THE THIRD OBIECTION against Cardinall Bellarmine → •or false allegations about Platina. §. XV.
*120. And I answere, that the more he multi∣plyeth in this kind the greater store of testimonies and suffrages he produceth of his owne folly, and impertinent dealing: for that Cardinall Bella•mine his denying of Platina to be of absolute credit & publick authority in all matters touched by him in his histo∣ry, doth not proue wilfull malice in the Cardinall but rather a true & prudent censure concurring with the iudgment of diuers learned men of our time, especially of Onup•rius Panuinus, who writing obser∣uatiōs Page 197 vpon the history of Platina concerning Popes liues,* doth oftentimes note the said story of diuers defects both in the Chronologie of times, and truth of matters set downe by him: and I doubt not, but whosoeuer shall haue read the works of Onuph•ius & of Balbus heere cited in commendation of Platina, will greatly preferre the iudgm•nt of the first, before the later in matters of history. But let vs see, what Cardinall ← Bellarmine → saith of Pla•ina, and vpon what ground, and to what effect, and so shall you see al∣so how weake a calumniation M. Morton hath taken in hand in this obiection.
121. The occasion of censuring Platina, was in the confutation of a certaine manifest lie auouched (as the Cardinall saith) by Caluin, who affirmed that there was neuer any certaine Ecclesiasticall law ex∣tant, binding men to Sacramentall Confession, before the Councell of Lateran vnder Pope Innocen•ius the third, some 300. yeares past, and for proofe of this, Caluin citeth the story of Platina as affirming the same with this preface of his owne to authorize more the writer, Eorum Annales narrant, their An∣nales, or publike histories (of the Catholickes) do declare. And againe:*Ipsis testibus nond•m cl•psi sunt anni trecenti, themselues being witnesses (to witt the Ca∣tholickes) and their publike histories, there are not 300. yeares yet past since the law of Conf•ssion began. Which manifest vntruth ← Bellarmine → cōfuting by great store of antiquityes,* commeth at length to Platina who in the life of the Popes Zephe•inus & Innocentius, writeth that the decree that was made by Zepherinus for receauing the communion, at least once a yeare about Easter, was extended also to Confession by Pope Innocentius, which only is found written by Platina, saith ← Bellarmine → , and not by any other Ecclesiasticall historiographer: adding further these wordes: Sed Page 198 neque Platina &c. But neither Platina did write those liues of Popes by publike authority,* nor out o• pub∣like records in such sort as they may be called our Annales: and oftentimes is he reprehended by our Historiographers, for that he fell into diuers errours in his history, by following of Martinus Polonus: and yet doth not Platina say,* that which Caluin saith, that there was no law extant about the necessity of Conf•ssion before the time of Zepherinus and Innocentius, but only that the certaine time, when, and how "often a man should confesse and commun•cate, was then prescribed more in particuler.
122. So as heere you see Platina doth make no∣thing for M. Caluin, and lesse for M. Morton, who dealt fraudulently according to his fashion, and neuer commonly doth otherwise, when reciting in his margent the latin text of ← Bellarmine → , he cut out the words immediatly following, Vt annales nostri dici possint, Platina did not write the liues of Popes as they may be called our Annales. And albeit Pla•ina saith in the Preface of his history vnto the Pope Sixtus 4. who liued somwhat aboue 100. yeares past, that he had cōmanded him to wri•e the Popes liues, yet this proueth not, that his collection is an Authenticall history of our Church, or so well per∣formed by him, as all things therin contained must be held for exact truth, and we bound to accept of the same, which is all in effect, that Cardinall ← Bellarmine auoucheth. And who would haue brought in this for an example of wilfull falshood but only M. Morton? Nay who would haue made oftentation therof• saying, that he findeth greater difficulty to subtract, then to multiply such examples, but himself, that seemeth not to disc•rne betweene saying somewhat in words, and nothing in effect? But yet we must passe a little further to see an impertinency or two more.