Chronography of Christianity

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See also Papal Succession

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�Cherish those who seek the truth but beware of those who find it.� Voltaire

He who begins by loving Christianity better than Truth will proceed by loving his own sect or church better than Christianity, and end by loving himself better than all� Samuel Taylor Coleridge

�Fanaticism consists of redoubling your efforts when you have forgotten your aim.� George Santayana

�Nature does nothing without purpose, or uselessly�. Aristotle, in Politics, Book 1


Map of Christian areas of Europe, 11th Century.


Bible and Prayerbook Developments � see appendix 1

Inquisition � see appendix 2

Jehovahs Witnesses � see appendix

Jesuits � see appendix

Methodists � see appendix

Mormons- see appendix

Quakers � see appendix

Salvation Army � see appendix

Templars � see appendix


Benedictines/Cistercians � see appendix a

Franciscans � see appendix b


UK Church attendance 1987-2019


UK Sunday

Church attendance, 1,000s

% of adult population






















However in London church attendance rose from 52,700 in 1987 to 53,600 in 2019


UK religious affiliation 1964-2017, % of electorate





All Christian








No religion




Picketty, Thomas (2018), Brahmin Left vs Merchant Right: Rising Inequality & the Changing Structure of Political Conflict, WORKING PAPER SERIES N� 2018/7


French religious affiliation 1967-2017, % of electorate







Catholic-attend church at least

Once a month



Catholic-non Church attending



Other religions(all)






No religion



Picketty, Thomas (2018), Brahmin Left vs Merchant Right: Rising Inequality & the Changing Structure of Political Conflict, WORKING PAPER SERIES N� 2018/7


US church attendance


Attended weekly






2016, In Britain, acording to the Social Attitudes Survey, the number of people with no religion reached 53%, up from 48% in 2015. In 1983 the figure was 31%. The number of non-Christians was 6%, down from 8% in 2015. The 41% of Christians was comprised of 15% Church of England (down from 37% in 1983), 9% Roman Catholic, down from 10% in 1983, their numbers bolstered by immigration, and 17% �other Christian�, up from 16% in 1983.


Acceptance of female clergy

26 January 2015, The Church of England appointed its first woman bishop. The Reverend Libby Lane became suffragan Bishop of Stockport at a ceremony in York Cathedral.

12 March 1994, The Church of England ordained its first women priests. 32 were ordained.

11 November 1992. The UK General Synod voted for ordination of women. Several hundred male clergy left the Church in protest and even in 2000 there were some 1,000 Church of England congregations that were refusing to accept female priests. The first female priests were ordained in 1994 and by 2001 around 20% of the Church of England clergy was female. Some saw this as progressive, others as blasphemous..

24 June 1990, The Anglican Church ordained its first two women deacons, at St Anne�s Cathedral, Belfast. Kathleen Young, a 50-year-old physiotherapist from Carrickfergus, County Antrim, and Irene Templeton, 49, from Belfast, were ordained.

1 August 1989, The Anglican Church was bitterly split over the issue of women the Lambeth Conference. By 423 votes to 28, they voted that the consecration of women Bishops could not be prevented. However the Archbishop of Sydney then called a motion that women Bishops would �destroy our unity� and �destroy the credibility of the office of Bishop�. He lost this motion by 277 to 187, but apart from the US delegation, a majority had sided with him.

25 September 1988, In the USA, Barbara Harris, a divorcee, was elected first woman bishop in the Anglican Church, to serve as Bishop of Massachusetts (inaugurated 11 February 1989).

5 July 1988, The Church of England voted for the ordination of women.

2 July 1985, The General Synod of the Church of England approved the ordination of women, despite strong opposition within the Church.

5 December 1981. Elizabeth Canham, a British theology teacher, was ordained priest in the USA. She was the first British woman to become a priest.

17 June 1977. The feminist claim that God is a woman was supported by no less than the Jesuit journal Civitta Cattolica, published fortnightly in Rome.

16 September 1976, In the USA, the Episcopalian Church approved the ordination of women.

1975, The Anglican Church in Canada approved of women being ordained as priests.

25 January 1944, In Macao the Reverend Florence Tim-Oi Lee became the first woman Anglican Priest


16 September 2010, Pope Benedict XVI commenced the first Papal visit to Britain since King Henry VIII split with Rome.

2010, In England, 800,000 went to a Church service every Sunday, down from 1,5 million in 1970.


New Saints

19 October 2003, Mother Teresa of Calcutta was beatified.

21 March 1993, Pope John Paul II declared Duns Scotus a saint.

14 September 1975, Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton was canonised by Pope Paul VI to become the first American saint.


16 August 2005, Brother Roger (Roger Louis Schutze-Marsauche), founder of the Christian Taize community, died (born 12 May 1915)

6 August 2003, Gene Robinson became the first openly gay Anglican bishop.

7 July 2003, Canon Jeffrey John, first would-be gay bishop in the Church of England, withdrew his acceptance of the post of the Bishop of Reading, after discussions with church leaders.

14 August 2002, Pope John Paul II drew a crowd of two million at a papal Mass in Krakow, on his 9th visit to his native Poland.

22 November 2001, Pope John Paul II sent the first Papal email from a laptop in his office.

12 March 2000, Pope John Paul II at St Peters, Rome, prayed for forgiveness of past sins of the Catholic Church, including the burning of heretics during the Inquisition, the slaughter of Muslims during the Crusades, being silent during the Nazi massacre of the Jews, and professing hatred for groups such as the Travellers.

15 June 1994, Israel and The Vatican established full diplomatic relations.

25 April 1993. Pope John Paul II made the first Papal visit to Albania, until then the world�s only officially atheist state.

10 February 1993. The Pope, John Paul II, called for an end to the persecution of Christians in Sudan.

26 April 1992, Worshippers celebrated Easter at the Russian Orthodox Church in Moscow for the first time in 74 years.

6 March 1991. Dr George Carey was elected Archbishop of Canterbury.

24 October 1989, Fake US TV preacher Jim Bakker was sentenced to 45 years in prison and fined US$ 500,000 for swindling millions of dollars out of his followers.

8 March 1989, The Vatican dismissed Archbishop Paul Marcinkus from his position as chief of the Vatican�s bank. which had made losses ofUS$ 88 million.

4 March 1989, Pope John Paul II branded Salman Rushdie�s novel The Satanic Verses blasphemous for suggesting that part of the Koran was inspired by the Devil.

28 February 1989, Hereford Cathedral dropped plans to sell the Mediaeval Mappa Mundi to raise money.

30 October 1988, The head of the Unification Church, Reverend Sun Myung Moon, presided over a mass wedding of 6,516 couples in Korea.

13 October 1988, The Turin Shroud was declared to be a fake; it was dated to between 1260 and 1390.

30 October 1988, The head of the Unification Church, Reverend Sun Myung Moon, presided over a mass wedding of 6,516 couples in Korea.

19 September 1987, The Pope concluded his visit to the US.

10 March 1987. The Roman Catholic Church banned contraception by artificial means.

13 April 1986, Pope John Paul II visited a synagogue in Rome, the first time a modern Pope had visited a synagogue.

3 June 1985. In Italy, compulsory Roman Catholic instruction in schools ended and Catholicism was no longer the state religion.

27 December 1983, Pope John Paul II met his would-be assassin, Mehmet Ali, in a prison cell in Rome after conducting a Christmas service at the prison.There were growing rumours that the Bulgarian secret services were involved in the assassination attempt.Ali had been imprisoned for life for the crime.

9 May 1983, Pope John Paul II retracted the ban on Galileo Galilei.

21 July 1982. The Reverend Moon, of the Unification Church or Moonies, married 4,000 in a mass ceremony in New York.

17 June 1982, The body of Roberto Calvi, a key figure in the Banco Ambrosiano scandal, was found hanging under Blackfriars Bridge, London. Archbishop Marcinkus, President of the Vatican Bank, was also linked to the affair.

29 May 1982. Pope John Paul II visited Canterbury Cathedral with the Archbishop. On 30 May 1982 he visited Coventry Cathedral, and spoke of his hope for an end to war.

28 May 1982, Pope John Paul II landed at Gatwick Airport, becoming the first Pope to visit the United Kingdom for 450 years.

12 May 1982, A Spanish priest, Juan Hernandes, tried to stab Pope John Paul II with a bayonet as he visited the Fatima shrine on a pilgrimage.

13 May 1981. Pope John Paul II, seriously injured in the stomach, survived an assassination attempt in St Peter�s Square in Rome, by a Turkish terrorist, Mehmet Ali Agca, in front of 20,000 people. Agca had escaped from Turkey where he was being held for murder; he shot the Pope �in protest at American and Russian imperialism�.

25 March 1980, Robert Runcie became the 102nd Archbishop of Canterbury.

29 September 1979, Pope John Paul II arrived in Ireland, the first ever papal visit there.

2 June 1979. Pope John Paul II visited his native Poland. He was the first Pope to visit a Communist country.

25 January 1979, Pope John Paul II visited Latin America.

25 August 1978, The Shroud of Turin went on public display for the first time in 45 years.

6 August 1978, Pope Paul VI (Giovanni Battista Montini) died, aged 80.

15 January 1976. The Roman Catholic Church condemned sex outside marriage and said homosexuality could not be condoned.

24 January 1975, Dr Donald Coggan was enthroned as the 101st Archbishop of Canterbury, succeeding Michael Ramsey.

1974, In the US, Church attendance stood at 40%. Amongst Roman Catholics it was 55%, down from 71% in 1963.

14 May 1974, Dr Donald Coggan was made Archbishop of Canterbury.

16 April 1973. The Church of England said that practising homosexuals would not be accepted for training as priests after a radio statement by the Archbishop of York said that many clergymen were homosexuals.

5 October 1972. The Congregational Church and the Presbyterian Church of England combined to form the United Reformed Church.


Doctrinal developments 1931-92

31 October 1992. The Vatican admitted that Galileo was right when he said the Earth revolved around the Sun.

1982, The Roman Catholic Church ceased automatically excommunicating Freemasons.

1972, Pope Paul VI abolished the obligatory tonsure for new priests and monks.

1970, Pope Paul IV declared that priestly celibacy was a fundamental principle of the Catholic Church.

1966, The Vatican rescinded the rule that Catholics could eat no meat, only fish, on Fridays.

14 June 1966, Pope Paul VI abolished the Index Librorum Prohibitorum, the list of books that Catholics were forbidden from reading.

25 January 1959, The Second Vatican Council began work on reforming and modernising the Catholic Church..

1 November 1950, The Assumption, the belief that Mary mother of Jesus bodily ascended to heaven when she died, was declared dogma for Roman Catholics by Pope Pius XII. This belief is not considered doctrine in the Eastern Orthodox Church and is resisted by many Protestants.

13 January 1938, The Church of England accepted the Theory of Evolution.

21 March 1931, A Catholic church decree condemned modern sex education and eugenics.


27 November 1970. Pope Paul IV was unharmed after a knife-wielding assailant dressed as a priest attempted to attack him at Manila Airport.

1969, A Gallup Poll in the US showed that 70% of people felt the influence of religion was declining in the USA.

29 July 1968, The Pope condemned all forms of birth control.


Initiatives towards unification of the Christian deonomiations, 1964-66

23 March 1966. In Rome the first official meeting for 400 years between the heads of the Catholic and Anglican Churches took place, Pope Paul VI met with Dr Michael Ramsey, Archbishop of Canterbury.

7 April 1965, A new YMCA building was dedicated in Nazareth, Israel. It was intended as a symbol of unity between the various Christian denominations.

5 January 1964, Pope Paul VI met with the Primate of Eastern Orthodoxy, Athenagoras I, Patriarch of Constantinople, in Jerusalem.


4 October 1965, Pope Paul VI visited New York City; the first Papal visit to America.

6 January 1964. Pope Paul VI finished a three-day tour of the Holy Land, the first Pope to visit there since Christianity began. He was also the first Pope to leave Italy for over 150 years. On 5 January 1964 Pope Paul VI met the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople in Jerusalem, the first meeting between the heads of the Roman Catholic and Orthodox Churches for 500 years.

3 January 1962, Pope John XXIII excommunicated Cuban leader Fidel Castro.

27 June 1961, Dr Ramsey was enthroned as the 100th Archbishop of Canterbury in Canterbury Cathedral.

19 January 1961, Michael Ramsey was appointed Archbishop of Canterbury, following the retirement of Archbishop Fisher.

23 May 1957. The Church of England broke with tradition by allowing divorcees to take Communion. The Bible taught that marriage was for life, but Britain�s legal system allowed divorce.

8 December 1956, The Polish government completed a process of reconciliation with the Catholic Church. Cardinal Wyszynski had been released from prison on 26 October 1956, and on this day the Church was now free to make its own ecclesiastical appointments. Religious teaching in schools, and religious posts in hospitals and the army, were restored. Criticism of government policies in church sermons was permitted.

24 February 1954, The American evangelist Billy Graham arrived in London on a three-month �crusade�.

10/1953, The first Scientology church was founded in Camden, New Jersey, USA, by L. Ron Hubbard, his wife Mary Sue Hubbard, and John Galusha.

2 January 1952, Pope Pius XII declared that television was a threat to family life.

11 March 1951, In Northern Ireland, the Reverend Ian Paisley founded the Free Presbyterian Church of Ulster.

23 August 1948, The World Council of Churches was formed.

1947, In the UK, only 10% of the population regularly attended church, two thirds never attended one. However only 5% of the population were committed atheists; 80% of women and 67% of men believed in some kind of deity.

6 November 1942. The Church of England relaxed its rule that women must wear hats in church.

26 September 1942, Wilson Carlile, British clergyman who founded the Church Army in 1882, died aged 95.

31 May 1939, Terry Waite, envoy of the Archbishop of Canterbury, was born.

4 May 1938. The Vatican recognised Franco as leader of Spain.

17 December 1936, Pope Francis I was born.

21 April 1936, James Dobson, Christian evangelist., was born.

13 November 1935, George Carey, Archbishop of Canterbury 1991-2002, was born.


Pope Pius XI and contemporary politics

24 May 1935. Pope Pius XI condemned the German sterilisation of 56,244 �inferior� German citizens.

8 July 1933, The Vatican signed a concordat with Nazi Germany; this did not protect German Catholics from persecution.

2 September 1931, Mussolini made a pact with The Vatican.

31 May 1931. The Pope denounced Mussolini�s Fascists following attacks on priests and church property.

15 May 1931. Pope Pius XI condemned Communism.

31 December 1929, Pope Pius XI condemned co-education as harmful to Christian training.

25 July 1929. Pope Pius XI became the first Pope for 59 years to leave the Vatican. The creation of the Papal state under the Lateran treaties had clarified the politico-legal position of the Pope, who until then had been a virtual prisoner within the Vatican.

7 June 1929. The Papal State, extinct since 1870, was revived as the Vatican City State in Rome under the Lateran Treaty.

11 February 1929. The 109 acres of the Vatican in Rome were made an independent state under the Lateran Treaty, which was signed by Benito Mussolini and Pietro Gasparri, Pope Pius XI.

18 December 1924, Pope Pius XI denounced the USSR.


25 September 1933, 25,000 visited Turin Cathedral to gaze at the Turin Shroud, revealed to the public for the first time in 400 years, which purportedly showed the face of Jesus.

20 September 1933, Annie Besant, co-founder of the Theosophical Society, died.

1928, Opus Dei was founded in Spain. In 2020 it had around 99,000 members.

21 May 1928. In Italy, Catholics were told to disassociate themselves from Fascism.

8 April 1926, Jurgen Moltmann, German theologian, was born.

10 July 1925, The Scopes trial began in Dayton Tennessee.Mr Scopes, a science teacher, was accused of teaching evolution and so breaching State laws against teaching ideas contradicting the Bible.The real issue was the role of the State in determining the religious nature of school education.The outcome was inconclusive.Scopes was found guilty on 21 July 1925 but the US$100 penalty was set aside on a technicality.See also Biology

23 March 1925. US Tennessee law prohibited the teaching of evolution.

4 June 1923, In Spain, the Archbishop of Saragossa was murdered.

2 March 1923, Cardinal Basil Hume, Roman Catholic Archbishop of Westminster from 1976, was born.

2 October 1921, Robert Runcie, Archbishop of Canterbury 1980-1991, was born (died 2000).

18 May 1920. Pope John Paul II was born as Karolum Wojtyla in the market town of Wadowice, near Krakow, Poland. He was the son of a junior officer in the Polish Army.

