Christianity’s Criminal History, 140

For the context of these translations click here

(Left, Pope Gregory in the great window at
the Church of the Good Shepherd (Rosemont, Pennsylvania).)

Modern research attributes to this pope regular studies and very solid instruction, ‘an eminent cultural and moral training’ (RAC XII 1983). However, precise data on Gregory’s scientific culture are lacking. In that blessed Christian age, it did not actually exist. ‘Criticism and judgment fade’, wrote Ferdinand Gregorovius in the middle of the 19th century. We no longer hear from schools of rhetoric, dialectics and jurisprudence in Rome. Instead, he discovers that ‘more room than ever has been made for mystical enthusiasm and material worship’. And in much more recent times Jeffrey Richards confirms: ‘The philosophical and scientific training had long since disappeared’. Gregory had probably only studied Roman law, having reached the last remnant of classical training …

At that time there was hardly anyone in Rome who knew Greek. And the papal biographers of the Liber Pontificalis show how badly Latin was written… For Gregory the only relevant philosophy is in the Bible, ‘his supreme authority’ (Evans). And all the wisdom in the world, ‘science, the beauty of literature, the liberal arts’ are things that only serve for the intelligence ‘of Scripture’, that is, for a life of constant repentance and penance. But everything that does not directly serves religion is rejected by Gregory. He eliminates it completely.

The pope, one of the four ‘great’ fathers of the Latin Church and patron of educated people, ordered the burning of the imperial library on the Palatine (where the western emperors, their Germanic heirs and the Byzantine rulers continued to reside) as well as the library of the Capitol. In any case, the English scholar John of Salisbury, bishop of Chartres, affirms that the pope had had manuscripts of classical authors destroyed in Roman libraries.
 

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Editor’s Note:

See what Catherine Nixey says in this section of her book about the destruction of old libraries by Christians. Even if he had not been assassinated, I believe that George Lincoln Rockwell would have failed because he never saw that it was not yet time to do any activism, but to spend long and painful years in the temple of ‘Delphi’, so to speak.

For those who survived him after the attack that took his life, the correct tactic would have been to follow what Rockwell had started with the journal National Socialist World, but this time bringing out the true history of our parents’ religion. Himmler and his gang had already done something similar with their pamphlets for the members of the SS, since they already contemplated the CQ although in a more embryonic way than we do in The West’s Darkest Hour. And the German psyche had already been prepared by 19th-century philosophers like Schelling and Hegel, who spoke of a more pantheistic conception of ‘God’ than the crude theism of Judeo-Christians.

Jumping directly into activism in 1960s America, as Rockwell did, tacitly implied that the masses of Americans were already awake and that they only needed a good guide. But they weren’t. And not even the pundits of white nationalism today are. Otherwise, by now they would have said something about the climax of the essay considered the masthead of this site:

435 CE: In this year occurs the most significant action on the part of Emperor Theodosius II: He openly proclaims that the only legal religion in Rome apart from Christianity is Judaism! Through a bizarre, subterranean and astonishing struggle, Judaism has not only persecuted the old culture, and Rome, its mortal archenemy, adopts a Jewish creed—but the Jewish religion itself, so despised and insulted by the old Romans, is now elevated as the only official religion of Rome along with Christianity!

Using the metaphors of Savitri, there can be no ‘lightning’ (action) without ‘sun’ (wisdom), and the fact is that in white nationalism the blackest darkness reigns just before the dawn, as they are still allergic to Delphi’s wisdom by ignoring Christianity’s history. Karlheinz Deschner continues:
 

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Around 600 Gregory lectured harshly in a letter to the Gallic bishop Desiderius of Vienne, because he taught classical grammar and literature. Filled with shame and ‘great disgust’ he attributes to his ‘grave iniquity’ a blasphemous occupation, as if the same mouth could not ‘sing the praises of Jupiter and the praises of Christ’.

Christianity’s Criminal History, 139

For the context of these translations click here

 

Gregory I, work of the Danish sculptor
Christian Carl Peters (1883-1884).
Frederik’s Church, Copenhagen.

We can thus consider Gregory as the founder of the temporal power of the papacy. Without yet existing a Church-State there was already a kind of State, or at least an important factor of power. Gregory elected the bishops, together with the large landowners, the provincial governors and defined their powers, especially the judicial power. The pope also influenced commerce and controlled, in conjunction with the senate, measures and weights. And to him they belonged—this being perhaps what increased his power the most—enormous territorial extensions, great agricultural estates throughout Italy and beyond.

Despite everything Gregory remained, like his predecessors, the subject of the emperor, his superior. The imperial person and government were considered sacred. The monarch of Byzantium also fought ‘heresies’, promulgated ecclesiastical edicts and convened councils…

Between the exarch of Ravenna and the pope there were no good relations. Italy, and especially the territorial chaos of its middle part, was a focus of small, almost continuous wars. That is why the exarch wanted to protect the corridor of land between Ravenna and Rome, and the pope himself wanted to protect Rome; but there were no longer enough troops for it. The Roman garrison, considerably depleted by the plague and without receiving soldiers, was on the brink of a mutiny.

Gregory assumed command. He took charge of the city, intervening decisively in all military actions, from the appointment of officers to the operations of the generals or the negotiation of armistice conditions. He took care that no one evaded the service of arms under the pretext of service to the Church. Furthermore, he recruited people from the monasteries to guard the city walls, although he avoided putting soldiers in the nunnery monasteries. He even designed military installations for Campania, Corsica and Sardinia. He took care to reinforce the weak points of the imperial enclaves with reinforcement troops and fortifications. He appointed a commander for Naples, whose population he threatened: ‘Whoever opposes his just orders will be considered as a rebel against Us, and whoever obeys him obeys Us…’

 
The beginning of papal propaganda in England

The beginnings of Christianity in Britain remains in the dark. Early Northern Christians had been Scandinavian merchants. In the year 314 there is a testimony of three British bishops who participated in the synod of Arles.

Roman rule over Britain, established in 43 c.e. by Emperor Claudius with four legions (barely 40,000 men), had finished around 400. In 383 Theodosius abandoned Hadrian’s Wall, and at the beginning of the 5th century the Romans, under the orders of Stilicho and Constantius III, withdrew. Faced with the attacks of Picts and Scots, the British called to their aid the Germanic tribes of Jutes and Saxons, and later also the Angles, who created a series of regional kingdoms that fought each other. Such were those of Kent, Sussex, Essex, and Wessex as well as those later of Mercia, Northumbria, and Middlesex, both rising to supremacy. But the period between 450 and 600, called Dark Ages, remains the least known period in English history.

