Homosexuality Part Two

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In the literature of Middle Ages homosexuality played a role, if only as an afterglow of classical antiquity. It should always be remembered that almost until the end medieval literature circulated in manuscript among highly elite publics, often ones that could read and appreciate Latin poetry. It was not subject to the formal and informal censorship that set in once the printing press had made possible a literature aimed at mass readers of the vernacular. The Latin classics–virtually the sole “exotic” literature accessible to medieval readers–were rich enough in homoerotic language and themes to inspire any medieval poet or prose author.

Ultimately, it is true, our theme succumbed to the Christian taboo, which was not simply a prohibition of homosexual behavior, but also a banishment of the subject from realm of polite discourse. It was only in the twentieth century that the topic returned to world literature thanks to pioneers such as Gide, Proust and Colette.

Four major themes can be discerned in the medieval literature dealing with love for one's own sex: 1) Glorification of the physical beauty of the adolescent boy; 2) Praise of male bonding and fidelity–now often coded as self-sacrificing friendship; 3) Treatments in which increasingly ambivalence, aversion, and reprobation come to the fore; 4) Reworkings of Biblical or Christian themes that are by their very origin negative and con-dem-na-tory, such as the much discussed passages in Dante's Inferno.

However, the late Middle Ages saw another phenomenon that was to last down to the twentieth century, namely the formation of a linguistic code that enabled insiders to communicate their homoerotic feelings and reveal their true sexual orientations to one another without being intercepted by a hostile Church and society. This innovation marked a radical break with the explicitly homoerotic literature of antiquity, whose authors and public had no need of such concealment. Much more needs to be done to collect and interpret whatever survives of the clandestine homosexual literature of the late Medieval period.

The 13th century was a turning point in the history of Latin Christendom and its understanding of homo-sexual behavior. The sin against nature had been condemned from the outset: not one father of the Church, not one penitentialist, not one scholastic or canonist ever made a single neutral, much less positive comment on homosexual activity. But it was not linked with apostasy; the role which male homosexuality had played in the sacral prostitution of the Ishtar-Tammuz cult or other religions of pagan Asia Minor had long been forgotten. In the West, it now came to be associated with the dualist heresy of the Bogomils in Bulgaria and the Cathars in Provence. Toward the mid-thirteenth century the very word Bulgarus acquired the meaning of sodomita. But most important, the earlier reprobation was now magnified into a full-fledged obsession, which Warren Johansson, the coauthor of this article, as early as 1978 defined and labeled as the sodomy delusion. In its fullest formulation, it is a complex of paranoid beliefs invented and inculcated by the Christian Church in the Middle Ages, and prevalent in much of Christendom to this day, to the effect that non-procreative sexuality in general, and sexual acts between males in particular, are contrary to the law of Nature, to the exercise of right reason, and to the will of God that sodomy is practiced by individuals whose wills have been enslaved by demonic powers that everyone is heterosexually oriented, but that everyone is susceptible of the demonic temptation to commit sodomy, and potentially guilty of the crime that everyone hates and condemns the crime of sodomy, but that the practice is ubiquitously threatening and infinitely contagious that everyone regards the practice loathing and disgust, but that whoever has experienced sodomitic with pleasure retains a lifelong craving for it that it is a crime committed by the merest handful of depraved individuals, but that if not checked by the harshest penalties it would become so rampant as to lead to the suicide of the human race that it is a source of eternal damnation for the individual sinner that it impairs and undermines the moral character of those who practice it that it is so hateful to God as to provoke his retaliation in the form of catastrophes that can befall an entire community for the crime of a single individual in its midst that for its own self-preservation every Christian community must be eternally vigilant against its occurrence and spread and that the parties guilty of such abominable practices should be punished with the utmost severity and–if not put to death in accordance with Biblical precept–then totally excluded from Christian society.

