chapter  8
20 Pages

Vernacular Poetry and the Spiritual Franciscans of the Languedoc: The Poems of Raimon de Cornet

Heresiologists have seen variations between Cathar experiences in northern Italy and other parts of Europe, particularly the Languedoc, especially in organisational structure and social status. Given the lively political and social changes taking place there, it seemed fruitful to analyse this observation by studying Milanese Catharism in the context of theories of urbanism or social mobility. The Vita of St Galdinus, Archbishop of Milan, holds the earliest evidence of Cathar presence in Milan. Galdinus was part of his predecessor's episcopal retinue when they were forced to flee during Frederick Barbarossa's siege of Milan in 1162 and was elected during exile in 1166, returning to Milan in 1167. In the thirteenth century papal correspondence always referred to heretica pravitas or heretici, whether addressing secular or educated religious individuals. In the Milanese communal acts, the single term heretici appears. Perhaps the communal officers were uninformed or uninterested in doctrinal distinctions between heretical sects.