In the time of Gregory the province of Brittany of the old Roman rule consisted of the Roman-British kingdoms in the west and the pagan kingdoms of the Anglo-Saxons, who had established themselves in the rest of the island territory. In August 598, Gregory wrote to Bishop Eulogius of Alexandria that the Anglo people lived ‘in an outer corner of the world’ and that ‘they still venerate the tree and the stone…’ with a veneration that was not without sense and beauty.

Towards the end of the 6th century King Ethelbert of Kent married the Merovingian and Catholic princess Berta, great-granddaughter of Clovis, niece of Brunichilde and daughter of the Frankish King Chabert of Paris. In her entourage was Bishop Liuthard, who was supposed to celebrate the Christian liturgy, although Ethelbert was still a pagan. But upon becoming the most powerful king of England and being recognised as sovereign, Gregory hastened to send (595-596) the prior of his monastery of St. Andrew, Augustine, with some 40 monks, as emissaries to the ‘barbarians’… Unfortunately Ethelbert allowed the Roman monks to develop their propaganda in the kingdom…

The fables of the Trinity and Peter, etc., now replaced the cult of Odin and the Druids. At Pentecost 597, or more likely 601—if it really happened—the king had many Angles baptised. There are no sure testimonies of the ‘conversion’ of Ethelbert, but he was certainly the founder of three Episcopal churches in Kent and Essex: those of Canterbury, Rochester and London, which already existed in 604 when Augustine died. And with his predominantly civil laws the king protected ecclesiastical possessions as well. But at his death in 616 (or 618), and this does appear with certainty, his son and his successor Eadbald was still pagan, and so was probably his second wife.

In 602 reinforcements arrived from Rome. Abbot Mellitus, who two years later was already bishop of London, came with his troops dressed in monastic robes, carrying all kinds of ornaments, sacred vessels, relics, and various papal letters. The news of the conversion reached Constantinople. Nor was the exhortation lacking to destroy paganism and to continue the work of conversion amid the warnings and evocations of the terror of the final judgment. ‘Therefore, my most illustrious son’, Gregory wrote to the king, ‘keep carefully the grace you have received from God and hasten to spread the faith among the people who are subject to you. Increase still more your noble zeal for conversion; suppress idolatry, destroy their temples and altars…’

Thus wrote the preacher of humility. But when the occasion required it—and that was always the supreme rule of his conduct—Gregory knew how to act with greater caution and adopt an apparently more conciliatory tone, which at times may even seem comical. For example, to his ‘dearest son’, Abbot Mellitus, leader of the new troop of propagandists, he wrote that he had resolved

after long reflection on the situation of the Anglos. It is unnecessary to destroy the pagan temples of those towns, but only the idols that are in them. Then those temples must be sprinkled with holy water, altars erected and relics deposited. Because if such temples are well built, they can perfectly be transformed from a dwelling place of demons into houses of the true God, so that if the same people don’t see their temples destroyed, lay down their error from their hearts, recognise the true God and pray and go to the usual places according to their old custom…

Isn’t this a magnificent religion? If the temples are ‘well built’ there is no need to demolish the devil’s work. None of that: they can then serve the work of God. You just have to destroy the ‘idols’ and let the new ones in exclusively.

Christianity’s Criminal History, 138

For the context of these translations click here

Use and abuse of slaves as livestock

From Gregory himself we know that many bishops did not care for the oppressed or the poor. On the occasion of the appointment of the defensor romanus as rector, he wrote to the coloni of Syracuse:

I therefore recommend that you obey his orders with good spirit, which he considers appropriate for the furtherance of the interests of the Church. We have authorised him to severely punish anyone who dares to be disobedient or rebellious. We have also instructed him to resume the investigations on all slaves who belong to the Church but who have escaped and to recover with all prudence, energy and promptness the lands that someone illegally occupies.

For the cultivation of his lands it is natural that Gregory needed entire armies of slaves, of settlers tied to the ground. ‘Free ecclesial peasants were scarce’ (Gontard). The pope did not confront slavery. Where else could the ‘treasurer of the poor’ have obtained the money to meet his needs? Not to mention the maintenance of ‘jobs’, which in his time was the concern of any master. Gregory certainly reminds the lords—for his Church will have to do justice to the rich and the poor simultaneously, which is perhaps the greatest of all his miracles—that slaves are people and that they have been raised equal by nature to their masters. But although men have been created equal, absolutely equal, without a doubt that circumstances have completely changed. Then it would be necessary, according to Gregory himself, to admonish the slaves ‘so that at all times they consider the baseness of their state’ and that they ‘offend God, when with their presumptuous behaviour they contravene the order established by him’. Slaves, the holy father teaches, must ‘consider themselves as servants of the lords’, and lords as ‘fellow-servants among servants’. Beautiful expression!

Isn’t this a profitable religion? By nature, Gregory teaches that ‘all men are equal’ but a ‘mysterious disposition’ places ‘some below others’, creates the ‘diversity of states’, and of course as ‘a sequel to sin’. Conclusion: ‘Since each man does not walk in the same way through life, one has to dominate over others’. God and the Church—which in practice are always identified with the high clergy!—exists for the maintenance of slavery. And from Great Britain to Italy, passing through Gaul, there was in his time a constant trade in Christian slaves.

The Roman Church needed slaves, and the monasteries needed them. Gregory himself encouraged, through the Gallic rector Candide, the purchase of Anglic boy slaves for the Roman monasteries. Everyone bought and abused slaves as if they were cattle. And even to an enemy such as Agilulf, king of the Lombards, the pope could assure him that the labour of the forced ones would be beneficial to both parties. If the most unfortunate escaped their misery, which happened frequently enough, the holy father naturally pressed to be returned to their owners. He chased the escaped slave from a Roman monastery as well as the escaped baker from his brother. But then the pope was magnanimous and instead of punishing the crime of the coloni with the deprivation of his possessions, he wanted to see them punished with a beating by ‘duly returning the slaves to his friends’ (Richards).

Gregory, who insistently proclaimed the imminent end of the world, and who with the struggle for faith made this preaching the ‘guiding idea’ of his pontificate, still had time to do great business. And he made Saint Peter an increasingly wealthy character. He greatly increased the profits of his estate and laid the foundations for the decisive and victorious territorial rule of the papacy. With his Sicilian latifundia he supplied grain to Rome, paid the imperial troops of the Roman parts, took care of supplies and defence, and in times of crisis he even commanded the Roman garrison. In this way the ‘treasurer of the poor’, as he called himself, set in motion the evolution towards the State of the Church, with a hardly imaginable sequence of failures, wars and deceptions.

