goodness of heart a guarantep, which is vpry l'aJ'ely 
found in tht' very laws thelllselve
. It wa
 not thirst fOl" 
powpr, Imt lon
 foJ' his suhjeets, that lpd him without de- 
sil'ing- it, to weakpn altogether the powpr of the feudal 
lords, and COIH.:ent ,'ate it in his own hands. In place of the 
fe1HIal lor-cIs hp 811 bstit ute(l jurists who are thp sole authors 
of all thoHl' laws whkh were enaetell ùy Louis in relation 
to the Church. The Pragmatic Ranction, (which French- 
men aI'e wont to call the foundation of GalIkan liberty), 
was pllhlishrd in :\Iarch, 12ß8. It concerned the 
ol1atioll 
of henefif'es, and bore on the title page the nallle of Louis. 
I t is a very short consti tu tion, COIn pl'i
ing only six al'ti- 
de!':,118 but n108t fruitful of 
on8PquencP8 which the lucu- 
hrations of jurists made them engender. To the princes 
and clergy of FJ'ance it was a Rtrong lmlwaI'k, forming a 
guarantee again8t what tJwy called the usurpations of 
thp Papal Curia. By ihi
 document the Pope ill using his 
authority oyer ehurehes, ('ith('r for th(' puuishnlPnt of th(' 
guilty, or to n
(' the sacred patrimony, Inu
t first sulHnit 
the affair to the judgment of tlw juI'Ïsts, ('ypr ready to 
dpspoil the Church to increase the power of the prince 


ue Tit. 9 de Poenis eap. Felids Recordationis. 117 See Pagi. Bre,'i. Pontiff 
Buuif. \'111, Il. 34, 523, 1180rdonn. ùes Rois de Frauce, tom. 1, p. 97. 



204 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
from whonl they expected advancement. The piety of 
the Saint and the true love he bore the Church, together 
with the disturbed condition of the minds of the Pontiffs, 
were the reasons why no protest or complaints were made> 
against this decree at Rome. But this seed sown by 
I
ouis IX, ripened under Philip the Bold, and under Philip 
the Fair bore fruit which Boniface was compelled to taste. 
Still Boniface raised Louis IX to the honors of the altar. 
His memory had froln day to day beCOIne nlore sanctified 
by miracles which the inquisitors after the strictest ex- 
amination found to be genuine. Even if this had not been 
done, the faithful of that time could not have been re- 
strained from venerating a Inan, in whose pure heart there 
was burned and spent itself the ardent fire of chivalry. 
His imprisonment at Damietta, and his slow lingering 
death calmly faced on a bed of ashes at Tuni8, for the 
Iiberation of the Holy Land, were already a sufficient 
reason for the people to venerate him as a martyr, Under 
such circumstances the Pope could not refrain from order- 
ing an inquiry to be made into the life and miracles of a 
Idng, who was an example not only of virtues, but also of 
devotion to the. Holy See, and of most ardent zeal in those 
things in which the faithful were wont at that epoch to 
show their love and devotion to religion. 
The Pontiffs had labored hard to gather sufficient eyi- 
dence of the deeds of that Prince and of the miracles 
wrought in his name. Nicholas III before his death used 
to say that if two or three miracles could be proven, he 
would not hesitate to raise Louis to the honors of the altar, 
so strong and firm was his belief in his virtue. UndeI- 
3Iartin IV, and IIonorius three Cardinals were deputed to 
inquire into the matter, and they reported to Rome many 
miracles, which wpre closely examined and approved by 
the College of Cardinals. By Xicholas IY the matter was 
intrusted to three othe!" Cardinals one of whom was Bene- 
dict Gaetani. A new investigation was made, and his life 
and miracles were again approved. Finally Boniface on 
the vigil of the feast of St. Lawrence and on the following 
day delivered two sermons to the Cardinals on the sanc- 
tity of Louis IX, and of his intention of proposing him to 
the veneration of the faithful. Tbe>Re two sermons known 
to very few were discovered in the library of the Canons of 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 205 
St. Victor of Pari:s, and published by Duchesne. 119 The 
following strong words from his sermon fully express 
what was in his mind. "At first it is to be observed that 
"he who knows how to govern himself and his subjects, 
" the same is a true king. But he who knows not how to 
" govern himself and his subjects, truly can be said to be a 
"false king. He was certainly a true king, because he 
" governed himself and his subjects justly and holily. He 
"go"\erned hÏ1l1self, because he subjected the flesh to the 
" spirit, and his passions to reason. Likewise he governed 
" his subjects well, for he preserved them in all justice and 
"equity. He also governed the churches well by defend- 
"ing the ecclesiastical liberties and rights. In our opinion 
" those who govern badly are not true kings." 
In the other sermon he thus gravely explains with what 
caution the Holy See proceeded in the matter of the canon- 
ization of anyone of the faithful who has piously departed 
this life. "Sincp," said he, " this act of enrollment among 
" the Saints by papal canonization is consi<lerpfl an act of 
" the higl1C'st importance in the Church 111Ïlitant, it is re- 
U sen'ed solely to the llonlan Pontiff; that is why the Holy 
" See bas wished to proceed with greatest prudence in that 
" of King Louis IX. Although his life had been so well 
"known, and although many miracles were wrought 
"through him; although the king, the barons and the prel- 
" ates entreated us often and earnestly to end this affair, 
" still the Holy See has wished that the private investiga- 
"tions that had been already made should be solemnly 
" prolonged for a longer period." 


APPE
DIX. 


A PREPARATIO
 FOR THE FOLLO'VI
G BOOKS, AND TOUCHI
G 
OX TIlE BrLL " CLERIC IS." 


'YI
 Ita"\e placed the Constitution" Clericis " of Boniface 
and his fatlwrly letter "I ncffaùlis JJ to Philip the FaÏ1
 
among thp numbf'r of the documents at the end of this 
work. 'Ye hope that those who have read the first three 
hooks of this history, will not neglect to take cognizance 
IJ. Hil'tor. Franc. 
('rirt. T. Y. pg. 481. See Document at end of work. 



206 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
of these two iIllportant docul11ents. For as the remote 
cause of the quarrels between Boniface and Philip the 
Fair are contained in them, it would be impos!';ihle for 
those who ignore them to read with interest, or e,en un- 
derstand well, what follows of this history. It is then to 
throw l110re light on the nature of the events, that we 
have judged it fitting to Yf'nture in this appendix upon a 
recital regarding this constitution and the admirable 
lettf'r to Philip. 
The taxes leyied on the goods of the churches in cases 
of public necessity were always not only tolerated, but 
e,en were approyed by the Church. Casting a glance over 
the tinIes previous to those which are the subject of this 
history, we notice that these public necessities by common 
consent were the warlike expeditions to wrest the Holy 
Land fr0111 the hands of the infidels; the conquest of the 
Byzantine Empire, as the surest and shortest means of 
accomplishing the former design and the reunion of the 
Cheek and Latin Churches; the wars waged by the Ponti- 
fical See against Prederick II, the avowed enemy vf thf' 
Church; tho
e waged against the Albigenses, and especi- 
nlly ag-aiust thp (10unts of Toulouse their protectors; and 
finally those against Peter of Aragon, the invader of Sicily. 
Of tlH'!'e necel'sitiL'
. as is 
:('en, only those of the holy wars 
('oll('f'ru('d all the faithful dil'ecily; the vtLers concerne(L 
thel11 only in(lirl'eU.r, as wLpn the Pope was in clanger 
t'itlwl' with l'egard to his patril11ony, his ju.-isdil"tion, or 
the preservation of 1'0111e dog-ma, all tlw bf'lipn'l's in )1Ïs 
Rl1IHPma('y were called to his aid. TLe levying of the 
tithe's on the sac'red patrimonies in the case of puhlk 
necpssity which concernea the Christian republic was of 
right ana of fact prescrihed hy the sOH>reign PontifIs, hoth 
hy the character of the 
ubject which wa
 
acred, and by 
the patl'bnonies which were equally sacred. But when 
pu blic necessity affected the partitular s,tate of some 
prince, then inasmuch aR the nature of the subject was 
not sacred, it pertained hy right to the Pope and the cIf'rgy 
to consent to this tax, by reason of the sacredness of the 
goods it affected, although in the fact the prince, owing 
eithpr to the urgency of the case, to tyranny, 01" to the 
weaknf'ss of Ow clergy, may bave levied and seized it ac- 
cording to hiH pleasure. In fact it contained the whole 



HISTORY OF POPE DONIFACE VIII. 


207 


history of the defence of the immunity of the ecclesiastical 
pOR8eRsion
 cOllrageOl1Rly lnaintained by the Pontiffs 
against the power of kings, and the syllogislllS of jurists. 
The justit-e or the injustice of a war undertaken by the 
king rendered just or unjust the dellland of ecelesiastical 
su1J
idieR; the exaction of them then without the consent 
of the clergy was always unjust. It is therefore clpar that 
from the difficult appreciation of thf'se reasons, and from 
the dangerous contact of the two powers there would arise 
a long train of dreadful f)uarrels. 
r.I'he tithes for the holy wars in Palestine were at first 
furnishpd to the kings by voluntary gifts of the clergy, 
and as it were in the name of alms.; but soon, according to 
the remark of that most sarcastic English monk, )Iatthew 
of Paris,120 the pious neerl was conyertf'd into yiolence, 
and the shameful vice of rapacity was hidden 1.nHIPI
 
the mantle of almR. The ('If'l'gy were so grpatly alarmed 
that Peter of Blois, ArelHlpal'on of Bath, c1'Ïed out fro III 
his Ell
dalld to a(hnoni
h the FI'Pll('h hi!'hops not to allow 
th('m
('ln>s to he rohbed of their possession by the king 
asking money for the exppdition to Palestine. 121 For he 
wrote to the 11ishop of Orleans: "Is it reasonahle. that 
" t ho
f' who fight for the Church shoul(l (lpspoil thp 
" rhlll'eh? whf'n tbf'Y should on the contrary f'nrich her 
"with the spoils of the enelny. and with triumphal pI'PS- 
h pnts? Do these wretches and fools imagine that Jesus 
.. rhrist, soyereign justice, desirf's a sacrifice of iniquities 
"and sacrileges, and that Rpoils in sHeh a manner gath- 
., ered ('an be of any service?" 122 Afterwards he con- 
dudes too sl'verely by ",aying that the princes would exact 
no other thing frOlu tbp pontiffs and the clergy but inf'es- 
sant praYl'rs. But tIlP CruRades were a necessity, and to 


120 Ad an. l1R8: "Eodem tempore decima pars mobilium generalis con- 
cessa per Angliam, ut collecta aù subventionem Terrae Sanctae impender- 
etur, tam clcrum quam populum exactione violenta pertprruit, quae sub 
deemosj'nae titus vitium rapacitatis inclusit." 121 Epist. 112. 
123 Quae ratio est, ut qui pro Ecclesia pugnant, Ecclesiam spolient? 
Quam inimicorum spoliis et donis triumphalihus ampliare debuemnt? 
Putantne insipientes et miseri, quod Christus, qui summa justitia est, 
velit siLi de injuriis et sacrilegiis exhiberi sacrificium, aut sustineat com- 
mi
sa ex his spolia proHperari? Quid aliud a pontificiLus vel a clero 
polest vel ùebet princep
 exigcre, quam ut incessanter fiat oratio al' 
Ecclcsia. lld DeulU? 



208 HISTORY, OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
cond uct them money was needed. The Lateran Council, 
held under Innocent III, 1215, therefore decreed that the 
Pope and the Cardinals should devote to them the tenth 
part of their benefices, and the clergy the twentieth. The 
First Council of Lyons, 1245, confirmed the canon of the 
Lateran Council by this decree: "Ex eoncilii comllluni 
,. 
lpprobatione statuimu8 ut omnes olllnino clerici vigesi- 
" mam, etc." The joint liability, and the establishment of 
the subsidies were determined by the needs of the 
kings and zeal of the clergy. The provincial councils, 
for example that of ...\.vignon (1209), of Narbonne (1227), 
of Toulouse (1229), renewed the decrees of the general 
councils. · 
These tenth and twentieth parts ,yere paid, but they 
were not always for wars in Palestine; and even when 
there was necessity, the kings were not always willing to 
go to the Holy Land, hut that did not hinder thelll from 
('ollecting the usual subsidies, even after the complete 
extinl'tion of the fire of the Crusade
. This abuse COlll- 
pelled the Popes to place them under the obligation of un- 
tlf'l.taking the Crusade or of l'e8toring what they had col- 
le
Ì(\d. X either the one or the other would they do, both 
hpl'ause the II oly Sepulchre was no longer so precious in 
thl'ir eyes that they would give up their lives for it, and 
hel'aUHf' it seemed sweet to them to retain the fruits of 
tht'ir rohheries, Kicholas IV in 1291 123 wrote to Philip the 
Fair, and to Edward of England/
4 but Philip and Ed- 
warcl did not restore. In a word the princes abused the 
('(lllOnS of the Council of Lyons; wheneT'er they wanted to 
p:aill possession of SOIne of the goods of the churches, they 
rushed to arms, they assumed the cross, they got in motion 
a
 if they were on the point of departing for the Holy 
Land, to whith they did not e"en dream of going, and they 
('xacted in this lImnner from the clergy the twentieth part 
which was fixed by the Couneil of Lyons. 
This could not last always; in time the convenient pre- 
text of the holy wars failed the kings, both because the 
people would not go any nlore to the IIoly Land, and be- 
('ause the clergy, where they had been stupid, acquired 
wisdom in that expensiT'e school. Summoned to pay, the 
lll<mks especially nmde the greatest outcry. The chroni- 
123 Ra;ynaldus ad an. 1291. 22, 5G. 57. 12i Raynaldus ad on, 12!H. 



HISTORY OF. POPE BONIFACE VIII. 209 
des of :\Iatthew of Paris, and :Matthew of 'Yestminster 
resound with their complaints. At that time other ways 
to a
k and to conceùe were employed, which we find were 
adopted for the first time by the bishops of the province of 
Tours in 1294, who granted tithes for two years to Philip 
for the defence of the kingdom and the churches: (( lJropter 
tuitionel1t rcgni ct ecclesianwz." Thus a Illutual agree- 
lnent was made between the king and the clergy, by which 
the former bound himself to defend the rights of the 
Church, and the latter to aid him in the defence of the 
state. But this compact could not continued in peace; in- 
asmuch as the Church would have to expect aid and the 
defence of her rights frOl1I the very one from ",hOln she 
had to fear impieties and the invasion of her rights. So it 
clearly appeal.s, that although the right of the immunity 
of the 
acred patrimonie
 remained unchanged, yet the 
fart was often wave1"Ïnl-!.'. owing to the ceH
ation of cÏreuUl- 
Atallces, as for example of the Cl'USadeH, of pirates and 
what not, which COUll RelIed n10fh:>ration on the part of thp 
clergy. 
In England and in Spain the clergy showed themselves 
more tenacious of their rights, than those in France. The 
Eng-lish feudal lords energetically resisted the king; they 
combined with the clergy, and the united resistance mani- 
feHted to the king hy the aristocracy and the clergy wrung 
from him the franchi:ses for all the people held sacred in 
the 
Iagna Uharta. Hequested to pay, the clergy never 
feareù threatH, they never yielded to ("a1"e88('8; the spirit of 
Ht. Thomas it Becket and 
t. .An
e1lll Heeuwd at that time 
to animate the episcopal hoùy. ".hl'n it became imposHi- 
hIe for th{,111 to persist in their refuHal, they always indeln- 
nified themselves for the f'ubddieR which they grantf'd by 
80me new and explicit con1ìrmation of their immunities. 
Edward I, engaged in a war with Philip the Fair, could 
not obtain the tithes from the clergy of the province of 
(1 an terbury, nor a fifth part of thf' revenues of the 
churches of the province of York, before his son promised 
in bis name to confirm that part of the Charta which re- 
lated to the immunit
r of ecclesiaRtical affairR. 125 
In Spain the tax{
s OJ) the dlu1"rhes W('l'P ltlOl'P dang-er- 
ous, but the firnUlP8:-i of tlU' c]e1"g,Y wa
 aI
o g-l"('aÜ>l'. III 
126 Thomas Walsingham ad an. 1298. 



210 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


that kingdom Crtumdes were not preaehed against infidpls 
in a di:5tant lanù, Crusades whieh were a necessity only 
through the in1petnosity of the Christian faith. The infi- 
del )loors were in the heart of the country, and the de- 
fence as well as the love of country made their expulsion 
a necessity. The princes of this kingdorll demanded n10st 
ahundant suhsidies from the churches. They were not 
satisfied with a tenth or twentieth part, hut they required 
a third. These third parts began to be collected for the 
first time in 1214 under Henry, King of Castile, who 
having succeeded his fathpr Alphonsus at a tender age, 
gavc unlimited authority to Alvarez his guardian, who 
placed the Church in a wretched condition by reason of 
these heavy exactions. 126 But solemnly excommunicated 
by the Dean of the ehurch of Toledo, at that time vicar of 
the Archbishop of tlu1t city, not only did he restore what 
he had unjustly coHee-ted, but he even swore that 11e 
would cease his depredations. This first blow wen given 
taught thp clergy to do likewise. After the Council of 
Lyons was PtHIed, Alphonsus of Castile, deluded by tl1e 
hope of being Emperor of Germany, thought no lllore of 
the :Moors. Gregory X, an arùent prolllotel' of the Cru- 
sades, called hiIll to his duty and granted him for six 
ypars the tithes of the ehurches of his kingdom, provided 
he would waive his e1aim to the empire, leaye Hndolph of 
Hapsburg in peaceful possession, and renew tl1e war 
ag'aillst the )100rs. This concession reinvestefl, it is true, 
as )lariana relnarks,127 the usurpations of the Spanish 
princes with a certain character of legality. However the 
clergy remained firm, as we have said, and the provincial 
('ouncils in Spain 128 are a splenrlid proof of it. 
The movement of the Crusades was not so intense and 
so constant in any other country of Christendom as it was 
in France. For that reason the tithes for this necessity, 
called Salad-ines, were of earlier origin and more continn. 
ous than elsewhere. This is how they CaIlle to be imposed 
for thc first time. In the middle of Lent a parliament was 
a
sen1bleù in Paris, which was attendpd by all the barons, 
hh.;hops, arf'hbishops, and abbots of the kingdOlll, and an 
imlllf'1JSP nnmllPl' of foot so](liers and knights, who as. 
m Thomas \Va l<;iugham ad an. 1298. ]27 :l\Iarian ann. ., Hoc initium 
castelIaf> regibus sacros tcmplorum rctlitus dccerpendi."- ]28 I... 13 c. ult. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 211 
sumed the cross in order to go to fig-lIt in the IIolJT Land. 129 
The King Philip Augustus showed himself disposed to set 
out for this reason, which was held to be of urgent neces- 
sity. -nTith the consent of the clergy and the people it was 
decided that he could collect tithes from everybody, for 
that year only, and for the sake of the impending neces- 
sity: "Omnibus ct tantuJn anno propter instantcuz, ncces- 
sitatcw/' The detaHs of these circum
tances have been 
tran
mitted to us hy Rigord, a monk of St. Denis, who 
was the historian and chaplain of Philip Augustus. The 
means sepmed agreeable to Philip, who having tasted 
thelll, oppressed the churches unlnercifully- by unheard of 
exactions: (( GraTibu8 ('xactionib1l,fJ vehcl1lrnter oppresJlit 
et iJuwlitis/ J 130 It is well to read in the chronicle of the 
religious 
which we have cited the pretexts by the aid of 
which the king tried to justify his usurpations, and with 
what unrestricted freedoln the goud monk wrote. N ever- 
theless the Prince realized his evil deeds"; for he acknowl- 
edged the right of the illlluunity of the nhuJ'ch, and he hy 
no means 
ought to wealwn 01' destroy it. A proof of this 
we have in Rigord. Some moments before the battle of 
Boyine, Philip, who knew of all the extortions which Otho, 
Emperor of O"ermany, and John uf England, in league 
against him, had been guilty of against the Church, began 
to pl'ay, and Rigord, his chaplain, behind him heard him 
utter these words: " All our hope, all our confidence is in 
"God. King Otho and his army have been exeommuni- 
" eated as puemies of the Church and as destroyers of her 
"posspssions. The tears of the poor and the fruit of his 
" plunder of the churches and the clergy form the wages 
"of his soldiers. -nTe are Christians in full communion 
" and peace with Holy Church. Although sinners, we do 
" the will of the Church of God and we defend according 
" to our power the liberty of the clergy." Then, according 
to the judgment of Philip, he who laid hands on the goods 
of the Church, and did not defend her Uberty, was not a 
Ch l'istian. 
1
he l'aympnt of the tith<.>s was at first free and spontane- 
ous in France; aftprwal'd
 it was requested by the king
. 
aIHl autltorizeù by the Popes; and the requests of the' 
foruwr folJow('(l 
o frpquently and so urgently, as wpH as 
119 Card. Aguir. Rispaniae. 130 Duchesne. 
cript, Rist. Franc. T. 5. 



212 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
the will of the latter, that it became an obligation for tlle 
clergy to pay on account of the urgent necessity; but their 
right to consent to or refuse this tax always remained in- 
tact. The wars against the Albigen
es having he en added 
to those of Palestine, under Louis YIII, the necessity of 
the tithes increased. A synod was convoked at Bourge
, 
in which the legate of Gre
ory IX imposed this tax on the 
. clergy for five years, in order to defray the expenses of the 
expeditions against these heretics. In order to persuade 
the clergy more easiI
r, the king preyaiIed upon the legate 
to place himself at the head of the expedition, but the 
clergy would grant only a half of the tithes, and they ob- 
jected to the use of that scandalous word, for which they 
substituted the word" subsidies," to dose the way to the 
custom. The king died: the legate renewed the request, 
but the chapters of the provinces of Rheims, of Sens, of 
Tours, of Rouen, appealed to the Pope, becau
e they did 
not want to see a gratuitous gift transformed into an obli- 
gation and a slaver)y: (( Attendentcs quod hoc iPSllnl, quod 
"de libertate processerat, con1.:crtebatllr in obligationcnt 
"et servitutem." The clergy complained then because 
they did not wish to be enslaved by a law; the kings, on 
their part insisted, because they wished to impose it. But 
although the right remained intact, yet the fact was 
strengthened, and these yearly exactions threatened to 
become a right. Louis IX ascended the throne; he was a 
saint, and we do not hear of hin1 oppressing the churches; 
yet this constant ardor for the holy wars had exhausted 
the Church in France. Louis wanted some money for a 
crusade, and he asked it fr01n the Pope; but the procura- 
tors of all the cathedrals of France, asseD1 bled at Paris, 
forwarded by letter their grievance to the Pontiff: 131 
" Your Holiness knows, for the whole world is full of 
"them, the trouble and trials of the rniversal Church, 
" and particularly of that of France, compelled to pay at 
"one time a tenth, again a twentieth, and at another a 
"hundredth part of its revenues, and to bear the weight 


111" Novit vestra sanctissima paternitas, et in fines orbis terrae exivisse 
"quantis, perturbationibus et pressuris universalis Ecclesia, potissime 
"Gallicana sit turbata, nunc decimam, nunc duodecimam praestando, 
"nunc centesimam, nunc multarum aliarum exactionum gravamina sus- 
" tinando." 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 213 
" of many other demands." Hence thpy protested, that hy 
no other power than the Holy See did they hope to sec> 
their former liberty restored, and if hplp failed them, that 
pest of the tithes would he prolonged indefinitely: "In 
(( q'llibus nisi a scde 0 postoli('a lJlenam pmaât oS.'iwfJU'i liber- 
(( tatem, pestis ista latissime se diffundct. n Duchene thu
 
writes in the old chronicle of N eustria for the year 1254. 
The tithes imposed by a king, holy as Louis IX, were 
criticised even in England. Here are the wOl'd
 of sar- 
castic 3latthew of Paris: ""'ïth the pernlission of the 
" Pope, he oppressed his kingdom in many ways, extorting 
"large sums of money under the pretext of nlaking a 
" pilgrimage with great display, and he levie.l on the tenth 
" part revenues of all the churches of his king(lom." 'Ye 
do not believe that Louis oppl'e
sed the churches so 
heavily; hut if there was reason for conlplaint under a 
saintly king it is easy to imagine how' the churches fared 
under a king less pious. 
The French kings had refused to go any nlore to the 
Holy Land, there were no heretics to ùe combated by arms, 
and consequently the old reasons for tithe
 cea
ed to exi
t. 
But since wars eontinually arose ùetwepu Christian 
princes, there was con
tant need of money to maintain 
them, and kings presented tlwmselves at the door of the 
churches, asking it for the defence of the kingdom: .( Ob 
(( tuitionem regni." Here was the difficulty; not to give 
was to provoke the angel' of the king; to give was to betray 
the sacred immunities, The councils of the Lateran and 
Lyons ordered subsidies for the IIoly Land, and not for 
other necessities, The warlike expeditions for the deliver- 
ance of the Holy Places, bore the evident character of 
justice and piety; but any other military expedition did 
not possess this mark without a decree to that pffect. 

loreover, in the first case the amount of aid to furnish to 
a prince on a crusade would be known, in the seeond case 
it would not be known, and hence the right would he un- 
determined. In the uncertainty the churches were op- 
pres
ed by Philip the Fair, partly through the tyranny of 
the king, partly through the weakn(-'
s on the part of the 
clergy. The clergy, thus oppre

ed, cOInplained. but they 
did not resist like those in England. Boniface moved hv 
these complaints puhlished tbe constitution, "Cleri('i
.;' 



214 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


Now reflecting on these nlatters, can we say with Bos- 
suet that it was unnecessary to publish that offensive 
constitution? The prohibition to the clergy to grant sub- 
sil1Ïes to the king without permission of the Pope was 


vf'rf', and severe the punishnlent also, but the applica- 
tion of the la \"" to Philip the Fair was nlost benign. 80, 
although having sufff'red a littlf' frOll1 this constitution 
which plated the sacred patrimonies out of his reach, and 
this pained him; y
t he would not have published that di
- 
graceful and unjust edict, if the flatterers, that torment 
of courts, had not gone about murmuring: " The pr
lat
s 
" awl the eccl
siasti('al per
.mns of your king<<lom now can 
" no longer render you service nor give you the p
('uniary 
"aid to which they are obliged by reason of their fiefs. 
" X ow they can no longer make to their king the simple 
" gift of a horse or a cup." 132 'Yhen had Boniface thought 
of the goods which the clergy held in the character of 
feudatories'? "Our constitution," said Boniface on the 
contrary, "doe:s not admit of such malicious comments, 
"and the spirit which prompted it rejects the nleaning 
" given to it by false cOllunentatoI's." 133 He declared that 
he did not forbid the concession of ecclesiastical :suùsidies 
to the king for the defence of his kingdom; ùut that he did 
not want it done without the special authorization of the 
Pope; and besides he was ready himself to dispose of the 
sacred vessels and the crosses, in order to coopf'rat
 in 
the defence of the kingdom of France. And finally here 
are the concessions which after all the clalllors of Philip 
the Fair, Boniface granted him, in the affair of ecclesim
ti- 
cal subsidies, by another Bull entirely favorable to this 
prince, and explanatory of the constitution "Clerics." 
1st, The intention of the pontiff was not to prohihit 
to the clergy the gratuitous gifts to the king or state in 
danger, provided there was no violence, hut only exhorta- 
tions and entreaties used to obtain them. 
2nd. The clergy, possessors of ecclesiastical feudal 
pl'opel'ty, rf'llulÏned ohliged to fulfil their duty antI to ren- 
der homage due to the king. 
3rd. In gravp and sudden dangprs of hoth king and 
state, the king could ask subsidies frOlll the prelates, and 


132 See Document L. Inefbbilis. 


113 The same. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 215 
they could grant them, even without the pern1ission of 
the Roman Pontiff. 
4th. The judgment of the grievousness of the necessity, 
for the sake of whit:h the clergy could be called upon, was 
left entirely to the conscience of the king, if he had reached 
bis twentieth Yf'ar, and to bis mini
ters, if bf' was a minol.. 
The reader therefore will spe that Philip, who consid- 
ered himself grievously tormented hy Boniface, was on the 
contrary mo
t favored by him, and IWYOlld othpl' princes 
had the privilege of collecting subsidies, even without the 
permis
ion of the Pontiff, in ca
e of npce

ity. For this 
reason the disputes which arose later bptween the two 
n1en, cannot be ascribed to the fault of the Pontiff. 



BOOK IV. 


SU)1:MARY. 


1297-1300. 


The sovereign expression of the papal power.-It derived all its greatness 
from that of St. Peter.-The Sixth Decretal.-Dino da Mugello.-The 
Count of Flanders becomes an ally of Edward of England.-A formid- 
able league against Philip the Fair.-He fights it and is aided by 
Boniface.-Boniface is chosen arbiter by Philip and Edward.-His de- 
cision.-How it was received by the two Princes.-Wallace disturbs 
Scotland.-Scotch envoys to Boniface.-His letter to Edward.-Ed- 
ward's reply and that of the English Parliament.-Albert of Austria 
with the aid of Philip is elected King of the Romans.-Boniface will 
not confirm this election.-The Armenians beg aid from Boniface 
against the Turks.
The Holy Wars.-Boniface defends the Templars 
against the king of Crprus.-'His moderation towards Philip.-The 
usurpations of Philip in league with Albert.-Sicily; and the acts of 
James against Frederick.-Small gain do they bring to the Church.- 
Battle of Cape Orlando.-Charles II, whom the Pope tries to restrain, 
undertakes au Lnfortunate expedition against Sicily.-Constitution of 
Boniface concerning corpses.-He pursues the Fraticelli.-He favors the 
Friars Minor.-He undertakes to subdue Palestrina.-The pretended 
counsel given him by Guy of Montefeltro.-The Colonnas !'.urrender at 
discretion.-The end of Palestrina,-Boniface approves the new order 
of st, Anthony.-The Greek Church. 


WE have finally reached that stage of this history, 
when the mind of the reader has been raised by itself, as 
it were, to the height of that fact which has dominated all 
others, the subject of our narrative: we mean the develop- 
ment of the Papal power. And since we have said that 
this reached iis extreme period during the lifetime of 
Boniface, a period, consequently, agitated and stormy like 
every living existence that ends; it is necessary for us to 
carefully turn our attention to it, in order to arrive at a 
knowledge of the scope of this narrative. But there is no 
need of much effort, since this fact is so forcibly charac- 
terized, that all the other farts which we shall narrate are 
216 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII, 217 
founded on it, and dominating as it was, it becomes th
 
one and only object of our study. In the moral order it is 
an invariable law, that th
 ending of a life is caused by 
the ending of its determining causes, which being con. 
sumed, so to speak, as they carry to the highest degree the 
power of existence, suddenly extinguish it. 
The life of this absolute Pontifical power, considered in 
itself, had expression in canon law, which at once had 
produced a relative Pontifical power outside of itself in 
contact with the faithful. 
ow since this power under 
Boniface and through him, reached the highest point in 
its life, the Papacy of Boniface must have had a particular 
expression in canon law; and this portion of the canonical 
laws should ahove all others lllanifest a sensible vigor pro- 
portionate to the vital strength of that power. The volume 
of these laws was the Sixth of the Decretals. 
The Papacy as a theocratic power assumed to rule the 
noblest part of the human individual, namely the intelli- 
gent spirit, in which there is liberty, that is to say, life 
through knowledge. Therefore every human knowledge 
not only clothed itself with the forms of that theoeratic 
power, but also accepted it as an ideal. For which reason 
phi1o
ophy in the :\Iiddle Ages was only theology, art was 
theological, and th
 standard of right, preelninently the 
guiding spirit of the people was Papal. And since the first 
necessity is that of existence, which can not he without a 
determination, or right, it canle to pass that men devoted 
themselves more closely to the study of this than any other 
science. The Universities of Bologna, Padua, and Paris in 
the thirteenth century were only assemblies of canonists; 
and Gregory IX, Innocent III, Honorius III, and Boniface 
VIII, addressed their collections of canons to the Univer- 
sity of Bologna. 
We shall not speak of the history of the Decretals, as 
it would be too great a digression; we wish to say how- 
ever, that these were not the expression of arbitrary power 
of the Pop
s, but rather the consequence of that same 
Papacy whieh Christ had established in the Church. The 
preaching of the Gospel, to which the Apostlf's were de- 
puted, had an immediate effect, namely the formation of 
the Church by unity of faith. The government of the 
Church, which also was entrusted to the Apostles, had not 



218 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
an immediate 
ffpct in its entire extension, proportionate 
to the efficacy of the power that was granted to the Apos- 
tles and the Episcopate. Preaching had for its ohject the 
existence of the Church, and the Church existed through 
the faith of thm
e who composed it. The existence of th
 
Church was absolute, and as regards its state of being it 
was unchangeable, unprogressive and actual as the faith 
which was its foundation. Th
 object of its gov
rnmpnt 
was the formal existence of the Church in its relations 
with exterior objects, and as these relations are suscep- 
tible of development and of progress, so also tllP govern- 
ment should dpvelop and progress. For this reason the 
ruling pow
r of the Pope and of the entire <,piscopatp could 
not manifest itself in the first age of the Chureh in the 
same manner as it did in succeeding ages. Preaching and 
the faith will always be the same; but the governing power 
will always T'ary according to the force of its progress; 
and will accompany the society of the faithful, whieh bp- 
ing human and visible, is visibly de\eloppd around th
 
pivot of faith. Hence the scandal of the J ansf'nists and 
R
galists at seping the Church, after the first ages, extend 
its power, and multiply its canons, is rather a sin against 
reason. Acknowledging the Church to be visihle and 
directed by a visible power, they obstinately' persisted in 
believing it despoiled of all power, or in other words in 
believing a contradiction. 
Preach the Gospel, that is to say the faith to every crea- 
ture, said Christ to the Apostles and their successors; but 
since this faith should be expressed perceptihly by works, 
by worship, and by the Sacraments, they could not com- 
plete their mission in a n1anner so as not to leave the ex- 
ercise of it to tlleir successors until the end of time. The 
visibility therefore of the Church is the soil on which the 
power of governing lnust ind
terlllinately deyplop itself. 
N ow since the power of governing a soci
ty is relative to 
all which tends to destroy it, it is evident that the sub- 
jective power will always be in direct proportion to the 
offences committed against the society. If the offences 
increase, the power will incrpase, as win also the laws 
which are the expression of it. So hefore anyone had 
dared to touch the offerings of the faithful, the power of 
securing them did not manifest itself, it was not known 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 219 
to the faithful, although it existed in the Pope. The first 
usurpation of the sacred patrimony of the Church made 
that power subjectin>ly exist, and the repeated exercise 
of it hegot the law again
t u
u1"pers which is nothing but 
a pprmanent POWPI'. 'Yherefol'e although St. Peter did 
not promulgate laws against the usurpers of the goods of 
the Church, whereas his successors had promu1gated 
many, yet it does not follow that he did not have the 
power, and that his Sll('ceSSOI'S usurped it. So then if we 
find the Papal powpr amplified and Papal laws increased, 
it is hecause the offences against the society of Church 
were llndtiplied and hence to this cause, and not to ambi- 
tion should be ascribed the great subjectivity of the Papal 
power. 
The sIlla]] number of Jaws in a human society is a sign 
of great vitality, just as a large lluillber hetokens littl(' 
yitality 01' in other words the many offences committed 
ag-ainst it. In fad a(:('onIingly a
 disorder ineI'pasetl in 
tivil sodety through harbarity and conspqllPntly in the 
disd}Jlillc of the Chun.h, so the suhjective power of the 
Pope in("1'l>ase(l, the laws increased, and so did the need 
in('rease of compiling them ill a collection, so as to render 
permanent hy maÌ<<:>rial proofs that power, which was ren- 
dpred morally such by the la\ys. 
In this principle we find Jiving and as it wpre pal})i- 
tatin
 with tr.uth, the reasuns for all those changes in 
(Iisdpline which had seandalized the Jansenists. The 
need of power, the pressing necessity, and the grpat in- 
erease of edl
 induced thp Pope to exercise it suddenly 
and pel't'mptorily. .A cIictatorsbip in repuhlics was en- 
gpndpre<l hy tbp existence and greatne
s of the evils that 
threatened thf'm. 
In tlU' timf' of Boniface the offences against the Church, 
although comhated hy the PapaJ power for lllany cen- 
turies, had taken the forill of right, which was that uf 
Princcs. Tlwrefore t1.1e naturaJ fOl'ce of evil doubled itself 
hy the power of t1.1is forill. And when it :seemed that in 
the new-born civilization these of[cnc.:es should diminish 
ill numher and strength, they multiplied and inerea
ed 
thI'ol1
h tlJe very benpfitR of dvilizatiun. HenC'P tlw Papal 
power, whose Rtl'pngth it s(>(>llled 
h()uld han' dt>(.lilHo>(I, was 
also l'einvigorat<.'d, antI far fl'Ulll the 01(1 eanons lmo;iug 



220 HISTORY; 01!
 POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
their force, they reappeared more threatening by the addi- 
tion of new ones, Therefore just as civilization gave to 
the offences committed against the Church the form of a 
lay right, so Boniface gave to all the Papal power the form 
of his own right, and this form was expressed by the Sixth 
Book of the Decretals. 
Thus reasoning we find ourselves brought to a conse- 
quence, which we laid down as a principle in the first 
pages of this history, namely that Boniface was the man 
of a passive reyolution, that is to say the personification 
of the ciyil Papacy in himself, his own ruin occurred with 
that of the civil Papacy. Therefore if this Pontiff is to be 
presented to posterity in all the fullness of his personal- 
ity, he should not be dissociated from the sixth book of 
the Decretals, which is the strongest expression of him 
and of the Papacy. 
All the Canons collected up to the time of Innocent III, 
and compriRed in the Decree of the monk Gratian, and in 
tbe two collections of Decretals of Bernard Circa and John 
Vallense, although the doctors in the universities mad
 
lIRe of th
m yet they had not as yet the force of laws by 
the authoritative decree of the Popes. But since Innocent 
III a(lmil1iRtel'('(l the Papacy in the strength of it
 power, 
in order to establish it firmly he was led to put his seal on 
hi
 con
ctiol1 of the Decretals, which he increased hy the 
aid of PetpI" Deacon of Benevento, compiling a third col- 
lection whicb contained those canons which emanated 
fl'om bim. The canons of the Fourth Lateran Council, 
and the subsequ
nt decrees of Innocent are contained in 
the fourth collection of an unknown author. The decree 
of Honorins III bad from this Pope approval and force 
of law!':. Finally this particular Papal approval was ex- 
tendl-'fl hy Gregory IX to all the Decretals from the time 
of Gl'Pgory the Oreat to bis own times, to the Apostolic 
Canons, to the Canons of the Councils from that of An- 
tioeh down to the 4th Lateran Council. All these were 
t"omhined h
r Pennafort, and were divided into five books. 
'.rhf'Y were solemnly published and given as laws to be 
followed in the tribunals and schools. 
The la
t epistles of Gregory IX, the canons of the two 
ronnci]
 of LyonR, and thp constitutions of the Popes who 
succeeded Gregory, and those published by Boniface in 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 221 
the first four years of his Pontificate, were already most 
important and sufficient for a new collection. The canons 
of the 1st Council of Lyons, promulgated during long 
struggles of the Church with Frederick II, and the consti- 
tutions of Boniface, published in times of violence had a 
certain vital energy; they were not to remain outside of 
the body of ecclesiastical right, nay they were even de- 
manded by the same right as its sovereign form. And this 
was truly remarkable, that this demand for the insertion 
of these laws did not come from the clergy nor from the 
Papal authority, but from the assembly of the doctors of 
Bologna. 
The "Cniversity of Bologna dispatched to Boniface 
James of Castello, chaplain of the church of that city to 
heseech him to make an addition to the body of Canon Law 
composeù of five Looks; to separate the false from the true 
Decretals puhlished since Gregory IX, and to sanction it 
with his authority in the law court. James being kindly 
received by the Pope, was standing in his presence; but 
as he was very short of stature, Boniface, thinking that he 
was in a kneeling posture, gave him a sign to rise. But 
Cardinal 
Iatthew of Acquasparta who was beside him 
undeceived the Pope by a joke which hurt the feelings 
of the honorable messenger, saying: "He is a new Zac- 
chew..;." 1 
Boniface set about immediately to put in effect the de- 
sire of the famous University. He selected three persons 
most learned in law, 'Yil1iam of )Iandagout, Archbishop 
of .drnhrun, Berengarius Fl'edoli, Bishop of Beziers, and 
Riehard Petroni of 
iena. To these he entrusted that 
compilation,2 which in 12Û8 was published under the name 
of the Sixth Book of the Decretals. Boniface addresseù it 
to the University of Bologna, with that letter which is 
founù in the Leginning of the Sixth Book. The compilers 
as a rewaI'll were afterwards raised to the Cardinalate. 
These men in the compilation of the work hall as a com- 
panion Dino of )Iugel1o, a celebrated juris-consult of his 
time. Born in Florence in that part of the city which was 
named 
Iugel1o by James Rossoni, he applied himself to 
the study of law in Bologna. In that city he was pro- 
J Tirabaschi .. History of Literature. Book 2nd, pages 239 and 138. 
J Preface to Rook VI of Decretals. 



'1'10) HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
"-' ... ... 


fe8sor, as well in Pistoja. Such renown for learning did 
he acquire, that during his lifetime the Veronese estah- 
lished hy law that in passing sentence, wherever the laws 
and the municipal statutes, the Roman Laws, and the 
commplltaries of Accorso did not touch upon the matter 
or held contrary opinion, all should consult and follow the 
opinion of Dino. In October, 1297, Leing sUlnn10ned to 
Rome by Bonifac(' for the compilation of the Sixth of 
the Decretals, he repaired thither, where he taught school. 
The services whieh he l'ender<,ù the Pontificate during 
that time stirred np in his breast the desire for the dignity 
of Cardinal, with wbith he heJieved the Pontiff shoul(l 
reward him. 
\nd 
o u111('h (lid hi
 not di
honorable ambi- 
tion confirm him in this opinion, that having- hade fare- 
well to his wife, Bice, he obliged- her to deyote herself to 
Ood in the Convent of Rt. Cohunballus in Bolog-na, and he 
he('3me a cleric. Unfortunatp expectations! The only 
honor h... gained wa
 that of haying pnt his han(1 to the 
Sixth of the DpcI'etals, aud pPl'haps the repentance of 
lual'ital seque
tI'ation. Some will have it that he dieù of 
gripf. So Dino after instruf'tiug so nlany others in the 
laws, did not know how to instruct himself. He had not 
learned that greediness foJ' dignities is a sign of intemp- 
erance in the truly wise, who p08sess the highest of digni- 
ties, that of intelligpnce, which neither princes can accord 
nor tyranny ('au steal. 
Althongh Boniface had in a fatherly manner ,'eplied to 
the edict puhlished by Philip the Fail' in angel', cau8ed by 
the constitution "Clerid
," 
ret there was sueh freeùOIll 
and authority of df'f'Ïsions in the re8ponse that the mind 
of that king should have heen aroused to additional angf'r. 
However, there was a mutual continence of the anger 
which agitated the Papal and royal breasts. The ruined 
but threatening Colonna8 re8trained Boniface and a great 
federation of unfriendly princes curbed Philip. Hence in 
the course of our history we shall find that the Pope is 
still a friend and supporter of tbe king, and the latter if 
not, is at least not an open enemy. 
Philip anù Edward \\
ere Htill at war, when Guy, Count 
of FlanderH, ('HIlle to prolong and increaHP it. He could 
not r('8t PP<.WPflll hp('(l11sp his (langhtpl" Philippa hl'tl'otJwd 
to the Hon of Edward, was h('I(1 a prisoner by Philip. lIe 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIF ACE VIII. 223 
a
sembled a large parlianlent at Grammont, at which were 
present the mubassadur uf England, those of Adolph king 
of the Homans, of the Duke of Brahant, and uf ahnust all 
of the princes of the Low Countries, aud Lorraine. lle 
complaiued of the illlpri
onment of hh.; daughter; and all 
proffered aid a
ainst Philip; but hefore hreaking off rela- 
tions with the latter, they dedded to send to hiln a solemn 
elnbassy, to demand the liùeration of the innocent prin- 
cess. It is sent but it returned with a refusa1. 3 Then Guy 
made an alliance with Edward, each one binding' himself 
not to Inake peace without the consent of the other; the 
other daughter Isabella was ùetrothed to the young Eng- 
lish prince instead of Philippa, and her dowry was to re- 
nlain in the hands of the Fleming to carryon the war 
ag"ainst Philip the Fair, together with a hundred thousand 
livre which had been promised by Edward. 4 The Counts 
of 
avoy and of Granson entered into the league, and they 
were R('nt to r011se to arms all the lords of Brittany, 
although John fluke of that country had been detached 
by Edward.
 They succeeded in their design, for with 
thirty thousand Jivre of the English king they induced 
the Counts of Auxel're, of )Iontbelliard, the lords of Ar- 
lay, of Neuchatel, of )Iontfaucon, and of Faueigny.6 Thp 
Count of Savoy, Amadeus V, was induced to join the 
league, by the promise as wife of Jane the niece of Eù- 
wê:lrd. 7 On the oUler hand Adolph, King- of the :Romans, 
rose in arms against France, hy W1HHll he was joined hy 
the Duke of Brabant, the Count of Hainaut and of Uuel- 
dria, the Bi
hops of Liege, and etrecht, and the Arch- 
hishop of Cologne. 8 A formidahle league, wllich would 
have put Philip in the direst straits, if the conf('derates 
had not heen in separate places, and if the gold of France, 
more plentiful than that of England, ha<l not disRuaded 
tlw Germans froill taking up arms against him. ...\..ncl now 
wa
 the OPPOl'tUllity fo1' ßonifaee to show hillU;plf, if 
uch 
he wa
, tlw enemy of Philip, eïtheJ' 1,y aic1ing thp aIJi('
, or 
]'y giving' tll(> JllPaning' to tlw Constitution " CleT'iei
 " the 
lIl('aning' which the' I'oyallniuiste'rs attl'Ï1mtf'd to it, namely 
to (lppl'ive him of all 
uh
icly of IllOIH'Y to lip dJ'awn fl'Olll 


B Onrle
herst. Annals of Flanders. c. 132, 1. tRyrneT, Tom. II, 
page 7::J7, 742. II Idf'm pago 733. e Idem Tom. lJ, page 7i8. 
., Idem Tom. II, page i5!), 8 Idem Tom. If, pages 752, 7G3, 768. 



224 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
the sacred patrimony. But let us proceed and we shall 
find that Boniface wheedled this unruly prince. 
The ardor with which these princes entered into the 
league, exceeded that with which they came to the war. 
The hosts of Edward, of Adolph, of the Bishops of the 
Empire, and of the Count of Gueldria delayed to advance. 
Guy was the only one who confronted Philip, who on June 
2nd, the feast of Pentecost, having asselnbled the flower 
of the army at Compiegne, at the head of it entered Flan- 
ders and laid siege to the city of Lille. 9 Having sustained 
defeat at Furnes and Comines the Flemish were compelled 
to open the gates of Lille, of Furnes, of Castel, and of 
Berg St. Yinox. 10 Edward arrived only to share in the 
discomfiture of the Flemish. But before he advancerl with 
his army, asseJnbled at London on the 1st of August, some 
of the nobles of the kingdom came to him saying how im- 
prudent it was for hÏIn to go to war, as he was now an 
enemy of the Church, and excommunicated by the Arch- 
bishop of Canterbury whom he had cruelly persecuted; 
and that he should be reconciled with him before leaving 
the kingdom. Sooner than h;lve an enemy in his own 
household, Edward in full parliament was reconciled with 
Robert of 'Vinchelsey, Archbishop of Canterbury, in the 
presence of a large concourse of people. )Ioreover he in- 
trusted to his care his son Edward and the entire king- 
dom. He ratified the peace bý promising to restore all 
that was unjustly taken. He asked pardon of the barons 
for his bad conduct of affairs; and he desired all to pray 
for him; but according to accounts, all did not pray well 
for him. l1 He departed for Flanders with a small follow- 
ing and joined Guy; but in a short time through the dis- 
satisfaction of the Flemish, and the misfortune that at- 
tended them, they both found themselves beaten back to 
Ghent, and aU the principal cities of the country were 
captured. The two princes despairing of better terms, 


D John Villani. Book 8, c. 19 .. .. William Nangii Chroni- 
cles 1297, 
10 Villani. Book 8, c. 20 . . .. . Nangii Chronicles 1297. 
1J Knyghton. English Events. Book 3, chap. 9, page 2510.-" Et ora- 
bant quidam publice alii autem sic; alli vero occulte, paud vero bene."- 
Walsingham, "Flores Historiae," year 1297.-Matthew of 'Veshninster, 
yr. 1297. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 22:5 
seeing that the remarkable successes of Philip had dis- 
couraged the lesser nobles who had entered the league, 
a
ked for an armistice. Philip granted it, both hecause 
of the approach of winter, and because his mind was more 
inclined to diplomacy than to wage war. 12 In October of 
1297 "
illiam d'Autun, a Dominican Friar and Arch- 
bishop of Dublin, who enjoyed the confidence of both Ed- 
ward and Philip, induced them to prolong the truce. 13 
The Papal legates 
icholas Boccasino, general of the 
DOluinicans, and John )Iinio of )1 urro, general of the 
Franciscans 14 arriyed, and Charles of :x aples hiInself 
sent by Boniface to obtain peace :15 and through their 
means an arlnistice for two years was signed in the mon- 
astery of St. )lartin of Tournai. 16 
A great debt of gratitude was owed by Philip to Boni- 
face, who admirably as
isted hÎIll during this war which 
lasted about three months. If in the Constitution " Cler- 
icis Laitos" there had heen hidden a spirit hostile to the 
king, and if the interpretation of the malicious courtiers 
was true, it is ce,'tain that Philip would not have received 
suh
iùie
 from the churches, of which he was in extreme 
need to carryon a rather difficult war. On the contrary 
when the Pope was asked by the French prelates how they 
would act towards the king in regard to granting money 
and nlen, seeing the king-donI so nluch threatened, and 
yet themselves held in check by the Constitution, in the 
fol1owing words he gave a satiHfactory an8wer to their 
inquiry:11 " Although we have published this Constitution 
"as a pre
erver of eceJesiastical liberty, yet it was not 
"onr intf'ntion to deprive of suhsidies the king, and the 
" otllPr lay princes, when in distress, and especially when 
"in fear of an unjust invasion from without, and a l'evo- 
"lution from within, with evident danger to prelates, 
"Chur('he
, and clerics. 'Ye desire simply that this he 
"donf' with our permission, and he the fl'ee and 
ponta- 
"neaus gift of the clergy for the common defpllce. And 
" just as at other times both hy messengers and lettprs we 
" signified to the King and the other princp
 of the realm, 


U Rymer, Tom. 78, page Ð5. 18 Chronicles. Nic. Trivet. 1297. 
1.4 Spondani year 1298. 111 VilJani. Book 8, v, 20. 
18 Nangis, year 1297. apud Achery Spic. tome 3, page 52. 
I7 Reg. Vatican. An. 3, page 26, Raynaldus 44. 



22G HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
" that if (which God forbid) the kingdom were in immi- 
"nent danger, far from pl'ohibiting subsirlies, not only 
" would we allow him to be provided ,vith money from the 
"sacreù patrimony of his kingdom, but what is more we 
"would proffer him, as far as our honor and that of the 
"Church would peru1it, the gooùs, the substance, the 
" power of Holy f1hurch, and even our own person, for the 
"preservation of his rights and for his relief in dire 
"nece
sity." These kind and amiable words which came 
from his heart, Boniface wrote on the 19th of February, 
as previously on the 7th of the same month the request 
was kind which he sent to Philip, to revoke the edict which 
prohibited money to he sent to Rome, and the clergy found 
outside of the realm fron1 receiving the revenue of their 
benefices. Is And his action
 bear testimony to the sincer- 
ity of his words. 'Ye find in the Vatican Register of the 
IC'tters of Boniface various letters which n1ake mention of 
the money given to Philip. He granted him a half of the 
alms that had heen collected for an expedition to the IIoly 
Land,t9 a half of the money that was owed by certain 
debtors to II ngh, Bishop of Toledo; 20 and finally during 
the war, he allowed hinl to collect for himself the revenue 
for the first year of all the vacant henefice
 in the King- 
dOlll,21 And in order to prove that the Papal cunstitutions 
sanctioned in favor of the immunities of the clergy, were 
not destructive of civil order and safety, he gave him full 
power to Illake himself sure of the person of those of the 
clergy whom he suspected during the war. 22 :Moreover he 
wrote to the Archbishop and chapter of the city of Lyons, 
to he on their guard and protpct tIw city, lest it might fall 
into the hanrl
 of enellliC's whilst the king was engaged 
in war. 23 This indeed was not a sign of that venomous 
rancor, that Boniface had been accused of bearing towarrls 
Philip; nor wa
 it a sign that he wished to make him a 
yassal, as those mo
t humble courtiers prodaÌlned, whose 
lniuds were clolHlC'd by the famous Constitution. And be- 
sides whilst Philip was engaged in the war Boniface re- 
leased him from whatever cen
ure he may have inrurreò 
hy the edict published in opposition to the Constitution, 
through the ..\,.chhishop of Auxl'l'rp 24 an(} throng"h hiR 
18 Raynaldus 46. 1SI Epistle 54. an 3. 20 Epistle 55.- 21 Epistle GO.- 
23 Epistle 50.
 23 Epistle 63.- 24 Vat. Register, Epistle 4, year 3. 



HISrORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 227 


confessor; so he proceeded to interrupt in his favor, in a 
manner the most advantageous, that Con
titution, so 
shameful1y and Iualigantly distorted by the king's cour- 
tiers. 25 And in order that it might not appear, that by 
any peculiar circuIlu;;tance he wa
 in(luf'ed to give the
e 
interpretations, lw Ol'dpred them afterwards to be inserted 
in the Rixth of the Decretals. 26 
Boniface wa
 no less henevolent to Edward, who a loser 
in the Flpmish 'Yar, had great neefl of powerful mediators, 
so as to reeoncile him with Philip. Adolph could giye him 
no further thought; the Scotch were in a ff'rnlent, and 
were threatening to break out into open war, being aroused 
by 'Val1ace, a Scottish t:hieftain, who ahhorred the subjec- 
tion to England. The losses sustained in Flanders were 
many and heavy; he asked for a truce, and obtained it. 
This was secured through the influence of Boniface. For 
we have alr'eady seen how Philip fln
lwò hy success, in- 
terrupted the pI'ogress of the war, through the Idnd offices 
of Charles II whom the Pope had sent to him; and on 
Christmas Day, Edward being still in Flanders, Papal 
Ilw
l"engeI's came to exhort him, as they had likewise done 
with Philip, to ehange that truce into a treaty of peace. 
For that purpose he should send to the Roman See envoys, 
who would submit the reasons of their quarrpl to Boni- 
face, who not as a judge anù Pope, but as a good nwdiator 
of peace would define the rig-hts of hoth parties, and ('ach 
one would promise to ahide by the dpf'Ísion. The messen- 
ger ha(1 not mueh difficulty in persuading Edward, who 
on aeconnt of the embarra
sed state of his affairs, anx- 
iously longl'd for SOllle such an arrangement. 27 The pro- 
position was also agl'eeaLle to Philip; and the English and 
French enyoys repaired to ROlne. 28 Sel' the confìdpuee 
which thpse two princes, jealous of their soverpignty, 
plaeed in tllP intelligence and the honesty of heart of Boni- 
face. Is it any wonder then that those Pontiffs of Italian 
nationality should have dU111inat('d 0\,('1' all th(' J>rinf'ps of 
(
lll'istf'ndonl with the arms of justice? 
The favors whkh Bonifaep had ]avi
h(>d on Philip, 
whilst the lleavy w{'ig!lt of war was pressing down on him, 
35 Vat. Register, Epigtle 5, Ra:ynaldus 49. Epistle 47, Rayn. 
28 Book 3 de Immun. Ecel. chapter" ClerieiR." 27 \Yalging-lIam, 
38 Chronicles of Nicholas Trivetti, year 12Ð8-AclIery, tom. 3, p. 22
. 



22
 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


and also the care with which he brought to a succes
ful 
end the eallonization of his grandfather, Louis, was a 
splendid proof to that Prince of the predilection of Boni- 
face for the Hoyal IIouse of Prance. A t the same time in 
tllf' heart of Edward all hope vanished of a ruptu
e be- 
tween Philip and the Pope, regarding the affair of the 
Constitution, which would have been to his advantage in 
the war. For which reason although he wished to profit 
by that armistice in order to reunite the league and renew 
tlw war, yet he suddenly courted the desire of peace. This 
al
o made him exceedingly desirous of deserting Adolph, 
because other things at home, and the furious uprising in 
Scotland claimed his attention. Also Philip desired peace, 
both because he was victorious and not a lover of war, and 
because the people were no longer enthusiastic, and were 
assluning- a threatening attitude owing to the many exac- 
tions. To such well-disposed min4s Boniface presented 
hiInself as a peace-maker. Edward who was in dire straits 
first ('hose hinl as arbiter of the rf>asons of his quarrel with 
Philip.29 He dispatched six ambassadors to Home giving 
them full power by letters he wrote at Gh('nt th<.> 18th 
of February of 1298. 30 And to show that he was sincere 
in his desire for peace, he departed from Flanders, and in 

Iarch he arrived in the harbor of Randwich.: n 
Philip also satisfied with the arbiter chosen, and like 
Edward bound himself to abide by the decision of Boni- 
face under the severe penalty of paying a hundred thou- 
sand silver marks. Yet ever fearing that his principality 
nlight lose some of its rights, he preferred that the Pope 
in judging should preside not in his character as Pope, but 


29 These courts of peaceful arbitration were of frequent occurrence. By 
agreement between the two contending princes the settlement of their 
differences was often intrusted to a bishop; a strong proof of the reverence 
and confidence which they had for the hierarchy. We find that in 1283 
Edward of England, as Duke of Gascony, heing at law with the bishop and 
chapter of Bazas, regarding jurisdiction over the territory of that city, 
both by agreement confided the settlement of the lawsuit to the judgment 
of the Bishop of Aine.- H Ista est littera omologacionis et consensus 
Episcopi et capituli Vasatensium, super quibusdam artículis pertinentibus 
fleI compositionem fact am inter Dominum Regem Angliae et ecclesiam 
Yasatensem," Unedicted document on the History of France. Letters of 
Kings V, I. 30 Walsingham---'Trivet. Chronicles 1298
Rymer, 
tom. 2. p. 825. 31 Idem. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 229 
a
 a private person, that is to say, as Benedict Gaetani. 
The agreement with this clause added was drawn up in 
Rome on the 14th of June 1298, and the rights of two 
great princes tired of war were weighed in the mind of 
Boniface. 32 
Anxieties at home and the noise of arms which re- 

ounded in the Papal court itself, did not divert the truly 
great mind of Boniface from the consideration of foreign 
affairs, On the 27th of June, precisely when hostilities 
wi th the Colonnas were beginning, in a public consistory 
Boniface presided as judge in the great contest of Philip 
and Edward, whose eagerness for war had subsided during 
the hyo years armistice. There were thirteen cardinals 
present, and a countless number of people had assembled 
to heal' the sole1nn decision, The minds of an were curi- 
ous to see how Boniface, called to judge as Benedict 
Gaetalli, although he was Pope, and presided as Pope, 
would render judgment regarding the rights of these two 
1110st powerful princes, Noone doubted his wisdOln, nor 
his uncompromising judgment; but they suspected that 
on account of the unusual solemnity of the office and his 
weI1-known attachment to things Roman he might be un- 
just to both, or that a hidden enmity against France might 
induce him to act too severely towards Philip. Boniface 
was not a saint, but jealous as he was of the authority of 
the Papal Chair, he was equally most zealous for the 
authority of justice. Before a final decision could be 
reached Boniface would be obliged to quiet the envoys of 
England who were objecting, that the
r could not arrive at 
an agreement with the French King, without violating 
the faith of their master with Adolph, King of the Romans, 
and Guy, Count of Flanders, to whom he hail sworn not 
to make peace without their concurrence. IIowever Boni- 
face knew how to surmount even this obstacle, and he 
decided: "The armistice agreed upon between Edward 
" and Philip should he prolonged in order to change it into 
" peace; they should confil'm it. and render it dn-rahle hy 
" ties of blood: Philip should givp in marriage his daugh- 
" trr, a chi]d who was upwards of seVPll years, to Edward 
" tIw eldest son of the English king, and the lattrr should 
"nlarry the sister of Philip. To each one was to be re- 
a Idem. 



