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John N. Andrews (1829-1883)

John N. Andrews (1829-1883)

First SDA Missionary J. N. Andrews was the first SDA missionary sent to countries outside...

Joseph Bates (1792- 1872)

Joseph Bates (1792- 1872)

Joseph Bates was the oldest of the three founders of the Seventh- day Adventist...

Rachel Oakes Preston (1809- 1868)

Rachel Oakes Preston (1809- 1868)

Rachel (Harris) Oakes Preston was a Seventh- day Baptist who persuaded a group of...

Uriah Smith (1832- 1903)

Uriah Smith (1832- 1903)

Uriah Smith was born to Rebekah Spalding and Samuel Smith in1832. He showed a...

William Miller (1782-1849)

William Miller (1782-1849)

American farmer and Baptist preacher who announced the imminent coming of Christ and founded...

John Norton Loughborough (1832-1924)

John Norton Loughborough (1832-1924…

Pioneer evangelist and administrator. He first heard the present truth preached by J. N. Andrews...

Stephen Nelson Haskell (1833-1922)

Stephen Nelson Haskell (1833-1922)

Evangelist, administrator. He began preaching for the non-Sabbatarian Adventists in New England in 1853, and...

Hiram Edson (1802-1882)

Hiram Edson (1802-1882)

Hiram Edson was the instrument whom God used to reveal to the early Sabbath-keeping Adventists...

John Byington (Oct. 8, 1798 - Jan. 7, 1887)

John Byington (Oct. 8, 1798 - Jan. …

John Byington was a Methodist circuit rider before he became a Seventh-day Adventist preacher. He...

Thomas M. Preble (1810–1907)

Thomas M. Preble (1810–1907)

Author, scholar, Free Will Baptist minister of New Hampshire, and Millerite preacher. He was born...

Owen Russell Loomis Crosier (1820-1913)

Owen Russell Loomis Crosier (1820-1…

Millerite preacher and editor, of Canandaigua, New York, first writer on what was to become...

Joseph Harvey Waggoner (1820–1889)

Joseph Harvey Waggoner (1820–1889)

Evangelist, editor, author. He attended school for only six months, but was indefatigable in private...

George Storrs (1796–1879)

George Storrs (1796–1879)

Millerite preacher and writer, chief proponent of conditional immortality. Born in New Hampshire, he was...

Alonzo T. Jones (1850–1923)

Alonzo T. Jones (1850–1923)

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Charles Fitch (1805–1844)

Charles Fitch (1805–1844)

Congregational minister, later Presbyterian minister, Millerite leader, the designer of the “1843 chart.”...

Ellen Gould White (1827–1915)

Ellen Gould White (1827–1915)

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Ellet J. Waggoner (1855-1916)

Ellet J. Waggoner (1855-1916)

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William Warren Prescott (1855-1944)

William Warren Prescott (1855-1944)

W. W. Prescott was an educator and administrator. His parents were Millerites in...

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Chapter 22 - The Supremacy of the Papacy

Chapter 22

The Supremacy of the Papacy

AS out of the political difficulties of the days of Constantine, the Catholic Church rose to power in the State; so out of the ruin of the Roman empire she rose to supremacy over kings and nations. She had speedily wrought the ruin of one empire, and now for more than a thousand years she would prove a living curse to all the States and empires that should succeed it.

We have seen how that, by the arrogant ministry of Leo, the bishop of Rome was made the fountain of faith, and was elevated to a position of dignity and authority that the aspiring prelacy had never before attained. For Leo, as the typical pope, was one whose "ambition knew no bounds; and to gratify it, he stuck at nothing; made no distinction between right and wrong, between truth and falsehood; as if he had adopted the famous maxim of Julius Caesar, --

Be just, unless a kingdom tempts to break the laws,
For sovereign power alone can justify the cause,'

or thought the most criminal actions ceased to be criminal, and became meritorious, when any ways subservient to the increase of his power or the exaltation of his see." -- Bower.1

Nor was the force of any single point of his example ever lost upon his successors. His immediate successor, --

HILARY, 461-467

was so glad to occupy the place which had been made so large by Leo, that shortly after his election he wrote a letter to the other bishops asking them to exult with him, taking particular care in the letter to tell them that he did not doubt that they all knew what respect and deference was paid "in the Spirit of God to St. Peter and his see." The bishops of Spain addressed him as "the successor of St. Peter, whose primacy ought to be loved and feared by all." He was succeeded by --

SIMPLICIUS, 467-483

in whose pontificate the empire perished when the Heruli, under Odoacer, overran all Italy, deposed the last emperor of the West, appropriated to themselves one third of all the lands, and established the Herulian kingdom, with Odoacer as king of Italy. In fact, the more the imperial power faded, and the nearer the empire approached its fall, the more rapidly and the stronger grew the papal assumptions. Thus the very calamities which rapidly wrought the ruin of the empire, and which were hastened by the union of Church and State, were turned to the advantage of the bishopric of Rome. During the whole period of barbarian invasions from 400 to 476, the Catholic hierarchy everywhere adapted itself to the situation, and reaped power and influence from the calamities that were visited everywhere.

We have seen that Innocent I, upon whose mind there appears first to have dawned the vast conception of Rome's universal ecclesiastical supremacy, during the invasion of Italy and the siege of Rome by Alaric, headed an embassy to the emperor to mediate for a treaty of peace between the empire and the invading Goths. We have seen that at the moment of Leo's election to the papal see, he was absent on a like mission to reconcile the enmity of the two principal Roman officers, which was threatening the safety of the empire. Yet other and far more important occasions of the same kind fell to the lot of Leo during the term of his bishopric. In 453 Leo was made the head of an embassy to meet Attila as he was on his way to Rome, if possible to turn him back. The embassy was successful; a treaty was formed; Attila retired beyond the Danube, where he immediately died; and Italy was delivered. This redounded no less to the glory of Leo than any of the other remarkable things which he had accomplished. He was not so successful with Genseric two years afterward, yet even then he succeeded in mitigating the ravages of the Vandals, which were usually so dreadful that the idea still lives in the word "vandalism."

Moreover, it was not against religion as such that the barbarians made war, as they themselves were religious. It was against that mighty empire of which they had seen much, and suffered much, and heard more, that they warred. It was as nations taking vengeance upon a nation which had been so great, and which had so proudly asserted lordship over all other nations, that they invaded the Roman empire. And when they could plant themselves and remain, as absolute lords, in the dominions of those who had boasted of absolute and eternal dominion, and thus humble the pride of the mighty Rome, this was their supreme gratification. As these invasions were not inflicted everywhere at once, but at intervals through a period of seventy-five years, the church had ample time to adapt herself to the ways of such of the barbarians as were heathen, which as ever she readily did. The heathen barbarians were accustomed to pay the greatest respect to their own priesthood, and were willing to admit the Catholic priesthood to an equal or even a larger place in their estimation. Such of them as were already professedly Christian, were Arians, and not so savage as the Catholics; therefore, they, with the exception of the Vandals, were not so ready to persecute, and were willing to settle and make themselves homes in the territories of the vanished empire.

An account of the conversion of the Burgundians, and through them of the Franks, will illustrate the dealings of the papacy with the barbarians, and will also give the key to the most important events in the history of the supremacy of the bishopric of Rome.

Ever since the time of Constantine, the god and saviour of the Catholics had been a god of battle, and no surer way to the eternal rewards of martyrdom could be taken than by being killed in a riot in behalf of the orthodox faith, or to die by punishment inflicted for such proceeding, as in the case of that insolent ruffian who attempted to murder Orestes. It was easy, therefore, for the heathen barbarians, victory and surest passport to the halls of the warrior god, was to die in the midst of the carnage of bloody battle, -- it was easy for such people as this to become converted to the god of battle of the Catholics. A single bloody victory would turn the scale, and issue in the conversion of whole nation.

The Burgundians were settled in that part of Gaul which now forms Western Switzerland and that part of France which is now the county and district of Burgundy. As early as A. D. 430, the Huns making inroads into Gaul, severely afflicted the Burgundians, who finding impotent the power of their own god, determined to try the Catholic god. They therefore sent representatives to a neighboring city in Gaul, requesting the Catholic bishop to receive them. The bishop had them fast for a week, during which time he catechized them, and then baptized them. Soon afterward the Burgundians found the Huns without a leader, and, suddenly falling upon them at the disadvantage, confirmed their conversion by the slaughter of ten thousand of the enemy. Thereupon the whole nation embraced the Catholic religion "with fiery zeal." -- Milman.2 Afterward, however, when about the fall of the empire, the Visigoths under Euric asserted their dominion over all Spain, and the greater part of Gaul, and over the Burgundians too, they deserted the Catholic god, and adopted the Arian faith.

Yet Clotilda, a niece of the Burgundian king, "was educated" in the profession of the Catholic faith. She married Clovis, the pagan king of the pagan Franks, and strongly persuaded him to become a Catholic. All her pleadings were in vain, however, till A. D. 496, when in a great battle with the Alemanni, the Franks were getting the worst of the conflict, in the midst of the battle Clovis vowed that if the victory could be theirs, he would become a Catholic. The tide of battle turned; the victory was won, and Clovis was a Catholic. Clotilda hurried away a messenger with the glad news to the bishop of Rhiems, who came to baptize the new convert.

