Daily Draw: Pierpont Morgan Visconti Sforza Tarocchi Deck
Duality. While late medieval communities most feared the material ill effects of witchcraft, inquisitor's manuals from the early fourteenth century reveal a different set of concerns. Chief among them was the desecration, perversion or imitation of the sacraments. This reflects the Church's wider concern with heresy, the possibility of a counter-church capable of polluting christian society.
Inquisitors were instructed to inquire particularly into the theft of the host or of holy oils. If this was happening at all it was more likely to result in the subversion rather than diabolical inversion of church practices. However the exercise of inquisitors' power was not simply repressive of deviance but also productive of orthodox christian identities. In this context tales of host desecration were used to boost belief in the miracle or transubstantiation.