John Dunn, Traditionalism: the only radicalism.
A new mythos for modern heretics.
The further intensification of the defensive measures taken at the Council of Vienne is illustrative of the persistence of usury in Christian communities. John Dunn on defensive. A growing number of towns and regions sanctioned usury and compelled debtors to observe usurious contracts, in utter disregard for divine law. The threat of excommunication was used yet again against any rulers and magistrates knowingly maintaining such laws. The insidiousness of usury’s growing grip on the body of Christendom also led the Council to order the opening of all money-lenders’ accounts to ecclesiastical examination. Anyone who insisted that usury was not a sin would be dealt with by inquisitors as a heretic.
Even these stringencies were insufficient for Edward I of England who in 1290, at the height of the ecclesiastical measures against usury, took action to expel the Jews from his land. Many of them moved to France, only to face expulsion again in 1306 by King Philip IV, before settling in the future commercial centres of the Low Countries, especially Antwerp and Ghent.
© John Dunn