- Robinson’s Ecclcesiastical Researches , chapter 10: p. 302, 303.
- WILLIAM JONES, an eminent Baptist, in his “History of the Waldenses,” has so mutilated and perverted the plainest documents of those pious Witnesses of the truth, in order to make them speak the language of anti-pedobaptist, as to place his character as an honest historian in a most undesirable position.
- Jone’s History of the Waldenses , Vol. II. p. 87.
- Leger , part I. p. 174.
- See BLAIR’ S Waldenses , I. 506.
See also Scott’s continuation of Milner’s Ecclesiastical History, I. 139, and all the Creeds and Confessions of the Waldenses. An almost countless number of Episcopal writers confess the same thing.
1 We add Bernard’s own Latin, extracted from his Sermo LXV. super Cantic.: — “Si fidem interroges, nihil Christianius; si conversationem, nihil irreprehensibilius; et quae loquitur factis probat. Jam quod ad vitam et mores spectat, neminem concutit, neminem circumvenit, neminem supergreditur. Pallent insuper ore, jejuniis; panem non comedit otiosus; operatur manibus, unde vitam sustenatt. Ubi jam vulpes? Mulieres relictis viris, et item viri dismissis uxoribus, ad istos se conferunt. Clerici et sacerdotes: populis ecclesiisque relictis, intonsi et barbati; apud eos, inter textores et textrices, plerumque inventi sunt.” It is extraordinary that a canonized and worshipped Saint should have emitted such edifying contradictions. 2 This is precisely the sentiment also of the Roman Orator — “ Movemur, wrote Tully, nescio quo pacto, locis ipsis, in quibus eorum, quos diligimus aut adrniramur, adsunt vestigia. Me quidem ipsa illae nostrae Athenae non tam operibus magnificis, exquisitisque antiquorum artibus delectant, quam recordations summorum virorum, ubi quisque habitare, ubi sedere, ubi disputare solitus sit; studioseque eorum etiam sepulchra contemplor.” — Cicero de Legib., Lib. II. Cap. 2. 3 “Les Vaudois ont fait de leur propre mouvement, une collecte entre eux en faveur des Hollandois, qui ont souffert par les dernieres inondations. Cette collecte a rapporte plus de 3000 F, eta ete envoyee en Hollande, ou elle a excite la plus vive reconnoissance. Il est effectivement touchant de voir la liste de souscription des diverses communes. Aucun individu ne s’en est exclu, chacun a donne selon ses facultes; meme les enfans y ont contribue leurs sous d’epargne. La bienfaisance est toujours une des plus belies qualitas et diggnes d’eloge.
L’homme riche ne sauroit faire un meilleur usage de son bien; mais elle est sublime, quand elle est exercec par celui, qui partage son dernicr morceau de pain, pour soulager ses freres malheureux.” 4 “Vous n’avez qu’un Dieu et qu’un prince a servir. Servez Dieu ct votre prince en toute conscience. D’autres ont ete la cause de vos malheurs; maie si vous faites votre devoir je ferais le mien, et aussi long tems que j’aurai un morceau de pain, vous en aurez votre part.” 5 “Je sais que je suis aime des Vaudois. J’ai fait la guerre dansces vallees.
J’ai demeure quelque tems au milieu d’eux avec plaisir. Leur attachement m’etoit connu. Maintenant je suis charme d’apprendre par vous, que dans ces dernieres circonstances, ils n’ayent point dementi leur caractere.” Nevertheless, against those, most exemplary and inoffensive Christians, the present king of Sardinia, at the instigatton of the Jesuits, has lately commenced another deadly persecution, which already has again been counteracted by the interposition of their brethren of the various Reformed Churches in Europe.
BOOK 1, CHAPTER - 1
The word “Host” is derived from the Latin “Hostia,” a sacrifice for a military naval victory. The term “Pix” is used for a box in which also is kept the idol crucifix! 2 Guido de Perpignan, Flower of Chronicles. 3 Sea of Histories, 203. Claudius Rubis, History of the city of Lyons, p. 269. 4 Louis Camerarius; History of the Orthodox Brethren of Bohemia p. 7.
Guido de Perpignan, Flower of Chronicles. 5 Catalogue of the Witnesses of the Truth, page 535. — Simon de Voion. — Names of Doctors of the Church. 6 Claudius Rubis, History, page 269. — Albert de Capitaneis, Original of the Vaudois.
CHAPTER - 2
From the inadvertency of divers Protestant writers, and even of Perrin, as well as from the malice of the Romanists and their Inquisitors, the churches of Milan and the subalpine Waldenses are derived from Peter Waldo, as if it were he that first founded them. The contrary of late has most clearly been demonstrated by Allix, in his History of the Ancient Churches of Piedmont, and also in his History of the Albigenses. Allix proves, that the Waldenses separated themselves from the Papacy long before Waldo of Lyons; and that the name of Waldenses or Vandois was given them from the place of their abode, which the inhabitants called “Les valles de Lucerne et Angrogne,” the valleys of Lucerne and Angrogne; whence came the Latin name Vallenses, which afterwards was changed to Valdenses, when the fallacious design was laid to make the world believe that Waldo was their first founder. Excepting this mistake; John Paul Perrin of Lyons, has given a true and most excellent history of the Waldensian Churches. As the title of Valleuses, the ancient name of the Vaudois, was taken from the place of their habitation, and not from the name of Waldo; so his disciples and descendants were dispersed into other places, and not among the valleys of the Alps. Allix confesses indeed, that some of Waldo’s disciples probably joined themselves with the churches in the valleys of Piedmont, being constrained to it by the persecutions which dispersed them far and near. But Waldo was not the founder of the Churches of the Valleys, which were in existence long before him. In truth, it does not appear that he ever had any communication with them. The authors who speak of him narrate, that he retired from Lyons into Picardy and Flanders. He died before the year 1179, as appears from the account of Gulielmus Mappus. The majority of his disciples spread themselves among the Albigenses, who were in being long before Waldo; as may be seen in the sixty-fourth sermon of Bernard upon the Canticles. Those Waldenses who removed into Italy did not give their name to the Churches in that country, who prior to that time had been called Waldenses from the place of their abode. It was only the malice of their enemies, and the desire to blot out the memorial of their antiquity, which made their adversaries impute their origin to so late a period, and to Peter Waldo. — Bray. 2 Vignier, Historiale Bibliotheque, Part III., page 130. Dubravius, History of Bohemia, book 14. 3 Sea of Histories. 4 Matthew Paris, History of King Henry III. of England, in the year 1223.
CHAPTER - 3
This imposture is found in Albertus de Capitancis, on the original of the Vaudois. — Reinerius de forma Hereticandi Hereticos, Folio 36. — Accusation of the priests of Bohemia to King Ladislaus against the Vaudois. 2 Reinerius de forma Hereticandi Hereticos, Folio 21, 29, Article 32; 36; — Reinerius in Summa, Folio 12 — Claudius Rubis, History of Lyons, Book III, p. 969 — Bernard on the Canticles, Homily 66. — Albert de Capitaneis, Original of the Vaudois, Folio 2, 4.