Christianity’s Criminal History, 137

For the context of these translations click here

Saint Gregory the Great
by Francisco Goya.

‘The property of the poor’

The same man who prophesied the calamitous end of the world and the impending divine judgment carried out an ecclesiastical property policy as intense as if that divine judgment were never to come.

The pope had a series of well-organised patrimonies, about fifteen at the beginning of his pontificate, and territory of many hundreds of square kilometres, called the patrimony of St. Peter. This meant that all this did not belong to the pope, the clergy or the Church, but actually belonged to the blessed prince of the Apostles. And that property of Peter extended from North Africa, where to Gregory’s great joy the almost depopulated territories were worked by prisoners of war (the cheapest ‘labour’), passing through Italy, the urban territory of Rome (Patrimonium urbanum), to Corsica, Sardinia, Dalmatia, Istria and Provence: a property of enormous extension and certainly the largest in Italy. Much of it came from imperial foundations. Perhaps the last gigantic increase was due to the estates of the Arian Church, which was plundered after the destruction of the Ostrogoth kingdom. And while private property diminished more and more, the riches of the Church were always increasing.

In Sicily, the granary of Rome since ancient times, the patrimony of ‘Saint Peter’ was so great that Gregory divided it into two administrative centres (rectories): Palermo and Syracuse, with about 400 tenants in total (conductores). And he personally was informed that for years ‘many people suffered violence and injustice by the administrators of Roman ecclesiastical property’, from whom he had deprived them by taking away their slaves. In the exploitation of the territories, the pope had the support of some of his closest associates as well as the rectors of different patrimonies (obliged with an oath before the supposed tomb of Peter, covered by him with 100 pounds of gold).

Gregory, who ordered the deacons of Catania to wear sandals (compagi) because it was the only thing allowed to Roman deacons, despite his gloomy penitential sermons and his corrosive expectation of the destruction of the world, still found time, surprisingly long, to take care of the fields, the belly mares, the old oxen, the useless cows and the slaves, who had to be naturally baptised members of the holy Church whenever possible. The methods of the holy father do not seem to have been too scrupulous. The main reason was to increase revenue before the impending doomsday and to present the boss with a perfect balance sheet. It has been written that his slogan was: ‘Prestige, efficiency and discipline’. Today, that could be the creed of any American marketing scholar…

Papal real estate continually provided Gregory with large amounts of merchandise and money, making the Catholic Church the leading economic power in Italy… The miserable peasants who were already being deprived with the taxes on the land (burdatio) that were collected three times a year, in addition to the leases and deliveries to the Holy Catholic Church, saw themselves oppressed… But Gregory called himself ‘treasurer of the poor’, describing the immense pontifical riches as ‘the property of the poor’: one ‘of the most beautiful expressions of him’, sings the Church History Manual.

Christianity’s Criminal History, 136

For the context of these translations click here

 

The altar of Gregory in St. Peter’s Basilica
contains the remains of Pope Gregory.

 
‘Thinking different from most—almost a crime worthy of death’

Soon this pope, like most of his predecessors and especially those who followed him, intervened harshly against those who thought differently, against all non-Catholics. His great goal was propagatio fidei, the planned extension of papal power, at almost any cost.

For this reason he interfered in the affairs of England and in the Frank-Merovingian kingdom, whose kings he vainly sought to win over to ecclesiastical reform. He recommended torture and imprisonment as coercive means, and occasionally also the peaceful transformation of pagan places of worship or Gentile customs, ‘so that people thus confidently go to the usual places’, always following the circumstances. He also advised, on occasion, promising converts a tax cut and ‘converting’ the stubborn with higher taxes. To the Sardinians, who still persisted in their paganism, their bishop had to Christianise them by force, as if they were slaves!

But not only did Gregory propagate the conversion of the ‘pagans’ in Sardinia, Sicily, Corsica, and elsewhere. He also tirelessly fought ‘heresy’ and intervened with great zeal in the war against heretics within the missionary war for the expansion of the faith outward, gladly called ‘defence of the Roman Church’ or ‘the pastoral care of the pope’. Not even those who were simply outsiders or disagreed could remain unmolested. ‘Thinking differently than most, leading a different way of life from that led by people in general, increasingly meant a direct questioning of the doctrines and practices of the common people, already constituting almost a crime worthy of death’ (Herrmann)…

Gregory was a propagandist convinced of the virtue of humility. And humble, of course, it is only he who is where the pope is and obeys him with the greatest submission. Conversely, in Gregory’s mind a ‘heretic’ could in no way be humble. The ‘heresy’ was a priori the opposite, a division of hearts, the ruin of souls, a service to Baal and the devil; it was apostasy, rebellion and pride. ‘The place of heretics is pride itself… the place of the wicked is pride, as conversely humility is the place of good’. Tolerance towards ‘heretics’ was unthinkable from the beginning, from New Testament times. The ‘heretics’ were already fought in the primitive Church as ‘antichrists’, as ‘firstborn of Satan’, ‘animals in human form’, ‘beasts’, ‘devils’, ‘slaughter cattle for hell’ and so on. All of this was, indeed, an old and accepted tradition in the Church, which a worthy predecessor of Gregory, Pope Gelasius I (492-496), had summed up in this sentence: ‘Tolerance towards heretics is more pernicious than the most terrible destructions of the provinces by the barbarians’.

In Africa, where after the total annihilation of the Arian vandals the Catholic imperial house prevailed again, the pope was annoyed by the Manicheans, some remains of the Arians, and to a great extent also the Donatists. Once again, as in Augustine’s time, domination was the champion of the impoverished! But soon Gregory forced the repression of the ‘heretics’. In a letter to the African prefect in 593, he is extremely surprised that the state does not act energetically against the sectarians. He later protested also by sending three bishops as delegates to Constantinople before the emperor, for the violation of the imperial laws in Africa. But the truth is that in the second half of his pontificate there is no longer any talk of the Donatists at all.

The ‘great’ pope hated anything that wasn’t Catholic, otherwise he wouldn’t have been ‘great’…

For Gregory the pagans had neither divine nor human rights. And messing it all up—as has been done in his circles to this day—he presented the pagans as persecutors of the Catholics! It is true that he did not advocate outright violence, lashing, torture and jail at any cost for the Gentiles, who according to him ‘live like wild animals’. Nothing of that! Magnanimous and good-natured as he was, he cordially encouraged to wipe out the pagan tenants from ecclesiastical lands by financial imposition. The stubborn and hard-headed peasant who refused ‘to return to the Lord God’ had to ‘be burdened with so many taxes that this punishment would push him to enter the right path as quickly as possible’.

