Was there a Papal Bull decreed calling for the assassination of Elizabeth I of England?


I just tuned into a documentary about Queen Mary I. I dont know much about history, only bits and pieces, but I definately find it interesting.

I heard the narrator say that the Pope (whom I found out was Pius V, but could be wrong) decreed in a Papal Bull that Elizabeth should be assassinated/murdered. I’m under the impression that the devout Catholic, Queen Mary I, supported this and wanted to order this. But then the Queen’s council betrayed her.

As I said I dont know much about this, but is it true that the Church could have ordered something like this? The narrator also said that the Bull started off by saying (in Latin): He that reigneth on high. And this was an exclamation stating that the Pope has authority to be “ruler over all peoples and kingdoms”. I found the Bull on the Net here (Im surprised at how assessible this is :slight_smile: ). I dont really have a problem with this claim because obviously he is a mere servant of God, but the appointed leader of the Church on Earth.

Reading it now, it does not seem that there was explicitly such an order, only the issue of an excommunication. However, it does say that:

We, seeing impieties and crimes multiplied one upon another the persecution of the faithful and afflictions of religion daily growing more severe under the guidance and by the activity of the said Elizabeth -and recognising that her mind is so fixed and set that she has not only despised the pious prayers and admonitions with which Catholic princes have tried to cure and convert her but has not even permitted the nuncios sent to her in this matter by this See to cross into England, are compelled by necessity to take up against her the weapons of juctice, though we cannot forbear to regret that we should be forced to turn, upon one whose ancestors have so well deserved of the Christian community. Therefore, resting upon the authority of Him whose pleasure it was to place us (though unequal to such a burden) upon this supreme justice-seat, we do out of the fullness of our apostolic power declare the foresaid Elizabeth to be a heretic and favourer of heretics, and her adherents in the matters aforesaid to have incurred the sentence of excommunication and to be cut off from the unity of the body of Christ.

Anyone know something about these events?


The most I can find in your citation is that she was to be opposed.

closed #3

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