CHAPTER - 4
Remedy against the Sin of Luxury, chap. 21. — Waldensian book on the Virtues; Chapter on Marriage. 2 Louis XII. condemned the usurpers of the goods of the Waldenses, to a restitution, — Treatise of Monecbe. 3 Spiritual Almanac: Folio 45. 4 This; appeareth by the process formed by the said Albert against the Waldenses of the Alps. 5 Spiritual Almanac: Exposition of the third Commandment. 6 Causes of separation from the Church of Rome, p. 233. 7 Chronicle of France, 1513. — Examination of the Council of Trent, Lib. i., chap. 5. 8 La Pouille is part of Naples, whose inhabitants are held to be very dangerous. Matthew Paris, History of England. — Examination of the Council of Trent, Book i, chap. 5. 9 Causes of separation from the Church of Rome, p. 195. 10 Light of the Treasure of Faith. 11 Complaint made to Ladislaus, King of Hungary and Bohemia. 12 Causes of separation from the Church of Rome, p. 41. 13 Treasure of Faith, Article 2. 14 Reinerius, Liber de forma Heretic., Article 38. 15 Process against the Waldcnscs of Dauphine, by Albert de Capitancis: and other Monks Inquisitors. 16 Tribulations, p. 274. 17 Sorcery, which includes pretended “charms and spells,” both for benefit and injury, is still practiced in every country where Popery is known.
It is not now displayed so openly in the countries where the light of the Reformation has penetrated — but the “Blessed Water,” the “Consecrated Crucifix,” the “Blessed Image,” the “Consecrated Coffinearth,” the “Holy Beads,” the “Blessed Rock,” and the piece of the “Holy Cross,” with numerous other devices, all are part of those “enchantments, conjurations, charms, and spells,” which the Waldenses denounced several hundred years ago as the “snare of the old adversary the Devil.” But those pretended “remedies to persons or beasts” are common even now among the Papists in every Protestant country, as well as in the ten kingdoms of the ancient Roman empire. 18 Bodin, Demon, Book 4, chapter vi., p. 911. 19 John Uvier, Book of Devils. Book iv., chapter 3, Folio 303. — Platina, Life of Sylvester II., Folio 218. — John le Maim, History of the Schisms of the Church, who also wrote this declaration — “All the Popes Acre spoken of were ‘magicians, necromancers, and sorcerers.’” 20 Lavater, Book of the Apparition of Devils, chapter xiii., section 7. This history of the monkish imposture at Berne is a curious piece, which deserves to be reprinted. It will be found in the Appendix, as detailed by Burnet, in his “Letter from Zurich.”
CHAPTER - 5
Jacob Riberia, Collections of the city of Thoulouse. — Chassagnon, History of the Albigenses, p, 97. 2 Reinerius, de forma Heretic., Folio 98. 3 Claudius Seissel, Treatise against the Waldenses. 4 Baronius, Ecclesiastes Annal., Tom. xii, anno 1170. Page 835. 5 Reinerius, de forma Heretic., Folio 97. 6 Jacob Riberia, Collections of the city of Thoulouse. 7 Vesembecius, Oration concerning the Waldenses. 8 Bernard de Girard, History of France, book xx. 9 Vesembecius, Oration respecting the Waldenses. 10 Memorials of Rostain, archbishop of Ambrun. The above testimony, by the official of Orleans, to the faith and manners of the poor Christians of Fraissiniere, is very important. Thuanus also describes both their poverty and piety, on the account of the former of which indeed, they might well enough be said to live a life little differing from that of beasts; which is a most glorious testimony of their religion by one of the contrary faith. Therefore, as well to gratify those who can relish the fineness of description, as to contribute to the just esteem which all Protestants ought to have of those most miserably oppressed, but otherwise most happy people, I subjoin the account of the Waldenses by Thuanus, in his own words: — “Harum omnium maxime horrida, et agrestis FRAXINEA, quippe cujus sterile et incultum solum, ob idque egentissimi sunt accolae. his vestitus ex pellibus ovium, quae desiccatas et salitas cum lana succida vifi pariter ac foeminae induunt, et anterioribus pedibus fibulae vicem ad collum, posterioribus infra ventrem subnectunt, exertis brachiis, eo tantum diverso foeminarum a viris amictu, quod hi viii subligari inferioia, foeminae stola quae paulo infra genua, neque ultra protenditur, tegunt, Praeterea pro caliendro involucrum linteum habent; alioqui nullus lintei neque in vestitu, neque in lectis apud eos usus.
Nam vestiti fete somnium capiunt, stramine subjecto et pellibus ovillis tecti. Septem vicis omnino habitant, et domos e silicibus constructas habent tecto plano, et luto congesto, quod imbribus corruptum, aut solutum cylindro rursus aequatum concinnant. In ils pronfiscue et jumenta stabulantur; saepe tamen interjecta, speluncis praeterea duabus ad fortuita sepositis, in quarum altera greges ac jumenta abscondunt, cum periculum ab incursionibus imminet, in alteram ipsi se recipiunt. In iis fornices fontibus manacles stillicidio congellato innumeras animallum, et aliarum rerum figuras incredibili ludentis naturae artificio exprimunt, et lumine ab antri ostio accepto lacubus binis inibi e specu scaturientibus, et in se absorptis repraesentatae jucunditatem simul et stuporem spectanti-bus afferunt. Lacte et ferina vivunt, pecuariam exercentes; sclopetarii optimi, et certis ictibus dorcadas ibices et ursos figere peritissimi, quorum carnibus fete impuris vescuntur, ex earum usu et squalore tanta graveolentia contracta, ut e longinquo nares feriant, vixque ab advenis ferri possint. “His opibus beati aequali omnium paupertare nullos mendicos habent, et seipsis contenti raras amicitias nullas cum allis adfinitates colunt. In tanta tenuitate imo et paedore degentibus, quod et horrida ac deformi specie prae se ferunt, est quod mireris, quod non incultis omnino moribus sunt; nam nemo apud cos nescit literas, et scribere commode sciunt. Linguam Gallicam callent, quatenusBIBLIA INTELLIGERE et\parPSALMOS CANERE POSSINT. Nec quemquam temere inter eos puerum reperias, qui interrogatus fidel, quam profitentur, non expedite memoriter rationem reddat, quod illis cumCAETERIS CONVALLENSIBUS commune est. Tributum religiose pendunt, idque secundum Dei culture in ipsorum fidel confessione praecipuum est. Quod si bellis civilibus prohibeantur, illud nihilominus coactum seponunt, et cum per pacem liter, coactoribus regiis studiose exsolvi curant.” — Thuani Hist., Lib. 27, p. 16.
The translation of the essential part of Du Thou’s testimony, follows.
It perfectly sustains the declaration of Louis XII., that the Waldenses, “me et caetero populo meo catholico meliores viri sunt; are better men then myself and the rest of my people.” “Of all those valleys the most rugged and wild is that of Fraissiniere, and on account of its sterile and untilled soil, its inhabitants are most needy. Their covering is of sheepskins salted and dried, with the wool not scoured, and with them both men and women are clothed. * * * The women have a linen covering for the head; otherwise they use not linen, either for clothing or for beds; for, almost clad, they take their sleep on straw, and covered with the skins of sheep. They dwell in seven villages, and their houses are constructed of flint stones; * * * * In those places they and their cattle are housed; but often, when there is danger from their persecutors, they conceal themselves and their flocks in caves. * * * * Employed in raising cattle, they live on milk and venison, and are excellent marksmen in killing goats and bears. * * * * “Blessed with this wealth, the equal poverty of all, they have no beggars; and contented with themselves, they cultivate little friendship and no affinity with others.
