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by: Kaya Conroy


Kaya Conroy
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This 38 page Class Notes was uploaded by Kaya Conroy on Thursday October 22, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to RG ST 7 at University of California Santa Barbara taught by Staff in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 9 views. For similar materials see /class/227182/rg-st-7-university-of-california-santa-barbara in Religious Studies at University of California Santa Barbara.

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Date Created: 10/22/15
Week 7 1 Week 7 Erasmus Julius Excluded hom Heaven 1514 After a reign of ten years Pope Julius ll died on February 21 1513 he was seventy years old and Leo X a humanist and a Medici succeeded him Less than a yearlater the anonymous satire Julius Excluded from Heaven was published There is no conclusive evidence that the brilliant Dutch humanist Desiderius Erasmus 14661536 wrote it He several times implied that he didn39tthough without saying so explicitly There were of course very good reasons for not avowing the publication not least the possibility of retribution from exfn39ends orallies ofJulius The pamphlet was enormously popular and many times reprinted but Erasmus had little to gain and much to lose from claiming it Though he never actually did so modern scholarship basing itself on internal evidence some cautious phrases in the later correspondence and the lack of a credible alternative author has had little hesitation in assigning the piece to Erasmus Actually the relation of the satire to Julius II is more problematic than its relation to Erasmus That Julius was one of the most secularminded of many secularminded Renaissance popes is not open to question and Erasmus who found that a fault mighthave aggravated it had he chosen by emphasizing the pope 39s huge building programs in Rome his patronage of Michelangelo Bramante and Raphael his lavish purchases of antique sculptures and manuscripts for the Vatican collections But these charges would not have blackened the dead pope 39s reputation as much as other abusive accusations that the satirist could pick up from the gutter orinvent out of whole cloth Pederasty simony the selling of church of ces for money nepotism and subornation to murder are only a few of these invented charges in addition Erasmus unfailingly interprets all of Julius39s behaviorin the worst possible light There is a wholly different side to the picture of Julius given by Erasmus according to which he was a deft diplomat a nancier of genius and one of the ablest administrators ever to occupy the chair of Peter Julius Exclusus then is not a portrait of a real pope but an extravagant caricature n39sing out of a theme dear to Erasmus39s heart a contrast between the spiritual and the worldly life It is also a comic masterpiece Julius Excluded from Heaven A Dialogue Speakers Julius his Genius Peter JULIUS What the devil is this The doors don39t open Somebody must have changed the lock or broken it GENIUS It seems more likely that you didn39t bring the proper key forthis door doesn39t open to the same key as a secret moneychest Why didn39t you bring both the keys you have This is the key of power not ofwisdom JULIUS I didn39t have any other key but this I don39t see why we need a different one when we39ve got this GENIUS I don39t either but the fact is we39re still on the outside JULIUS Now I39m really getting mad I39II knock the doors down Ho Ho Somebody come and open this door right away What39s the hangup nobody Week 7 2 home What39s the matter with the doorman He39s asleep I guess or else drunk GENIUS This fellowjudges everyone else by himself PETER A good thing our gates are of adamant othenNise this one whoever he is would have kicked them in He must be a giant of some sort a general ofthe armies a stormer of cities But oh my God what a sewerstench is this I certainly won39t open the gates right away but take a seat up here by a grated window where I can look out and keep an eye on the scene Who are you and what do you want JULIUS Open the door will you at least ifyou can And if you were really doing yourjob it should have been open long ago and decorated with all the heraldry of heaven PETER Pretty lordly But rst tell me who you are JULIUS As if you couldn39t see for yourself PETER See What I see is new to me like nothing I ever saw before and I might say monstrous JULIUS But if you39re not stoneblind you39re bound to recognize this key even if you aren39t familiar with the golden oak tree You can certainly see my triple crown as well as my cloak all gleaming with gold and gems PETER That silver key of yours I do recognize though there39s only one ofthem and it39s very different from those that were given to me long ago by the one true shepherd ofthe church that is Christ But that glorious crown ofyours how could I possibly recognize it No tyrant ruling over barbarian peoples ever ventured to wear one like it much less anyone who came here asking for admission Your cloak doesn39t impress me either for I always used to consider gold and jewels as trash to be despised But what does this amount to really In all this stuffthe key the crown the cloakI recognize marks ofthat rascally cheat and impostor who shared a name with me but not a faith that scoundrel Simon whom I once flung down with the aid of Christ JULIUS Enough ofthese jokes and watch yourself for I ifyou don39t know am Julius of Liguria and I don39t doubt you recognize these two letters P M unless you39ve forgotten how to read PETER I expect they stand for quotPestiferous Maximusquot GENIUS Ha ha ha This porter is as good as a wizard he39s got the needle39s touch JULIUS What it means is quotPontifeX Maximusquot PETER If you were triply great greater even than Hermes Trismegistus you still wouldn39t get in here unless you were supremely good that is holy JULIUS Well if it comes down to comparative holiness you39ve got some nerve to keep me waiting outside here when for all these centuries you39ve only been called quotholyquot whereas nobody ever called me anything but quotmost holyquot I have six thousand bulls to prove it GENIUS That39s what he said bulls JULIUS in which I am not only named quotLord most holyquot but addressed as quotyour holinessquot so that whatever I chose to do GENIUS Even when he was drunk JULIUS people used to say that the holiness of the most holy lord Julius had Week 7 3 done it PETER Then you39d better askthose flatterers ofyours to let you into heaven because they39re the ones who made you so holy They provided the holiness now let them provide the bliss By the way though I know you don39t think it matters do you actually imagine you were a holy man JULIUS You really vex me If I were only allowed to go on living I wouldn39t envy you your holiness or your bliss either one PETER The proper expression ofa pious mind But apart from that when I look you over from head to foot I see many a sign ofimpiety and none of holiness What39s the meaning of these many comrades ofyours They39re certainly not a papal retinue You have almost twenty thousand men at your back and in this entire crowd I can39t nd one single individual who has so much as the face ofa Christian I see a horrifying mob of ruf ans reeking of nothing but brothels booze shops and gunpowder They look to me like plain highway robbers or spooks stolen out of hell and now intent on stirring up wars in heaven As for yourself the more I look at you the fewer traces do I see of any apostolic character What sort of unnatural arrangement is it that while you wear the robes ofa priest of God under them you are dressed in the bloody armor ofa warrior Besides that what a savage pair of eyes what baleful features what a menacing brow what a disdainful and arrogant expression I39m ashamed to say and even to see that there39s no part of your body not marked with traces of outrageous and abominable lust in addition you belch and stink like a man just come from a drunken debauch and fresh from a t ofvomiting Judging from the appearance ofyourwhole body you seem to me not worn out by age or disease but broken down and shrivelled up by drunken excesses GENIUS How vividly he portraysthe man in his own colors PETER I see you threatening me with your lofty expression but my feelings won39t be suppressed I suspect you may be that most pestilent pagan ofall Julius the Roman returned from hell to make mock ofour system Certainly everything about you agrees well with him JULIUS Ma di si PETER What did he say GENIUS He39s angry At that expression every one ofthe cardinals used to take ight othenNise they39d feel the stick of his holiness on their backs especially if he hadn39t had his supper PETER You seem to me to have some understanding of the man tell me who are you GENIUS I am the particular Genius ofJulius PETER His bad Genius no doubt GENIUS Whatever I may be I39m Julius39s man JULIUS Why don39t you stop all this nonsense and open the doors Perhaps you39d rather I broke them down Why do we need all this palaver You see the sort of troops I have at my command PETER I do indeed see some highly practiced thieves But you must be aware that these doors can only be opened in other ways JULIUS Enough words I say If you don39t hurry up and open the gates I39ll Week 7 4 unleash my thunderbolt of excommunication with which I used to terrify great kings on earth and their kingdoms too You see I39ve already got a bull prepared for the occasion PETER Just tell me please what you mean by all this bombast about bulls bolts of thunder and maledictions I never heard from Christ a single one of these words JULIUS You39ll feel their full force if you don39t watch out PETER Perhaps you used to terrify people with that bluster but it counts for nothing here Here we deal only in the truth This is a fortress to be captured with good deeds not ugly words But let me ask you since you threaten men with the thunder of excommunication what39s your legal authority for that JULIUS Very well I take it you are now out of office and have no more standing than any other unbene ced priest indeed you39re not even a complete priest since you lack the power to consecrate PETER Doubtless because I happen to be dead JULIUS Obviously PETER But forthe same reason you have no more standing with me than any other dead man JULIUS But as long as the cardinals are arguing overthe election ofa new pope it counts as my administration GENIUS He39s still dreaming dreams about being alive JULIUS But now open the door I tell you PETER And I won39t do a thing I tell you unless you give me a full account of your merits JULIUS What merits PETER Let me explain the idea Did you distinguish yourself in theology JULIUS Not at all I had no time for it being continually engaged in warfare Besides there are plenty of priests to do that sort of work PETER Then by the holiness of your life you gained many souls for Christ GENIUS Many more for hell I39d say PETER You performed miracles JULIUS You39re talking oldfashioned nonsense PETER You prayed earnestly and constantly JULIUS This is pure foolishness PETER You subdued the lusts of the esh with fasts and long vigils GENIUS Enough of this please with this line of questioning you39re just wasting your time PETER I never heard of any other gifts that an outstanding pope was supposed to possess Ifhe has some more apostolictalents let him tell me about them himself JULIUS Though it39s a disgraceful thing for Julius who never lowered his crest before anyone else to yield to Peterwho was to say nothing worse a lowly sherman and almost a beggarstill just to let you know what sort of prince you39re slighting in this way now hearthis In the rst place I am from Liguria not a Jew like you but I39m afraid that like you I was once a boatman GENIUS It39s nothing to be ashamed of forthere39s still this difference that Peter Week 7 5 shed for a living while Julius plied the oar on a barge for minimum wages JULIUS Then as it happened that I was the nephew of Pope Sixtus the great GENIUS Great in vices he means JULIUS on his sister39s side his special favor combined with my industry rst gave me access to ecclesiastical of ce and so I gradually rose to the dignity ofa cardinal39s cap Having undergone many reverses of fortune and been tossed to and fro by various accidentshaving suffered among other diseases from epilepsy and the pox they call French I found myself quite ovenNhelmed I was exiled rejected despised despaired of and almost given over as lost Yet I never doubted that some day I would attain the papacy That showed real strength of character compared with you who were terri ed at the question of a serving girl and gave up your faith on the spot She weakened your courage but I got new courage from a woman a soothsayer and prophetess of sorts who when she saw me ovenNhelmed with misfortunes secretly whispered in my ear quotBear up Julius Don39t be ashamed of anything you have to do or put up with some day you will attain the triple crown You will be king of kings and ruler of all rulersquot And in fact neither her prophecy nor my own instincts deceived me Beyond all expectations I achieved my goal partly with the help ofthe French who sheltered me in my hour of need partly by the marvelous power of money in large quantities which I increased by taking usurious rates of interest And nally my own ready wit helped me PETER What39s this ready wit you39re talking about JULIUS to coin money from the bare promise of ecclesiastical of ces making skillful use of brokers in the process since the sums I demanded couldn39t have been paid in cash by a man as rich as Crassus But it39s useless to describe the schemes to you since not even all my bankers understood them Anyhow that39s how I made my way Now as for how I bore myself in the ponti cate I39ll venture to say that none of the early popes who seem to me to have been popes in name only nor even ofthe later ones deserve so well ofthe church and of Christ himself as I do GENIUS Only listen to the bragging ofthe beast PETER I39m waiting to hear how you got away with it all JULIUS I discovered a great many new of ces that39s what they39re called which in themselves brought goodly sums into the papal treasury Then I found a brandnew way by which bishoprics could be bought without any taint of simony For my predecessors had made a law that any man appointed bishop should lay down his previous of ce I interpreted it this way quotYou are ordered to lay down your previous of ce but ifyou don39t have one you can39t lay it down therefore you must buy itquot By this means each individual bishopric brought in its six or seven thousand ducats over and above those that are traditionally extorted for bulls Also the new money that I spread all over Italy brought in a very healthy sum And I never let up on accumulating money understanding as I did