Sede Vacante 1087-1088



Letter of Pope Urban II (Odo of Chatillon)
to Hughes, Abbot of Cluny,
announcing his election to the Papacy

(March 13, 1088)



The Letter:   Urban II's Electoral Manifesto

 

Stephanus Baluzius [Étienne Baluze], Miscellaneorum Liber Sextus (Paris: apud Franciscum Muguet 1683) pages 527-531 [1713 edition, p. 371-372 = Migne, Patrologiae Latinae Cursus Completus Tomus 151, columns 284-285]:

Urbanus Episcopus, servus servorum Dei, Hugoni reverendissimo Abbati Cluniacensi omnique ejus sancto conventui salutem et apostolicam benedictionem.

Quoniam sanctitatem vestram satis avidam exaltationis Romanae Ecclesiae novimus, ea quae circa nos acta sunt compendio vobis notificare curamus. Notum itaque facimus dilectioni vestrae quod apud Terracinam Campaniae civitatem sanctae Romanae Ecclesiae Episcopi et Cardinales, Portuensis videlicet, Sabinensis, Tusculanus, Albanensis, et Signensis cum aliis Episcopis numero XVI. et Abbatibus quatuor aliisque quam plurimis viris religiosis convenientes, cum Portuensis Episcopus omnium Romanorum clericorum catholicae parti faventium se legatum diceret, Abbas vero Cassinensis Cardinalis Diaconus caeterorum Diaconorum, P. quoque Cardinalis tituli Sancti Clementis omnium Cardinalium, Praefectus autem urbis laicorum omnium se ferre assereret legationem, cumque post triduanum jejunium supplicationibus multis magnisque ad Deum precibus vehementer insisterent, quod ego quidem omnino dignus non fui, tandem me sibi quarto Idus Martii [March 12, 1088] in Pontificem elegerunt. Quibus, Deum testor, non ambitionis causa nec alicujus dignitatis desiderio assensum praebui, sed quia tot tantisque viris inobediens esse verebar; talique qualii tempore si quantum ad me periclitanti Ecclesiae non subvenirem, Deum me offendere metuebam; praesertim cum praedecessores meos viros omni veneratione dignos, Gregorium scilicet atque Victorem, hoc sibi divine praecepisse asserunt. Rogo igitur, desiderantissime, nimiumque te deprecor ut si qua tibi sunt pietatis viscera, si qua filii et alumni tui est tibi memoria, me multum id cupientem tua praesentia consolari sanctamque matrem tuam Romanam Ecclesiam, si unquam possibile fuerit, tuo multum nobis optabili adventu visitare digneris. At vero si id fieri nequit, ut tales de filiis tuis confratribus meis te ad nos mandare non pigeat, in quibus te videam, te suscipiam, tuae consolationis in immensis perturbationibus positus verba cognoscam, qui tuam caritatem, tuaeque dilectionis affectum mihi repraesentent, qui qualiter et tu omniumque fratrum nostrorum se habeat congregatio mihi denuntient. Precor autem ut omnem sanctorum fratrum congregationem commonere facias ut apud omnipotentis Dei clementiam preces effundant quatenus et nos et Ecclesiam suam sanctam, quae tantis videtur subjacere periculis, in pristinum restaurare statum dignetur. Noveris enim ..... specialius hoc negotium super te pendere. Vale.

Datum III. Idus Martii apud Terracinam.

[From the Bibliotheca Colbertiana, Codex 2892]



A letter with a similar purpose, but far from identical text, was sent by Pope Urban II to the Archbishop of Salzburg, five bishops, and abbots (Martene et Durand Veterum scriptorum et monumentorum ... nova et amplissima collectio I (Paris 1724), 520-522; Migne, Patrologia Latina Tomus 151, 283-284; Watterich I, 576-577), and many others. The Abbot and Monks of Cluny were no doubt on a list kept in the Chancery of persons to be notified of a papal election; the list also included all archbishops, bishops and abbots directly dependent upon the Holy See, Emperors, Kings, and ruling princes [cf. Berthold Costantiensis, Gesta Urbani Papae II, ad init., in Recueil des historiens des Gaules et de la France XIV, p. 674].  Urban, however, had previously been a monk of Cluny, and the letter may testify to his special regard for his spiritual home.

E. Martene et U. Durand, Veterum scriptorum et monumentorum ... nova et amplissima collectio I (Paris 1724), 520-522:

Urbanus episcopus servus servorum Dei, venerabili Salzeburgensi archiepiscopo, ceterisque reverentissimis episcopis, Pataviensi, Worceburgensi, Wormatiensi, Augustensi, Constantiensi, et venerandis abbatibus, et gloriossimis Welphoni B. & B atque omnibus majoribus et minoribus beati Petri fidelibus, salutem & apostolicam benedictionem.