But after the battle was over, and the dangerous crisis was past, Clovis was not certain whether he wanted to be a Catholic. He said he must consult his warriors; he did so, and they signified their readiness to adopt the same religion as their king. He then declared that he was convinced of the truth of the Catholic faith, and preparations were at once made for the baptism of the new Constantine, Christmas day, A. D. 496. "To impress the minds of the barbarians, the baptismal ceremony was performed with the utmost pomp. The church was hung with embroidered tapestry and white curtains; odors of incense like airs of paradise, were diffused around; the building blazed with countless lights. When the new Constantine knelt in the font to be cleansed from the leprosy of his heathenism, 'Fierce Sicambrian,' said the bishop, `bow thy neck; burn what thou hast adored, adore what thou last burned." Three thousand Franks followed the example of Clovis." -- Milman.3

The pope sent Clovis a letter congratulating him on his conversion. As an example of the real value of his religious instruction, it may be well to state that some time after his baptism, the bishop delivered a sermon on the crucifixion of the Saviour; and while he dwelt upon the cruelty of the Jews in that transaction, Clovis blurted out, "If I had been there with my faithful Franks, they would not have dared to do it." "If unscrupulous ambition, undaunted valor and enterprise, and desolating warfare, had been legitimate means for the propagation of pure Christianity, it could not have found a better champion than Clovis. For the first time the diffusion of belief in the nature of the Godhead became the avowed pretext for the invasion of a neighboring territory." -- Milman4 "His ambitious reign was a perpetual violation of moral and Christian duties; his hands were stained with blood in peace as well as in war; and as soon as Clovis had dismissed a synod of the Gallican church, he calmly assassinated all the princes of the Merovingian race." -- Gibbon.5

The bishop of Vienne also sent a letter to the new convert, in which he prophesied that the faith of Clovis would be a surety of the victory of the Catholic faith; and he, with every other Catholic in Christendom, was ready to do his utmost to see that the prophecy was fulfilled. The Catholics in all the neighboring countries longed and prayed and conspired that Clovis might deliver them from the rule of Arian monarchs; and in the nature of the case, war soon followed. Burgundy was the first country invaded. Before the war actually began, however, by the advice of the bishop of Rhiems, a synod of the orthodox bishops met at Lyons; then with the bishop of Vienne at their head, they visited the king of the Burgundians, and proposed that he call the Arian bishops together, and allow a conference to be held, as they were prepared to prove that the Arians were in error. To their proposal the king replied, "If yours be the true doctrine, why do you not prevent the king of the Franks from waging an unjust war against me, and from caballing with my enemies against me? There is no true Christian faith where there is rapacious covetousness for the possessions of others, and thirst for blood. Let him show forth his faith by his good works." -- Milman.6

The bishop of Vienne dodged this pointed question, and replied, "We are ignorant of the motives and intentions of the king of the Franks; but we are taught by the Scripture that the kingdoms which abandon the divine law, are frequently subverted; and that enemies will arise on every side against those who have made God their enemy. Return with thy people to the law of God, and he will give peace and security to thy dominions." -- Gibbon.7 War followed, and the Burgundian dominions were made subject to the rule of Clovis, A. D. 500.

The Visigoths possessed all the southwestern portion of Gaul. They too were Arians; and the mutual conspiracy of the Catholics in the Gothic dominions, and the crusade of the Franks from the side of Clovis, soon brought on another holy war. At the assembly of princes and warriors at Paris, A. D. 508. Clovis complained, "It grieves me to see that the Arians still possess the fairest portion of Gaul. Let us march against them with the aid of God; and, having vanquished the heretics, we will possess and divide their fertile province." Clotilda added her pious exhortation to the effect "that doubtless the Lord would more readily lend his aid if some gift were made;" and in response, Clovis seized his battle-ax and threw it as far as he could, and as it went whirling through the air, he exclaimed, "There, on that spot where my Francesca shall fall, will I erect a church in honor of the holy apostles." Gribbon.8

War was declared; and as Clovis marched on his way, he passed through Tours, and turned aside to consult the shrine of St. Martin of Tours, for an omen. "His messengers were instructed to remark the words of the Psalm which should happen to be chanted at the precise moment when they entered the church." And the oracular clergy took care that the words which he should "happen" to hear at that moment -- uttered not in Latin, but in language which Clovis understood -- should be the following from Psalm xviii: "Thou hast girded me, O Lord, with strength unto the battle; thou hast subdued unto me those who rose up against me. Thou hast given me the necks of mine enemies, that I might destroy them that hate me." The oracle was satisfactory, and in the event was completely successful. "The Visigothic kingdom was wasted and subdued by the remorseless sword of the Franks." -- Gibbon.9

Nor was the religious zeal of Clovis confined to the overthrow of the Arians. There were two bodies of the Franks, the Salians and the Ripuarians. Clovis was king of the Salians, Sigebert of the Ripuarians. Clovis determined to be king of all; he therefore prompted the son of Sigebert to assassinate his father, with the promise that the son should peaceably succeed Sigebert on the throne; but as soon as the murder was committed, Clovis commanded the murderer to be murdered, and then in a full parliament of the whole people of the Franks, he solemnly vowed that he had had nothing to do with the murder of either the father or the son; and upon this, as there was no heir, Clovis was raised upon a shield, and proclaimed king of the Ripuarian Franks; -- all of which Gregory, bishop of Tours, commended as the will of God, saying of Clovis that "God thus daily prostrated his enemies under his hands, and enlarged his kingdom, because he walked before him with an upright heart, and did that which was well pleasing in his sight." -- Milman.10

Thus was the bloody course of Clovis glorified by the Catholic writers, as the triumph of the orthodox doctrine of the Trinity over Arianism. When such actions as these were so lauded by the clergy as the pious acts of orthodox Catholics, it is certain that the clergy themselves were no better than were the bloody objects of their praise. Under the influence of such ecclesiastics, the condition of the barbarians after their so-called conversion, could not possibly be better, even if it were not worse than before. To be converted to the principles and precepts of such clergy was only the more deeply to be damned. In proof of this it is necessary only to touch upon the condition of Catholic France under Clovis and his successors.

Into the "converted" barbarians, the Catholic system instilled all of its superstition, and its bigoted hatred of heretics and unbelievers. It thus destroyed what of generosity still remained in their minds, while it only intensified their native ferocity; and the shameful licentiousness of the papal system likewise corrupted the purity, and the native respect for women and marriage which had always been a noble characteristic of the German nations. "It is difficult to conceive a more dark and odious state of society than that of France under her Merovingian kings, the descendants of Clovis, as described by Gregory of Tours . . . Throughout, assassinations, parricides, and fratricides intermingle with adulteries and rapes.

"The cruelty might seem the mere inevitable result of this violent and unnatural fusion; but the extent to which this cruelty spreads throughout the whole society almost surpasses belief. That king Chlotaire should burn alive his rebellious son with his wife and daughter, is fearful enough; but we are astounded, even in these times, that a bishop of Tours should burn a man alive to obtain the deeds of an estate which he coveted. Fredegonde sends two murderers to assassinate Childebert, and these assassins are clerks. She causes the archbishop of Rouen to be murdered while he is chanting the service in the church; and in this crime a bishop and an archdeacon are her accomplices. She is not content with open violence; she administers poison with the subtlety of a Locusta or a modern Italian, apparently with no sensual design, but from sheer barbarity."

"As to the intercourse of the sexes, wars of conquest, where the females are at the mercy of the victors, especially if female virtue is not in much respect, would severely try the more rigid morals of the conqueror. The strength of the Teutonic character, when it had once burst the bonds of habitual or traditionary restraint, might seem to disdain easy and effeminate vice, and to seek a kind of wild zest in the indulgence of lust, by mingling it up with all other violent passions, rapacity and inhumanity. Marriage was a bond contracted and broken on the slightest occasion. Some of the Merovingian kings took as many wives, either together or in succession, as suited either their passions or their politics."

The papal religion "hardly interferes even to interdict incest. King Chlotaire demanded for the fisc the third part of the revenue of the churches; some bishops yielded; one, Injuriosus, disdainfully refused, and Chlotaire withdrew his demands. Yet Chlotaire, seemingly unrebuked, married two sisters at once. Charlbert likewise married two sisters: he, however, found a churchman -- but that was Saint Germanus -- bold enough to rebuke him. This rebuke the king (the historian quietly writes), as he had already many wives, bore with patience. Dagobert, son of Chlotaire, king of Austria, repudiated his wife Gomatrude for barrenness, married a Saxon slave Mathildis, then another, Regnatrude; so that he had three wives at once, besides so many concubines that the chronicler is ashamed to recount them. Brunehaut and Fredegonde are not less famous for their licentiousness than for their cruelty. Fredegonde is either compelled, or scruples not of her own accord, to take a public oath, with three bishops and four hundred nobles as her vouchers, that her son was the son of her husband Chilperic. -- Milman.11 Thus did the papacy for the barbarians whom she "converted;" and such as she could not thus corrupt, she destroyed.

At the fall of the empire, the bishopric of Rome was the head and center of a strong and compactly organized power. And by deftly insinuating itself into the place of mediator between the barbarian invaders and the perishing imperial authority, it had attained a position where it was recognized by the invaders as the power which, though it claimed to be not temporal but spiritual was none the less real, had succeeded to the place of the vanished imperial authority of Rome. And in view of the history of the time, it is impossible to escape the conviction that in the bishopric of Rome there was at this time formed the determination to plant itself in the temporal dominion of Rome and Italy. The emperors had been absent from Rome so long that the bishop of Rome had assumed their place there, and we have seen how the church had usurped the place of the civil authority. The bishop of Rome was the head of the church; and now, as the empire was perishing, he would exalt his throne upon its ruins, and out of the anarchy of the times would secure a place and a name among the powers and dominions of the earth.

The barbarians who took possession of Italy were Arians, which in the sight of the bishop of Rome was worse than all other crimes put together. In addition to this, the Herulian monarch, Odoacer, an Arian, presumed to assert civil authority over the papacy, which, on account of the riotous proceedings in the election of the pope, was necessary, but would not meekly be borne by the proud pontiffs. At the election of the first pope after the fall of the empire, the representative of Odoacer appeared and notified the assembly that without his direction nothing ought to be done, that all they had done was null and void, that the election must begin anew, and "that it belonged to the civil magistrate to prevent the disturbances that might arise on such occasions, lest from the church they should pass to the State." And as these elections were carried not only by violence, but by bribery, in which the property of the church played an important part, Odoacer, by his lieutenant at this same assembly, A. D. 483, "caused a law to be read, forbidding the bishop who should now be chosen, as well as his successors, to alienate any inheritance, possessions, or sacred utensils that now belonged, or should for the future belong, to the church; declaring all such bargains void, anathematizing both the seller and the buyer, and obliging the latter and his heirs to restore to the church all lands and tenements thus purchased, how long soever they might have possessed them." -- Bower.12

By the law of Constantine which bestowed upon the church the privilege of receiving donations, legacies, etc., by will, lands were included; and through nearly two hundred years of the workings of this law, the church of Rome had become enormously enriched in landed estates. And more especially "since the extinction of the Western empire had emancipated the ecclesiastical potentate from secular control, the first and most abiding object of his schemes and prayers had been the acquisition of territorial wealth in the neighborhood of his capital." -- Bryce.13

The church of Rome had also other lands, scattered in different parts of Italy, and even in Asia, for Celestine I addressed to Theodosius II a request that he extend his imperial protection over certain estates in Asia, which a woman named Proba had bequeathed to the Church of Rome. As the imperial power faded away in the West, the bishop of Rome, in his growing power, came more and more to assert his own power of protection over his lands in Italy. And when the imperial power was entirely gone, it was naturally held that this power fell absolutely to him. When, therefore, Odoacer, both a barbarian invader and a heretic, issued a decree forbidding the alienation of church lands and possessions, this was represented as a presumptuous invasion of the rights of the bishop of Rome, not only to do what he would with his own, but above all as protector of the property and estates of the church.

