Gregory and Other Christians
Gregory and Other Christians
Many, perhaps most, historians give Pope Gregory 1, "The Great", the crown as the most important Christian influence in Medieval times.
Some make him the dividing point between "Late Roman" and Medieval
They all may well be right, but there were others before and after him that deserve some credit.
After Gregory, many of the same historians place Leo 1, and not only because he talked Attila out of a jaunt into Rome (with or without the help of sword-bearing Saints or Angels).
Clearly we can't deal with all the relevant Christian players -- As with the Barbarian groups, we'll pick a few persons who were particularly influential: He took actions that implied and explicitly claimed papal primacy.
Working with the Emperor, he exerted papal temporal authority.
Among those discussed below are Not movers and SHAKERS, but movers and SHAPERS -- i.e., the "orthodox" (i.e., the winners) not the heretics[Fill in the gaps using the following Internet starting points: http://www.churchtimeline.com/white/index.htm
Use Google (http://www.google.com) to search for people and events from these
Pages]The four great "Latin Fathers of the Church": Abrose, Jerome, Augustine, and Gregory 1.
The four great "Greek Fathers", Athanasius, Basil (The Great), Gregory of Nyssa, and John Chrysostom are not included, because it would be complex to include them in a "Rome" course.
The study of the lives and works of the "Fathers", great and small, is called "Patristics" (for Internet sources on Patristics, see http://patristics.org/resources/ and for a whole library of the writings of the fathers see http://www.ccel.org/fathers2/)
Christian players: Note that any one of the persons chosen could be the subject of a lifetime of study.
Don't expect more than a brief (and dogmatic) precis here.
PETER and PAUL -- before our period, but obviously definitiveWas peter in Rome? He probably was, although still a few Protestant objections -- many 19th century doubters
Paul's time in Rome is better documented -- "Postmarks" on his letters, Addresses of his letters, Contents of his lettersIcons/personifications of the two Christian communities;DAMASUS (3??- 383) -- Pope from 366-383, commissioned Jerome. He had to overcome the first known "anti-Pope" (Ursinus), and was accused of being worldly (even adultery), criminal (murder), and ridden with peccadilloes.The Circumcised -- i.e., "converted" Jews
The Gentiles -- Latin gentilis from gens, gentis
[Goy, -im: TRILITERAL: gwy. DEFINITION: (Central Semitic noun *gy-) tribe. Goy, from Hebrew gôy, nation people (usually, and later exclusively, of non-Israelite, and then non-Jewish]
But he commissioned Jerome's Vulgate, set a calligrapher to work engraving epigrams in tombs and catacombs, and embellished and enriched churches.
First known Bishop of Rome to invoke the "Petrine text" -- (Mathew 16:18--"thou art Peter and upon this Rock I build my Church").AMBROSE (339-397) -- Bishop of Imperial Milan, unbendingly Orthodox, humiliated Theodosius, music man, converted Augustine
JEROME (340-420) -- "Cardinal", lion-tamer, historian, polemicist, biblical translator/popularizer, biblical commentator, Latin, Greek, and "Hebrew" (Semitic) linguist, ran a "research institute" in Bethlehem.
[Note 1: During his Tenure, the Western Empire court settled in Milan (Gratian, then Valentinian 2)].
[Note 2: Arianism, the first of the great "heresies", defined Christ (according to its "orthodox" enemies) as a second, inferior god standing midway between the "First Cause" and creatures. The Council of Nicea condemned Arianism and the Nicene Creed is the expression of the "orthodox" and what became the "Catholic" view. See http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01707c.htm and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arianism for more info.]
Ambrose defined differences between Orthodoxy and Arianism -- public relations and manifestations prevented imperial (Valentinian) efforts to allow/order debate between the two streams.
Ambrose was clearly anti-liberal -- no reason to debate with Arians -- and even argued that violence was justified in defense of faith.
Some writings were clearly "anti-Semitic": this was many centuries before the Church announced (at Vatican 2, 1962-65) that what the Gospels clearly said about responsibility of Jews for Christ's death was not what they meant. [Keep in mind that this issue is still current: Mel Gibson's movie on the life of Christ is said to, once again, blame the Jews.]
Dispute between Ambrose and Theodosius (Eastern Emperor, appointed by Gratian). Although Theodosius was clearly a supporter of Ambrose's anti-Arian crusade, they fell out over Theodosius' punitive executions of Thessolonica rioters. Ambrose demanded and got public penitence.
