Sede Vacante 1409

Conclave: June 15—June 26, 1409




Palace of Archbishops, Pisa
Palace of the Archbishops, Pisa
Site of the Conclave of 1409

The Council of Pisa

Frustration among European leaders, lay and clerical, had been growing for years. The schism which had begun in 1378 over the elections of Urban VI and Clement VII, had led to greater and greater acrimony among the contending parties, to the political annoyance and spiritual angst of people of every sort of commitment. A first way to solve the problem had been tried by Charles of Anjou, who took his army into Italy, intending to take his Kingdom of Naples, left to him by his adopted mother, Queen Johanna, and to destroy Urban VI, who had humiliated and ruined Queen Johanna. But the Via Belli was not acceptable to the Church, its theologians or its canon lawyers. A set of strategies had been worked out for ending the schism, but neither pope could be brought to embrace one of them. Even after the deaths of Urban and Clement, their successors continued the squabbles, and, though they talked repeatedly about healing the schism, practical measures to do so were defeated by quibbling and tergiversation (Sauerland, passim.). The option that both popes should simultaneously resign so that a new pope, acceptable to all sides could be elected (the Way of Cessation, Via Compromissi), was popular, and was embraced by one or another pope according to his strategy of the moment. But it was never carried into effect. Finally, the Way of the Council, either of a Particular Council, with limited attendance, to bring about a double resignation, or a General Council of all prelates (Via Concilii) was adopted by one interested bystander after another, as the only solution by which Christendom might heal itself without the assistance of two obstinate Popes .   [See, e.g., the presentation of Nicholas Clemangius to King Charles VI of France on behalf of the University of Paris, June 6, 1394, before the death of Clement VII: Du Boulay, Historia Universitatis Parisiensis 4, pp. 687-699].

Pope Gregory had fled from Rome and the tyranny of the Condottiere Paolo Orsini on August 9, 1407. He took up residence in Viterbo, intending (so he said) to travel to the meeting with Benedict XIII which was being planned for Savona. In September, he and eight cardinals arrived in Siena, where, thanks to the presence of the French (whose famous marshal Boucicault was governing Genoa on behalf of King Charles), he was able to claim that Savona was no longer a safe place for him to appear. Negotiations began again towards finding an appropriate site for a meeting between the two popes. Negotiations were managed by Gregory's nephews, who were in no hurry to end the schism and their own influence. Writing from Genoa to Benedict XIII in January of 1408, Petrus de Alliaco, the Bishop of Cambrai (1396-1412), remarked that Gregory did not appear to be prepared to give peace to the Church by way of the Via Cessionis, as he had promised, sworn and vowed at his election and coronation (and which Benedict desired). This boded ill for the Church, and Pierre d'Ailly saw only three options: (1) a Constitution in which both parties agreed to a union of both parties in the event of the death of one of them; (2) a General Council of the Benedictine obedience, which could be accomplished quickly and presented no immediate danger; (3) a third option (which he declines to name) because it could not be accomplished without the consent and help of a General Council [He probably means deposition of one or the other or both claimants]. Benedict eventually implemented the second plan in 1409 with the Council of Perpignan, but it was too little and too late. He was already being deserted by his supporters.

Gregory, in fear of the fleet that Benedict XIII had in northern Italy in 1408, removed himself to Lucca (where he stayed until his return to Siena on July 14, 1408) and suspended negotiations. In the meantime, King Ladislaus of Naples saw his opportunity; he offered bribes to Paolo Orsini to put Rome into his hands, but when the Romans discovered what was being contemplated, they themselves made a treaty with the King and gave him control over all of their fortresses and over the government of their city. On April 25, 1408 King Ladislaus of Sicily entered Rome in triumph. His troops occupied the Patrimony of St. Peter and Umbria, and he was recognized by Amelia, Assisi, Orte, Perugia and Todi. At the end of June, leaving behind a committee (including Cristoforo Caetani, Lord of Fondi) to rule the city for him, he returned to Naples. Papal government in central Italy was nearly extinguished. Amazingly, Gregory did not even recall his ambassador to Naples.

In May of 1408, Pope Gregory decided to create new cardinals [Theoderic de Nyem de schismate III. 31; Baronius-Theiner, sub anno 1408, no. 59, pp. 222-223]. This was a major political mistake on his part. His failure to arrange a meeting with Benedict XIII and to resign if necessary to end the schism, as promised in 1406 during the Conclave and again before his coronation, was already a major irritant:

... si quis eorum assumptus fuerit ad apicem summi Apostolatus, pro redintegratione unitatis christianorum, renuntiabit et cedet praetensis juri suo et papatui, sive decedat, dummodo anticardinales effectualiter velint cum eisdem dominis sacri collegii sic convenire et concordare, quod ex sacro collegio et ipsis sequatur justa canonica electio unici summi Romani Pontificis....

He had also agreed and sworn not to create new cardinals, except to keep his own college on a par with the cardinals of Benedict XIII:

pendente tractatu unionis hujusmodi effectualiter et realiter ex utraque parte non creabit nec faciet aliquem cardinalem nisi causa coaequandi numerun sui sacri collegii cum numero perversi collegii anticardinalium praedictorum, nisi ex defectu steterit adversae partis, quod unionis praefatae conclusio infra annum a fine dictorum trium mensium computandum non fuerit subsecuta....

There was certainly no need to create new cardinals in May of 1408. The older cardinals, moreover, were so indignant at Gregory's four choices (tainted as they were by nepotism), and the fact that the cardinals themselves had not been consulted in Consistory beforehand, that they refused to attend the Consistory for the installation ceremonies on May 12, 1408. Gregory's angry reaction caused them to wonder whether they might become victims of retaliation, as six of Urban VI's cardinals had been. On Wednesday, May 11, 1408, Jean Gilles, the Cardinal of Liège (who died July 1, 1408), removed himself from Lucca, where the Pope was in residence, and went (first) to a castle held by the Florentines some four miles away, and presently to Pisa. The Pope's nephew Paolo Corrario pursued him with troops, attempted to catch him and to bring him back a prisoner, but without success [Gregorovius, 600-601]. The papal violence was so shocking, however, that seven more cardinals deserted Lucca along with their retinues that same evening, and made for Pisa. They were Angelo Acciaioli (Bishop of Ostia), Antonio Gaetani (then Bishop of Palestrina), Corrado Caraccioli of S. Crisogono, Giordano Orsini (then of SS. Silvestro e Martino ai Monti), Rinaldo Brancaccio of SS. Vito e Modesto, and Oddone Colonna of S. Giorgio in Velabro.   Cardinal Petrus Blavi of S. Angeli arrived in Lucca on the same day, May 11, and departed the next morning for Pisa. No doubt to prove that he was in the right, Gregory XII further amplified the number of his cardinals in September of 1408 with nine more members. Again, there was no need and no consultation, and further offense was given to the cardinals at Pisa. The Council of Pisa in its fifteenth session, June 5, 1409, demonstrated the importance of Gregory's offense in creating new cardinals by annulling the creations of May, 1408 [Mansi 27, 404]:

Et insuper omnes promotiones, immo verius profanationes quorumcumque ad cardinalatum per dictos contendentes de papatu, vel eorum utrumque attentatos, per dictum Angelum a die tertia Maii, et Petrum antedictum a die XV. Junii anni proxime praeteriti MCCCCVIII. fuisse et esse nullas, cassas, irritas et inanes, et quatenus de facto proceserunt, de facto annullandas, cassandas, et irritandas, et sic et etiam ad cautelam quatenus expediat omni modo et jure quibus melius potest, praefata sancta Synodus per hanc definitivam sententiam cassat, irritat et annullat...

Actual preparations for a General Council began with the sending of an embassy by Pope Benedict XIII to Italy, around May 20, 1408.  Four cardinals led the embassy: Guy de Malsec (Bishop of Palestrina), Pierre de Thury, Pierre Blau (died December 12, 1409), and Antoine de Chalant (Ehrle, Archiv  7, p. 635, 644; Valois, 4). They were also to sound out the Cardinals of Gregory XII as to the prospects for Church union. Benedict XIII's instructions for the Embassy survive. Three of his four cardinals, to his great anger, found common cause with Gregory's alienated cardinals. On June 29, 1408, thirteen cardinals who were gathered in a meeting at Livorno (who also had the proxies of two other cardinals) undertook a series of promises directed toward the holding of a General Council of the Church for the healing of the schism. Within a few months, seven more cardinals subscribed to the Livorno declaration.

Deposition of Gregory XII and Benedict XIII

On January 26, 1409, the Florentines withdrew from obedience to Pope Gregory, at least partially and conditionally [Baronius-Theiner, p. 233 n. 1; Mansi Sacrorum Conciliorum 27, columns 425-435]. Since Pisa was in Florentine territory, this was yet another blow to Gregory XII's influence over central Italy and over events.