In the wake of the adoption of these beliefs, the most absurd notions find their way into Latin Christian authors writing on sodomia ratione sexus. Although St. Anselm, Archbishop of Canter-bury, made some excuses for younger clerics who committed the sin of Sodom, the new hard line prevailed. A circle around Peter the Chanter in Paris, at the end of the twelfth century, maintained that a the very moment when the Virgin Mary was giving birth to Jesus, all those in the world who were guilty of sodomy died a sudden death. In his Legenda aurea (1290), Jacopo da Varagine repeats this fantasy with an ascription to Saint Jerome, adding that according to Saint Augustine, because human nature was defiled with this vice, the Son of Man repeatedly postponed his incarnation and even thought of renouncing the project altogether. Hugh of Saint-Cher, in his com-mentary on the Vulgate composed at Paris in 1232, solemnly asserted that grass will not grow on a place where sodomy has so much as been mentioned, and that while an incubus may assume the shape of a man, and a succubus the shape of woman, a succubus would never take on male form because even devils would be ashamed to take the passive role in sodomy. In the emerging law codes, to be sure, the active (= older) partner often received harsher penalties.

Christian intolerance enveloped homosexual behavior in a nexus of absurd, unprovable but credible fantasies. Toward 1360 a South Italian jurist, Luca da Penne, wrote in his Commentaria in Tres Libros Codicis, Book XII, 60(61), 3: If a sodomite had been executed, and subsequently several times brought back to life, each time he should be punished even more severely if this were possible: hence those who practice this vice are seen to be enemies of God and nature, because in the sight of God such a sin is deemed graver than murder, for the reason that the murderer is seen as destroying only one human being, but the sodomite as destroying the whole human race. . . .

Guy de Roye [Guido de Monte Rocherii], archbishop of Tours and of Reims, composed in the year 1388 a work entitled Manipulus curatorum, of which a French version circulated as late as the seventeenth century under the title Le Doctrinal de Sapience. In it he wrote: Of the vice of sodomy Augustine declares how detestable it is, saying that the sin is far greater than carnal knowledge of one's own mother, as shown by the punishment inflicted on the Sodo-mites who perished in fire and brimstone from heaven. This sin, moreover, cries spiritually unto the Lord, whence in Genesis the Lord says: The cry of Sodom and Gomorrah has come unto me, for as Augustine says, by this sin the society which should be in us with God is violated when the very Nature of which he is himself the prime mover is polluted by the perversity of lust.... It is indeed of such accursedness that not the act alone but the mention of it pollutes the mouth of the speaker, the ears of the listeners, and the very elements in general.

The French edition published at Troyes in 1604 adds that the reproach of sodomy is so vile that even the enemies of Jesus did not dare to accuse him of it at the time of his Passion, although they heaped every other kind of abuse on him.

