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334 [334]

Actes and Monuments Of the Church

In the meane time the Emperours ambassadoures, and the ambassadours of the electors, went vnto Basell, and hauinge conference wyth the ambassadoures of the other prynces which were there, and sending for the Cardinall of Sainte Peters an excellent manne, which at that time, taried at Constance to see the end, and issue of thinges, they did earnestly exhort the fathers of the councel, that they would embrace and receiue the vnitye of concord whych they woulde offer. The request of the princes was, that the fathers wold transport the coūcell, and goo vnto another place, the which only thing, Poope Eugenius seemed alwaies to seke and desire, that there by he might eyther deuide the fathers of the coūcell, or take away their liberty.

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This sacred Sinode thought good neyther to deny the Princes request, nor to graunte that which pope Eugenius required. During this doubt, the Emperoures ambassadoures, the byshoppes of Patauia and Augusta, being much required and stirred there vnto apoynted a noble and valiaunt Baron called Conrad Weinsperge, by the kinges commaundement, to be protector and defendor of the councell, and the fathers. Where by as the ennemies perceyued the Emperoures minde to be alienate from the Poope, so the fathers of the councel vnderstode hys good wyll towardes them. Forsomuch, as he would not haue sent them a protector, if he hadde not iudged it a lawfull councell, nether again wold he haue iudged it a councel in Basell, if he had geuen creadit to Poope Eugenius. But by meanes of a great pestilence whiche began to growe, the assembly that should haue bene holden at Frankford, was transported vnto Mētz. The ambassadors of þe Princes also thought good to goo thither, if they might find any meanes of vnitie, wherby they might vnite and knit, the Pope again vnto the councel.

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The assemblye was very famous, for there were presente the Archbishoppes of Mentz, Colen and Treners, electoures of the sacred Empire. And all the ambassadours of the other electoures. Notwithstanding, the Archbishop of Colen was the chiefe fauourer of the councel in this assembly, who with al his laboure and dilygence went about to brynge the matter vnto a good ende, Rabanus the Archbishoppe of Treuers shewed hym selfe somewhat more roughe. The sacred Sinode also thoughte good to send thither their ambassadors, and appoynted oute the patriarke of Aquileya, the bishop of Vicene, and the byshop of Argen deuines, Ihon Segouius, and Thomas Decorcellis, with dyuers others. There was no manne there present whyche would name hym self the ambassador of Eugenius. All be it there were manye of his fauourers and frendes come thether both from the councell, and also oute of Florence, the whiche albeit they had sworne to the contrary, yet fauoured they more Eugenius thē the councel, whose sect William Constantiensis afterwarde called the sect of Grise. The chief force and Hercules of all the Eugeniās, was Nicolaus Cusanus, a man syngulerlye well learned and of great experience. After dyuers consultacions had, the electoures of the Empire, and the ambassadoures of the other princes of Germany, thought good to geue oute commaundement, through out their hole nation and country, that the decrees of the councell of Basell shoulde bee receyued and obserued.

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Whilest these thynges were thus debated at Mentz, there sprang a certen very doutful question amonges the deuines, which remained at Basill, whether Eugenius myghte be called an hereticke, which had so rebelliously contempned the commaundementes of the church, here vpon they gathered them selues together, disputing amonges them selues by the space of vi. daies, afore noone, and after noone, some affyrminge, and other some holding the negatiue part. Vppon this their dysputation, there arose iii. seuerall opynions, some affyrming that he was an hereticke, other some, not only an heretycke, but also a relaps. The third sort wold neyther graunte hym to be an hereticke nor a relaps. Amōgest these deuines, the chiefe and principall bothe in learning and authority, was the bishop of Ebrun, ambassador of the moost noble kynge of Castell, and a certain skottish Abbot which as two moost valiaunt champyons subdued all theyr ennemyes, so that all the reast dyd eyther cōsent vnto their arguments, or gaue place vnto them, so that their determination toke place, and Eugenius was pronounced both an heretick & relaps viii. conclusiōs wer there determined & allowed amongest the deuines which they called verities, þe copy wher of they did diuulgate throughout all christendom. When thambassadors of the coūcel wer returned frō Mētz, þt certen report was made of the alowing of their decrees, the fathers of the councel thought good, to discusse the conclusyons of the deuines more at large.

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Whervpon by the commaundement of the deputies, al the masters and doctors and clergye were called together wyth the resydue of the Prelates into the chapter house of the great church, there openly to dispute and discusse Eugenius heresy, the which thyng sore greued the Byshop of Millaine, fearing leaste thys disputatyon woulde woorke the depryuation of Eugenius, the whyche as he sayde he hadde alwaies letted for feare of Scisme, he ceased no manner of waye to laboure,

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