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  THE «UNIONIST» THESIS RECONSIDERED:DO RECENT DATINGS OF THE  ARS COMPEN-DIOSA INVENIENDI VERITATEM CYCLEALLOW US TO INFER THAT THE CONCEPTSOF DEIFICATION AND HOMINIFICATIONUSED BY RAMON LLULL WERE DEVISED FORA LARGELY «SCHISMATIC»AUDIENCE? * Robert D. H UGHES (University of Lancaster) 1. Introduction I n this paper I aim to revise Sebastián Garcías Palou’s thesis, detailed inhis Ramon Llull en la historia del ecumenismo (G ARCÍAS P ALOU 1986),regarding Ramon Llull and his relations to the East (i.e. to ByzantineChristians, Nestorians, and Monophysites 1 —or Jacobites 2 as they are called ∗ I should like to thank Dr Joan Santanach for his provision of material relating to the recentedition of the Romanç d’Evast e Blaquerna, NEORL VIII 2009, eds. Albert Soler and Joan Santanach,prior to its publication, and for his comments on the final draft of this text which, where possible, havebeen incorporated.1.For a good account of the beliefs characterising and the authors writing within the Nesto-rian and Monophysite traditions, cf. P ELIKAN (1974: 39-61). For a full exposition of the Monophysite sys-tem and its history during the fifth and sixth centuries, cf. F REND (1972), passim. That Nestorius (c.386–c. 451) himself, Archbishop of Constantinople, attached (at least a negative) importance to theconcept of deification and the use thereof can be seen in his accusation, within a letter to Pope Celesti-ne I (422–432), against certain Byzantine clerics who believed that, after the Resurrection, « carnem con- junctam deitati ad deitatem transisse, blasphemant ipso verbo deificationis » [punctuation added], cf. A MANN (1949: 26-27, 30, n. 1) and corresponding text. Within a clearly Arabic context, cf. B URMAN (1994: 99-104), for the role of the Melkites, Nestorians and Jacobites in appropriating Greek theological termino-logy via Syriac, and for the familiarity with (and recasting of) such «Oriental-Christian» terms and apo-logetic techniques as shown by Mozarabic texts produced between the mid-eleventh and end of thetwelfth century, some of which texts may have exerted a significant influence on Ramon Llull’s formula-tion of his «Art», cf. ibid., 203.2.On the origin of the term «Jacobite», taken from the founder of the West Syrian Church (aMonophysite or Miaphysite Church), Jacob Baradaeus (James Bar’adai) (fl. 541; † 578), cf. P ELIKAN (1974: 50); F REND (1972: 285); and L OUTH (2002/2004: 152).  by Llull). I shall do so by reassessing some of the former’s claims in the lightof Joan Santanach’s more recent chronology for the  Ars compendiosa inve-niendi veritatem cycle, and by focusing above all on the Doctrina pueril , the Liber de Sancto Spiritu and the Romanç d’Evast e Blaquerna , 3 the three workswhose dating is central to Garcías Palou’s arguments con cerning Llull’sinvolvement —or rather lack thereof— in and with the Second Council of Lyons (May–July 1274). 4 Within this paper I also seek to moderate theclaims made independently by both Antoine Dondaine and Anthony Bon-ner, respectively, that neither the writings nor method of Ramon Llull boreany relation to the patristic tradition (D ONDAINE 1951: 427-28) and thatLlull rejected this tradition as far as its authority is concerned (B ONNER 1997: 373-85). 5 1.1.Certain preliminary methodological considerations The recent datings to which the title of this paper refers, suggest thatthe Doctrina pueril was composed between 1274–1276, the Liber de SanctoSpiritu between 1274–1283 and Blaquerna from before or shortly after 1276to at least 1283. 6 In belonging to the first cycle of the Quaternary Phase,these works must all have been written, broadly speaking, after RamonLlull’s illumination on Mount Randa in 1274 and before 1283, the probabledate of the  Ars demonstrativa . On the basis of the above and in connection 3.For the derivation of the title of this romanç from the Palace of Blakhernai (Blachernae) inConstantinople and the statue to the Virgin located therein, cf. B ONNER (1985: 690, n. 34). The palacewas also the site of a Council in 1285 where the former Eastern Patriarch John XI Bekkos (who resignedhis post in March 1279 though returned to it in August of the same year) attempted to defend his supportfor a pro-Unionist interpretation of the Procession of the Holy Spirit, and was ultimately excommunica-ted and imprisoned, cf. H USSEY (1986: 241, 246-7).4.The more strident commentators go as far as to assert that the motivations behind the diplo-matic