230 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII, 


" turned thai which belonged to him befol'p the hreaking 
" out of the war ;-Acquitaine was to be returlwd to the 
"control of Edward, but he was eyen to relnain a vassal 
"of France; Philip was to haye dominion oyer it. The 
"lands occupied by both parties during the war were 
"to be surrendered into the custody of the Pope, until 
" they could come to some agreelllf'nt concerning the same. 
" And during this time neither one should be considereù 
"gainer or loser in their respective rights. That which 
"they agreed upon should l,e sacred and inviolablf', that 
"about which there lllight bp doubts or di

ensions was 
"always to be submitted to the decision of the PopP." 33 
Ilaving thus deciderl this difficult affair, Boniface 
quickly sent the treaty to Edward and Philip,. exhorting 
them by fervent letters, to ratify it, and telling thenl that 
they were mutually bound to stand by it, and that he 
would not have become judge in the affair if they had not 
requested it. lIe ordered, that into the custody of Arnold 
Bishop of Toulouse, Philip should surrender the lands he 
had seized in Acq ui taine, and which belonged to Ed ward 
prior to the war, and Edward should give up the lands he 
had taken from Philip during the war. 34 lIe absolved 
Guy of Flanders from the oath which bound him to give 
his daughter in marriage to Edward, eldest son of the 
I{ing of England; 35 and dispensed the latter fr0111 the 
degree of relationship which existed between him and 
Isabella of France. 36 So it seemed there were no longer 
any impediments to the longed for peace. 
The decision given by Boniface as a private person was 
differently received by the princes who had requf'stf'd it. 
If one of the two ought pot to c0111plain, that one was 
assuredly Philip. The Pope on July 3rd had spnt a Bull 
to Philip, in which he promised that nothing would be 
added to the given decision without his consent declared 
by letters or special messengers. 37 :l\loreover on the 10th 
of the same lilonth he sent another letter to Edward, re- 
questing him not to undertake an expedition of war 
against the Scotch. These two documents were favorable 
to Philip; they even exhibit a special kind leaning of Boni- 
83 See Document A at end of Book, 
If, Vatican registers, epistles 233, 23G, 237. 8ð Epist. Book 4. 415. 
IOEpist. 234-Raynaldus no. 7. B7 Preuve du ditTo dp Bonif. }):lge 41. 



HISTORY OF rOPE BONIFACE VIII. 


231 


face towards hinl. Philip accepted the truce ordered by 
the Pope, but e,oer excited hy j('alou
y of state, which his 
faithful coul'tiers took occa
ion to keep alive in his lllind, 
protesting importunately, he said to the papal legates: 
"that the tenlpol'al government of his kingdom belonged 
" to him, and to no other; in that respect he had no supe- 
" rioI'; and that he would never submit to any man who 
"should pretend to interfere in the civil administra- 
tion." 38 'Ye believe that Philip was impelled to make 
this outcry by the fear of heing obliged to liberate the 
daughter of Guy of Flanders, and to restore the estates 
of the :salue. 39 But there was no mention of this in the 
Papal decision. However he accepted the arnlistice and 
the decision of Boniface, and the lands taken fl'onl Ed- 
ward were inÌl'usteù to the Papal Legate Arnold, Bishop 
of Toulouse. Edward accepted the decision 1110st kindly 
and IllOSt peacefulJy. Hardly had he received the letters 
of Boniface, exhorting him to ahide hy the decision, and 
have all confidence in him, than he read them to all the 
nobles of the kingdom assembled in 'Vestminster. 4o lie 
published an edict to the Gascons, in which having ex- 
plained all that was effected up to that time, he ordered 
that all the lands and vassals that he possessed in the 
French kingdom should he placed in the hands of the 
Papal legate. 41 The treaty was ratified by the two kings 


.8 Tres. des Chart. IG. History of England. Lingard, Tom. II, page 38. 
118 Here we shall call attention to a remark of Hallam which he makes in 
his History of Europe in the l\Iiddle Ages about the decision of Boniface, 
and the unjust complaints of Philip, and of some French writers: The 
award of Boniface, which he claims to make both as Pope and as a private 
individual, is published in Rymer and is very equitable. Nevertheless the 
French historians agree in charging him with partiality towards Edward, 
and mention several proofs of it, which do not appear in the Bull itself. 
Previous to its publication, it was perhaps allowable to follow the common 
tradition; but Velly, a writer always careless and not always honest, has 
repeated mere falsehoods from Mezeray and de Baillet, while at the same 
time he refers to the instrument itself in Rymer, which disproves them. 
M. Gaillard, one of the most truthful writers that France has ever pro- 
duced, has pointed out the error of these historians in the :Mem. de 
l'Academie des Inscriptions, and the editors of "1'Art de verifier les Dates 
have also rectified it." Hallam, page 385. .u Westmon. Flor. Hist. 
41 . . . . . . "nous pour honneur et pour reverence du dit pope 
. . . . . . avons ja mis et assigne en la main et Ie pouvoir de 
l'honorable pere R. eveque de Viccnce, messager du dit pape, toutes les 



232 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


through their envoys in June, 1299, at :\Iontrein-
llr-mer, 
by the means of the legate, Bishop of Yicenza. 42 
It clearly appears from the decision of Boniface that 
peace had not been established by that armistice. The 
cause of the dissension still remainf>d, namely the division 
of Acquitaine, and the settlelnent of the jurisdiction of the 
two prinees, which was to be suhmitted to a future de- 
cision of the Pope. 43 
But the Pope did not wish to reopen the wounds of old 
sores through fear that the contending parties who sub- 
mitted themselves to his decision, might escape from his 
power. He was in hopes that the ties of relationship 
about to be contracted between them would soften their 
minds, and render them soon willing for a happy and a 
lasting agreement. In 1\Iay, 1299, Edward deputed Ama- 
deus Y of Savoy to act as his proxy and that of his son 
in contracting lnarriage with )largaret and Isabella, the 
one the sister and the other the daughter of Philip.44 In 
August Jane, Queen of France, in writing pron1Ïsed to 
Edward her daughter Isahella as ,vife, as soon as she 
reached thp marriageable age. 45 Rohert, Count of Artois, 
promised the same in the name of Philip.46 Unfortunate 
marriages! which contracted for thp sake of peace, were 
nevertheless the cause for a fierce war between the Eng- 
lish and French, which lasted for almost a century. 
V{hilst Edward was at war with Philip, we remarked 
how the Scotch were striving by arms to recover their 
lost independence, and how this uprising induced the 
English Prince to come to some terms with Philip. He 
had overcome the Scotch in various battles, and had 
taken their king John Baliol a prisoner. So he believed 


terres, vassaux, biens et autres choses que nous ten ions au royaume de 
France, Ie jour que la dite prononciation fut faite . . . . pour quoi 
nous vous prions et requerrons . . . . que soyez des l'heure que 
vous aurez ces lettres recues . . , . . . obeissants et en toutes 
choses repondants au dit eveque, ou a son mandement, en nom du devant 
dit pape comme a nons memes." Rymer, Vol. 2 page 832 et seq. 
G Rymer. Vol. 2, pages 840, 851. 
U \Yestm. Flour. Hist.-" Romae per Dominum Papam Bonifacium inter 
reges Galliae et Angliae pax confirmatur, quae non fuerat totaliter solid- 
ata."- 
 See the letter of Edward, the son, to Amadeus regarding this 
marriage. Unpublished documents, History of France, Vol. I, p. 430. 
tI5 Idem 76, page 431. ø Idem 433. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 233 
no one else would oppose him in enjoJing a peaceful rule 
over that courageous nation. But the flight of its armies 
and the imprisonment of its king do not assure the sub- 
jection of an independent people. The foundation of its 
rights is not in armies nor in a broken scepter, but in the 
conviction of right, which jealously preserved in the heart, 
will sooner or later free those who have been faithful. 
This the Scotch had still pref':erved in thos(' times, and 
"'ïlliam 'Yallace aroused it to generous efforts. Of an 
humble, but honorable family, he undertook to do that 
which a king had failed to accomplish, we mean the feeble 
Baliol. 
Scotland groaned, and bore the foreign rule like any 
other country deprived of its independence. English min- 
isters held the hig-hest public offices, and an Englishman, 
John 'Yarenne, Count of Surrey, snprenle power in the 
realm, as Yiceroy of Scotland. These foreign ministers 
had laid their hands on the goods of the churches, and for 
that reason tIle clergy, more than the laymen, bore with 
bad grace the EngJish yoke. Ed,vard with all his forces 
,vas at Guipnne, when 1Yallace raised the standard of 
Scotch independence. Having lived in the fore
t, he had 
a brave soul, a strength of body, which is necessary for the 
performance of valorous deeds. At first he had but few 
followers; success added to their courage and nluItiplied 
their numbers; and a fortunate encounter in which 'Yilliam 
Heslop, Sheriff uf Lanarkshire, was slain, gave celebrity 
to the name of 'Yallace. They attenlpted at Scone to sur- 
prise the chief ju<lieiary of Ormesby, who lost his treas- 
ures, hut save(] himself by the precipitancy of his flight. 
On a sudden other chieftains arose in arms in different 
counties and the people rw;;hed to the standard of inde- 
penùf>ncp. The nanlC alone of 'Vall ace guided tltf'tn. The 
origin and progress of thf'se numerous parties had been 
viewed with secret satisfaction hy 'YisÌl
cant, Bishop of 
Glasgow, and the Grand )[aster, or Seneschal of Rcotland 
who determined to collect them into one body, and give to 
their efforts one common direction. Df'elaring thelnselves 
the asscrtors of Rf'ottish independence, they invited the 
different leaders to rally round them; and thf' summons 
wa
 obeyed by 'Vall ace, Douglas, RÏI' ...\lexall(ler Lindsay, 
Sir Andrew ?\Ioray, anf1 Sir Richard Lunùy. But dissen- 



234 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
Rions and the fear of Edward srparated the weak of heart 
from the strong. All eapitulatpd save 'Yallace and 
:Moray, who having nothing to lose persevered in their 
purpose. rfhis eircumstance increased their popularity 
with the people and the COllllllon Roldiel's. The greater 
part of the at'my followed them in thpir retreat ùeyond 
the Firth. OIl the 1Ðth of H<,'ptemher, 12nS, they suddenly 
rushed upon the royal army led hy "Tarenne the mar
hal 
of Scotland, routed thenl and put to the sword five thou- 
sand English knights and foot soldiers on the left hank 
of the Forth, This unexpected disaster ùroke all the plan
 
of "rarenne. Scotland was rid of foreig'ners. "Tallace 
and )Ioray ('rossed the borders, and during a mOlltl1 
Northumherland and Cumberland were ravaged by a re- 
vengeful soldiery.47 'Yallace reached the height of his 
power. He called himself" the guardian of the l{ingdom, 
and general of the arrnie
 of Scotland," under which 
title he summoned a padiamellt to nleet at Perth. 
Perhaps in this assembly the question of asking aid 
from the Apostolic See was discussed. It is certain the 
request was made to Boniface, who oprnly undprtook to 
defend the independence of Seotland. On .July 10th, 1298, 
he wrote to Edward earnestly exhorting hhn to live at 
peace with his neighhors, tlH-' Scoteh, and to listen no 
longer to the suggestions of his alnLition. 48 To a request 
conveyed in such general terlllS it was easy to return an 
evashye answer. 'Yallace dispatched envoys to Rome who 
more powerfully interested Boniface in their favor. They 
refe)'red their quarrel with the king of England to his de- 
cision, because he was the only judge whose jurisdiction 
extended over both kingdoms: they l'emindrd hinl that by 
remaining indifferent, he would suffer Edward to annex 
to his own throne a realm, whith of right belonged to the 
See of Rome as a fief. 
Boniface in welcolning the Scotch envoys had before 
his l11ind the rigllts of the Church, and those of a people 
struggling for their liherty, which Edward violatei1. By 
word and by a doeunlellt the lpgates stated their claims, 
which Boniface sent to Edwar(l. The English historians 
of this time assert that Boniface was led by the !':ph,it of 
.7 Lingard. History of England. Vol. II, pages 181, 182. 
.8 Rymer, II, 827. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 235 


amhition, more than justice, when he declare<<l Scotland 
to he a fi('f of the Church. Yet Edward knew wpIl the 
contrary to he the trutl1. For when h(' de:.;ir('d Nicholas 
IV in Ì2!)O to confiru1 the usurpf'd right of the Engli
h 
crown over Scotland, Kicholas replied that he could not 
flo it, hecause it would he to deprive the ROlnan See of a 
r(>ahll which was 
u1Jject to it. 49 Therefore Boniface wrote 
to Edward from An
gnï" on 
Tune 27t11, deelaring that the 
king should know, that Scot land had belonged frOlll the 
ancient tÏ1nes, anrl did still belong, in full right to thp 
Homan See. He then proved it was not a fief of the Eng- 
li
h crown, frOlll the following instances: 1st, 'Yhen 
Henry, his fatllf'r, sought assistance from Alexander, 
I
ing of Scotland, in his war with Simon de )Iontfort, 
Earl of Leicester, he acknowledged by letters patent that 
it waR a
 a favor, frol11 an indf'pendent king, and not as a 
feudal service. 2nd, \Yhen the 8ame Edward, desirous 
of having AlexandpI' of Scotland present on the occasion 
of his coronation, he declared by letters patent that the 
Seottish Kill:
 came not as a vassal, but through courtesy. 
3rd, AlexallÙel"s oath of fidelity to Ed,vard concerned, not 
Scotland, but the lands he possessed in the confines of 
England, and Edward publicly recognized the oath in 
this sense. 4th, 
\.t the death of I{ing Alexander the cus- 
tody of Scotland did not fall into the hands of Edward, 
but of the Scotch nohles chosen hy popular votf' on account 
of the t('n<1er age of ::\Iargaret, niece of Edward and 
<<laughter of 
\.l(>xander. 5th, At the death of 
Iargarpt, 
although the ('hiefs of the Sf'ottish nation on account of 
diRRl'nsions concerning a successor, had made Edward the 
arhitl'l' of tlwir fJuarl'el, they did not however constitute 
him their Inaste1". 6th, In the treaty of marriage betwcen 
the prince of England and 1\fargal'et it was declared, that 
the kingdom of Scotland should remain forever fl'pe and 
independent, and in ca
e of her death b(' rCfo;torprl in that 
state to thp npxt lwh.. Fina lly a
 nwst cf'rtain proof of 
the in<1ppenden{'p of Scotlaml and it
 separation frotH thl' 
English rpahll was the fact that tll(> Pope
 alway
 a
Rignf'fl 
:Sl'parate hog-ationfo; to tho:o<p Idng(loms. Thf-' violent Ruh- 


411" Se non posse in regno Scotine, sedi \postolicae olmoxio, EccI(>sia(> 
Romanae dcrogare, ejusque fiduciarios Regi Anglo submittere." Year 
1290, Vatican Registers, letter 102,- 



23G HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
jection of Scotland manifested itself also in the bad treat- 
Jllent of the c1ergJ, especially the Bishops of Glasgow and 
Sondor, and other c1ergy, who having opposed his ambi- 
tious projects, were subjected to an ignominous im- 
prisonment; and that crowd of ministers whom he had 
left in that unhappy kingdom to squeeze out and take 
away the sacred life substance of the churches. Hence 
the Pontiff expressed the hope that the king, desisting 
from an unjust aggression, would set at liberty the bish- 
ops, clergy and natives of Scotland, whom he had held in 
captivity; and if he thought he had any right to the whole 
or part of that kingdOln, would pursue his c1aim to it 
within the six months following to the Holy See. 50 
It is true that in the period of time which elapsed be- 
tween the death of Alexander, and the election of John 
Raliol to the Scottish throne, Edward had firmly estab- 
lished himself in Scotland, both because she placed her- 
self in his hanils to put an end to the contentions of the 
three pretenders to the crown; and, as he said, because the 
rights of England over that kingdom went back to ancient 
times. He had caused the archives of monasteries to be 
searched, and their chronic1es to be consulted, which gave 
him most favorable answers to his projects. 51 It could 
not be denied that the Scotch had paid homage to him in 
the per
on of 
John Baliol. But it had been done either 
by the will of John, who was king by the will of Edward, 
and for that reason agreeable to him, and not by the peo- 
pIe; or because the Scotch through fear of intestine wars 
had J'ielded unwillingly; yet it is true that they obtained 
from Pope Celestine a release from the oath by which 
.John Raliol had bound Scotland to England,52 and they 
continued to fight with varied success in order to gain 
their liberty. Boniface deputed the Archbishop of Can- 
terbury to bear this letter to Edward, under pain of dep- 
osition from office if he failed to do so, and to report to 
him every act and word of the king when he read the Papal 
document. 53 But the Papal letters did not reach Edwarù 


10 Lingard's History of England, Vol. II, page 185. 
&1 Knyghton de Event. Angliae. Book 3, col. 2470.-Nich. Trivetti. 
Chronicles year 12!J2.-Archery ape tom. 3. page 213. 
&2 Knyghton de Event. Angliae, Book 3, col. 2477. 
r;a Vatican Register 5. Epistle 465. Raynaldu8 99-19. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 237 
in time. Only after a year could the Archbishop delivel- 
them, and so they were of no avail to save Scotland and 
her valiant \Yallace. The latter was defeated and his 
armv destroyed by Edward after a bloody battle. He re- 
nou
ced the title of guardian, and hid himself in the 
forests and lived a roaming life in 9rder not be a witness 
of the evils of his unhappy country. 54 So Scotland having 
been inspired with the hope of liberty by Philip the Fair, 
reeeived no aid whatever from him. The only favor he 
obtained from Edward was the release of John Baliol, 
who on July 14th, 1299, was given into the custody of the 
Papal legate, the Bi:'ihop of Yicenza. This unfortunate 
king retired to his estates of Bailleul in Normandy, 
France, where he ended his days six years later. 55 
Edward was camping with his army at Caerlaverock 
when \Yinchelsey, Archbishop of Canterbury, bearing the 
Papal letter presented himself on August 26th, 1300. The 
letter was publicly read in Latin and French in the pres- 
ence of the I{ing and the barons. It is quite true that the 
letter was not pleasing to Edward. But peace with 
France was not yet concluded; Gascony was still seques- 
tered in the hands of the Papal legates; and Scotland 
conquered but restless under the yoke. Unwilling to 
offend one whose friendship was so necessary to him, to 
gain time he replied that in a matter which concerned the 
crown it was his duty to consult his counsellors: that 
shortly he would assemble his parliament, and with its 
advice would return a satisfactory answer to the Pontiff. 
In fact he assembled a parliament at Lincoln on the 27th 
of September. All the universities sent their doctors in 
law; and who brought from monasteries every document 
in their pos:ses:sion, which could bear upon the question. 
After some debate a reply was framed, which was signed 
by one hundred and four earls and barons, in the name of 
the people of England. In this they show that Scotland 
never belonged in telnporals to the see of Rome; that the 
induhitable right of sovereignty which England possessed 
over that realm should not be brou
ht into question; that 
thpy were obliged by oath to defend it, and were most 
ready to defend it 
o as not to prejudice the rights of the 


M Lingard. History of England. VoL 2, pagp lRfI. I' Mat. Westm. 431. 



238 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
crown, the liherties, custom and laws, which they in. 
herited frOl11 their fathers. 56 
Edward wrote also his defence, which provoked a reply 
from the Scotch. Edward made use of a ridiculous in- 
vention and traced back his rights to the remote age of 
Elias and Samuel. The Scots opposed fiction to fiction, 
and declared that they were sprung from Scota, the 
daughter of Pharaoh, who landed in Ireland and whose 
deRecndants wrested by force of arms the northern half 
of Britain, and therefore they owe no subjection to the 
Britons, From fabl<:'8 thf'Y hoth pass on to history; but 
lwitlwl' furni
hed proofs. 57 IIowever, the Scotch re- 
mained subject to England, hecau
e the only hope of their 
liherty was gone; for Boniface at that period found him- 
Relf involv{>d in other affairs, and was engaged in defend- 
ing his own and not the independence of others. 
In the league formed by Edward against Philip the Fair, 
we have seen that one of its members was Adolph of N as- 

au, chosen the succeSRor of Rudolph of Hapsburg, to be 
the King of the Romans, He did nothing against France, 
but to have declared himself an enemy was sufficient to in- 
spire Philip with the desire of revenge. Adolph had as a 
rival in the election Albert of Austria, eldest son of Ru- 
dolph, who was rejected by the electors, because he was too 
haughty, and of excessive ambition, although he was pos- 
sessed of great military courage. Having failed in the 
strong desire he had of reigning, he hovered about Adolph 
in order to supplant him. Philip knew this; he offered to 
aid him to mount the throne in order to revenge hinlsplf on 
Adolph. IIe sent him monpy, and prOluised to reconlluend 
him to Boniface. The Archhishop of :\Iayence, the Dukes 
of Raxony and Brandenburg embraced his cau
e, an(l 
professed friendship. TheRe three electors having come 
together again at .Mayence in 1298 decided that Adolph 
was headstrong, under the influence of young and inexperi- 
enced advisers, and wanting in mental allility and pecuni- 
ary re80urees; they agreed that he was no longer wortl1y 
of the royal cr'own, which suitf'd better the head of 
\1bert. 
They acquainted the latter of their ,viII, and entreated him 
to go and implore the Pope to bestow on him the crown of 


M Chronicles. Nich. Trivetti apUfl Archery Spicil. tom. 3, col. 224 sq. 
17 Lingard. History of England. Vol. II, page 187. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. :!39 
the king of the Romans. To Albert all this seemed to fall 
from heaven, and quickly consenting to the request of the 
electors, he immediately di
patched his ambassador the 
Count of Hagirloch to Boniface, who not being able 
to obtain anything fronl his nlaster, returned joyful 
with forged Papal letters, which he palmed off as genu- 
ine, and which declared that Boniface was in every 
way favorable to Albert. The legates of Adolph hastened 
to Rome, and spoke to Boniface of these letters. He as- 
sured them that he did not listen to the petition of Albert 
at all, nor did he send any letters whatever; they should 
return and report to the king, who in confirnlation of the 
a!';
ertioll, would be anointed Emperor, if he would come 
to ROllIe. But those electors, either becau!';e they con- 
Ridered the letters genuine which the Count of Hagirloch 
ha(l brought from Rome, or because they pretended to be- 
Heve thenI as such, repaired to the cathedral of )Iayence 
and announced Albert as king, with slight consent of the 
Germans; the princes favored Albert, and the people 
...\dolph. Then the riyals began a furious war, and in the 
battle fought at Glenheim near 'Yornls, Albert, not think- 
ing of anything else but the killing of his rival, threw the 
whole weight of hattle upon him, who, although he fought 
with increùible valor, yet was killed hy the hand of 
...\.lbert himself on July 2nd. A universal diet at Frank- 
fort confirnled the conqueror as King of the Romans, and 
he was crowned at Aix-la-Chapelle. 
The df'ath of ..:\dolph and the elevation of Albert to the 
throne with a blood-stained crown could not be approved 
hy Boniface. He did not find any inviolability in the 
right nor power in the fact that raised Albert to the 
th rone. For the former he declared did not exist, when 
his approyal was aske(l by the Count of Hagirloeh, and the 
latter was wanting whell he would not con!';ent to the 
violent intru:;;ion of ..\11I('rt into tlw governnH'nt. 5S For thf' 
Roman Pontiffs claimed as their
 the right to exalnine the 
dlO!';cn king of the Romans, to anoint him, to consecrate 
him. mHl to (lpe1are his fitness for ruling. 59 Nor was this 
an a

nlIlptioll of 1'ights. Tlu> Electors thenu;clves ac- 
kllo\\o)p(}gp(l it ; for they fountl llO other legal argUIll('nt fOI. 
Þ8 Ptolemy of Lucca. llist. of Church, Book 24, chap. 37. 
68 Epistle to }Iogunt et Trevir. 
\rchiepi::;copos. ItaJnalùw" yr. 1301, no. 2. 



210 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
substituting Albert in place of Aùolph than that of ob- 
taining Papal letters, which would appoint the Hapsburg 
Prince to the J'oyal dignity. For this reason he rebuffed 
the ambassadors of Albert who had conle to ask him to 
confirln the elf'ction of this prince which he declared to be 
ahsolutely null. 60 
In the meantime Albert with that strong disposition of 
nlind, which at first the Electors had feared so much, 
began to strengthen himself on the throne, by humbling 
the nobles and depriving the cities of their liberties. And 
that Philip of France might not undertake to disturb him, 
he entered into a treaty of peace with him; and in order 
next to gain favor of Boniface, he spread the rumor that 
he was willing to engage the Turks in battle. 61 In fact at 
that time Christian affairs in the East were in the worst 
possible condition; and if Albert had been truly a king, 
and had been in earnest in regard to war, Boniface woulù 
JlaV{> nlost willingly favored his desire. For at the thne 
that Alhert having triunlphed over his rival ascended the 
throne, Boniface had received lnesspngers and letters fr0111 
SC01nhal, King of Armenia, and from the Patriarch of that 
nation, appealing to hinl for aiù against the Turks. Boni- 
facp replied to thenl kindly,62 exhorting them to bear a 
little longer the affiietions they were receiving at the hands 
of the infidels. For the establishnlent of peace between 
Philip and Edward, the more decided attachment of James 
of Aragon to the Roman Sep, and the probable conquest of 
Ricily inspired him with the hope of seeing again the 'Yest 
in arms for the holy undertaking. But the times of the 
Crusadps were past; and we do not doubt that Boniface 
was of this opinion. :Many had thought that continual 
recomnlendation to the notice of Princes the expedition to 
the Holy Land, had been a cunning device of the Popes, to 
open for the passions of princes and people in a distant 
Jand, so that alone and without molestation they could 
cause to spread nlore widely in their states the roots of 
the tree of the Pontifical power. It may be that in certain 
distressing circumstances, like tholSe occasioned by the 
House of Suabia, the Popes encouraged a crusade in order 
60 ptolem:r of Lucca. History of the Church. Book 24, chap. 37. 
81 Raynaldus, no. IG. 

 Book IV, epistle 61. Raynaldus, ibidem epistle 271. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 241 
to create a diversion but that their efforts in opposing the 
vile Islamitic generation, in recovering the Holy Sepul- 
chre, thp holiest monument in the land of the divine mys- 
teries, was with a view to their own advantage, this wp 
can never believe, Religion in mankind desires and as- 
sumes human forms, in which interior worship is more 
readily developed anò enlivened. In the :\liddle Ages, a 
time of pure and canflid piety, and of a strong and gener- 
ous temperament, the Holy Land, the Holy Sepulchre was 
precisely the exterior form best expressing the interior 
belief, both because it concerned more immediately, so to 
speak, Christ the object of the worship, and because in 
conquering it that martial spirit, which in those times was 
most abundant, was to be exercised. And the Papacy 
never having been a stranger to this tendency, but, on the 
contrary, its guide and support, could not resign its office, 
('xcept when the spirit of the tinIes having changed, the 
people would have found some other means of expression. 
From these religious conditions of the people those mili- 
tary orders originated, which were to unite a brave war- 
rior to the austerities of the cloister (a difficult union), 
and which from the start wonderfully aided the Euro- 
peans in their pious efforts in the East. But afterwards 
these instruments of war, on account of the existence of a 
long peace began to rust and degenerate; and later when 
the love of the Holy 'Val' ceased, they began by degrees to 
be dissolved. In the time of Boniface when the thought of 
recovering the Holy Land had not as yet died out, these 
Knight IIospitalers and Templars, were honored and 
favort>d by the Pope.. 'Vhen the thought of fighting the 
infidels had grown cold within the kings they forgot the 
many immunities and privileges which these religious 
military orders enjoyed. Although the island of Cyprus 
was a stepping-stone to the East for the Christians, and 
had much to fear from the Turks, yet Henry its King, fear- 
ing more the power of the Templars, sought to restrain and 
curtail it. He had imposed a tax of two bezants a head 
on their domestics and slaves, and as the Templal's and 
Hospitalers could not acquire new estates without the 
permission of the King and of the Pope, he had enacted a 
law forbidding them to increase their holdings hy even a 
span. The fear was not groundless. James ùe )Iolay, 



242 HISTOR Y OF. POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
Grand 
Iaster of the Templars, with all his fellow knights, 
began to make loud complaints, which Boniface heeded. 
He wrote to Henry telling him not to act harshly towards 
them,63 to esteem them for their custody of his kingdom, 
and for the sake of future expeditions to the Holy Land, 
and to remenlber the good service they had rendered re- 
ligion. For this purpose he sent eertain friars with a 
Constitution, that would reconcile hinl with these power- 
ful Knights. 
'
"'he appeal which Boniface nlade for aid to be extended 
to the king of Arlnenia against the Turks manifested his 
dispositions and his moderation towarrls Philip. 'Ve have 
seen how his decision as Gaetani had excited in the French 
prince jealousy of state to such a degree as to call forth 
a remonstrance in defence of his rights. This was a sign 
that a poison was fermenting in the heart of Philip since 
the proclamation of the Constitution (( Clericis Laicos." 
The Pope perceived it, and remained silent; although it 
was urgent for hiIn to complain, because Philip did not 
desist from violating the sacred immunities. Philip 
abused this silence. However, externally tLey seemed 
friendly, and between them there was such a display of 
kind offiees, that the people without knowing the truth, 
said the two princes were at peace. As to a most Chris- 
tian king, Boniface wrote to Philip in October, 1298, 
recOIn mending to hÏIn the I{ing of Armenia harassed by 
the Turks. In the letter there was a confidence in the 
piety and good will of the King, and the Pope seemed cer- 
tain that if he would not go himself, at least he would send 
a French arnlY to that country.64, On the other hand 
Philip affected to be a loving son of Holy Chureh, and as 
if consumed by zeal for the Lord, he published an edict 
which declared: " How in order that the Inquisition might 
" succeed against the wicked heretics, for the glory of God 
"and the gTowth of Faith, he cOlllmanded the Dukes, the 
"Counts, Barons, Stewards, Bailiffs, and Provosts, of his 
" kingdom, if they wished to show themselves truly faith- 
"Iul to us, to obey their bishops and the inquisitors 
"deputed or to be deputed by the Apostolic See, by bring- 
"ing before them, whenever requested, all heretics, their 
63 Boniface's Letters. Book 5, 46 apud Raynaldus 21, year 1298-Book V. 
Epistle 180, Raynaldus, year 12D9-38. 64 Raynaldus, year 12D8, 110. 19. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 243 
"abettors, believers, and receivers, and to execufe forth- 
"with all sentences of the judges of the Church, notwith- 
"standing any appeal or complaint whatsoever the her- 
"etics or abettors might make, as all way of appeal to 
them was closed." 65 These things he sanctioned against 
the heretics, who were not trouhlesome to him, but rather 
an advantage on account of a pious confiscation he nwde of 
the goods of heretics. But he did many other things which 
truly called for an inquiry. He had an insatiable thirst 
for guld, and that of his ministers still greater. The 
Cuunt of Artois had been in pos
ession of the city of Cam- 
lwai, which belonged to the Bishop, and in the mildest 
terms Boniface had entreated him to re
tore it. Philip 
had appropriateò for himself the revenues of the Church 
of TIheims during a yacancy of that See, and he refused to 
restore them to the new Archbishop, Robert of Courtenay. 
The Pope in the strongest terms recal]ed to his mind 
how that custody which the secular princes exerei
ed over 
the vacant benefices was only tolerated by the Church, and 
ceased as soon as a new incumbent was chosen; his nlinis- 
tel'S had shamefully seizeù the sacred reY'enues which they 
should only have guardpd, and then 
hould have delivered 
to the newly-elected henpficiary.66 Philip turned a deaf 
ear to these rplllonstrances. Boniface in
isted hy letters 
which he sent directly to the Prince ana also made use of 
the good offices of the Count of St. Paul, that he might 
prevail npon him to act justly. But the Frenth King 
wi
hp(l to abuse all those concessions, which the Pope had 
bepn obliged to make in the Constitution "Clericis Lai- 
cos/ J in order that he might not conlplain. His officials 
unùer the pretence of taking the npcesHary suhsidips for 
war out of the revenues of the churches, sPized theIn, and 
in doing so made no distinction between the limits of 
Church and of the State. 67 Philip who cprtainly did not 
suffer frOln scruples, when he was draining both people 
and churclws of their gol(l, full;v understood the wicked 
rule h(' (,xPl'ci
ed over the sacred patrimonies, and the 
justice of the Pope'
 remonstrance; hut not wishing to 
depart from a road which was so delightful, he thought 
rather of strengthening himself in order to present a 
85 Ordonne de France, tom. I, page 330. ell Raynaldus, 23. 
87 Raynaldus, 25. 



244 HISTORY OF POPE BONIF ACE VIII. 
bolder front to Boniface when an open rupture would 
come. 
Albert, the new King of Romans, not having succeeded 
in obtaining from the Pope a confirmation of his elevatioll 
to the throne of Germany, certainly did not bear any 
good will towards Boniface, whom he well knew was not 
of such a mild disposition as to yield to hinl; and he saw 
dimly in the distance the consequences of that clash, when 
the fact in his hands would engage the right in the hands 
of Boniface. Therefore he did not rest content and in- 
active, but set aùout energetically in his search for sonle 
one, in a like condition in opposition to the Pontiff, who in 
joining his forces with his, could resist Boniface, or at 
least intimidate him to their own advantage. Hence 
Philip of France and Albert agreed in their way of think- 
ing; and those rights which could not be settled by the 
force of arms between Philip and Alphonsus, they decided 
by friendly treaties and ties of marriage. The two princes 
met in December of that year at Yancouleurs in Lorraine, 
and the former friendly relations were restored which 
once existed between Germany and France, and which 
were disturbed by the rights which Adolph claimed over 
the kingdom of ArIes. They were willing to corne to an 
agreement the reason for which was not difficult to find. 
Albert ceded to France the kingdom of ArIes, and France 
surrendered her rights over Lorraine and Alsace. They 
defined the boundaries of the two kingdoms; and by oath 
they both bound themselves to defend each other in pre- 
serving their respective rights; and in order to seal this 
alliance by some stronger argument, it was agl"eed that 
Rudolph, Duke of Austria, son of Albert should marry 
Blanche, the sister of Philip.68 Philip and Albert con- 
cluded these holy peaceful relations with their lllinds in- 
tent on Boniface as if to call forth respect frolll him by 
that show of strength they presented in that alliance, the 
one entreating him to make legitimate the crown stolen 
fro In the murdered Adolph, and the other claiming the 
right to pillage the churches and so act as King and Pope 
at one and the same time. In fact Albert, whilst Blanche 
was being escorted to Austria for the marriage with his 
son, 80 certain was he that these ties of relationship would 
118 Spondani, year 1299, tom. I, page 327. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 245 


move Boniface, that he sent another message entreating 
him to confirm him as King of the Romans. But Bonifacp 
would not yield to the murderer of Adolph, nor did he 
allow himself to be intimidated by the li'lranco-Germall 
alliance. 
Ioreover he gave such a peremptory refusal, 
as to furnish occasion to a certain Ghibelline writer to 
relate, that having received the Inessengcrs of Alhert 
seated on a throne with a crown on his head and a sword 
at his side, with the ostentation of king he 
aid: " It is I, 
I, who am Caesar, it is I who am the Emperor." 69 B ow- 
ever since Albert did not ask to validate a false right, 
he was able finally to arrive at the fulfihnent of his de- 
sires, because rights are engendered by deeds; Lut Philip 
never, because injustice can never be sanctified into a 
right, 
But in the meantime affairs in Sicily did not seenl to 
take so favorahle turn as to lea\?e the lnind of Boniface 
free to think of Jerusalem. After the defection of Roger 
of Loria, Frederick far froln fearing the great prepara- 
tion Dla<le in Rome against him, dared himself and incited 
others to resist, no matter what his fate lnight be. As 
long as the Sicilians were faithful, he desired to be king 
and king of Sicily. 'Ve cannot understand how Boniface 
with his penetration, with his knowledge and practical 
judgment of men, ùid not see so far into the lnind of 
J ames of Aragon as to notice that he showed himself 
most devoted to Rome, and most ready to wage war 
against his brother, while the papal favors were falling 
about him, while he was collecting tithes from the churches, 
and the crown of Sardinia was on his heacl, but in the 
depth of his heart he still nourished bittprnesH against 
Rome })ecause of her efforts to drive the Aragon family 
out of Sicily. Gold and Sardinia wpre things of the 
present, services to be rendered were those of the future. 
The selection of James for the conqueHt of Sicily did not 
help the undertaking. Of James' diHpositions anù of the 
impropriety of the means Boniface afterward was con- 
"iuced, but too late. 
Everything was prepared for the war in snch a manner 
that there seemed to be no uncertainty of the victory. 
The _\r2gonese fleet of forty galleys in union with that 
l1li Benven. da. 1m. Cronic.--Comment. on the Divina COllmedia. 



24G HISTORY OF POPE BONIF ACE VIII. 
of rharIes ICing of Naples was large and vpry well 
nlanned. 'rhat eminpnt warrior Hog(>l' of Loria com. 
manded it, who to skill in military affairs added a know}. 
edge of the sea and the Sicilian coasts, where the war was 
to he waged. J ames therefore set sail with his fleet; he 
landeù on the Roman shores and went to interview Boni- 
face. In the ]ueantime Frederick was not unprepared, 
heing aided wonderfnlIy hy the fipry Sicilians. He placed 
on the spa sixty-fonr galleys, manned by the choicest 
sailors, experipnced in naval battles. He chose as Ad- 
miral, a brave Genoese, Andrew Doria. So much did 
their courage increase in the face of danger that he was 
impatient of (lelays, and wished to encounter the enemy. 
He sailed as far as Naples to meet it. The Sicilian fleet 
sailed along the 
eapolitan coast, and was ploughing the 
waves with colors displaYf'd, as if dpfying to battle, hop- 
ing therehy to entice Charles to sonle fe>at of arms, or to 
vanquish hin1 hefore he was joined by James. But James 
sent word to Frederick saying that he should not try the 
fortune of a battle outside> of his own kingdom and 
should withdl'aw. 70 This does not apppar to be the mes. 
sage of an enemy, but of a friend, and we believe the Ara- 
gonese king endured more fatigue in prf'tending war than 
sustaining it. However, Frederick having retirerl from 
Naples, .James conducted to that city his fleet, which to- 
gether with the Neapolitan numbered more than eighty 
galleys. 'Yith f111arJes of 
aples and the Cardinal Legate 
on board, he directed his course towards Sicily in Aug'ust 
of 1298. Roger of Loria opened the way for them. He 
pointed out to the])] suitable positions, where perhaps stilI 
linger the men10ry of his power and wh(ìre were his 
friends and vassals. So the ecclesiastical militia sailing 
along the east coast of Sicily, the city of Patti and some 
other fortresses soon capitulated. The name alone of 
J...4oria was nlore effective than arms. The fleet set out for 
Ryracuse and laid siege to it; hut the city stubbornly held 
onto In tlw ll1f'antime the provinces that surrenderf'd 
either were forced, or by their own will returned to the 
rule of Frerlerick, and the pontifical army between disease 
and the sword waR greatly decimated, for Frederick tak- 
ing refuge in Catania sent his light solùiers in small bands 
'10 Fazzelli, Book IX, cap. 3. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 247 
to haras
 the enpmy often hy furion
 and deadly skir- 
mishes. In these encountf'rs the hrave Blasco of Alagone 
at the head of a band of Catalonians was ambushed, ana 
made prisoner with them; and also John of Loria, nephew 
of Roger, suffered a defeat and was nlade a prisoner, on 
his return frOln provisioning Patti with a few ships.71 
A voiding therefore great battles, anù thus harassing the 
hostile army, F'rederick oblige(l James to return without 
advantage to 
aples, but before his departure James 
asked his brother for sonw ships whieh the people of 
Ies- 
sina had prepared for John of Loria and promiseù hinl 
peace, but Frederick's reply was to offer battle which 
J alnes prudently refus('(l 
It was now the nlonth of 
Iarch in the year 1299, and 
Boniface saw that little or nothing had been gained; yet 
he did not lose confidence in J anles. He imagined per- 
haps the cause of his return was the threats made on the 
frontier of his kingdom, for which reason he suùdcnly 
left :Naples for Spain. So in order to renew the war he 
allowed him to collect tithes from the churches of Yalen- 
da, (latalonia, Aragon and the Balearic Islands. í2 He 
took him under his protection, and restrained other 
princes from molesting hinl dul'ing the Sicilian war. 73 
And that thp soldiers n1Ïght know that the war was to bp 
wagpd for the COlnmon )IotJH'r the Church, he granted 
them holy indulgences. 74 lie afterwards deputed "'ïlliam, 
Archhishop elect of Salerno to see that confessors were 
not wanting in the fleet, who would immediately absolve 
fl'om censures those of the enemy, who would pass over 
to the party of the Church, and who would oblige them 
by oath to remain faithfu1. 75 
The tithes were a good gift but for the present war 
ready money was neee
8ary. Jmnes did not have it and 
Boniface was slow to give it to a servant whose honesty of 
purpose he began to susp('('t. The Aragonese Prince tried 
to get it froln the :Neapolitans. Having rf'tul'ned from 
Spain, he joined his fleet to that of the N eapolitanR, and 
on the 24th of .Tnnp hp s('t Rail steering his conrRe for 
Sicily with the intpntion of trying again the fortunes of 


11 Special Book 4, c. 6, 7. 
n Ibidem, Epistle 20G, 207, Raynaldus 2. 
Raynaldus 1. 


n Book 5, Epist. 208. Ray. I. 
7. Ibidem, Epistle- 193, 
75 lb. Ep. 193, RaynaJdus 2. 



248 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
'war. The famous Roger of Loria cOillInanded the fleet, 
and the presence of James, Robert Duke of Calabria, and 
Philip Prince of Taranto inspired them with courage. 
Frederick set out with forty galleys frolll the harbor of 

Iessina with men eager for the fray, and led by mo
t 
skilful captains and many Sicilian bal.ons. He wished to 
engage the enemy, to prevent it from reaching the Sicil- 
ian coasts, and to vanquish it in open battle. But either 
because the winds were unfavorable, or the Catalonian 
pilots were more skilful and their fleet was handled better, 
the latter arrived at Sicily near the coast of St. 3lark, and 
immediately they formed in line turning their prows to- 
wards the Sicilian fleet, which ardently desiring battle, 
sailed directly to meet it. ,re shall not relate how furi- 
ously the two fleets fought, since Nicholas Speciale had 
written at length about it; 76 we shall only say that the 
victory won by J allies oyer his brother was entirely of the 
work of the invincible Roger of Loria, who to the hate he 
had for Frederiek added an incredible thirst for revenge 
on account of the death of the incautious John of Loria, 
his nephew, whonl the Sicilians had hnpl'isoned, as we re- 
lated. He planned the battle; he ordered the sudden 
attack from behind upon the assailants, and inspired the 
minds of all with his own implacaùle hate. Eighteen gal- 
leys were surrendered to J a nlP s, and six thousand Sicil- 
ians perished in those disastrous waters, mnong ,,,horn 
were many barons, who by the authority of their name, 
and the number of their follower
, had up to that time 
confirmed Sicily in its determination of not being sub- 
ject to the Papal will. 77 Crushed and blood-stained the 
Sicilians retreated, and with them Frederick, who in that 
battle mingled with the soldiers with so nluch bravery, 
that he seemed a common soldier more than a king. Vil- 
lani, who lived at that tiIne, declared afterwards that 
through the artifice of Jmnes with his Catalonians, Fred- 
erick was allowed to escape, as it was publicly reported. 78 


'f8 Book IV, Chap. 14. 'f1 SpeciaJe. Book IV c. 14. 
'f8 Here are his own words: "It is said with reason, that if King James 
had willed it, Don Frederick, his brother,. would have remained a prisoner 
after his ganey fell under the power of the prince of Aragon, and that the 
war in Sicily would have ended. But, whether such was the wiU of James, 
or such was the will of the CataJonian nation, they alJowed him to es- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 249 
Such was the result of the naval battle of Cape Orlando, 
that if James had passed through Sicily, without giving 
time to the enemy to recover their spiritH, it is most cer- 
tain that the war would haVf
 been tprminated by the 
conquest of the island, But, contrary to the expectationH 
of the two sons of Charles, and of Roger of Lol'ia, having 
exchanged prisoners with Frederick, he allowed Robert of 
Calabria and Roger to continue the war. It is true that 
if the power of his brother was broken, he himself did 
not come out of that terrible battle unscathed, and his 
fleet was badly injured, but nevertheless he was victorious, 
and Roger was with him; and then the awful dpfeat and 
the loss of those valiellt barons made the Sicilians nlort' 
docile, as the desire for revenge had not as yet succeeded 
to the distress of adversity. He set sail for Salerno whf're 
he expected to meet the afflicted Constance his lllother, 
who in those days was the most miserable of mothers, as 
she perhaps had never taken her eyes off those waves, 
which might have been reddened by the blood of one of 
her sons. He then sailed for 
aple
, and saw Charles 
who did not accord him the best wekome. 79 Even on him 
this sudden departure made a bad inlpression. So Jalnes 
returned to Catalonia in bad repute with the Angevines, 
and detested by the Sicilians, who however, if he wished, 
he could have reduced to the direst straits. 80 
Boniface was very displpased over the return of James 
to Catalonia; on considering that this prince had not 
arrested Frederick in the battle of Cape Orlando, and had 
abandoned the affair at the very moment in which he 
could have gathered the fruits of a signal victory, he 
clearly perceived that the reasons of his departure were 
pretended, and that he acted in bad faith. 81 This lllotive, 
added to a desire of not interrupting the course of pros- 
perity in Sicily, fixed his attpntion lllore sÌJ'ongly on that 
country; but he had still lllore at hpart not to losp that 
which hp had reconquered, and not to exposp to danger 
the army which remained entirply in the hands of Charlps. 


cape." Book 8, chap. 29.-Ptolemy of Lucca, also a cotemporary writer 
affirms the same, Hist. Eccl. 
n Speciale. Book IV, chap. 15 . . . "a quo non multum 
diligenter acceptusest." 
· Speciale, Book IV, cap. 15, BIl\Iariani, Book IX, chap. 3. 



250 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
J ames being at a distance, and probably caring very little 
for the enterprise which had been intrusted to him, Boni- 
face tremblf'd; for if the fleet would encounter a defeat, it 
would be difficult to repair it. He restrained {'Iharles and 
exhorted him not to trust to the chances of fortune. But 
this prince who had drafted other soldiers could not re- 
strain himself, especially since the good news arrived of 
the deeds of Robert, his son, and Roger of Loria, who were 
making many fine conquests in Sicily, and among them of 
Catania itself. To his son Philip prince of Taranto, im- 
patient and desirous of engaging in some signal enter- 
prise, he intrusted forty galleys and a goodly number of 
soldiers. The commander was the valiant captain Peter 
Salvacossa, who had deserted the party of Frederick. 82 
From the distance Boniface protested against Philip ven- 
turing a battle with that force. He wrote to Charles to 
restrain him and to prevent him from going, or if having 
gone to Sicily to recall him. He would also have him re- 
Juember his oath of fealty to the ROJuan See, and know 
that he would be visited with censures in order to restrain 
hin1 and his son frolu the foolish enterprise; and that he 
had intrusted to the Archbishop of Naples the infliction 
of the censures. 82 The Pope wrote thesf' things on the 
2nd of Novelnber, and in the beginning of this lllonth the 
young prince had set sail for Sicily, steering towards the 
promontory Lilibeo, where he landed with his arnlY. The 
entreaties and comnlands of Boniface were, as it were, a 
certain presentiment of disaster. For a month had hardly 
passed since his departure from :Kaples, when, on the 
plains of Falconaria between 
Iarsala and Trapani, Philip 
nleasured his strength with Frederick, by whom he was 
defeated and made prisoner. Thus was lost the fruit of 
the victory of Cape Orlando, and those enmities and the 
war were prolonged without any benefit to either party. 
Then Boniface saw wither all the hopes he had placed in 
J ames which afterwards he sought to revive in Charles 
of Valois. Haù hf' from the beginning entrusted to this 
prince the rights of the Church over Sicily, affairs Juight 
perhaps have taken a more prosperous turn, and the war 
might have been waged more honestly by a Frenchman, 
who was not a brother of Frederick. 
s:: Book V, Epistle 591, Raynaldus 4. 



HISTOR Y OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


. 231 


N ow we can not dismiss the account of the Sicilian war 
without mentioning a most atrocious fact, which as an 
instance of the ferocity of those times, also makes known 
to us the vigilance of Boniface, and his immediate remedy 
for every disorder that offended the sacred laws of nature. 
Among the followers of Frederick, there was a certain 
l\lontanero Sosa, who not by the art of war, but by per- 
fidy had put to death a handiul of Frenchnlen and being 
possessed by the demon of avarice conceived a wicked 
plan for making money. He set about to boil the dead 
bodies of the slain, in order to remove the flesh from the 
bones, which he afterwards sold at a high price to the 
relatives of the dead, that they might carry them for 
burial to their own country. And thus, says Fazzelli, he 
sold the dead whom in life he had betrayed. s3 It is true 
this custom originated among the Crusaders, who in order 
not to leave in the land of the infidels the bodies of the 
nlen either dear to them, or illustrious by birth, removed 
the flesh from the bones, that they might hear them away 
with them, as we read was done with the body of St. 
Louis of France. This treatment of human bodies even if 
they Wf're corpses, was a great irreverence shown to the 
divine handiwork. And yet it was often made use of by 
those in high position, either to bury their dead relations 
in grand sepulchres at home or with the pious desire of 
securing the bones of their relatives who died in far off 
countries, they disembowelled them, and boiled them in 
loathsome boilers. Boniface published a Constitution,84 
in which detesting the horrible practise, he threatened t 
with solemn exconlmunication all those guilty of the bar- 
barous practise of removing the flesh from human bones. 
Although, as we have related, Boniface did not lose 
Hight of those foul heretics, the Fraticelli, and quickly 
hrought th(>m to trial, yet they did not stop their evil prac- 
tiH(>S, and in the false garb of sheep they were worse than 
ra,.enons wolvps. 
lisel'able religious they were, expelled 
fJ'om monastel'ies and fanatical founders of new orders 
anù reforms. They fixed thpir abode
 in the Abruzzi 
mountains and in the Marches of .\.ncona. As we have 
pl'eviom
ly stated, these puisonous shoots had 
prung from 
Home poisonous l'OUt. Censul'ps had little or 110 efIet't 
sa Fazz. ib. "" Extrav. Commun. Tit. Dc sepultura, cap. I. 



252 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
upon them, because they did not care to know or have 
any connection with the Pope or Church. Strict observers 
of the rule of St. Francis, this was of more value in their 
eyes than the Gospel, or anything else. At the solicita- 
tion of Boniface, Friar 
Iatthew of Chieti, Inquisitor, pur- 
sued them. 85 That is to say that the pursuit was relent- 
less. They then left the continent, and fled to Sicily; and 
there surfeited with food, and heated by much wine, they 
formed a procession of real bacchanals, and to the accom- 
paniment of certain reed trumpets, they sang a hymn 
which began thus: (( Rejoice. 0 Harlot Church," meaning 
thereby to slander the Roman Church. And afterwards 
they broke these instruments and a cup to signify by this 
the end of the Church. They passed over to Greece, where 
they spread their bad doctrines; but Boniface preceded 
them by a letter to the Patriarch of Constantinople and 
the Archbishop
 of Patrasso and Athens, in order that 
they would suppress them. They took refuge in Achaia. 
This vile troupe of heretics was certainly not to be treated 
with indifference nor despised, because the people, de- 
ceived by those appearances of rigid poverty, began to 
consider them as saints and to venerate their relics. Ber- 
nard Guido,86 relates that the inquisitors of heresy were 
oLliged to disinter the ashes of Herman. a heretic of Ff'r- 
rara, and scatter them to the winds; and demolish an 
altar which the people had erected to him as a saint. The 
same was done with the remains of a low-bred English 
woman who declared herself the Holy Ghost bf'come in- 
carnate for the salvation of her sex. 87 :Now if these stupid 
doctrines could not prevail so much as to deceive cultured 
minds, they however were among the people as a ridicu- 
lous expression of certain theories which sprang up in 
minds, not altogether uncouth nor uncultured, and which 
could menace the nobler parts of the Church. In this 
very year John Oliva died, of whom we have spoken, who 
in his commentaries on the book of the Apocalyp
e of St. 
John, after giving utterance to many extravagances con- 
cerning St. Francis, his rule, his strict poverty and so 
forth, bitterly assailed the Church and Pope, calling the 
former a New Synagogue, Babylon, a harlot, and already 
III Reg. Vatic. epi. 170 Ray. 55. 68 Chron. Rom, Pont. 

 Annal. Domin. Colmar. year 1301.- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 2;)3 
dying; and the latter Antichrist in flesh. 88 Xow these 
doctrines taught by a man considered a saint outwardly, 
and Ipal'ned as Oliva was, could be agreeably embraced 
by those, who, impatient of the jurisdiction of the Church, 
were restless under the lash of Boniface. This is the 
reason why Boniface was vigilant, and the inquisitors 
acti ve. 
As we have said, the Fraticelli were a. most wicked off- 
spring of the excellent Franciscan Order, and hence Boni. 
face pursued them relentlessly; so it is well to remark 
that this Order had no greater admirer and protector 
than this Pontiff. He removed them from the jurisdic- 
tion of bishops; he conceded to their rectors full power of 
judgment over their subjects according to the constitu- 
tions of the order without regard to the general prescrip. 
tion of the law; and confirmed all their privileges in a 
Bull entitled (( 111 are Jl agn lon." 89 He often employed 
F'rancÏRcalls in legations and in the government of 
churches. Friar Porchetto Spinola was placed by him 
over the .Archiepi!"copal see of Genoa; Friar Alamanno of 
Bag-norea over the Archiepiscopal see of Abora in 8ar- 
d inia, who also had the privilege of exercising episcopal 
juriR(liction in Rome as Vicar of the Pope, even while he 
himf'elf was present; Friar John of Lamois, created Peni- 
tentiary of the Pope, and sent on many embassies, was 
appointed to the see of Rennes, and afterwards translated 
to that of Lisieux. 90 These favors were granted in return 
for the great services given the Church by these friars. 
The character of the Order was such that it correspondefl 
well to that of the times; and Iuany men of rare learning 
became members of it. .And since it was still in its first 
fervor, the )lendicants, and also the Dominicans were ever 
nlOst ready for all those works in the performance of 
which there was needed a perfect abnegation of human 
naturp. Therefore pOOl', penitent, zealous and diligent in 
preaching and in the administration of the sacraments, 
they alone confrontpd the dangers in the far off missions 
of the infidel countries. 
But the justice of the recompense did not seem dear to 
88 Constit. GG, John XXII, in Extrav. Communiter nonnullos. 
III Wadding. Annal. l\Iinorum Tom. V, page 340. 
10 Wadding. Idem, 
.ears 1298, 1299. 



234 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


the bishops and pastors. They saw on a pal' with them 
certain cOlnpanions who up to that tiIlle were unknown in 
the exercise of their ministry. The Friars were bearers 
of Papal ordinances, which rendered then1 no longer sub- 
jeets of the hishops but their helpers, and they lessened 
the nlinistry of the pastors. The decrees were just, be- 
cause the diocesan clergy in those times were in need of 
help and co-laborers, and the Pontiffs of ministers freer 
and more active in the application of their power; but the 
bishops complained, because they did not wish to have the 
Friars )linor on a par with them, but under them. 'Ve 
shall not speak of the dissensions which this state of 
affairs engendered; but only of the provisions made by 
Boniface in favor of the Friars. In the year 1299 he puh- 
lished the Bull (( Super Cathedram/' 91 in which he gave 
full permission to all the ...\lendicant Friars to preach in 
the Church or on the square, provided at the same nlO- 
nlent th(' Bishop did not preach there, or they did not 
preach in his presence. 'Vhen invited and with the per- 
lllission of the pastor they could preach in the parish 
churches; only the permission of the bishops was to be 
asker} for the friars selected by their superiors to admin- 
ister the sacrament of penance; if the bishop should re- 
fuse, they could do so by concession of the Pope; the friars 
could bury the dead in their churches, reserving however 
for the pastors the fourth part of the money they received 
for the obsequies. Finally he exhorted the bishops and 
pastors not to lllolest the friars, but to favor them, and 
assist them with alms. Little good resulted from these 
provisions; the quarrels did not end, but rather increased 
in intensity. 
The times were hard and embarrassing, and a Pope who 
did not wish to closp his eyes to the course events Wf're 
taking neeùed to be a man of a strong and resolute nature. 
'Ye have alr'eady seen how Boniface, after declaring war 
against the Colonnas, had sent Cardinal Aquaspal'ta to 
start a crusade against thf'm, promhdng the same indul- 
gences that were granted to the crusadf'rs in the Holy 
I.Jand. TJlP report of the rehellion of the Colonnas, and 
tllP hpIp which Boniface stood in need of to repress thf'm 
agitated the p('ople greatly; and they answered the appeal 
111.Extrav. comlliuniter. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


9-- 
....oJ...> 


beyond expectations, they ru
heù to arms, and took the 
cross. Even the Orsinis the enemies of the Colonna
 agi- 
tated the undertaking of this war. 92 Florence had sent to 
the aid of the Pope two hundred cavalry and six hundred 
infantry under the leadership of Cianco of 
Iontespertoli 
and Davizo of Galiano; (YiIJani reports only six hundrrd 
in all, arches and spearsmen,) also two hundred cavalry 
fro III Orvieto,93 and other soldiers from :\Iatelica 94 under 
the banner of the nlunicipality of Florence. 95 If we may 
believe the chl'oniclf'S of Paulin us of Piero, even the women 
were filled with the desire of aiding the Pontiff, and as 
they were unahle and unfit, by reason of their sex, to go 
to war, they hired soldiers to fight in their stead. In a 
Hhort time a mighty army was assemhled under the chief 
command of Landolph Colonna, which sufficed and ex- 
ceeded the expectations of the Pope. So with the blessing 
of the Pope, and endowed with bountiful indulgences, the 
crusaùers a(lvanced to the attack of N epi, a strongly forti- 
fied town of the Colonnas, which they brought to terIns, 
hut with a great loss of soldiers occasioned by the poiRon- 
ous atnlO
phel'e.96 Soon other castles and towns surren- 
dered to tlWlIl. The stronghold of Palestrina alone re- 
mained, which, hecau
e of its difficulty of approach and 
strong fortifications, was rendered difficult of capture. 
3Ioreover the Colonna princes were there, Agapito, Sciarra, 
au(] the two ral'(linals, who saw within the
e walls pushed 
to their last extremity, their own fortune and a people 
Rtl'ongly devoted to the Colonnas. And right here Fer- 
rettus of Yiccnza,97 and Pipino,98 strong Ghibellines, in- 
tl'1Hle themsf'h
es and l'rlate that Boniface, as it were, de- 

pairing of ca pturing Palestrina by force, thought of 
01lY of 1\[ontf'feltro, now a friar, who in 01<1 :lge was liv- 
ing in a mOlla
tt'ry at ...\ncona attending to the things of 
(lod antI his ROUI. He sent a lllf'
Rengel' to him imploring 
him. a man skilled in war, to come and dirpct tll(> sif'ge. 
rl'1u''y (ledal'ed that h('" rf'fu
ed to come, hecause hf' had a 


83 Villani, Book 8, chap. 21. 83l\fanente, History of Orvieto. 
Ufo Petro ::\[pm, Proenest. Page 158. 
85 Tosa Cronac. an. 12!)Î, add. ad. ft R. T, tom. 2, p. 53. 
86 Tosa Cronac. an. 12!)Î, add. ad. S. R. T, tom. 2, p. 53. 
91 Chronicles of Tuscany 
'ear 12!)Î. 
9R Chronicles Tom. 1, add. ad R H. I. page 53. 