16 May 1920, Joan of Arc was canonised.

7 November 1918. Billy Graham, US evangelist, was born in Charlotte, North Carolina, the son of a diary farmer.

11 December 1917, Owen Snedden, Archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Wellington from 1962 to 1981, was born in Auckland (died 1981).

13 May 1917, At Fatima, a small town in north east Portugal, three shepherd girls aged 10 -13 saw a vision of a lady outside the town.The vision reappeared at monthly intervals and on 13 October 1917 declared itself to be �Our Lady of the Rosary�

1914, Bournemouth finally permitted Sunday trains. Sunday steamers, however, remained forbidden until 1929.

13 January 1913, The Pope spoke out against films of a religious nature.

16 May 1912, MPs backed a Bill that would disestablish the Church in Wales, despite opposition by church leaders.

12 November 1911. Rev. Chad Varah, founder of The Samaritans, was born

3 December 1910. Mary Baker Eddy, American founder of the Christian Scientists, died.

26 May 1910, Pope Pius X issued the encyclical Editio Saepe. This angered many German Protestants because of its derogatory comments about Luther and the Reformation. On 11 June 1910, after protests by Prussia, the Pope expressed regrets over the encyclical and ordered bishops in Germany to stop circulating it.

18 April 1909, Joan of Arc was beatified by the Roman Catholic Church; she was canonised in 1920.

25 November 1908, The Christian Science Monitor began publication at Boston, USA.

16 November 1908, Soeur Emmanuelle, French nun who gave much aid to the poor in Egypt and Turkey, was born (died 2008)

30 April 1907, King Edward VII of Britain visited Rome and The Vatican.


Anti-clericalism, France

2 January 1907. Anti-clerical laws in France forbade the crucifix in schools.

2 February 1906. 530 injured in Paris in dispute over Church property.

9 December 1905, In France, the Church and State were legally separated.

18 March 1903, An anti-clerical French Government dissolved all religious orders.

3 June 1902, In France, Rene Waldbeck-Rousseau resigned, despite having a majority on the Chamber, over disputes with extremists. He was succeeded by Emile Combes, who pursued a strongly anti-clerical policy.

1 July 1901, France enacted its anti-clerical Association Law, which outlawed all religious institutions not formally registered with the State.


14 November 1904, Michael Ramsey, 100th Archbishop of Canterbury, was born (died 1988)

12 October 1904, The Polish Archbishop, Wincenty Popiel, condemned socialism as being subversive of all institutions.

25 December 1902, Pope Leo XIII, in his Christmas Encyclical, endorsed the Christian Democratic Movement as an alternative to the more radical Socialists and Communists. These latter groups had great appeal to those feeling excluded from the advances and promises of society.

1901, The modern Pentecostalist movement began when Agnes Osman started speaking in tongues at Topeka, Kansas, USA.

11 December 1901, The American Federation of Catholic Societies was founded at a meeting in Cincinnati after members amended the initial proposal to exclude women from a federation of all the Roman Catholic societies in the United States.

15 April 1901, Pope Leo XIII issued a pronouncement condemning hostilities to Roman Catholicism. across Europe. For instance the French Government hadrecently passed laws requiring the registration and control of religious associations, and had closed some Roman Catholic schools.

2 January 1901, The first municipal crematorium was opened in Britain, by the Lord Mayor in Hull.

31 October 1900, In Scotland, the Free and the United Presbyterian Churches merged.

8 January 1900, Marshal O Waggoner, an attorney in Toledo, Ohio who had recently converted to Christianity, destroyed his library of books �consisting of the writings of infidels�. Many of the volumes were exceedingly rare. There were a large number of manuscripts and first prints not to be found in any other library in America.

1899, The International Gideons Association was founded. They are best known for their placing of Bibles in hotel rooms.

26 September 1897, Pope Paul V was born in Concessio, as Giovanni Battista Montini.

31 December 1891, Samuel Adjai Crowther, African missionary bishop, died.

15 May 1891, A Papal Encyclical urged employers to fulfil their moral duty to improve conditions for their workers.

21 November 1890, The Lincoln Judgment, concerning the jurisdiction of the Archbishop of Canterbury, was delivered.

11 August 1890, Cardinal Newman (born 1801) died in Birmingham, UK. He was appointed as a Cardinal in 1879, and believed in the romantic vision of the Mediaeval Church.

29 October 1885, James Hannington, first Bishop of eastern Africa, died

10 October 1885, John McCloskey, US Cardinal, died (born 20 March 1810).

2 June 1883, Rioting at Stromeferry, Scotland, to try to prevent fish being despatched to London as so desecrating the Sabbath.

7 March 1882, The UK Parliament was presented with a Bill to prevent atheists becoming MPs. The Bill failed.

1881, Pubs in Wales were forbidden from opening on Sundays, contributing to the growth in illegal drinking dens.

25 November 1881, Pope John XXIII was born in Sotto il Monte, near Bergamo, Italy, as Angelo Guiseppe Roncali, the son of a peasant.

1880, In Britain, at least 25% and probably nearer 30% of the population regularly attended Sunday church services.

14 July 1880. Bismarck ended his Kulturkampf, or anti-Catholic policy.

11 May 1879, Samuel Gobat, Bishop of Jerusalem, died (born 26 January 1799)

1878, Pope Leo XIII banned castrati, males who had been subject to castration in order to retain high clear voices for singing, from the papal choir.

28 December 1878, Pope Leo XIII issued an encyclical, Quod apolostici muneris, condemning the rise of socialism, communism, the nihilists and anarchists.

2 March 1876, Pope Pius X was born in Rome, as Eugenio Pacelli.

30 October 1875. In the USA, Mary Baker Eddy published Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, arguing that illness is illusory and laying the basis for Christian Science.

24 July 1875, Athanase Coquerel, French theologian, died.

12 July 1871. In New York, 31 civilians and 2 policemen were dead after fighting between Scots/Irish Presbyterians and Irish Catholics.

8 July 1871. Bismarck launched a cultural offensive against the Catholic Church, abolishing the Catholic Department for Spiritual Affairs.

7 August 1870, Jozef Brems, Bishop of Roskilde, was born.

18 July 1870. Pope Pius IX, 78, obtained a declaration from the Vatican General Council that the papacy was infallible in all its pronouncements, per se and not by virtue of the assent of the Church. Papal nuncios persuaded the bishops to vote 533 to 2 in favour of Papal infallibility.This move provoked much anti-Church legislation in Germany.

2 October 1870 In a plebiscite, the Papal States voted to unite with Italy. The capital of Italy was moved from Florence to Rome. This was under the reign of Pope Pius IX.

1869, Pope Pius IX declared that abortion of any kind was an excommincatory sin.

1865, The Seventh Day Adventist Church was founded by Ellen G White (nee Harmon, born 1827) and her husband.



10 February 1870, The YWCA (Young Women�s Christian Association) was founded.

6 November 1861, James A Naismyth, American physical educator and director of the International YMCA in Springfield Massachusetts, inventor of basketball, was born.

6 June 1844. George Williams founded the YMCA at 72 St Paul�s Churchyard, London.

11 October 1821. Sir George Williams, founder of the YMCA in 1844, was born in Dulverton, Somerset.


9 July 1860, Massacre of Christians in Damascus.

11 November 1858, Alessandro Moreschi, last castrato singer, died.

15 June 1858, Christians were massacred in Jeddah.

11 February 1858. At Lourdes, a 14 year old peasant girl, Bernadette Soubirous, claimed to have seen a vision of a lady surrounded by light in a grotto.

31 May 1857, Pope Pius XI was born.

8 December 1854. Pope Pius IX settled an ancient controversy by declaring that Christ�s mother, Mary, was free of all sin the moment she was born. This doctrine is known as the �Immaculate Conception�.

1853, Until this year only Roman Catholicism, introduced by the Spanish, was the permitted religion in Colombia. The Roman Catholic religion was disestablished from Colombian State patronage in 1936.

30 March 1851, In Britain this day, 7.25 million out of a total population of 17 million reportedly attended Church. This was thought to be a disturbingly small proportion.

15 March 1849, Guiseppe Mezzofanti, Italian Cardinal, died (born 17 September 1774)

1848, The Christadelphians were founded by John Thomas (1805-1871).

27 June 1848, Denis Affre, Archbishop of Paris (born 27 September 1793) died.

1847, A Papal Bull again reiterated the need for Catholic Priests to be celibate.

3 September 1847, James Hannington, first Bishop of Equatorial Africa, was born.

14 January 1847, Wilson Carlile, English clergyman who founded the Church Army, was born in Buxton, Derbyshire.

14 December 1844. China relaxed a ban on the Roman Catholic Church.

25 December 1843. The first Christmas card was designed by John Calcott Horsley for Sir Henry Cole. The design was of three generations of a Victorian family sitting round a festive table, toasting an absent guest. Some objected that the illustration encouraged drunkenness. Sir Cole said he was too busy at business to send letters to all his friends as was his custom, so he had 1,000 cards printed up, selling the surplus for 1 shilling each. By 1862 cards featured �A Merry Christmas and a Happy new Year�; then holly and robins appeared in the illustrations, and by 1871 a daily newspaper complained that people were trying to outdo each other in how many cards they received, and the consequent delay in other post.The GPO adopted the slogan �Post Early For Christmas� for the first time in 1880. Christmas crackers appeared in the 1840s. However Christmas trees date back to around 1605 where they were seen in Strasbourg.In Alsace fir trees, or maien, were set up on May Day as far back as 1521.

23 September 1840, Nathanael Emmons, US clergyman, died (born 20 April 1745)

5 April 1840, Lant Carpenter, English Unitarian Minister, died (born 2 September 1780)

12 September 1839, John Keane, US Roman catholic Archbishop, was born.

13 August 1839, Michael Corrigan, Archbishop of New York, was born.

13 May 1839, Joseph Fesch, Cardinal, died (born 3 January 1763)

2 June 1835, Pope Pius X was born.

19 June 1834, C H Spurgeon, Victorian preacher, was born.

4 September 1832, Antonio Agliardi, Papal diplomatist, was born in Bergamo, Italy.

18 August 1831, William Magee, Archbishop of Dublin, died

22 September 1827. Joseph Smith, son of an impoverished New England farmer, announced that he had received golden plates from an angel. From this he translated the Book of Mormon, leading to the founding of the Mormon religion.

31 October 1825, Charles Lavigerie, Catholic Primate of all Africa, was born (died 26 November 1892).

25 February 1825, Quote from Samuel Taylor Coleridge, �He who begins by loving Christianity better than Truth will proceed by loving his own sect or church better than Christianity, and end by loving himself better than all

16 July 1821, Mary Baker Eddy, American religious leader who founded the Christian Scientists, was born in Bow, New Hampshire.

3 December 1815, John Carroll, US Roman Catholic prelate, died (born 8 January 1735)

20 March 1810, John McCloskey, US Cardinal, was born (died 10 October 1885).

2 March 1810, Pope Leo XIII was born, as Gioacchino Vincenzo Pecci, in Carpineto, the son of a Count.

28 August 1805, Alexander Carlyle, Scottish religious leader, died (born 26 January 1722)

2 August 1803, Nicolas Wiseman, first Archbishop of Westminster, was born.

26 January 1799, Samuel Gobat, Bishop of Jerusalem, was born (died 11 May 1879).

21 June 1792, Ferdinand Baur, theologian, was born in Schmiden (died 1860).

13 May 1792, Pope Pius IX was born.

12 September 1788, Alexander Campbell, US Christian religious leader (died 1866) was born.

8 September 1784, Ann Lee, religious leader and founder of the US sect of the Shakers, died.

7 March 1782, Angelo Mai, Vatican librarian, was born (died 8 September 1854).

2 September 1780, Lant Carpenter, English Unitarian Minister, was born (died 5 April 1840).

1779, The Religious Tract Society was founded in London. Its aim was to distribute religious literature in the British colonies and other lands.

5 February 1775, Eusebius Amort, German Catholic Theologian, died in Pulling, Bavaria (born 15 November 1692 in Bibermuhle, Upper Bavaria).

17 September 1774, Guiseppe Mezzofanti, Italian Cardinal, was born (died 15 March 1849).

18 September 1765, Pope Gregory XVI was born.

3 January 1763, Joseph Fesch, Cardinal, was born (died 13 May 1839).

20 November 1761, Pope Pius VIII was born.

22 August 1760, Pope Leo XII born.

20 August 1745, Francis Asbury, US clergyman, was born (died 31 March 1816)

20 April 1745, Nathanael Emmons, US clergyman, was born (died 23 September 1840).

14 August 1740, Pope Pius X was born

28 April 1738. Pope Clement XII condemned freemasonry.

8 January 1735, John Carroll, US Roman Catholic prelate, was born (died 3 December 1815).

26 January 1722, Alexander Carlyle, Scottish religious leader, was born (died 28 August 1805).

27 December 1717, Pope Pius VI was born.

1713, Jansenism, the Christeian sect originally led by Bishop Cornelius Jansen, Bishop of Ypres, was finally eradicated by Pope Clement XI. Similar to Calvinism, it had been condemned as heresy by Pope Innocent IV in 1654.

21 January 1710, Johann Gichtel, German preacher, died (born 14 March 1638).

1698, In London the Society for the Promotion of Christian Knowledge (SPCK) was formed by Dr Thomas Bray (1656 � 1730).

27 September 1696, Alfonso Liguori, Roman Catholic saint, was born.

15 November 1692, Eusebius Amort, German Catholic Theologian, was born in Bibermuhle, Upper Bavaria (died 5 February 1775 in Pulling, Bavaria).

25 February 1686, Abraham Calovius, German Lutheran theologian (born 16 April 1612) died.

1662, In Britain the Uniformity Act stated that all Church Ministers must be ordained by the Anglican rite. This aliented more Dissenters.

18 January 1664, Moses Amyraut, Protestant theologian (born 1596) died.

27 September 1660, Vincent de Paul, preacher, later beatified, died.

13 May 1655, Pope Innocent XIII was born.

6 May 1638, Cornelius Jansen, Bishop ofYpres, died (born 28 October 1585).

14 March 1638, Johann Gichtel, German preacher, was born (died 21 January 1710).

5 August 1633, George Abbot, Archbishop of Canterbury, died (born 19 October 1562).

18 November 1626. St Peter�s Church in Rome was consecrated.

8 September 1624, Marco Dominis, Italian theologian, died (born 1560).

28 December 1622, Death in Lyons, France, of St Francis of Sales, co-founder of the female religious Order of the Visitation and author of the influential Counter-Reformation book Introduction to the Devout Life.

6 June 1622, Pope Gregory XV founded the Sacred Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith, or Propaganda Fidei, to promote Catholicism and counteract Protestantism.

17 September 1621, Roberto Bellarmine, Italian Cardinal, died in Rome (born in Tuscany 4 January 1542).

9 February 1619, Lucilio Vanini, born 1585 near Naples, was arrested near Toulouse and executed for being an atheist

9 July 1618, Religious dispute in Holland between Jacobus Arminius and Gomarus. Gomarus supported the doctrine of predestination; Arminius opposed it. The Arminians, or Remonstrants, were supported by the local State-Princes; the Contra-Remonstrants (Gomarus) were supported by Maurice, who also had the Army on his side. Maurice moved to eliminate the waard-gelders, the local militia possessed by the State-Princes. Supporting the Remonstrants were Hugo de Groot (Grotius) and Hoogerbeets.

13 March 1615, Pope Innocent XII was born.

16 April 1612, Abraham Calovius, German Lutheran theologian (died 25 February 1686) was born.

16 May 1611, Pope Innocent XI was born.

1609, The Catholic League was founded.

