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solemn abjuration of idolatry was exacted from the
subjects, or at least from the clergy, of the eastern
empire.” -
The patient East abjured, with reluctance, her
sacred images; they were fondly cherished, and vi-
gorously defended, by the independent zeal of the
Italians. In ecclesiastical rank and jurisdiction, the
patriarch of Constantinople and the pope of Rome
were nearly equal. But the Greek prelate was a do-
mestic slave under the eye of his master, at whose nod
he alternately passed from the convent to the throne,
and from the throne to the convent. A distant and
dangerous station, amidst the barbarians of the West,
excited the spirit and freedom of the Latin bishops.
Their popular election endeared them to the Romans:
the public and private indigence was relieved by their
ample revenue; and the weakness or neglect of the
emperors compelled them to consult, both in peace
and war, the temporal safety of the city. In the school
of adversity the priest insensibly imbibed the virtues
and the ambition of a prince; the same character
was assumed, the same policy was adopted, by the
Italian, the Greek, or the Syrian, who ascended the
chair of St. Peter; and, after the loss of her legions
and provinces, the genius and fortune of the popes
again restored the supremacy of Rome. It is agreed,
that in the eighth century, their dominion was founded
on rebellion, and that the rebellion was produced, and
justified, by the heresy of the Iconoclasts; but the
conduct of the second and third Gregory, in this me-
morable contest, is variously interpreted by the wishes
of their friends and enemies. The Byzantine writers
unanimously declare, that, after a fruitless admoni-
tion, they pronounced the separation of the East and
7 IIgoyegoo, yog tårobe zarz razav tázézizy raw öro orns zugos avrov,
ravros toroyezoba zai ouvuya, rou affarnazi ray reorzvnow roy vertov saxovay

(Damascen. Op. tom. i. p. 625). This oath and subscription I do not remember to have seen in any modern compilation,

West, and deprived the sacrilegious tyrant of the re- CHAP.

venue and sovereignty of Italy. Their excommunication is still more clearly expressed by the Greeks, who beheld the accomplishment of the papaltriumphs; and as they are more strongly attached to their religion than to their country, they praise, instead of blaming, the zeal and orthodoxy of these apostolical men.” The modern champions of Rome are eager to accept the praise and the precedent: this great and glorious example of the deposition of royal heretics is celebrated by the cardinals Baronius and Bellarmine;" and if they are asked, why the same thunders were not hurled against the Neros and Julians of antiquity? they reply, that the weakness of the primitive church was the sole cause of her patient loyalty." On this occasion, the effects of love and hatred are the same; and the zealous Protestants, who seek to kindle the indignation, and to alarm the fears, of princes and magistrates, expatiate on the insolence and treason of the two Gregories against their lawful sovereign." They are defended only by the moderate Catholics, for the most part, of the Gallican church," who re

* Kazi rmy ‘Pauny avy rary, Iraxug rns 32013 suzo avrov worsovnas, say Theophanes, (Chronograph. p. 343). For this Gregory is styled by Cedrenus ayne arorroxixe: (p. 450). Zonaras specifies the thunder, avaénwari ovoaizo (tom. ii. 1. xv. p. 104, 105). It may be observed, that the Greeks are apt to confound the times and actions of two Gregories. * See Baronius, Annal. Eccles. A. D. 730, N° 4, 5: dignum exemplum ! Bellarmin. de Romano Pontifice, 1. v. c. 8: mulctavit eum parte imperii. Sigonius, de Regno Italiae, l. iii. Opera, tom. ii. p. 169. Yet such is the change of Italy, that Sigonius is corrected by the editor of Milan, Phillipus Argelatus, a Bolognese, and subject of the pope. * Quod si Christiani olim non deposuerunt Neronem aut Julianum, id fuit quia deerant vires temporales Christianis (honest Bellarmine, de Rom. Pont. 1. v. c. 7). Cardinal Perron adds a distinction more honourable to the first Christians, but not more satisfactory to modern princes—the treason of heretics and apostates, who break their oath, belie their coin, and renounce their allegiance to Christ and his vicar (Perroniana, p. 89). • Take, as a specimen, the cautious Basnage (Hist. de l'Eglise, p. 1350, 1351), and the vehement Spanheim (Hist. Imaginum), who, with a hundred more, tread in the footsteps of the centuriators of Magdeburgh. "See Launoy (Opera, tom. v. pars ii. epist. vii. 7. p. 456–474), Natalis Alexander (Hist. Nov. Testamenti, secul, viii. dissert. i. p. 92–96), Pagi (Cri

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CHAP.
XLIX.

Epistles of
Gregory II.
to the
Emperor,
A. D. 727.