For this offense of Odoacer, there was no forgiveness by the bishop of Rome. Nothing short of the utter uprooting of the Herulian power could atone for it. The Catholic ecclesiastics of Italy began to plot for his overthrow, and it was soon accomplished. There were at that time in the dominions of the Eastern empire, unsettled and wandering about with no certain dwelling-place, the people of the Ostrogoths under King Theodoric. Although in the service of the empire, they were dissatisfied with their lot; and they were so savage and so powerful that the emperor was in constant dread of them. Why might not this force be employed to destroy the dominion of the Heruli, and deliver Rome from the interferences and oppression of Odoacer? The suggestion was made to Theodoric by the court, but as he was in the service of the empire, it was necessary that he should have permission to undertake the expedition. He accordingly addressed the emperor as follows: --

"Although your servant is maintained in affluence by your liberality, graciously listen to the wishes of my heart. Italy, the inheritance of your predecessors, and Rome itself, the head and mistress of the world, now fluctuates under the violence and oppression of Odoacer the mercenary. Direct me with my national troops, to march against the tyrant. If I fall, you will be relieved from an expensive and troublesome friend: if, with the divine permission, I succeed, I shall govern in your name, and to your glory, the Roman Senate, and the part of the republic delivered from slavery by my victorious army."14

The proposition which had been suggested was gladly accepted by the emperor Zeno, and in the winter of 489, the whole nation took up its march of seven hundred miles to Italy. "The march of Theodoric must be considered as the emigration of an entire people: the wives and children of the Goths, their aged parents, and most precious effects, were carefully transported; . . . and at length, surmounting every obstacle by skillful conduct and persevering courage, he descended from the Julian Alps, and displayed his invincible banners on the confines of Italy." -- Gibbon.15

Theodoric defeated Odoacer in three engagements, A. D. 489-490, and "from the Alps to the extremity of Calabria, Theodoric reigned by right of conquest." Odoacer shut himself up in Ravenna, where he sustained himself against a close siege for three years. By the offices of the bishop of Ravenna, and the clamors of the hungry people, Odoacer was brought to sign a treaty of peace. He was soon afterward slain at a solemn banquet, and "at the same moment, and without resistance," his people "were universally massacred," March 5, A. D. 493.

Thus was destroyed the kingdom of Odoacer and the Heruli. And that it was in no small degree the work of the Catholic Church is certain; for, "Throughout the conquest and establishment of the Gothic kingdom, the increasing power and importance of the Catholic ecclesiastics, forces itself upon the attention. They are embassadors, mediators in treaties; [they] decide the wavering loyalty or instigate the revolt of cities." -- Milman.16 The bishop of Pavia himself bore to Thedoric at Milan the surrender and offer of allegiance of that great city.

Another thing which makes this view most certainly true, is the fact that no sooner was order restored in Italy and in Rome, and the church once more felt itself secure, than a council of eighty bishops, thirty-seven presbyters, and four deacons, was called in Rome by the pope, A. D. 499, the very first act of which was to repeal the law enacted by Odoacer on the subject of the church possessions. Nor was the law repealed in order to get rid of it; for it was immediately re-enacted by the same council. This was plainly to declare that the estates of the church were no longer subject in any way to the authority of the civil power, but were to be held under the jurisdiction of the church alone. In fact, it was tantamount to a declaration of the independence of the papacy and her possessions.

This transaction also conclusively proves that the resentment of the bishopric of Rome, which had been aroused by the law of Odoacer, was never allayed until Odoacer and the law, so far as it represented the authority of the civil power, were both out of the way. And this is the secret of the destruction of the Herulian kingdom of Italy.

It is no argument against this to say that the Ostrogoths were Arians too. Because (1) as we shall presently see, Theodoric, though an Arian, did not interfere with church affairs; and (2) the Church of Rome, in destroying one opponent never hesitates at the prospect that it is to be done by another; nor that another will arise in the place of the one destroyed. Upon the principle that it is better to have one enemy than two, she will use one to destroy another, and will never miss an opportunity to destroy one for fear that another will arise in its place.

Theodoric ruled Italy thirty-three years, A. D. 493-526, during which time Italy enjoyed such peace and quietness and absolute security as had never been known there before, and has never been known there since until 1870. The people of his own nation numbered two hundred thousand men, which with the proportionate number of women and children, formed a population of nearly one million. His troops, formerly so wild and given to plunder, were restored to such discipline that in a battle in Dacia, in which they were completely victorious, "the rich spoils of the enemy lay untouched at their feet," because their leader had given no signal of pillage. When such discipline prevailed in the excitement of a victory and in an enemy's country, it is easy to understand the peaceful order that prevailed in their own new-gotten land which the Herulians had held before them.

During the ages of violence and revolution which had passed, large tracts of land in Italy had become utterly desolate and uncultivated; almost the whole of the rest was under imperfect culture; but now "agriculture revived under the shadow of peace, and the number of husbandmen multiplied by the redemption of captives;" and Italy, which had so long been fed from other countries, now actually began to export grain. Civil order was so thoroughly maintained that "the city gates were never shut either by day or by night, and the common saying that a purse of gold might be safely left in the fields, was expressive of the conscious security of the inhabitants." -- Gibbon." Merchants and other lovers of the blessings of peace thronged from all parts.

But not alone did civil peace reign. Above all, there was perfect freedom in the exercise of religion. In fact, the measure of civil liberty and peace always depends upon that of religious liberty. Theodoric and his people were Arians, yet at the close of a fifty years' rule of Italy, the Ostrogoths could safely challenge their enemies to present a single authentic case in which they had ever persecuted the Catholics. Even the mother of Theodoric and some of his favorite Goths had embraced the Catholic faith with perfect freedom from any molestation whatever. The separation between Church and State, between civil and religious powers, was clear and distinct. Church property was protected in common with other property, while at the same time it was taxed in common with all other property. The clergy were protected in common with all other people, and they were likewise, in common with all other people, cited before the civil courts to answer for all civil offenses. In all ecclesiastical matters they were left entirely to themselves. Even the papal elections Theodoric left entirely to themselves, and though often solicited by both parties to interfere, he refused to have anything at all to do with them, except to keep the peace, which in fact was of itself no small task. He declined even to confirm the papal elections, an office which had been exercised by Odoacer.

Nor was this merely a matter of toleration; it was in genuine recognition of the rights of conscience. In a letter to the emperor Justin, A. D. 524, Theodoric announced the genuine principle of the rights of conscience, and the relationship that should exist between religion and the State, in the following words, worthy to be graven in letters of gold: --

"To pretend to a dominion over the conscience, is to usurp the prerogative of God. By the nature of things, the power of sovereigns is confined to political government. They have no right of punishment but over those who disturb the public peace. The most dangerous heresy is that of a sovereign who separates himself from part of his subjects, because they believe not according to his belief."18

Similar pleas had before been made by the parties oppressed, but never before had the principle been announced by the party in power. The enunciation and defense of a principle by the party who holds the power to violate it, is the surest pledge that the principle is held in genuine sincerity.

The description of the state of peace and quietness in Italy above given, applies to Italy, but not to Rome; to the dominions of Theodoric and the Ostrogoths, but not to the city of the pope and the Catholics. In A. D. 499, there was a papal election. As there were as usual rival candidates -- Symmachus and Laurentius -- there was a civil war. "The two factions encountered with the fiercest hostility; the clergy, the Senate, and the populace were divided;" the streets of the city "ran with blood, as in the days of republican strife." -- Milman.19

The contestants were so evenly matched, and the violent strife continued so long, that the leading men of both parties persuaded the candidates to go to Theodoric at Ravenna, and submit to his judgment their claims. Theodoric's love of justice and of the rights of the people, readily and simply enough decided that the candidate who had the most votes should be counted elected; and if the votes were evenly divided, then the candidate who had been first ordained. Symmachus secured the office. A council was held by Symmachus, which met the first of March, 499, and passed a decree "almost in the terms of the old Roman law, severely condemning all ecclesiastical ambition, all canvassing either to obtain subscriptions, or administration of oaths, or promises, for the papacy" during the lifetime of a pope. But such election methods as these were now so prevalent that this law was of as little value in controlling the methods of the aspiring candidates for the bishopric, as in the days of the republic the same kind of laws were for the candidates to the consulship.

Laurentius, though defeated at this time, did not discontinue his efforts to obtain the office. For four years he watched for opportunities, and carried on an intrigue to displace Symmachus, and in 503 brought a series of heavy charges against him. "The accusation was brought before the judgment-seat of Theodoric, supported by certain Roman females of rank, who had been suborned, it was said, by the enemies of Symmachus. Symmachus was summoned to Ravenna and confined at Rimini," but escaped and returned to Rome. Meantime, Laurentius had entered the city, and when Symmachus returned, "the sanguinary tumults between the two parties broke out with greater fury;" priests were slain, monastaries set on fire, and nuns treated with the utmost indignity.

The Senate petitioned Theodoric to send a visitor to judge the cause of Symmachus in the crimes laid against him. The king finding that that matter was only a church quarrel, appointed one of their own number, the bishop of Altimo, who so clearly favored Laurentius that his partisanship only made the contention worse. Again Theodoric was petitioned to interfere, but he declined to assume any jurisdiction, and told them to settle it among themselves; but as there was so much disturbance of the peace, and it was so long continued, Theodoric commanded them to reach some sort of settlement that would stop their fighting, and restore public order. A council was therefore called. As Symmachus was on his way to the council, "he was attacked by the adverse party; showers of stones fell around him; many presbyters and others of his followers were severely wounded; the pontiff himself only escaped under the protection of the Gothic guard" (Milman20), and took refuge in the church of St. Peter. The danger to which he was then exposed he made an excuse for not appearing at the council.