But notwithstanding they live in such poverty and filth, which they exhibit in its most disgusting shape, it is marvelous that they are not uncultivated in their manners; for no one among them is ignorant of letters, and they all can write fairly. They are well taught in the French language; so that they can understand the bible, and sing the psalms .
Nor can any boy be found at random among them, who being asked of the faith which they profess, will not promptly give you an intelligible account, which is common to all the other vallenses . They religiously pay their tribute, which, after their service to God, is a chief article in their confessson of faith.” 11 Joachim Camerasius, History, page 352.
CHAPTER - 6
Beza, History of Worthy Men. 2 Constans, Comment upon the Revelations, Chapter XI. 3 Bullinger, Preface to sermons upon the Apocalypse. 4 Vesembecius, Oration concerning the Waldenses. 5 George Morel, conference with Oecolampadius. 6 Book on the Persecutions of the Waldenses. 7 Vignaux, Memorials of the Waldenses, Folio 4. — Vignaux, History of the State of the Church, p. 337. 8 Viret, True and False Religion, liber iv., chapter xiii., p. 249. 9 Ecclesiastical History of the Reformed Churches of France, tom. 1, liber i., p. 35. 10 Chassagnon History of the Albigeois, p 25. 11 Vignaux History of the State of the Church, p. 336. 12 Vesembecius, Oration concerning the Waldenses. 13 Vignier, Historica Bibliotheca, p. 130. 14 Holagaray, History of Foix, pp. 120, 121. 15 Matthias Illyricus, Catalogue of the Witnesses of the Truth, p. 134. 16 Aldegonde, Table of Differences. Part in., p. 150.
CHAPTER - 7
Vignaux, History of the State of the Church, p. 307. 2 Vignaux, History of the State of the Church, p. 3. 3 Aldegonde, first table; p. 153. 4 Aldegonde, first table, p. 153.
CHAPTER - 8
Lindanus, Analytic Tables. 2 Hosius, Heresies of our Time; Book I. 3 Gualtier, Chronological Table, 12:Chapter xv., p. 494. 4 Claudius Rubis, History of the city of Lyons; Liber in; p. 269. 5 Sylvius, History of Bohemia. — Dubravius, History of Bohemia. 6 Walden, Things Sacramental, vol. vi., title 12. — Papoliniere, History of France. 7 Bellarmin, Tom. ii., Liber i., Chapter xxvi, — Column 86. 8 Eccius, Common Places. — Chapter xxviii. 9 Alphonsus de Castro, Heresies, Liber vi., page 99. 10 Arnold Sorbin, History of Friar Peter of the Valleys of Sernay; folio 172. 11 John de Cardonne, History of the Monk of the Valleys of Sernay. 12 Anthony d’Ardene’s history of the Monk of the Valleys of Sernay.
CHAPTER - 9
Aldegonde, First Table of Differences, pp. 150,151. 2 Vignaux, Memoirs, folio 14. 3 This appears by the bag of processes which was found in the cabinet of D’Avencon, Archbishop of Arabrun, at the capture of Ambrun, in the last croisade against the Waldenses of Fraissiniere and L’Argentiere.
CHAPTER - 10
Reinedus, de forma Heretic., Folio 8. 2 Book of the Pastors, George Morel and Peter Mascon, p. 8.
CHAPTER - 11
This confession is extracted from the work entitled, “The Spiritual Almanac,” and also from the “Memorials” of George Morel. — It is found also in both the original Waldensian and in the French languages, in the “Histoire des Vaudois,” by Brez; volume ii., p. 281. 2 This confession of faith is extracted from “Mendes Francois,” by Charles du Moulin; p. 65.
BOOK 2, CHAPTER - 1
Reinerius of the Waldenses. 2 Reinerius, Cap. de studio pervertendi alios, et mode docendi, fol. 98. 3 These sentences are to be seen in the Manual of the Inquisitors, with the letters of Pope Alexander III., and of divers other popes who succeeded him. 4 This council was held at Lateran, 1180. Chapter 27.
CHAPTER - 2
Treasure of Histories, in the year 1206. 2 Lib. Inquisit., cap. de non occidendo, fol. 100. 3 Sic fuit occisus Sanctus Petrus de ordine fratrum praedicatorum. 4 Moynes qui mandient. 5 Martyrology, in the Life of Dominic. 6 Catalogue of the Testimony of the Truth, page 534. 7 George Morel in his Memorials, p. 54.
CHAPTER - 3
This bull was taken out of the chamber of the country of Grenoble. 2 Vignaux Memorials, fol. 6.
CHAPTER - 4
Vignaux, Memorials, fol. 7. 2 Vignaux, Memorials. Fol. 6. 3 This admonition or remonstrance given by Oecolampadius and Bucer, to George Morel and Peter Mascon, is in the Memorials of Morel, fol. 5. 4 Ecclesiastical History of the Churches of France, p. 37. 5 Book of Martyrs of our Time, lib. 3, fol. iii. 6 Book of Martyrs of our Time, lib. 8, fol. 123.
CHAPTER - 5
Vesembec in Oratione de Valdensibus. 2 Book I. Chapter VI. of this History. 3 Perrin, in this remark, referred to the churches of the Huguenots, at the period when he wrote, 1618. In consequence of the toleration and favor exhibited towards the reformed Christians by Henry IV. for a short time, through divine mercy they were much in the same condition, with the brethren of the primitive race of believers, of whom it is recorded, Acts 9:31, “The churches had rest and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied.” All those Waldensian churches were subsequently devastated by the revocation of the edict of Nantes; “so that the flourishing cities set on a hill,” whose “zeal and piety” could not be hidden, were overthrown. The few Christians who survived the universal ravages contrived and enforced by Louis XIV. and the Jesuits, were scattered among the protestant countries; some of them even escaping to America, and the pure resplendency of the evangelical light among the Christian churches in France, almost was extinguished.
On that same hallowed provence , where the spiritual Ark of God then appeared to have taken up its abode, has been inscribed during the last hundred and fifty years, “Ichabod, where is the glory?” CHAPTER - 1 The same desolation attended the churches in Dauphiny, as was experienced in Provence. Refer to the note at the end of chap. viii. 2 Albert de Capitaneis, Lib. de Origine Valdensium, Thuanus in Hist. sui Temporis, p. 457. Petrus Valdus eorum Antesignanus, patria relicta in Belgium venit atque in picardiam quam hodie vocant, multos sectatores nactus, cum inde in Germaniam transisset, per Vandalicas Civitates. 3 Vignaux, Memor. fol. 15. 4 Flac. Ill. in Catal. Test. Verit. p. 116. 5 Lib. de Origine Ecclesiarum Bohemia, p. 273. Sed cum oppressae Tyrannide Pon, tificia conventus publicus nullos haberent, neque Scripts horum extarent ulla, ignotae nostris prorsus fuere. 6 Esrom Rudiger in narratiuncula de Ecclesiis fratrum in Bohemia, dicit Valdenses, ad minimum ccxl. ansis Originem nostram antecedunt. 7 Confession of the Waldenses, in the Catalogue rerum expetendarum. Lib de origine et Confess. Eccl. Bohem. Scimus quad multi boni viri, et Veritatis Evangelicae instauratae cultores et fectatores pii seducti, et indicationibus falsis et criminationibus adversariorum pro Valdensibus nos hebeant. 8 Ibid. Hoc quidem constat multum in ipsis lucis fuisse, et de plerisque eos recte sensisse et docuisse, et propter Veritatem gravissima perpessos in Gallic imprimis. 9 Aeneas Sylvius, History of the Taborites. — De Origine and Conless.