exchanges between Michael VIII Palaiologos and Urban IV lacked any theological significanceand may be «reduced to a competition of imperial policies», cf. J ORDAN (1987: 455). It seems fair to say,however, that Michael VIII’s offer to Gregory X of a union of the two Churches represented a «diploma-tic ploy» at best, cf. A  NGOLD (2003: 212). For the threats facing Michael VIII during the period of UrbanIV’s papacy, the former’s approaches to Urban between 1262–1264 to secure Union between the Chur-ches and the role in all of this of Bishop Nicholas of Cotrone, cf. also H USSEY , op. cit. , 222-23.5.D ONDAINE (1951: 427-28), states that «Raymond Lulle, [...] suit une voie propre, sans rap-port avec les écrits des Pères» (emphasis added). 6. Cf. L LULL (2009: 24-26),the Catalan critical edition of the Romanç d’Evast e Blaquerna,whose editors estimate this work to have been composed during these years. Cf. S ANTANACH (2000: 23-46), for datings relevant to the  Ars compendiosa inveniendi veritatem cycle and to the subject of this paper;cf. also B ONNER (1989, Vol. 2: 543, 545-46) where the dates given for these three works are: 1274–6 (?),1274–83 (?) and 1283, respectively. 2 R. D. Hughes   with the Second Council of Lyons (1274), I wish to propose a more precisedate for the composition of the Liber de Sancto Spiritu than the one just men-tioned. In doing this, I shall be assuming that the proposed dates for thesethree works (and for the Liber de Sancto Spiritu in particular) are more accu-rate than those presented by Sebastián Garcías Palou, from which assump-tion I shall be inferring that at least part if not all of each individual workmay have been written during the immediate period of the Second Councilof Lyons. I shall also be assuming that since two of these works (the Doctrina pueril and the Liber de Sancto Spiritu ) deal in part or in full with differences of belief and customs between Roman and Byzantine Christianity, it is legiti-mate to infer that they have a bearing upon that council and that councilupon them. My third and final assumption is that, given all of the preceding,this council and its aftermath may well provide the terminus a quo for thecomposition of at least the Liber de Sancto Spiritu , from which I infer thelegitimacy of seeking external evidence for its terminus ad quem within thesame constellation of events surrounding the Papal–Imperial relationshipand the unsuccessful reunion of the Churches. As regards these early datings, we should be careful, however, not tofall into a circular argument. For, we cannot simultaneously maintain thatsuch datings and the relevance of the works to issues of Byzantine belief arethemselves dependent on the events of Lyons II, while also maintaining thatthe importance of Lyons II rests on both these early dates and the Unionistintent of such works. We may emerge from this impasse, I believe, if we attend to the factthat the content of all three of the works mentioned — Blaquerna included(given the explicit reference in its very title to the palace of Blakhernai inConstantinople and possibly to the council held there in 1277)— is indis-putably connected to matters of Byzantine belief, regardless of the dates atwhich they were written. The question then arises as to which historicalcontext is to be preferred when it comes to providing a more powerful expla-nation for the presence of such content: the period between 1274–83, asproposed by Bonner and Santanach, or the years following 1282, as pro-posed by Garcías Palou? As I shall be showing, the former period is to bepreferred and, by calling our attention to matters of Byzantine politics andPapal–Imperial relations, provides us with a much clearer set of dates for the Liber de Sancto Spiritu . The «unionist» thesis reconsidered: do recent datings of the...  3  This re-dating and the re-contextualisation it involves, therefore,also enable us to presume that Ramon Llull might have been familiar withthe existing anti-Greek polemical literature by bilingual authors such asHugh Etherian (Hugo Eterianus), author of the De haeresibus , and Nicholasof Cotrone, who wrote the florilegium, the Libellus de fide sanctae Trinitatis ,to which Thomas Aquinas was responding when he drew up his Contraerrores Graecorum , and that Llull would likewise have been informed of theactivities of both the Franciscan and Dominican orders in Constantinople,established there since 1220 and 1228, respectively. 