Anticipated and directly influenced Augustine in many respects. Augustine had gone to Milan and, according to his own account, was overcome by Ambrosian music.
Great literary and musical achievements.
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01383c.htm Ambrose, Catholic Encyclopedia
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/14577d.htm Theodosius, Cath Ency
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01394a.htm Liturgy and Rite
Sponsored by Damasus and funded by Paula (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11582a.htm for Paula)AUGUSTINE (354-430) of Hippo (see note below on Hippo location) -- penitent playboy, teacher, bishop, Christian theoretician
Studied "classical" literature and wrote histories before imbibing the scriptures.
Early contact with Antioch's Jewish Christians (? First study of Hebrew?)
In Rome (ca 382) came under influence of Damasus and became an influential Papal staffer. Started to revise the Latin bible based on Greek texts. Surrounded by pius Roman women, including Paula.
When Damasus died (Dec 10, 384 -- but note vagaries of pre-Gregorian dates) -- the "irascible", polemical and critical Jerome (he'd derided Ambrose, for example) decamped again for the Middle
East, taking with him his coterie of Roman women. (Never any accusation of sin - unlike his theretofore patron, Damasus).
The Bethlehem "research institute" -- by 338 they and some Antiochenes picked up en route were ensconced in Bethlehem.
Thirty-four years of literary output from his hermit's cell (traditionally in a cave under the courtyard of the current Latin Church of St. Catherine, adjacent to the Greek Orthodox Church of the Nativity)
Most important product was the Vulgate -- not the first Latin translation, but it was the first Latin translation using Semitic language sources as well as Greek -- herefore considered more authentic.
His biblical commentaries (i.e., exegetical treatises) also benefited from his knowledge of Hebrew.
Note that Jerome’s "Latin" was the simple inelegant contemporary (i.e., vulgar) language and not the Latin of Cicero, which was later canonized by "Ciceronian" renaissance humanists.
He’s one of the most depicted of all Christian Saints
(Famous quotes -- you'll be surprised; "…blind leading the blind", "…practice what you preach", "…justifying the means by the end", "…gift horse…." Most were already proverbial in Middle Eastern Languages, but his letters and writings brought them into the West -- move over Shakespeare.)
(Jerome’s Vulgate in purposely lower class (i.e., vulgar) not very Ciceronian Latin. His Latin was "improved" in renaissance Rome to give us the "Vulgate" we have today )
Academic advancement in N. African Universities after an impoverished middle class upbringing (a "scholarship" from a wealthy family friend made it possible).LEO 1, "The Great" (4??-461) -- Pope, barbarian tamer, "2nd to Gregory" Early on, he was an academic pedant and imitator of Cicero's style
"Looking for himself" he first became, in Carthage, a Manichaeian (Manichaeians believed in two competing powers, the perfectly good creator and the absolutely evil destroyer) but soon saw through the mythology and was affronted by the ignorance of Manichee teachers.
Drifted back home, but soon headed again to Carthage seeking new inspiration. Augustine prospered there as an itinerant teacher but soon sought a bigger tutorial market -- Rome.
In Rome, Jerome used Manichee contacts to get an interview from Roman Prefect Symmachus, who hired him as a teacher for the Imperial Court in Milan. Rapid advancement there and an society marriage arranged by his mom.
Still unhappy, perplexed, (maybe a depressive?), started to study Christianity: eventually converted by Ambrose (-- he was "transfixed" by Ambrose's music.)
After conversion, recognizing the hollowness of temporal advancement, Augustine and his companions returned to N. Africa seeking a quiet contemplative life.
Soon "drafted" into the priesthood, then into a bishopric. Most of his efforts were on local pastoral matters, but he intervened in three big controversies.
Donatism, which demanded rebaptism of those who had compromise under persecution. Augustine initially tried to talk the Donatists around, but when they refused, he organized Imperial intervention, which after long hearings suppressed the Donatists. Principle: sinners don't need reconversionThe mortal decline of Augustine coincided with the arrival of the Vandals in North Africa, their having been invited by a local Roman governor seeking allies in rebellion. They inevitably evaded the governor's control and took over. They Took over Hippo a few days after his death and Carthage fell shortly thereafter.