Nosse volumus beatitudinem vestram, quae circa nos gesta sunt noviter: reverentissimi siquidem fratres nostri episcopi et cardinales, Saviensis videlicet, Tusculanensis, Albanensis, Signensis praeterea & Portuensis legationem & consensum, & petitionem ferens omnium fidelium laicorum nostrae parti faventium clericorum Romae eligentium, & religiosissimus abbas Cassinensis omnium diaconorum, & R. cardinalis tituli S. Clementis omnium cardinalium, necnon & B. praefectus omnium fidelium laicorum, una cum XX.& I. episcopis & quatuor abbatibus apud Terracinam coadunati, & triduano jejunio cum multis precibuys communiter celebrato, dominico tandem die IV. idus Martii mihi omnium indignissimo contra omne votum et desiderium, Deus scit, & plurimum renitenti regimen sedis apostolicae commisere, & omnium tam praesentium quam & absentium praedictorum fidelium consensu me eligentes, & auctoritatem atque imperium sanctae memoriae praedecessorum meorum Gregorii & Victoris habere se super hoc asserentes, longe impar viribus meis imposuerunt.

Sed quoniam, ut ante Deum loquar, nulla honoris ambitione, nulla omnino praesumtione, sed sola tot tantorumque religiosorum virorum non absque periculo contemnenda obedientia, confidens insuper de misericordia omnipotentis Dei, tantum onus in praesenti in tam periculoso tempore subire sum coactus, Rogamus & obsecramus in Domino Jesu, ut in ea quam coepistis, & quam domino & praedecessori nostro beatae memoriae Gregorio semper ostendistis fidelitate & devotione, & benevolentia firmiter maneatis, sanctamque Romanam ecclesiam matrem vestram, omnibus quibus valeatis auxiliis & consiliis adjuvetis.  De me porro ita in omnibus confidite, & credite sicut de beatissimo patre nostro papa Gregorio, cuius ex toto sequi vestigia cupiens, omnia quae respuit respuo, quae damnavit damno, quae dilexit prorsus amplector, quae vero rata & catholica duxerit confirmo & approbo, & ad postremum in utramque partem qualiter ipse sensis in omnibus omnino sentio atque consentio. 

Nunc ergo precor & amplector fraternitatem vestram, ut agatis viriliter atque constanter, & confortemini in potentia virtutis Dei ascendentes ex adverso & opponentes murum pro domo Israel, ut strenuissimi Domini bellatores stetis in praelio in die ipsius.  Vos ergo qui spiritualiter estis, eos qui instructi non sunt verbis & exemplis instruite, &exhortamini sicut scitis & necessitas exigit hujus periculosi temporis. Cum enim apud vos eram, tales vos omnes inveni, ut voce ipsius Domini possem clamare:  Amen dico vobis, non inveni tantam fidem in Israel: qui autem perseveraverit in finem, hic salvus eris [~Matt. 24: 13]. Insuper apud omnipotentis Dei misericordiam continuas preces effundite, quatenus & ecclesiam suam sanctam in gradum pristinum misericorditer restaurate dignetur.  Ipse autem Deus pacis conterat satanam sub pedibus vestri velociter.  Gratia Domini nostri Jesu Christi sit cum omnibus vobis, dilectissimi in Christo.

Datum apud Terracinam III. idus Martii. [March 13, 1088, the day after the election]

 



episcopi et cardinales was a common formula. It can be found, for example, in Bonizo of Sutri's liber ad amicum [MGH SS Libelli de lite 1, p. 588], where, speaking of the 'election' of Leo IX, he says: Cui cum episcopi et cardinales hoc ei respondentes dicerent; 'Hec fuit causa te vocandi, ut te nobis eligeremus pontificem,' et archidiaconus ex more clamaret: 'Domnum Leonem pontificem sanctus Petrus elegit', populusque subsequens vocibus iteratis hoc concreparent, cardinales et episcopi, ut moris est, beatorum apostolorum principis cathedre [eum] intronizarunt.  Paulus Diaconus uses the phrase several times in his narration of the events of 1085-1088.  Bruno of Segni uses it in his hagiographical "Life of Leo IX" {Muratori, RIS III. 2, col. 351:  Iussit igitur episcopi et cardinales  aliosque clericos vocari ad se...    Cf. Alexander II, who employs a contrast between cardinals and bishops in his letter to the seven cardinals of S. Peter's:  adeo ut quisque cardinalis haud secus aliquid in eis disponat et iudicet, quam episcopi in suo episcopio facere cognoscuntur [Pflugk-Harttung Acta pontifica Romanorum inedita II, no. 120; Kehr IP I, p. 7 no. 9].  Incidentally, Gregory VII and Urban II make a distinction between deacons and cardinal deacons [Kehr IP I, p. 7 nos. 10-11;  Kehr, Nachrichten (1908) p. 228 no. 3].  For additional examples of episcopi et cardinales see L. Duchesne, "Le sedi episcopali nell' antico ducato di Roma," Archivio della R. società Romana di storia patria 15 (1892) 475-502, at 476, where he remarks, "Ancora nel dodicesimo secolo si parlava di cardinali e di vescovi riservando la prima denominazione ai preti dei ventotto titoli e ai diaconi delle diciotto diaconie."

