Page:A History of the Inquisition of the Middle Ages-Volume I .pdf/506

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were not held to apply to those who abjured heartily after arrest.[1]

In the later sentences which have reached us it is often not easy to guess why one prisoner is incarcerated and another let off with crosses, when the offences enumerated as to each would seem to be indistinguishable. The test between the two probably was one which does not appear on the record. All alike were converts, but he whose conversion appeared to be hearty and spontaneous was considered to be entitled to the easier penance, while the harsher one was inflicted when the conversion seemed to be enforced and the result of fear. Yet how relentlessly a man like Bernard Gui, who represents the better class of inquisitors, could enforce the strict measure of the law is seen in the case of Pierre Raymond Dominique, who had been cited to appear in 1309, had fled and incurred excommunication, had consequently, in 1315, been condemned as a contumacious heretic, and in 1321 had voluntarily come forward and surrendered himself on a promise that his life should be spared. His acts of heresy had not been flagrant, and he pleaded as an excuse for his contumacy his wife and seven children, who would have starved had they been deprived of his labor, but in spite of this he was incarcerated for life. Even the stern Bernard de Caux was not always so merciless. In 1246, we find him, in sentencing Bernard Sabbatier, a relapsed heretic, to perpetual imprisonment, adding that as the culprit's father is a good Catholic and old and sick, the son may remain with him and support him as long as he lives, meanwhile wearing the crosses.[2]

There were two kinds of imprisonment, the milder, or "murus largus" and the harsher, known as "murus strictus" or "durus" or "arctus." All were on bread and water, and the confinement, according to rule, was solitary, each penitent in a separate cell, with no access allowed to him, to prevent his being corrupted or corrupting others ; but this could not be strictly enforced, and about 1306 Geoff roi d'Ablis stigmatizes as an abuse the visits of

  1. Concil. Tarraconens. ann. 1242.— Concil. Narbonn. ann. 1244 c. 9, 12. — Concil. Biterrens. ann. 1246, Append, c. 20.— Coll. Doat, XXI. 152.— MSS. Bib. Nat., fonds latin, No. 9992.— Bern. Guidon. Practica P. iv. (Doat, XXX.).
  2. Lib. Sententt. Inq. Tolos. passim^ pp. 347-9. — Eymeric. Direct. Inq. p. 507. — MSS. Bib. Nat., fonds latin, No. 9992.— Practica super Inquisit. (MSS. Bib. Nat., fonds latin, No. 14930, fol. 222).