19 October 1609, Jacobus Arminius, Dutch religious reformer, died in Leiden (born 10 October 1560 in Oudewater, south Holland).

1604, In Britain, the Hampton Court Conference attempted to enforce religious practices that the Puritans would not accept. They became the first of the Dissenters.

29 February 1604, John Whitgift, Archbishop of Canterbury, died.

27 December 1603, Thomas Cartwright, English Puritan reformer, died.

26 May 1595, Philip Neri, Italian churchman, died (born 21/7?1515).

See also Great Britain; religious conflict, 16th and 17th centuries

28 October 1585, Cornelius Jansen, Bishop ofYpres, was born (died 6 May 1638).

1 January 1583, Simon Episcopius, Dutch theologian, was born (died 1643)

5 October 1582. Pope Gregory XIII cancelled 10 days from the 5th to the 15th October 1582 to bring back the Spring Equinox to the 21st March and ensure that Easter fell on the proper date. Under the old Julian calendar, established in 46 BC, the calendar gained a whole day every 128 years. The new system cut out three leap years every 400 years to maintain accuracy.

29 September 1582, St Teresa of Avila died (born 28 March 1515). A Spanish noblewoman, she joined the Carmelite nuns in 1533, and reformed the order.

24 February 1582, Pope Gregory XIII announced a change from the Julian calendar to the new Gregorian calendar, entailing a forward move of 11 days, see 5 October 1582.

24 April 1581, St Vincent de Paul, founder of the Congregation of the Mission, was born in France.

25 June 1580, Publication of the Lutheran Book of Concord. This set out the essential foundations of the Lutheran faith.

2 May 1576, Bartolome Carranza, Spanish theologian, died (born 1503)

24 April 1576, St Vincent de Paul, founder of the Congregation of Priests of the Mission (Lazarites), was born in Pouy, France (died 27 September 1660 in Paris)

17 May 1575, Matthew Parker, Archbishop of Canterbury, died.

6 May 1574, Pope Innocent X was born.

14 April 1570, At the Concensus of Sandomierz in Poland, Lutherans, Calvinists and Moravians agreed to unite against Catholic attempts to stamp out religious toleration, and to hold joint Protestant Synods.

1 October 1567, Pietro Carnesecchi, religious reformer, was executed (born 1508).

22 September 1566, Johannes Agricola, German Protestant reformer (born 20 April 1494) died.

14 May 1565, Nicolaus von Amsdorf, German Protestant reformer, died in Eisenach (born 3 December 1483 in Torgau).

1564, The term �Puritan� was first used, according to Thomas Fuller. It was a somewhat pejorative term, having a sense of both �Protestant-extremist� (rather like the Cathars) and �pedantic�, as in stickler for detail or tradition�. The Puritans were a group of Protestant Christians who felt that the Reformation of the Church had not gone far enough.

13 November 1564, The Tridentine Creed was promulgated.

27 May 1564, John Calvin, French theologian who helped spread the Protestant revolution, died.

25 May 1564, St Philip Neri, Florentine Church reformer, founded the Congregation nof the Oratory in Rome.

26 January 1564, Pope Pius IV confirmed the declarations of the Council of Trent.

1563, The Council of Trent reiterated the celibacy rule for priests.

19 January 1563, The Heidelberg Catechism of the Reformed Protestant Churches was published.

12 November 1562, Peter Vermigli, Swiss Church reformer, died in Zurich.

19 October 1562, George Abbot, Archbishop of Canterbury, was born (died 5 August 1633).

1 March 1562, Hugenots massacred at Wassy.

18 January 1562, The Council of Trent reconvened, after a suspension of ten years.

20 December 1560, The first assembly of the Church of Scotland.

12 November 1560, Caspar Aquila, German religious reformer, died (born in Augsburg 7 August 1488).

10 October 1560, Jacobus Arminius, Dutch religious reformer, was born in Oudewater, south Holland (died in Leiden 19 October 1609).

30 September 1560, Melchior Cano, Spanish theologian (born 1525) died.

19 April 1560, Death of Philip Melancthon, German Church reformer.

16 February 1559, Pope Paul IV issued the Papal Bull Cum Ex Apostolatus, calling for all heretical rulers to be deposed. This justified attempts by the Habsburgs to threaten Protestant rulers.

6 December 1557, John Macalpine, Protestant theologian, died.

25 September 1555, The Peace of Augsburg was signed between Holy Roman Emperor Charles V and the Schmalkaldic

League, at the city of Augsburg. It cemented the division within Christendom between Catholicism and Protestantism, and allowed German states to choose either Roman Catholicism or Lutheranism as their State Religion.

9 January 1554, Pope Gregory XV born.

27 October 1553, Michael Servetus, theologian, was burnt at the stake.

17 September 1552, Pope Paul V was born.

1 May 1551, The Council of Trent reopened in Trent, Tirol (Trento, northern Italy). Protestant delegates were barred from entry, and the doctrine of Trsnasubstantiation was upheld.

24 November 1548, The English Parliament voted to allow clergymen to marry.

11 February 1548, English churches were ordered to remove all images of saints, as the Reformation proceeded.

13 December 1545, The Council of Trent began.

20 April 1545. The Waldensians were massacred in Provence.

16 January 1545, George Spalatin (Burckhardt), Church reformer, died in Altenburg (born 17 January 1484 in Spalt)

10 February 1543, Johann Maier Eck, opponent of the reforms of Martin Luther, died (born 13 November 1486).

4 October 1542, Roberto Bellarmine, Italian Cardinal, was born in Tuscany (died in Rome 17 September 1621).

24 December 1541, Carlstadt, German religious reformer, died (born 1480).

25 July 1539, Lorenzo Campeggio, Italian Cardinal, died (born 1464).

2 June 1537, A Papal Bull issued by Pope Paul III prohibited enslavement of American Indians, contrary to King Charles V�s policies. Paul excommunicated Catholic slave traders.

6 October 1536, William Tyndale, English religious reformer and translator of the Bible, was burned at the stake as a heretic in Vilvarde, Brussels, on the orders of King Henry VIII.

25 February 1536, Berthold Haller, Swiss religious reformer, died (born 1492).

11 February 1535, Pope Gregory XIV was born.

See also Great Britain for religious conflicts during 16th century and Dissolution of the Monasteries

15 January 1535, The Act of Supremacy was passed in England. This made King Henry VIII head of the Church.

1534, Pope Paul III acceded, and began the process called the Counter-Reformation.

9 August 1534, Cardinal Cajetan (Tommaso de Vio) died (born 1470). He was a staunch defender of papal privilege, in the face of Protestant reform.

25 January 1533. King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn were secretly married by the Bishop of Lichfield, and became the future parents of Queen Elizabeth I. Anne Boleyn was crowned at Westminster on 1 June 1533, shortly after Thomas Cranmer (who was appointed as Archbishop of Canterbury on 30 March 1533) had declared Henry VIII�s marriage to Catherine of Aragon null and void. On 23 May 1533 Henry VIII actually divorced Catherine of Aragon, resulting in a break between England and the Church of Rome.

18 January 1532, English Parliament banned payment by English churches to Rome.

11 October 1531, Ulrich Zwingli, Swiss Church reformer, was killed in a fight with soldiers from the Catholic-supporting Forest Cantons at Kappel, near Zurich. Zwingli was Chaplain to the Protestant troops from Zurich.

25 June 1530, The Confession of Augsburg was read to the Diet.

18 April 1530, Francis Lambert, Protestant reformer, died.

19 April 1529, At the Diet of Speyer, an alliance of German principalities and city states protested against the reinstatement of the Diet of Worms, so beginning the Protestant movement.

17 June 1527, The Protestant Reformation began in Sweden.

1525, The original Mennonite movement started in Switzerland. It later took the name of a former Roman Catholic priest, Menno Simons, Later an offshoot developed, called the Amish after its founder, Jacob Amman. They subsequently migrated from Germany and Switzerland into Pennsylvania in the early 1700s.

1525, The Capuchin order was founded.

19 January 1523, Huldreich Zwingli published his 67 Articles in Zurich. They attacked the authority of the Pope, and the concept of Transubstantiation.

11 October 1521. Pope Leo X (217th Pope) conferred the title of Defender of the Faith on King Henry VIII.Twelve years later Henry VIII broke with Rome to marry Anne Boleyn.


Martin Luther

18 February 1546. Martin Luther, Augustinian friar and instigator of the Reformation, died (see 31 October 1517), at his birthplace of Eisleben, Germany, at the age of 63, apparently of overwork.

8 November 1527, Jerome Emser, opponent of Martin Luther�s reforms, died (born 20 March 1477)

25 May 1521, The Holy Roman Empire ordered the destruction of all of Martin Luther�s writings within its territory.

16 May 1521, The Edict of Worms imposed the Ban of Empire on Martin Luther.

18 April 1521, Martin Luther ended his defence at the Imperial Diet of Worms with the words �I cannot and will not recant anything.God help me.Amen�.

16 April 1521, Martin Luther arrived at the Diet of Worms.

28 January 1521, The Diet of Worms began.

3 January 1521, Pope Leo X again issued a Papal Bull, Decet Romanum, Pontificem, re-excommunicating Martin Luther, after a deadline by which Luther had been ordered to recant his �heretical� views expired. Martin Luther had condemned the sale of Indulgences (Papal forgiveness for sins) to raise funds for the Papacy, promoted by the Archbishop of Mainz as away of raising money for rebuilding St Peters in Rome.

10 December 1520, Martin Luther publicly burnt the papal Bull, Exsurge, that had excommunicated him.

15 June 1520, Pope Leo X excommunicated Martin Luther.

4 July 1519, Death of Johann Tetzel, German Dominican whose sale of Indulgences was criticised by Martin Luther.

26 June 1519, Martin Luther publicly debated with German Catholic theologian Johann Eck at Leipzig, Saxony. Luther went further than before in contesting Papal authority.

12 October 1518, At the Diet of Augsburg, Germany, Church reformer Martin Luther refused to withdraw his 95 theses against the Church.

31 October 1517. Martin Luther, born 10 November 1483 in Eisleben, Germany, nailed his 95 Theses to the churchdoor at Wittenburg, so starting the Reformation. He died on 18 February 1546. These theses condemned the sale of indulgences granting forgiveness of sin. On 15 June 1520 Pope Leo X condemned Luther�s theses as �heretical and scandalous�.

10 November 1483, Martin Luther, German religious reformer, leader of the Protestant Reformation, was born in Eisleben, the son of a miner.

20 March 1477, Jerome Emser, opponent of Martin Luther�s reforms, was born (died 8 November 1527)


11 August 1519, Johann Tetzel died in Leipzig Priory, aged 54. He defended the Church practice of selling indulgences

16 March 1517, The Fifth Lateran Council ended. The doctrine of �Immortality of the Soul� was made Church dogma.

1515, The Fifth Lateran Council forbade the printing of any books without the permission of the Roman Catholic Church.

21 July 1515, Philip Neri, Italian churchman, was born (died 26 May 1595).

16 April 1515, Roman Catholic mass was banned in Zurich as the Lutheran Revolution spread across Europe.

28 March 1515, St Teresa of Avila was born. A Spanish noblewoman, she joined the Carmelite nuns in 1533, and reformed the order.

11 April 1514, Italian architect Donate Bramante died whilst still building St Peters in Rome, which he had begun in 1506.

11 October 1513, The Church reformer Huldrych Zwingli died (born 1 January 1484). He was killed, as Army Chaplain for the forces of Zurich, in battle during the War of Kappel, against the Forest Cantons.

3 May 1512, The Fifth Lateran Council began. It declared that the immortality of the soul was a dogma ofd the Church.

10 July 1509, John Calvin, French priest who spread the Reformation, was born at Noyon, Picardy.

1506, The Vatican City Swiss Guard was formed. Pope Julius II mad a contract with the Swiss Confederacy that no other country could recruit soldiers from Switzerland or emply Swiss mercenaries without Papal permission. The original Guard was 6,000 strong but now has just 100 men.

6 August 1504. Matthew Parker, Archbishop of Canterbury, was born.He had a very long nose, and was extremely inquisitive, hence the expression �nosey parker�.

See also Great Britain; religious conflict, 16th and 17th centuries

17 January 1504, Pope Pius V was born.

7 January 1502, Pope Gregory XIII born.

31 March 1499, Pope Pius IV was born.

19 December 1498, Andreas Osiander, religious reformer, was born.

23 May 1498, Italian religious reformer Girolamo Savonarola was executed for heresy.

16 February 1495, Birth of Philip Melancthon, Protestant reformer.

20 April 1494, Johannes Agricola, German Protestant reformer (died 22 September 1566) was born.

5 June 1493, Justius Jonas, German Protestant Reformer, was born (died 1555).

28 June 1490, Albert, Archbishop of Mainz (died 24 September 1545) was born.

7 August 1488, Caspar Aquila, German religious reformer, was born in Augsburg (died 12 November 1560).

10 September 1487, Pope Julius III was born.

29 January 1487, Richard Foxe became Bishop of Exeter.

13 November 1486, Johann Maier Eck, opponent of the reforms of Martin Luther, was born (died 10 February 1543)

17 January 1484, George Spalatin (Burckhardt), Church reformer, was born in Spalt (died 16 January 1545 in Altenburg)

1 January 1484, Church reformer Huldrych Zwingli was born in Switzerland (died 11 October 1513).

3 December 1483, Nicolaus von Amsdorf, German Protestant reformer, was born in Torgau (died 14 May 1565 in Eisenach).

9 August 1483. Pope Sixtus IV (212nd Pope) celebrated the first mass in the Sistine Chapel, which was named after him.

28 July 1480, (1) An Ottoman Army landed near Otranto, Italy.Pope Sixtus IV called for a crusade to drive them out.

(2) Mohammed II failed in an attempt to take Rhodes from the Knights of Rhodes.

4 May 1493, Pope Alexander VI issued the Papal Bull Inter Cetera, dividing the Americas between Portrugal and Spain,

28 June 1476, Pope Paul IV born.

11 December 1475, Pope Leo X was born.

28 February 1468, Pope Paul III was born.

23 October 1456, Giovanni di Capistrano, Italian theologian, died (born 1386).

21 September 1452, Girolamo Savonarola, Church reformer, was born.

1447, Pope Nicholas V acceded (died 1455).

6 March 1447, St Colette, founder of the Colettine Poor Clares, died at Ghent (born 13 January 1381). She founded 18 convents.

23 February 1447, Pope Eugene IV died.

1434, Insurrection in Rome; Pope Eugene IV was forced to flee to Florence. Florence Cathedral (begun 1420) was completed.

6 July 1439, Emperor John III of Constantinople (by then he ruled very little outside Constantinople, Salonika and Morea, and was known in western Europe as �Emperor of the Greeks�, not as he was officially, Roman Emperor) travelled to an Ecumenical Council in Florence and accepted papal primacy and union with Rome. The Decree of Union (Laetentur Caeli) formally uniting the Latin and Greek churches was issued. This was a last-ditch attempt to save his dominions from the Ottoman Turkish advance. However the Greek clergy rejected this union; there were too many fundamental differences of doctrine between the two Churches. Those who had formally accepted the union recanted upon return home. They preferred, in the words of a Byzantine dignitary, �the power [in Constantinople] of the Turkish turban rather than the Latin tiara.

29 May 1439, Pope Pius III was born.

26 January 1431, Richard Fleming, Bishop of Lincoln, died.

5 April 1419, St Vincent Ferrer, Spanish Dominican preacher, died in Vannes (born 23 January 1355 in Valencia)

6 July 1415.. Jan Hus, preacher and religious reformer, arrested on 28 November 1414, was burnt at the stake in Constance, Germany

5 May 1415, The Council of Constance opened in Germany. Its aim was to reform the Church of abuses, promote unity and prosecute heresy.

12 December 1409, Pope Alexander V issued a Papal Bull ordering all books written by English reformer John Wycliff to be handed in. Archbishop Zbynek of Prague publicly burned his books.