The number of unnamed bishops is  XVI in one letter and XX & I in the other.  There is a simple paleographical error, though which letter is wrong is not clear.  The Salzburg letter (which comes from a ms. at S. Germain des Pres in Paris and is not the original autograph) clearly means XXI, however.  It is not usual to write XV & I.   In the proceedings of the Lateran Council of March 18, 1112 [Monumenta Germaniae Historica Legum, Constitutiones et acta publica I (Hannoverae 1893), no. 399, pp. 570-573],  there appears a long list of the participants,  first of archbishops and patriarchs, then of some twelve bishops:  Episcopi vero ... et alii fere C episcopi;  a few are cardinal bishops, but many are certainly not. Then follows a list of cardinals:  Cardinales vero... The formula is the same as in the Electoral Manifesto of Urban II, and indicates that it is not a necessary inference that all of the bishops mentioned are cardinal bishops.

The letter to the Archbishop of Salzburg says R[anerius] cardinalis tituli S. Clementis omnium cardinalium: that Cardinal Rainerius was spokesman for all the cardinals, which must mean cardinal priests and not cardinal bishops or cardinal deacons—who are separately mentioned.   When the Salzburg letter states & religiosissimus abbas Cassinensis omnium diaconorum,  it obviously means what is much clearer in the Cluny letter: Abbas vero Cassinensis Cardinalis Diaconus caeterorum Diaconorum.  This gives some information as to the the application of the word "cardinalis" in the context of the letters.  "episcopi et cardinales", therefore, must mean Bishops and Cardinal Priests and Cardinal Deacons. This is the sense used by Pope Leo IX on April 22, 1049, in his recognition of the transfer of John Bishop of Porto from Toscana [Ughelli, Italia sacra I, 120-125; Bullarium Romanum Turin edition I, no. xii, pp. 598-599; JL 4163; Hüls p. 117]: Pari modo concedimus et confirmamus vobis vestrisque successoribus in perpetuum omnem ordinationem episcopalem tam de presbyteris quam de diaconis vel diaconistis sive subdiaconis, consecrationem ecclesiarum vel altarum, quam in tota Transtyberi necesse fuerit facienda, nisi forte cardinales, diaconi vel subdiaconi aut acolyti sacri Lateranensis palatii efficiantur...   And again, in his grant of privileges to the Archbishop of Cologne on May 7, 1052 [ Bullarium Romanum Turin edition I, no. xxv, p. 616; JL 4271]: Concedimus etiam, atque perpeuo largimur, ut maius altare ecclesiae suae Matris Virginis honori dedicatum, et aliud ibidem apostolorum principi B. Petro addictum, veneranter ministrando procureat septem idonei cardinales presbyteri dalmaticis induti, quibus etiam cum totidem diaconibus ac subdiaconibus ad hoc ministerium prudenter electis, ut sandaliis utantur, concedimus et constituimus.

Many copies of this form letter were made by various scriptores in the papal Chancellery, which had not had a stable home in several years. Rome, of course, was in the hands of the Imperialists and Clement III (though Clement himself was at Ravenna:  Jahrbücher der deutschen Geschichte 26 [Heinrich IV. Band IV] (Leipzig 1903), p. 202; JL 5327-5328).



 

Designation of a Successor

At the end of the 11th century, it was not unheard of for a dying pope to attempt to designate his successor; indeed, this was a custom, irregularly observed, down to the 19th century. Cardinals often took the advice of their dying leader. They were, however, constrained by the Constitution of Nicholas II, which placed the responsibility for recommending the name of a new pope in the hands of the Cardinal Bishops, who would then submit a name to the rest of the Cardinals, and then to the clerics and then the people of Rome, for their approval [JL I, p. 558; but note that the word 'episcopi' does not occur in the Imperial version: Watterich I, 229; Monumenta Germaniae Selecta III, iv.b, p. 14.  It has been argued that the Roman version is heavily interpolated in the light of later practice].

Pope Gregory VII (Hildebrand) had been driven from Rome by his own subjects. They were angry at the behavior of the troops of Duke Robert Guiscard, who had rescued Pope Gregory from the army of Emperor Henry IV.   Henry's men, however, occupied Rome, and the Roman clergy and people had elected Henry's pope, "Clement III" (Guibert/Wibert), as their pope, repudiating Gregory VII. They enthroned Clement in the Lateran Basilica on March 24, 1084. Henry himself was crowned Holy Roman Emperor in Rome by "Clement III" on Easter, March 31, 1084.   Pope Gregory fled to Montecassino, and then Salerno. On his deathbed at Salerno (May 1085), Gregory named three desirable successors [ Hugo Flaviniacensis Chronicon II, MGH SS 8, p. 466, derived from a letter of Odo of Castillon (the future Urban II), who was an eyewitness]:

It is said, that, at the time of Gregory's death, each of the three papabili was elsewhere; Anselm attending upon Countess Mathilda, Odo on an embassy in Germany, and Hugh in his diocese in France.

Paulus Bernriedensis (died ca. 1146-1150) wrote [Watterich I, p. 539]:

Praeterea [Gregorius] rogatus ut in tanta fidelium perturbatione sibi successorem et ecclesiae contra praenominatum adulterum designaret ultorem, trium dedit optionem, videlicet: Desiderii, cardinalis et abbatis coenobii Casinensis; atque reverendissimorum episcoporum Ottonis Ostiensis; et Hugo Lugdunensis. Verum quia Otto nondum a Germaniae et Galliae partibus redierat, ubi Apostolica legatione functus..., Hugo quoque sua lustrans gubernacula procul aberat: interim suasit eligi vicinum Desiderium , licet brevissime victurum, non tamen absque typo victoriae Victorem esse appellandum.