that without it nothing is managed properly whether sacred or profane Now to come to my major achievements I conquered Bologna which had long been ruled by the Bentivogli and restored it to the control of Rome The previously undefeated Venetians I crushed with my army For a long time I harrassed the duke of Week 7 6 Ferrara and nearly caught him in a trap l cleverly escaped from a schismatic council set up against me by convoking a fraudulent countercouncil and so as they say drove out one nail with another Finally I expelled from Italy the French who at that time were the terrors ofthe whole world and I would have driven out the Spanish too for I had that project underway ifthe fates had not suddenly removed me from the earth And ask you to admire my undaunted spirit throughout these trials When the French looked like winners l was already looking around for a good hiding place when my position seemed almost desperate I grew a long white beard as a disguise But then the golden messenger ofvictory alighted unexpectedly on me at Ravenna where a good many thousand Frenchmen were killed and that was the resurrection ofJulius In fact for three days l was believed to be at death39s door I thought so myself and yet here again against everyone39s hopes and even my own expectations I lived anew In fact my power and my political shrewdness are so great to this day that there39s none of the Christian kings whom I haven39t brought to blows breaking up the treaties by which they had painfully made peace with one another ripping them to pieces and trampling them underfoot Indeed I was so successful in abolishing the treaty of Cambrai made between me the king of France the emperor Maximilian and several other rulers that nobody ever mentions it any more Over and above all this I raised several different armies celebrated many grandiose triumphs put on splendid shows built numerous impressive structures and then at my death left at least ve million ducats which I would have increased even further ifthat Jewish physician who saved my life on one occasion had been able to stretch it out a little longer And I really wish now that some magician could be found to restore my earthly existence so that I could put the nishing touches on the really marvelous projects that I had underway Still on my deathbed I tried to ensure that none of the wars I had stirred up throughout the world should be settled I ordered that moneys set aside for those wars should not be diverted elsewhere and that was my last wish as l breathed out my dying breath Now do you hesitate to open the gates for a pontiff who has deserved so well of Christ and the church And I expect you to be all the more impressed because all this was achieved by my individual constancy of mind alone I had none of those helpers and favoring circumstances that others have enjoyed I had no ancestors for I didn39t even know my own father which indeed I say proudly I had no personal attractions since most people shuddered at my face as at an ogre I had no education since with me it nevertook I had no physical strength for reasons mentioned above I was not possessed ofyouthful energy for I did all these things as an old man popularity played no part for there was nobody who didn39t hate me and I got no credit for clerqency because I punished savagely those whom other rulers commonly let off scotfree PETER What39s this all about GENIUS He talks very tough but there39s something soft in it JULIUS Thus with everything against mefortune age strength brie y without help from gods or men by the unaided power of my spirit and my money accomplished in a few years so much that my successors will be busy for at least a decade deciding what to do next I39ve said all this about myselfwith the Week 7 7 utmost truth and also for that matter with the utmost honesty Ifone ofthose preachers who orate before me in Rome had been here to cover my account with his decorations you39d have thought a god was being described not a man PETER Unconquerable warrior since all these things you talk about are new to me and unheardof I beg your pardon for my amazement or inexperience I hope it won39t be too tiresome for you to answer a few clumsy questions about the details Who for example are these little curlyheaded striplings JULIUS I brought them up for my diversion PETER Who are these smokeblackened and mutilated fellows JULIUS They are soldiers and warriors who in behalf of me and the church bravely encountered death in battle Some died in the siege of Bologna many in the war against the Venetians others still at Ravenna They are all to be admitted to heaven by the terms of our contract in which I promised by promulgating some mighty bulls to send anyone straight to heaven who died ghting for Julius whatever his previous life had been like PETER As far as I can see these people must have been the very lot who before your coming were most hateful to me because they were always trying to break in by force using leaden bulls to force their way JULIUS Then as I understand it you didn39t let any of them in PETER Not a single one of that crowd did I admit That39s what Christ told me he didn39t say to admit those who came here lugging heavy leaden bulls but only those who had clothed the naked fed the hungry given drink to the thirsty visited the prisoners aided the pilgrims If he wanted me to keep out those who prophesied in his name cast our devils and did wonderful works I do you suppose he would want people let in who just walk up with a bull in the name of JuHus JULIUS Ifl had only known PETER I understand if some demon out of hell had told you about it you would have declared war on me JULIUS I would have excommunicated you rst PETER But go on why do you go about wearing armor JULIUS As if you didn39t know the holy pope wields two swords you wouldn39t want me to go into battle unarmed would you PETER When I held your position I followed that rule in the word of God which says to use no sword save that ofthe spirit JULIUS That would surprise Malchus whose ear you cut offwithout a sword no doubt PETER I recall the event and it39s true but at that time Iwas ghting for my master Christ not for myself for the life ofthe Lord not for loot or worldly booty and I fought not as pope but as one to whom the keys had only been promised not delivered nor had I yet received the holy spirit All the same I was ordered to put up my sword as a clear warning that warfare of that sort was unbecoming to priests and even to Christians in general But more of this elsewhere Why are you so careful about calling yourselfa Ligurian as if it mattered what part of the earth the vicar of Christ came from JULIUS But I consider it an act of the highest piety to shed renown on my Week 7 8 people that39s why I have this title inscribed on all my coins statues structures and arches PETER So a man can recognize his fatherland who doesn39t know his father At rst I thought you had in mind that heavenly Jerusalem the home of all true believers and of its unique prince in whose name those believers are eager to be sancti ed and exalted But why do you describe yourself as quotnephew to Sixtus on his sister39s sidequot I39m surprised that this man Sixtus never showed up here though he was pope and related to such a leader as yourself Do tell me if you will what kind of man he was was he a priest JULIUS A might soldier he was and a man of exemplary religion too he was a Franciscan PETER Indeed I once knew a man named Francis6 a layman distinguished among his fellows for virtue as well as his scorn for wealth pleasure and ambition Does that poor man now have command of military commanders like this JULIUS As far as I can see you don39t want anyone to better himself even Benedict was a poor man once but now his followers are so rich that even I am envious ofthem PETER Fine but let39s go back a ways you are the nephew of Sixtus JULIUS Glad to con rm it I39d like to stop the mouths ofthose who say I39m his son That39s slanderous PETER Slanderous indeedunless perhaps it39s true JULIUS It39s an insult to papal dignity which must always be protected PETER But I think popes should protect their own dignity by not doing anything offensive to the moral law Speaking of papal dignity let me ask you is that the common and accepted way of achieving the papacy that you were describing just now JULIUS For some centuries now that39s been the way of it unless my successor is created by some other procedure For as soon as I achieved the papacy myself I issued a formidable bull that no one else should seek the of ce by the means I had used and I renewed that bull shortly before my death How it will be observed is up to other people PETER I don39t see how anyone could describe a bad state of affairs any better But this puzzles me how anybody can be found to undertake the job since so much hard work attaches to the office and so many dif culties must be overcome to acquire it When I was pope hardly anyone could be persuaded to accept the of ce of a presbyter or a deacon JULIUS No wonder for in those days the reward of bishops was nothing but hard work sleepless nights constant study and very often death now it39s a kingdom with the privileges of a tyrant And who if he has a chance of a kingdom won39t grab at it PETER Well tell me now about Bologna Had it departed from the faith that it had to be brought back to Rome JULIUS Absurd that wasn39t the question at all PETER Perhaps the Bentivogli were poor administrators and destroying the prosperity of the city JULIUS Not a bit of it the town was ourishing as never before they had Week 7 9 enlarged it and adorned it with many new buildings That only made me more eager for it PETER I understand they had taken possession of it illegally JULIUS No again the city was theirs by treaty PETER Perhaps the citizens hated their ruler JULIUS On the contrary they clung to him tooth and nail whereas they almost all loathed me PETER What was the reason for it then JULIUS Because as the ruler arranged things out of the immense sums that he collected from the citizens only a few paltry thousands ever reached my treasury Besides its capture helped on some other plans that I had in mind And so with the French doing the work mostly out of fear of my thunderbolt I drove out the Bentivogli and put bishops and cardinals in charge of the town so that all the money collected there down to the last penny came into the hands ofthe church of Rome Besides in the old days all the titles and dignities of imperial rule seemed to belong to him Now you see everywhere statues of me my titles are inscribed everywhere my trophies are admired nothing to be seen but stone and bronze images ofJulius Finally ifyou had seen the royal procession in which I entered Bologna you would surely despise all the triumphs celebrated by the Octavii and Scipios you would understand that there were good reasons why I fought so hard for Bologna and you would see that at the same time the church was ghting and triumphing alongside me PETER So when you were the monarch as I understand it that condition had come about for which Christ ordered us to pray quotThy kingdom comequot Now tell me what the Venetians did wrong JULIUS First of all they ran after Greek fashions and they treated me almost as a joke putting all sorts ofobstacles in my way PETER Were they right or wrong JULIUS What does that matter It39s sacrilege even to mumble about the pope of Rome except in the way of praise Then they bestowed their priesthoods as they saw t they wouldn39t allow lawsuits to be transferred to Rome and they wouldn39t allow the selling of dispensations Do I have to go on They in icted unbearable damage on the authority of Rome and took command ofa signi cant part ofyour patrimony PETER My patrimony What patrimony are you talking about to me who left all my possessions behind to follow unclad a barefoot Christ JULIUS I say that various cities are the property ofthe Roman church and it has pleased the most holy fathers to call by that name these their own special possessions PETER Thus you use my shame to cover your own greed And so this is what you call unbearable damage JULIUS Why not PETER Were their manners corrupted Was piety growing cold JULIUS Forget it you39re talking about tri es We were being deprived of thousands upon thousands of ducats enough to furnish out a legion of soldiers PETER A terrible loss for a usurer I39m sure And now about the duke of Ferrara Week 7 10 what was the matter with him JULIUS What did he do that most ungrateful of men Alexander the vicar of Christ did this miserable rogue the honor of bestowing on him as a wife his second daughter and with her he gave an enormous dowry more than a man so base of birth could have expected IYet indifferent to such humane treatment he made nothing but trouble for me accusing me of simony pederasty and mental instability And besides he held back some taxes not the major ones I concede but still important enough not to be overlooked by a diligent shepherd GENIUS Or a skin int JULIUS Besides which is more to the point Ferrara helped along the main project I had in mind to join this territory to my own because of its strategic location At rst I wanted to bestow the city on my kinsman a man of energy who would have ventured anything in behalf of the dignity of the church In fact he recently killed the cardinal of Pavia with his own hands in my behalf As for my daughter39s husband he isn39t the political sort PETER What39s this I hear Do popes have wives and children nowadays JULIUS Proper wives they don39t have but what39s so strange about their having children since they39re men and not eunuchs PETER But what sort of events led to the calling ofthat schismatic council JULIUS It39s a long story but I39ll cut it short For a long time some people have been discontented with the Roman church They complained ofthe shameful moneygrubbing of monstrous and abominable lusts of poisonings sacrilege murders public sales of simoniacal positions pollution of every description They called me a simonist a drunkard a low villain swollen with eartth lusts and on every count the man least worthy of occupying the position that in fact I occupied they called me the greatest of all perils to the Christian community And in this troubled state of affairs they thought help was to be sought from a general council ofthe church They added that I had sworn when I was created pope to call a general council within two years asserting that I was created pope only on that condition PETER Were they right about that JULIUS Absolutely But when it suited my convenience to do so I absolved myself of my own oath When a king wants to break his solemn oath who has any doubt that he can do it Keep your piety for another occasion as the rst Julius my other self used to say But only note the audacity of these men the schemes they devised Nine cardinals made a separation noti ed