The Cause of the fall of Rome (to Alaric) and the City of God: after the sack, some upper class pagan Romans retired to N. African estates, bringing with them the theory that neglect of the old Roman gods (i.e., rise of Christianity) had caused the fall. Early books of The City offered
consolation and refuted that theory. Later volumes issued over 15 years eloquently and elegantly continued to expound on Christian principles.
Pelagians who advocated asceticism at a level that Augustine thought was extreme. Augustine eventually invoked papal and imperial authority and won the day, but he then had to constantly defend the level of asceticism of which he himself approved.
The Vandals were Arians, so, locally, at least for the hundred-year tenure of the Vandals, Augustine's efforts were for naught. On the broader and especially on the Roman stage, his works, especially The City of God had great influence.
http://faculty.georgetown.edu/jod/augustine/ J. J. O'Donnell -- best Augustine http://www.utm.edu/research/iep/a/augustin.htm Internet site -- menu in sidebar
http://www.stoa.org/hippo/ Electronic Confessions
BOETHIUS (480-524) "The last of the Romans" -- Mathematician/scientist/musical theorist, philosopher, Medieval and Renaissance role model. Leo's pontificate, next to that of St. Gregory I, [arguably-tkw] is the most significant and important in Christian antiquity. At a time when the Church was experiencing the greatest obstacles to her progress in consequence of the hastening disintegration of the Western Empire, while the Orient was profoundly agitated over dogmatic controversies, this great pope, with far-seeing sagacity and powerful hand, guided the destiny of the Roman and Universal Church. -- Catholic EncyclopediaA formidable writer as a deacon under Celestine 1 (422-32), he was a problem-solver/diplomat for Sixtus 3 (432-40). In Gaul on a mission when Sixtus 3 died, he was elected in absentia. (In early Christianity, as in ancieent Rome, a deacon was a guardian and dispensor of organizational resources and treasure.)
As Pope, Leo led the campaign against Pelagian and Manichaeian heresies. (Pelagians had originated in Rome and Manichees had fled to Rome when the Vandals had taken North Africa.)
Leo sought out ways to interfere in extra-Roman, extra-Italian affairs, sending out "warnings" to external dioceses about heresies and intervening in disputes between rival claimants to bishoprics.
"Disciplinary decrees" were designed to enforce uniformity of rules and liturgies.
Most famous exploit: Warning off Attila in 452. (Attila is at http://www.mmdtkw.org/VAttila.html.)
includes Raphael’s famous painting in the Stanza di Eliodoro, Vatican Palace
Algardi’s sculpture in St. Peter’s, (modeled after the Raphael painting)
[Note: at this time Christianity was divided between Arians and "orthodox", the latter group claiming that designation ex post facto to the appearance of the Arians. These "orthodox" have nothing to do with the "Orthodox" (upper case "O") Greek Christians who appeared later.]BENEDICT (ca480-ca547) -- "Monk" (= a singlton fr. Gr. monos), Western Christian monastic founder
Boethius was clearly the best educated Roman of his day.
Student, translator, and commentator on Neoplatonism, he began a project to translate and interpret all works of Plato and Aristotle, a project cut short by his death.
Office Director (Magister Officiorum) for Theodoric, the Ostrogothic king of Italy, for whom he also performed diplomatic missions.
Jealous enemies accused him of treason and of sacrilegious astrology and, most importantly of being an orthodox Catholic. Since Theodoric was an Arian and the Eastern Emperor (Justin) was orthodox, this was clearly the most dangerous charge.
Boethius was eventually executed after an imprisonment during which he wrote his most important philosophical work, Consolations of Philosophy. The orthodox (lower case) church immediately claimed him as a martyr even though his Consolations give no real indication that he was even a Christian -- the Church still gives some labored arguments that the Consolations were orthodox, but it's a long stretch, and it certainly has always been in the interest of the Church to claim "the last Roman" as her own.
After his death and through the Medieval and Renaissance periods, Boethius was held up as an educated Christian role model for Christians/Catholics.
Boethius was one of the main sources of material for the quadrivium, the Scholastic educational course introduced into monasteries consisting of four topics: arithmetic, geometry, astronomy, and the theory of music. On this last topic Boethius wrote on the relation of music to science, suggesting that the pitch of a note one hears is related to the frequency of sound. (Vincenzo Galilei, the father of the famous Galileo Galilei. did the definitive work on musical mathematics, harmonics, string tensions and frequencies, ca. 1588.)
