But it may be asked whether the Judge
can compel witnesses to sweat an oath to tell the truth in a case
concerning the Faith or witches, of if he can examine them many
times. We answer that he can do so, especially an ecclesiastical
Judge, and that in ecclesiastical cases witnesses can be compelled to
speak the truth, and this on oath, since otherwise their evidence
would not be valid. For the Canon Law says: The Archbishop or Bishop
may make a circuit of the parish in which it is rumoured that there
are heretics, and compel three or more men of good repute, or even,
if it seems good to him, the whole neighbourhood, to give evidence.
And if any through damnable obstinacy stubbornly refuse to take the
oath, they shall on that account be considered as heretics.
And that the witnesses can be examined several times is shown by the Canon, where it says that, when the witnesses have given their evidence in a confused manner, or appear to have withheld part of their knowledge for some reason, the Judge must take care to examine them afresh; for he may legally do so.