Thomas Aquinas, the doctor angelicus, played his own distinctive role in the onset of the sodomy delusion. In a crucial passage of the Summa Theologiae (I-II, q. 31, 7) Thomas falsified the material which he borrowed from Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics (VII v 3-4, 1148b). There Aristotle had explicitly stated that sexual attraction to males (venereorum masculis) could be motivated either by nature (natura) or from habit (ex consuetudine). In his commentary on the Latin text of Aristotle, Aquinas dutifully admitted that such unnatural pleasures could be sought and experienced “from the nature of the physical constitution which [certain people] have received from the beginning” (ex natura corporalis complexionis quam acceperunt a principio). But in the Summa Theologiae he suppressed this concession to assert that what is contrary to human nature (id quod est contra naturam hominis) may “become connatural to a particular human being” (fiat huic homini connaturale). “Connatural” here does not mean not “inborn” but is applied to feelings that have so fused with the personality of the subject as to become “second nature.” Later he adds what Aristo had nowhere said, that “such corruption can be...for psychological causes” (quae corruptio potest esse...ex parte animae) and exemplifies it with “in intercourse with animals or males” (in coitu bestiarum aut masculorum) to paraphrase the Christian notion of sodomia. Like Philo Judaeus in the first Christian century, Aquinas illegitimately paired the Hellenic conception of the “unnatural” with a Zoroastrian-Judaic belief to produce the scholastic condemnation of homo-sexuality which the psychoanalytic school has served to rationalize by implicitly adopting the logic of Aquinas and his epigones as if it were a scientific finding–and echoing the Biblical prohi-bi-tion as if it were some law coterminous with the universe itself. His formulation could serve as the motto of the homophobic psychiatrists and psychoanalysts of the late twentieth century, who insi-stently deny any genetic or con-stitutional basis for attraction to one's own sex and maintain that it is acquired by psycho-sexual development in childhood. Catholic authorities on Aquinas frankly admit that Aristotle does not con-demn homosexual behavior as such and that Aquinas super-imposed the moral sanc-tion from a wholly independent source: the Biblical tradition adopted by the Church as a “my-stical body.” Since Aristotle's acknowledgment that homosexuality could be innate was sup-pres-sed by Thomas Aquinas, and by the Church generally, we have designated the late 19th century reasser-tion of it as neo-Aristotelian. Thanks to Aquinas, and no doubt other Christian moral “authorities,” Western civilization lost the knowledge of exclusive and involuntary homosexu-al-ity (known to Plato, Aristotle and other Greek writers, including astrologers, even in a society that was pre-dominantly bisexual), which it regained only thanks to the campaign begun by the homophile apologists Karl Heinrich Ulrichs (who formulated the concept) and Károly Mária Kertbeny (who invented the word) in the 1860s–after some six centuries of ignorance that justified unrestrained cruelty and vindictiveness against those guilty of “unnatural vice.”

From the late thirteenth century onward, statutes against sodomy, with penalties ranging from mere fines to castration, exile and death, enter the criminal law of secular jurisdictions. The sacral offense moved from canon law to civil law. Times and places varied, but the language and motiva-tion are everywhere the same. The first actual known execution in Western Europe is from the year 1277, while in England buggery did not become the object of a statute of Parliament until 1533. Illegality became the norm throughout Christian Europe and remained until the Enlighten-ment began its work of criticizing and dismantling the criminal law of the Old Regime, specifically understanding the offense of sodomy, like witchcraft, to be motivated by superstition and fanaticism.

A further weapon of the Church in its repression of sodomy was the ascription of infamy of fact. This was the stigma attached to those who violated specific canons and ordinances of the Church, and in the case of the sodomite it entailed perpetual infamy, which is to say lifelong exclu-sion from the sacral community of Christian belief. Those found guilty of unnatural vice, or even sus-pected of it, suffered a civil death: even if not prosecuted, they and their families could be com-pletely ostracized and economically boycotted, they could be assaulted or even murdered with impunity, since the civil authorities felt no obligation to prosecute the assailant–a mentality that has lasted in police and court practice to this day. The persistence of medieval infamy into modern times, not some “instinctive aversion” to homosexual activity, underlies the ostracism and persecution which lovers of their own sex have endured even into modern and “post-modern” times. Infamy is a subject remarkably neglected by medievalists; recent works have chiefly dwelt upon obscure technical points of canon law rather than upon its social impact. It is this last that badly needs to be investigated in connection with the status of those oriented toward their own sex.