me ofa council to be called and invited me to attend even to preside When I declined they announced the council to the whole world in the name ofthe emperor Maximilian under the pretext that years ago councils used to be called by Roman emperors and likewise Louis of France the twelfth ofthat name What they proposedI shudder to say itwas to rip up the seamless garment of Christ which even those who cruci ed the Savior left untorn PETER But were you the sort of man they said JULIUS What has that got to do with it I was pope Suppose I was a worse rascal than the Cercopes stupider than a wooden statue or the log from which it was made more foul than the swamp of Lerna whoever holds this key of power Week 7 11 must be revered as the vicar of Christ and reverenced as the holiest of men PETER Even if he39s openly evil JULIUS As open as you like It39s just unthinkable that God39s vicar on earth who represents God himself before men should be rebuked by any puny mortal or disturbed by any sort of popular outcry PETER But common sense is outraged if we must feel warmly toward one whom we see to be evil or speak well of one about whom we think ill JULIUS Let every man think as he will as long as he speaks well or at least holds his tongue The pope of Rome cannot be censured by anyone not by a general council PETER This one thing I know that Christ39s vicar on earth should be as much like him as possible and lead his life in such a way that nobody can blame any part of it orjustifiably speak evil of him Things go badly with popes when instead of earning men39s commendations by good deeds they extort praises with threats Such popes cannot be praised without lying indeed they can39t expect anything more than the sullen silence ofthose who hate them Tell me now truly is there no way at all to correct a criminal infectious pope JULIUS Absurd Who is going to remove the highest authority of all PETER That39s exactly why he should be removed because he39s the highest gure forthe higher he is the more pernicious his in uence may be Ifsecular laws allow for a king who rules his land badly to be not only deposed but executed why should the church be so helpless that it must put up with a pope who ruins everything instead of expelling him as a public nuisance JULIUS If the pope is to be corrected it ought to be by a council but against the will ofthe pope a council can39t be called othenNise it would be a mere convention not a proper council Even ifit were called it couldn39t issue any decrees ifthe pope objected And nally my last defense is absolute power of which the pope possesses more all by himself than an entire council In short the pope can39t be removed from of ce for any crime whatever PETER Not for homicide JULIUS Not for parricide PETER Not for fornication JULIUS Ridiculous not even for incest PETER Not forthe sin of simony JULIUS Not for six hundred such sins PETER Not for poisoning someone JULIUS Not even for sacrilege PETER Not for blasphemy JULIUS No Isay PETER Not for all these crimes poured together in a single sewer of a man JULIUS Add if you like the names of six hundred other vices each one worse than any ofthese and still the pope cannot be removed from his throne for any such reasons PETER This is a new doctrine about the dignity ofthe pope that I39ve picked up here he alone it seems is entitled to be the worst of men I39ve also learned about a new misery for the church that she alone is unable to rid herself of such a monster but is forced to adore a pope with a character that nobody would Week 7 12 endure in a stableboy JULIUS Some say there is a single reason for which a pope can be removed PETER What kind of good deed is that please tell mesince he can39t be removed for evil deeds such as those I39ve mentioned JULIUS For the crime of heresy but only if he39s been publicly convicted of it In reality this is just a imsy thread of an exception that doesn39t limit papal authority by a single scintilla The pope can always repeal the law if it bothers him in the least And then who would dare to accuse the pope himself entrenched as he is behind so many lines of defense Besides if he were hard pressed by a council it would be easy to save face with a recantation ifa at denial didn39t dispose ofthe matter Finally there are a thousand different deceptions and evasions by which he could get away unless he were a plain wooden stock instead ofa man PETER But tell me on your papal authority who thought up such splendid laws as these JULIUS Who else but the wellspring ofall laws the Roman pope And by the same token it39s his privilege to abrogate the law interpret it expand it or shrink it just as suits his convenience PETER A happy pope he must be if he can propound a law by which he can get around Christ and even a council Though as a matter of fact against a pope of the sort you39ve just describedan open criminal a drunkard a murderer a simoniac a poisoner a perjurer a skinflint a man befouled in every part of his life with the most atrocious and disgusting lusts and completely shameless about it allI wouldn39t propose a general council but a public uprising the people should arm themselves with stones and expel such an infectious plague forever from their midst Tell me now what reason you have as pope of Rome to avoid a general council JULIUS You might as well ask monarchs why they hate senates and assemblies ofthe nobility Because a gathering of so many excellent men casts a shadow over the royal dignity Those who are learned gain assurance from their reading those who answer only to a clear conscience speak their minds more freely than I like those who have been granted dignities make use oftheir new authority Among them some are always to be found who envy my glory and approach every issue with an eye to diminishing the wealth and authority of the pope In short nobody sits in such assemblies who doesn39t think himselfentitled to put forth under the authority ofthe council something prejudicial to the popewhom othenNise he wouldn39t dare assail Thus hardly any council concludes its work without the pope39s suffering some diminution of his authority he departs less supreme than he came You yourself can provide an example ofthis if you recall the incident for although in those days only tri es were being discussed not empires and kingdoms as now nonetheless James ventured to add something to your decision The case was that you had freed converted gentiles entirely from the Mosaic law but James made an exception for fornication idolatry and crimes of blood as if correcting your judgment Some people ifthey were judging this matter today would think the supreme authority ofthe church should be granted to James instead of Peter Week 7 13 PETER You think then that the only thing to be considered is the royal authority ofthe papacy rather than the welfare ofthe entire Christian community JULIUS Every man must look to his own interests I mind my own affairs PETER But if Christ had felt this way there would be no church for you to boast ofruling and I still don39t think it right that one who claims to be Christ39s vicar on earth should follow a path different from Christ39s But tell me now what tricks did you use to get rid of that schismatic council as you call it JULIUS I can tell you if you can follow the story First of all I got to the emperor Maximilian as they call him he was the easiest to manipulate and though he had solemnly proclaimed the council by methods that I39d rather not describe I got him to withdraw Then I persuaded various cardinals in the same way that they ought to withdraw their support forthe council as publicly as they had proclaimed it PETER Was that legal JULIUS What isn39t legal if the pope with his full authority approves it PETER What Then if he chooses to say so an oath is not an oath since he can dissolve it whenever he wants with regard to anyone JULIUS Well to speak frankly this particular maneuver was a little shady but I couldn39t come up with a better one at the moment Then when I saw that some people hostile to me were determined to have a council and had drawn up the call so that far from being excluded I was humbly invited and asked to preside see what a trick I made use of taking a hint from my predecessors I called a council of my own declaring that the place and time set for the other were quite unsuitable I called my council to meet on very short notice at Rome where I knew nobody would come except a friend of Julius or at least someone compliant to his wishesit was a lesson I had taught many times over And just to make things sure I created a number of new cardinals with views favorable to my designs GENIUS Criminal views that is JULIUS Ifl hadn39t authorized the council it would not have been one yet it didn39t really suit my purposes to assemble a great crowd ofbishops and abbots among whom there might conceivably be some honorable and pious men so I decreed that in the name of economy each district should send only one delegate or at most two Then when I still didn39t feel quite safe enough since there were so many districts that only a few from each would make a great number when they were already on the way I issued an order forbidding them to continue and putting off the council till a later date for this I gave some tri ing reason that lay to hand Then when I had excluded practically everybody I called my council at Rome anticipating the date I had set and with nobody there except those I wanted And even ifa few were present who might disagree with me I knew there was nobody who would dare to challenge Julius directly because I had the upper hand in both troops and weapons And in this way I was able to bring enormous disrepute on that French council sending out letters everywhere in which I talked about our sacrosanct council but denounced theirs as a conventicle of Satan a gathering of diabolic agents a conspiracy of schismatics and repeating these epithets over and over Week 7 14 PETER The cardinals and princes who instigated that council must have been very great rascals JULIUS About their morals I never asked The head of their group was cardinal d39 Amboise of Rouen who out of some quirk of conscience was always trying to reform the church and so he did in a number of places Death removed him from the arena to my enormous grati cation His successor was cardinal Santa Croce a Spaniard a man of blameless life but elderly set in his ways and a theologian it39s a breed of men particularly dangerous to the popes of Rome PETER And did this theologian have no arguments to justify his behavior JULIUS Plenty He said the times had never been more disturbed northe church more afflicted with more intolerable diseases and he called for a general council to heal them He and his colleagues reminded me that when I was received into the papacy I solemnly swore to call a council within two years and the oath was so phrased that not even the college of cardinals could absolve me ofit Though I had often been reminded ofit by my fellow cardinals queried and prodded by princes they said I would listen to anything ratherthan this so that now it was apparent that during Julius39s lifetime there would never be a council They cited the examples of previous councils and quoted various papal decrees purporting to show that in refusing to call a council I was betraying the law itself and with the connivance of the other princes they declared it was the duty of the Roman emperor who used to have sole responsibility in the matter and the French king now to convoke a council PETER No doubt they addressed you in vitriolic language JULIUS No the rascals were too smart forthat I39d have preferred some abuse Painful though the matter was they treated it with the utmost discretion and not only refrained from bad language but were careful to use all my titles of honor begging and praying me by all things holy and good to behave as was worthy of me and as I had promised by calling a council and presiding over it taking part with them in the work of curing the ailments ofthe church I can39t tell you how much hostility this gentle temper of theirs raised against me especially since they grounded all their suggestions on holy scriptures i for apparently they had some men oflearning in their camp And meanwhile they fasted and prayed and maintained a marvelously frugal existence to oppress me with the opinion of their holiness PETER And you on the other hand on what grounds did you propose your council JULIUS On the most magni cent grounds of all I explained that it was my intention to reform rst the head of the church that is myself then all the princes ofthe Christian world and nally the general population PETER It sounds like a ne comedy but what was the conclusion I want to hear what those theologians in the assembly of Satan determined JULIUS Horrible abominable things my mind shrinks from remembering them PETER Good lord Was it as bad as that JULIUS Downright impiety sacrilege worse than heresy ifl hadn39t opposed them tooth and nail with every bit of my strength and craft all the dignity ofthe Christian church would have gone to rack and rum Week 7 15 PETER You make me even more eagerto hear what it was JULIUS Oh I shudder to pronounce it This is what the scoundrels were up to that the church should be stripped of all her wealth and all her splendor returned to her primitive squalor and wretched frugality That cardinals who now outdo princes in the pomp oftheir equipage should be reduced to poverty that bishops should live more moderately without retainers and without so many horses in their stables They proposed that cardinals should not accumulate extra positions as for example bishops abbots and priests Lest anybody hold more than one bishopric they proposed that those who by one dodge or another as they say have accumulated livings by the hundred should be deprived of some ofthem and forced to content themselves with the income intended for a single frugal priest They said that nobody should be created pope or bishop or priest as a result of money changing hands or because of worldly favor or base attery but only because ofthe purity of his lifewhich if he compromised it would be cause for removal That a Roman pope convicted of agrant crimes might be deposed that bishops guilty of whoredom and drunkenness should be dismissed that criminal priests should not only be deprived but mutilated on some part of their body along with many other notions ofthe sort which it would weary me to recite but all tending to one point loading me down with religious duties and stripping me of my wealth and power PETER What was decreed in the other direction by the sacrosanct council at Rome JULIUS Now you seem to have forgotten what I told you that I wanted nothing out of my council except to drive out one nail with another After the rst session had been devoted to a number of solemn ceremonies handed down from antiquity