“Those Damned Swarm”: Friars Minor Conventual Prosecuted Owing to Heresy at the Beginning of XVI Century
On the 4th of October, 1532, during the day of Saint Francis, Gian Pietro Carafa sent to Pope Clement VII the famous cairn titled De Lutheranorum haeresi reprimenda et ecclesia reformanda, in which he encouraged the Pontife to begin that work of reorganization of the cleric institutions, that seemed then compulsory to face the Protestant ribellion. In the first lines of the work appears a violent and disdained accusation to a group of Minor friars of Venice (called «maledetta nidiata» by the bishop of Chieti) who, according to the words of Carafa, named also “il Teatino”, spreaded the Lutheran “pestilence” over the area of “la Serenissima”. For long time abandoned from the studies on the Italian religious XVI century, this accusation is full of important information on the history of the first Italian Reformation, but can be also a starting point for new studies on the relationships between the three Franciscan families and the reformed world.
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