Saint Bartholomew Day's Massacre
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A celebrated event in history, to which Voltaire's comments thereon have done much to assure that this massacre would not be forgotten.  

An Eyewitness Account of the Saint Bartholomew's Day Massacre
by François Dubois
From the Musée Cantonal Des Beaux-Arts, Lausanne Switzerland

JK has edited the language (translation) which in style would make one think that a high schooler produced it.  Most of the sentence have been rewritten and several paragraphs added.

August 24, 1572, was the date of the famous St. Bartholomew's Day Massacre in France. On that day, over 400 years ago, began one of the most famous holocausts in history.

A great change had come over the educated people as commerce enlarged the world and the Greco-Roman wisdom became the mainstay of education.  With the standard of philosophy gaining in currence, a deeper skepticism concerning revealed truths spread.  Since the higher church offices were filled with the sons of the nobles, skepticism infected the church, and it perculated down to an ever increasing percentage of the masses.  Because of this, the glorious Reformation, which began in Germany on October 31, 1517, rapidly spread in France.  Within a century over one-quarter of the population embraced the reformed-Christian faiths.

Herecy had traditionally been met with violence.  France was her eldest daughter and main pillar the chief source of money and power.  There even was for centuries the papal court in that country.  In time nearly half the lands of France were owned by the clergy.  Strong action was naturally taken against this new form of herecy.

During the reign of Henry III, the Court spiritual adviser, a Jesuit priest urged them to massacre the Protestants as penance for their many sins! To catch the Protestant heretics, the king and queen of Frnce devised and executed in secret. 

Suddenly and without warning the devilish work commenced. Beginning at Paris, on Saint Bartholomew's Day, the French soldiers and the Roman Catholic clergy fell upon the unarmed heretics, and the mob joined in.  Blood flowed like a river throughout the entire country. Men, women, and children fell in heaps before the mobs and the blood-thirsty troops.  In one week an estimated 15,000 Protestants perished.  Violence spread quickly from Paris to the country.   The rivers of France were so filled with corpses that for many months no fish were eaten. In the valley of the Loire, wolves came down from the hills to feel upon the decaying bodies of Frenchmen.

Of those who survived, some were imprisoned, many sent as slaves to row the King's ships, and some were able to escape to other countries. When news of the Massacre reached the Vatican there was jubilation! Cannons roared, bells rung, and a special commemorative medal was struck to honor the occasion! The Pope commissioned Italian artist Vasari to paint a mural of the Massacre which still hangs in the Vatican!

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Medal struck by Pope Gregory XIII (1572-85) to commemorate the slaughter of over 15,000 French Christians!! 

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Pope Gregory had the great red dragon of Satan as his heraldic symbol! The Gregorian Calendar is named after him.

The Huguenots won a short period of relief from persecution with the ascension of Henry IV to the throne. The Edict of Nantes gave limited freedoms to his Protestants subjects. The signing of this Edict inaugurated an era of peace and prosperity for France. The edict was opposed by the Church; the king was stabbed to death by a Jesuit named Ravaillac. This Edict of Toleration was revoked in 1685, and a new storm of persecution ensued.  Over a million Huguenots fled France to avoid increased, and now government supported, repression.  

The list of massacres in the name of Hebrew God is long!   In the university course book, "The Bloody Refomation," it is stated that about one-quarter of the population during the 16th century killed each other over how best to worship Jesus.   Saint Bartholomew's Day has, because of the pen of Voltaire, been of popular historical interest. 

The process of pupulation cleansing, a final solution to herecy and doing God's work continued in the last century--and will continue in the 21st century.  Because religious cleansings were often done with government sanction including troops, the actions of Hitler have their precedents.   

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Another article on doing God's work!