Negotiating Interfaith Relations in Eastern Christendom: Pope Gregory IX, Bela IV of Hungary, and the Latin Empire
Lower, Michael (University of Minnesota)
Essays in Medieval Studies, Vol.21 (2004)
At the beginning of the thirteenth century Pope Innocent III (1198-1216) laid a framework for centralizing papal power over Christian encounters with non-Christians. He enacted legislation to separate Jews from Christians, requiring Jews, for example, to wear distinguishing dress, at the same time that he insisted all should heed his call for their physical safety. He created a definition of orthodoxy that made it possible to identify heresy, called upon bishops to ensure orthodoxy in their jurisdictions, and asserted the rights of popes to replace rulers who refused to comply. He expanded the scope of crusade targets, developed more ways for the faithful to participate in crusades, and attempted to channel funds for these campaigns through the papacy. In every case, Pope Gregory IX (1227-41) not only tried to push forward the programs Innocent had outlined, but also developed new methods to implement them, usually by turning to the mendicant orders. Gregory sought to enforce the legislation over Jews that Innocent had enacted and went further, establishing a campaign against the Talmud, an unprecedented attempt to regulate Jewish belief.