But the election of a new pope did not take place for nearly a year, and by that time two of the candidates were present (Odo and Hugh) and the third (not Abbot Desiderius, who had been a cardinal priest since March 6, 1159, but Anselm of Lucca) had died.   Paulus' remarks betray his own maladroit manipulation of his source material, or an Italian literary tradition already manipulated, and disqualify him as a reliable witness.

The Chronicon of Montecassino , nonetheless, says that the choice of Pope Gregory was Abbot Desiderius, the abbot of Montecassino since 1058 and Cardinal since 1059 Cardinalis Sancti Petri et abbas sancti Benedicti [Chronicon III. 65 in Migne PL 173, 801; MGH SS 7, 747; Migne, PL 148, column 1309; Gregory VII, Ep. VIII. 34 (A.D. 1181)]:

...interrogatus ante diem tertium obitus sui ab episcopis et cardinalibus, qui tunc una cum Desiderio praesentes erant, quid post suum obitum de Romanae sedis ordinatione iuberet; respondit, ut si unquam aliquo modo possent, eundem Desiderium ad hoc officium promoverent. Is enim praeter id quod primum presbyter cardinalis Romanae tunc ecclesiae esset, et prudentia maxima, et religione singulari, et principum circummanentium amicitia multa polleret. Si vero hunc nullatenus flectere ad ista valerent, aut archiepiscopum Lugdunensem Ugonem, aut Ottonem Hostiensem, aut Lucensem episcopum, quem prius ex is habere possent, in papam eligere post suum obitum quantocius festinarent.

One must wonder, at this point, whether the Benedictine tradition is manipulating the story to the benefit of one of its own. The scriptorium of Montecassino and Peter the Deacon, Leo Marsicanus' continuator, moreover, have an unsavory reputation as interpolators of bulls and forgers [E. Caspar, Petrus diaconus und die Monte Cassineser Fälschüngen (Berlin 1909)].

Victor III (1186?-1187)

An attempt at an election of a new pope did not take place, however, until a year after Gregory's death. Gregory had been driven out of Rome by Henry IV, and the city was occupied by the Antipope "Clement III" (elected pope by the Romans on March 24, 1184) [Gregorovius IV. 1, pp. 238-248]. Robert Guiscard and the Normans, beginning on May 28, 1184, had attacked the Imperialists in Rome and had destroyed a good deal of the city. They had taken a number of prisoners back to the south with them, including the Imperial Prefect of the City. The people of Rome remembered the Norman sack for centuries thereafter, and pitched their politics against the Normans and in favor of the Empire. "The sack of Rome remains a dark stain on Gregory's history, and also on that of Guiscard." {Gregorovius, p. 247-248]. It was some time before it was safe for the Cardinals to return to what was left of the city. In the meantime, Robert Guiscard had died, on July 17, 1085, and was succeeded by his son Roger.

When they finally began to attend to business, none of the Roman cardinals could have been cheered by the thought of becoming Pope.  The attention of the Cardinals came to be directed, not toward one of Pope Gregory's recommendations, but instead toward Cardinal Desiderius of S. Cecilia, the Abbot of Monte Cassino. He was an Italian, related to the princely family of Benevento, a reformer in the Gregorian and Cluniac mode, and someone who was friendly with the Norman Duke Roger—whose protection against the Imperialists and aid in restoring the Papacy to Rome was essential. He had interceded with Pope Gregory in 1180 on behalf of Duke Roger, and obtained the revocation of the excommunication against him [Petrus Diaconus, MGH SS 7, 736]. He was also Apostolic Vicar for southern Italy [Hirsch, p. 91 and n. 1]. Unfortunately, as Bernoldus pointed out, Cardinal Desiderius was not a healthy man: iam pluribus annis infirmus et in eadem infirmitate ordinatus [est].

On May 24, 1186, the 59 year old Cardinal and Abbot was certainly the leading candidate in the eyes of the electors. Abbot Desiderius, however, refused the election, many times, as any sensible person would, as he gazed at the physical and social ruins of Rome. Desiderius even indicated, when asked, that he would prefer to see Odo of Castillon, the Bishop of Ostia, elected. One of the Cardinals even protested that the proceedings were uncanonical, perhaps (it is conjectured—foolishly) because the election of Odo would involve the translation of a bishop from one see to another [H. Mann, Lives of the Popes VII, 221]. But that was an issue long settled; Alexander II, for example, had been Bishop of Lucca, and continued to hold the office even while pope. It is abundantly clear that Desiderius did not want the papacy, and that he was being put under extraordinary pressure. The proceedings thus far had been tumultuous.

