Nicolas Bonet

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His Excellency
Nicolas Bonet
Bishop of Malta
Church Roman Catholic
Diocese Malta
In office 1342-1343
Consecration 27 November 1342
by Pope Clement VI
Personal details
Born 1280
Died 1343
Nationality French

Nicolas (Nicholas, Nicolaus) Bonet (date of birth around 1280; died 1343) was a Friar Minor, theologian, missionary and bishop of Malta.


Probably a Frenchman by birth, he taught theology with great success at Paris, where he received the title of "Doctor Pacificus" (The Peaceful Doctor) on account of his suave and tranquil mode of lecturing. Bonet took an important part in the dispute concerning the beatific vision which was warmly discussed during the pontificate of John XXII and finally settled by the decree of his successor, Benedict XII, "Benedictus Deus".

He was a member of the papal embassy sent by Benedict XII to Kublai Khan. The Franciscan missions in Tatary were founded as early as the year 1245 by the zealous apostles of the Faith, Lorenzo da Portogallo and Giovanni da Pian Carpino; and in his desire to see the great work which was inaugurated by them and continued by the saintly Archbishop John of Monte Corvino kept up and extended, the great khan was induced to send an embassy to Benedict XII to petition for new labourers in the missions of Asia. The pope received the legates with every mark of honour and acceding to the wish of the Mongolian monarch, commissioned four religious of the order of Friars Minor as his legates, on whom he conferred all the Apostolic faculties and privileges necessary for their missionary labours. These were John of Florence, afterwards Bishop of Bisignano in Calabria, Nicholas Bonet, Nicholas of Molano, and Gregory of Hungary. The embassy bearing letters from the pope to the khan left Avignon towards the end of the year 1338, and after a long and arduous journey arrived at Beijing, the residence of the Tatar emperor at the beginning of 1342. The missionaries were encouraged in their apostolic labours by the kindly attitude of Kublai Khan and succeeded in founding numerous Christian settlements throughout the vast Mongolian empire. About the year 1346 they set out again for Italy.[1] Part of the homeward journey they made by sea and the remainder, from the Kingdom of Persia, by land, arriving in Avignon at the beginning of the year 1354. But Bonet was not able to go himself on the mission because he was consecrated Bishop of Malta by Pope Clement VI on November 27, 1342 and died the following year.[2]


Among the writings of Nicholas Bonet, the "Tractatus de conceptione B. Mariæ Virginis jussu Clementis V scriptus", the "Formalitates e Doctrina Scoti" and his "Commentarius in IV libros sententiarum" deserve special mention.


Nicolaus Bonetus, Metaphysica, Naturalis philosophia, Praedicamenta, Theologia naturalis, Venice, 1505.


  1. ^ Arnald of Sarrant, Muscat, Noel (2010). Chronicle of the Twenty-Four Generals of the Order of Friars Minor, p. 80. Ordo Fratrum Minorum, Malta.
  2. ^ "Nicolaus Bonetus", 29 January 2015. Retrieved on 04 February 2015.
  • Cusack, St. Francis and the Franciscans (New York, 1867), XIV, 470-472
  • Sbaralea, Suppl. et castig. ad script. ord. min., 552
  • Da Civezza, Storia delle missioni Francescane (Rome, 1859), III, xv, 599-617
  • Wadding, L, Annales Minorum, VII, 213-219
  • De Gubernatis, De missionibus antiquis (Rome, 1689), I, 399; Analecta Franciscana (Quaracchi, 1887), II, 178.

External links[edit]

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainHerbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "article name needed". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton.