Pope Celestine V
1215 – 19 May 1296
founded the Order of the Celestines
It is reported that Sauniére
received a copy of the above painting of Peter of Morone being crowned
Pope Celestine V from the Louvre along with the two paintings by
About the year 1254, Peter of Morone (later took the name
Celestine V) gave the
order a rule formulated in accordance with his own practices. In 1264 the
new institution was approved as a branch of the
Urban IV; however, the next
Pope Gregory X had
commanded that all orders founded since the prior
Lateran Council should not
be further multiplied. Hearing a rumour that the order was to be suppressed, the
reclusive Peter traveled to
Lyon, where the Pope was holding a council.
There he persuaded Gregory to approve his new order, making it a branch of the
Benedictines and following the
rule of Saint Benedict, but
adding to it additional severities and privations. Gregory took it under the
Papal protection, assured to it the possession of all property it might acquire,
and endowed it with exemption from the authority of the ordinary. Nothing more
was needed to ensure the rapid spread of the new association and Peter the
hermit of Morone lived to see himself "Superior-General" to thirty-six
monasteries and more than six hundred monks.
The fame of the holy life and the austerities
practised by Pietro Morone (Celestine V) in his solitude on the
of Majella, near
many visitors, several of whom were moved to remain and share his mode
of life. They built a small convent on the spot inhabited by the holy
hermit, which became too small for the accommodation of those who came
to share their life of privations. Peter of Morone (later Pope Celestine
V), their founder, built a number of other small oratories in that
was thought to be the birthplace of
Poussin carried a copy of Ovid's
Metamorphoses on his person at all times.
The Majella Massif has long been one of the most revered mountains in
Italy. Its name derives from
the mother of Mercury (or Hermes) and also one of the
Pleiades, who in ancient times was widely worshiped in the Adriatic
region. In the 13th century many monasteries and hermitages were built
and rebuilt on its slopes, due largely to the influence of hermit Peter
of Morrone (later Pope Celestine V). Over 40 of these structures
survive, some intact, others in ruins; many are still used by nearby
residents for religious purposes such as annual pilgrimages.
also raised the infant
Arcas, the child of
Callisto with Zeus (See
Tomb at Les Pontils).
Wronged by the love affair, Zeus' wife
Hera in a jealous rage had transformed Callisto into a bear. Arcas
is the eponym of
Arcadia, where Maia was born. The story of Callisto and Arcas, like
that of the
Pleiades, is an
aition for a stellar formation, the constellations
Ursa Major and
Ursa Minor, the Great and Little Bear.
Of course one should also realise that the name Celestine means
starlike or pertaining to the heavens.
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