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Patarines

A lay reform movement in N Italy during the late eleventh century, directed against clerical immorality. Centering in Milan, it was directed primarily at the archbishop and other simoniac priests, but also at the upper-class laity who had crept into the ranks of the religious by similar unethical means. Certain radical Patarines, as lay preachers, inveighed against these corrupt clergy, forbade the faithful to attend their ministrations, and by violent means removed refractory priests and bishops from their altars and their benefices. Papal encouragements angered German monarchs whose clergy had received only royal (lay) authority; the Reformation thus became an element in the bitter, centuries-long investiture* struggle between pope and emperor. By 1075, upon the excision of the more corrupt elements from the northern clergy, the movement soon disappeared. Patarine activity produced a strengthening of papal political authority in Lombardy, and served also to destroy an ecclesiastical network established upon simonaic practices.