The Council of Pisa had its opening ceremonies on March 25, 1409. During the first business session on March 26, the consistorial advocate who was speaking from the pulpit referred to "Errorius and Benefictus", rather than Gregorius and Benedictus (Valois IV, p. 90). On June 5, 1409, at its Fifteenth Session, the Council of Pisa deposed and anathematized both Benedict XIII and Gregory XII as notorious schismatics, heretics and perjurers:

... ipsoque Angelum Corrario et Petrum de Luna de papatu, ut praefertur, contendentes, et eorum utrumque fuisse, et esse notorios schismaticos, et antiquitati schismatis nutritores, defensores, fautores, et approbatores, et manutentores, pertinaces, necnon notorios haereticos et a fide devios, notoriisque criminibus enormis perjurii et violatione voti irrretitos, universalem ecclesiam sanctam Dei notorie scandalizantes, cum incorrigibilitate, contumacia et pertinacia notoriis, evidentibus et manifestis, et ex his ac aliis se redidisse omni honore et dignitate etiam papali indignos, ipsosque et eorum utrumque propter praemissas iniquitates, crimina et excessus, ne regnent vel imperent aut praesint, a Deo et sacris canonibus fore ipso facto abjectos et privatos, ac etiam ab ecclesia praecisos; et nihilominus ipsos Petrum et Angelum et eorum utrumque per hanc definitivam sententiam in his scriptis privat, abjicit, et praescindit, inhibendo eisdem, ne eorum aliquis pro summo pontifice gerere se praesumat, ecclesiamque vacare Romanam ad cautelam insuper decernendo....

Unluckily for the Lord of Pesaro, Carlo Malatesta, Bologna and northern Tuscany had been placed by Pope Benedict XI in the hands of Baldassare Cossa, who was now a Cardinal, and he had managed to build himself a more-or-less independent principality centered on his Legateship of Bologna, as Pope Gregory stumbled from one maladroit action to another under the influence of his nephews. Cossa had broken with Gregory, of course, by signing the call of the Cardinals for a General Council on August 30, 1408 [Martenè et Durand VII, 803-808], and Gregory had, of course, excommunicated Cossa along with the others. His opposition to Gregory had profound practical effects on Gregory's grip on central Italy. Gregory's opinion of him had been published to the world [Baronius-Theiner sub anno 1408, nos. lxvi, p. 227]:

Hos tamen tempore et malitia longe ante praecessit iniquitatis alumnus, et perditionis filius damnatus Baldassar Cossa olim S. Eustachii diaconus cardinalis, qui tyrannice sub mentito nomine legationis nostras et sanctae Romanae Ecclesiae terras occupans, odiis et errorum furiis debacchatus fere per annum ante recessum olim cardinalium praedictorum de Luca studuit per nonnullos ad hoc invitatos, et falsitatibus informatos, nos perjurii et schismatis maculis infamare, et fecit quantum potuit ad hoc contra nos publice divulgari, successive sollicitans adversus nos insurgere cardinales, praelatos, principes, communitates et alias privatas personas, inter quos praecipue mendaciis, precibus, pretio ac pollicitationibus seduxit Petrum de Candia tunc Basilicae XII Apostolorum, et Joannem, timorem eidem incutiendo, tunc S. Crucis in Jerusalem presbyteros cardinales, ut sibi caeterisque rebellibus et schismaticis adhaererent. Nec his malis contentus excsecrabilia quaedam mandata poenalia fecit, ne quis nos papam diceret aut scriberet, arma nostra in nostrum et Sedis Apostolicae opprobrium turpiter et manifeste de locis publicis et privatis faciens deleri et captivari jubens: nuntios nostros et quamplures ad curiam adventantes perturbavit, et pecuniis et bonis aliis spoliavit, praecludens omnem viam, quam potuit, ne litterae nostrae per nos de indicto Concilio generali, et aliis veritatibus edocendis ad praelatos, principes et communitates, eorumque ad nos pervenirent.

Carlo Malatesta, however, was Gregory's voice at a Council to which he had been invited, but which he had no intention of recognizing or attending. He had spent his entire reign trying to keep either a General Council or a Particular Council from being assembled. Then the Council had deposed him, putting Malatesta in a particularly difficult position. He was the host of the ex-pope in his own territory, and he ruled the Romagna as Gregory's legate. His base of power was in danger. Through his agents, Carlo Malatesta was in contact with Cardinal Baldassare Cossa, and no doubt others in the Sacred College. Their two legations shared common borders and common interests. Unfortunately, Cardinal Cossa did not spend much time in Pisa in the Spring of 1409, and although Malatesta peppered the cardinals with his own personal visits and colloquies, with letters, memoranda and briefs (which survive in quantity; see e.g. "Acta et tracta inter Carolum de Malatestis et Cardinales existentes pro extinctione schismatis", Mansi 27, 245-298), the magnitude of what was going on in Pisa diminished his voice. His repetition of old arguments which previously had led nowhere increased the exasperation of the Cardinals with the bad faith of Gregory and his party. At least it can be said that Pope Gregory's views had an extensive hearing and reply at the Council. Malatesta also had ambassadors in Pisa, one ecclesiastical person and one layman, a Bishop and a lawyer. Each would have his own entrée and his own manner of presentation and argumentation. In 1409 the ambassadors were Paul, Bishop of Cervi (who arrived in Pisa on April 5, 1409: Mansi 27, 339) and Johannes de Petra-Longa.

 

The Cardinals

At the assembly of the Cardinals at Livorno in June 1408, which resulted in their sworn agreement, the Cardinals anticipated that the two Colleges of Cardinals would unite to elect a replacement for Benedict and Gregory: nos provideri taliter, quod per canonicam electionem a nobis ambobus collegiis in unum convenientibus faciendam, provideatur ecclesiae de unico vero et indubitato pastore. This agreement to unite the two Colleges was formally ratified by the Council of Pisa in a decree of May 10, 1409.

All of Gregory XII's cardinals, with the exception of Antonio Calvi, had left him to join the other cardinals, though even Cardinal Calvi finally abandoned Gregory for his colleagues at Pisa (he came to Pisa on June 16, 1409, in time for the Conclave). On December 14, 1408, Gregory had deprived most of the members of his Sacred College of their status as cardinals. On January 19, 1409, they were excommunicated. [Contelori, Elenchus, p. 130]. Those deprived were [Baronius-Theiner sub anno 1408, nos. 61-66, pp. 224-228; and again p. 235]:

Gregory was especially harsh on Cardinal Cossa, who was very competent (Gregory admits) at winning away his cardinals (especially Petrus de Candia and Giovanni Migliorati) and depriving him of resources and communications [Mansi 27, column 69]:

Hoc tamen tempore et malitiis longe ante praecessit iniquitatis alumnus et perditionis filius, damnatus Baldasar Cossa olim S. Eustachii diaconus cardinalis, qui tyrannice sub mentito nomine legationis, nostras et sanctae Romanae Ecclesiae terras occupans, odiis et errorum furiis debacchatus fere per annum ante recessum olim cardinalium praedictorum de Luca, studuit per nonnullos ad haec invitatos, et falsitatibus informatos, nos perjurii et schismatis maculis infamare: et fecit quantum potuit hoc contra nos publice divulgari, successive sollicitans adversus nos insurgere cardinales, praelatos, principes, communitates, et alias privatas personas, inter quos praecipue mendacus, precibus, pretio, ac pollicitationibus, sedux: Petrus de Candia, tunc basilicae XII. Apostolorum, et Joannem, timorem eisdem incutiendo, tunc S. Crucis in Jerusalem, presbyteros cardinales, ut sibi caeterisque rebellibus et schismaticis adhaererent. Nec his malis contentus, execrabilia quaedam mandata poenalis fecit, ne quis nos papam diceret aut scriberet, arma nostra in nostrum et sedis apostolicae porrobrium turpiter et manifeste de locis publicis et privatis faciens deleri, et captivari jubens nuncios et quamplures ad curiam adventantes perturbavit, et pecuniis et bonis aliis spoliavit, praecludens omnem viam, quam potuit, ne litterae nostrae per nos de indicto concilio generali, et aliis ventatibus edocendis, ad praelatos, principes, et communitates, eorumque ad nos pervenirent.

As of the end of June, 1408, there were twenty-six living cardinals: fourteen of the Roman Obedience and twelve of the Avignon Obedience. Cardinal Angelo Acciaioli died at Pisa on May 31, 1408. Cardinal Jean Gilles died at Pisa on July 1, 1408. The two popes, however, had only four cardinals on their sides (Souchon II, p. 41 n.2, n. 3). At the opening of the Council of Pisa on March 25, 1409, there were fourteen cardinals, according to one reckoning (or sixteen cardinals: nine Italians and seven French, according to another) in attendance (Souchon, II pp. 41-42). Eighteen cardinals attended the Council of Pisa, according to a ms. cited in J. D. Mansi (Sacrorum Conciliorum 27, columns 331-33; cf. Souchon II, p. 41 n. 5; leaving out Petrus Fernandi S. Praxedis, Francesco Uggucione, Baldassare Cossa, and Louis de Bar); the total number in attendance at one time or another was in fact twenty-four (Mansi Sacrorum Conciliorum 26, columns 1239-1240; Baronius-Theiner 27, sub anno 1409, no. 45, p. 257-258; Souchon, p. 41), not counting Gilles or Acciaioli. They were all excommunicated, anathematized, and deprived of their cardinalates by Benedict XIII or by Gregory XII (May 16, 1408, e.g. Theodericus de Nyem, de schismate III. 33, p. 284-285 Erler).