spect the saint, without approving the sin. These
common advocates of the crown and the mitre cir-
cumscribe the truth of facts by the rule of equity,
scripture, and tradition; and appeal to the evidence
of the Latins," and the lives' and epistles of the popes
themselves.
Two original epistles, from Gregory the second to
the emperor Leo, are still extant; * and if they can-
not be praised as the most perfect models of elo-
quence and logic, they exhibit the portrait, or at least
the mask, of the founder of the papal monarchy:
“During ten pure and fortunate years,” says Gre-
gory to the emperor, “we have tasted the annual
comfort of your royal letters, subscribed in purple
ink, with your own hand, the sacred pledges of your
attachment to the orthodox creed of our fathers.
How deplorable is the change! how tremendous the
scandal! You now accuse the Catholics of idolatry;

and, by the accusation, you betray your own impiety and ignorance. To this ignorance we are compelled to adapt the grossness of our style and arguments: the first elements of holy letters are sufficient for your confusion; and were you to enter a grammarschool, and avow yourself the enemy of our worship, the simple and pious children would be provoked to cast their horn-books at your head.” After this decent salutation, the pope attempts the usual distinction between the idols of antiquity and the Christian images. The former were the fanciful representations of phantoms or daemons, at a time when the true God had not manifested his person in any visible likeness. The latter are the genuine forms of Christ, his mother, and his saints, who had approved, by a crowd of miracles, the innocence and merit of this relative worship. He must indeed have trusted to the ignorance of Leo, since he could assert the perpetual use of images, from the apostolic age, and their venerable presence in the six synods of the Catholic church. A more specious argument is drawn from present possession and recent practice; the harmony of the Christian world supersedes the demand of a general council; and Gregory frankly confesses, that such assemblies can only be useful under the reign of an orthodox prince. To the impudent and inhuman Leo, more guilty than an heretic, he recommends peace, silence, and implicit obedience to his spiritual guides of Constantinople and Rome. The limits of civil and ecclesiastical powers are defined by the pontiff. To the former he appropriates the body; to the latter, the soul: the sword of justice is in the hands of the

tica, tom. iii. p. 215, 216), and Giannone (Istoria Civile di Napoli, tom. i. p. 317 –320), a disciple of the Gallican school. In the field of controversy I always pity the moderate party, who stand on the open middle ground exposed to the fire of both sides. • They appealed to Paul Warnefrid, or Diaconus (de Gestis Langobard. 1. vi. c. 49. p. 506, 507. in Script. Ital. Muratori, tom. i. pars i.), and the nominal Anastasius (de Vit. Pont. in Muratori, tom. iii. pars i. Gregorius II. p. 154. Gregorius III. p. 158. Zacharias, p. 161. Stephanus III. p. 165. Paulus, p. 172. Stephanus IV. p. 174. Hadrianus, p. 179. Leo III. p. 195). Yet I may remark, that the true Anastasius (Hist. Eccles. p. 134. edit. Reg.) and the Historia Miscella (l. xxi. p. 151. in tom. i. Script. Ital.), both of the ixth century, translate and approve the Greek text of Theophanes. * With some minute difference, the most learned critics, Lucas Holstenius, Schelestrate, Ciampini, Bianchini, Muratori (Prolegomena ad tom. iii. pars i.), are agreed that the Liber Pontificalis was composed and continued by the apostolical librarians and notaries of the viiith and ixth centuries; and that the last and smallest part is the work of Anastasius, whose name it bears. The style is barbarous, the narrative partial, the details are trifling—yet it must be read as a curious and authentic record of the times. The epistles of the popes are dispersed in the volumes of Councils. s The two epistles of Gregory II. have been preserved in the Acts of the Nicene Council (tom. viii. p. 651–674). They are without a date, which is variously fixed, by Baronius in the year 726, by Muratori (Annali d'Italia, tom. vi. p. 120) in 729, and by Pagi in 730. Such is the force of prejudice, that some papists have praised the good sense and moderation of these letters.

magistrate: the more formidable weapon of excom

munication is intrusted to the clergy; and in the exercise of their divine commission, a zealous son will not spare his offending father: the successor of St. Peter may lawfully chastise the kings of the earth.

“You assault us, O tyrant! with a carnal and mili

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CHAP. tary hand: unarmed and naked, we can only implore * the Christ, the prince of the heavenly host, that he

will send unto you a devil, for the destruction of your body and the salvation of your soul. You declare, with foolish arrogance, I will despatch my orders to Rome; I will break in pieces the image of St. Peter; and Gregory, like his predecessor Martin, shall be transported in chains, and in exile, to the foot of the imperial throne. Would to God, that I might be permitted to tread in the footsteps of the holy Martin; but may the fate of Constans serve as a warning to the persecutors of the church. After his just condemnation by the bishops of Sicily, the tyrant was cut off, in the fulness of his sins, by a domestic servant: the saint is still adored by the nations of Scythia, among whom he ended his banishment and his life. But it is our duty to live for the edification and support of the faithful people; nor are we reduced to risk our safety on the event of a combat. Incapable as you are of defending your Roman subjects, the maritime situation of the city may perhaps expose it to your depredation; but we can remove to the distance of four-and-twenty stadia," to the first fortress of the Lombards, and then you may pursue the winds. Are you ignorant that the popes are the bond of union, the mediators of peace, between the East and West? The eyes of the nations are fixed on our humility; and they revere, as a God upon earth, the apostle St. Peter, whose image you threaten to destroy." The remote and interior kingdoms of the

h Elzori-rsarzez orra?iz ãorozogno's 3 A6%usésus “Poon; sus orny Žogov 'rn; Kozarzvia;, xz àrays 3iogov 'rous awsuovo (Epist. i. p. 664). This proximity of the Lombards is hard of digestion. Camillo Pellegrini (Dissert. iv. de Ducati Beneventi, in the Script. Ital. tom. v. p. 172, 173) forcibly reckons the xxivth stadia, not from Rome, but from the limits of the Roman duchy, to the first fortress, perhaps Sora, of the Lombards. I rather believe that Gregory, with the pedantry of the age, employs stadia for miles, without much inquiry into the genuine measure.

‘‘O, a rara, gariatiz, rn, 8vasos & 6soy sorytoy $2300aa

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