From: St. Dominic and His Work, by Pierre Mandonnet, O.P.,
        Translated by Sister Mary Benedicta Larkin, O.P., B. Herder Book Co., St. Louis/London, 1948.


Domini Canes by Pierre Mandonnet, O.P.

HISTORIANS of art and numerous critics have studied the architecture of the ancient chapter room in the Dominican convent of Santa Maria Novella in Florence, and they have shown even greater interest in the great paintings there. Considering the architectural monument of Jacopo Talenti, Ruskin marveled "that human daring ever achieved anything so magnificent";(1)and Louis Gillet, describing the frescoes on the walls of the vast nave, called them "the most celebrated in Florence."(2) The Spanish Chapel, as the ancient chapter room of Santa Maria Novella is commonly called, is, in fact, a unique work.

The symbolism of the frescoes of Andrea of Florence(3) holds a particular fascination for critics. Much has been written on this subject, and the last word has not yet been said for every detail. Meanwhile a rather common error should be rectified in regard to one motif in the great fresco entitled "The Mission of the Preachers in the Church."

At the lower right of this vast painted allegory, St. Dominic appears, holding the rod of the master, ready to disperse throughout the world the black and white dogs who are attacking wolves in the act of ravaging a flock of sheep. Everyone sees the Friars Preachers in the dogs of the color of the Dominican habit, the heretics in the wolves, and the faithful of the Catholic Church in the sheep. The symbolism is so transparent that the discovery deserves no merit. Many critics have found the use of the dog for Dominicans so clearly appropriate that, like Taine, they have not hesitated to trace its origin to a pun, or like Louis Gillet to a play on words.(4) The idea is, indeed, quite general with contemporary writers who treat of the frescoes in the Spanish Chapel. Yet it has no basis whatever. This study will attempt the proof, in order to explode a tradition without solid origin, and particularly to demonstrate how the dog was used in the later centuries of the Middle Ages to represent the preacher in general and the Friar Preacher in particular.

The writers who recognize a pun or a play on words in the use of the dog to designate the Friar Preacher do not explain clearly what they mean. But evidently they are thinking of a connection between "dog" and "Dominican" (in Latin, Dominicanus, Dominicani). In relating the words canis and canes to the preceding names, they get a pun or play on words. Ordinarily they join the word "Domini" to "canis" and thus make Domini canis or Domini canes, the dog or dogs of the Lord, or even, the dogs of Dominic, Dominici canes, which they consider substitutes or equivalents of Dominicanus and Dominicani. Reasoning thus, they sense a play on words. Questionable as such a relation would be in itself, a symbolism with no other basis for its justification would be amazingly poor. But it does not figure in the symbolism at all. Men of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries who were the inspiration of Andrea of Florence had no thought of such a verbal relationship; it is the fabrication of our own contemporaries and endures only through ignorance of philology and history.

Philologically, neither in form nor in meaning can Domini canis be related to Dominicanus. Dominicanus comes from Dominicus,(5) the name of St. Dominic, and its formation is philologically very regular. To the base Dominic has been added the inflexion -anus, resulting in the substantive Dominicanus, which signifies a religious of the Order of St. Dominic. Only those unfamiliar with Latin would think of splitting Dominicanus into Domini and canus. Clerics of the Middle Ages, even in speaking a vulgarized Latin, were careful to preserve the spirit of the language in forming words. Moreover, canus is not canis. The first form has no meaning. The relation is as formally excluded by denotation as by philological laws. Dominicanus no more means "the dog of Dominic" or "the dog of the Lord" than Franciscanus, which is similar in formation, means "the dog of St. Francis." The confusion stirred up by our contemporaries would not have been possible in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, for the reason that Dominicanus, the word now current, did not exist or was scarcely heard of at all in those times. It could not, therefore, have given rise to a play on words.


