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ANSELM, returned from Rome, Anselm was summoned to court to Abp. Cant. give the king satisfaction about the business of investitures. It seems Robert, duke of Normandy, and his party, had prevailed with the king to call Anselm to an account, and insist upon his prerogative. But before I proceed farther in this dispute, it will not be improper to acquaint the reader with pope Paschal's letter to the king upon this
After the usual forms of salutation, he begins thus:
chal's letter to the king upon the subject of
"Your instructions to your ambassadors were welcome to us, dear son, but we should have been glad your performance had come up to your promise. You declare yourinvestitures. self ready to pay the same regard to the holy see of Rome
which was given by your father; and that you only require the same treatment which he received from our predecessors. These things look very agreeably at the first view; but when they are more thoroughly examined, as your ambassadors explain them, they discover a very harsh and unacceptable meaning. You desire the Church of Rome should allow you the right of giving bishops and abbots investitures, and would draw that within the prerogative royal, which God has declared can be done by none but himself. For our Saviour has told us, 'I am the door, by me, if any one enters in, he shall be saved;' but, when kings take upon them to be the door of the Church, it necessarily follows, that those who enter by that passage are thieves and robbers, instead of shepherds; for, as our Saviour declares, he that enters not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbs up some 1 John 10. other way, the same is a thief and a robber. Had your highness desired anything which religion, justice, and the circumstances of our station would have allowed, we should have gratified you with all the willingness imaginable; but the point you insist on is so unaccountable, and ill-complexioned, that the Catholick Church can by no means give her consent. St. Ambrose chose rather to run the utmost hazard than to resign a Church to the emperor. 'Be not carried into so dangerous a mistake,' says he to the emperor, as to think that spiritual matters, and things within my administration, are part of the jurisdiction of the crown. Be not elated with your purple; but, if you desire a long
K. of Eng.
reign over men, take care to behave yourself like a HENRY I. subject to God Almighty; for it is written, 'let Cæsar have what belongs to him, but give unto God the things that are God's.' Now the palaces belong to the emperor, but the churches to the bishops. The town walls are under your majesty's command, but not those of the consecrated buildings. Why,' says St. Ambrose, 'should you concern yourself for an adulteress? Now she that is not lawfully married must certainly lie under that imputation.' Thus, your highness," continues the pope, "may perceive, that Church is called an adulteress, which is not fairly married. Now every bishop is the husband of his Church, as appears by the scripture, where the surviving brother is commanded to marry his brother's wife, to raise up seed to his brother. Your highness may easily conceive how ignominious, how criminal, it is for a mother to be debauched by her children. If, therefore, you are a son of the Church, suffer your mother to be lawfully married; and that God incarnate, and not man, may lead her into this relation. For bishops are made by God Almighty when they are canonically elected; for, as the apostle assures us, no man takes this honour to himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron.' And St. Ambrose tells us, that he that is chosen by an universality, may reasonably be said to receive his character from God Almighty. For,' as that father goes on, 'where the votes are general and unanimous, we need not question but that the motion is inspired, and the choice conducted by our blessed Saviour; and that he will preside over the affair, and bless the solemnity.' Besides, the Prophet David, speaking of the Church, has these words, 'Instead of fathers, thou shalt have children whom Psalm 45. thou mayest make princes in all lands.' Thus we see the Church produces an offspring, and makes princes for her government. We might allege several other testimonies from the holy Scriptures, that bishops, who stand in the relation of husbands, and pastors to the Church, are not to be preferred to this character at the discretion of the secular power. No; this affair is to be regulated by the direction of our blessed Saviour, and the judgment and approbation of the Church. For this reason the emperor Justinian
Abp. Cant.' speaks thus in his Constitutions: 'In the choice of a bishop,' says he, 'there ought to be a strict enquiry into the life of the person, to see whether he has a general good report, and that there be no blemish upon his character.' And a little after, Let everybody have the liberty of making their objections; and if there be any complaint preferred before consecration, let the solemnity be stopped till the case is examined, and the charge disproved.' Thus," as the pope goes on, "that which the emperor declares belongs to the whole diocese, or community, the king is desirous to draw within his own jurisdiction. Farther; by the imperial laws, a bishop is not allowed to take a journey, or appear at court, without leave from his metropolitan. And does your highness think it accountable to make that person a spiritual prince, whom you ought not to admit into your presence without letters of allowance from his archbishop? Nothing can be a greater contradiction to nature than for a son to make his father. Therefore the Therefore the emperor Constantine, of pious memory, was afraid to interpose in ecclesiastical matters. For this reason our predecessors have always opposed this abominable usurpation of investitures; neither could the sharpest persecution from tyrannical princes ever prevail with them to give up the point. Now we trust in Almighty God, that St. Peter, the supreme bishop and prince of the Church, will never lose the reward of his meritorious confession by our mismanagement. We desire your highness, therefore, would not be prepossessed with any irreligious suggestion, as if we had any intention to lessen your authority, or make any new claim upon you in the promotion of bishops. Be pleased rather to consider, that if out of regard to God Almighty you let fall these pretensions, these apparent encroachments upon religion, which we can neither grant, nor yourself exercise with any good conscience, whatever you desire for the future, provided it lies within our power, shall be willingly granted, and we shall be always very ready to promote the honour and interest of your crown. Never think that any part of your prerogative will be lost by desisting from this ungodly encroachment; but conclude rather that your government will have more strength and lustre, when the divine laws and
authority have a due deference. By this means you will HENRYI. have a farther interest in our friendship, and reign under K. of Eng. the happy guardianship and protection of the holy apostles."
