promised him, as for a voyage to Palestine, but he was empowered to seize and add to his dominions the territories of all nobles who might not join in persecution and expel the hated heretic.
Innocent might well feel disheartened at the failure of this vigorous move. He had played his last card and lost. The prelates of the infected provinces, indignant at the usurpation of their rights, were less disposed than ever to second the efforts of the legates. Philip Augustus was unmoved by the dazzling bribes, spiritual and temporal, offered to him. He had already had the benefit of an indulgence for a crusade to the Holy Land, and had probably not found his spiritual estate much benefited thereby; while his recent acquisitions in Normandy, Anjou, Poitou, and Aquitaine, at the expense of John of England, required his whole attention, and might be endangered by creating fresh enmities in too sudden a renewal of conquest. He took no steps, therefore, in response to the impassioned arguments of Innocent, and the legates found the heretics more obdurate than ever. Pierre de Castelnau grew so discouraged that he begged the pope to permit him to return to his abbey; but Innocent refused permission, assuring him that God would reward him according to the labor rather than to the result. A second urgent appeal to Philip in February, 1205, was equally fruitless; and a concession in the following June, to Pedro of Aragon, of all the lands that he could acquire from heretics, and a year later of all their goods, was similarly without result, except that Pedro seized the Castle of Escure, belonging to the papacy, which had been occupied by Cathari. If something appeared to be gained when at Toulouse, in 1205, some dead heretics were prosecuted and their bones exhumed, it was speedily lost, for the municipality promptly adopted a law forbidding trials of the dead who had not been accused during life, unless they had been hereticated on the death-bed.
The work might well seem hopeless, and all three legates were on the point of abandoning it peremptorily in despair, even Arnaud's iron will yielding to the insurmountable passive resistance of a people among whom the heretics would not be converted and
- Regest. vii. 76, 77, 79, 165.
- Regest. vii. 210, 212; viii. 94, 97; ix. 103. — Havet, L'Hérésie et le bras seculier (Bibliothèque de l'École des Chartes, 1880, 582)