18 October 1405, Pope Pius II was born.

27 September 1404, William of Wykeham, Bishop of Winchester, died.

1398, Jan Hus, Church reformer, was lecturing on theology at Prague university.

15 November 1397, Pope Nicholas V was born.

31 December 1384, John Wycliffe, religious reformer (born 1328), died.

4 December 1383, Anti-Pope Felix V (Amadeus, Duke of Savoy) was born (died 7 January 1451).

20 May 1381. A council was held in Paris to find a way of ending the scandal of two Popes existing at once; After Pope Gregory XI died (1378) two rival Popes had been elected, Pope Urban VI at Rome and Pope Clement VII at Avignon. This Great Schism persisted until 1417.

13 January 1381, Birth of St Colette, founded of the Coletttine Poor Clares, in Corbie, France. See 6 March 1447.

29 April 1380, Death of Catherine of Siena, who became the patron saint of Italy. She was born in 1347 in Siena as Caterina Beninasca and became an ascetic. She campaigned against the Papal split (Avignon) and corruption, and was canonised by Pope Pius II in 1471, and was a noted Mediaeval female writer.

31 December 1378, Pope Callixtus III was born.

17 January 1377, The Papal See was transferred back to Rome from Avignon.

23 January 1355, St Vincent Ferrer, Spanish Dominican preacher, was born in Valencia (died 5 April 1419 in Vannes)

20 October 1349, Pope Clement VI outlawed the flagellants. They had become more numerous since the Black Death began., and encouraged persecution of the Jews.

1322, Pope John XXII forbade the use of counterpoint in Church music.

1317, The Papacy outlawed alchemy.

5 May 1313, Pope Celestine V was canonised.

15 August 1309, The city of Rhodes surrendered to the forces of the Knights of St. John, completing their conquest of Rhodes. The knights established their headquarters on the island, and renamed themselves as the Knights of Rhodes.

9 March 1309. Pope Clement V (French) arrived at Avignon to set up court there. Rome was no longer the Papal Seat.

5 September 1307, Pope Clement V confirmed the Knights Hospitaller possession of Rhodes, although only Feracle had fallen to their attacks.

5 August 1305. Bertrand de Got, Archbishop of Bordeaux, was elected Pope and took the name Clement V.

12 September 1303, A popular uprising in Anagni forced the release of Pope Boniface VIII.

7 September 1303, Italian forces loyal to King Philip IV of France arrested Pope Boniface VIII after he released the French people from allegiance to the King.

24 June 1303, King Philip IV of France summoned all European rulers to a council to hear acusations against Pope Boniface VIII.

18 November 1302, Pope Boniface VIII issued a Bull , Unam Sanctam, asserting the superiority of Papal authority over secular rulers.

11 August 1297, Pope Boniface VIII canonised French King Louis IX, who died in 1270.

29 February 1296, Pope Boniface VIII issued a Papal Bull forbidding kings from taxing the clergy.

31 July 1291, The Mamluks took Beirut, completing their conquest of the Kingdom of Jerusalem.

18 May 1291, Al-Ashraf Khalil of Egypt captured Acre, the last Christian stronghold in the Holy Land. Christians in Acre, who had broken a truce by massacring all Muslims in the town, scrambled for places on boats to Cyprus. Most Christians in Acre were captured, and sent to the slave market in Damascus.

6 April 1291, Mamluks under Sultan al-Ashraf of Egypt began a siege of the Crusaders at Acre.

27 April 1289, Fall of Tripoli: Mamluk Sultan Qalawun captured the County of Tripoli (in present-day Lebanon) after a month-long siege, thus extinguishing the Crusader state.

8 August 1288, Pope Nicholas IV (died 1292) proclaimed a Crusade against Ladislaus IV of Hungary. who had lost credibility by favouring his semi-pagan Cuman subjects and in general refusing to conform to the social standards of western Europe.

31 May 1287, The Genoese defeated the Venetian fleet off Acre, Crusader Kingdon of Jerusalem.

25 April 1285, Mamluk Sultan Qalawun began a siege of the Crusader fortress of Margat (in present-day Syria), a major stronghold of the Knights Hospitaller thought to be impregnable; he captured the fortress a month later.

6 January 1285, Archbishop Jakub Swinka ordered all priests subject to his bishopry in Poland to deliver sermons in Polish rather than German, thus further unifying the Catholic Church in Poland and fostering a national identity.

3 July 1281, By the Treaty of Orvieto, the Venetians promised to help Charles of Anjou, King of Sicily, restore the Latin Kinhgdom of Jerusalem.

17 July 1274, The Second Council of Lyons ended. It had commenced 7 May 1274, to 1) end the Greek Schsim, 2) call a new Crusade, and 3) counter moral corruption within the clergy.

7 March 1274. Thomas Aquinas died. He was born into a Lombard-Norman family in 1225. A controversial figure, he became a notable philosopher and theologian of the Catholic Church. He died at Fossanuova Abbey in the Roman Campagna whilst on the way to the Council of Lyons.

22 May 1272, A peace treaty was agreed between Babyars I and the Crusader Kingdom of Acre.

9 May 1271, Edward, heir of King Henry III of England, arrived in Acre, where the Crusaders were under siege by Mamluk forces under Babyars I.

8 April 1271, Mamluk Sultan Baibars continued his territorial expansion, capturing the strategically important castle Krak des Chevaliers from the Knights Hospitaller in present-day Syria.

23 November 1270, A storm destroyed the Crusader fleet at Trapani, Sicily, preventing Charles of Anjou from setting out for the Holy Land.

25 July 1270, King Louis IX of France took Tunis (8th Crusade).

18 July 1270, King Louis IX of France landed at Carthage on his way to the Eight Crusade.

1 July 1270, King Louis IX of France set sail on the Eight Crusade.


18 May 1268, The Principality of Antioch, a crusader state, fell to the Mamluk Sultan Baibars in the Battle of Antioch;

7 March 1268, Egyptian Sultan Babyars I seized the Crusader city of Jaffa.

24 March 1267, �Saint� Louis of France called his knights to Paris in preparation for his Crusade.

23 July 1266, Babyars I, Mamluk Sultan of Egypt, seized the Templar fortress of Safed and overran the Galilee region.

4 April 1263, Egyptian Sultan Babyars I attacked Acre, inamajor effort to eliminate the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem, the County of Tripoli and the Principality of Antioch.

1260, A nunnery was established at Longchamps, Bois de Boulogne, near Paris. It was suppressed in 1790, and te site became a racecourse and pleasure park.

1260, The first Flagellants appeared in southern Germany and northern Italy.

1256, The Order of Augustine Hermits was founded.

9 October 1253, Robert Grosseteste, theologian, died.


Seventh Crusade, see also Egypt

11 July 1254, Louis IX returned to France from the Seventh Crusade.

24 April 1254, French King Louis IX left Palestine. Civil War broke in the Outremer (Crusader States).

11 February 1250, The Muslims counterattacked the exhausted Crusaders, who only just hung on by their use of Greek Fire.

6 April 1250, Battle of Fariskur. Louis IX surrendered to the Mamluks, after a failed breakout and thwarted retreat to Damietta. The Crusaders were weakened by scurvy. Louis IX and his forces were allowed to depart on payment of a ransom of 800,000 gold livres.Louis� surviving soldiers returned to France. Louis himself sailed for Acre, but his further negotiations, including an attempted alliance with the Mongols,came to nothing.

8 February 1250, Louis IX�s invading forces dosvovered a ford across the Ashmoun Canal 4 miles from the main battlefield and surprised the Muslim forces with an attack on Damietta on the way to Cairo. However Louis IX�s brother, Robert of Artois, disobeyed orders, he was supposed to hold the opposite bank of the Canal until further French reinforcements joined him, but he rashly attacked into the town of Mansura prematurely. In the streets, Robert�s cavalry were of limited effectiveness; the Miuslims rallied and halted his advance.

1/1250, Crusader forces tried to build a causeway across the Ashmoun Canal, but the Muslims harassed them with war engines, also widened the canal by excavating on the side they held.

22 November 1249, Sultan Al-Salih died, leaving his inexperienced son Turanshah as ruler. This was good news for the invading King Louis IX of France. However initially hois death was kept secret and one of his wives, Shajah ud Durr, ruled in his name.

20 November 1249, The Seventh Crudaders in Egypt had only advanced 50 miles in 4 weeks as they moved towards Cairo. They were halted at Mansura, where the Fifth Crusade had been stopped, as Muslim forces under Emir Fakr ed Din, held tham at the Ashmoun Canal.

6 June 1249, In the Seventh Crusade, King Louis IX of France landed at Damietta, Egypt. Opposaition was light, as the garrison defending the city fled in panic. Mindful of the issues faced by the Fifth Crusade in advancing on Cairo in the midsummer heat, Louis IX delayed until Autumn. However this gave the Egyptian Sultan Malik al Salih, then seriously ill,time to restore morale in his forces.

25 August 1248, The Seventh Crusade left Aigues Mortes, France, under King Louis IX.

1245, The Seventh Crusade was mobilised under King Louis IX of France. It left for Egypt in 8/1248, and invaded Damietta, Egypt in Spring 1249. It then marched on Cairo, but was halted at Mansura. See 6 April 1250, Egypt.


16 March 1244, Following their successful siege of Monts�gur, French royal forces burned about 210 Cathars.

1241, Jerusalem was finally captured by the Muslims. It remained in Egyptian hands until 1517, and in Muslim hands until World War One. A further seventh Crusade was planned to recapture it but this did not happen. See 1245.

22 September 1236, Battle of Saule. In the Northern Crusades, Livonian Kights had fought against Baltic pagan peoples such as the Samogitians of Lithuania. The Pope had previously criticised the Livonian Knights for their rather more materialistic acquisitive as opposed to spiritual agenda. Having taken much loot from the Samogitians in an expedition in 1236, they found themselves blocked at a river crossing this day on the way home. They did not wish to dismount and fight, nor to ride through marshy ground and attempt a breakthrough. The Livonians footsoldiers, perhaps forcibly recruited, deserted, and the light Livonian cavalry cut down the heavily-armoured Livonians. The remnant of the Livonian Order was forced to join with the Teutonic Knights,by Papal order.

3 June 1232, St Anthony of Padua was canonised.

13 June 1231, St Anthony of Padua died.

17 March 1230, The Archbishop of Bremen, Gerhard II, convened a Great Church Gathering at Bremen. There he organised the excommunication of the Stedinger for such crimes as worshipping wax images of the Devil and consulting evil spirits. In reality the Stedinger had been granted permission, in 1106 by an earlier Archbishop of Bremen, to reclaim the marshlands at the estuary of the River Weser for agriculture. The work was hard, digging drainage ditches and buildingdikes but the inhabitants of this land, called Stedingen, were at least free from Feudalism. They paid a nominal tax to the Archbishop but owned no feudal duties to any Lord. Over time the feudal Lords of the region and the Archbishops of Bremen came to see the freedom of the Stedinger as a threat. Relations deteriorated as the Counts of Oldenburg built two fortresses in Stedingen, at Lechtenburg and Luneberg, kidnapping local people from the area, and in turn the Stedinger formed local militias for their own protection. Gerhard II went to Rome to secure Pope Gregory II�s agreement for a Crusade against the Stedinger, which began in Spring 1233. By the end of 1234 the Stedinger society had been eradicated, although some families claiming descent from the Stedinger remain today in Germany and the USA.

12 April 1229, The Treaty of Paris brought the Albigensian Crusade to an end.


Sixth Crusade

18 March 1229, King Frderick II of Germany had himself crowned King of Jerusalem.

12 March 1229. Frederick II of Germany finally arrived in Jerusalem, having been twice excommunicated by the Pope for delaying his Crusade. He had intended to depart in 1215 but was delayed by domestic problems including the Mongol invasion. He reached Acre, with only a small army, but he had been (2/1229) in clandestine negotiations with the Sultan of Egypt, Al-Kamil, who had been shaken by the fifth Crusader�s advance into Egypt. The Sultan was happy to surrender Bethlehem and Nazareth, and a corridor of territory from Jerusalem to the coast as well as much of Jerusalem itself. The Vatican, however, disapproved of Frederick�s negotiating with a non-Christian.


19 July 1228, St Francis of Assissi was canonised.

9 July 1228, Stephen Langton, Archbishop of Canterbury, died.

28 June 1228, Frederick II finally embarked on the Crusade; however Pope Gregory IX did not revoke his excommunication.

29 September 1227, Pope Gregory IX excommunicated King Frederick of Germany a second time, for delaying his Crusade.

8 September 1227, Frederick II, King of Germany, departed from Brindisi on a Crusade. However an epidemic in his fleet caused him to abandon the project 3 days later. This was his second abandonment; the first intended departure, in 1215, was delayed by Frederick having to deal with disorder in Sicily.


Fifth Crusade

31 August 1221, Under a peace deal, the Franks left Egypt.

6 November 1219. The Egyptian port of Damietta fell to the Crusaders (Franks) after a siege.

24 May 1218, The Fifth Crusade left Acre for Egypt.

1215, Pope Innocent III called for a Fifth Crusade, to go by way of Egypt.


1217, Death of Peter Waldo, or Valdez, born ca. 1140, founder of the Waldensians.


6 August 1221, Saint Dominic, Spanish priest and founder of the Dominicans, born ca. 1170, died in Bologna, Italy. He was canonised in 1234. In England, from their black robes they were also known as Black Friars. By 1221 there were 60 Dominican Houses.

22 December 1216, The Dominican Order of monks was founded.


11 November 1215, Pope Innocent III opened the Fourth Lateran Council in Rome. This officially ended the Albigensian Crusadem and authgorised a Fifth Crusade in Palestine. Simon de Montfort was granted the County of Toulouse. The first Papal tithe on the clergy was imposed. The Jews were pordered to wear distinctive clothes.

24 August 1215, Pope Innocent III declared the Magna Carta (forcibly signed by King John at Runnymede) invalid.

1 July 1215, The number of monks in England had grown considerably, from about 1,000 in 1066, on the eve of the Norman Conquest, to around 13,000 by 1215.

4 March 1215, King John of England made an oath to Pope Innocent III as a crusader to gain his support. John also technically passed authority of his kingdom over to the Pope, thereby making anyone who tried to depose him an enemy of the Pope and liable to excommunication. This move was a precaution by John who was facing rebellion by his barons. This healed the rift between King John and Pope Innocent III, see 15 July 1207.

8 January 1215, Simon de Montfort the Elder was elected Lord of Languedoc at a Council in Montpellier, after his campaign against the Cathars.

12 September 1213, Battle of Muret: The Toulousain and Aragonese forces of Raymond VI of Toulouse and Peter II of Aragon were defeated by the Albigensian Crusade under Simon de Montfort.

4 November 1212, Felix of Valois, founder of the monastic order of Trinitarians (Redemptionists) died (born 19 April 1127).

22 July 1209. The Crusade against the Cathars, The Cathars, also known as Albigensians after the French town of Albi, held beliefs heretical to the Catholic Church. They also denied the divinity of Jesus, and the Pope. The Papacy declared them heretics in 1176, and Pope Innocent sent preachers to convert them. However in January 1208 his legate, Pierre of Castelnau, was killed by the Albigensians; the Pope then declared a Crusade against them. Many joined this Crusade, attracted by promises that they could keep any land seized from the Albigensians. In 1209 the 10,000 strong Crusader army gathered in Lyon and marched south under the command of another Papal legate, Arnauld Amalric, Abbot of Citeaux.. The Cathars were massacred in Beziers, but remained active elsewhere for another 20 years.

17 November 1208, Pope Innocent III asked the nobility of northern France to start the Albibegnsian Crusade against the Cathars in southern France.

12 March 1208, St Peter of Castelnau was canonised, see 15 January 1208.

15 January 1208, St Peter of Castelnau died, see 12 March 1208.

15 July 1207, King John expelled the monks at Canterbury who were supporters of Stephen Langton. The dispute between John and Pope Innocent led to King John being excommunicated in 1008; an interdict was placed upon England, meaning Church services could not officially be held there. In 1213 Pope Innocent III authorised King Philip II of France to invade England and depose King John. However see 4 March 1215.