Not participating in the Conclave, likewise, were Benedict XIII's loyal cardinals: Jean Flandrin, Pierre Ravat, Jean Martinez, Alfonso Carillo and Carlos Urriés (F. Ehrle, Archiv für Literatur- und Kirchengeschichte 5 (1889), p. 402 n.; 7 (1900), 669). Ehrle also publishes ( Archiv für Literatur- und Kirchengeschichte 7 (1900), p. 669; cf. Mansi Sacrorum Conciliorum 26, 1099-1104) a list of the prelates present at a Session of the Council of Perpignan (March 26, 1409) under the presidency of Benedict XIII, including the Cardinals:

This particular list proves, contrary to the assertion of Ciaconius-Olduin [II, 775], that Cardinal Johannes Flandrin did NOT desert Benedict XIII and attend the Council in Pisa.

Twenty-four cardinals participated in the Conclave of June, 1409. Konrad Eubel, Hierarchia Catholica I, p. 32 n. 3, lists 23 electors. Cardinal Calvi arrived and was admitted the day after the Conclave began, post prandium [Martène-Durand VII, 1113; Souchon II, p. 62, 65]. Another list is provided by Jacques Lenfant, Histoire du Concile de Pise I, pp. 350-351. Souchon II, p. 97. Seventeen votes would be needed for a canonical election.

Cardinals attending:

  1. Guy de Malsec (Malesset) [Limousin], Bishop of Praeneste. (died April 4, 1412). Doctor in utroque iure. "Erat primus in ordine Penestrinus." [Souchon II, p. 44, n. 3; 45; and p. 51] [He was close to 70 years of age, having participated in the disastrous conclave of 1378: Souchon II, p. 66 and n. 3]. Author of a treatise on the need for a General Council, and of a speech to King Charles VI (1400) on the same subject [Martene-Durand, Thesaurus novus anecdotorum II (1717) 1193-1200; 1226-1230].
  2. Joannes de Bronhiaco (Jean Allarmet de Brogny) [Annecy in Savoy], Bishop of Ostia and Velletri. S. R. E. Vice-Cancellarius since 1391. [Martène-Durand VII, 1115; Baumgarten, Von der Apostolischen Kanzlei, pp. 127-131] (a cardinal of Clement VII). He continued in the office under Alexander V, John XXIII, and Martin V  [E. von Ottenthal, Die päpstliche Kanzleiregeln, p. 160, 171 and 187; additions to the Regulae under his orders continue until Year 9 of Martin V].   [Baluzius I, 1353; Cardella II, 355-359].   called "Vivariensis"   (died February 16, 1426).

    Salvador Miranda labels Jean Allarmet "bishop of Ostia and Velletri, dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals", which is both factually incorrect and anachronistic. There was no "Dean" at the time, especially not at the Council of Pisa. The Acta of the Council refer to a "Primus in Ordine" and a "Prior", but they are referring to Cardinal Guy de Malsec, who was in fact the senior Cardinal Bishop present (Souchon II, p. 44 and. nn. 1-4, p. 45 and p. 51).

  3. Niccolò Brancaccio [Messana, Sicily], Bishop of Albano. Neapolitan Patrician, second son of Marino Brancaccio and Giacoma d'Aversa [He is C2 in the genealogy]. (died June 29, 1412 in Florence) [Baluze I, columns 1256-1260].
  4. Antonio Gaetani [Romanus/Neapolitanus], third son of Giacomo dell' Aquila Caetani, Signore di Anagni, Count of Fondi; and Sveva Sanseverino Signora di Piedimonte, daughter of Roberto Conte di Marsico. He was therefore nephew of Onorato Caetani, Count of Fondi, the enemy of Urban VI. Bishop of Palestrina. Patriarch of Aquileia. Abbot Commendatory of SS. Bonifacio ed Alessio. Appointed Archpriest of the Lateran Basilica by Innocent VII. He was excommunicated by Gregory XII in a bull dated January 19, 1409 [Contelori, Elenchus, p. 130] (died January 11, 1412, according to his sepulchral inscription) [Cardella II, 317-318]
  5. Pierre Girard de Podio [du Puy en Velay], Bishop of Tusculum. Created cardinal by Clement VII in 1390. (died November 9, 1415 in Avignon) called "Aniciensis"
  6. Enrico Minutoli [Neapolitanus], He was Gregory XII's Bishop of Tusculum, but joined the Council of Pisa on September 14, 1408. Archpriest of the Liberian Basilica (S. Maria Maggiore) [Cardella II, 312-313]

  7. Pierre de Thureyo [Thury], Cardinal Priest in the title of S. Susanna. Legate in France. (died December, 1410).  (Souchon II, pp. 44 n.1)   His brother Philippe was Archbishop of Lyon
  8. Angelo d'Anna de Sommariva, O.Camald. [Laudensis (Lodi), Neapolitan], Cardinal Priest in the title of S. Pudenziana. (a cardinal of Urban VI) [joined the Council of Pisa on September 14, 1408]. [Eubel I, 25] (died July 21, 1428). called "Laudensis"
  9. Petrus Fernandi de Frigidis (Pedro Fernández de Frías) [of Medina, Castilian], Cardinal Priest in the title of S. Prassede.(a cardinal of Clement VII) "Oxomensis" (died September 19, 1420) [Cardella II, 359-360; Eubel I, 29]
  10. Corrado Caraccioli [Neapolitanus], son of Roberto, Patrician of Naples [The Cardinal is N2]. Cardinal Priest in the title of S. Crisogono. Nephew of Pope Boniface IX.. Legate in Lombardy (died February 15, 1411) S.R.E. Camerarius. called "Militensis" [Cardella II, 320-321]
  11. Francesco Uguccione [Urbino], Cardinal Priest in the title of Ss. IV Coronati. called "Burdigalensis". Doctor utriusque iuris.   Sent to England in 1408 by the Cardinals of Pisa; as Archbishop of Bordeaux he was a vassal of King Henry IV [Baronius-Theiner sub anno 1408, nos. lxvi, p. 227; Rymer VIII, p. 568]; he returned to Pisa on April 30, 1409 [Mansi Vol. 27, column 346].
  12. Giordano Orsini [Nobilis Romanus], son of Giovanni Orsini, Signore di Nerola, Marcellino, Vicovaro, Cantalupo, Bardella, Pacentro, Montemaggiore, Montelibretti e Scandriglia, Senatore di Roma 1350-1352; and Bartolomea Spinelli, daughter of Nicola Conte di Gioia and Grand Chancellor of the Kingdom of Sicily. Cardinal Priest in the title of S. Lorenzo in Damaso. (a cardinal of Innocent VII). Archpriest of the Vatican Basilica (died May 29, 1438) {Eubel I, 26; Cardella II, 321-324).
  13. Pietro Filargi [Petrus Philargi], OFM, Archbishop of Milan. [Born at Candia, on the Island of Crete, raised by Franciscans there and in Italy] He was sent to Oxford for studies before going to Paris (according to Theoderic of Nyem, de schismate III. 51). 1371, Lector at the University of Pavia. By 1380 he had writtin a commentary on the penitential chapter of the Sentences. 1381, Licencate in Theology, Paris. October 5,1386: Bishop of Piacenza (Urban VI). January 23, 1388: Bishop of Vicenza (Urban VI). September 18, 1389: Bishop of Novara (Urban VI). He acted as an ambassador for Gian Galeazzo Visconti in Genoa in 1391, in Florence in 1392 and in Prague (King Wenceslaus) in 1394. On May 17, 1402, he became Archbishop of Milan (Boniface IX). June 12, 1405: Cardinal Priest of the Basilica XII Apostolorum. (Innocent VII), and administrator of Milan. On September 11, 1405, he was named Legate in northern Italy, from the Adriatic to the Tyrrhenian Sea: Sedes Apostolicae Legatum in Liguria, in Insubria, atque in Aquileiensi et Gradensi Patriarchiatibus, including Genoa and Milan [Baronius-Theiner, sub anno 1405 no. 17, p. 137].
  14. Antonio Calvi [Romanus], Cardinal Priest in the title of S. Marco (formerly of S. Prassede, created by Innocent VII in 1405), Archpriest of the Vatican Basilica [L. Martorelli, Storia del clero vaticano, pp. 209-211]. He was the last of the cardinals to leave Gregory XII; he came to Pisa on June 16, 1409, and voted in the election of Alexander V. (died October 2, 1411) Called "Tudertinus" [Cardella II, pp. 329-330].
  15. Giovanni Migliorati [Sulmonensis, Neapolitan], Cardinal Priest in the title of S. Croce in Gerusalemme. Nephew of Pope Innocent VII [Theoderic of Nyem de schis. III. 38, p. 297 Erler]. Archbishop of Ravenna.[Martène-Durand VII, 1179] Doctor utriusque iuris.

