Bakocz, Thomas, Cardinal and statesman, b. about 1442, in the village of Erdoed, county Szatmdr, Northeastern Hungary; d. 15 June, 1521. His family belonged to the lower class, but was raised to the rank of nobility by his older brother Valentine. Through the generosity of this same brother he was enabled to pursue a thorough cotirse of studies first in the town of Szatmdr-X^meti, then in Cracow, Poland, and finally in the Italian cities of Ferrara and Padua. He returned to his native coimtrj' about the year 1470, with the doctor's degree, and soon after made the acquaintance of a distinguished ecclesiastic from Italy, Gabriel Rangoni, who enjoyed the con- fidence of King ilatthias (145S-90) and held high positions in Himgarj-. By this prelate Bakocz was introduced to the king about the year 1474; and through a fortimate incident he attracted the at- tention of his sovereign. He was retained at court, employed in the chancerj', and soon became secretary to the" king and substitute of the royal chancellor. In 14S0 he received a provostship in the town of Titel. Southern Hungary; and in 1486 he was pro- moted to the Bishopric of Raab. After the death of King Matthias in 1490 Bakocz took an active part in the selection of a new ruler; and when his candi- date. Ladislaus II (1490-1516), a Polish prince and King of Bohemia, was chosen, Bakocz was made chancellor of the realm. As such he became the real ruler of his couiitn,', whose destinies he directed with firmness and skill. He concluded advantageous treaties with other powers, and made the alliance with \'enice the pivot of his foreign policy. On that accoimt he kept Hungar,' out of the League of Cambrai formed in 1508 between Pope Julius II (1503-13), France. Spain, and the Emperor Ma.xi- milian (1493-1519) against Venice. No wonder that the authorities of Venice vied with Iving Ladis- laus in securing honours and riches for the powerful and ambitious prelate.
When the Bishopric of Erlau became vacant in 1491, Bakocz was appointed to it by the king. Pope Alexander VI (1492-1503) at first opposed, but later ratified, the appointment in 1497; and shortly after- wards, in December of the same year, transferred Bakocz to the primatial See of Gran. In addition to this Bakocz was created cardinal in 1500, and made Patriarch of Constantinople in 1507. The republic of Venice gladly assigned to him the revenues which were found witliin its own territory and attached to the patriarchal title. Not satisfied with all this Bakocz aspired to the papal throne, and received assiu'ances of support from the Emperor Maximilian and from Venice; however, adverse circiunstances prevented the realization of these hopes. A man of such prominence had necessarily his part in the ecclesiastical events of a general character. When in 1510 several cardinals rebelled against Pope Julius II, both sides tried to win him for their plans. Bakocz maintained a waiting attitude, tmtil the pope, in 1511. condenmed the schismatic Coimcil of Pisa and announced that a general sjtiod would be held in the Lateran in 1512. Bakocz was invited to this council, and without further hesitation he sailed on a Venetian sliip to Ancona, and arrived in Rome in January. 1512, where he was received by the pope with much pomp and splendour. In the council, which opened the following May. Bakocz took an active part; he was on the committee for the reform of the Church and the Roman Curia. After the death of Pope Julius II, early in 1513, and during the conclave, it became evident that he had little prospect of winning the papal tiara; in fact on the 10th of March Cardinal Jledici was chosen as Leo X (1513-211.
The new pope secured at once the service of the influential Bakocz for a crusade against the Turks. He appointed the primate a legate a latere not only
for Himgary but also for the neighbouring cotmtries, and granted to him most ample faculties. After his return to Hungan,- in 1514 Bakocz made prepara- tions at once for the expedition, and soon an army of about 100,000 soldiers was gathered under the leadership of George Dozsa. Unfortunately the nobles were opposed to the enterprise, and the whole matter ended in a civil war between them and the Crusaders, in which the nobility remained victorious. After the death of King Ladislaus II in 1516 the influence of Bakncz cea.sed almost com- pletely; the last years of his life were spent more in retirement. He was a man of the world, very am- bitious, and not always tender in the choice of the means to an end. Out of his large fortune, and through his influential position, he provided in a princely manner for the members of his family. Owing to the great power so long wielded by him. he made many enemies among his own coimtrj'men. whose opposition triumphed in the end. With all that his personal conduct was blameless; not even a shadow of suspicion was cast upon his character by his enemies. He was deeply religious, and had a special devotion to the Blessed Virgin, in whose honour he fitted out a chapel in the Cathedral of Erlau, and built one near that of Gran. In the latter, a magnificent structure of the Renaissance, his re- mains foimd their last resting place.
Fr.iknoi. Erdodi Bakocz Tamds (Budapest. 1SS9); D.vNKii. in Kirchenlei s. v. Bakdcz (Freiburg, 1886), I.
Francis J. Schaefer.
Bakunin, Mich.\el. See Socialism.
Balaam. — The derivation of the name is uncertain. Dr. Neubauer would connect it with the god Ammo or Ammi, as though Balaam belonged to a people whose god or lord was Ammo or Ammi. It is certainly remarkable that Balaam is said (Num.. xxii, 5) to come from "the land of the children of Ammo" (D. V. reads ".Ammon").
The Narr.\tive. — The storj' of Balaam is con- tained in Numbers, chapters xxii-xxiv; xxxi, 8-16; Deut., xxiii, 4; Josue, xiii, 22; and xxiv, 9-10. There are also references to him in Nehemias. xiii. 2; Micheas, \n, 5; II Peter, ii, 15; Jude, 11; and Apoc, ii, 14. Balac, Iving of Moab, alarmed at Israel's victories over the Amorrhites, sent mes- sengers with presents to Balaam, son of Beor, who dwelt in Pethor (the Pitru of the ctmeiform texts) to induce him to come and curse Israel. For in those early times, men attached great importance to a curse, as, for instance, that of a father on his child; and Balaam had a special reputation in this matter. "I know", said Balac to liim through his mes- sengers, "that he whom thou shalt bless is blessed, and he whom thou shalt curse is cursed." When the messengers had dehvered their message, Balaam consulted the Lord as to whether he should go or stay, and being refused permission to go, in the morning he gave a negative answer to the ambas- sadors. Nothing daunted, Balac sent another em- bassy, composed of men of liigher rank, princes, with directions to offer Balaam anything he hked. provided onlj' he would come and curse Israel. .\gain Balaam consulted the Lord and obtained permission to go, on condition that he tmdertook to do what God conmianded. In \iew of what follows, some commentators think that this leave was extorted by importunity, and that Balaam was actuated in making his request by mercenary motives, and had fully made up his mind to curse Israel.
The next morning Balaam saddled his ass and set out with the princes of Moab. On the way, the ass manifested even,' sign of alarm: it swerved suddenly from the path, crushed Balaam's leg against a wall and finally sank to the groimd under him, so that