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Cabriere [Cabriera]

Provence, France

Coordinates: 43° 38' 60 N, 6° 22' 0 E

 
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La Motte-d'Aigues

Luberon, Vaucluse, Provence, France

Coordinates: 43° 46' 27" N, 5° 31' 18" E

 
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La Roque-Alric [La Roche]

Vaucluse, Provence, France

Coordinates: 44° 8' 37" N, 5° 3' 54" E

 
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Lourmarin [Lormarin]

Luberon, Provence

Coordinates: 43° 46' 10.58" N, 5° 21' 46.96" E

 
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Moissac-Bellevue [Mussic]

Var, France

Coordinates: 43° 39' 0" N, 6° 10' 0" E

 
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Peypin-d'Aigues [Pipin]

Luberon, Vaucluse, Provence, France

Coordinates: 43° 47' 19" N, 5° 34' 14" E

 
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Saint-Étienne-du-Grès [St Stephens]

Bouches-du-Rhône, France

Coordinates: 43° 46' 53" N, 4° 43' 34" E

 
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Sanfales

nr Merindol, Luberon, Vaucluse, Provence

 
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St-Martin-de-la-Brasque

nr La Motte-d'Aigues, Luberon, Vaucluse, Provence, France

 
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Villelaure

Vaucluse, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France

Coordinates: 43° 42' 41" N, 5° 26' 5" E

976 [952]

K. Henry. 8. The historie of Merindoll, and Cabriers. The bloudy cruelty of Papistes.

make it one of the Cantons of the Switzers: MarginaliaThe king abused by wicked counsaile.And to stay this enterprise, he sayd it was necessary to execute the Arrest manu militari, and by this meanes he obteyned the Kings letters patents, thorough the helpe of the Cardinall of Tournon, commaunding the sentence to be executed against the Merindolians, notwithstanding that the King had before reuoked the sayde sentence, and geuen straight commaundement that it should in no wise be executed, as before is mentioned.

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After this he gathered all the Kynges armey 

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The execution of the letters patent of 1 February 1545 were delayed until April 1545 to allow the military forces under Antoine Escalin des Aimars, baron de la Garde ( known as 'Poulin de la Garde') to be mustered. From 18 April 1545 the army moved along the southern edge of the Luberon ['Libron']. Mérindol and Cabrières were among the last to be devastated. La Motte, Lourmarin ('Lormarin'), Villelaure, Saint-Martin de Castillon and other villages were caught up in the operation. Its savagery became widely noted through Europe: 'Crudelitas plusquam Scythica' comments the marginal gloss in Pantaleon's account (fol. 144), which Foxe follows closely in his narrative. For details of the military operation, see P. Gaffarel, 'Les massacres de Cabrires et de Mérindol en 1545' Revue Historique 101 (1911), 241-64.

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, whyche was then in Prouince ready to go agaynst the Englishmen, and tooke vp all besides, that were able to beare armour, in the chiefest Townes of Prouince, and ioyned them with the armey which the Popes Legate had leuied for that purpose, in Auinion and all the countrey of Venice, and employed the same to the destruction of Merindoll,. Cabriers, and other Townes and Villages, to the number of xxij. geuing commission to his souldiours to spoile, ransacke, burne, and to destroy altogether, and to kill man, woman and child, without all mercy, sparing none: no otherwise then the Infidels and cruell Turkes haue dealt with the Christians, as before in the story of the Turkes, you may reade.

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For as the Papistes and Turkes are like in their Religion, so are the sayd Papistes like, or rather exceede them, in all kindes of cruelty that can be deuised. But this Archtyrant before he came to Merindoll, ransackt and burnt certaine townes, namely La Roche, S. Stephens, Villelaure, Lormarin, La Motte, Cabrierettes, S. Martin, Pipin, Marginalia8. townes with the most parte of the people destroyed for true religion. and other places mo, notwithstanding that the Arrest extended but only to Merindol. Where the most of the poore inhabitants were slaine and murthered without any resistance: MarginaliaHorrible cruelty vpon women & young infantes.womē and maydens rauished: women with child and little infants borne and to be borne, were also most cruelly murthered: the pappes of many women cut off, which gaue sucke to their children, which looking for sucke at their mothers brest being dead before, died also for hunger. There was neuer such crueltie and tirannie seene before.

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The Merindolians seeing all on a flaming fire round about them, left their houses and fled into the woods, and remained that night at the Village Sanfales and thereaboutes, in wonderfull feare and perplexitie: for the Bishop of Cauaillon, deputie to the Bishop of Romes Legate, had appointed certaine Captaines to go and slay them. The next day they went a little further, hiding thēselues in woods, for there was daunger on euery side, and Miniers had commaunded vnder paine of death, that no mā should ayde them by any meanes, but that they should be slaine without pitie or mercy, wheresoeuer they were found. The same Proclamation was of force also, in the Bishop of Romes dominions thereby: and it was sayde that the Bishops of that countrey did finde a great part of the army. Wherefore they went a tedious and a paynefull iourney, carieng their children vpon their shoulders, and in their armes, and in their swadling clothes, and many of them also being great with child, were constreined so to do. And when they were come to the place appointed, thether was already resorted a great number which had lost their goodes, and saued themselues by flight.