And if even with the most unbearable tax pressure someone was reluctant to enter ‘the right path’, the Holy Father was a little tougher. He then ordered a rigorous prison and, in the case of slaves, even torture which Augustine, the preacher of the mansuetudo catholica or ecclesial meekness, already allowed. And he allowed it not only with slaves but also with all schismatics (Donatists). The clever Numidian thinker twists the words and calls torture emendatio, as if it were a kind of baptismal cure and preparation, a trifle compared to hell.

Gregory thus Christianised the sad remains of Sardinian paganism in the light of doctor Augustine. In 599 he exhorted by letter ‘with the greatest fervour’ to Archbishop Januarius of Cagliari ‘to pastoral vigilance against idolaters’. He first recommended conversion through ‘a convincing exhortation’ and not without evoking ‘divine judgment’. Then he wrote clearly:

But if you find that they are not willing to change their way of life, we wish that you arrest them with all zeal. If they are slaves, punish them with whipping and torment, seeking their correction. But if they are free people, they must be led to repentance employing severe prison, as it should be, so that those who despise hearing the words of redemption, which save them from the danger of death, may in any case be returned by bodily torments to the desired healthy faith.

Through bodily torments a healthy Catholic mentality is achieved…

At that time, ‘pagans’ still existed in many regions, not only where Archbishop Januarius himself tolerated them among his tenants. There were pagans in Corsica, in Sicily, in Campania, let alone in Gaul and even in Great Britain. Everywhere Gregory pushed for their disappearance.

For this he not only set in motion his clergy but the nobility, the landowners and the civil arm too. He had to strike everywhere in union with the ecclesiastical arm. Thus, in 593 he ordered the praetor of Sicily to render all his assistance to the bishop of Tyndaris in his work of annihilating the ‘pagans’. And in 598 he ordered Agnelo of Terracina to seek out the tree worshipers and punish them so that ‘paganism’ would not be passed on to others. He also required the assistance of Mauro, the local military commander. And of course all of this happened, to put it in the words of John the Deacon, ‘through the application of legitimate authority’.

Pope Gregory accepted and even openly sanctioned the religious war to subdue the Gentiles… They had to submit by force without further ado and then more or less smoothly seek conversion: a rule that the Catholic historian Friedrich Heer defines as ‘the Christian policy of conquest and expansion until the eve of the First World War’. In this regard Gregory worked, as we see in his letter to the emperor, with the old Ambrosian idea that ‘the peace of the res publica depends on the peace of the universal Church’. He consequently kept his military commanders and even his own soldiery, which repeatedly prevailed victorious… In the eyes of the Catholic historian of the popes, all this happened ‘in an absolutely natural way’ as by himself Pope Gregory was ‘the bulwark and leader’, the ‘consul of God’, who took in his hands ‘in an autonomous way the history of Italy, the history of his country’.

Christianity’s Criminal History, 135

For the context of these translations click here

 
Left, Mass of St. Gregory, c. 1490, attributed to Diego de la Cruz, oil and gold on panel (Philadelphia Museum of Art).

From Gregory I, the humble servant of servants, until the 20th century it is well known that the popes had their feet kissed. The peculiarities were regulated by the ceremonial books. But, as we also know, the one who was actually being kissed was not his foot, but God’s. That is why all the emperors, including Charles V, also regularly performed this ugly rite on the portico of St. Peter’s basilica.

It is understood that Gregory’s personal conscience was marked by the origin, career and status of his character. He always made himself respected by both the clergy and the laity. In modern parlance it could be said that he was a Law-and-order type, a person of order, a former prefect of police, a judge of the criminal who strongly insisted on obedience and discipline, especially by monks and nuns, taking a special interest in their morality—or immorality—as well as in the observance of their vow of poverty.

Gregory used to call his clerics and officials, whose influence was decisive in the Roman municipal administration, ‘soldiers of Peter’ and also ‘soldiers of the Roman Church’ (milites beati Petri, milites Ecclesiae romanae). The first monk elevated to the pontifical throne administered the Lateran almost in the manner of a monastery, populating it in any case with monks, whom he elected to high offices. But he, who adopted the humble monastic catchphrase of ‘servant of the servants of God’—which after his death became an official title of the popes—naturally wanted to be ‘the first servant in the Church of God’ (Altendorf).

Gregory never used the name of St. Peter without the tag ‘prince of the apostles’. He strictly forbade subjects (subditi) to dare to pass judgment on the life of prelates or superiors (praepositi). Even if they were unworthy and justly deserved to be censured, they should not be reproached. Rather, one had to voluntarily embrace the yoke of reverence.

 
The man of double standards

Where he had power, Gregory exercised it without regard, very proud of his justice in front of his subordinates. Archdeacon Lorenzo, who for his sake was preferred in the papal succession and who could not hide his disappointment, lost his post. A year later, Gregory burned him in a solemn ceremony and in the presence of all the clergy ‘for his pride and other crimes’.

Yet more significant is the following event. The monk Justus, a doctor at the Monastery of Saint Andrew, who cared for the increasingly ill pope, confessed to brother Copious that he had hidden three gold coins. When Gregory found out, he rigorously forbade anyone to treat Justus, that no one from the monastery should visit him on his deathbed or assist him. And after his death his corpse had to be thrown with the three coins into a dunghill while the assembly shouted: ‘To hell with you and your money!’

With such severity Gregory understood the monastic vow although, personally, everything that he hadn’t given to his monasteries he sold, distributing the money among the poor. As a monk he was so wealthy that in 587 he was able to make another donation to the Monastery of Saint Andrew (to which with the expression of owner he called ‘my monastery’). Furthermore, at least thirteen years after becoming a Benedictine monk, he still possessed many rustic goods.

Undoubtedly, the pope was also a man of compromise and double standards. As hard as he was always with the defrocked monks and nuns, forcing them to return to the monastery, in the case of nobles he could make exceptions.