256 HISTORY OF. POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
repugnance for such a cruel occupation, but that after- 
wards he" yielded, and haying examined the stro:gg city 
wall, he told the Pope that it could not be taken by force, 
as it seemed impregnable. So much for these two writers. 
They were followed by Dante in his verses, and more 
openly by his commentator Benvenuto of Imola, who de- 
clared that GllY had indicated a means for accomplishing 
the purpose, but would not adopt it because it was sinful; 
that Boniface answered him and told hin1 to have no fear 
of sin, as he himself would absolve him from it before it 
was done; and that the plan was to draw the Colonnas 
from their stronghold by fair promises, then to break 
them, to destroy them, violating sacred oaths. Such is 
the poetical fiction of Dante, and after him Ferrettus of 
Vicenza and Pipino as historians narrate this story.99 
'Ye beg the reader not to neglect to read this note. 
But this account cannot be followed, because they alone 
narrate it, and do not agree in their recitals, and are only 
in faithful accord with that which afterward the Colonnas 
spread of the treachery of Boniface. 
It is true that the Papal soldiers labored much and for a 
long time around Palestrina, with a great shedding of 
human blood; but finally in September the four Colonnas 
came out and surrendered the city to the Papal con1- 
mander, whether on terms or at the discretion of the con- 
queror the ancient writers do not say. But it is evident 
from that which followed. For leaving the city in the 
hands of the Papal general they repaired to Rieti, where 
the Pope was dwelling, to implore forgiveness from bim,lOo 
Having reached the gates of the city, they dismounted 
from their horses, and went on foot clothed in garments 
of mourning and with halters about their necks 101 to 
throw themselves at the feet of Boniface. The Pope was 
seated on his throne with a crown on his head, and sur- 
rounded by the Cardinals and Prelates of the Curia to- 
gether with a great multitude of laymen, among whom 
was Charles, Prince of Taranto. He manifested no harsh- 
ness, but received them graciously and kindly, to use the 


19 2 B. in relation to this at end of book. 
100 Villani Book 8, cap. 28,-Paolo di Piero, Chronicle S. R. 1., tom. 1, 
p, 53. Add. ad S. R. I. ]01 Pipi. Chron, S, R. I. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIF ACE VIII. 257 
words of Piero. 102 In fact they were so humble in word 
and action that they exdted pity; with tears in their eyes 
they kissed the feet of the offended Pontiff, acknowledg. 
ing themselves guilty and unworthy of forgiveness. One 
of them, to move the heart of Boniface, made use of the 
words of the Gospel: "0, Father, I have sinned against 
" Heaven and before thee, and I am not worthy to be called 
"thy son." And afterwards: "Thou hast punished us 
" for Our wickedness." If this is to surrender on terms, 
we would like to know what it is to surrender uncondition- 
ally. Boniface restored them to favor, and absolved them 
from all censures. But his pardon did not extend so far 
as to restore them to their former state, nor to leave un- 
punished the rebellious Palestrina, which had so fiercely 
resisted the Papal forces. He ordered Theodore Raniero, 
Bishop of Orvieto, his chamberlain/ o3 to raze to its foun- 
dation the unfortunate Palestrina, and when levelled to 
the ground, to pass the plow over it and sprinkle the fur- 
rows with salt, in order that nothing living would remain 
in remembrance of it. The Church of St. Agapitus alone 
remained standing. A like severe sentence was passed 
upon the people. All their goods and fortunes as of rebels 
and schismatics were confiscated. So, deprived of their 
dwellings, and destitute of everything, they were con. 
dncted by the Pope to found and dwell in another city, 
which was calJed Papale. This storm also struck J aco- 
pone, who also had been rebellious, and had aided the 
8ehi
m. He was cast into prison, not in Palestrina, as it 
no longer existed, but in a certain monastery. And there 
having repented of the consequent schism he shed tears, 
grieving not so much for the vexations of imprisonment, 
as the remorse he felt in having incurred the Papal cen- 
sures. These lamentations clothed in rude verses are 
found among his poems. Such was the mournful end of 
lllost ancient Praeneste, the reason of which whether it 
was the inordinate pride of its nobles, or the excessive 
judgment of the Pontiff, we are not sure. IIowcver we 
must not forget to mention that in July of the next year 
all their possessions were restored to the citizens of the 
new city Papale, to be enjoyed as fiefs, and be allowed to 


:seD Loc. Citato ut supra. 


103 Ughell. d<> F.pi
. Prpen., n. 53. 



2G8 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
translllit them to their descendants. And in the course of 
a few days in a Bull he declared them free, Ï111posing on 
them the annual payment of twenty-five livres in token of 
the restoration of their liberty; and he gave them permis- 
sion to draw up particular statutes, restraining them how- 
ever by certain laws the better to keep them in subjec- 
tion. 104 The destruction of their stronghold, Palestrina, 
and the terrible punishment meted out to John, Lord of 
Ceccano, Annabeleschi, an enemy of Boniface and their 
ally, astounded the Colonnas. "Thilst the war was going 
on around Palestrina, John had gone about spreading 
rumors against the Pope in Campania and the maritime 
provinces. 10 r> Having recovered from the humiliations 
into which they had fallen, they began to fear that the 
angry Pontiff after the absolution from censures might 
suhject them to as dire a fate as that of Palestrina. So 
they again arose in rebellion, but being defeated by the 
Pontiff, they fled to other parts. Stephano went to 
France, and Sciarra followed him, after having suffered 
slavery for a time at the hands of corsairs, who captured 
him in the waters of :l\Iarseilles, according to Giovio. 
Philip the Fair received the fugitive Colonnas in defiance 
of Boniface. During their residence in France they nur- 
tured that fire of revenge in their breasts which after- 
wards burst into a flame in Anagni. 

\nother religious Order arose at that time, and was ap- 
proved by Pope Boniface; inasmuch as it expresses the 
eharacter of the age, it may be well to say something of 
its history. In the twelfth century the body of St. 
Anthony Abbot was brought to Vienne in Dauphiny by a 
nohleman of that country named Joselin, to whom the 
Emperor of Constantinople had given that rich present. 
An excessive devotion to the saint gave him rather dis- 
honor than reverence. For Joselin, being a soldier, think- 
ing of a place where the sacred relics might rest, did not 
wiHh to lose the benefits which the possession of them 
l)rought him. Wherever he went to give battle he carried 
the body of St. Anthony along, that it might serve as his 
protector. When he died, he left it as an inheritance with 
other things to a certain Quigo, also given to warlike pur. 
1m Epistle 65, Raynaldus, year 1299 no. 9. 
104 Vide Petrini Mem. Prenest. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 239 
suits, and the pious but irreverent translation of the holy 
body in the midst of battles did not cease. IIowever, Pope 
Urban II lllade him deposit the body in a resting-place. 
It was placed in the Church of La 
Iotte St. Didier, not 
far from ArIes, then a Benedictine priory belonging to the 
Abbey of :l\Iont 
Iajour. Around this priory Guigo began 
to build, at the expense of the faithful who contrilnltf>d 
bountifully, a church and hospital which was s(,I'ved by 
laymen called hospitallers. Afterwards it was given to 
the Benedictines of 
Iont l\Iajour, and thus arose the 
priory of St. Anthony.lo6 
Now it happened that in 1089 a pestilential distemper 
broke out, which like a fire inflamed the legs and fe('t, 
whieh swelling and assuming a ùrown color, mortified and 
inevitably led to a wretched death. lo7 It was called the 
llO]y fire, the infernal, and finally St. Anthony's fire, bf>- 
causp the recent arrival of the body of St. Anthony having 
inspired the victims of this plague with the thought of in- 
voking him, it proved a powerful relief. Public prayers 
and processions were ordered against this scourge. At 
length it pleased God to grant many miraculous cures of 
this dreadful distemper to thosp who implored His mer('y 
through the intercession of St. Anthony, espf>cially before 
his relics. Those afflicted with the Holy Fire flocked to 
the Priory of St. Anthony, where the good lay hospitaller 
received them, converting the building into a hospital, by 
the leave of the monks of the Priory. Great numbers of 
pilgrims repaired to the shrine of St. Anthony, and his 
patronage was implored over the whole kingdom against 
this disease. But the rich oblations were a cause of dis- 
sf>nsion between thf> monks and the hospitallers, and they 
quarrelled over the possession of them. Boniface at- 
tpnùed to this scandal. lIe dismissed the Illonks, l)idding 
them to return to the monastery of Mont 
[ajour; Imt the 
ho
pitallers he allowed to remain. He converted the 
Priory into an Abbey which he hf'stowed on the hospitaller 
hrothcrs, and gave thenl the religious rule of the regular 
canons of St. Augustine. They had alrf>ady taken as the 
mark of their society the letter T, whose nwaning is dis- 
puted. Some said that it meant thp Greek If>tter Tau, thp 
1011 Translatio St. Antonii ap. Bolland. Mense J annarii, pages 153, 154, 17, 
tom. II, lOT Du Cange GlaRs. Lat. Tom III, Ignis, 



2(;0 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIF ACE VIII. 


lllark that the prophet Ezechiel saw on those exempt from 
the divine scourge/ 08 as it were to signify that those con- 
secrated to St. Anthony would be proof against the pesti- 
lence. Others say that it was the image of a crutch, emble- 
lnatic of the nlalady which the saint miraculously cured. 109 
Boniface desired 110 that on their habit the hospitaller 
Augustinians should wear this sign. St. Anthony was 
chosen as a protector against all pestilences, and just as in 
the remotest times the faithful lllade large offerings to 
churches and monasterieR for t1lP Ralvation of the soul 
(pro 'rcdemptione animae), so also at that time did they 
give bountifully to this new Order for the relief of the 
body. For the failure of the public authorities to provide 
against contagion, the limited knowledge of physicians, 
and the miserable kind of life led by a half-civilized peo- 
ple, rendered more formidahle a malady domestic or for- 
eign, and men, despairing of human aid, more eagerly had 
recourse to divine remedies. The Order of St. Anthony by 
this llleans soon became very rich; but it {'ame to a bad 
('nd. On their part the Friars of St. Anthony departed 
from their primitive piety, and besides many impm;;tors 
clothed in their habits went ahout extorting alnls with 
bold pr01nises of spiritual favors, which Dante termed 
paying- money without the coin. H1 
'Vbilst the mind of the reader is forel)oding the ap- 
proach of the stormy period of the Pontificate of Boniface, 
it seems to us, that besides giving an exposition of tbe 
reasons that justified bim in his resistance of the usurpers 
of the property and liberty of the Cburch, it is necessary 
at the same time to give an exposition of facts, which by 
reason of their more sensible power of conviction, nlay 


108 "Onmen autem super quem viùerities signum Tau, ne occidatis " 
Ezechiel 9. 4. 109 See Bollandists. 110 Bullardium Tom. I. 
m "'Which now the dotard holds in such esteem, 
That every counterfeit, who spreads abroad 
The hands of holy promise, finds a throng 
Of credulous fools beneath. St. Anthony 
Fattens with this his swine, and others worse 
Than swine, who diet at his lazy board, 
Paying with unstamp'd metal for their fare." 
Dante's Paradiso, Canto XXIX, Wright's translation. 
See the commentaries of Chevallier de Cesare on this passage, Acts 
of the Academy of Pontaniano, vol. II. fasc. II. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 261 
gently lead the mind of the reader to the truth. The 
Greek Church although separated from the Roman has 
always a place in the history of the Pontiffs, and its ap- 
pearance there is but the manifestation of either the vice 
which devours it and sinks it deeper in death, or of the 
efforts of the Popes to restore it to life by a reunion with 
it. During the years that Boniface occupied the Papal 
Chair we do not find among the Greeks any particular 
event that had relation with the Latins; but we find one 
permanent and general, namely the contrast of the evil 
produced by their Church with the good flowing upon all 
Catholics from the Roman Ohurch. This contrast is a 
Aource of knowledge and instruction and is one of the de- 
signA of Providence which mingles here l)elow, for our 
henefit, truth with error. .And if there be a life of a 
Roman Pontiff, in which the hiRtorian ought to study the 
(tree},: f1hureh to learn facts regarding the Latin Church, 
that one is unquestionahly that of Boniface. For in the 
impetuous exercise of his power in the face of tyrants. 
thiR great Pope shows in strong re1ief the degradation of 
thp priestly dignity at OonRtantinople; after thoRe com- 
bats maintaine{} in defence of ch
il and divine justice, he 
places, RO to speak, the drapery of triumph upon the 
episcopal thrones of the Greek Church. 
The history of the usurpers of the rights of the Church 
always follows that of the protectors. For protection ren- 
dering the benefactors too confident, and the Church less 
jealous of its liberty, it happened that fr0111 heing pro- 
tectpd she b('cOlues enslaved. The favors which Charle- 
magne and his successors bestowed on the noman See pre- 
pal'efl that way for the suhsequent usurpations of the Em- 
perors; and the most cordial welcome given l)y Charles to 
the perRecuted Pope Leo in France was afterwards 
ehangerl into hitterness in the diRputes over tIle investi- 
tureR. The princes entered the houRe to defend it, and 
afterwards refused to leave in order that they might rul(' 
there. Constantine the Great was the firf':t and most 
striking example of what we assert. He openly em hraced 
the persecuted religion of Ohrist, he built churches, he en- 
richefl them and took the clergy under the imperial protec- 
tion, but he intruded himself in the affair of Arius, and 
that pest which should have been confined to the deserts, 



2G2 HISTOR Y OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


was reinstated by him in tht' bOSOlU of the Church. TIle 
usurpation of the Church's power proceeded beyond lneas- 
ure under his successors. The definitions in dogmatic 
questions given by Constance, Yah'l1s, IIeraclius, and 
Zeno would excite lau
ldf>r, were it not that they cau
pd 
grief on account of the destruetioll thf'Y hrought upon 
souls. The Patriarchs of ComÜantino}Jle were nwn of 
wonderful learnin
 and courag(', (am()n
 WllOJll the most 
conspicuous was John Chrysostom who posses
e<1 the 
genius of a Delllosthenes with the heal"Ì of a St. Panl,) 
and they manfuHy resisted the imperial suprelllacy. But 
the resistance did not last long, and the Greek Church, 
enticed at first to syHogize in the Court, reluaineù there 
and aftel'wanls becanle its servant and handmaid. That 
jealousy towanls old Rome, and in the degradation of it 
the desire they had of acquiring for their Byzantium the 
nanle and power of Rome, was the cause of this cowardice 
of the clergy. :U unicipal love unnerved their hearts, and 
blinded their luinds. ThC' latter becaIne blinded in view- 
ing the seat of the sllprellle priesthood of Christ in eternal 
Rome, and the fornler l)eCanle degenerate, by drawing 
strength from the palace of the Emperors. The fact of the 
ROlnan See heing so far a way contributed to deaden in the 
sacerdotal hreasts the love of unity. There was a time 
when the voice of the Pontiffs reached as far as the Greeks, 
and this it was that animated with the spirit of God the 
great Oouncils of Nice, Ephesus, Constantinople and Ohal- 
cedon. But the noise of the Barbarians hursting into 
Italy weakened it, and Byzantine pride, stung to the f}ukk 
by a sacred command from Bonle, finally silenced it en- 
tirely; and the Greek Ohurch, having left the sanctuary 
of God, and being stripped of its priestly trappings, en- 
tt"red the palace of Constantine, and put on the palatine 
livery. Photius and )Iichael Oerula1'Ïus engrafted their 
Church to the Ílnperial trunk, and preferred to be an in- 
crustation and an offshoot of a human and perishable 
power rather than a hranch of the tree of life. 
The sad effects of the imperial influence were soon seen. 
Arianisnl and N estorianism heresies, clothed in the im- 
perial purple, oWf>d their origin to the Greeks. 'Ye do not 
mean to sa
" that there wpre no. hpresies in the Latin 
Church, for heresies even entered in the economy of the di- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIU. 2G3 
vine counspls, as St. Paul says, for the manife
tation of the 
good. But thpsc two errors for the remmn that they were 
I'pepÏ\'c<<l ana caressed in tlw palace in their earl
y period 
of existenep awl he('auHP a Chureh deprived of thp Apos- 
tolic force of Home wa
 powerless to arrest their march, 
they became most terrible and formidable on account of 
their magnitude and their duration. At the Jncre mention 
of these here
;ies the 'Valdenses, the Albigenses and the 
Fratieelli sink into insignificance. TIlCse latter atflicte<.l 
the Latin Chureh, Imt the Arians and Xestorians like pes- 
tilences gnawed and ate into the Greek Chureh, which 
afterwards, altogether vitiated, breathed its last breath in 
the arms of the schismatic Photius. The Greek Church 
J'emained exelnde<<l fr(Hll the providential benefits whieh 
the ROlllan Church sf'attered over the entire ""'est. These 
regions und(>rwent great tl'iLulations, but they were Lorn 
again to a new life. The Orient went to rot under the 
foolish pride of its df'spots, and it encountered that slow 
death that was prepared for it l)y vile Islamism. In the 
".,. est the Latin Church strup:gled with usurping princes; 
but, she was represented hy the Pontiffs who uphelù the 
clergy in their high ministry, slle did not bow tbe head in 
submission, nor did she descend frmn the throne on whieh 
Ooù had placed her, but triumphed over error, and took 
the op}Jortunity to plant the seeds of a new birtb in the 
heart of dvil society. 'Ye have said that the Cburch did 
not bow in snLnlission, but Frederick submitted to Pope 
Alexander III in Venice, and Henry IV asked pardon of 
St. Gregory YII at Canossa. 
This nohle fortitude of the Ohurch, and these subjec- 
tions of kings, proved that the principle of the Papal 
supremacy was not dead in the 'Yest, althougb cmnbated 
by events. Eyen granting that the Byzantine princes had 
been always wicked, but yet if the clergy had always 
strongly resisted them the affairs of the Greek anù Latin 
Churches would bave proceeded nobly on the same way to 
a lllOSt holy term, hut alas! the pride of the princes aUf I 
the l'owardice of the cI('rgy raised that wall of Reparation 
hptwepn tb<:, GJ'eel\: and Latin Ohurrllf's long before the 
tiIup of Photius. .A wonc1f'rfnl ]psson. The "T
st witb tbe 
('I'OSH upon its hreast arose to arms, anel went to meet the 
Ea:-;L !-5hiuiut?' as vet with an aneient liO'ht , to consult it 

 
 
 , 



264 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
anù crave a ray to illuIlline itself, and it is Christian 
Byzantium which interposed itself an enemy to impede 
the union fruitful of so much civilization. 
:Material misfortunes sometimes aroused the Greeks 
from the sleep of error; but yet this awakening occurred 
rather among the Emperors who had worldly possessions 
to lose, than among the clergy who placed all their happi- 
ness in preserving themselves free from all allegiance to 
the Roman See. 'Yhen Charles of Anjou took up arms 
against Byzantium, it was not the clergy who becaIne 
alarmed, no, but the Elnperor l\Iichael Paleologus. 
Through fear of Charles, and with the hope of obtaining 
Papal aid he suddenly aeknowledged his belief in the 
supremacy of the Pope and in thl
 procession of the IToly 
Ghost. Anyone who reads the history of George PacJlY- 
mer 112 will find that Paleologus did not conceal tIle 
reason of his ill-timed helief, but he openly stated it in 
those dhwoul'ses which he delivel'f'd before the Patriarch 
Joseph and the clergy in order to persuade theIll to follow 
his opinions. In the efforts of 3Iichael Paleologus to 
reunite the Greeks with the Latins, in the futility of the 
sanle the Greek Church canle, as if by divine decree, to 
reveal to the Latin her internal wretchedness. The reason 
why the Greeks having first agreed to the union, soon 
afterwards shrank from it, was because their minds wav- 
ered, being tossed about by every wind of doctrine. If 
in the dogmatizing proceedings of the Emperor he made 
use of prisons and exile in order to force his commands, 
it was because liberty was wanting. And if those ab- 
horring a union with ROlne displayed obstinacy, it was be- 
cause they were wanting in unity and for that reason 
the truth. This is how Nicephorus Gregoras,113 who 
lived a little after the times of which Wf> speak, and 
although he was a Greek, tells mournfully the state of his 
Church: " In the remotest times the Ohurch abounded in 
"learned doctors, who on various days and in different 
"places of Constantinople were wont to expound some 
"the Psalms of David, others the Epistles of the great 
" Paul, and others the Gospels of the Saviour. Then an 
"the priests in turn preached the divine word in the 
112 Ristoriae Bizantinae Script. Tom. XIII, lib. V. 
113 Rist. Byzant. Script., tom. XX, par. 1, pag. 93, V and XI. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 2ft:; 
"bou
es, and in different quarters of the city; in the 
" courts and in the parish churches. In human life there 
"was something of the divine, that i
 to 
my, thp h'up 
"manner of apprehending religion, and a certain path- 
"way to virtue, or rather a certain irrigation from the 
"great and heavenly spring, which watered the souls 
"of the hearers, and gathered then1 together, and pre- 
"pared them for better things. But in the course of 
"time all these things have disappeared. In our days 
" every holy custom is lost, being subn1crged as it were in 
" the deep sea. Hence a like contagion infe
ting the other 
"churches, the souls of all Christendom in these days 
"find themsehyes, as it were, in a desert plain without a 
" pathway and without water, And to such a degree of 
"shamefulness bave things arrived, that for a small obo- 
"Ius one may hear thp rattling of Jnost horriLle oaths, 
" whieh the hand of the writpr dare not record. For the 
" salutary light of religion and reason baving disappeared, 
"all is confusion. 3Iany being fallen into a .hrutish 
"stupidity, there is no one who can arrive at an under- 
" standing of what is useful 01' how piety is distinguished 
"from impiety." Such is the sad state to which the 
Greek Church had come. This state of affairs was not the 
result of human f)>ailty, nor of those vices which always 
are plotting against the life of the spouse of f1hrist, hut 
came aùout hecause the priestly spirit had died in the 
dergy; that is to say from the Jack of a barrier to these 
vices. For the episcopate estahlished by God to govern 
his Church, is charged not only to provide it with a life- 
giving pasture, ùut also to protect it from death, which 
certainly occurs when it is deprived of its liberty. 
For this rpason Boniface at the door of the Church 
refused an pntrance to those who desired to plot again8t 
its life, anf} if through the imperfections of human nature 
anything is to be censured in his holy ministry, yet he 
should he commended and honored for having preserved 
a II Catholicism from tho
e evils which shamefully dis- 
graced the Greek Church. 



BOOK V. 


SUl\Il\IARY. 


1300--1303. 


How the Papacy had r{'sisted tIle abuses of force and law by the faith of 
the people.-This latter having languished, the Pontificate of Boniface 
hecomes difIicult.-He sees a new civilization born in Italy at the foot 
of his throne.-He wishes to sanctify it by faith.-He institutes the 
Jubilee.-He first proclaims it.-Immense number of pilgrims at Romp. 
-Great offerings.-Giotto, and the works confided to him by Boniface. 
-The singular embassy sent to him from Florence.-The impulse 
which the Jubilee gave to Italian minds.-The Tartars or Mongols 
send envoys to Boniface, to ask aid against the Turks.-His fruitless 
efforts to arOuse a Crusade.-\Vith the end of the Crusades the Otto- 
man Empire arose.-Efforts of Boniface against Sicily.-His letter to 
Charles n.-Disturbances in Florence.-The 'White and Black Guelphs, 
-Unfruitful legation of Cardinal d' Acquasparta.-Boniface calls 
Charles of Valois into Italy.--.Dante, Ambassador to Rome.-Civil dis- 
sensions in Florence.-Dino Compagni.-Charles of Valois enters 

'lorence.-Instead of pacifying it, he arouses dissensions.-Boniface 
wishes to remedy the mischief of the Frenchman, by sending Cardinal 
d' Acquasparta to Florence, but in vain.-The evils of Florence reach 
their height under Charles of Valois.-The exile of Dante.-He be- 
comes a Ghibelline, and creates a new epic poem.-Dante and Boniface. 
-Charles of Valois instead of waging war, makes an agreement with 
Frederick of Sicily.-'The treaty concluded by him.-Rejected at first 
by Boniface, he afterwards approved it.-Moral conditions of Philip 
the Fair and Boniface at the time of their rupture.-Why Boniface 
according to the ancient tradition of the Holy See loved France.- 
Quarrels between the Archbishop and the Viscount of N arbonne.- 
Boniface takes sides with the prelate.-He wishes to recover to the 
Church the country of Melguevil.-He dispatches the bishop of Pami- 
ers as legate to Philip.-Philip fabricates charges against him and im- 
prisons him.-Parliament of Senlis.-Its message to Boniface.-His 
reply to it.-The Bull "Ausculta Fili," and the summoning of a synod 
at Rome.-Insolence of Peter Flotte, and the false letters which he 
fabricated.-,James Norman as Papal Legate brings that Dull to 
}i'rance.-It is burned by Philip.-Parliament in the Church of Notre- 
Dame of Paris.-The discourse of Philip in the mouth of Flotte.- 
Faint-heartedness of the French prelatps.-Letter SPDt by the Par- 
266 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


Of'- 
.-,)l 


liament to the Pope and Cardinals.-Consistory in Rome, and the dis- 
course of Cardinal De Murro, and then that of Bonifací'.-.Än ob- 
servation on the indirect power of the Pope over the states of Princes. 
-Egidio Colonna.-The doctrine of the English and Spanish churches 
concerning the sacred immunities.-Synod held by Boniface.-The Bull 
.. Unum Sanctam."-Another observation on the power of the l)ope and 
the appeals to the Councils.- Efforts of Boniface to maintain peace 
with Philip.-Disturhances in Hungary oYer the succession to the 
throne.-Boniface protects the Minor Carobert, and sends a Legate to 
Hungary.-His letters to the Legate.-Other letters to \Venceslaus 
King of Bohemia.-He is reconciled with Albert of Austria, and ac- 
knowledges him King of the Romans. 


IN narrating the cyents that happened under the Pon- 
tificate of Boniface VIII at thc lJep:inl1ing of the four- 
tef'nth century, we rejoice to say that thc Papal throne 
was occupicd hy this Illan, who rcviled by many, cannot 
hut be admired by all as the last support of that magni- 
ficent cidl Pontificate, at a timc when, haying created a 
pure and nohle civilization in the heart of Italy, misun- 
derstood and calumniated by its own chlIdren, it retired 
weary and sad to repose in the holy and inviolable re- 
cesses of religion to which it gave form. "Then the 
Papac
T, called upon to sit in judgment on the human race, 
to consider and dispense the rights of kings and people, 
had given the decision which strongly and sweetly should 
have Lrought men together in friendly relations by the 
honds of justicf'; whpn it had consecrated on the altar of 
Ood that liberty which, Ly freeing llllman society, per- 
nlittf'd man to seek for the good, then the adult genera- 
tions, in their fail' youth, advanced admirably on the way 
of the beautiful and thf' good. The Roman Papacy had 
to f'IlCountf'r many difficulties froIll thf' fall of the empire 
of AlIg'ustns up to this time. It was its duty and its wish 
to prpsPITe and incrcase thc principle of life in human 
soeiety, hy dirf'cting it so as not to allow it to rplapse into 
hal'hal'ism, which is the principle of death; and for that 
l'('ason it had triumphantly fought the twofold enemy of 
that liff', namply tllP despotism of law and the dcspotisIll 
of force. The fornler was a difficult fight, and the othcr 
was supN'human. he('ausp th<> Papacy found itself face to 
fa('e with a despotism compl('te in mattpl' and form. That 
1'0\\'('1' was wondf'rful wbich softenf'd tll(' llf'arts of thf' 

aYag(> trihes which overran Europe; and that power was 



268 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
assuredly divine which built up as a wall the Jaw of God 
in opposition to the force which called itself law. And 
for that reason the holy rights of the Church, her immuni- 
ties and liberty were the forInal expression of the law of 
God, which prescribed a limit to the right of princes; if 
this limit did not exist, that right would be injurious to 
God, as being emulous of His power; and would be fatal 
to men, as being the destroyer of the law, which protects 
them. 'Ye speak not of men; but of that supreme medium, 
the Papacy, which divine providence made use of in 
order to make human life less unhappy. 'Yherefore if at 
times the heaùs that wore the Papal mitres seemed to be 
clouded with worldly thoughts; if the hands that held the 
scales of justice seemed weak and trembling; and if the 
eyes of the mind seemed turned towards worldly objects, 
yet the person as Pontiff always sought the end to which 
the finger of God pointed, invested with and conduded by 
his power. We do not mean to say that at the beginning 
of the year 1300 the external enemy of civil society, bar- 
barism, and the internal, the abuse of public rights, had 
disappeared or were harmless. On the one hand Islamism 
in the Ea
t threatened from without the civilization of 
Europe; on the other hand the terrible difficulty of con- 
ciliating order and liberty harassed in a bloody manner 
the democracies, and was already slowly tormenting peo- 
ple ruled by absolute monarchs. The Roman Papacy con- 
tinued the war against these two enemies, and will con- 
tinue as long as the religion of Christ will be the bene- 
factor of men, but not with as much force as at first, owing- 
to the want of means, by which it aroused the people and 
led them on to this double combat, naIlle]y, by the ardor 
of their faith. By means of this Pope Urban II aroused 
the 'Vest to meet and repel the barbarism of the children 
of :l\Iahomet; and by which Gregory YII kept the imperial 
power within bounds. 
\.fter the beginning of the XIVth 
century, the Church defended dvilization against the 
above mentioned adversaries, not by the spontaneous de- 
votion of the people, but at times by using the interests 
of the princes and the people, at other times by ÏInmedi- 
ately enlarging her power. Urban aroused the people as 
a whole by reason of the equality of their faith and devo- 
tion to hi
 throne, Pius Y incited the individual prin
es 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 269 
through the inequality of their interests. Gregory VII 
and Innocent resisted the imperial tyranny by the faith of 
the people; Pius VII by the immediate power of the 
Papacy, which is absolute and omnipotent like God him- 
self who establish
d it. It is for that reason that the 
former of these Pontiffs obtained more abundant results 
and appeared less merely human than the latter. 
Boniface found himself at the head of Christianity pre- 
cisely at that time when the powerful means of faith was 
losing its force; his duty by reason of being Pontiff, was 
to combat with human means the two enelllies of the 
young civilization, to even oppo:-:e his own bOSOlll to them; 
that is why he appeared a nIan, and his adversari('s dis- 
played so much fury and bitterness. However, if he had 
the ill-fortune of being obliged to make the Pontificate 
aflvance in the same way, but by different means, he had, 
on the other l}and, the remarkable good fortune of being 
destined by Heaven to see and welcome to his arms, so to 
speak, the holy and true civilization which the Pontifi- 
cate had conceiv('d fronl the time of Augustus to this 
ppoch. This was the civilization which the Pontificate 
bad animated and vivified, not by the corrupt spirit of the 
Cæsars, but by the virginal purity of the Church. He 
saw, in this weB-beloved and charming Italy, a nursery 
of gooò plants, in this Italy fructified hy tb(' sweat of the 
PopeK, the Latin genius awaken as out of a long sl('ep, 
and the fine arts arise about hin1, as a festal crown; 
he saw that our soul could represent in the arts of thought 
and fancy the hriHiant forms with which God himself 
had clothed reI igion. 
o whilst he was calling to arms to 
oppose a barrier to Islamisnl in the East; and from the 
height of the Vatican stronghold he was hurling thunder- 
bolts against usurpers, he saw developing around him a 
band of men, who in the greatness of their genius seemeò 
superhuman; and who within the shadow of the Papal 
chair, were opening the age, upon the threshold of whith 
they had been placed, to a new light, which was to shine 
from the summit of the Alps and diffuse itself through- 
out the world. Dante, Giotto, Blessed Angelico, 
Ial'co 
Polo, Flavius Gioja, and others, an Italians, all crowned 
and resplendent with t]I(' aureola of religion, were the 
gloJ'ions fat11ers of the ddlization of whi<:h we are to-day 



270 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
so py.oud. Dante created a new epic, which is after thp 
Inanncr of neithe'l" HOllier nor Virgil, inasmuch as it is 
a1togetller spiritual in nature and altogether divine. For 
his a II powerful imagination taking wing from the eternal 
foundations of good anù evil, of reward and punishment, 
arrested its flight only in the infinite region of the immor- 
tality of the soul, which is the essential dogma of the true 
religion; anù the sublime poet so confesses this in verse, 
that the claim will last as long as remains the idea of the 
true and the beautiful. Giotto and Fra Angelico, and aU 
of thpir serapùic school, as if no longer conscious of the 
matpl'ial pnvelope of this huynan Inind, infused into the 
art of painting a ray tru
y of Paradise, mystic and holy 
like the virgins and saintR they represented. And that 
knowledge of Rpiritual beauty they did not receive fronl 
t he ancient Greeks, nor from the Byzantines, but from 
the Cburch alone. Dante and Giotto are crude in external 
fOl'ms, but divine in soul; their poetry and painting with- 
out form because of the innocent youthfulness of the fine 
arts, exhale the odor anù life of the maternal milk which 
they drank at the breast of 1\10ther Church. Those voy- 
:If{es whil'h establish communications and relations 
among men, wIdth open ways and outlets for human 
thong]}t, that it may not become stagnant, but may in- 
el"e'ase the nlutnal contact in order that there may be an 
uniform diIIn:-;ion of goofln
ss in the social moral body, 
hegan to be frequent in this age, and religion pointed out 
the \Yay, and encouraged and animated the first discoy- 
('reI'S of new lanùs, "not by oak nor triple bronze'," as 
llol'aee says, but hy charity. The daring :l\1arco Polo and 
t he missionaries "'ÙOIn the Hmuan Church sent to distant 
amI almost unknown countries in this century, taught 
posterity that this base world is aJtogpther a thing of 
man, wllÏth he can travprse and measure by his ste'ps; and 
their tea<.:hing and example begot Columbus, the donor of 
a ncw world, )loreover these wonders were wrought in 
our Italy still haras
ed by domestic wars. It secmcd that 
irascibility of spirit nourished the flame of genius. A 
great lesson resulted frOll} this fact, namely, that eVe'n 
from the vices of an active and progressive people some I 
good can come, but never from those of poltroons and 
idlers. 
I 
, 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 271 


The fourteenth century ùawned; and if the great soul 
of Boniface rejoiced at the brilliant progress of the gen- 
erations issuing from infancy, it felt ah;o a deep pain at 
the sight of the decline among the nations of that faith, 
which in ages past haù been the source of such deep re- 
spect for the Papacy. Princely encroachments on the 
rights of the Church had taught him how weak in their 
opinion and hence in that of the people, bad grown the 
power of ecclesiastical thunderbolts. He saw daily how 
princes and people who but lately had laid their com- 
plaints before the Holy See as a tribunal recognized by 
all, remained nlore and nlore aloof; he saw the Papal de- 
cision replaced by that of the people, who, having escaped 
their tutor, wanted to act for themselves. The )Iagna 
Charta in England, the States-General in France, the 
Courts of Aragon were proofs that the nations knew how 
to construct lmlwarks, and make use of them to check 
tht' power::; threatening to degenerate into tyrannies. That 
the Pope was pleased with and applauded these noble 
effort
, we cannot doubt; but at the sallle time it was im- 
pOf'
ible for Boniface not to fore
ee that, in case of col- 
]iHion between the two parties, the fight would he long, and 
the victory of one over the other would result in tyranny 
or anarchy. Therefore Boniface, although admiring the 
mOYf'IlH'nt, put no hope:-; in it and sought to call baek the 
lninds of men to the principJf's of faith, in order that the 
l'IHle nations after having laid aside the trappings of 
youth, should yet preserve a respect for )lother Church, 
and not drspif'e bel' old and tried wisdom. .And so 
he instituted the "Jubiler," as a last means to unite 
(luring a few days the chilùren to their mother, IToly 
Church, that dose to her bOSOlll, they woult! fecI the nIa- 
ternal warmth, and naturaHy their filial affr{'tion woulel 
rf'turn, and by love for her they would be conducted to 
peace and ju
tice. 
It serllls to us tlutt tIle efforts of certaiu "Titers wrre 
vain and fruitIf'f'
, who rudt>avore<l to show that tlH> in- 
Rtitution of the Juhilee antedated the time of Boniface in 
tlle Church, as if he, ill inf'tituting it, did sOllletùing either 

mpt'rstiiious or what ,,'as not authorizrd hy prpvious 
Papal authority. But the g}'anting of {'(:ntenary indulg- 
ences to those visiting the great Ba
ilicas at a certain 



272 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
time, was not an act that exceeùed the Papal authority, 
nor was it superstitious, and for this reason to Boniface 
all credit and glory must he given for this pious ana 
nlagnificent institution, ".bieh can ùe said to he the no- 
blest act he performed in the supreme priesthood. He did 
not invent illflulg-ene
s, for if the immensity of the merits 
of Christ, and the power of the Keys in the Pontiffs be 
true, th('n are indulgenceR most true and as old as the 
('huI'eh heI'
e1f; but the distrihution of these merits 
solemnly administered for the full remission of the tem- 
pOI'al punishnlent at the beginning of each century of 
thoRe who would visit with faith the mystical rock of the 
Church of God, was a solemn and most holy thought that 
was conceived solely in the mind of Boniface. To renew 
hy one's perlSonal pre
ence that charity which runs like a 
ppl'('nnial spring of life frmn the head to the members of 
the Church; to honor by universal hon1age the tomb of 
the A posUes. the chief founders of the Church; to call the 
nations to the tmnbs of the mar(vrs, that the Inenlory of 
ihPRe heroes might invigorate faith; and finally in order 
ihat the {'hipf Shepher(l of every ag-e amid
t the joy of 
pardon might embrace his flock in the bowels of Christ, 
this was the wonderful purpose, that God suggested to 
this Pope in instituting the Juhilee. However Boniface 
did not wish to )'(']y on his own judgment alone in this 
mattpr. He ol'dererl Cal'flinal Stf'phaneschi,t .who has left 
in prose and verse an account of this Jubilee, to search 
1 he old writings, to see if he could find any vestige of 
those centenary indulgenceR in past ages, and he found 
nothing else but the antiquity of the pilgrimages to the 
t0111b of the Apostles (and the pilgrims were called 
Romei), and the indulgences that were granted the pil- 
grims. Therefore at a meeting of the Cardinals he pre- 
sented the new project, to have their advice, and they all 
applauded the holy and heautiful thought. On the feast 
of the Chair of St. Peter in the Vatican Basilica filled by 
a large nnI1titude of the faithful, Boniface ascended the 
pulpit, which was rø;;plendent with gold, and adorned 
with festive drapery of silk. He preached the Jubilee to 
the people, and exl1iLited to the view of the astonished 
multitude the writing lwaring the Papal Reals which pro- 
1 James Card. de Jubilee c. 1. 



r-- - -- --- - 


'" 


...... 


\, 


",\. - 


IIU
 IFACE \ II[ I'HO("J..-\DII
G TIlE ,InlII,FE, 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 273 
claimed the precious pardon. Boniface made known to 
those of that time anù to posterity, that from time im- 
nlemorial it '" as a faithful tradition, that all those visit- 
ing the Roman Basilita of the Prince of the Apostles 
gained bountiful forgiveness of their sins and indulg- 
ences; and that he by reason of his office, anxious for and 
attentive to the spiritual salvation of everyone, held valifl 
that pardon and those indulgence
 and confirmN1 and ap- 
proved them by Apostolic authority, and strengthened 
them by the force of that document, in order that the 
honor paid to the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul would 
henceforth be increased, the pious visits to their Basilicas 
would be more frequent, and as a result the faithful would 
feel consoled by a greater abundance of piety. So trust- 
ing in the mercy of God and the merits of the Holy 
Apostles, with the advice of the Cardinals and from the 
fullness of his power he was pleased to grant the most 
bountiful indulgences to all those who, penitent and con- 
fessed in that year, and as well in the heginning of every 
century, would undertake with all reverence to visit those 
Basilicas. In order to obtain these indulgences the in- 
habitants of Rome were obliged to continue their pious 
visits for thirty days while those of the country and the 
pilgrims were allowed to make thf\m in fifteen days. The 
treasury of the indulgences was closed only against those 
in rebellion, chief among whom were Frederick and his 
Sicilian abettors, and the Colonn2.s. For, as the monk 
J ohn Ros
i, 3 remarks "they were to be deprived of the 
" clenlency of him, whose majesty they despised." 4 
The religious excitement which tIle publication of the 
Papal decree produced throughout Europe was extraordi- 
nary. As if the indulg-ences promisf\d hy Boniface to 
those coming to Rome were to he the last, an immense 
multitude of the faithful, regardless of sex or age and 
undeterred hy the distance, flocked to the Eternal City 
so that it was filled to overflowing. Those who were physi- 
cally unable to come were brought thither. Cardinal 
Stepaneschi relates the incident of an old Savoyard peas- 
ant, a man over one hundred years of age, who did not 
wish to die without the spiritual consolation of these in- 
IJames Card. de Jubilee c. 3. aYit. Bonif. cap. X[, page 

l. 
· Vide Doc. D, 



274 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


dnlgences, and made his sons convey him to Rome. 'hlore- 
over 
esides the citizens of ROlne there were counted two 
hundred thousand pilgrims continuously throughout the 
entire year, besides those who were on the way coming or 
returning. In the beginning the throng of people was so 
great and so impetuous, that many lost their lives by 
suffocation. A remedy was thought of, which Stephan- 
esC'hi 5 says was eyen insufficient, namely a breach was 
made in the walls, in order to facilitate the entrance and 
departure of the immense nluItitude collected within and 
without the walls of the city. 
But if the throng of visitors was marvellous. no less 
wonderful was the skill of Boniface in providing that 
there would be no scarcity of food for both nlen and 
hea
ts. It was nothing 
hort of a luiracle as Baronius 
narrates, that the sanctity of these days was not disturbed 
hy any disorder in that vast multitude, since it could 
ea
ily happen hoth fronl the imnwnse crowd, and the first 
meeting of so Illany people differing in language and 
('u
toms. 6 
If the Pope had been more than g-enerous in spiritual 
indulgences, the faithful were not behind in their dona- 
tions to the Basilicas. Yentura, an eye-witness, declares 
that day and night he had seen clerics with rakes in hand, 
gathering the nloney which poured in at the foot of the 
altar of the Apostle. By the light of that vein of gold the 
eyes of many historians were so blinded as to believe tllat 
Boniface had opened the fountain of indulgences in order 
to drink copiously at the stream of pious offerings. They 
accused him of being' greedy after money, and capable of 
confounding heavenly and earthly things in order to 0 b- 
tain it. But Yïllani, Compagni and other Ghibel1ine 
writers, eyewitnesses of these facts, when they saw the 
cleriC's collf>cting the 11loney, they saw as wf>II two hundred 
thommnd human beings lw
ides the aninIal
, in the cir- 
cuit of TIOlne, being- fed, anrl having an abundanC'e of fooil 
which was provided hy the Pontiff. '""'hat did he do with 


Ii" !Sam ut intra et extra moenia compacta multitudo aggarebatur, eo 
amplius quo magis in dies erat processum. Pluresque multitudine op- 
pressi deinde remedium, etsi haud penitus sufficiens, salubre appositura 
facta in moenibus aIta, qno pcregril1antibus compendiosioT pateret via 
inter monumentum Romuli ac vetustum portum." e Raynaldus 7. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 275 
the offerings which they placed at the foot of the altars 
but spend it on these people '? These offerings did not losp 
anything by this; being ble

('d by tlw virtue of the sacri- 
fice, they returned for the relief of thm
e necp
siti('s for 
which God created gold and silver in the bow.els of the 
earth. 1 
"Y e are of the opinion that ûf the money collected dur- 
ing the J u hi1ee which was useù by Boniface to increase 
the patrhnony and the pOlnp of divine worship in the 
Ba
ilicas,8 that which he used in embellishing them with 
paintings by Giotto was thp most pleasing and aeceptable 
to God and lnen. He esteemed highly this singular genius, 
who as Lanzi well says,9 was the Raphael of painting in 
the beginning of its renai
sance. Yasari who wrote his 
life, gives us to unrlerstand that Giotto was first Ntllpd 
to ROlne by Benedict IX to decorate St. Peter's rhurch. 10 
But this is one of the many errors of that biographer. 
Benedict IX assumed the Pontificate in the eleventh cen- 
tury (1033), which was very far remote from the time of 
Giotto. And even .if we would substitute in the writings 
of Yasari XI for the IX, we could not a(hnit that Bene- 
(lict XI had arranged with that artist to execute many 
paintings. For that Pope occupied the Papal Chair only 
eight months and spventeen days, and the times were so 
stormy and trouhlesome that there was no thought given 
to painting. It is true that Boniface, who proclaimed the 
Juhi1pe, was portrayed by Giotto, and the pai.nting stiU 
exists in the Lateran Basilica, which work could not have 
been ordered except by that Pope. ll And since this paint- 
ing was but the relic of the many others which he executed 
in the vestibule of the Lateran Basilica, it is fair to con- 
clude, that all those works which Ya
ari says were per- 
formed at the solicitation of Benedict XI, should be attri- 
lmterl rather to Pope Boniface. 
It is probahle that Giotto arrived in Rome during the 
year of the Jubilee which brought so many there. In this 
city he wa
 aCflllainted with Oderic of Gubbio, a famous 
painter of miniatures, who had heen call('d by the Pope 
, See note E. 
8 Card. James of St. George. De Jubilaeo Anno, chap. IX. 
"Hist. of Painting. Florentine School first epoch. 
10 D' 
\gincourt, tom. 4. part II. 11 D' Agincourt, idem. 



276 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
to embeHish lnany books of the Palace, as Vasari narrates, 
and which in his time had been going to ruin. The Jubilee 
being ended, Boniface wished to preserve the nlemory of 
it by means of a painting. He had himself portrayed be- 
tween two attendants, while a third one read frOln an un- 
folded parchment the faluous Bun of Institution. All 
these figures were placed above the pulpit, which was 
handsomely adorned with drapery, I)earing the Gaetani 
coat of arms. The Pope is depicted clothed in the ponti- 
fical robes and wearing- the tiara on his hearl, his head 
inclined a little towards the reader, and his right hand 
raised in the act of blessing. Giotto also executed in 
mosaic in the vestibule of St. Peter's the mystic bark of 
the Church in a great storm, with the Apostles working 
to save it. Yasari nlarveHed at the skill which the painter 
displayed in assembling' those pieces of glass, so as to 
surpass in effect that which he could have done with the 
bru
h, especially in the swelling of the sail which in the 
lights and shadows was done with surprising cleverness. ' 
Lanzi laments the ill-advised restoration of this mosaic, 
after which nothing rf'mained of the original save the 
lllemory. The Pontiff had employed Giotto in other 
works, namely the histories of the Old and New Testa- 
ments, which the artist painted round about St. Ppter's. 
In the time of Yasari SOlne of them had already been re- 
stored, or rather destroyed, while others had been remon>d 
when the walls were rebuilt. How many sins has Italy 
committed against those who had raised her to a throne 
as Queen of the arts! 
The exam pIe of the Pontiff served as an incentive to 
others in Rome to make use of the good services of Giotto. 
Among these must be noted those miniatures of Cardinal 
Stephaneschi. He engaged this painter to enrich with 
miniatures his books of the Life of St. George, and to 
decorate with frescoes the church bearing that saint's 
nanle. 
From pious things we now pass to public affairs. Flor- 
ence at the end of the thirteenth century was in a most 
flourishing condition, and enjoyed domestic peace, which 
encouraged men of talent in cultivating the fine arts, and 
at that time she began the erection of those most beauti- 
ful monuments, for which after Rome there was no other 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


Q-- 
-. . 


Italian city that could equal her in the splendor and ele- 
gance of monuments of art, and which entitled her to ùe 
called the Italian Athens. It was during that time that 
there arose that 
anctuary of true Italian splendor, Santa 
Croce, the Church of S. 
Iaria del Fiore, tJle palace of 
the Priors, and the fine walls which still surround t]l(
 
city. The people had become tired of dmuestic turmoihl. 
At first that ardent tribune Giano Bella had aroused tlIp 
people against the nohles, then the nobles exerted thenl- 
selves to drive him out of the country, and finally they 
quieted down, the Guelphs ùecon1Ïng so strong, that tliP 
GhibeUines were entirely overwhelmed. This predomi- 
nance of the Guelphs was derived not only frOll1 factional 
strength but from a certain, as it were, natural tendcl1cy 
which the city possesserl of regulating itself accor(1ing to 
popular and Guelphish forms. Florence then being alto- 
getber Guelph, as soon as the Jubilee was proclainled, 
wished to give evidence to Boniface of the love shp bore 
the Roman See. She sent numerous and splendid em- 
hassies, which inasmuch as they intended to represent the 
Guelph Cities close to the Papal See, whose throne is 
above the royal and imperial thrones, were compo
ed of 
various personages, each one of which was to represent 
some ruling potentate of thosp times. Thus Verlnulio 
Alfano went as an envoy of the Emperor of the ""est; 
Simon Rossi, for the Emperor of the East; 
[usdatto 
Franzese for the King of France; U golin de Cerchi for 
the King of England; Hornero Frighinello for the King 
of Bohemia; Guicciardo Bastaro for the Khan of Tartary; 
:Mano )Iiamano for the King of Apulia; Bernard Vayo 
for the King of Sicily; Beneviente Folco for the Grand 
l\Iaster of the Knights of TIhodes; Lupo Uberti for the 
republic of Pisa; Sino Diotisalvi for Gerard Verano, lorll 
of Carnerino; and Benedict N erli for the lorùs of Rcala, 
Verona, and Padua. Pallas Strozzi represented Florence. 
This emba:ssy truly poetical in conception, lacked nothing 
to make it appear marvel10us in outward splendor. It 
was accompanied by fully five hundred knights Wl10 in the 
richest of rohes, and in the various costumes portrayed 
the different people and princes they intendf'd to repre- 
sent. It is surprising that Yallani and Compagni make 
no mention of this singular embassy, nor would we have 



278 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
touched upon it, were it not that Rossi, a conscientious 
writer, had corroborated two Florentine writers. 12 We 
are not certain of the n10nth in which this emhassy was 
sent, whether before or after the unfortunate dissensions 
betwef'n the Cerchi and Donati in Florence, and the Can- 
('('IUeri in Pistoja. For if it occurred aftf'rwards, we 
would say that pprhaps unaer thf' appearance of a solemn 
nl:1nifestation of homage wl1Ïeh Florence paiù to the Pope, 
it was tIlf' work of the Guelph party which still governed 
tht' city, whence Boniface lllight enùeavor to reconcile the 
pal'tif's, as we shall soon see was done through the means 
of another special embassy. 
Among those who hastened to avail then1selves of the 
Papal influlgencf's were n1any .listing-uished bishops and 
princes, either under the garb of pilgrin1s, or openly in 
their official d1'ess. 13 A1nong these was Charles :\Iartel, 
f'ldest son of Charles tht' Lame of Naples. His nlother 
was :\Iary, sister of Ladislaus, King of I1un
ary, and as 
such up to that time he bore the title of I(ing of Hungary, 
and contested with Andrew III for the possessions of that 
kingdom. He was of Papal creation, being aided by 
Nkholas IV and Celestine V to ascend the throne, and 
now he set out for ROIl1e because Boniface made the way 
c1f':1r for him to succeed to his paternal throne of Naples, 
and assured his son Carobert of the Hungarian throne. 
ITe saw the Juhilee, hut he did not see the fulfilment of 
his desires. In the following year he lllet with a pre- 
1uature death in Naples. Bis brother Robert, greedy for 
powpr, was suspected of poisoning him. 14 But so good 
and honest of heart was Robert that this infmnous charge 
was douhtless unfounded. 
The people derived at once son1e l)enefit from the Jubi- 
lee. It is certain that in this year the minds of people 
being engaged with the thought of the Papal indulgences, 
thf'Y were restrained from giving vent to any animosity. 
.And Italy especially derived hnmense benefit from the 
vhÜt which so many made to the city of most wonflerful 


12 Peter CalzoJari. De Vir. illust. Florentiae--PauJ. Minus. De Nobil. 
Flor. Cap. de Flor. eloqu. Claris ap. Rossi, Life of Boniface, chap. XI, 
pages 121, 122. 
13 Summonte lib. 3. clmp. 2. 1t Trithemius Chron. Hirsaug. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 279 


nlClllories. The Latin lnontunents, though damaged l)y 
the barùarians anù much nlore so by the brutal fury of the 
inl1abitants, were not all demolislwd anf! upon these was 
puthroned a thought of civil greatness, which appealing 
powerfully still to lofty n1Ïnds, encouraged them to nohle 
deeds. The Capitol, the Flavian .\.mphitheatre, the tri- 
umphal arehes, the Palace of the Cæ
.;ars, the t('n1ples in 
their Inajesty and beauty of form brought hack the minel 
to the time when Rome, a wearied COn(]lWrOr of the worhl, 
softened the fierce warlike spirit by a cultivation of the 
fine arts and a love for learning, with which she wi
lll'd 
to share that throne, upon which she sat as nlistress of tlw 
world. Foreigners marvelled, the Italians felt themsplvps 
Latins, and that blood which was noman warming up in 
them, they aspired to Roman greatness. Florence alone 
will ever ùe a living witness of those nohle efforts which 
began through the nleans of that holy pilgrimage. John 
Villani had left beautiful stories of Floren
e, whidl he 
wrote as soon as he returned frOll1 ROlne, where l1{' had 
gone to gain the indulgences. Rome inspired him: " Find- 
" iug myself by that blessed pilgrÌIllage in the holy city of 
" Rome; seeing her grand monuments of antiquity; and 
" reading the history aud the great deeds of the HomallH 
"told by Virgil and Sallust. . . . . . . . , I have adopted 
"their style and form, although their unworthy ùisciplp 
" I am incapable of works so beautiful as theirs." 15 Rut 
Rome with all her great monuments of paganism would 
have been only a cold corpse were it not that the n10ral 
magnificence of the Christian Pontificate had given life 
to the material virtue of the Cæsal's which had dh.d with 
them. For this they who felt great ideas rising within 
then1, op('ned at once the heart to those chaste emotions of 
religion, after the manner of the Florentines who hy dvil 
viI-tue, by daring deeds, and by words of 111agllificence haa 
emulate<l pagan Rome anò now in (','cry instance p1'ov('d 
themselves chilflrpn of Catholic Ronw. Dantc, it 
wems 
without doubt, was prf'sent at the JuùileeY' In that 
U John Villani, L. 8, chap. 3G. 
11 "So, o'er the bridge, the cOß('ourRe to convey, 
"\Vhieh flocks, the year of Jubilee, to Rome, 
"Means are devised to form a double way,- 
"That on the one side, all may keep ill front 



280 HISTORY OF POPE BONIF ACE VIII. 
solemn Papal pardon; in that judgment of Boniface, 
which refused the spiritual favors to those in contuma- 
cious rebellion against the Church; in that meeting of the 
universal Christian people; in that wonderful display 
which the Roman Pontificate made of its greatnf'ss, we 
would surmise that Dante conceived and fashioned tht
 
su LUme idea of the Divina Comnledia. Catholic RonH' 
spoke to his heart and there awakened religious inspira- 
tion, by which, leaving the wilderness of vice, he wa
 
moved to contemplate and sing of lIell, Furgatory ana 
Paradisp. Pagan Home spoke to his luind, and gavp hin1 
as a guide on his journey the poet Virgil; and that fancy 
whieh is the offspring only of Italy, joined together the 
mind and heart so strongly and lovingly, that Papal 
Home also had her Virgil. 'Yhile Boniface was dispen:o::- 
ing spiritual indulgences, and thereby strongly arousing 
the Italians to great works, he was attentively guarding 
the Church, both as a congregation of the faithful, and as 
the sovereign provider for the civil order. As we ob- 
served previously, the new and rising civilization was 
thl'C'atened by an external and internal enemy. The first 
was the power of the Turks, and the latter was the un- 
bridled power of princes, and the rebelIion of the people 
which the rulers could not check. Boniface opposed both. 
He set about to remedy the evil of the Turks. In Asia 
along the banks of the river Silinga there dwelt a savage 
people called Tartars or :\Iongolians. Spondano narrates 
lllany things about their origin,17 which anyone can read 
in the authors which he cites. It is sufficient for us to 
l,:now that they were of a most fierce nature, but on the 
other hand they had not been spoiled by the effeminac
" 
of cities and the sensual indulgences of the l\Iahometall 
religion. At first they had not known the great Prophet, 
and practised a religion of their own; but afterwards they 
were incorporated into the great family of Islamism. 
PossE'ssing a lively imagination like every Oriental peoplE', 
through their ignorance they could be led to the perforn1- 
ance of great deeds by a man shrewd and ambitious, who 
knew how to make use of this pliaLle people by the lan- 


"The castle, to St. Peter's as they throng,- 
"All on the other, journey to the :Mount."-Dante Infer. XVIII 
Wright's Translation. 17 Ann. 1202 no. X. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 2Rl 
guage of the supernatural. Such a man precisely was 
Temudhsin Genghis-Khan, a man very brave and of un- 
measured ambition, who knew how to subdue the 
Iongo- 
Hans and lead them on to brilliant victories. These were 
continued by their descendants, who threatened Europe in 
the XIIIth century with new incursions and barha1"Ïtie
. 
But Heaven would not allow the old wounds made by the 
ancient Barbarians to be reopened by new savage inva- 
sions. For after having devasted Hungary, and intiIlli- 
dated Berlin, they turned back into Asia. By the sword 
they became masters of Bagdad, Aleppo, Damascus, and 
even pushed on as far as Palestine. This people, so power- 
ful as to resist the power of the 
lohammedans, awakened 
the attention of the Roman Pontiffs, and they used every 
means to convert them to the true faith, so as afterwards 
to get them to do what the Crusaders could not and would 
not do-conquer the Turks. Up to this time these Bar- 
barians never entered the minds of the Pontiffs, except 
to be considered and repelled as Turks. In fact Innocent 
IV wrote a constitution to repress their fury.Is Alexan- 
der IV took care to convoke councils against the Tartars, 
as for instance in Paris/ 9 in Ravenna,20 in London 21 and 
elsewhere. Urban IV left nothing untried to arouse a 
cru
ade against them. Clement IV was compelled to drive 
them out of Hungary. But finally the Tartars learned by 
the experience of the Turks that power which the Pope 
possessed over Christendom, and the great benefit to them 
whieh a friendship with the Christians would be, in over- 
coming the Turkish power with which they were contend- 
ing. So a certain Abaka, King of the Oriental Tartars, 
was the first to send ambassadors to the Roman See, seek- 
ing an alliance. Nicholas III accorded them a Inost joy- 
ful welcome, and was assured by them that Abaka offered 
to unite all his forces with those of the Christians against 
the Saracens; also that the uncle of King Abaka, by nanw 
called Quolibey, Great Khan of all the Tartars, was 
already a Christian, and he asked that missionaries be 
sent to convert his subjects to the faith of Christ. Nicho- 


u" Christianae religionis cultum." la Nangius. Life of St. Louis. 
20 Rossi. History of Ravenna. L. 6. 
21 Matthew of Westminster, year 1261. 



282 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
las III wrote letters, which 'Yadding rclates,22 to both 
Ahaka and Quo1iùey, fun of affection and congratulation; 
and he sent five experienced friars of St. Francis for the 
conversion of the Tartars. 23 From that time afterwards 
the Popes never ceased, and especially Nicholas IV, to 
RPnd oftf'll friars to keep alive thf' faith, which was spread 
widely alnong that barùarous people. The Great Khan 
and the other tribal chiefs sent frequent en1 bassies to 
l'ptaill the Papal benevolence. The Register of the letters 
of Nicholas IV records lllany directed to the chiefs of that 
people. 24 This conversion of the Tartars to the Christian 
religion would have assisted greatly the affairs of the 
IIoly Land, if the Christian Princes had been lnindful of 
the Holy Sepulchre, and had sent liberators of it, who 
would have found in the Tartars a most powerful support. 
And just in the Pontificate of Boniface there was a most 
striking proof of this. In the course of the year 1300 
Ca!ssano, Great Khan of the Tartars, having united his 
forces with those of the King of ...\rmenia. led this numer- 
ous army against the Sultan of Egypt, in order to take 
fl'om him Palestine. He met him in battle near the city 
of Emesa, defeated hhn, and drove him back into Egypt,25 
He wished to advance further, but having received tlll
 
nf'WS that a certain relative of his was invading Persia, 
he withdrew from his conquest, leaving a portion of his 
army in Syria, cOlnmanding that when the Christians 
arrived from the "V\T est, this region should he left under 
their sway. He believed firn11y in their coming, and had 
sent anlbassadors to the Pontiff and the King of France, 
in order that they might avail themselves of this favorable 
opportunity for relieving the Christians in the Levant. 
It is beyond doubt that Boniface rejoiced oyer this eln- 
bassy and the good tidings it brought. The thought of 
conquering the Holy I.Jand although it was not so popular 
as in the time of the Council of Clermont, yet was pre- 
dominant in the n1inds of the Pontiffs, and especially was 


22 Annal Min. tom. v. page 36 and following. 
28 Ab. page 40 and following. 
24 2 April 1288 "Habet" to Queen Tultani.-13 July, 1299, to CobIa reat 
Cham. "Gaudeamus ":-2 Aug., 1291, "Exultat" cor. See Aython Rist. 
of the East. chap. 45.-Maria Sanuto lib. 8. part. 13, 8 Chap. 
2
 Raython, chap. 41.-Villani, lib. 8, chap. 35.-Ptolerny of Lucca Ann, 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 283 


it ascendant in the mind of Boniface. He slunmoned a 
Council in Ronle; he touched upon the question of the 
Holy Land; he besought its delivery, and dispatched leg- 
ates to the Christian princes to gather 1110ney and men for 
the holy cause. France had always heen the first to heed 
thf' cry for the IIoly 'Yar, and was the special defender of 
the Christian cause in the East. So Boniface bearing in 
mind the favorable opportunity which Syria in Christian 
hands offered, immediately and especially turned to Philip 
the Fair, asking for the tithes of the churches that were 
collected in his kingdom for the affairs of the Holy Land, 
and exhorting hilll not to be behind St. Louis, who was a 
lllartyr to this cause. But Philip held Flanders in his 
clutchps, and having renewed the war, to carry it on he 
neede(I nlonpy, and so did not care to hear anything a bout 
Tartars 01' Saracens. lIe refused Boniface the tithes that 
wel'f' coHpcted. And since he foresaw that thf'se injustices 
would f'xasperate the redoubtahle mind of Boniface, as if 
to hold him in deference not only did he extend hospitality 
to the Colonna refugees in his kingdom, but he lavished 
npon thenl puhlic favors and courtesies in order to bring 
disrespect on Boniface and cause him to fear. Thus while 
Boniface entreated Philip to undertake a crusade against 
thp Turks, Philip was making friends with those who were 
fug-ith"es hecause of a Papal crusade against them. There- 
fore they became puffed up with pride, but we shall soon 
FPe how shameful win be their outbreaks. John, Duke of 
Brittany, was the only one who was truly prompt to the 
call of Boniface, and showed hinlse1f ready not only to 
aid, hut also lead an expedition to thp Holy Land. He 
wished to start in June, and had even implored the usual 
indulgences, which Boniface granted profusely to the 
Crusaders. 26 But no one set out. Perhaps the sad news 
from Ryria had then arrived, of how in Cassano's ab- 

('nre the Tartars were driven out by thp treachery of a 
('('rtain Cappldrk, guardian of the city of Damascus, awl 
tll(' affairs of 1 he Christians returned to their forIner safl 
(,OIu1ition. 27 This last chanc.:e of lilwrating the Holy Land 
from the hands of the infidels which the Christians al- 
lowpd to pass, was followed hy the impossibility of arous. 
28 Lib. 6 ep. 2ï8. 27 Raynaldus, 33. 
28 Hayton, History of the East. ('hap, 43. 