Thereupon, the Cardinals assembled in the ruins of the City, at the Deaconry of S. Lucia in Saepta Solis, in the valley to the east of the Palatine Hill (the old Temple of the Syrian god Elagabalus), and formally elected Desiderius according to the canons (May 24, 1186). He assumed the name Victor III. They put the red pluviale on his shoulders, but they could not get him to put on the alb. His supporters were also unable to get him consecrated and crowned. The imperial opposition, led by the Imperial Prefect of the City— who had been released after the death of Robert Guiscard —had organized an anti-Norman resistance in the city, and they held control over the Vatican Basilica. Four days after the election, Victor left Rome and went to Ardea and then Terracina. He abandoned the use of all the papal regalia, and returned to his residence at the Monastery of Montecassino. During this time, however, the question of the canonical validity of Desiderius' election was again raised, and by Desiderius himself, according to Hugh, the Archbishop of Lyons. He appeared to have abandoned the trappings of the papacy, and refused again or resigned the papal office. During all that time since May 24, 1186, he had signed no papal document [The single reference to the Electoral Manifesto in Bernoldus' Chronicon ad annum 1187 (JL 5342) is highly problematical, both as to date and to content].

An important meeting was held at Capua in March, 1187 [JL I, p. 655; Petrus Diaconus Chronicon III. 68], to which (among others) Richard of Marseille, Hugo of Lyons, Archbishop Peter of Aix, who were all then in Salerno, were invited [Kehr, IP 8, p. 338 no. 34]. The meeting, which included the Norman Duke Roger, Jordanus the Prince of Capua, the Cardinals, and Cencius the Consul of Rome, again placed extreme pressure on Victor to relent and actually assume the papacy. He was only consecrated and crowned finally on May 9, 1087, by Odo Bishop of Ostia [Hugo Flaviniacensis (Hugh de Flavigny), Chronicon Book II, MGH SS 8, p. 468] but then he immediately returned to his monastery at Montecassino. The Chronicon Casinense [III. 68; Migne PL 173, 305] states that he was consecrated and enthroned by the BIshops of Ostia, Tusculum, Porto and Albano, with the assistance of cardinals, bishops, and abbots. He was summoned back to Rome by Countess Mathilda of Tuscany, but most of the city remained in the hands of his enemies and the imperial anti-pope. In July he was forced to leave the city again, thanks to the arrival of fresh imperial troops. During a stay at Beneventum in August of 1187, Victor III held a synod, during which he excommunicated Cardinal Richard, Abbot of St. Victor in Marseille, and Archbishop Hugh of Lyons [J.-D. Mansi, Sacrorum Conciliorum nova et amplissima collectio 20, column 640; Migne PL 149 columns 966-967; Massino, 11-20 and 32-37; Huls, p. 217]. He died on September 16 of the same year, only four months and one week after his coronation. The last lines of his funeral inscription acknowledges that he was pope for only four and a half months, i.e. from May 9, 1087, not from May 24, 1186 [Augustinus Olduin, Athenaeum Romanum (Perugia 1676), p. 180; Gregorovius, The Tombs of the Popes (Westminster 1903), p. 43]:

...Hoc senis lustris minus anno functus honore,
Quatuor et semis vix mensibus inde peractis
Bis sex lustra gerens [60 years], mortuus hic tumulor,
Solis virgineo stabat lux ultima signo,
Cum me sol verus hinc tulit ipse Deus.

Three days before his death, Victor III (1086-1087) had Dom Oderisius—whom he had made a Cardinal Deacon—Abbot of Monte Cassino (a position which Victor himself, who had been Abbot of Montecassino before his election, had not relinquished until that very moment), and he designated Odo of Castillon as his intended successor ("Life of Victor III," by Leo and Peter, Monks of Monte Cassino, Watterich I, 570; Chronicon Casinense III. 73, in Migne PL 173, 811):

Hoc statuto, omnium monachorum unanimi consensu, praefatis episcopis in eodem capitulo residentibus atque confirmantibus, domnum Oderisium religiosum valde virum et Romanum diaconum, qui tunc in hoc monasterio praepositurae fungebatur officio, abbatem constituit. Post haec, convocatis eisdem episcopis et cardinalibus, monuit atque praecepit ut juxta quod predecessor suus Papa Gregorius jam dudum decreverat, Ottonem Ostiensem episcopum in Papam eligere quanto possent citius persuderent eumque, quia presens erat, manu apprehendens caeteris episcopis tradidit, dicens, "Accipite eum et in Romanam Ecclesiam ordinate meamque vicem in omnibus, quousque id facere possitis, habete." His ita dispositis sepulchrum sibi construi in absida ipsius capituli iussit atque post diem tertium feliciter migravit ad Dominum XVI Kal. Octobris, anno dominicae incarnationis 1087.

Indeed, since he himself was dying, and since Anselm of Lucca had died during the Sede Vacante [March 18, 1086], and since Hugh of Lyons was Victor's most vigorous opponent and an excommunicate, the only other candidate of those named by Gregory VII on his deathbed was Odo of Castillon, Bishop of Ostia.


Cardinals

The Cardinals and others who participated in the Election of March 1088, following the death of Pope Victor III, numbered some forty persons. They certainly included:

It must be noticed immediately that Cardinal Raniero de Bieda was spokesman for all of the Cardinal Priests, and the Abbot of Montecassino was spokesman for all of the Cardinal Deacons;  Johannes, the Bishop of Porto was spokesman for all of the clergy of Rome.  In fact the number of cardinals and clergy in attendance at this important event was disappointingly small.  After nearly four months of trying to organize an Election, most of the important participants were not in attendance.  Urban II's manifesto attempts to put the best face on it by mentioning that there were 16 bishops in attendance, in addition to those named—to a total of twenty-one.  Had there been more cardinals present, it would have been to his great advantage to name them, in order to bolster his claim to legitimacy, but he does not, and probably could not. The truth is probably that prudent people were staying away and awaiting the development of events.

