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LONDON QUARTERLY REVIEW.
ART. I.-1. Geschichte der neu-manichæischen Ketzer, u. s. w. (History of the new Manichæan Heretics. By DR. CHRISTOPHER ULRICH HAHN.) Stuttgart, 1845.
2. (Review of the foregoing Work, by SCHMIDT, in the Jena) Allgemeine Litteratur-Zeitung. March, 1846.
3. Histoire et Doctrine de la Secte des Cathares ou Albigeois. (History and Doctrine of the Sect of the Cathari or Albigenses. By C. SCHMIDT, Professor in the Protestant Faculty of Theology at Strasburg. Two Vols. Paris and Geneva, 1849.)
4. (Review of the foregoing, by HAHN, in the) Studien und Kritiken (for 1852. Part IV.)
5. Ein Katharisches Ritual. (Catharic Ritual. Edited by PROFESSOR CUNITZ, in Vol. IV. of Miscellanies published by the Theological Society of Strasburg, 1852.)
6. (Articles by PROFESSOR REUSS, on the Vaudois and Catharic Versions of the Bible, in the Strasburg) Revue de Théologie. (December, 1852, and February, 1853.)
7. Histoire du Pape Innocent III. (HURTER'S History of Pope Innocent III. Translated from the German by M. DE SAINT-CHERON.) Bruxelles.
8. Histoire de la Croisade contre les Hérétiques Albigeois. (History of the Crusade against the Albigenses, in Provençal Poetry. By WILLIAM OF TUDELA. Edited by FAuriel.
THE sympathies of every true Protestant are naturally enlisted on the side of all the victims of mediæval Papal persecution, without exception. We admire the courage of men who dared
to brave the resentment of the Hierarchy, at a time when the doing so involved the sacrifice of fortune and life and honour; we recognise in the tortured prisoners of the Inquisition the champions of our own dearest rights; our every feeling of humanity is outraged by the spectacle of the perfidies and studied cruelties by which Rome achieved her triumphs,-the persevering, vigilant, and implacable hatred with which she pursued her adversaries. Hence, when ecclesiastical historians of all parties tell us that some of those persecuted sectaries were really heretics, who rejected at once the divinity and the real humanity of our Lord, attributed the creation to a malignant deity, and blasphemed the God of the Old Testament, one's first impression is to reject the accusation as a calumny. If Roman Catholic writers do not hesitate frequently to attribute to the Reformers sentiments they never uttered, though their voluminous works are extant to confute the charge, how much more readily, may we suspect, has a malignant imagination given itself scope in the case of men, from whose ashes no voice of rectification or apology can be heard, since their writings have perished with their persons!
On a first view, many considerations present themselves to confirm our doubts. Not only does the Manichæism of the Albigenses appear to rest essentially upon the testimony of their persecutors; it must be added, that testimony is not always consistent with itself. The heretics of the South of France are accused by some of condemning marriage, and by others of marrying within prohibited degrees of kindred; they are accused of rejecting the Old Testament, and yet one of their offences was the translating great parts of it into the vulgar tongue, and the committing them to memory; they are said to have despised sacraments, and yet were detected administering something very like the Lord's Supper in their conventicles; we are told, in the same breath, that they would not shed the blood of animals, and that they repeatedly assassinated Inquisitors. There are, it is true, innumerable confessions of Manichæan doctrine attributed to sufferers at their trials, and at the stake; but we know that the torture was generally employed to make the accused condemn themselves, and it is easy to conceive that unfortunate beings under such circumstances might be brought, like Topsy, in "Uncle Tom's Cabin," to confess any thing that came into their own or their interlocutors' heads; and there were certainly instances in which persons were tortured into the admission of doctrines which they had at first disavowed. A prosecution of Cathari at Arras in 1025 furnishes one such case, and that of Vezelay, in 1167, another.
As early as the year 1595, we find a French Protestant, Jean Chassanion, of Monistrol, in Velay,-one of the very regions which had been watered by the blood of the Albigenses,-dedi
The Albigenses distinct from the Vaudois.
cating to the Princess Catherine of Navarre a book, in which he identifies the Albigenses with the Vaudois, treats them as martyrs for the truth's sake, and asserts that they had never held the errors attributed to them. The learned Basnage, and Abbadie, and Beausobre, the celebrated author of the "History of Manichæism," maintained the same view: so did the Vaudois historians of the seventeenth century, Perrin and Leger. Even Voltaire, in his hostility to Popery, tells the readers of his Essay Sur les Moeurs et l'Esprit des Nations, that the Manichæans, Vaudois, or Lollards, (!) were the remains of the primitive Christians of Gaul. In England, Jones, Blair, and most other writers on the subject, have assumed both the orthodoxy of the Albigenses, and their identity with the Vaudois. Mr. Stanley Faber, in particular, so late as 1838, carnestly endeavoured to defend them against the accusation of dualistic heresy.
On the other hand, almost all the writers of the Middle Ages agree in distinguishing between the two sects, or, rather, groups of sects, and in imputing Manichæan principles to that which was the most widely spread of the two in South-Eastern Europe, in Italy, and in France. Bossuet and Fleury urged the unanimity of this testimony against the Protestant writers of their own time. The learned Limborch, when editing the Records of the Inquisition of Toulouse, which had fallen into his hands, confesses its perusal had changed his opinion, and convinced him of the Manichæan character of the theology of the Albigenses. Mosheim adopted the same side of the controversy; and he has been followed by all the ecclesiastical historians of Germany, including Neander, Gicseler, and those especially who have devoted their labours to the sects of the Middle Ages, as Hahn, Schmidt, Herzog, &c.