The canonical title of the Order founded by St. Dominic was that of Friars Preachers, or Preachers for short. This title, signifying the most eminent office in the ecclesiastical order, was so honorable that the Friars Preachers would have allowed no other to be substituted for it.(6) It is true that the Preachers of Paris were popularly called the Friars of St. Jacques, and those in Bologna were called Friars of St. Nicholas, from the names of the convents in the two principal centers of the Order in the Middle Ages. But the Preachers themselves repudiated the names, and only the first persisted, particularly in France.

The fifth master general of the Order, Humbert of Romans (d. 1277), who protested against these appellations,(7) would not have recognized the word "Dominican." It certainly did not yet exist. If it occurs exceptionally later, at the end of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, still it is exceedingly rare and does not represent common usage.(8) The dog, then, as a symbol of the Friar Preacher, did not originate through the belated term "Dominican." The symbol was created and was employed quite generally long before this name began to be current. Even several centuries before the foundation of the Preachers it was used to designate preachers in general.. The dogs, therefore, in the fresco of Santa Maria Novella are there not by reason of a play on words, but by a perfectly symbolic right, since in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries the dog was the figure or metaphor regularly used to refer to preachers in general and to the Friars Preachers in particular. That is the fact about to be established. The symbolism of the dog in the fresco of Andrea of Florence is common to many works of art, and we shall have occasion to refer to them. Thus also the sheep and lambs represent the faithful of the Church, and the wolves and foxes represent the heretics.

In general, religious symbolism in the thirteenth century was excessively elaborate. This might have been owing to the growing intensity in religious life and the amount of ecclesiastical literature produced in that period.

The images used to represent the preachers grew in luxuriance. Humbert of Romans, whose work richly reflects the temper of the thirteenth century, made a collection of the figures employed in ecclesiastical books to refer to the preachers of the Gospel. They proceeded ultimately from Scripture through the medium of the gloss (9) in which the meanings were related to the preachers, as Humbert states in introducing his enumeration: "In regard to the figures for the preachers, it must be noted that Holy Scripture presents almost innumerable images to signify the preachers, as shown in the glosses."(10) The reader will be spared the list. It is enough to indicate, for example, that preachers were represented as the mouth of the Lord, angels, stars, clouds, precious stones, fountains, eagles, and so on. We hardly need to say that they were also represented as dogs. Isaias 56:10, "Dumb dogs not able to bark." Gloss: To bark means to preach. The preacher, therefore, is spoken of as a dog, and, like a hungry dog, he ought to run hither and thither to swallow souls into the body of the Church, according to the words of psalm 58:7, "They shall suffer hunger like dogs, and shall go round about the city." In his enumeration, Humbert of Romans makes no comment on the symbols most frequently used, but he leaves no doubt that the symbol of the dog was most popular.

Apparently Gregory the Great (d. 604) was the first who used the symbol of the fox to signify the heretic, and that of the sheep and the dog to signify the faithful and the preacher. It was in his Exposition on the Canticle of Canticles that he explained the figures in reference to the text: "Catch us the little foxes, that destroy the vines" (2:15).

"The foxes stand for the heretics, and the vines for the various churches.... The foxes are caught by holy preachers... who at times are referred to as dogs, because their assiduous preaching, like troublesome barking, forces the adversaries, whoever they may be, to abandon the flock of sheep."(11) At the close of the sixth century, the whole pattern of symbolism was already woven, as found seven or eight centuries later in the fresco of the Spanish Chapel: the foxes, the sheep, and the dogs. With Gregory, however, the heretics were compared to foxes and not to wolves.

I pass over the symbolism of the Carolingian age and the feudal period. Information is available in the material collected by Cardinal Pitra and referred to in a preceding note. Thus we come to the twelfth century. In his Fragmenta, Geoffrey of Auxerre (d. 1176) recalls the prophecy of a religious to St. Bernard's mother when she carried him in her womb. In saying that her son would be a great preacher, he says that her son will be a splendid dog and a perfect preacher.(12) The use of this term by one of the historians of St. Bernard is proof that the symbol was not infrequently used. With the repression of heresy and the development of preaching, and especially with the founding of the Order of Preachers, the thirteenth century imparted new life to these old symbols. They were already familiar to Innocent III, who, in his letter of March 25, 1199, brought foxes, wolves, sheep, and dogs together in two lines.(13)

The symbolism is complete in the following example. It is a sermon of Foulques, bishop of Toulouse. Here the heretics are wolves, the faithful sheep, and Simon de Montfort, who conducted the crusade against the Albigenses, a good dog.(14) Montfort in the war against heresy defended the Church; thus his friend, Foulques of Toulouse, compared him to a dog since, like the preachers, he had defended the Catholic faith, though by other means.