28-1 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
ing any more Crusades. The powerful and crafty Osman, 
son of Erdogrul, another conqueror who had extended his 
dominion over the mountain districts of Asia l\Hnor and 
in the valleys of the Taurus, began to make himself for- 
midable by his conquests. The retreat of Cassano, Chief 
of the Tartars, and the imbecility of the Byzantine Em- 
peror opened to this audadous Turk the way to an empire, 
which, for largeness of territory and prolonged existence, 
is unique in history. He made the foundation of it in 
Bithynia, fixing his seat in the city of Prusa in :àlysia at 
the foot of l\It. Olympus. Such was the foundation of the 
terrible Ottoman Empire, and like a wave of the Sl
a which 
from time to time dashes itself against the remains of a 
once grand edifice in ruins on its banks, so it stifled the 
expiring breath of the Grecian power as far as to place 

\Iahon1et lIon the throne of Constantine. I
lamism then 
heing predominant in the East, it began to spread it
 
roots even in the West, and pollute those beautiful shores 
of Europe which look towards Asia. This was the bar- 
harity that threatened all Europe for many centuries, and 
which the Popes checked by the holy wars. This empire 
t-;till exists solely because the division of the spoils could 
never be satisfactorily adjusted by the would-be sharers. 
The Turkish Empire arose, and the civil power of the 
Pontiff
 declined, yet slowly, because the shoulders of 
Boniface were strong enough to support it still. He saw 
himself surrounded by a fickle people, as were the Italian
, 
and he had a presentiment of the struggle that was to 
('IlSUC. Of Florence we shan speak later; let us return to 
the affairs of Sicily. We have seen how she neglected the 
admonitions of Boniface. Philip, Prince of Taranto, 
through a juvenile imprudence was defeated, and taken 
eaptive in the battle of Falconaria, Now this reverse, 
which Charles II, so to speak, went in search of, greatly 
grieved the mind of Boniface, already saddened by thp 

ll(l(len return of James to Aragon, after his victory over 
I"l.pderick at Cape Orlando. The bad faith of James of 
AJ'agon, the weakness of Charles of Anjou, and the con- 
stancy of Frederick and the Sicilians would have de- 
pressed the minds of other men, but not that of Boniface. 
The Papal coffer
 had hppn l'Pplenished by offerings dur- 
ing the ,JulJilec, anù the Guelph party in Italy offered help 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 285 
in money and men; Boniface at the same time saw his 
hopes revived in Charles of Yalois, whom he made his 
champion. Thus encouraged he l'enewed the attempt to 
expel Frederick from Sicily. Frederick had received pow- 
erful assistance from Ghibelline Genoa, and for that rea- 
son Boniface by mighty effol.ts strove to sever their union 
with the Sicilians. He threatened, he stornled, he im- 
plored the aid of James and even of Philip the Fair 
against them,28 but Genoa would not yield. Finally 
whilst two millions of the faithful were joyfully availing 
thenlselves of the Papal indulgences in Rome, these 
Gpnoese were the subjects of most severe chastisement, 
which seemed over severe in the time of sut:h great 
pardon and indulgence. Boniface hurled the solelun ex- 
eOllnllunication against Oberto and Corrado Doria, Cor- 
rado Spinola, and their relations and retainers, and placed 
an interdict oyer the entire territory of Genoa, threaten- 
ing thelll with further penaltie
 upon their estates, if by 
.Ascension Day they did not sever their connection with 
the Sicilians. 29 The Genoese were frightened, and they 
made a treat.y with Charles of Naples. 'fhat weakened 
the force of the opponpnt
, and to inereaf:':c his own Boni- 
face had since January complained loudly against that ill- 
advised expedition of Philip, Prince of Taranto, in a letter 
which he wrote to the Legate Gerard, Bishop of Sabina; 30 
and he filled the minds of Charles and Loria with such 
terror, that they l'Ppaired to Home in person to pacify him. 
In the liveliest manner he explained to Gerard the hope he 
had of seeing this affair come to a happy termination, by 
nwans of the fleet he expectpd from J anles. In fact at the 
same time he had written to James, that he exp{lcted assis- 
tance even from Genoa; that the Knights Templars a1Hl 
those of S1. John, by promises of particular favor
, had 
been induced to wage war in Sicily; that the Guelph 
cities would srud him a choit:e and well-provisioned hody 
of cavalry; finan
r hp recommended hinl to hold himself in 
readiness and to hp fun of hope. 
But whilst ßonifacp was (lnconrap:inp: the T..pgate to 
war, Chal']es appearpd to he inclined to peace. The irn- 
pl'isonmpnt of his son Philip distr('ssrd bim, and he was 
tired of war. FT'(ldpl'Îck knew tllis, and be u!';cfl it to his 
'9 Raynaldus, n. 12, 13. 30 Rayna1òus t
oo, n. to. 



286 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
advantage. He sent him envoys to draw up an agreement, 
hut Loth sides feared Boniface. They would rather treat 
in secret, in order that he luight not thwart their negotia- 
tions. Charles, like a child under the rod of a rigid 
pedagogue, made the treaty, and trembled. But Boniface 
discovPl'ed the plot, and he scolded him severely, both 
because Sicily concerned the Pope more immediately, and 
ùecam
e of Chal'lps' poor judgment. The Pope spoke 
harshly to hiIn: "That he had still present in mind that 
"which Charles was known to have done in the treaty 
"concluded with .James, at the siege of Gapta, without 
" having- consnlted the Papal legates; that he remenlbered 
"also that other treaty, an astonishing monlllnent of 
"prudence and wisdom, which he made with the same 
" .J ames for the liberation of his son; long experience had 
,. taught him that when Charles was left in his affairs a 
"little to himself alone, it led to nothing but disaster. 
"The unfortunate expedition of his son Philip, was a 
" clear l:ase in point. "'here was his prudence, where his 
" respet't for the Church? To nleet in a secret conference 
"on a galley with the legates of the common enemy Fred- 
,. erick, and not allow one word or deed to be kno\vn." 
And he cnaed this severe reLuke by displaying to hinl the 
fetters of excOlnmunication if he persisted in that evil 
course of wishing to act alone and in secret. 31 This lan- 
guag(' addressed to Charles and that used with the Legate 
l'(,Yf'al the nlind of Honiface exasperated hy the condition 
of tIle affairs of Sic-iIy, and at the same time fun of vigor 
to SUrlnOUl1t ohs:tacles. On the 14th of June Loria ob- 
tained a signal -victory over the Sicilian fleet in the waters 
of Ponza; hut hecause little fruit was df'rived from it, and 
hecause the Guplph party in Italy was not prosperous, the 
nlind of Ronifa('e was not jnhilant. hut rather filled with 
great anxiety and a stlHly of mf'ans to meet the situation. 
'Ye ('OI11e now to spf'ak of Tus(>any, hut it is necessary to 
prC'pare the mind with some factI', hecause they are strong 
IDPans of instruction to posterity. 
It is clear the cidl Pontificate entirely rpstef1 in that 
party of the pf'ople, which was Gllf'lph, and for that reason 
the Guelph character was that of the Popes. Nay more, 
31 lb. No. 12 . . . . . . "ex suae fatuitatis impulso in timore 
periculi pouissee."- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 287 


this party never haù any other truly natural head than the 
Pope. The dash of parties far from ùeing harmful, was 
useful to Rome. Friction quickened life; and either los- 
ing or victorious the Guelph party was ever active, and 
the Popes were in need of this. Therefore an idleness too 
prolonged, or a superiority too marked over a rival fac- 
tion was prejudicial, either because there was lacking the 
stimulus to keep them active, or because inactivity was 
pJ'O(luctive of eorruption and schism in the party. 'Yhen 
nllelphi
m had reached that state of division, then it 
could bp surely maintained that the civil Pontificate, feel- 
ing it
p]f dis
olving and shaken in its foundation, would 
al
o have a presentiment of the decline of its power. Boni- 
face was l1estined to have this presentiment, and Florence 
was to inspire him with it. This powerful republic ex- 
perienced all those vicissitudes to which states are sub- 
ject, no matter what may be the form or the solidity of the 
government, or the condition of their citizens; for imper- 
fection involves and penetrates everything here below. 
Power is a divine thing; but its manner and location in 
human socipty is not divine. This indptermination of 
circlllllRtances and the excessive cupidity of Inen engendpr 
rebellions in statt's. These revolutions at times are neces- 
sary, to reveal hUlnan infirmity, and disconcert the confi- 
dence of legislators in the sanctity of laws, as well as that 
of princps, in the empire of force. We have said rebellions 
are nece!';sary, because it is not possible to prevent at 
times wealth or power from ùecon1Ïng centered in one 
party in a state and by stagnation causing moral infirmi- 
ties, much as in thp human body physical maladies are 
cause(l by derangement of humors. In urder to arouse 
and dissipate this sluggish and pestilential nlass, Heaven 
a l1o\ys these l'Íyil revolts, which like storms are not de- 
sirahlc, ,n't they are a nleans which a free Providence em- 
ploys for the common good, In a monarchy they are of 
)':LI'P occurrcncp, but more terrible in chal'arter; on the con- 
trary more frt'qut'nt in a repuhlic, but not so terrihle. 
1"'01' in tlJP former rf>vert'nrp for him, who holds in his 
han(ls tJw f'ntil'c POWPI", rc
trains and rf'tards the fury 
of tlIP pt'ople, hut ronfined for a long timp, it breaks out 
11101'(' fiPI'('ply. J n rppublics civil liberty and the division 
of power render the suùden uprisings less ùifficult ùecause 



288 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
of few obstacles, but also less imposing. Therefore after 
the audacious but yet honest tribune, Giano della Bella, 
had been banished from Florence in 1295, the nobles of 
the city had attained a high degree of power and splendor. 
Peace reigning and commerce, which thrived with that in- 
dustrious people, had greatly increased the wealth of the 
citizens. There were at that time families who by their 
riches and the number of their adherents could have ex- 
ercised the influence which at a later period the 
ledici 
family acquired. Among these families were the Donati 
and the Cerchi. The head of the former was Corso, the 
latter Veri. Their deeds and the origin of their disgrace- 
ful feuds are well told by Com pagni and Villani. It suf- 
fices for us to know well that they displayed towards one 
another hostile feelings, and through envy at times they 
took up arms. 32 Now while these two chieftains, Corso 
and Yeri, to the great scandal of the public were warring 
against each other, there appeared from without another 
cause of dissension and the fire which was 
nkindled in 
Florence assumed frightful proportions. The family of the 
Cancellieri of Pistoja, by the perpetration of a savage and 
most crnel deed, became divided into two factions, called 
the 'Yhites amI the Blacks. As was customary the whole 
city took sides, citizens lost their senses and murdered 
one another. Florence as the h
ad of the Guelph party 
hastened to effect a peace; she assumed the sovereignty 
over Pistoja, and rashly confined the two factions, the 
'Yhites and the Blacks, within the confines of the city's 
walls. This was only adding fuel to the flame that burned 
between the Cerchi and the Donati. The Blacks united 
their interests to those of the Donati, and the 'Vhites to 
those of the Cerchi; and there began in the city a furious 
war, between these two rival factions. Florence was 
Guelph, and for that reason this division was a blow at 
the very heart of Guelphism; and the Ghibelline party 
profited thereby, because the moderate Guelphs were nec- 
essarily obliged to incline towards the Ghibelline party, 
and thus, as Villani narrates, the ""'hites, or that of the 
Cerchi, was the more powerful faction. Hence staunch 
Guelphs were sent to Pope Boniface beseeching him to 
take in hand the unfortunate affairs of Florence, and ad- 
a Raynaldus, year 1300, no. 15. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 2
n 
just them, otherwi
e there would be nothing left of the 
Guelphs save the Inenl0l'Y, on account of the advantage 
which the 'Yhites with the Ghibellines possessed. Boni- 
face was deeply grieved at this news. He restrained their 
animosity, and sought to control their minds, in order to 
reconcile thenl. So he sent for Ved, head of the Cerchi 
and the ""'hites, and by the promise of every spiritual and 
tenlporal favor, he endeavored to persuade this proud 
soul to make peace with the Donati. But stubborn and 
whimsical, he replied, that he was not at war with anyone, 
and he left without complying with the request of the 
Pope. 'Yhen Veri had returned to Florence, the two 
factions, agitated and threatening hitherto, finally came 
to blows, and a bloody civil ,val' ensued. The ""'hites 
were victorious; the Blacks became alarmed and invoked 
the aid of the Pope. 33 
In June of 1300 )Iatthew Acquaspal'ta, Friar )Iinor, 
Cardinal of Porto, a
 Legate of Boniface to the Republic 
arrived unexpectedly in the disturbed city, to pacify it. 34 
Thcir angry feelings were quieted, and their reception of 
him was hearty and becoming. He effected a peace, and 
wished to establish it firmly and with justice to all. IIe 
asked from the Con1mune of Florence the authority to ar- 
range affairs, distributing the offices of the city equally 
between the two parties. But the 'Yhites who po
ses
ec1 
the major part, would not for the sake of peace re1inquish 
any. They rejected the wi
e an(l telnperate advice of the 
Legate with great anger; they refused to obey, and they 

tirl'ed up fresh rage. The Legate discoura
ed and irri- 
tated by the brutal ohstinacy of the 'Yhites, departed 
from Florence, justly leaving it under an interdict. "Then 
he was gone, the factions flew at each other nlOre fiercely, 
(1is
racing' 
heir city by the shedding of fraternal blood.3
 
'Yhen Cardinal Acquasparta was in the Roman Court 
making a report of his unsuccessful e1l1bassy, Boniface 
fOJ'esaw the grave evils produced by these npw factions. 
which, although they were contained within the walls of 
Florence, nevertheless had a nlost injudous effect on the 
entire Guelph, or Papal party. Hecent events in the 
Papal province of ('mbria confirmed this fore
ight of 
Roniface. Frederick, Count of l\[ontefrelto, 
on of Friar 
II Villani, Book VIII. .. Ra
.naldus, 24 Epist. 16, lib. 6. SO! See Doc. G, 




90 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE :VIII. 
Guy; Hubert l\Ialatesta; and Uguccione Faggiula, power. 
ful Ghibellilles,36 ruled in that province. The latter, a 
falllous warrior, exercised there a very great sway, and 
being head of Gubbio, he had expelled all the Guelphs. 
Boniface dispatched Napoleon Orsini, Governor of the 
Duchy of Spoleto, to reinstate them in the city. Orsini 
succeeded in his design, being aided by the Perugians. 
TIe entered the city accompanied by the Guelphs, but the 
victory was disgraced by rapine and murder. Even the 
cities of the Romagna were in COllllllotion, but there was 
no bloodshed. :l\Iatthew Acquasparta, who became in 
October Papal Governor, quelled the riot. 37 
These agitations gave Boniface much to think of, and 
caused him great apprehension. This was further in- 
creased by the clamors which the Blacks made in his court, 
who were magnifying maliciously the injustice of the 
'Vhites, and the reports which they were spreading were 
more dangerous "'l'han the point of the sword/' as Com- 
pagni relates. 38 The Colonna refugees were always caus- 
ing alarm, anù the Blacks were making use of this in order 
to cause Boniface to be suspicious of the assistance which 
the rising Ghibelline party would be to them. This D1adp 
him expedite matters, and execute a project which the 
Pope had contemplated with regard to Charles of Yalois. 
namely to make him a peacemaker in Tuscany.so In that 
good thought Com pagni found hidden a most wicked 
proposition, the suppression of the 'Yhites. Compagni 
was a ,Çhite Guelph. The resolution was taken with the 
advice of Corso Donati himself and the more powerful 
agreement of Geri Spini and his associates, bankers of tlw. 
Pope. 40 It is never good policy to invite a foreigner to 
nleddle in the affairs of onp's country. The despair, the 
impossibility of otherwise obtaining order can alone legi- 
tiInize this appeal. In factions this despair is al ways on 
the side of the vanquished. So the Ghibellines when 
beaten invoked the aid of the German emperors, and the 
Guelphs when oppressed turned to the French. As the 
Pope hinlself appealed to the latter, this circumstance 
rendered the invitation of the Guelphs less dangerous than 
36 Chron. Dino Comp, L. II. 87 Chron. Caesen, S. R. I. T. 14. 
I
 John Villani, Book 8, Chap. 43. Þ Chron. S, R. I. T. IX book VII. 
<10 Chr. S. R. I. T. lib. 11. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 2!>1 
that of the Ghihellines. For the Popc was so powcrful a
 
to make use of the French prince only as an instrument, 
and the authority of the priesthood was sufficient to put 
sense into the head of Charles if he aspired to SUpl'elne 
power. But the Ghibellines, after having invoked the aid 
of a powerful foreigner, were not able to prevent this 
charitable assistance from degenerating into an insolent 
tyranny. Boniface knew this, and no one as much as he 
had the strength to restrain a foreigner who refused to 
obey his orders. But either to reaSSure the great number 
of Italians who thought that the presence of a second 
French prince among them would be unbecoming, or in 
order to induce the French clergy to give him the tithes 
for this expedition, he wanted to justify by weighty 
reasons the coming of Charles, and the levy of the tithes. 
He did this in a letter expressly addressed to the French 
clergy. In it he said that Sicily was still in revolt against 
the Church, and the other ecclesiastical towns were in 
disorder; that Tuscany was so disturbed as to entail all 
Italy; that the Holy Land was clamoring for aid to liber- 
ate it from the hands of the infiùels; that Charles was to 
come as peacemaker into Italy; and afterwards go to lib- 
erate the Christians in the East. 41 Then to induce Charles 
to willingly accept this expedition, besides the grant of 
those tithes, he dazzled his eyes with the charm of empire, 
by insinuating that the imperial throne was vacant. 
)Ieanwhile affairs grew worse; Corsi, always at the side of 
the Pope, kept importuning him to let him see the longed- 
for Charles of Yalois. New Papal legates went to hasten 
the coming of the future peacemaker. The reader need 
not be curiou
 to know if it was a pleasure for Charles to 
conle to Italy; for what foreiç:n prince ever felt it a pain 
to enter this beautiful country? He welcomrd the lrp:ate
 
most cordially, who urged him to n1ake haste. Immedi- 
ately he sounded the trumpets, ordering the bannf'l's to be 
ullfurlNl, and the knights to assemble, and post-haste he 
set out for discordant Italy.42 Charles came with a good 
number of soldiers, and the news of his near arrival differ- 
ently affected various parts of Italy. Florence anù the 
court of Boniface were the places where the minds WPI'C 
Inost agitated. The Blacks at Rome had heen successful 


&1 John VilJani, L. 8, ch, 42. 


43 See Document H. 



292 HISTORY OF POPE BONIF ACE VIII. 
in securing Charles as peacemaker by plying all their de- 
vices, counsel and money. The 'Yhites did not desist from 
working most sedulously in the Roman Court, and frus- 
trating the designs of their adversaries. The 'Yhites sent 
an embassy to Boniface, at the head of which was Dante 
Alighieri. This man, to use the words of that eloquent 
,vriter Boccaccio, was then in the zenith of his fame. The 
heart of this virtuous citizen, whom heaven adorned with 
the highest intelligence, was grieved at seeing his country 
so wickedly divided, and he foresaw the misfortunes which 
always follow in the train of this scourge. By word and 
{leed he strove to soften the anger of the parties and 
pacify them; hut having failed in his purpose, he wanted 
to sever all connections with public affairs, and bid thenl 
an eternal farewell. But the love of his country restrained 
hiIn; and perhaps also being mindful of his own worth he 
('ould not close his heart to the sweetness of glory, whieh 
arises frOlll the virtuous administration of public affairs, 
he concluded to remain, and resolved to follow the party 
of the Whites. 
"Then Florence was certain of the coming of Charles, 
the 'Yhites were startled and feared for their liberty. 
They assembled in council, and decided to send ambassa- 
dors to Boniface, that he might stop the coming of the 
foreigner or retard him, and in any case to inspire him 
with peaceful dispositions towards them. And in that 
assembly Dante being unanimously chosen as head of the 
embassy, he unbecomingly gave utterance to the follow- 
ing: "If I go, who remains? If I remain who will go?" 
At all times such words sound badly from the mouth of 
any nlan, and are detestable in the mouth of a statesman 
in a time of fierce factions. They were displeasing even 
to his friends. 43 The embassy strengthened by that of 
Siena set out; and it was to act quickly, so as to give no 
time to the intrigues of the Blacks. But a certain Ubal- 
dino )lalvolti a Sienese Judge and a member of the em- 
bassy, injured the opportunity of the journey. He stopped 
on the way to demand from the Florentines jurisdiction 
over a castle which he said belonged to him. This delay 
for a private gain damaged that of the community, as the 


<118 History of Pistoja, S. R. I., tom. XI 377 B. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 293 
ambassadors did not arrive in time. When the legates 
arrived in Rome they were admitted into the private 
chambers of the Pope, who when he had them alone said 
to them secretly: "'Yhy are you so stubborn? Humble 
"yourselves before me. I tell you truly that I have no 
" other object in view but your peace. Return at once two 
"of you, and they will have my blessing if they obtain 
"obedience to my will." 44 The secrecy of this conversa- 
tion showed the fear of causing suspicions among the 
Blacks who were in the court. '\Ye know not what the 
terrible Dante said. But it is certain that if Boniface 
could have foreseen those creations that were to be pro- 
duced by the imagination of that ambassador, exiled after- 
wards through the stupidity of Charles of Yalois, and the 
hideousness of the Hell into which the poet was to hurl 
him, we believe that the 'Yhites would have gained their 
cause. For the thrust of a sword is not so agonizing to 
the body, as is to a generous soul the anathema of the 
word which is eternalized by the immortal genius of him 
who utters it. 
The Florentine legates were still in Rome, and in Flor- 
ence the arrival of Charles was awaited. It pleased none 
as citizens, it pleased many as partisans. However, just 
as one trembles when strong and painful remedies are to 
be applied, so hearts were trembling in unhappy Florence. 
I t seemed the presence of the foreigner softened the angry 
minds. :l\Ien of temperate habits and with love for peace 
and their country were chosen for the governnlent of the 
dty, among whom was that charnlÍng character, Dino 
Compagni. These men undertook to distribute the offices 
in cornmon among the factions. The Blacks began to 
make advances towards the ""Yhites, who held the sover- 
eignty, under the leadership of Compagni. But they 
could not revive a fraternal peace, as mutual mistrust and 
suspicion still influenced them, which in factional differ- 
ences ever stifle the breath of good feeling. In fact while 
the one was making advances to the other, and in exterior 
politeness there seemed a hope of peace, in both parties 
minds were timorous and they dared not trust one an- 
other. In these friendly negotiations it must be said that 
the greater frankness and sincerity were displayed by the 
44 Rocc. Life of Dante. 



294 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII, 
party of the '''"hites, who wiHhec1 to sep pC'ace ensue frmll 
thp spontaneous agreement of the citizens, whereas the 
Rlacks desired it through the ever dangerous ministry of 
a foreigner. The ambition of the Blacks overcame the h01y 
affection they had for their unhappy country. The first 
:messengers from Charles appeared in Florence. The do- 
111estic troubles could have been concealed from them, but 
the Blacks spoke openly to them, and extolled to the skies 
Charles who was at hand. Words of servile flattery freely 
fell frOln their lips, a sign of drooping spirits and of a 
hopeless despair. The question whether Charles should be 
welcomed or not was agitated, The opinion of the Blacks 
prevailed, and Charles was welcomed hy an embassy, and 
was even furnished with money to increase his resources. 
Such was the action of the party of the Blacks, but not 
of that model of civic moderation, Dino Com pagni, who, 
in every way the equal of the most virtuous citizen of 
either the Grecian or Roman republics, surpassed them 
all by that nobility of heart which the Christian religion 
alone can instil. If there is a man to whom all Italy owes a 
solemn debt of gratitude, that man is Cmnpagni. IIe wrote 
only the history of Florence; but the events of Florence 
are of such a nature, and are narrated by him in such a 
manner, that they reproduce in outline an image of the 
whole of Italy in every epoch, and they are a source of 
salutary instruction. Statues have been erected to actors 
and dancers, but not a stone has been raised to the mem- 
ory of the Father of Italian history, Dino Compagni. See- 
ing that the efforts to make the Frenchman return to his 
country were hopeless, Compagni would at least have him 
not find the citizens in riot, but peaceful. For there is 
nothing more favorable to tyranny, than the intervention 
of a stranger in tbe affairs of a city that is rent by fac- 
tions and especially of a stranger who feigns honorable 
and peaceful pretexts. He nlade one last effort, which 
would not have failed, if in the heat of civil tumult, nlen 
had been nlen. In the church of St. John he assembled a 
parJiament of many and excellent citizens whom he urged 
in eloquent terms that laying aside all hatred they should 
oppose to the foreign maker of an uncertain peace, a cer- 
tain domestic peace, and they should swear on the baptis- 
mal font that such would be done. 'Ye cannot refrain 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VII1. 29;) 


from quoting his words: "Dear and valiant citizens, you 
"who bave all received llOl,y Baptisnl at this same font, 
"reason forces and constrains you to love one another 
" because you are brothers, and al
o because you possess 
"the noblest city in the world. Among you there has 
" arisen some enmity in the struggle for the offices, which 
"Iny cOlllpanions and I on oath have promised to distrib- 
"ute equally among you. This foreign lord is conling, 
" and it is becoming for us to show him honor. Lay aside 
"your enmities and make peace with one another, in order 
"that he may not find you divided. For the love and 
" benefit of your city pardon and forget all offences and 
"evil desires, and upon this sacred font where you re- 
" ceived holy Baptism, swear to a good and lasting prace, 
"in order that the French prince nlay find the citizens all 
"united." 1\lost touching words coming frOln a very holy 
heart. These very few words, by an ÍIllpressivpness of 
forlll, altogether Italian; by the force of feeling and a cer- 
tain heavenly unction, surpass the many words so loudly 
launched frOlll the height of foreign tribunes. And Oh! 
would that they were engraven on Italian minds! For 
from these alone they would learn how manliness of spirit 
in being a true citizen and a virtuous magistrate is not en- 
gendered by the example of Greeks and ROlnans, but by 
religion which before Rome and Greece knew how to place 
man in society and educate hiIn in virtue. Then they all 
swore; but Illany violated the oath. At this the good 
COlllpagni's heart was deeply grieved, as if his charitable 
expedient had been an added scandal. From him and 
YïJlani it is clear that the Blacks, elated over the arrival 
of Charles, were puffed up exceedingly with pride. 
'Yhile Illind
 were thus agitated in Florence, Charles 
appeared lwfore Boniface in Anagni in September of this 
year, On seeing Charles honorably received by Boniface 
at this tiIne, the reader nlight be inclined to believe that 
Boniface had sanctioned the excesses of the Blacks, so 
nluch deplored by Com pagni. But it must be remembered 
that their excesses were abhorred by Boniface. He in 
truth desired peace, and he well knew that the disorders 
of the Blacks far frOln achieving it only prevented it. Thp 
struggle was Guelph against Guelph, and the Pope as the 
head of Guclphism did not care to be the head of two 



29() HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
bodies, but of one; and for this reason he loved to see har- 
mony existing alllollg the Guelphs, not only as Vicar of 
Christ, but also as a civil potentate. The calling of 
Charles was the fault of the -nThites, who were not inclined 
to make an equal distribution of the offices, by reason of 
which the efforts of Cardinal Acquasparta entirely failed. 
{Tnarmed and feeble he did not succeed in his honest pur- 
pose, so Charles called to attain it by arms. And Boni- 
face, who knew Charles, did not let him come prepared to 
do evil, because five hundred knights (the nunlber of the 
forces which Charles led) would be insufficient for that; 
but only to add strength to the efforts of the Legate. The 
mind of Boniface will appear clearer in the course of this 
narrative. 
[1harles came then to Anaglli to kiss the Pope's foot/ 6 
after having a taste of Italian gold, which the 
Iarquis 

\zzo d'Este presented to him with great honors as hp 
passed through 
Iodena.46 Charles II of Naples also came 
to Allagni, as he placed the greatest hopes in Charles of 
Yalois to recover Sicily. Before going to effpf'Ì a peace ill 
Tuscany, he wished to wage war in that island, longing to 
pass over into Greece, to place himself as Emperor on the 
throne of Byzantium, having married Catherine, daughter 
of Philip, titular EUlperor of Constantinople, and grand- 
daughter of Baldwin, rightful EUlperor. If thp Frpnch 
prince regarded Tuscany already pacified, Sicily recov- 
ered, Greece conquered, and perhaps even the Holy Land 
freed from the infidels, it is not surprising. The titles of 
Viear of the Empire; Prefect of the Roman Church; the 
peacemaker of Tuscany; the jurisdiction which the Pope 
gave him over the Duchy of Spoleto, over the ::\Iarch of 
Ancona, the province of Emilia, and other territory; 48 
the ecclesiastical tithes which he collected plentifully in 
Italy, in Corsica, in Sardinia, in France, in the principal- 
ity of Achaia, in the Duchy of Athens,48 besides the money 
furnished him by the Blacks, were of a nature to inspire 
bim with lofty opinions of himself; but it will be seen how 
he deceived the hopes of his adherents and failed in the 
designs he had himself conceived. Postponing the expedi- 
tion to Sicily until spring, Charles witb his barons set 


46 Dino Compagni. 
"7 Chron. Esten. S. R. I. T. XV. 


<&6 Ptolemy of Lucca in Ann. brev. 
<&8 Raynaldus, year 1301, no. 12. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIF ACE VIII. 297 


out for Florence, which they entered on the 1st of Novem- 
ber, being welcompd with all honor by the citizens. 49 His 
first imprudence was to allow himself to be followed by 
the banished Blacks, who swelled the number of his sol- 
diers to twelve hundred horsemen, and to take up their 
abode in the house of the Frescobaldi, a family belonging 
to the party of the Blacks, and to fortify it. This was not 
a peaceoffering to the opposite party, but a sign of war. 
Therefore the "Thites grew suspicious and the Blacks be- 
came elated. The Priors, and among them Compagni, did 
not desist from that calmness and honesty of counsel 
which should ever attend magistrates in time of great 
crises. They formed a parliament of forty citizens, chosen 
from both parties, to conduct affairs in such calamitous 
times. But the remedy was useless, because 80nle had lost 
energy and others had a criminal intent, and because the 
Blacks wanted the victory to be complete by demanding 
the dismissal of the Priors and the recall of those 
banished. riO 
The imprudence of Charles and the excesses of the 
Blacks came to the knowledge of Boniface, with whom 
still were the ambassadors of the "'hites, among whom 
was Dante. These men remained round about the Pope 
to show him effectively by the irresistible argument of 
facts how harmful Charles was to Florence, and how un- 
just and arrogant were their opponents the Blacks. Boni- 
face charged two <;>f these ambassadors, 
Iaso 
Iinerbetti 
and Corazza, to go and speak to the rulers of Florence 
and such was the power of this communication that the 
latter obeyed on the spot. They wrote to the Pope to send 
them Gentile of 
rontefiore, a Cardinal of I10ly Church, to 
arrange affairs. The obedience which Boniface exacted 
was to put in execution the distribution of the offices, 
which had been requested in vain by the Legate, 
Iatthew 
Acquasparta. ri1 From this it is clear that the work of 
Charles was displeasing to Boniface; neither did he desire 
the ruin of the Whites, nor approve the excesses of the 
Blacks. These latter, having had an inkling of the move- 
ments of their opponents with the Pope, brutally broke out 


G Raynaldus 15 Ep. Book 7, 196. GO Jobn Villani, cbap. 58, Book 8. 
G1 Dino Com pagni. 



298 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
into all kinùs of violence. The Priors reported everything 
to the Pope, and Dante pressed tIle matter vehemently. 
This being told to the Blacks, they destroyed all hope of 
accord. For after they ohtained the desired cOlnmunity 
of the offices, three Priors being chosen from one of the 
parties, and three froln the other, they were not even then 
satisfied. They wanted the ascendency in order to crush 
their opponents. 
They dared to attempt their object because Charles 
actf'd neither as a loyal nor as an honest man. They ex- 
J)ibited publicly the instruments of justice to terrify the 
('yiI-doers, but secretly they circulated money to corrupt 
the ministers of justice itself. Charles was not ignorant 
of these corrupt practices so hostile to the public safety. 
lIe knew their source, because the Blacks made no secret 
of their boast: "We have a sovereign anlongst us. The 
"Pope is our protector. Our adversaries are equipped 
"neither for war nor for peace. They have no money, 
"and the soldiers have not been paid." Their boastings 
were followed by deeds. On the fourth day of N ovemher 
the Blacks armed themselves; Charles took up arms under 
the pretext of restraining criIninals, and the Florentines 
being apprehended, he sent his French soldiers as guards 
over the gates of the sixth district of the city, beyond the 
Al'no. At the head of this guard Charles placed himself 
and hy oath he swore to defend the gate, and hold it at the 
disposal of seigniory of the town. But his oath was a 
wicked perjury. He opened the gates to Gherarduccio 
Buondelmonti with many of those that had been banished, 
and gave the signal for open lawlessness to the Blacks. 
lIe desired the mastery of the city, and he obtained it. 
He swore to keep it in a peaceful condition and yet he 
allowed the turbulent Corso Donati to enter, and swore 
another time that he did not know of his entrance at all, 
and wanted to hang Donati. But he knew it, and allowed 
him to do all that he did, on account of which the city 
was all in a tumult; the 'Vhites betrayed; the Blacks 
unrestrained for the perpetration of every evil deed; the 
Priors dismissed from office, and for some days all rule 
('(.ased. :MeanwhiIe Charles the peacemaker through an 
imhf'('iIe malice, peacefulJy bf'held men murdered, houses 
burnpd, rapine and civil fury. ",'Vith hypocrisy and per- 



HISTORY OF POPE DONIF ACE VIII. 2!}!) 
jury he created new Priors, all of the party of the Blacks, 
and of the worst reputation. 
Boniface was ahsent in body hut in thought he was 
close to this villany which the Peacemaker fostered. 
Dante still in Rome in a certain way too must have shown 
by his silence alone how vain was the hope that was cen- 
tered in Charles of Valois, and yet at the same time he 
must have recalled those peaceful negotiations of Car- 
dinal Acquasparta, which failed of success through the 
obstinacy of his own party, the Whites, who were the 
cause of the coming of Charles. Boniface at once sent 
Cardinal Acquasparta a second time as legate to Flor- 
ence more to remedy the evil of Charles than that of the 
Blacks. For although in the letter in' which he appoints 
tIle Legate, he styles Charles a man tried, good and skil- 
ful in arms, who pntered the province of Tuscany with 
prudence, yet he addressed some words to the Cardinal 
whieh say that Charles was in sore need of counsel and 
prudence in conducting these affairs with moderation and 
tact. 52 
This was an excellent precaution of the Pontiff, but too 
late. The people were too exasperated, and the Blacks too 
puffed up with pride. The Legate, an unarmed peace- 
lllaker, and a sincere seeker of peace, effected some sort 
of an agreement. This, however, was only a particular 
arrangement which was founded on an alliance between 
thp Cerchi, Ademari, Donati and Paggi. This could not 
he lasting while there remained in the city that focus of 
discord, that is to say Charles, around whom all the fury 
of the Blacks assembled. In fact when Acquasparta un- 
dertook to distribute in common the offices, just as he 
found the 'Yhites intractable in the previous year, so at 
this time the Blacks were most inexorahle, and despairin
 
of a remedy, he ended his legation by placing mad Flor- 
ence under an interdict. IIardly had he departed than 
the Blacks more wrathful than before attacked the 
"Thites; and although they did not accon1plish with the as- 
sistance of Charles a general expulsion of their rivals, ypt 
they continupd. an aùominaùle system of confiscations and 
of arhitrary hanishments. 53 This intprdict was placed OY('J' 
FloI'pnce through the incorT'Îgihlp wickedness of [1harles 



 DillO Compagni. 


118 See DUClllllcnt at ellù of work. 



300 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
and the Blacks, so these latter ought to have felt it deeply, 
if indeed this species of men can suffer qualms of con- 
science. After the scandals which he occasioned, Charles 
went to Bonle, and we do not know with what effrontery, 
and why, he presented hinlself before Boniface. "T e are 
certain that he requested nloney, and Boniface replied: 
" That he had placed him in a golden fount." These words 
could not proceed from a tranquil soul, but were the cry 
of a heart indignant at the infidelity of Charles in fulfill- 
ing his mission and at his insatiable avarice. Tyranny 
in governments engenders conspiracies, fornled either by 
the oppressed or the oppressor. The oppressed form them 
to put an end to the evil, the oppressors for greater profli- 
gacy of rule. The former are real to destroy the op- 
pressor, the latter are imaginary to find a means, with an 
appearance of justice, to destroy him who could restrain 
and check the tyranny. Charles and the Blacks in Flor- 
ence certainly did carryon a very bad government and 
made the party of the "Thites groan. 'Ve know not 
whether the conspiracy to murder Charles, which made 
so much comIllotion at that tinle, was real, that is to say, 
the work of the oppressed, or ÎInaginary, that is to say, 
invented by the oppressors, to expel the former with an 
appearance of justice. It is certain that after certain 
nightly and sudden judicial meetings held by Charles im- 
nlediately after he had returned from Ronle, a furious 

torm burst on the heads of the party of the Whites, of 
which more than six hundred had their goods confiscated, 
their property burnt, and the punishment of exile inflicted 
on them, by reason of which "they wandered about the 
world some here and some there suffering from want." 
The crime of the exiles was a conspiracy against the peace- 
maker. Villani tells us that not the -nThites but a wicked 
haron of I.Janguedoc formed the conspiracy, who forged 
letters bearing their seal, in which he disclosed the con- 
spiracy and carried it to Charles. 54 The threads of these 
villanies were hpld by the Blacks. Peter Ferrant, as the 
Baron was called, had woven them. But it cannot be 
alleged that f1harles was ignorant at all of this dark plot 
as to become stupefied at the sight of these letters, as a 


M Villani, L. VIII. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 301 
thing unsuspected; on the contrary, it would be much 
nearer the truth to affirm that he had a full and entire 
knowledge of the treachery of which the poor Cerchi and 
all the 'Yhites were the victims. He had Boniface on his 
side, who called him not only to be a peacemaker in 
Florence, but also and perhaps more especially, to be a 
warrior in Sicily. He pressed him to undertake this last 
expedition, and Charles had to go. But to depart and 
leave the Whites in their own homes in Florence, seemed 
to him to be their restoration. He must then act quickly, 
strike them, and lead them to final destruction. In this 
he was instigated by the Blacks, who approved it, because 
it was of vital importance to them. And just as even the 
wicked love, if not justice itself, at least an appearance 
of it, they imaged conspiracies or provoked them by dark 
treachery, which is the lnore expeditious, and the more 
honest way apparently, to lead to destruction those whom 
they fear, and of keeping an opinion of justice for some 
time on their side. For sonle time, but not forever, be- 
cause history is the faithful revealer of wickedness. At 
this juncture in Florence there thundered forth a voice 
truly sublime, because it came from the depth of an in- 
corrupt heart. Dino Com pagni, than whom a more beauti- 
ful character Florence never had, was bewailing the mis- 
erable spectacle presented by his country, which after 
llaving disclosed her wounds to a stranger, received not 
the remedies that would heal them, but the points of the 
f:word which opened them. Compagni revealed to poster- 
ity the infamy of the wretched citizens who were to blame 
for these misfortunes. The reader will pardon us if we 
enrich this narrative with a wealth of Grecian, but yet 
Christian, eloquence. "0, wicked citizens, procurators of 
"the destruction of your city, whither have you led it! 
".And 
TOU, Amanto di Rota Beccanugi, disloyal citizen, 
"wickedly you turned to the Priors and endeavored by' 
"tbe threats to get the ke
rs trom them: see what your 
" ma1ice has brought on us. 0 Donato Alberti. where is 
"your arrogance, you who hid yourself in a vile kitchen 
" of Kuto )Iarignolli! And you, Nuto, provost and spnior 
" from your quarter of the city, becam;;e of animosity of 
"tb(> Guelph party you have allowl'd yonrRPlf to he dp- 
h ceived ! 0 Sir Ged Spini, Hatiate your soul; eradicate 



302 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


"the Cerchi, in order that you may live safe from the 
" price of your perfidy! 0 Sir Lapo Saltarelli, menacer 
"and oppressor of the rulers, who did not serve you in 
":your disputes, where did you arm yourself? In the 
"Pulci palace, by renlaining in concealment? 0 Sir 
"Berto Fresco baldi, since you showed such friendship 
"for the Cerchi, and made yourself a mediator in their 
"quarrels, for borrowing from them twelve thousand 
"florins, where have you 111erited from them? How do 
"you now appear in the eyes of the public? 0 Sir l\Ian- 
"eUo Scali, who desired to be considered so great and 
"feared, believing yourself at all thnes a lord, why did 
"you take up arms? "There is your following? Where 
" are your barbed horses? You have allowed yourself to 
"submit to those who in comparison with you were con- 
" sidered as nothing. 0 you commoners, who longed for 
"the offices, and appropriated the honors and occupied 
" the palaces of the rulers, where is your defence? It is 
"in falsehoods, at one time pron1ising, at another dis- 
" selubJing; condemning your friends and praising your 
" {'nemies for the sole purpose of self-preservation. There- 
" fore weep over us, and over your city." Such were the 
sf'utiments of Com pagni within Florence. Dante fronl 
without gave utterance to another kind of eloquence, 
that of an exile. Like those Numidians, who while flee- 
ing turned round to shoot their arrows, he discharged at 
Charles of Valois a most poisonous dart. He revealed the 
plebeian origin of the Capets, and then puts on the lips 
of Hugh Capet himself scorching words ag'ainst his 
descendant Charles of Valois. 55 .And having taken a fare- 
well look at Florence, rather than weep, in the same man- 
npr tllat Compagni was comforted, he cOlnposes his feel- 
ing's with a smile of bitter sarcasm, whose eloquencf' has 
ll('ver been equalled; he flails with the lash of cutting 
df'rision his ungrateful, hut infortunate, country.56 
55 Leonard Aretino says that he saw these letters a century later in tlw 
Florentine archives, and found them assuredly forgeries. See Balbo, Life 
of Dante. 
M "Hugh Capet -was the name I had on earth: 
The I)hilips and the Louis, -who bore sway 
In France of late, from me derive their birth: 
::\Iy f::ire at Paris plied the hutcher's trade." 
He strikes Charles of .'...lljOU: 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII 


30:3 


The hanishnlf'ut of the 'Yhitc Gnelphs filled all Italy 
with compassion. Therp bad been other banishments, but 
this one Reempd lllorc ('ruel becau
e it was effected by a 
foreign prince, the numher was greater, and because vir- 
tuous and upright citizens were the sufferers. These men 
were dispersed, roaming here and there throughout Italy, 
stripped of all their property, driven from that swpetest 
of nests their native place, and their wives and children 
were torn from their bosoms. They cursed Charles the 
peacemaker, and Boniface who called him, for their ruin. 

\.s their misfortunes fined all hearts with pity, Charles 
and Boniface were condenlned to execration. They haa 
hppn so prescribed and so brutaIly expelled by the Black 
Guplphs that they broke the barriers which separated 
thelll from the Ghihplline party, and wishing to no longer 
share the Guelph TIanle with the Blacks they became all 
GhibeIline. Dante Alighieri was among these, 
o more a 
Guelph, but a GhibeIline; upon him Charles of Valois 

pemed to inflict an his rigor, because the poet had op- 
posed his coming most strenuously of all the Florentines, 
and had denounced his acts in the Papal court, where he 
sought a renleely. lIe was involved not only in the general 
condemnation by the fart of the conspiracy, but in two 
other preceding condemnations. 57 lie departed from 


"Charles entered Italy, nnd for amends, 
"A victim of young Conradin made, 
" And sent to Heaven Aquinas for amends." 
Then he lashes Charles of Valois: 
"I see from France, ere many years have flown, 
Another Charles Italy's peace invade, 
Thereby to make his Tace more fully known. 
rnarmed he goes, save with that lance alone 
Which Judas tilted with: and thus he bears 
:;;0, that e'en now is Florence overthrown. 
I.and shall he reap not; but of shame and guilt 
The heavier load, as, light the heart he swears, 
While blood around him is profusely spilt." 
He puts all this in the mouth of Hugh Capet. 
Purge Canto XX V. 70. (Wright's Translation). 
.7 Aftf'r having spoken of a II Italy, he turns to Florence: 
"::\fy Florence! wl'll contented may'st thou he 
With this digre;;sion--thee it toucheth not; 
Thanks to the pl'ople wllO advise thf'e. 

Iany have justiee in their hearts; but long 



304: 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE ;VIII. 


Florence leaving behind his wife and children and a snlall 
portion of his dowry saved by him during the civil dis- 
turbances, and which scantily supported his dear ones. 
He took away with him none of those things which are 
wont ordinarily to assist men in misfortune. But the 
brilliant renown of his virtue and genius preceded him, 
and opened the courts of Princes, and what is more gave 
him an entrance into the hearts of those whom Heaven 
destined to taste the pleasure of pitying the misfortunes of 
]l1ost distinguished mortals. In his worn-out and battered 
llody he bore enclosed a mind sÍJnilar to that of Horner 
and 'Tirgil; and in his heart a wrath, and such a wrath 
as in lnen of genius enkindles the fever of creation. 
117zen he had eaten bitterly the brrad of strangers, 'when 
he ascended and descended the stairs of others, his ter- 
rible iInagination, being fertilized hy grief, conceived and 
brought forth that grand Epic poem, The Divine Comedy. 

\ristotle would also have called it an Epic poem, if he 
had known that those cantos did not contain the unity 
of one fact or of one people, but the unity of the whole 
)Iiddle Ages, united by the warmth of its faith and 
strength of its passions; divided by those noisy jolts of 
virtue and vice, and by the hostility of the elements, which 
war again
t each other, they would strike each other mor- 
taHy, and from this the edifice of modern eÏvilization would 
finally arisp. Homer sang of Greece, Virgil of Rome, but 
Dante's 
ong was of thf' whole world. 
Being made most famous l}y t]1OS(' cantos, not only in 
Delay, through fear, the meditated shot;- 
Thy people have it on the very tongue. 
Many refuse the burdens of the state;- 
Thy people answer with officious }laste 
Ere they are asked: 'I bow me to the weight.' 
Then be thou joyful, for good cause hast thou;- 
Thou rich! Thou peaceful! thou with wisdom graced! 
That truth I speak, the facts themselves avow."- 
Then rendering the veil of bitter irony, he concludes: 
"If thou rememberest well, and art not blind, 
Thou'lt see thyself like one distraught with pain, 
\Yho on her bed of down, no rest can find, 
But, ever turning, seeks relief in vain." 
Purg. canto VI V. 127, etc. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 305 
the estimation of the Ghibelline party, but of all Italy, 
he anathematized his enemips, and especially those who 
had brought about his misfortunes, and an minds centered 
around him. Those who shared with him the sentence 
of exile, or factional opinion, coincided with him by re- 
venge, and others by pity. For fully nine times he poured 
forth his vengeance on Boniface. He begins by plunging 
hhll into the dark hole of those guilty of simony. He 
snarls at him as a traitor; as a "oU; as unmindful of the 
Holy Land; as an usurper of the See of St. Peter, and we 
know not what else, in such a manner that like Hector 
dragged many times around the walls of Troy, so was 
Boniface in the Poem of Dante cruelly dragged through 
the Inferno by the angry inlagination of Dante. Losing 
all reverence for the power of the KeJ
s, he entprs furiously 
the Papal Court. He strips the ministers of their mantles, 
he reveals their. human failings and now strikes thenl 
with a scourge, then galls them by the poison of a most 
terrible sarcasm. Then passing blindly frOln men to 
things, he irreverently aims a ùlow at that Pontificate 
which in his calm moments he had respected, and had 
loved in the peaceful times when he was a Guelph. The 
suspicion of the sinloniacal intrusion of Boniface into the 
Papacy proc1aimed from such a powerful source, bore a 
semblance of truth; the severe sentence passed on the 
Colonnas appeared a manifest injustice; the calling of 
Charles appeared a horrible betrayal of the Guelph party. 
So the friends of Pope Celestine, the Colonnas, the exiled 
-n?hite Guelphs, and all the Ghibellines formed but one 
hody closely united, and sworn enemies of Boniface. As 
if the phalanx was not sufficiently strong, Philip the Fah' 
came to join it and offer it the support of arms and the 
royal power. .An these arose in a threatening attitude, 
not to judge hut to condemn Boniface. Quick anf] flireful 
YPllgeanf'p wa
 visited on the ma!Jnanimous sÜz1Zpr, which 
11(> woule] be ohlig-p(l to hear for a long tinIe, for the op- 
pl'oùl'ium which Philip the Fair had cast on him was too 
g-ripvous, the soul of Dante which guarded this oppro- 
hrium was too nohle to easily remove it. 
Dante, and by tbis IUlnle we expre
s all Ghiùplline 
Italy, strengthened h:,? the part;v of the 'Yhite Guelpb
, wa
 
a man who was all bloody by thp uutI'age
 of the Blacks; 



306 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
and as one wounded ù
r the sword does not rush against 
thp steel, but against the arm that brandished it, so he 
consigned to Hell the Black Guelphs his enemies, and 
venting his hatred for Charles, he stopped to become more 
furious against Boniface as the primar
y cau
e of his mis- 
fortunes. Boniface had called and urged Charles to come. 
fIe did not dismiss hinl when he founù him unsuited for 
making peace, and did not prevent his wicked deeds 
against the White Guelphs. Such were the faults of 
Boniface in the eyes of Dante. But judgment could not 
be passed fairly by one who was banished from his coun- 
try, despoiled of his possessions, and above all excluded 
from taking part in public affairs, which were adminis- 
tered by a foreigner and an opposing faction. llis grief 
was too intense, and his wrath too impetuous. This im- 
possihility of judging calmly and dispassionately was 
shared not only l}y those who suffered but also by those 
wllo synlpatbized with them. For this reaHOll the cry that 
was rai
ed against Boniface in Italy was almost universal. 
And chroniclers could not free thenlselves from the 
dominion of an opinion so general and so nlanÏfest. That 
b1ind vengeance which was frequently practised in Italy 
during the disturhances hetween the Guelphs and Ghibel- 
lines was exercised by Ghibelline writers against Boni- 
face. And if it is folly to think that with justice and 
calm minds men animated by factional hatred could com- 
mit murder, now in ambush and now in open places, there 
is less reason to believe that a faction so cruelly hurt, 
could justly and with a dispassionate spirit have esti- 
mated the character of this pontiff. 'Ye must recognize 
in Dante and all the enemies of Boniface this human 
nature which in the heat of passion loses that calmness 
and clearnes
 of reason which is so necessary in judging 
men, and especially those who by reason of the power they 
('xercispd are found enclosed in the mysterious reasons of 
state. Thp
e reasons are not apprehendecl hy anyone but 
in thp course of centuries, anò for that rea
on only after a 
long tÏIne nwn's real characters are laid bare to history. 
Boniface did not wish to 
ee the Guelphs òivifled, InIt 
UJlitpd and in ppace. He wi
hed to rpcover Ricily, a tipf 
of the Church, which Jw could not renonnce. The calling- 
of Charles was decided on in desperation of all other 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 307 


means, as we have sepJl, to ac('omp1i
h these two ends. 
",Yhile Charles deeeh'cd his hopes in Florence, he could not 
check him, because he had become too powerful by rea:-;on 
of the party of the Blaeks, of WhOlll hp had bpC'n maae 
head. He wished, however, to do so, and his win was 
manifC'st in his acquiescing to the propositions of the 
",Yhites, in the second legation of Cardinal Acquasparta, 
and in the interdict which he placed over Florence. Boni- 
face afterwards could not expel him and send him back 
to France, because he would have ruined the affairs of 
SiciJy, which he was sure could be restored by the power 
of Charles; and he would have lost a11 the money collected 
from the tithps, and from the pious offerings of the faith- 
ful with which he harl enriched the French prince to 
carryon the war in Sicily, and afterwards in the Holy 
Land, The affair of the Holy Land in the beginning of 
the XIV century, if less grave than in the previous cen- 
tury, was stiIl of importance and sel'iousl
r engaged the 
attention of tlle public. )Ioreover, precisely at this thne 
the quarrel with Philip the Fair began, and the solution 
of the difficulty still appeared possible. To embitter 
Charlrs was the same as to precipitate matters to that 
sad state which followed later, and which at that time 
there was hope of arresting. 
Here now is Boniface obliged by these reasons to re- 
main an idle spectator of the wickedness of Charles and 
the Blacks, and the unjust calamities of the ",Yhites. So 
inactive was hr, that he appeared to thp 'Yhites not only 
abetting but even urging on Charles to their ruin, as Vil- 
lani thougllt. 58 But could he rejoice in the dissolution of 
tllP Glwlph party? Could he be glad of the increase of the 
Ohih('1]Í11Ps? Coulrl he he contented with that portion of 
the Glwlphs, called the Blacks? Could h(' continup to 
trust in Charles urging him on to such wiekedne
s, whkh 
would mal.:e llim hateful to all Italy, and an unseemly 
captain of the ("hurch in Sicily? "Te do not hesitate to 
acknowledge that Boniface was the material cause, so to 

ppak, of the injustices of the Blacks, but not the moral 
cause. For the moral cause was entirely the "
hitps whpn 
they rebelled against Cardinal Acquasparta in his first 


118 Ba lbo. Life of Dante. 



308 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
1egation, and the Blacks in the second legation. Dante 
himself sheds a bright light on this fact, when suspending 
for a moment his personal hatred, when recovering his 
right reason he turns to Italy and vigorously charges the 
misfortune under which she groaned to the discord among 
hf'r own chiJdr('n, which Boniface evidently strongly 
1abored to stifle in the interest both of others and of him- 
self. But the reasons which we lun"e submitted to the 
reader could nòt be apprehended by a man who was car- 
ried away hy the whirlwind of a party so arrogant as the 
Ghibelline was, and which was cruelly harassed by the 
opposite party to which the Pontiff belonged. 'fherefore 
as later observers of those facts, let us pity in Dante this 
human nature, which, mortally provoked by anger flies 
into a passion and rejects all explanations; let us pity 
these irreverences towards the Yicar of Christ. Such feel. 
ings did not proceed from the philosophical wantonness 
of our epoch, nor from corruption of heart, but from the 
blind passion of anger, which transfornled him into an- 
other man, But Dante was always the same, Italian and 
thoroughly Catholic, In fact afterwards hardly had it 
been made known to him that Boniface had been insulted 
by two ruffians, N ogaret and Sciarra Colonna, than the 
fever which made him delirious, immediately disappeared; 
there 1eaped up in his heart a fountain of filial love, which 
extingui
hed within him the desire of revenge, and con- 
ducted him to the feet of that Boniface, whom he no 
]onger abhorred as simoniacal and criminal, but whom he 
revered not only as Yicar of Christ, but as Christ him- 
self.!'í9 And in this action we find in Dante the mode1 of 
every Italian who is truly Catholic. N ow if it be allowed 
a historian to ascenù to the sphere of poetry, we will ven- 
turf' to assert that, if these two noble souls, Boniface and 
Dante, had met pure and freed from the imperfections of 
this lower nature, there is no doubt that they would have 
leen unit('d in the kiss of pardon, and the Papal Keys 
would have been placed as a sign of peace on the volumes 
of the Divina Commedia. This latter was the fruitful 
source of Italian civilization. The Keys did not bring 
forth the civil independence for the attainment of which 


1511 Villani. Book 8, Chap. 48. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


30!) 


Gregory VII and Innocent III exert
d themselves. God 
rendered thenl barren in civil effects, in order to punish 
tho
p who would have enjo.yed thenl. ßo 
After having spoken of the wrath of poets, we now come 
to that of princes. But it is necessary that we first dis- 
miss that ineffective peacemaker, Charles of Valois. The 
spring having set in, the tiIne appointed for the expedi- 
tion to Sicily, Charles departed from Florence, loaded 
with infamy, and set out for Xaples. After the defeat 
of the army of the King of 
aples at Fakoneria, the affail'
 
of war had taken a di
advantageous turn for the Church. 
Hence Robert, Duke of Calabria, was forced to a
k a truce 
from Frederick, which being obtained strengthened the 
latter's sovereignty over Sicily. But they were to re- 
sume tIleir arms with great ardor; for the new conditions 
in which Boniface had placed affairs promised great vic- 
tories. Genoa, vpry powerful in her navy, was finally de- 
tached from Frederick, and joined her forces to those of 
Charles. In the previous summer a treaty of peace was 
signed between Xaples and this republic, which being 
eminent1y commercial in its interests, suffered consider- 
ably from its hostile relations with Xaples. For tbe ports 
of Apulia and Calabria being closed against her, she 
could not draw away the wheat and other grain with 
which they al\ounded, for tIle sake of trading, and she 
lost thereby immen
e profits. So among the conditions 
introduced into the treaty in favor of Genoa, the princi- 
pal were the fJ'
e entry into and departure from the ports 
of ...\pulia and Calabria of the Genoese ship
, the privilpge 
of exporting the cereals, and the assimilation of that re- 
public to every other friendly and al1ied State in the 
amount of custom duties. 61 The aid of the Genoese was a 


eo" Entering Alagna, 10 the fleur-de-lis, 
And in his Yicar Christ a captive led! 
I see him mocked a second time ;-again 
The vinegar and gall produced I see; 
And Christ himself twixt robbers slain." 
Purgatorio Canto XX, line 86, etc. 
fl "' Dictus Dominus Carolus venit Florentiam, et facta est ibi magna 
commotio, et spoliorum direptio, et domorum combustio in civitate, et in 
comitatu qualis non fuit a tempore, quo Guelphi et Ghibellini Florentiae 
fuerunt." Ptolemy de Lucca. Annals. 



