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tyranny, and for the worst of all abuses, he began by reforming abuses, and vindicating legal rights.
Throughout Christendom the church had been so liberally endowed, that its wealth at once endangered and corrupted it. Monasteries and Cathedrals were frequently despoiled of their lands. Lanfranc had successfully resisted an usurpation of this kind; aud Hildebrand boldly began by threatening the King of France with ecclesiastical censures, if such injustice were not redressed in that kingdom. Sees were kept vacant, that the Kings might enjoy their revenues; they were disposed of by purchase so commonly, that simony became the characteristic sin of the age : in all such cases they passed into unworthy hands; and even when they were not sold, equal, or greater evil resulted, if they were given, for favour or consanguinity, to subjects who disgraced the profession by their ignorance and their habits of life. To prevent such abuses, Hildebrand claimed the right of investiture, which Princes had hitherto exercised as their undisputed prerogative. In the first of these measures he was clearly justified. The second was a questionable point; yet, on the whole, it may appear that the power might best be intrusted to the spiritual head of Christendom. But when he proceeded to anathematize all who should receive investiture from lay-hands, and all lay-men who should confer it, that measure manifested an assumption of temporal authority, which, if it were once established, must render all Sovereigns dependent upon the Pope. And this conclusion, the intrepid Hildebrand loudly proclaimed. His language was, that if Kings presumed to disobey the edicts of the apostolic See, they were cut off from participating in the body and blood of Christ, and forfeited their dignities. For if that See had power to determine and judge in things celestial and spiritual, how«much more in things earthly and secular! The Church, he affirmed, had power to give or take away all empires, kingdoms, duchies, principalities, marquisates, counties, and possessions of all men whatsoever.
Had the authority which the Pope thus arrogated appeared as monstrous then as it does now, the claim could not have been advanced with any likelihood of establishing it. But what is now understood by constitutional rights, had no existence in those
days. A power unlimited by any laws, was everywhere vested in the Sovereigns, and the Pontiff only arrogated over them, by a pretended right divine, that authority which they exercised ofer others originally by right of the sword. Were it, indeed, as possible to realize the fair ideal of a Christian Pope, as of a patriot King, such authority might more beneficially be trusted to a spiritual than to a secular autocrat. But the system of the Papal Church was anything rather than Christianity; and the papal court, at the time when it advanced its loftiest pretensions, was the most scandalous in Christendom. The usurpation was resisted for awhile as boldly as it was attempted. Even among the clergy themselves, a strong party was found who, for motives worthy and unworthy, sided with the Emperor in the struggle ; many for the sake of retaining the preferment which they had obtained by simoniacal means, the great body because the determination of compelling them to celibacy was now rigorously pursued. On the other hand, Hildebrand found partisans in the Empire. The dreadful war between the Guelphs and Ghibellines, by which Germany and Italy were so long convulsed, was thus begun. A rival Pope was set up on one side, a rival Emperor on the other : both parties proceeded with equal violence and with alternate success. But the papal party acted upon a matured system, which a succession of men, raised for their abilities and devoted to the cause, steadily carried on : there was neither weakness nor vacillation in their councils, and they profited by every opportunity which feeble or rash princes afforded them.
The struggle between the spiritual and temporal authorities did not extend to England during the life of William the Conqueror : Hildebrand was wholly occupied in his contest with the Emperor, and Lanfranc best promoted the interests of the church, by avoiding all disputes with a King of his decided temper. The same conciliatory prudence enabled him to live upon fair terms with William Rufus, and even to exercise a controlling influence over his irregular mind. But upon Lanfranc's death, the Red King restrained himself no longer : to supply the expenditure of his excesses, as Abbacies and Prelacies fell, he kept them vacant, and by a system like that of rack-rent, drew from the helpless tenants all that it was possible to extort. The ample re
venues of Canterbury were thus perverted for nearly five years, nor would the repeated entreaties of the clergy then have prevailed upon him to nominate a primate, if a dangerous illness had not awakened in him some fear of what might follow after death. Under that fear he appointed Anselm, partly perhaps in deference to what had been Lanfranc's wish, and partly as thinking him a person who would not offer any determined opposition to his will. Anselm, like his predecessor, would have refused the undesirable promotion ; " the Church of England,” he said,
was a plough which ought to be drawn by two oxen of equal strength; would they then yoke him to it, an old feeble sheep, with a wild bull ?” He characterized himself untruly ; for whatever his individual disposition might have been, his conduct was in full conformity with the aspiring views of his church.
