Page:A History of the Inquisition of the Middle Ages-Volume I .pdf/529

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509
APPARENT EXCEPTIONS.

])roperty were left to him ; but as he had for ten years been a contumacious and proscribed fugitive, these fines must have been taken out of his estate in the hands of the State. Apparent exception» such as these can be accounted for, and the proceedings of the Inquisition as a whole indicate that imprisonment and confiscation were inseparable. Sometimes, even, it is stated in sentences passed upon the dead that they are pronounced worthy of imprisonment in order to deprive the heirs of succession to the estates. At a later date, indeed, Eymerich, who dismisses the whole matter brief- ly as one with which the inquisitor has no concern, speaks as though confiscation only took place when a heretic did not repent and recant before sentence, but his commentator, Pegna, easily proves this to be an error. Zanghino assumes as a matter of course that property is forfeited by the act of heresy ; and he points out that pecuniary penances cannot be imposed because the whole estate is gone, although there may be mercy shown at discretion with the assent of the bishop, and simple suspicion is not subject to confiscation.[1]

In the early zeal of persecution everything was swept away in wholesale seizure, but, in 1237, Gregory IX. assumed that the dowers of Catholic wives ought to be exempt in certain cases, and in 1247 Innocent TV. erected it into a rule that such dowers should be restored to the wives and should not be included in future forfeitures, although heresy would not justify divorce, and, in 1258, St. Louis accepted this rule. It was subject to serious limitations, however, since under the canon law the wife could not claim it if she had been cognizant of the husband's heresy when she married, and, according to some authorities, if she had lived with him after ascertaining it, or even if she had failed to inform against him within forty days after discovering it. As the children were incapable of inheritance, she only held the dower for life, after which it fell into the fisc.[2]


  1. Archives dc I'Inq. de Carcassonne (Doat, XXXI. 152). — Berger, Registres d'Innoc. IV. No. 1844.— MSS. Bib. Nat., fonds latin, No. 9992.— Lib. Sentcntt. Inq. Tolosan. pp. 158-62. — Arch, dc I'lnq. dc Carcassonne (Doat, XXVII. 98).— Eymcric. Direct. Inquis. pp. G63-5. — Zanchini Tract, de Hajret. c. xviii., xix., xxv.
  2. Archives de Tfiveche de Beziers (Doat, XXXI. 35).— Potthast No. 12743.— Isambert, I. 257.— C. 14 Sexto v. 2.— Zanchini Tract, de Ha^ret. c. xxv. — Livres de Jostice et de Plot, Liv. I. Tit. iii. § 7.