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of the humiliations and tribulations of his troublous life that Matthew was led to renounce the ambitions of his youth, and even to denounce strongly the corrupt system of the papal administration of that time. That a man who believed himself to be acting under the immediate inspiration of God should little heed the commands of his archbishop was inevitable. Matthew continued both in word and in writing to attack the immorality of the clergy and the idolatrous worship of images. He also extolled the frequent communion of laymen, as he had done before, and administered the sacrament daily to all the faithful who desired it. Yet we have no knowledge of any further conflict between the archbishop and Janov after the one that took place in 1392. Archbishop Jenzenstein was entirely engrossed in a violent dispute with King Venceslas IV. of Bohemia, and in 1394 Matthew of Janov passed away from the jurisdiction of all earthly judges; he died on November 30 of that year.
It has already been mentioned that Janov was a very fertile writer. It will here, however, be sufficient to refer to his Regulae Veteris et Novi Testamenti. The book was his masterpiece and his life-work, and we meet in it with all Matthew's predominant ideas and theories. The book, one of the most precious documents of the Bohemian reformation, long remained almost unknown, hidden away in various manuscripts, not one of which contained its complete contents. Dr. Kybal, the author of a valuable life of Matthew of Janov, to which I have frequently referred, is now engaged in editing and publishing the Regulae, and part of the work has already appeared. Matthew himself is our authority with regard to the origin of the Regulae. He had at first intended to treat his subject in but one book, but then added two more, and later on a fourth and fifth. Here, as so frequently, Janov
1“ Illum enim principaliter, id est solum illum primum intendebam sub brevitate scripsisse. Dehinc pius Jhesus michi dilatavit, et aperiens ostium me implevit suis copiis, ut duos libros, puta secundum et tercium scripserim, de indicio et discrecione verorum et falsorum christianorum et prisnum pseudoprophetarum et doctorum. Dehinc alios duos libros, scilicet quartum et quintum solum et simpliciter de communicacione in Christi Jhesu ecclesia deifici et supertremendi veri corporis et sanguinis Jhesu.” Regulae, Proemium, p. 16. of Dr. Kybal's edition.
believed himself to be writing under the direct inspiration of Jesus, by whose order he, as he tells us, extended his work. In the introduction (proemium) quoted below, which Matthew probably wrote after the completion of his work, he indicates the two leading ideas which inspired his book and to which he ever returns from the by-paths of scholastic philosophy, whose redundancy and frequent repetitions render the study of Matthew's work an arduous task. These two Leitmotive” are the definition of true Christianity in distinction from false Christianity and the theory of the utility of the frequent communion of laymen. It had been customary with writers anterior to Dr. Kybal to dwell mainly on the first of these two points, and the Regulae were frequently described as the book of true and false Christianity. Dr. Kybal first pointed out the great importance which Janov attaches to the veneration of the sacrament and the great stress which he lays on the frequent communion of laymen. From this theory indirectly, and by no means through the direct influence of Janov, the doctrine of utraquism sprang.
To notice briefly the contents of the Regulae, it may be stated that the first book which follows on the introduction deals of the distinction between true and false prophets according to the Old Testament, and the veneration of the holy sacrament.1 Conformably to its twofold subject, the book is divided into two tractatus (treatises). In the first of these Matthew warns his readers against false prophets (pseudoprophetae), who, he states, are more numerous than true prophets. He then endeavours to instruct the faithful as to the means by which they can distinguish them. The second treatise, which deals of the sacrament of the altar and communion, is one of the most valuable parts of Janov's great work. He has here expressed most fully and most clearly his views on the allimportant subject of the sacrament, to which he refers very
1 The titles of the different books and treatises are different in the various manuscripts of the Regulae. In Dr. Kybal's edition the first book is entitled: De Discrecione Spirituum in Doctoribus et Prophetis et de Venerabili Sacramento.
?" Ex hoc contigit quod multi pseudoprophete exierunt in mundum, similiter et prophete veraces, licet pauciores." Regulae, p. 21 of Dr. Kybal's edition.
frequently in the Regulae. “In these days," Janov writes,1 "some dispute on the frequent receiving of the body and blood of Jesus Christ by laymen; among these are preachers also and doctors who have expressed their views, some in favour, others in opposition to this practice, basing their opinions either on reasoning or on the Scriptures.” Janov then proceeds in the usual scholastic fashion, abounding in " distinctions” and classifications, to place before his readers, and then to refute, the arguments of those who were opposed to frequent communion. He strongly blames the priests who, from haughtiness, refused to administer the sacrament frequently to laymen, though David called it the "nourishment of the poor,” meaning hereby the laymen in distinction from the priesthood. Not only to men should frequent communion be allowed, but also to women, whose religious fervour Matthew greatly extolls. The great part played by women in the Hussite movement has not yet been sufficiently noticed, and we only occasionally find-as here—some mention of it in the scanty records of the period that have been preserved. Later on the Bohemian women were on Zizka's hill to seal with their blood their devotion to the Hussite cause.
The second book of the Regulae also contained two treatises. The first one is entitled, De Hypocrisi, and Matthew here expresses himself strongly on the subject of hypocrites, particularly among the priesthood. He draws attention to the insufficiency of the precautions taken by the church to guard against such men, while it is always prepared to be watchful of heretics. The second i Regulae, p. 51:
We meet with this praise of the religious fervour of women frequently in this treatise:
Puta quod mulieres que sunt in Christo in hoc tempore viros in virtutibus anticurrunt.
