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the head of the so-called philosophers, was Ecrasez rinfdme.
Not a few, such as Helvetius [Dc l' esprit), de la Mettrie
[L'homme plante, Vhomme machine), Condillac, and Baron
de Holbach [Systeme de la nature), preached more or less
overtly the crassest materialism. J. J. Rousseau (f 1778)
was, on the whole, less hostile to Revelation, but by his natural
religion {Emile, 1761 ; Confessions, 1770) and his assertion
of the sovereignty of the people {Contrat social, 1762) he
contributed as much as any other man to the destruction of
Christianity and to the overthrow of political and social order.^

§ 197


In Germany the first to lead an assault on Christianity,
and on Scripture, the Christian Koran as he called it, was

' Encyclopedie ou dictionnaire raisonne des sciences, des arts, et des mHiers
28 fol. (7 supplementary vol.), 1751-80.

- Mg. by Strauss, 2nd ed. 1878.

^ Bersot, iLtude sur les philosophes du XVIII'' Steele, 1878; Lanfrey,
I.'dglise et les philosophes au XVIlh siicle, 1879; Charaux, Critique ideate
et cath. : I' Esprit de Montesquieu, sa vie et ses princ. ouvrages, 1885,

2o6 A Manual of Church History

the Holsteiner Matthias Knutzen, who endeavoured (c. 1672)
to form a party known as the Conscientiarii} In the eighteenth
century rationahsm was more successful. In 1735 was
pubhshed the first part of the Wertheim translation of the
Bible, a work of L. Schmidt, unfavourable to revelation. In
the same year began the literary activity of J. Chr. Edelmann
(f 1767),^ who attacked both Christianity and the Church as
products of ignorance and priestcraft.

Shortly afterwards, Reimarus wrote at Hamburg (f 1768)
the WolfenbuUel Fragments, to be later on published by Lessing,
in which revelation in general and Christ's resurrection in
particular were denied. As, at this same time, Frederick II
of Prussia (1740-86) had made his court the asylum of French
freethinkers, and as the greatest German writers of the day,
Lessing, Goethe, and Schiller, were likewise infected with the
same spirit, it is no wonder that rationalism won ground.
It was mainly furthered by the ' General German
Library,' founded by the Berlin bookseller Nikolai (1765).
Even theologians were carried away by the current, rationalism
being proclaimed both from the professor's chair and from
the preacher's pulpit. It had as its representatives among the
exegetists, J. A. Ernesti at Leipzig (f 1781) and J. D. Michaelis
at Gottingen (f 1791) , and among Church historians, J. S. Semler
at Halle (f 1791). The movement was spread still further
through their pupils, such as the notorious K. F. Bahrdt
(t 1792). The edict of Wollner (1788) indeed insisted that
teaching and preaching should be conformable to the creeds,
but so deep was the contrary feeling that it had to be revoked
ten years later.

The movement of ideas was not confined to Protestant
Germany, but even invaded the Catholic provinces. 3 In
Austria the premature reforms undertaken by Joseph II had

1 St. u. Kr. 1844.

" His autobiography (in German), 1752; ed. W. Klose, 1849.

^ RuLAND, Series et vitae Professorum SS. Theologiae qui Wirceburoi usque
ad annum 1834 docuerunt, 1835 ; H. Bruck, Die ration. Bestreb. im kath.
Deutsrhland, 1867 ; Schwab, Franz Berg, 1869. Mg. on Eul. Schneider by
L. Ehrhard, 1894; E. MuHLENBECK, 1895 ; Taute, Die kath. Geistlichkeit
und die Freimaurerei, 2nd ed. 1895 [Kath. 1895, I, 509-27) ; L. Wolfram, Die
Illuminaten in Bayern und ihre Verfolgung, 1898-1900, Erlangen, Programm.
AUbayer. Monatsschrift, 1900; A. F. Ludwig, Weihhischof Zirkelvon Wiirzburg,
2 vol. 1904-6 ; J. B. Sagmuller, Die k. Au/kldrung am Ho/e d. H. Karl
Fugen von Wiiritemberg (1744-93), 1906.

Rationalism in Germany 207

prepared the way for it. At Ingolstadt in Bavaria, the
professor A. Weishaupt founded the Order of the ' Illuminati '
(1775), of which the tendency is sufficiently indicated by its
name, and though the society was soon (1784) suppressed by
the government, the spirit which had directed its formation
still survived. In the remainder of Germany, the new
enlightenment made itself felt more especially at the Universities
of the three Rhenish archdioceses, and also at Wiirzburg.
Its best known supporters among the theologians were
Lorenz Isenbiehl and F. A. Blau, at Mainz ; at Bonn, Ph.
Hedderich and Eulogius Schneider, who afterwards entered
the service of the constitutional bishop of Strasburg, then
flung himself into the revolution, and finally ended his life
on the scaffold at Paris (1794) ; and at Wiirzburg, the dog-
matic theologian F. Oberthiir, author of many works and
editor of the Opera folemica sanctorum patrmn, and the
Church historian Franz Berg.