and generally acceptable though they had nothing to do with the matter to hand two masses were said one to the holy cross and the other to the holy ghost as if everything was to be done in his name and then there was a long oration full of my praises At the next session I turned the worst threats of my thunderbolt against those cardinals declaring that whatever they had said or would say in the future was worse than impiety more vicious than sacrilege viler than heresy In the third session I threatened France with the same thunderbolt transferring the trade fairs out of Lyons and making an exception for certain parts of France which I named in orderto alienate the affections of the people from their king and stir up seditions among them And to give extra authority to all these deeds I issued a bull which I addressed to all the princes especially those who seemed inclined to favor me PETER And that was all you accomplished JULIUS I got what I wanted I won out at least if my decrees hold up In public ceremonies I deprived oftheir offices the three cardinals who remained obstinate conferring their posts on others in such a way that they could not easily be restored Their persons I consigned to Satan though if they39d fallen in my hands I39d have been glad to consign them to the ames PETER But ifwhat you say is right the decrees ofthat schismatic assembly seem to me a good deal more holy than those of your sacrosanct council I don39t see that you produced anything but tyrannical threats curses and cruelty Week 7 16 combined with cunning If Satan inspired that other assembly he seems closer to Christ than the spirit for whom I don39t even have a name who presided over your council JULIUS Watch your step now for in all my bulls I cursed thoroughly anyone who in any way favored that assembly PETER Wretch in whom I seem to see old Julius born again But what was the outcome ofthis business JULIUS I left it in the state I described how it will come out is up to the future PETER SO the schism survives JULIUS It survives and grows every day more dangerous PETER And you as the vicar of Christ preferred a schism before a genuine council JULIUS Three hundred schisms rather than find myself forced into submission and a reformation of my entire life PETER SO you39re as guilty as that JULIUS What39s that to you PETER I understand you couldn39t face the draining of that pestilential swamp But which of the two groups do you think will win out JULIUS As I said it39s in the hands of fortune though we have more money France is exhausted by her many long drawnout wars the English have mountains of gold still untouched This I can confidently predict if the French win which God forbid all the names will be turned around My sacrosanct council will be an assembly of Satan I will be not a pope but the idol ofa pope they will have acted on the impulse ofthe holy ghost and everything we did will bear the mark ofthe devil But I feel con dent that the money I left behind will keep that from happening PETER But what inspired this hatred of the French and their king on whom your predecessors bestowed the title of the Most Christian King Especially since you admit you lived undertheir protection for a long time and afterthey helped raise you to this more than imperial throne you received from them Bologna and other citiesand since nally with their help you dominated the previously unbeaten Venetians How did you wipe out the memory of such recent assistance and break such firm bonds JULIUS It would take a long story to explain the whole thing but to put it brie y the change wasn39t an abrupt one what I had been maturing in my mind for a long time I gradually began to put into effect At rst things standing as they did I had to dissimulate then I came out openly I never really liked the French Itell you this from my heart nor does any Italian actually like the barbariansany more for God39s sake than a wolf is fond of lambs But I39m notjust an Italian I39m from Genoa I treated them like friends as long as I needed their help in the way one always takes advantage of barbarians In the process I put up with a good deal I concealed my feelings I did plenty of pretending I endured a lot I achieved a lot But then when things had reached the stage where I wanted them I had only to act the role ofthe real Julius and drive that barbarian trash out of Italy PETER What kind ofanimals are those you call barbarians JULIUS They are men Week 7 17 PETER Men then but not Christians JULIUS Yes Christians too but what does that matter PETER Christians then but without laws or letters leading a rude uncultured life JULIUS In some respects they39re quite civilized and besides which is the thing we principally envy them they are very rich PETER Why then this name of barbarian What39s that you39re grumbling GENIUS Let me speak for him The Italians when they were ovenNhelmed and completely submerged under a ood of really barbaric nations as if from an over owing sewer picked up this mannerism from classical literature of calling everyone born outside Italy a barbarian this epithet is more scornful as they use it than ifthey called someone a parricide or accused him of robbing a church PETER So it seems But since Christ died for all men and showed no respect of persons and since you claim to be Christ39s vicar on earth why don39t you accept all men in the same spirit seeing that Christ himself did not discriminate JULIUS I would be delighted to accept everyoneIndians Africans Ethiopians Greeksas long as they can count money and pay taxes But we were right to cut them all off and especially the Greeks because they are too stubborn in refusing to recognize the authority of the Roman pope PETER So the court of Rome is to be as it were the treasure chest ofthe whole world JULIUS Is it such a great matter if we collect all their carnal wealth seeing we spread our spiritual gifts far and wide PETER What spiritual gifts are you talking about Up to now I39ve heard only about worldly things No doubt you attract men to Christ by preaching his holy word JULIUS There are people who preach it and I don39t prevent them as long as they don39t in any way question my authority PETER What then JULIUS What then Why are kings given whatever they demand except that individuals attribute to them whatever they have as if it were their gift even though in reality the monarchs have contributed nothing at all In the same way everything that39s holy is imputed to us popes even if we39ve done nothing but snore our life away But we do more we give extensive indulgences for very small sums of money in more serious cases we provide dispensations for less than the maximum price and wherever we go we bless everyone and for free PETER I don39t understand a word ofthis But let39s go back to our former subject why does your most holy majesty hate the barbarians so much that you39ll move heaven and earth to drive them out of Italy JULIUS I39ll tell you there39s a superstitious streak runs through the whole lot of these barbarians especially the French for I don39t get along badly with the Spanish whether you consider their language or their manners though in fact I had to drive them out too in orderto be free to act in my own independent way PETER Apart from Christ do they have any other gods JULIUS No the trouble is they worship Christ himselftoo precisely You wouldn39t believe how seriously these foolish people take certain obsolete antiquated Week 7 18 phrases PETER Magic formulas JULIUS You39re joking No words like quotsimonyquot quotblasphemyquot quotsodomyquot quotpoisoningquot quotfortunetellingquot PETER Fine words indeed JULIUS Just as you abominate them so do they PETER Never mind the names the things themselves are found in your part of the world aren39t they or are they perhaps common to all Christians JULIUS I daresay the barbarians have vices of their own but different from ours they denounce ours and indulge their own while we in turn atter our own and despise theirs We consider poverty a horrible crime to be avoided by any possible means they seem to think it39s barely Christian to enjoy your own money even if it was innocently acquired We hardly dare to speak ofdrunkenness though in this particular I might not differ with them very sharply if on other matters we saw eye to eye but the Germans consider it a minor and ratherjolly error not a crime They hate usury we consider moneylenders of all men most useful to the church of Christ They view pederasty as such a disgraceful act that if someone even mentions it you would think the atmosphere and the sun itself had been polluted we look at it othenNise Likewise with simony a word long since completely antiquated and dropped from the common vocabulary they still fear the very shadow of it and cling furiously to the outmoded laws made against itnot so with us And there are many other matters of this sort in which we don39t agree with the barbarians Since we39re so different in our manners of life they have to be kept away from the mysteries of our busihess which they will respect more ifthey don39t understand them For ifonce they knew all the inner workings of my court they would spread the story abroad and noise about all the vices they would be quick to uncover Already they write bitter and malignant letters to their people at home they cry abroad that this is not the seat of Christ but the cesspool of Satan they argue over me asking whether since I got the papacy as I did and live as I do I should be considered a pope at all In this way they threaten my reputation for holiness as well as my papal authority among the common folk who formerly knew nothing about me except that I was Christ39s vicar and wielded power next to that of God himself And from these events rise intolerable dif culties for the church of Christ we sell fewer dispensations and get less forthem our revenues from bishoprics and priesthoods diminish ifwe demand anything from the people it39s given only grudgingly our revenues are off our business ventures are losing money people even care less and less about the terrible menace of my thunderbolt Ifthings once reach the point where they say I39m a scoundrel of a pope who does nothing and only pretends to wield a makebelieve thunderbolt then outright hunger will be staring me in the face Now if they were at a safe distance for barbarians aren39t very smart they would worship more zealously and I could rule overthem as I choose by written directives PETER Things can39t be going well with you if the apostolic authority depends only on their ignorance of your sly tricks and your way of life In my day we wanted people to know all about us whatever we did even in our cells we Week 7 19 thought we would become many by becoming well known But explain this to me are the princes of the world so religious nowadays and so respectful of priests that at the beck ofa single oneespecially such a one as yourselfthey will all at once plunge into war For in my time we considered princes our most bitter enemles JULIUS As far as the character oftheir life is concerned they are not much like believing Christians They openly despise us and consider us buffoons except for a few ofthe weaker ones who may be a bit afraid of that terrible thunderbolt of excommunicationand even they are more upset by the publicity about it than by the thing itself There are some princes who hope to share in our wealth or are afraid of it and for those reasons they may defer to our authority we39ve persuaded them in addition that some horrible misfortune awaits those who meddle in our priestly business Almost all of them having been thoroughly indoctrinated feel respect forthe rituals especially as we observe them for ceremonies are given to people as fairy stories are told to children Meanwhile the show goes on Even ifthey are rascals we bestow splendid titles on them calling them quotcatholicquot quotyour most serene highnessquot quotmost illustrious majestyquot and quotmost worshipful monarchquot we also call them all our quotbeloved sonsquot Meanwhile in their letters they refer to us as quotmost holy fatherquot and sometimes abase themselves so far as to kiss our feet and when some really trivial question comes up they go through the form of submitting to our authority which gives them a great name for piety among the masses We send them consecrated roses crowns swords they in turn send us horses soldiers money and sometimes boys thus a pair ofmules scratch each other turn and turn about PETER lfthat39s the sort of men they are I understand even less how you can incite such powerful kings to terrible wars and to the breaking of all their treaties JULIUS lfyou can follow what I tell you you39ll pick up some betterthan apostolic wisdom PETER I39ll do the best I can JULIUS The rst thing I undertook to do was to acquaint myself with all the peoples and especially their princesto know their minds manners emotions their wealth and their ambitions as well as who got along with whom and who was at odds with whom All this information was to be used for my own advantage Then I found it easy to stir up the French against the Venetians because there was an ancient ingrained hostility between the two parties I knew the French were eager to expand their power and the Venetians were occupying some of theirtowns so I made the French cause my own Then the Emperor though othenNise no great friend ofthe French saw he had no other hope of getting back from the Venetians what they held of his and they held a number of ne cities so he too made an alliance with the French for the time being Then when I saw that the French were growing in power more than suited me for the alliance had succeeded betterthan I wanted it to I began to stir up the king of Spain against them He was not all that strict about keeping his promises I and he had a great interest in holding down the power ofthe French because he did not want to be barricaded out of his possessions at Naples Then I pretended to Week 7 20 take the Venetians back into favor though I really didn39t like or trust them so that playing on their grief over loss ofthe recent battle I could rouse them against the French Next I took the Emperor whom l39d recently joined with the French and detached him from them A major argument with him was money which always works wonders with a man who needs it I also sent letters and envoys to renew his ancient hatred of the French which was always on the point of aring up even when he had no real chance to get at them I knew the English at this time really hated the French who were in close alliance with the Scots They were a nation as I well knew of exceptional ferocity eager for war and especially avid for lootrather given to superstition as well because far removed from Rome Finally they were enjoying at the moment a new liberty resulting from the recent death ofan old and very severe king Exuberant