Nam cum sacerdotes stertunt et nauseant vix debito et officio et alias raro missas sanctissimas dignati calebrare mulieres summis desiderüs et studüs festinant cottidie vel quanto eis saepius potest fieri, corpus et sanguinem Jhesu Christi manducare et potare.'
Istis temporibus surgunt mulieres virgines et vidue et apprehendunt disciplinam, agunt strenue penitentiam properant ad divina sacramenta et preripiunt viris regnum celorum circa vanitatem hujus seculi occupatis." (Regulae, Lib. I., tr. 2, passim.)
* Competenter vigilatur contra hereticos et vigilatum est dudum copiose per doctores; tamen contra nocentissimos ypocritas et luciformes (diabolical) non puto esse satis attentos usque modo christianos dei neque satis vigilare. (Regulae, p. 109.)
treatise, which formed part of this book, has not been preserved, though we are acquainted with its name, De Distincta Veritate.
In the third book, which contains no less than six treatises, Matthew can be said to have formulated his views most clearly. The book shows evidence of that fact that the different books of the Regulae were written separately and at different times, though Janov afterwards united them into one entirety. The third book, and indeed all parts of the Regulae, therefore, teem with repetitions, and the writer who endeavours to briefly delineate the contents of the work constantly runs the risk of committing the same offence. In the first treatise Matthew expounds a tenet which is the foundation of all his teaching. Jesus Christ himself, he writes, is the primary principle of truth, and the only sufficient guidance and law of Christian life. The second treatise, De Testibus Veritates, refers to the prophets and apostles as the witnesses of truth; and in the third, Matthew again broaches his views concerning the necessity of frequent communion. He quotes numerous witnesses, beginning by Jesus Christ and ending by contemporaries such as Adalbert Ranco, in support of his favourite doctrine. The fourth treatise, On the Unity and Universality of the Church, criticises bitterly the depraved state of the church at the time of Janov. The idea, outlined in this treatise, that the evil state of the church foreshadows the end of the world and the appearance of Antichrist, is fully developed in the fifth treatise, De Antichristo. As Matthew himself tells us, it was the influence of Milic, who had dealt with the same subject, that induced Matthew to write his treatise. It differs little from the many other eschatological works written in Bohemia at this period. This treatise, which was long attributed to Hus and figures in the older editions of his work, obtained more celebrity than any other work of Janov, and was translated both into German and into Bohemian. It contains, in numerous distinctions,” a mystic description of Antichrist. The sixth and last treatise has great interest with regard to the development of the Hussite movement. It is entitled De Abominacione in Loco Sancto, and, to borrow the words of Dr. Kybal, is full of general and
1 Dr. Kybal, Matej 2. Janova, p. 63, n. 3.
impassioned attacks on the ecclesiastical community of his day, founded on the language of the Old Testament and of the Revelation. Perhaps fearing that the vehemence of his attacks might be attributed to personal motives, Matthew here lays particular stress on the point that it was only his love of Christ that induced him to write.1
The fourth book of the Regulae contains but one treatise, which is entitled A question whether it is permissible to each and all holy Christians to receive Communion daily, that is to say, to partake of (manducare) the Body and Blood of Christ. Matthew here again enters on a subject which obviously interested him more than any other. This treatise takes the form of an answer given by Matthew to a friend, a pious priest who was troubled by the question of frequent communion that then occupied all thoughtful minds in Bohemia. Matthew here, as elsewhere, appears as a staunch upholder of frequent communion. He vigorously attacks those priests who hold laymen in contempt, calling beasts and ribalds those poor plebeians who wish to communicate frequently. The monks in particular, he writes, endeavour, impelled by spiritual pride and hatred, to prevent laymen from receiving the sacrament frequently
Very similar to that of the fourth is the subject of the fifth book of the Regulae, which is entitled De Corpore Christi. In this treatise Matthew addresses a friend, a layman, who desired to frequently receive the sacrament, and had in consequence often been reproved
“ Nam et ista scribens fateor quod nihil aliud me in illud perurget nisi dileccio domini nostri Jesu Crucifixi cujus stigmata pro modulo mee infirmitatis vilitatis in me ipso cupio deportare et quia igitur zelus domus sue comedit et opprobria exprobancium Jesu crucifixo ceciderunt super me, ideo ista loquor et scribo. (Regulae, quoted by Dr. Kybal, Matej 2. Janova.)
meipsum ad hoc obtuli et distinavi in Christo Jesu ut sim promotor et propugnator crebre communionis corporis et sanguinis domini Jesu Christi. (Kybal, Matej 2. Janova, p. 72, n. 3.)
3“ Hü sunt qui ferme quemlibet de plebe dedignantur, bestias et ribaldos pauperes plebeios audacter nuncupando. . . . Habent de more quidem hujusmodi stomachari ad frequenter sacramento communicantes: Isti Reghardi et Begynejam nituntur sacerdotibus simulari. Quis dyabolus ad hoc eas consecravit (Kybal, Matej . Janova, p. 224, n. 2). Here as everywhere I have used Janov's own spelling as transcribed by Dr. Kybal from the manuscripts.