From the French Revolution to the Present Day,
1789-1906 1



§ 198

The French Church in the Age of the Revolution (1789-
1800) and Pius VI ^

In the spring, 1789, the Estates-General were summoned to
meet at Versailles to discuss the measures to be taken to
relieve the financial depression in which France had involved
herself in the course of the eighteenth century. Many other
abuses also claimed consideration. The condition of the
finances was really a result of a more deeply-seated evil. The
absolute monarchy and feudalism had outlived their time, and
it was now the intention of the rulers to bestow on the people
a share in the government of the State, and to distribute more
evenly the burden of taxation, which had so far been almost
exclusively borne by the Third Estate. In the event no sooner
had the Estates met as the 'Constituent Assembly' than they
began to discuss the establishment of a new order of things.

' B. Gams, Gesch. der Kirche Christi im 19 Jahrh. 3 voL 1854-56 ; F.
NiPPOLD, Handb. d. neuesten KG. 3rd ed. 5 vol. 1889 ff. ; J. Silbernagl,
Die kirchenpolit. u. relig. Zustdnde itn 19 Jahrh. igoi.

2 Mg. on the French Revolution by Buchez et Roux {Hist, parlementaire),
40 vol. 1834-38; Thiers, 10 vol. 4th ed. 1836 (Leipzig. 6 vol. 1846) (EngL
Trans, last illustrated ed. 1895) ; Sybel, 4 vol. 1877 ff. ; Jager, Hist, de
I'eglise de France pendant la revolution, vol. 1852 ; KL. X, 1122-60 ; A. Wahl,
Vorgesch. der /ram. Revolution, I, 1905 ; Anglade, De la secularisation des
biens du clerge sous la revolution, 1901 ; W. M. Sloane, The French Revolution
and Religious Reform (1789-1S04), 1901 ; G. Giobbio, La Chiesa e lo Stato
in Francia durante la Rivoluzione (17S9-99), 1905.

The French Revolution 209

The deliberations soon degenerated into disorder, the govern-
ment completely losing control of the proceedings. At the
time the people's heads were too full of the abstract ideas of the
Co7itrat social to make sufficient account either of the laws of
life or of history. Instead of the constitution being amended
it was overthrown, a change which was pregnant in misfortunes
for the Church, all the more so because she was then in sad
need of reform, because her clergy belonged to the hated
privileged class, and because the power was now wholly in the
hands of the Voltairean party who had vowed the destruction
of Christianity.

The Assembly first aboHshed feudal rights and the class
privilege of the tithes, and in the Declaration of the Rights
of Man proclaimed freedom of worship. All superfluous
treasures of the Church were confiscated for the good of the
country, and as still greater financial resources were needed,
the whole of the church property was, on the motion of Talley-
rand, bishop of Autun, placed at the disposal of the nation.
In 1790 the religious Orders were dissolved, with the exception
of those which devoted themselves to education, to the care
of their neighbours, or to the progress of learning, and, in the
Constitution civile du clerge, a new constitution, totally at
variance with existing institutions, was given to the French
Church. The 134 sees which the kingdom (including Corsica)
then possessed were reduced to the number of the new depart-
ments, i.e. to eighty-three : the parish priests and bishops were
to be elected by those qualified to vote in the election of district
and departmental assemblies, canonical institution was to be
undertaken by the bishops and metropolitans, and all sinecures,
such as canonries, prebends, and chaplaincies were abolished. In
accordance with a further enactment, no one could be appointed
to any office in the Church who had not previously subscribed
to this law. In the event only about a third of the clergy
consented to take the oath, the first to do so among the clerical
deputies being abbe Gregoire. The rest of the clergy, some
46,000 in number, refused to have anything to do with it,
and were supported in their resistance by the mass of the
people. France was therefore, from a religious point of view,
split into two camps, the Church of the Jurors, or constitutional
party, and the Church of the Non- Jurors. The Constitution


210 A Manual of Church History

was also rejected by Pius VI (April 13, 1791), who, however,
paid for his action with the loss of the counties of Avignon and