Not the founder of Christian Monasticism, but of Western Christian Monasticism. There were Christian monasteries in the Middle East almost from the beginning as pre-existing Jewish monasteries converted.GREGORY 1, "The Great" (540-604) -- the watershed, first Medieval Christian
Benedict didn't set out to be a hermit -- took his old nurse along as a maidservant when he left Rome and joined a company of "virtuous men" at Enfide, the supposed site of his first miracle, mending a broken earthenware wheat sifter. Notoriety of the event caused him to seek a more remote retreat at Subaico (nurse still went along).
He spent three years in the cave helped by a local monk named Romanus. Eventually called out by monks to replace a local abbot who had died.
The monks eventually tried to poison him -- he was more strict than they had bargained for. Benedict went back to his cave.
Miracles then came fast and thick, and eventually 13 Monasteries grew up around him. Schools and homes for children followed.
Benedict set up a lay Rule, but the Church later imposed a clerical character on the Benedictines. (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rule_of_Saint_Benedict.)
The only "authentic" biography of Benedict was written by Gregory The Great and comprises 38 chapters of the second volume of Gregory's Dialogues. (Gregory's bio of Benedict is at http://www.osb.org/gen/greg/)
Much more on Monasticism will be in Unit 5.
More info on Benedict:
http://www.ora-et-labora.net/dialoghidis.html (in Italian)
[Note: the "Exarch" (= "outside ruler") was the chief local administrator for the Eastern Emperor, who was nominal ruler of Italy -- kind of a viceroy, but with more closely defined powers (limited rather than general power or regency). De facto, the exarchs' powers were even more limited by circumstance than by the Emperors directives. Unit 4 is about these guys and how and when they could wield power.]"Bad" Popes — 9th à 12th centuries — Until the "Avignon captivity" (1309 — 77)
By about age 33 (in 573) he was already "Prefect" of the city of Rome -- de facto mayor -- unusual advancement for a person of that age
But he had family connections: probably of gens Amicia, with a large villa on the Caelian Hill, ruins of which are under the Church of Gregorio Magno.
Little is known of his mother Silvia, except that she also came from wealth.
In 574, he dropped out and became a monk -- presumably a Benedictine, since he wrote a biography of Benedict (which is at http://www.osb.org/gen/greg/).
Family estates in Sicily were given over to found 6 monasteries. Caelian villa was converted into the Monastery of St. Andrew. Debate over whether the monasteries were Benedictine is only important in that the outcome would determine what kind of monasticism Augustine of Canterbury introduced into England.
Drawn out of austere life in 578 and appointed "regionary " deacon. Then sent to Constantinople as the Pope's Ambassador in the hopes he could get imperial help (Tiberius 2 Constantine, 578-82) against the advancing Lombards.
Famous dispute with Patriarch Eutychius over "palpability" of risen bodies of the Elect while in Comstantinople -- and no help against Lombards. Lesson was that Rome had to save itself.
Back to St. Andrew's by 586 -- writing and lecturing.
Exact date unknown -- meets Angles in the Forum and petitions the Pope for a missionary assignment in England. According to legend he actually set out, but was called by popular demand. (He eventually sent Augustine.)
Elected pope in 590 after an anno nero -- plagues, floods, famines, wars, dead Pope. Gregory tried to beg off.
During the wait for an imperial decision, in the face of ongoing plague in the city and surrounding areas he organized the "sevenfold procession" (seven regionary deacons) during which the eponymous angel appeared over Hadrian's mausoleum/Castel Sant'Angelo.
The Emperor finally decided to confirm Gregory's appointment, against his wishes. Stories that he fled and hid were later inventions.
There followed 14 years as Pope -- but he still lived as a monk in the Lateran after dismissing all the lay attendants and pages and staffing the place with clerics.
Despite ill health, he worked tirelessly Pope) organizing the defense of Rome against the Lombards, provisioning Rome from his former Cicilian estates, reorganizing the liturgy (extent of which is debated), establishing weekly "station churches" to bring the Papacy to the people , managing the churches vast and widely separated estates, arguing with the (Arian) Lombards -- in short he was a general manager: a COO rather than a CEO.
Actual hostilities between the Western Emperor and the Lombards began in 592. Noting the exarch's inaction after a few Papal diplomatic moves, Gregory made a separate peace with the Lombards, details of which are unknown. But the fact of the existence of a treaty was thereafter an argument for sovereign Papal temporal power.