  16. Amedeo di Saluzzo, Cardinal Deacon of S. Maria Nuova. Cardinal Protodeacon [Ciaconius-Olduin II, 773]. Legate in Genoa (died June 28, 1419) [Baluzius I, column 1317]
  17. Landolfo Maramaldo, Cardinal Deacon of S. Nicola in Carcere Tulliano. called "Barrensis" Former Vicar of Gregory XII for Perugia and adjacent areas [Baronius-Theiner, sub anno 1408, no. lxiv, p. 226] Sent on April 4 to Germany to the Diet at Frankfurt by the Cardinals of Pisa [Baronius-Theiner sub anno 1408, nos. lxvi, p. 227; Theoderic of Nyem de schismate III. 39, p. 298 Erler; Mansi Sacrorum Conciliorum 27, 339].
  18. Rinaldo Brancaccio [Neapolitan], Cardinal Deacon of Ss. Vito e Modesto [See Paolo Mazio, pp. 4, 10-14].
  19. Baldassare Cossa (Coscia, Coxa) [of Procida, Neapolitanus] (aged ca. 40/42), Cardinal Deacon of S. Eustachio from February 27, 1402. (died December 22, 1419). Decretorum doctor. [E. Kitts, pp. 141-144, follows the authorites on the Cossa family back to their flimsy or unsupported origins. Only Theoderic de Nyem refers to Baldassare as a pirate, and even he adds ut fertur (de vita ac fatis Constantiensibus Johannis papae XXIII   I. 1, p. 338 Hardt)]. Archdeacon of Bologna. 1392-1396. Chamberlain to Boniface IX, 1396, Protonotary Apostolic, and Auditor of the Rota. Named Legate in the Romandiola in 1403.
  20. Oddone Colonna [Romanus] (aged 45), fourth son of Agapito Colonna, Signore di Gennazzano, Capranica, Palestrina, San Vito et Ceciliano; of the Gennazzano branch of the family [He is K4]; his mother was Caterina, daughter of Giovanni Conti, a Roman Noble and Signore di Valmontone. Cardinal Deacon of S. Giorgio in Velabro.
  21. Petrus Blavi [diocese of Mende, in the Givaudan], Cardinal Deacon of S. Angelo in Pescheria (Benedict XIII). Decretorum Doctor. Left Pisa on July 15, 1409 (died December 12, 1409) [Eubel I, p. 29 and n. 6]   "Vielleicht mag auch Blavi, der bereits im Dezember 1409 starb, schon damals leidend gewesen sein." Or not. (Souchon II, 67).
  22. Pietro Stefaneschi, alias de Anibalis [Romanus, of Trastevere], Cardinal Deacon S. Angelo (translated from Deacon of S. Angelo in Pescheria, 1405-1409, to of Ss. Cosma e Damiano, and back again to S. Angelo from 1410. This was to accomodate Cardinal Petrus Blavi (created by Benedict XIII in 1395), who was called the "Cardinal S. Angeli", but who died on December 12, 1409). [on 'de Anibalis' see Ehrle, Archiv fur Literatur- und Kirchengeschichte 7 (1900), 643; Gregorovius VI. 2, p. 575]. Stefaneschi was made Papal Vicar of Rome when Gregory XII fled from his own condottiere Pietro Orsini on August 9, 1407. On April 11, 1408, he restored the offices of the Bandarenses in Rome, who remained in office until April 21, when Rome surrendered to King Ladislaus. Petrus Stefaneschi died on October 30, 1417. He was also called or "Cardinal Romanus".
  23. Louis de Bar [son of Robert Duc de Bar], created Cardinal Deacon of S. Agatha by Benedict XIII in 1397. Created Cardinal Priest in the title of SS. XII Apostoli on July 1, 1409; he was ordained priest in late June, 1409, by Cardinal Guy de Malsec and Cardinal Niccolò Brancaccio, and promoted to SS. XII Apostoli by Pope Alexander, who had been the previous incumbent [Martène-Durand VII, 1120]. Cousin of King Charles of France, and also related to King Martin of Aragon and King Sigismund. Legate in France in 1409 [Religieux de Saint-Denys XXX. 11]. Legate in Germany. [Eubel I, 30 n. 3] (died June 23, 1430). His assistants at the Council of Pisa were Pierre d'Ailly and Jean Charlier de Gerson
  24. Antonio de Celancho [Antoine de Challant], Cardinal Deacon of S. Maria in Via Lata. Former Chancellor of the Count of Savoy. Abandoned Benedict XIII and joined the Council of Pisa at its Sixteenth Session on June 10, 1409 (died September 4, 1418)

Cardinals not attending:

  1. Ludovico Fieschi [Genuensis], Cardinal Deacon of S. Adriano.(a cardinal of Urban VI). Nephew of Cardinal Giovanni Fieschi. He had left the Obedience of Benedict XIII after Benedict had been condemned by the Council of Pisa, and had joined the Obedience of Alexander V. On May 23, 1410 he entered Bologna, too late for the Conclave of 1410 [Eubel I, p. 25 and n. 3] (died April 3, 1423).

The Chamberlain of the Holy Roman Church (Avignon Obedience) was François de Conzieu, Archbishop of Narbonne. He arrived at the Council of Pisa on May 7, 1409 [S.R.E. Camerarius: Mansi Sacrorum Conciliorum 27, 342, 350 and 407]

Financial Problems of the Cardinals

One of the problems which the Gregorian Cardinals in particular faced was financial. The Cardinals of the Avignon obedience had their benefices, many of them in France, which continued to supply them with funds; and the Papal Treasury in Avignon continued to operate under the direction of the Camerarius, Archbishop François de Conzieu. But the Gregorian Cardinals had cut themselves off from most of their income by abandoning their pope—who was an exile himself and short of funds and friends. Worst of all, the money which Pope Gregory did receive went in profligate generosity to his nephews, both Correr and Condulmer, not to his cardinals.

As a Continuator of Ptolemy of Lucca's Life of Joannes XXIII notes [Muratori RIS III.2, column 854], omnes cardinales, qui a domino Gregorio recesserant, pecuniis legationis suae in concilio sustentavit. Cardinal Baldassare Cossa was supplying them with funds from the monies of his legation. In the exchanges between Carlo Malatesta and the Cardinals at Pisa, the Cardinals point out that many of the delegates at Pisa were feeling the pinch [Mansi 27, 278]: Manifestum quidem esse dicebant multos ex patribus congregatis Pisis impeditos, alios senio, alios languoribus, alios egestate. Exemplumque adduxerunt de Domino Penestrino [Guy de Malsec], Gallico, et aliis quibusdam quorum nominibus non recordantur quae propter praedicta non possent Concilio interesse, si locus mutaretur. The Carthusian Bonifacius Ferrer [Tractatus pro defensione Benedicti XIII ch. 39: Martène et Durand, Thesaurus novus anecdotorum II, 1459] says scornfully of Cardinal Petrus Fernandi de Frigidis: Ille olim Hispanus non habet ubi caput suum reclinet; ideo oportet quod vivat de reliquiis mensarum dominorum. But if Cardinal Cossa were using his grants of money to manipulate the cardinals, he was doing it in an unobtrusive way; he was not even in Pisa in the first half of the Spring of 1409, arriving only a day or two before the Conclave began (cf. Souchon II, p. 42, 69). In fact, for all of his good work in collecting the meager evidence, Souchon (II, pp. 63ff.) is not able to produce a convincing argument that any cardinal was swayed by financial considerations. In agreeing to the declaration at Livorno, the Cardinals had risked their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor, to say nothing about their souls. The reunification of Christendom was their stated goal, as they declared:

Et quod in praemissis omnibus et singulis dabimus ad invicem nobis ipsis in communi et particulari unus alteri auxilium consilium et juvamen, bona fide, mutua et sincera caritate, fideliter sine dilatione et pallatione quacumque, praecipue contra quoscumque qui impedimenta praestare vellent in praemissis, vel nos in communi vel in particulari perturbare, laedere, seu persequi verbo vel facto. Est autem nostra intentio. quod si pendente prosecutione praemissorum casus aliqui inexcogitati occurrent, quibus esset aliter occurrendum et providendum pro utilitate ecclesiae et unione habenda, quod hoc facere valeamus, communicato ad invicem consilio, de communi et concordi omnium nostrum consensis

and they needed to produce a pope upon whom all of Christendom, beginning with the Cardinals themselves, could accept. The election, in point of fact if not in law, had to be unanimous. That meant that previous allegiances to one Obedience or another had to be set aside. Whether one was French or Italian had to be set aside for the sake of unity. On the Italian side, those most enthusiastic in favor of unity were Gaetani, Uguccione, Orsini, Maramaldi and Cossa (Souchon II, 67).

