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Pope Joan (Diane Sawyer looks at FEMALE POPE)
popejoan.com ^ | 1996 [!] | Donna Cross

Posted on 12/22/2005 12:17:13 PM PST by theFIRMbss

"As its title reveals, the novel is based on the life of one of the most fascinating, extraordinary women in Western history--Pope Joan, a controversial figure of historical record who, disguised as a man, rose to rule Christianity in the 9th century as the first and only woman to sit on the throne of St. Peter.

Brilliant and talented, young Joan rebels against the medieval social strictures forbidding women to learn to read and write. When her older brother is killed during a Viking attack, Joan takes up his cloak and identity, goes to the monastery of Fulda, and is initiated into the brotherhood in his place. As Brother John Anglicus, Joan distinguishes herself as a great Christian scholar. Eventually she is drawn to Rome, where she becomes enmeshed in a dangerous web of love, passion, and politics. Triumphing over appalling odds, she finally attains the highest throne in Christendom.

Pope Joan is a sweeping historical drama set against the turbulent events of the 9th century -- the Saracen sack of St. Peter's, the famous fire in the Borgo that destroyed over three-quarters of the Vatican, the Battle of Fontenoy, arguably the bloodiest and most terrible of medieval conflicts. The novel is a fascinating vivid record of what life was really like during the so-called Dark Ages, as masterwork of suspense and passion that has as its center an unforgettable woman, reminiscent of Jean Auel's Ayla, Jane Austen's Emma, and other heroines who struggle against restrictions their souls will not accept."

----------------------------------------------------

Donna to Appear on PrimeTime Live!
(December 2005)

Tune in Thursday, December 29, 2005 at 10PM Eastern to see Diane Sawyer of ABC News interview Donna Woolfolk Cross, author of Pope Joan, about the book, her research and more. Check your local ABC affiliate for more information.

----------------------------------------------------

Movie News! (updated May 2005)

Principal photography for the movie version of Pope Joan is now scheduled to begin in Spring 2006. Casting for the most important roles is now underway.

February 2005

Pope Joan, the movie, has made progress! It is being produced by Constantine Films. Producer: Herman Weigal. Director: Academy Award Winning Volker Schlondorff. Principal photography to begin in 2006

-----------------------------------

Pope Joan at Amazon link


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; Philosophy
KEYWORDS: abclyingliars; abcnews; bravosierra; catholics; dianesawyer; didnthappen; liberalmedia; phonyhistory; pope; popejoan; roadapples; urbanlegend; vatican
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first 1-5051-100 next last
The media seems
to be jumping on this book
in time for Christmas . . .

(Though it is not new
a librarian told me
"The DaVinci Code"

has sparked new interest
in EVERYTHING religious
if there is INTRIGUE . . .)
1 posted on 12/22/2005 12:17:16 PM PST by theFIRMbss
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To: theFIRMbss

I read this book several years ago---thought it was a "has been"


2 posted on 12/22/2005 12:18:26 PM PST by Mears (The Killer Queen)
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To: theFIRMbss

More mental preparation for an American commander in chief?


3 posted on 12/22/2005 12:18:33 PM PST by Darkwolf377 (Warning: Adult language, but great Christmas message: http://foamy.libertech.net/noxmas.swf)
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To: theFIRMbss

How much more interesting this story would be if it were even vaguely close to true.


4 posted on 12/22/2005 12:18:47 PM PST by SedVictaCatoni (<><)
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To: Darkwolf377

You Got it!

Mcain beats Hitlary!


5 posted on 12/22/2005 12:20:33 PM PST by The_Republican
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To: theFIRMbss
I read this years ago. The story is interesting, but the author is honestly not the best by any means. The story drags more than once.


According to the book there is now a chair that the newly elected popes sit on so that someone can look in on to see if there are dangling things there. Then he must announce "the Pope is a man." However, others say that the chair is nothing more than an old time toilet.


Of course when all is said and done, the movie will be nothing more than another episode in the "feminization" of society.