and almost riotous at their sudden release they could easily be directed into any insane venture lying to handwhich was my dearest wish My chances were improved by the temper ofthe new king a young man little more than a boy newly come to power sharp bold and like most young men restless even belligerent he was naturally ambitious and had been trained up to great deeds From earliest youth he was said to have been planning an attack on the French besides which his marriage made him a kinsman of the king of Spain whom at that very moment I was inciting to war All these circumstances I turned to the advantage ofthe church and by a great number of artfully composed letters managed to embroil all the princes in the most furious wars conceivable I did my best not to leave anyone out trying to involve the king of Hungary the king of Portugal and the duke of Burgundy who is the equal of many monarchs But since they had no particular interest in the war I couldn39t get them in I knew that in any case with those I already had involved there would be no peace for anyone else The combatants though they really fought for their own interests accepted distinguished awards and titles from me as ifthe more death and destruction they visited on Christian folk the more they might seem to be defending devotedly the church of God And so that you may appreciate the full extent of my luck or skill I will tell you that though the king of Spain was warring at the time on the Turks and had enjoyed hitherto enormous success and taken lots o oot I got him to abandon that enterprise and turn all his forces against the French The Emperor too was bound to France by many treaties and even more by the enormous assistance he had received from them in regaining his possessions and cities in Italy And he had major problems in Italy because Padua had deserted to Veniceas well as in Burgundy where the Gelderlanders had proved dangerous enemies of his grandson then duke of Burgundy in a war he himself had provoked And yet I arranged that he should neglect his own affairs in orderto do my business Then there is no people among whom papal authority counts for less than the English that will be clear to anyone who looks over the life of Thomas archbishop of Canterbury and the ancient constitutions of the kingdom yet that nation though othenNise most impatient of impositions almost allowed itselfto be skinned alive by me It39s practically a miracle the way I got the priests who used to skim off for themselves whatever they could to bring in taxes to the king without ever thinking of the precedent they were setting for Week 7 21 future royal exactionsthough indeed the king himself never noticed the example he was setting for action against his own and his successors39 interests whenever the pope in Rome might become impatient with England In fact the young king went at the matter with more energy than I wanted or advised even though I thought he was erring in the right direction But it would be a long story to explain in detail how artfully I stirred up these various princes to make war on their fellow Christians when no previous pope had ever even been able to rouse them against the Turks PETER But it may be that the ames of war that you fanned will spread out of control across the entire world JULIUS Let them spread as long as the Roman church retains its dignities and prerogatives Actually I39ve tried to let the whole weight of the war fall on the barbarians rather than the Italians let them ght it out as long as they want we39ll stand by and perhaps applaud their idiocy PETER And is this the proper attitude ofa pastor a most holy father a vicar of Christ JULIUS Why did they stir up the schism PETER But some evils must simply be endured if the remedy is Worse Besides if you had permitted a council there would have been no occasion for a schism JULIUS Don39t be silly I39d sooner have six hundred wars than one Council What if they had removed me from the papacy as a simoniac and a buyer of the papal of ce not a true pope at all What if they learned the whole truth about my life and made it public information PETER Even if you were a true pope you would have done betterto resign the of ce than to protect your dignity by spreading such evils across the face of the Christian world It39s even Worse when the of ce has been bestowed on an unworthy person or not even bestowed but bought and snatched away by force And it occurs to me that God in his wisdom may have created you as a plague for the French in retribution fortheir having raised you up to be a plague forthe church JULIUS By my triple crown and by my heroictriumphs I swear ifyou stir my anger you even you will feel the wrath ofJulius PETER Oh madman So far I have heard nothing but the words ofa warlord not a churchman but a worldling not a mere worldling but a pagan and a scoundrel lower than any pagan You boast of having dissolved treaties stirred up wars and encouraged the slaughter of men That is the power of Satan not a pope Anyone who becomes the vicar of Christ should try to follow as closely as possible the example provided by Christ In him the ultimate power coincided with ultimate goodness his wisdom was supreme but ofthe utmost simplicity In you I see an image of powerjoined with the ultimate in malice and the ultimate in stupidity Ifthe devil that prince of darkness wanted to send to earth a vicar of hell whom would he choose but someone like you In what way did you ever act like an apostolic person JULIUS What could be more apostolic than strengthening the church of Christ PETER But if the church is the ock of Christian believers held together by the spirit of Christ then you seem to me to have subverted the church by inciting the Week 7 22 entire world to bloody wars while you yourself remained wicked noisome and unpunished JULIUS I think the church consists ofthe holy buildings the priests and especially the court at Rome myself most ofall who am the head ofthe church PETER But Christ made us servants and himselfthe head unless you think a second head is needed But in what way has the church been strengthened JULIUS Now you39re getting to the core ofthe matter so I39ll tell you That hungry impoverished church of yours is now adorned with a thousand impressive ornaments PETER Such as An earnest faith JULIUS More of yourjokes PETER Holy doctrine JULIUS Don39t play dumb PETER Contempt for the things ofthis world JULIUS Let me tell you real ornaments are what I mean Those things you39ve mentioned are just words PETER What do you mean then JULIUS Regal palaces spirited horses and ne mules crowds of servants well trained troops asiduous retainers GENIUS highclass whores and oily pimps JULIUS plenty of gold purple and so much money in taxes that there39s not a king in the world who wouldn39t appear base and poor if his wealth and state were compared with those of the Roman pontiff Nobody is so ambitious that he wouldn39t confess himself outdone nobody so extravagant that he wouldn39t condemn his own frugality nobody so wealthy not even a usurer that he wouldn39t envy my riches These are what I call ornaments I39ve protected what I inherited and added to them PETER But tell me who rst ofall befouled and burdened with these ornaments ofyours the church that Christ wanted to be supremely pure and unencumbered JULIUS What does that matter The main thing is that I39ve got them I possess them I enjoy them Some people do say that a certain Constantine transferred all the riches of his empire to pope Sylvester armor horses chariots helmets belts cloaks guardsmen swords gold crowns ofthe very nest gold armies machines ofwar cities entire kingdoms PETER Are there any proper records ofthis magnificent donation JULIUS None except one codicil mixed in with some old decrees PETER Maybe it39s a fable JULIUS I39ve often suspected as much What sane man after all would bestow such a magni cent gift even on his own father But still it39s a very pleasant thing to believe and when anyone has tried to question it I39ve been able to silence him completely with a timely threat or two PETER And still I hear nothing from you but worldly concerns JULIUS Evidently you are dreaming on about the old church in which you with a couple of hungry bishops acted out the role ofa meager pope afflicted with poverty labor danger and a thousand othertroubles The new age has changed all that for the better Nowadays the high pontiff of Rome is another creature Week 7 23 altogether you were a pope in name only What ifyou could now see all the holy churches decorated with the wealth of kingdoms the thousands of priests everywhere many of them with splendid incomes all the bishops equal in wealth and military powerto so many kings all the splendid episcopal palaces lfwe were at Rome now you couldn39t fail to admire all the cardinals in their purple robes attended by legions of servants followed by riders on imperial horses and mules glittering with linen caparisons studded with gold and gems shod with gold and silver shoes like so many blazing suns Then you might see the pope himself born aloft on the shoulders of his guards seated on his golden throne and blessing as he passes all the adoring faithful lfyou then heard the crash of the cannon the applause of the people and their acclamations if you could see the splendor of the massed torches and the highest princes barely allowed to kiss the holy feet if you saw the supreme pontiff of Rome placing a golden crown on the head ofthe Roman emperor who is king ofall kings that is if written words carry any weight though in reality he carries nothing but the shadow of a great namewel I say if you heard and sawall this what would you think PETER That I had seen the worst tyranny in the world the enemy of Christ and the church39s bane JULIUS You would think very differently if you had seen just one of my triumphs either the one that l celebrated at Bologna or that which I held at Rome after subduing the Venetians or that in which eeing from Bologna I returned to Rome orthe latest one celebrating the defeat ofthe French after almost all hope was gone at Ravenna lfyou could see the long lines of steeds and stallions the les ofarmed soldiers the gaudy uniforms of the commanders the choirs of specially chosen boys the gleaming insignia the wagonloads of booty the splendor of the bishops the magni cence of the cardinals the trophies the piles of prizemoney the cheers of the people and the soldiers echoing up to the heavens if you could hear the roars and thunders ofapplause the blast of horns the thunder of trumpets the roar of cannon and then ifyou could see me carried aloft like a very god scattering coins among the people the center and creator of all this splendor then you would say the Scipios Aemilii and Augusti were shoddy parsimonious fellows compared to me PETER Oh enough ofyour triumphs you braggart soldier You surpass in hatefulness even those pagansyou who while claiming to be the most holy father in Christ have caused thousands of Christian soldiers to be killed for your own personal advantage who have created only new legions of the dead and who never by words or deeds brought one single soul to Christ By the bowels of the Father Oh you worthy vicar ofthat Christ who sacrificed himself for the good ofall mankind You to preserve your own accursed skin have driven to their deaths entire populations JULIUS That39s what you say because you are envious of my glory when you see how puny your career as a bishop was when compared with me PETER Have you the audacity you scoundrel to compare your glory with minethough in fact my glory is the glory of Christ not my own First if you concede that Christ was the best and true prince ofthe church then it was he who gave me the keys ofthe kingdom he told me to care for his flock he approved of my faith by Week 7 24 granting me his authority What made you pope was money in the rst place then attery and nally fraudifin fact you should bear the title of pope at all I gained thousands of souls for Christ you drew just as many to death and hell I rst taught pagan Rome the lesson of Christ you made yourself master ofa kind of pseudoChristian paganism I with the mere shadow of my body healed the sick exorcised the diabolically af icted recalled the dead to life and wherever 1 went left my blessing on everything What does that have in common with your triumphs By a single word I could give over to Satan anyone 1 chose and what 1 could do Saphira and her husband found out Yet what power I had I exercised for the good ofall you were not only useless to everyone but you used what power you had and where didn39t you have it to harm people throughout the world JULIUS I39m surprised that when you list your achievements you don39t include poverty wakeful nights heavy labor criminal courts prisons chains abuse stripes and last of all the cross PETER You39re right and I39m glad you reminded me for I39ve more reason to be proud of those sufferings than of miracles It was in the name ofthese things that Christ told us to rejoice and be exceeding glad in the name ofthese he called us blessed So Paul my former fellowapostle when he prides himselfon his achievements has nothing to say of cities captured by armed force or legions cut to pieces with cold steel princes incited to war or celebrations worthy ofan autocrat nothing but shipwrecks chains lashings dangers acts of be trayal There is the really apostolic triumph that is the glory ofthe Christian leader Let him boast of those whom he saved from sin not of how many thousands of ducats he piled up Then when we celebrate our perpetual triumph with Christ even evildoers will join in our praise but nobody will fail to curse you except perhaps someone just like you or your atterer JULIUS What you say is unheardof I never heard the like PETER I believe it for when did you ever take time to read the gospels or to study the epistles of Paul and myselfbusy as you were with so many delegations treaties schemes expeditions and celebrations Even the other arts call for a spirit empty of sordid concerns but the discipline of Christ requires a heart completely purged of any sort of eartth interest For a teacher like the one we revere does not come down from heaven to give men any sort of facile or vulgar philosophy Being a Christian is no lazy or comfortable profession All the pleasures must be avoided like poison riches trodden underfoot like dirt and life itself treated as valueless this is the profession of a Christian man This sort of life because it seems unbearable to those who do not act in the spirit of Christ is easily reduced to a few idle words and empty ceremonies and thus to a fraudulent head of Christ men add a fraudulent body JULIUS What39s left of me that39s any good at all if you take away my money strip me of my power deprive me of my usury forbid my pleasures and even destroy my life PETER You might as well say