The same vein of symbolism runs through the work of Jacques de Vitry (d. 1240). It might be expected, for the Bishop of Ptolemais was pre-eminently a popular preacher, and his language was marked by images. So it was when he related the old fable of the shepherds and the wolves, in which the latter agree to leave the sheep to the shepherds, provided the shepherds gave up their dogs. The moralist reflected: "The infernal wolves know very well that if they could triumph over these dogs, namely, the preachers, they would easily strangle the sheep." (15)

Gregory IX, in his letters dealing with heresy, continually employed these symbols. The heretic, in particular, was frequently represented as a fox.(16) But he was also called a wolf, as in the Constitutions of Frederick II.(17) That was true in a particularly interesting passage in the letter of October 21, 1233, in which the Pope asked the German bishops to excommunicate the assassin of Conrad of Marburg, prosecutor of the heretics (July 30, 1233). "Who was the dog of the Lord whose tongue frightened the dangerous wolves with most powerful barking?"(18) Note here, not only the use of the word "dog" to refer to the zealous preacher, Conrad of Marburg, but even the expression "dog of the Lord," dominici canis. If any allusion were traceable to the word Dominicanus, it might be thought to be this. But it would not be authentic. The word "Dominican" certainly did not exist in 1233, and Conrad of Marburg was not a Dominican but a secular priest,(19) a fact that removes any foundation to the possibility of a play on words.

We need not pile up texts to show that the dog was a specific symbol for the preacher in the thirteenth century. But a few more may be added. The Friar Preacher, Moneta of Cremona, in his celebrated Summa against the Cathari and the Waldenses written in 1240, addressed the heretics thus: "You are not supporting the persecutions like sheep and lambs, but like wolves, under the guise of shepherds and dogs."(20)

Commenting on psalm 58:7, "They shall return at evening, and shall suffer hunger like dogs, and shall go round about the city," Hugh of St. Cher declares: "This prophecy, it seems, refers to this Order of Preachers." Then he enumerates the reasons why the Preacher is called a dog: "On account of his barking, his keenness of scent, his healing tongue, his continual hunger, his fidelity to his master, his hatred of wolves, his guarding of the flock, his hunting, his reserving for his master what he takes in the hunt, his thirst for blood, because it is the tongue that feels thirst."(21)

During the course of the thirteenth century, the preachers of course knew and employed this symbol. "We are watchdogs of the Lord," they said, "charged with barking in his house."(22) And in the language of the time a preacher thought of himself as, "The good dog, the good preacher, who barks and watches for wolves and robbers."(23)

Instituted in the early thirteenth century(24) under the title of Preachers and for the special office of preaching, the Order of St. Dominic was not slow in making particular use of the already existent symbol of the dog. Many of the texts here cited come from writers in the Order, and there are still others in which the reference is more direct. This fact does not imply that the Order of Preachers ever officially and exclusively adopted this symbolism. It was simply a question of popular usage; but it was precise and constant, and complete enough to throw light on the historical problem under consideration.

