Busy Day at Smithfield

"...On July 30, 1540, two different sets of martyrs set off for Smithfield for execution. There were three Catholics, who had refused to swear Henry VIII's Oaths of Succession(1) and Supremacy, and there were three Protestants--more properly, Zwinglians--who refused to accept the definition of Christian sacramental doctrine outlined in Henry VIII's Six Articles..." more at Supremacy and Survival:


(1) On 23 March, 1534, Parliament passed the Act of Succession, vesting the succession of the English Crown in the children of King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn. This act, effectively, set Princess Elizabeth first in line for the throne, declaring Princess Mary a bastard. It was also proclaimed that subjects, if commanded, were to swear an oath to recognizing this Act as well as the King's supremacy. People who refused to take the oath, including Sir Thomas More, were charged with treason.

This Act was overridden by the Act of Succession, 1536, which made the children of Jane Seymour first in line for the throne, declaring the King's previous marriages unlawful, and both princesses illegitimate.


A Brief History of Pontifical Zouaves

The Battle of Castelfidaro.

The creation of the Pontifical Zouaves found in the will of Pope Pius IX to form a force to oppose annexation by the Kingdom of Piedmont, reinforced after the Franco-Austrian War of 1859. In 1860 the Vatican created a pontifical army, and placed it under the command of General of La Moricière, French hero of Algeria and a minister under the Second Republic. A call to foreign volunteers is announced, and an army of 14,000 men is placed on the establishment, and in particular including a battalion of Franco-Belgian riflemen, commanded by Commandant Becdelièvre, formed as a Regiment of Pontifical Zouaves.

A group of Pontifical Zouaves fighting as the Légion des Volontaires de l'Ouest, in the Franco-Prussian War.

The threat in September 1860 is real, as the troops of Garibaldi, who have just seized the kingdom from Naples, and have now penetrated into the Papal States. At the same time, the army of Piedmont, not to be influenced by Garibaldi, attempt to pass through the Papal States in order to conquer the Italian Marche region in order to establish continuity with the southern Italy. The pontifical troops are committed to war on September 18, 1860 with the Battle of Castelfidaro which ends in a major defeat for the Papal Forces, which obliges the Pope to sign peace treaty and to give up the Marches and Ombrie. The battle is remembered for being bloody, and for the highly lopsided numbers of troops - 10,000 papal troops to 60,000 Piedmontese. The papal army was composed of volunteers from many different European countries, amongst whom the French and Belgian nationals constituted a Franco-Belgian battalion.(1) This defeat compels La Moricière to reinforce his battalion of Franco-Belgian tirrailleurs(2), (the only unit which has shown any military qualities,) increase them to regimental size and to rename it The Pontifical Zouaves. At the call of the Pope, French volunteers flock to enlarge this regiment. Regarded as a new crusade, this call attracted the noble youth of French Catholic and more often than not the descendants of Vendean chouans. Between 1860 and 1870, 3300 French volunteers are assigned to the Pontifical Army.

The zouaves (3500 men total, include 600 French, 800 Dutch and 450 Belgian soldiers), first commanded by colonel Allet (pictured below), then by the colonel de Charette (pictured below) from 1862, proved themselves illustrious in 1867. During that year they skirmished with the forces of Garibaldi. The tension builds gradually, until open conflict in October. On November 3, at the time of the battle of Mentana, the Pontifical Army, supported by a French troops, repulses Garibaldi. It was during this battle that the French employ the new Chassepot rifle, the zouaves glorify themselves in the capture of the Santucci villa.

With the Franco-Prussian War of 1870, another page in the history of the zouaves is opened. With the declaration of war of France in Prussia, the French occupation troops in Rome who had protected the papal states leave for France on August 5. Losing his principal support, Pope Pius IX can no longer resist Piémontese pressure. Piedmontese troops occupy Rome in September.