Eccl. Bohemicarum, p. 265. Non dubitamus autem quae bona et vera in Ecclesiasticorum deprebenherunt nostros, ea inde assumpsisse et in suas transtulisse, etc. Ut hoc nomine etiam gratis aliqua a nobis Ecclesiis illis debeatur, praesertim cum Viclefus a Valdensibus adjutus dicatur, qui Hussum nostrum excitavit.
CHAPTER - 6
Chron. of Hirsauge. 2 Joachim Chum. Hist. de Ecclesiis Fratrum in Bohemia and Moravia, p. 104. 3 Joachim Cam. in Hist. de Ecclesiis fiatrum in Bohemia and Moravia, pp. 105.
CHAPTER - 7
Dabravius, Hist. of Bohemia. 2 Constans upon the Revelation. 3 Vignier, First part of his Bibli. Historial. 4 Trithem Chron. Hirsaugiensi, Godefridus Mon. in Annalibus. 5 Krantz Metrop, 1. 8, Section 18, and Saxon. 1. 8, cap. 16. 6 Matth. Paris, Henr. 3, Anno 1230. 7 Vignier, in the third part of his Biblotheca Historialis, in the year 1336. 8 Krantz, Metrop. lib. 8, pag. 18, and in Sax. 1. 8, cap. 16. 9 John le Maire, in the third part of the Diff. of Schisms, in the twentyfourth Schism. 10 “LOLLARD’ S TOWER,” was a large detached room belonging to bishop Bonner’s palace in London, and formed a prison of the most gloomy nature. It was set apart for the punishment of protestants, formerly called Lollards, who were brought before him on an accusation of heresy, and who were there subjected to various tortures, at the discretion of that bigoted and merciless tyrant. The most common punishment inflicted was setting them in the stocks in which some were fastened by the hands, and others by the feet, They were in general permitted to sit on a stool, but to increase their punishment, some were deprived of that indulgence, so that lying with their backs on the ground, their situation was exceedingly painful. In this dungeon, and under these tortures, they were kept, some for several days, others for weeks, without any other sustenance than bread and water, and to aggravate their sufferings, they were prohibited from being seen by their relations or friends. Many of those who had tender constitutions, died under those inhuman inflictions; but those who were otherwise, survived to, execrate the, name of the barbarous persecutors.
CHAPTER - 8
Matthew Paris, Hist. of England, the year 1163. 2 John Basse, Chron. of London. 3 Tho. Walden, fourth volume of Things Sacramental, lib. 12, chap. 10. 4 La Popeliniere, Hist. of France, 1. 1. 5 Lib de Origine et Confess. Ecclesiastes Bohemiae. Wicclefus a Valdensibus adjutus Hussum nostrum excitavit, page 264.
CHAPTER - 9
In the middle of the twelfth century, when a dreadful persecution raged upon the European continent, against the disciples of Christ, a company of the Waldenses, about thirty men and women, to escape from their implacable adversaries, fled from Germany to England.
They resided near Oxford, and speaking only the German language, soon attracted notice by their religious practices. They were all arrested upon suspicion of heresy, and conducted before a council of Inquisitors at Oxford. When examined respecting their religion, Gerrard, the pastor of the little flock, answered, that they were Christians — that they believed the doctrine of the Apostles; but that they did not receive the Romish tenets of purgatory, prayers for the dead, the invocation of saints; and similar and christian superstitions.
They were instantly condemned, as heretics, and delivered to the secular power to be tormented. Henry II., then king of England, through the instigation of the Roman prelates, commanded that those Waldenses should be “branded with a hot iron on the forehead, then whipped through the streets of Oxford, and having their clothes cut off at the girdles, should be left in the fields; and all persons were prohibited from affording them any shelter or relief, or exhibiting towards them any proof or act of humanity, tender the penalty of torture and death!” That malignant and cruel decree was executed in its utmost rigor. In the most intense cold of a very inclement winter, the whole Christian company speedily perished, from nakedness, starvation, and the frost; in the year 1166. — Henry’s Great Britain, vol. 5:page 338. Aldeg. first table algae Diff. Fol. 149. John Dubravius in the history of Bohemia, lib. 14. 2 Mat. Paris, Life of Henry III.
CHAPTER - 10
Flat. Illy. Catal. of the Wit. p. 539. 2 Vignier, Biblio. p. 130. Hist. 1. 1.
CHAPTER - 11
Hist. of Languedoc, 1. Forier, fol. 7. 2 First Tab. p. 152. 3 Sea of Hist., year 1378.
CHAPTER - 12
Sigonius de Regno Italico, lib. 17. Vignier, third part of his Bible History. 2 Rain. in Summa, fol. 18. 3 Le Sieur de Hail Life of Philippians 3. 4 It appears by the indictment of the said pastor, the original of which is in our hands. 5 Vigneaux, Memorials, fol. 15. 6 Constitut. which begins Inconsutilem Tunicam. 7 Sigonius de Regno Italico, lib. 17. 8 Paulus Aemilius in Charles the Fair. 9 Sea of Hist. in the year 1300. 10 The Waldensian colony in Calabria Citeriore had increased in the sixteenth century to four thousand persons. To suppress those churches, and reduce them to the papal bondage, the Inquisitors at Rome sent two monks, Malvicino and Urbino, who were directed either by fraud or force to accomplish their satanic design.
On their first arrival, those monks assumed great gentleness; Having assembled the inhabitants of Santo Xisto, the monks announced their friendly warning to the Waldenses, not to hear any teachers but the Romish massmen, to dismiss the Waldensian missionary evangelists, and to live according to the popish rules, in which case, they would have nothing to fear — but if they would not submit to the court of Rome, they would incur the punishment of heretics, the confiscation of their property, and death in ignominy and torment. Having appointed a time for the celebration of mass, they required all the Waldenses to attend on that idolatry. But those Christians in a body left the town, except a few aged persons and children, and retired into the neighboring forest.
The subsequent details are found in Chapter 8: But one circumstance which Perrin only mentions incidentally must be detailed in full, as given by Pantaleon, and De Ports. Pope Pius IV. promised to make the brother of the marquess of Buccianici, a cardinal, if that marquess, who was governor of Mentulto, would eradicate Christianity out of the province of Calabria. The following narrative was written by an eyewitness of that papal impious tragedy. “I have now to inform you of the dreadful execution of the Lutherans this morning, June 11, 1560. To tell you the truth, I can compare it to nothing but the slaughter of so many sheep. The executioner went to the prison, and bringing out one of them, covered his face with a napkin or bends, as we call it, led him into an adjacent field, and causing him to kneel down, cut his throat with a knife. Then taking off the bloody napkin, he went and brought out another, whom he murdered in the same manner. In this way he butchered the whole number, eighty-eight men. Not any person, after witnessing the slaughter of one, could stand to look at a second. The meekness and patience with which they went to martrydom are incredible. I still shudder when I think of the executioner with, the bloody knife in his teeth, the dripping napkin in his hand, and his arms besmeared with gore, going to the house, and taking out one victim after another, just as a butcher does his sheep that he intends to kill. According to the order, the dead bodies are appointed to be quartered, and hung up on the public roads throughout Calabria. The marquess of Buccianici, the governor of the province, will go on and put others to the torture, and multiply the executions until he has destroyed the whole of them.