310 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
great help to the war. There waR gathered a fleet of fully 
one hundred largf' vessels, with the flower of the cavalry 
and a great number of French barons; 62 the Archbishop 
f'leet of Salerno, Papal Legate, was endowed with the 
faculty of absolving from censures, and of dispensing 
graces. The army dpparted for Sicily. Roger of Loria, 
who commanded, directed their course to "the Val of 
:l\fazzara. In 
Iay they reached the coast of Termini. 
Having captured the city, they encamped there; for the 
country was favorable' for movenlents 'of the cavalry, 
which formed a considerahle part of the army. Then they 
maile an attack on the cities of Polizzi and Cor1eonf'; but 
as it was uself'ss and also injurious, they proceed('d after- 
waròs towards the southf'J'n coasts, and laid siege to the 
city of Sciacca. The walls were strong, and strongf'r still 
were the defenders, and the besiegers with all their en- 
f'rgy fought to conquer it. But it was in mid-.Ju1y; the 
heat was scorching like in Africa, to which country this 
was very neal', the snn darted its rays of fire over the 
marshy ground, and there arose frOlll it putrid exhala- 
tions. A frightful mortality decimated the horses, so that 
in a few days there remained only five hundred of all the 
large number. The men themselves suffering from the 
effects of the bad air saw their ranks considerably df'- 
creased from day to day. Charles of Valois despaired of 
success,63 anò felt the necessity of a treaty; disgusted with 
a war so unfortunately begun, he turned all his thoughts 
towards empire. Altbough Robert, Duke of Calabria, was 
opposed to f'very sort of treaty, lamenting the loss of 
Ricily, as well as the treasures and the blood sbed RO 
ahundantly and so uselessly to wrest it from Frederick, 
nevertheless be was forced to suhmit, because the reverses 
exacted it, anrl l)('cause Charles induced him. Thpy came 
to a parley with Frederick on thp 24th of August in a 
country house between CaItabellotta and Sciacca. Charles 
spoke first alone without being heard by Rol)f'rt of Cala- 
bria, who finished by taking part in the conversation. 
There were present Roger of Loria, a witnpss for one f1irle, 
and Palizzia, most ardent admirer of Aragon for the other, 
621.etter of Boniface, Raynaldus, nos. 1 G and 17, J"ear 1307, 
113 John Yillani, book 8, chap, 49-ptolemy of Lucca Annal.-St Anton- 
inus 3. par. tit. 20, 16. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 311 
and many other barons. For five da.r
 they were delib- 
erating. The treaty was concluded on the 29th of August 
and sworn to on the 30th. In the annals of RaJTllaldus 64 
is found the sUlnmary of the terms of peace. Frederick 
was to retain the sovereignty over Sicily with the title of 
king during his life, and was to marry Eleanor, daughter 
of Charles; his children were to receive the kingdonls of 
Cyprus and Sardinia, and failing in these, either they 
were to retain Sicily as the dowry from their mother, or 
would be recompensed with one hundred thousand ounces 
of gold; there was to be a gratuitous and mutual libera- 
tion of prisoners, a mutual restoration of the territory 
seized by Charles in Sicily and by Frederick in Calabria; 
the goods taken in the beginning of the wars in Sicily 
were to be returned to the churches; and each prince 
was to grant pardon to his respective reùels. 
From these terms of peace it is clear that, apart from 
that future and possible restoration of Sicily to be made 
by the sons of Frederick in the event of not receiving 
Cyprus and Sardinia, Charles, after his profuse outlay 
of nloney, and after a long war, did not derive any nene- 
fits; on the contrary he granted to the enemy that which 
in open war he strove to take froln hiIn. Boniface, that is 
to say the Church, fared worse. He was not summoned, 
or consulted in drawing up the terms of peace. Charles 
of Valois treated with Frederick about Sicily as if it were 
a kingdom subject to the right of conquest, and completely 
independent of the Papal See, which public opinion at 
that time recognized as the rightful nlaster of that island. 
This is the reason why Boniface, pressed by the ambassa- 
dors of Frederick to approve the treaty, declan'd by l{'tter 
that the conditions of agr<>el1wnt drawn up hy Charles 
could not be approved by him without impugning his own 
dignity and that of the Apostolic See; the substance of 
the treaty being maintained, some cen
ure was necessary 
for the honor and the recognition of the dominion of the 
Chnrch. 65 From which it appears that Boniface out- 
wardly complained only that the honor of the Church was 
not uplwld, inasmuch as he had not taken part nor ev<>n 
ð4 Nic Special. Book 6, cap. 6, cap. 8, cap. 10.-VilIani, Book 8, cnap. 50. 
-Ptolemy of Lm>ca AmaI. R R. 1. T. XI, p. 1305. 
tl5 Ra.rnaldus, 1:'02, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7. 



312 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
was called to take part in the composition of tlw al'tirl
R 
of agreement. Inwardly, however, an
r one can RurmiRe 
whether he approved or not that surrender of the right
 
of the Church in Sicily into the hands of Frederick, and 
for the same reason if in truth the sum and substance of 
the treaty was pleasing to him. However he sent an an- 
swer immediately, absolving tl1f' Sicilians frOlll the long- 
imposed censures, and dispensed Frederick and Eleanor 
from the impediment of consanguinity, in order that they 
might wed, which they did. But we do not wish to paRR 
over in silence a certain ohservation on the conduct of 
Boniface in the matter of this treaty drawn up by Valois 
without his authorization. 
"Te now see Boniface changed into a new lnan. The 
reader may remember how, having heard that Charles of 
Naples, anxious to liberate his son Philip, the Duke of 
Taranto, from the custody of the Sicilians, made overtures 
of peace to Frederick without consulting him, Boniface 
severely reprimanded the king and made hhn desist from 
the overtures. Now CharleR of Yalois concluded a treaty 
without the knowledge of Boniface, and Boniface say
 
nothing. He asks only the privilege of taking part in its 
confirmation, not to change the suhstance of the agree- 
ment, but only to save the honor of the Papal See, which 
had been compromised, because it was not thought of in 
the management of an affair, which was altogether its 
own. ,,-rho then restrained Boniface? 'Yho made him in- 
active and patient at this time? It is evident that it was 
Philip the Fair, with whonl he had already a miRunder- 
standing. Foreseeing the effect of this division wonld be 
terrible, to avert it he carefully avoided every pretext that 
could arouse the proud spirit of this prince, or lend a 
color of justice to his violence. For Charles of Valois 
was a French prince, and if the Pope punished llim and 
sent him ùack in shame to his own country as he deserved, 
this would have aroused and precipitated the anger of 
Philip the Fair. Now if Boniface for these reasons re- 
mained patient in affairs of his own, what fault was it 
for him to be likewise patient in the affairs of the "TlIite 
Guelphs for the same reasons? And this was why this 
Charles of Yalois, called to establiRh peace in Florence, 
and undertal
e a war in Sicily according to the will of the 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 3U
 
Pontiff,66 was allowed to continue the strife in Tuscany, 
and to effect a peace detrimental to the Church in Sicily, 
without Boniface speaking a word. And Boniface was 
not a man to bear in silence such foreign impertinence. 
Therefore that slander set upon the nlemory of Boniface 
by certain pf'ople, who accuse hhn of causing Dante's 
woes, appears to us to have no reasonable foundation. 
To arrive at the truth, so far as it is possible for man to 
do so, of events which happened at times far relllote from 
us, and over which human passions had been greatly and 
for a long while exercised, it seems to us that the his- 
torian, to reach a right decision, had two solemn duties 
to perform, in which if he fail, far from combating and 
rectifying the error of others, he only confirms them by 
his own. First of all, documents which others made use of 
lJpforehand must be subn1Ïtted not only to the laws of 
criticism, but also to the philosophy of history; and after- 
wards lnen must be cooBy considered not so much in the 
lnaterial as in the moral condition of their liyes which are 
Jl13nifested in the circunlstances of times and places. Such 
a study distinguished the chronicler from the historian. 
The former narrates, the latter in narrating discusses, 
that is, passes in reyiew the circUlllstances of which we 
speak, and by this reflects a sure light on the indh'idual, 
whom he treats, and not only brings to light the facts, 
l)ut also their moral reason. The reader may clearly per- 
ceive from these words that we are now approaching that 
famous struggle of Boniface with Philip the Fail-. The 
reader may also be certain that it is with a faltering heart 
that we approach the subject, both because the mission 
of the historian in the narration of facts of this nature is 
a very difficult one, and because the love of truth forces 
us to differ in opinion from many a worthy writer. Now 
let us consider the characters of thesp two pprsonages, 
Boniface and Philip the Fair, WhOID the fiery human 
passions of their timps have handed down to us, clothed in 
mystery. ,"Ye bave already spoken of Philip in the second 
book of this history. But if the reader will allow, we 


ee Rayna1dus 2302, p. 5 et Beq . . . . "in principalibus integra 
remanente substantia, ad emendationem et reformationem ejus, secundum 
aequam rationabilemque censuram, pro reverentia et honore, ac recognitione 
debita nobis, et eidem ecc1ec;iap, tuum convertas animum."- 



314 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
will recall his moral traits, because we come to a fact 
which the prime cause of his confiuct, a conduct which 
will confirm our assertion. There is no douht that Philip 
was a man of unbounded ambition and of unbridled lust 
for gold. And when we consider the laws enacted by him, 
and the acts of his reign, we find that wearing the crown 
meant to him no opposition whatever to his absolute and 
despotic authority. Feudalism, which rested entirely in 
the civil aristocracy and clergy, was an obstacle which he 
resolved to remove, and to this end he fought vigorously 
and with little opposition, for at that time in France 
neither with the people nor the feudal lords was there a 
legal means of resisting a possible derangement of the 
royal win. The French kings fI'mll Charlen1agne down 
to this time were absolute monarch
; hut that ilh-'ntifi- 
cation of the monarch with the state was not for a per- 
sonal but a public benpfit. Philip the Fair was the first 
who united in himself all public authority to the deb'i- 
ment of others, solely for his own use. He was the state, 
and the state had to bear the weight of the yoke, and not 
enjoy the favors of hhn who imposed it. He penetrated 
the remotest part of French society to imprint there by 
laws conceived in his brain, undisciplined by anyone, the 
character of his absolute power, and to wr(>!':t power from 
others. The right to coin money which was invested in 
other lords in France, by him was reserved alone to the 
king. This was right and proper, if it had been òone for 
the public good, but wicked and improper if for private 
and profligate gain, as was the case. Observe how, being 
king, he was not m;;hamed of becoming a base ('ounter- 
feiter of money; in other words guilty of the greatest ras- 
cality, the consequence of which is that a people is separ- 
ated from others, deprived of the benefits of commerce, 
and conòemned to domestic miseries for a sole'mn betrayal 
of a public trust. In his encounter with feudalism, he 
had to face two enemies, the dvil and clerical aristocra- 
cies. The former was overcome, because not being in- 
vested with legal forms as a body, it was consequently 
wanting in the power given by unity of rights and of 
chiefs. The latter rpsisteò, because it was acknowledged 
by public opinion of the time, and was vpry powprflll ow- 
ing to the unity of its rightR and of its f)end, who was the 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 315 
Roman Pontiff. The former being overcome, easily passed 
from subjection to servitude, and strengthened the king. 
The other resisting irritated the king, but it could not 
long preserve inviolate its rights, because oppressed by 
the king and the lords themselves, when the latter, it 
seems, should have remained united to it by a community 
of rights in a community of fiefs. The times were past of 
pure barbarism in which the will of the conqueror im- 
posed itself, inflexible and blood-stained like the point of 
sword upon which it supported itself. The generations 
once being civilized, princes hid their sword, and to the 
eyes of the people, whom they desired no longer to intimi- 
date, but to persuade, if they could, they displayed the 
book of Law in order to create their power. There was 
needed for this work not soldiers, nor an armed hand, but 
jurists and subtleties. And as there are soldiers just de- 
fenders of their own goods, and soldiers unjust despoil- 
ers of the goods of others, so also there would be honest 
jurists true interpreters of the law, and jurists without 
honesty, who violated it under the mantle of justice. Our 
readers may remember how Frederick Barbarm;;sa, in order 
to have himself considered another Cæsar Augu
tus, and 
as a consequence natural master of Italy, made use of 
jurists, and especially of that kind of whom we have 
spoken in the second place. Philip the Fair had a good 
numher of this stamp to legitimize his attacks against the 
rights of the Church. He could not openly strike the 
Church, for he would not have had many followers or 
companions, He bid himself behind the sublety of his 
jurists, and chiefly Enguerrand de l\Iarigny, ",Yilliam de 
Plessis, and those two adventurous ruffians Peter Flotte 
and \Yilliam (]e N ogaret. They directed their efforts to 
destroy the di8tinction of the different species of the goods 
of the Church. Some were really offerings of the faithful, 
anf1 b{'ing placed on the altar of God, every Jaw human 
and divine forharle thpm to be touched by man, even were 
he most powerful. Others were donations of Princes, in 
title of fief
, and over this tJ1f' prince coull1 exercise rights, 
as their suprPillP ffiastpr. The exercise of this right 
Philip wantp(] to f'xtend WitllOut distinction to tIle goodc;; 
of the rhurch of the first kill(l, and in thh;; lie was al)lv 
assi
teù by th
 jurist
 who ('onfOllll(l
d the nature of th'e 



316 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
patrimonies. In a word Philip desired to do in the matter 
of the Church's property, what the emperors had done in 
the affairs of the Investitures, In fact every disagree- 
ment arising bet wen him and Boniface had its origin in 
the usurpation of some sacred thing. At one time he 
issued an edict in opposition to the constitution "Cler- 
icis Laicos," preventing the pious offerings from being 
sent to Rome for the expedition to the Holy Land; again 
allowing his minister Count Robert of Artois to usurp 
a part of the city of Cambrai, subject to the Bishop even 
in temporalities; again delaying to restore to the Arch- 
hishop elect of Rheims, Robert of Courtenay, the posses- 
sions of thp Church, which he held in custody while the 
see was vacant; 68 seizing the return of a year from all 
the prebends and ecclesiastical benefices in France, during 
the war in Flanders. Consulting the register of the letters 
of thi
 Pontiff one can see that other princes also had 
from time to time been guilty of the same fault, but none 
to !':uch a degree as Philip the Fair, who used every effort 
to sanction by law usurpations of the goods and the rights 
of the Church. 
He with his ministers actually became indignant at the 
complaints of Boniface, as if menaced by a robber, who 
wanted to deprive him of his crown, and they raised the 
cry that Boniface wished to make himself King of France. 
From this it appears, he considered that to control the 
ch urches was only to exercise his right as king, as over 
any other part of his kingdom. l\Ioreover every way of 
escape from the error was closed to the unfortunate King 
by these jurists, who, interested in magnifying hi8 power 
to 
atisfy more fully their own covetousness, never tired 
in their dishonest adulations and in the work of seeing the 
king triumphant over the Pope. For thi
 reason ever 
whispering falsehoods into the ears of the I{ing, and nlis- 
representing the words and actions of Boniface, they in- 
jected into him the mania of authority; on account of 
which poor Philip, like the Saul of Alfieri, enjoyed no 
rest nor peace and at every turn the terrihle Pontiff ap- 
peared to him striving to precipitate him from his throne. 
The old story of the misery of Princes lulled to sleep by 
flattery! 


e1 John Villani, 5. 8. c. 49. 


88 Raynaldus 1299, no, 22. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 317 
A strong- support was given to his nefarious work by 
Philip, in his convocation of the States General, which if 
it was not the first time that the citizen class was called 
to take part in public affairs, at least Philip did it more 
often than other kings. It nlakes us smile when we hear 
uf some, who think thenlSelyes well versed in political 
econOIUY, lay open their hearts not to a mere hope, but to 
an assured civil happiness if they see a prince assemble 
parliaments; as if from these there should come forth 
that mysterious means whereby liberty and order are 
harmonized. PhiJip of France was greatly extolled by 
some for his convocation of the States General, hut yet he 
convinces us and he should convince those facile prom- 
isers of good, that these assemblies in an absolute mon- 
archy are not productive of good at all, but often of evil. 
Called upon to deliberate they are either too free, and 
then the royal power being subservient, lest tyrannies be 
multiplied there is need of a check, which is however no- 
where to be found; or else they are too servile like the 
pal'lianlent of IIenry YIII in England, and then far from 
tpIllpering. theJ7 incl'ease a thousandfold the power of the 
prince, who u
ed them as Tile satellites. And since we 
speak of France, we find among the French examples of 
these two kinds, but we do not wish to speak to sueh re- 
cent events. It is not to be doubted that the States Gen- 
eral which Philip convoked were composed of servile men. 
He deriver} fl'Oln thcm two of very great benefit. One was 
that by his having invited the citizen class to take part 
in public affairs, thereby gratifying their vanity, and as 
it were making them participators of the royal power, 
they were nlOst pliant in tIle imposition of thuse taxes 
and subsidies, which he so ardently desired; and the other 
advantage was, that being in a state of war either with 
princes or Popes, the sight of him Lein
 sUJ'I'oundpù l)y 
all the people of the kingdmn, increased greatly respect 
and rcycrence from without, as if fortified by the IllOral 
force of th<> assistance of the entire people. Such was 
Philip the Fair; such were the reasons of his actions; and 
I,mch were the means he adopted, Xow we corne to Doni- 
face. 
Boniface was Supreme Pontiff, and therefore watehfnl 
of the rights and the affairs of the Church, in a worù, of 



318 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
hpr liberty, for which he could not be blamed. The timps 
were very dangcrous especially for that liberty and as 
time went on th(' danger bccame greater. The day had 
pa
sed when the mere presence of the Sovereign Pastor 
was sufficient to arrest the march of an Attila, and when 
the brutal force of an invading army could be restraineò 
hy the force of supernatural faith. .As monarchies took 
refuge behind the bulwark of right, the Pope was obliged 
to do likewise, for two objects in view; the one to 
strengthen, or at least to maintain the rights of the 
Church, such as follow from the constitution purely 
divine of the Church; and the other was not to allow it 
to lose the position which the public right had given in 
the civil institutions of the 
Iiddle Ages. The first of 
these duties created for the Pope the necessity of a con- 
tact with secular states by reason of the immediate rela- 
tion between the spiritual society and the temporal; to 
accomplish the second, a simple contact with these states 
would not suffice, but it should penetrate to the inmost 
df'pths of the States, in order to appeal to the justice of 
public right. Now since the monarchies were absolute, 
the request of the Pope, and consequently the severe meas- 
ures which the denial of justice provoked, would have to 
he addressed immediately to the King, and not to the 
people. An excellent reason why we finò the Popes in 
opposition to kings. If the latter little by little withdrew 
the concpssions made to the Pope by them and the people, 
(liminishing thus the benefit of the public right in favor 
of the Church, the opposition of the Pope was reasonable; 
hut if in the process the kings happened to strike at that 
right altogether divine, which is the chief foundation of 
the Church, any defence raised by the Pope was not only 
reasonable but rigorously obligatory. So those Popes 
wpre reasonable and just, who wished, for example, to 
preserve the jud
ll1ent of the civil cases conceded to them 
1'.v pI'inces and the consent of the people, and which was 
('onsee-rated by puhlic opinion. But most just and bound 
l.y duty were those Popes, who to rppair the loss of souls, 
intruded tJwmsplves into states to prevent wars and to 
punish tho
c prilltf'S, who, engaging in unjust wars, be- 
(':tmc tlu' cam.;ps of so Jnar.
'" llla
S
i.Cres an(l J.aphws and 
injnry to the ehul'ches. And IlPnce that absolution of 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 319 
the people from the oath of obedience to princes became 
just and necessary; no one being obliged to swear to de- 
fend a wicked act, such being the obedience to a rascally 
prince, because it would be binding oneself by oath to 
co-operate in the wicked deeds of another. 'Ye speak of 
those times. 
Boniface saw snatched away by the French king not 
only tLat which froln religious fervor had been conceded 
by Pepin and flharlemagne, but also that which no king 
could give or take away, the liberty of the Church, which 
is a thing entirely divine. Therefore the Pope held out 
against a downright robbery, and for that reason we are 
not to wonder at the vigor of the resistance. 
And in the quarrel with Philip the Fair if some one 
finds Boniface excessive in Ids anger (which we have not 
found), he mnst consider the temper of mind of the Pope, 
and the ingratitude of Philip for all his benefits. That 
magnanimous sinn('r, (as Benvenuto of Inlola, St. Anto- 
ninus and even ViHani call him), shows us, that within 
that Pontifical breast there was contained a strong and 
generous heart. This firnlness it seems to us was rlis- 
played morc hl'il1iantly in his self-control, than in his 
holy pUI'snit of ju
ti('c. For froln the years 12!)G in which 
the COllfo:titu1Ïon "Clericis" was pubJisllCf1, until 1300, 
tllP ;\Tear of thc legation of the Bifo:hop of Pamiers, the be- 
ginning of the quarrel, the Pope had been an example of 
forhearance. To publish an offensive edict in opposition 
to a Papal Con
titution, which was directed to weaken the 
enemies of Philip, was an impertinence sufficient to 
arouse the indignation of an anchoret; and yet Boniface 
did every tIling to please Philip, favoring hinl with a be- 
nign interpretation of the Constitution, by which the 
French kings hegan to cnjoy a new priyih>ge. But favors 
di(l not rec1aÏ111 Philip, they served only to make him more 
rascally, and yet we find no re('ord of censures hurle(l 
against hinl hy Boniface, hut in
teac1 he repeale(l those 
whieh had already heen fuhninate(l in th(> hody of the law. 
Boniface was not a man to b(> frightpnc(l, and foJ' this 
l'cason this control of temper is won(lerful in a soul so 
al'dl'nt and vigorous. 
""e (10 not know if a personal friPIHlship unitrù noni- 
fac(> to Philip the Fair, "'"e í1wl that up to this 
.ear he 



320 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
did everything to favor him, and refrained from every- 
thing that would tend to hurt him. But since we are 
speaking of persons placed in the highest offices, the dis- 
covery of this friendship would be vain, as it may have 
ceased on the lnorning of public life. There is no doubt 
that the Pope loved the King of France. For that move- 
Inent undertaken to restrain his enemies round about him, 
at one time exhorting Edward of England, then Adolphus, 
to. lay down their arms, and not disturb the peace of 
France; that constancy in taking revenge upon Sicily for 
Charles of Naples, a Frenchman; that confidence placed 
in Charles of Valois, and the desire to elevate him to the 
rank of Emperor; and finally that control of temper to- 
wards Philip, who was in a fury, were most certain proofs 
that the Pope wished the French King well. There can 
be no dOlI bt of this loye. It was enshrined for a long time 
in the counsels of the Papal Court, and it could never be 
lessened. There are certain benefits in human life, which 
can never be banished from the mind, such as we may 
receive in youth, and whatever might be the offence com- 
ing to us from a benefactor, our love even grows stronger. 
Such were the benefits which the Popes had received in 
the youth of the civi1 Pontificate from the French kings. 
Unable to resist the power of the Lombards from with- 
out, and the tyranny of the Romans from within they 
found a liberator in Charlemagne, and he found in them 
magnificent remunerators. In those times, we speak of 
the eighth century, to be anointed and to receive a crown 
from the hands of the Pope, and that cry: (( To Charles 
most pious Augustus crowned by God, great and peaceful 
Emperor, long life and victory," were truly worth an 
empire. And from that time on account of this exchange 
of friendly offices, France was always considered the 
support of the Papal See, and as a defender to be invokeil 
when serious civil difficulties aro!';e. 'Vhen the Pontifi- 
cate wm; oppressed by the might of the Suabians, it was 
relieved by the French family of Anjou. In the bound- 
le!':s expansion of the monarchy of Charles Y, the Popes 
never lost sight of France, and this country from time to 
tinw they favored, in order to show respect for that lord 
of such a vast domain. France was always a place of 
refuge for per
ecllted Popes. Leo III, and Gelasius II, 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 321 
so brutally treated by the proud Roman patricians, sought 
an asylum and assistau(:e in France. That solemn Coun- 
cil of Lyons, in which there was such a long deliberation 
over sacred and ciyiI destinies, was hcld in France as a 
place of safety. Therefore it was established in the coun- 

els of the Papal C0urt, that France would be the de- 
fender of the Church in tiIne of danger. The French bet- 
ter than any other people suited this design, for although 
they did not wed the intellect to a certain maturity of 
judgment, frOlll which is generated a tenacity of purpos
, 

'et they superabound in lin
Iiness of the heart, from which 
deeds bun;;t forth rather than proceed, and in that gener- 
osity of ROld by which on the very first meeting of ob- 
stac1es thpy seem entirely superhuman, and hence n10st 
powerful propagators of good and of eviI.68 And 
o they 
are found alwa
ys the first in those actions, in which the 
heart plays a greatcr part than cold reason. The Crusade 
l)('in
 proclaimed, the French are the first to raise the 
standard of the Cross and march. Is there a certain coun- 
tr.y to ùe enlightened by the preaching of the Gospel, the 
French are the first to hasten, lavish of tIlPir life. Is there 
a society to be formed in the interest of the faith, or for 
tII(> relief of distress, they are the first who COllie forward 
lavish of their goods. The Catholic rpligion, which in 
man likes to dwell in the fervid regions of the heart 
rather than in the somhre recesses of the brain, will 
always have nepr! of this race of men. For this reason 
the faults of the French could never withdraw the Roman 
Pontificate from that innate trust which it placed in them 
in its human calami ties, and for the disrespect of these 
sons it always holds in readiness a paternal forgiveness. 
In fact whilst France, like one shipwrccked, was still 
tossed about ill the tpmpest of that revolution, by wllich 
Pope Pius YII, wrcsted from the sacred precincts of the 
Yatican, was by French hands bot'n
 across the Alps to 
exiJe; France, WP Ray, threw herRelf prostrate at his feet 
I'eY
ring him with imn1ense love, like l\Iagdalpll at the fpet 
of Christ; and Pius wept with a holy joy. PiUR VI after 
having endured thp philosophic tyranny of .Jospph II, was 
induced to visit AUf'trÏa. Austria, however, did not revere 




 See Guizot. h IIislor
' of Ci\"ilization in Europp," par(> Hi. 



322 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
him, nor do we find that Pius wept with joy; rather he 
shed tears of grief. The reader will understand from this 
comparison wl1at we tl1ink of France, and how sincere was 
the love Boniface bore for Philip the Fail', as a successor 
of Charlemagne, The 1110ral portraits of Boniface and 
Philip the Fair bein
 traced, there is no doubt that ap- 
proaching thenl nearer in order to observe their conduct 
in tile famous quarrel, the truth will be seen nlore plainly 
and more easily. And since it is imp08siLle henceforth 
to find the culpability in the substance of the acts of Boni- 
face, our jUflgment will be restricted to the exan1ination 
of the lUanneI' of action, that is to say, to see if he did not 
sin by excess in the defence of justice; this will be clearly 
shown in the narration upon which we are ahout to enter, 
and in which we are about to refrcsh ol1rselvps after being 
unncryed, as it were, by the judgment we have passed on 
such great personages. 
Philip up to the year 1302 had been most obstinate in 
worIdng injury on the Church. Neither the favors, nor 
the- threats of Boniface had been able to dissuade him 
one iota fronl his purpose, on the contrary he proceeded 
from had to worse. The tithes which he was allowed to 
roJIect fronl the churches for the war in the Holy I
and, he 
greedily seized. He kept the Clerics a long time deprived 
of their prebends, and imprisoned them. lIe totally ig- 
nored the sacred immunities. 
Frmll the year 12!)8 Philip, exceeding all limits of jus- 
tices pl'o,'oker1 Boniface to the severest exercise of his 
power. The n1Ïnisters and courtiers knew the pain the 
King suffered hy reason of the laws which forhade hhn 
to steal the property of another and especially that conse- 
crate(] to God; and therefore hetween the desire of m::su- 
aging the royal ills, anil because the same malaòy had 
attaek('(l thelll also, thpy shamefully pounced upon the 
possessions of the churches. The Idngs of France en- 
joypd tlIp privileges delegated from the Pope, of guarding 
and holding in custody vacant benefices. Here was a right 
that ha(1 !':prnng from a privilege. But whither did it 
tend? FroD1 custody Philip passed on to robbery, anù he 
('onfÌseatpd the pos
essions he guarded. If a bishop or 
lIPllPfÌeial''y, not hy flpath but by 80lUe l'ea
on of absenec, 
lpft the chun:h whi1e living, he on the strength of tllat 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 

23 
right of guar(1ianship Reized everything with a free hand. 
His ministers did the same, and evpn worse. 
Gazon, Dishop of Laon, for sonle fault or other, being 
RURpended by the Pope frOIll the spil'itual and tenlpol'al 
administration of his diocese, set out for Rome, in answt'r 
to a SUlnmons to appear there. IIardly had ht' depal'tpd 
than Philip enters, declares the see "Vacant, Iuakes him- 

elf custodian of the same, and as such lnaster of evPI'Y- 
thing he finds. Boniface warned him, but in vain: "Be 
" most m::sul'ed that by an interdict of administration, hy 
"suspension and even exconnnunication of a bishop, the 
" see is by no means vacant." 69 Philip knew this. John, 
Cardinal of the title of St. (lecilia, by his last will left 
Rome of his property for pious works in France, aITIong 
wllieh was the foundation of a college for poor tlcrics in 
Pari
. Philip and his ministers seized these goods, pre- 
sumably to guard thenl, but only to steal them. Boniface 
Rent John, Cardinal of Sts. Peter and l\Ial'cellinuR, and 
the Archbishop of Narbonne to exeeute the will of thr- 
pious Cardinal, and prevent the goods from being stolen. 70 
But he obtained nothing. Tbr- Count of ArtoiR, one nlOst 
intimate in the counsels of Philip, declare(1 that a part 
of the city of Cambria subject temporarHy and Rpiritually 
to the Bishop, belonged to him, and without any forIn of 
proceedings, took PORscssion of it in 12Ü9. Boniface ad- 
moniRhpd and besought him at least to inform thcm by 
what right he estahlishe(} hiR claim. 71 He refused. In 
thp same yp3r the ArchhiRhop elect of Rhpims, RoLert de 
(I(HI1'tenay, found that Philip had laid hands on the goods 
of his church, under the pretext of guarding tllf'm. ITe 
ref}uestf'd Philip to re1inquish his custody over tllf'm, Imt 
he refused to do so. Boniface admoniRhed him, and wrote 
to him that as the See of Rheims was no long-PI' v:1.cant, 
there was no need of a custodian and a trustee for its 
property.72 Rut 11(> spoke, as it were, to thp dead. The 
royal ministel's baò alrpa(1y settl
f1 thcmselV
R tlwre, and 
werp being pnl'if-h('(l tlwreby. Tlwn a cry was raised 
throughout Franc(' h;\T all the clergy, that tlle lland of a 
Pharaoh was upon them, and they implorpfl thp help of 
ell Letter of Boniface to Philip, Raynaldus, 1298, no. 24. 
'10 Raynaldu!'I. idem. '11 Ra
'na 1ùu!'l, ] 2f)!), no. 22, 
12 Ra
'nalduB, 1299, no, 23. Letter of Boniface to Philip. 



324 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
the Roman Pontiff. And in such circumstances was he to 
do nothing else but weep over these violences? 
And now we have come finally to thc lamentable quarrcl 
with Philip the Fair. Certain controversies had arisen 
hetwef>n the Archbishop of 
arbonne, Egidius AsceIine 
and the Ahnaric viscount of this city. Thf> former de- 
clared that he held supreme dominion over the city; and 
for this reason whatever the Count possessed in the city 
and suburb, he held as a fief of tile See of Narbonne; but 
the latter denied this, and said he was a vassal of the 
I{ing. In support of this he had obtained letters frmll 
Philip, which proved his pretensions, but they violatf>d 
the agreement made before by his predecessors and the 
Sce of Karbonne. At the end of October of 1299 the Arch- 
l)ishop held a Council at Beziers, which was attended by 
the Bishops of Beziers, Nimes, l\Iaguelone, Elne, Pamiers, 
Agde, Lodeve, and by the Abbots of Grasse, St. Pons, 
"'ïlliam of the Desert, and others. 73 The question of the 
usurpation of the Count was debated, and it was decided 
to send the I{ing a letter which would set forth the rights 
of the See of Narbonne; and among thesf\ was the oath of 
homage taken by the father of the Viscount. They com- 
plained of the letters which the Viscount had obtained 
from Philip.74 The Bishop of Bezier, an Abbot and a 
Canon were the bearers of the complaints to Philip. If 
Philip had given letters to the Viscount, by which he re- 
mo"\ed him from the dominion of tbf> Bishop, it was not 
hard to ÏInagine in what manner thesp complaints would 
be received. Therefore the Archbishop of Narbonne had 
recourse also to Boniface. 
'There arosc another controversy, or better another 
usurpation of Philip. The Bishop of the now destroyed 
city of )Iaguelone, in N arbonnese France, possessed the 
county of 
Iaguelone as a fief of the Holy See. During 
the reign of St. Louis IX, the royal nlinisters began to 
invade the jurisdiction of the Bishop and undertook to 
place this county under the dominion of the King. But 
Pope Clement IV, being consulted by the I{ing, returned 
such a wel]-reasoned reply, sustained by such an array of 
documents,75 that the ministers desisted fronl the unjust 
73 Colt Max. Concil. tom. II, page 1430. 76 The same. 
16 See Ra
Tnaldus, year 1300, no. 30. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 325 
invasion. During Philip's reign, the documents of Clen1- 
ent were forgotten, and as a finished case, without pro- 
ceedings, his lninisters deprived the .Apostolic See of the 
county of )Iaglwlone. Boniface was aroused and he wrote 
Philip a very ten1pPl'ate letter, which we collate among 
the documents of this work. For from the writings of 
this Pope one can form a more certain judglnent than that 
which others have given of this famous quarrel. 76 In this 
letter, after having mentioned Philip's grandfather, King 
81. Louis IX; after having explained the rights of the 
Church over the county of )Iaguelone; after having com- 
plained how the churches, elevated to great splendor by 
his predecessors, were by him and his ministers oppressed, 
reduced to servitude, and ruined, he concluded in these 
words: " Tolerating, my son, these abuses in the churches 
"of your kingdom, you have good reason to fear that God, 
" the Lord of judgment and King of Kings n1ay l)e aroused 
" to vengeance, and that His Yicar will not rpmain silent 

'to the end, leRt perhaps he may hear this sentence 
"against him: 'A dumb dog is not fit to bark ;'-who 
" although he waits patiently for a time, in order that the 
"way of mercy may not be closed, yet one day he will 
" arise for the punishment of the guilty and for the honor 
"of the good. :May God grant that you may understand, 
"and weigh wen the suggestions which are offered you 
" as from bad angels; and pay no attention to the wicked 
"counsellors, false prophets with honeyed lips who ll1ake 
" you see false and foolish things.... Be careful, 
" then, lest the counsel of those who have alrpady blinded 
"you by flattery, may lead you to a wicked end." 
To alJow Philip full reign any longer was on the part 
of the Pope yiplding too much to prudence, and neglect- 
ing his office of supreme guardian and defender of the 
rights of the Church. Therefore Boniface thought to 
restrain Philip by a legation, with the hope that the 
things explained by letter might be more effectual in the 
mouth of a Papal legate. IIe deputed Bernard de Saisset, 
Bi
hop of Pamiers, who had been abbot of the monastery 
of St. Antoninus, lord of Pamiers, whicb from being an 
aLhatial was raised to an epi:5copal see, and he was ap- 
78 See Document: Letter of Boniface to Philip about the county of 
.Maguelone. 



:
2G HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
pointed the first hi!':hop. This appointment of the legate 
was displeasing to Philip, beeau:5e on a former occasion 
he fOUllfl Bernard most tenacious of his right of dominiun 
over the city, whieh he wished to usurp. 
(1301) Bernard explained to tlte King the decision of 
the Pope, hut Philip would 1l0t ahide by it. The LegaÜ> 
threatened him with the usual Rpiritnal penalties, al1(1 
those which ahyays obtained in those times. The authori- 
ties of the time have not handed down to us any account 
of what passed hetween the Legate and the King. Some 
have conjectured that he went too far, eyen daring to re- 
prove the King for iInprisoning Guy of Dampierre, Count 
of Flanders, and his daughter, intimating that he should 
liberate them. But there is no foundation for this con- 
jecture. 77 Others said that the I..egate was excessive in his 
threats. 78 But the only witnesses they could quote of tile 
importunities of the Legate, would be Philip and his nlin- 
isters; now in the proceedings which they afterwards iu- 
Rtituted against the Legate, there is found no mention of 
that crime of lese-Jnaj
sty. There is no doubt that thf' 
flatterers who sU1'rounded Philip, being ever ready to do 
his will in wrong or l'ight, and seeing him badly disposed 
to the legation of the Bi!':l1op of Pa1niers, suddenly brought 
up so many charges against l1im, as to nlake him guilty 
of high treason. I t was n
cessary to find the ('rimes. 
Philip had recourse to his jurists, who were truly om- 
nipotent. They deputed the .Archdeacon of 
\..uge and the 
Yidanle 79 of A1lliens to ('ollert through the Seneschal's 
Court of Toulouse secret information concerning the 
Legate. so According to the desire of the jurists, twenty- 
four witneRses were found, who with one arcord swore 
to seven different charges, nmuel:v that he had published 
how King St. Louis had prophpsied, that the kingdom of 
France would go to ruin under the rule of Philip the Fair, 
and fall into the hands of a foreignpr; that hf' had con- 
spired with the Count of Fois (the reader win remember 


7T Sismondi. History of France. T. VI, page 45. 
78 Spondani, year 1301-Pag. 218. Brev. Gest. Pontif. Sec. XIII, 
Tom. 111, page 335. 
'III A ridame in France during the 1\liddle Ages was he who guarded the 
temporal affairs of a bishop, and who defended them. 
80 History of Languedoc, Book LXVIII, c. G3, p. 99. apud Sismondi. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


3 '>- 
...., 


that the Count was precisely that deadly enemy of Ber- 
nard with WhOlU the latter had waged war for a long time 
on aecount of bis usurpations) against the King, and bad 
plotted with tbe sallie to remove the f'ounty of Toulouse 
from ob{'dien
e to the King, and to prevent the luarriage 
of tbe royal daughtpr to the son of Count Philip of ...\rtois, 
in order to arrang'e it with the daughter of the King of 
Aragon; that he bad reported that the dty of Pamiers 
was not compriRed in tbe kingdOlll of Fl'an
p, and conse- 
quently was not suhject to Philip; that he had declared 
the King to be a hastard, and a falsifier of the coinage of 
the reahn. As usual in addition he waR accused of heresy, 
blasphelny and Rimony.81 
The Legate kne\1" of the inquisition that was going on 
in his diocese, and in order to escape the stornl which was 
gathering about him, he decidel1 to set out for Ronle. But 
the Yidame of ...\luiens on the night of the 12th of July 
haYing- forced himself into the episcopal palacp, dragged 
forth the Legate, to whom he gave notice to appear on the 
first of the nlonth in the royal presence. He suhjectpd his 
servan ts to crne 1 tortures in order to wrest from thenl 
that which was ne
essary. Saisset presented a pitiable 
sight broken down by infirlnities, enfeeùled by old age, 
dragged by the master bowman to the court, and thrust 
into a dark prison. Peter Flottp, a man accustomed to 
thiR, acted as prosecutor. 
Philip was furious OIl hparing of the felonies that were 
imputed to th(> Legate, and on the 24th of )[ay 1301, hav- 
ing orderpd the proofs to he collected, he decIarpd the ac- 
cusations true. It was decided to proceed on the lines of 
a trial, and in order to giye to the proceedings an honor- 
ahle character by observing the ordinary ruleR of justice, 
Philip summoned a council of the nobles of the kingdom 
at Senlis, with many doctors of laws and derics. ...\ftel' 
taking counsel from them he impriRonet1 the Legate and 
proceeded against him. He was condemned to be de- 
graded from tbe epis
opate, and left in tlw power of Hw 
Prince. As a prisoner he was consigned to the custody of 
EgidiuR, ...\rf'hhishop of Xarhonne. 82 In Raynaldm
 wp find 
thp chipf chargps against the Lpgate, whiC'h wpre spnt to 
81Martene Thesaurus Anecdotorum T. I, page 131!)-1336-Continuat. 
Chron. Nangii 1:301, page 54. 
 Rist. du Dill'er., rage (j:H. 



328 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
the Pope by Philip, but we do not find an account of the 
trial, in which these charges were proven to be true. (In- 
stead we read in another author,83 not a Catholic in be- 
li
f, but truly a philosopher, who exmnined the f1etails 
of this trial, declared that it was an example of down- 
right injustice and violence.) Yet Spondano, Page the 
Younger, and Fleury agree in accepting with hands 
joined this sentence of the most pious and most teluper- 
ate Philip. And these Frenchmen had leisure and eyes 
to read this trial, just as well as this other writer. Poor 
History! Those crimes were not cOlumitted by the Bishop 
on the exact day on which he exercised his office as legate 
to Philip, they were (if true) committed at a time far 
remote. "'"hy this sudden inquisition at the mon1ent in 
which Bernard commenced the exercise of a mission which 
demanded respect, and placed him under the safeguard 
of all laws? Can one believe that the accusers at that time 
only learned of these crimes? Should not they have 
waited either until Bernard had fulfilled his legation, or 
had been dismissed, in order not to drag to judgment the 
person of an anlbassador, that is to say, the person of the 
prince himself whom he represented, namely the Pope? 
But we shall Soon see that Philip had sufficient spirit to 
judge and condemn even the Pontiffs. 
Peter Flotte, \Villiam de N ogaret and the other two 
jurists, whom we named before, directed the affairs of the 
parliament of Senlis, in order to make them proceed with 
an appearance of justice. It was decided to send a mes- 
senger to the Pope to report the resolution passed in the 
assembly. He was to state humbly that although King 
Philip had a right to condemn Bernard de Saisset to death 
as convicted of grave crimes, yet he refrained from doing 
so, in order to iIuitate the example of his ancestors, zealous 
preservers of the rights of the Church, and above all the 
Roman Church, their mother. The messenger was to be- 
seech the sovereign pontiff to deprive the felon bishop 
of the dignity of orders and every clerical privilege, in 
order that he might be punished as an incorrigible crim- 
inal. They instructed the messenger in the replies he waH 
to make to all proposals of Boniface, and charged him to 
III Guizot. "History of Civilization in France," 45th lesson, pnge 588, 
Brussels edition, 1839. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 3:!H 
point out the means of renewing the proceedings against 
the accused, in case Bernard was not condemned at Rome. 
'Ve are not certain if from this messenger Boniface 
learned of the imprisonment of his legate, his trial awl 
condemnation, or by son1e other wa
? However he was 
very ready to receive with prudent firmness the embassy 
of Philip defining in that con8i
tory of jurists, and the 
following is that which by private letters he wished thenl 
to know: That by divine and hUlllan ri
ht he is the guar- 
dian of the liberty of clerics; that laynwn are power]p
s 
over them; that the predecessors of Philip had known ana 
acknowledged the same; that it pained him to learn, how 
notwithstanding this pious example, he had sun1moned to 
trial in his presence his venerable brother the Bishop of 
Pamiers, and impl'isonerl him in the custody of the Arch- 
bishop of :x arbonne, under the pretext of personal secur- 
ity; that he 
hould a]]ow the imp1'Ïsoned legate to come 
to Rome; that he should restore all the patrimony he haiJ 
sequestered; that he should know that he incurred the 
penalty proclaimed by t11(1 ranons against those laying' 
violent hands on clerics; tLat he wrote all this to the 
Archbishop of Narbonne. 54 So n1uch privately. The pub- 
lic insult offered the dignity of Bishop and Legate de- 
manded a public reparation and Boniface publicly pro- 
vided for it with the Bull (( Salcator mundi:' which he 
sent to the king in a letter beginning: (( 
"Tllper r{fJ raNon- 
abilibus cala
i8.JJ In this lIe revoked an the pl'ivilpges and 
fa VOl'S granted by the Roman SC'e to the King of Franc(\ 
which revocation was to laRt until the Prelates of France 
assembled in Council in his preRen{'e, deliberated concern- 
ing the same. 85 ...\llÙ on the Rame day the 15th of Ð('{'emhpl" 
h.. published the famous Hull: (( A1.Uwlllta. JJ 86 " Listen, 
" my son, to the precepts of a father and to tllf' instruc- 
" tiom;; of a n1aster, who holds the place of llim who is tllP 
"sole :\Iaster and Lord; open your heart to the arlmoni- 
" tions of a most loving mother, the Church; dispose your- 
" self to return to God from whom either by weakness, or 
"by the bad advice of others you have strayed away. 
" Let not the king flatter himself that he has no 
" superior on earth but God, and that he is not subject to 
8' Raynaldus, 28-History of Diff., page 661. 86 Raynaldus, 32. 
M See Document at end of work. 



330 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
" the power of the Pope. lIe who thinks thus is an infif1el" 
-This preamùle is followed ùy an enlulleration of the 
Sovereign Pontiff's eomplaints against the King of Fl'ancp, 
whOln he charge8 with bestowing benefices without eon- 
sulting the Holy See; of adulitting no judgulent ùut hi
 
OWll, either within or without h
s kingdonl, on the unju
t 
and violent aets eonllnitted in his nanle; of arhitrari1y 
srizing upon Church property; of appropriating to his own 
n
e the revenues of vacant sees, which ahu
e was not s:xn:>tl 
from odium by the specious nalllf' of 'rcgale). of his debaRe- 
nlPnt of the eUrl'Pl 1 (')?; and of imposing on his suh- 
jects intolerable Inn'dens. "'Ye have l'epl'ateùl
Y," con- 
tinues the Pope, " but vainly, warned Philip to rpturn to 
"justice. 'rlwrefore now we enjoin an the Archbishops, 
" bishops, abhots and doctors in Francp to meet Us in the 
"nlonth of Xoyelnber of next year (.A. D. 1302), that, by 
" the help of the'ir counsel, We Jnay take nwasures for the 
" reform of c IC'rical affairR in the kingdom and the ],e'8tor- 
" ation of order." Bonifaee finally concludes with a lllost 
pressing exhortation to give assistance to tlw Holy Lanf1. 
This Bull although addreRsed to Philip, was sent hy Boni- 
face' to all the Prelates of France,87 in orde'r that coming 
to Rmne for the Synod, they should know in what condi- 
tion the affairs of the King were, in order thp hettpr to 
(leliherate on them. The multiplicity of copieR haR nlade 
it possible for us to have the original words of thiR falllOl1R 
docunlent in spite of the fact that it farec1 badly in that 
hase and shaIueful ohliteration, obtained l)y Philip, of the 
Hulls and letters of Bonifaee from the Yatican Registe'r, 
chiefly those which stung him most. For thiR reason the 
copies which we're at lland were not uniformly cOlnplete', 
and we pl'efe'l.l'C'd that pu hlished hy Hossi. 88 because' it 
seenled to us to be less deficient than that produced by 
Raynaldus. 89 
The tone of this Bull waR vigorous. hut ypt it was tem- 
perate eyen in its reproaebeR. 'Ye do not find any cen- 
sure
, an3Y threatened absolution of the Freneh from their 
oath of obe(lience to their King, and no forfeiture of the 
throne. Boniface pC'l'haps had no hope of it succeeding in 
its intent. because it was hard to hplieye that one who for 
a long timr llad progreRsed on a wicked path, would re- 
87 Raynaldus, 32. 88 Life of Bonifacc. chap. 17, p. lü7. 89 No.5!. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 331 
trace his steps. But he could not entirely persuade hiIn- 
self, that Philip would arrive at such a degree of iniquity, 
the like of which was not seen in past ages. Proud he 
was, but still worse were those false prophets, as Boniface 
called those counsellors, who with the nlost refined nlalice 
placed themselves between him and the Pope, violaterl the 
truth, published falsehoods, and aroused fatal quarrels. 
But before we f'ome to speak of the effects produced in 
France bJ? the Bull "Asculta," it is necessary for us to 
tarr;v a moment, and rectify, or better set in right order 
the facts disarranged through an innocent error hy Spon- 
dani, and Pa
e the younger. The reader nlnst not forget 
that when these facts are not viewed in their natural 
order, an opinion founded on thell1 is always prrOIWOUS. 
They relate,!Jo that Peter Flotte, had beC'n sent to Rome 
hy Philip to uphold him, not previous to tlw puhlication 
of the Bu II (, _111 .sclllta fi li,'
 but instead after the leg-a tion, 
which fonowed, of the Archdeacon of Narhonne, the 
1,ea1'er of the solemn censures incurred by Philip through 
hiH disohedience. They, or rather Spondani, a little later 
contradicts himself, when he declarps that Flotte had fal- 
sified the llnll "Au
culta I"ili," and had even substituted 
instead a lll'i('f l('ttpr full of venOlll fl.onl Boniface to 
Philip, and lwnce he was fonnel in Rome in 1301, the p1'C- 
{'ise yeal' in which the Bull was writtcn and promulgated, 
] [ow doe
 he loeaÌl> Flotte the Inessenger of Pl1ilip, in 
Romc>, after thc tl11'patening legation of the ;\.rchdeacon 
of Narbonn(>, which took place in tlw following year? 
Therefore Plotte the falsifier of the Bull was in ROnlf' 
when it was written, for he could not falsify it, when it 
had been already promulgated in France. Hence we can 
say without any hesitation, that that lllf'SSenger sent to 
tl1(' Pope hy Philip ancl the parliament of HC'nlis, was none 
other than Peter Flotte; and to pre
C'nt himself before a 
POpC' and a Pope snch as BonifacC', after the impl'isonmC'nt 
of a If'gate, tlu>l'e was nef'dpd a countrnnnce not Irs:,; brazen 
than that of Flotte, callpd by Xatalis Alexander: " diaboli- 
Ú cum. rorCliticntrlJl rorpore. cacrulJl IJlcnte, arctoSUI7l. 
(( fellitulll, hn(,J"('tir.ulJl, rli.
conli((p ]lr.'lr1}1 inter rt Ecdp- 
(( .,inn1, ROtllmw rn in rrntoJ"cm." "Diaholieal, hlind in 
" },ocly nnll l1linfl, full of ranf'01', a hpl'pt if', nnd a fOlllPnÌt'r 
80 Spond. 1301. n. 7-Pagi. Brev. R. R. P. P. Bonif. VIII. n. 55. 



332 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
of discord between the King and the Roman Church." The 
reader may judge the Prince from this sort of an ambas- 
sador. Now Flotte present in Ron1e, being sent, as was 
said to clear Philip of the accusation of violence against 
the Legate, understood to defend and justify every bad 
action of his Prince, with an assurance the like of which 
the most innocent of n1en would not have Rhown before 
a most furious tyrant. Boniface contented himself with 
only threatening to strike Philip with the sword of spiri- 
tual censures, to which the impudent legate retorted with 
this insulting reply: " Your sword is only verbal, but that 
of my master is real and well-ten1pered." By this was 
presaged even from that time how this controversy of 
respective rights was to tern1Ïnate in Anagni by a violent 
decision of ruffians. Our reader can iInagine whether 
the iInpertinence of Flotte aroused the indignation of 
Boniface; not to have resented it, would have been a fault 
in a Pontiff. Then passing to fraud, Flotte, in order 
perhaps to forestall the Bull (( Al.lsc1llta fili/' forged a cer- 
tain brief letter n10st bitter in tone, addressed to Philip, to 
which he attached the nan1e of Boniface as the author, 
and which Spondani pulllished, taking it from the Victor- 
ine manuscript: "Boniface, servant of the servants of 
" God, to Philip King of the French: Fear God and keep 
"His commandments. \Ye wish you to know that you 
" are subject to us in both telnporal and spiritual things; 
"that the granting of benefices and prebends belongs to 
"
rou in no way; that if 
'ou have in custody any vacant 
" ones, you are bound to reserve their revenues for those 
"who succeed to them; and that, if you have conferred 
"any benefices, we pronounce such collations to be null 
" and void. \Ye regard as heretics all who believe other- 
wise." Now to lessen the guilt of Philip some think that 
it was owing to these deceptions of his ministers that he 
transgressed so far beyond the limits of reverence towards 
Boniface. But Philip was not stupid; we admit that the 
dissension was caused to a great extent by infamous min- 
isters, such as Flotte, but that he allowed himself to be 
controlled and led by them, we shall never concede. 
Philip knew too well the virile style of Boniface, with 
which in his letters he adnlonished him, to be led to attri- 
bute to h!m thi
 
ickly note, f'0 devoid of vigor. It was 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 333 
the whelping of a wanton cur compared to those noble 
l'oarings that are heard in the Register of the Papal docu- 
ments. But although the forgery was most evident, yet 
it was not altogether without some result. These veno- 
nlOUS writings, in \vhich Boniface was depicted as a rav- 
isher of crowns, and a disturùer of peace, were circulated 
alllong the people, who quick to believe and incapable of 
criticising, decided unfairly and forIned that terrible 
thing, \vhkh is called pubHc opinion, from whkh the 
writers of the tinw, a little prejudiced as they were either 
for party advantage or through private spleen, could not 
withdraw tJ1('mselw.l
. IIence the Bun (( AU8culta fili." 
was preceded awl foHowed by the eyil rumor that Boni- 
face in
ane from amhition wished to dethrone Philip and 
make 11Ïmself King of France. 
James de :x ormans, Archdeacon of Narbonne, a notary 
and Papal Legate, a man of approved worth, brought the 
Bun into France, where Peter Flotte returned, the bearer 
of the pretended brief, and a spreader of' the blackest 
calumnies on the charaeter of Boniface. De Normans was 
commissioned to support by word of mouth that which 
the Bun had expressed. 'Ye know not where ITenry 

pon(lani 91 had learned that he bad a secret order from 
the Pope to dec1are the FrC'nch people ab
olved from their 
oath of allegiance to Philip, and that the kingdom de- 
volved to the Homan See, if Philip refusecl to conform to 
this BuH. This was perhaps a calumny of Flotte. The 
Legate then appeared hefore Philip, and explained to him 
the contents of the Bull, which are reduced to the follow- 
ing beads: that the Pope is superior to princes; it is clear 
from that which follows that Boniface spoke of spiritual 
dominion, since there is no word of temporal affairs, ex- 
cept thp hint at the deba
ement of the pul)Iic money and 
the oppression of the poor subjects; 92 that the king can- 
not without the permi8
ion of the Roman See take the 
l'f'VenlWS of vacant churches, and confer benefices; 93 that 


81 Spondani, n. 7. 
n Atque uti de mutatione monetae, aliisque gravaminibus, et injuriosis 
proces!'ibus, per te, ae tuos magnis ae parvis regni eju!':dem in colis 
irrogatis, Be habilis contra eos, quae proeessu temporis expli
ari poterunt, 
taceamus . . . . . . 
8B Quod in eccIC'f-iasticis di
nitatibus . . I. . Beneficiis . . . in 
. Á 



331 


HISTORY Q:F' POPE BONIFACE VIII, 


he should not take possession of the goods of the churches 
as fif'fs, and for that reason he cannot by right of fief 
summon clerics before his tribunal;!J4 that he should 
only with moderation make use of his right of (( 'rcgalia " 
over the revenues of vacant sees. 95 'Ye are not looking 
now at the modifications which the civil laws made on the 
rig-hts of the churches in later tÏInes; we are speaking of 
them as they \yel'e in the beginning of the XIVth century, 
as Boniface wished to maintain them and as they were 
recognizeù everywhere, even in France.!J6 But Philip and 
his 11linistel's and even BOSSlwt would not read in the 
Bull the sentiments of the Pope, but interpreted them 
according to their own liking. According to theln these 
defellces were only an insane effort of Boniface to make the 
kin
 of France a vassa1. 97 So wlwn ùe :Korlnans had ex- 
p1ained his legation and had read the Papal Bull, Philip 
and his courtiers aIl1azed at the í'xcessive requests of 
Boniface, showed thenlselves greatly disturbed. They 
haHtily entered into a consultation in which flattery ex- 
crted itself and they decided to convoke a parliament of 
1 he It(1)]f'H of the king(lom, the Ahbots, the rf'ligious 
ol..l('rH awl the Hl'('nhll' clel'g;y. In the IIH'antime Philip, 
who ('onl.1 not 1)(':11' the sight of that Bull, on Februar:,- 
11 tho 1302, 01'<1('1'('(1 it to 1Jc burned publiely in presence of 


cnria. vel extra . . R. Pontifex: summam, et potiorem obtincat potsta- 
tern: ad te tamen hujusmodi ecclesiarum digllitatum . . . bene- 
1ìciorum collatio, non potest quomodo libet pertinere, nee pertinent: nee 
per tuam collationcm, in ipsis, vel eorum aliquo, potest alieui jus acquiri, 
sinc auctoritat et conscnsu Ap. Sedis. 
94 rrelatos insurer, ct alias ecclesiasticas pcrsonas . . . etiam super 
rNsonalibus actionibus, juribus, et immobilibus bonis, quae a te non tcn- 
cntur in feudam ad tuum judicium protrahis, et eoarctas . . . licct 
in clericos et personas ecclesiasticas nulla sit laicis attributa potestas. 

5Yacalltium etiam regni Ecclesiraum redditus, et proventus, quos tu et 
tui appellatio Regalia, per azusum, tu ac ipsi tui non moderate pcrcipitis 
8è(1 imnwùcrate consumitio. 
06 Let tIle reader consult among the Italians, Bianchi; "The Power and 
PoliQ' of the Church," Book YI, sect. VI, Tom. II; and among the French, 
.Antonille Thomas: "The Power of the Church," chap. XIII. 
117 Tom. I, par. 2, lib. 7, cap. 24: Quas si valuissent, vel de regni regi- 
mine R. Pontifex Romae, rege sive absente sive praesente, decerneret, 
nempe re
naret Pontifex: ipse rex nudum nomen regis obtineret. Now 
who would bf'licve that Bossuet from the Bull "Ausculta" could have 
drawn this con:,;equence? 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 335 
al1 the nobility then in Paris, and aftel'wards the news of 
the act was pl'oclaimed by a public crier through the 
streets. It was the Count of Artois who having snatched 
the Bu]] frOIll the hands of the Legate, thl'cW it into the 
fire. IIistory records only two public burnings of Papal 
Buns. This one done by a French king, and the other h
y 
a friar, namely )Iartin Luther at '''ïttenl)('rg. Everyone 
knows the sad consequences which ensued from the sacre- 
lig-ious insolence of the fl'iar; and the reader may imagine 
what was in the minds of the people and French clergy as 
a result of this act of Philip.flB The Legate was banished, 
and the other I...egate tIle Bi
hop of Pamiers, waR allowed 
to depart with him. Guards were placed at the frontier, 
and Philip forbade any of the French clergy to go to 
Rome, and to send money out of the country. An those 

umlnoned to the memorable parliament nlet in the great 
('hurch of Kotre Dame at Paris on April 10th, 1302. The 
I(ing presided, and Peter Flotte arising forthwith spoke 
aR fol1ows in his nan1C: " A certain letter fronl the Pope 
"has been brought to us by the ArchbiRhop of Xarbonne, 
"which declares that we are subject to hiIn in the tenl- 
"pOl'al administration of this kingdom; and to him and 
"not to God alone, as has always hepn believed, do Wp 
"owe our crown." Th(,l1 snnnning np the cOlnplaints of 
the gOYf'l'nment against the Sovereign Pontiff, he con- 
dlJ(les: " fIe, the Pope, ainls at subjecting the King of 
,. France to thp power of the IIoly See; but this monarch 
"protests here before you all that he acknowledges no 
" 
upel'ior hut God alone; and he calls upon you, as your 
"friend and so,'ereig-n, to lend yonI' parnest co-operation 
" for the support of the ancient liberties of the nation and 
" of its cl1urch; and yon should return an open and quick 
"reply to these propositions."-The Barons and s
'ndicR 
of the communes ha,'ing retired to deliberate, soon re- 
turllC'd J'f'ady to do the I(ing's pleasure, and aR his nlost 
ob('l1ient servants, to give to him not only their fortunes 
hut alRo their lives, in assisting to resist the covetous 
Pope. The spiritual lords took a longer time to deliber- 
atp. ThpÏI' npcks were hound by an ugly haJtpr they were 
unahle to ullloo
e. Ohf'(liC'J)cE' to the I
ing- nwant rpbplIion 
to the Pope; rc.'fll
al to do tl)(
 win of tliP IGng woul{l 

 :n't 
8ó Ili:,l. <Iu DiITcr., Pl'. C8 au<l Ii!). 



