Page:Cambridge Modern History Volume 1.djvu/304

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to belong to the State, not to the Curia Romana, whose outward and visible abode was that comparatively insignificant building San Pietro di Castello, at the extreme north-eastern corner of the City.

The anti-Curial attitude of the Republic is obvious all down her history. In 1309, during the War of Ferrara, when Venice was lying under an interdict, the Doge Gradenigo enunciated the principle that the Papacy had no concern in temporal affairs, and that a misinformed Pope could not claim obedience.

She again asserted her adherence to the Conciliar principle when in 1409 she recognised Alexander V, the Pope elected by the Council of Pisa, against her own citizen Gregory XII (Angelo Correr), who was deposed by that Council; and yet again when she sent three ambassadors to the Council of Constance, who solemnly pledged the Republic to accept its decrees. By these acts she accepted the principle that Councils are superior to Popes, from whom an appeal may lie to a future Council; as well as the doctrine that an appeal may lie from a Pope ill-informed to a Pope better informed. In spite of "Execrabilis" the Republic more than once availed herself of these rights. When Sixtus IV placed the Republic under an interdict during the Ferrarese war in 1483, Diedo* the Venetian Ambassador in Rome, refused to send the bull to Venice. The Patriarch was instructed to present it to the government; he feigned to be ill, and secretly informed the Doge and the Ten that the bull was in Venice. The Ten ordered all clerics to continue their functions, and announced their intention to appeal to a future Council. Five experts in Canon Law were appointed to advise the government, and the formula of appeal was actually fixed on the doors of San Celso in Home.

Again, in 1509, Julius II, preparing for the combined attack of all Europe upon Venice, placed the Republic under an interdict by the bull of April 27. The College and the Council of Ten which undertook to deal with the situation, forbade the publication of the bull, the guards were ordered to tear it down if it were affixed to the walls; doctors in Canon Law were again appointed to advise, and once again an appeal to a future Council was affixed, this time to the doors of St Peter's in Rome.

The position of the Church in Venice as defined by the close of the fourteenth century was as follows. The parish clergy were elected by the clergy and the people, and inducted by the Ordinary. Bishops were elected in the Senate. Candidates were balloted for until one obtained a majority. He was then presented at Rome for confirmation. But in 1484 the Senate decreed that the temporal fruits should not fall to any one who was not approved of by the government. This really made the State master of the situation; and its position was further strengthened by a law of 1488 rendering all foreigners ineligible for the episcopate.

Venetian nobles who were beneficed were excluded from the Maggior