A decree this day has been passed that a hundred women shall be racked, and afterwards executed, in order that there may be a complete mixture of men and women. Some refuse to look at the crucifix, or Confess to a priest, and will be burned alive. These people amount to sixteen hundred, all of whom are condemned. They are a simple, unlettered people, entirely occupied with the spade and plough, and show themselves sufficiently religious at the hour of death.”
Tommaso Costo, a Neapolitan historian of that period, thus writes of those Calabrian Christians. — “Some had their throats cut, others were sawn through the middle, and others were thrown from the top of a high cliff: while the father saw his son put to death, and the son his father, they exhibited not any symptoms of grief, but said joyfully, that they should be as the angels of God.”
When the persecutors were “drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus,” Revelation 17:6; it was not difficult to dispose of the prisoners who remained. The men were sent to the Spanish galleys; the women and children were sold for slaves; and the entire colony was exterminated. “Many times have they afflicted me from my youth” — may the Waldenses say — “many times have they afflicted me from my youth — My blood — the violence done to me and my flesh” — my CHRISTIAN BLOOD BE UPON ROME! — McCrie’s Reformation in Italy, chapter v.
CHAPTER - 1
Rain. de forma hareticandi, fol. 10. 2 Vignier, third part of his Bibl. Historial. p. 130. 3 Matthew Paris. Life of Henry III., King of England. 4 Antonin, part III Titus 21.
CHAPTER - 2
Matthew Paris, Reign of Henry III. 2 Bull which begins Irae cunctis. 3 From 1412 to 1425, a great number of persons who entertained the sentiments of the Vaudois were committed to the flames by the Inquisitors of Valentia, Roussillon, and Majorca. The followers of Wickliffe emigrated to the Spanish Peninsula; for in 1441, the Inquisitors of Arragon and Valentia reconciled some of them to the papacy, and condemned others to the fire as obstinate heretics. But previous to that time, a fiery inquisition had been in operation against the Beghards, which is an opprobrious epithet then applied to the Waldenses by the persecuting popish priesthood, thereby to excite odium against those Christians, and to justify their own blood-thirsty cruelties. The leader of those disciples was condemned to perpetual imprisonment at Valentia. in the year 1350, and the bones of his followers were dug up from their graves and burned; nevertheless in 1442, it was discovered that they had multiplied both in Biscay and Calahorra. Alfonso de Mella, a Franciscan, and brother of the prelate of Zamorra, having incurred the suspicion of being at the head of a party of Waldensians, fled with his companions to the Moors, among whom, he died by torture at Grenada, having been pierced with reeds — ‘an example — records the biographer — worthy to be recorded, of the vanity in human affairs, and the opposite dispositions of persons borne by the same mother?’ — John II. king of Castile, also sent a band of musketeers to scour the mountains of Biscay, and of Old Castle, who drove the Christians before them, like cattle, and delivered them to the Inquisitors, by whom they were transferred to the flames of martyrdom, at Domingo, and Valladolid. Thus the ancient Believers, after a most barbarous and unrelenting persecution of two centuries, were exterminated in Spain, with the exception of a few, who concealed themselves in the remote and inaccessible districts; and who at a subsequent period furnished occasionally a straggling victim, to the myrmidons of the Inquisition, when surfeited with the blood of Jews and Moriscos. — McCrie’s History of the Reformation in Spain, chapter i. 4 The conclusion of Faber’s Inquiry into the History and Theology of the ancient Vallenses and Albigenses” is so apposite and convincing, and is so admirable a counterpart to the last paragraph of Perrin’s narrative concerning the Old Waldenses, that it must be introduced, especially as the volume whence it is extracted is unknown to almost every American student.
I. Agreeably to the promises of our Savior Christ, there never has been wanting, from the very first promulgation of the Gospel, a spiritual visible Church of faithful worshippers. Through all the worst and darkest periods, even through that century which Baronius himself calls, ‘the iron, and leaden, and obscure age,’ such a Church incessantly has existed; though often, to all appearance, on the very brink of destruction. In novem inchoatur seculum, quod, sua asperitate ac boni sterilitate ferreum, malique exundantis deformitate plumbeum, atque inopia scripto. rum, appellari consuevit, obscurum.” — Baronius Annal. in A.D. 900.
There was a time when, in the boasted immutable communion of the Latins, religious knowledge was at so low an ebb, that the Cardinal, during the evolution of his leaden age, is fain to pronounce that Christ himself was asleep! while the mystic ship of the Church was overwhelmed by waves; and what he thinks even yet worse than the alleged somnoleney of the omniscient Redeemer, the ecclesiastical mariners “of the Popedom,” snored so soundly, that the disciples who might rouse their sleeping Lord, could no where be found. — ormiebat tuna plane alto, ut apparet, sopore Christus, cum navis fluctibus operiretur: et quod deterius videbutur, deerunt, qui Dominum sic dormientum clamoribus excitarent discipuli, tertentibus omnibus. — Baronius Annal. in A.D. 912.
However, he who keepeth Israel neither slumbered nor slept. Profound as might be the drowsiness of the whole Latin ‘Apostates’ respecting which Baronins so justly and so honestly complains; widely extended as might be the great apostacy from the faith, which Paul so characteristically foretold; nevertheless, Christ was not without mariners, both fully awake, and zealously active at their post. What the Cardinal was unable to find throughout the Vast obscure of the papal dominions, and the want of which might seem to have frustrated the promise of the Savior himself, continued to exist, in the secluded and despised valleys of Dauphiny and Piedmont — Though incessantly harassed and persecuted by the tools of the papacy, yet through all those middle ages which preceded the Reformation of the sixteenth century, the Vallenses were never either exterminated by the sword of violence, or enslaved to the unhallowed superstitions of the Latin “Hierarchy.” According to the remarkable confession of an archbishop of Turin in the. earlier part of the sixteenth age, though perpetually attacked by an enemy of surpassing power, still in mockery of all expectation, the Vallensic Christian of the Alps came off victorious, or at least showed himself unconquered and invincible. — Quippe quia, a longe potentissimo hoste inversus, prater opinionem victor, nut omnino invictus, evasit; multo, quam prius, fit insolentior atque auda. cior; et quem prius valde formidabat, repulsum facile deinceps contemnit. Idque tunc magis contigit, quum hostis conatus saepius inanes fuere. — Claud. Seyssel. Taurin. adversus Valdenses, Fol. 1.
II. With the Reformed Churches of the sixteenth and nineteenth centuries, the visible and united churches of the Vallenses and the Albigenses, now actually existing in the valleys of the Cottian Alps, agree; both in all essential parts of Scriptural doctrine, and in a steady opposition to the unscriptural corruptions of the court of Rome.
