Cats and the Catholic Church
• Cats and the Catholic Church
In ancient Egypt, cats were considered sacred animals. They are revered so much that was considered sacred any image cats. They made personal sarcophagi of them left inscriptions on the walls, hoping that the inscriptions preserved for centuries. And now, two thousand years later, the cat suddenly became much less popular. Especially in the context of other religions - Catholicism when cats got probably the most.
When the Pope was Gregory IX (1227-1241 years), the cats got in full. It was this Pope instituted the papal Inquisition, which was supposed to deal with heretics - torture Gregory IX did not approve, but imprisonment encouraged. He also endorsed the Northern Crusades of the Teutonic Order. In the course of these campaigns planned forcibly baptize (which was equivalent to "grab") peoples living in the territory of the Baltic, Scandinavia and the Russian lands of Novgorod and Pskov principalities.
Pope Gregory IX.
While the cats were considered just an attribute heretical beliefs, and especially black cats. They Inquisition saw the embodiment of Satan itself. Especially because the cats did not like personally Konrad von Marburg - the head of the Inquisition. Cruel and ferocious, he ruthlessly his duties assigned to him by Gregory IX. Therefore, when Conrad was required to produce evidence of who the cat communicate directly with Satan - he got them.
Konrad von Marburg - the head of the Inquisition.
Conrad and even got "an accurate description of the person initiating the Satan." Such "evidence" told of organized black masses, which was a huge toad the size of a dog, which turned into a blednolikogo person. The initiate had to kiss this man, and from that moment he or she completely forget everything I ever heard in church. And after all those present to forget about the church, the statue came to life a black cat - a cat and Satan himself bypassed its new adherents. And then, according to denunciations and recognition started Orgy.
The fact that such "recognition" and "information" were produced in the course of severe torture, no one in the papacy and the Inquisition did not bother. In the end, once people gave such details, then the way it was. That is why in 1233-1234 years the Catholic Church began to destroy the cats. Also, people who have these cats lived.
It is believed that a total extermination of cats eventually led to a pandemic of plague in the mid-1300s. Even though the beginning of the epidemic, hunting for cats has not stopped - it was believed that the disease - leprosy is Satan, so that the cats have to destroy even harder.
The bas-relief of Gregory IX, the US House of Representatives.
A century later, in the late 1400s, the cats went back - this time the Catholic Church has accused them of facilitating the witches. And the Pope again, this time Innocent VIII of, ordered to kill all the cats in the neighborhood. Of course, people got it many times more - that Innocent VIII issued a papal bull known "Summis desiderantes affectibus" ( "All the forces of the soul"), which called on all Christian Europe hard to destroy the witches.
The Pope Innocent VIII.
For example, in Belgium, there is still a celebration called "Kattenstoet" - in the course of his celebrated history of the country. One of the highlights of the festival is the ceremonial throwing a soft toy in the form of a cat from the bell tower of the church and then a ceremonial burning of the effigy that symbolizes the witch. In the Middle Ages such a "holiday" was also held, only thrown out of the bell tower of this cat and burned at the stake a real woman, declared a witch.
Holiday in Belgium "Kattenstoet".
Now cats can be seen in the Vatican. Fortunately, they had no more burns and emits a high-rise buildings. The only thing that said, the current Pope Francis, it's not worth spending a lot of money on their pets costumes, it's better to spend it on charity. I must say that a few centuries have not been in vain: to kill every cat between order and request for them to spend less money - a real pit.