That position, in turn roused the exarch who came roaring back into Rome, only to leave with his garrison a year later. Rome was now again exposed to the re-aroused northern Lombards who came back to the gates of Rome. There was a meeting between Gregory and the northern leader, and Gregory later wrote that he had been "paymaster to the Lombards": he presumably bought them off with cash (and thereby allowed them to re-equip/re-arm to face their perceived secular rival, the Eastern Emperor and his exarch.)
Gregory also established relations with the emerging Franks, but they lapsed at his death and there was no lasting effect -- yet
One of several periods of internal strife that the Catholic Church characterizes as periods during which political actors imposed themselves on control of the ChurchPope Joan: the Papessa who never was Essentially, the church is right, but it begs the question of just what the Church is — Is it only responsible for its acts when it conforms to later views of "morality".Background Charlemagne’s kids and grandkids had torn apart the Carolingian "Holy Roma Empire and the scuffles among their heirs continued for centuries — East, Middle, and West Carolingians became Germany, Lotharingia/Italy, and France. There were still Visigothic remnants in Spain.End of 800s —
Formosus was Pope from 891 — 896. He had connections in both the "French" and "German" wings fo the Carolingian successors, but as Cardinal, he fled to a French supporter — He may initially have been pro-French, and that could have made him a rival of the pro-French incumbent. Details of his connections and disposition are at http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/06139b.htm. (The Popes after him can all be found at http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/12272b.htm.) Formosus died of a stroke and his successor, Boniface 6, reigned 15 days. Steven 7 exhumed, condemned, desecrated the body of Formosus.900s
Successive popes in the 900s rehabilitated and re-desecrated Formosus as power shifted among the contending external powers. For a while, he was the bellwether of which wy the flock was moving.In some cases the women were the apparent power brokers.
Not just an "external" problem — local nobles in Rome were working the situation to their own advantage.
Theodora was married to Theophylact but apparently in bed with John 10, for whom, I was said, she acquired the Papacy using her husbands influence.The Church’s problem in dealing with this stuff:
Theodora arranged a marriage between her daughter, Marozia, and Alberic (elder).
When Theodora and Theophylact died (ca. 928) Marozia had John 10 imprisoned and murdered. Marozia had kids with Pope Sergius, and their son became Pope John 11.
Alberic died and Marozia married his half brother, King Hugo of Provence — her bastard son, John 11 officiating.
Her son by Alberic, another Alberic, worried that he was about to be killed and appealed to the Roman mob. He imprisoned his half brother (John 11) and Marozia, the latter being kept in Castel Sant’Angelo for 50 years.
It goes on and on — read all about it in the Papal biographies.
The "German"/ "French" rivalry goes on into the 20th century (and probably beyond, after they get over their current "anti-US" axis.)
The church doesn’t want to condone what went on in the Papacy at this time, but it does want to claim all of these "bad popes" or "imposed" popes to establish the "unbroken succession" from Peter (the foundation Rock) and the popes in power at the time of the Protestant Reformation. Supposedly in the 800’s but doesn’t appear in legend until centuries later.THOMAS AQUINAS (1224-1274) -- philosopher, logician, reasoner (from Latin: rationor)
May well be a later distortion, witting or unwitting, of the whole Theodora/Marozia balagan
Suppoesedly she masqueraded as a man/monk to be with her monkish lover who eventually went to Rome accompanied by her. When he died, she blossomed into a learned scholar and then was made Pope. She delivered her lover’s child in her inaugural procession to the Lateran Palace — there’s a street nearby called Via Papessa — and was exposed. Etc.
[Note: Persons previously discussed were on our list mostly because of how the affected the period under discussion. Thomas', coming as he did nearer to the end of the period, had his influence in later -- much later -- periods, and mostly in the last hundred or so years. The cause of this was the decline, in the years following his lifetime, in recourse to reason.
[Many modern theorists ascribe this decline to the die-off of thinkers in the famines and plagues that swept Italy and the rest of Europe starting at about the time of his death.]
Coming as he did from a large, rich, and noble family (youngest son of the Duke of Aquino), Thomas had great education opportunities. At age 5 he was sent off to the Benedictine Monastery at Monte Casino to be educated for a career in the Church.