1200 French members of the Pontifical Zouaves were evacuated and unload in Toulon on September 27. Re-named "Légion des Volontaires de l'ouest" (Legion of the Volunteers of the West) on October 7, it forms an irregular force, ordered by the Lieutenant Colonel de Charrette, affected to the XVII Army Corps of the Army of the Loire. The legion distinguishes itself again on December 1, 1870 at the battle of Loigny where it suffers the loss 96 dead and 122 wounded from a total of 300 combatants. The zouaves are de-established in August 1871.

Joseph Eugène ALLET, first Colonel of the Zouaves.

Athanase de CHARETTE, Second Colonel of the Zouaves, Decendant of the legitimist Vendean family and of François-Athanase Charette de la Contrie he the grandson of the Duke of Berry by his mother.

Les frères de Charette... not only Athanase joined the Zouaves but his brothers as well came to the Papal colours. in the center is Athanase as a major of Zouaves, to his left is Alain, a Second Lieutenant (sous lieutenant in French), and then to the right Ferdinand a private Zouave, and lastly is Louis, on the left in the differing uniform, a Sergeant of Dragoons. (Maréchal des logis de Dragons). This family continued in it's traditional support of the True Faith by it noble actions. This is a family which rings true in every age.


(1) Castelfidaro was also notable for the number of French nobility from western France especially Bretagne forcing the Peidmontese General Caildini to remark with a wry humour "…you would think this was a list of invitees for a ball given by Louis XIV!.."

(2) Literally skirmisher. An independent marksman of light infantry.

Sieur de Joinville discribes the Bedouins

by Jean de Joinville

"...AFTER we had routed the Turks and driven them from their quarters, and during the time that the Saracens' camp was left empty by our people, the Bedouins, who were a very numerous race, broke into it. Not a single thing did they leave in the camp, but carried off everything that the Saracens had left behind. Yet I never heard it said, that the Bedouins, who were subject to the Saracens, suffered any discredit for anything they had taken or stolen from them; for such is their custom and practice, ever to attack the losing side...

...Since it has to do with the subject, I will tell you, what manner of people the Bedouins are...

...The Bedouins do not believe in Mahomet, but they follow the law of Ali(1) , who was Mahomet's uncle, and so obey the Old Man of the Mountain, the same who maintains the Assassins. They believe, that when a man dies for his lord, or for any good purpose, that his body passes into a better way of life and a happier than before. And this is why the Assassins offer no resistance if they are slain while carrying out the orders of the Old Man of the Mountain(2). Of the Old Man of the Mountain we will say no more at present, but will speak about the Bedouins...

...The Bedouins dwell neither in towns nor cities nor castles, but lie always in the open fields; and in the evening their servants, wives and children creep for the night, or by day when the weather is bad into a sort of shelter that they make out of the hoops of casks lashed to poles; just like the [Sedan] chairs of these ladies here; and over these hoops they throw sheepskins, called "Damascus hides," cured with alum. The Bedouins themselves have great pelisses of these skins, which cover their whole body, legs and feet and all. When the evening is rainy or the weather bad at night, they wrap themselves up inside their pelisses, and take off their horses' bridles and let them graze beside them; and when morning comes, they spread out their pelisses again in the sun, and dress them, and there is not a trace to be seen of their night's wetting...

...The Bedouins' creed is this: That no man can die, save on his appointed day; and for this reason they will not wear armour; and when they curse their children they say: " Mayst thou be accurst, even as the Frank who arms himself for fear of Death!" In battle they carry nothing but sword and spear. Nearly all of them are clad in surplices, like priests. They wear napkins twisted round their heads and passing under their chins, so that they are loathly people and hideous to behold, for the hair of their heads and beards is all black. They live on the milk of their flocks and herds, and purchase from the wealthy men the grazing of the prairies, which feeds their beasts...

...Their number is past reckoning, for one finds them in the realm of Egypt, and in the realm of Jerusalem, and in all other countries that belong to the Saracens and Infidels, to whom they pay heavy tributes every year...

...I have seen in our own country, since I returned from beyond seas, certain disloyal Christians, who held the faith of the Bedouins, and said that no man could die, save at his appointed hour. Their belief is so disloyal, that it is as much as saying, that God has no power to help us. For we should be mad, who serve God, if we did not believe that He has power to prolong our lives and to keep us from harm and mishap; and in Him we ought to believe, that He has power to do all things..."


(1) Ismailis. The Ismailis broke away from the main body of The Shi'as on the question of the line of imams in succession to Muhammad (precisely the issue on which the Shi'as and Sunnis have broken away from each other). Between Shi'as and Ismailis the dispute concerns the seventh imam, in the later years of the 8th century. The Shi'as give this position to Musa; the Ismailis support his elder brother, Ismail.

(2) Founder and head of the Assssins, see Secrets of the Assassins

The beginning of an American Culinary Tradition

"EarlyFla_SE_History", posted this yesterday. Très drôle...

July 29, 1539: The Beginning of an American Culinary Tradition – In July 1539, during his North American entrada, the army of Governor Don Hernando de Soto crosses the Withlacoochee River near present day Inverness, FL. Low on supplies, De Soto moves ahead of the main body of his hungry band with over 50 mounted troops and seizes a large cache of food in the native territory of Ocale (near modern Ocala, FL). Some of this is sent back by “pack mules to the main army.” Don Luys Hernández de Biedma, the Emperor’s representative on the expedition, reports that “We got some maize, beans, and little dogs, which were no small relief to people who came perishing with hunger." This is the first time during the entrada that the Spanish invaders encounter native beans. The “little dogs” mentioned by Biedma were a small, fat, non-barking breed raised by the natives for food.

Consequently, this marks the first documented occasion that grilled hot dogs are consumed by Caucasians in what is now the continental United States.

Special thanks to Tim Burke, of Calderon's Companie of Calderon’s Company for his help with this entry.


I like mine Chicago style, with Vienna hot dogs.

Farwell to a Swiss Guard

Farewell to a Swiss Guard who served three popes: his last interview

Joseph Schmidt died in Rome July 28, 2010. This is his last interview.

The Swiss Guard is probably the only army in the world whose mission has not changed in 500 years. No nation building, no problems with a social agenda, no power showing, and deployment to wars everlasting. The just guard the Pope and the Vatican.


Why I am Catholic.

Posted by Robert Colquhoun at Love Undifiled. His reason, because it is true. Who can argue with that? More and a video...



Russia officially celebrated its conversion to Christianity in 988,

Russia officially celebrated a new holiday on Wednesday marking its conversion to Christianity in 988, the latest Kremlin boost to an Orthodox Church that has grown increasingly powerful since the fall of Communism.

Rights groups have criticized the new holiday, approved by President Dmitry Medvedev in June, as undermining Russia's secular constitution and members of the country's large Muslim minority have complained that it excludes them.

Marking the anniversary, Patriarch Kirill, head of the Russian Orthodox Church, told state-run television: "Abandoning the historical significance of the baptism of Rus means discarding the supporting pillar of our entire civilization".

I cannot imagine the United States ever celebrating a holiday like this, prpbably because the United States has yet to convert.


The Mi'kmaq And The Jesuits

The 400th anniversary celebration of a Nova Scotian chief's baptism will be held next week. His baptism, along with others from the Mi'kmaq people represent the first conversions to the Roman Catholic Church in the area.

The celebration commemorating 400 years since the baptism of Grand Chief Henri Membertou of the Mi'kmaq People will take place on Chapel Island, Nova Scotia this coming Aug. 1. More...

Thanks and a tip of the beret to Joseph.


The Chouans, Jean Chouan, the Catholic and Royal Army and the fall of Napoléon

Catherine Delors explains the word "Chouan". more...


I have always been taught that Chouan meant Screech Owl, which is appropriate. If you have ever been in the woods at night and been swooped on by an owl you would know why they chose that name.