Subsumed under the “crime against nature,” homosexuality became invisible to the Christian mind, yet the object of a thousand obscene fantasies. It was nowhere, yet everywhere threatened society with destruction. It was blotted out of the annals of the past, unrecorded in the present, forbidden to exist in the future. Records of trials were burned along with the culprit, so that no trace of the crime should remain. Yet enveloped in the impenetrable darkness of ignorance and superstition, it existed silent and unseen, a phantom eluding the clutches of an intolerant world. This shift from the explicit but not obsessive condemnation of earlier centuries to the frantic intolerance of homosexual expression that has been a hallmark of Western civilization from the late thirteenth century onward9 has been noted by previous investigators, but with reference to the striking parallels. Just recently the Stanford historian Gavin I. Langmuir, particularly in his book Toward a Definition of Antisemitism (1990), has called attention to a similar evolution of the Western Christian attitude toward the Jews in the thirteenth century, particularly following the Fourth Lateran Council (1215), where under Pope Innocent III the Church achieved the all-time zenith of its power and influence. He argues that the anti-Judaism of earlier centuries was succeeded by what he calls “chimerical antisemitism,” but what we would rather designate as the Judeophobic delusion, by analogy with the sodomy delusion and the much better studied witchcraft delusion. The Judeophobic delusion took the form of accusations that Jews profaned the Christian host (the consecrated wafer in the Eucharist) and that they murdered Christian children to use their blood in unleavened bread for Passover, along with equally fanciful notions such as that on Good Friday the Jews bleed through the anus in fulfillment of the cry “His blood be on us and on our children!” Although painstaking investigations by Christian authorities always led to the finding that human sacrifice is as incompatible with any form of Judaism as it would be with any form of Christianity, the long-standing (and perhaps unresolvable) ambivalence of Christian theology toward Judaism allowed the authorities of the Church to canonize supposed victims of Jewish ritual murder and to erect shrines in their honor. In the past, Muslims were generally less inclined to persecute such groups, though today they are more retrograde in their attitudes than are the Christians of Western Europe and the United States.

In the same way the condemnation of sorcery which Christianity had inherited from Biblical Judaism was in the late fifteenth century magnified into the witchcraft delusion–the paranoid belief that witches had the power by their magical rites and practices to inflict infinite harm on society. Because of this delusion hundreds and thousands of old women, often in the initial stages of senility, were cruelly tortured to extract confessions and then executed.10

In the Judeophobic delusion the accusations were purely imaginary, but represented a retrieval of the unconscious content of the Jewish Passover and the Christian Eucharist as a symbolic Ersatz for rites of human sacrifice in the Canaanite-Phoenician religion that preceded both Judaism and Christianity. The origins of the witchcraft delusion have long been debated, with no satisfactory conclusion in sight. Some hold that witchcraft represented a survival of pre-Christian fertility cults or other forms of paganism that had survived from the mists of prehistoric ages; others maintain that proceedings were purely and simply invented by the inquisitors for motives to be found within the politics of the Church itself. We do not suppose that forms of magic practiced in pre-Christian Europe before the seventh century vanished completely with the formal triumph of Christianity, and the existence of dvoev_rie (dual belief) is attested for much later periods, especially where the new faith was introduced only in the tenth century, as it was in Scandinavia and most of Eastern Europe. However, the modern investigator starts from the premise that the rites of the presumed witches had no efficacy, hence the causal nexus accredited by their Christian persecutors was an example of paranoid reasoning. But the sodomy delusion represented a purely imaginary construction of real behavior that indeed occurred, but was undertaken for the mutual pleasure or sexual relief of the participants, with no thought of harming anyone. The catalogue of misfortunes which the sodomy delusion compiled was solely the paranoid invention of the Christian mind. It will remain for future historians, aided by depth psychology and comparative folklore, to ascertain what primordial fears and anxieties were revived and crystallized by the sodomy delusion. However, it should always be remembered that if homosexual activity occurred everywhere in medieval Christian society, accusations brought against a particular individual or sect need not have been grounded in reality. This is the crux of the century-long debate over the alleged guilt of the Knights Templar, who were accused of sodomy and in many cases tortured into confessing it so that thei order could be abolished and its property confiscated. The judgment has for the most part been a function of the methodological rigor of the scholarship employed. The most painstaking investigators have generally come to negative conclusions, even pointing out that the charges failed to convince contemporary public opinion that the trials had any other motive than the greed of the French king.11 However, less critical minds starting from some such premise as “there are always homosexuals in an all-male organization,” or that “male bonding usually involves some form of homosexuality” have freely accepted the charges and even elaborated on them.12 It is pertinent, however, that the execution of Piers Gaveston–against whom the evidence was far more substantive–occurred a mere two years after the trial of the Templars.

