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Barontius and Desiderius
- "Barontius" is also the name of a martyr associated with Saint Crispoldus.
Barontius (Barontus) (French: Baronce, Italian: Baronto, Baronzio) and Desiderius (French: Dizier, Italian: Desiderio) were two 8th century hermits who are venerated as saints by the Catholic Church. They were hermits near Pistoia, in Italy.
Barontius had been a Frankish nobleman of Berry who had, with his son, been a monk at Saint-Pierre de Longoret (Longoreto, Longoretum, Lonrey) (diocese of Bourges), now the monastery of Saint-Cyran-du-Jambot. Barontius was a former member of the court of Theuderic II.
Visio Baronti Monachi Longoretensis
According to the text known as Visio Baronti Monachi Longoretensis, a 4700-word long text dated 25 March 678 or 679 purportedly written by Barontius himself, Barontius received a vision of heaven and hell around 678. Barontius, described by one scholar as “a middle-aged former public servant with three marriages and far too many mistresses on his conscience,” claims that he fell into a coma and had a vision that he was flying through the air above the Bourges region as demons clawed and kicked at him.
Accompanied by the archangel Raphael, Barontius journeys through the four levels of heaven, although he continues to be tormented by the demons, who want to pull him down to hell. Barontius meets people he has known, including fellow monks from Longoreto. Raphael asks another angel to bring Saint Peter to them, so that Peter can judge Barontius.
The demons bring their evidence against Barontius, going “over all the sins that [Barontius] had committed from infancy onwards, including those which [he] had totally forgetten.” However, the demons get so annoying that Peter whacks them with his keys, sending them away. Peter then decides to send Barontius back to earth via hell, where Barontius sees all of the souls in torment before returning to earth.
When he recovers, he is asked to tell of his vision.
They lived an austere life, and were joined by disciples.
- Katherine I. Rabenstein (1998). "Saint of the Day, March 25: Barontius (Barontus) & Desiderius". SaintPatrickDC.org. Retrieved March 7, 2012.
- Eileen Gardiner (2006). "Judeo-Christian Hell Texts". Hell-On-Line. Retrieved May 18, 2009.
- Caroline Walker Bynum, Paul H. Freedman, Last things: death and the Apocalypse in the Middle Ages (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2000), 54.
- Eileen Gardiner, Medieval visions of heaven and hell: a sourcebook (Published by Taylor & Francis, 1993), 43-44.
- "Den hellige Barontius og Desiderius av Pistoia (d. ~725)". Katolsk. 1998-11-07. Archived from the original on March 16, 2005. Retrieved May 14, 2009.
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