Through the medium of the Vallensic churches, which at the very beginning of the fifth century, not to speak of even a yet earlier period, subsisted where they still exist, in the region, geographically defined by Jerom, lying between the waters of the Adriatic sea and the Alps of King Cottius, we stand connected with the purity of the primitive churches. In despite of the lawless innovations of the papacy, innovations which are condemned by the testimony of the earliest ecclesiastical writers, the promises of Christ have been faithfully accomplished.
III. In the valleys of the Alps, by pure visible churches, the ancient faith of Christianity has been preserved, through all the middle ages of innovating superstition, sound and uncontaminated. Behold the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed. The angel of the Lord was in it; and the arm of the mighty God of Jacob was its protection. Therefore the son of wickedness “and perdition” could not destroy it: and the enemy was unable to wear it out by violence.
HISTORY OF THE OLD ALBIGENSES
BOOK 1, CHAPTER - 1
Rainerius de forma hareticandi. 2 James de Riberia, in Collectaneis urbis Tolozac. 3 Here is the like inadvertency with respect to the Albigenses, as we observed with respect to the Waldenses; his deriving as well these as the former from Waldo of Lyons. With reference to both, the truth of history in short is this — That as in the Valleys of Piedmont, the primitive christianity was derived clown to Claudius Archbishop of Turin, who maintained the purity of doctrine in the ninth century against the innovations of Rome, and who transmitted down the same to his disciples, and they to succeeding generations to this day — so in the neighboring parts, in France, in the eighth century, the purity of christianity in opposition to the idolatry of the church of Rome, was strenuously maintained under Charlemagne; and from the holy men of that age the lamp of pure doctrine was handed clown to Bertram, from him to Berengarius, from him to Peter Bruis, from Peter Bruis to Waldo, from Waldo to Dulcinus, from him to Marsilius, from him to Wickliff, from him to Huss and Jerom of Prague, and from their scholars, the Fratres Bohemi, to Luther and Calvin. 4 James de Riberia in his Collections of the City of Toulouse. 5 Claudius de Rubis in his Hist. of the City of Lyons, 1. 3, p. 269. 6 Holagaray in the History of Foix. 7 Ibidem. James de Riberia, ut supra.
CHAPTER - 2
Treasury of Histories, year 1206.
CHAPTER - 3
The monk of the valley of Serney, History of the Albigenses, cap. 11. fol. 33.
CHAPTER - 4
Treasure of Histories: the taking of the city of Beziers: Paul Aemilius, pp. 13-17. The capture of the town was followed by the most horrid cruelties. As the Albigenses refused to yield upon the terms proposed by that impious blasphemer, the pope’s legate, he ordered a general assault to be made; and the place having thus been taken by storm, every species of outrageous cruelty that barbarous superstition could devise was practiced. Nothing was to be heard but the groans of men, who lay weltering in their blood, the lamentations of mothers, who, after being violated by the soldiery, had their children taken from them, and dashed to pieces before their faces. The city being fired in various parts, new scenes of confusion arose; in several places the streets were streaming with blood. Those who hid themselves in their dwellings had only the dreadful alternative to remain and perish in the flames, or rush out and fall by the swords of the soldiers. The bloody legate, during those infernal proceedings, enjoyed the carnage, and even cried out to the troops, “Kill them, kill them all; kill man, woman, and child; kill Roman catholics as well as Albigenses, for when they are dead the Lord knows how to pick out his own.” Thus the beautiful city of Beziers was reduced to a heap of ruins; and 60,000 persons were murdered. 2 Treasure of Histories, in the taking of Beziers. Petrus Vallis Sernens. Hist. Albigen. chap. 18.
CHAPTER - 5
Treasure of Histories, in the Treatise of the Albigenses.
CHAPTER - 6
The monk of the valley of Sernay, chap. 47, Chass. lib. 3, chap. 7. 2 Termes. The lord of Toulouse, in the history of his times, p. 459. 3 Petrus Vallis Sarm. lib. 15. 4 Lib. 3, p. 129. Hologarai Hist. of Foix, p. 129. 5 Chass. lib. 3, p. 150. 6 Treasury of Hist. in the treatise of the Albigenses.
CHAPTER - 7
Chass. Lib. 4, c. 14, p. 162. Earl Remond determined to interrupt the besiegers by frequent sallies. After several furious assaults given by the popish army, and some successful sallies of the Albigenses, the earl of Toulouse compelled his enemies to raise the siege. In their retreat they did much mischief in the countries through which they passed, and put many defenceless Albigeases to death. The earl of Toulouse did all he could to recover the friendship of the king of Arragon; and as the marriage ceremony between that monarch’s daughter and Simon’s son, had not been performed; he intreated him to break off that match, and proposed another more proper: that his own eldest son and heir should wed the princess of Arragon, and that by this match their friendship should be again united and more firmly cemented. His majesty was easily persuaded not only to agree to this proposal, but to form a league with the principal Albigenses, and to put himself as captain-general at the head of their united forces, consisting of his own people, and of the troops of the earls of Toulouse, Foix, and Comminges. The papists were greatly alarmed at these proceedings. Simon sent to all parts of Europe, to engage the assistance of the Roman powers, and the pope’s legate began hostilities by entering the dominions o£ the earl of Foix, and committing the most cruel depredations. 2 Chass. Lib. 3, c. 14, p. 169. 3 Petrus de Val. Sam. c. 79. 4 Hologaray, Hist. of Foix, p. 133. 5 Hologaray, Hist. of Foix, p. 133. 6 Petrus Vailis Sarnens. chap. 64.
CHAPTER - 8
Petrus Vailis Sarn. p. 113. 2 Hologaray, History of Foix. 3 Petrus Vallis Sarens. C. 89. 4 Chass. C. 17, p. 177.
CHAPTER - 9
Petrus Sarn. c. 126. 2 Pet. Val. Sarnens. c. 127. 3 Hist. of Lang. fol. 12.
BOOK 2, CHAPTER - 1
Hologaray, Hist. of Foix, fol. 159. 2 Pet. Vallis Sarnens. c. 133. 3 Petrus Vallis Sarn. c. 152. 4 Chass. Lib. 4. 5 Pet. Val. Sarnens. c. 152.
CHAPTER - 2
Paul Emil. in the life of Philip August. — Petr. Val. Sarnens. 2 Pert. Val. Sarnens, c. 148, 153, 161. 3 At Tell, while the minister was preaching to a congregation, the papists attacked and murdered many of the people. A lady of considerable eminence, being exhorted to change her religion, if not for her own sake, at least for that of the infant she held in her arms, said, with undaunted courage, “I did not quit Italy, my native country, nor forsake the estates I had there, for the sake of Jesus Christ, to renounce him here.
With respect to my infant, why should I not deliver him up to death, since God delivered up his son to die for us?” As soon as she had done speaking, they took the child from her, delivered it to a popish nurse to bring up, and then cut the mother to pieces.
Dominico Berto, a youth of sixteen, refusing to turn papist, was set upon an ass with his face to the tail, which he was obliged to hold in his hand. In this condition he was led to the market place, amidst the acclamations of the populace; after which they cut off his nose, ears, and cheeks, and burnt holes in several parts of his body till he at last died. An Albigense young lady, of noble family, was seized by the papists, and carried through the streets with a paper mitre upon her head. After mocking, beating her, and smearing her face with dirt, they bade her call upon the saints; to which she replied, “My trust and salvation is in Christ only; for even the virgin Mary, without the merits of her son, could not be saved.” On this the multitude fell upon and destroyed her.