The movement was, however, by no means at an end. The
Legislative Assembly which replaced the Constituent Assembly
in the autumn, 1791, took a new step. Under threat of the
loss of pension, of the right of exercising their ministry, and of
other penalties, it summoned all the clergy to take the civil
oath, and to promise to uphold the Constitution in the measure
of their power. In many of the departments the law was
rigorously enforced. In the spring, 1792, all religious corpora-
tions which had survived were abolished, the wearing of the
cassock was prohibited, and every ' suspect,' i.e. non-juror,
was condemned to banishment, a measure which soon drove
some 40,000 persons out of the country. There were also many
deeds of violence. In the revolutionary massacre, which cost
the lives of over 1,200 people at Paris in the first week of
September, there perished some 300 of the clergy, and the
example of the capital was followed in many parts of the
provinces. The completion of the work of demolition, eccle-
siastical and civil, was left to the Convention (1792-95). The
monarchy was abolished, the Republic proclaimed (Septem-
ber 21), and Lewis XVI was sent to the scaffold (January 21,
1793) . The law of celibacy, which had already been largely trans-
gressed, was annulled in the autumn, 1793, the Christian method
of reckoning time and the Sundays were replaced by the
Republican calendar and the Decadis, and finally Christianity
itself was laid aside, atheism being proclaimed amidst out-
rageous ceremonials. Gobel, archbishop of Paris, and others
of the constitutional clergy, timidly laid down their charges
and professed the worship of ' freedom and equality,' and a
girl from the opera was enthroned as ' goddess of reason ' on
the altar of the country in the cathedral of Notre Dame.

The supremacy of utter atheism did not, however, last long.
The power of the Hebertists and Dantonists, representing the
extreme wing of the Convention, was broken early the next
year, and on the motion of Robespierre, who at least held that
belief in Providence was the basis of virtue and probity, a
decree was passed acknowledging a Supreme Being and the
immortality of the soul, and introducing a new worship

The French Revolution 211

comprising thirty-nine feasts, inclusive of the thirty-six decadis
of the Repubhcan calendar. On Robespierre's fall the ardour
of the Republicans was still further moderated. In 1795
Christian worship again received toleration ; at first it was only
to take place at private dwellings, but, soon after, all the churches
which had been in the possession of the parishes on the first day
of the second year of the RepubHc (September 22, 1793), and
which had not 3^et been alienated, were restored to their owners.
The non-juring clergy also received permission to hold services,
provided they submitted to the Republic and its laws, of which
the civil constitution now no longer formed a part. Those
who refused remained objects of the old-standing hatred.
Under these circumstances, even under the Directory (1795-99),
the clergy had much to suffer ; there were some executions,
and after a momentary lull in the persecution, hundreds were
transported to Guiana and to the islands of Re and Oleron (1797).
The anti-Christian spirit also made itself felt in other directions.
The Deistic sect of the ' Theophilanthropes,' 1 a creation of the
age, was for a time in high favour with the government, chiefly
because it was thought that it would rival the Church. The
constantly renewed attempts of the government, to enforce
its calendar with the national feasts, were so many covert
attacks on the Christian worship and the observance of the
Sunday, nor were they to cease entirely until the establishment
of the Consulate.

For the Holy See the loss of its French possessions was
not the only result of the Revolution. On the conquest of
Lombardy by general Napoleon Bonaparte (1796), the Papal
States in Italy were also attacked, and at the peace of Tolentino
(February 19, 1797) the Pope was compelled to cede to France
not onl}^ Avignon and Venaissin, but also the legations of
Ferrara, Bologna, and Ravenna. In 1798 the death of general
Duphot, in a tumult at Rome late in the previous year, was
seized as a pretext for proclaiming a Republic at the Eternal
City itself, and Pius VI was brought as a prisoner, by way of
Siena and the Certosa or Charterhouse near Florence, to Valence
where he died in 1799.

The Republican Era began September 22, 1792, the first day

of the Republic. The Repubhcan year also commenced that

' A. Mathiez, La theophilanthropie et le ciilte decadaire (1796-1801), 1904.

p 2

212 A Mamial of Church History

same day, the autumnal equinox, and was divided into twelve
months each of thirty days, and thirty-six weeks each of ten days,
known as Decadis, and five (in leap years, six) supplementary days.
The formal revocation of the new calendar took place in 1805.
The Christian Sunday had, however, been already recognised in
1802, when, as a result of the Concordat entered into with the
Holy See, it was again made a day of i est for the official classes.