The most of the council were favorable to Symmachus and to the pretensions of the bishop of Rome at this time, and therefore were glad of any excuse that would relieve them from judging him. However, they went through the form of summoning him three times; all of which he declined. Then the council sent deputies to state to Theodoric the condition of affairs, "saying to him that the authority of the king might compel Symmachus to appear, but that the council had not such authority." Theodoric replied that "with respect to the cause of Symmachus, he had assembled them to judge him, but yet left them at full liberty to judge him or not, providing they could by any other means put a stop to the present calamities, and restore the wished-for tranquillity to the city of Rome."

The majority of the council declared Symmachus "absolved in the sight of men, whether guilty or innocent in the sight of God," for the reason that "no assembly of bishops has power to judge the pope; he is accountable for his actions to God alone." -- Bower.21 They then commanded all, under penalty of excommunication, to accept this judgment, and submit to the authority of Symmachus, and acknowledge him "for lawful bishop of the holy city of Rome." Symmachus was not slow to assert all the merit that the council had thus recognized in the bishop of Rome. He wrote to the emperor of the East that "a bishop is as much above an emperor as heavenly things, which the bishop administers and dispenses, are above all the trash of the earth, which alone the greatest among the emperors have the power to dispose of." -- Bower.22 He declared that the higher powers referred to in Romans xiii, 1, mean the spiritual powers, and that to these it is that every soul must be subject.

At another council held in Rome in 504, at the direction of Symmachus, a decree was enacted " anathematizing and excluding from the communion of the faithful, all who had seized or in the future should seize, hold, or appropriate to themselves, the goods or estates of the church; and this decree was declared to extend even to those who held such estates by grants from the crown." -- Bower.23 This was explicitly to put the authority of the church of Rome above that of any State.

Justin was emperor of the East A. D. 518-527. He was violently orthodox, and was supported by his nephew, the more violently orthodox Justinian. It was the ambition of both, together and in succession, to make the Catholic religion alone prevalent everywhere. They therefore entered with genuine Catholic zeal upon the pious work of clearing their dominions of heretics. The first edict, issued in 523, commanded all Manichaeans to leave the empire under penalty of death; and all other heretics were to be ranked with pagans and Jews, and excluded from all public offices. This edict was no sooner learned of in the West, than mutterings were heard in Rome, of hopes of liberty from the "Gothic yoke." The next step was violence.

Under the just administration of Theodoric, and the safety assured by the Gothic power, many Jews had established themselves in Rome, Genoa, Milan, and other cities, for the purposes of trade. They were permitted by express laws to dwell there. As soon as the imperial edict was known, which commanded all remaining heretics to be ranked as pagans and Jews, as the Catholics did not dare to attack the Gothic heretics, they, at Rome and Ravenna especially, riotously attacked the Jews, abused them, robbed them, and burnt their synagogues. A legal investigation was attempted, but the leaders in the riots could not be discovered. Then Theodoric levied a tax upon the whole community of the guilty cities, with which to settle the damages. Some of the Catholics refused to pay the tax. They were punished. This at once brought a cry from the Catholics everywhere, that they were persecuted. Those who had been punished were glorified as confessors of the faith, and "three hundred pulpits deplored the persecution of the church." -- Gibbon.24

The edict of 523 was followed in 524 by another, this time commanding the Arians of the East to deliver up to the Catholic bishops all their churches, which the Catholic bishops were commanded to consecrate anew.

Theodoric addressed an earnest letter to Justin, in which he pleaded for toleration for the Arians from the Eastern empire. This was the letter in which was stated the principle of the rights of conscience, which we have already quoted on page 537. To this noble plea, however, "Justin coolly answered: --

"I pretend to no authority over men's consciences, but it is my prerogative to intrust the public offices to those in whom I have confidence; and public order demanding uniformity of worship, I have full right to command the churches to be open to those alone who shall conform to the religion of the State."25

Accordingly, while pretending to no authority over men's consciences, the Arians of his dominions were by Justin "stripped of all offices of honor or emolument, were not only expelled from the Catholic churches, but their own were closed against them; and they were exposed to all insults, vexations, and persecutions of their adversaries, who were not likely to enjoy their triumph with moderation, or to repress their conscientiously intolerant zeal." -- Milman.26 Many of them conformed to the state religion; but those of firm faith sent to Theodoric earnest appeals for protection.

Theodoric did all that he could, but without avail. He was urged to retaliate by persecuting the Catholics in Italy, but he steadfastly refused. He determined to send an embassy to Justin, and most singularly sent the pope as his embassador. "The pope, attended by five other bishops and four senators, set forth on a mission of which it was the ostensible object to obtain indulgence for heretics -- heretics under the ban of his church -- heretics looked upon with the most profound detestation." -- Milman.27 This arrangement gave the bishop of Rome the most perfect opportunity he could have asked, to form a compact with the imperial authority of the East, for the further destruction of the Ostrogothic kingdom.

The pope, John I, "was received in Constantinople with the most flattering honors, as though he had been St. Peter himself. The whole city, with the emperor at its head, came forth to meet him with tapers and torches, as far as ten miles beyond the gates. The emperor knelt at his feet, and implored his benediction. On Easter day, March 30, 525, he performed the service in the great church, Epiphanius the bishop ceding the first place to the holy stranger." -- Milman.28 Such an embassy could have no other result than more than ever to endanger the kingdom of Theodoric. Before John's return, the conspiracy became more manifest; some senators and leading men were arrested. One of them, Boethius, though denying his guilt, boldly confessed, "Had there been any hopes of liberty, I should have freely indulged them; had I known of a conspiracy against the king, I should have answered in the words of a noble Roman to the frantic Caligula, You would not have known it from me."29 Such a confession as that was almost a confession of the guilt which he denied. He and his father-in-law were executed. When the pope returned, he was received as a traitor, and put in prison, where he died, May 18, 526.

He was no sooner dead than violent commotion and disturbances again arose amongst rival candidates for the vacant chair. "Many candidates appeared for the vacant see, and the whole city, the Senate as well as the people and clergy, were divided into parties and factions, the papal dignity being now as eagerly sought for, and often obtained by the same methods and arts as the consular was in the times of the heathen." -- Bower.30 Theodoric now, seventy-four years old, fearing that these contentions would end in murder and blood-shed again, as they had at the election of Symmachus, suffered his authority to transcend his principles, and presumed, himself, to name a bishop of Rome. The whole people of the city, Senate, clergy, and all, united in opposition. But a compromise was effected, by which it was agreed that in future the election of the pope should be by the clergy and people, but must be confirmed by the sovereign. Upon this understanding, the people accepted Theodoric's nominee; and July 12, 526, Felix III was installed in the papal office.

The noble Theodoric died August 30, 526, and was succeeded by his grandson Athalaric, about ten years old, under the regency of his mother Amalasontha. Justin died, and was succeeded by --

JUSTINAN, AUGUST 1, 527 -- NOVEMBER 14, 565

In the supremacy of the papacy, Justinian holds the same place as does Constantine and Theodosius in the establishment of the Catholic Church. "Among the titles of greatness, the name `Pious' was most pleasing to his ears; to promote the temporal and spiritual interests of the church was the serious business of his life; and the duty of father of his country was often sacrificed to that of defender of the faith." -- Gibbon.31 "The emperor Justinian unites in himself the most opposite vices, -- insatiable rapacity and lavish prodigality, intense pride and contemptible weakness, unmeasured ambition and dastardly cowardice. . . . In the Christian emperor, seem to meet the crimes of those who won or secured their empire by assassination of all whom they feared, the passion for public diversions without the accomplishments of Nero or the brute strength of Commodus, the dotage of Claudius." -- Milman.32

Pope Felix was succeeded by Boniface II, A. D. 530-532, who was chosen amidst the now customary scenes of disturbance and strife, which in this case were brought to an end, and the election of Boniface secured, by the death of his rival, who after his death was excommunicated by Boniface. On account of the shameful briberies and other methods of competition employed in the election of the popes, the Roman Senate now enacted a law "declaring null and execrable all promises,bargains, and contracts, by whomsoever or for whomsoever made, with a view to engage suffrages in the election of the pope; and excluding forever from having any share in the election, such as should be found to have been directly or indirectly concerned either for themselves or others, in contracts or bargains of that nature." -- Bower.33 Laws of the same import had already been enacted more than once, but they amounted to nothing; because as in the days of Caesar, everybody was ready to bribe or be bribed. Accordingly, at the very next election, in 532, "Votes were publicly bought and sold; and notwithstanding the decree lately issued by the Senate, money was offered to the senators themselves, nay, the lands of the church were mortgaged by some, and the sacred utensils pawned by others or publicly sold for ready money." -- Bower.34 As the result of seventy-five days of this kind of work, a certain John Mercurius was made pope, and took the title of John II, December 31, 532.

In the year 532, Justinian issued an edict declaring his intention "to unite all men in one faith." Whether they were Jews, Gentiles, or Christians, all who did not within three months profess and embrace the Catholic faith, were by the edict "declared infamous, and as such excluded from all employments both civil and military; rendered incapable of leaving anything by will; and all their estates confiscated, whether real or personal." As a result of this cruel edict, "Great numbers were driven from their habitations with their wives and children, stripped and naked. Others betook themselves to flight, carrying with them what they could conceal, for their support and maintenance; but they were plundered of what little they had, and many of them inhumanly massacred." -- Bower.35

There now occurred a transaction which meant much in the supremacy of the papacy. It was brought about in this way: Ever since the Council of Chalcedon had "settled" the question of the two natures in Christ, there had been more, and more violent, contentions over it than ever before; "for everywhere monks were at the head of the religious revolution which threw off the yoke of the Council of Chalcedon." In Jerusalem a certain Theodosius was at the head of the army of monks, who made him bishop, and in acts of violence, pillage, and murder, he fairly outdid the perfectly lawless bandits of the country. "The very scenes of the Saviour's mercies ran with blood shed in his name by his ferocious self-called disciples." -- Milman.36

In Alexandria "the bishop was not only murdered in the baptistery, but his body was treated with shameless indignities, and other enormities were perpetrated which might have appalled a cannibal." And the monkish horde then elected as bishop one of their own number, Timothy the Weasel, a disciple of Dioscorus. -- Milman.37

Soon there was added to all this, another point which increased the fearful warfare. In the Catholic churches it was customary to sing what was called the Trisagion, or Thrice-Holy. It was, originally, the "Holy, holy is the Lord of Hosts" of Isaiah vi, 3; but at the time of the Council of Chalcedon, it had been changed, and was used by the council thus: "Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us." At Antioch, in 477, a third monk, Peter the Fuller, "led a procession, chiefly of monastics, through the streets," loudly singing the Thrice-Holy, with the addition, "Who wast crucified for us." It was orthodox to sing it as the Council of Chalcedon had used it, with the understanding that the three "Holies" referred respectively to the three persons of the Trinity. It was heresy to sing it with the later addition.

