Page:A History of the Inquisition of the Middle Ages-Volume I .pdf/332

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312
THE INQUISITION FOUNDED.

tants selected in each district and sworn to investigate all cages of crime, to capture the malefactor, and to bring him before court for trial. [1]

The Church naturally fell into the same system. We have just seen tliat Charlemagne ordered his bishops to make diligent visitations throughout their dioceses, investigating all offences ; and with the growth of ecclesiastical jurisdiction this inquisitorial duty was, nominally at least, perfected and organized. Already at the commencement of the tenth century we find in use a method (falsely attributed to Pope Eutychianus) which was subsequently imitated by the Inquisition. As the bishop reached each parish in his visitation, the whole body of the people was assembled in a local synod. From among these he selected seven men of mature age and approved integrity who were then sworn on relics to reveal without fear or favor whatever they might know or hear, then or subsequently, of any offence requiring investigation. These testes synodales, or synodal witnesses, became an institution established, theoretically at least, in the Church, and long lists of interrogatories were drawn up to guide the bishops in examining them so that no possible sin or immorality might escape the searching inquisition. Yet how completely these well-devised measures fell into desuetude, under the negligence of the bishops, is seen in the surprise awakened when, in 1246, Robert Grosseteste, the reforming Bishop of Lincoln, ordered, at the suggestion of the Franciscans, such a general inquisition into the morals of the people throughout his extensive diocese. His archdeacons and deans summoned both noble and commoner before them and examined them under oath, as required by the canons ; but the proceeding was so unusual and brought to light so many scandals that Henry


  1. Fr. 13, Dig. I. (Ulpian.).— Allard, Histoire des Persecutions, Paris, 1885, p. ill. — Capit. Car. Mag. i. ann. 802; iii. ann. 810; in. ann. 812.— Capit. Ludov. Pii v., VI. ann. 819 ; ann. 823, c. 28; Capit. Wormatiens. ann. 829.— Caroli Calvi Capit. apud Carisiacum ann. 857; Edict. Pistens. ann. 864. — Carolomanni Capit. ann. 884.— Guillel. Nangiac. Gest. S. Ludov. ann. 1255 ( D. Bouquet, XX. 394, 400).— Ducange, s. v. Inquisitores.—Les Olim, T. III. pp. 169, 181, 211, 231, 358, 471, 501, 522, 529, 616.— Assisae de Clarendon $ 1 (Stubbs's Select Charters, p. 137, cf. p. 25).— Stubbs's Constitutional History, I. 99-100, 313, 530, 695-6.— Lib. Juris Civilis Veronse c. 171 (Ed. 1728, p. 130).— Carta de Logu cap. xvi. (Ed. 1805, pp. 30-2).