The Life and Trial of Giordano Bruno: A Chronology

Copernicus proposes a sun-centered universe.
Pope Paul III establishes a Roman branch of the Inquisition called The Holy Office.  The Holy Office is charged with investigating Protestants, witches, and heretics, as well as approving books for publication.
Copernicus publishes On the Revolution of Heavenly Spheres.
Filippo (name later changed to Giordano) Bruno is born in Nola, Italy, a hamlet located east of Naples.
Bruno moves to Naples (then the fifth largest city in the world).
Bruno enters the convent of San Domenico Maggiore in Naples.  The convent is the center of resistance to Spanish rule, and while living in the convent Bruno begins to link theological and political ideas.  Bruno's actions, such as removing religious decorations from his cell (except for a single crucifix) and reading a book that friars believed showed insufficient reverence for the Virgin Mary, raise eyebrows.  Privately, Bruno begins to have doubts that Jesus is the son of God incarnate in human flesh, as Catholic teaching insists.
Bruno takes the name Fra Giordano.
Bruno develops a reputation for having an amazing memory using "artificial memory" techniques (techniques that link words orphrases with images) from ancient Greece and Rome.  He is sent to Rome to perform feats of memory before Pope Pius V.
Bruno becomes a deacon.
Bruno gains admission as a formal student in theology at the prestigious College of San Domenico in Naples.  (Thomas Aquinas, in the thirteenth century, was a professor at the College.)  Meanwhile, a new star (a supernova) appears in the night sky, casting doubt about the theory that stars are fixed to a sphere that encircles the Earth.
Bruno receives his license as a reader in theology.
Under investigation for an unknown reason (the charge seems to have been defending certain alleged heretics), Bruno leaves Naples and moves to Rome and the convent of Santa Maria Sopra Minerva.  Later, Bruno heads north to Genoa, traveling not as a friar but at Filippo Bruno, gentleman. After a several month stay in Genoa, Bruno moves on to the seaside village of Noli, where he teaches grammar to children.
Bruno travels to Venice, with short stays on the way in Savona and Turin. In Venice he publishes a booklet, The Signs of the Times.  In the fall, Bruno heads to the Protestant city of Geneva. While in Geneva, Bruno converts to Protestantism.
Bruno enrolls at the University of Geneva as "Phillipus Brunus Nolanus, professor of sacred theology."  He publishes a broadsheet attacking the ideas of a philosophy teacher at the university, Antoine de La Faye.  As a result, he is arrested and spends two-plus weeks in jail, before apologizing on his knees to the professor.  Bruno leaves Geneva and heads to Lyon, and then Toulouse, France. In Toulouse, Bruno lectures for two years at the University of Toulouse on Aristotle's On the Soul.
Bruno moves to Paris.  Bruno writes a book (published in 1582) about memorization techniques, On the Shadows of Ideas, and King Henri III makes Bruno an adjunct professor, instruction in the art of memorization and royal reader. He also served as a private tutor to the king.
Bruno publishes a black comedic play about Neapolitan life called The Candlemaker.  The play introduces others to Bruno's philosophy. The same year, the Gregorian calendar is implemented.
With rumors in the air of the Inquisition coming to France, Bruno moves to England.  Bruno finds, in a theology debate at Oxford, that many people laugh at him because of his gestures, physical appearance, and accent.  Beginning in August, Bruno lectures at Oxford on the cosmos, suggesting in his teaching that the Copernican system offers good support for a version of Platonic theology.  The dons of Oxford suggest is ideas are not original, but stolen, and Bruno heads to London.  He publishes a dialogue, The Ash Wednesday Supper, in which he suggests a larger universe than Copernicus imagined, one with millions of inhabited planets circling millions of suns. In subsequent dialogues, he argues that awareness of a vast, inhabited, and infinitely old  universe will and should transform human lives.
Bruno publishes The Expulsion of the Triumphant Beast, a book that will become the primary evidence against him in his future trial.  The book is an indictment of the Church that contains reference to Egyptian religion, Greek mythology, mysticism, the art of memory, metaphysics, science, ethics, and philosophy. 
Bruno's friend and patron in London, French Ambassador Castlenau, is recalled to Paris, and Bruno has little choice but to follow him to Paris
With a religious civil war on the verge of breaking out in France, Bruno flees to Germany, where he delivers lectures at the University of Wittenberg.