Venantius, a patrician of Syracuse and probably a friend of Gregory, left his monastery in contempt of the ecclesiastical precept. He took home the beautiful and dominant lady Italica who made him the father of two girls, also becoming the epicentre of a circle of anti-monastic literati. But Gregory didn’t force him to return to the monastery. He only tried with great effort to convince him to do it voluntarily, although in vain. What is more, he aided the children born of that anti-canonical marriage, proving once more—as Jeffrey Richards, his modern and often benevolent biographer says—‘that in Gregory’s image of the world was a law for the rich, and another for the poor’…

One last example about Gregory’s double standards: When Bishop Andrew beat a poor woman who lived off ecclesiastical charity so barbarically that she died shortly after, the pope simply forbade him to celebrate Mass for two months—perhaps to the satisfaction of the bishop himself. On the contrary, Gregory had ‘all carnal sinners’ locked up in the prisons of the monasteries, so that a modern researcher (Grupp) writes that this ‘evokes the old slaveholders’, taking such crowds into those monastic houses of repression that according to the monk John Climacus—a contemporary of Gregory, somewhat younger than him—they ‘could hardly take a step’.

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Editor’s note. ‘But, as we also know, the one who was actually being kissed was not his foot, but God’s’.

This means that even proud kings had to symbolically kiss the feet of the god of the Jews, since the god of the New Testament is the same as the god of the Old Testament.

When will American white nationalists see something so obvious? Or is it that they don’t realise that the Christian religion of our parents is somehow connected with the empowerment of Jewry?

Published in: on February 1, 2021 at 1:30 pm  Comments Off on Christianity’s Criminal History, 135  

Christianity’s Criminal History, 134

For the context of these translations click here

 

CHAPTER 7

Pope Gregory I (590-604)

A 1627 interpretation of Gregorio
Magno by Francisco de Zurbarán

‘Just and loving was Gregory, both with the poor and the economically weak, as with the slaves, the heretics and the Jews.’ —F.M. Stratmann, Catholic theologian

‘The history of the Church has not produced many characters who have rightfully carried the nickname of The Great’. —Heinrich Kraft

‘Nor was it the worst that he advised proceeding against the recalcitrant with whipping, torture and jail, but with naive cynicism he recommended the increase in taxes as a means of conversion: those who converted had to be relieved of the established taxes, and those who were reluctant had to be softened with tax pressure’. —Johannes Haller
 

The flight from the world and the desire to make a career

Of the more than 260 popes, only Leo I and St. Gregory I (590-604) are the pontiffs who, in addition to the title of Doctors of the Church, bear the appellation of ‘The Great’ (San Gregorio Magno). He came from the ‘big world’. The first monk who reached the supposed chair of Peter was of the senatorial lineage of the Anicius; that is to say, of the high and rich Roman nobility, de senatoribus primis. All ecclesiastical writers emphasise the ‘noble’ or rich origin of their heroes. Even in the purely external aspect of him it was the ‘miracle of his time’ for being a man of average height, with small, yellowish eyes, a discreet aquiline nose, and four miserable little curls, and a powerful, almost bald skull: a miracle in himself, and not only in his time. Well, that truly extraordinary head multiplied and, like a holy relic, it could be in many cities at the same time: Constance, for example, possessed the head of Gregory, as did Prague, Lisbon and Sens.

By 573 Gregory was praefectus urbis, the highest civil office in Rome. Decked out in precious stones and flanked by an armed personal guard, he resided in a sumptuous palace because, although he was ‘already driven by the yearning for heaven’, as he confesses, he was interested in beautiful appearances, in their ‘external standard of living’ and without excessive disgust he served ‘the earthly world’.

The family was wealthy with possessions in and around Rome, and especially in Sicily. He even had contacts in Constantinople, and also apparently was intensely religious. Wealth and religion are not excluded in any way. Quite the contrary: whoever God loves makes him rich, and despite the camels and the needle eyes, he gets to heaven. The powerful bloodline of Gregory had already given the world two popes: Agapetus I and Felix III, whom he himself calls his ancestor (atavus). And the Church also canonised his mother Silvia…

Already between his election and consecration on September 3, 590, Gregory, who because of his weakness almost always lay in bed, had called to fight the bubonic plague from Egypt, to which even his predecessor Pelagius II had succumbed on February 8, 590.

Of course, Gregory declared the plague as punishment from God, as revenge for the sins of the Lombards, the ‘pagans’, the ‘heretics’ and demanded their conversion ‘to the true and upright Catholic faith’ through repentance, penance, prayers and songs of Psalms for three days, ‘while it is still time for tears’.

He also set in motion among the ruins of the destroyed city a spectacular seven-round procession—with it Ferdinand Gregorovius begins History of Rome in the Middle Ages—with pitiful choral songs and tedious invocations to all possible martyrs, including those who never had existed but were invented in the bloody comedy of the doctor of the Church, St. Ambrose of Milan. The success was tremendous but an eyewitness told St. Gregory of Tours that then ‘in the space of an hour, while the people raised their voices in prayer to the Lord, eighty men collapsed and fell dead’. In any case, in Constantinople, by God’s inscrutable design, between 542 and 544 the plague had claimed the lives of 300,000 people.

Amid such gloomy feelings, visions and realities of worldly decay—not only was the plague raging: ancient temples were also being razed, and even the papal granaries and churches—, Gregory, who has been called ‘the last Roman’ and ‘the first medieval pope’, surprisingly started his career knowing exactly what he wanted…

In 590 Gregory ascended the pontifical throne despite his ailments and, naturally, supposedly against his will. This was part of the etiquette and until the 20th century it has been part of clerical hypocrisy. In his time, however, even the humblest ecclesiastical offices were so coveted that in 592 or 593 Emperor Maurice forbade soldiers from entering monasteries and civil servants from embracing the clerical state. And Gregory knew very well that ‘someone who strips off his worldly garments to immediately occupy an ecclesiastical office only changes places, but doesn’t leave the world’.

Published in: on January 28, 2021 at 11:55 am  Comments Off on Christianity’s Criminal History, 134  

Christianity’s Criminal History, 133

Christianity does not belong to the church! It might have once, but certainly not since the American and French Revolutions. Secularisation rarely opened doors to atheism—more often, it made the Jewish creed reborn in fierce anti-Aryan liberalism where the empty idea of money trumps the sacred matter of blood and soil. Only in Germany did Jesus die—and yet, he resurrected in 1945, in the unholy spirit of anti-racism, anti-discrimination, of egalitarian idealism that draws no distinction between the Aryan and the Negro, dead and alive, living and a rock. A faith so crudely nihilistic nobody dares to believe its malice—and yet, it permeates the entire sick body of Europe!—cf. the essay ‘The Red Giant’.

