Arnold Breshianskiy

Picture of Arnold Breshianskiy

Age: 55

Place of birth: Brescia

Citizenship: Italy


Arnold of Brescia (ca. 1100 -. 1155) - Italian religious and public figure. A native of Brescia. In his youth, he spent several years in France, where he became a disciple of Pierre Abelard. Upon his return to Brescia, already a priest, Arnold of Brescia led the struggle of citizens against the lord Bishop. During this II Lateran Council (1139) he was deprived of office and expelled from Italy. Again, once in France, Arnold of Brescia, together with Abelard led a bitter struggle against the higher hierarchy of the Church, whose leader acted, Bernard of Clairvaux.

Arnold of Brescia was preaching that the clergy should not have wealth and temporal power. He accused the pope, bishops, abbots in luxury, depravity, indulging in looting and killings in the purchase church offices for money. The ideal Arnold of Brescia was the original Christianity, the poor, but the immaculate Church.

In 1140 the Pope condemned the views of Abelard and Arnold of Brescia as heretical and ordered to imprison both the monastery and their books burned. Arnold of Brescia was forced to leave France, and lived for several years in Zurich, where he continued to preach his doctrine. From Zurich he was expelled at the urging of Bernard of Clairvaux. Being in a desperate situation, Arnold of Brescia in 1145 came to the Pope Eugene III, and asked for his forgiveness, giving the oath of allegiance to the Church. This allowed Arnold of Brescia to be in Rome, whose inhabitants in 1143 rebelled against his lord, the pope and proclaimed a republic.

In Rome earlier sounded preaching of Arnold of Brescia, which enjoyed great popularity among the townspeople. Without taking any official position in the leadership of the Roman Republic, it was Arnold became its de facto leader and ideologue, and, therefore, the main enemy of the Pope, expelled from the city. In 1155, four days after the imposition of interdict Rome Roman Senate was forced to comply with the requirement of the pope and expelled from the city of Arnold of Brescia, who fled to northern Italy. There he was captured by Frederick I Barbarossa, to move to Rome at the request of the Pope. In Rome, Arnold of Brescia was issued by Pope Adrian IV and 18 June 1155 executed. He was hanged, and then the body was burned and the ashes thrown into the Tiber, to the remains of Brescia did not read his numerous followers.