Stories that he was a slow learner simply are not true. At 14 he was sent to the University of Naples where he excelled, studying in particular the newly rediscovered works of Aristotle. Thomas became a logician.
At about age 19, he joined the Dominicans (OFP = Order of Friars Preachers). Displeased by his choice -- not wanting him to be a Monk, and especially an "inferior" one -- his family kidnapped him and tried to "de-program" him, going so far as introducing a prostitute to his prison cell. Finally giving up, the family released him and he took the Dominican Friars' vows.
He quickly left for the University of Paris where he studied under Albertus Magnus. When Albertus transferred to Cologne, Thomas followed. Other students of Albertus nicknamed him "Dumb Ox" because he spoke little and was very large. Albertus declared that the Ox's bellows would be heard around the world. In Cologne, probably around 1250 he was ordained as a priest.CATHERINE OF SIENA (1347-1380) Mystic, Ascetic, Anorexic
Within a few years he was back in Paris lecturing at the University and working on his own Doctorate in Theology. His degree (and degrees of other clerics) was delayed when University administrators objected to his (their) unwillingness to participate in street battles between the University and the "townies." Both Papal and French Royal (Louis 9) interventions were needed to release the degrees.
From 1257 though 1273 he produced over 50 major philosophical, theological, and Aristotelian and scriptural exegetical works, meanwhile also actively preaching and teaching. Among the written works was the Summa Theologica, from the time of the Counter Reformation until now has been the major source of Catholic theology.
Thomas was, above all, a supporter of "reason" as opposed to "faith" as a method of philosophy and theology. Shortly after his death, circumstances (as noted above) led the Church away from reason and toward faith -- and mostly of the ecstatic variety.
Other circumstances led to the Protestant Reformation and the Church responded by favoring a new "preaching order", the Jesuits, who immediately seized on "Thomistic Philosophy" -- logical reasoning -- to counter the Protestant emphasis on salvation through "faith".
http://www.newadvent.org/summa/ Thomas' Suma Theologica -- full text
Finally, a woman crosses the stage. Unfortunately, she represents the rise of unreason in the Church and in Medieval society. It was mostly women who had the ecstatic experiences that were so popular in the disastrous 14th and 15th centuries, but remember, that Francis of Assisi was an early participant in the previous century. Francis will be covered in unit 5 on the survey of monasticism.
[Note 2: Some modern editions of her works are "condensed" or sometimes simply Bowdlerized to remove sections that are much too sensual and sexual for a "religious" context: Catherine's descriptions of her ecstatic encounters with Christ are explicit and livid.]
[Note 3: Catherine was born the year before the "Black Death" plague swept through Italy. An economic depression, caused by over population (cooling at the end of the Medieval Warm Period) and agricultural soil exhaustion was already under way. In January of 1348 plague entered Italy through Genoa and it reached Siena the following month. May 1348 was the month of highest mortality in Siena, and, according to contemporary reports more than half of the city's population was dead within one year. Social order rapidly broke down leading to tradesmen's and agrarian revolutions, and the mental state of the survivors was understandably fragile. In the early 1360s plague swept Europe again: the pestis secunda or pestis puerorum took out the younger generation who had not acquired immunity by surviving the first pandemic. More on the plague(s) in unit 10.]
Catherine was the last of 23rd of 25 children (!) of Giacomo and Lapa Benincasa, members of the "Party of the Twelve", a lower middle-class group that took over Siena between 1355 and 1368 between revolutions (i.e., when Catherine was already in her nunnery.)
Visions and austerities were said to have begun in her childhood (age 7?). At age 16 she entered a Dominican nunnery and continued to have visions and ecstatic experiences, including "spiritual espousals".
About 1366 she left the convent and began to work with the sick -- especially victims and survivors of the plague (pestis secunda).
Thereafter, she was reportedly "persecuted" by her former Dominican sisters and brothers who doubted the reality of her claims. Soon a small community of disciples, men and women, began to aggregate around her and her popularity increased.
In summer of 1370 another series of visions and ecstasies culminated in a "command" to enter public life. In a short time she was meeting with and corresponding with the civil and religious aristocracy.
In 1375 she received the "secret" stigmata -- i.e., no outward signs while she lived. The marks were visible on her body only after she died.
Like a modern politician, she seemed to turn up at every local and national crisis.
She died, as might be expected, at a very young age during one of he long and rigorous fasts.