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Not long after, it was shewed them how that Miniers was comming with all his power, to giue charge vpon them. This was in þe euening, and because they should go thorough rough and combersome places, and hard to passe by, they all thought it most expedient for their safegard to leaue behinde them, all the women and children, with a few other, and among them also, certeine Ministers of the Church: the residue were appointed to go to the towne of Mussic. And this did they vpon hope that the enemie would shew mercy to the multitude of women and children, being destitute of all succour. MarginaliaA lamentable separatiō of the Merindoliās frō their wyues and children.No toung can expresse, what sorrow, what teares, what sighing, what lamentation there was at that wofull departing, when they were compelled to be thus separated asūder, the husband from his deare wife, the father from his sweete babes and tender infants, the one neuer like to see the other againe aliue. Notwithstanding, after the Ministers had ended their ordinary Sermons, with euening Prayers and exhortations, the men departed that night, to auoyde a greater inconuenience.

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When they had gone all the night long, and had passed ouer þe great hill of Libron, they might see many villages and farmes set on fire. Miniers in the meane time, had deuided his army into two partes, marching himselfe with the one, towardes the Towne of Merindoll, and hauing knowledge by espiall whether the Merindolians were fled, he sendeth the other parte to set vpon them, and toshewe their accustomed crueltie vpon them. Yet before they came to the place where they were, some of Miniers armye, eyther of good will, or mooued with pitie, priuily conueyed themselues awaye, and came vnto them, to geue thē warning that their enemies were comming: and one from the top of an high rocke, where he thought that the Merindolians were vnderneath, casteth downe two stones, and afterward, although he could not see them, he calleth vnto them, that they should immediately flye from thence. MarginaliaThe Merindolians ouertaken of their enemies.But the enemies suddenly came vpon them, finding them all assembled together at praiers, and spoyled them of all that they had, pulling off their garments from their backes: some they rauished: some they whipped and scourged: some they sold away like cattell, practising what cruelty and villanie soeuer they could deuise against them. The women were in number about fiue hundreth.

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In the meane time Miniers came to Merindoll, where he founde none but a young man named Maurice Blanc, who had yelded himselfe to a souldiour, promising him for his raunsome, two French crownes. Miniers woulde haue had him away by force, but it was answered that the souldiour ought not to lose his prisoner. Miniers therefore paying the two crownes himselfe, MarginaliaVile cruelty shewed vpon a yoūg man of Merindoll.tooke the young man, and caused him to be tyed to an Oliue tree, and shot thorough with harquebushes, and most cruelly martired. Many Gentlemen which accompanied Miniers against their willes, seeyng thys cruell spectacle, were mooued wyth greate compassion, and could not forbeare teares. For albeit this yong man was not yet very well instructed, neyther had before dwelt at Merindoll, yet in all hys tormentes hauyng alwayes hys eyes lyfted vp to heauen, wyth a loude voyce, he ceased not still to call vpon God: and the last words that he spake, were these: Lord God, these men take away my life full of miserie, but thou wilt giue vnto me life euerlasting, by thy sonne Iesus Christ: to whome be glory. MarginaliaThe towne of Merindol destroyed of the Papists.So was Merindoll without any resistance, valiantly taken, ransackt, burnt, rased, and layed euen with the ground. And albeit there was no man to resist, yet this valiant Captaine of Opede armed from toppe to toe, trembled for feare, and was seene to chaunge his colour very much.

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MarginaliaThe towne of Cabriers falsely takē.When he had destroyed Merindoll, he layed seege to Cabriers, and battered it with his ordinaunce, but when hee coulde not winne it by force, he with the Lorde of the Towne, and Poulin his chiefe Captaine, persuaded wyth the inhabitauntes, to open their gates, solemnely promising, that if they would so do, they would lay downe theyr armour, and also that their cause should be heard in iudgement with all equitie and Iustice, and no violence or iniurie should be shewed against them. Vpon this, they opened their gates, and let in Miniers with his Captaynes and all his army. MarginaliaOthe and promise brokē of the Papistes.But the Tyraunt when he was once entred, falsified his promise, and raged like a beast. For first of all he picked out about thirtie men, Marginalia30. men. Martyrs. causing them to be bound and caried into a medowe neare to the Towne, and there to be miserably cut and hewen in peeces of hys souldiours.

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Then, because he would leaue no kinde of crueltie vnattempted, hee also exercised outrage and fury vppon the poore selly women, Marginalia40. women. Martyrs. and caused fortie of them to be taken, of whome diuers were great with child, and put them into a barne full of strawe and hey, and caused it to be set on fire at foure corners. And when the sely women running to the great window, where the hey is wont to be cast into the barne, woulde haue leaped out, they were kepte in with pikes and halberdes. Then there was a souldyoure which moued with pitie at the crieng out and lamentation of the women, opened a dore to let them out, but as they were comming out, the Tyraunt caused them to be slaine and cut in peeces, opening their belyes, that theyr children fell out, whome they trode vnder their feete. MarginaliaCruelty Neronicall, or rather furye diabolicall.Many were fled into the wineseller of the Castell, and many hid themselues in caues, whereof some were caryed into the medowe, and there stripped naked, were slaine: othersome were bound two and two together, and caried into the hall of the Castell, where they were slaine by the Captaynes, reioysing in theyr bloudy butcherie and horrible slaughter.

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That done, this Tyraunt, more cruell then euer was Herode, commaunded Captayne Iohn de Gay wyth a bande of ruffians, to go into the Churche (where was a great number of women, children and yong infantes) to kill all that he founde there. Which the Captayne refused at the first, to do, sayeng: that were a crueltie vnused among men of warre. Whereat Miniers being displeased, charged him vpon payne of rebellion, and disobedience to the King, to do as he had commaunded hym. The Cap-

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