To the Same Pope, in the Name of Geoffrey,
Bishop of Chartres.
He explains to the Pontiff the cause why the Bishop of Paris was unjustly oppressed by King Louis. The interdict of the bishops of France had put pressure upon him, and he had promised to make restitution, when the absolution of Honorius rendered him contumacious, and prevented his fulfilling his promise.
It is superfluous to recall to you, very holy Father, the cause and order of a very afflicting history, and to linger over what you have already heard from the pious Bishop of Paris, and which must have profoundly affected your paternal heart. Yet my testimony also ought not to be wanting to my brother and co-bishop; what I have seen and heard respecting this matter, this I have undertaken to make you acquainted with in few words. When the before-mentioned Bishop had brought forward his complaint, which he did with great moderation, in our provincial assembly, where had gathered with our venerable metropolitan the Archbishop of Sens, all the bishops of the province, and certain religious also whom we had summoned, we determined to represent to the King, with all becoming humility, his unjust proceeding, and to beg that he would restore to the Bishop unjustly maltreated what had been taken from him; but we obtained no satisfaction from him. Understanding, at length, that in order to defend the Church we had decided to have recourse to the weapons of the Church, he was afraid, and promised the restitution demanded. But almost in the same hour arrived your letter, ordering that the interdict over the royal domains should be raised, thus, unfortunately, strengthening the King in his evil doings, so that he did not perform at all what he had promised. Nevertheless, as he had given a fresh promise that he would do what we required, we presented ourselves on the day appointed. We laboured for peace, and it did not come; but instead of it worse confusion. Thus the effect of your letter has been that the goods unjustly seized are more unjustly retained, and those which remain are seized day by day, and that so much more securely, as he is assured of entire impunity in retaining them. The just (as we consider) interdict of the Bishop has been raised by your order, and as the fear of displeasing you has made us suspend that which we proposed to send forth by our own authority, and by which we hoped to obtain peace, we are made in the meantime the derision of our neighbours. How long is this to be? Let the compassion of your piety be exercised in our behalf.