To terminate the comparison, the witchcraft delusion was the shortest lived of the three. It held sway only from the end of the fifteenth century to the middle of the eighteenth, by which time it had been discredited in all but the remote backwaters of Christendom and left no real successor. The Judeophobic delusion lasted much longer, certainly down to the middle of the twentieth century, when revulsion at the active or passive complicity of many Christians with the Holocaust inspired profound guilt on the part of Christian theologians as to the Church's role in defaming the Jewish people over the centuries. Formal proceedings inspired by the “blood libel” had occurred as late as the turn of the century: the Tiszaeszlár ritual murder trial at Nyiregyháza in Hungary in 1882, the Polna ritual murder trial at Kutná Hora (Kuttenberg) in Bohemia in 1899, and the trial of Mendel Beilis in Kiev in 1911-13. In the nineteenth century, it is true, older, religiously motivated form of anti-Judaism gave way to economic and then racial anti-Semitism. Only in the wake of the Holocaust did the Roman Catholic Church formally absolve the Jews of the charge of deicide. But the sodomy delusion was in full vigor down to the middle of the twentieth century. It explains why the homosexual victims of National Socialism received no sympathy or reparations, why as late as 1957 the Federal Constitutional Court in West Germany, without a trace of remorse, not merely up-held the Nazi laws but even suggested that the penalty be doubled–from five to ten years imprison-ment. Even in its last decade this baleful legacy of the Middle Ages allows clerical politi-cians to win support from the electorate by their denunciation of the campaign for gay rights. Its meta-morphosis in modern times has been the belief (almost as tenaciously voiced as the previous one) that homosexuals are mentally ill, or are a source of social conflict and dis-organi-za-tion, or cause the decline of civilization.

All three of these belief systems, the sodomy delusion, the Judeophobic delusion, and the witch-craft delusion, were conceived and propagated by the Christian clergy. They were invented by theo-logians and jurists and disseminated among the laity by the parish clergy. Non of them can simply be attributed to “sexism,” to “prejudice against otherness” or some other abstraction dear to the hearts of social psychologists. Over the centuries they blighted the lives of thousands and milli-ons of human beings, even if not on the scale of the Holocaust of 1942-45–a deliberate at-tempt to exterminate the Jewish population of Continental Europe down to the last man, woman and child, while the policy in regard to homosexuals continued to be one of forced assimilation, so that only some 12,000 who had run afoul of the vice squads in German cities died in concentration camps. A crucial difference, however, separates the policy of the Church in regard to the Jews and its sanctions affecting those oriented toward their own sex. Down to the last third of the 18th cen-tury, Jewish communities in Western and Central Europe lived in total separatism and visibility. This status was not only desired by their members but reinforced by the Jew badge instituted by the Fourth Lateran Council in 1215 and by the ghetto first established at Venice in 1516. Both of these institutions had as their object to prevent sexual intercourse between Jews and Christians.13 The ghetto was not simply a quarter in which Jews were compelled to reside by the collusion of real estate agents, it was a walled area in which every Jew had physically to be after a certain hour of the night at which the gates were locked so that no one could either enter or leave. However, these communities had an officially recognized political and legal status, with a leadership that could negotiate on their behalf with the Christian authorities.

The sodomy delusion, on the other hand, forced homosexuals to live in a state of outward assimilation and invisibility. The only social organization which they could devise was that of a criminal subculture that hoped for and desired no visibility to the authorities of an intolerant church and state, and not everyone could discover or gain access to this underworld. Less than a ghetto, they had at most, known solely to the initiate, clandestine rendezvous for furtive sexual encounters, attested from London, Cologne, and many Italian cities, particularly during the Renaissance. Forced separatism on the one side, forced assimilation on the other: these were the political strategies which the Church adopted, and which even National Socialism merely revived–in the case of the Jews with the horrifying corollary that they had to be removed from European society once and for all.