Many other horrible cruelties were perpetrated by those bigoted monsters; and the pope sent them a letter, approving what they had done, and commanding them, if possible, not to leave one heretic alive in that part of the country; which command they strictly fulfilled; butchering all the protestants in the neighboring districts. 4 Naugiers’ History of Toulouse, chapter 10. 5 Pet. Val. Sarnens. c. 165. — Chass. lib. 4. c. 11. 6 After Toulouse was recovered by the Albigenses, the pope supporting earl Simon’s crusade, new forces were raised for him, which enabled him again to undertake the siege of that city. The earl assaulted the place furiously, but being repulsed with great loss, he seemed sunk in affliction: when the pope’s legate said, to comfort him, “Fear nothing, my lord, make another vigorous attack; let us by any means recover the city, and destroy the inhabitants; and those of our men who are slain in the fight, I will assure you shall immediately pass into paradise.” One of the earl’s principal officers, on hearing this, said with a sneer, “Monsieur cardinal, you talk with great assurance; but if the earl believes you, he will, as heretofore, pay dearly for his confidence.” Earl Simon, however, took the legate’s advice, made another assault, and was again repulsed. To complete his misfortune, before the troops could recover from their confusion, the earl of Foix made his appearance, at the head of a formidable body of forces, and attacked the already dispirited army of earl Simon, easily put them to the route; when the earl himself narrowly escaped drowning in the Garonne, into which he had hastily plunged, in order to avoid being captured. This miscarriage almost broke his heart; but the pope’s legate continued to encourage him, and offered to raise another army, which promise, with some difficulty, and three years delay, he at length performed, and that bigoted nobleman was once more enabled to take the riehl. On this occasion he turned his whole force against Toulouse, which he besieged for the space of nine months, when in one of the sallies made by the besiege), his horse was wounded. The animal being in great anguish, ran away with him, and bore him direetly under the ramparts of the city, when an archer shot him in the thigh with an arrow; and a woman immediately after throwing a large stone from the wall, it struck him upon the head, and killed him; thus were the Albigenses, like the Israelites, delivered by the hand of a woman; and thus this atrocious monster, who had so long persecuted the people of God, was at length himself slain by one of those whom he had intended to have slaughtered if he had been successful. The siege was raised; but the legate, enraged to be disappointed of his vengeance on the inhabitants, engaged the king of France in the cause, who sent his son to besiege it. The French prince, with some chosen troops, furiously assaulted Toulouse; but meeting with a severe repulse, he abandoned that city to besiege Miroround. This place he soon took by storm, and put to the sword all the inhabitants, consisting of men, women, and children.
The bloodthirsty legate, whose name was Bertrand, being very old, grew weary of following the army; but his passion for murder still remained, as appears by his epistle to the pope, in which he begged to be recalled on account of age and infirmities; but intreated the pontiff to appoint a successor, who might carry on the war as he had done, with spirit and perseverance. In consequence, the pope recalled Bertrand, and appointed Conrude, bishop of Portua, to be legate in his room. The latter determined to follow the steps of his predecessor, and to persecute the Albigenses with the greatest severity. Guido, earl of Montfort, the son and heir of earl Simon, undertook the command of the troops, and immediately laid siege to Toulouse, before the walls of which he was killed. His brother Almeric succeeded to the command, but the bravery of the garrison soon obliged him to raise the siege. On this the legate prevailed upon the king of France to undertake the siege of Toulouse in person, and reduce to the obedience of the church, those obstinate heretics, as he called the brave Albigenses. The earl of Toulouse hearing of the great preparations made by the king of France, sent the women, children, cattle, etc. into secret and secure places in the mountains, ploughed up the land, that the king’s forces should not obtain any forage, and did all that a skillful general could perform to distress the enemy. By these wise regulations the French army, soon after entering the earldom of Toulouse, suffered all the extremities of famine, which obliged the troops to feed on the carcasses of horses, dogs, cats, etc. which unwholesome food produced the plague. The king died of grief; but his son, who succeeded him determined to carry on the war; he was, however, defeated in three engagements, by the earl of Toulouse. The king, the queen-mother, and three archbishops again raised aformidable army, and had the art to persuade the earl of Toulouse to come to a conference, when he was treacherously seized upon, made a prisoner, forced to appear barefooted and bareheaded before his enemies, and compelled to subscribe the following ignominious conditions — 1. That he should abjure the faith that he had hitherto defended. 2. That he should be subject to Rome. 3 . That he should give his daughter Joan in marriage to one of the brothers of the king, of France. 4. That he should maintain in Toulouse six popish professors of the liberal arts, and two grammarians. 5. That he should take upon him the cross, and serve five years against the Saracens in the Holy Land. 6. That he should level the walls of Toulouse with the ground. 7. That he should destroy the walls and fortifications of thirty of his other cities and castles, as the legate should direct. 8. That he should remain prisoner at Paris till his daughter was delivered to the king’s commissioners. After these cruel conditions, a severe persecution took place against the Albigenses, many of whom suffered for the faith; and express orders were issued that the laity should not be permitted to read the sacred writings.
CHAPTER - 3
Hologaray, Hist. of Foix. p. 161. 2 Chass. Lib. 4. c. 13.
CHAPTER - 4
Pet. Val. Sar. ad finnem. 2 Hologaray, p. 164.
CHAPTER - 5
History of Languedoc, p. 33 — Fol. 34.
CHAPTER - 6
These statutes of earl Remond, are found in the book of Rainerius de modo examinandi hereticus, fol. 130. 2 The seventh canon of the council of Toulouse.
CHAPTER - 7
Hologaray, Life of Roger earl of Foix.
CHAPTER - 8
Matthew Paris ad an. 1234.
CHAPTER - 9
History of Languedoc, cap. 4, fol. 40, 41.
CHAPTER - 10
History of Waldenses, lib. 2, chap. 2.
BOOK 3, CHAPTER - 1
The abhorrence that those professors of, “pure religion and undefiled,” declare against feasts and vigils, must be understood of the multitude of feasts instituted in the honor of a rabble of new saints of very doubtful sanctity; and those celebrated with exceedingly superstitious, and idolatrous rites. The intercession, invocation, adoration, and canonization of saints by the pope, begun in the ages next preceding, did in the twelfth century mightily increase. That they despised the feasts of the saints, was propter multiplicationem festorum, occasioned by the multiplication of those festivals, even then so very burdensome in the Roman church; which is the reason given by Rainerius the inquisitor in his account of those people. Flacius Illyr. in Catal. Test. Lib. 15.
CHAPTER - 2
This Catechism in the original language of the Waldenses, about the year 1100, and in a French translation, is found in Histoire des Vaudois. — By Jaques Brez, Minister of Middleberg, Holland. Two volumes, Paris, 1796.