17 June 1207, Pope Innocent III consecrated Stephen Langton as Archbishop of Canterbury, following the death of the previous incumbent, Hubert Walter, in 2105. However King John of England preferred John de Grey, Bishop of Norwich, to succeed to the post.


Crusader assault on Constantinople

16 May 1204, Baldwin, Count of Flanders, was crowned Latin Emperor of Constantinople. In October 1204, Venice and Baldwin partitioned the Byzantine Empire. Venice gained the Adriatic coast,Rhodes and the Aegean Islands. Other Crusaders held their territories as fiefs of Baldwin. The Fourth Crusade had ended, never having reached the Holy Land, diverted from the aims of Pope Innocent III by Venetian and Byzantine politics.

13 April 1204, The Crusaders captured Constantinople.Venice had provided the shipping to carry the Fourth Crusade eastwards, but in order to repay Venice the Crusaders were obliged to seize, on behalf of Venice, the port of Zara on tye Adriatic from Christian Hungary. Meanwhile the exiled Byzantine Prince Alexius Angelus , son of the deposed King Isaac II, also offered to pay the Crusaders if they would restore him to the Byzantine throne. In June 1203 therefore, the Crusaders arrived in Cinstantinople and set up Alexius as Emperor. However in February 1204 Emperor Alexius was murdered, and replaced by courtier Alexius Doucas, who told the Crusaders to leave. Moreover the promised 200,000 Marks fee for installing Alexius Angelus was never paid. The Crusaders responded by besieging and attacking Constantinople. The Crusader nobleman Baldwin of Flanders was installed as Byzantine ruler, but most of Byzantium refused to recognise him, and the Empire fragmented into four disunited States.

See also Roman Empire for more on Constantinople

1/1204, Increasing resentment by the Byzantine nobility against the Crusaders and thrir puppet rulers, Isaac II and Alexius IV. Alexius Ducas Mourtzouphlous, son in law of Alexius III, mounted an insurrection. Isaac II was imprisoned and Alexius IV executed. Alexius Ducas now seized the throne as Alexius V. The Crusaders now planned an all-out assault on Constantinople.

17 July 1203, The Crusader assault on Constantinople began. The Crusader Army attacked by land from the west whilst the venetian fleet assaulted the sea wall. Alexius III fled the city by night. The Byzantine nobles released Isaac II from prison and restored him as Emperor. Alexius IV became co-emperor.

23 June 1203, The Crusader force arrived at Chalcedon, on the Asiatic shore opposite Byzantium, then, despite efforts by Byzantium, established a fortified camp at Galata. The Venetian fleet then forced its way into the Bosphorus and then into the Golden Horn, the water between Galata and Constantinople. Venice was seeking to recover lands lost in the Balkans; Pope Innocent III objected that Christian Venetians were now killing other (Balkan) Christians.

15 November 1202, The Crusdaers took Zara (now in Croatia) from Hungary and transferred it to Venice. The Crusaders agreed to help deposed Byzantine Emperor Isaac II Angelus, an ally of Venice, regain the throne.

2 April 1195, Holy Roman Emperor Henry VI proclaimed a Crusade at Bari.


1202, The Popeissued the Decretal Venerabiliem, asserting the superiority of the Papacy over secular Emperors. See 4 March 1075. See also 754.


End of Third Crusade, 1189-92

2 November 1192. Peace was concluded between Richard I (Lionheart) of England and Saladdin of Jerusalem (see 2 December 1187). The Crusades never achieved their objective of liberating the Holy Land from the Muslims but because they caused the death of so many noblemen the system of serfdom and landholding in Europe was gradually dismantled. Feudalism gradually ended over the period from 1300 to the Thirty Years War, 1618-48.

5 August 1192, Final battle of the Third Crusade, at Jaffa. After victory at Arsuf, Richard I had spent months capturing castles and winning minor fights, but never managed to attain his ultimate objective of gaining Jerusalem. In late July 1192 he was in Acre, planning his return trip to England when Saladin unexpectedly attacked Jaffa. Saladin took the town but not the citadel, Richard I arrived at Jaffa by sea and managed to drive the Muslims away from Jaffa. Saladin and Richard I then opened peace negotiations. The end result was a deal that left the Christians with just a narrow coastal strip in the Holy Land, but did at least ensure their presence there for another century.

28 April 1192, Conrad of Montferrat, Crusader King of Jerusalem, died.

5 April 1192, Easter Sunday. Guy de Lusignan, King of Jerusalem, was deposed and succeeded by Conrad, Marquis of Montferrat. Guy received Cyprus as compensation.

6 September 1191. Richard I defeated the Saracens at the Battle of Arsouf. Richard I then marched on Jaffa.

4 July 1191. The Crusaders under Richard I captured Acre from Saladdin, during the Third Crusade.

21 June 1190, The German Crusaders arrived in Antioch.

10 June 1190. Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I (Barbarossa) drowned in the River Saleph (now, Goksu) on his way to the Holy Land in the Third Crusade. He was succeeded by his son Henry IV.

18 May 1190, Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I advanced into Konya, capital of Rum, western Turkey.

12 December 1189, King Richard I of England left on the Crusade.

4 October 1189, Saladin returned to Acre with a larger army tio relieve the Crusader siege. Both sides lost heavily, and the siege continued.

15 September 1189, Saladin attempted to relieve the siege of Acre, which was wanted by Guy of Jerusalem so he could use the port as a base for the expected Third Crusade. However the Muslim forces were driven off.

11 May 1189, Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa departed from Regensburg on the Third Crusade, with 100,000 troops.

21 January 1189. Henry II of England, with Philip Augustus and Frederick Barbraossa, assembled troops for a third Crusade.

Start of Third Crusade


Loss of Jerusalem to Saladdin 1187

2 December 1187. Jerusalem surrendered to Saladdin (see 2 November 1192). Saladdin was born in 1138, in Tikrit (Saddam Hussein�s native town) of Kurdish parents andwas educated in Syria. In 1164 he accompanies his uncle on a military campaign in Egypt. The aim was to substitute Sunni for Shia Islam there, and also to drive the Crusader Franks out of the Levant. The local Syrian leader died in 1174 and Saladdin defeated his 11 year old successor and seized power. The Abbasid Caliph in Baghdad gave Saladdin power over all the lands from Morocco to Syria; Saladdin later extended his rule into Mesopotamia. Saladdin also subdued the Assassins, a Muslim sect that had twice tried to kill him. He now attacked the Crusaders, and on 1 July 1187 captured Tiberias after a six day siege.

After the capture of Jerusalem by Saladdin, the Franks were almost evicted from the region, holding on only at Antioch, Tripoli, and Tyre. European states set aside their differences in panic and three rulers; Richard I of England, Frederick Barbarossa of Germany, and Philip Augustus of France, set out on a third Crusade. The Crusaders marched on Muslim-held Acre, Saladdin arrived, and there ensued a long battle, control swinging back and forth. After two years, Acre fell to the Crusaders. Peace negotiations began, (see 2 November 1192), the end result being a marriage of his daughter with Saladdin�s brother, Al-Malik, who was knighted by Richard. The peace gave the coast to the Europeans and the interior to the Muslims. In February 1188 Saladdin fell ill with a fever and died 12 days later aged 55.

4 July 1187, The Battle of the Horns of Hattin (an extinct volcano crowned with two rocky outcrops). Saladin�s 20,000 strong army defeated Guy of Lusignan, King of Jerusalem. Guy de Lusignan had made a tactical error in attempting to relieve Saladin�s siege of Tiberias. Thirst drove Lusignan�s troops to drink at a nearby lake, where Saladin then attacked them.

1 May 1187, Battle of Cresson: Saladin defeated the Crusaders.

29 December 1177, The Order of Alcantara (founded 1156 as the Order of Saint Julian) received Papal approval. It was a military order of crusading knights, and played a part in the Reconquista of Spain from the Muslims.

25 November 1177, King Baldwin of Jerusalem defeated Saladin at Montgisard.

17 September 1176, Emperor Manuel of Byzantium was defeated by the Muslims, in the Crusades.


5 September 1174, Fire gutted the Choir of Canterbury Cathedral. It was rebuilt using the pointed arch, the first known use of this type of arch in England.

1173, The Waldensian Movement began in Lyons, France.

1170, Dominic de Guzman, founded of the Dominican Order, was born at Calahorra, Spain.

1170, Pope Alexander III established rules for the canonisation of Saints.

29 December 1170. The murder of Thomas Becket, 40th Archbishop of Canterbury, by four knights in his own Cathedral. The knights (Reginald Fitzurse, William de Tracy, Hugh de Merville, and Richard de Breton) believed they were acting on King Henry II�s orders. Becket, far from being the docile cleric Henry believed him to be on appointing him as Archbishop of Canterbury, was a firm upholder of ecclesiastical privileges. Henry, furious at Becket�s excommunication of the six bishops who had assisted the Archbishop of York at the crowning of Henry II�s son in Westminster Abbey, uttered the fatal cry. �Who will rid me of this turbulent priest�. The four knights gave Henry his answer.

2 December 1170, Thomas Beckett returned to Canterbury from his voluntary exile. He had left England on 2 November 1164.

14 June 1170, King Henry II�s son was crowned, not as was custom by the Archbishop of Canterbury but by the Archbishop of York. This was a major snub to Thomas Beckett, and against Papal instructions. Henry then made verbal reconciliation with Beckett, who, impatient to return to England, did so without proper guarantees of safety.

1167, The Council of Tours forbade the clergy from practising surgery, so this skill was taken over by the barber-surgeons.

1161, Pope Innocent III was born.

1 September 1159. Death of Pope Adrian IV, elected Pope on 4 December 1154. He was formerly Nicholas Breakspear, and was the only English Pope. In 1155 he authorised King Henry II of England to invade Ireland and hold it as a hereditary fief of the Papacy. Breakspear was born at Bedmond Farm in Abbots Langley, Hertfordshire, around 1100. His father became a monk of St Albans abbey, presumably after the death of his wife. Nicholas Breakspear also applied to join the Abbey at age 18 but was refused admission because of too little schooling. He went abroad as a wandering scholar and finally became a monk in the Augustinian Abbey of St Rufus in Avignon in 1130. He was elected Abbot in 1137 and came to the notice of the Pope, Eugenius III. The Pope recognised his qualities and made him a bishop and a cardinal; Breakspear was sent on a trip to war-torn Scandinavia where he restored peace. After 4 years Breakspear returned to Rome to find that Eugenius III had died and was succeeded by Anastasius IV, a man of 90. Within the year Anastasius IV was dead and Nicholas Breakspear was unanimously elected Pope, taking the name Adrian IV.

1155, The Carmelite Order was founded.

18 June 1155, Rioting in Rome as English born Pope Adrian crowned Frederick Barbarossa as Holy Roman Emperor; 1,000 died.

2 November 1148, �Saint� Malachy, Church reformer, died.


Second Crusade. Christians fail to captiure Damascus

29 June 1149, Raymond of Poitiers, Prince of Antioch, was defeated and killed by Nur ad Din, son of Imad ad Din Zangi. The Second Crusade ended.

28 July 1148, The Crusaders failed to capture Damascus. The troops of Louis II of France and Conrad III of Germany suffered considerable losses at the hands of the Turks on the way to the Holy Land, even before they arrived to join with Baldwin III of Jerusalem. They arrived at Damascus on 23 July 1148 and occupied the large orchards and fields west of Damascus, suffering further losses at the hands of the skilled Damascene archers. Failing to take Damascus from this angle, on 27 July 1148 they moved to the more open ground east of Damascus. The army leaders then began to argue over the best plan of attack, and who should rule Damascus once captured; news also broke of a large Muslim army now in Homs under the command of skilled General Nur-ad-Din. Local Christian lords deserted, taking their men away, and on 28 July 1144 Louis, Conrad and Baldwin began their own retreat back to Jerusalem, having accomplished nothing.

25 October 1147, Battle of Dorylaeum, the Seljuq Turks defeated German crusaders under Conrad III.

24 December 1144, The city of Edessa fell to the Muslims, sparking the Second Crusade. Zengi had been informed that Count Joscelin of Edessa had argued with Prince Raymond of Antioch, and had then taken most of his army to Diyarbakir to interfere in a local dispute there. Therefore Zengi moved to capture Edessa at ths time. Arriving on 28 November 1144, Zengi began undermining the city walls and battering them with trebuchets. Queen Melisende of Jerusalem sent a relief force, but Prince Raymond of Antioch refused to help. On 24 December 1144 a section of Edessa�s walls fell. Zengi separated local Christians from the foreign ones, then executed the latter. Edessa�s citadel held out until 26 December 1144, surrendering on condition that their lives would be spared, just before Joscelin and Melisende�s troops arrived. These relief troops did hold onto lands west of the Euphrates River. When Pope Eugene III heard of the fall of Edessa, he called for the Second Crusade to begin.


1140, The Trappists were founded.

6 February 1140, Thurstan, Archbishop of York, died.

1139, The Second Lateran Council abolished the practice of Agapetae. This was a practice of monks cohabiting with virgins, both professing celibacy and �bonded by spiritual love�. This, and the First Lateran Council (1123) enforced more strongly a rule of celibacy on the clergy as a means of protecting the Chirch�s power and wealth.

20 April 1139, The Second Lateran Council denounced the religious reformer, Arnold of Brescia.

25 December 1130. The Norman King Roger II was crowned King of Sicily by the anti-Pope Anacletus II (died 1138), who thereby gained a powerful supporter for his claim on the Papacy against Pope Innocent II (died 1143). Anacletus II in fact had the better claim on the Papacy but lost secular support because he was the son of a wealthy Jew, founder of the Pierleani family.

19 April 1127, Felix of Valois, founder of the monastic order of Trinitarians (Redemptionists) was born (died 4 November 1212).

18 March 1123, The First Lateran Council began. It condemned simony and the marriage of priests.

23 September 1122. The Diet of Worms. A council is held at the German town of Worms, to settle a dispute between Church and State that went back to 1076, when Pope Gregory VII excommunicated King Henry IV of Germany, seeking to impose papal power over the king. Both Henry IV and his son, the present King Henry V set up anti-Popes and forced the Pope to flee to refuge in a monastery. Pope CalixtusII and King Henry V agreed at this Diet that the King would not force the election of Bishops but allow their free election by the Church; in return the King will be present at the election of Bishops and have some influence over disputes within the church.

21 December 1118, Thomas Beckett was born in Cheapside, London.


First Crusade,

21 August 1131, Baldwin II, King of Jerusalem, died and wsas succeeded by Fulk of Anjou.

1128, Zengi of Mosul captured Aleppo from the Crusaders..

7 July 1124, Tyre fell to the Crusaders.

29 May 1123, The Crusaders defeated the Fatimids at Ibelin, Palestine.

18 April 1123, Danishmend Turkish Emir Balak of Khanzit captured King Baldwin of Jerusalem,and destroyed his army. In June Balak occupied Aleppo (Syria). Baldwin was released in June 1124 on payment of a ransom.

28 June 1119, The Dashmend Turks under Ghazi defeated a Crusader army at Antioch. Roger of Salerno, Prince of Antioch, was killed.

2 April 1118, Baldwin I, Crusader King of Jerusalem, died and was succeeded by Baldwin II, Count of Edessa in Syria.

7 July 1115, Peter the Hermit, a leader of the First Crusade, died.

4 December 1110, First Crusade, the Crusaders conquered Sidon.

12 July 1109, Tripoli, in modern-day Lebanon, surrendered to Baldwin I, King of Jerusalem.

23 March 1106, Pope Paschal II, eager for support from King Henry of England for the Crusades, agreed to compromise over Henry�s royal power to command homage from the clergy.

27 August 1105, Baldwin I, French Crusader King of Jerusalem, decisively defeated the Fatimids at the Third Battle of Ramleh.