Hubaldus, Suburbicarian Bishop of Sabina, is mentioned by Urban II, but not by Paulus Diaconus, as being present.

One of those cardinals who certainly did not attend was Cardinal Richard, Abbot of S. Victor of Marseille, who had been excommunicated by Victor III in August of 1087 (He had been at Salerno in October of 1086, with Hugh of Lyons: Kehr IP 8, p. 317 no. 4; Massino, pp. 11-20). It is not known whether Rotger, the Cardinal Subdeacon S. R. E., was present or whether he participated, or in what capacity. He is mentioned by Hugh of Lyons in a letter to Countess Mathilda of Tuscany: De caetero, dilectum fratrem nostrum domnum Rotgerum, sanctae ecclesiae apostolicae sedis cardinalem subdiaconum, qui in proximo Romam per vos ad utilitatem sanctae ecclesiae venturum se dicit, nobilitati vestrae sicut necessarium commendamus. [See Catalano I, pp. 290-291].  There were also cardinal subdeacons of the Church of Ravenna [Bullarium Canonicum Regularium Congregationis Sanctissimi Salvatoris  (Romae 1733), p. 2, a decree of Archbishop Gualterius, January 23, 1136; Ughelli-Colet II, 366 (1141)]

Certainly not participating were ten excommunicated cardinals who had joined Clement III (Guibert of Ravenna) in his schism: Leo the Cardinal Archpriest (created in 1049, joined Clement III in 1180, died under Urban II); Beno (created in 1057, joined Clement in 1084, died 1098/1099); Ugobaldus (created in 1058 and died during Urban II's reign); Petrus the Chancellor (excommunicated in 1185); Hatto Bishop of Palestrina (created in 1063, joined Clement III in 1084); Innocentius (created in 1075 and excommunicated in 1084); Leo; Theodinus, the Archdeacon along with the Cardinal Deacon Crescentius (created 1075), and the deacon Joannes [list in "Cardinal Beno", Gesta Romanae Aecclesiae contra Hildebrandum, in MGH SS Libelli 2, 369]. One may add to this list Cardinal Hugo Candidus, Cardinal Priest in the titulus of S. Clemente (created 1049, joined "Honorius II" in 1061 but went over to Alexander II in 1068, participated in the Diet of Worms in January, 1074 [Watterich I, p. 372], signed the deposition of Gregory VII in 1080 [Watterich I, p. 442], and participated in the election of "Clement III"; died 1098).  From the perspective of these cardinals, there was no vacancy in the papal throne at all;  Clement III was their pope.

It may also be remarked, with reference to the use of the word "cardinal", that Latin usage was a good deal looser in the XI Century than later, and still in a process of refinement.  There is, for instance,  a privilegium granted by Urban II  within months of the Election [August 23, 1088:  Pflugk-Harttung, Acta pontificum Romanorum II (Stuttgart 1884) , pp. 141-142,  Nr. 175 (JL 53650; Kehr IP II, p. 137 no. 7], to Bishop Peter, the Bishop of Anagni (where Urban II was staying at the time):

Praeterea Trevensam ecclesiam, quia et pauper est, ut proprium competenter et digne nequeat redditibus suis sustentare pontificem, et iam dudum a nostris predecessoribus, reverende scilicet memorie Nicolao, Alexandro, Gregorio septimo, predecessorum tuorum procurationi commissa est, et a Victore reverende memorie tertio, qui nos post ipsos novissimus in hoc sacerdotalis regimine precessit officii, sub tuo, ut inventa, ita est et dimissa, regimine nos ex tuto tuo tuorum successorum iuri perpetua firmatione contradimus, ut eam cardinaliter amodo iuris episcopalis dicione possideatis, custodiatis ac disponatis cum omnibus quae ad eam iuste pertinere videntur, municipiis, id est valle Petrarum Filittino, Genne, Colle Altulo.  Quicquid super ista fundorum vel ecclesiarum aut predecessorum tuorum cura, aut fraternitatis tue studium iuste et canonice acquisivit vel acquiret in posterum, Anagnine, quam deo auctore gubernas, ecclesie concedimus atque firmamus, quatinus commissi vobis populi animarum curam valeatis facilius ac diligentius exhibere

In addition to a confirmation of the usual privileges always granted to the Bishop of Anagni, Pope Urban confirms the assignment (made by his Predecessors Nicholas II, Alexander II, Gregory VII, and Victor III) of the Diocese of Trevi to the Bishop of Anagni [Cappelletti, Chiese d' Italia VI, pp. 386-389]. This was done in consideration of the fact that the Diocese of Trevi was too poor to support a bishop.  The grant is made perpetual (suppressing the Diocese of Trevi), and in such a way  ut eam cardinaliter amodo iuris episcopalis dicione possideatis.   The meaning is clearly that the Bishop of Anagni possesses Trevi without any intervening authority between the Bishop and the Pope,  i.e. cardinaliter.   This certainly does not mean that the Bishop of Anagni is a cardinal, merely (in feudal language) that he is a direct vassal of his overlord the Pope, the Pope is his suzerain.   This was surely the situation with Bruno of Segni as well, and a number of other "cardinals" of the XI and XII centuries, such as Offo of Nepi [cf. Kehr, IP II, p. 176].  One may also point to abbots of monasteries directly dependent upon the Holy See who also claimed to be "cardinals":  e.g.  S. Clemente a Casauria (Casa-Auri) in the Abruzzi, SS. Trinité de Vendôme [U. Robert, Etude sur les actes du Pape Calixte II, clii, no. 319A], and even Cluny.  SS. Trinité de Vendôme actually calls itself a "cardinalatial abbey".