Christ was wretched when he who had been at the peak ofall things was made a mockery before men In poverty and painful labor in fasts and deprivation he passed his entire life and then died the most Week 7 25 shameful of deaths JULIUS He may nd people to praise his example but not to follow it not in these days anyway PETER But to praise him is really to imitate him Though Christ doesn39t deprive his followers of all good things in place of false goods he provides them with true and eternal goods But he does not enrich anyone who has not rst renounced and rejected all the good things of this world As he himselfwas altogether heavenly so he wanted his body that is the church to be exactly like him pure from the contagions of mundane life OthenNise how could anyone be united with him if he were still contaminated with the filth of eartth existence But when the church has got rid of all the pleasures of this world and what is more of all secret hankerings afterthem then Christ will reveal his true riches exchanging heavenly joys for eartth ones too often plentifully mixed with bitter avors and in place of lost riches substituting riches of another far better sort JULIUS What are those may I ask PETER You shouldn39t think the gift of prophecy the gift of wisdom and the gift of miracles are like any form ofvulgar riches you shouldn39t suppose Christ himself is some common commodity that you can possess entirely and in him possess everything and you shouldn39t think that we here live a meager life The more anyone is af icted in the world below the more delight does he feel in Christ the poorer he is in the world the richer in Christ the more lowly in the world the more exalted and honorable in Christ the less he lives in the world the more he lives in Christ As he wished his entire body to be ofthe utmost purity so he placed special importance on his ministers that is the bishops and among these the loftier anyone39s position the more closely he should resemble Christ in being completely free of and unencumbered by any worldly considerations Now here on the other hand I see one who wants to be thought close to and almost on a par with Christ yet who is immersed in all the dirty business he can find in accumulating money displays of wealth possessions of every sort wars treaties and private vices I won39t even try to describe And though you are utterly alien to Christ you abuse the titles of Christ to serve your own pride Hiding behind him who despised the rule of the world you act the tyrant and though really the enemy of Christ usurp for yourselfthe honor due to him While blessing others you are accursed yourself you open to others the gates of heaven yet cannot get yourself admitted as you consecrate you are execrated you excommunicate when you yourselfare out of all communion with the sacred What after all is the difference between you and the leader ofthe Turks except that you pretend to use the name of Christ You have the same sort of mind you lead the same sordid lives you are a worse misfortune forthe church even than he JULIUS I wanted to see the church adorned with every sort of good thing But they say Aristotle distinguished three sorts of good goods of fortune goods of the body and goods ofthe mind I didn39t want to change his order so I began with goods of fortune and I might have worked up to goods of the mind if untimely death hadn39t called me away39 PETER Untimely you call it and you seventy years old In any case how could Week 7 26 you expect to mingle re with water JULIUS But if we have to do without eartth shows the common people won39t respect us at all as it is they hate us almost as much as they fear us Then the whole Christian community will go to rack and ruin when it can39t defend itself against its enemies PETER But if ordinary Christians recognized in you the real gifts of Christ that is a holy life a sacred teaching ardent charity prophetic wisdom and genuine virtue they would look up to you as one purified from the impulses of the world and the Christian community would expand even further if its leaders won respect from the unbelievers for the purity of their life their contempt for pleasure wealth conquest and death As things stand Christianity has shrunk within narrow bounds indeed and if you look closely even within those bounds you will nd many merely nominal Christians Let me ask you didn39t you ever consider when you became supreme pastor ofthe church how this church was born how it grew what sort of men gave it strength Was this accomplished by wars by chests full of treasure by cavalry raids No by patience under suffering by the blood of martyrs and our own by enduring prisons and whips You say the church has grown when all its ministers are burdened with eartth goods you say it39s been adorned when it39s weighed down with worldly possessions and pleasures you say it39s being defended when the entire world is ripped apart by ferocious wars for the private gain ofthe priests you say it39s in ourishing estate when it39s drunk on the pleasures ofthis world you call it quiet when because nobody complains about your riches you are free to cultivate your vices and you grant glorious titles to princes who recognize you as their teacher in the art of perpetrating shameless robberies and atrocious murders under the name of quotthe defense of Chris JULIUS Such things as this I never heard before PETER What did your preachers tell you then JULIUS I never heard anything from them but fulsome praise They exercised their fanciest rhetoric in thundering out my glories they compared me to Jove wielding his thunderbolt they practically dei ed me they called me the savior of the world and a great many other things ofthat sort PETER I39m not surprised there was nobody to give you good advice for you yourself were the salt that had lost its savor For that is the special function of the apostles and those that follow them to teach others the lesson of Christ and in the purest form possible JULIUS You39re not going to open the gates then PETER To anyone rather than a contagious disease like you As far as you39re concerned we39re all excommunicated anyway But would you care for a word of practical advice You have here a gang ofmusclemen you have a pile of money you39re a good builder Go make yourselfa new private parardise but make it good and strong to keep the demons of hell from dragging you out ofit JULIUS I39ll act in accordance with my own dignity I39ll take a couple pf months to build up my forces then we39ll beseige you here and ifyou don39t surrender drive you out Fot I don39t doubt to receive shortly from the wars I started fresh recruits of sixty thousand souls or more Week 7 27 PETER Oh you hateful disease Oh the poor church But tell me Genius for I d rather talk with you than with this hideous monster GENIUS What s your problem PETER Are all the other bishops on earth like this one GENIUS A good number are ofthis general type but this one is as you might say outstanding PETER Are you the one who stirred him up to such atrocious crimes GENIUS I did hardly anything he was so eager in his vices that even with woings I could hardly have followed him PETER Well I m not surprised that we get so few candidates for admission when monsters like this are in charge of governing the church But perhaps the common people may be curable or so I conjecture from the fact that because of the mere empty title of pope they gave honor to such a lthy piece of garbage as this GENIUS You ve hit the nail on the head But my master is getting underway and has been shaking his stick at me So farewell Source Desiderius Erasmus The Praise of Follv and Other Writings trans Robert M Adams New York and London Norton Critical Edition 1989 pp 14273 QUESTIONS 1 Why would a Catholic reformer use a comic satire to criticize the papacy 2 What is the effect of crafting the satire as a conversation between Julius II and Saint Peter at the gates of heaven 3 What might sixteenthcentury readers have thought of this Michel de Montaigne Of Cannibals 15805 Between 1562 and 1598 France fell into a long and bloody civil war Foughtfor both political and religious reasons the Wars of Religion weakened France politically and left many French nobles searchingfor political stability One such group of Frenchmen called the politiques argued in favor of religious toleration and submission to a strong monarch as the best remedy for France39s political ailments One of the most in uential politiques was Michel de Montaigne 1533 1592 a French nobleman jurist and government of cial whose greatest legacy was his writing His most famous work Essays remains one of the most innovative and in uential works in European literature In one of his bestknown essays quotOf Cannibals quot Montaigne used the peoples of the Americas to make a stinging critique of the troubles of his own age in France I had with me for a long time a man that had lived ten ortwelve years in that other world which has been discovered in our century in the place where Villegaignon landed which he called Antarctic France This discovery of so vast a country seems worthy of consideration I do not know if I can be Sure that in the future there may not be another such discovery made so many greater men than we having been deceived in this I am afraid Our eyes are biggerthan Our Week 7 28 bellies and that we have more curiosity than capacity We grasp at all but catch nothing but wind This man that I had was a plain ignorant fellow which is a condition t to bear true witness for your sharp sort of men are much more curious in their observations and notice a great deal more but they gloss them and to give the greater weight to their interpretation and make it convincing they cannot forbearto alter the story a little We should have a man either of irreproachable veracity or so simple that he has not wherewithal to contrive and to give a color of truth to false tales and who has not espoused any cause Mine was such a one and besides that he has divers times brought me several seamen and merchants whom he had known on that voyage I do therefore content myselfwith his information without inquiring what the cosmographers say about it nd that there is nothing barbarous and savage in this nation according to what I have been told except that everyone gives the title of barbarism to everything that is not according to his usage as indeed we have no other criterion oftruth and reason than the example and pattern ofthe opinions and customs ofthe country wherein we live There is alwaysthe perfect religion there the perfect government there the perfect and accomplished usage in all things They are savages in the same way that we say fruits are wild which nature produces of herselfand by her ordinary course whereas in truth we ought rather to call those wild whose natures we have changed by our artifice and diverted from the common order In the former the genuine most useful and natural virtues and properties are vigorous and active which we have degenerated in the latter and we have only adapted them to the pleasure of our corrupted palate And yet for all this the avor and delicacy found in various uncultivated fruits ofthose countries are excellent to our taste worthy rivals of ours These nations then seem to me to be barbarous so far as having received very little fashioning from the human mind and as being still very close to their original simplicity The laws of Nature govern them still very little vitiated by ours lt is a nation wherein there is no manner oftraf c no knowledge of letters no science of numbers no name of magistrate or of political superiority no use of servitude riches or poverty no contracts no successions no dividing of properties no employments except those ofleisure no respect of kindred except for the common bond no clothing no agriculture no metal no use of wheat or wine The very words that signify lying treachery dissimulation avarice envy detraction and pardon were never heard of They have wars with the nations that live farther inland beyond their mountains to which they go quite naked and without other arms than their bows and wooden swords pointed at one end like the points of our spears The obstinacy oftheir battles is wonderful they never end without slaughter and bloodshed for as to running away and fear they know not what it is Everyone for a trophy brings home the head of an enemy he has killed and xes it over the door of his house After having a long time treated their prisoners well and with all the luxuries they can think of he to whom the prisoner belongs forms a great Week 7 29 assembly of his acquaintances He ties a rope to one ofthe arms ofthe prisoner by the end ofwhich he holds him some paces away for fear of being struck and gives to the friend he loves best the other arm to hold in the same manner and they two in the presence ofall the assembly dispatch him with their swords After that they roast him and eat him among them and send some pieces to their absent friends They do not do this as some think for nourishment as the Scythians anciently did but as a representation ofan extreme revenge And its proof is that having observed that the Portuguese who were in league with their enemies inflicted another sort of death on them when they captured them which was to bury them up to the waist shoot the rest ofthe body full ofarrows and then hang them they thought that these people from the other world as men who had sown the knowledge of a great vices among their neighbors and were much greater masters in all kind of wickedness than they did not exercise this sort of revenge without reason and that it must needs be more painful than theirs and they began to leave their old way and to follow this I am not sorry that we should take notice of the barbarous horror of such acts but I am sorry that seeing so clearly into their faults we should be so blind to our own I conceive there is more barbarity in eating a man alive than in eating him dead in tearing by tortures and the rack a body that is still full of feeling in roasting him by degrees causing him to be bitten and torn by dogs and swine as we have not only read but lately seen not among inveterate enemies but among neighbors and fellowcitizens and what is worse under color of piety and religion than in roasting and eating him after he is dead We may then well call these people barbarians in respect to the rules ofreason but not in respect to ourselves who in all sorts of barbarity exceed them Their warfare is in every way noble and generous and has as much excuse and beauty as this human malady is capable of it has with them no other foundation than the sole jealousy ofvalor Their disputes are not for the conquests of new lands for they still enjoy that natural abundance that supplies them without labor and trouble with all things necessary in such abundance that they have no need to enlarge their borders And