33G HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
a furious conflagration which would be Injurious to the 
church of France for a long time. They returned to the 
King not with offerings, but with counsel anù admonitions, 
representing how the Pope did not think of offending the 
liberty of the kingdom and the dignity of the Prince; and 
how they should not endanger their necessary union with 
the Roman See. But Philip and with him all the Barons 
did not care to listen to more sermons, and they notified 
tho
e prelates that if they did not at once give a satisfac- 
tory answer, the clergy would be proclainled hostile to the 
King and to the 
tate. Then the prelates knowing they had 
to deal with Philip, and with a flock of enslaved barons, 
allowed it to be drawn from their lips, that either by 
reason of the fiefs they held, or by reason of loyalty to the 
lnng whkh was obligatory on all even the clerics they 
were all disposed by counsPl and every other aid to de- 
fend the King, in person and in dignity, and in the liberty 
of the realm; but they besought him to allow them to go 
to Rome, so as not to be wanting in obeùience to the Pope, 
who called th('I11. He answered this request with positive 
refusal. Such was the liberty of the Gallican church, for 
the defence of which Philip was willing to offer both his 
wealth, his life, his sons, his wife and we know not what 
else. 
The Barons reported the decisions of the assembly of 

 otre Dame to Boniface in a letter, which they addressed 
to the College of Cardinals. The clergy wrote directly to 
1 he Pope. The former wrote in the French language; and 
Fleury remarks that they did this in order to show even 
hy their words that their sentiments were French. They 
did nothing- hut repeat what the King had said in the 
a
sembly; they only adderl that the opinion of the Pope 
was deplorahle, ånd worthy of the times of Antichrist. 
They charged the cardinals to leave Philip in peace, that 
he nlight be ahle to fight the infidels in the Holy Land. 
Thirty-one lords, and the first men of the kingdom signed 
their names to the letter. The prelates themselves being 
astonished at the novelty of the doctrine of Boniface on 
the subjection of the l{:ing to the sovereign Pontiff in 
nlatters teInporal, besought him with tears to dispense 
them from the obligation of going to Rome, and repre- 
sented to him that censures would have little or no effect 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


337 


on Philip and his abettors, These letters, which suffici- 
ently manifest the shameful hnbecility of the clergy, were 
brought to the Pope by the three Bishops of Koyon, Con- 
stance and Bf'ziers. 99 Philip dispatched the Bishop of 
Auxerre to obtain from the Pope a postponement of the 
council. 100 This fact, which even Spondani relates al- 
though he quotes falsely the monk continuator of 
angis, 
published bJ Achel'Y, clearly shows us that another letter 
bearing the title of Philip to Boniface, in which that king 
descends to the ,ile
t abuse against Boniface, was purely 
the work of Flotte, tru]
y possessed ùy the devil. Although 
unfit to appeal' on the page of history, yet for the informa- 
tion of our readers we produce it. lOl "Philip, by the 
" grace of God, King of the French, Boniface, who giveth 
" himself out for sovercig'n Pontiff, little or no greeting. 
"Let thy ExtrPllle Fatuity know that we are subject to 
"no one in things telnporal, that the presentation of 
"churches and prebends that are vacant belongeth to us 
"by kingly right, and the revenues therefrom are ours: 
" that the presentations already nlade and to be made are 
"valid both now and hereafter, that we will firmly sup- 
" port the possessor
 of them, and that we hold as sense- 
"less and demented those who think otherwise." The 
French me
sengers, the bf'arpl's of these- lettprs, were re- 
ceived in full consi
toT'Y. The C'ardinal of Porto, Friar 
.John )Iinio of )lurro of the Friars :l\Iinor, arose and in the 
presence of the Pope and all the Cardinals addressed 
them, taking his text from Jeremias: "Lo, I have set 
"thee this day over the nations and over kingdoms, to 
" root up and to pull down, and to waste, and to destroy 


"Jordan, MS, Vat. n. 1960. 
100 Jordan: .. Rex quoque episcopum Antisidorensem mittit rogans ut 
suspenderet usque ad tempus magis postea opportunum." Rayn. 1302, 
n. II. 
101" Philippus Dei gratia Francorum Rex Bonifacio gerenti se pro summo 
pontifice, salutem modicam seu nullam, Sciat tua maxima fatuitas, in 
temporalibus nos alicui subesse. Ecclesiarum ac praebendarum vacantium 
collationem ad nos jure Regio pertinere, fructus earum nos tros facere: 
collationes a nobis factas, et faciendas fore validas in proeteritum et 
futurum, et earum posses:,>ores contra omnes virliter nos tueri: secuq 
autem credentes fatuos et dementes reputamus. Datum ParisHs, et('." 
bee Page Brev. Rom. Pont. ;3, page 53f)' Alsu it i:,> related in l'IIistoirf' 
du Diff. 



338 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
" and to build, and to plant. "-" How truly applicable to 
"Peter and his successors are those divinely rev('aled 
"words of the Prophet, that he was placed over all to 
"destroy and to build up, just as one deputed for the 
" degradation of the wicked and the exaltation of the good. 
"There has arisen a quarrel between the Pope and the 
"Roman Church on one side, and the King of France and 
"his ministers on the other, which in truly slight and 
"tridal causes had its origin. But if the causes of the 
"irritation were slight, most serious were those which 
"nlOyed the Papal u1Ïnd to resort to remedies. A long 
"and serious coulplaint had been made to the Pontiff in 
"relation to the disturbed state of affairs in the French 
" king-dom, and of the oppression of the churches, There- 
" fore a private letter ,vas written with the consent of the 
"Pope and the Cardinals, which was read and reread 
"often, pondered and considered in fun Consistory, and 
" was full of charity and sweetness, and kind admonitions 
" to the King. Some went about declaring that in it was 
"containf'd that judgment that the I{:ing owes the crown 
" he wears to the Church, whereas there was not a syna- 
"ble of this either in that letter, or on the lips of the 
"Pope or the Cardinals. The source whence a certain 
"other letter came addressed to the King iR unknown; 
"but let it be known positively that it was the work 
" neither of the Pope nor the Cardinals. Philip is an hon- 
"est and Catholic Prince, but it is to be feared that he 
" is surrounded by evil advisers. 'Yhy did the I{:ing take 
,,
o nluch to heart the calling of the French prelates to 
" llOlne for consultation on most serious matters? It was 
"not the summons of strangers, of rivals or of enemies, 
" but of friends and Rervants, certainly most jealous of his 
"honor, and of all the king-donl. To be called in fine to 
" Home was not to he called to the extreme limits of the 
"('al'th, nor to dwell there eterna]]y, but return after 
" transacting busineRs. "'Thy did Philip show himself RO 
" hadly diRposed to the pleasure of the Church in the mat- 
" tel' of confprJ'Ïng prehpll(ls? The right of patronage and 
"prPRPntation is admitted, but the bestowal and enjoy- 
" Jlwnt of tbpm witùout ParmI approval difl not hpIong to 
" a layulan. Philip claims the right by prescription. TIut 
" this docs not e
ist DOl' does he prove he possesses it, as 



I1ISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 339 
"he m;ked the Pope for the priviJege of that which he 
"now said was prescribeù. For he who has possession 
" of a thing of right, does not ask a privilege. The Pon- 
" tiff has the fullness of power, inheriting it frolH Christ, 
" is a truth that is to be witnesspd to even b
y blood; and 
" for this reason not only does he become judge in spiri- 
"tual things, but also in temporal things whenevel' there 
"enters the question of sin." Boniface him
elf tIwn fol- 
lowed with a discourse, in which he displa;ved 
llch Rweet- 
ness of manner, such cogent reasoning, and such n1Ïldness 
of temper, that it is really a wonder, when we con Rider 
whom the legates represented, and the object of their mis- 
sion. 
\t first he recalled that holy bond by which France 
truly could be said to have been wedded to the Roman See 
in the baptism of Clovis, and how on the observance of 
those espousals, according to St. Remigius, thf' whole pros- 
perity of the kingùom and the king depended. This fact hp 
had called to the attention of Philip, while he was a 
legate in France, and this relnembrance Philip acknowl- 
edged -with pl(>aRure and gratitude. A man of pprdition, 
Peter Flotte, with his satellites the Counts of Artois, and 
of St. Paul, in the worst spirit tried to sever this solemn 
union, by so urging Philip to the most desperate project!ò!, 
'Yhile the College of Cardinals were considering maturely 
the Papal letters to Philip, Flotte had forged another, 
which he presented to the I{:ing, in the beginning of which 
he had inserted that it was the intention of the Pope to 
Inake him a Papal va
sal. The Pope incensed at these 
indignities, continued in a spirited manner: "During 
" forty years we have studied Jaw, and hay{> It'arnerl that 
" on earth two powers, the temporal and the spiritual bave 
" heen ordained by God. 'Yho can bplieve that such fool- 
"ishneRs can havp entf'rprl into our mind to unÏtp in the 
" Pontiff OIlP supreme power? But on the other hand who 
"can in nlattpl'S of sin? And coming to the question of 
"the conferring of benefices, we have often de" lared to 
"the messengers of the I{ing that it is our wish, for his 
" 
piritual good that he do licitly that which he had done 
"illicitly, being most ready to gratify his every wish; 
"for it is cprtain that the Canons forbid benefices to he 
" confprred by a layman, as if he were inveRted with spiri- 
" tual powpr. ",Ye have concederl to the King thp power to 



340 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
" confer one canonry in each church of the kingdom; and 
"to dispose of all the prebends in the church of Paris, 
"provided they be conferred on Doctors of Divinity, or 
"Law, or any other ecclesiastics distinguished for learn- 
"ing. . . . . . . . 'Ye desire nothing more than peace and 
"fl"Ïendship with the I{ing, as we have always haJ an 
" affection for France, insonluch that we were considered 
" more French than ItaJian. But if then Philip does not 
"retrace his step
, and allow the prelates to conle, it is 
"our duty not to al10w the affair to go unpunished." 102 
The doctrine which the Cardinal of Porto and the Pope 
expressed in full consistory, was confided to letters which 
were to be carried to France by the Bishop Legates. The 
Cardinals replied to the nobles, the Pope to the ßishops.103 
Now if from the Bull U A'IJscl.llta filit the King and his 
followers had apprehended the excessive amùition of 
Boniface of wanting to rule France in temporal affairs, 
those discourses and those letters which expressed the 
contrary, should have removed all suspicion of such from 
their minds. But Philip and his nlini
ters renewed their 
as
ertions ani! their complaint
; very evident proofs that 
these loud lamentations were only tactics and a pretext 
with which they covered themselves that they lnight act 
according to their own will in the things which concerned 
the authority purely spiritual of the Pope. Here it is 
necessary to enlighten the reader on a point without which 
the subsequent acts of Boniface might appear in contra- 
diction with the language we previously reported, especi- 
ally when he will have hearù him speak, in full consistory 
and in another Bull, of the dual power in the Pope and the 
subjection of kings to the latter. 
Boniface and the cardinals with him declared that they 
had nothing to do with the temporal affairs of the French 
kingdom, but that the King was subject to the Pope in 
matters of sin. ""e do not wish to enter into a discussion 
of that question of the Papal and royal powerl:', debated 
hetween the partisans of the Pope and the satellites of 
the King, hoth hecause the tinles have changed, and be- 
cause we do not believe that the palm of martyrdom is 
held in re
erve for hil:'torians who defend old truths, even 
if indeed truth can grow olù. But we ought and we will 
l021\1S. Vittorino. Spondani, fol. 82, 84. 101 Rist. du Diff. p. G5. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 3-11 
explain the terms in order that the reader may knoW' what 
happened between Boniface and Philip; and that briefly 
and simply, that it may be understood by all. It was the 
common and accepted opinion in the time of Boniface and 
even now-a-days, it is believed that every faithful Chris- 
tian was subject in spiritual things to the Vicar of Christ. 
Prince or PleLeian if he desired to be a Catholic, should 
relnain thus subjected. But from this truth, it did not 
follow that the Prince, or the father of a family should 
leave to the Pope the affairs of the kingdom 01' of the 
home; (nor would the Popes have had the desire or lei- 
sure to attend to these) ; however, it did fonow that when- 
ever they departed from the evangelical law they becalne 
subject to the decision, the admonitions and the punish- 
nlentl'ì of the Pope, and should Lear them patiently. There- 
fore the recognized Papal authority, and human peccabiJity 
were the basis of the truth; that the Pope was superior to 
everyone, who wished to be a Catholic. And since the 
dogma is unchangeable and this world will never Le free 
from this cursed proneness to sin, it necessarily followed 
that this supremacy should be perpetual and unchange- 
able. From this it is evident that inasmuch as not all 
sins, or violations of the evangelical laws, are purely 
spiritual, but sonle are concerned with material things, 
the Pope who is the judge of them, indirectly touched the 
object of the sinner's disorder. Thus for example, to a 
robLeI' he did not only say, "you have acted wickedly in 
"stealing," but he further added, "restore the booty." 
Thus in short he judged the sin and indirectly the object 
of the sin. This is the reason why a Prince in those timcs 
wanting to be a Catholic, was subjected to the Pope not 
only in things purely spiritual Lut also Juaterial, when 
these lattcr were the oLjeet of his sin. So if one placp 
himself in thc position, for example as Phi1ip, of falsify- 
ing the puhlic Jnoney, of shedding the blood of his suh- 
jects, and waging an unjust war, he should not l'cspnt the 
voicc of the Pope, if he should say at first" you have done 
"evil, return the good; hecausp you are a counterfciter 
"and unjust," and then indirectly: "withdraw froIn cir- 
culation that counterfeit money, restol'e the property of 
others; do not slwd the blood of your ppople, whi('h does 
not belong to you. And this is ho" the Pontiff exercised 



342 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


over the King and kingdoms not a direct, Imt also an in- 
direct supl'elnacy. All Catholics in the 3Iiddle Ages 
thought thus, and in the same luanner that the species is 
formed frOIll the individuals, and the genus from the 

1)Peie
, so froln the unanÏ1nous con
ent of aU the individ- 
uals was formed a g'pueral opinion, which became the 
})ub1ic law, by which the POpl:' not only judged Pl'incp!': 
in tpmporal affairs by reason of sin, hut al
o judgpfl thpm 
wùen rpqupsted to do 
o as a civil magistrate. In thosp 
tinlPs lw who {lid not wisll to acknowledge this jwlgpsbip. 
tl11'PW off at one toss also the evangelical yoke. 'Yhprefore 
he who wished to be a f1atbo1ic, and would not accppt in 
this fulness the Papal supremacy, was in oppn contradic- 
tion with hÏ1nself and was guilty of two sins, one against 
faith and one against reason. Thus Philip the Fair, who 
ahove all wanted to be considered very Cll1'istian, was 
IPH8 than a Christian, and less than reasonahle, when he 
refused to subnlit to the Pope. On thp contrary, we citp 
this fact for greater clparness, Henry VIII of England 
sinned only against faith and not against reason. For 
lmying changed the principles, he had all latitude to 
change the consequences. TIe said: "I am the Pope" 
(that was the principle). "That which is the more pleas- 
ing to me to do, will be right," (this was the conseqnence.) 

Ien have always dehated between the admission of a 
principle and the rejection of the consequences, Juaking 
always, by a sad vicissitude, a failure of one or the other. 
rp to the XVlth century the failure had been in tlw couse- 
(}uences, and principles were betrayed, though aflmittefl; 
and these anOlnalies, or injuries to lllllnan reason, were 
infected with her('sy, because they had occurred in matters 
of religion. In the XYlth century when :l\Iartill Luther 
preached reform, reason tired of the struggles, of these con- 
tT'adictions, overturned the principles; the consequences 
were logical, the here
ies were unalloyed, Imt not guilty 
of an abuse of reason. In which of these two states do 
we find ourselves now-a-days? We will not say, because 
the mission of a historian is to narrate past, not present 
events. "r e hope the learned will willingly he iu(lulgent 
to the simplicity of our rp3soning, when they con
idel" 
that it is not written by a doctor of laws, and that many: 
win not be such who read these pages. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. R!3 
This, however, will suffice to throw a little Jight on the 
object of the cuntroyt>l'
y between Philip and Boni- 
face. But we will not without comlnent, pa

 ovpr tLo!':p 
prelates of the parliament of Senlis, who Wf're HO weak 
and cowardly as to l('t thems('lves he vanqui!':lled hy Philip. 
It is necessary for them to apppar heforf' us, in order that 
their conduct with regard to the Pope in tllis controyPl'!':Y 
may be shown aright. If the things previously statpd arp 
true, as they seem to us to b(', it follows that the body of 
bishops and other clerics in those times should have held 
themselves as a most solid wall to defend not only the 
direct authority of the Pope, but al
o the indirect, as the 
latter is the legitimate and necessary con
ef(llPnCe of tlw 
former. 104 And since they form a body 80 long as they 
are joined to the head, it is evident, that in giving aid to 
him who attempts the moral life of the head, is to attpmpt 
their own lifp. "'Yc are 1110St devoted sons of the noman 
Pontiff," said they, "and most faithful subjects of 
"Philip." These were futile words. Filial devotion to 
the Pope had been destroyed at once hy their suhnlission 
to Philip, not as a Prince, but as an enemy of the Papal 
supremacy. Their weak virtue did not bind thenl very 
strongly to the Pope, anù they were wavering hetwecn 
him and Philip. Obliged to dpcide they pl'cfprl'ed to throw 
themselves into the arlllS of Philip, rather than on the 
bosom of their head, becam;;e that wavering on their part 
was already a separation from the Pope. They saw after- 
wards the need of ju!':tifying their action by proclaiming 
Philip a most patient Prince, Philip who had dc>prin>d 
thpm of tlwir sacred patI'illlonie
, who would not even 
allow them to repair to Rome, and who caused them to 
cry out in desperation; and aftprwards they represented 
Boniface m
 an alubitious persecutor, who, as they wpll 
knpw took action only to hold in the path of duty thpir 
criminal henpfactor. 
But this was not dpcisive, it left thpnl still wavering, 
as the Prince was not their natural hea(l in the pxerci!':p 
of their priestly power, and so a strange member they 


106 By direct power the author means that which Jesus Christ has given 
to the Church over consciences: and by the indirect power, that which 
flow
 from this power purely divine, in its rplation with temporal things. 
(Note of the translator.) 



344 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
could not receive from him the fooù of life, hut rather an 
iInpu]se to death. Thus they remained in bad odor with 
the POpE', and unfriendly with the King. Lpft in su('h a 
manner dismembered, they should then provide for them- 
selves the means to exercise their power. "Thence deri,p 
the power? Not from the Pope whom they accused of 
boundless pretensions, but rather frOln the Prince whoni 
they considered their protector, whilst he drove them to 
extreme!';, when he compelled then1 to desert the Pope. 
Then it was they sought the royal privileges and pur- 
chased them with that liberty, which is the life of the 
power and which naturally flowed to them frOll1 the Pope. 
Therefore enslaved, they called themsel,es free; and in 
that slavery they scattered the seeds of that later lihert;v, 
called Gallican. A striking proof that what are callec1 
privileges of a particular church to liherate it f1'0111 the 
Ronlan, and to exempt it from the dependence in which 
the others are in relation to the mother and Jnistress of 
churches, are not privileges at all but fatal occasions of 
severing the salutary bond of unity. One God, oup 
Church, one is the obligation of adhesion to the super- 
natural truth, before which all are equal. In discussing 
these things we wish to remark that if Philip a Catholic 
committed a grave offence against human reason by re- 
jecting the indirect power of the Pope over him as a secu- 
lar prince, the French clergy transgressed much more 
grievously by their shameful surrender to court influence. 
\Ye speak not of the consequences, because all know them 
and because it is dangerous to touch upon theln. In those 
times there were very many, and even Frenchmen who 
defended this lloman doctrine, among whom we finil Hugh 
of St. Yictor,105 St. Thomas,to6 St. llonavellture,t07 and 
Durandus. 108 :Moreover that ardent debater. Friar JO]ln 
of Paris, of the Order of Preachers, in the work" De Hr- 
[Jia potp,c.:tate rt Papali/' in which he defends Philip, g-ives 
utterance to a certain opinion, which, if Boniface had ex- 
pressed it, would have aroused a storm. 109 But among a11 


105 Book 2, part 2, chap. 4. 106 In fine 2 Senten. 
1117 De Eccles. Hierarch. Part. 2, cap. I. 108 De Origine Jurisd. Quest. 5. 
109 "Papa vero. qui est supermum Caput non solum clericorum, sed et 
genera liter omnium fidelium, ut fideles sunt, tanquam informntor fidei et 
morum; in quo casu omnia bona fidelium sunt communia, et communi- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


345 


these special mention should be made of Blessed Egidius 
Colonna, who educated in the wisdom of St. Thomas of 
Aquin, was a singular defender of Boniface in his con- 
troversy with Philip the Fair. IIe was born in Rome in 
1247, or thereabouts, and being a member of that powerful 
Colonna family, we may know if he had any love for 
Boniface. At first he studied the sciences in his own 
country, then having entered the Augustinian order, he 
was sent to Paris in 1269 to prosecute his studies. He 
had as teacher 81. Thomas of Aquin, whose doctrine he 
afterwards defended again
t ",Yïlliam de :l\Iora, a Friar 

Iinor of Oxford. Crevier 110 m
serts that Egidius became 
the most famous doctor of his time in Paris. In fact ac- 
cording to the cu
tom then prevailing, he was called hy 
the splendid surnames of Prince of Theologians,111 the 
l\Iost Profound Doctor. 1l2 He wa
 appointed tutor to 
Philip the Fair, to whon1 he dedicated his treatis
, (( De 
Regimine Principllm," 113 a work different from that at- 
tributed to St. Thomas. From the education he received, 
according to Crevier, Philip derived his love for learn- 
ing. 114 'Yhen after having bepn anointed as king at 
Rheims, Philip was entering Paris, Egidius met him and 
paid homage to him in a eulogistic speech. 115 This made 
him very dear to the King. But perhaps he was even 
dearer to Pope Boniface, in whose favor he wrote the 
treatise U De Renunciatione Papae," when owing to the 
singular renunciation of St. Peter Celestine, many were 
undecided in relation to the If'gitimacy of thf' Papacy of 


canda, etiam calices Ecclesiarum; habet bona exteriora fideIium dispen- 
sare, et exponenda decernere, prout expedit necessitati communi fideL" 
Chap. 7. And chap. 14; "Si princeps esset haereticus et incorrigibilis, et 
contemptor ecclesiasticae censurae, posset Papa aliquod facere in populo, 
ut privaretur ilJe seculari honore, et deponeretur a populo. Et boc 
faceret Papa in crimine Eccle
iastico, cujus cognitio ad ipsum pertinet, 
excommunicando, scilicet orones qui ei ut Domino obedirent." See Ordin. 
de Script. Eccl. 75, page 635. 
110 History of the University of Paris, Tom. 2, page 106. 
nl Cave. Saec. Scholast. Sol. 658. 
112 Labbe, de Script. Eccles. Tom. I, page 13. 
118 Tiraboschi. Hist. of Literature. St. 74, page 114. See Oudin. de 
Script. EccI. Seculo XII!., CoI. 139. 
m Crevier. History of University of Paris, Tom. 2, page 113. 
1111 GaIIia Christiana, Tom. 2, page 76. 



346 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
Boniface. As a rewarù for this he was created Arch- 
hiRhop of Bourges. A man of austere habits, he waR ('on- 
sidered a saint, being always styled Blessed; anù he was 
teJuperate in action in those stormy times. For we find 
that besides the afoI'psaid proofs of his love for Philip, he 
lweI manifested his bpnevolence in two synods hy con- 
c('ding to him the ecelesiaRtical tithes. U6 On tIle other 
hand, the terrible quarrel having broken out, he wrote un 
the royal and papal power, deciding in favor of Uonifaec 
against Philip. This opinion was not to be despisf'd inas- 
much as he was a man dear to the two rivals, anfl he was 
well acquainterl with the things he saw. 'Ye hayp sah1 the 
things he saw, but he never felt them. For hy reason of 
tithes and taxes his income was so reduceù, that from 
being a very rich prelate, he was obliged for the necessi- 
ties of life to serve as a simple canon in the Order, in 
order to receÏ\'e a portion of the daiJy distrilmtionK The 
continuator of N angis asserts that it was the Pope who 
had so cruelly appropriated the patrimony of the ..\rch- 
bishop of Bourges,117 Unfriendly to the Popes the writers 
of the U Gallia Christiana J' seenl to accept this opinion. us 
lIe died at A vignon in 1316, and was buried in the church 
of his Augustinians in Paris. 119 The opinions favorable 
to the doctrine of Boniface, as we have shown, which 
caused so much comJl1otion in France, were not a scandal 
to other Catholic churches of Christendom, but were re- 
ceived as sacred. If we call to mind the provincial coun- 
cils held at that time, we find scarcely any that did not 
establish some canon affecting the ecclesiastical immuni- 
ties in the same manner as they were regarded by Boni- 
face. The English Church was a splendid exanlple of 
what we here assert. 'Ye have seen with what reverence 
the constitution" Clericis " was welcomed; and with what 
great solemnity and vigor, the illustrious Robert, Arch- 
bishop of Canterbury and Primate of England, set about 
to promulgate it. 
ow whilst the parliaments in Franc(\ 
were acting against tIle Pope, Rohert was ever the more 
fortifying himself against Edward, taking refuge behind 
the Papal authority, the only bulwark of liberty for the 


116 GaUia Christiana, Tom. 2, col. 77. 
m Spicil. Archery, Tom. 2, page 620. 
110 See note at end. 


118 The same place, 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 347 
churches against the assaults of laymen. He did not 
repair to the rOJal court to defend himself against an 
imaginary Roman supremacy. ,Guided by the same pru- 
(Ience and by the sallle views, his predecessors, and par- 
ticularly the noblf' Stephen Langton had obtained frOlll 
J(ing John for the English people the famous )Iagna 
Charta, the foundation of their common rights. So that 
the immunitif's of the Church were ever the parent of thosp 
of the proplf'. Htephen with invincible conrage had fought 
for the liberty of the clergy, and for this reason he also 
with the same energy directed and led that warlike band 
of Barons, known as tIle League of God and of the Holy 
Chureh. He tl'Ïllluphrd in the sanctuary. and he tri- 
umphf'd on the field; and fron1 the trelnbling hands of King 
John the 3Iagna Charta fell into the hands of Stephen. 
The rig'hts of the English people were established by this; 
but the first articles of tlw agreement were an acknowl- 
edgmrnt of the inviolability of tlw rights of the Church. 

\J1d when this was confirmed in fnll parlian1ent in the 
palace at ,,? estminster hy Henry III, the king who swore 
to keep it as a man, a f1hristian, a knight and a king, more 
than hy the arms of the Barons was he intimidated and 
frightenf'd hy the artion of the bishops undf'r the leader- 

hip of Langton, who extinguished anò threw on the 
groun(1 the lighted candles they bore to indicate thereby 
thf' malp(1Ïctions they pronounced against the violators 
of the Charta, caIling down upon them the darkness and 
confusion of Hell. Thus while the people obtained their 
l"Ïghts through a victory of the Church, the latter enclosed 
and strengthened herself within these rights. And the 
ambitions of Rome only tpnded to compel the Prince to re- 
spect the rights of his subjects and the Church. That e(Ii- 
fice of EngIi:-;h rights, so venerable and so admirable, rested 
in the hands (}f those bishops, who anointed by the God 
of jUF::ti('e, had for a long timp exerted themselves in de- 
fpnding it. ""e (10 not finù that the shameful imbecilitv 
of tll(' Frpnch f.lprgy in subjecting thenu.;elves to PhiliÌ) 
produced any (1harta for the ppople, unlt'ss we would 
ad
nowh'dg:(' a
 a worthy fruit of sH('h a plant, that lib- 
('i't.r whi<'h is ('a1Jpd <1al1if'an. 
Xot lp:-;s ,.ig:Ol.OHS was t ht' Íl'mppr3111Pnt of tlw Rpanish 
clergy ill tllO
e timcs. They stood firlU a
 a wall against 



3:18 


..,; 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


8ecuJar tyranny, and with brea
ts of bronze defended their 
liberty. "Te read that precisely in the year 1302 Egidius, 
.Arch bishop of Toledo, convened the Synod of Pennafield, 
in which the bishops clamored loudly for the Í1nmunities 
of the ('h111'ch(,8, and this was nothing else but an echo of 
the yoice of Boniface. Canon XIII of this Synod is very 
(,leal' and expre
RiYe. It eRtabJished and conunanded that 
if anyone eyen of l'oyal birth violated the imlnunities of 
the churches, the bishops and the dioceses in which it hap- 
pened, were to notify theln to desist, and if they refused, 
their lands were to be interdicted. And as those bishops 
were in earnest, they proceeded against persons of high 
degree with apostolic firn1ness, mentioning by name 
Renr
v, son of the illustrious Ferdinand, King of Castile 
and Leon, and also a certain Princess Infanta of Portu- 
gal, cOlnmanding them to restore that which they had 
wickedly usurped from the churches of Toledo, Segovia, 
Lagunto, anfl Concha. 120 In the affairs of the Church of 
France, that evil which more than any other to be de- 
plored. was a certain cowardly feeling occasioned by the 
fear of the roy-al power, that is to say, the most pitiful 
consequence of the death of liberty and the triumph of 
120 Item ('a quae Dh-ini juris saecubri non subjaceant potestati et non- 
nulli potE'ntps, nescimus quo ducti spiritu, yel odii fomitE', vel cupiditatis 
radice. Ecclesias infringerE', et earum libertates, et privilegia imminuere 
mo1iuntur, eis earum lib(>rtates, et onera gravia imponendo, proinde nos, 
qui ex ofBpii nostri debito, bnquam murum pro domo Israel opponere nos 
dehpmns, hujnsmodi excessibus, quantum cum Deo possumus, resistere 
cupi(>ntp<; : statuimus, et ordinamus, ut si Regina fuerit, quae facere 
accpptaverit (forte attemptaverit vel prandia in debita exegerit, vel fi1ii 
Regum: Episcopus, in cujus Diocesi atentare vel etiam perpetrari contig- 
erit pis penitus dcnunciet, ut satisfaciant de commisso: et si requisiti 
satisfacere noluerint infra mensem, juxta modum, et qualitatem culpae, 
"pI damni dati, cujus aeitimatio Diocesani arbitrio relinquatur, prout 
viderit expedire, terra eorum, si qua in sua Dioecesi habuerint. Eccle- 
siastico subjaceat inter dicto . . . . . Verum quia quia Domini 
Henrici fil1i illustristrissimi domini Ferdinandi quondam Regis Castellae, 
et Legionis, qui ab Ecclesia Tolestana Passadicilam, et ab Ecclesia Sego- 
biensi Riacamaldeas indebite detinet occupatas, nee non et Episcopa Se- 
guntino quaedam mobilis postquam fuit de co provisum Seguntinae Ecc1E'siae 
usurpayit, excessus est notorius; statuimus, et ordinamus, ut nominatim 
requiratur, quor praedicta loca restituat-Seguntino Episcopo satisfaciat 
de abIatis. Idem penitus statuentes de Infantissa Portugal1iae super 
restitutione poenarum de Viana C'onchensi Ecclesiae facienda." Aguir 
COIlC. IIisp. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


3:l!) 


tyranny. 'Ve have said that Boniface wanted to hold 
thf" Council in Rome, and he did hol(1 it. Philip feared 
this 1l101'e than censures. He knew full wpll that those 
prelates, who had been inclined towards him, if for how- 
('vel' 
hort a time they would have left France, and breathed 
the air of Rome, their courage would be re\"Ïved, and they 
woulrl acknowledge their unbecoming weaknes
, and feel- 
ing a
bamed of themselves, would give a final blow to hi
 
projects. Spondani does not believe that Boniface held 
the Council; but there is no doubt of it, as the anonymous 
author of the life of Boniface 121 affirms it, and nlention 
of this Council is founù in the great collection of )Ianf'i/ 22 
and it was held on the 30th of October. It seems to be 
true that not :;;;0 many Frenchnlen attended as this anony- 
BIOUS writer would Lave us believe. He 
ays that the 
f'1ounril was held in the presence of tlle prelates of the 
French kingdOln, and of all the Freueh Doctors of Divin- 
ity and of Law. Philip had earpfu11y phH'ed 
afe harriers 
on a 11 the roads leading to Rome, and all tllOse Doctors 
('ould not, nor do we believp would they carp to, e:;;;cape 
froln France at thf'ir own peril. It is probahle that when 
the author declarerl that the Council wa
 held in presence 
of prelate:;;;, he referred to the presence of the Frencll 
legates in the consistory who listened to the discourses of 
the Cardinal of Porto and of the Pope. Oreat was the 
lnoderation of Boniface in this Synod. There were no 
censures, and not even was Philip named in the fanlous 
(.onstitution .. Ullam Sanctam ," whieh was the work of 
this Council. ::\IoreovPl" this sanle anonymous author of 
t he life of this POpf' had wonder(>d, writing: figuratively, 
how amidst :;;;0 mueh lightning again
t the I{ing, thl'l'p (Url 
not follow 
howPl'S; 123 and ll.H'mml'es were not taken even 
again
t gl'cat IH't'lates of tlw kill
(loll1, lnh,takpn through 
love for their own interest, and solicitors only for them- 
selvps for the time heing. 
The f'ollstitution which begins" Una1}l 
c:::(( 11 ('to 111 ," eman- 
ated from this Council. In this Boniface ùid nothing 


m Auctor vitae Bonif. Raynalùus, year 13G2, 12. 
m CoHee. ConcH. Tom, 2f>, page 97. 
123" Ibi corruscationibus muItis praeviis contra Regem, nulla pulvia 
apparuit subsecuta; dpfeceruntque sibi Praelati rnagni in regno, quaerC'ntcs 
<Iuae sua sunt, et sibil ipsis ad tcmrus tantummoùo consulcntes."- 



3:>0 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
more than repeat that which he had heretofore said in 
his Papal docunlents and in presence of the French leg- 
ates. But since in that violent cOll1mand given to the 
Bishops, in whieh Philip forbids them to repair to Rome, 
and for this reason to conlmnnÏcate with the Pontiff, he 
openly offended his ministry, Boniface more openly treats 
of the Papal power. and its complete independence. H
 
says, that the Chureh is one; that it fornls one mystical 
body; that it can have 1mt one head; the head is Christ, 
through him Peter, and his successors, n
unely the PopeR, 
and this iR of faith. That there are two powers in thp 
Church, the spiritual and the tenlporal, figured by thosp 
two swo1'(ls, which the ApoRtles preRented to Christ, saying 
to Rim: ,. Behold, here are two swords," the material swo1'(1 
to be uRed for the Church, and the Rpiritual sword by the 
Church; the second in the hand of the priest, and the 
firRt in the hand of the king, but according to the order 
and direction of the Pope. Hence the lnaterial is subject 
to the spiritual, and the spiritual power teachelb and 
guides the temporal. He concludes by defining, that it is 
neceRsary to Lelien" in order to he saved that every crea- 
ture nlu
t be subjpct to the Pontiff. IN 
"'e do not helipve that ever in tllP world anything 
cau
p(l sueh contl'OVerHY, and arouspù snch great and 
lasting commotion, as did tl('sP words of Boniface. The 
('onrtiers and the theologians of the time of Philip wpre 
aroused, and this is not I11nch to be wondered at. But 
when in after tÍInes XataIÏs Alexander, Fleury and Ros- 
supt, the famous bishop of )leaux, and so many otherR, 
so unreaRonably have raised a diaholical disturhance in 
the time of the most ChriRtian LouiR XIV, the reader can 
easily perceive that nnder the garb of a zeal for the lih- 
erty of particular churches, of a desire to restrain Ponti- 
fical ambitions, there must be hidden some reason, which 
evidently did not depend on times or circllnlstances, but 
exiRted absolutely in the minds of the disturbers; and 
thpy tlwmselves either did not know the final consequences 
of tlwir thporips, or else tlll'Y wished to conceal thenl. TVe 
win Rtatp hripfly what this rpaRon was. It was their re- 
})ngnancf' to tlw ah
olntc> 1ll00WTThy of tlH
 Church, and tlw 
foo1i:.;h Ï(](>a of t('mpp]'ing: it eithC']. hy a f'oTIHiHtol'ial a1"Ïs- 
12
 
ee document J at enù of work. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII, 3=>1 
tocracy, or worse, by royal authority. If we would not 
wish to penetrate the labyrinth of opinions concerning 
the dual power, of which Boniface speaks, the task woul<1 
he wearisome to Dle and of little service to the reader, and 
not worth the tiIne whkh is so precious. But we have 
come at length to the time of proeeeding to a considera- 
tion of the canses of the great controversies, and of leav- 
ing aside witb tJle grf'atest respect the two bodies of con- 
ten(ling canonistso 
 ataJis Alexander especial1y sunl- 
moned aronnfl hinl a host of writers, who were of his 
opinion, and with the snperci1ions tone of a pedant de- 
manded their opinion of the dual power, which hf' belif'w'<1 
was fabricated by Boniface. They all replied that it is 
an impertinence; it never existed, and is an e
cessiveness 
of sovereignty on the part of Pope Boniface; and so he 
triumphs. Even the partisans of the Pope or rather those 
who, adoptin
 thp principles, do not wish to resist the 
consequences engendered thereby, speID to us to have 
prred in thPir nlanner of dpfence. They also gather cham- 
pions who agree with thpnl and thf'Y triumph. But it is 
stiU undecidf'fl whieh of tl1ese two parties gained the 
victory. 
lany stn] continne to clamor, terming Boni- 
face a rascal, and very fpw consi(ler him honest ancI justo 
fIowever whi1st thp (1aUicans, Iik(' Xatalis Al<:>xand<:>l', 
aJ>p consuming tim<:> in enumerating how many writers of 
t lIe University of Paris coincide with them, and whether 
Boniface had Inade a right or wrong usp of Scriptural 
passages, we shall treat tbe reader to a short and simple 
consideration which touches the ypry heart of the ques- 
tion. and not of men who are engaged in quarrelling with 
onp another. 
In this constitntion Boniface had rpmindr<1 Philip of 
thf' doctrine as old as the Catl101Ïc Chul'eb, nanwly that 
the Pop<' is snp<'I'iol' to lay Princes 1.y rca:-:on of !':in. "... p 
han' (
xplainc(l tll<' !':('n
(' an(] t1'uth of tlH'RC wor(]
. 1\0'" 
in thp Con
titnti()n C( ('}lain F{rlllf"fam .. lw t1'ac('s this <10('- 
frillP to tllP prindpl<, f1'om whi('h it is d('rÏvp(], by d<'Íining 
hat tll<'r(
 m o (' t,,'o quite distinct pOWl'l'S on p:l1,th, tlw 

pi1"Ïtl1a] a])(l t hp tpmpol'al, and tlle lattel' i
 al'rang;('d awl 
litop(,t('(l hy tlJ(' fmompl'. If this hp nut ae1mitt.'d, Donif:Hop 
h'.'ielpcl, 1 h('}'p wa
 nothing ('I
(' to do but how th(' ])(':1(1 
l1ul adopt tll<' 
ralli<-hè.lf'an phantasy of two pl'Ïndples. 



352 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
Noone is ignorant that there is one God, one power, one 
order. Power and order a1l10ng men are derived from 
God, to be multiplied accidentally, but remaining one and 
ab
olute by nature. If there is a great nun1ber of beings 
outside of God, these should be reunited by the bond of 
subordination, as is evident fron1 the natural order of 
things, which ascend to God by a succession of depend- 
ence and empire. A similar law presides over the moral 
order. Hence tracing all the various powers to their own 
peculiar sources, we shall find the spiritual and temporal 
powers supreme moderators of Catholic Christian society. 
The question arises to which belongs the office of ruling 
over the other, both not being able to exist independent. 
The spiritual power is adjusted to an infallible and eternal 
legislation, and to a head or determined master. There- 
fore both by the law of which it is the custodian, and 
through the person who is invested with it, this power 
comes immediately fron1 God; there being nothing human 
in it save the infirmity of hin1 who exercises it, as a Pope 
is not transforn1ed into a God. The temporal power then 
is established with a view to a temporary and fallible 
legislation, owing to a diversity of times and of men, and 
with a view to an undetermined master. Therefore the 
temporal comes immediately from God, mediately as to 
its forms. So if it is necessary to a civil Catholic society 
that there should be a governing power, it is not however 
necessary that by the immediate will of God this power 
should be placed in the hands of an aristocracy or of a 
n1onarch. This determination comes from men, and hence 
is changeable like the civil laws, fallible and not per- 
petual. On the contrary the spiritual power immediately 
both in its substance and in its form comes froln God; as 
it is not the office of men to determine into whose hands 
it should be placed. The Bishop of Rome, as the successor 
of St. Peter, is chosen by God to exercise it. He shall be 
a perpetual, unchangeable minister of it, just as the law, 
of which he lIas been designated custodian and master, 
is perpetual, unchangeable and infallible. Hence the 
Pope alone is rightly called the Vicar of Christ, and to 
no republican form of government or monarchy has this 
appellation been given. l\Ioreover the Pope applies an 
infallible law to faith and morals, and he is the head 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 333 
of an infallible society, which is the governing Church, 
There are two sources of infallibility, faith and morals, 
that raise the Vicar of Christ so high, as to make him un- 
accountable to anyone on earth in those judgments with 
a view to which his power has been established. 
Therefore just as the infallibility of the Church in the 
Pope elevates him so high that he has no superior, so the 
fallibility of a Prince calls for some other power superior 
to him, except in case of his immediate deputation re- 
ceived from God. If therefore no things outside of God 
are perfect equality with one another, and if besides, the 
Papal and the civil powers are both derived from God, 
the reason by which one of the two is more nobly derived, 
will furnish at once a reason for its preeminence. De- 
stroy this preeminence and the civil power will clash with 
the laws of nature, which as they will not have independ- 
ence even in power, will be destructive of the society over 
which they are exercised, and will be rebellious against 
God who confided his power to the head of His Church. 
Therefore if the court of appeal be closed to the society 
ruled by the fal1iLility of a Prince, and to the faults of the 
ruling power, the governed will reply with brutal force, 
which can never be sanctioned by right. Then when the 
combatants have become wearied of the strife there will 
arise the necessity of absolute justice, which is not to be 
found in the bosom of a convulsed society, must be im- 
plored from the spiritual power, or else the combatants 
will become delirious over the sovereignty of the people or 
the rights of man. These are phantasies which give birth 
to princes intolerant of restraint, and nurtured by the 
people under the pressure of a nloral and terrible neces- 
sity. It is true that the civil power is not derived fr0111 
the spiritual, but equally strong and equally free both 
come from God to reign, the latter over the Church, and 
the former over the people. So that the spiritual power 
freely unfolds itself, and is not restrained by a superior; 
and the tenlporal is directed and rpgulated by the former, 
as there can be no subjf'ction without the direction of a 
superior. The power for example of a father over his 
{'hilùrpn is not destroyed in a republic by the subjection 
of thf' parf'nts to the state government. This direction, 
or order is manifested every time the ch'U government is 



334 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
in disorder, that is sins. Its fault is always a violation 
of cUlnmutative justice, which imposes on the rulers and 
the people, an equal command of mutual preservation. 
One of the contracting parties, which fails in its duty, 
l'eleases witb good reason the other from its obligation. 
But inasmuch as that right can resolve itself into a fact, 
there is always need of a judge, to be chosen either by the 
conS('l1t of the parti('s, or aIr('ady in tbe selection of a 
R('Jigion infallible in her laws, and in those who expound 
thenl. And here again we behold, as a consequence of 
the two power
, the one subordinate to the other, the pre- 
eminence of the Pope over other ch.n rulers by reason of 

in. And therefore there i
 not a creature, as Boniface 
defined, which is not subject to the Pontiff. A king or a 
president of a republic, who desires to be a Catholic Chri
- 
tian, can never withdraw from this subjection, unless he 
wishes to subject himself to God in a mauneI' different 
frOlli that established by Christ, or prefers rather to try 
the benefits of tyranny or anarcby, which wrestling in the 
bosom of soci('ty increase the miseries of this short jour- 
ney of life. The
e theories were not the production of 
the human brain, but of the Christian religion, as soon as 
Dlen embraced it not only as individuals, but also as lnem- 
hers of a civil society. Therefore those who Blake Boni- 
face the author of them eithf'r do not know, or do not care 
to know that they were always defined by Popes his pre- 
decessors, confirmed by Greek and Latin Fathers, and de- 
f('nded hy Doctors, eyen Frenchm('n. In fact that which 
w(' haye calh:.d a " directive" or " administrative" power 
of the Pope over Princes, was a long time previous con- 
sidered as suell and called such by Gerson, a French- 
Inan. 125 The application of the Scriptural pa
sages, e
pe- 
dally thp one of the two swords as a symbol of the two 
powers, the one subordinate to the other, was not alto- 
gether the wm.k of Boniface. It was first discovered by 
a holy Fr(,l1ch Doctor, St. Bernard. 126 The application 
to the Pope of the words spoken by God to Jeremias, was 
a thing much oldpr than the time of Boniface both in the 
(1 r('ek and Latin Churches. 127 Boniface has bf'en accused 


125 LJe PotC'state Ecclesiae. Consid. 12. ue Book 4. De Consid. all 
]
ugf'nium P3p3m. 1278ee Bianchi. On the Indirect Power of the 
Church. Book VI, 7, Tom. 2. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 3j5 


of a violent distortion of Scriptural pas
age
, and of t]10 
fabrication of an unlimited ecdpsia
til'al rib'ht, becau
c 
he had to resist ÍJllmcdiatcly the tran
greHsOI.s of the RaIne. 
But in this precisely we discover hh; g'.C'ê.lÌness of sonl. 
FOI" when a man COllleS to be identified with a theory, in 
such a n1anne!' that war against the theory means war 
against him who defends it, it mURt be that the soul of 
this nlan is capable of comprehending it, and able to de- 
fend it alone. Hence hatreds have survived against Boni- 
face, because the truth he defended has survived. .\.nd 
when eyer the hand of the powerful attacks the Church in 
her rights, it digs up from the tomb the ashes of that 111ag- 
nanimous soul in order to execrate them. Foul' centuries 
have elapsed since the death of Boniface, and yet Bossuet 
ru
hed against him with the same fury aR was rlispla
'ed 
against him in the assemhly of SenJis. 
...\.fter the definition of l"ight Boniface procpeded to ac- 
tion. He published sentence of excommunication on the 
same day X ovenlher 18th against all, and even cro,,-ned 
lwa<ls, who would dare to molest, hinder, 01' imprison 
t hosp going to the Roman See or returning. In this Bull 
he could have struck PhiJip heavily, by naming him, since 
hp was guilty of this kind of violence, but he held to gpn- 
eralities. For in all those barefaced proceedings of Philip 
against him, Boniface never dismissed from his 1llind the 
hope of being ahle to lead him by reason to a better course. 
lIe desired peace. But he could not endure those puhlic 
violations of the liberty of the Church, of which be was 
the supreme guardian and defender. He negotiatp<1 with 
(1harIes of Valois, that he might use his good influence 
with his Lrother, King Philip, to recol1cih. him with Rome. 
Charles pron1ised, but as we bave seen in Florence, this 
peaef'n1aker was fit for everything else, except to make 
peace. 128 
In this Roman Synod where thp Bull ,( Fnam Saurtam " 
waH pu hJislwd, John Lemoine, Cardinal of the title of 
ts. 
)IarceHinus and Petpr, a Frenchman, was sent to France 
as It'gate in OI'ùer not to give ulnLrage to Philip. lIe was 
a man of gl'avp character, endowed with many virtne
, 
of tl'if'd prud(>nce and also a mo
t cOl1ragf'OnR man, for 
cOIl
idering the fatp of thp other l('gate
 in their dea1ings 
12S na
rnaldus, 1302, D. 15. 



33G HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
with the brutal Prince, there was much reason to fear. 
The Pope had granted him the amplest faculty to release 
Philip from censures, if he requested such. 
But before we come to speak of the outcome of that 
legatipn, we must narrate the doings of Boniface else- 
where. For the affairs of France, although most grave, 
were not so important as to take his attention from other 
{:hurches and other states of the universal Church. 
The kingdoln of Hungary at this time was in great dis- 
orùer owing to factional fights over the uncertainty of its 
ruler. Ladislaus III, surnamed Cumano, King of H un- 
gary dying childless in 1290, left only his wife :\Iary, 
ùaughter of Charles I of Anjou, King of 
aples. Thf' 
Juajority of the Hungarian nobles greeted as their king 
Andrew, the third of that name, called the Venetian, be- 
cause born in Venice of Thomassina 
Iorosini, and he was 
crowned in August, 1290. But )Iary, the sister of the dead 
I..adislaus, the wife of Charles II, the LaIne of Naples, be- 
li
ved that her son Charles :L\Iartel deserved by right of 
succession the crown, and Popes 
icholas IV and Celes- 
tine V, ever ready to promote the interests of the house 
of Anjou, twice in Naples had crowned Charles 1Iartel, 
I{ing of Hungary. In the meantime Andrew reigned in 
fact. In 1295 Charles :Martel died prematurely leaving 
his rights to the crown to his son Charles Robert, short- 
ened into Carobert, who, supported in his claims by the 
Papal Court, disputed with Andrew the throne of Hun- 
gary. The question was, which was of greater weight in 
the establishment of legitimacy, the selection by the nobles 
or the succession of heredity'? Boniface, endowed as he 
was with a keen knowledge of human affairs, saw clearly 
that since this people was only half-civilized, and menaced 
round about by a most fierce tribe, as the Cuman Tartars 
were, to leave to them the selection of a king, would have 
given a lasting occasion for war within, and invasions 
from without. As Pope he saw a way closed to extend the 
power of the house of the .Angevines of Xaples, the recog- 
nized defenders of Papal rights. 1\Ioreover the kings of 
IT ungary were never elective, but the nearest relative of 
the dead king inherited the crown. Therefore his ward 
Carobert had the best right to succeed Ladislaus; nor 
could a party of nobles by making a selection destroy a 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 357 
law prescribed by a long period of years. Boniface there- 
fore took the part of Carobert according to justice. He 
set to work with great ardor, negotiating not only in the 
interests of one man, but of the whole kingdom, and of the 
IIungarian Church. The former was in great disorder, 
the result of factional fights, the latter was disturbed in 
its liberty and oppressed. 
On the 13th of )Iay, 1301, Boniface had appointed Xicho- 
las, Cardinal Bishop of Ostia and Velletri as his Legate to 
settle the affairs in Hungary by establishing Carobert on 
the throne. He had given him the fullest power to nego- 
tiate also as his Legate in Poland, in Croatia, in Dalmatia, 
and in othcr regions. I t is well to remark here how he 
expressed to Nicholas the nature and the duties of his 
mission: "'Y e send you as an Angel of peace: 129 enjoin- 
" ing you that, in that kingdom and in the aforesaid prov- 
"inces, you consult with the clergy and laity, whatever 
"may be their rank and dignity, on all things which con- 
" cern the divine worship, the honor of the Apostolic See, 
" the observance of the ecclesiastical canons, the restora- 
"tion of the Uberty of the Church, the prosperity of the 
"kingdom and those provinces, the decorum of divine 
" worship, the return of peace, spiritual health and bodily 
"tranquillity." The Legate hrought with him from the 
Pope very important letters to all the Prelates of Hun- 
gary exhorting them to receive the Legate as himself in 
person, to give him whatever he needed and a kind recep- 
tion. But in July of the same year, 1301, Andrew III had 
died and the nobles of Hungary having heard of the near 
arrival of the Papal Legate, feared that they might suffer 
the loss of their liberty, if they allowed Boniface to choose 
a king for them. So they appealed at once to Wences- 
1aus, King of Bohemia, son of Anna, a daughter of Belo 
IV, King of Hungary, who died in 1271, beseeching him to 
accppt the crown of Hungary. The Bohemian king far 
advanced in years did not wish to leave his old kingdom, 
and relinquished to his son ".. enceslaus the throne to 
which he wa
 invited by the IIungarians. ""encpslaus 
was crowned king by John, Archbishop of Colocza in 

\JLa-Heale, as the see of Strigonia was vacant, upon the 
Ar('hbi
hop of which devolved by right that ceremony. 
12\) .. Tanquam pads Angelum destinamus!' Raynaldus, 1301, n. 4. 



338 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 

\!'; soon as Boniface beard of tbis f'lHlden coroIJation, 
lIe oyel'took the Legate" Hh Iptte1's, aH he wa
 about t'lltpr- 
ing the kingdom. The affairs of I"l'ante had embittered 
his mind, and rendered him nlOl'e jpalous of the Papal 
power; for which reason froln the time of the open rup- 
ture with Philip he adopted in letters more solelnn lan- 
guage to magnify the supreme power of the Church, as 
we see in this letter which he dif'patched to the I...egate, 
Cardinal of Ostia. It began: " The Roman Pontiff estab- 
"lished by God over kings and kingdoms is the supreme 
"high-priest in the Church militant; and prince over all 
"luen, being seated on the throne of judgment, he judges 
"quietly, and with one glance he cau
es all nlanner of 
"evils to disappear." He then relninds him of the care 
with wbich the Apostolic See had protected IInngary frollI 
the fury of barbarians, and says that not departing frollI 
the custOIU of his predecessors, lw designated hÍln Legate 
to that kingdom so violently disturbed. lie ('ondemns 
the rashness of the Archbishop of Colocza, for having 
dared to place the crown of n ungary upon the head of 
'Yenceslaus, since Carobert had been already crowned, 
and he sunlmons him to appear before him ,,'ithin the 
period of four months, and give a reason for his conduct. 
To 'Yenceslaus the elder, the aged King of Bohemia, he 
complained by letter, and demanded that he annul at once 
the things done with sUl:h little prudence. lIe asked by 
what right of succession or by what title his son had ap- 
propriated the kingdom of IIungary; and what reason 
was there for the temerity of the Arch bishop of Colocza 
to meddle in an affair in which lIe had no right. That he 
should not have despised the 
\.postolic See, the mother 
and teacher of all, and that in caf'es of doubt, and affairs 
of great moment he should have had recourse to her. The 
kingdom of II ungary was bronght almost to nothing by 
the fury of the Cumans, the Tartars, the Pagans and the 
schismatics, and this rash act will 
erve only to open a 
way to further lacerate her. That if his son had any rights 
in Hungary, he should expose them before the Holy8ee, 
and if proven, they will be presenTed whole and intact. 13o 
In the meantime having arrived in IIungary, the Car- 
dinal Legate assembled the nobles of the kingdom. He 
130 Raynaldus, year 1301, no. 10. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 339 


tried every means to reconcile thenl, and have them recog- 
nize Carobert as king, but all in vain. Then be left that 
country, and repaired to Yienna, whence he di
patched a 
Ine
senger to the Pope to acquaint hin1 of the unsuccess- 
ful result of hi
 llli

ion. On the other hand 'Venceslaus, 
I(ing of Bohemia, replied to the Papal letter, and <<leclared 
that bis SOIl bad been legitimately ('lected I(ing of Hun- 
gary. Boniface did not yield; he insisted and undertook 
to present thp rigllts of :\Ial'ia, mother of Carobert, to the 
IIungarian throne. He invited the King of Bohen1ia, 
.:\IaJ'Ïa and hel' son Caro 1>ert to appear before him to dis- 
cuss the affair. And since in his letter Wencl'slaus had 
taken also the title of King of roland, in the strongest 
terms he exhorted ltiln to ahandon it, telling him that 
that was a crime of state, as roland was a fief of the 
ROlnan See. He wrote to this effect in June 1302; and the 
Cardinal Legate according to his cOlllJnand citpd the pre- 
tenders to the throne of Hung-ary.131 
3Iaria and Carobert dispatched their procurators to the 
Papal Court, 'Yenceslaus deputed thl'ee not as exponents 
lmt as dpfenders, against any decision of the rights of 
thpir lord. Boniface decided with the advice of the Cardi- 
nah;, that the throne of II ungary was hereditary and not 
elective, and to Carobert the crown belonged. lie pub. 
lished this decision in a Bull, beginning "S pcctatvr 
Omnium," given at .A.nagni on .:\lay 30th, 1302, and or- 
dered the Archbishop of Colocza and the Bishop of Zagra- 
hiense to announce it to the Bohemian elected king. 132 
This decision was followed by an enc
yc1i('al to all the H un- 
gaI'ians, cummanding thenl under the pain of censure to 
yield obedience to Ca1'obert; and a letter to this young 
man exhorting hÍIll to the practise of virtue, written also 
at ...\..nagni on June 31'd, 1302. The care exercised by Boni- 
faee oyer Hungary hrought the desired peace to that king
 
dOlll. ...\ll acknowledged Carohe1't as their king; the two 
'YPllccslaus of nohemia renounced their claims, and II un- 
gal'Y was quieted, and was goyerned very well by that 
princp. 
Thp firmness of this Pontiff, as it appears from the nar- 
ration of the affairs of IInng-ary, did not always bring dis- 
aster. ...\8 in ùefence of the loight
 of his wmod ral'oLcl't he 
1.11 Raynaldus, year 1302, no. 20, 22. 132 Raynaldus, ;);ear I
03, no. 17. 



360 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
showed himself a most tenacious observer of justice, so 
afterwards in the affairs of Germany he showed that he 
knew how to moderate himself with prudence in affairs of 
great difficulty. 'Ve have already seen how strenuously 
J1e opposed Albert, son of Rudolph of Hapsburg. This 
prince violated his oath to Adolph, King of the Romans, 
and having raised a rebellion against him, slew him in 
the battle of Spires. Up to this year, 1303, Boniface had 
been inexorable to the entreaties of Albert, who sought 
his approval wherewith to acquire the Imperial crown. 
)Ioreover as we have seen he had aroused the ecclesiasti- 
cal Electors of Germany to carryon war against the 
usurper, which they did. He was induced to this rigor, 
both because justice was wronged by ...\.lbert rebelling 
against and slaying his lord Adolph; and because of the 
violation of the rights of the Papal See, as it is the right 
of the Pontiff to examine the person selected as King of 
the Romans, to consecrate him, to crown him, and if un- 
worthy of the office to reject him. The :first reason, as it 
was a fact that violated, but did not make sacred, a right, 
would disappear, as soon as the consent of the Electors 
and the Pontiff made that fact legitimate. 
The second, although it was a violation of a right, also 
would cease, as soon as reparation for the same was made. 
And both ceased when Albert submitted to the judgment 
of Boniface, and confessed that he had wickedly acquired 
the crown of King of the Romans and had ignored the 
rights of the Roman See. )Ioreover it must be further 
added, that an unbending spirit would have prolonged still 
more the damage of the intestine wars and quarrels in 
Germany, and would have deprived the Pope of a support 
in his stormy controversies with Philip the Fair. There- 
fore Albert sent ambassadors to the Pope to express how 
willing he was to do his pleasure, seeking not judgment 
but mercy.133 They promised in his name :fidelity and 


183 Raynaldus, year 1303, no, 4 . . . . . . "tu devoti et prudentis 
more filii, de solita patris benignitate confidens, super iis non judicium, 
sed misericordiam humiliter implorasti. Praestitisti quoque nobis et 
eidem sedi fideJitatis et obedientiae juramentum et nonnulla alia etiam 
promisisti, et juramento firmasti, quae tam a praedicto patre tuo, quam 
a praedecessoribus elgus Romanorum Regibus jurata, promissa facta, 
recognita et concei>sa fuerunt sicut haec et alia in duabus patentibus lit- 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 361 
oiJeùience to the _\postolic See; and they promised also 
under oath to stand by what his predecessors, the Kings 
of the Romans, had conceded to the Popes. From this it 
is evident, that it was not through fear of Philip that 
Boniface had recognized as just the usurpation of Albert, 
anù ratified it after having condemned it. The change of 
sentinlents in this prince who craved pardon for his in- 
justice, and promised obedience to the Holy See, induced 
the Pope to change his dispositions. The letters of Albert 
to Boniface, found in the annals of Raynaldus, afford 
pleasant reading. In these not only does he mention his 
obligation to the Roman Pontiffs, but he discussed at 
length with a solemn profession (profiteor) how the Im- 
perial crown had been transferred by the Apostolic See 
from Greece to Germany in the person of Charlemagne. 
Hence the chief duty of the emperors was to defend the 
Church; to swear never to take sides against her, but ever 
to guard her; and strenuously to uphold her liberty and 
her rights. This did Albert of :Xuremburg write on Au- 
gust 17th, 1303. 134 And Boniface in reply to that which 
the ambassadors had reported, solemnly confirmed hi!'; 
election as King of the Romans,135 in a document which 
begins: (( Patris aeterni filius/' and which he concludps 
with a beautiful exhortation to be grateful to the Church: 
"'Ve advise and beseech you by the Son of God the Father, 
"to fix the eyes of your body and mind respectfully on 
"God and on the Church, if you desire to rule nobly; 
" meditate piously in your soul on the kindness of us and 
"of that holy 
Iother, who, you should not forget, had 
"anticipated you; engrave it in the inmost recesses of 
"your heart, and there let it remain as a perpetual re- 
"mindel' of favors received." 


teris tuo sigillo signatis, quae in ipsius Archivio conservantur Ecclesiae, 
plenius continuentur." (Letter of Boniface to Albert, King of the 
Romans) . 136 Raynaldus, year 1303, no. 9, 
11$ Raynaldus, year 1303, no. 2. See document at end of book. 



BOOK YI. 


SU
Il\L\RY. 


1303-1314. 


Philip renews the war with the Flemish.-The defeat of the French at 
Courtrai.-Reparation demanded of Philip by the I..egate, Cardinal Le- 
moine.-Philip's reply.-l\Iission of Kicholas Bpnefratte to Philip. 
who imprisons him.-Parliament in the Louvre Palace.-Charge8 
against Boniface -The wretched picture the bishops present us.-A 
consistory in Rome; and punishments proclaimed against Philip anù 
France.-Of appeals to the Council.-Certain rufIians cross the Alps to 
seize the Pope.-Their number is increased b
7 the soldiers of Charles 
of Valois, and Sciarra Colonna is at their head.-They lay siege to 
Anagni, and the inhabitants rebel against the Pope.-They enter the 
town and invade the Papal palace.-How Boniface received them, de- 
serted by every on e.-Low insolence of Sciarra Colonna and Nogaret, 
-The people of Anagni return to their senses.-Magnanimity of Boni- 
face.-He goes to Rome.-His death.-Judgment of his actions.-His 
body is found after three centuries almost incorrupt.-Philip the Fair, 
after the death of Boniface.-Benedict XL-His indulgence to the 
French, he tries to bring Philip to his senses.-His prophecy concern- 
ing the affair of Anagni.-He wishes to punish the guilty.-He dies of 
poison.-The Conclave, and how it happened that Bertrand de Got, 
Clement V, became Pope.-PhiIip the Fair interferes with him, and 
the Papal See is transferred to France.-Clement is urged by Philip to 
proceed against the memory of Boniface.-The lamentable position of 
Clement in the clutches of Philip at Poitiers.-The Templars.-Philip 
wants to plunder them, he demands their death from Clement.-They 
are burned at the stake.-After the burning of the Templars, thet'e 
was a demand to burn the bones of Boniface.-Proceedings against 
Boniface in presence of the Pope.-End of the proceedings.-Heaven 
punishes Philip; his last days and his death,-A calamity visited on 
Anagni.-Conclusion. 