Election

The Papal Curia was staying at Terracina when the pope died.  Joannes, the Bishop of Tusculum, took the lead.  On March 9, he spoke to all those assembled for the Election in the Cathedral of St. Peter in Terracina (Watterich, 575-576; Petrus Diaconus Cassinensis, in Migne, Patrologiae 173, columns 824-826; MGH VII, p. 761):

Altera igitur die convenerunt omnes .... et cum resedissent, surgens in medium Tusculanensis episcopus retulit per ordinem omnia quae de ordinatione Ecclesiae vel Papa Gregorius antea vel postmodum Papa VIctor statuerant; simul etiam quam ob causam ipsimet universi tunc in eodem loco convenerant. Dein surgens episcopus Portuensis et Benedictus praefactus retulerunt et ipsi tam clericorum quam laicorum fidelium a Roma super hoc negotio legationem pariter atque consensum....Cumque huius monasterii abbas et archiepiscopus Capuanus et ad postremum cuncti, qui convenerant, bene factum recte dictum laudassent.

He first rehearsed all that had taken place in the Election of Gregory VII and then the Election of Victor III, and stated the reason why they had all gathered together that day in that place. Then, on the morning of Sunday, March 12, the three Cardinal Bishops (Porto, Tusculum, Albano) announced that they wished the fourth Cardinal Bishop, Odo of Ostia, to be elected. Note again that Bruno of Segni is not one of the participants:

Dominica itaque die [March 12], valde mane, omnes iterum in eadem ecclesia congregati, cum inter se pariter nonnulla de re huiuscemodi tractavissent, exurgentes tres cardinales episcopi, qui caput eiusdem concilii erant, Portuensis scilicet, Tusculanensis et Albanensis ambonem ascenderunt factoque silentio uno simul ore pronuntiant, Ottonem episcopum placere sibi in Romanum Pontificem eligendum. Cumque utrum omnibus idem quoque placeret, sicut est consuetudo, requirerent, repente mirabili ac summa concordia omnes magna voce, hoc sibi placere dignumque illum universi conclamant apostolicae sedis Papam existere. Tunc Albanensi episcopo pronuntiante, Urbanum illum placere vocari, mox cuncti surgentes capiunt eumque cappam laneam exuentes, purpuream induunt, et cum acclamatione atque invocatione sancti Spiritus ad altare Beati Petri Apostoli illum pertrahentes in pontificali solio ponunt, quarto Idus Martii: sicque ab eodem Pontifice missa sollemniter celebrata, universi gaudentes Deoque gratias referentes redierunt ad sua.

All cried out in agreement in a loud voice that it was pleasing to them and that he was worthy to be Pope. The Cardinal Bishop of Albano announced that Bishop Odo wished to be called Urban. They then clothed him with the papal mantle and placed him on the episcopal throne. Since Urban II was already a bishop, he did not need to be consecrated. He was enthroned on the day of his election. But it was not until November that he was able to return to Rome [Gregorovius, p. 271; JL I, p. 660].

 


Subscriptions to papal documents give a good idea of who (some of) the cardinals were at any given time. The subscriptions are not, of course, exhaustive, but they are positive testimony for a particular date.

At the Roman Synod of 1081 [Migne, Patrologiae 148, 822], the following were present:


 


Bibliography

Paul von Bernried, Canon of Regensburg, "S. Gregorii VII Vita," J.P. Migne (ed.), Patrologiae Cursus Completus Series Latina Tomus CXLVIII: Sancti Gregorii VII Epistolae et Diplomata Pontificia (Paris 1878), 39-104. [a 'mediocre author": Gregorovius IV. 1, p. 311 n.2.] = Watterich I, pp. 474-546.

Pandulphus Pisanus, "Vita Gregorii Papae VII,", columns 304-351; "Vita Urbani Papae II," columns 352-353; Bernardus Guidonis, "Vita Urbani Papae II," columns 353-355; in: Antonio Muratori (editor), Rerum Italicarum Scriptores Tomus III, pars 1.

Bertold Constantiniensis, "Acta Pontifica, ex Chronico Bertoldi Constantiniensis," J. P. Migne (editor), Patrologiae Latinae Cursus Completus 148, 103-114.

I. M. Watterich, Pontificum Romanorum qui fuerunt inde ab exeunte saeculo IX usque ad finem saeculi XIII vitae ab aequalibus conscriptae Tomus I (Lipsiae 1862), 570-576.

