Page:A History of the Inquisition of the Middle Ages-Volume I .pdf/394

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of the inquisitor ; the provincial who held the appointing power could select any member of his Order. That this frequently led to the nomination of young and inexperienced men is presumable from the language in which Clement V., when reforming the Holy Office, prescribed forty years as the minimum age in future. Bernard Gui remonstrated against this, not only because younger men were often thoroughly capable of the duties, but also because bishops and their ordinaries who exercised inquisitorial power were not required to be so old. The rule, however, held good. In 1422 the Provincial of Toulouse appointed an inquisitor of Carcassonne, Friar Raymond du Tille, who was only thirty-two years of age. Though he was confirmed by the general of the Order, it was held that the office was vacant until an appeal was made to Martin V., who ordered the Official of Alet to investigate his fitness, and, if found worthy, the Clementine canon might be suspended in his favor.[1]

The trials were usually conducted by a single inquisitor, though sometimes two would work together. One, however, sufficed, but he generally had subordinate assistants, who prepared the cases for him, and took the preliminary examinations. He had a right to call upon the provincial to assign to him as many of these assistants as he deemed necessary, but he could not select them for himself. Sometimes, when the bishop was eager for persecution and careless of the episcopal dignity, he would accept the position; and it was frequently filled by the Dominican prior of the local convent. When the state defrayed the expenses of the Inquisition, it seems to have exercised some control over the number of officials. Thus in Naples Charles of Anjou, in 1269, only provides for one assistant.[2]

These assistants represented the inquisitor during his absence, and thus were closely assimilated to the commissioners who came

  1. C. 2 Clement, v. iii.— Bern. Guidon Gravam. (Boat, XXX. 117, 128).— Ripoli II. 610. — In 1431 Eugenius IV. dispensed with the rule in the case of an inquisitor appointed in his thirty-sixth year (Ripoli III. 9).
  2. Concil. Biterrens. aun. 1246 c. 4.— Molinier, pp. 129, 131, 281-2.— Haurgau, Bernard Dglicieux, p. 20.— Wadding. Annal. ann. 1261, No. 2.— Urbani PP. IV. Bull. Ne catholicæ fidei, 26 Oct. 1262.— Bernardi Guidonis Practica, P. iv. (Doat, XXX.).— Eymerici Direct. Inq. p. 557, 577.— Archivio di Napoli, MSS. Chioccarello T. VIII. ; Ibid. Registro 6, Lett. D. f. 35.