The evidence, moreover, shows that it was the French who were the movers of events at Pisa, and that among the French those particularly in favor of union were Guy de Malsec, Simon de Cramaud the principal Ambassador of King Charles of France, Philippe de Thureyo and his brother the Cardinal de Thuryeo (Souchon II, 68-69). There was, in fact, a disadvantage to any cardinal who was connected with or closely associated with one or another ruling house—such as Thureyo or Malsec or Louis de Bar. He would have trouble in being presented as a unifier of Christendom. However, (for what it is worth) Boniface Ferrer claims (ch. 40) that it was the French who were engaging in bribery with their generosity to their fellow cardinals,

Propter quae justo Dei judicio illi de Francia fuerunt turpiter decepti et illusi. Fecerant enim ubique, maxime Pisis, inexplicabilia praeparatoria, ut intruderetur in illo conventiculo Pisano de natione illorum, cum multis muneribus et donis altiora et majora promittentes tam in beneficiis, quam in aliis, illis anticardinalibus Italicis, sicut semper consueverunt, et postea nisi in omnibus consentiant eis, etiam velociter eos privant, nec in hoc multum deliberant. Quanta vina, quot munuscula, quod blantitias ille Petrus de Tureyo jactavit erga illos anticardinales, non posset explicari. At illi astutissimi et callidissimi natura et arte, quorum unus venderet centum, simulantes eis complacere verbis palliatis, ordinaverunt praesidentem illum de Tureyo in illo conventiculo, ut sic inflatus diceret primam Missam, id est poneret Christum in domum Caiphae, et sic illudendo illis traxerunt eos, usque ad clausuram damnati conclavis, vel verius latibuli, et ibi quid passi sunt, ostendat mora quam illic traxerunt, et loquatur effectus productus: Ex eo enim dixit ille Penestrinus post intrusionem quasi eadem vel sequenti die cuidam de nostris regiis ambaxiatoribus inter alia verba: Teneatis pro firmo, quod numquam fiet electio in Italia, quae non fiat ad voluntatem eorum: significans aliquid, vel forte nimis de violentia et impressione intervenisse, et ex inde illi anticardinales de Francia, capta opportunitate, recesserunt ab eo, ut dictum est ....

If, in fact, Cardinal Malsec said anything like what is attributed to him, it was certainly not with the malicious meanings as imagined by Ferrer. Malsec may have been referring to the plain fact of voting numbers: the French contingent had sufficient votes to block the election of anyone they did not want to see elected (under the 2/3 rule of Alexander III). As to the charge of corruption, it appears that Ferrer cannot tell the difference between charity and bribery.

In fairness, it should be said that it was the general gossip in Pisa (as reported by a French informant to S. Laurence in Liège) that the French wanted a French pope [Martenè et Durand VII, 1103], though that does not mean that the French Cardinals were prepared to elect one:

Dicta die in vesperis fuerunt multi praelati et alii de natione Franciae congregati in domo Carmelitarum super modo futurae electionis, et ibi venerunt nuncii universitatis Parisiensis, nitentes omnino inducere illam congregationem ad consentiendum quod penitus staretur ordinationi cardinalium super futura electione, hoc addito, quod si umquam opus esset, hoc fieret auctoritate concilii. Dicebant etiam quod nisi sic fieret, periculum divisionis et impedimenti totius negotii possemus incurrere, maxime quia aliae nationes jam dicebant quod Gallici modis omnibus quaerebant et procurabant habere papam Gallicum. Verum est tamen quod dicebatur communiter inter Gallicos, alias nationes ad haec dicenda fuisse inductas per aliquos Gallicos, ut sic, indirecte sequerentur cedulam patriarchae alias factam super hujusmodi materiam electionis.

And it was another French reporter, Prior Robert of Sauxillanges, who was a delegate to the Council and the Proctor of the Abbot of Cluny, that the most influential French cardinal was Pierre de Thury:

Et sciatis quod dominus de Thureyo inter omnes dominos cardinales habet apud eum [the newly elected Alexander V] majorem audientiam, et credo quod tantam habebit, quantum habuit cum domino Clemente.

Eventually, however, each cardinal of the Avignon Obedience had to reckon with the fact that a French pope would not bring the unity that they all sought. A French pope would be rejected immediately by Gregory XII's remaining supporters, by the Kingdom of Sicily, by the Iberians, and maybe even by the English; and the Schism would continue, with a great opportunity wasted and great opprobrium for the French.

At the same time, the Cardinals of Gregory XII were not without their insurmountable problems. A number of them, the Neapolitans and Orsini, were far too close to King Ladislaus, who had captured Rome and who had ex-Pope Gregory under his control. His right to the Kingdom of Sicily had been contested by the House of Anjou for nearly thirty years, and Louis II d'Anjou was back in Italy to reclaim his throne (another disqualification for Thureyo, who was his friend and advisor). No friend of Ladislaus would be acceptable to the French cardinals, who had long endorsed King Louis and his enterprises, just as no friend of Louis would be acceptable to many of the Italian cardinals. No enemy of Ladislaus could find favor with some of the Italians (and that included Baldassare Cossa), as being likely to split the Italian peninsula and continue the Schism. And yet, if Louis d'Anjou were to win the struggle with Ladislaus or even prolong it for a time, the new pope would have to deal with Louis and the French. An Italian candidate could not be an enemy of the French either, which was difficult after thirty years of demonizing the Avignon Obedience.

Peter of Candia (Cardinal Petrus Philargi) had unique credentials. He was not French, but he was not Italian either; he had been born on the Island of Crete. But Crete was under Venetian control, and he had been brought to Venice as a youth for his education. He therefore had strong Italian ties. But he was not related to any of the Italian dynastic families. He was a Franciscan, and for all practical purposes without a family. His rise to the Cardinalate had preceded the coming to power of the Venetian Angelo Correr (Gregory XII), and was instead connected with the Milanese Duke Gian Galeazzo Visconti, whose principal advisor he became. It was Visconti who supported his elevation to the See of Milan. And yet, Visconti died in 1402, and was no longer an influence on him. The first marriage of Visconti to Isabella of Valois (died 1372), youngest daughter of King John II of France, brought Visconti into the French sphere of influence, which was intensified when the Duke's daughter, Valentina, married Louis, Duc d'Orleans (son of Charles V, King of France). On this account, Peter of Candia had distantly friendly relations, if not ties, at the French courts.  It had been Innocent VII who had named him Legate in Lombardy in 1405, and thus he had no particular allegiance to Gregory XII. As a notherner, he was no supporter of the ambitions of King Ladislaus of Sicily, and in fact turned out to be quite friendly to Louis II d'Anjou in his reconquest of the crown of Naples. He could win the support of the French. The problem was convincing all of the Italians. It took eleven days in conclave.

Sede Vacante, June 1409

When the two Contenders over the Papacy had been deposed on June 5, 1409, the Cardinals at Pisa decided to treat the moment as the beginning of the Sede Vacante. The custom had been to observe nine days of mourning, and, to ensure that all of the canons and customs were carried out, it was decided to wait until the tenth day before beginning the Conclave. It was therefore on June 15, 1409, that the Cardinals entered Conclave:

Post sententiam autem lata praedicti domini cardd. decem diebus prout a sacris canonibus constitutum est, expectatis, et interim his, quae disponenda et providenda erant, dispositis atque provisis, tandem die sabbati proxime praeterita (die 15 Junii) Conclave pro electione facienda ex auctoritate et approbatione sacri Concilii intraverunt.

On Monday, June 10, 1409, the matter of Cardinal de Challant came before the Council. He had failed earlier on to answer his summons to attend, and had been declared contumacious by the Council. Now, he was prepared to join the Council, and matters had to be made right. At the XIV Session of the Council, Cardinal Niccolo Brancaccio, Bishop of Albano, spoke on his behalf, and he was admitted to the Council and given his seat among the Cardinals [Mansi 27, 405]:

... quia dominus cardinalis de Chalanco recesserat, et diu post convocationem Concilii moratus fuerat cum Petro de Luna olim vocatum Benedictum XIII. propter quod vocatus fuerat; et suspectum se rediddeerat de fautoria ipsius Petri schismatici et haeretici, maxime quia vocatus fuerat ad Concilium, et in ipso Concilio fuerat ipsius cardinalis accusata contumacia, ut patet in quarta sessione; ideo ad purgandum praemissa, dominus cardinalis Albanensis excusavit coram Concilio dictum dominum cardinalem de Chalanco, dicens in effectu, quod dominus cardinalis de Chalanco cum dicto Petro de Luna remanserat, non ut sibi in sua malitia faveret, sed potius ut laboraret ad eum inducendum ad unionem ecclesiae effectualiter prosequendam, et quia reducere non potuit, recessit ab eodem Petro de Luna, etc. Cujus excusatio praesente dicto cardinali de Chalanco saltem tacite admissa fuit per Concilium et adjunctus fuit, et receptus in suo loco cum aliis cardinalibus.

At the same Sessio XVI on Monday, June 10, the Archbishop of Pisa, Alamanno Adimari, got up and read a document, to which each and every one of the cardinals had set his signature and seal, containing an Electoral Capitulation [Mansi 26, 1228]

continens in effectum formam cujusdam promissionis, quam fecerunt omnes praedicti et singuli cardinales ad satisfaciendum multis, qui requirebant et petebant, quod reformarentur usurpationes, quae erant in ecclesiam introductum in prejudicium libertatis ecclesiasticae, etc. per quam cedulam omnes et singuli praedicti cardinales promittunt, videlicet quilibet eorum, si eum contingat ad papatum assumi, quod intendet reformationi ecclesiae tam in capite, quam im membris; et si cum contingat assumi ad papatum, erga eum instabunt et procurabant fideliter et bona fide, quod circa dictam reformationem intendat, nec permittat, quantum in eo erit, quod hoc concilium dissolvatur, quousque super hoc provisum extiterit.