§ 199

Pius VII and Napoleon I*

When the cardinals met in conclave at Venice, the French
had already been driven out of Italy, hence the new Pope,
Pius VII (1800-23), formerly cardinal Chiaramonti, bishop
of Imola, was able to take up his residence at Rome. His
primary concern was to be the French. By the battle of
Marengo (1800) they had begun their re-conquest of Higher
Italy, and their victorious leader, Napoleon Bonaparte,
who since 1799 had been First Consul, was already evolving
a plan by which the French Chuich should be reconciled with
Rome. In the summer, 1801, the plan took shape and form
in a Concordat. It was settled that the Church should be re-
organised (under ten metropolitans and fifty bishops), that the
First Consul should have the right of nominating to the Sees,
the Pope that of canonically instituting the bishops, &c. The
negotiations, to further which Consalvi the cardinal secretary
of State had betaken himself to Paris, were not easy, but still
greater were the difficulties due to Napoleon's arbitrariness,
which were encountered in putting the compact into execution.
In spite of the promise which had been given of not nominating
to the new sees any of the episcopate who had taken the civil
oath, no less than ten were actually proposed for canonical

^ Artaud, Hist, dti pape Pie VII, 2 vol. 2nd ed. 1837 ; Memoires du card.
Consalvi, ed. Cretineau-Joly, 1864 ; Rance-Bourrey, 1896 ; Duerm, Le
conclave de Venise, 1896; D'Haussonville, L'eglise romaine et I'empire,
5 vol. 3rd ed. 1870 ; Boulay de la Meurthe, Documents sur la nigociation
du Concordat, &-c. 1800-1, 6 vol. 1S91-1905 ; Seche, Les Origines du Con-
cordat, 2 vol. 1894 ; P- J- RiNiERt, La diplomazia pontificia net secolo XIX.
II concordato tra Pio VII e il primo console, 1902 ; Napoleone e Pio VII
(1804-13), iqo6; Mathieu, Ze Concordat de iSoi, 1903; H. Welschinger,
Le pape et I'empereur (1S04-15), 1905 ; Ricard, Le concile national de 1811,
1894 ; MICE. 1898, pp. 92-156 (on Napoleon's second marriage) ; Historical
Memoirs of Cardinal Pacca, 2 vol. 1850.

Pius VII and Napoleon I 213

institution ; nor was this all. The Concordat was published
(1802) only after the addition of the so-called Organic Articles,!
which are in several respects at variance with the Concordat
itself, besides being opposed to the principles of the Holy See.
By these Articles the Pope's decrees and those of foreign
Councils weie to be subject to the Placet of the State, synods
and similar assemblies were forbidden save by express per-
mission of the government, the Recursus ah ahusu was allowed,
the Galilean Articles of 1682 were enforced as the common
teaching, a distinction was made between parish priests, i.e.
head priests serving a cantonal or greater parish, and ' des-
servants,' serving supplementary parishes, the latter — who
numbered about 20,000 against only 3,500 of the former
category — were not only assigned a smaller income, but
informed that they might be removed at will {i.e. without any
canonical reason). The Pope was therefore compelled to
protest, especially as the Articles had been so published as to
create the impression that they had been approved by the
Holy See. The tyrant's ambitions were, however, soon to lead
to yet graver issues.

Napoleon, on being elected emperor of the French (1804),
invited Pius to attend at Paris for the coronation, and so
strongly was the invitation urged that, after much hesitation,
it was accepted by the Pope. He hoped for some return for
his own services, and even ventured to formulate his desires,
though without going so far as to ask for the evacuation of the
provinces of the Papal States which had been occupied by the
French. The Pope had, however, reckoned without his host.
The new emperor, though willing enough to receive, was not
disposed to give. In the event he made new demands, and as
some of them were quite incapable of fulfilment, it came to a
new rupture.

Pius Vn had scarcely reached Rome before he received an
application for the dissolution of the marriage which Jerome
Bonaparte had contracted at Baltimore with ]\Iiss Patterson
(1803). The emperor's next step was to seize Ancona in
violation of all law, the Pope being rudely given to understand
that in future he was to consider the emperor's foes as his own,
particularly the Russians, English, and Swedes, was to expel

' E. Munch, Sanimlung aller Konhordatc, 2 vol. 1S30-31.

