338 THE GLORY OF CHRISTENDOM THE NEMESIS OF POWER 339 were confiscated, and he was charged with speaking

and prophesying against the King, a crime in every medieval state. Bishop Saisset's appeal to the Pope was ignored, and William of Nogaret drew up charges against him, many based on no evidence at all.l27 Though Bishop Saisset had evidently been indiscreet and some of the charges against him were probably true, the Pope could not ignore a challenge of this magnitude. He responded in November 1301 with a demand that Philip IV release Bishop Saisset at once and return his confiscated estates, threatening the King with excommunication if he did not do so. He followed this a day later with the bull Ausculta fili ("Listen, son!") suspending the exemptions from Clericis laicos' restrictions on financial levies on the Church which he had previously granted to Philip, and condemning Philip for misgovernment and disrespect for the Church and its bishops.t2' The introductory sentence of Ausculta fili again displayed Boniface VIII's unfortunate tendency to word his directives and offer his counsel in very provocative fashion: "Listen, son, to the words of thy father and to the teachings of thy master who, on this earth, holds the place of Him Who is the sole Master and Lord." t29 The doctrine was sound, but for the Pope to refer to himself as the king's "master" was not the most tactful way to state it. Boniface VIII followed this with another bull, Salvator mundi, in December, explicitly revoking the exemptions from Clericis laicos which he had given to Philip IV and forbidding the payment of any Church revenues to Philip without specific Papal authorization. 130 Ausculta fili was received at the French court in February 1302 and was promptly burned. 131 Pierre Flotte, Philip's chief minister, then forged a Papal bull (Scire te volumus) which explicitly claimed temporal authority for the Pope in France, denied the King the income even of vacant sees and benefices, and condemned as heretics all who disagreed. In April Philip called the first known meeting of the Estates-General (the French parliament, not to be confused with the special courts known as parlements) at which the forged bull was presented as the document Boniface VIII had actually sent to Philip. The king declared that all who opposed him in this matter and supported the Pope would be treated as his personal enemies. The papal emissary who had brought Ausculta fili to Paris was expelled from France along with Bishop Saisset, and Bishop Peter de Mornay of Auxerre was sent to Rome bearing letters from the EstatesGeneral condemning the Pope's action.l3z The gauntlet had been thrown down, and Pope Boniface VIII did not hesitate to pick it up. He received Bishop Peter de Mornay in consistory with his cardinals, all of whom gave him full support. Cardinal Acquasparta opened the meeting with a lengthy explanation of the distinction among spiritual authority, temporal authority, and the Pope's right and duty to act as the moral judge of kings. Boniface denounced the forgery of the bull Scire te volumus, saying that of course he had never claimed and would never claim temporal authority over France, and reproving the French bishops for appearing to believe that he had; but, he went on, "our predecessors have deposed three kings of France; and, we say it with sorrow, we are ready to depose one like a groom."133 Whether the Pope could, strictly speaking, depose a king was debatable, for absolving a king's subjects from their duty of allegiance and obedience was not quite that; but did he really need to add "like a groom"? That spring the people of Flanders had risen against Philip IV's autocratic rule much as the people of Palermo had risen against Charles I of Naples in the "Sicilian Vespers," and in July 1302 the Flemish army defeated the French at the Battle of Courtrai. Pierre Flotte and Count Robert of Artois, who had done much to stir up the conflict between Philip IV and the Pope, were killed in the battle. There was briefly some hope that their elimination might reduce the tension between king and Pope; but the appointment of the able and utterly unscrupulous William of Nogaret as "first lawyer of the realm" suggested otherwise." Boniface VIII, perhaps hoping for support from Edward I of England, abandoned the cause of the Scots in August, rebuking the patriotic Scots bishops as "sowers of discord" and urging them to accept Edward's authority. t3s But he saw no grounds for compromise with Philip IV, and on November 18, 1302 issued the bull Unam sanctam proclaiming, in the strongest terms in papal history, the superiority of the Pope's authority over all other authority, and his right and duty to be the moral judge of kings. It did not specifically claim the exercise of universal temporal authority for the Pope, but its language was open to the interpretation that it made such a claim. The imprudence of its language has caused trouble for the Church from its own time 127 Mann, Popes in the Middle Ages, XIX, 324-328; Boase, Boniface VIII, pp. 298-300; Strayer, Philip the Fair, pp. 262, 265-266; Curley, Conflict between Pope Boniface VIII and Philip IV, pp. 90-94.

Strayer, Philip the Fair, pp. 267-268; Boase, Boniface VIII, pp. 301-303, 310-311; Mann, Popes in the Middle Ages, XIX, 319-323; Curley, Conflict between Pope Boniface VIII and Philip IV, pp. 94-96. 129 Mann, Popes in the Middle Ages, XIX, 321. 13°Boase, Boniface VIII, p. 301. 13t lbid., p. 304. Strayer, Philip the Fair, p. 270, doubts that the bull was burned, but Digard, Philippe le bel, II,


95n-96n, provides solid evidence that it was. Mann, Popes in the Middle Ages, XIX, 331-334, 337-340; Boase, Boniface VIII, pp. 305-307; Curley, Conflict between Pope Boniface VIII and Philip IV pp. 99-105; Strayer, Phil* the Fair, pp. 271-272. 1% Mann, Popes in the Middle Ages, XIX, 340-345 (quotation on p. 343); Boase, Boniface VIII, pp. 308-311; Curley, Conflict between Pope Boniface VIII and Philip IV, pp. 105-111. 13° Strayer, Philip the Fair, pp. 333-335; Boase, Boniface VIII, pp. 312, 316-317; Curley, Conflict between Pope Boniface VIII and Philip IV, p. 112; Pegues, Lawyers of the Last Capetians, p. 46. 13s Boase, Boniface VIII, pp. 327-328; Powicke, Thirteenth Century, pp. 709-710.

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