6 posted on 12/22/2005 12:20:36 PM PST by SoftballMominVA
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To: SedVictaCatoni

St. Leo III (795-816)
Stephen V (816-17)
St. Paschal I (817-24)
Eugene II (824-27)
Valentine (827)
Gregory IV (827-44)
Sergius II (844-47)
St. Leo IV (847-55)
Benedict III (855-58)
St. Nicholas I (the Great) (858-67)
Adrian II (867-72)
John VIII (872-82)
Marinus I (882-84)
St. Adrian III (884-85)
Stephen VI (885-91)
Formosus (891-96)
Boniface VI (896)
Stephen VII (896-97)
Romanus (897)
Theodore II (897)
John IX (898-900)


7 posted on 12/22/2005 12:21:08 PM PST by BenLurkin (O beautiful for patriot dream - that sees beyond the years)
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To: theFIRMbss

Whoops, take two: More preparation for a female American commander in chief?


8 posted on 12/22/2005 12:21:45 PM PST by Darkwolf377 (Warning: Adult language, but great Christmas message: http://foamy.libertech.net/noxmas.swf)
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To: SoftballMominVA

And you believe do ya? R-i-g-h-t. The story of Pope Joan is a complete fabrication.


9 posted on 12/22/2005 12:24:26 PM PST by big'ol_freeper ("Freedom consists not in doing what we like, but in having the right to do what we ought." Pope JPII)
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To: Mears
>I read this book several years ago

Check out the web site.
It's well made, very fancy.
It looks to my eyes

like some PR firm
is putting really big bucks
to capitalize

on "DaVinci Code"
and "The Passion" fans. I think
mainstream media

just sees "religion"
as ONE genre, without thought
that some stories are

faith-building, some are
tin foil thrillers, and some are
just exploitation.

10 posted on 12/22/2005 12:25:04 PM PST by theFIRMbss
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To: BenLurkin; SedVictaCatoni

Yeah, my first thought is why is all of this publicity being given to A FICTIONAL CHARACTER?!


11 posted on 12/22/2005 12:26:09 PM PST by wagglebee ("We are ready for the greatest achievements in the history of freedom." -- President Bush, 1/20/05)
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To: theFIRMbss

Thanks for the link.


12 posted on 12/22/2005 12:26:41 PM PST by Mears (The Killer Queen)
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To: big'ol_freeper
>R-i-g-h-t. The story of Pope Joan is a complete fabrication

PROOFS OF ITS MYTHICAL CHARACTER

The principal proofs of the entirely mythical character of the popess are:

1. Not one contemporaneous historical source among the papal histories knows anything about her; also, no mention is made of her until the middle of the thirteenth century. Now it is incredible that the appearance of a "popess", if it was an historical fact, would be noticed by none of the numerous historians from the tenth to the thirteenth century.

2. In the history of the popes, there is no place where this legendary figure will fit in.

Between Leo IV and Benedict III, where Martinus Polonus places her, she cannot be inserted, because Leo IV died 17 July, 855, and immediately after his death Benedict III was elected by the clergy and people of Rome; but owing to the setting up of an antipope, in the person of the deposed Cardinal Anastasius, he was not consecrated until 29 September. Coins exist which bear both the image of Benedict III and of Emperor Lothair, who died 28 September, 855; therefore Benedict must have been recognized as pope before the last-mentioned date. On 7 October, 855, Benedict III issued a charter for the Abbey of Corvey. Hincmar, Archbishop of Reims, informed Nicholas I that a messenger whom he had sent to Leo IV learned on his way of the death of this pope, and therefore handed his petition to Benedict III, who decided it (Hincmar, ep. xl in P.L., CXXXVI, 85). All these witnesses prove the correctness of the dates given in the lives of Leo IV and Benedict III, and there was no interregnum between these two popes, so that at this place there is no room for the alleged popess.

Further, is is even less probable that a popess could be inserted in the list of popes about 1100, between Victor III (1087) and Urban II (1088-99) or Paschal II (1099-1110), as is suggested by the chronicle of Jean de Mailly.

ORIGIN OF THE LEGEND

This fable of a Roman popess seems to have had an earlier counterpart at Constantinople. Indeed, in his letter to Michael Caerularius (1053), Leo IX says that he would not believe what he had heard, namely that the Church of Constantinople had already seen eunuchs, indeed even a woman, in its episcopal chair (Mansi "Concil.", XIX, 635 sq.).

Concerning the origin of the whole legend of Popess Joan, different hypotheses have been advanced.

Bellarmine (De Romano Pontifice, III, 24) believes that the tale was brought from Constantinople to Rome.

Baronius (Annales ad a., 879, n. 5) conjectures that the much censured effeminate weaknesses of Pope John VIII (872-82) in dealing with the Greeks may have given rise to the story. Mai has shown (Nova Collectio Patr., I, Proleg., xlvii) that Photius of Constantinople (De Spir. Sanct. Myst., lxxxix) refers emphatically three times to this pope as "the Manly", as though he would remove from him the stigma of effeminacy.

Other historians point to the degradation of the papacy in the tenth century, when so many popes bore the name John; it seemed therefore a fitting name for the legendary popess. Thus Aventinus sees in the story a satire on John IX; Blondel, a satire on John XI; Panvinio (notae ad Platinam, De vitis Rom. Pont.) applies it to John XII, while Leander (Kirkengesch., II, 200) understands it as applicable generally to the baneful female influence on the papacy during the tenth century.

Other investigators endeavour to find in various occurrences and reports a more definite basis for the origin of this legend. Leo Allatius (Diss. Fab. de Joanna Papissa) connects it with the false prophetess Theota, condemned at the Synod of Mainz (847); Leibniz recalls the story that an alleged bishop Johannes Anglicus came to Rome and was there recognized as a woman. The legend has also been connected with the pseudo-Isidorian Decretals, e.g. by Karl Blascus ("Diatribe de Joanna Papissa", Naples, 1779), and Gfrörer (Kirchengesch., iii, 978).

Döllinger's explanation has met with more general approval ("Papstfabeln", Munich, 1863, 7-45). He recognizes the fable of Popess Joan as a survival of some local Roman folk-tale originally connected with certain ancient monuments and peculiar customs. An ancient statue discovered in the reign of Sixtus V, in a street near the Colosseum, which showed a figure with a child, was popularly considered to represent the popess. In the same street a monument was discovered with an inscription at the end of which occurred the well-known formula P.P.P. (proprie pecuniâ posuit) together with a prefixed name which read: Pap. (?Papirius) pater patrum. This could easily have given origin to the inscription mentioned by Jean de Mailly (see above). It was also observed that the pope did not pass along this street in solemn procession (perhaps on account of its narrowness). Further it was noticed that, on the occasion of his formal inauguration in front of the Lateran Basilica, the newly-elected pope always seated himself on a marble chair. This seat was an ancient bath-stool, of which there were many in Rome; it was merely made use of by the pope to rest himself. But the imagination of the vulgar took this to signify that the sex of the pope was thereby tested, in order to prevent any further instance of a woman attaining to the Chair of St. Peter.

Erroneous explanations — such as were often excogitated in the Middle Ages in connection with ancient monuments — and popular imagination are originally responsible for the fable of "Popess Joan" that uncritical chroniclers, since the middle of the thirteenth century, dignified by consigning it to their pages.

[Pope Joan, The Catholic Encyclopedia]

13 posted on 12/22/2005 12:29:35 PM PST by theFIRMbss
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To: theFIRMbss

Well here is the list of all the 9th Century popes and I don't see any Pope "Joan" and I don't see any "Brother?" John Anglicus??? either.

St. Leo III (795-816)
Stephen V (816-17)
St. Paschal I (817-24)
Eugene II (824-27)
Valentine (827)
Gregory IV (827-44)
Sergius II (844-47)
St. Leo IV (847-55)
Benedict III (855-58)
St. Nicholas I (the Great) (858-67)
Adrian II (867-72)
John VIII (872-82)
Marinus I (882-84)
St. Adrian III (884-85)
Stephen VI (885-91)
Formosus (891-96)
Boniface VI (896)
Stephen VII (896-97)
Romanus (897)
Theodore II (897)
John IX (898-900)


14 posted on 12/22/2005 12:30:25 PM PST by kellynla (U.S.M.C. 1st Battalion,5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Div. Viet Nam 69&70 Semper Fi)
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To: All

Old story, which has been long debunked (like in the 1850s!)

If you are interested in the debunking, see:

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/08407a.htm


15 posted on 12/22/2005 12:32:39 PM PST by bnelson44 (Proud parent of a tanker! (Charlie Mike, son))
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To: theFIRMbss
a controversial figure of historical record who, disguised as a man, rose to rule Christianity in the 9th century

Mmmm. Yeah. Which version of the 'popess' tale is an 'historical' record?

16 posted on 12/22/2005 12:32:39 PM PST by siunevada
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To: SoftballMominVA
According to the book there is now a chair that the newly elected popes sit on so that someone can look in on to see if there are dangling things there.

Another jobs that Americans just won't do.

17 posted on 12/22/2005 12:33:07 PM PST by socal_parrot (Fröliche Weinachten)
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To: theFIRMbss

I'm not even Catholic, but I have long heard that this story is bogus. Wasn't it filmed already, circa 197?


18 posted on 12/22/2005 12:35:12 PM PST by Sans-Culotte (Meadows Place, TX-"Tom DeLay Country")
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To: Mears

I liked the part about giving birth in the "Popemobile."


19 posted on 12/22/2005 12:37:04 PM PST by Old Professer (Fix the problem, not the blame!)
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To: siunevada
>Which version of the 'popess' tale is an 'historical' record?

In Diane's history,
the "true" record probably
will be the record

that makes Catholics
look most repressive, and men
in general, bad.

20 posted on 12/22/2005 12:37:31 PM PST by theFIRMbss
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To: SedVictaCatoni

Monks don't have Fruit of the Looms.


21 posted on 12/22/2005 12:37:50 PM PST by Old Professer (Fix the problem, not the blame!)
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To: big'ol_freeper

Is that why they referred to it as a novel?


22 posted on 12/22/2005 12:40:11 PM PST by bigsigh
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To: socal_parrot

Not enough money out there for me to lift a Papal skirt and look for doo-dads. Let the Mexicans do it!!


23 posted on 12/22/2005 12:43:01 PM PST by SoftballMominVA
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To: theFIRMbss

My alma mater's rare books library has a very old German book circulating this legend. As I recall, the story arose when some Germans and the papacy were fighting over something or other a few centuries before the Reformation, but a few centuries after the alleged popess.


24 posted on 12/22/2005 12:43:51 PM PST by Dumb_Ox (Hoc ad delectationem stultorum scriptus est)
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To: bigsigh
Is that why they referred to it as a novel?
Yes, a novel that purports to be "based on the life of one of the most fascinating, extraordinary women in Western history--Pope Joan, a controversial figure of historical record."
25 posted on 12/22/2005 12:44:14 PM PST by Bohemund
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To: socal_parrot

Papal Pecker Checker?


26 posted on 12/22/2005 12:44:44 PM PST by ozzymandus
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To: Bohemund
As soon as I see novel based upon facts I break out into hives. I guess we need these books every now and then so we can inform the general public.

The problem with this subject is that the ancient and medival church is not exactly an honest, reliable source.

27 posted on 12/22/2005 12:47:09 PM PST by bigsigh
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To: theFIRMbss

She's a man, baby. - Austin Powers


28 posted on 12/22/2005 12:48:33 PM PST by peyton randolph (<a href="http://clinton.senate.gov/">shrew</a>)
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To: theFIRMbss

Another explanation I recall is that some of the Popes of the era were figureheads, tugged hither and yon by mothers and sisters with more forceful personalities. The "Pope Joan" legend may be a distortion or satire of those times.


29 posted on 12/22/2005 12:48:37 PM PST by steve-b (A desire not to butt into other people's business is eighty percent of all human wisdom)
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To: bigsigh
>The problem with this subject is that the ancient and medival church is not exactly an honest, reliable source

"The DaVinci Code"
and "Holy Blood, Holy Grail"
have been "accepted"

as reasonable
histories by many folk.
If they accept those . . .

30 posted on 12/22/2005 12:55:17 PM PST by theFIRMbss
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To: bigsigh
As soon as I see novel based upon facts I break out into hives. I guess we need these books every now and then so we can inform the general public.
I can live with historical novels with fictional characters. I just hate it when the authors lie about history.
The problem with this subject is that the ancient and medival church is not exactly an honest, reliable source.
Who can prove a negative?

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. In the absence of positive, contemporary evidence of her existence, I'll consider Pope Joan a hoax.

31 posted on 12/22/2005 12:58:17 PM PST by Bohemund
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To: theFIRMbss

You have to look at the hostory of the church and not just respond to novels. The churh has bben rife with corruption and politics at many times. After the burning of the library at Alexandria, the church became the biggest repository of books in the world. That's a lot of power and history in the hands of sometime corrupt popes and some who would act out of politcial motivation and their perceived need to protect the church from heresy.


32 posted on 12/22/2005 12:58:37 PM PST by bigsigh
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To: Bohemund

Not defending Pope Joan. Are you saying the church history has been without sin?


33 posted on 12/22/2005 1:00:05 PM PST by bigsigh
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To: bigsigh
Not defending Pope Joan. Are you saying the church history has been without sin?
Huh? What does that have to do with Pope Joan?
34 posted on 12/22/2005 1:05:45 PM PST by Bohemund
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To: Bohemund
you and I have a different interpretation of our previous replies.

Best wishes!

35 posted on 12/22/2005 1:06:40 PM PST by bigsigh
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To: Darkwolf377

THAT WAS MY THOUGHT!

This is just another BS story to tryin and imply Hitlary is "just another" woman.

Sorry to the Dinosaur Media, Hitlary is unworthy of even dog catcher.


36 posted on 12/22/2005 1:16:27 PM PST by longtermmemmory (VOTE!)
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Sawyer should have stuck to waiting tables.

Better off reading fellow freeper Patrick Madrid's book:

Pope Fiction

37 posted on 12/22/2005 1:22:20 PM PST by A.A. Cunningham
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To: theFIRMbss

That's ok... Newsweek has already declared that "The Davinci Code" is going to be "Next Years Hottest Movie" on their cover no less... amazing.. now the press corp thinks they can predict the future.....

Not to obvious that the same media company that owns Newsweek also is in bed on the movie is it??

What absolute drivel.


38 posted on 12/22/2005 1:25:25 PM PST by HamiltonJay
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To: SedVictaCatoni

This is the 21st Century. Truth is what the MSM wants you to believe.


39 posted on 12/22/2005 1:26:51 PM PST by Mr. Lucky
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To: theFIRMbss

Why is it that the ACLU and MSM decide that Christmas and Easter is the best time to try and depress and slander a chosen religion, which is still a protected right in this country, in order to erode people's beliefs and destroy people's hope?

Do they take pleasure in this? I can tell you a few things that I would take pleasure in doing to these groups. But it wouldn't be the christian thing to do.


40 posted on 12/22/2005 1:32:43 PM PST by Hayzo
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To: SoftballMominVA

Actually, what they used to say is "Testiculos habet et bene pendentes", which roughly translates to "He has testicles, and they dangle nicely". Kind of funny actually!

As to the whole debate over whether she actually existed, I'd think that the matter would be easy enough to settle. One of the few things that all of the versions of the legends agree on is that she gave birth in that carriage, and that she was buried in that spot under the street. Since we know exactly which street, and even which part of the street, that the popess was supposedly exposed on, it would be trivial to scan it to see if there's actually anyone buried there.