In A. D. 511, two hordes of monks on the two sides of the question met in Constantinople. "The two blackcowled armies watched each other for several months, working in secret on their respective partisans. At length they came to a rupture. . . . The Monophysite monks in the Church of the Archangel within the palace, broke out after the `Thrice-Holy' with the burden added at Antioch by Peter the Fuller, "who wast crucified for us.' The orthodox monks, backed by the rabble of Constantinople, endeavored to expel them from the church; they were not content with hurling curses against each other, sticks and stones began their work. There was a wild, fierce fray; the divine presence of the emperor lost its awe; he could not maintain the peace. The bishop Macedonius either took the lead, or was compelled to lead the tumult. Men, women, and children poured out from all quarters; the monks with their archimandrites at the head of the raging multitude, echoed back their religious war-cry." -- Milman.38

These are but samples of the repeated -- it might almost be said the continuous -- occurrences in the cities of the East. "Throughout Asiatic Christendom it was the same wild struggle. Bishops deposed quietly; or where resistance was made, the two factions fighting in the streets, in the churches: cities, even the holiest places, ran with blood. . . . The hymn of the angels in heaven was the battle cry on earth, the signal of human bloodshed." -- Milman.39

In A. D. 512 one of these Trisagion riots broke out in Constantinople, because the emperor proposed to use the added clause. "Many palaces of the nobles were set on fire, the officers of the crown insulted, pillage, conflagration, violence, raged through the city." In the house of the favorite minister of the emperor there was found a monk from the country. He was accused of having suggested the use of the addition. His head was cut off, and raised high on a pole, and the whole orthodox populace marched through the streets singing the orthodox Trisagion, and shouting, "Behold the enemy of the Trinity."40

In A. D. 519, another dispute was raised, growing out of the addition to the Trisagion. That was, "Did one of the Trinity suffer in the flesh? or did one person of the Trinity suffer in the flesh?" The monks of Scythia affirmed that one of the Trinity suffered in the flesh, and declared that to say that one person of the Trinity suffered in the flesh, was absolute heresy. The question was brought before Pope Hormisdas, who decided that "one person of the Trinity suffered in the flesh" was the orthodox view; and denounced the monks as proud, arrogant, obstinate, enemies to the church, disturbers of the public peace, slanderers, liars, and instruments employed by the enemy of truth to banish all truth, to establish error in its room, and to sow among the wheat the poisonous seeds of diabolical tares.

Now, in 533, this question was raised again, and Justinian became involved in the dispute.

This time one set of monks argued that "if one of the Trinity did not suffer on the cross, then one of the Trinity was not born of the Virgin Mary, and therefore she ought no longer to be called the Mother of God." Others argued: "If one of the Trinity did not suffer on the cross, then Christ who suffered was not one of the Trinity." Justinian entered the lists against both, and declared that Mary was "truly the Mother of God;" that Christ was "in the strictest sense one of the Trinity;" and that whosoever denied either the one or the other, was a heretic. This frightened the monks, because they knew Justinian's opinions on the subject of heretics were exceedingly forcible. They therefore sent off two of their number to lay the question before the pope. As soon as Justinian learned this,h e too decided to apply to the pope. He therefore drew up a confession of faith that "one of the Trinity suffered in the flesh," and sent it by two bishops to the bishop of Rome. To make his side of the question appear as favorable as possible to the pope, he sent a rich present of chalices and other vessels of gold, enriched with precious stones; and the following flattering letter: --

"Justinian, pious, fortunate, renowned, triumphant; emperor, consul, etc., to John, the most holy Archbishop of our city of Rome, and patriarch: --

"Rendering honor to the apostolic chair, and to your Holiness, as has been always and is our wish, and honoring your Blessedness as a father, we have hastened to bring to the knowledge of your Holiness all matters relating to the state of the churches. It having been at all times our great desire to preserve the unity of your apostolic chair, and the constitution of the holy churches of God which has obtained hitherto, and still obtains.

"Therefore we have made no delay in subjecting and uniting to your Holiness all the priests of the whole East.

"For this reason we have thought fit to bring to your notice the present matters of disturbance; though they are manifest and unquestionable, and always firmly held and declared by the whole priesthood according to the doctrine of your apostolic chair. For we cannot suffer that anything which relates to the state of the church, however manifest and unquestionable, should be moved, without the knowledge of your Holiness, who are THE HEAD OF ALL THE HOLY CHURCHES; for in all things, we have already declared, we are anxious to increase the honor and authority of your apostolic chair."41

All things were now ready for the deliverance of the Catholic Church from Arian dominion. Since the death of Theodoric, divided councils had crept in amongst the Ostrogoths, and the Catholic Church had been more and more cementing to its interests the powers of the Eastern throne. "Constant amicable intercourse was still taking place between the Catholic clergy of the East and the West; between Constantinople and Rome; between Justinian and the rapid succession of pontiffs who occupied the throne during the ten years between the death of Theodoric and the invasion of Italy." -- Milman.42

The crusade began with the invasion of the Arian kingdom of the Vandals in Africa, of whom Gelimer was the king, and was openly and avowedly in the interests of the Catholic religion and church. For in a council of his ministers, nobles, and bishops, Justinian was dissuaded from undertaking the African war. He hesitated, and was about to relinquish his design, when he was rallied by a fanatical bishop, who exclaimed: "I have seen a vision! It is the will of heaven, O emperor, that you should not abandon your holy enterprise for the deliverance of the African church. The God of battle will march before your standard and disperse your enemies, who are the enemies of his Son."43

This persuasion was sufficient for the "pious" emperor, and in June 533, "the whole fleet of six hundred ships was ranged in martial pomp before the gardens of the palace," laden and equipped with thirty-five thousand troops and sailors, and five thousand horses, all under the command of Belisarius. He landed on the coast of Africa in September; Carthage was captured on the 18th of the same month; Gelimer was disastrously defeated in November; and the conquest of Africa, and the destruction of the Vandal kingdom, was completed by the capture of Gelimer in the spring of 534.44 During the rest of the year, Belisarius "reduced the islands of Corsica, Sardinia, Majorica, Minorica, and whatever else belonged to the Vandals, either on the continent or in the islands." -- Bower.45
Belisarius dispatched to Justinian the news of his victory. "He received the messengers of victory at the time when he was preparing to publish the Pandects of the Roman law; and the devout or jealous emperor celebrated the divine goodness and confessed, in silence, the merit of his successful general. Impatient to abolish the temporal and spiritual tyranny of the Vandals, he proceeded, without delay, to the full establishment of the Catholic Church. Her jurisdiction, wealth, and immunities, perhaps the most essential part of episcopal religion, were restored and amplified with a liberal hand; the Arian worship was suppressed, the Donatist meetings were proscribed; and the Synod of Carthage, by the voice of two hundred the seventeen bishops, applauded the just measure of pious retaliation." -- Gibbon46

As soon as this pious work had been fully accomplished in Africa, the arms of Justinian were turned against Italy and the Arian Ostrogoths. In 534 Amalasontha had been supplanted in her rule over the Ostrogoths by her cousin Theodotus. And "during the short and troubled reign of Theodotus -- 534 to 536 -- Justinian received petitions from all parts of Italy, and from all persons, lay as well as clerical, with the air and tone of its sovereign." -- Milman.47

Belisarius subdued Sicily in 535, and invaded Italy and captured Naples in 536. As it was now about the first of December, the Gothic warriors decided to postpone, until the following spring, their resistance to the invaders. A garrison of four thousand soldiers was left in Rome, a feeble number to defend such a city at such a time in any case, but these troops proved to be even more feeble in faith than they were in numbers. They threw over all care of the city, and "furiously exclaimed that the apostolic throne should no longer be profaned by the triumph or toleration of Arianism; that the tombs of the Caesars should no longer be trampled by the savages of the North; and, without reflecting that Italy must sink into a province of Constantinople, they fondly hailed the restoration of a Roman emperor as a new era of freedom and prosperity. The deputies of the pope and clergy, of the Senate and people, invited the lieutenant of Justinian to accept their voluntary allegiance, and to enter into the city whose gates would be thrown open to his reception." -- Gibbon.48

Belisarius at once marched to Rome, which he entered December 10, 536. But this was not the conquest of Italy or even of Rome. "From their rustic habitations, from their different garrisons, the Goths assembled at Ravenna for the defense of their country: and such were their numbers that after an army had been detached for the relief of Dalmatia, one hundred and fifty thousand fighting men marched under the royal standard" in the spring, A. D. 537; and the Gothic nation returned to the siege of Rome and the defense of Italy against the invaders. "The whole nation of the Ostrogoths had been assembled for the attack, and was almost entirely consumed in the siege of Rome," which continued above a year, 537-538. "One year and nine days after the commencement of the siege, an army so lately strong and triumphant, burnt their tents, and tumultuously repassed the Milvian bridge," and Rome was delivered, March 538. The remains of the kingdom were soon afterward destroyed. "They had lost their king (an inconsiderable loss), their capital, their treasures, the provinces from Sicily to the Alps, and the military force of two hundred thousand barbarians, magnificently equipped with horses and arms." -- Gibbon.49 And thus was the kingdom of the Ostrogoths destroyed before the vengeful arrogance of the papacy.