Another report of the same Session reads [Mansi 26, 1148]:

quod domini cardinales promittebant Deo sic quod procurarent toto posse, quod is qui in papam eligeretur, reformaret ecclesiam, et quod non pateretur aut permitteret concilium dissolvi, donec de concilio esset facta bona reformatio ecclesiae, tam in capite quam in membris.

That afternoon, the French delegates held a meeting at the Carmelite Convent in Pisa, to discuss how they should deal with the subject of the election of a new pope. According to a French reporter, delegates of the University of Paris were present and argued that the election ought to be made by the entire Council, and that if that course were not followed, there was danger of division, because some delegates in the French nation as well as delegates in the other nations were saying that, if left to the Cardinals alone, then the new pope would certainly be French. The discussion was responding in part to the Capitulation entered into by the Cardinals and revealed that morning. Simon de Cremant, however, argued that they ought to stand by the decision of May 10 of the Council, and leave the election to the Cardinals; Cremant, in fact, had introduced and sponsored the draft of that decree [Martène-Durand VII, 1103-1104; Hefele, 287]:

Dicta die in vesperis fuerunt multi praelati et alii de natione Franciae congregati in domo Carmelitarum super modo futurae electionis, et ibi venerunt nuncii universitatis Parisiensis, nitentes omnino inducere illam congregationem ad consentiendum quod penitus staretur ordinationi cardinalium super futura electione, hoc addito, quod si umquam opus esset, hoc fieret auctoritate concilii. Dicebant etiam quod nisi sic fieret, periculum divisionis et impedimenti totius negotii possemus incurrere, maxime quia aliae nationes jam dicebant quod Gallici modis omnibus quaerebant et procurabant habere papam Gallicum. Verum est tamen quod dicebatur communiter inter Gallicos, alias nationes ad haec dicenda fuisse inductas per aliquos Gallicos, ut sic, indirecte sequerentur cedulam patriarchae alias factam super hujusmodi materiam electionis. His tamen non obstantibus, major pars et quasi omnes de dicta congregatione fuerunt opinionis, quod dictae cedulae non staretur; sed in crastino singulae provinciae super hoc deliberarent, ac referrent post prandium suas deliberationes. Deliberatum fuit etiam quod deputarentur aliqui, qui adirent alias nationes extraneas ad pacificandum eas, et proponendum motiva Gallicorum petentium electionem fiere auctoritate concilii, et ad minus per duas partes utriusque collegiii, vel per compromissum, alias electio non videbatur esse de jura pacificativa conscientiarum, etc. ad certificandum eos quod non quaerimus papam Gallicum, sed pacem et unionem et sententionem universalis ecclesiae et conscientiarum fidelium, et securitatem electionis, sic quod nihil posset contra eam impingi, vel alio modo impugnari, seu etiam calumniari

As the XVIII Session was beginning on Thursday, June 13, 1409, it was noticed that the Cardinals had retired behind the main altar during the Mass. They were working on an agreement about electing a candidate. They agreed to require a unanimous election of a candidate, or at least a two-thirds vote, of each of the two Colleges:

Verum est tamen quod aliqui dicebant dominos cardinales, praesentibus quibusdam praelatis, dum Missa celebraretur, in ists sessione existentes, retro altare jurasse se electuros unum indubitatum papam, in quem omnes consentirent, aut saltem duae partes utriusque collegii. Nihilominus tamen hoc non placuit pluribus in concilio existentibus, sed fuerunt plures scandalizati.

This was a stricter standard than required by the Constitution of Alexander III, but the Cardinals may well have had good reason, if the election were to be such as would be unchallengeable. Clearly, the decision of the Council at the VIII Session on Friday, May 10, 1409, had not satisfied all parties, who thought it would be more effective to have a new pope elected by the entire General Council. Others, however, in particular the French contingent (led by Patriarch Simon de Cremaud), held to the idea that in canon law it was the Cardinals who had the right to elect a pope.

As the first order of business on that day, the Advocate read the Bull of Gregory X, Ubi majus periculum, on the subject of conclaves [Mansi 27, 407]. It is clear that final arrangements for the Conclave had to be agreed upon in that Session. But the Patriarch of Alexandria got up and revealed what had been transacted behind the altar earlier. Some people were said to be shocked. But It was decided that further consultations were necessary [Hefele, Histoire VII, 287], and so the meeting went on to other business, namely the reception of the Ambassadors of the King of Aragon. They had forgotten to bring their documents of accreditation, which delayed matters, and when the Chancellor or Aragon finally spoke, he had nothing of substance to say except that the Ambassadors of Pedro de Luna (formerly Benedict XIII) wanted to be received by the Council.

On the evening of Friday, June 14, another meeting took place. Prior Robert of the monastery of Sauxillanges reported to the Abbot and monks of Cluny that several Cardinals were present, along with other prelates and ambassadors, to receive the credentials of the ambassadors of Pedro de Luna (the former Benedict XIII). First, the sentence of deposition was read to the ambassadors. When the documents were examined, it turned out that the ambassadors were only authorized to deal with security arrangements for a meeting, and a suitable place, whether for the principals or their procurators, to deal with the union of the Church, including the Way of Cession. In other words, Benedict was at the same position that he had been in when Gregory XII was elected in 1406, and he wanted to do everything again, or at least go through the motions once again. They explained their late arrival with a series of complaints of harassment by the Florentines and Pisatans against their travelling company. They had some private discussion with the Aragonese ambassadors, who were present, and then tried to drag out the discusion even further. They were told that the Mass of the Holy Spirit would be celebrated the next morning, and that the members of the Council would be busy. They continued stalling, however, and returned to their hotel. Next morning, they boarded a galley and departed. This is evidently the same meeting as mentioned in another of the reports on the Sessions of the Council [Mansi 26, 1232]:

Die Veneris decimaquarta Junii, quae erat crastinam praecedentis sessionis, sicut in eadem sessione fuerat deliberatum, facta fuit processio generalis omnium praelatorum revestitorum, ab ecclesia S. Martini usque ad ecclesiam cathedralem, cum cantu litaniarum et antiphonarum. Et in dicta ecclesia cathedrali fuit celebrata Missa solemnis de Sancto Spiritu per unum dominum cardinalem.

Eadem autem die post prandium venerunt nuncii Petri de Luna apud sanctam Martinum, et intraverunt locum ubi erant aliqui domini cardinales ordinati ad audiendum eos; et cum difficultate intraverunt peropter assistentiam populi et servitorum ac famulorum, qui deridendo contra eos proclamabant et sibilabant. Ibi tamen postquam ingressi fuerunt, ostio clauso, fuit eis denunciata et intimata sententia lata contra dictos contendentes de papatu, de qua supra in quintadecima sessione.

Item, etiam Capitaneus villae Pisarum erat ibidem, qui intimavit eis quod jam fecerant juramenta de custodiendo conclave, et de multis aliis juxta formam c. Ubi majus, de elcct. l. VI.   Inter quae erant tria capitula, quae principaliter concernebant quod non permitteret dictus Capitaneus, quod aliquid fieret in praejudicium, scandalum, vel vituperium, seu impedimentum procedendi ad electionem unius papae. Et ista tria capitual dictis nunciis intimavit explicite, eis denuncians, quod quidquid facerent aut dicerent, tamen caverent sibi, quod contra ista nullatenus attentarent. Ipsi autem dixerunt quod volebant habere copiam dictorum capitulorum, et super hoc deliberare antequam aliquid proponerent; et hanc copiam habuerunt, et sic pro tunc recesserunt. Et die sequenti, licentia non petita abierunt, et sic nihil proposuerunt, videntes esse dispositionem negotiorum ad aliud quam illud quod forsitan praetendere aut dicere volebant pro dicto Petro de Luna.


The ambassadors of the King of Aragon, however, were still in Pisa. During the Conclave, one of them, Geraldus de Sernihon, a knight, who was married to ex-Pope Benedict's niece, approached Patriarch Simon de Cremaud and informed him that he had the authorization to offer a renunciation, pure and simple, of Pedro de Luna, and that he should be admitted (to the Conclave?) before they proceeded any farther. Cramaud's reply was that the Cardinals were already locked in Conclave and they could not be impeded, nor was communication with them possible; though he was not able to speak on behalf of the Council, Cramaud said that he would inform the Council of this. Prior Robert of the monastery of Sauxillanges, in a letter of June 28 [Martène-Durand VII, 1114], says that he was a witness to the conversation of Cramaud and Sernihon in the cloister of St. Martin's, and that after they concluded, the Patriarch went into the Sacristy where more than forty members of the Council, including the Archbishop of Lyon, Philippe de Thury, were meeting. Cremant explained what had just happened, but nothing had yet been done about the business when Robert wrote his report on June 28 (negotium in statu remansit hucusque; nescio quid fiet).

