Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Loyola, Ignatius de (Inigo Lopez de Recalde) (1491-1566). founder of the Society of Jesus, was descended from an illustrious Spanish family, and was born in the province of Guipuzcoa. After living at the Court as a page, be entered the army, and for many years led the gay life of a soldier. At the siege of Pampehma by the French (1521) one of his legs was fractured by a cannon ball, and the other was injured by a splinter of stone; and he was removed to the castle of Loyola. During his confinement he amused himself by reading romances, and when these were exhausted had recourse to the Life of Jesus and the Lives of the Saints. His spiritual nature was gradually awakened,_and he determined to devote himself to a life of religion. His first project was a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, but before undertaking it he repaired to Catalonia, where he passed a year amongst the poor in St. Lucy's hospital at Manresa. It was here that he composed the celebrated Spiritual Exercises. The difficulties he encountered during his pilgrimage (1523-24) in his efforts to convert the infidels induced him to qualify himself for the office of instructor by a renewed course of study. After studying Latin under Jerome Ardebal, at Barcelona, he resided at the universities of Alcala and Salamanca; but he aroused the hostility of the Inquisition by persisting in delivering public discourses, and, after spending some time in prison, removed to Paris in 1528. Whilst a poor student at Paris he became acquainted with Xavier, Lainez, and other kindred spirits, with whom he united to form the society which was subsequently organised as the Jesuit order. After some difficulty and delay the Papal sanction to the foundation of such an order was obtained in 1538, and confirmed by a Bull in 1540. In 1541 Loyola was chosen general with absolute power. The remainder of his life was spent at Rome. [Jesuits.]