28 February 1105, Raymond IV, Count of Toulouse, died whilst besieging Tripoli in Palestine.

7 May 1104, Battle of Harran. The Crusaders were about to lay siege to Harran to distract the Seljuk forces of Sokman of Mardin and Jikirmish of Mosul, who wree themselves besieging Edessa. At this point the forces of Sokman and Jikirmish appeared, and drew the Crusaders under Count Baldwin and Prince Bohemond of Antioch. Jikirmish�s cavalry charged and inflicted heavy casualties; Baldwin was taken prisoner. He was freed after paying a ransom, in 1108 and later became King of Jerusalem.

28 May 1102, Baldwin I defeated the Fatimids at Jaffa.

17 May 1102, The Fatimids defeated Baldwin I, French Crusader King, at Jerusalem.

4 September 1101, Baldwin I, King of Jerusalem, defeated the Fatimids at Ramleh.

23 June 1101, Raymond of Toulouse took Ankara with a new Crusader army from Constantinople. However in 8/1101 his army was destroyed by the Danishmend Turkish army at Mersivan, Anatolia.

25 December 1100, Baldwin was crowned King of the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem by Dagobert.


Rule of Godfrey de Bouillon

18 July 1100, Godfrey de Bouillon, first Crusader king of Jerusalem, died, aged 39. He had led successful expeditions against the Seljuk Turks as far as Damascus. He was succeeded by his older brother Baldwin, Count of Flanders, who ruled until 1118 with the support of Tancred, a Sicilian Norman who was now Prince of Galilee.

12 August 1099, Battle of Ascalon. Fatimid attack on the Crusaders was defeated by Godfrey.

22 July 1099, Godfrey of Bouillon, a Crusader leader from Boulogne, was elected Defender of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, and established the Kingdom of Jerusalem.

15 July 1099. Jerusalem fell to the Crusaders, (see 27 November 1095). 40,000 people, both Jews and Muslims, were slaughtered in two days, an event European scholar-monks acclaimed as �the greatest event since the Crucifixition�. On 12 August 1099 the Crusaders defeated Al-Afdal, the Fatimid Vizier of Egypt, at Ascalon. He was bringing an army to recapture Jerusalem, which the Egyptians had earlier lost to the Turks.


7 June 1099, The Crusaders arrived at Jerusalem.

1 August 1098, Adhemar de Monteil, Criusader, Bishop of Puy en Velay from 1077, died during the plague in Antioch.

28 June 1098, Battle of Orontes. Supposed discovery within Amtioch of the �Holy Lance� � the weapon used to pierce Jesus�s side at his death. Despite doubts even amongst some Crusaders, they collectively believed that with possession of this lance they were invincible, and they sallied out to attack the Muslims. However with determination they prevailed over the Turks, who fled the battle.

5 June 1098, Emir Kerboga�s forces now arrived at Antioch and besieged the Crusaders there.

3 June 1098, The Crusaders took Antioch.

9 February 1098, A second Syrian attempt to relieve Antioch was also driven off by the Crusaders.

31 December 1097, A Syrian army attempting to relieve the Crusader siege of Amtioch was driven off.

21 October 1097, The Crusaders arrived at Antioch.

1 July 1097, Battle of Dorylaeum. Bohemunds forces were losing to a Turkish attack when Godfrey and Raymond�s forces attacked the rear of the Turks, turning the result into a Crusader victory.

24 June 1097, The Crusaders took Nicea.

April 1097, The knightly Crusader force now assembled in Constantinope totalled between 150,000 and 300,000 men.

23 December 1096, Crusader leader Godfrey of Bouillon, along with his brotherBaldwin, arrived in Constantinople.

15 August 1096, The forces of the First Crusade departed from Europe, to rendez-vous at Constantinople.

May 1096, The zealous Peter the Hermit travelled throughout France and the Rhine Valley, recruiting peasants to the First Crusade. As these forces gathered together in 8/1096, they also began a persecution of the Jews in the Rhine area, a Judenhetze. By October 1096 this peasant army had perished in what is now Turkey, at the hands of te Seljuk Turks.

March 1096, The European knights began to assemble for their Crusade.

27 November 1095. Pope Urban II called for a Crusade to the Holy Land, at the Council of Clermont. He talked of how, due to Turkish misrule, it was no longer safe for Christian pilgrims to visit the holy sites of Jerusalem. The Crusaders defeated the Turks at Dorylaeum on 30/6 1097, opening the way to Jerusalem. Jerusalem fell to the Crusaders on 15 July 1099.

19 November 1095, The Council of Clermont began. The council was called by Pope Urban II to discuss sending the First Crusade to the Holy Land. See year 1071, Jerusalem.

First Crusade


1084, The Carthusian Order was formed.

24 March 1084, Palm Sunday. Henry IV of Germany, having captured Rome, installed Pope Clement III. In turn Clement III crowned Henry IV as Emperor on Easter Sunday 1084.

5/1081, Henry IV of Germany marched south across the Alps to confront Pope Gregory VII; no reconciliation was possible, so Henry decided to occupy Rome.

15 October 1080, Rudolf of Swabia was killed in battle, leaving Henry IV as unchallenged ruler of Germany.

7 March 1080, King Henry IV of Germany was excommunicated a second time by Pope Gregory VII, see 27 January 1080. In response Henry IV summoned an assembly of bishops to Brixen and declared Pope Gregory VII deposed and appointed Wilbert, Archbishop of Ravenna, in his place. However not everyone, even in Germany, accepted the right of Henry IV to judge a Pope �appointed by God�.

27 January 1080, King Henry IV of Germany defeated Saxon rebels at Flarchheim. Emboldened by this, he rejected the mediation efforts of Pope Gregory VII to settle the rulership dispute between him and Rudolf of Swabia, see 25 October 1077 and 7 March 1080.

25 January 1077, German King Henry IV, who was losing popular support because of his excommunication by Pope Gregory VII, arrived at Canossa Castle, northern Italy, to do penance in reconciliation. He knelt in the snow in a monk�s hair shirt for three days before the Pope admitted him. �Going to Canossa� became a saying for reluctant penance, especially in Germany. Henry IV had faced a rebellion by Saxons, and had to reach Pope Gregory by a roundabout route via Burgnndy and Provence. Pope Gregory VII wanted, politically, to refuse forgiveness, but as head of the Christian Church he had no choice but to dispense it. The rebels, feeling betrayed by Gregory VII, rejected the kingship of Henry IV anyway and elected Rudolf of Swabia in his place. Germany faced effective civil war. Pope Gregory, to restore his influence over Germany, sent a Papal Legate northwards in 1079 to settle who was the rightful ruler of Germany, decreeing that if either Rudolf or Henry rejected the findings of this legate they would be excommunicated. However see 27 January 1080.

24 January 1076, German King Henry IV called an assembly of German Bishops to Worms to complain about the interference ofPope Gregory VII (Hildebrand) in the rulership of Milan. Earlier, a revolutionary faction called the Pataria had usurped Henry IV�s control over Milan, which included the right to appoint the Archbishop of Milan. Milan was very strategically important to Henry IV as it controlled the Alpine passes between Italy and Germany. Pope Gregory VII sided with the rebels against King Henry IV and insisted that he, Gregory, had the right to appoint the Archbishop (see 4 March 1075, Dictatus Papae). The German Bishops signed a letter of protest from Henry IV calling for Hildebrand �that false monk, who had forsaken the cloisters� (see 22 April 1073)to resign as Pope and that Henry IV did not recognise him as Pope. The message caused an uproar in Rome, in fact the messenger was nearly killed, saved only by the intervention of Hildebrand himself. Two days later Gregory VII (Hildebrand) excommunicated and nominally deposed King Henry IV. See 25 January 1077.

1071, Jerusalem was captured by the Seljuk Turks from the Egyptian Arabs. The Turks were less tolerant of Christian pilgrims to Jerusalem than its previous rulers. Even before this the schism between the Byzantine and Roman Churches had begun to make things difficult for Western European pilgrims � excessive �taxes� were levied on Roman Catholic pilgrims by the Byzantine Church. See also years 671 and 807 below. These developments were the primary cause of the Crusader Movement from Western Europe. See year 1095.

23 August 1059, Pope Nicholas II (1059-61) met with Robert Guiscard, leader of the Normans of southern Italy, at Melfi, and accepted Robert�s vassalship. Robert pledged that if Pope Nicholas died before him, he would assist the Cardinals in the elction of a new Pope. In effect, Robert was pledging to protect the Cardinals from political interference by the Roman nobility. In return Pope Nicholas bestowed upon Robert the title of Duke of Calbria and Apulia. This infuriated the (Byzantine) Roman Emperor, who claimed all of Italy as part of his domain, and insisted that Nicholas could not give away lands he had no title to.

1054, Schism between the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church.

1 October 1049, Pope Leo IX (1048-54), noted for his attempts to eradicate simony, arrived at Reims, France. In March 1049 he had begun a tour of the Christian lands of Europe, to assert his authority over these regions. He left Rome and travelled via Florence, Pavia and Cologne to Reims. Whilst still Bishop of Toul, Pope Leo IX had pledged to be present at the Consecration of the Cathedral of Reims, built to honour St Remigius, who had baptised Clovis and played a large role on converting the Franks to Christianity. In fact due to opposition to Leo�s visit by the King of France, only 20 bishops and 40 abbots attended at Reims, a clear sign of Leo�s limited authority on France. After parading an effigy of the Saint around the town, before setting in in its place in the Cathedral, Leo set it on the high altar as a �witness� and asked all present to declare, individually one by one, that they had not paid money for their office. Many of those present would not make such a statement.

25 October 1046, At a Church Council in Pavia, Emperor Henry III denounced simony, the practice of buying and selling ecclesiastical positions.

1046, Emperor Constantine Monomachos of Constantinople sanctified the exclusion of women from Mount Athos.

19 April 1012. St Alpheage, Archbishop of Canterbury, was murdered by the Danes. He had been captured by the Danes who sacked Canterbury in 1011 and kept in prison for 7 months, and killed when a ransom was not paid.. Born in 954, St Alphege was elected Abbot at Bath, and in 984 became the Bishop of Winchester. In 1006 he succeeded Aelfric as Archbishop of Canterbury.

27 September 1009, Caliph Al Hakim ordered the destruction of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Jerusalem.

21 June 1002, Pope Leo IX was born.

25 December 1000, Stephen I became King of Hungary, which was established as a Christian kingdom.

29 February 992, Saint Oswald, Archbishop of York, died.

13 February 990, Ethelgar, Archbishop of Canterbury, died.

19 May 988, Saint Dunstan, Archbishop of Canterbury (born near Glastonbury ca. 910) died in Canterbury. He was appointed to Archbishop by King Edgar in 959.

2 June 959, Odo, Archbishop of Canterbury, died.

910, The Cluniac order was founded.

906, The Church issued the Canon Episcopi, declaring that anyone not following the Christian faith was a devil-worshipper.

23 October 877, St Ignatius of Constantinople, Byzantine prelate who had opposed Imperial interference in Church affairs, died.

30 October 869, The radical German theologian Gottschalk of Orbais died.

862, St Swithin (Swithun), Bishop of Winchester 852-62, died.

848, Pope Leo IV erected the Leonine Wall around the Vatican, to protect it from attack.

845, Arab pirates sacked the Vatican.

11 March 843, Icon veneration was officially restarted at the cathedralof Hagia Sofia, Constantinople.


Churchyard Burials

813, The Council of Mainz stipulated that burials within the church were to be only for bishops, abbots, or notable priests and worthy laymen (see Council of Braga, 563)

758, Death of Cuthbert, Archbishop of Canterbury from 741. He introduced into England the custom of burying the deasd in the precincts around the church, or church-yard. On the Continent, church-yards began to be used as customary burial places for the dead from the 500s, although a few cases of this occurred from the 300s. Early Christians, from the time when this religion was still under persecution in the Roman Empire, usually met at the tombs of martyrs, since Roman Law strictly protected these memorial grounds from violation. Early churches grew up, therefore, adjacent to these memorial grounds. However the dead would then have been buried in separate areas of ground, away from the church. See 563.


807, Harun al Rashid, Arab ruler of Jerusalem, acknowledged Charlemagne, Holy Roman Emperor, as spiritual guardian of the Christian heritage of Jerusalem. He was tolerant towards Christian pilgrims visiting the city. See also years 638 and 1071.

19 May 804. Death of Alcuin, a learned churchman of the eight century. He was born at Eboracum (York) in 735 and became head of the Episcopal school of York in 766. Between 781 and 790 Alcuin helped Charlemagne teach church and other knowledge to the Frankish nobility.

8 January 794, Vikings again raided Lindisfarne.

8 June 793. Vikings raided the monastery at Lindisfarne, killing many of the monks.

754, The start of the Papal States as an independent political entity, when Pepin le Bref presented the Exarchate of Ravenna to Pope Stephen II. Benevento was added in 1053, and in 1102 Matilda of Tuscany left Parma, Modena and Tuscany to the Pope. In 1202 the Papal States were formally constituted an independent monarchy.

25 May 709. Death of Aldhelm, Bishop of Sherborne. Born around 640, Aldhelm was educated by an Irish scholar and monk, Meldun (or Maildulf), who had settled in the British stronghold of Bladow, on the site of Malmesbury. Aldhelm succeeded Meldulf as head of the Christian community at Malmesbury when Meldulf retired due to ill health in 675. Under Aldhelm, the community at Malmesbury increased and he founded two other centres of learning at Frome and at Bradford on Avon.

20 March 687, Cuthbert died on Farne Island.

8 August 676, Death of St Colman, Bishop of Lindisfarne from 661. An Irish monk, he attended the Synod of Whitby in 664, where he supported the Celtic method of calculating Easter date against the Roman, but was overruled by King Oswy.


Jerusalem lost to Christendom

637, Jerusalem was captured by the Arabs under Osman. For the history of the city before this year see Jewish History. Christian pilgrims to Jerusalem were still tolerated, but see years 807 and 1071 above.

5 May 614. The Persians completed the conquest of Syria by capturing Jerusalem. They seized the �true cross�, the most holy relic of Christendom. However on 3 April 628 the Persian ruler Kavadh sued for peace with Byzantium. He handed back Armenia, Byzantine Mesopotamia, Syria, Palestine, and Egypt, as well as the �true cross�. This cross was restored to Jerusalem by Heraclius on 21 March 630.


12 March 604. Pope Gregory the Great (64th Pope) died in Rome. Aged 64, he had been Pope for 14 years. He was the son of a Senator, and wealthy, but at the age of 33 sold off his property and gave the money to the poor. He founded severalmonasteries, and entered one himself. Pope Gregory had appointed Bishop Augustine of Hippo to begin the work of introducing Christianity to the Anglo-Saxons.


St Columba

563, St Columba left Ireland and landed on Iona (Hebrides) where he founded a monastery.

563, The Council of Braga authorised burial not only within the churchyard but within the church itself. See 758, 813.

563, The Church in Europe forbade the free movement of lepers. A priests had to make any leper in their congregation lie ion a coffin in front of the altar and have some soil thrown on them. Now, legally dead, they were outlaws, obliged to beg for support, to carry a bell to warn of their approach, and a stick to point for items they wanted, to wear gloves and shoes to protect barefooted travellers behind them. All this was unnecessary because in fact leprosy has very low infectivity.

7 December 521, St Columba was born at Gartan, Donegal, Ireland.


507, At the Battle of Vouille, near Tours, France, Clovis King of the Franks defeated Alaric II ruler of the Visigoths. Clovis�s victory ensured the supremacy of Catholicism over the Arianism of the Visigoths,

500, The first plans for the Vatican Palace in Rome were drawn up. St Romanos (Melodos) wrote hymns especially for Christmas, Easter and the Passion.

25 December 496, Clovis I was baptized into the Catholic faith at Rheims, by Saint Remigius. The conversion strengthened the bonds between his Gallo-Roman subjects, led by their Catholic bishops.

3 January 492, Pope Felix III died after a 9-year reign in which he excommunicated Patriarch Acacius of Constantinople, thus dividing the Western Church and Eastern Church (Acacian Schism). He was succeeded by Gelasius I as the 49th pope.