214 ^ Manual of Church History

them from his States, and close his harbours to their shipping.
When Joseph Bonaparte took possession of the throne of Naples,
and Pius, on being informed of the fact, ventured to remind him
of the right of suzerainty which the Apostolic See had exercised
from time immemorial over the kingdom of the Two Sicilies,
he was threatened with the loss of his own sovereignty (1806).
On Candlemas Day, 1808, the French actually made their
entry into Rome; two months later several of the papal pro-
vinces, and in 1809 the whole of the States of the Church were
brought under France, or rather annexed to the new kingdom
of Italy. The Pope, after having retorted by a decree of
excommunication, was carried off a prisoner to Savona ; cardinal
Pacca, his secretary of State, was shut up in the fortress of
Fenestrelle in Piedmont ; and the remaining cardinals, excepting
those who were too old or feeble to travel, were brought to
Paris. When the emperor had secured a dissolution of his
marriage with Josephine Tascher, the widow of the marquis
of Beauharnais, and thirteen cardinals refused to attend his
new marriage with the archduchess Maria Louisa, urging that
the divorce had been granted, not by the Pope, who alone has
the right of settling questions of royal marriages, but only by a
judgment of the French Church, they were declared to have
forfeited their positions, and were banished in twos to various
French towns (1810). Pius, too, had yet more misfortunes
to experience. Owing to the absence of his counsellors, he
refused to ratify the election of the bishops presented to him,
and, to punish him, his intercourse with the outer world was
further curtailed, the pension assigned him for his support was
reduced to a sum altogether insufficient, and in other ways also
he was made to feel the weight of the imperial displeasure.
As the number of widowed sees was growing ever larger
owing to the continuance of the conflict, Napoleon determined
to fill the vacancies independently of the Holy See, and to this
end summoned a national Council to meet at Paris (181 1).
This assembly, after having first declared itself incompetent
to take any action, at last yielded to the pressure brought to
bear on it by the monarch, and in a supplementary session decided
that the metropolitans should have the right of confirming
the candidates should the Pope not have given them canonical
institution within six months. Through his ignorance of the

Pins VII and Napoleon I 215

real state of affairs the Pope himself actually gave his consent
to the decision. At Fontainebleau, whither he was brought
in the summer, 1812, during the Russian campaign, it was
proposed to wring new concessions from him, Napoleon
personally entering into negotiations with him in 1813. Accord-
ing to the preliminaries of a new Concordat which were then
discussed, the Pope was to receive a yearly income of 2,000,000
francs, and take up his residence in France or in the kingdom
of Italy ; the emperor was to have the right of nominating to
all the bishoprics of both countries, the Pope retaining the
full rights of nomination only in the case of the six suburban
bishoprics and ten others. The emperor furthermore demanded
approval of the four Galilean Articles, the appointment of
Paris to be the seat of the Apostolic See, the nomination of
two-thirds of the cardinals by the Christian princes, and that
the ' black ' cardinals should be severely reprimanded for
their conduct at his wedding. To these latter demands the
Pope, however, steadfastly refused to submit, and even the
other reforms decided on were never to be carried into effect.
Whilst Napoleon, in order to ratify in all haste the concessions
he had succeeded in wringing from the pontiff, ordered a
solemn Te Deum to be sung in all the churches in thanksgiving
for the peace, at the same time notifying the Senate of the
Articles which had been agreed upon, Pius was already
regretting at leisure the renouncement of the Papal States
which was implicitly contained in the extension of the right
of nomination which he had granted the emperor. As, more-
over, the majority of the cardinals who now surrounded him
svere opposed to the whole measure, he formally revoked his
consent. In notifying his decision he, however, requested the
opening anew of the negotiations. As in that same year
Napoleon's power was broken, the Pope demanded that,
before all else, he should be restored to freedom. His request
was finally granted in the spring, 1814, the Pope having
already shortly before been brought back to Savona. Negotia-
tions were, however, never to be again opened with the emperor,
for, whilst Pius was on his way to Rome, Napoleon had already
signed his abdication at Fontainebleau. After having again
seized the reins of government in 1815, he was, after the lapse
of only a few months, again overthrown, and this time for ever

2i6 A Manual of Church History

The so-called ' Little Church,' a sect with a small following
in the diocese of Lyons and in that of Poitiers, originated through
the refusal of a certain number of the Faithful to accept the
Concordat of 1801. In thus refusing, they were following the
example set by a portion of the episcopate. Cp. Internal, theol. Z.
1905, pp. 121-24.

§ 200

Secularisation and Reorganisation of the Church in

Germany 1

In Germany, which then consisted of well-nigh 300 states,
the Revolution produced political and ecclesiastical changes
scarcely less decisive than those in France. The decree of the
French National Assembly (August 4, 1789) having made an
end of the feudal rights, not only of the French landed pro-
prietors, but also of those of the many German princes who
possessed property in Alsace and Lorraine, a conflict between
the two nations was opened. The antipathy shown by the
German powers for the Revolution adding to the misunder-

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