CHAPTER - 3
The controversy which has been produced by the Oxford Pseudo- Protestants through the “Tracts for the Times,” included the vital question whether the system of the papacy, in its dogmas, ceremonies, tyranny, and practices, is not the apostolically predicted “Mystery of Iniquity and working of Satan.” That comprehended our investigation into the origin, principles, and antiquity of the Christians among the European Alps; who deny that they are Protestants, although they admit the doctrines of the Reformers of the sixteenth century; for they allege, that they never were in communion with Rome, as slaves of its usurped ecclesiastical jurisdiction! The decisive point is this — if the Waldenses and Albigenses were true Christians then the popedom is the great ant;christian “Man of Sin and son of perdition” — on the contrary, if the papacy be the true church of Christ, then all who reject its rule and superstitions are anathema!
Mr. Faber undertook an elaborate research into the History and Theology of those ancient Christian dwellers among the South-eastern Alps, and in his “Inquiry,” page 370-384, he thus expresses his judgment concerning the “Treatise on Antichrist.” Internal evidence brings out a very strong presumption, that the treatise was written in the course of the twelfth age, and from its leading dogma, that the Roman church is the Apocalyptic harlot. I deem it to be the production of Valdo, shortly after the conversion of that eminent Reformer; whose zeal in communicating the New Testament in the vulgar tongue would be very likely to produce such a work as the Treatise upon Antichrist.
From the passage respecting the adoration of the mass-wafer, it appears that the idolatrous worship of the eucharist had been fully established when the treatise on Antichrist was written. Of the unspeakable infatuation respecting the bread used in the celebration of the mass one instance may suffice. The old historian William of Mulnesburg, who lived about the year 1100, professed his full belief that the elements, after the priestly declaration, were the true body and blood of the Savior; and he says, that he was thereto induced, both by the authority of the church and by many newly displayed miracles. Of which he certifies the following concerning a little Jew boy.
The Jewish lad entering into a mass-house, with a Christian boy, beheld upon the altar a child torn limb from limb, and thus severally divided to the people. Having told the story to his parents, in a rage they threw him on a burning pile. There he lay for some hours unhurt, until he was drawn out by the Christians. When asked how he escaped the effects of the fire, he replied, “that the beautiful woman whom I beheld sitting on a throne, and whose son was divided to the people, alway stood at my right hand, turning aside with her robe, the fire and smoke.” This legendary fragment, detailed by William as an indubitable matter of fact, with implicit credulity and full approbation, could never have been constructed, save on the basis of the admitted dogmas of the eleventh century; and therefore the “Treatise on Antichrist” may be referred justly to the periods of its date, about the middle of the twelfth century.
CHAPTER - 4
In the year 1658, Samuel Moreland, whom Oliver Cromwell had sent as ambassador to the Duke of Savoy on behalf of the persecuted Waldenses, carried from Piedmont to Britain several ancient manuscripts, which were represented to be works of the primitive Christians among the Cottian Alps. These he deposited in the university library at Cambridge, whence most of them have since disappeared. — Faber’ s Inquiry, 369, 370.
HISTORY OF THE VAUDOIS
Rainerius contra Waldenses, cap. 4. ex. ed. Gretseri, Ingoldstad, 1613. 40. 2 Jonas Aurialensis adversus Claudii Tauronensis Apologetieum, in Bib.
Pat. in Ed. Par. Tom. IV. p. 688. Rainerius contra Waldenses, cap. 4.
Samuel de Corsani Trionfale. Coni. 1410. Morland, p. 12. 3 See Morland’s History of the Evangelical Churches of Piedmont, p. 11. 4 Rainerius contra Waldenses, c. 7. 5 Thuan. Hist. Lib. 27. 6 Account of the History of the Vaudois.
BOOK 1, CHAPTER - 1
Those precious remains of the old Waldenses; containing their doctrine, worship, and discipline, and the controversy they had with, and the confession they exhibited against the antichrist of Rome. All these from Leger and Moreland, with those collected by Perrin, are combined in the preceding book.
CHAPTER - 2
Allin's remarks upon the ecclesiastical history of the ancient churches of Piedmont. 2 Ancient confession of the faith of the Waldenses, in the fifth book of Perrin's History. 3 Ancient Confession of Faith of the Waldenses, Book 5:Perrin's History.
CHAPTER - 3
In tanta tenuitate, imo miseria ac paedore degentibus, quae et horrida ac deformi specie prae se ferunt, est quod miresis, quod non incultis omnino moribus sunt; nam nemo epud cos nescit litteras, et scribere commode sciunt, lingeamque Gallicam callent, quatenus Biblia intelligere, et Psalmos canere possint; nec quenquam temere inter eos puerum reperias, qui interrogatus fidei quam profitentur, non expedite ac memoriter rationem reddat, quod illis cum caeteris convallensibus commune est. Tributum religiose pendent, idque secundum Dei in ipsorum Fidei Confessionibus praecipuum est. Quod si bellis civilibus prohibeantur, illud nihilominus coactum seponunt, et cum per pacem licet, coactoribus regiis studiose exolvi curant.
CHAPTER - 4
These rules may be seen in Perrin's History.
CHAPTER - 5
Such as have the curiosity to see this bull may find it at length in Leger's History of the Vaudois, book 2 chapter 2. And remarkable enough it is, as well for the extraordinariness of its matter, and arrogancy of its style, as for the dismal effects of it; since according to the computation of Leger, there were 800,000 Vaudois, with the like professors of true religion, in the valleys of Languedoc and Provence, and the several parts of Europe, martyred in consequence thereof without mercy.
Dominick himself was canonized for laboring in the execution thereof.
Here also may be found the same Albertus de Capitanets his Origo Waldensium, with his processes made against them. 2 Perrin specifies the places, Angrogne, Lucern, La Perouse, St. Martin.
Praviglerme, Boiler, and Pragela. He also mentions the causes and concomitants of their successful repulse.
CHAPTER - 6
Within this period, namely, in the year 1545, happened the memorable massacre of the inhabitants of Merindoles and Chabiers, a branch of the Waldensian church; which being so extraordinary an instance of Romish cruelty, and not mentioned by Leger, I thought once to supply that defect out of Sleidan's Sixteenth Book of the History of the Reformation. But since the reader will find in Perrin's History of the Waldenses some account of this massacre, where he not only calls it the most exorbitant, cruel, barbarous, and inhuman that was ever pronounced by any parliament, but gives us also a short, yet a very tragical description of it; but especially, since it is so largely treated of by Fox in the second volume of the Book of Martyrs, I shall refer the reader to them, and proceed to the persecution of the Vaudois in the next period.
The Vaudois were stopped by deep snow from reaping all the harvest in the autumn of their return. The corn, thus preserved by the snow, supplied them after their stores had been burnt by the enemy.
THE MODERN VAUDOIS
This cup was handed down from father to son for several generations. 2 Traces of these emigrants from the valleys were for a long time to be found in those portions of Germany. Indeed a Synod, having about fifteen of their churches under its care, many of whose pastors were supported by the British and Dutch governments, existed there for some time. To this day many inhabitants of Germany trace their origin hack to these fugitives, who were driven from Piedmont without even the means of subsistence. 3 The Rev. Dr. Henderson. See the Vaudois, pp. 205-208. 4 They very properly reject the name of Protestant; saying that as they never belonged to the Church of Rome, they cannot be said to have seceded from it. 5 Claude Scyssel, Adv. error, et sect. Valdenses, fol. 9. lib. 27. tom. 2. p. 19. 6 Thuani Historia. 7 Letter of Paula and Eustochium to Marcella; quoted in Dr. Gilly's Vigilantius.