The State of England 1509

1509, the year should be shown as a turning point in the history of the west. Stephanie A. Mann in her blog Supremacy and Survival: The English Reformation writes about the King before Henry VIII, his father Henry VII...

"...the minds of the early Tudor age found security in two pillars of strength. The one was the common law of the land, tangible, acknowledged by all, and applied by experts taken from their midst. The other was the command of the sovereign, drawing its strength from his claim of obedience in conscience..." more...


Other persons who have impacted the west and the faith in 1509, Henry VIII marries Catherine of Aragon, and are crowned. John Calvin, is born, and Erasmus writes "In Praise of More" which has come to be seen as a catylist for reformation though Erasmus was a life long and ardent Catholic.


on the Feast of Saint Anne

Everyone in Brittany, and even elsewhere, knows St. Anne of Auray.

St Anne, the Mother of the Virgin Mary, has, since time forgotten, has been revered in Brittany. All we know about her we are told in apocryphal literature, that is those books which, while containing much information are not concerned with salvation and so are therefore excluded from the canon of Bible.(1) Catholic iconography comes down to us mainly from these books. Information about the early childhood and youth of Holy Mary and St Joseph other than that which we find in the Bible is found in the following books, the Gospel of the Nativity of Mary, the Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew and the Protoevangelium of James. In these books we are told that St Anne and St Joachim were the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Near the little village of Auray there existed since ancient times a chapel in honour of St Anne. Since about the 5th century she has been venerated there. Toward the end of the 7th century it was destroyed. Tradition remained alive in the area and the local village was called Keranna, which in the Breton Celt means Saint Anne.

Yves Nicolazic possessed 2 fields adjacent to each other, one was fit to plow the other was too rocky to allow a plow, and so his cows were turned out into it. This field was called by the older people the the "Chapel field". ("C’est le champs de la chapelle") This local belief was encouraged by an outcropping of rocks which appeared to form the pads of a structure. In fact Yves father had used them to construct a barn there.

In august of 1622 Yves began to have visions. He glimpsed St. Anne by the local fountain, had seen her by the cross at the moor, she travelled with him at all times and appeared in his house.

On July 25 in the summer of 1624 Yves and his brother-in-law Louis, having gone to fetch his herd which had strayed off his land into the neighbouring field, found it and on returning allowed the cow to take water at the local fountain. The cows stubbornly refused to advance. In a flash a majestic lady appeared to them bearing a torch. The Lady in the apparition said "Yves Nicolazic, do not fear. I am Anne, mother of Mary. Say to your rector that in the field called the Bocenno, there was formerly, even before there was no town, a dedicated chapel in my name. This was the first one of the whole country. 924 years and 6 months ago that it was ruined. I desire that she is rebuilt as soon as possible, and that you took some care, because God wants that I there be honored". This mandate, was accomplished but only through multiple tests and many false starts. He sufficed in fact to have received this mission, but it still remained to be recognized by the Church and especially by the parish rector, Sylvestre Roduez. Nothing was accomplished.

St Anne was not to be denied however, for on the night of 7-8 March, 1625, she appeared again to Yves and said, "Yves Nicolazic, call your neighbors, as I counseled you; take them with you to the place where this torch will take you, you will find the proof that will allow you to show the world, which will then know at last the truth of what I promised you".

Yves called upon his brother-in-law Louis, and found neighbors from the surrounding towns: Jacques Lucas, François le Bléavec, John Tanguy and Julian Lézulit (the parish churchwarden). The torch began to move. Arriving opposite the Bocenno, the torch halted over the place of the former chapel. The men began to dig as they were instructed until they found and old statue, dis- figured and damaged through being buried in the ground for 900 years. The news spread like lightening.

A crowd of the curious arrived from the area, not only of Ker Anna (Keranna) but neighboring, localities to pray and make offerings. How did they know? This remains a mystery.

A commission arrived, and took Yves to the Church where he was questioned. He stayed with the Capuchins. His story was verified. It was decided that it would be proper to reconstruct a chapel to Honour St Anne on the spot where 900 years prior a chapel existed to honour St Anne. The Bishop, Mgr. de Rosmadec, allowed a mass to be celebrated on 26 July 1625. That Mass was celebrated by Fr. Roduez.

