No coins have been identified.
The Marshal of the Holy Roman Church and Guardian of the Conclave was Giovanni Battista Savelli.
Pope Martin V (Colonna) had lived during most of his reign on Colonna property, in a palazzo next to the Basilica XII Apostolorum. At the beginning of 1431 it was apparent that he was not well, though he seemed to be in recovery. He had had an episode of illness at the beginning of the year, and Cardinal Antonio Correr wrote to the Florentines on February 20 [Pastor, History of the Popes I, 396] that the gossip in the city was that his life was in danger. On Monday, the 19th, he summoned the cardinals and made a few general remarks; the general impression was that he was going to die immediately. Stefano Infessura [Diaria p. 26 Tommasetti] says: a dì 19 cade la iotta a papa Martino nella lengua, e fu dì lunedi, e lo martedì seguente morse su nell albo dello dì, e fu a dì 20 de febraro.
He died on the night of Tuesday, February 20, 1431, shortly before dawn, at the age of 63, of apoplexy (a stroke). He had taken supper and gone to bed ["Life of Martin V," from a Vatican ms., in Muratori RIS III. 2, 868]:
jam sumto prandio infirmatus est, et nocte sequenti paulo ante diem hic beatissimus Pastor et semper memorandus Pontifex Deo animam reddidit, aetatis suae, ut ferebatur, anno sexagestmo tertio.
He had reigned as Pope for thirteen years, three months, and nine days (Platina, 294). . His death is noted in the 15th century Memoriale of Paolo dello Maestro (Pelaez, 81; Constant, 323 n. 3):
XIV Feb. morio Papa Martino Quinto....a di prima Martii, li cardinali se misero in Conchiave in nella Minerva et fu di Jovii alle 24 hore, e fu sbarrata la piazza della...Die X di Marzo fu coronato papa Eugenio, su le scale di S. Pietro.
He was buried in the Lateran Basilica, in front of the high altar, ante capita Apostolorum Petri et Pauli. His funeral inscription reads [Forcella Inscrizioni delle chiese di Roma 8 no. 37, p. 23]:
The tomb was opened on February 7, 1853, in order to make possible the restoration of the Tabernacle of the Basilica and enlargement of the small Confessione. The tomb was very simple, and to everyone's surprise, the body was buried with its head toward the main entrance of the Basilica, without papal ornaments or proper coffins. It has been theorized that either the body was not that of Martin V (Colonna), but a ruse to prevent desecration; or that the tomb had been violated during the hostile reaction against the Colonna family in the early years of Eugenius IV [A. Coppi, Memorie colonnese (Roma 1855), pp. 183-190].
There was an immediate reaction to the news of the death of the Pope. The Duke of Milan, Filippo Maria Visconti, wrote at once to the Emperor Sigismund, on March 5, 1431:
Etsi nihil dubitem serenitatem vestram que scripturus sum ex multis aliorum litteris audituram, ut ego tamen meo debito satisfaciam, Majestati vestre notificare constitui, et qua debeo reverentia ac humilitate notifico sanctissimum dominum nostrum papam Martinum die vigesimo preteriti mensis februarii, in aurora, suos clusisse dies, atque migrasse ad dominum Deum nostrum. Et sicut ex romana curia certior factus sum, provisum est ut cum pace omnium cito novus Pontifex eligatur; ego vero non sine magna spe sum quod eligendus favorabilis erit atque benivolus; et quisque futurus ille sit, non dubito quin in sua me gratia et benivolentia sua recipiat, meque libenter habeat in servitorem et filium pre ea devotione et reverentia quam in Ecclesiam Dei habeo, et per omnia tempora habere dispono. Ut igitur, invictissime princeps et domine metuendissime, breviter concludam, nihil ex hoc obitu summi Pontificis rebus imperialibus in Italia secuturum eat quod incomodum esse possit; neque mea devotio statui Ecclesie erit inutilis; immo, si de me ipso loqui liceret, maxime fructuosa; sed, judicio meo, Deoque propicio, meliora succedent. Quare supplico devotissime, ut Majestas vestra suum ad has partes accelerare dignetur accesum, ubi desiderio plurimo expectatur, nec aliqua occasione moretur. Per eius enim adventum omnia sunt felicissime successura; nec alias fuerit unquam Cesar qui tantam gloriam reportaverit.