Notwithstanding all our first impressions to the contrary, we have been unwillingly obliged to adopt the conclusions of the latter class of writers. The monks and Inquisitors of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries were under no necessity of accusing their victims of Manichæism, if the charge were false; for the Church of Rome was all-powerful, and those who resisted her claims and her doctrines from the most simple evangelical motives, were sent out of the world as readily and as mercilessly as those who were accused of departing altogether from the ground of Christian theism. Moreover, the decrees of Councils, the manuals of Inquisitors, and the polemical treatises of Roman Catholic writers of the Middle Ages, with some exceptions, give a tolerably correct idea of the doctrine of the Waldenses, as can be ascertained by the still remaining literature of that interesting people: it is natural, therefore, to suppose that their account of other contemporaneous heresics is faithful in the main. Those documents, be it remembered, were many of them
intended exclusively for the use of the persecutors themselves: the Annals of the Inquisitions of Toulouse and Carcassonne are among the most important, and they were surely never meant by their authors to meet any other eyes than those of their fellows and successors in the Holy Office. The polemical compositions of Magister Alanus, (close of the twelfth century,) Stephen de Bellavilla, (middle of the thirteenth century,) Eckbert of Schonau, (close of the twelfth century,) were intended for the sole use of the Clergy: even the historical works of Peter of Vaux-Cernay, (A.D. 1218,) and William de Puy-Laurens, (A.D. 1272,) were also at first written in Latin, and of course destined for those only who could read that language. Indeed, at that period there existed no reading public, except in the South of France itself, and no language of modern origin was used for literary purposes, except the Provençal; so that it could not be the purpose of the ecclesiastical writers to mislead their readers. Some of those above mentioned are credulous in the extreme; but there is apparently less intentional perversion of historical truth than we see among Roman Catholic historians, since the development of the several modern languages, the discovery of printing, and the impulse of the Reformation have brought a reflecting public into existence. The most elaborate work against the Cathari is that written about the year 1190, by Moneta, a Dominican and Inquisitor of Cremona: it was the result of his long experience, and intended to direct his brethren in their interrogations, and in their discussions with heretics. Moneta quotes the writings of some of the principal Catharic Doctors, and his detailed and laboured refutations throughout five books are ample proof of the real existence of the doctrines he combats.
A treatise, composed in the Provençal dialect by the Troubadour, Pierre Raimond, of Toulouse, against the errors of the Arians, as he called them, would have been a high authority on this subject; but it has been unfortunately lost. We still possess eight hundred lines of another orthodox Provençal poet, Isarn, on the conversion of an heretical teacher, Sicard. It is a foolish and violent production, but leaves no room for doubt that the sectaries against whom it was directed, asserted the unlawfulness of marriage, the transmigration of souls, the creation of the material world by a malignant Deity, and the other doctrines generally attributed to them. The poetical History of the Crusade against the Albigenses, by a contemporary, William of Tudela, printed for the first time by Fauriel, in 1837, from the only remaining manuscript, is, in many respects, the most remarkable memorial of its times. The author is a partisan of the Count of Toulouse: he is an ardent adversary of the Crusaders, and expresses the most lively indignation at the outrages perpetrated upon the population of the South; yet
Recantations of certain Dualists.
he never intimates that the doctrinal views of the Albigenses had been either misrepresented or exaggerated. Passing from those grave witnesses to another kind of evidence, it seems incontestable that, both in France and Germany, a popular method of detecting faith in the metempsychosis was the summoning suspected persons to put to death a chicken, or some other domestic animal: those who refused to do so were self-convicted, without any further form of trial. This summary test was put in practice by the suite of the Emperor Henry III., spending his Christmas at Goslar in 1052, and it was afterwards adopted by the Inquisition in Languedoc. It evidently would have been utterly useless, unless there really existed some superstitious repugnance to putting animals to death.
The only known literary relic of the Albigenses is a manuscript in the library of the Palais des Arts at Lyons. It consists of a translation of the New Testament, in a Provençal dialect closely related to the Spanish, and a liturgical Appendix. A most interesting description of the former, and extracts from it, collated with corresponding passages of the old Waldensian version, are to be found in the contributions of Professor Reuss to the Strasburg Review. Nothing, it seems, in this translation would suggest the heterodoxy of its authors: that it should contain the apocryphal Epistle to the Laodiceans, will surprise no one who is acquainted with the unsettled state of opinion in the medieval Church with respect to this Epistle. It is the appended Ritual which betrays the Catharic origin of the manuscript, and that more by its formulas for certain religious acts, than by any positive doctrinal statements. It interprets, however, Jude 23 in a dualistic sense, and applies a series of passages to the baptism of the Spirit in such a way as tacitly to exclude water baptism. The loss of the writings of those Cathari who remained faithful to the sect, is in some measure compensated by the information obtained through others who reconciled themselves with the Church of Rome. Bonacursus of Milan, who addressed a tract against heresy to the people of that city about the year 1190, had himself been a zealous preacher of the doctrines he now refuted. Ermengaud, Abbot of Saint Gilles, who wrote a short and purely biblical refutation of Dualism towards the close of the twelfth, or beginning of the thirteenth, century, had also been an heretical leader. Reinerius Sacchoni had been seventeen years a teacher among the Italian branch of the Cathari before he became their persecutor; and his famous Summa,* written in 1250, is so little intended for the laity, that he exposes the principal points of the
*A manuscript of this work, found in Bavaria, and published by the Jesuit Gretser in 1613, contains a great deal of additional matter, by an anonymous author, who does not distinguish his interpolations from the original. This edition is generally quoted under the title, "Pseudo-Reinerius."