Imagens das páginas

Persecuted However that be, it is plain that the new emperor deby Leo dared himself no less zealous against the Jews than against Isauru*. images; for both they and the Manichees were ordered by him to turn Christians, under the severest penalties; only the latter being more tenacious of their heresy, suffered themselves to be burnt for it, whilst the Jews took their old method of saving their lives by dissembling; which they found, however, proper means to disallow in private. But as the patrons for images gained their point, notwithstanding the strenuous opposition of the emperor and his followers, they obliged the Jews, whose sincerity they had no great reason to rely on, to subscribe to a formulary, by which they acknowledged themselves worshipers of the cross and holy images, and prayed to God to strike them with Gehaji's leprosy, and Cain's tremor, if they did not do it from their hearts h. In Syria. They found themselves still more involved in those deA.C. 769. vastations which Abdallah, the son of AU, was making at Jerusalem and Syria, and, among other hardships, were forced, as well as the Christians to be branded in the hand, to distinguish them from Moslems. The latter did indeed retire upon it to the Roman territories; but the Jews not only submitted to it, but chose to follow Abdailah's army, in'order to enrich themselves with the plunder of the Christians. For that prince, we are told, had always a considerable number of them in his army, to whom he sold all the church plunder he took'. Favoured They fared much better under Nicephorus, who succeeded by Nice- Leo about the beginning of the ninth century, and who likephorus wife declared himself for the Iconoclasts; for which it probably came that the other side branded him with having forsaken God, to put himself under the care of the Manichees and Attingans, who were a kind of diviners or soothsayers; but according to the language of the Anti-Iconoclasts, were persons that dealt with the devil, and could by their art make kingdoms flourish, princes victorious, <bc (U). However, the latter

h Theophan. ub. sup. sub. A. C. 759, & seq. 'Apud Goar Euchol. inTHEOPH. p. 149.

(U) Itis not easy to fay who chees(16),and tohaveused some either these Manichees or Attin- kind of sacraments, CSV. Zensgans were. Some make them ras (37) represents them as a 10 be the fame, under two dis- kind of soothsayers, one of ferent names, and to belong to whom foretold Micbaess seethe heretical sect of the Mani- cession to the throne, after Nici

(36) Paul Diacon. lib. juciv. p. 55Z. (37) Ann, torn. iii, f. ico.


ter of them were, against all probability, pretended to be of Jewi/b extract; and it was thought sufficient proof of their being so, that Nicephorus protected their nation, and suffered them to live quietly under him. They were still more in favour under his successor Michael, sirnamed the Stammerer, anj J^j;_ who is by some represented as half Jew, and by other brand- chael, ed with the odious appellative of the Sink of all religions, be- A.C. 830. cause he had imbibed something from each, during his younger days. However, tho' he tolerated them all, and seems to have shewn a particular regard to the Jews, yet, as he was professedly a Christian, and an orthodox, and never swerved front them, it is not unlikely that his being an Iconoclast hath been the main cause of all that slander (W). We are told by Photius, that about this time there was a law in force against A lave the Jews, that made it capital for any of them to appropriate againfi any of the church's goods k, which is however denied by his them. commentator Balsamon, because no such one is to be found in Theodastan code. But might not such a one have been made since, on account of their buying so much of the church's plunder from the Moslems, as was hinted above? And might not the empress Theodora, who persecuted all the Iconoclasts with such severity, have made such a law against them, on purpose to punish them for being such professed enemies to the worship of images?

We know but little of their condition either in Italy or Deceived Spain, during these two centuries; except that in the latter, a by afclse Jew, named Serenas, taking advantage of the feuds which mej/iah, reigned between that and France, proclaimed himself the A.C. 724. Messiah, and drew great numbers of his nation to follow him into Judea, where he was to fix his kingdom. How far that deceiver led them, we cannot find; except that Ambisa, the then governor in those parts, took the opportunity to

k Phot. Nomocah. tit. 9. p. 123, & scq.

fhorus. But that prince having declaring for the use of images,
declared against images, the he was extolled to the ikies as a
Jews were again accused as the David or Jojiah, by no less a
authors of it, and the Attingans man than Theodore Studites, one ,
affirmed to be a set of conjurers of their miraculous saints; but
belonging to that nation,meer- as soonasthey found themselves
ly to brand the Iconoclasts. disappointed of their hopes, he
(W) As a proof of this we hath been represented as a mon-
may remember, that upon his ster, and had among other op-
mounting the throne, tho' by probrious names, that of Sink of
murder and treason, yet so long all religions, given him.
as there were any hopes of his •

leize on all the estates and effects which those infatuated people had Jest behind them; those that did not perish by the way, returned to their habitations, where they were at leisure to bewail their folly and loss '. Here also, in the reign of Abdal-Rahman or Abderama, who had been acknowledged Khalif the west, and built a famed mosque at Cordaua, flourished R. Judah, the famed R. Judah, a man of great learning, who published a learned a philosophical treatise, to shew why the sea did not overflow Jew» the land, which was highly applauded by the learned. He A.C.763. ftkewise translated several books out of Arabic into Hebrew, and compiled a dictionary in the former: all which shews not only that the sciences flourished there among the Jews, but likewise that the first Khalifs favoured them more than they did the Christians, whom they obliged to build the stately mosque above-mentioned, with the materials they had taken from them m. Invite the LANGUEDOC being at this time (as well as great Arabs i'»- part of Spain J in the hands of the Visigoth, was much into Lan- fested with the incursions of the Arabs, who are said to have guedoc. been in league with, if not invited thither by, the Jews, and to have engaged themselves, by their help, to massacre all the Christians. They are likewise accused to have invited the Saracens out of Spain, to free them from the tyranny which they suffered under the bishop of Thohsa, who coming accordingly, took Narbonne and Thohsa in their way, and penetrated as far as Lyons, putting all to fire and sword, as they went, except the Jews who had assisted them in it. Charlemagne having afterwards defeated the Saracens, and retaken Thohsa, resolved to punish the treacherous Jews with the utmost severity, who had been the authors of so much bloodshed; but being at length softened by their groans and cries, commuted their punishment, and only executed the heads of Their /«- them, and condemned the rest of those that dwelt in that city, nijhment. to receive a box on the ear, three times a year, at the gates of one of the churches, which should be named by the bishop, and to pay a perpetual fine of thirteen pounds weight of wax. The greatest part of this accusation, and of the facts alleged to support it, hath been refuted by a late historian ": and indeed the mild behaviour of the emperor towards the Jews, shews nothing less than his supposing them the betrayers of