325- 1075, Key Church doctrines introduced, not Biblical, including Easter, Christmas, All Souls Day, monasticism, Papal Infallibility, use of Latin only, formal hymn singing and celibacy for priests.

4 March 1075, Hildebrand issued the Dictatus Papae, 27 short propositions setting out the powers of the Roman Catholic Church. These propositions, aimed at curbing the Greek Church and the temporal power of European Kings, included, (I) that the Roman Catholic Church was founded by God alone, i.e. it was more than �just� apostolic (III), only the Pope can dismiss or reinstate Bishops, (XII), the Pope has the authority to depose Emperors, (XVI), That only the Pope had the authority to call Councils (i.e. the Greek Church didn�t), (XIX), The Pope can be judged by no-one except God himself, (XXII), The Roman Church has never erred and is in fact infallible, See 1202.

9 March 1074, Married priests were excommunicated by Pope Gregory VII. He also decreed, at the Council of Rome, that all laymen who received Communion from a married priest should be excommunicated. Nevertheless, instances of married Catholic priests still occurred down into the 12th and 13th centuries.

22 February 1072, Pietro Damiani, ecclesiastic, died. He was opposed to simony, but reserved his main energies for attacking the marriage of clergy.

1022, The Synod of Pavia ordered that higher clergy must be celibate.

2 November 998, The Abbot of Cluny, France, instituted this day as All Soul�s Day, when prayers are said for the dead. This way the Church co-opted the ancient pagan festival of Samhain, at the beginning of November, when the souls of the dead were said to return to roam the Earth.

6 April 885, Methodius of Moravia died; he had promoted the use of Slavonic, rather than Latin, in the Liturgy. Pope Stephen V banned this use of Slavonic and after Methodius� death his followers were expelled from Moravia by Svatopulk.

840, Paschasius Radbertus, Abbott of Corbie (France), established the Doctrine of Transubstantiation � that the Communion bread literally becomes the Body of Christ.


Images debate

25 December 795. Death of Pope Adrian I, Pope from 772 to 795. He halted the trend against the use of images in Church which was taking place in the east of Christendom. In 726 Emperor Leo III of Constantinople had banned the use of religious images in Christendom. This trend was upheld by a meeting of churchmen in Constantinople in 730; all visible symbols of Christ, other than the eucharist, were forbidden and anyone using icons or statues would be accused of idolatry and paganism. Leo felt that what were symbols of the divine have become divinities in themselves, and the seemingly inexorable spread of Islam made Christians wonder about the power of their images. Leo wanted to strengthen Christianity�s appeal against Islam, which forbids any portrayal of the human form. Leo was also concerned about the growing power of the monasteries, which threatened the divide between church and state.

787, The Council of Nicea abandoned iconoclasm and ordered resumption of image-worship.

726, Pope Gregory II attacked the iconoclasm prevailing in Constantinople, where icons and images had been banned to discourage superstition and miracle-mongering, and the spread of monasticism checked because the tax-exempt monasteries were draining the economy of both money and productive labour. In 730 Byzantine Emperor Leo III was excommunicated by Pope Gregory II for this iconoclasm.


700, Earliest recorded use of Easter Eggs by Christians.

692, The Council of Constantinople adopted the Crucifix as the symbol of Christianity. At first this was a picture of Christ with arms outstretched, without the Cross.

16 February 600, Pope Gregory I decreed that a sneeze should be responded to by �God bless you�.

566, The Council of Tours decreed the suspension, for a year, of all secular priests and deacons found to be married. Whilst several of the Apostles themselves had been married, from the 4th century onwards, celibacy same to imposed on Church officials, firstly the higher ones, then gradually spreading down the ranks.

500, Incense began to be used in Church services.

459, Simeon Stylites died, aged 72. He was the first of a number of Christian ascetics who secluded themselves on top of pillars, from which they preached to visiting pilgrims. In the Middle East such �stylites� coild be found down to the 12th century.

8 October 451, The Fourth General Council of the Church opened, at Chalcedon. The doctrine of ther Trinity was reaffirmed; Christ as equal to God. The Nestorians and Monophysites walked out in protest.

25 December 440, The Church officially decreed the birthday of Jesus to be 25 December, the pagan day of celebrating the winter solstice. This was the ancient Sol Invictis (Unconquered Sun) festival, to mark the lengthening again of the winter days.

28 August 430, St Augustine died in the town of Hippo, then enduring its 3rd month of siege by the Vandals. His writings have had considerable influence on Church doctrine.

431, Council of Ephesus.

30 September 420, Saint Jerome, Church leader, died.

30 April 418, Theologian Pelagius, welcomed by Pope Zosimus on his return in September 417, was now expelled as a heretic.

14 September 407, Saint John Chrysostom died.

26 November 399, Pope Siricius died at Rome after a 15-year reign in which he commanded celibacy for priests, asserted papal authority over the entire Western Church, and threatened to impose sanctions who did not follow his dictates.

3 April 397. Death of Saint Ambrose, bishop of Milan. Born a Roman citizen around 337-340, Ambrose was appointed as bishop of Milan in 374 when the previous incumbent, Auxentius, died.

3 November 392. Emperor Theodosius passed a decree prohibiting all pagan worship in the Byzantine Empire.

390, First use of �Hallelujah� (meaning �praise Jah, or Jehovah�) hymns in the Church.

24 April 387, St Augustine of Hippo was baptised, along with his son, Adeodatus, by Ambrose at Milan.

17 December 384,Pope Siricius succeeded Damasus I as the 38th Pope. He took the title Pontifex Maximus, after it was relinquished by late emperor Gratian.

2/ May 373. Athanasius, the patriarch who fiercely defended the Nicene Creed against Arianism, died at Alexandria, Egypt. He played an important role in the spread of monasticism.

368, Formalised hymn-singing was introduced by Ambrose, Bishop of Milan (died 397).

26 June 363. Julian the Apostate, Roman Emperor, was killed fighting the Persians. The Emperor Julian was determined to reinstate the old Roman gods and eliminate Christianity. A cousin of Constantius II, he declared himself a pagan in November 361 when Constantius II died, leaving him as sole emperor. On 17 June 362 Julian forbadeChristians from teaching grammar or rhetoric. He was succeeded by the captain of his bodyguard, Flavius Jovianus, who ruled for 7 months as the Emperor Jovian.

19 February 356. Constantius II ordered all pagan temples in the Roman Empire to be closed.

354, Bishop Liberus of Rome finally declared 25 December to be the official Church date for Christmas.

13 November 354, Aurelius Augustinus, or St Augustine, was born at Tagaste, a town in Numidia.

25 December 350, The first officially-sanctioned Christmas Day celebrations.

21 October 346. Under heavy imperial pressure, a split between the eastern and western Churches was patched up at Alexandria, Egypt.

340, The first monastery in the true sense was established by Pachominus at Tabennisi, an island in the Nile (see 305). The monks lived under a common roof and by an agreed set of rules.

336, The priest, Arius, was tortured to death for his beliefs that Jesus Christ was not equal to God.

25 December 336, The first recorded celebration of �Christ�s birth� on what is now Christmas Day.

325, The official date of Easter was settled at the Council of Nicea. Previously, the Eastern Church had fixed it on the 14th day of the Jewish lunar month of Nisan, that is, the old Jewish Passover date. The Western Church had fixed Easter on the first Sunday after this day of Nisan 14th. At Nicea, the Western date was favoured, and the Eastern date labelled the quartodeciman heresy.

325- 1075, Key Church doctrines introduced, not Biblical, including Easter, Christmas, All Souls Day, monasticism, Papal Infallibility, use of Latin only, formal hymn singing and celibacy for priests.


Roman adoption of Christianity

20 May 325. The Emperor Constantine, dressed in purple to mark the sacred nature of his power, opened the Council of Nicea. He has summoned bishops from all over the Empire to settle violent controversies raging within the Church, especially over Arianism. Arius, a priest in Alexandria, argued in 318 that Christ was not equal to God; if Christ was the Son of God, said Arius, he had a beginning so could not be eternal and was inferior to his Father. Constantine was acting as peacemaker and favoured equality of Christ with God. In fact the creed was worded so as to be ambiguous enough for most Arians to accept it. The Council also attempted, unsuccessfully, to impose a celibacy rule on the clergy.

3 December 321. Sunday was made a day of rest throughout the Roman Empire. Under the Edict of Milan, 3 February 313, Christianity was now tolerated in the Empire. Persecution of Christians had begun under Diocletian in 303 and peaked under his successors Galerius and Maximian. Constantine, born in Naissus in what is now Yugoslavia, was son of a Christian mother, Helena. When Constantine (born 274) became Emperor in 306 he followed the cult of Sol Invictis, the Unconquered Sun. However in 312, whilst fighting Maxentius the son of Maximian, he saw a cross of light superimposed on the sun. From then on Constantine identified the sun with the God of the Christians. He ordered his men to fight Maxentius with Christian symbols painted on their shields, and they won a famous victory at the Milvian Bridge just outside Rome, on 28 October 312. Constantine became ruler of the western Roman Empire.

315, Christians now numbered about 10 million, one quarter of the population of the Roman Empire.

313, The Edict of Milan restored Christian property and freedom of worship.

28 October 312, Battle of Milvian Bridge. Maxentius had been declared Emperor in Rome, with the backing of the Senate. However Constantine was marching down from Gaul to claim title as Emperor. Constantine�s army was smaller, and relied on cavalry, performing best on open ground. Maxentius had dismantled the Milvian Bridge over the Tiber to halt Constantine�s advance; Maxentius� troops had to ford the Tiber to attack Constantine, this move put them in the open, favouring Constantine�s cavalry. Maxentius fought in the name of Mars, the Roman God of War; Constantine saw a flaming cross in the sky and fought in the name of Christianity. Constantine�s cavalry charged, disrupting Maxentius� ranks; Maxentius was killed and his head paraded through Rome the next day on a spear.


305, St Anthony established the first community of Christian monks at Fayum, Egypt. However this was not a �monastery� in the established sense because the monks lived in separate huts, and lived their own lives, meeting for prayers. See 340.


Roman persecution of Christians

24 March 303, St George was executed in Palestine. He was a Roman soldier from Cappadocia (now, Turkey) who refused to persecute Christians.

4 March 303, St Adrian was martyred.

24 February 303, Emperor Diocletian ordered a massive persecution of the Christians.

301, Armenia became the first country to make Christianity its official State religion.

300, The earliest Religious Plays.

249, Roman Emperor Decius ordeed a massive persecution of Christians across the Empire.

14 September 258, Saint Cyprian (born ca. 200) was martyred.

5 February 251, Saint Agatha was martyred

250, Christians now numbered about 1 million, one fortieth of the population of the Roman Empire.

200, The position of the �Bishop of Rome� as supreme Pope, head of the Church, became established. The various Churches across the Roman world were organising themselves into a single �Catholic� (Greek, Kata-Holos, �the entire whole�) Church.

See also Roman Empire

177, The elderly Bishop Ponthinus was martyred under the persecution of Christians by Marcus Aurelius.

155, The Bishop of Smyrna, Polycarp, was martyred by the Romans.

64, Persecution of the Christians began. Peter and Paul were martyred in Rome. Subsequently, Peter was counted as the first �Pope� � however he himself would have rejected this title.

62, The Apostle James was stoned to death at the orders of High Priest Ananias.

60, Paul was arrested in Jerusalem, and taken to Rome.

45, Paul began the first of his major missionary journeys to preach Christianity to the non-Jews. His last such journey was in 57.

44, Peter was arrested by the Romans.

38, Stephen, the first Christian martyr, was stoned to death.


34, The Apostle Paul was converted to Christianity from Judaism on the road to Damascus.

3 April 33, Jesus was put to death. This was to become the Church festival of Easter, with chocolate bunnies and Easter Eggs. Not really much to do with Jesus� death, but everything to do with the old Pagan festival of rebirth, as spring life returned to the land. Even the name �Easter� derives from the old fertility goddess, Astarte, from which we derive fertility-related words like Oestrogen and East, the direction the (lifegiving) sun rises from.

Ca. October 29, Jesus baptised and commenced his ministry

28 December 1 (AD). Herod ordered the slaughter of all the infants in Bethlehem to ensure the death of Jesus Christ, whom he saw as a possible future rival King. Earlier, a mysterious ***star*** had guided the Magi (wise men, or magicians) not directly to Jesus, but first to King Herod, then on to the baby Jesus. Herod ordered these Magi to report back to him as to where Jesus was, so he could kill him; however the Magi returned east by another route. It is this ***star*** that people put on their Xmas trees today.

Ca. October 2 BCE, Jesus was born in Bethlehem. The climate in the Judean hills would have been too cold and snowy in late December for �shepherds to be out tending their flocks� as the story goes; the idea of celebrating Jesus� birthday on 25 December was that it would replace the old pagan festival of Saturnalia, a drinking festival held to celebrate the passing of the shortest day and the return of Sol Invictis, the �unconquered Sun�. Pine trees, as life that had survived over winter, also came to symbolise Xmas (that�s why you�re cleaning pine needles off the carpet on Boxing Day).

See also Judaism


Appendix 1Bible and Prayerbook Developments

1990, In the US, the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible was published.

16 March 1970, The New English Bible was released, and quickly sold out.

7 March 1970, In Britain, the New English Bible became the top best seller, with one million copies sold in the first week of its publication.

14 March 1961, The New English Bible was published.

18 June 1960, Jehovah�s Witnesses released the New World Translation of the Bible.

19 March 1928, In Britain, the Revised Book of Common Prayer was published.

6 July 1927, The Church of England approved revisions to the Book of Common Prayer.

8 February 1927. The revised book of common prayer introduced sex equality to the Church of England wedding service.

1925, The London Bible Society distributed worldwide 10,500,000 Bibles, in 566 languages.

1901, Large demonstrations in Athens against the proposed publication of the Gospels in modern Greek. This caused the resignation of both the Metropolitan and the Government.

10 February 1889, The Church of England approved the use of the revised Bible.

1735, The Bible first translated into Lithuanian.

1671, The first Bible printed in Arabic produced, in Rome.


Reformation � Bible and prayer books now printed in current languages, rather than Latin

1666, First Armenian Bible printed.

2 May 1611, In Britain, the Authorised Version of the Bible was published.

1632, The �Adulterer�s Bible� was published; the word �not� in the 7th Commandment had been omitted, so it read �Thou shalt commit adultery�. London printers Robert Barker and Martin Lucas were fined �300 for this error.

16 January 1604, The Hampton Court Conference ended; at this conference, King James I had authorised preparations for a new translation of the Bible.

16 October 1594, Death in Rome of William Allen, English Roman Catholic Cardinal who oversaw the Douai-Reims translation of the Bible into English.

22 June 1576, Queen Elizabeth�s Prayer Book was issued.

4 December 1563, The Council of Trent was dissolved. It reaffirmed all major Catholic doctrines and declared the Apocrypha to be canonical along with the actual Bible.

1560, The Geneva Bible, published by followers of John Calvin, was the first to have numerical divisions for bith chapters and verses.

1550, King Christian III (1503-1559), King of Denmark and Norway 1534-59, brought out a Danish translation of the German Bible

8 April 1546, At the Council of Trent, the Roman Catholic Church declared the Apocrypha to be part of the Bible.

1541, The Gustav Vasa Bible was produced in complete form (New Testament produced in 1526). This was the first Swedish translation of the Bible.

9 June 1549. The Church of England adopted the Book of Common Prayer, compiled by Thomas Cranmer. In 1550 all Latin prayer books in English churches were destroyed. In 1553 the English Catholic monarch Mary Tudor attempted to reverse these changes.

20 May 1549, From this date, only the new Book of Prayer was allowed to be used in English churches.

4 October 1537, The Matthew Bible, ptinted under the pseudonym Thpomas Matthew, was produced.

6 May 1536, King Henry VIII ordered a copy of the Bible to be placed in every English church.

4 October 1535. The first English Bible was printed, translated and published by Miles Coverdale.


845, The Vivian Bible, an early illustrated manuscript, was produced.