This completely opened the way for the bishop of Rome to assert his sole authority over the estates of the church. The district immediately surrounding Rome was called the Roman duchy, and it was so largely occupied by the estates of the church that the bishop of Rome claimed exclusive authority over it. "The emperor, indeed, continued to control the elections and to enforce the payment of tribute for the territory protected by the imperial arms; but, on the other hand, the pontiff exercised a definite authority within the Roman duchy, and claimed to have a voice in the appointment of the civil officers who administered the local government." -- Encyclopedia Britannica.50 Under the protectorate of the armies of the East which soon merged in the exarch of Ravenna, the papacy enlarged its aspirations, confirmed its powers, and strengthened its situation both spiritually and temporally. Being by the decrees of the councils, and the homage of the emperor, made the head of all ecclesiastical and spiritual dominion on earth, and being now in possession of territory, and exerting a measure of civil authority therein, the opportunity that now fell to the ambition of the bishopric of Rome was to assert, to gain, and to exercise, supreme authority in all things temporal as well as spiritual. And the sanction f this aspiration was made to accrue from Justinian's letter, in which he rendered such distinctive honor to the apostolic see. It is true that Justinian wrote these words with no such far-reaching meaning,' but that made no difference; the words were written, and like all other words of similar import, they could be, and were, made to bear whatever meaning the bishop of Rome should choose to find in them.

Therefore, the year A. D. 538, which marks the conquest of Italy, the deliverance of Rome, and the destruction of the kingdom of the Ostrogoths, is the true date which marks the establishment of the temporal authority of the papacy, and the exercise of that authority as a world-power. All that was ever done later in this connection was but to enlarge by additional usurpations and donations, the territories which the bishop of Rome at this point possessed, and over which he asserted civil jurisdiction. This view is fully sustained by the following excellent statement of the case: --

"The conquest of Italy by the Greeks was, to a great extent at least, the work of the Catholic clergy. . . . The overthrow of the Gothic kingdom was to Italy an unmitigated evil. A monarch like Witiges or Totila would soon have repaired the mischiefs caused by the degenerate successors of Theodoric, Athalaric, and Theodotus. In their overthrow began the fatal policy of the Roman see, . . . which never would permit a powerful native kingdom to unite Italy, or a very large part of it, under one dominion. Whatever it may have been to Christendom, the papacy has been the eternal, implacable foe of Italian independence and Italian unity; and so (as far as independence and unity might have given dignity, political weight, and prosperity) to the welfare of Italy. . . . Rome, jealous of all temporal sovereignty but her own, for centuries yielded up, or rather made Italy a battle field to the Transalpine and the stranger, and at the same time so secularized her own spiritual supremacy as to confound altogether the priest and the politician, to degrade absolutely and almost irrevocably the kingdom of Christ into a kingdom of this world." -- Milman.51

Then "began that fatal policy of the Roman see," because she was then herself a world-power, possessing temporalities over which she both claimed and exercised dominion, and by virtue of which she could contend with other dominions, and upon the same level. And that which made the papacy so much the more domineering in this fatal policy, was the fact of Justinian's having so fully committed himself. When the mightiest emperor who had ever sat on the Eastern throne had not only under his own hand rendered such decided homage to the papacy, but had rooted out the last power that stood in her way, this to her was strongly justifiable ground for her assertion of dominion over all other dominions, and her disputing dominion with the powers of the earth.

It is evident that as the papacy had hitherto claimed, and had actually acquired, absolute dominion over all things spiritual, henceforth she would claim, and, if crafty policy and unscrupulous procedure were of any avail, would actually acquire, absolute dominion over all things temporal as well as spiritual. Indeed, as we have seen, this was already claimed, and the history of Europe for more than a thousand of the following years, abundantly proves that the claim was finally and fully established. Henceforth kings and emperors were but her tools, and often but her playthings; and kingdoms and empires her conquests, and often only her traffic.

The history of this phase of the papacy is fully as interesting, though the details are not so important, as that which shows how her ecclesiastical supremacy was established. Here, however, will be noticed but the one point, how the papacy assumed the supremacy over kings and emperors and acquired the prerogative of dispensing kingdoms and empires.

The contest began even with Justinian, who had done so much to exalt the dignity and clear the way of the papacy. Justinian soon became proud of his theological abilities, and presumed to dictate the faith of the papacy, rather than to submit, as formerly, to her guidance. And from A. D. 542 to the end of his long reign in 565, there was almost constant war, with alternate advantage, between Justinian and the popes. But as emperors live and die, while the papacy only lives, the real victory remained with her.

In A. D. 568 the Lombards invaded Italy, and for nearly twenty years wrought such devastation that even the pope thought the world was coming to an end. The imperial power of the East was so weak that the defense of Italy fell exclusively to the exarch of Ravenna and the pope. And as "the death of Narses had left his successor, the exarch of Ravenna, only the dignity of a sovereignty which he was too weak to exercise for any useful purpose of government " (Milman52), the pope alone became the chief defender of Italy. In 580 Gregory I -- the Great -- became pope, and concluded a treaty of peace with the Lombards, and "the pope and the king of the Lombards became the real powers in the north and center of Italy." --Encyclopedia Britan.53

The wife of the king of the Lombards was a Catholic, and by the influence of Gregory, she "solemnly placed the Lombard nation under the patronage of St. John the Baptist. At Monza she built in his honor the first Lombard church, and the royal palace near it." -- Id. From this the Lombards soon became Catholic; but though this was so, they would not suffer the priesthood to have any part in the affairs of the kingdom. They "never admitted the bishops of Italy to a seat in their legislative councils." -- Gibbon.54 And although under the Lombard dominion "the Italians enjoyed a milder and more equitable government than any of the other kingdoms which had been founded on the ruins of the empire," this exclusion of the clergy from affairs of the State was as much against them now, though Catholic, as their Arianism had been against them before; and the popes ever anxiously hoped to have them driven entirely from Italy.

In 728 the edict of the Eastern emperor abolishing the images, was published in Italy. The pope defended the images, of course,and "the Italians swore to live and die in defense of the pope and the holy images." -- Gibbon.55 An alliance was formed between the Lombards and the papacy for the defense of the images. The alliance, however, did not last long. Both powers being determined to possess as much of Italy as possible, there was constant irritation, which finally culminated in open hostilities, and the Lombards invaded the papal territory in A. D. 739.

Charles Martel, the mayor of the palace of the Frankish kingdom, had gained a world-wide glory by his late victory over the Mohammedans at Tours. Of all the barbarians, the Franks, were the first who had become Catholic, and ever since, they had been dutiful sons of the church. The pope, Gregory III, now determined to appeal to Charles for help against this assertion of Lombard dominion. He sent to Charles the keys of the "sepulcher of St. Peter;" some filings from the chains with which "Peter had been bound;" and, more important than all, as the legitimate inheritor of the authority of the ancient Roman republic, he presumed to bestow upon Charles Martel the title of Roman consul. "Throughout these transactions the pope appears actually, if not openly, an independent power, leaguing with the allies or the enemies of the empire, as might suit the exigencies of the time." And now, "the pope, as an independent potentate, is forming an alliance with a Transalpine sovereign for the liberation of Italy." -- Milman.56

The Lombards, too, sent to Charles with counter negotiations. This the pope knew, and wrote to Charles that in Italy the Lombards were treating him with contempt, and were saying, "Let him come, this Charles, with his army of Franks; if he can, let him rescue you out of our hands;" and then Gregory laments and pleads with Charles thus: --

"O unspeakable grief, that such sons so insulted should make no effort to defend their holy mother the church! Not that St. Peter is unable to protect his successors and to exact vengeance upon their oppressors, but the apostle is putting the faith of his followers to trial. Believe not the Lombard kings, that their only object is to punish their refractory subjects, the dukes of Spoleto and Benevento, whose only crime is that they will not join in the invasion and plunder of the Roman see. Send, O my Christian son, some faithful officer, who may report to you truly the condition of affairs here; who may behold with his own eyes the persecutions we are enduring, the humiliation of the church, the desolation of our property, the sorrow of the pilgrims who frequent our shrine. Close not your ears against our supplication, lest St. Peter close against you the gates of heaven. I conjure you by the living and the true God, and by the keys of St. Peter, not to prefer the alliance of the Lombards to the love of the great apostle, but hasten, hasten to our succor, that we may say with the prophet, `The Lord has heard us in the day of tribulation, the God of Jacob has protected us."37
The embassadors and the letters of the pope "were received by Charles with decent reverence; but the greatness of his occupations and the shortness of his life, prevented his interference in the affairs of Italy, except by friendly and ineffectual mediation." -- Gibbon.58 But affairs soon took such a turn in France that the long-cherished desire of the papacy was rewarded with abundant fruition. Charles Martel was simply duke or mayor of the palace, under the sluggard kings of France. He died October 21, 741. Gregory III died November 27, of the same year, and was succeeded by Zacharias. No immediate help coming for France, Zacharias made overtures to the Lombards, and a treaty of peace for twenty years was concluded between the kingdom of Lombardy and "the dukedom of Rome."

Charles Martel left two sons, Carloman and Pepin; but Carloman being the elder, was his successor in office. He had been in place but a little while, before he resigned it to his brother, and became a monk, A. D. 747. The events in Italy, and the prestige which the pope had gained by them, exerted a powerful influence in France, and as the pope had already desired a league with Charles Martel, who although not possessing the title, held all the authority, of a king, Pepin, his successor, conceived the idea that perhaps he could secure the papal sanction to his assuming the title of king with the authority which he already possessed. Pepin therefore sent two ecclesiastics to consult the pope as to whether he might not be king of France, and Zacharias returned answer "that the nation might lawfully unite, in the same person, the title and authority of king; and that the unfortunate Childeric, a victim of the public safety, should be degraded, shaved, and confined in a monastery for the remainder of his days. An answer so agreeable to their wishes was accepted by the Franks as the opinion of a casuist, the sentence of a judge, or the oracle of prophet; . . . and Pepin was exalted on a buckler by the suffrage of a free people, accustomed to obey his laws, and to march under his standard;" and March 7, 752, was proclaimed king of the Franks. -- Gibbon. 59

Zacharias died March 14 the same year, and was succeeded by Stephen II, who died the fourth day afterward, and before his consecration, and Stephen III became pope, March 26. Astolph was now king of the Lombards. He had openly declared himself the enemy of the pope, and was determined to make not only the territories of the exarchate, but those of the pope, his own. "In terms of contumely and menace, he demanded the instant submission of Rome, and the payment of a heavy personal tribute, a poll-tax on each citizen." The pope sent embassadors, but they were treated with contempt, and Astolph approached Rome to enforce his demand. "The pope appealed to heaven, by tying a copy of the treaty, violated by Astolph, to the holy cross." -- Milman.60

He wrote to Pepin, but got no answer; in his distress he wrote even to Constantinople, but much less from there was there any answer. Then he determined to go personally to Pepin, and ask his help. There was present at the court of the pope an embassador from the court of France, under whose protection Stephen placed himself, and traveled openly through the dominions of Astolph. November 15, 752 he entered the French dominions. He was met on the frontier by one of the clergy and a nobleman, with orders to conduct him to the court of the king. A hundred miles from the palace he was met by Prince Charles, afterward the mighty Charlemagne, with other nobles who escorted him on his way. Three miles from the palace, the king himself, with his wife and family, and an array of nobles, met Stephen. "As the pope approached, the king dismounted from his horse, and prostrated himself on the ground before him. He then walked by the side of the pope's palfry. The pope and the ecclesiastics broke out at once into hymns of thanksgiving, and so chanting as they went, reached the royal residence. Stephen lost no time in adverting to the object of his visit. He implored the immediate interposition of Pepin to enforce the restoration of St. Peter . . . . Pepin swore at once to fulfill all the requests of the pope; but, as the winter rendered all military operations impracticable, invited him to Paris, where he took up his residence in the Abbey of St. Denys."-- Milman.61

Pepin had already been anointed by a bishop in France, but this was not enough; the pope must anoint him too, and then upon this claim that the king of the Franks held his kingdom by the grace of the bishop of Rome. In the monastery of St. Denys, Stephen III placed the diadem on the head of Pepin, anointed him with the holy oil, confirmed the sovereignty in his house forever, and pronounced an eternal curse upon all who should attempt to name a king of France from any other than the race of Pepin. The pope was attacked with a dangerous sickness which kept him at the capital of France until the middle of 753.