—Adûnâi

Editor’s note: This recent comment by Adûnâi on The Unz Review doesn’t mean that he has earned the privilege of commenting here. It only means that what drives me to continue with these instalments of Karlheinz Deschner’s Christianity’s Criminal History is the red giant, a nova that’s engulfing the West: Christianity in its secular form.

For the context of Deschner’s work see: here.

The Conversion of Reccared I as recreated by
Antonio Muñoz Degrain, Senate Palace, Madrid.

 

CHAPTER 6

The Conversion of the Visigoths to Catholicism

No other country in the Western world experienced such a profound and lasting transformation by Christianity as Spain. —Willliam Culican

After the defeat of Poitiers (507) at the hands of Clovis, the great Toulouse kingdom collapsed completely and the Visigoths, almost entirely expelled from southern France, concentrated in Spain, where they had conquered one province after another. From 473 they were owners of the entire peninsula, except for the small Swabian kingdom in the northwest and the Basque territories of the Bay of Biscay. Its new capital was Toledo, which supplanted Toulouse…

Liuvigild, the last Arian king of the Visigoths, certainly reinforced the power of the crown. He improved the monetary system, and revised the laws, filling in deficiencies and eliminating superfluous aspects. He was the first German prince who founded cities, the most important of which he called Reccopolis, after his son Reccared (in the upper reaches of the Tagus). During his eighteen-year reign he re-unified the Visigothic kingdom, which was crumbling. Even St. Isidore of Seville, who attributes Liuvigild’s successes to the favour of fate and the bravery of his army, admits that the Goths, until then reduced to a small corner in Spain, came to occupy most of the territory. ‘Only the error of heresy obscured the reputation of his bravery’. That was naturally the decisive point: ‘the pernicious poison of that doctrine’, the ‘deadly plague of’ heresy’.

Full of the fury of Arian infidelity, he persecuted the Catholics and exiled most of the bishops. Liuvigild deprived the churches of their income and privileges and through terror he drove many into the Arian pestilence and won many more without persecution with gold and gifts. In addition to other heretical depravities, he even dared to re-baptise Catholics, and not only lay people but also members of the priestly state.

In reality, and in the face of radically intolerant Catholicism, since it had already established itself in the Visigothic kingdom, Liuvigild carried out a proven policy of detente. During his reign many Arian monasteries were founded and many churches were built. The king personally endowed Abbot Nanctus and his monks from Africa with real estate. Moreover, he theologically compromised with the Catholics through certain concessions in Trinitarian doctrine…

Editor’s Note: After five pages of describing fights, Deschner writes about how the tide turned from Arianism to Catholicism, and he concludes:

Finally, the Goths who—Bishop Isidore writes— had drunk so thirsty and so long retained the ‘pernicious poison of heresy’, ‘thought of the salvation of their souls, freed themselves from the deeply ingrained and by the grace of Christ reached the only beatifying faith, which is the Catholic faith. Hallelujah!’

At the III Council of Toledo, held in May 589 (see painting above), and whose worthy preparation was preceded by a three-day fast, ordered by the king, part of the Arians went to the victor’s field. The king declared Catholicism the official state religion and began by uprooting Arianism quickly and completely: destroying its ecclesial organisation, excluding the Arians from all public office, and burning their sacred books…

At the same time that Reccared, together with the bishops, put an end to Arianism in Spain, he also turned the Church into an instrument of oppression as had never happened before in the history of the Goths. All Christian opposition disappeared, the Arians were forbidden from any public office, all Arian ecclesiastical property passed to the Catholic bishoprics and celibacy was imposed on the converted clergy.

Conversions were also reached by force. Some within the Arian episcopate, such as the obstinate prelate of Mérida, Sunna, met their death in exile. Catholicus nunquam ero, it seems that Sunna responded to Reccared’s demands for conversion. ‘I will never become a Catholic, but in the faith in which I have lived I want to live also in the future, and I will gladly die for the faith that I have maintained since my youth!’

Many Arian bishops embraced Catholicism just as in Liuvigild’s time many Catholic clergymen had joined the Arian national Church. Then began the alliance of the State with the Catholic Church, what Bishop John of Biclaro* calls the renovario, the attitude of the christianissimus imperator. According to the old Catholic tradition, Reccared ordered the immediate burning of all Arian Bibles and doctrinal writings in Toledo, in the public square. ‘Not even a single Gothic text was left in Spain’ (Thompson).

___________

(*) John of Biclaro attended council of Toledo where Reccared converted to the Catholic faith, represented in the painting above.

Published in: on January 5, 2021 at 11:00 pm  Comments Off on Christianity’s Criminal History, 133  
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Christianity’s criminal history, 131

For the context of these translations click here

 

Odin and Frigg looking out of a window in the heavens…


…and spotting the Lombard women with their long hair tied as to appear as beards.
 

CHAPTER 4

The Invasion of the Lombards

The Lombards (the men with long, ‘long’ beards, according to the traditional interpretation of the name) belonged to the East Germans more than to the Westerners. They were a demographically small town and probably hailed from Scandinavia, perhaps Gotland. They became sedentary around the time that is indicated as the passage from the Ancient Ages to the Middle Ages, and thus related to the Saxons, in the lower Elbe, where part of their people remained constantly and where still in the 20th century names as Bardengau and Bardewick remember them.

For centuries the Lombards are hardly mentioned in history. Their presence is proven in the manner of geological strata, the emigrants first followed the course of the Elbe to spread from the 4th century, and for two hundred years, through Bohemia, Moravia and a part of present-day Lower Austria, ‘Rugiland’, which they occupied around 488, after the withdrawal of the Rugian: another Germanic people, also a native of Scandinavia and who left the name of their island there, Rugen. Through Hungary they advanced south, creating in the Danube basin a kingdom that extended as far as Belgrade.

Auxiliary Lombards troops had supported Justinian’s wars against the Persians, as well as in 552 under the command of Narses, in the decisive battle against the Ostrogoths. Disillusioned by Byzantium, its leader Alboin allied himself with the misers, in union with whom he annihilated in another decisive battle (567) the kingdom of the Gepids, another East Germanic people. The carnage on both sides was such—there were 60,000 deaths—‘that out of such a large crowd hardly a messenger to announce the destruction survived’ (Paul the Deacon).

Alboin took Rosamund, daughter of Cunimund, the defeated Gepid king, as his wife. The Gepids no longer continued their settlement between the Lombards and the Avars, who broke in immediately. In the spring of 568—according to a contemporary Burgundian chronicler—‘the entire Lombard army, having set fire to their settlement, left Pannonia, followed by the women and the rest of the population’. Under the pressure of greedy expansion and attracted by the south, at the orders of their boss Alboin they stormed through Emona and the gorges of the Julius Alps, entering the generally unprotected north of Italy. It was the same path that Alaric and Theodoric had already travelled.