The Duke was to be considerably disappointed to hear that the newest successor of S. Peter would be a Venetian.
As soon as Pope Martin was dead the Cardinals held a Congregation, on February 20, in which the Conservatores, Capita Regionum, Marshalls, and all the Officiales of Rome took part. They all placed themselves at the disposal of the Cardinals, and promised to hold the City in complete obedience to the Church. Prince Colonna, the nephew of the late Pope, sent a delegation of important men and distinguished citizens to the Cardinals, to announce that, on his behalf, they promised to turn over the Castel S. Angelo and the gates of the city, as well as all of the fortresses belonging to the Church, to the College of Cardinals. The Cardinals were delighted that there would be no trouble from the City or from the Colonna. They planned to conduct the Pope's funeral, observe the Novendiales, and then begin the Conclave immediately.
The Venetian ambassador, Francesco Tornabuoni, wrote to the Signoria that the Cardinals were disposed to get on with the novendiales and have a quick election. That being the case, the Venetians decided not to interfere with the proceedings, though their favorite was of course the Venetian Antonio Correr, the Cardinal Bishop of Porto. The Florentine government, however, wrote to Cardinal Orsini that they offered him all their support and hoped to see him elected. But they also made the same representations to Cardinal Condulmaro (Bishop of Siena), to Cardinal Albergati (Bishop of Bologna), and to Cardinal Casini (Petruccelli, 240). The Romans favored Cardinal Colonna, a nephew of the deceased pope, or so it is said; but the idea of electing a twenty-two year old, however talented, was and is absurd. The generations-long feuds between the Orsini and Colonna, in any event, cancelled out his chances. For the same reason, Giordano Orsini, however competent and highly thought of, was not a viable candidate. His was the role of pope-maker.
The Conclave was enclosed on March 1, 1431, according to the Memoriale of Paolo Benedetto di Nicolai dello Maestro (Pelaez, 84; Cancellieri, 12-13 calls him the papal Master of Ceremonies, but this is premature; see Constant, 162):
Anno 1431 à 13 Febr. morto Papa Martino V, quale visse nel Papato 14 anni, et tenne un quieto e tranquillo stato, che s' andava con l'auro in mano, attorno Roma, ducento miglia di notte, e di giorno securo, e fece grandissimo bene alla Città di Roma. 1 di Marco li Cardinali si misero in Conclave nella Minerva à 24 hore, e fu sbarrata la piazza della Minerva e fu guardata da Romani.
The Dominican convent, next to the Basilica of Santa Maria sopra Minerva, was chosen for the conclave for the sake of security, since the square in front of the Basilica was easily closed off and defended. There survives a note of the payment of 47 florins to Master Bartholomeus, the carpenter of Master Jacobus, who constructed "barrae pro custodia conclavis" [Eugène Müntz, p. 66]. There was also work done in the monks' dormitory, which needed to be repaired after the Conclave. A note in the books of the Apostolic Camera records the payment, on October 23, 1431 [Müntz, p. 49], "honesto religioso fratri Leonardo de Roma ordinis praedicatorum sindaco et procuratori conventus fratrum praedicatorum in sancta Maria de Minerva de Urbe commorantium pro complemento pecuniarum dicto conventui concessarum pro reparatione dormitorii quod fuit destructum tempore conclavis in quo s. d. n. fuit creatus flor. auri d.c. 150."
Business began at the Minerva on March 2, 1431. There were approximately nineteen or twenty cardinals in total. One cardinal, Domenico Capranica, was not allowed to participate in the Conclave. He had been named cardinal by Martin V in secret consistory on July 23, 1423, and was confirmed in another secret consistory on May 26, 1426, but his appointment was not published until November 8, 1430. In the parlance of the subject, his mouth had been closed, but not yet opened; he was entitled to the status and prerogatives of a cardinal, but he had not served his novitiate and was entitled neither to speak in consistory nor to vote in a papal election (or so it was alleged; Cartwright, p. 128; cf. Pastor I, 264). Capranica applied, nonetheless, for admission to the Conclave, and was refused by the Cardinals. The election was finally conducted by fourteen cardinals.
