Urbain Grandier eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 130 pages of information about Urbain Grandier.

At this point the bailiff, seeing no reason why the dialogue between Barre and the superior should ever come to an end, interposed and demanded that questions suggested by him and the other officials present should be put to the superior, promising that if she answered three of four such questions correctly, he, and those with him, would believe in the reality of the possession, and would certify to that effect.  Barre accepted the challenge, but unluckily just at that moment the superior regained consciousness, and as it was already late, everyone retired.


The next day, November 25th, the bailiff and the majority of the officers of the two jurisdictions came to the convent once more, and were all conducted to the choir.  In a few moments the curtains behind the grating were drawn back, and the superior, lying on her bed, came to view.  Barre began, as usual, by the celebration of mass, during which the superior was seized with convulsions, and exclaimed two or three times, “Grandier!  Grandier! false priest!” When the mass was over, the celebrant went behind the grating, carrying the pyx; then, placing it on his head and holding it there, he protested that in all he was doing he was actuated by the purest motives and the highest integrity; that he had no desire to harm anyone on earth; and he adjured God to strike him dead if he had been guilty of any bad action or collusion, or had instigated the nuns to any deceit during the investigation.

The prior of the Carmelites next advanced and made the same declaration, taking the oath in the same manner, holding the pyx over his head; and further calling down on himself and his brethren the curse of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram if they had sinned during this inquiry.  These protestations did not, however, produce the salutary effect intended, some of those present saying aloud that such oaths smacked of sacrilege.

Barre hearing the murmurs, hastened to begin the exorcisms, first advancing to the superior to offer her the holy sacrament:  but as soon as she caught sight of him she became terribly convulsed, and attempted to drag the pyx from his hands.  Barre, however, by pronouncing the sacred words, overcame the repulsion of the superior, and succeeded in placing the wafer in her mouth; she, however, pushed it out again with her tongue, as if it made her sick; Barge caught it in his fingers and gave it to her again, at the same time forbidding the demon to make her vomit, and this time she succeeded in partly swallowing the sacred morsel, but complained that it stuck in her throat.  At last, in order to get it down, Barge three times gave her water to drink; and then, as always during his exorcisms, he began by interrogating the demon.

“Per quod pactum ingressus es in corpus hujus puellae?” (By what pact didst thou enter the body of this maiden?)

“Aqua” ( By water), said the superior.

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Urbain Grandier from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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