This was the last great advance of the invasion of the Nordic peoples.

With the Lombards, who together may have formed a people of 130,000 souls, came other tribal groups, populations from Pannonia, the Noricum, numerous Saxons, remnants of Gepids, Thuringians, Swabians, and Slavs. And just as the Lombards were open to the integration of other peoples, they were also open to religious tolerance. Converted to Christianity in good part from about the year 500, the majority of the population was made up of Arians. But among them there were also Catholics—Alboin was first married to Chothsind, daughter of Chlothar I—and there were above all pagans, who for a long time continued their sacrifices and sacrificial banquets, without apparently the change of beliefs of the different kings playing any role.

Published in: on November 23, 2020 at 12:48 pm  Comments Off on Christianity’s criminal history, 131  

Christianity’s criminal history, 130

For the context of these translations click here

 

CHAPTER 3

THE SONS OF CLOVIS

‘The successors of the first great Frankish king also protected the Church and the worship; monasticism developed… The remnants of paganism were fought with increasing energy’. —H. H. Anton

 

The division of the kingdom

The kingdom of Clovis was divided almost aequa lance, almost equally, passing in principle to his four sons: all ‘kings of the Franks’; all heirs with the same rights, according to the German rule of succession; all Catholics, except for Theuderic I, with a saint for his mother. And they all also led a life full of hideous cruelties, wars and military campaigns. In the proven tradition of the father they systematically expanded the kingdom and conquered Thuringia (531), Burgundy (533-534) and Provence (537). The aforementioned annexations were joined by numerous raids in search of loot in an extraordinarily troubled time, one of the darkest and bloodiest times in history, brimming with disorder and brutality, fratricides, wars between brothers and betrayals: a race unleashed ‘for power and wealth’ (Buchner), a ‘foolish desire for loot and slaughter’ (Schulze).

But even critical historians bend the knee before the ‘founding of the kingdom’ of the Merovingians, before the bridge they built ‘between Antiquity and the Middle Ages’, before their contribution to the triumph ‘of Catholic Christianity’ to the alliance ‘between throne and altar’. As if all this had not made the story much more gruesome!

The boundaries of the four partitions of the kingdom are not stated with sufficient precision. The one we know best is the inheritance of Theuderic I (reign 511-533). The presumed Hugdietrich of the saga received the lion’s share with the capital, Reims: a territory which would include what later became Austria with its predominantly Germanic population: the entire east, from Burgundy to the Rhineland, and perhaps even as far as the Fritziar and Kassel region, as well as large territories that had belonged to the Alemanni, which was the case in eastern Aquitaine. But each of the sons obtained a part of the Aquitaine lands south of the Loire, which the father had taken over; three of them were exclaves.

Chlothar I (reign 511-561), the youngest of Clovis’ sons, and perhaps not yet twelve years old, the Salic age to reach legal age, obtained mainly the territory of the Salian Franks with the royal cities of Tournai and Cambrai. For the same reason, it included the old Frankish territory between the coast of the English Channel, the Somme and the Carboniferous Forest, with approximately the same borders that it had before the predatory incursions of his progenitor. As the seat of government Chlothar chose Soissons, in the extreme south. Southern and western France corresponded to Chlodomer and Childebert respectively.

Chlodomer (reign 511-524) was around fifteen when his father died and ruled as king of western Aquitaine, the northernmost territory of the middle Loire, at Orleans. And Childebert I (reign 511-558) controlled the coastal lands from the Somme to Brittany; he resided in Paris, the undisputed capital.
 

A saint and murderer

Shortly after the Auvergne rebellion, the Catholic Frankish kings attacked the Catholic kingdom of Burgundy.

Sigismund (reign 516-523), son of the Burgundian king Gundobad, still ruled there. Since 501 Sigismund was viceroy in Geneva. And what the jealous Avitus had not achieved with the father, he obtained with the son. Around the year 500 Sigismund converted from Arianism to Catholicism. Sigismund later introduced Catholicism throughout Burgundy. He was the first German king to make a pilgrimage to Rome…

Sigismund, the murderer of his own son, makes his way as a saint of the Catholic Church! They ended up thanking him for the conversion of the Burgundians to Catholicism. Soon his cult began in the monastery of St. Moritz founded by him. Those with fever had masses celebrated in honour of Sigismund (who allegedly helped against malaria and tertian fever). In the 7th century he also appears as a saint in the so-called Martyrologium Hieronymianum. At the end of the Middle Ages he will be one of the patron saints of Bohemia and even become a fashionable saint. The Archbishop of Prague declared the feast of Sigismund a feast of the archdiocese.

His statue appears on French and German altars as well as in the Freiburg Cathedral; there are churches dedicated to Sigismund and a brotherhood named after him. His relics were requested, which initially rested at St. Moritz. The head was taken to the church of St. Sigismund, although a fragment of it is found in Plozk of the Vistula; in the 14th century a part of the body was deposited in St. Vitus Cathedral in Prague, and another was taken around the same time to Freising, which eventually became the centre of its veneration in Germany.
 

______ 卐 ______

 
Editor’s interpolated note: Regardless of the repulsiveness of relic worship—pieces of decomposed corpses —, what is currently happening in France and Germany has very dark and old historical roots that no one in white nationalism sees for the simple reason that none lives under the weirwood but in the inane present.

It should be obvious that, if these Germanics hadn’t been infected with a cult of Semitic origin, they would have regarded Hermann as a hero who fought against the Romans when the latter were already mongrelising.

Instead, after the Christian takeover these Germanics were forced to worship Catholic monsters. Tell me whom you worship and I’ll tell you who you’ll become. Read pages 23-32 of The Fair Race’s Darkest Hour: the only article by a Jew in that compilation. Even the Nazis translated it to German in the Czernowitzer Allgemeine Zeitung of September 2, 1933.

Now let’s go back to Deschner’s account of how a female ‘saint’ gives orders to murder her grandchildren:
 

______ 卐 ______

 
On the death of Chlodomer, his three brothers, ‘warriors above all and simple gang leaders’ (Fontal) shared the inheritance, ignoring all the rights of the three minor children of the deceased king and without allowing any regime of tutelary government from their mother.

