Bulla "Inter caetera" №2

BULLA "INTER CAETERA" № 2

Alexander, Bishop, servant of God's servants, to the Most High Emperor, our very beloved son in Christ Ferdinand, the king, and our very beloved daughter in Christ, Isabella, Queen of Castile, Leon, Aragon and Granada, greetings and apostolic blessing.

Among other acts acceptable to the omnipotent Lord and desired by our hearts, the greatest importance in our time is the exaltation of the Catholic faith and the Christian religion and its strengthening and spreading for the salvation of souls and for the sake of humility and conversion to this faith of barbarian peoples. Therefore, although we were not worthy, we were called by the mercy of God to the holy throne of St. Peter. It is known to us that you are now the true Catholic kings and rulers, and were such before, and that the whole world is already aware of your great deeds, but these actions have remained not only in your thoughts, but you have been committed with earnestness and persistence; accomplishing them, you spared neither strength, nor means and did not look at the danger and sacrificed your blood, being devoted to your business with all your soul and devoting yourself to its fulfillment for a long time, to which the testimony of the liberation of the kingdom of Granada from the Saracen bondage, accomplished to the glory of God's name.

Therefore, appreciating the deed, we consider it our duty to welcome you on our own will and in your favor, which will allow you to continue your holy and honorable work so pleasing to our immortal Lord for the glory of God. We know that you have long been inspired by the desire to search and discover certain islands and continents (terras firmeas), distant and unknown, not yet found, to call their inhabitants and inhabitants (incolas et habitatores) to serve our Redeemer and turn them into catholic faith; and that, being burdened with the liberation of the kingdom of Granada, you could not bring to the desired end this holy and venerable intention; and that finally, after you had purchased the kingdom called by the will of God, you were instructed to fulfill your intention to undertake in the sea-ocean a diligent search for these distant and unknown continents and islands in places where no one has hitherto hitherto done to our kind son, Christopher Columbus, a very worthy husband, deserving of high respect and capable of such a thing, and given him ships and the right people. They [Columbus and his people], with God's help, showing extraordinary zeal, found, floating in the sea-ocean, some very distant islands, as well as continents, which had never been discovered by anyone else; and there are a lot of peaceful people living there, and they walk, they say, naked and do not eat meat.

And, judging by the messages of your messengers, the people living on the islands and lands mentioned above believe in the one creator God existing in heaven and seem sufficiently capable of converting to the Catholic faith and learning good practices, and there is hope that if they will be instructed in the faith, then the name of the Savior and our Lord Jesus Christ will easily penetrate the borders of these lands and islands. And the aforementioned Christopher on one of the main named islands ordered to build a fortress, in which he left to protect her several Christians, his companions, who must search for other islands and continents, far and unknown; and on islands and lands already open, gold, spices and many other things of various kinds and dignity were found. Therefore, thoroughly taking into account all of the above, and especially the need for the exaltation and spread of the Catholic faith, you must begin, relying on God's mercy, to subjugate the islands and continents and their inhabitants and inhabitants, somehow befitting the Catholic kings and rulers, following the example Your ancestors, and convert them to the Catholic faith.

We praise before the Lord this your holy and worthy intention; and, wishing that it be performed properly and that the very name of our Savior be affirmed in these countries, we will earnestly encourage you for the glory of the Lord; thanks to Holy Baptism, which you received, you are obliged to fulfill the apostolic orders; and, calling upon all the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ, we urge you to undertake your work with genuine zeal for faith and to encourage the peoples who live on the islands and lands to accept the Christian religion; and may your work and dangers not frighten you, and hope and firm assurance that Almighty God will assist you in your enterprises will not leave you.


On the right is the dividing line for “Inter caetera”; left - by the Treaty of Tordesillas. Image: pinterest.com

And so that you can proceed to such a great cause with readiness and ardor, we, after having been given generous apostolic mercy, of our own free will, and not at your request and not at the request of those acting on your behalf, and only of our generosity, awareness and completeness of our apostolic authority, we grant eternal possession, we give in and give you and your descendants all the islands and continents found and those that will be found, open and those that will be open, to the west and south of the line held and installed by arkti the North Pole, that is, the North, to the Antarctic Pole, that is, the South, regardless of whether the continents and islands already found are meant, or those that will be found towards India or towards any other to the side; This line should be located one hundred leagues to the west and south of any of the islands, usually called the Azores and Cape Verde. So all the islands and continents found and those that will be found are open and those that will be open to the west and south of the named line (unless they were put into real possession of another Christian king and sovereign until the day of the Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ, that passed last year, from which the current 1493 begins, when your messengers and captains found some of these islands), we are the authority of almighty God, granted to us through St. Peter, and as vicarious of Jesus Christ on earth amu, we concede and give forever to you and your descendants, king of Castile and Leon [mentioned land] with all estates, towns, castles, towns and villages, with the rights, jurisdiction and all that pertains to them.

And we make, designate and trust you and your heirs and descendants mentioned as the lords of these [lands] with full, free and absolute power, ownership and jurisdiction, warning that this right, concession and granting rights should not diminish or violate to any Christian sovereign who owned these islands and continents in actual possession of the previously mentioned day of the Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ [December 25, 1492].

And besides, we are commanding you on the duty of obedience - and this is promised by you - and we have no doubt that you will accomplish the following, for that is your piety and generosity - to send to the islands and continents mentioned good, God-fearing, knowledgeable, learned and experienced people so that they instruct the inhabitants and residents mentioned in the Catholic faith and teach them good customs, while applying all the diligence necessary for such an undertaking.

And we strictly prohibit any persons, whatever their rank, even if it is imperial and royal or of any other position, degree, dignity or condition, under the fear of weaning (what kind of people such obedience will be) to go to purchase goods or for some other reason, without special permission given by you or your heirs and descendants, to the islands and continents, both already found and those that will be found and will continue to be opened to the west and south of the line drawn and established th from the Arctic to the Antarctic pole, find whether the continents and islands in the direction of India or other any party. This line should be a hundred leagues from any of the islands, usually called Azores and Cape Verde. You, accomplishing your actions under the guidance of God, entrusting yourself to the Lord and considering any apostolic ordinances valid, fulfilling your holy and praiseworthy enterprise, will soon achieve complete success - to the glory and happiness of all Christianity.

And since it will be difficult to deliver the present message to each of those places where it should be delivered, we wish and with our inherent will and knowledge we command that copies of this message, signed by a notary public (publici notorii), for this purpose are designed, and the persons affixed with the seal of the clergy or the spiritual curia, were received in public places with the same honor as the originals; and copies of these must be served when required to present and show them.

In the same way, no one is allowed to violate this our recommendation, prayer, demand, talent, assignment, prescription, establishment, trust, command, command, prohibition, and will. And to anyone who dares to do this, let it be known that he will incur the wrath of the almighty Lord and the holy apostles Peter and Paul.

Given in Rome, in the year from the incarnation of our Lord, one thousand four hundred and ninety-third, the fourth of May, in the first year of our pontificate.

Published: Chronicles of the discovery of America. Book I. M. Academic project. 2000

Image announcement on the main page: wikivisually.com
Lead Picture: Wikimedia Commons

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