they are still in that happy stage of desiring only as much as their natural necessities demand all beyond that is super uous to them QUESTIONS 1 How does Montaigne establish his humility What does he say are the characteristics of a barbarian 2 How do Montaigne39s claims about the source of his knowledge compare to Las Casas39s claims of knowledge about the Amerindians 3 According to Montaigne how do Europeans act more savagely than Amerindians What marks Amerindians as virtuous and Europeans as unvirtuous 4 Do the real indigenous peoples ofthe Americas matter to Montaigne What are the implications ofthis Source Michel de Montaigne Montaigne Selected Essays ed Blanchard Bates New York Modern Library Random House 19494777982 84 Week 7 3O 3 Christopher Columbus The Letters of Columbus to Ferdinand and Isabel Historians debate whether Christopher Columbus 14511506 was or was not the rst European to reach the Americas Whatis beyond dispute however is that his voyages sparked an unprecedented period of European exploration and expansion In his letter to Ferdinand and Isabel included here Columbus painted a picture of the New World calculated to please his royal patrons SIR Since I know that you will be pleased at the great victory with which Our Lord has crowned my voyage I write this to you from which you will learn how in thirtythree days I passed from the Canary Islands to the Indies with the eet which the most illustrious King and Queen our Sovereigns gave to me There I found very many islands lled with innumerable people and I have taken possession ofthem all for their Highnesses done by proclamation and with the royal standard unfurled and no opposition was offered to me To the rst island which I found I gave the name quotSan Salvadorquot in remembrance ofthe Divine Majesty Who had marvelloust bestowed all this the Indians call it quotGuanahaniquot To the second I gave the name the island ofquotSanta Maria de Concepcionquot to the third quotFernandinaquot to the fourth quotIsabellaquot to the fth island quotJuanaquot and so each received from me a new name Espanola is a marvel The sierras and the mountains the plains the champaigns are so lovely and so rich for planting and sowing for breeding cattle of every kind for building towns and villages The harbours of the sea here are such as cannot be believed to exist unless they have been seen and so with the rivers many and great and of good water the majority of which contain gold In the trees fruits and plants there is a great difference from those of Juana In this island there are many spices and great mines of gold and of other metals The people ofthis island and of all the other islands which I have found and ofwhich I have information all go naked men and women as their mothers bore them although some of the women cover a single place with the leaf of a plant or with a net of cotton which they make for the purpose They have no iron or steel or weapons nor are they tted to use them This is not because they are not well built and of handsome stature but because they are very marvelloust timorous They have no other anns than spears made of canes cut in seeding time to the ends ofwhich they x a small sharpened stick Of these they do not dare to make use for many times it has happened that I have sent ashore two or three men to some town to have speech with them and countless people have come out to them and as soon as they have seen my men approaching they have fled a father not even waiting for his son This is not because in has been done to anyone of them on the contrary at every place where I have been and have been able to have speech with them I have given to them of that which I had such as cloth and many other things receiving nothing in exchange But so they are incurany timid It is true that after they have been reassured and have lost this fear they are so guileless and so generous with all that they possess that no one would believe it who has not seen it They refuse nothing that they possess if it be asked ofthem on the contrary they invite anyone to share it and display as much love as if they would Week 7 31 give their hearts They are content with whatever tri e of whatever kind that may be given to them whether it be ofvalue or valueless l forbade that they should be given things so worthless as fragments of broken crockery scraps of broken glass and lace tips although when they were able to get them they fancied that they possessed the best jewel in the world So it was found that for a thong a sailor received gold to the weight of two and a half Castellanos and others received much more for other things which were worth less As for new blancas for thcm thcy would give everything which they had although it might be two or three castellanos39 gold coins weight of gold or an arroba or two of spun cotton They took even the pieces ofthe broken hoops ofthe wine barrels and like savages gave what they had so that it seemed to me to be wrong and l forbade it I gave them a thousand handsome good things which I had brought in order that they might conceive affection for us and more than that might become Christians and be inclined to the love and service of Your Highnesses and of the whole Castilian nation and strive to collect and give us ofthe things which they have in abundance and which are necessary to us They do not hold any creed nor are they idolaters but they all believe that power and good are in the heavens and were very nnly convinced that l with these ships and men came from the heavens and in this beliefthey everywhere received me after they had mastered their fear This belief is not the result of ignorance for they are on the contrary of a very acute intelligence and they are men who navigate all those seas so that it is amazing how good an account they give of everything It is because they have never seen people clothed or ships of such a kind As soon as I arrived in the Indies in the rst island which I found I took some ofthe natives by force in order that they might leam and might give me information of whateverthere is in these parts And so it was that they soon understood us and we them either by speech or signs and they have been very serviceable At present those I bring with me are still ofthe opinion that I come from Heaven for all the intercourse which they have had with me They were the rst to announce this wherever I went and the others went running from house to house and to the neighbouring towns with loud cries of quotCome Come See the men from Heavenquot 80 all came men and women alike when their minds were set at rest concerning us not one small or great remaining behind and they all brought something to eat and drink which they gave with extraordinary affection In all these islands I saw no great diversity in the appearance ofthe people or in their manners and language On the contrary they all understand one another which is a very curious thing on account of which I hope that their Highnesses will determine upon their conversion to our holy faith towards which they are very inclined l have already said how I went one hundred and seven leagues in a straight line from west to east along the seashore of the island of Juana and as a result of this voyage I can say that this island is larger than England and Scotland together for beyond these one hundred and seven leagues there remain to the westward two provinces to which I have not gone One ofthese provinces they call quotAvanquot and there people are born with tails These provinces cannot have a length of less than fty or sixty leagues as 1 could understand from those lndians whom I have and who know all the islands The other island Espanola Week 7 32 has a circumference grcaterthan all Spain from Collioure by the seacoast to Fuenterabia in Vizcaya for l voyaged along one side for one hundred and eighty eight great leagues in a straight line from west to east It is a land to be desired and when seen never to be left l have taken possession of all fortheir Highnesses and all are more richly endowed than I know how or am able to say and I hold all fortheir Highnesses so that they may dispose ofthem as they do ofthe kingdoms of Castile and as absolutely But especially in this Espanola in the situation most convenient and in the best position forthe mines of gold and for all trade as well with the mainland here as with that there belonging to the Grand Khan where will be great trade and pro t I have taken possession ofa large town to which I gave the name quotVilla de Navidadquot and in it l have made forti cations and a fort which will now by this time be entirely completed In it l have left enough men for such a purpose with arms and artillery and provisions for more than a year and a fusta and one a master ofall seacraft to build others and l have established great friendship with the king of that land so much so that he was proud to call me quotbrotherquot and to treat me as such In conclusion to speak only ofwhat has been accomplished on this voyage which was so hasty their Highnesses can see that I will give them as much gold as they may need if their Highnesses will render me very slight assistance presently I will give them spices and cotton as much as their Highnesses shall command and mastic as much as they shall order to be shipped and which up to now has been found only in Greece in the island of Chios and the Seignory sells it for what it pleases and aloe as much as they shall order to be shipped and slaves as many as they shall order and who will be from the idolaters I believe also that l have found rhubarb and cinnamon and I shall find a thousand otherthings ofvalue which the people whom I have left there will have discovered for l have not delayed at any point so far as the wind allowed me to sail except in the town ofNavidad in order to leave it secured and well established and in truth 1 should have done much more ifthe ships had served me as reason demanded This is an account of the facts thus abridged Done in the caravel offthe Canary Islands on the fifteenth day of February in the year one thousand four hundred and ninetythree Question 1 How could Columbus reconcile his views ofthe native peoples with his stated intention oftaking their gold and enslaving them Source The Journal of Christopher Columbus translation by Cecil Jane London Anthony Blond 1968 pp 191 194 196 198200201 4 Bartholom de Las Casas Native Americans When Bartholom de Las Casas 14741566 was twentyeight years old he made his rst trip to the Americas By 1514 he had committed himself to pressuring the Spanish government to improve the treatment ofthe natives to abolish slavery and forced labor and to devote more resources to the spread of Catholicism in the New World He would spend his entire life working towards Week 7 33 these goals God has created all these numberless people to be quite the simplest without malice or duplicity most obedient most faithful to their natural Lords and to the Christians whom they serve the most humble most patient most peaceful and calm without strife nortumults not wrangling nor querulous as free from uproar hate and desire of revenge as any in the world They are likewise the most delicate people weak and of feeble constitution and less than any other can they bear fatigue and they very easily die of whatsoever infinnity so much so that not even the sons ofour Princes and of nobles brought up in royal and gentle life are more delicate than they although there are among them such as are ofthe peasant class They are also a very poor people who ofworldly goods possess little nor wish to possess and they are therefore neither proud nor ambitious nor avaricious They are likewise ofa clean unspoiled and vivacious intellect very capable and receptive to every good doctrine most prompt to accept our Holy Catholic Faith to be endowed with virtuous customs and they have as little dif culty with such things as any people created by God in the world Once they have begun to learn of matters pertaining to faith they are so importunate to know them and in frequenting the sacraments and divine service of the Church that to tell the truth the clergy have need to be endowed of God with the gift of preeminent patience to bear with them and nally I have heard many lay Spaniards frequently say many years ago unable to deny the goodness of those they saw certainly these people were the most blessed of the earth had they only knowledge of God THE SINS OF THE SPANISH INVASION Militant friars like Las Casas and many of his fellow Dominicans pictured the Spanish conquistadors and settlers as vicious and cruel exploiters These tales were based in reality but they were also aimed at convincing a European audience that the excesses of the conquest had to be curbed and the powers of the crown and the clergy expanded in the New World Along with the images of the indigenous peoples as innocents reminiscent of the Garden of Eden they created a powerful picture of European excesses According to many friars these abuses undermined the chances for salvation of all Christians who tolerated such sins against humanity The Christians with their horses and swords and lances began to slaughter and practise strange cruelty among them They penetrated into the country and spared neither children nor the aged nor pregnant women northose in child labour all of whom they ran through the body and lacerated as though they were assaulting so many lambs herded in their sheepfold They made bets as to who would slit a man in two or cut off his head at one blow orthey opened up his bowels They tore the babes from their mothers39 breast by the feet and dashed their heads against the rocks Others they seized by the shoulders and threw into the rivers laughing and joking and when they fell into the water they exclaimed quotboil body of so and soquot They spitted the bodies of other babes together with Week 7 34 their mothers and all who were before them on their swords They made a gallowsjust high enough for the feet to nearly touch the ground and by thirteens in honour and reverence of our Redeemer and the twelve Apostles they put wood undemeath and with re they burned the Indians alive And because all the people who could ee hid among the mountains and climbed the crags to escape from men so deprived of humanity so wicked such wild beasts extenninators and capital enemies ofall the human race the Spaniards taught and trained the ercest boarhounds to tear an Indian to pieces as soon as they saw him so that they more willingly attacked and ate one than if he had been a boar These hounds made great havoc and slaughter Question 1 What are the similarities between Columbus39s view ofthe natives and that of Las Casas What explains the dramatic difference in how they sought to treat the natives Source Bartholomew De Las Casas His Life His Apostolate and His Writings translation by Francis Augustus McNutt New York 