The symbol of the dog has been applied particularly to St. Dominic, the Founder of the Preachers, to signify his mission as Preacher par excellence. His first historian and successor, Jordan of Saxony, in the biography written just before the canonization (1233), recorded the vision which the mother of Dominic had before his birth. She saw the child under the form of a dog, holding in his jaws a flaming torch and setting fire to the world. Jordan explains that this signified what an illustrious preacher Dominic would be, for by the barking of sacred wisdom he would awaken souls from the slumber of sin and pour out upon the entire world the fire which our Lord Jesus came on earth to kindle.(25)

The second historian of St. Dominic, Peter Ferrand, who wrote shortly after the canonization, included the same fact in his account and developed the symbolism more explicitly. Among other things, he declared that Dominic would put to flight, and drive off the wolves from the flock by the barking of his incessant preaching.(26)

Later still, Stephen de Salagnac (d. 1290), after reference to the vision, added by way of reflection: "Indeed it is by dogs that we designate the Preachers, of whom Dominic is the father and the leader." In the fourteenth century, a writer of legends, Peter Calo, O.P. (d. 1348), for his own account, took the note and reflection of Stephen de Salagnac and inserted them in his biography of St. Dominic.(27)

It is the memory of this vision, symbolizing the personal influence of St. Dominic and that of the Order he founded, which accounts for the picture of a dog with a burning torch in the coat of arms of the Order. The use of this image, as far as can be determined, does not occur before the seventeenth century.(28) At the beginning of the sixteenth century, the arms of the Order consisted of a fleur-de-lis cross of silver and sable.(29)


By the privileges and the approbation which it repeatedly conferred on the Order of Preachers in the thirteenth century in assigning to it the office of preaching and the defense of the faith against heresy, the Church gave the warrant for all the symbolism employed in the frescoes of the Spanish Chapel. The letters of Gregory IX, to cite only those addressed to the Archbishop of Reims, February 1, 1234, and on the fourth of the same month to the Archbishop of Sens and to their suffragans, seem in themselves like the libretto later translated by Andrea of Florence into his frescoes: "The Mission of the Preachers in the Church." There we read of the foxes that plunder the vineyard of the Lord or set fire to his harvest as do other enemies. The Friars Preachers, who have the zeal of God and are powerful in work and word, have received the apostolic mission to catch these foxes and break the jaws of those who tear the Church of Christ. They must carry the sheep on their shoulders to the sheepfold, and by the file of their preaching cleanse the souls encrusted with rust, in order that these, having been purified, may enter the sanctuary of God and their heavenly country. Preachers are so much the more fitted to convince heretics as their life and their teaching are in harmony.(30)

Toward the close of the thirteenth century, a pious Dominican visionary, Robert d'Uzès (d. 1292) called the Friars "the sons of the spotted dog," that is, the sons of St. Dominic.(31)


In his letter in favor of the Friars Preachers (1317), William, Cardinal of St. Cecilia, speaks of those who would like to impose silence on these divine dogs who preach the truth, for if they were silenced, it would be possible to penetrate into the sheepfold to devour the sheep of the Lord.(32)

We could cite other such texts and witnesses. Those chosen are enough to demonstrate what we have affirmed. The use of the dog in the frescoes of Santa Maria Novella was not suggested by a play on words, occasioned by the word "Dominican," which did not then exist. The symbol of the dog was already long established as signifying preachers in general and the Friars Preachers in particular. It ranked in a class with the fox or the wolf to designate heretics, and the sheep to represent the faithful of the Church.

Two remarks may be added in consequence of what has just been established.

Following the lead of Vasari, those who write about the animals that attack the sheep in the fresco of Santa Maria Novella generally call them wolves. Indeed that identification seems natural enough. Hettner, however, the first to my knowledge, identified them as foxes.(33) Perhaps the truth is that they are both. In spite of the indecisive anatomy of these animals, it cannot be denied that those who have a plumelike tail are foxes. According to the tradition which, as we have seen, applied the symbol of the fox and the wolf to heretics, the painter, or rather whoever inspired him, sought to conform to the historical and traditional evidence in keeping the two types of animals.

Lastly, the fact which we have established regarding the symbolism of the dog as the specific representation of all preachers and of the Friar Preachers in particular, seems to limit the interpretation of a passage of the Divine Comedy on which there has been much writing and discussion.(34) It is the question of "Veltro," the greyhound.