1. 3. p. 59, 60, 61.
By this letter, it appears, the pope was resolved not to dispense with the canons in favour of the regale; neither would the king, on the other side, give up that which, for some late reigns, had passed for part of the prerogative.
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When Anselm made his appearance at court, the king The dif commanded him either to do homage, and consecrate the ference kept bishops invested by him, or forthwith to depart the king- tween the king and dom. To this Anselm made answer, that he had given his Anselm. highness an account of what was lately done in this matter by the synod of Rome, and that those who abetted the claim of lay investitures were to be excommunicated. Which way, therefore, was it practicable for him to comply, without pronouncing an excommunication upon himself? And as for the agents at Rome, who moved for a relaxation, they were now returned without any success. To this, the king replied, "What's all this to me? I am resolved not to part with the privilege of my predecessors, nor suffer any person in my dominions, who refuses me the securities of a subject." When Anselm received this message from the king, he was so hardy as to say, "He should not depart the kingdom, but go down to Canterbury, and stand the shock there."
But here Anselm, to speak softly, exceeded the moderation of St. Cyprian; for this holy bishop submitted to banishment at the emperor's order, and refused to return without his leave; but, in excuse of this incompliance, it may be said, that probably the archbishop did not believe the kings of England so absolute as the Roman emperors.
In this dispute between the king and Anselm, the majority of the bishops, and temporal nobility were on the court side; and some of them were very earnest with the king to disengage from any farther connectoin with the see of Rome. Eadmer, 1. 3. p. 62.
But at last, it seems, it was not thought adviseable to proceed to an open rupture without trying a farther expedient. In pursuance of this resolution, the king sent to Anselm to attend him at Windsor, with an intimation of
ANSELM, coming to a temper, and that the former demands would be Abp. Cant. somewhat moderated. When Anselm eame to court, it was agreed in the great council of bishops and barons, that Anselm should be allowed a longer term for deliberation. That in the meantime fresh agents should be dispatched to Rome, with positive instructions to offer the pope this alternative that his holiness must either depart from his former declaration, and relax in the point of investitures, or else be contented with the banishment of Anselm, lose the obedience of the English, and the yearly profits accruing from this kingdom.
The archbishop's agents were two monks, Baldwin, of Bec in Normandy, and Alexander, of Canterbury. The reason of Anselm's sending these men, was not to importune the pope to any farther condescensions, but partly to inform him of the menaces of the English court, and partly to bring back a farther account of the determination of the Roman The king's ambassadors were, Girard, lately translated from Hereford to York, Herbert, bishop of Norwich, and Robert, bishop of Chester. Two of these prelates had business of their own, Girard wanted his pall, and Herbert intended to try for the recovery of his jurisdiction over the abbey of St. Edmundsbury: for, some few years before, in the popedom of Alexander II., Baldwin, abbot of that monastery, had procured a bull to exempt the abbey from all episcopal jurisdiction, only with a salvo for the rights of the see of Canterbury. Archbishop Lanfranc was so far displeased with this matter, that he deprived the abbey of this privilege; neither could the strongest importunity prevail with him to allow it till towards the latter end of his life. Thus we see Lanfranc made no difficulty to reverse an order of the court of Rome, when he found it prejudicial to the right of the diocesan, and break in upon the ancient government of the Church.
Fresh agents sent to Rome.
And here, by Alexander the second's bull of privilege to the abbey of Bury, it is plain sir Edward Coke was misA mistake in taken in founding the exemption of that monastery upon the Sir Edward king's charter. It is true he cites the Year Book of Edward
III. for his opinion; but to this it may be replied, that the king's courts are not always infallible in their decisions. Were the case otherwise, there would be no occasion for