When the new pope was elected, Gerald complained that his instructions and documents had been for the Cardinals not for Alexander V, including a letter from the Infante of Castile solicited by Pedro de Luna; all he could do was rehearse his authorization to arrange for a meeting of the principals.

 


Conclave

Pisa-Cathedral_close_Google_EarthThe Conclave took place in the Archiepiscopal Palace in Pisa [lower right of photo], beginning in the late afternoon of Saturday, June 15, 1409. Earlier in the day the Mass of the Holy Spirit had been celebrated in the Cathedral by Archbishop Philippe de Thury, and a Conclave sermon preached by the Bishop of Novara, Giovanni Capogallo. Later in the afternoon, around the time of Vespers, the participants entered the Archiepiscopal Palace and were enclosed. There were ten cardinals of the Avignon obedience, and thirteen others, including Cardinal Antonio Calvi, who had finally deserted Gregory XII and come to Pisa on June 16, 1409 [Robert Prior Celsiniensis: Martenè et Durand VII, 1113]. As soon as the Cardinals were enclosed in Conclave, a controversy erupted in the Council, as to whether the Constitution of Pope Gregory X, Ubi majus, ought to be strictly observed. Should the Cardinals, after the eighth day, be restricted to one loaf of bread and water? Or should the more generous concessions of Pope Clement VI be followed, according to which, after the eighth day, one plate of food was allowed per day, and fruit did not count? They finally agreed to follow the more liberal regulations. Another debate broke out, as to whether to set a time-limit on the Cardinals to agree on a pope, after which the Council itself would choose a pope. It was decided to leave the Cardinals their liberty to elect as they chose.

Robert of Saxillanges was standing in the Choir of the Cathedral of Pisa, just after Mass on Wednesday, June 26, in conversation with a number of other participants. They were apporached by a certain Doctor, who had arrived in Pisa with an escort of six horsemen on the previous evening. He explained through some translators that he was an ambassador of the King of Castile, and he was carrying letters for the Cardinals, which he was not able to deliver. He wanted someone to explain to the Council why he was seeking an audience, and (in brief) that there was danger in delay. Finally the Council decided to give him a hearing on the next morning, and in the meantime he should present his credentials and documents of instruction. As the Council was rising, news was brought that the Cardinal of Milan, Pietro Filargi, OFM, from Candia on the Island of Crete, a famous Master in Theology and advisor to the Duke of Milan, had been elected pope. All rushed to the Archiepiscopal Palace to do reverence, while the bells of the cathedral and city began to ring. The new pope was carried to the Cathedral and enthroned there. The news was that the election had been unanimous, with no dissenting voice (fuerunt in electione omnes domini cardinales utriusque collegii concordes, nemine discrepante. Et revera fuit electio multum libere fcta, et conclave die ac nocte fuit strenuissime custoditum et sine tumultu: ita quod nec nutu, nec verbo domini cardinales poterant scire quod extra fiebat, nec illi qui erant extra scire poterant quod intus fiebat, in the words of Robert of Sauxillanges: Martène et Durand VII, 1115]

That same evening the new Pope, Alexander V, announced that he would retain François de Conzieu as Camerarius S. R. E., Johannes de Bronhiaco as the Vice-Chancellor S. R. E., and Pierre Girard de Podio as Major Penitentiarius.

On the next day, Thursday, June 27, Prior Robert was present at another important meeting. During the Conclave, the Council had appointed a committee to draw up articles concerning Church reform. It was the opinion of the Council that its existence and its work of uniting the Church and reforming it, top to bottom, should and would continue, even after a new pope was elected. The Committee had sixteen members of the French church, including the Archbishop of Vienne [Jean de Nanton], the BIshop of Cambrai [Petrus de Alliaco], seven other bishops. the Abbots of Cîteaux, Casa Dei, Vezelay and Robert de Sauxillanges; Robert Hallum of Salisbury was also on the Committee. Robert of Sauxillanges acted as the secretary, and actually drew up the forty-five articles included in the final document. On June 27, after they had done reverence to the new pope, the prelates of the Gallican Church and Universities assembled in the Baptistry of the Cathedral, where Robert read his document, which was lightly emended. The revised document was given to some people to be discussed further, and they met again that night. The next morning, June 29, Cardinal Joannes de Bronhiaco (Jean Allarmet de Brogny), to whom the matter had been referred, was going to hear the entire Committee, since the Pope wanted them to move quickly before he departed Pisa (desiderat nos celeriter expedire antequam abhinc recedat). At the time the letter was written by Prior Robert, it was uncertain whether the new Pope would be crowned in Pisa or in Florence, or even perhaps in Bologna (which was papal territory).

On Monday, July 1, there was a Session of the Council [Mansi 27, 411-412; Mansi 26, 1151-1152], at which Cardinal Pierre de Thuryeo celebrated a Solemn Mass, and the Pope presided and preached a sermon. At the Pope's command Cardinal Antoine de Challant ascended the pulpit and read the Electoral Decree and the subscriptions of the Cardinals. Cardinal Louis de Bar, Deacon of S. Agatha, was created Cardinal Priest of XII. Apostolorum. A Consistorial Advocate ascended the pulpit and requested that all of the actions of the Council and the Cardinals done between May 3, 1408, and the first day of the General Council, as well as all things done thus far in the Council, be approved by the new Pope, and he did so. The Cardinal of Bologna, Baldassare Cossa, then ascended the pulpit, and repeated what the Pope had said in a loud voice so that all could hear, and then asked that all present should publish the Acta of the Council in their own dioceses both to clergy and laity. Finally, to remove all question of which cardinals were true cardinals and which were pseudo-cardinals, Cardinal Cossa read a decree of Pope Alexander which promoted all the cardinals into the Sacred College and made one College out of two.

On Tuesday, July 2, in a Secret Consistory, Patriarch Simon de Cremaud was named Archbishop of Reims; the Archbishop of Bourges, Pierre Aymery, was named Bishop of Carcassone and Patriarch of Alexandria; and Guillaume de Boisratier was named Bishop of Bourges—all conditional on the approval of King Charles VI. Theoderic of Nyem complains mightily about this event, and indicates that there was much more going on than was noticed by Robert of Sauxillanges—who, in fact, was selecting material for his report which would be of interest to the French monks at Cluny. Theoderic [de schismate III. 52] states that the Pope had appointed all the friends of the cardinals who had been present in the Conclave to various positions:

Praefatusque dominus Alexander papa, statim postquam creatus fuit in papam, et ante ipsius coronationem multos creavit archiepiscopos, episcopos et abbates et omnibus aliis familiaribus dictorum dominorum cardinalium, qui eum elegerunt in papam, qui dictis dominis cardinalibus in conclavi ministrarunt, adeo abusivas et exorbitantes beneficiales gratias etiam cum dispensationibus ad plura incompatibilia beneficia, qui eas petierunt, absque personarum delectu fecit, sicut a saeculis numquam prius auditae fuerunt, ita quod caeteri saltem intelligentes curiales de tam indiscreta provisione stupefacti murmurabant. Videbatur enim praedictus Alexander pro nichilo habere titulos ecclesiasticos, quos tam improvide dividebat. Adiecit etiam dictus papa in signatura dicti rotuli facti pro eisdem familiaribus, qui in eodem conclavi suis dominis ministrabant, quod illam signaturam pro eo tam large fecisset, quia quilibet ipsorum dominorum cardinalium in eodem conclavi promisisset omnia se concessurum, quae ipsi familiares peterent, si eligeretur in papam. Et ecce cum quanta providentia haec negotia in apicibus processerunt, et quod papa no ex suo arbitrio, sed ex conventione seu pacto precedenti gratias petentibus facere teneretur, non inspectis ydoneitate et qualitate familiarium predictorum.

This was, however, the custom, and it remained the custom, that each Conclavist received the first benefice that became available in their diocese, until the twentieth century. Likewise, it was the custom for each cardinal to present a rotulus to a new pope at the first Consistory of his reign, requesting favors, offices, and promotions for his followers. Theoderic attempts to turn this into a corrupt bargain, even an electoral capitulation, but this may be nothing more than Germanic bile against French good fortune (Cf. Souchon II, p. 65).

On July 4, the people of Siena removed themselves from the Obedience of Gregory XII and joined that of Alexander V; their delegates appeared before the Pope and Council on July 7 to make the announcement [Mansi 26, 1152-1153]

Coronation

On Sunday, July 7, 1409, a Solemn Mass was celebrated in the Cathedral of Pisa by Pope Alexander V, in the presence of the Cardinals, prelates and most of the Council. After Mass, they proceeded to a high platform which had been erected in front of the Cathedral, where the Pope was crowned by the Cardinal Protodeacon, Cardinal Amadeo de Saluzzo [Mansi 27, 412]. Then there was a grand procession on horseback through the city. During the procession, Cardinal de Saluzzo and the Captain of the City went to a place where the Jews of the city were gathered. They presented the Cardinal with a Torah, which he received and took to the Pope. The pope received the scroll from the Cardinal, and then threw it behind him, saying "Legem recipio, sed ceremonialia respuo."