IT seeIned that Heaven wanted to allure the hlinded 
Philip from the precipice by an awful di
a
ter, that fined 
aU France with RhaIue anù mourning. When Edward of 
England and Philip the Fair haù agreed to submit to thp 
judgmpnt of the Pope, as a private man, the rpason of their 
362 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 363 
dis:-.(>nsion
, the English I\::ing had included in the treaty 
of arn1Ïstice, which followed the Papal decision, Guy of 
Flanders, his ally. But Boniface in his decision, in order 
not to give offence to Philip, made no mention of Guy and 
his Flemings. Being protected by Edward they were 
guaranteed against annoyance by Philip. But having for 
some unknown reason come to a misunderstanding with 
the English who were as
isting them in guarding the city 
of Ghent, it happened that thf'ir allies withdrew frOlll 
Flanders, and thereby they were left exposed to the anger 
of Philip who longed for the moment to fall upon them. 
In the beginning of 13aO the truce between England and 
France expired, under the shadow of which the Flemings 
rf'po
ed; when suddenly there appears in the field the 
French army moving against them under the leadership of 
Charles of Ya]ois. In two hattles Robert of Bethune, the 
eldest son of the Count of Flanders, was defeated, and in 
a short tinw all Flanders was under the power of the 
Frf'nch. There still remained well fortified the city of 
Ghent and Count Guy within. who had the courage and 
resources to aI'rest the pl'ogrl'ss of the conquerors by a 
long resistance.! 
This resistance irritatf'd Charlf's of Yaloi
. who wished 
to subdue his enemy without fatigue. He proposed arti- 
cles of capitulation to Guy, and that he should tru
t hÎIl1- 
self to the generosity of the King of France, and to the 
justice of the court of Paris, of which he was the chief 
member: he should lay down his arms, and should come 
unarmed with all his family, and some fifty Flemish no- 
LIes and deliver himself into his hands ;-besides he should 
pre
l'nt to Philip in writing his sincere desire of being 
reconciled to him. Charles in return promised that he 
would protect him at the court of Philip; and have hi1n 
rf'stored to the sovereignty of all his provinces. the dignity 
of fir
t Count, and have him nlade a Peer of France; and 
as a gnarantef' of his promi
l's llf' staked his own honor 
and 10:yaJt
y. Guy then sUI'1'endered: and thf' port of 
Ollf'nt, and an the other fOl'h'f'S
f'S opened tlwir gates to 
the Fl'pndl. But Ouy anf! his 
ons and ("hipf hm'ons went 
to France to f'xpprience in pI'i
olls tbf' gf'nf'ro
ity of 
Philip, and the inyiolah
 good faith of Charles. This is 
1 Chron. K angii. 



364 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
the Charles of Valois who afterwards went to Florence, of 
whom Dante well said, (( that he fought with the anns of 
Judas." 
All Europe was stupefied at this infamous treachery, 
and the suspicion that Philip had put to death the unfor- 
tunate daughter of Guy whom he had held imprisoned 
for a long time, became a certainty. Philip went to view 
his new conquest, and appointed as governor James of 
Chatilon, brother of the Count of St. Paul, and he was 
a very cruel governor of the poor Flemings: he was the 
Verres of Flanders. But like Sicily, Flanders also had its 
Yespers. Robert, Count of Artois, hastened with chosen 
troops to. create the storm. Guy of Flanders, the younger, 
and ",Yilliam, the grand-nephew of Guy the elder, led the 
Flemish force and encountered the French at Courtrai. 
Some mysterious hand must have guided them to the 
bank of a river. They chose their position skilfully be- 
hind a narrow canal, which concealed the view of the 
water from the opposing forces. The attack was begun by 
the French archers and foot soldiers, but the barons and 
knights, imagining in their contempt for the popular 
troops that the victory would be easily gained, and afraid 
that the foot soldiers should have the honor of it, ordered 
t hem to fall back on the flanks, and maI;::e way for the 
ea valry to charge. Almost immediately the whole line of 
the French cavalry dashed at full gallop, and swept down 
npon the Flemings. But in their imprudent haste they 
had not made themselves acquainted with the existence of 
the canal, and were only made aware of it by falling over 
into itR deep bed. The whole mass of the cavalry waR 
rushing forward with such impetuosity that it waR im- 
possible to stop, and as one line rolled over the other, con- 
tinually pushed forward by those l)ehind, who knew noth- 
ing of what had happened in front, the confusion became 
fearful, and multitudes were crushed or suffocated under 
the weight of their own horses. The Flemings at this mo- 
ment, separating into two bodies, crossed the canal at 
opposite points, and fell upon the flanks of the French, 
whom they found incapable of defence. The Flemings 
attacked all indiscriminately, sparing no one. It was not 
a hattle, but a carnage, Among the slain was Robert, 
Count of Artois, who was pierced with more than thirty 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 365 
wounds; Peter Flotte, the Chancellor, whom the reader 
knows; the Duke of Brabant and his son; and the son of 
the Count of llainault; Raoul de :x esle, the constable of 
France, and his brother Guy, marshal of the army; thp 
Count of Tancarville; J ame
 of St. Paul, governor of Flan- 
ders, the cause of the war; together with two hundred 
other barons, and six thousand cavaliers who perished in- 
gloriously on that day. "This defeat humiliated greatly 
"the honor, the rank, and the fame of the ancient French 
"nobility and prowess, as the flower of the world's cavalry 
"was defeated and humbled by as Iowa class of people as 
"were in the world, weavers and fullers. . . . . and as a 
" result of this victory their pride was raised to such high 
" rlegree, that one Fleming foot-soldier with spear in hand 
"would have met two French cavaliers on horseback." 
Thus writes ViIIani. 2 This stroke of divine vengeance 

hould have brought Philip the Fair to his sen
es, or at 
kaRt have made him suspect that his attacks upon the 
Church were displeasing to God. He did not see return- 
ing from Courtrai, his cousin and close adviser, the Count 
of _\.rtois; nor Peter Flotte his chief minister; nor the 
flower of the French cavalry; and this affair taught him a 
salutary but a bitter lesson. This was a time in his reign 
when he employed cunning more than tyranny. Flanders 
was victorious, Ed ward was restless, the French people 
were irritated, and Rome was threatening, yet he knew 
how to navigate the ship of state on these troubled waters. 
""e shall not speak of the way he did it, as that would 
('ause us to digress, but we shall nlPntion only that mali- 
dous cunning with which he manifested his most tender 
compassion for the distress of the people, not in the reduc- 
tion of taxes, nor the free ('our
e of justice, but in the 
hypocritical cry raised against the Inquisitors of heresy.3 
""e would not declare that these latter walkerl imlnaculate 
before the Lord, but we will say undeniably that these 
same Inquisitors a short time previous had been piously 
exhorted by Philip the Fair to deal severely with heretics, 
because it helped to make him appear zealous in the eyes 
of Boniface. :Kow hf' compassionates his dear and faithftll 


2.John Vi1l9.ni.. L. vnI, c, 5b. 
I Martene. f'ollpct. amplis, Tom. V, " 5'11 et øeq. 



366 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
subjects tortured by these same Inquisitors. Philip 
wanted to estrange the people from the clergy. 
Cardinal John Lemoine had been received in audience 
on December 24th. He was sent as Legate to Philip with 
the power of releasing him from censures, published not 
against him in particular, but in general against all those 
who had hindered the French prelates from going to 
Rome. But before the Legate nloyed in the nlatter, Boni- 
face in Rome negotiated with Charlrs of Valois and the 
ambassador of Philip, to whom having presented twelye 
accu
ations against the King, ohtained a pronlise fronl 
them that to pach of the chargeR Philip would give the re- 
quired sati
faction. The Legate 
et out for France bearing 
with him tIle twelve acrusations and the promise of 
CharIeR and the amba

a(lor, if this promise at the end of 
a month's time was not fulfil1ed, the Pope threatened to 
resort to spiritual and temporal chastisements. 
The Legate presented him
elf to Philip, and explainell 
under twelve specifications the rpquests of the Pope, wllich 
were the folJowing: 1st. The King should recan his pro- 
hibition, direct or indirect. again
t the French Prelates 
and Doctors repairing to llmne to attend the Synod con- 
vened by the Pope ;-2nd, he should admit that the 'Pon- 
tiff has the suprpme and chief power to confer any vacant 
eccle
iastical benefice within or without the Roman Curia; 
and in the bestowal of the same a layman coulf1 not obtain 
the right without the tacit or expressed consent of the 
Apostolic See ;-3rd, that the Roman Pontiff can senrl at 
wiII Nuncios and I..egates to Princes in any empire or 
kingdom, inrleppndently of any petition or consent ;-4th, 
in spite of contrary usage anrl customs the adnIinistration 
of pcclesia
tical gooòs shoulò only he in the hands of 
clerics and not laymen, and the supreme administration 
and di
pensation of them rested with the Apo
tolic See, 
which with a certain nece

ary consent can di
po
e of 
them, and impoRe a hunf1redth part, tithes or any oUlPr 
tax ;-5th, that the I{ing and otlwr princes are forhidden 
to 
eize ecclesiastical goods and rights except tho
e con- 
('l
ded by right or granted by the TIoly SPp, 31H1 to summon 
hpforc his own tl'ilmnal pc('lesiastical per
;ons by reason 
of proprrt:v or rights, wlwn they ar(' not hpld in fipf;-fith, 
that thp King 
hou]ù restore to the Prelates, and especially 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 367 
to the monasteries, OYer which he had the right of custody, 
the us
 of the spiritual sword, and free jurisdiction, no 
matter what privileges had been granted to the King and 
his ministprs ;-7th, that the King should send to the Pope 
his procurator with Rufficient power, and prepared in his 
name to do the will of the Pontiff by apologizing for the 
most gJ'Îf'VOUS insult to the Apostolic See, when he allowed 
the Papal Bulls to he burned; anrl he should know that 
he had determined to recall all the privileges formerly 
g-ranted by the Apostolic See to the King, to his sons, to 
his brothers, and to his nlinisters, that the punishmpnt for 
such wickedness might serve as an example for posterity; 
-8th, that the King should not abuse the rights of Re- 
galia, and of custody over vacant sees; but the usual ex- 
pf'nses bf'ing taken, the remainder of the revenues should 
he faithfully resprved for future prelates.-9th, that he 
should nlade amends for injuries, especially his adultera- 
tion of tlu:> public money, of which within hrief intervals 
he harl thrice l)f'en guilty of;-lOth, that he should remind 
the I{ing of other abuses committed by him or hy Ids 
ministers, and contained in sealed letters of which the 
legate Janles de Kormans had been the hearer,-llth, 
that the city and borough of Lyons with all jurisdiction, 
and pure and nlixed government beIon
ed not to the I{ing. 
hnt rather the Church of Lyons; ann he conunands hiln to 
repair the injuries and offences given to tIle Archhishop, 
the clerics, and their vassals; 12th, and finally if within 
the space of tinle agreed to by Charlps his brothel' and his 
amhassadors he difl not begin to correct the above men- 
tioned abuses, and satisfy the ApostoJic See, he the Sn- 
prelllf' Pontiff, would proceec1 to spiritual and tenlporal 
ehastisements. 4 Kow anyone can see from these articles 
how rigorously Boniface entrenched himself in the right 
of the Church recognized by the puùlic ch-n law of the 
times; and how he revoked that which his predecessors 
had granted as a privilege to the Fl'l>nch kings in the 
matter of the bestowal of ecch'siaHtical heupfÌ<'es. 
Philip met tlwRe charges WitIl that lllalltJe whit'h the 
artifices of lawyers and th(' cunning of ('oul.tiel'H have evpr 
ready to throw over a Prince, when he is intent on plun- 


· Brov. Ann. Raynaldus. year 1303, n. 34. 



368 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE ;VUI. 
del'. lie replied, as Natalis Alexander says, with incred- 
ible modesty: That the war against the Flemings in diffi- 
cult anù trouùlesome times had hindered the transport of 
money, arms, and horses outside of his kingdom; and in 
this he made use of a right which he believed he held in 
common with other princes. 
It should not displease the Pontiff, in case he truly 
loved the King and the realm, if he had opposed the Prel- 
ates leaving France, because they should be near him to 
assist him by word and deed in his defence of both Church 
and State in such troublesome times; and yet he had never 
drnied permission to those who lawfully and honestly 
wished to go to the Roman Curia. lIe provided that those 
having gone to Rome contrary to his wishes should have 
a free passage, and that when they would return to their 
sees, their benefices should be restored to them out of 
reverence for the Apostolic See. By right and custom 
regarding the bestowal of benefices, he conferred them like 
his predecessors from remote times. He granted a free 
entry to Papal Nuncios and Legates, so long as they were 
not suspected by the I{ing, and there were not other just 
reasons for preventing them. He took possession of the 
goods of the Church in cases only where they were granted 
either by custom or by right; he sumnloned clerics to his 
tribunals only in those cases in which it had been lawful 
to his predecessors. He had never prohibited nor would 
he prohibit the exercise of the spiritual sword hy the prel- 
ates whenever right. and custom justified it. It was true 
the Papal letters were burned, but not in contempt of the 
Holy See; it was commonly admitted that, not relating to 
spiritual but purely material things in the court of the 
King, this Bull was without value, and consequently had 
been thrown into the flames as useless so that none might 
abuse it. He made no innovation regarding the Regalia! 
he made use of them without abuse like St. Louis and his 
other predecessors. Acting within his rights, for the needs 
and urgent defence of the kingdom, he had changed the 
public money, but he made reparation forthwith on peti- 
tion of his subjects. Concerning the grievances set forth 
ill the lettel's given to James de Norlnans, he was most 
reac1y to indemnify the churches, the bishops, the barons 
and thp people for all the damages which his officers 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 369 
might have caused them; he would make a rigorous in- 
quiry into the past, and to prevent others in the future, 
he had published most salutary ordinances. If the Arch- 
bishop of Lyons had suffered in any way, it was his own 
fault, because he had refused to swear fidelity to the King; 
still he was about to negotiate with him concerning the 
di
puted rights, in order that everyone may know that 
content within the limits of his own power, he respects 
those of the Church. Finally he entreated the Roman 
Pontiff not to injure the liberty, the privileges, and the 
royal induIts, and not to sever those kind relations which 
always existed between the French kingdom and the 
Roman See. )Ioreover if his replies were not satisfactory 
to his Holiness, and if there still lay hiddpll a spark of dis- 
cord, he would be willing to a bide by the decision of the 
Dukes of Burgundy and Brittany, being accepted by him 
as arbiters, owing to their honesty and devotion to the 
Roman Ree. 
A prince who believed that without a scruple he could 
falsify the public money, and doing so was acting within 
his rights; and that he could, like a miscreant, throw into 
the fire without a shadow of sin, the Papal letters, under 
the pretext that they did not treat of spiritual things, cer- 
tainly could not understand that princes had no right over 
the goods of churches, or in the collation of benefices; and 
finally that what his predecessors had done by virtue of 
Papal concessions and privileges, could be denied him by 
the Pope by the withdrawal of these privileges. That 
Boniface had excellent reasons for withdrawing them, 
everyone will know who peJ'ceives, up to this time, Philip 
pa:-5S f]'om violence to the holùest impudence and to a hypo- 
crisy. sufficient to weary the patif'nce of a saint. So for 
p:ood reason, when Boniface had received the answers of 
Philip, and after having them well examined and discussed 
in his pl'P
ence by distinguished prelates and doctors of 
(livinity and law, he wrote to the Legate: 5 that some of 
the an
wers did not agree with the truth; others were so 
ohseuJ'pd llY verbosity as to be worthless, and others ex- 
preH
f'd such evasion and delay that they held the mind 
uHelessly in suspense. But that in order to manifest the 


Ii Letter of Rubeus, Life of Boniface VIII, page 201. 



370 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
purity of his intentions, and that he acted openly, and not 
in the dark, he proposed to have recourse to the advice of 
the Dukes of Bretagne and Burgundy, according as his 
own honor and that of the Apostolic See would permit. 
He wrote these things from the Lateran Palace April 15th, 
and ended the letter by threats of spiritual and temporal 
chastisements, and exhorted the Legate to acquaint him 
by person and not by letter of the result of the negotia- 
tions. 
This letter contained threats of particular censures, but 
not a sentence of excommunication. Now why does Nata- 
lis Alexander, place in the hand of Boniface the thunder- 
bolt of excommunication, and have him hurl it against 
Philip while he was trying to effect an agreement? He 
was learned in history, and why this location of events, 
or rather dislocation of them, unless it is from a desire to 
incriminate the Pope by accusing him of having used un- 
justly and inopportunely his authority against Philip '? 
These are not the times of canonical disputes, nor the 
times to sacrifice historical truth for the friendship of 
Cæsar. Let u.s proceed more orderly. Boniface did not 
resort to extreme measures until the 13th of April, that is 
two months after he had received the royal reply, and 
forty-nine days after he had written a letter to Charles, 
the brother of Philip, in which he exhorted him to prevail 
upon Philip to moderate that reply. 'Vith the letters of 
the Pontiff under one's eyes, it is easy, from the date of 
their issue, to place his.acts in an orderly series. Could 
not the learned disputant Natalis Alexander have done 
this, or was he unwiUing to do so? 
l\Ioreover it is not to be denied that the above men- 
tioned letter to the Legate, and another addressed to the 
Dukes of Burgundy and Brittany,6 where there was still 
question of an agreelnent, were carried into France by 
:Nicholas Benf'fratte, Archdeacon of Constance. To this 
letter was joined a solemn sentence of excommunication 
against the King, to be published in all the provinces of 
tlH
 kingdom. This envoy was also charged to summon 
again to his tribunal aU those prp]atps and doctors, who 
had refused to come to Rome at the time of the first con- 


6 History of Diff., page 95. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


371 


vocation; and to pronounce a special sentence of deposi- 
tion and deprivation of every dignity against any hi
hops 
who would not appear in his presence at a stated time. 7 
But the excommunication and the other punishments w(>r
 
to be resorted to only when all means of agreeInent and 
su bmission faiJed. So that Benefratte carried two kinds 
of documents, one gentle in tone in hope of peace, the 
other severe in despair of a remedy. "T e shall tell later on 
how these arts at the same time were given publicity. 
The time was finally conle when the tightened knot was 

ither to be loosened by reason, or broken by force. Nicho- 
las Benefratte entered France, and as soon as he arrived 
at Troyes he was set upon by the satellites of the King, 
who probably were placed there for that purpose. They 
robbed him of the Papal letters, and then violently cast 
him into prison. 8 The Legate Lemoine would have liked 
to protest strongly against this violence, but it was better 
to remain silent, because Philip was more powerful than 
hp, and was moreover in this matter disposed to mak
 use 
of his rights, like the rights which the robber feels in the 
dagger and the wild beast in its claws. :Kay more, sur- 
I'oun(led a
 he was by spies, perhaps so as not to pollute 
the respected majesty of an aInbassador with the obscene 
contact of spies, and convinced by the brutal violence ex- 
ercised against Benefratte that all hope of harmony was 
gone, he fled secretly to return to Rome. 

\fter the departure of the Legate and the imprisonment 
of Benefratte, Philip remained alone with the stolen 
letters of Boniface, hesitating what to do on the brink of 
a pt.ccipice \yhich he had constructed with his own hands. 
A perm
al of the letters mad
 known to him his condemna- 
tion. He could not disguise the fact that the terrible hur- 
den of excommunication, with which he had hitherto heen 
only threatened, at last rested heavily on his soul. How 


7 History of Diff.. page 9B. 
8 Natalis Alexander who accused Boniface of bf'ing too hasty with ex- 
communication, narrates this infamous imprisonment with the greatest 
coolnesR: "Qui (Xicolaus) Pontificis diploma tibus interceptis, Trecis 
comprehensu"l in carcerem conjectus est Regia jussione, frustra postulante 
Legate ut libertate donaretur." We believe in truth that if the article 
was not ended there, Alexander would have extolled Philip for this. He 
had the buldne"", to do RO. 



372 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
this anathellla was likely to be to him a source of a mo
t 
cruel elnbarrassment before the eyes of a nation oppressed 
and impoverished by his robberies. The Barons and the 
Bishops, seizing the opportunity, could at the same time 
harass him, and take revenge upon him for curtailing 
their power. There came perhaps to his mind the memory 
of Henry of Germany who was driven from his throne, 
and had anathemas hurled against him by Gregory VII. 
But Philip ruled a people in whom the most exalted love 
of country swiftly succeeded to the ardent desire of do- 
mestic revenge; a people who although rent, oppressed 
and divided by most furious factions, yet when attacked 
from without presented a bold and undivided front to 
repel the foreigner. A malicious report was spread that 
Boniface in his defence of ecclesiastical liberty intended 
to injure that of the French kingdom, and subject it as a 
:fief of the Church, Boniface was thus made to appear 
in the eyes of the French an ambitious Pontiff, who mak- 
ing his spiritual authority subservient to his temporal in- 
terests, attacked their country in order to enslave it, and 
forcibly drive their king fronl the throne in order to make 
it his footstool. And even if any idea of fear had existed 
in Philip's mind, the thought prevailed that when a prince 
is so well entrenched in injusticp, those who could restrain 
him, sooner t ban oppose a generous resistance, choose 
:rather to aid him, in order to enjoy in the tranquillity of 
servitude the shameful honors he thrusts upon them. 
Philip did not remain long undecided. He was not 
wanting in advisers, nor was he devoid of expedients when 
he was intent on usurpation. lIe assembled the orders of 
the kingdom in the palace of the Louvre on the 13th of 
June. The reader "ill remember what we have said else- 
where ahout these assemblies under a king of the charac- 
ter of Philip. The ordinary purpose of this assembly of 
the States General was to take counsel for the safety of 
the state, to obtain money, or to submit to their delibera- 
tions similar matters. On the present occasion they were 
not summoned around the throne of Philip for any other 
purpose but to judge the Pontiff, to wrest from his hands 
the holy Keys, to gain time by an appeal to Councils and 
future Popes, and to evade the power of the Church which 
could not be destroyed, because divine, nor made to yield, 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 373 
because it was exercised by a most vigorous hand. All 
the acts of this assembly were decided in advance, all that 
remained was to justify the arbitrary violence by the forms 
of a false justice. Seated with the Barons in that assem- 
bly were the Bishops and .\..bbots, and they presented a 
pitiful appearance. They came fronl the churches which 
they had surrendered to the custody of a prince, even sold 
them, either through abject fear, or through courtly blan- 
dishments which had softened th
m. They knew by WhOlll 
and for what purpose they had been called to that place; 
they knew that fronl the rock of the Yatican the Vicar 
of Christ was observing them. They heard the lamenta- 
tions of the churches despoiled of that liberty, which had 
ùeen defended by the sweat and blood of so many priests; 
ùut one voice ran through that assemùly! "If you do not 
release unto us Barrabas, 
you are no friend of Cæsar." 
-and at these words, deserting the sanctuary, they at- 
tached themselves to a throne established, not on a firm 
rock, but on the changeable and unsteady foundation of 
human vicissitudes. 
'Yilliam de Plasian a knight, advanced to the centre of 
that assemùly, with his hand perhaps over his heart to 
check its throbbings; his head bent in horror of the vile 
aeensations he was to beget; and his eyes perhaps suffused 
with some tears of compassion for Holy )lother Church. 
He bad at his sides as agents, to sustain the accusations, 
Louis, Count of Evreux, brother of the King; Guy, Count 
of St. Paul; and John, Count of Dreix. He commenced 
his harangue by a venomous diatribe against Boniface, in 
which frolll torrent of villainous abuse the following accu- 
sations against the Pontiff are collected: 9 Boniface was 
tainted with heresy; he did not believe in the immortality 
of the soul nor in the life to come, nor in the Real Pres- 
ence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist. He practised the 
diabolical art of sorcery and enchantments; he had pub- 
lidy preached that the Roman Pontiff can not be guilty 
of the sin of simony; he was an intruder in the Papal See, 
being thp murderer of Pope Celestine; hp indulged in 
II God be praised; N atalis Alexander when he wrote the IVth artic1e of 
the IVth dissprtation, was in such a state of reason and justice as to find 
that these accusations were black calumnies "immania accusationum, 
immo calumniarum capita." 



374 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
heinou
 sins; he was a hideous defender rather than a 
reprover of fornication; he was a jesting violator of fast- 
ing and abstinence; he was insatiable of riches acquired 
hy simony, for the advancement of his relation
; he con- 
demned ecclesiastical cerelnonies and all holy things; he 
was a calumniator of prelates and the religions orders; he 
was guilty of blind implacable hatred against the King 
and the kingdom of France; he was the fomenter of re- 
bellion against the majesty of the King. In confirmation 
of these charges he cited the forged indictment of 'YIIlialll 

 ogaret against the Pope, and boldly placed his hand on 
the Rook of the Gospels, swearing solemnly to the truth 
of a11 the charges. Silence reigned in the hall; even the 
clergy remained silent. De Plasian continued in a loud 
voire, that he was moved to these accusations not out of 
any hatred for Boniface, but by ardent zeal for the Faith, 
and by devotion to Holy :Mother Church; that he appealed 
to a general council, to the IIoly and Apostolic See, and 
to all those to whom it appertained, saving always the 
l'ights and honor of the Holy See. (Surely at this, me-' 
thinks, the holy man should have crossed his arms on his 
hreast, and bowed his head). Then turning towards the 
I
ing, he besought hinI, in his quality as defender of 
IIoly 
Iother Church, and of the Catholic Faith, and the 
prelates who should sit as judges in the council, to use 
their every endeavor to convoke the council. Such was 
the result of the first two meetings of the States. 10 
In that a
semLly there were five Archbishop
, namely 
of Nicosia in Cyprus, of Rheims, of Sens, of X arbonlle, of 
Tours; twenty-one hishops; eleven abbots, alnong them 
thosp of Cluny, of Premontre, and of Citeaux. These 
were horrifipd at the calumnies of Plasian, and hence they 
refusf'd to be a party to the accusations; but condescend- 
ing to the demands of the King and the Barons, they 
favored the convocation of a council, to lnake clearer, (as 
they said) the innocence of the Pope. Their words were 
accompanied by the ardent and usual formulas of devotion 
to the 1I0ly See, and they invoked a rigorons oùservance of 
the Canons and the statutes of the Fathers. :\Ioreover 
because they feared the Pope, and they had good reason 


10 Hist. du Diff. 107. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 375 
for it, in order to evade just puni
hlnent for their lliighty 
tlnd shameful (1pfeetion, on the 15th of June they pre
pnte(l 
to the King a documpnt with thirty-two seals attachpd, 
in which they promiRed him aid and favors in case Boni- 
face proceede(l against their insolent appeal. The King 
pl'onlised his protection to them and all who would attach 
themselves to his cause. And behold in the twinkling of 
an eye the ramparts of the Church levelled to the ground, 
and Episcopate enfeoffed to the King, the sacrifice of 
ecclesiastical Uberties consummated, the Pontiff enchainpd 
hy his brethren. and ignominiously hetrayed to the tribu- 
nal of a Council convoked by Philip the Fair, and in which 
be proposed to take part. 1l 
On the 24th of Junp an immense crowd of laymen and 
eec lesiastics flocked to the garden of the royal palace. The 
King there acknowledged his acts. He ordered the seques- 
tration of the goods of all the prelates and other members 
of tbe clergy who were found outside of the kingdom; be 
published the appeal to a Council; and this was the Lirth- 
day of the inviolable liberties of the Gallican Church. The 
royal edict was scattered profusely througbout the king- 
dom; and all Lowed the head to this most Christian King, 
crying out that they appealed to a future Ecumenical 
Council to he convened, and to the legitimate Pope tbat 
was to he chosen. The Church of Paris appealed, the 
eniversity of Paris appealed, the Friars Preachers ap- 
pealed, and we know not how nlany others, for this nlost 
reasonable and most holy purpose of not incurring the 
resentment of the King. 12 Some religious of )Iontpellh
l', 
sustained and encouraged by Fra Raymond, thpir provin- 
cial, refused to appeal and were hanished by Pl1ilip. The 
same fate befell tbo
e few others who haò the conrage to 
re8i
t the will of the insensate dpspot. 
u('h Wf're all the 
Italian bishops, who were in France, and tIle Abbot of 
Citeaux, whoni he imprisoned. In order that the reader 
may know what tbis appeal to a council signified, (the 
learned will paròon us; we write al
o for those ignorant 
of thesp things), it is np('essary for us first to hear what 
a reprobate Boniface was in the eyes of the Frpnch. 
11 Persona liter intendit interesse. Nat. Alexanrler, Art. IY, n. l. 
12 Rist. duo Diff. Iü3. "Ke indignationem Domini nostri Regis incur- 
rere . . . . . . possitis."- 



376 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
The news of scandalous conventicles held in France, and 
an appeal made to a general council and to his successor, 
was made known to Boniface not by the legatrs, ùut proù- 
ably by SOlne victims who escaped from the hands of 
Philip. Accused by an infamous calumny of the grosse
t 
depravity, he an old nIan, a more than octog'pnarian; ac- 
cused of disbelieving the dogmas which he had so long and 
so strongly defpnded, he felt his heart pierced by grief, 
not so nluch through dangpr to his reputation, as through 
the excesses and irreverence of a ppople, which still called 
itself Christian and Catholic. N either times nor circum- 
stances permitted him to remain silent. Duty ohligpd 
hÎIn to speak, not so much to defend himself, as to show 
that his sovereign dignity was not lowered nor crushed 
by the vile slanders of a mad prince. On the 15th of 
August in a sermon in full consistory he cleared himself 
with a solemn oath of all the crimes with which he was 
charged in France. Then he dispatched various constitu- 
tions, one of which, in order to provide against the violence 
of Philip, declared that the citations to appear before the 
Apostolic See made to kings and emperors, or any other 
persons whatever, even if intercepted or not received, 
would have their full effect, as they would be affixed to the 
A postolic Palace, and to the doors of the principal church 
of the place where the Papal Court then resided. It be- 
gan with these words: (( Rent non noram ag.r;redimllr. JJ 
And ùy two others he deprived the Doctors of the Univer- 
sity of Paris of the faculty of teaching and conferring 
degrees of the licentiate and doctorship; and he l'e8erved 
to hÎInself the provision of all the vacant churches in 
France, until Philip would suùmit to the Holy See. On 
the 1st of Septemùpr be published from Anagni for a per- 
petual memorial of the thing, the following: "'Ve have 
"been inforlued of the acts committed in France on St. 
"John's day in the garden of the ro
ral palace; we know 
"the crÎIlles of which we have been accused; we know of 
"the rpqupstf'd conyocation of a Council, and of the ap- 
"peal to this same council, in order to prev('nt us frOln 
" pl'oceeding against the King, the harons, and the French 
" prelates. "T e know of the league entered into hetween 
" PhiJip and the prelates, to relieve them of all subjection 
" to us; we know the friendly welcome extended to Stephen 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 377 
"Colonna, our enemy. Reflecting upon the
e things, it 
"will be seen that by men, whose tongue was in mire 
"whilst their eyes were fixed on Heaven, we have been 
"accused of heresy, our reputation has been blackened 
" with as many crimes as their imagination could invent." 
" But," continues the distressed Pontiff, " when was it ever 
"heard that we were tainted with heresJ? 'Yho shall 
"say that our family, and all Canlpania whence We' 
"
prung, were ever suspected of such? I t is certain that 
"yesterday and before, as long as we were indulging him 
" with favors, we were considered as Catholic by this same 
"king, but to-day he covers us with infamy. Whence 
" comes this sudden change? 'Yhence this irreverence of 
"a son? Let the whole world know that the relnedies 
"which we wished to prescriùe for his correction, for the 
" cure of the wounds ef his sins, and the bitterness of the 
"penance by which we wished to cleanse them, put in his 
" hands the arnlS of fraud, and have cast hiIn into the fire 
"of infidelity. Certainly we are greater than a Bishop 
" of 
Iilan, and a king of France is less than a Yalentinian 
" Augustus; yet this humble and Catholic emperor was not 
" ashamed to submit, as a sinner, to the bishop of l\Iilan, 
"and to accept, the remeòies which the charity of the 
"holy bishop had offered. But Philip, this new 8en- 
" l1acherib tossing his head in derision, let him tremble at 
" the words addressed to Sennacherib :-' 'Vhom clost thou 
"dishonor? ",Yhom dost thou blaspheme? Against whom 
" hast thou raised thy proud face and voice? _\gainst the 
"Holy One of Israel.'-This holy one of Israel is the 
" Yicar of God, the successor of Peter, to whom was said: 
í( Thou art Peter and 'Upon this rock I will build my 
" C'hurch, and the gates of Hell shall not pre'Cail against 
(( it
. and 'lChaÜwever thO'lt shalt bind 'Upon parth shall be 
,( bound in HeaDen." -Hence he who will not follow the' 
" hark of Peter will be lost in the storn1, and he who fol- 
"lows should submit to the orùers of the pilot. Lately 
"in his letters he called us most holy Father in Christ; 
" now whereas the voice of conscience and the 0 hligation 
" of our pa
tol'al office will not allow us to defer correc- 
"tion any longer, tlns well-hploved but vain Ron, puffed 
" up and arrogant, reùel
 against us, anù adds to former, 
" new and viler abuse. "\Yhat! Has the state of the Church 



378 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
" changed? Has the authority of the Roman Pontiffs 
"sunk into the mire, that thi
 waJ? will henceforth hp 
"wide open to kings and princes? In a Rhort courRe of 
" time it would occur that to escape the chastisenlf'nts of 
"the Homan Pontiff to humble his sovereign power, he 
"would be treated as a heretic, as soon as he raised hi
 
"hand to keep them in bounds. Prompt Inust be the remp. 
"diPR for such contagious errors; promptly must the 
"sword be drawn to suppress the wicked example, other- 
"wise kings and princes at each tightening of the rein, 
" would not refrain from blaspheming the Sovereign Pon- 
"tiff, and appealing to the convocation of councils with- 
" out a head. Punishment must be promptly given. if all 
" hope of repentance is lost, so that God n1ay not demand 
"their blood from our hands."-These were the last words 
that were uttered by the mouth of Boniface. 13 
On the 8th of September Boniface published finally the 
bull of excon1munÏcation against Philip. and the first 
words were the following: "Seated by divine dispensa- 
"tion on the high throne of Peter, we hold the place of 
"IIim to whom the Father said: Thou art Iny son, thiR 
" day have I begotten thee. Ask of me and I will give thee 
"as a heritage, and place in thy power the utmost parts 
" of the earth; thou shalt rule then1 with a rod of iron, and 
"shall break them in pieces like a potter's vessel. "-Anù 
this to admonish kings, and teach the judges of the earth; 
Then he mentioned the faults of Philip, and excommuni- 
cated him, and ordered the Papal Bull to be affixed to the 
doors of the Church of Anagni. 
The reader will observe, that even if Philip and all the 
crowd of courtiers, clerics and laymen, had erred in noth- 
ing but in an appeal to a Council, he deserved to be ex- 
communicated, because in breaking with the Pontiff, he 
fell into schism and dragged with him into the abyss the 
entire Church of Francp. Certain authors, theologians 01" 
lawyers, we know not how to call thPIn, have often dis- 
puted the question of an appeal from the PopP to a coun- 
cil, and have been divided as to whether the one is supe- 
rior to the other, from which opinion is derived the other 
of the legitimacy or illegitin1acy of these appeals. 


II See document Q. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 379 
"re shall repeat here what we have said elsewhere on 
another point, namely that we do not wish to swell the 
ranks of either one of the two parties in dispute; but 
rather turning aside we prefer to ask human reason, what 
teachings flow from this truth: that the true Church of 
Christ has a 8upreme head, who is the Vicar of Christ 
himsplf. The two parties agree on this trnth, and how 
then do they arrive at opposite consequences? The reader 
will see this in the explanation we propose to give, not as 
a theologian or a jurist, hut only as a reasonable Inan. 
The fallibility of judges in every society concedes the 
right of appeal to a superior tribunal. But the necessity 
of not arresting the course of justice, and the fear of de- 
stroying the force and dignity of the laws, has placed a 
necessary limit to successive appeals, and has constituted 
a judge from whom there is no possible appeal, and when- 
ever done, this appeal is considered an open rebellion 
against the laws. This supreme judge then should be 
invested with permanent authority, and always ready to 
receive the appeals, so that injustice be not allowed to 
triumph, nor power to languish in a scandalous inaction 
through tlle uncertainty of law and the want of a decision. 
In fact, not to go out of France, if a Frenchman injured 
in his goo(ls or rights by a sentence of the King would 
have appealed to a tribunal or judge higher than the King 
himself, Philip certainly would have imposed silence on 
this rash appellant by delivering him to the gibbet. For 
by the fact of appeal he would have questioned the title 
of the Prince as the sovereign head of the kingdom, and 
would ba,e robbed hinl of his power. :x ow a Catholic, 
who of his own free will is a Catholic, freely believing that 
the Church is a human society endowed by God in its rul- 
ing body with an infallihle authority, although the in- 
dividuals charged with its dil'petion luay bp subject to 
error, if on account of this fallibility this Catholic recog- 
nizes that he and his core1igionists have the right of ap- 
ppal to a superior judgp, then Jikewise h(' ought to believe 
tlmt tllel'e is in th(' [1hur('h also a supreme judge, before 
whom this right resolyes its('lf into hlind submission. So 
fa [' t lIP opposing tJwologians ngr(>e. Rut they commence 
10 sf'pm'atp ns soon ns thpy Un(lpl"takp to flf>("id(' who is this 
suprenle judge. Some hold he is th(' f':over
ign Pontiff, 



380 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
while others say it is a future council. 14 But we think 
that in the opinion of the latter there is a contradiction. 
He who appeals, submits himself and the judge) with whom 
he is dissatisfied, to the judge to whom he appeals; there- 
fore before the council, the appellant and the Pontiff are 
equally amenable, and in this condition the Pontiff will be 
and will not ùe at the same time the supreme Pastor of 
the Church. If, at the first cry of appeal he lowers him- 
self to the condition of party, how can he at the same time 
raise the voice of pastor and sovereign judge to convoke 
an assembly of pastors who could not stir if he were 
silent? Besides a future council to be convoked, (we 
speak of a general council), is wanting in the quality and 
principal characteristic of a sovereign judge of appeal, 
that is to say, it is not invested with an authority perma- 
nent and uninterrupted which permits it to reply to the 
first request of the appellant. A council is a very uncer- 
tain tribunal, and events sometimes render it impossible. 
A\ plague, a war and other circumstances which would 
hinder a convocation of bishops, would close for a long 
time this tribunal to the appellant; and in the meantime 
the authority of the Church would remain mute and un- 
certain, the laws would be violated, and crime would go 
unpunished. If then the opinion of appealing to a coun- 
cil was true, either the bishops would be obliged to re- 
main perpetually in session in order to judge and define, 
or the faithful be ever fluctuating on points of faith and 
morals, But Christ established the bishops to rule the 
particular churches, and not to form permanent councils. 
He has constituted a judge, who, by the universality of 
hi
 power, sits at the pinnacle of the Church, and arrests 
the course of ascending appeals, and he is the Sovereign 
Pontiff. 
If someone, alarmC'd at the human peccahility of this 
judge and forgetting that he liveR among men and not 
angels, would wish to appeal to a higher tribunal, we 
would advise him for the love of God and of r('a
on to 
submit in the same manner that he would submit to a 
civil prince through fear of the haltf'r or guillotine. 
Hence, in that which concerns Boniface, PhiJip did not 
14 This work was written before the Vatican Council, in which the 
question who is the supreme judge was forever settled,-Translator's note. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 381 
appeal to a Council, but he himself judged and condemned 
the Pontiff. lIe invoked the Council and the future legi- 
timate Pope, because he judged Boniface whom he already 
considered a false Pope. Now, this sentence of the ille- 
gi1 imacy of the Papacy of Boniface, from whom did it 
emanate? If it came from a legitimate tribunal, why 
appeal to a Council, whence it might emanate? If on the 
contrary from a illegitimate tribunal, that is to say, from 
the asselnbly of the Louvre, it should have judged and 
condemned Philip, and by no means Boniface, who in the 
opinion of these same Gallicans, did not cease to be thp' 
legitimate Pope, until pronounced so by an unappealable 
trihunal. Among the defenders of Philip, Bossuet was an 
appf'llant. Once there lived in Italy a King called Theo- 
doric, a Goth, and consequently considered a barbarian, an 
Arian in religion, beset by the followers of the anti-pope 
Lawrence, who accused Symmachus, the legitimate Pope 
of heinous crimes, and besought the King to send a bishop 
to inquire into the affairs of the Pope. The King sent on 
this mission, Peter bishop of Altina. But Symmachus 
convoked a synod of all the bishops of Italy, not for the 
sake of being judged, but of being solemnly vindicated. 
The Arian king coöperated actively in this convocation, 
and admonished the bishops that they were as
embled pre- 
cisely because be did not wish to intrude in the affairs of 
the Church. 'Yhen they were all assembled before him, 
th('y boldly asked him why they were summoned, they 
who were so infirm and so worn out by years. The Arian 
replied: "To establish the innocence of Symmachus by 
your judgment." Strangely surprised, the holy prelates 
protested that they could not be called together except by 
the order of that Pope who was accused, and pleaded their 
incompetence to judge his Apostolic see, which was above 
them. Rut reassureù by Symmachus, who appeared among 
then}, that it was he who assembled them, they imnledi- 
at('ly restored the Pontiff to the dignity of which he had 
ùe('n deprived by the Schismatics,15 and they would not 
even examine the charges against him, If'aving it to him- 
Rl'lf whethpI" to answer or not the complaints of his ene- 
nlips. Theodoric, informed of tIle facts, approved of them 


Ii Council Rom. apud. Labbc, Tom. 5, concH. colI. 501-502, 



382 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
fully, and pronounced this sentence which should be en- 
graved on the crown of all the kings of the earth: (( In 
,( ecclesia:$ticol affairs 1 hare no other right but 're'Ver- 
" (''/lee.'' 16 These Italians bishops came out of the sanctu- 
ary, and not from the royal court; and this prince although 
a heretic, had however a deep sense of justice and right. 
'Ye offer this explanation as pertinent to the appeal of 
the French to a general council. 
Philip was aware that he could lodge the cry of an ap- 
peal, but could not assemble a general council to receive 
him as an appellant. The Church is not confined to the 
fron tiers of France. 'Yherefore if the French bishops 
were dragged to a council by the royal satellites, notwith- 
standing the 
ilence and without the order of the pontiff, 
the remainder of the episcopate could not bf? SUlllIDOned; 
and then Philip would have to be contented with his coun- 
cil in thf' garden of the Louvre. He wished to seize a 
right, but he found in his hands the sword, ,vhich is the 
right of forcf', and he resolved to use it. He entered into 
a diabolic counsel with N ogaret and 
ciarra Colonna, a 
most profligate wretch, in which a nefarious crime was 
planned, which we would not have the courage to narrate, 
were it not that others had done so previously. 
A handful of 
atellites sent by Philip crossed the Alps 
into Italy. At their head marchC'd Nogaret, Du Plasian 
and Sciarra Colonna, animated by the sanle fury of the 
I{jng, and thirsting for revenge. To hidf' their purpose 
they falsely announced that they had come to negotiate a 
pf'ace between the Pope and Philip. Believing that the 
money they carrierl was insufficif'nt, they brought with 
them royal letter
 of credit on the Petrnccis, Florentine 
bankers. 17 Ro true is it that it is in the destiny of our 
unfortunate country, that the foreign treacheries of which 
it is the victim, have been bought by gold, anrl achieved 
hy the treason of her own children. They arrived in Tus- 
cany, and assenlLled near Siena in the casth
 of Staggia, 
1 he property of 
I usaccio Franzese, who had come from 
France, says Yillani,18 to serve as guide for Charlf's, and 
hy his eonnsf'ls h
l(l powerfully contributed to the ruin 
of affairs at FI01'enCf'. Although the author
 who Lf'- 
U!" N"ec aliquid ad se prater reyerentiam de ecclesiasticis negotiis 
pertinere." . . . . 17 Rossi. Life of Boniface. 18 Book 8. chap. 48. 




 


I 
 


..... 
.-. 


-
 


'1'111: 01 TH.\(;J.: .\'1' .\:\.\1;:\1, I:O:\IF.\(,I-: \"111 .\:'\11 111:-' .\S:-'.\II..\:\TS, 


-:-1 
I 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 383 
lieved l\Iusaccio to be French are contradicted by Bail- 
let,19 we are not allowed to follow their opinion, owing to 
the clear and precise terms of Villani. In that castle a 
,yicked council was held; and there is not doubt that the 
death of Boniface was plotted. From the height of that 
fortress the dastardly satellites of Philip of France, took 
otcasion to plan their crÏIne and prepared the means. 
Three of their accomplices John 
Iouchet, Thier d'Biri- 
con, and James di G,esserin, traversed the cities of the 
patrimony of St. Peter to sound the dispositions of the 
I)('ople, anf} pI'Ppare their minds in favor of the Kings, 
whence tlwy would he less amazed at what was about to 
happen. They called in aid the Ghibellines; they won oyer 
the wicked by nloney, and they quieted the good with the 
lying pretpxt of conling as ambassadors of peace. The 
sons of John of Cessano, imprisoned by Boniface; those 
of 
Iaffeo of Anagni; Hinaldo of Snpino, governor of Fer- 
entino, and other barons of the province of Campania, 
offered their services to the French. 'Y]}iIe still dispersed 
throngh Tuscany there rpmained the dishonorable soldiers 
of Charlps of ''''alois, called into Italy at so great a price, 
and with promises by Boniface, not having anything better 
to do thf'Y of1'ere(} their servicf's to 
 ogaret to coöperate 
in his horrible sacrilege; and those arms so d('arly bought 
for the dpfenee of the Holy See, now ar(' turned against 
the pontifical breast of Boniface. A terrible proof that 
tlw assistance of a stranger is always fatal to those who 

l'ek it in their own home. 
Nogaret had at his disposal a good number of soldiers. 
8darra had collected three hundred cavalry, and some 
companies of infantry, to which werf' added two hundred 
more of cavalry, detached from the army of Valois; and 
tlw number in all was about eight hundred armed men. 
Th(' gold of France flowed at Anagni, where the Pontiff 
was holding his court; and this shameful motive power 
of so many actions there exercised its fatal influence on 
hearts. 
Iany of the chief men of the town, sonle cardinals 
of the Ghibelline party, the vpry domestics and servants 
of th(' Pope entered into the dpsignR of thf> ('on
piratOJ'R. 
Unrelenting history sllOnh1 nwntion among these second- 


1. Hist. d{> Demelez, page 211. 



38-! HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
ers, Richard of Siena, and Napoleon Orsini; she should 
tie them to the pillory and dishonor them before all ages; 
loaded with benefits by Boniface they betraJTed him with 
the most barefaced ingratitude. It is easy to explain the 
mystery and the rapidity with which corruption had crept 
into the pontifical palace, when we reflect that elective 
governments greatly arouse ambitions and the love of 
novelty; that the inflexible severity of Boniface had per- 
haps re
trained some wrongdoers too much; and finally 
the most holy counsels of religions and honesty, are pow- 
erless in factional hatreds. 
Thirsting the most for vengeance, and knowing better 
the locality, Sciarra Colonna with three hundred cavalry 
and a small company of infantry, was the first to advance, 
and he secretly reconnoitred the environs of Anagni. 20 
Boniface noticed nothing for the reason that he did not 
believe that the bloody era of Nero, in which the Pontiffs 
were persecuted by the sword, could possibly return. 
During the night, the gates of the town were opened and 
the French entered Anagni, displaying the banner of the 
lilies of France, and shouting-: "Death to Boniface, long 
live the King of France." The people of Anagni betray- 
ing this Pontiff, their countryman, followed them, and re- 
peated their cries. The house of Peter Gaetani, nephew 
of the Pope was taken and plundered, On the 7th of 
Septenlber at the break of day, the brutal satellites rushed 
against the doors of the palace, where a venerable old 
man, protected by the sanctity of his office of supreme 
Pastor, was quietly sleeping. The noise of the tumult, 
and the influence of money had left his palace deserted. 
The Cardinals fled in disguise to save their lives; only two 
rc>nlained, whose courage showed itself greater than this 
nnheard of and terrible misf.ortune; they were Nicholas 
Boecassini, Bishop of Ostia, and Peter of Spain, Bishop of 
Raùina. Thus aroused and startled by the approach of 
danger, the troubled Pontiff looked around and found 
himself almost alone. But he remained himself, and that 
sufficed. He asked a truce from Sciarra, and he obtained 
only nine hours, during which he strove to prevail upon 
the inhabitants of Anagni to liberate him, but in vain. 


:10 Ferreti, Vie. Rist. Book 3. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 385 
Then, he delllanded of the proud Colonna what he wanted 
of hinl. Thirsting for vengeance, and gratified at the 
plight of the Pontiff, he replied in writing: "Let my 
" brothel', Iny uncle, and an the memhers of our family be 
" restored to their former rank, and let you renounce the 
"Papacy." The noble Pontiff refused; then he remained 
silent, his heart being moved by the thought of the extremi- 
ties to whit:h the cruel Sciarra would be carried. In fact 
the French de
pairing of succeeding in their purpose by in- 
timidation, furiously had recourse to violence. 
The doors of the Pontifical palace had been closed, and 
fortified as it was it resisted the attacks of the assailants. 
Rut as it was joined to the Cathedral of Anagni, in order 
to {'nter, tlwy opened a way through the Church, which 
thpy HPt OIl fi1'(,. Gaptani, a npphew of Boniface, hore the 
firHt shoek, llUt after having fought courageously he and 
his retainprs were obliged to Hurrenfler. The rehels ad- 
yan('pd, Ipaving ùehind the pl'ofan('fl cathpdl'aI; tIl(, flmnes 
which w(,l'e cOllsun1Ïng it, cast a weird light on the bodies, 
lying dead around, of those who perished in the fray, 
anlon
 whom was the Archbishop elect of Strigonia. The 
evening of this infernal clay arrived; and the darkness of 
the night favored thi
 horde of robbers who invested the 
palace. The venerahle Pontiff retired to his apartments, 
and there awaited death. SOlne tears trickled down his 
ehp{'lu;; but scarcely had lIe heard the windows and doors 
of his palaee hrok('n, and had seen the light of the con- 
lIagl'ation, than feeling a!';hmned of his tears, he dried 
them, and said to two eccle
iastics who were beside hinl: 

'
ow since I have heen hetrayed like 
Tesus Christ, and 
"fleIivered into th(' ]1alH18 of my enemies to be put to 
"death, I desire and wi
h to die as Sovereign Pontiff." 
..\nd after saying thi
, he put on the pontifical cloak; he 
placed the tim'a on his head, he heIrl the holy key
 in his 
1lands, together with the cross which he ki
sea and pressed 
to his heart, in order that he might draw from it that 
power and strength which Christ gave to it to overcome 
error and injustice. So clothed in the Pontifical robe!'!, 
and prepared to Ine(\t death, he a!'!cended his throne and 
thf're 
at; the two ('ardinals shi('Jded him with their rohes. 
There waR not founa ('ven one ItaHan! The white lo('ks 
of the veneralJle old man; the consciousne:5s of the lihel'ty 



3
G 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


of the Church, for which he was to die a martyr; the 
Leauty of this great soul, as depicted on his countenance, 
and in his entire personality; and that lllysterious and 
touehing dignity which surrounds the man on the brink of 
the grave, restrained for an instant the arm of the angry 
Hdarra, who, after having battered down the door, entered 
the apartment of the Pope to strike him in that tremen- 
dous Jl1ajesty. The roup:h and proud Sogaret fonowed 
him, and with the insolence of a butcher, said to the Pon- 
tiff: "1Ye are come to lead 
you captive to Lyons, to de- 
" prive you of the dignity of Pope, in a council to be con- 
"yened in that city to judge you;" and then he dragged 
hiln violently from his throne. Boniface replied to hiln 
with incredihle courage: "Here is my head, here is my 
" npck; I, a Catholic, legitilnate Pontiff, VIcar of 
Tesus 
"Christ, am willing cheerfuUy to be depospd and con- 
"clpmned hy the Patarini. I long to die for the Faith of 
" .J e
u
 Christ, and for the Church." These words were 
more loud-
onnding than a thunderbolt to that ruffian. 
Boniface was unarnled; but a superhuman strength shone 
in his eyes and appeared in his words, that strength of 
God, who never abandons his ministers in time of persecu- 
tion. Ah! would to God that people were always con- 
vinced of thi
, and never dishonor the venerable dignity of 
t be priesthood, by stooping to the great ones of this earth 
to bep- for that support which is so frail, that an infuriated 
people shatters it at every toss of the head. N ogaret, 

tartIed and a
hamed, because the word Patarini l'ecaUed 
the menlory of his grandfather who was burned as a 
heretic, could make no reply.21 But the brutal Sciarra 
found words 3nd means worthy of him; he loaded the 
venerable Pontiff witb abuse, and went so far as to strike 
bim in the face with his glove. 22 Despairing of subduing 
:/1 Baillet. 225. 
:n Violent]y opposed though hp .was to Boniface, Dante relented at its 
contemplation, and indignantly sang of his enem)": 
"Entering Alagna; 10 the fleur-de-lis, 
And in his vicar. Christ a captive led; 
I see him mocked a second time ;-43.gain 
The vinegar and gall produced I see; 
And Christ himself twixt living robbers slain." 
\Vright's translation. Purgatory, canto XX. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 3
7 


the indomitable spirit of the Pope by force, these ruffiall
 
left him guarded by soldiers, and they returned to their 
foJ]owers who were sacking the palace. The treasury was 
plundered; the relics of the saints were scattered and the 
precious reliquaries stolcn; and the archives and privi- 
leges of the Roman Church were torn to shreds. For thref' 
days this whirlwind ravaged the Papal palace. Durin
 
all this time Boniface took no food of any kind, eithpr 
because distress of mind over these misfortunes removed 
the desire for it, or because his jailers desiring l1i
 death, 
refused to give him any. The inhabitants of Anagni had 
committed a sacrilegious betrayal. A man, their country- 
man, the universal father of the faithful, had been not 
only abandoned by them, but was also perfidiously sold 
to his encmics, at a time when, sojourning among them, he 
confided in their care and fidelity. Treason needs no 
avenger; it is itself its own judge and its own executioner. 
The third day of the French invasion, the inhabitants of 
Anagni, aroused by Cardinal Fieschi di Lavagno, were 
seized with a lively and sudden feeling of repentancp and 
shame, and in view of the crime of which they "Tere guilty, 
they flew to arms, and rushed against the French, crying 
out: "Long live the Pope, death to the traitors," 
lany 
were slain; all were put to flight; a great part of the treas- 
urc was recovere(]; and the standard of the fleur-de-lis was 
trailed in the mire. 
The tempest having subsided, and those robbers dis- 
persed, the venerable Pontiff presented himself at the head 
of the stairs lcading to the palace worn and exhausted, 
and with serene countenance spoke words of parùon awl 
of peace. Be pardoned all thoRP who llad betraypd him, 
and those who had held hinl a prisoner, and the Cardinals 
Richard of Siena. and Xapoleon Orsini, and even Rinaldo 
of ..\nagni, the chief and leader of the domestic treason, 
whom the ppople brought to hinl, bound in ('hain
 with 
his sons. That soul wbich had heen ahle to 
tand like a 
rock in the nlidst of daggers, knew how to rcsist fault- 
lpssly the fury of revenge. 
'Vlwn the npw
 of the da
taI'dly crime at Anaf!ni rpacheù 
Ronle, the in]la ùitant
 arosp in great indirrnation at tlIp 
injury (lonp to tlw Pontiff, ani! forthwith spnt fonr hun- 
dred knights under the leadership of )Iatthp". all(l Jam(':;; 



3SS HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
Orsini. Under the protection of these, he departed, leav- 
ing Anagni plunged in grief. The inhabitants besought 
hiIll not to leave and aHow tht'ln to have time to efface 
their illfaIny by unequivocal marks of repentance. "Then 
he arrived in Rome, lIe was met by a vast concourse of 
people who came to fête and applaud him, so that the 
entry an(} reception partook of the nature of that of a 
conqueror; an(1 yet the Pontiff wa!'; returned from the 
greatf'st tribulation, in wllich lw appeared hunliJiated and 
vanquished. ThiR tea('he
 u
 that 1 he ruin of the Inatt'l.ial 
forcf' of the Church, far frOIll wf'3kening her, on the con- 
trary strengthens and elevate!'; her power in the hearts of 
the people. Cardinal Napoleon Orsini followed him; and 
the Pontiff, in order to show that he had sincerely par- 
(loned him, g1'3ciou!';ly invited hinl to his table. Rut that 
1)00rish man, fancyin
 that the Pope may have been en- 
feebled not nlerely in body but also in lnind hy the in- 
juries inflicted on him, had the audacity to say to him 
with .a proud air: " that it was at length tinle for him to 
"restore tlw Colonnas to favor; and grant aU that had 
"bt'en taken by force." It is certain that this language 
in view of the recent crimes of Sciarra Colonna, was a 
piece of outragpous insolence. Boniface answered thf' 
haughty Orsini by a refusal. TIe would be wining to 
pardon, but without compulsion, as his dignity of sover- 
eign demanded. And at that tiIne we believe there hap- 
pened that which Ferrettus of Yineenza, and the Ch]'on- 
ieJt:'I' of ParIno narrate, that the Orsinis held the Pope in 
Hl1ch rigorous seclusion, that it served as a second impris- 
onlllent to him. 
Bonifa('e perceived, from the audacity of the Cardinal. 
that the !';canòals of Anaglli had greatly injul'pd his 
authority; that the angel' of Philip not sufficiently ap- 
lwased, would hecome wOl'!';e; and that thf' Or!';inis also 
would offer their Sf'ITÏces to thiR prince. Bence he wrote 
a letter to CharI('!'; II, King of N apIes, hf'!';eecbing him to 
come to his aid; but the letter was intercepter} by Cardinal 
01'!';ini. These new injurie!'; on the part of the Cardinal, 
greatly favored by him, and generously receiver1 at Anagni, 
pierced his heart, and convinced him that he plotted his 
(If'ath. He was so grieved thereby, that he was at the 
point of death. A horrible fact, according to Ferretus, 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 389 


made memoraùle the last moments of Pope Boniface, who 
died, says this historian, in the transports of despair. Be 
narrates that thi
 great Pontiff, having become mad by a 
dose of poison admillistf'rcd to him, and having sent away 
his servant J o11n Campano, shut himself up alone in his 
room, gnawed his staff, dashed his head against the wall, 
so as to imbrue his gray hairs with blood, and then 
strangled himself with the bedclothes, calling on Beelze- 
1mb. When we consider that Boniface had reached an 
extreme old age, and was altogether broken hy misfortune; 
that ùeing shut up alone in his room, there were not wit- 
nesses to bring to Ferretus those disgusting details; and 
that the death of this magnanimous Pope is quite iliffer- 
ently narrated by eye-witnesses, we do not know for what 
sort of readers Sismondi believed he was writing, when 
he spoiled his history with the fables of Ferretlls. 23 It is 
beyond douùt that Boniface died a peaceful death in the 
Vatican Palace. The testimony of Cardinal Stephanes- 
chi, who was present, and the process afterwards drawn up 
on the acts of this Pontiff, admit of no doubt. 24 Eight 
cardinals and other honorable personages surrounded the 
bed of the dying Pope. In a feeble voice he made to thenl 
a profession of faith according to the custom of his pre- 
decessors, affirn1Ïng that he had always lived in the 
Catholic faith, and in it he wished to die. Then fortified 
by the Holy Viaticum, on the 7th of Octoher, thirty-five 
days after his imprisonment at Anagni he surrendered to 
God that soul wearied after the long combat it endured for 
the rights of the Church, saddened by the wickedness of 
man, but unconquered, and unsullied in its grandeur. 
His body was borne to the tomb, which he while living had 
prepared in the Vatican Basilica, near to the altar of St. 
Andrew. His obsequies were Papal. Among the many 
illustrious personages who were present was seen Charles 
II of Naples. He had come too late to succor the hf'sieged 
Pope while living, but opportunely to assist at the honors 


21 History of the Italian Republics. 
:.K . . . . . . "Lecto prostratus anhelus 
Procubuit, fassusque fidem, curamque professus 
Romanae 1<
cclesiae, Christo tunc redditur almus 
Spiritus, et saevi nescit jam judicis iram, 
Sed mitem placidamque patris cui credere fas est." 