There were at this time two Popes, each excommunicating the other with all his adherents. England had not yet made its choice between them; but Anselm, in defiance or in ignorance of the late king's law, had acknowledged Hildebrand's successor, and now demanded leave to go and receive the pall from him at Rome. Rufus, already exasperated by the proper firmness, with which the Archbishop had called upon him to fill up the vacant benefices, took advantage of this, and accused him before the Great Council of having broken his fealty and disobeyed the laws. The case was plain, and the Bishops declared that unless he retracted his submission to Pope Urban, they would not obey him as their Primate. Obedience was not to be obtained from Anselm, and the Bishops, when Rufus called upon them to depose him, plied, that it was beyond their power. The proceedings, therefore, were suspended; and as the King soon afterwards thought proper to recognise the same Pope, that cause of dispute was removed, and the pall was sent to Anselm. But the reconciliation was of short continuance. The manner in which Rufus continued to wrong the church, called for interference on the Primate's part, and this again provoked the irascible King; and when Anselm, after having been twice refused, persisted in requesting leave to visit Rome, he was told, that if he went, his possessions should be sequestered, and he should never be allowed to return.
To Rome, however, he went, and was received with all the honours due to a Confessor in the Church's cause.
lodged him in his own palace, and ordered that the English who came to that city should kiss his toe. He wrote also to William, commanding him to restore the Archbishop's property; but the resolute King had no sooner been informed that the bearer of this letter was one of Anselm's servants, than he swore that he would pull out his eyes if he did not immediately leave England. The matter was laid before the Council of Bari, at that time assembled; and the Pope represented to them the irreligious life of the Tyrant, as he styled him, according to the complaints against him which had repeatedly been preferred ; exhortations and menaces, he said, had often been tried, but with what effect might be seen in the expulsion of a man like Anselm ; what then remained to be done? The Council replied that he should be smitten with an anathema by the sword of St. Peter; and the Pope would instantly have fulminated the sentence, if Anselm had not on his knees interposed, and prevailed upon him yet a little longer to refrain.
But though in this instance Anselm moderated the proceedings of the Council, he entered heartily into the feelings of that assembly when the question of investiture was brought forward ; and excommunication was denounced by acclamation against all who should do homage to a layman for ecclesiastical honours. It was too execrable, they said, that hands which could create' the Creator, and offer him to the Father as a redeeming sacrifice, should become the servants of those which were continually polluted with impure contacts, with rapine, and with blood. Rufus, who like his father was a man of strong intellect and dauntless resolution, cared little for this while it excited no opposition to him at home. He perceived the impolicy of quarrelling with a power, which was not to be met in the field and opposed with arms: at the same time he was determined not to yield to it by inviting Anselm back. A middle course suited the views of one who cared so little for the future; and he negotiated a sort of suspension with the Pope, which left the matter as it stood during the remainder of his reign.
Rufus had succeeded to the English throne, in exclusion of an elder brother, upon the ground of his father's appointment. Henry, who obtained possession of it now, had no such plea ;
* Eadmer, Acta Sanctorum, Apr. t. ii. p. 919,
he found it expedient, therefore, to conciliate the clergy as well as the people. And in the charter of liberties with which he began his reign, he promised neither to sell, let, or retain benefices, and to restore its old immunities to the Church. The Primate was of course invited back, and was received with every mark of respect and honour. But when he was required to do homage for the 'possessions of his see, he declared that the late canons rendered this impossible, and that if the King persisted in demanding it, he must again quit the kingdom. Upon this, Henry, who at that time could ill dispense with the services of so important a personage, proposed that the matter should be referred to the Pope: Anselm unwillingly consented to a measure which he well knew could only create delay; but in Henry's situation delay was of great moment. . . . The messengers returned with an answer, in which the Pope insisted on his point, and supported it by the strangest distortion of Scripture: “I am the door; by me if any man enter in he shall be saved." “He that entereth not by the door into the sheep-fold, but climbeth up some other
the same is a thief and a robber. ” “ If Kings,” said the Pope, “take upon themselves to be the door of the Church, whosoever enter by them become thieves and robbers, not shepherds. Palaces belong to the Emperor, Churches to the Priest ; and it is written,' Render unto Cæsar the things that are Cæsar's, and to God the things that are God's.' How shameful is it for the Mother to be polluted in adultery by her sons ! If therefore, O King, thou art a son of the Church, as every Catholic Christian is, allow thy Mother a lawful marriage, that the Church may be wedded to a legitimate husband, not by man but by Christ. . . . It is monstrous for a son to beget his father, a man to create his God: and that Priests are called Gods, as being the Vicars of Christ, is mani. fest in Scripture.”
Such arguments were more likely to incense than satisfy a prince of Henry Beauclerc's understanding. He commanded Anselm either to do homage or leave the kingdom, and Anselm with equal firmness replied that he would do neither. A second reference to Rome ensued: two monks were deputed thither by the Primate, three Bishops by the King. The Pope upon this occasion acted with consummate duplicity, for which the motive