The pious Childebert got, it seems, the lion’s share. He was a true father of the nation, who promoted ecclesiastical institutions, enjoyed dealing with bishops granting them real estate, war spoils and large sums of money while being in constant communication with the ‘Holy See’. And as Childebert and Chlothar, who had married Guntheuc, the widow of Chlodomer, certainly feared that the hereditary rights of Theuderic and Gunthar, Chlodomer’s minor children, would be asserted, Childebert didn’t doubt in encouraging their murder, of which Chlothar ‘was very glad’.

After all, both sovereigns had a saint for their mother, Saint Clotilde, and furthermore, being already a Catholic princess, she had imposed baptism on the children of Clovis, had ‘raised them with love’ and had certainly given them a good Catholic upbringing. And since Clotilde also took care of the education of the minor children of the late Chlodomer, the kings Childebert and Chlothar, who had taken over her nephews, asked Clotilde if she wanted her grandchildren to ‘continue living with their hair cut off [like monks] or if they had to kill them both’. And ‘the ideal figure of the desire for feminine holiness’, the francorum apostle who felt for the two children ‘a singular affection’ (Fredegar), replied: ‘Rather dead than tonsured, if they are not going to reign’…

Chlothar put the knife to the neck first to one and then to the other of his brother’s sons, who cried out in anguish. ‘After they had also dispatched the boys’ servants and educators’ Chlothar mounted his horse ‘and left there’. One of them was ten years old and the youngest seven… Queen Clotilde led such a life that she was venerated by the whole world… ‘Her conduct was always of the utmost purity and honesty: she granted goods to churches, monasteries everywhere to holy places, willingly and supplying them with whatever they needed…’

The third son of Chlodomer, the youngest, named Clodoald, was saved from the carnage and entered the clergy, after allegedly shearing himself. ‘He renounced the earthly kingdom and dedicated himself to the Lord’, Gregory writes beautifully. And Fredegar adds: ‘And he led a dignified life; the Lord deigns to perform miracles on his grave’. Clodoald was the founder of the monastery of Saint-Cloud in Paris, which bears his name, and died around the year 560… Clotaire, the uncle-murderer and the executioner, obtained Tours and Poitiers, with the sanctuaries of the patron saints of France, Martin and Hilary, together with the treasure.
 

Theudebert I, and killer kings

Theudebert [editor’s note: the son of Theuderic I and the father of Theudebald] was the first Frank to call himself Augustus and who felt he was the successor of the Roman Caesars and liked to adopt imperial attitudes like minting gold coins with his image that could be described as illegal. He ordered circus games to be held in Arles in the manner of the emperors and must have even thought of the conquest of Constantinople, cherishing the hope of seizing imperial dignity and world domination through an incursion against Byzantium, something planned jointly with the Gepids and Lombards. Such a man naturally had to be on good terms with the Church…

King Theudebert was a benefactor of the Church, which he ‘exempted from tax obligations and deliberately favoured’ (Zollner) while he did nothing more than bleed his Frankish subjects with taxes in the Roman manner… Very significant is the fact that his finance minister, Parthenius (grandson of Bishop Ruricius de Limoges, the murderer of his wife and her lover), on the death of Theudebert and despite the episcopal protection, was removed in Trier from a church, spat on, beaten and stoned by the enraged people.

Even more criminal and even more devoted to the Church was the family clan, which outlived Theudebert. Chlothar I also fought almost continuously during the last years of his life, without this fact bothering at all and not even attracting the attention of those who preached peace and love of neighbour and enemy. The king, undoubtedly the weakest of the Frankish princes until after the death of Theudebert I (558), took over the entire kingdom. He had nevertheless criticised the growing ecclesiastical wealth, but per his brother’s constitution of 554, he also tried to uproot whatever was left of the indigenous religions of his subjects.

It is true that in a winter campaign (555) against the Saxons he bore the worst of it, but the following year he imposed himself on the association of Saxons and Thuringians and even sent troops against the Ostrogoths of Italy. In 557 he fought again against the Saxons, apparently reluctantly, but ‘he was beaten with such enormous bloodshed, and with such a great multitude of casualties on both sides that no one can calculate or evaluate’ (Gregory). But he managed to beat the Danes and Eutenians…

A year later Clotaire also died, and with him the last of Clovis’ four sons, all of whom—like their father—had lived for robbery, murder and war. Everywhere they had gone in search of relics of martyrs, had taken care of relocating them and had promoted the veneration of the saints. They founded many monasteries and endowed them generously. They awarded large real estate to the clergy and made donations to them. The old annals abound in their praises…

Clotaire I, in whose territory the Church was poorly organised and the victim of special relaxation, perhaps didn’t care about Christianity at all. Anyway, he too became a Christian and a faithful Catholic, who waged war after war and had his closest relatives murdered, including young children, maidens, and even his own son, while personally bankrupting himself with countless concubines and at least six marriages ‘and not always successive’ (Schultze). Despite this, the ecclesiastical author of the 7th century compares this king with a priest, showering him with praise. And it is that, indeed, he worried about the transfer of the remains of martyrs, promoted the veneration of Medard, the patron saint of the royal house and supported the founding of churches and monasteries…

Childebert I showed a very special fervour and devotion to the clergy. The usurper and incestuous erected the Holy Cross and the Spanish proto-martyr Vicente de Zaragoza—whose martyrdom was adorned with great propagandistic displays—a basilica in Paris, which would later become the Abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés. He made a pilgrimage to the cell of Saint Euspicius, in whose honour he also built a church. He made donations of land and large sums of money, including the spoils of his wars for Catholic churches and monasteries, in which he ordered to pray for the salvation of his soul and the prosperity of the Frankish kingdom.

Thus he distributed among the Frankish churches dozens of chalices and numerous patens and gospels, all made of gold and precious stones, and all material that he had stolen in his Spanish war. Childebert made Orleans the ecclesiastical capital of his kingdom. There four national synods met (in the years 533, 538, 541 and 549). All Frankish kings sent their bishops to them (exception made for the one celebrated in 538). In 552 Childebert summoned another national council in Paris. He promulgated a decree against ‘paganism’ that was still alive, mostly in northern and eastern France. He harshly persecuted anyone who erected ‘idols’ in the fields or prevented their destruction by the priests. He forbade even pagan banquets, songs, and dances, though certainly without demanding conversion by force…

Vigil, the murderous pope, described Childebert in 546, as ‘our most glorious son’ and praised his ‘Christian will, pleasing to God’… Pope Pelagius died in 561, the same year that Clotaire I, the last son of Clovis, did. In that same decade, and together with the Franks and the Visigoths, another Germanic people began to play an increasingly important role: the Lombards.