390 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
shown after death. In fact when we reflect that Heaven 
had punished the too great human confidence of the Po peR 
in the French house of Anjou by the ingratitude and secrpt 
plots of this family, we undpl'
tand how ne('e

ary it was 
that a prince of Anjou should heal' to the sepulchre Pope 
Boniface, in whose 1)1'e38t, as in a 8anctuar
? of apostolic 
stability, the civil Homan Pontifi('ate wa
 lmripd. So 
Cl1arles came rather to the funpl'al honors of that Ponti- 
ficate, than to those of the POlltiff. 25 
During the life of princes, fear restrains the opinion of 
people. But when they are laid away in the tomb, the 
doors of their palaces being' open to the people permit 
them to examine and judge their actions. Now liberty at 
this time too unrestrained compromises the truth. For 
we know that sovereigns on their departure froln this 
world leave in the custody of their court a secret or mys- 
tery which reveals itself only to the severe and patient 
investigation of history. I1pnce this was the cause of so 
many and unrestrained jndgnwnts at the tonlh of Boni- 
face. The resistanee with which he opposed all manner 
of injustices, 
easing at his death, oIwued a way to resent- 
ment which fUJ.ion8l
y :u;;saiJed his Inemory and oppressed 
it. The chronieJers of the tinw werf> not historians; their 
tendencies being in favor of {'ither the Guelph or Ghibel- 
Hne party, they porh'ayeù the actions of this Pontiff ac- 
cording to their own point of view, and according as puh- 
lic rUlllor expressed them, en:'ryone knows transforms 
everything whpn it is al10wed to run uncIwcked. :N OJ' 
were there philosophers, strong enough to arrest and grasp 
with the arms of criticism, the truth which was distorted. 
Philip the Fair in France, the Colonnas in Italy, the proud 
Ronlan patriciate, and all those who had experipnced the 
strong tempermnent of Boniface in anger, al10wed the 
stone of the sppulchre to be lowered upon the head, and 
upon this they did not raise a complaint, but a cry of exe- 
cration and veng-eance. 
They were ashamed of their acts of violence by the aid 
of which they shortened the life of this Pontiff, and they 
found it necessary to dishonor his memory in order to ex- 
culpate themselves, and give to their wickedness an ap- 
25 Here there is no question of the spiritual Pontificate, which is per- 
petual like the Church. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 391 
pearance of a just defense. During all his Pontificate 
Boniface aimed at nothing else but to preserve intact the 
rights of thf' Chu1"l'h not only in the sanctuary, but also 
in thf' Iwart of civil society itself, over the tcnlporal des- 
tinies of which h(> could no more cease to preside than the 
soul oyer the purely material functions of the body. 
Hf'nce for this r(>a
on he was a l110st valiant defend('l' of 
her interior and extf'rior rights, amI f'very prince who 
overstf'ppf'd his bound:,; to mf'ddle in the affair!': of tIle 
Church, or bf',vond his own authority, always found Boni- 
face standing hefore him as a rock to impede his progre!':s. 
For this reason he was a zealous prf'server of the sacrf'a 
patrimonies, and of the juris(1Ïction of the Church; he 
was an indefatigable peacemaker; vigilant in preventing 
quarrels, and in ending them b
T agreel11Pnts, in which he 
offered himself as mediator in his quality of pastor and 
universal father, rather than by war which wastes the 
goods and the blood of the people. He was an inexora l,le 
reformer of princes who founded their pprversity on the 
weakness of their subjects. The proof of onr assertion is 
that some kings, and !':ome cities trusted spontaneously to 
his judgment the settlenwnt of their differences, and his 
decisions were always models of justice. X 0 other pope 
showed sueh zeal as Boniface for the propagation of th(> 
Gospel among barbarous and distant nations; he enriched 
ehurches, especiaIly the Yatican and Lateran ba!':i1ica!':; 
he founded n
w academie!':, assigning them revenues; he 
wagpd wars to preserve Sicily, at that time a patrimony 
of the Church. X ow to bring all these great affairs to a 
succes!':ful is!':lW there was needed large pecuniary 1'e- 
sources. As his life was full and entirely composed of 
these honorablf' actions, he was always open to contradic- 
tions, and those who would wish to attack him, would 
ha ve to find in these actions themselves the arms wi th 
which to strike him. Anù hence besides his simoniacal in- 
trusion into the Papacy, his assassination of St. Peter 
Celestine, bis zeal for the rights of th(> Church was called 
thirst for empire; his punishment of those whOln he wished 
to despoil was called tyranny; hi
 apostolic fil'lnTleS
 was 
fooJish pri(h
; his oppoRition to the excess(>s of Philip, a 
pas
ion for a nnivp\':,;al monar('hy, and the Rpit.it of prn. 
dence which he displayed in gathcriug rieb()R
 gross ayar- 



392 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE :VIII. 
Îce. But Boniface appears under far different colors from 
:the facts in this book which we have dedicated to him, 
and the moral portrait which we have traced here is ad- 
miraùly confirmed hy some contemporaneous historians 
and especially by Villani. 
Boniface was a man most remarkable in his time for 
magnanimity; and as the office which he filled was great, 
he adnlinistered it so attentively and so energetically, that 
he identified himself with it. And as the estimate which 
he had of this ministry did not allow him to endure words 
or deeds against it, so possession of it aroused within him 
every human passion to resist these attacks. For this 
reason equal to every other Pope in the greatness of his 
conception of the Roman Pontificate, he surpassed them 
all by the ardor with which he displayed his power. 
Knowing that the Pontifical edifice is not supported by 
material means like the thrones of other princes, he raised 
from the crowd, for the sake of using them, those whose 
mental acumen and learning broug-ht them to his notice, 
and he loaded them with favors and riches to attach them 
to hÏIn. The people were accustomed to distinguish power 
by the splendor of its forms; he presented himself to them 
in the glitter of worldly pomp; and as he was superior to 
Idngs l)y reason of his double power direct and indirect so 
he wished to surpass them in the outward signs of au- 
thority. As his views were so were his actions. In the 
times when he lived princes were ashamed of the unaf- 
fected piety of their infancy and their ancient inability to 
govern the people, so that whereas in formpr tinles they 
laid even their crown on the altar of St. Peter, they with- 
drew it in these times with great violence, and in with- 
drawing it they shook the foundations of the Church. It 
was by reason of this that Boniface appeared angry and 
proud; that his voice resenlbled that of a roaring lion; and 
that his shoulders were as of bronze to sustain the totter- 
ing edifice in guard of which he had been placed. ,"Yon- 
derful in his quickness of perception, in comparing and in 
judging momentous affairs; very clever and prudent in 
the way of conducting them, he employed, in their order, 
and with an unbending spirit, the means capable of assur- 
ing success. 
lost courageous against others, he was not 
weak regarding himself; so that during the impulse of 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIIl. 393 
passion and anger, his heart not only remained unmoved 
ùut even opened itself to generosity, of which the pardons 
at Anagni are of proof. Profoundly versed in the science 
of law both human and divine, he interpreted them with 
eloquence in his discourses, with elegance in hi
 writing
, 
and he defended them with a courage superior to all. Hi
 
haughty and disdainful nature, his many and important 
occupations, the vigilance and hatred of his enen1Ïes had 
humanely rendered him chaste, while religion made him 
pure. He celebrated mass regularly and with great piety; 
and the tremendous sanctity of the sacrifice made him shed 
abundant tears; 26 it preserved him from those stains with 
which his enemies in accusing- him dishonored rather thenl- 
selves than him. His tall figure corresponded to his 
grandeur of soul; his limùs were robust and in perfect 
harmony; and his every movement and pose revealed a 
man Iuade for the throne. His forehead was high and 
llroad; his cheeks full, and the interior majesty of his 
soul disclosed itself in the calm severity of his gaze, and 
his countenance. In a word, from qualities of both mind 
and body he was what Petl'arch judged him to be: "The 
wonder of the world." 27 
The common people are credulou
; the strange and the 
impossible arouse their eager curiosity. :l\Iany perhaps 
helieved on the authority of Ferretus that the proud Pon- 
tiff lay in his sepulchre with gnawed wrists and a frac- 
tured skull; and perhaps no one could approach that sepul- 
chre without a certain feeling of horror, on thinking that 
it enclosed so much pride and despair. 
Three hundred and two years had elapsed since the 
death of Boniface, when Paul Y captivated by the gigan- 
tic project which Pope Julius II had devised, of raising a 
basilica over the tOlnb of the 
\postl('s, entered upon the 
execution of it. "... e could pardon .J ulius for destroying 
an ancient and venerable church through love of the great; 
he had engaged Bl'amante and )Iichelangelo to make 
his thought magnificent. But Paul would ever be held 
inexcusable if he had taken the initiative, because Bernini 
and Borromini were not the men to reproduce, by the 
power of genius, that mysterious beauty which ever sits 
-Justinian, in Chron. Riccar. Ab. S. Just in Reg. S. Ben. See Docu- 
ment 2 R. :n De otio Religiosorum. 



3D! HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


as qneen over the rugged works of our ancestors. But the 
impetuous de la Hovere had already deillolished a great 
pal't of the au(.ient Basilica to build that striking cupola, 
the sight of which would serve to frighten thf' barbarians 
whonl he wished to drive out of Italy; and so Panl Y was 
forced to complete the destruction of the ancient part HO 
that the new would not be left unfini
hed. 'Yhprefore in 
the first year of his Pontificate on the 2Gth of RepteIUbf'I', 
Paul after having' ohtained in a consistory the advÌf'e of 
the Cardinals and skilled architects, resolved to demoli
h 
that which remaÌlwd of the ancient basili('a. 'Ye do not 
know whether a certain remorse of conscience for that ir- 
reverent yiolpllCe to ancient walls determined the archi- 
tects to say that there existed a deviation of fiye palms 
between the top and the base of the walls, that the timbers 
had rotted, amI that the roof and the entire edifice weI'f' 
threatened with ruin; or whether the òanger was real and 
certain. Howeyer, it is a fact that on the 28th of the same 
nlonth Cardinal Pallotta, archpriest of St. Peter's ordere<<l 
all the altars in the great nave of the Basilica to be re- 
moved. These works of renloval, always detrimental, 
lwought the worknlen to the chapel of the Gaetani family. 
The altar was surmounted by a Gothic tabernacle of ex- 
quisite. design which Boniface had ordereò made: (ells- 
pidum operis Germanici); the forms were sharp and se- 
vere, and the top was in shape like an arrow. The chapel 
itself had been huilt by Boniface VIII after the design of 
the architect Arllolpho, who left his name inscriheò in it. 
A remarkahle picture in mosaic by Charles Conti contri- 
buted to its ornanlentation, in which was s('el1, in those 
holy forms and styles now a long thne lost, the blessed 
Virgin, at one side of whom was Rt. Peter, presenting 
Boniface to her,28 and at the other St. Paul with Rt. 
Boniface. The entire work was roughly carried away and 
afterwarrls lost. The tomb was placed on the wall in such 
a way as to be always visible to the priest who celehrated. 
It was of nlarble of the most unpretending kind, 
mch as it 
is still seen in the Yatican Basilica. This mausoleum hav- 
ing heen built òuring the life of Boniface, we consid('r it 
right to observe that in it there is found no indication of 
28 The Pontiff was probably kneeling, and of smaller proportions, ac. 
cording to the custom of the times. 




.... 
u;: 

. 
z
 
o
 


...... 


50 


" 


. 
, ... 
... 


1 .; 


.., ...... ... 
. ,.. 

 


\ 


-.1 


"\ 


.. 


..... 


....... 


1/' 

 


;'. 


I:. 



 


, 
\. 



 


--l 



 

 


:.... 
7_ 

 


:.... 
;... 


:.:: 


:.-; 


;.J 
Ç.. 
..; 
:.. 



 



 


ô 

 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 393 
an immoderate love of display. It is a simple sarcophagus 
on which reposes the statue of the Pontiff in a sleeping 
attitude, and èlothed in the priestly vestments; the head is 
covered by the tiara, and the hands are joined in the form 
of a cross and rest on the lower part of the stomach. Two 
cushions sli
htly elevate his head; a coverlet placed undcr 
the prostrate figure and displaying the coat of arms of the 
Gaetani family, falls in natural and graceful folds over 
the face of the luonulnent. 'Yho would not have imagined 
to find on that sepulchre signs and emblems indkating 
the houndless alubition and pride of him whose remains 
lay within '? As soon as the despoilers reached the tomb, 
t hey stopped, as they wished the Gaetani fan1Ïly to be pl'es- 
ent at the opening. The three Gaetani brothers, Anthony, 
Archbishop of Capua, Boniface, Bishop of Cessano, and 
Peter, duke of Sel'lllOneta, were prespnt with all thp can- 
ons of the Basilica and other prelates. The cover having 
been raised a wooden coffin was found within which con- 
tained the hOlws of the Pontiff, and this was opened on 
Oetob('1' 2Gth, the anniversary of his death. All present 
were struck with wonder at seeing how well preserved the 
corpse was, and how lifelike and sound the flesh looked. 
The head was not den uded of skin, the upper and lower 
membranes of the eyelids and the nlemhranes of ears 
were intact; the cheeks were full; ani! with the exception 
of two teeth lost during life all the other teeth were firmly 
set in the gums; the nose and the lips alone showpd marks 
of decay. The countenance was severE'. His body was 
seven palms and three quarters in length; his hands were 
long and so hpautiflll, " as to fill with adnliration all who 
saw them," the nails on them had grown; and from the 
nerves and the ('0101' of the veins, one would believe thpln 
full of life, amI that blood still circulated through them. 
All tlw vestnwnts wpre entire and well preserved. The 
hOJ'df'r of the al1., r('presentin
 flifferpnt suhjects taken 
from Holy 'Yrit, was composed of a rich and wonderful 
('mbroidpry in silk and gold. Such was the state of the 
hody of Bonifaf'e. ".. e have entered upon these details, not 
hef'ausp we considt'r('d nlaITelIons the perfect preserva- 
tion of the corpse of Boniface; for that could happpn either 
1),v the hody not },eing decomposed and tl1(> humors viti- 
ated hy a long inness, aud hy a perfect exclusion from the 



39G HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
tomb of the air, the principal cause of putrefaction. But 
we wished to show by the integrity of the skull and the 
fingers, by the calm pose of the entire corpse, how very 
calm also had been the departure of the soul which once 
vivified it. 
)len ordinarily are gracious to tombs; their hatred ends 
there and is appeased, and vengeance is disarmed; be- 
cause those who rest there become something sacred. But 
such were not the hatred and vengeance of Philip the Fair. 
He had been st.ruck Lya spiritual sword, not of a Gaetani, 
but of a Sovereign Pontiff, who although dead, had left as 
a heritage to his successors, the duty of punishing, as an 
example to others, the Frcnch prince, a violator of the 
sacred rights of the Church, and a brutal persecutor of her 
head. The thundering voice of Boniface was silent. but 
the scandal of 
\.nagni cried for vengeance, and Philip 
wished to stifle that cry. So after having cast upon the 
agents of his fury the culpability, froln which they were 
to be purified by some spiritual penance, he intended to 
present himself before the new Pope and the council, not 
as guilty and deserving of condelunation, but as a man 
injurerl in his honor and in his rights, to whom a just 
reparation was due. Not only did he hope to succeed in 
his purpose, but he believed it certain upon the arrival of 
the messengers coming in all haste to apprise him of the 
death of Boniface. This information filled him with joy, 
and for the tinle to conlC unopposed, he promised himself 
a most brilliant future. But if the runlor then current is 
not false, a certain Bishop of )Iorienne met in the Alps 
the messenger bringing the news of the taking of Boniface 
and by a sudden and divine inspiration broke forth into 
cries; "Alas! PhiJip will rejoice greatly over this infor- 
" mation, but 1Jis joy will be followed by a great cause for 
" sorrow. Ah! that judgment will fall on his head and 
"that of his children." If the Bishop whether humanly 
or supernaturally spoke the truth in those words, the 
course of this history will prove. 29 
The nine òays of mourning having passed, the Cardinals 
assembled for the election of a DPW Pope. Still terrified 
by the misfortune of Boniface, they felt their spirits were 
too feeble to hold th'e reins of government which Boniface 
29 John Villani, Book 8, c. G4. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 397 
had managed with so much vigor; their hearts palpitated 
between the apostolic resolution of continuing the work 
of the magnanimous deceased, and the arguments of pru- 
dence, which counselled peaceful concessions. By firm- 
ness one courted martyrdom; by concessions a not distant 
invasion, and the enslavement of the entire Catholic 
priesthood would ensue. If, through the imperfections 
and weakness of humanity, ambitions for the tiara were 
aroused in that assenlbly, they should have been curbed 
by the thought that he who would be chosen to direct the 
bark of Peter, should descend ignominiously from the 
hdghts of the pontifical dignity where Boniface had 
courageously held it, that is to say, either make criminal 
arrangenwnts with Philip, or suffer the violence of some 
otlwr 
 ogaret. After one day of conclave, all the suf- 
frages united on Cardinal Xicholas Boccasini, Bishop of 
O
tiaJ a religious of the order of St. Dominic, who was of 
humble extraction, of pnre Inorals, and of a sweet dispo- 
sition. "Te s)wlI not speak at length of his pontificate, 
nor of the one that followed, but we shall narrate only 
those facts which have a bearing on the affairs of Boni- 
face. And here we are forced to rf'mark to the reader 
that we enter upon an epoch far different fronl the ancient 
times, and frOlu those which have been subject of our 
narration, rrhe tragedy of Boniface put an end to that 
glorious era of the Papacy. Therefore such kings as 
Henry, Frederick Barbarossa, 
lanfred and Philip the 
Fair will not be seen again; princes restrained by the 
Hf'Verity of command, but managed by arrangements 
which contain a certain equality of power. The Papacy, 
surrounded and defended by the nloral power of the priest- 
hood, which at first had solemnly opposed thr laws, now 
negotiates by treaties, which prudf'llce dictates. It did 
not fear martyrdom hut the inefficacy of the spiritual 
arms despised by the people, as if Christ ill placing theln 
in the hands of his Vicars, bJd not thought to temper 
them so as not to rf'nrler tlwm useless in the lasting de- 
frnce of the Church. However, in view of the prosperous 
situation in whi('h thf' policies of govrrnment have placed 
tlIP rights and the liberty of the Church, one can easily 
judgf' wbrtber pl'udencf' has succeeded better than force. 
One of the first acts of TIenedict W:lS to raise his yoice 



398 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
against those who pillaged the treasury of Boniface, and 
to threaten them with censures. He entrusted his chap- 
lain, Bernard Riardi, with the difficult mission of recov- 
ering it. The bells were tolled, the candles were lighted, 
anathemas were hurled; but not one of the plunderers 
restored the booty. 30 The cause of the scandals con- 
tinued; Nogaret still hovered around the environs of 
Anagni, his heart full of anger, because of the disgrace- 
ful expulsion of the French from that town. As soon as 
he heard of the death of Boniface, he sought Rinaldo of 
Supino, in the town of Ferentino, to renew his courage 
for new crimes, offering him men, money and royal favors. 
11e remembered the events of Anagni, and he resolved 
at any cost on revenge. 31 In the nleantiIne another mes- 
senger of Philip, Peter of Peredo, a prior, being sent into 
Italy to arouse the people against Boniface and fill Rome 
with the usual conlplaints against him, had arrived in 
the city a day before the death of the Pope. IIardly was 
Benedict seated on the Pontifical throne, than Peredo be- 
gan to complain, in his presence and before the Cardinals, 
of the injury which the dead Pope had done to the Church. 
lIe related to the new Pope all that had passed in the 
State
 general; he renewed the appeals to the council and 
to the Pope; he entreated hiIn to convoke a council at 
l,yons, or in any other place not dangerous to the French; 
and he concluded by execrating the memory of Boniface, 
'fhe envoy did not have credential letters; and for thi!' 
reason Benedict replied that he could not deliberate on 
the affairs in consistory, and he also made Nogaret l('av(' 
I taly, with the prolnise of pacifying and reconciling 
France with the Ronlan Church. 
:N ogaret returned to France opportunely to aid Philip 
IIY bis counsel
 of which he was in great need. It was not 
prudent to wait until Benedict notified the I{ing, accord- 
ing to custom, of his elevation to the Pontificate through 
the mediulll of a Nuncio. For in case this KUlH.io did not 
come, Philip heing excomnlunicated, Benedict would thu!' 
show clearly that he confirmed the Bulls of Boniface. It 
was of no value to await the coming of any Legate bear- 
ing arrangements, because it could not he foresepn with 


10 Ra)'nalduB, no. 37. 


II Process, p. 174: apud Baillet, p. 233. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 399 
what instructions he would be charged by Benedict; and 
supposing that Philip did not accept them, he would he 
forced to prolong the hostility against the new Pope also, 
from whom he expected benign concessions. Therefore, 
with the advice of Nogaret he anticipated Benedict by 

ending to him three ambassadors, Berardo, lord of 
Ier- 
{'ueil, 'Yilliam Plasian, lord of Yezenobre, and Peter of 
Bellepercho, a canon of Chartres, and a most renowned 
lawYf'r. They had the nlost extensive power to conclude 
a peace with the Pope, and a procuration from Philip to 
recf'ive absolution from the censures imposed on the King, 
and the kingdonl of France, :K ogaret was to accompany 
them, but. he could not take part in the affair of the cen- 
sure
, because he had been personally struck by the 
anatlu"ma of Boniface. But, either being afraid of the 
rf'lative
 of Boniface, and of the impression which the 
sight of him would produce on the Pontiff, or because his 
presence was useful to the prince, he renlained in France, 
wh(>rp he occupied himself in preparing the particulars 
of the suit that was to be instituted against the lnemory 
of Boniface. 32 The ambassadors departed; the French 
pt'ople followed them with these acclaluations: "The 
"liberty of their country consistf'd in acknowledging in 
"the temporal matters no one superior to the king, ex- 
"('('pt God. Boniface sllOuld be declared a heretic, for 
"having nlaintained the contrary; this should be sup- 
"mitted to a council or the new Pope; and that his con- 
"flemnation would ju
tify France in the eyes of poster- 
" ity." In the meanwhile the French understood how 
ad,'antageous it was to them that Philip had no one but 
God above him, when thf'Y saw what respect he had for 
their liberty. Benedict found himself navigating in diffi- 
cult waters. He had been one of the Cardinals faithful to 
Boniface; the memory of that terrible night at Anagni 
evpr present in his mind, reminded him that it would cost 
Philip and his ministers vrry little to renew the horrible 
acts of violencp of which he had been a witness. Guided 
pither by these fears or by prudence, he resolved to come 
to a peaceful 
ettlemf'nt with Philip. But in order that 
by this he would not he con
idf'rf'd as wanting in couragp, 


· Process. p. 174 apud. B:lillet, p
ge 239. 



400 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
and his indulgence would not have the appearance of 
eonstl'aint, he sent to Philip the absolution from the ex- 
conul1unication, before the aITival of the ambassadors, 
and before any previous l'eque8t of this prin(:e. An act, 
whieh the fear of sOlnething worse t:ounselled, assumed 
thus the appearance of generosity. On April 2nd he pub- 
Jishpd two do(:ument
, one for the perpetual memorial of 
the thing, and the other aùdressed to Philip, by which he 
l'emoved the cen
n]'es against Philip and the chul'eh in 
Fl'allt'e, and "thi
 to avoid scandal, because it is neces- 
., 
al'Y to relax a little of the rigor in the interest of the 
., multitude. H
 l'pvoked all the other acts of his pre- 
d
eessor against Philip, he accorded new privileges; but 
alwa;ys excluded formally from the general favor \Yilliam 
de 
ogaret, whose absolution" we reserve to ourselves, 
and to the ..lpo
tolk See." Benedict also wished, in order 
to soften Philip, to modify the ('onstitution "Clerici
 
Jaicos,'. by tempering the penalties. It condemned 

o]emn]y, not only those who without permission of the 
Holy 8ee, exacted subsidies fronl the clergy, but also those 
who, on reqnest, consented to thpse exactions, and to the 
eolleetion of tith('s, and other taxes. Benedict released 
tb('se latter from all penalty. 
The amllas
adors not having arrived as yet at Rome, 
tbe
e absolution
 and pardons were received in the name 
of the King, hnt without deputation by 'Yilliam Chaste- 
llay and Hugh de Celles, two of the numerous agents 
whom Philip kept in Italy in order to press the affair of 
tlIP conllciI, to which he wished to appeal. Sp
ing that 
pverything wa
 progressing' wonderfully we]], they took 
with them a notary of Rome; and six days after the pub- 
Iication of the Bull of pardon, they went to see different 
Cardinals successively, in ord
r to prevail upon them to 
('nter into the views of the King regarding a Council. 
Fh'e of the ten there declared that they were in favor of 
calling a council, whereas th
 other five would abide by the 
(lecision of the Pope. Bnt Benedict wonld not hear of a 
Council and appeals. lIe had sacrificed even too much 
for peace. 33 
The royal envoys arrived bearing a letter from Philip 


33 Bai11et, 242, 243. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 401 
to the Pope. It was full of congratulations on his eleva- 
tion to the Papacy; of hopes; of abuse against his pre- 
decessor; then followed excessive and hypocritical praise 
of Benedict. He called him a man of brilliant qualities, 
a mirror of virtue, a model of sanctity, a man after his 
own heart, who did not seek his own glory, but only that 
of God, the interests of the Church, and the prosperity of 
Christianity in the Holy Land. IIe reconlmended himself 
and the whole Gallican church to his IIoliness. ""'e have 
said that these praises were hypocritical; because if the 
hopes failed in their intent, Benedict would be another 
Boniface to him. Hypoeri
y is always the nlost poison- 
ous and most dangerous weapon of usurpers. 34 Benedict 
replied in most polite term
, striving to bring back by 
gentleness this prince, against whom all rigorous meas- 
ures had failf'd. Passing over in 8ilence Boniface and the 
excommunication emanating from him, he said: ",Judge 
" of our tenderness in releasing you from all censures be- 
"fore you canle or sent to ask it; 35 we have wel
omed 
" ,vith joy and benevolence your envoys and your letters. 
" And far from rppenting of our indulgence, we feel it a 
"duty as Yicar of that good Shepherd, who having l<.>ft 
" in the de
ert the ninety-nine 
heep, goes to sf'ek the one 
"hundredth, and after having found it places it joyful1y 
" on his 
houlders, in 01'(1er to return it to the fold." And 
he conchulf's hy re
alIing the example of Joas, King of 
J uda, who r<.>ignf'd gloriously and practi
ed virtue as lon
 
as he folIow<.>d the counsel
 of tbe high-priest Joad, but 
when he d<.>partf'd frOlll them he fell into disgrace and was 
finally assassinatf'd hy his own servants. "Listen to your 
father," 
aid he, " in order that God may strengthen yonI' 
"kingdonl and render it glorious." But Boniface bad 
u
ed similar language lwfore he had recourse to rigor; it 
cau
<.>d a violent death to this Pontiff and we shall se
 
what kind of death it procured fOl" Benedict. Anyone 
can notice that, in all these act
, the prudent Pontiff, in 
pardoning the King of France, did not condt'mn Boniface. 
On the contrary the pal'doll granted to Philip the FaÏ1
 
and to France, suppost's their revolt again
t the Apostolic 
M RaynaldU!
, 1304, 8. 
SII" Tibi absenti et non petcnti."--Pagi Brev. Pont, Rom. Tom. III, 
p. 553. 



40
 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
Se
, and the justice of the chastisements by which they 
bad heen punished. He called Philip an illustrious, a 
noble, a distinguished, but always a lost and a stray 
sheep.36 
The Colonnas did not lose time; they exerted them- 
selves greatly, in order to turn to their advantage such 
indulgent dispositions. The good Pontiff, who was clem- 
ency itself, released them from the enormous weight of 

xcommunications, suspensions, and interdicts which they 
llad deserved; 37 allowed them to return home, extending 
his indulgence so far as to restore them to their family 
privileges, and their civil rights. But he refused to re- 
store to the two Cardinals the hat and the ecclesiastical 
benefices; and forbade the rebuilding of the fortifications 
of Palestrina. By these restrictions he acknowledged the 
Colonnas to have been truly seditious, and men dangerous 
to the state and Church. 38 ",yith these favors the Colon- 
nas showed themselves apparently satisfied yet the two 
deposed Cardinals did not cease their agitations. They 
a(hlressed to Philip, their friend, a memorial, in which 
they entreated him to continue his former protection to 
them, to unite his efforts to theirs, in order to finish the 
proceedings against Boniface. "The cause of a Cardinal," 
they remarked, "could be tried only in an Eculnenical 
"Council. Leaving to the Pope the power to dispose and 
"banish a cardinal, is to expose to ruin the government 
"of the Church. The cardinals are a salutary counter- 
"pose to the Papal power. They form the counsel of the 
"Pope, they sit in judglnent with him, and are members 
" of the same body. It is a destruction of the kingdom of 
"Jesus Christ to deprive the cardinals of the right and 
"liberty of opposition to the Pope, in cases where it is 
"necessary to defend truth and justice against him, and 
"where he would overstep the limits of his ministry. 
"They had been neither denounced, nor cited, nor con- 
"victed of any crime which merited such chastisement. 
" They hoperl that his :l\1ajesty by his favors would obtain 
"in entir
ty for them, from Benedict, the justice which 
"this Pontiff had already begun to render them." 39 
38 )r amquid bnt" m ovem, tu cs, sic N obilem, praecepuam, et praeclaram 
relinquemus. PRgi TIrpv. Pont. Rom. Tom. lIT, p. 553. 
3T Preuves du Diff., page 227, '8 Baillet, 248. III Baillet, 249. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 403 
Up to the end of )lay, Benedict followed the inspiratiolls 
of his kind alid indulgent heart; but then a seeret voiec 
sounded in his heart and urged him to resume a little of 
that courage becoming to a Pontiff; ùecause justice has 
some duties which clemency must not forget. The par- 
ùons granted were so many revocations of penalties sanc- 
tioned by Boniface when alive. But there were enornlOUS 
crimes to be punished, which, from the depth of the tomù 
of that Pontiff cried for and deserved vengeance. 'Ye 
speak of those who had com1nitted, or favored the incrpd- 
ihle c1'Ïuw of Anagni. Silence and impunity would bave 
bef'n considcred a sort of approbation. 
So this excellent Pope then determined finally to act, 
and on June 7th 40 he wrote and published a Bull in which 
there was ùetokened the grandeur and n1ajesty of a 
prophet; after having recalled the tragic event of Anaglli, 
and named an the leading conspirators, among WhOlll wer
 
X ogaJ'et anù Rciarra, he burst forth and allowed to es- 
cape, in bi
 grief, some fiery words: "And these crimes 
" we1'p committed publicly and under our very eyes. . . . 
"crimes of lese-majesty, of rebellion, of sacrilege, of 
"felony, of theft, of rapine, the mere thought of which 
"excites hor1'01.. 'Yho would be so cruel as not to shed 
" tears; so spiteful as not to ùe moved to compassion? 
"'Ybat judge would be so negligent as not to be eager to 
" proceed; or so merciful or clement as not to becon1e 
"severe? Security has been violated, immunity offended. 
"One's own country has not been a protection; the do- 
" me
tie firesiùe has not been a refuge; a Sovereign Pon- 
"tiff has bf>en outraged; and with her sponse a captive, 
"the Chul"eb herself has been a captive. "There hence- 
"forth find a safe place? "That sanctuary will be re- 
"fò;Iwcted, after the violation of that of the Roman Pon- 
" tiff? 0, inexpiable crime! 0, unfortunate Anagni! 
" .:\Iay the rain and dew fall on thee no more, but descend- 
"ing on other mountains pass to the side of thee. Be- 
h C3Ufò;f> the hero has fallen; that which was invesh.fl with 
"
trength has bren overcome under thy eyes, and thou 
"('oulrlfò;t have prevented it. 0, most wretched 1nalefac- 
" tors! In your actions you would not imitate the ex- 


.0 Rayn., 1304. 13. 



40:1 


HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 


"ample of holy David, who not only refuseù to lay a hand 
" on the anointed of the Lord, altllough his eneIllY, perse- 
" cutor, and riyal, but even ordered to be struck ùown ùy 
"the sword the one who had dared to do so. For it is 
" written: "Touch not my anointed." Inexpressible 
" grief! lamelltaùle action! pernicious example! inexpi- 
"able fault! Intone, 0 Church, the nlournful chant of 
" lamentations; let tears course down thy cheeks; and as 
"ahlers in thy vengeance let thy I';ons conle frOln afar, 
" and tby daughters rush to tllY side." 
He ended the Bull ùy heaping on tbe beads of the nlale- 
factors, and all their aÜlers and abettors, ùy favor or ad- 
vice, all the censures descriùed in the holy canons, and 
ci ted them to appear lwfore him in the short space of 
twenty-two days.41 There is a reason to believe that after 
so many indulgences, the malf'factors considered them- 
selves safe. But Benedict thought of them, and if lIe was 
slow in punishing theln until this tiIne, it was because he 
was hindered ùy just reasons. 42 
Philip was not mentioned but he was comprised among 
the abettors, counsf'llors, and supporters of the crimp; 
he was included indirectly among the nanled chiefs; be- 
cause there was no Dlan in the world who did not be- 
lieve that the treachery of .Anagni was entirely his work. 
Spondano with the ingenuity of a child thinks that 
the King npitber knew nor approved of those wicked 
crimes. But it would be uspless to contradict him. Tbf' 
simple reflection that Nogarf't and Sciarra Colon a would 
not have dared to comn1Ït such an enormous erinle with- 
out the power and the wealtb of the King, is a cOlllplete 
refutation of this charitahle ancl ingenuom;; assertion. 
Dante assigns the rôle of Pilate to Philip the Fair in that 
tragedy.43 This rôle did not satisfy him, for the reason 
that proudly trampling under foot the holiest laws, he 



1 See Document 2 S. 42 "Puniendum prosequi ex justis causis." 

S" See the modern Pilate, whom avails 
No cruelty to sate, and who, unbidden, 
Into tlle temple sets his greedy sails. 
o thou, my Lord! when shan I joyful1y, 
BellOld the vengeance, which profoundly hidden 
Makes sweet thy anger in thy mystery?" 
Purgatory, canto XX. Wright's translation. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 40:> 
forced himRelf into the sanctuary of the Church, and thpre 
hpld sway. Did the publication of that Bull, whieh was 
rec('ived with joy hy the multitude, cause theRe thou
hts 
to arise in his mind? Let the reader not ask us, cOllsider- 
ing that this pious and clement Pope on July 7th (onp 
month only after the publication of the Bull) passed out 
of this world by poi80n which was adn1inistered to him. 
Philip was not near, hut the Colonnas, Napoleon Orsini, 
and his other mORt faithful mini8ters were very clu
e at 
hand. Some contemporary writers aCCU8e them of poison- 
illg the Pope. 44 Ferretus of Yincenza goes right to the 
point and flatly accuses Philip the Fair. 45 
Pardons, and Popes precipitated into their sepulchres 
did not 8atisfy the fury of Philip. These were only tri- 
umphs oyer men materially weaker than he; he wished 
to triumph over right, that is to say, he wished to give 
to his actions an appearance of justice, by proving that 
Boniface had ùeen an illegitimate Pope, a heretic, a mon- 

ter of iniquity, while he himself was guiltless of any 
fault, and a victim of his wickedness. Now it is here 
precisely that one distinguishes the comnlon brigand from 
the tyrant. The former by force deprives you of your 
money and your life; he violates justice, but he dops not 
profane it by changing its nature. The tyrant rohs you 
of both life and possessions, he crushes you und{'l' foot 
down to the gr_ave, and drags along justice in order to 
sanctify his wickpdnf'ss. Benedict having ùeen poiROIwd, 
PhHip had recoursp to oth('r measurPR in order to Rllcrepd 
in his design. Tired of acts of violence, anò pel'hapR de- 
Hpairing of their f'flkacy, because dead Popes havp suc- 
ef'HROrS he tried corruption. 'Ye now come to another pro- 
fanation of the Apostolic See. 
If there wa
 f'ver a time, in which, considering only men. 
and not Heavf'n which governs the things of this world, it 
was practicaHy impossible to elect a Pontiff on aeeoun1 of 
disspnsions among the electors, it was pred
e]y this tiuw. 
The ob
tacles to a prompt and peacpful elt'ction do not 
romp only from that weaknf'ss of human natuI'f', whirll is 
not cured hy the sanctity of tbp office, but rathcr (a R
Hl 
thing to Ray) from ff'at, within, and t
'Tanny witbout. The 
.. Jobn Villani. L. 8. c. 80,-Dino Compo Lib. 3.-Fran. Pipino. T,ib. 4. 
c. 49. "s. R. 1. Tom. 9. page 1013. 



406 HISTORY 01<' POPE BONU'ACE VIII. 
one prolonged the widowhood of the Church; the other 
prepared chains, whi<.h the diabolic inventive genius of 
the Cæsars of pagan Home had not found. A Pope per- 
secuted by Nero, and hidden in the Catacombs, at the 
Juost was at the summit of l1Ïs moral majø;;:ty and power. 
A Pope imprisoned .by a most Christian king. and sweetly 
dragged within his Idngdom, was and will always be the 
nlost shameful despoliation of power and dignity. There- 
fore the stake and the gallows rather than perfidious 
caresses. PhiHp knew it well, and he aspired to this de- 
gradation of the Pontificate by favors. 
The cardinal electors wpre divided into two parties, the 
one favoraùle to the French, and the other to the Italians. 
31atthew Orsini and Francis Gaetani, nephew of Pope 
BOlliface, werp the chiefs of the latter, while 
apoleon 
Orsini and de Prato, who as relative anf1 friend of the 
Colonnas desired their restOl'ation, were the heads of thl
 
latter. Scandalous dissensions: thpy asspmùled, they ad- 
journed, they nlet again Witllout doing anything; thp 
people were indignant; the Church sOl'rowpd; Philip was 
npgotiating. Tired of these skirmishes, De Prato and 
Gaetani one day met in secret, and agreed that the Italian 
party should choose at their pleasure, three French prel- 
ates, from WhOll1 the French party would make their 
selection witl}.in the period of forty da;ys, and the othpr 
would abide by the choice. The combination conciliated 
all interests; because if the French faction had the advan- 
tage of obtaining a Pope of that nation, the Italian fac- 
tion had the privilege of proposing three prelates devotpd 
to thp nlenlory of Boniface, and enemies of Philip the 
Fair. Gaptani and his adherents chose three archbishops 
who owed their prolllotion to Bonifal'e, and whonl Philip 
had ostpllsibly persecuted; Cardinal di Prato, with his 
followers, chose frolll al110ng the three, as Pontiff, Ber- 
trand de Got, a native of Bordeaux, and the Archbishop 
of that sep. De Prato speedily acquainted Philip of the 
(.hoice, the arf'hhishop being as yet ignorant of the fact, 
in order that the I{ing might negotiate, and take posses- 
sion of him. Phi1ip was shrewd and he knew that the 
Pope plect was alllbitious and greedy for honors. He made 
an appointInent with him in a forest, near the Abbey of 
St JoIlll d' Angely. In the first place he requested him to 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 407 
be reconciled to Charles of Valois, against whom he en- 
tertained an old aversion; then showing him the letter of 
de Prato, he said, that the Papal Keys were in his hands, 
and if he wished to obtain thelll he would have to promi
e: 
1st, to reconcile him fully to the Church; 2nd, to absolve 
hiIn and his partisians from the cen
mre of eXl"OmIllUni- 
cation; 3rd, to condemn the melllory of Boniface; 4th, to 
restore the two Colonnas to the dignity of car(linal. 5th, 
to grant him the tithes of all the French ('hul'ches for five 
years; the Gth favor was to remain a secret until the king 
deemed the time opportune for its disclosure. And 111any 
conjectured, not incorrectly that it was the removal of thp 
Papal See to A vignon. Dazzled by the glitter of the tiara, 
the Archbishop opened his mouth only to swear on tlle 
holy Eucharist that he would oùserve faithfully a1] that 
Philip wished hhn to promise to do. After having given 
to the King aN a guarantee his brother and two nephews 
as hostages, the prelate departed; some n1cssengers sent 
by Philip, went qukkly to inform de Prato of the conclu- 
sion of the shameful compact. 46 Faithful to their prom- 
ise, and ignorant of this secret intprview, the Italians cast 
their votes for the Archbishop, who was solpu1nly electetl 
sovereign Pontiff. He took the name of Clell1ent Y. The 
Cardinal electors announced to the faithful this election, 
but they kept silent on the compromise agreed to by thp 
chiefs of the two factions, and the artifices of the FreDeh 
party.47 The Italians perceived the ruse, as soon as tlw 
new Pope ordered them to come to him in Lyons, where 
he wished to be crowned. They manifested IOlHlly thpir 
surprise, and chagrin, but they were already in the trap, 
from which they would not escape, so that turning' to 
Cardinal de PI'ato, 
Iatth('w Orsini, dean of the sacred 
College, said to him: " You succeeded in leading us into 
"the trap; the Roman Court had erosspd the mountains; 
" it will not be seen 
oon again in Italy; I know something 
"of the temperament of the Gascous." Clement was a 
Gascon. 48 
'Yhih:\ the Cardinals were striving in Perugia to elect 
a Pope, Philip and :K ogaret were not losing time in 
France. The latter, notwithstanding his harangups and 
toe John Villani L. 8, c. 80. .7 Raynaldus, 1305, 130G. 
61 Villani, ibidem, c. 81. 



408 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII, 


]Jlustering, was :severely tormented by the censures im- 
posed on hinl. Those of Beneùict especially weighed very 
hea,Tily on him, an<1 ll(
 
aw clearly that, as time calmed 
the resenÌIllent against Boniface, he would end b
y showing 
a disgraceful rôle with his calumnies and his robbery of 
Anagni. So in order to free him
elf from the excommuni- 
cations, and rehabilitate hiInself in the public favor, he 
is
ued Inanifestoes, in which he justified his acts. lIe 
addressed five of theln to the officials of the Church of 
Paris; and aB could be reduced to the following: "Be 
"should not be surprised to see him ask absolution from 
" censures; sent to negotiate with the Roman See, he 
"asked only for greater security. The decrees of Boni- 
"face were not binding before God or men. IIe did not 
"retract one single word of his grievances against this 
" Pontiff; he was ever ready to accuse him of heresy, of 
"schism, of idolatry, and this for the instruction of prel- 
" ates and too indulgent kings, through love for his coun- 
" try, so horrihly n1altreated by that Pope. Sent to Rome. 
"by his n1ajesty to urge the convocation of a council, to 
"which all France appealed, he had employed succe

- 
" fully all n1('3ns of avoiding extreme nlf'3SUreS, which th(' 
"obstinacy of the Pontiff haò voluntarily provoked. Hp 
"lwd nothing- to reproach himself with in the events of 
"Anagni with regard to a Pope, who by hi
 contumacy 
"was acknowledged guilty of heresy, and all other crime
 
"imputed to him. 'VhiJe there prudence and humanity 
"had been the rule of hi
 conduct; he had forbidden the 
" pillage of the Papal palace and treasury; but the fury of 
" the soldiers exceeded the command of the chief, and if 
"Boniface harl escaped alive from their hands. he owed 
"it to him, N ogaret, alone. Restored to liberty, that 
" Pontiff had pardoned all those who had lnaltreated hiIn, 
"and he found himself named among those pardoned. 
" 
\fter the death of that Pontiff he had interrupted his 
"proceedings against him only through defel'encp for 
"Pope Benedict, hut he renewed thell1 now more vigor- 
"ow
Iy than ever; he was well prepared to justify him- 
"
eIf, and prove the truth of his accu
ation. either in a 
" full Council, or even before the convocation of thi
 coun- 
"cil, before the Holy See, provided there would be suffi- 
"dent protection again
t the resentInent of the relatives 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. '409 


"and partisans of Boniface." He complained in the other 
documents, of the injustice of Benedict, who had excom- 
municated him; and he asked, as a measure of precaution. 
for a1Jsolution fron1 the censures, in order that he might 
proceed more fref'ly against the memory of Boniface, not 
through hatred, but for the glory of God, the good of the 
Church, and the preser,ation of the public right. 49 
N ogaret was depresRed and agitated. But the elevation 
of the Archbishop of Bordeaux to the sovereign Pontifi- 
cate raised his hopes, and those of Philip. TheRe hopes 
were manifested at the feasts of Lyons. Clement deRirpfl 
to be crowned in this city and not at Rome. He invited to 
this grand ceremony the King of France, and the King 
of England, of whom he was a subject, being a Gascon, 
who could not come, as he was detained in his kingdom 
by the affairs of Scotland. "Then Cardinal ::\Iatthew 
Rossi Orsini, who as we remarked was the first to foresee 
the long exile of the HOITIan Pontiffs, had placed the crown 
on hiR head, Clement set out triumphantly with a caval- 
carle for hiR palace. Philip the Fair for a part of the time 
appeared on foot in the procession holrling the bridle of 
the horse on which the Pontiff was mounted; the two 
brothers of the King, Charles of Valois, and Louis of 
Evreux, and John, Duke of Brittany performed the same 
office successively for the Pope. Speaking of ...\. ,ignon, we 
do not know whether it was in triumph or to prison that 
Philip It'd Clenlent. The feast was marred by a sad acci- 
dent. An olrl wall which lined the way of the procession, 
fell under the weight of the numerous spectators with 
which it was ladpn, at the very mOluent the Pope was 
passing; Clement was not inj ured, but only thrown to 
the ground, and his crown, fallen froin his head, rolled 
in the mire. Twelve peJ'Rons within the compass of it 
were mortally wounded, and died a few days afterwards; 
among the number was the Duke of Brittany; the Duke of 
Valois was badly injured. The Italian cardinals con- 
sidered this lamentahle accident a bad omell. The fes- 
tivities were followed by the fulfilment of the promises 
made hy Bertrand de Got. In December the two Colon- 
nas were reinstated in the dignity of cardinal, became 


.. Preuves, pp. 237, 239, 252, 269, 274. 



.110 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
again electors and elegi1Jle to the Papacy themselves; ten 
other cardinals were created, all Frenchmen; the sen- 
tence of Boniface against Philip and his ministers was 
revoked, and tithes were granted for five years. The Pope 
as yet was not pre8sed to condemn the memory of Boni- 
face, and in the nlPanwhile Philip and Clelnel1t partpd 
very well pleased. Philip went home, Clement could not, 
and he went to Bordeaux. Either the secret favor which 
Philip has asked from him was not to leave France, or 
Clenlent, fearing the anger of the Gaetani, did not want 
to go to Rome. 
Clement found himself in a difficult and an embarras
- 
ing position. He was a Frenchman, and a French prinee, 
if he had not placed him in the Pontifical chair, at lea
t 
aided him to arrive there; therefore, although the voice of 
duty of his high office spoke strongly to hiIn interiorly, 
it was stifled by the love of country, and a feeling of 
gratitude towards Philip. Benedict also would have 
granted him the tithes, and would have given him absolu- 
tion from censures, and we have seen how that good Pontiff 
in all the indulgences he lavished on Philip, avoided, with 
wonderful cleverness, all that which would appear as a re- 
vocation of the acts of Boniface. Past and present reasons 
imppIled Clement to revoke the Papal constitution of 
Boniface, and it came to that. The most vexatious to 
PhiJip were the constitution "Clericis la icos," and the 
one which began by the words: Unarn sanctam,. they were 
nightmares which made sleep impossible to Philip. Clem- 
ent published two decretals the 1st of Fehruary; 50 one of 
them ahrogated the first of these BuIls, as a cause of dis- 
sension, and condemned all the subsequent acts of Boni- 
face in defence of it, recaIling however the faithful to the 
observance of the regulations of the councils, especially 
of the Coundl of the Lateran relative to the taxes which 
laymen levied on ecclesiastical property. The other de- 
cretal did not revoke but rather renewed the constitution 
rnul1
 sanctum. TIere are the words: "The entire and 
" sincere affection of our dear son Philip, iIlustrious King 
" of France, towards us and towards the Roman Church; 
"the briIliant deserts of his ancestors; the pure and sin- 


110 BeT. Guido. Chron. R. Pontif. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 411 


"cere devotion of his subjects, merit for him and his king- 
"dom signal favors. 'Ye wish accordingly, and intend 
" that the dispositions of the Bull Unam Sanctum of Pope 
" Boniface VIII, our predecessor of happy memory, bear 
" to them no prejuùice whatever; that they do not subject 
"them more strictly than before to the Roman Church; 
" but that everything remains, regarding the Church, the 
"King, the kingdom and its inhabitants, in the state in 
"which it was previously." 51 
X ow supposing that the constitution Unum Sanctum 
waR here revoked, there is no denying the fact, that the 
revocation rf'garded only France, and it effected the letter 
rather than the spirit. In fact in speaking before of this 
Bull, we remarked that Boniface had not put forth any 
thing new. IIencf' recalling to Philip (as in the abroga- 
tion of the Rull clericis) the old rules, Clement did nothin
 
but bind this prince tacitly to the very constitutions which 
he believed were aholished. But Philip was pleased by 
appearances; hence notwithstanding the praises given 
him for his merit!':, his dpvotion, and his ardent love for 
tbe Roman See, he could not bear the epithet happy ap- 
plied to the memory of Boniface VIII. It disturbed his 
own happineRs, and turned into bitterness the sweet and 
paternal concessions; he wanted his name cancelled from 
the Papal writings and from the hearts of all faithful 
rhristians. He vigorously importuned the Pope to con- 
demn Boniface, as he had sworn to do. Pressed by the 
ambassadors of the King, Clement was in torture. To 
nse the keys g-ivf'n to St. Pf'ter to open the gateR of Heaven, 
for the opening of a tomb wherein a Vicar of Christ re- 
posed, to revive his memory; to drag it before the bar of 
a tribunal instituted to protect justice; and to immolate 
bim with infamy by weapons furnished by a brutal prince 
-such were the series of enormities which a sovereign 
Pontiff was ('aIled upon to sanction. Clement felt his 
position aR Pontiff, and full of horror, he tried to tempor- 
ize; hut that expedient has ever been ruinous to the weak 
against a violent enemy. For it is always necessary to 
reply to force hy force and not by weakness. Philip cut 
sbort tbese evasions and delays, by inviting him to an 


111 Raynaldus, 1306. 



412 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
interview at Poitiers in the spring of 1307. Strongly im- 
portuned by Pl1ilip the Pope had to obey. He went to 
Poi tiers, and the King repaired thither with a splendid 
court; Charles of Valois, and his sons accompanied him. 
Robert Count of Flanders; Charles II of Sicily, and the 
alnbassadors of Edward 1,52 by their presence added eclat 
to this a
sembly. Hayton, an envoy from the King of Ar- 
menia, was also present, through the report circulated by 
Philip that the affairs of the Holy Land would ùe treated 
in that lneeting. But the sole affair was the condemnation 
of Boniface, By his own presence and that of so many 
princes Philip wanted to wrest from Clement the fulfil- 
ment of his sworn prOluise. The Pope tremùled, and the 
Cardinals were no more tranquil. The latter advised the 
Pope to flee in disguise from Poitiers; but Philip inter- 
cppted hiIn, and forced him to remain. 53 
The ass;;auIts of the King were terrible, and horrible were 
his den1ands. lIe demanded that the proceedings against 
the memory of Boniface, which he considered had already 
been begun, be ùrought to an end; and the truth of the 
cI'in1es alleged by S ogaret having been established, the 
l)ody of that Pope should ùe dragged from the tomb, and 
he puùlidy consigned to the flames. Philip insisted, and 
he reminded the Pope of his oath in the forest of St. John 
d'Angply. In these straightened circumstances the soul 
of Clement was perplexed, and he tried to influence Philip, 
now Ly magnifying the difficulty of such a procedure 
which could not be had without the advice of the Car- 
dinah
, now by lessening the enormity of the faults im- 
putpd to his predpce
sor, and persuading the King to 
exer('i
e moderation in this affair, by checking the ÏIn- 
petuo!':ity. of the accu
prs, and not e lose the way to justi- 
fication. 54 But Philip was deaf to every entreaty, and 
angered by the obstacles he pur
ued hiR project with 
greater ardor. Clement believed himeIf 10Rt. Cardinal 
de Prato came to his assistance, and suggested an expe- 
dient. Although French in spirit, yet a
 a Cardinal and 
a creature of Boniface he could not bear to allow that 
prince to proceed unchecked not only against the memory 

 Yillani, L. 8, c. 91. 
M Vita Clem. Joan. S. Vie. apud. Baluz, Tom. 3, p. 452, 
It Raynaldus, 130i, no, 10. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 413 
of a Pontiff, but directly against the Apostolic See. "\Vith 
great cleverness he advised Clement to represent to the 
King the inconvenience of proceeding directly to a trial, 
in a consistory composed of cardinals, who, for the most 
part fond of Boniface, would not fail to oppose and defeat 
his design; the advantage there would be of entrusting 
the affair to a council which he could convoke at Vienne 
in Dauphiny, in which the sentence, being- of greatpr 
wpight and more authoritative, would thus afford greater 
satisfaction to the I{ing. Tile Cardinal further added 
that Vienne being a neutral city. the French would not 
predominate in the as!';emhly, in which it would he easy 
to save the memory of the detested Pontiff. 55 Clenlent 
hasten<>d to represent these things to Philip in the sweet- 
est possible manner, and if he did not sl]('reed in subduing 
that proud and fiery nature, he calmed it a little, and 
gained time, which is almost a salvation to pusillanimous 
men. 
The announcement of a Council quieted Philip; which 
idea since the assenlbly of the Louvre, was a dream of hi
 
and inspired him with the hope of a more splendid tri- 
umph, and thus moderated the fury of his impetuous re- 
venge. This was rather a truce than a peace. The more 
CJpment trie(l to dear hÏIn and his ministers from the 
infamy of thpir evil deeds, so much the n10re this obstin- 
ate prince clamored and strived to have the corpse of 
Boniface exhumed. 56 Courage began to leave Clement; 
he sa \V by experience that in a foreign country a Roman 
Pontiff was ahvays a slave; that to the cry of alarm no 
one would reply in France; and that the will of a king 
who had no regard for the Papal dignity, imposed it on 
him as a yoke to hind him in an injustice. In times of old 
on the contrary when the voice of a Pope was freely heard 
from the Vatican hill, the voice of the entire Church 
always rpspondefl with aid, and before he could rearh him 
to disturh him on llis throne, a prinre had first to trample 
upon dust consecrated by the hloorl of n1artyrs, and fronl 
which therfl' arost' as fire a se('ret power of memoI'Îes, 
whÌ<'h was more destrurtive than a sreptre. ITe had ex- 
haustea the treasury of Pontifical favors; the assembly 


01 VilJani, L. 8, c. 92. 


10 Raynaldus, 1307, no. 10. 



414 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 
of Poitiers had been a triumph to Philip. Charles of 
Yalois whose character we have seen from the affairs of 
Sicily and Tuscany, appeared in that assembly as the 
Emperor of Byzantium chosen hy Clement. 57 The latter 
had previously granted hhn the tithes of all the churches 
of France for two years, and indulgences to all those who 
would accompany him in tIle war against the Greeks. 
:Kow although Charles of Yalois, being contented with the 
sacred money thought very little of Byzantium, yet Clem- 
ent, for the sake of his dpar 
on Philip, to whom at any 
cost he wanted to be agreeable, spoke strongly to the 
faithful to arouse them to a Crusade apparently against 
the Turks who threatened Andronico, but in reality to 
òislodge Andronico and place Yalois on the throne. 58 The 
relllal'k that Clement wanted to ùe agreeable to Philip, re- 
lieves us of the necessity of declaring that neither the 
Pope nor the faithful had the Turk
 in view. Philip 
wanted to place his son, Louis Ie-Rutin (the quarreller) 
on the throne of Xavarre, and Clement gave him a help- 
ing hand,59 aß(1 tll(' young princp took p08session at Pam- 
}wlnna.-6O Philip l'equpstf>d Clen1ent to confirm Carobert, 
f'on uf his cousin Charles I [ of Sicily. in his possession of 
the ('1'own of IIungary, and this he did. by striking with 
anathema Otho of Bavaria, his l'iva1. 61 Philip asked that 
the deùt of 360,000 ounces of gold which his cousin owed 
to the Holy See he remitted, and Ckment remitted a 
third, intending the relnainder for the expense of the 
Crn
ade of Charl('s of Valois. 62 Philip triumphed, hut 
Clpment deceived hin1s('}f if he believed that he was satis- 
fied. There was one glory lacking in bi
 triumph, and 
that was that the Pope should descena into the tomb, and 

earch for the ghost of Boniface in order to condemn it. 
This Sanl of the XIYth century wished to change by force 
a Roman Pontiff into a pythoness. 
'Ve haT'e seen that the primary cause of the quarrel 
between Philip and Boniface had been the rapacity of the 
King and his ùemanùs on the property of the churches. 
This hu
t for gold was not 
atisfied, but increased frmn 
day to day, both because of his cupidity, and because the 
57 RaynaJdus, 1306. no. 2. 18 Raynaldus, 1307. 6. 
r;g R ayna Mus, 1307. 14. 80 Conti N'" angii, p. 60. 
81 Ra
'na1dus. 130ï, 15-21. e2 Ra
'naIdus. 130ï. 23. 



HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII. 41:> 
long and oh
tinate wars in Flanders had exhau
ted the 
sourees of the public re"ennes. Philip in his search for 
money had re('ourse to quick expedients; and he had no 

cruples regarding the means he adopted; to wish with 
hÏJn was the same as to have. The counterfeiting 63 of the 
puhlic nlOney was a holy measure justified by necessity; 
the spoliation of the churches was a venerable exercise of 
the ro
ral rights; and when the monies were wpary of these 
repeated falsifications, (for Philip had committed thelll 
often), and when the churchC's pither ('ould not or would 
not gratify his wi
hes, he pounced upon whoevpl' had 
money to e
tOI't it from them, always covering his royal 
dignity with tbe mantle of justice. In 1201 on the same 
day he J'obbe(1 all the Italian merchants residing in 
France; he accused thC'm of usury. In 1306 he treated tbe 
.I ews in the same lnannC'r. 64 And since in thos(' times to 
1'C'n(ler an action commendable and justifiable in the eyes 
of the people, there was ne(>d of the intervention of re- 
ligion, luany thnes this wretch dragged the clergy in bis 
train and exactC'd their coöperation in his roùbC'rÏes. .A. 

trong proof of this is that which we ha\e narrated of his 
in
ol()nce to Clement in his endeiH'Ol' to have the boneR 
of Boniface burned. If he had lived after the reformation 
of 3Iartin Luther, and tbe revolt of Henry VIII, it is not 
to be douhtC'ò that in order to extirpate the scandals of 
the monks and the clergy, be wouhl have piously confis- 
cated their property. having alt'ea(ly proved that Bulls 
and canons of f'oullcils arf> small oh
tacles in the way of a 
king who is re
olutely intent on his purpose. But the 
times wC're not ripe for actions of this nature. lIe oper- 
atl'd in detail, and always on sociC'ties. For just as tbC'y 
('ou1<1 more ea
iJy bC'ar calumnies than indidduals, so it 
was likewise more C'ilSY to bestow on the blo,,, that struck 
them a 
(,1llb]an('(' of justice and morality. ...\ftpr having 
l.ohLf"<1 tIw Italians and the Jpws, he ca
t his eyes on a 
sO<'Ìpty, I'pmarkablc for its ill11l1C'use wpalth, and which, 
"y r('a
()ll of thp faults of s.ome of its nl('mh('r
, could 
wit hout (Ion ht p1'(>
ent the af01'(>
aid appea1'ance of ju
ticp 
and 1llol'a]it:v to hi
 atta('k
. to he 
anf.tion('d alway
 hy a 
jn<1gnH'nt of tlw ('hn1'("h. 'Ye h(,1'(' ]'efC'1' to thp fam()u
 
68 Rismondi Hist. of Fran('e, chap xxr, Tom. G, pap-(' 8ï. Brussels 1839. 
Sf SisIDonùi. ni
t. of France, chap. XXII, page 122. 



416 HISTORY OF POPE BONIFACE ;VUI. 
Templars. The reader will bear with us while we narrate 
briefly the story of this holy militia, whose ruin was allied 
to that with which Philip threatened the memory of 
Boniface. 
The pious pilgrimages in former times to the holy 
places in Palestine originated, as it appears, by Helena, 
mother of Constantine in the fourth century, were the 
first causes of the Crusades, and of the 
Iilitary Orders. 
:No one can read without emotion the recital of the dan- 
gers to which the pilgrims were exposed on the way, and 
the affronts they had to bear from the avarice of the in- 
fidels, the guardians of the Holy Places. 65 The afflictions 
of these devoted people touched the heart of all Christen- 
dom; and just as some took up arms for the conquest of 
the IIoly Land, so some societies were armed in defence 
of those who desired to visit it. These societies were the 
3Iilitary Orders, deputed either for the care of sick pil- 
grims, or for the protection of pilgrims against the Turks 
during the jonrney. The Templars were chosen for this 
noble purpo
e. Their Order was founded by five knights 
who took part in the first Crusade, and all the names of 
whom are lost with the exception of two, Hugh de Payens, 
and Ganfl'ed of St. Alden1ar. 66 They bound themselves, 
in the presence of the Patriarch of J erusaleln and of other 
bishops, for the remission of their sins, to hold and guard 
against robbers the roads on which the devout pilgrims 
would travel, and to observe perpetual