The number and status of cardinals at the end of the reign of Martin IV is somewhat confused: (a) by the effects of the Schisms; (b) Martin's habit of naming cardinals "in pectore" and not getting around to publicizing their names or completing their installations. Konrad Eubel Hierarchia Catholica II editio altera (Monasterii 1914), p. 7 n. 4, states that there were twenty-two cardinals at the time of the election of Eugenius IV, of whom nine were absent. The signatures of the cardinals present at the Conclave at the Minerva on March 2, 1431, Apostolica Sede vacante, are preserved on the Electoral Capitulations [Baronius-Theiner 28 sub anno 1431, no. 7, p. 84]: Giordano Orsini, Antonio Correr of Porto, Antonio Panciera of S. Susanna, Gabriel Condulmar Bishop of Siena, Branda Castiglione, Jean de la Roche Taillée, Ludovicus Aleman of S. Cecilia, Antonio Casini of S. Marcello, Johannes Cervantes of S. Pietro in vincoli, Alfonso Carillo of S. Eustachio, Lucido dei Conti, Ardicino of SS. Cosmae et Damiani, Hughes de Lusignan of S. Adriano, and Prospero Colonna of S. Giorgio—a total of fourteen participants.
[Panvinio (297) lists Albergati and Cesarini as absent—which is correct. He lists Ludovicus Alamanus, Arelatensis, Cardinal Priest of Sta Caecilia; Juan Cervantes, Cardinal Priest of S. Pietro in vinculis; and Hughes of Cyprus, Cardinal Deacon of S. Adriano, as present–a total of fourteen cardinals out of nineteen. Bartolommeo Platina, however, states (295) that there were eighteen cardinals in the Conclave—which, however, may only be loose language].
Fourteen cardinals of a total of 19 (or twenty) were in attendance—depending on one's judgment of Cardinals of the obedience of John XXIII and Benedict XIII, and of the cardinals who had been named but not fully installed by Martin V.
This does not take into account
Facilities for holding the Conclave had been prepared for the cardinals in the Convent of the Dominicans, attached to the Basilica of S. Maria sopra Minerva. There is an inscription in the Sacristy of the church which reads: MEMORIAE • CREATIONIS • HIC • HABITAE | SVMM • PONTIF • EVGENII • IIII • ET • NICOLAI • V. The Mass of the Holy Spirit was sung on Thursday March 1, 1431 by Cardinal Giordano Orsini, the Bishop of Albano, prior Cardinalium.
The cardinals immediately entered into an electoral compact, to which, on Friday March 2, Cardinal Gabriele Condulmaro was a signatory [Baronius-Theiner 28 sub anno 1431, no. 7, p. 84; Gregorovius, 26, citing Reynaldi's text; quoted by Gieseler, Compendium, 312-313 n.3]. He subscribed again on March 3 as Eugenius IV.
Among its eight provisions published by Reynaldus (Gregorovius believed that the document as quoted was incomplete, VII. 1, p. 26) were articles about the reform of the Roman Curia and demands that it not be moved about or transferred from Rome; and a call for a General Council to reform the entire Church. There were demands for the adherence to decisions made at the Council of Constance about the creation of cardinals, requiring their majority consent to any new creations:
Item, quod non creabit cardinales, nisi juxta formam et ordinationem factam in Concilio Constantiniensi, quam servare tenebitur, nisi de consensu et consilio majoris partis Domm. Cardd. aliud fiendum videretur.
There was a provision binding the pope not to tyrannize over the cardinals' persons or property, and to allow them freedom of speech in consistory. They also demanded that the old tradition be observed, that, in all matters in which the Cardinals ought to have been consulted, the resulting documents should list the names of all of the cardinals who gave their consent—with the exception of promotions to prelacies.
On Saturday, March 3, 1431, the forty-eight year old Gabriele Condulmaro was elected unanimously as pope. Paolo di Nicolai dello Maestro noted (Pelaez, 81; Cancellieri, 13):
Alli tre, alle 21 hora, fu creato Papa Eugenio IV, e fu di Sabbato, lo quale si chiamava Monsignore di Siena, et abitava in Trastevere, e fu Venetiano.