In the first canto of the Inferno, when Dante comes out of the dark forest, he finds himself successively in the presence of three wild beasts who bar his way: the panther, the lion, and the she-wolf, symbols of pleasure, pride, and ambition. Dante is stopped especially by the wolf, whose hunger is insatiable, in which regard, wrongly it seems to me, most of the commentators have seen avarice, whereas it clearly designates cupidity, that is, an immoderate desire for earthly goods, or ambition limited to the senses thus indicated. Virgil, who comes to the aid of Dante, describes the manners of the she-wolf. He observes that she forms an alliance with a great number of animals, meaning social categories, and that others of the kind will appear. But he adds that it will be thus only until the Greyhound comes who will make her die harshly. He will nourish himself neither upon earth nor pewter, nor upon terrestrial goods nor silver, but upon wisdom, love, and virtue, and his nation will be between Feltro and Feltro.

A library would be needed, said Scartazzini, to house the works written to determine who Veltro is.(35) The most unlikely opinions have been expressed. But, as far as I can judge, there is no doubt that "Veltro" designates the person of a pope or an emperor, being symbolic also of the papacy or the empire. Many interpreters have identified the Greyhound who killed the she-wolf as Pope Benedict XI (1303-4) of the Order of Preachers. Benedict's politico-religious attitude and his holiness (he is "Blessed") would make him pleasing to Dante. Naturally enough, he may be the one to whom allusion is made, especially if the words "Feltro and Feltro" are taken to be a geographical reference, as the most obvious meaning seems to require.

We need not list here the reasons favoring the comparison of the Greyhound to Benedict XI. After what we have said about the symbolism of the dog to designate preachers in general and the Friars Preachers in particular, the supposition that Dante turned from the universally accepted significance of the symbol of the dog and applied it to a temporal ruler, would present serious difficulties. It is quite otherwise if we suppose that, by his use of "greyhound," Dante meant to designate a Dominican Pope, such as Benedict XI. In the fresco of Santa Maria Novella at the foot of the papal throne, occupied by Benedict XI, there are sheep and lambs representing the faithful of the Church. They are guarded, even here, by two black and white dogs. Here the drawing is very exact. One is a watch dog, and the other a greyhound.


1 Mornings in Florence, p. 123.

2 Histoire artistique des Ordres mendiants ( 1912), p. 145.

3 Since the time of Vasari, these frescoes have generally been attributed to Simone Memmi. They are really the work of Andrea Bonaiuto of Florence (d. 1377), the creator of the Story of St. Regnier in the Campo Santo of Pisa (Il Rosario, 1916, p. 404).

4 Taine, Voyage en Italie (3rd ed.), II, 124, and L. Gillet, op. cit., p. 151.

5 The adjective dominicus from the substantive Dominus occurs frequently in ecclesiastical literature, for example, dominicum sacramentum (the Eucharist), and easily lends itself to relation with the name Dominic, as in Dominici canes, "the dogs of the Lord," or "the dogs of Dominic." There is a curious echo of this in a text of St. Augustine speaking of Christ: The Son of Man, therefore, was first visited "in ipso homine dominico," ("in the very man of the Lord") born of the Virgin Mary (Enarrat. in psal., 8, no. 11; PL, XXXV1, 114).

6 Prior to the foundation of the Friars Preachers (1206-16), preaching was the office of prelates: of the bishop in his diocese, of the abbot in is abbey, and of the provost in his collegiate church. All those who ex officio devoted themselves to the apostolate of the word were considered as forming an Ordo Praedicatorum. This title passed by right and by the will of the Church to the Order founded by St. Dominic.

7 "Rightly reprehensible are the brethren who call themselves or allow others to call them Friars of St. Jacques or of St. Nicholas, or by titles of that kind; and more reprehensible are the prelates who do not take counsel against that error" (Humbert, De vita regulari, II, 39). "Let our brethren be called Friars Preachers and not by any other names." General chapter, Paris (1256), Acta capitulorum generalium, I, 81.

8 The only example I know comes from the Council of Rouen ( 1292), which recorded: "Since grave difficulties have arisen among us, the Friars Minors and the Dominicans.. .." Marbot, Metropolis Remensis Historia, II (1679), 580. This lesson appears problematic. The Florentine poet, Antonio Pucei (d. 1373) in one of his sonnets wrote: "Dominican Friars do not eat meat" (Carducci, Rime di Cino da Fistoia e d'altri del secolo XIV, p. 464).

9 In the texts cited farther on there will be a certain number of references to Holy Scripture, especially in what concerns the symbolism of the dog; the symbolism of the fox to designate the heretics comes from Judg. 15:4; Cant. 2:15; for the wolves, Matt. 7:15; 10:16; for the sheep, John chap. 10 and 20:17. J. B. Pitra has published two volumes of texts on symbolism in the Middle Ages, Spicilegium Solesmense (1855), Vols. II and III.

10 Humbert, De vita regulari, II, 409. An index of the symbols used to designate preachers will be found in PL, CCXXI, 11-19, with a reference to the authors who employed them.

11 "The heretics are symbolized by the foxes, the churches by the vines. But the foxes tear down the vines; because through heretics the churches are drained of the vigor of the right faith. These little ones are thus well designated because, though they may swell in pride against truth from within, they are dried up without while simulating humility in words. These, then, are brought under the power of holy preachers when their altercation stops and they are convinced by the thoughts of truth. Holy preachers, indeed, are spoken of as dogs, at times in similitude: for by their assiduous speaking, as by importunate barking, they exert themselves in keeping all adversaries away from the flock of sheep. Those dogs catch the foxes for Christ; because, while they follow their leader faithfully, laboring for His love, they lead the groping heretics from the confusion of questions as from dark caverns to the light of truth" (PL, LXXIX, 500).

12 "You have a prize dog in your womb, and he who will be born of you will be an excellent preacher, nor will he be like many dogs, unwilling to bark" (Vacandard, Vie de Saint Bernard [1895], I, 9).

13 "Lest... we... seem neither to catch the wolves demolishing the vine of the Lord, nor to keep the wolves from the sheep, for this we may merit to be called dumb dogs not able to bark." Incorporated in the Decretals of Gregory IX, these letters must have contributed to the spread of this symbolism.

14 The Bishop of Toulouse preached publicly to the Christians: Beware of false prophets, etc., saying that the heretics were wolves, the Christians sheep. And there rose up right in the midst of the sermon a certain man whose nose and lips had been cut and his eyes dug out by order of the Count de Montfort because he was thus treating the Christians, and he said: "You have heard that the Bishop said that we are wolves, you, sheep. Have you ever seen a sheep which would thus bite a wolf?" The Bishop replied: "As the Cistercian abbey does not hold all in the abbey but has farms with sheep which dogs defend from wolves, so the Church does not have all Christians at Rome; but in many places and here especially she has her sheep, and to guard them from wolves she as sent one good and brave dog, forsooth the Count de Montfort, who has thus bitten this wolf, because it was eating the Christians, the sheep of the Church" (Bourbon, p. 23).

15 "Moreover, we read that the shepherds and the wolves had a great conflict, because the wolves wished to devour the sheep, but the shepherds hindered them. After a long controversy the wolves said: 'Let us make peace on this condition; you may have the sheep only give us the dogs.' For the infernal wolves know that if the dogs, that is, the preachers, can be brought under their sway, they will easily be able to strangle the 'sheep" (T. F. Crane, The Exempla of Jacques de Vitry, 1890, p. 17).

16 Letters of February 3, 1232 (Potthast, no. 8859); May 26, 1232 (ibid., no. 8932); April 20, 1233 ("It is permitted to catch small wolves, namely, heretics", ibid., no. 9153); July 3, 1234 (ibid., no, 9485 bis).

17 "These (Patarines) are rapacious wolves within, pretending the meekness of sheep, to the end that they may creep into the sheepfold of the Lord" (Monumenta Germaniae historica, Leges, II, 327).

18 Potthast, no. 9316.

19 There was formerly much discussion about whether Conrad was a Dominican. But there is no doubt that he was a secular priest. Kaltner, Konrad von Marburg und the Inquisition in Deutschland (1882), pp. 78 f.

20 Adversus Catharos et Valdenses libri quinque ( 1743), p. 509.

21 Commentaria ( 1732), II, 148.

22 Langlois, "L'é1oquence sacrée an moyen Age," Revue des Deux Mondes (Jan. 1, 1893), p. 190.

23 Lecoy, P. 38.

24 The first institution of the Order dates from 1206, and the solemn confirmation from 1216.

25 "It was shown to the mother before she had conceived, that she would bear a dog in her womb who carried a flaming brand in his mouth,and coming forth from the womb would set fire to the world. By this it was prefigured that an illustrious Preacher would be conceived by her, who by the sacred bark of learning would rouse minds from the sleep of sin to watch; and he would spread over the universe the fire which the Lord Jesus came to cast upon the earth" (Jordan, no. 5).

26 "His mother, before she had conceived, saw herself in sleep bearing a dog, brandishing a flaming brand in his mouth, which having come from the womb was seen to enkindle the whole world. Therein it was prefigured that the matchless preacher was to be born who would carry the torch of fiery eloquence vehemently to inflame the charity grown cold in the hearts of many, and, by the barks of preaching, to drive off the wolves from the flocks and also awaken souls sleeping in sin to watch in virtue. And events proved it. For he was a wonderful purger of vices, a foe of heresies, and a most diligent champion of the faithful" (Ferrand, Legenda Sti Dominici, no. 3).

27 "For in the dogs are symbolized the Preachers, whose leader and father he himself is" (Mamachi, App., p. 338). On Peter Calo, see Analecta Bollandiana, XXIX (1910), 5-116.

28 In the Processionarium Ord. Praed. ( 1494) there is a full page engraving of the arms of the Order. The shield is of sable and silver, with a crucifix extending over the whole surface; but in the middle base point there is a dog carrying a flaming torch. St. Dominic stands below the shield.

29 These arms are included in the inscriptions on the tombs of the two Dominican cardinals, Thomas de Vio Cajetan (d. 1534) and Nicholas of Schönberg (d. 1537) close to the entrance of the Church of Santa Maria sopra Minerva in Rome. They are explained by this devise: Ordinis Praedic. insigina haec sunt. They are reproduced in J. J. Berthier, O.P., L'Église de la Minerve, à Rome (1910), p. 409, and on the title page.

30 "It being formerly understood that now they rose up in array and laid open snares for the Catholic faith, small animals which secretly demolished the vine of the Lord, and openly burned the Lord's harvest with torches bound to their tails; we have addressed apostolic letters to the Brethren of the Order of Preachers, zealous for God and powerful in word and work, that for the purpose of crushing the head of these reptiles, catching the little wolves, and holding with bit and bridle the jaws of those who lacerate the Church of Christ, they should rise up and bring back on their shoulders the sheep wandering from the fold; by the file of their preaching they should cleanse the persons infected with the rusty scab, so that purified they may be worthy to enter the sanctuary of God and the heavenly country.... Moreover, these brethren are the more apt to confute the heretics for the reason that their life vivifies their teaching, and their teaching informs their life, while that which can be read in their manners is explained in their sermons; we think it useful in the defense of the faith that you should call on them for extirpating the errors of the perverse, as you see it to be expedient" (Potthast, nos. 9386, 9388; Fredericq, Corpus inquisitionis Neerlandicae, I, 94 f.).

31 "Tel the sons of the spotted dog" (Echard, I, 449).

32 "O grief! This is evidently the poisonous purpose of the ancient serpent and the work of the future Antichrist, endeavoring to impose silence on the divine dogs preaching the truth, so that when they are silent they may lead others to the ford to devour the Lord's sheep" (Die Chronica Novella des Hermann Korner, ed. J. Schwalm, p. 41).

33 Hettrier, Italienische Studien ( 1879), pp. 118 ff.

34 Inferno, I, 49 f.

35 Scartazzini, Enciclopedia dantesca ( 1896-99), pp. 2090 f.