When construction was fininshed in 1628, Yves Nicolazic had moved to Pluneret. Respected by the religious, and revered by the pilgrims, Yves Nicolazic seems to be the happiest of men. However Yves happiness is blunted by the fact that he and his wife have remained childless. Finally on 18 January 1629 Yves arrived at the door of the Church with a son to be Baptised. Two years after was born a named girl Jeanne, then another named girl Paterne.

Before dying May 13 1645, at age 63, Yves Nicolazic lives to see the promise that St. Anne had done for him. The crowds of believers and non-believers had come and continued to come. The chapel had been built, and many miracles and conversions had happened there. Keranna, his humble town had become the center of the veneration of Holy Anne and this pilgrimage already was one of the more popular ones of France. His body was buried in the Chapel of the Pilgrimage, and, as he had expressed the desire, to be buried at the same place where, twenty years beforehand, he had miraculously discovered the statue of St. Anne.

Anne of Austria and Louis XIII enriched the sanctuary with many gifts, among them a relic of St. Anne brought from Jerusalem in the thirteenth century, and in 1641 the Queen obtained from the Pope the erection of a confraternity, which Pius IX raised to the rank of an archconfraternity in 1872. In the meanwhile pilgrimages had begun and became more numerous year by year, nor did the Revolution put a stop to them. The chapel, indeed was plundered, the Carmelites who served it, were driven out, and the miraculous statue of St. Anne was burned at Vannes in 1793; yet the faithful still flocked to the chapel, which was covered with ex-votos. In 1810 the convent of the Carmelites was turned into a petit séminaire (Minor Seminary). In 1866, the Cardinal Saint Marc laid and blessed the first stone of the present magnificent basilica. Finally, in 1868, Pius IX accorded to the statue of St. Anne, before which many miracles had been wrought, the honour of being crowned. St. Anne has continued to be the favourite pilgrimage of Brittany down to the present day:

C'est notre mère à tous; mort ou vivant, dit-on,
A Sainte-Anne, une fois, doit aller tout Breton.(2)

St. Anne is patroness of women in labour; she is represented holding the Blessed Virgin Mary in her lap, who again carries on her arm the child Jesus. She is also patroness of miners, Christ being compared to gold, Mary to silver.

O Glorious Saint Ann, filled with compassion for those who invoke you and with love for those who suffer, heavily laden with the weight of my troubles, I cast myself at your feet and humbly beg of you to take the present affair which I recommend to you under your special protection [here mention silently your intentions] Please recommend it to your daughter the Blessed Virgin Mary and lay it before the Throne of Jesus so that He may bring it to a happy issue. Please continue to intercede for me until my request is granted. Above all, obtain for me the grace of one day beholding my God face to face and with you and Mary and all the Saints praising and blessing Him for all eternity. Amen.

St. Anne pray for us.


(1) Apocryphal literature, should not be confused with the Protestant term which refers to what the Catholic Church knows as the deuterocanonical books that is the second Canon. They are seven books: Tobias (Tobit), Judith, Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, Baruch, 1st and 2nd Machabees, and three documents added to protocanonical books, viz., the supplement to Esther, from 10;4, to the end, the Canticle of the Three Youths (Song of the Three Children) in Daniel 3, and the stories of Susanna and the Elders and Bel and the Dragon, forming the closing chapters of the Catholic version of that book. Of these works, Tobias and Judith were written originally in Aramaic, perhaps in Hebrew; Baruch and I Machabees in Hebrew, while Wisdom and 2nd Machabees were certainly composed in Greek. The probabilities favour Hebrew as the original language of the addition to Esther, and Greek for the enlargements of Daniel.

(2) Roughly, this is all of our mother, alive or dead all Bretons to St Anne one day must go. (Make a pilgimage once in a lifetime.)