Sessio XX of the Council had been scheduled for Monday, July 15, 1409, but at the Pope's request was postponed until Saturday, July 20, and then again until Wednesday, July 24, but due to the arrival of King Louis II d'Anjou, it was postponed again until Saturday, July 27 [D'Achery, Spicilegium I, 852; Mansi 26, 1234]. Pope Alexander announced through the Archbishop of Pisa, Alamanno Adimari, that, considering the poor financial condition of the Church, he was remitting a wide range of monies owed to the Apostolic Camera, including death duties on deceased prelates, annates, and arrears owed to the Treasury. The members of the General Council responded, Placet!  [Full text in Mansi 26, 1235-1237].  The Archbishop then proposed that the College of Cardinals should also remit similar monies owed to their Treasury. The Archbishop then asked the prelates if they approved, and they responded again, Placet.   The Archbishop then addressed the Cardinals, "Vobis Dominis meis Cardinalibus pro parte omnium supplicatur, quatenus ista arreragia remittere dignemini?" There was no reply. He then asked the assembly again if it was pleasing to them, and again he got the reply, Placet. (It was known beforehand that most of the Cardinals were well enough pleased with the proposal, except Cardinal Niccolò Brancaccio, who said several times that he would not remit them, even in open Council. Cardinal "Neapolitanus" [Minutoli] was also opposed).

Action was also taken on the case of Cardinal Ludovico Flisco [Fieschi] of Genoa. He was given two months to appear personally and offer his obedience to Pope Alexander V:

Item, sacro approbante Concilio decernimus et declaramus quod, si Cardinalis de Flisco infra duos menses proximos personaliter ad nos veinre, et obedientiam nobis praestare, et determinationi hujus sancri Concilii adhaerere voluerit, benigne recipiatur cum integritate status et honoris, atque beneficiorum, quae decimo quinto Junii millesimi quadringentesimi octavi [June 15, 1408] obtinebat.

On May 23, 1410 he finally entered Bologna, too late for the Conclave of 1410 which elected Baldassare Cossa as John XXIII, and never having faced Alexander V [Eubel I, p. 25 and n. 3]. While he had withdrawn from Benedict XIII, he kept to himself until the Council of Constance, where he became a leading figure.

The next meeting of the Council of Pisa was set for August 2, 1409, and then postponed until August 7. Alexander V lived a little over ten months after his election.


Bibliography

"Vita Alexandri Papae V," "Vita Joannis Papae XXI. vulgo XXIII," J. D. Mansi, Sacrorum Conciliorum 27 (1784) 503-505.

"De Johanne XXIII.," in Ludovico Antonio Muratori (editor), Rerum Italicarum Scriptores III. 2 (Milan 1724), columns 846-857.

B. Platina (edited by Onuphrio Panvinio), B. Platinae de vitis pontificum Romanorum (Coloniae: apud Maternum Cholinum 1568). "Innocentius VII" (pp. 278-280); "Gregorius XII" (pp. 280-282); "Alexander V" (pp. 282-283); "Iohannes XXIII" (pp. 283-287). Bartolommeo Platina e d'altri autori, Storia delle vite de' pontefice Tomo Terzo (Venezia: Domenico Ferrarin 1763), "Innocenzio VII" (pp. 284-287); "Gregorio XII" (pp. 288-295); Alessandro V (pp. 296-298); "Giovanni XXIII" (pp. 299-312).

George Williams (editor), Memorials of the Reign of King Henry VI: Official Correspondence of Thomas Bekynton, Secretary to King Henry VI, and Bishop of Bath and Wells Volume II (London 1872), no. CCXLIII, pp. 109-111. 

Theodericus de Nyem [Dietrich Niem]: Georg Erler (editor), Theoderici de Nyem de scismate libri tres   (Lipsiae 1890). Georg Erler, Dietrich von Nieheim [Thoedericus de Nyem]. Sein Leben und seine Schriften (Leipzig: Alfons Dürr 1887). [ca. 1338/1348—1418] [Theoderic is completely hostile to most of the popes he worked for and wrote about, especially Gregory XII, Alexander V and John XXIII}

Theodericus de Nyem, "Informacio facta cardinalibus in conclavi ante eleccionem pape Joannis XXIII. moderni," in Erler, Dietrich von Nieheim [Thoedericus de Nyem]. Sein Leben und seine Schriften (Leipzig: Alfons Dürr 1887), Beilage II, pp. XXX-XLI.

Theodericus de Nyem, "De vita ac factis Constantiensibus Joannis Papae XXIII. usque ad fugam et carcerem ejus," in Hermann von der Hardt, Res Concilii Oecumenici Constantiensis II, XV, pp. 334-460. [very hostile]

Antonius Petri, Diarium Romanum [1404-1417] {Muratori, Rerum Italicarum Scriptores XXIV,  973-1066;  Savignoni, "Giornale d'Antonio di Pietro dello Schiavo," Archivio della R. societa Romana di storia patria 13 (1890), 295-359]

L. Bellaguet (editor and translator), Chronique du Religieux de Saint-Denys Tome quatrième (Paris: Crapelet 1842), Liber XXXI [Latin text and French translation].

Lucas d' Achery, OSB, Spicilegium, sive Collectio Veterum Aliquot Scriptorum... nova editio   Tomus I (Paris: Montalant 1723).

Edmundus Martène et Ursinus Durand, Veterum Scriptorum et Monumentorum Amplissima Collectio Tomus VII (Parisiis: apud Montalant 1733) Stephanus Baluzius [Étienne Baluze], Vitae Paparum Avinionensium 2 volumes (Paris: apud Franciscum Muguet 1693)

Bonifacius Ferrer, once Prior of Chartreux, Tractatus pro defensione Benedicti XIII [Martène et Durand, Thesaurus novus anecdotorum II (Paris 1717) 1435-1529]. (written in January, 1411)

Augustinus Theiner (Editor), Caesaris S. R. E. Cardinalis Baronii, Od. Raynaldi et Jac. Laderchii Annales Ecclesiastici   Tomus Vigesimus Septimus 1397-1423 (Barri-Ducis: Ludovicus Guerin 1874) [Baronius-Theiner].

Jacques Lenfant, Histoire du Concile de Pise Tome premier (Amsterdam Pierre Humbert 1724), Livre IV (esp. pp. 324-328); Tome second (esp. pp. 2-12). Joannes Dominicus Mansi, Sacrorum Conciliorum nova et amplissima Collectio  Tomus vicesimus-septimus (Venetiis: Apud Antonium Zatta 1784) [a chaotic and completely unsatisfactory presentation].  Georg Erler, Zur Geschichte des Pisanischen Konzils (Leipzig 1884). Carl Joseph von Hefele, Conciliengeschichte   Sechster Band. Zweite Auflage (ed. Alois Knöpfler) (Freiburg im Breisgau: Herder 1890), pp. 982-1041; Siebenter Band, pp. 5-8. Hefele, Histoire des Conciles (ed. H. Leclercq) VII (Paris: Letouzey 1916). Carl Rudolf Kötzschke, Ruprecht von der Pfalz und das Konzil zu Pisa (Jena 1889). Franz Ehrle, "Aus den Acten des Afterconcils von Perpignan 1408," Archiv fur Literatur- und Kirchengeschichte 7 (1900).

H. B. Sauerland, "Gregor XII. von seiner Wahl bis zum Vertrage von Marseille (30 Nov. 1406-21 April 1407)," Historische Zeitschrift 34 (1875), 74-120.   J.-B. Christophe, Histoire de la papauté pendant le XIV. siècle Tome troisième (Paris 1853), Books 16 and 17.   F. Gregorovius, History of Rome in the Middle Ages, Volume VI. 2 second edition, revised (London: George Bell, 1906) [Book XII, chapter 5]   Eustace J. Kitts, In the Days of the Councils. A Sketch of the Life and Times of Baldassare Cossa (afterward Pope John XXIII) (London 1908).   Noël Valois, La France et le Grand Schisme d'Occident Tome quatrième (Paris: Alphonse Picard 1902)

Martin Souchon, Die Papstwahlen in der Zeit des Grossen Schismas   Zweiter Band (Braunschweig: Benno Goeritz 1899).

Cesare Guasti, "Gli avanzi dell'Archivio di un pratese Vescovo di Volterra che fu al Concilio di Costanza," Archivio storico italiano  Quarta serie 13 (1884), 20-41; 171-209; 313-372. [Stefano Geri Boni di Prato (Bishop of Volterra 1411-1435)].

L.-H. Labande, "Un légiste du XIVe siècle: Jean Allarmet, Cardinal de Brogny," Mélanges Julien Havet (Paris 1895) 487-497.

Leonce Celier, "Sur quelques opuscules du camerlingue François de Conzié,"  Mélanges d' archéologie et d' histoire  26 (1906), 91-108.

Erich Koenig, Kardinal Giordano Orsini (†1438). Ein Lebensbild aus der Zeit der grossen Konzilien und des Humanismus (Freiburg im Breisgau: Herder 1906).

 

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