Johannes Adolphus Hartmann, Vita Victoris Tertii Pontificis Romani (Marburg 1729).

Petrus Diaconus Cassiniensis, Chronicon in: J. P. Migne (editor) Patrologiae Latinae Cursus Completus Tomus 173. Erich Caspar, Petrus Diaconus und die Monte Cassinenser Fälschungen (Berlin 1909). H. Zatschek, "Zu Petrus Diaconus. Beiträge zur Entstehungsgeschichte des Registers, der Fortsetzung der Chronik, und der Besitzbestätigung Lothars III. fur Monte Cassino," Neues Archiv 47 (1928) 174-224. H.W. Klewitz, "Petrus Diaconus und die Montecassineser Klosterchronik des Leo von Ostia," Archiv für Urkundenforschung 14 (1936) 414-453. H.W. Klewitz, "Die Entstehung des Kardinalkollegiums," Zeitschrift der Savigny-Stiftung fur Rechtsgeschichte. kakonische Abteilung 25 (1936) 115-221. H.E.J.Cowdrey, The Age of Abbot Desiderius. Montecassino, the Papacy, and the Normans in the Eleventh and Early Twelfth Centuries (Oxford 1983). M. Dell' Omo, "Leo Marsicano (Leone Ostiense), Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani 64 (Roma 2005), 552-557.

An extensive collection of relevant material on Urban II: Jean Mabillon and T. Ruinart, Ouvrages posthumes de D. Jean Mabillon et de D. Thierri Ruinart Tome III (Paris 1724), "contenant la Vie d' Urbain II. les Preuves et le Voiage d' Alsace et de Lorraine, par D(om) T(hierry) Ruinart".

Cardella, Lorenzo, Memorie storiche de' cardinali della Santa Romana Ecclesia tomo primo parte prima (Roma: Pagliarini 1792). Rudolf Hüls, Kardinale, Klerus und Kirchen Roms: 1049-1130 (Niemeyer 1977) [Bibliothek des deutschen historischen Instituts in Rome, 48].

Gerold Mener von Knonan, Jahrbücher des Deutschen Reiches unter Heinrich IV. und Heinrich V.: Vierter Band, 1085 bis 1096 (Leipzig 1903). Ernst Bernheim (editor), Quellen zur Geschichte des Investiturstreites Heft I: Zur Geschichte Gregors VII und Heinrichs IV (Leipzig 1907); Heft 2: Zur Geschichte des Wormser Konkordates (Leipzig 1907). Otto Köhncke, Wibert von Ravenna (Papst Clemens III) (Leipzig 1888). Joseph Schnitzer, Die Gesta Romanae Ecclesiae des Kardinals Beno, und andere Streitschriften der schismatischen Kardinäle wider Gregor VII. (Bamberg: C.C. Buchner 1892).   Johannes Massino, Gregor VII. im Verhältnis zu seinen Legaten (Greifswold 1907).  . Paul Fridolin Kehr, "Zur Geschichte Wiberts von Ravenna (Clemens III)," Sitzungsberichte der Preussischen Akademie der Wissenschaften (1921), 355-368; 973-988.

Lucien Paulot, Un pape français, Urbain II (Paris 1903). Eduard Franz, Papst Paschalis II (Breslau 1877). F. Gregorovius, History of Rome in the Middle Ages, Volume IV. 1 second edition, revised (London: George Bell, 1896) [Book VII, chapters 6-7], pp. 261-270. Alfons Becker, Papst Urban II (1088-1099) (A. Hiersemann 1988) [Schriften der Monumenta Germaniae Historica, 19]. Ferdinand Hirsch, "Desiderius von Montecassino als Papst Victor III," Forschungen zur Deutschen Geschichte 7 (München 1867), 3-103 (esp. pp. 88 ff.). A. Fliche, "L' élection d' Urbain II," Le Moyen Âge 19 (1916), 379 ff. A. Fliche, "Le Pontificat de Victor III," Revue d' histoire ecclésiastique 20 (1924) 387-412. A. Becker, Papst Urban II (1088-1099) 2 volumes (Stuttgart 1964, 1988), I, 91-96. R. Gregoire, Bruno di Segni, exégète médiéval et théologien monastique (Spoleto 1965). E. Pásztor, "Per la storia del cardinalato nel secolo XI: gli elettori di Urbano II, " Società, istitutizioni, spiritualità. Studi in onore di Cinzio Violante II (Spoleto 1994) 581-598 [Nothing of importance. She writes apparently in ignorance of Ganzer, repeating Klewitz and Gregoire, though not following Gregoire in his dismissal of the cardinalate of Bruno of Segni]. Cristina Colotto, "Vittore III" Enciclopedia dei Papi (Roma 2000). Simonetta Cerrini, "Urbano II," Enciclopedia dei Papi (Roma 2000)

Richard Zöpffel Die Papstwahlen und die mit ihnen im nächsten Zusammenhange stehenden Ceremonien (Göttingen 1871). Karl Holder, Die Designation der Nachfolger durch die Päpste (Freiburg: Weith 1892), 51-56.   Louis Duchesne, "Le sedi episcopali nell' antico ducato di Roma," Archivio della R. società Romana di storia patria 15 (1892) 475-502.

 

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