At some point in this series of transactions, we know not exactly where, the pope as the head of the restored republic of Rome, renewed to Pepin the Roman title and dignity of patrician, which, as well as that of consul, had been conferred upon Charles Martel. The insignia of this new office were the keys of the shrine of St. Peter, "as a pledge and symbol of sovereignty;" and a "holy" banner which it was their "right and duty to unfurl" in the defense of the church and city of Rome.

Meantime Astolph had persuaded Carloman to leave his monastery, and go to the court of Pepin to counteract the influence of the pope, and if possible to win Pepin to the cause of the Lombards. But the unfortunate Carloman was at once imprisoned "for life," and his life was ended in a few days. In September and October 753, Pepin and the pope marched to Italy against Astolph, who took refuge in Pavia. They advance to the walls of that city; and Astolph was glad to purchase an ignominious peace, by pledging himself, on oath, to restore the territory of Rome.

Pepin returned to his capital; and Stephen retired to Rome. But Pepin was no sooner well out of reach, than Astolph was under arms again, and on his way to Rome. He marched to the very gates of the city, and demanded the surrender of the pope. "He demanded that the Romans should give up the pope into his hands, and on these terms only would he spare the city. Astolph declared he would not leave the pope a foot of land." -- Milman.62

Stephen hurried away messengers with a letter to Pepin in which the pope reminded him that St. Peter had promised him eternal life in return for a vow which he had made to make a donation to St. Peter. He told Pepin that he risked eternal damnation in not hastening to fulfill his vow; and that as Peter had Pepin's handwriting to the vow, if he did not fulfill it, the apostle would present it against him in the day of judgment. Pepin did not respond, and a second letter was dispatched in which the pope "conjured him, by God and his holy mother, by the angels in heaven, by the apostles St. Peter and St. Paul, and by the last day," to hasten to the rescue of his holy mother the church, and promised him if he would do so, "victory over all the barbarian nations, and eternal life." But yet Pepin did not respond, and as Astolph was pressing closer and harder, the pope determined to have St. Peter himself address the dilatory king. Accordingly, he sent now the following letter: --

"I, Peter the apostle, protest, admonish, and conjure you, the most Christian kings, Pepin, Charles, and Carloman, with all the hierarchy, bishops, abbots, priests, and all monks; all judges, dukes, counts and the whole people of the Franks. The Mother of God likewise adjures you, and admonishes and commands you, she as well as the thrones and dominions, and all the hosts of heaven to save the beloved city of Rome from the detested Lombards. If ye hasten, I, Peter the apostle, promise you my protection in this life and in the next, will prepare for you the most glorious mansions in heaven, will bestow on you the everlasting joys of paradise. Make common cause with my people of Rome, and I will grant whatever ye may pray for. I conjure you not to yield up this city to be lacerated and tormented by the Lombards, lest your own souls be lacerated and tormented in hell, with the devil and his pestilential angels. Of all nations under heaven, the Franks are highest in the esteem of St. Peter; to me you owe all your victories. Obey, and obey speedily, and, by my suffrage, our Lord Jesus Christ will give you in this life length of days, security, victory; in the life to come, will multiply his blessings upon you, among his saints and angels."63

This aroused Pepin to the most diligent activity. Astolph heard he was coming, and hastened back to his capital; but scarcely had he reached it before Pepin was besieging him there. Astolph yielded at once, and gave up to Pepin the whole disputed territory. Representatives of the emperor of the East were there to demand that it be restored to him; but "Pepin declared that his sole object in the war was to show his veneration for St. Peter;" and as the spoils of conquest, he bestowed the whole of it upon the pope -- A. D. 755. "The representatives of the pope, who, however, always speak of the republic of Rome, passed through the land, receiving the homage of the authorities, and the keys of the cities. The district comprehended Ravenna, Rimini, Pesaro, Fano, Cesena, Sinigaglia, Iesi, Forlimpopoli, Forli with the Castle Sussibio, Montefeltro, Acerra, Monte di Lucano, Serra, San Marino, Bobbio, Urbino, Cagli, Luciolo, Gubbio, Comachio, and Narni, which was severed from the dukedome of Spoleto."

Astolph was soon afterward killed while hunting. The succession was disputed between Desiderius and Rachis. Desiderius secured the throne by courting the influence of the pope, and in return the pope compelled him to agree to surrender to the papacy five cities, and the whole duchy of Ferrara besides. The agreement was afterward fulfilled, and these territories were added to the kingdom of the pope.

Stephen III died April 26, 757, and was succeeded by his brother Paul. Paul glorified Pepin as a new Moses, who had freed Israel from the bondage of Egypt. As Moses had confounded idolatry, so had Pepin confounded heresy; and he rapturously exclaimed, "Thou, after God, art our defender and aider. If all the hairs of our heads were tongues, we could not give you thanks equal to your deserts."

All the donations which Pepin had bestowed upon the papacy were received and held by the popes, under the pious fiction that they were for such holy uses as keeping up the lights in the churches, and maintaining the poor. But in fact they were held as the dominions of the new sovereign State descended from the Roman republic, the actual authority of which had now become merged in the pope, and by right of which the pope had already made Charles a Roman consul, and Pepin a patrician. All these territories the pope ruled as sovereign. He "took possession as lord and master; he received the homage of the authorities and the keys of the cities. The local or municipal institutions remained; but the revenue, which had before been received by the Byzantine crown, became the revenue of the church: of that revenue the pope was the guardian, distributor, possessor." --Milman.64

In A.D. 768, Pepin died, was succeeded by his two sons, Charles and Carloman. In 771 Carloman died, leaving Charles sole king, who by his remarkable ability became Charles the Great, -- Charlemagne, -- and reigned forty-six years, -- forty-three from the death of Carloman, -- thirty-three of which were spent in almost ceaseless wars.

Charlemagne was a no less devout Catholic than was Clovis before him. His wars against the pagan Saxons were almost wholly wars of religion; and his stern declaration that "these Saxons must be Christianized or wiped out," expresses the temper both of his religion and of his warfare. He completed the conquest of Lombardy, and placed upon his own head the iron crown of the kingdom, and confirmed to the papacy the donation of territory which Pepin had made. He extinguished the exarchate of Ravenna, and its territory "by his grant was vested, either as a kind of feud or in absolute perpetuity, in the pope." --Milman.65

It seems almost certain that Charlemagne really aspired to consolidate the territories of the West into a grand new Roman empire. Saxony, Bohemia, Bavaria, Pannonia, the Lombard kingdom of Italy as far as the duchy of Beneventum, that part of Spain between the Pyrenees and the river Ebro, Burgundy, Allemannia, and all Gaul, were subject to his sway. In addition to the kingship of all the Frankish dominions, he wore the iron crown of Lombardy. The next step was to be emperor indeed; and that was soon brought about. Leo III was pope. In 799 he made a journey to France, and was royally received and entertained by Charlemagne. At an imperial banquet, the king and the pope quaffed together their rich wines with convivial glee."-- Milman.66 In 800 Charlemagne made a journey to Rome. He arrived in the city November 23, and remained there through the month of December.

On Christmas day magnificent services were held. Charlemagne appeared not in the dress of his native country, but in that of a patrician of Rome, which honor he had inherited from his father, who had received it from the pope. Thus arrayed, the king with all his court, his nobles, and the people and the whole clergy of Rome, attended the services. "The pope himself chanted the mass; the full assembly were wrapped in profound devotion. At the close the pope rose, advanced toward Charles with a splendid crown in his hands, placed it upon his brow, and proclaimed him Caesar Augustus." The dome of the great church "resounded with the acclamations of the people, `Long life and victory to Charles, the most pious Augustus, crowned by God the great an pacific emperor of the Romans.'" Then the head and body of Charlemagne were anointed with the "holy oil" by the hands of the pope himself, and the services were brought to a close.67 In return for all this, Charlemagne swore to maintain the faith, the power, and the privileges of the church; and to recognize the spiritual dominion of the pope, throughout the limits of his empire.

Thus had the papacy arrogated to itself all the authority of the ancient Roman empire, and with this the prerogative of bestowing upon whom she would, the dignities, titles, and powers of that empire. And now, as the representative of God, the pope had re-established that empire by bestowing upon Charlemagne the dignity and titles of Caesar, Augustus, and emperor.

Such was the origin, and thus was established, the doctrine of "divine right" in rulers. Thus was established the doctrine of the supremacy of the bishop of Rome over all things earthly, to whom it "belongs" to set up and to pull down kings and emperors. Thus did the papacy become the dispenser of kingdoms and empires, the disposer of peoples, and the distributor of nations. As she had already, and for a long while, asserted supreme authority over all things spiritual, in heaven and hell, as well as upon earth, and now by this transaction was enabled to assert supremacy over kingdoms, and empires, and their rulers, henceforth the papacy recognized no limits to her dominion over heaven, earth, and hell.

Ever since that Christmas day, A. D. 800, Leo and all his successors have spent their lives, and exercised their boundless ambition, in making felt to the uttermost this blasphemous claim; and for ages, nations groaned and people perished, under the frightful exercise of this infernal power. Under it the famous and the infamous Hildebrand punished Henry IV, emperor of Germany, in the no less famous and infamous transaction of Canossa. Under it, through the gift of the pope to Henry II, of England, Ireland is oppressed to-day, equally as the servitor of England, and the slave of the pope. By it Urban and his successors unto Innocent III, like terrible Muezzin, called millions from Europe to dreadful slaughter in the Crusades; and through it, by the instrumentality of the "Holy" Inquisition, Innocent III and his successors unto Gregory XVI, poured out their demoniacal wrath upon the innocent Albigenses, the devoted Waldenses, and the millions of other Christians who by sword, by captivity, by dungeon, by rack, by torture, and by flame, yielded their lives rather than submit to this horrible despotism over the bodies and souls, the actions and the thoughts, of men, choosing rather to die the free men of Christ, than to live the slaves of that filthy strumpet who has "deluged Europe and Asia with blood" (Gibbon68) and whom the holy seer of Patmos saw "drunken with the blood of the saints, and the blood of the martyrs of Jesus." Rev. xvii, 1-6.

And even the Inquisition in its practical workings, is but the logic of the theocratical theory upon which the papacy is founded. God is the moral governor. His government is moral only, whose code is the moral law. His government and his law have to do with the thoughts, the intents, and the secrets of men's hearts. This must be ever the government of God, and nothing short of it can be the government of God. The papacy then being the head of what pretends to be a government of God, and ruling there in the place of God, her government must rule in the realm of morals, and must take cognizance of the counsels of the heart. But being composed of men, how can she discover what are the thoughts of men's hearts whether they be good or evil, that she may pronounce judgment upon them? By long and careful experiment, and by intense ingenuity, means were discovered by which the most secret thoughts of men's hearts might be wrung from them, and that was by the confessional first, and especially for those who submit to her authority; and by the thumbscrew, the rack, and her other horrible tortures second, and for those who would not submit -- in one word it was by the Inquisition that it was accomplished.

There remained but one thing more to make the enormity complete, and that was not only to sanction but to deify the whole deceitful, licentious, and bloody record, with the assertion of infallibility. As all the world knows, this too has been done. And even this is but the logic of the theocratical theory upon which the foundation of the papacy was laid in the days of Constantine. For, the papacy being professedly the government of God, he who sits at the head of it, sits there as the representative of God. He represents the divine authority; and when he speaks or acts officially, his speech or act is that of God. But to make a man thus the representative of God, is only to clothe human passions with divine power and authority. And being human, he is bound always to act unlike God; and being clothed with irresponsible power, he will often act like the devil. Consequently, in order to make all his actions consistent with his profession, he is compelled to cover them all with the divine attributes, and make everything that he does in his official capacity the act of God. This is precisely the logic and the profession of papal infallibility. It is not claimed that all the pope speaks is infallible; it is only what he speaks officially -- what he speaks ex cathedra, that is, from the throne. The decree of infallibility is as follows: --

"We teach and define that it is a dogma divinely revealed, that the Roman pontiff, when he speaks ex cathedra, that is, when in discharge of the office of pastor and doctor of all Christians, by virtue of his supreme apostolic authority, he defines a doctrine regarding faith or morals to be held by the universal church, by the divine assistance promised to him in blessed Peter, is possessed of that infallibility with which the divine Redeemer willed that his church should be endowed for defining doctrines regarding faith or morals; and that therefore such definitions of the Roman pontiff are irreformable of themselves, and not from the consent of the church.

"But if any one -- which may God avert -- presume to contradict this our definition, let him be anathema.

"Given at Rome in public session solemnly held in the Vatican Basilica in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and seventy, on the eighteenth day of July, in the twenty-fifth year of our pontificate."69

Under this theory, he sits upon that throne as the head of the government of God, and he sits there as God indeed. For the same pope that published this dogma of infallibility, published a book of his speaches, in th preface to which, in the official and approved edition, he is declared to be "The living Christ," "The voice of God; " "He is nature that protests; he is God that condemns."70 Thus, in the papacy there is fulfilled to the letter, in completest meaning, the prophecy -- 2 Thess. ii, 1-9- -- of "the falling away" and the revealing of "that man of sin," "the son of perdition, who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshiped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God."

Therefore, sitting in the place of God, ruling from that place as God, that which he speaks from the throne is the word of God, and must be infallible. This is the inevitable logic of the false theocratical theory. And if it be denied that the theory is false, there is logically no escape from accepting the whole papal system.

Thus so certainly and so infallibly is it true that the false and grossly conceived view of the Old-Testament theocracy. contains within it the germ of THE ENTIRE PAPACY.71

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1 [Page 521] "History of the Popes," Leo, last par. but one.
2 [Page 524] "History of Latin Christianity," book ii, chap. ii, para. 21; Socrates's "Ecclesiastical History," book vii, chap. xxx.
3 [Page 525] "History of Latin Christianity," book iii, chap. ii, para. 27.
4 [Page 526] Id. par. 28.
5 [Page 526] "Decline and Fall," chap. xxxviii, par. 6.
6 [Page 526] "History of Latin Christianity," book iii, chap. ii, par. 27.
7 [Page 527] "Decline and Fall," chap. xxxviii, par. 8
8 [Page 528] Id., par. 11.
9 [Page 528] Id., par. 12, and Milman's "History of Latin Christianity," book iii, chap. ii, par. 29.
10 [Page 528] "History of Latin Christianity," Id., par. 29.
11 [Page 530] Id., par. 33, 34.
12 [Page 532] "History of the Popes," Felix II, par. 1.
13 [Page 532] "The Holy Roman Empire," chap. iv, par. 7.
14 [Page 533] Gibbon, "Decline and Fall," chap. xxxix, par. 5.
15 [Page 533] Id., par. 6.
16 [Page 534] "History of Latin Christianity," book iii, chap. iii, para. 3.
17 [Page 536] "Decline and Fall," chap. xxxix, par. 14; and Milman's "History of Latin Christianity, iii, chap. iii, par. 5.
18 [Page 537] Milman's "History of Latin Christianity," book iii, chap. iii, par. 8 from the end.
19 [Page 537] Id., par. 11.
20 [Page 539] Id., par. 14.
21 [Page 539] "History of the Popes,"Symmachus, par. 9, 10.
22 [Page 540] Id., par. 16.
23 [Page 540] Id., par. 18.
24 [Page 541] "Decline and Fall," chap. 17; Milman's "History of Latin Christianity," book iii, chap. iii, para. 23.
25 [Page 541] Milman's "History of Latin Christianity," book iii, chap. iii, par. 30.
26 [Page 542] Id.
27 [Page 542] Id.
28 [Page 542] Id., par. 32.
29 [Page 542] Id., para. 28
30 [Page 543] Bower's "History of the Popes," Felix III, par. 1.
31 [Page 544] "Decline and Fall," chap. xlvii, par. 23.
32 [Page 544] "History of Latin Christianity," book iii, chap. iv, par. 2.
33 [Page 544] "History of the Popes," Boniface II, par. 3.
34 [Page 544] Id., John II, par. 1.
35 [Page 545] Id., par. 2.
36 [Page 545] "History of Latin Christianity," book iii, chap. i, par. 5.
37 [Page 546] Id., Bower calls him Timothy the Cat; but whether "weasel" or "cat," the distinction is not material, as either fitly describes his disposition, though both would not exaggerate it.
38 [Page 547] Id., par. 31.
39 [Page 547] Id., par. 21, 22.
40 [Page 547] Id.
41 [Page 549] Croly's "Apocalypse," chap. xi, "History," under verses 3-10.
42 [Page 549] "History of Latin Christianity," book iii, chap. iv, par. 6.
43 [Page 549] Gibbon's "Decline and Fall," chap. xii, par. 3.
44 [Page 550] Id., par. 7-12.
45 [Page 550] "History of the Popes," Agapetus, par. 5, note A.
46 [Page 550] "Decline and Fall," chap. xii, par. 11.
47 [Page 550] "History of Latin Christianity," book iii chap. iv, par. 7.
48 [Page 551] "Decline and Fall," chap. xii, par. 22.
49 [Page 552] Id., par. 23, 28 and chap. xliii, par. 4. Afterward, from 54a till 553, there was carried on what had been called the "Gothic" War; but those who made the war were not Goths. They were "a new people" made up of Roman captives, slaves, deserters, and whoever else might choose to join them, with but a thousand Goths to begin with. See Gibbon, Id., chap. xliii, par. 4 and 6.
50 [Page 552] Article "Popedom," par. 25.
51 [Page 553] "History of Latin Christianity," book iii, chap. iv, last two par.
52 [Page 555] "History of Latin Christianity," book iii, chap. vii, par. 1.
53 [Page 555] Article "Lombards," par 6.
54 [Page 555] "Decline and Fall," chap. xiv. par. 18.
55 [Page 556] Id., chap. xlix, par. 9.
56 [Page 556] "History of Latin Christianity," book iv, chap. ix, par. 14, 26.
57 [Page 557] Milman's "History of Latin Christianity," book iv, chap. ix, par. 24.
58 [Page 557] "Decline and Fall," chap. xlix, par. 12.
59 [Page 558] Id., par. 13.
60 [Page 559] "History of Latin Christianity," book iv, chap. xi, par. 24.
61 [Page 559] Id., par.25.
62 [Page 561] Id., par. 28.
63 [Page 562] Id., par. 31.
64 [Page 563] Id., par. 41.
65 [Page 563] Id., chap. xii, par. 16.
66 [Page 564] Id., par. 26.
67 [Page 564] Id., par. 31, and Gibbon's "Decline and Fall," chap. xlix, par. 20.
68 [Page 566] "Decline and Fall," chap. xiv, par. 22.
69 [Page 567] Schaff's "History of the Vatican Council," Decrees, chap. iv. The "pontificate" is that of Plus IX.
70 [Page 568] Speeches of Pope Plus IX, pp. 9, 17; Gladstone's Review, p. 6.
71 [Page 568] Neander's "History of the Christian Religion and Church," Vol. ii, Section Second, part i, div. ii, par. 29.

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