A further problem is the failure of resistance to the Judeo-Christian condemnation and its intensification in the thirteenth century. At least four factors were involved:

The isolation and atomization of the individual who could not make contact with the underground subculture, and was doomed to frustration and helplessness; the “initiatory rebirth” of those who were introduced into the freemasonry of forbidden pleasures, which made them unwilling to reveal its secrets to a hostile and intolerant world; the ideological grind between two millstones: the substratum of aversion and contempt for those who inverted the norms of gender-appropriate behavior, and the superstratum of Judeo-Christian condemnation of sexual activity between persons having the genitalia of the same sex; and the absence of any positive religious sanction for homosexual activity. There could be no appeal to any religious tradition other the Christian one, and this was uncompromisingly negative.

In response to the onset of the sodomy delusion, lovers of their own sex were forced into dissimulation as the only way of survival. Marginalized by the dominant culture, they could only take refuge in a clandestine subculture that hid not just from the authorities but from Christian society as a whole. A proto-homosexual personality type resulted for which deception and hypocrisy were second nature. Over the centuries this manner of “existence in the world” became normative–to such an extent that a German writer of 1893 observed that “Given the case that the hour struck when by international agreement a general Uranide [homosexual] amnesty was suddenly proclaimed and everyone of them was urged to enter his name unabashedly on the open Urning census lists, in order to clarify the question once and for all whether the percentage of humanity that is homosexual does in point of fact demand a comprehensive reform of all the laws of social life–then it is quite certain that out of a hundred Uranians barely three would summon up the courage suddenly to drop the mask that has all but fused with their inner selves.”14

The conversion of the religious taboo into an administrative process of repression required the innovation of police procedures–and here the delusional world of the religious mind collided head-on with the real world. The enormity of the offense was matched only by its ubiquitousness. The dissertation by Michael J. Rocke, Male Homosexuality and its Regulation in Late Medieval Florence (1990), concludes that it remained “an integral and apparently ineradicable part of the society of late medieval and early modern Florence.” Efforts to suppress homosexual activity were to no avail, because the belief system could not suppress the cultural traditions (and biological forces) underlying it. The officials charged with policing sodomy quickly became aware that to inflict the death penalty upon every male who engaged in it would be a self-inflicted wound on the body of society. When the penalties were too harsh, magistrates simply refused to convict. In Florence they were gradually reduced as the number of those convicted rose. A strategy of repression emerged that hovered between two poles: toleration in the sense of turning a blind eye to activity which the police kept under surveillance, and periodic bursts of interference in which offenders could be rounded up in droves but were punished with fines, exile and other far from drastic sentences. With all the vagaries of police administration over the centuries, this remained the pattern, even in modern times. Moral crusaders could, of course, make life wretched for sodomites and other denizens of the sexual underworld, but their campaigns were usually of brief duration, after which life went back to normal. Hypocrisy, corruption, and moral ambivalence became the real norm, while the invisibility of homosexual activity became the outward one–the screen behind which forbidden urges enacted their dramas of lust and gratification.

What was the legacy of the Middle Ages in the sphere of homosexuality? This can be divided into two parts. The positive legacy included:

1. The friendship of Edward II and Piers Gaveston–the sole homoerotic model of male liaison be-quea-thed by the medieval period, and commemorated in literature as early as the Elizabethan era, in Marlowe's play Edward II;

2. The survival of a precious body of literature that informed the modern world about the pederasty of the ancients, and this for the most part in late medieval manuscripts. The Greek Anthology is known from a manuscript of the late tenth century, Athenaeus from one of the Hesychius from one of the early 15th, Catullus from three manuscripts of the fourteenth. So the heritage of antiquity survived Christian censorship and destruction, perhaps thanks to editors and copyists who merit closer investigation.

3. A clandestine homosexual subculture arose that survived more than six centuries of repression and defamation to become the basis of the emancipation movement of modern times. All the efforts of Church and state failed to eradicate the forbidden tendencies and the outlawed behavior, even if they could drive these underground.