7 2. How the recent dating of three works from Llull’s early period affects the «unionist» orecumenical thesis proposed by Garcías Palou 2.1.Revised dates and revised contexts for the Doctrina pueril ,the Liber deSancto Spiritu and Blaquerna 2.1.1. Two hypotheses: Llull’s «documental silence» vs. his knowledge of Patristic florilegia and anti-Byzantine theological texts 8 The primary effect of these revised datings is to undermine theexistence, proposed by Garcías Palou, of a twelve-year period between1269–1281 during which Llull supposedly mantained a «documentalsilence» as regards Eastern «schismatics». 9 Consequently, we are free toconsider the year 1274, if not earlier, as the beginning of Llull’s theologicalengagement with Byzantine Orthodoxy, and, in so doing, to forge a closeassociation between this engagement and the Second Council of Lyonsitself. By accepting these new datings one is released from a commitment tothe assumption that, if the Doctrina pueril is indeed the first work of RamonLlull to make reference to the dispute over the Procession of the Holy Spirit, 7.For details of these three (as well as other) works, see text and notes between nn. 13-26. Cf.A  NGOLD in A BULAFIA (ed; 1999/2006: 553-57), where the author notes the foundation of a house forFranciscan friars in Constantinople in 1220 and that of a Dominican house in 1228; cf. also A  NGOLD (1995: 525) and N ICOL (1961: 454-80, here 456, n. 2 and text).8.In mentioning these works of and on the subject of eastern theology, it is important to dis-tinguish between those which are authentically eastern —or at least gather together texts of eastern ori-gin— and those which form part of an anti-eastern polemical literature.9.Regarding the term «schismatics», it should be noted that what the Greek OrthodoxChurch was to its Roman counterpart, the Nestorian and Monophysite Churches were to the Orthodoxfaith itself. 4 R. D. Hughes   such reference had to wait until as late as 1282–1283 to materialise, that isto say, until after the Union agreed at Lyons had been seen to fail. It likewisereleases one from a secondary attachment to the inference that since thework Blaquerna is mentioned in Chapter 100 ( De paradís ) of the Doctrina pueril 10 its composition and completion must have directly followed that of the latter work.Garcías Palou argues that Ramon Llull’s level of knowledge concern-ing the differences between Latin and Byzantine theology, character andcustoms can only have come from the personal contact afforded by travel.He speculatively situates this period of travel within the years 1279–1282,wherein Llull would have visited Byzantium. Only thus, he argues, couldRamon Llull state in Chapter 72 ( De gentils ) of the Doctrina pueril —a workthis author considers to be the first occasion on which Llull makes referenceto aspects of the so-called «Great Schism», and which he assigns to theyears 1282–1283— that: « Grecs son cristians, mas pequen contra la santa Trinitat de nostro senyor Deus enso que dien que·l Sant Esperit no ix mas del pare tant solament. On aquets an mol-tes de bones custumes, e per so con son ten prop a la fe catholica serien leugers aenduir a la Esgleya romana, si era qui aprezés lur lenguatge e lur letra, e que aguéstanta de devoció que no duptás a pendra mort per honrar Deu, e que anás preycarenfre eyls la excellent vertut que·l fil divinal a en donar proceció al Sant Sperit .[Emphasis added.]» (L LULL 2005: 187, ll. 18-24). What is of interest here, among the rudimentary references to Trini-tarian issues, is the very real prospect or expectation expressed by Llull thatsuch missionaries would need to be prepared for martyrdom, a fact which sitsstrangely alongside his assurance that the Greeks « serien leugers a enduir a laEsgleya romana ». As an expedient, however, the use of this phrase may sim-ply indicate the standard level of fervour and devotion Llull would hope forin any missionary. Since the time of Garcías Palou’s book, if not before, however, thescholarly consensus has been to show scepticism towards the possibility of extensive travel beyond the Latin West on Llull’s part before 1283. I intendto show now that the very claim that such journeys were not only prior but 10.L LULL (2005: 284, ll. 55-57): « On pus te parle, fill, de la celestial gloria, mes trop en mi de defa-lliment a recomptar e a significar la gloria de paradís, e per açó lexar-me-n’e, e parlarem del Libre de Evast e deBlaquerna ». The «unionist» thesis reconsidered: do recent datings of the...  5
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