[ocr errors][merged small]

that city, Ot the authors of the Saracens incursion (X): but as • the farther discussion of these points would not only carry us too far, but be a mere repetition of the history of those. raonarchs, we shall refer our readers for a further account of it to the history of those times, in the second and third - ■ - . volumes, as well as to the author there quoted. .'....'.. ^.'

They were still more favoured under Lewis, sirnamed the Their creDeknair, whose chief physician was a Jew, named Sede* dit under cias, whom some historians have represented as one of the Lewis the greatest magicians in the wprld °, but who was in such high Debonair, credit with that prince, that all the courtiers were glad to gain A.C. 815. his and his countrymen's friendship, with the noblest presents. They had, the liberty of building of new synagogues, and obr, tained such singular privileges, as could not fail of inspiring them with uncommon insolence, as well as of .raising jealousy in the Christians, as it accordingly happened, more particularly in the diocese of Lions p; where Agobard bistiop of it, Disturbed did not content himself with forbidding them to buy any by the biChristian slaves, and the keeping of their Sabbath, but forbad/-'5/ °fLilikewise, under some frivolous pretences, the Christians to ons> buy any wine, or to deal with them during the time of Lent. The Jews made no difficulty to complain of the bishop's edicts to the emperor, who sent three commissaries to Lions to enquire into the truth of it, upon which they were immediately restored to their ancient privileges, to the no small mortification of the bistiop, who, tho' otherwise a moderate man, aud averse to persecution, could hardly be persuaded of the reality of the emperors orders, tho' signed with his own seal. This made him invent some new accusations against them, ,..: J -.• and to fend him fresh remonstrances against them, signed by ■ two other bishops. Evrard, the chief commissary, remained firm to the Jewish interest, and all the allegations against them were rejected at court, as false and groundless, as indeed they deserved, being mostly such; and some of them so ridicu-,

0 Dandin de suspect, de Hæresi. Trithsm Chron. Hirsaugiens. P Vid. Agobard. de Insolent. Judeor.

(X) The Jews in his reign . ing informed of it, forbad intoasted that they had been fuf- deed, by a severe law, all such' fered to buy some of the richest abuses for thef future; but neivefTels of the church, and other ther condemned the Jews to reccflly utensils, belonging to the store those they had, norrestrainchurches, abbies.tsv. which the ed them from, that'lhameful luxury and avarice of the bi- commerce, but levelled the pe1'iops and abbots had induced nalty wholly against such" of his ta:m to fell. Charlcnwvne be- clergy as should be guilty of it.

Mou. Hist. Vol. XIII. R "'"sous'"

lous as to cast no small reflection on the blind zeal of those prelates. The reader may fee them in the authors quoted in the margin "*. His un- A GO B A R D, seeing all his pious endeavours thus

f""^'2*"'frustrated, resolved to take a journey to court, in order to suppressed. f0mcjt tfat prince more effectually against the Jexus ; but he failed of success, being only admitted to an audience of leave, wherein he was permitted to go back as he came, without any farther satisfaction, as he himself complains, so that he '-","," . was even afraid of baptising the heathen slaves that belonged to the Jews, for fear of exasperating the court against him, tho' he offered to pay them the full price for them r. But as he did not dare venture upon this last, without the emperor's leave, he sont to beg his consent to it. What answer he had we cannot learfc; but if one may guess by the dreadful curses he pronounces against the Jewijh nation, in his letter to the great and learned Nebudius, bishop of Narbonne, one may . * conclude that "it was not such as he liked; and the spleen which ■ he vents in that uncharitable epistle, was the less excusable, because it not only made the Jtrws the more flourishing and insolent, but was like to have caused a general defection; insomuch that people not only professed openly that they were to be respected as the posterity of Abraham and the prophets, but began to conform to the JewiJJj rites in many instances (Y), that were quite scandalous, and a reproach to Christianity. Under Their cafe was not quite so agreeable to them under

Charles Charles, sirnamed the Bald, when Remifius the bishop of that the Bald, diocese caused some of his clergy to preach every Saturday in their synagogues"; by which so great a number of their children were like to have bees converted, that they were forced to send them away to Vienne in Dauphine, to Maeon and Aries ia Provence, and other places, where they were more numerous. Of this the bishop sent a complaint to court, and begged of that prince to send orders to the bishop of Arles,.&c. to follow

1 AcoBARn.ub. sup. & Epist. Bernard & Ever Ar D de Judaic. Superstition. * Acobard. Consult, ad proceres de Baptism. Judaic, vid. & Basnac. ub. sup. $14, & (eq.

(Y) Thus we are told that the sermons preached in their some 6f them began to celebrate own churches; and that a deathe Sabbath, instead of the con named Putho, or Paudo, beLord's-day; that many of them longing to the court, had rechose to go and hear the Jew- nounced the church, and gone ijh rabbies declaim in their fy- over to the synagogue.

Jiagoguet, rather than to hear

[ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »