While reading the book Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott, I have come to the conclusion that Scott criticizes the church a lot. Some quotes by various characters show that he has some type of grudge towards the church.
In the following paragraphs, I will give several examples of his criticism. One example of the criticism of the church is when the Grand Master was talking at the trial. He said, You are aware that we might well have refused this woman the benefit of the trial by combat; but, though a Jewess and an unbeliever, she is also a stranger and defenseless, and God forbid that she should ask the benefit of our mild laws and that should be refused to her.” This is just one of many examples where the Grand Master is accusing and not letting the trial be fair because Rebecca is a Jew. This shows that many of the churchmen would lie to save their own lives.
I believe they turned Rebecca in for being a witch to save one of their own, Brian. Another example of church criticism is the appearance of Brian and Brother Aymer. They both seemed rich, but people involved in the church are supposed to live with fewer advantages. We knew they were rich because the brother had many servants.
The brother was also overweight, so it should be noted that he indulged a lot even though he wasn’t supposed to. Then, when Wamba tricked them by saying one direction and pointing the other, Scott was trying to say that obviously the two churchmen that Wamba encountered were not that bright. Then there was the time when Ulrica was talking to Cedric about her past. She said, This castle, for ten years, has opened to no priest save the debauched Norman chaplain who partook in the nightly revels of Front-de-Boeuf, and he has been long gone to render an account of his stewardship. But thou art a Saxon—a Saxon priest, and I have one question to ask of thee.” Then she goes on to say how priests have come and gone without even noticing the pain she was going through.
Since Ulrica’s past was so awful, she has always hated her family because they have never helped her when she needed them the most. In Ivanhoe, there were many examples of criticism, but it would take a while to name all of them. It was obvious that Scott didn’t exactly like the church. The strange thing that I keep thinking about is why he didn’t like the church. I think that there is probably a good reason, but most people don’t even know about it. Still, he made his point in the book.