Message #8721 - CULT_WATCH
Date : 25-Nov-90 18:31
From : Mister Zen
To : Jonathan Defabritis
Subject : Reply, Part 1
Truly, it was not until the publication of Sprenger and Kramer's book, Malleus
Maleficarum (Hammer of Witches), in 1486, that the floodgates of persecution
towards the religion of Witchcraft was begun. You might also note that
Sprenger and Kramer were BOTH Dominicans, and Kramer was later instituted as
Inquisitor. The substance of the book was taken from the
"Praeceptorium" and the "Formicarius" of the Dominican prior, Johannes
The Inquisition itself, as I have previously noted, was instituted in 1231 by
Pope Gregory IX. He stated in the "iquisitores hereticea pravitatis" in 1233
that all inquisitors were to be Dominicans, appointed by and subject to only
the pope. Inquisitors were to remain in an area until they had
"stamped out heresy."
Europe at this time was marked by apostasy, especially in southern France,
central France, and the Rhineland. The Inquisitorial method of rooting out
such apostasy was given as follows:
1. The accused was presumed guilty until he had proven his innocence.
2. Suspicion, gossip, or denunciation was enough to bring a person to
3. All offenses were described as "heresy."
4. Witnesses were not allowed to be identified.
5. Convicted perjorers and other proven liars were permitted to
6. No witnesses were allowed to testify on behalf of the accused.
7. The accused was not allowed legal counsel.
8. The judges were the same Inquisitors who had brought the charges.
9. Judges were allowed to "trip" the accused into confessing.
10. Torture was regularly used, and could be inflicted on any witness.
11. Torture could be repeated until a confession had been obtained.
12. The accused, having confessed, was forced to repeat his confession
within sight of the torture chamber.
13. All accomplices had to be named.
14. No appeal was allowed.
15. The property of the accused was confiscated by the Inquisition.
16. Only the verdicts of Guilty and Not Proven were allowed. No one
was ever found Not Guilty.
Pope Sixtus IV endorsed the creation of the seperat Spanish Inquisition in
1483, presided over by Tomas de Torquemada. Its major targets were the
Marranos (Christian converts from Judaism), and the Moriscos (Christian
converts from Islam). Protestants and Alumbrados (Spanish mystics) were not
included in the persecution until the late 1500's!!!
By the way, the Inquisition never officially ended. It succeeded in supressing
Spain and Rome by 1834, and was reorganized in 1908 under the title
"Congregation of the Holy Office" and then in 1965 as the
"Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith." It still exists.
Now, since Luther did not form his seperate religion until 1521, Zwingli in
1523, Calvin in 1536, the Anabaptists (Munzer's religion, opposed by Luther,
who advocated killing them) in 1533, how can you say that "The MAIN victims of
the persecutions were the protestant/evangelial/ana-baptists!"
In view of your statement, which is not backed up by fact at any point, I must
conclude that you are incorrect. The "witches" were, indeed, the main victims
of the Inquisition, although I will concede that the RCC's definition of
"witch" is not what most today would consider Witchcraft. Protestants and
Anabaptists were persecuted by the Inquisition, yes. But not until nearly 200
years after the first "witches" were burned at the stake. As far as
"Evangelial" (I assume you mean Evangelical) Christians, they are strictly a
modern invention, hence, were not subject to the Inquisition.
I am not trying to prove that more Witches died than Protestants at the hands
of the RCC (although that is true). I am showing that your scholarship is
severely lacking. I suggest that you get yourself a history book and study it
before you open your yap in the future on subjects that you have proven you
know nothing about.
Note to all: I'm getting a little tired of the constant stating of myths and
lies as if they were the truth. If you post a lie here, expect me to take you
to task. If you have a problem with that, I suggest that you admit to
yourselves that you have no interest in truth whatsoever, and that you merely
wish to hate without reason.
Grolier's Electronic Encyclopedia (Academic American) The Encyclopedia of
Witchcraft and Demonology, Robbins Dictionary of Mysticism and the Occult,
Drury European Witchcraft, ed. Monter The Western Experience, Chambers, Grew,
Herlihy, Rabb & Woloch
As an aside, those found Not Proven did NOT have their property returned, were
excommunicated, and had to wear two crosses of yellow felt on the front and
the back of their clothing forever (sound familiar?).
Since the Inquisition commonly shared its booty with secular authorities, the
Inquisition was seen as a mighty tool of the princes and kings to relieve
their subjects of their riches. In just over a century, the Inquisition itself
had nearly exhausted ALL of Europe's privately held wealth! Inquisitor
Eymeric, in 1360, complained that there "are no more rich heretics...", so the
princes no longer helped them in their activities.
In 1257, Pope Alexander IV was asked to extend the Inquisition to include
Sorcery as well as Heresy. He refused, unless the sorcery involved heresy as
well. Nice refusal, since sorcery inherently included heresy. In 1320, Pope
John XXII allowed the Inquistition to include magic and sorcery, especially
worship of demons, along with heresy.
By 1326, less than one hundred years after the beginning of the Inquisition,
it was hunting "Witches" at Toulouse and Narbonne. Witchcraft was defined as
"divination, incantation, keeping of demons, and all forms of magic." Both
heretical "Satanic" Witches and non-Christian Witches
(healers, midwives, and pagans) were included in the persecution. Please
note: at this time, there were NO Protestants, NO Anabaptists, NO non-Catholic
Christians at all.
As far as non-Catholic Christians go, the Inquisition was used to suppress the
Lollards (followers of 14th century reformer John Wycliffe).