397, At the Council of Carthage, the Bible Canon was finalised, with controversial decisions being made as to what Books were included, and which excluded. Inclusion, or not, of certain Books was crucial as it determined what doctrines the Church would accept, or not.

382, Pope Damasus requested Jerome to produce a �corrected� version of the Bible, a number of errors having crept in over the centuries. His version, the Roman Psalter, was completed in 383.

98, The books of John (43), 1 John (62), 2 John (63), 3 John (64) were completed about this time.

96, The book of Revelation (66) was completed about this time/

65, The books of Mark (41), 2 Timothy (55), 2 Peter (61), Jude (65) were completed about this time.

61, The books of Acts (44), Ephesians (49), Philippians (50), Colossians (51), 1 Timothy (54), Titus (56), Philemon (57), Hebrews (58), James (59), 1 Peter (60) were completed about this time.

57, The book of Luke (42) was completed about this time.

56, The books of Romans (45), 1 Thessalonians (52), 2 Thessalonians (53) were completed about this time.

55, The books of I Corinthians (46), 2 Corinthians (47) were completed about this time.

51 ,The book of Galatians (48) was completed about this time.

41, The book of Matthew (40) was completed about this time. For the first 39 Bible book dates (Hebrew/Old testament) see Jewish history.


Appendix 2 � The Inquisition

15 July 1834, The Spanish Inquisition, founded in 1478, was disbanded.

26 July 1826, Cayetano Ripoli, a Deist teacher, became the last person to be executed by the Spanish Inquisition.

31 May 1820, The Inquisition was finally suppressed in Mexico.

1814, Pope Pius VII returned to Rome, after Napoleon was vanquished, and restored the Inquisition.

1808, Napoleon abolished the Inquisition in Spain and Italy.

1772, The Inquisition was abolished in France.

5/1751, In Portugal, the Marques de Pombal limited the powers of the Inquisition, and decreed that no auto da fe (sentencing and execution of heretics) could take place without State sanction.

16 February 1568. The death sentence was passed on an entire country when the Spanish Inquisition condemned The Netherlands for heresy. During the first week of the plan to kill 3 million people, 800 were hanged, burnt, or killed by other means.

1543, The first Protestants burned at the stake by the Spanish Inquisition. The Pope issued a list of books that it was forbidden for Roman Catholics to read.

21 July 1542, Pope Paul III established the Universal Inquisition in order to halt the Reformation by repression.

30 April 1536, The Inquisition was implemented in Portugal.

1530, The Inquisition in Portugal stepped up its efforts, in reaction to the spread of Protestantism, which damaged the Portuguese economy.

1513, The Inquisition was introduced into Sicily.

16 September 1498, Tomas de Torquemada, Inquisitor-General, died.

5 December 1484, Pope Innocent VIII issued the Papal bull Summis desiderantes affectibus giving the Inquisition a mission to hunt heretics and witches in Germany, led by Heinrich Kramer and Jacob Sprenger.

2 August 1483, Pope Sixtus IV appointed the Dominican priest Tomas de Torquemada, known for his severe intolerance of Jews and Muslims, as the first Grand Inquisitor of Spain.

15 June 1447, The Inquisition was revived in Spain.

25 May 1261. Death of Pope Alexander IV (181st Pope). Rinaldo Conti was elected Pope Alexander IV at Naples, after the death of Pope Innocent IV, (180th Pope) on 12 December 1254. He attempted to unite the Greek and Latin churches, and established the Inquisition in northern France.

1252, The Inquisition began to use instruments of torture. Pope Innocent IV sanctioned torture as a means of forcing heretics to confess. The actual torture was carried out by local lay thugs, but in 1256 Pope Innocent IV allowed priests to do the torture themselves and absolve each other for the deed.

30 July 1233, Conrad of Marburg, German Inquisitor, was assassinated near Marburg.

1229, The Inquisition inToulouse forbade the reading of the Bible by lay people.

4 November 1184, Pope Lucius III proclaimed the persecution of heretics. This developed into the Inquisition.


Appendix � Jehovahs Witnesses

18 June 1960, Jehovah�s Witnesses released the New World Translation of the Bible.

1931, The International Bible Students Association adopted the name Jehovah�s Witnesses. Ruthwerford started the slogan �Millions now living will never die�.

31 October 1916, Charles Taze Russell, who founded the modern-day Jehovah�s Witnesses, died.

11 January 1911, The Jehovah�s Witnesses released their film, The Photodrama of Creation, in New York. By the end of 1911 nine million people had seen it, mainly in N America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand.

1884, The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society was founded by Charles Taze Russell, to publish his books, pamphlets and periodicals.

1872, Pittsburgh evangelist Charles Taze Russell announced that Christ would return, unseen by mankind, in Autumn 1874. He founded the International Bible Students� Association.

1870, Charles Taze Russell and others formed a Bible Study Group, which later became the Jehovah�s Witnesses.

16 February 1852, Charles Taze Russell, American who organised the start of modern-day Jehovah�s Witnesses, was born in Pittsburgh.



30 March 1984, Karl Rahner, German Jesuit priest, died aged 80.

1925, The Jesuits had 18,718 members in 32 countries.

1884, The Jesuits were expelled from Costa Rica, where they had previously been very influential.

30 March 1880. France expelled the Jesuits from its territory. Jules Ferry, the Minister of public instruction, wished to create a public education system free from Church domination.

30 January 1880, In France, the Jesuits were disbanded.

1879, Anti-Jesuit legislation enacted in France.

25 June 1872, Jesuits expelled from Germany, as part of the new Kultirkampf.

1848, The Jesuits were suppressed in Italy.

1820, Jesuits expelled from Rome. They were suppressed in Spain, 1820-25, and again from 1835-44 and in 1868.

1817, The Jesuits were severely restricted in Russia, and expelled from there in 1820.

1815, The Jesuits were re-established in Naples, Sardinia and Spain.

7 August 1814, Pope Pius VII re-established the Jesuits� ancient college, the Collegio Romano, in Rome.

1804, The Jesuits were reconstituted in Sicily.

1801, Pope Pius VII permitted the reconstitution of the Jesuits in Lithuania.

1799, The Duke of Parma allowed the reorganisation of the Jesuits; the Pope allowed this but did not approve.

8 February 1795, Pierre Beckx, Jesuit, was born in Sichem, Belgium (died in Rome 4 March 1887).

21 July 1773, Pope Clement XIV dissolved the Society of Jesus (Jesuits). This was the result of pressure from Spain and France, where the Jesuits had been found too unbending and zealous. They were also seen as a symbol of Papal interference in national secular affairs.

1768, The Jesuits were expelled from Parma and Paraguay.
1 March 1767, The Jesuits were expelled by King Charles III from Spain, also the Spanish possessions of Parma, and the Two Sicilies. They had established a university on Malta, but this, and the rest of their property, was now confiscated.

26 November 1764, The Jesuits were suppressed in France.

3 September 1759, Jesuits expelled from Portugal and Brazil by royal decree. Some refused to leave and were violently deported tp the military, onto ships bound for the Papal States.

11 July 1742, A Papal Bull condemned Jesuit tolerance of Confucianism in China.

1685, French Jesuits established the first Jesuit mission in Brazil.

29 January 1678, Jeronimo Lobo, Jesuit missionary to India, died.

1632, The Jesuits were expelled from Ethiopia after a popular uprising against them.

25 July 1587. The Japanese Emperor Hideyoshi banned Christianity, and ordered the Jesuits to leave within 20 days. The Jesuits were accused of selling the Japanese as slaves.

23 November 1584, The English Parliament passed legislation to expel all Jesuits within 40 days.

1581, Claudius Acquaviva (1543-1681) became leader of the Jesuits. He was a very able educator and organiser.

30 September 1572, St Francis Borgia, Jesuit priest, died.

1556, Jesuit Order established in Prague.

31 July 1556, Ignatius Loyola, Spanish soldier and priest, and founder of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits), died.

1552, The Jesuits founded the Collegium Germanicum, Rome.

1551, The Jesuits founded the Collegio Romano in Rome, as the Papal University.

21 November 1551, Papal Legate Francis Xavier and fellow Jesuits returned from a two-year missionary trip to Japan. The Mikado was at first unimpressed with Xavier�s humble dress, but when he returned in more suitable attire, with gifts, he was even granted a disused Buddhist monastery for his work. Xavire left behind a community of 2,000 Christians, and was impressed with Japanese society.

21 July 1550, The Society of Jesus, or Jesuits, was approved by Pope Julius III.

24 January 1540, Edmund Campion, Jesuit, was born.

15 August 1534, The Jesuits (Society of Jesus) was founded by Ignatius Loyola. They became the main counter-Reformation movement in the Catholic Church.

7 April 1507, Birth of Spanish Jesuit St Francis Xavier, in Sangesa, Navarre, Spain.

24 December 1491, Ignatius Loyola, Spanish priest who founded the Society of Jesus (Jesuits), was born in Azpeitia.


Appendix � Methodists



Methodists (UK)












22 June 1970, The Methodist Church said it would ordain female ministers.

20 September 1932, At the Royal Albert Hall, London, UK, the three Methodist Churches � Wesleyan, Primitive and United � agreed to merge.

3 April 1910, While in Rome, former U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt announced that he would not meet with Pope Leo XIII because of the Vatican's request that Roosevelt not meet first with local Methodists. In March, former Vice-President Charles W. Fairbanks declined an audience for the same reason.

31 May 1807, A open air meeting was helfd at Mow Cop, southern Pennines, that is conse=idered to be the start of Primitive Methodism.

2 March 1791. John Wesley, founder of Methodism, died in London aged 87.He was born on 17 June 1703 at Epworth Rectory.His brother Charles Wesley, a hymn writer and preacher, was born on 18 December 1707 and died in 1788.

29 March 1788. The evangelist Charles Wesley, younger brother of John Wesley, died. He wrote over 5,000 hymns.

28 February 1784. John Wesley signed the Deed of Declaration of the Wesleyan faith.

10 July 1762, Alexander Kilham, Methodist minister, was born in Epworth, Lincolnshire.

1744, The first general conference of the Methodists was held.

5 January 1743, Welsh Calvinistic Methodists under George Whitefield�s leadership formed the first Methodist Association.

24 May 1738, During a reading of Martin Luther�s preface to the Bible Book of Romans, John Wesley had a religious inspiration that led him to found the Methodist Church.

1729, Methodism had its beginnings at Oxford University, where students called Charles Wesley, aged 22, a �methodist�because of his methodical study habits. He studied the Bible, and fasted on Wednesdays and Fridays.

18 December 1707, Charles Wesley, who along with his brother founded Mathodism, was born.

17 June 1703. The founder of Methodism, John Wesley, was born at Epworth, Lincolnshire. He was the 15th child of a rector who fathered 19 children.


Appendix� Mormons

6 October 1890, The Mormons in Utah renounced polygamy.

29 August 1877. Mormon leader Brigham Young died.

2 October 1871, Mormon leader Brigham Young was arrested for bigamy.

24 July 1847. A group of Mormons under Brigham Young founded a settlement on the banks of the Great Salt Lake, Utah. The Mormons had been driven by mobs from their former homes in Illinois.

8 August 1844. The Mormons chose Brigham Young as leader to replace Joseph Smith, see 27 June 1844.

27 June 1844. Joseph Smith, founder of the Mormon Church, died. He was killed, along with his brother Hyrum, by a 200-strong mob in Carthage prison, Illinois,where they had been held on riot charges. The brothers had destroyed the offices of a rival Mormon newspaper. This followed months of tension between the Mormon settlers, who came to Nauvoo, Illinois, in 1839, and locals who resented Mormon political and economic power. Mormon polygamy was also a contentious issue.

10 May 1840. Mormon leader Joseph Smith moved his followers to Illinois to escape hostility in Missouri.

6 April 1831, Mormon leader, Brigham Young, married his 27th and final wife.

6 April 1830. Joseph Smith, in Fayette, New York State, founded the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints, whose adherents are better known as Mormons.

23 December 1805, Joseph Smith, founder of the Church of Latter Day Saints (Mormons), was born in Sharon, Vermont.

1 June 1801, Brigham Young, American Mormon leader, was born in Whittingham, Vermont.


Appendix � Quakers,

1963, The Quakers had some 203,000 members worldwide, including 123,000 in the USA, 30,000 in Kenya and 21,000 in the UK

13 January 1691, George Fox, English religious leader who founded the Society of Friends in 1648 (often known as the Quakers from 1650) died in London.

30 October 1650, �Quakers�, the more common name for the Religious Society of Friends, came into being during a court case at which George Fox, the founder, told magistrates to �quake and tremble at the word of the Lord�.


Appendix� Salvation Army

1965, The Salvation Army, now 100 years old, had 27,000 members.

16 June 1929, Bramwell Booth, second General of the Salvation Army, died.

19 August 1912. William Booth, founder of the Salvation Army, born on 10 April 1829, died aged 83. He was succeeded as leader of the Salvation Army on 21 August 1912 by Mr Bramwell Booth.

1 August 1905, The founder of the Salvation Army, General William Booth, began a 2,000 mile crusade round Britain.

21 September 1899, Frederick Coutts, Salvation Army leader, was born on Kirkcaldy, Scotland.

2 July 1865. The Salvation Army was founded, by William Booth, with a revival meeting in Whitechapel, London.

10 April 1829, William Booth, founder of the Salvation Army, was born in Nottingham, the son of a builder.


Appendix� Templars

18 March 1314, Jacques de Molay, the 23rd and the last Grand Master of the Knights Templar, was burned at the stake.

22 March 1312, The Pope abolished the Order of the Templars.

11 May 1310, In France, 54 members of the Knights Templar were burned at the stake for heresy.

2 November 1308, Castellar, last of the Templar�s strongholds, fell.

10 January 1308, The Templars were suppressed in England.

13 October 1307, The Knights Templars in Paris were arrested. French King Philip IV seized their assets in France. They had become wealthy and were a major creditor to the King. Their extenbsive geographical presence, with so9me 870 castles and houses spread across Europe, made them an ideal choice for trsansferring money, rather like today�s banks. However King Philip I of France, a debtor to the Templars, turned public opinion against them with a major propaganda campaign.

1128, The Order of the Knights Templar was officially recognised by Pope Honorius II.

1118, The Templars were founded.


Appendix a � Benedictines/Cistercians

25 October 1757, Antoine Calmet, French Benedictine monk and teacher (born 26/2.1672) died.

26 February 1672, Antoine Calmet, French Benedictine monk and teacher (died 25 October 1757) was born.

20 August 1153, St Bernard, Abbot of Clairvaux, died.

1128, The first Cistercian monastery in Britain was founded, at Waverley, Surrey.

23 December 1119, Pope Calixtus I officialy approved the new Cistercian order

21 March 1098, C�teaux Abbey became the origin of the Cistercian Order, founded by French ecclesiastic Robert de Molesmes, aged 69 and English ecclesiastic Stephen Harding, aged 50. The Benedictine Abbott, Robert de Champagne, wished to reform the secularised monastic life. His first attempt at this was in the Forest of Molesme. In 1098 he founded, in the Forest of Citeaux (Cistercium), an Abbey, at a small hamlet near Dijon, where the rules of St Benedict would be strictly observed. The new Abbey had nearly became extinct when in 1113 it was joined by St Benedict with thirty companions. In 1115 St Benedict became the first Abbott of Clairvaux, which henceforth became the centre of the revived Benedictine Movement.

529, The Benedictine Order was formed at Monte Cassino, near Naples, by Benedict of Nursia, aged 49.

480, Saint Benedict was born, to a wealthy family in Nursia, near Spoleto.


Appendix b � Franciscans

2 April 1602, Maria Agreda, Spanish religious visionary and Franciscan nun (died 1665) was born.

3 October 1226, Saint Francis of Assisi, founder of the Franciscan Order, died aged 44. He was canonised 19 July 1228.

10 September 1224, The first Franciscan friars arrived in England

1209, The Franciscan Order of monks was founded. The Carmelites were founded.


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