I don't doubt that the Catholic Church had the ability to bury events they wanted forgotten, and the fact that they had centuries to do it makes it all the more plausible that such an event of this magnitude could have been covered up. Still, I don't think she actually existed. The fact that no OTHER nations outside of Catholic Europe recorded an intermediary pope during this period is a fairly solid indication that it didn't happen. Even Muslim historians briefly mention the appointment and deaths of the Catholic popes, since Christian Europe was one of their main adversaries and the pope was seen as one of their leaders. There's no mention of an intermediary pope in that period, and certainly no mention of one being female (which Muslims would have found to be devastatingly scandalous and would have written about extensively).


41 posted on 12/22/2005 1:42:35 PM PST by Arthalion
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To: BenLurkin

Pope Joan is an URBAN myth............


42 posted on 12/22/2005 1:44:34 PM PST by Red Badger (And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him)
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To: theFIRMbss
Here is a brief and true history of Pope Joan:

Following the death of Pope Gendelflorb the Nefarious, the citizens of Rome, were in a quandry for a leader. Who could they chose who would be both grasping and wicked enough to rule the see of St. Peter? They settled on Joan d'Scarafaggio, an Italian matron standing a full 4'10" and weiging 320 lbs. She immediately accepted, and within days had gained complete mastery of the curia, smacking reticent cardinals upside the head with a rolling pin. She is best known for her infallible decrees on the making of canoli and for the canonical definition of the word 'gravy' as meaning a sauce used on spaghetti. She is widely believed to have introduced the tomato to Italy. Pope Joan died in the year 943 when she was struck by a Papal bull.

Actually, my version is probably closer to accurate than Diane Sawyer's.
43 posted on 12/22/2005 1:49:21 PM PST by Antoninus (Liars spend nearly all of their time trying to convince you that they're honest.)
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To: bigsigh
Best wishes!

Same to you!

44 posted on 12/22/2005 2:00:36 PM PST by Bohemund
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To: SedVictaCatoni

It's about as true as The DaVinci Code.


45 posted on 12/22/2005 2:14:30 PM PST by karnage
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To: Arthalion
>Actually, what they used to say is "Testiculos habet et bene pendentes"

You know, I have heard
folks say Joe Theisman had balls . . .
I guess that must mean

once upon a time
there was a quarterback who
was really a girl

and the NFL
covered it up, but today
we still indicate

real male quarterbacks
by saying that they have balls . . .
It all makes sense now!

46 posted on 12/22/2005 4:02:17 PM PST by theFIRMbss
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To: Hayzo
>Why is it that the ACLU and MSM decide that Christmas and Easter is the best time to try and depress and slander a chosen religion, which is still a protected right in this country, in order to erode people's beliefs and destroy people's hope?

I think it's because
Christians -- not even Mormons
or Catholics -- don't

track down and murder
people who slander Christ or
Christianity.

We don't strap on bombs
and blow up innocent folks
if we feel slighted.

We are a backward
religion out of touch with
modern world values . . .

47 posted on 12/22/2005 4:07:41 PM PST by theFIRMbss
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To: HamiltonJay
>That's ok... Newsweek has already declared that "The Davinci Code" is going to be "Next Years Hottest Movie" on their cover

I'd bet money that
if Jim Robinson paid out
proper loads of cash,

Newsweek would put him
on the cover and report
that Free Republic

is the greatest thing
since the New Deal . . . Seems to me
it's just a question

of knowing how much
to pay to whom and how to
do it sub rosa . . .

48 posted on 12/22/2005 4:13:59 PM PST by theFIRMbss
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To: Antoninus

Thanks for the laugh tonight, I really needed it... :)


49 posted on 12/22/2005 4:16:03 PM PST by WV Mountain Mama (Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel Shall come to thee, O Israel. Merry Christmas!)
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To: theFIRMbss
...

This is anti-Catholic bigotry, plain and simple.

The Da Vinci Code, and now this garbage.

Shame on ABC.

A "Pope Joan" debunking: The Myth of Pope Joan by Alain Boureau

...

50 posted on 12/26/2005 10:37:10 PM PST by infoguy (www.frankenlies.com ... www.themediareport.com ...)
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