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Élites et ordres militaires au Moyen Âge

Philippe Josserand
Luís Filipe Oliveira
Damien Carraz

II. — Hierarchies et elites au sein des ordres militaires

The Priests in the Military Orders

A Comparative Approach on Their Standing and Role

Jürgen Sarnowsky

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In one of the treatises on the reform of the Empire, the Reformatio Sigismundi from about 1438, the Hospitallers and the Teutonic Knights are accused to suppress their priest brethren: «The commanders, great or small, they represent the order, carry the cross and do not sing and read, and take the priest that they have in the order to be nothing and their servants1». A similar impression was also at some point prominent at the Roman Curia. In summer 1456, Pope Calixtus III in gave orders to the cardinal legate Ludovico Trevisan to initiate reforms that would strengthen the standing of the Hospitaller priest brethren, who are expressly described as the former leading branch of the order2. The bull refers to the precedence the knight brethren had gained in all military orders since the 12th century, though the situation seems not to have been this dramatic, because the text was cancelled and then revoked by another bull from early 14573. In fact, the situation of the priest brethren o...


University of Hamburg, Department of History

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