1909 pp 314315 5 Sepulveda and de Las Casas Debate on Native Americans Juan Gines de Sepulveda Democrates Secundus 1544 The public debate over the status of the Amerindians reached its peak in 1550 when Charles V king of Spain and Holy Roman Emperor ordered two of the leading contestants Juan Gines de Sepulveda and Bartolome de Las Casas to debate the issue at the University of Valladolid before a panel of lawyers and theologians Sepulveda 14901573 a scholar and theologian born into the Spanish aristocracy argued that the Spanish as a superior people had the right to enslave the inferiorindians The selection from Sepulveda39s work Democrates Secundus or the Treatise on the Just Causes of War against the Indians demonstrates how Sepulveda de ned the Spanish and Amerindian civilizations to make his case It is established then in accordance with the authority of the most eminent thinkers that the dominion of prudent good and humane men overthose of contrary disposition isjust and natural Nothing else justi ed the legitimate empire ofthe Romans over other peoples according to the testimony of St Thomas Aquinas in his work on the role ofthe Prince St Thomas here followed St Augustine God gave the Romans their empire so that with the good legislation that they instituted and the virtue in which they excelled they might change the customs and suppress and correct the vices of many barbarian peoples Therefore you can easily understand if you aee familiar with the character and moral code ofthe two peoples that it is with perfect right that the Spaniards exercise their dominion over those barbarians of the New World and its adjacent islands For in prudence talent and every kind ofvirtue and human sentiment they are as inferior to the Spaniards as children are to adults or women to men orthe cruel and inhumane to the very gentle orthe excessively intemperate to the continent and moderate Week 7 35 And who is ignorant ofthe Spaniards39 other virtues courage humanity justice and religion I refer simply to the princes and to those whose aid and skill they utilize to govern the state to those in short who have received a liberal education As forthe Christian religion I have witnessed many clear proofs of the rm roots it has in the hearts of Spaniards even those dedicated to the military What shall I say ofthe Spanish soldiers39 gentleness and humanitarian sentiments Their only and greatest solicitude and care in the battles after the winning of the victory is to save the greatest possible number of vanquished and free them from the cruelty of their allies Now compare these qualities of prudence skill magnanimity moderation humanity and religion with those of those little men of America in whom one can scarcely find any remnants of humanity They not only lack culture but do not even use or know about writing or preserve records of their historysave for some obscure memory of certain deeds contained in painting They lack written laws and their institutions and customs are barbaric And as for their virtues if you wish to be informed oftheir moderation and mildness what can be expected of men committed to all kinds of passion and nefarious lewdness and ofwhom not a few are given to the eating of human flesh Do not believe that their life before the coming ofthe Spaniards was one of Saturnine peace of the kind that poets sang about On the contrary they made war with each other almost continuously and with such fury that they considered a victory to be empty ifthey could not satisfy their prodigious hunger with the esh oftheir enemies This form of cruelty is especially prodigious among these people remote as they are from the invincible ferocity ofthe Scythians who also ate human bodies But in other respects they are so cowardly and timid that they can scarcely offer any resistance to the hostile presence ofour side and many times thousands and thousands ofthem have been dispersed and have ed like women on being defeated by a small Spanish force scarcely amounting to one hundred So as not to detain you longer in this matter consider the nature ofthose people in one single instance and example that ofthe Mexicans who are regarded as the most prudent and courageous Their king was Montezuma whose empire extended the length and breadth of those regions and who inhabited the city of Mexico Informed of the arrival of Cortes and of his victories and his intention to go to Mexico under pretext of a conference Montezuma sought all possible means to divert him from his plan Failing in this terrorized and lled with fear he received him in the city with about three hundred Spaniards Cortes for his part after taking possession ofthe city held the people39s cowardliness ineptitude and rudeness in such contempt that he not only compelled the king and his principal subjects through terror to receive the yoke and rule ofthe king of Spain but also imprisoned King Montezuma himself Could there be a better or clearer testimony ofthe superiority that some men have over others in talent skill strength of spirit and virtue Is it not proofthat they are slaves by nature For the fat that some ofthem appear to have a talent for certain manual tasks is not argument for their greater human prudence We see that certain insects Week 7 36 such as the bees and the spiders produce works that no human skill can imitate l have made reference to the customs and character of the barbarians What shall I say now of the impious religion and wicked sacri ces of such people who in venerating the devil as if he were God believed that the best sacri ce that they could placate him with was to offer him human hearts Opening up the human breasts they pulled out the hearts and offered them on their heinous altars And believing that they had made a ritual sacri ce with which to placate their gods they themselves ate the flesh of the victims These are crimes that are considered by the philosophers to be among the most ferocious and abominable perversions exceeding all human iniquity And as for the fact that some nations according to report completely lack religion and knowledge of God what else is this than to deny the existence of God and to live like beasts In my judgment this crime is the most serious infamous and unnatural How can we doubt that these peopleso uncivilized so barbaric contaminated with so many impieties and obscenitieshave been justly conquered by such an excellent pious and just king as Ferdinand was and as the Emperor Charles is now and by a nation excellent in every kind of virtue with the best law and best benefit for the barbarians Priorto the arrival ofthe Christians they had the nature customs religion and practice of evil sacri ce as we have explained Now on receiving with our rule our writing laws and morality imbued with the Christian religion having shown themselves to be docile to the missionaries that we have sent them as many have done they are as different from their primitive condition as civilized people are from barbarians or as those with sight from the blind as the inhuman from the meek as the pious from the impious orto put it in a single phrase in effect as men from beasts QUESTIONS 1 What are the basic premises of Sepulveda39s argument that superior peoples may enslave inferior peoples What does he mean by calling the Amerindians quotslaves by naturequot 2 What does Sepulveda identify as the virtues ofthe Spaniards and the de ciencies ofthe Amerindians What proof does he offer for his assertions 3 For Sepulveda what characteristics or practices identify an advanced people Bartolome de Las Casas In Defense of the Indians 1551 Opposing Sepulveda in the debate at the University of Valladolid was Bartolome de Las Casas 14741566 Born to a family of small merchants Las Casas spent thirteen years in the Spanish colony of Hispanica In 1514 however he renounced all his property rights in America and returned to Spain where he eventually took religious orders and passionately lobbied the Spanish government to provide greater protections to the Amerindians The selection that follows is part of Las Casas39s response to Sepulveda at the Valladolid debate in which Las Casas working within a European framework of thought challenges both Sepulveda39s knowledge of the Amerindians and his philosophical principals The distinction the Philosopher Aristotle makes between the two kinds of Week 7 37 barbarian is evident For those he deals with in the first book ofthe Politics are barbarians without quali cation in the proper and strict sense ofthe word that is dull witted and lacking in the reasoning powers necessary for self government They are without laws without king etc For this reason they are by nature un tted for rule However he admits and proves that the barbarians he deals with in the third book ofthe same work have a lawful just and natural government Even though they lack the art and use of writing they are not wanting in the capacity and skill to rule and govern themselves both publicly and privately Thus they have kingdoms communities and cities that they govern wisely according to their laws and customs This is made clear by the Philosopher and Augustine Now if we shall have shown that among our Indians of the western and southern shores granting that we call them barbarians and that they are barbarians there are important kingdoms large numbers of people who live settled lives in a society great cities kings judges and laws persons who engage in commerce buying selling lending and the other contracts ofthe law of nations will it not stand proved that the Reverend Doctor Sepulveda has spoken wrongly and viciously against peoples like these either out of malice or ignorance of Aristotle39s teaching and therefore has falsely and perhaps irreparany slandered them before the entire world From the fact that the Indians are barbarians it does not necessarily follow that they are incapable of government and have to be ruled by others except to be taught about the Catholic faith and to be admitted to the holy sacraments They are not ignorant inhuman or bestial Rather long before they had heard the word Spaniard they had properly organized states wisely ordered by excellent laws religion and custom They cultivated friendship and bound together in common fellowship lived in populous cities in which they wisely administered the affairs of both peace and war justly and equitably truly governed by laws that at very many points surpass ours and could have won the admiration of the sages of Athens I would like to hear Sepulveda in his cleverness answerthis question Does he think that the war ofthe Romans against the Spanish was justified in order to free them from barbarism And this question also Did the Spanish wage an unjust war when they vigorously defended themselves against them Next I call the Spaniards who plunder that unhappy people torturers Do you think that the Romans once they had subjugated the wild and barbaric peoples of Spain could with secure right divide all ofyou among themselves handing over so many head of both males and females as allotments to individuals And do you then conclude that the Romans could have stripped your rulers oftheir authority and consigned all of you after you had been deprived of your liberty to wretched labors especially in searching for gold and silver lodes and mining and refining the metals And ifthe Romans finally did that as is evident from Diodorus would you notjudge that you also have the right to defend your freedom indeed your very life by war Week 7 38 Sepulveda would you have permitted Saint James to evangelize your own people of Cordoba in that way For God39s sake and man39s faith in him is this the way to impose the yoke of Christ on Christian men Is this the way to remove wild barbarism from the minds of barbarians Is it not rather to act like thieves cutthroats and cruel punderers and to drive the gentlest of people headlong into despair The Indian race is not that barbaric nor are they dull witted or stupid but they are easy to teach and very talented in learning all the liberal arts and very ready to accept honor and observe the Christian religion and correct their sins as experience has taught once priests have introduced them to the sacred mysteries and taught them the word of God They have been endowed with excellent conduct and before the coming of the Spaniards as we have said they had political states that were well founded on bene cial laws Furthermore they are so skilled in every mechanical art that with every right they should be set ahead of all the nations of the known world on this score so very beautiful in their skill and artistry are the things this people produces in the grace of its architecture its painting and its needlework But Sepulveda despises these mechanical arts as ifthese things do not re ect inventiveness ingenuity industry and right reason For a mechanical art is an operative habit of the intellect that is usually de ned as quotthe right way to make things directing the acts ofthe reason through which the artisan proceeds in orderly fashion easily and unerringly in the very act ofreason39 So these men are not stupid Reverend Doctor Their skillfully fashioned works of superior re nement awaken the admiration of all nations because works proclaim a man39s talent In the liberal arts that they have been taught up to now such as grammar and logic they are remarkably adept With every kind of music they charm the ears oftheir audience with wonderful sweetness They write skillfully and quite elegantly so that most often we are at a loss to know whether the characters are handwritten or printed l have seen this with my eyes felt with my hands and heard with my own ears while living a great many years among those peoples Now if Sepulveda had wanted as a serious man should to know the full truth before he sat down to write with his mind corrupted by the lies of tyrants he should have consulted the honest religious who have lived among those peoples for many years and know their endowments of character and industry as well as the progress they have made in religion and morality As to the terrible crime of human sacrifice which you exaggerate see what Bishop Giovio adds quotThe rulers ofthe Mexicans have a right to sacrifice living men to their gods provided they have been condemned for a crimequot From this it is clear that the basis for Sepulveda39s teaching that these people are uncivilized and ignorant is worse than false Yet even if we were to grant that this race has no keenness of mind or artistic ability certainly they are not in consequence obliged to submit themsehes to those who are more intelligent and to adopt their ways so that ifthey refuse they may be subdued by having war waged against them and be enslaved as happenstoday For men are obliged by the natural law to do many things they cannot be forced to do against


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