The negative legacy included:

1. The loss of the knowledge of exclusive, involuntary homosexuality in Western civilization–an under-standing that had to be regained slowly and tortuously in the course of an entire century after the homophile apologists of the 1860s began their work.

2. The development of police procedures for the surveillance and repression of homosexual activity. None had been needed in classical antiquity, because homosexuality as such was not illegal. They continued to be refined in metropolitan areas down to the twentieth century and often led to irregular and capricious harassment of the clandestine gay subculture.

3. The creation of a homosexual personality type that survived in a hostile milieu by virtue of dissimulation and hypocrisy (“the closet”), often at the expense of others equally engaged in the forbidden behavior but more exposed to society's recriminations, and finally.

4. The adoption by Western society of the sodomy delusion, a complex of irrational beliefs that made the sodomite the scapegoat for society's ills–and implicitly the failure of the Church's own prophylactic and apotropaic rites. This delusion persisted after every other form of medieval intolerance had been abandoned or at least so discredited that it could no longer enter into official policy, even if it lingered in private attitudes. This tenacious survival of the medieval heritage remains the chief obstacle to the gay rights movement of the present day–but it is also a challenge for students of medieval society, its power structures, and its historic evolution. In one respect it is even fortunate that the sodomy delusion has survived virtually intact into the contemporary period, because it can be examined in vivo with all the tools of the cultural historian and the depth psychologist, not just from yellowing documents of the sixteenth century couched in a language that often obscures what the modern scholar would like to know. Future study of its dynamics and of the social forces that still uphold it can afford precious insight into the psychopathology of the medieval Christian mind.


Footnotes to Part Two

  • 9 F. J. Foakes Jackson, in An Introduction to the History of Chris-tianity, A.D. 590-1314 (New York: Macmillan, 1921), p. 161, writes that in the thirteenth century “the high water mark of medieval civilization was at-tained. Judged by the men who were born or flourished within it, the age is one of the most glorious in history...but judged by its fruits it is one of the most disastrous in history.” This assertion is certainly true of the Church's relations with both Jews and homosexuals, where the legacy of the thirteenth century lasted intact into the twentieth.
  • 10 In connection just with the witchcraft trials, the German psychiatrist Otto Snell more than a century ago observed that it was not the defendants, but the prosecutors and witnesses for the prosecution who were mentally ill. The delusion existed in their minds, not in their victims'. See his book Hexenprozess und Geistesstörung. Psychiatrische Untersuchungen (Munich: Ver-lag von J. F. Lehmann, 1891)
  • 11 The best example of this is Heinrich Finke, Papsttum und Untergang des Templerordens (Münster in Westfalen: Aschendorff, 1907). In their de-fense the Templars had alleged that any Templar found guilty of homosexual behavior_which was one of the principal charges against the order_would be expelled and imprisoned in fetters for the rest of his life; such was their rule. See Tony Burrows, “The Templars' Case for their Defence in 1310,” Journal of Religious History, 13: 255 (1965).
  • 12 Typical of these lines of reasoning are Gershon Legman, in The Guilt of the Templars (New York: Basic Books, 1966), where his contribution is solidly opposed by Henry Charles Lea with 'The Innocence of the Templars,”and Karlhans Kluncker, “Die Templer: Geschichte und Geheimnis,” Zeitschrift für Religions- und Geistesgeschichte, 41: 227 (1989).
  • 13 Solomon Grayzel, The Church and the Jews in the XIIIth Century: A Study in Their Relations during the Years 1198-1254, Based on the Papal Letters and the Conciliar Decrees of the Period, revised edition (New York: Hermon Press, 1966), pp. 60-63.
  • 14 Otto de Joux, Die Enterbten des Liebesglücks. Ein Beitrag zur Seelen-kunde (Leipzig: Max Spohr, 1893), p. 244.

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