Bruno moves to Prague, and then to the Lutheran University of Helmstedt.
With fights breaking out at Helmstedt between Calvinist and Lutheran faction, Bruno moves to Frankfurt-am-Main.
Bruno publishes two more works further developing his unique philosophy.  A wealthy Venetian gentleman, Giovanni Mocenigo, impressed by Bruno's writings, invites Bruno to come to Venice and stay in his residence.
Bruno moves to Venice and takes up residence in Mocenigo's home.  Mocenigo, however, comes to believe that Bruno holds heretical beliefs.  He discloses his concerns about Bruno to his father confessor, who urges him to denounce him to The Holy Office.  When Bruno announces his intention to return to Germany, on May 22 Mocenigo locks him in his attic and reports him to civil authorities, who in turn deliver him to the Inquisition.  Bruno is interrogated in jail and deposed six times by three judges in the chamber of the Ducal Palace.  At his final deposition, on July 30, Bruno makes a confession. The Holy Office in Rome requests Bruno's extradition from Venice.
On February 20, Bruno is put on a ship and extradited to Rome. A week later, he is placed in a prison near St. Peter's Square, where he will spend the remaining seven years of his life. 
In the fall, a (mentally unbalanced) former cellmate from Venice, Celestino Arrigoni da Verona, convinced wrongly that Bruno had incriminated him, writes a letter to the Roman Inquisition reporting incriminating things that he said Bruno had told him in prison.  Based on Celestino's testimony, and statements gathered from other former cellmates in Venice, Bruno is charged and tried on 29 charges of heresy.
The trial is in a state of suspended animation.  Church inquisitors continue to investigate the possible heresies of Bruno, trying to identify and study his prior writings, some of which only exist outside of Italy.  Bruno, meanwhile, tries to prepare his defense. In 1597, Bruno's books are censored.
Church officials draft a summary of the trial of Giordano Bruno.  (The Summary is later lost, but discovered again in 1940.)
Pope Clement VIII makes Jesuit theologian Robert Bellarmine, a consultant to the board of inquisition since 1592, a cardinal.  This allows Bellarmine to make appointments to the board of inquisition. Bellarmine prepares a list of Bruno's eight heresies, as he identifies them, and on January 18 invites Bruno to abjure each of the eight "propositions."  Bruno, in his reply a week later, demands that Bellarmine prove that the Pope agrees with Bellarmine's list of heresies, in what Bellarmine likely took to be an insolent challenge to his authority.  On February 4, the inquisitors demand abjuration a second time. In September, Bruno sends the Pope a letter reasserting his beliefs, including some he had indicated a willingness to abjure previously.  Bruno is given 40 days to make abjure all his identified heresies, but Bruno refuses.
February 8, 1600
A bishop performs Bruno's "solemn degradation" ceremony.  The ceremony strips Bruno of his symbols of the priesthood, his deacon's stole, his subdeacon's alb and maniple, his acolyte's candle, his Dominican scapular, and his habit. He is shaved, dressed in the clothes of a layman, and turned over to a bailiff representing the secular arm of the Roman government. He is transported to the prison of Tordi Nona. For the next eight days, various friars make appeals to Bruno to repent.
February 17, 1600
Bruno is stripped naked, manacled, gagged, and burnt at the stake in the Campo de' Fiora in Rome.
A statue of Bruno, sculpted by Ettore Ferrari, is erected in the marketplace of Campo de' Fiora.
Pope John Paul, through a letter written by Cardinal Angelo Sodano, declines to give Bruno an official pardon, but the letter expresses "profound regret" for "aspects of the procedures" and the "violent result" of the proceeding against him.

Giordano Bruno was imprisoned in Rome for seven years, from 1593 when he was transferred from his heresy trial in Venice into the hands of the Roman Inquisition until his auto-da-fé in 1600. His trial took place between 1593 and the censoring of his books in 1597. That’s where the summary ends. In 1598 the Curia left Rome, following Clement VIII to the Duchy of Ferrara which he claimed for the Papal States after the death of the childless Alfonso II d’Este, Duke of Ferrara. They left Bruno idling in jail. By the time the trial resumed with interrogatory number 20 in February 1599, Bruno was willing to offer a partial abjuration of the beliefs deemed heretical in return for his neck. He reiterated that willingness during the 21st interrogation in early September 1599.

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