The lateness of the hour suggests that there must have been both a scrutiny and an accessio. From succeeding events it seems clear that the Orsini faction, led by Cardinals Giordano Orsini and Lucido Conti, influenced the electors to completely repudiate the habits of Pope Martin V and his family. They had sowed the wind with their arrogance, and were about to reap the whirlwind.
Cardinal Condulmar took the name Eugenius IV. On Sunday, March 11 he was crowned, on the steps of the Vatican Basilica by Cardinal Albornoz, the Cardinal di Santi Quattro. the senior cardinal deacon (Panvinio, 298). Paolo di Nicolai dello Maestro noted (Pelaez, 81; the same information is given in the Diary of Paolo Benedetto Nicolai: Gattico I, 281):
nell'anno preditto a di .XI di marzo fu coronato papa Eugenio in nelle scale di Sancto Pietro, e miseli la renno in capo lo cardinale di Sancti Quattro; e poi annò a Sancto Ioanni Laterano e fu adestrato dalli offitiali di Roma, e poi se ne tornò a Sancto Pietro.
The Diario rerum Romanarum of Stefano Infessura, however, states (p. 26 Tommasini; cf. Platina, 295):
Die 11 martii fu coronato lo ditto Eugenio, secondo lo stile di Santo Ioanne Laterano, et po' alla sua coronazione tornò a palazzo, e fece consistorio generale, et fonce de molte gente nella sala granne, in nella quale per la ditta pressura si ruppe lo arrizatore, e credendo la gente che cadesse la sala grande, ogni homo con festinanza si diè a fuggire , et per la detta pressura ce affocò le vescovo de Senegallia, fratello di Pietro Mellino, et hoc fuit in modo praedicto die 16 martii.
The new Pope immediately set out to revise and clarify the rules for making cardinals. He appointed his nephew Francesco Condulmaro Vice-Chamberlain of the Holy Roman Church. On March 12, 1431, he issued a decree convoking an ecumenical Council, to meet at Basle. Cardinal Capranica applied for recognition as a cardinal, but this was refused by Pope Eugenius, perhaps because Capranica was associated with the Colonna. Capranica took his grievance to the Council of Basel. Since he had been elected with the support of the Orsini, Pope Eugenius immediately launched what amounted to a war against his predecessor, Martin V Colonna, and all the Colonna interests; there was good evidence that the Colonna were already conspiring against him within a month of the coronation (Fumi, 611-618). On April 22, 1431, hostilities broke out into the open, as Paolo di Nicolai dello Maestro noted (Pelaez, 81):
nell'anno 1431 a dì 22 di aprile, e fu lo die di sancto Iuorio, venne lo Prencipe [Antonio Colonna, principe di Salerno] cioè lo nepote di papa Martino V, e pigliao porta d'Accia come nemico, e venne per infino a Cancto Iuorio e là si fisse. Partiose Sefano Colonna a dì 24 di aprile e venne per infino alla casa, e poi venne a Sancto Marco con molta iente d'arme e famti, e la trovao la sbarra de' Romani e fecero un granne battaglia dove che Stefano colonna fu rotto e sconfitto da Romani: fulli sbudellato lo cavallo sotto, e furno presi de molti della soa gente, e fullui messa a sacco la casa e qualla dello Prencipe e monte altre case de' loro seoventi.
Soon the entire Ghibelline nobility of Rome and Latium were in arms against the Papacy. On May 18, 1431, Pope Eugenius excommunicated the Colonna. By September the papal adherents were close to a definitive victory, but the illness of the Pope himself (poison?) induced him to offer peace, which was accepted and concluded on September 22, 1431 (Gregorovius, 26-30).
Bartolommeo Platina, Historia B. Platinae de vitis Pontificum Romanorum...que ad Paulum II Venetum ... doctissimarumque annotationum Onuphrii Panvinii (Cologne: apud Maternum Cholinum 1568), 294-295. Bartolommeo Platina ed altri autori, Storia delle vite de' pontifici Tomo Terzo ( Venezia: Domenico Ferrarin 1765) 348-352. Onuphrio Panvinio, Epitome Pontificum Romanorum a S. Petro usque ad Paulum IIII. Gestorum (videlicet) electionisque singulorum & Conclavium compendiaria narratio (Venice: Jacob Strada 1557). Lorenzo Cardella, Memorie storiche de' cardinali della Santa Romana Ecclesia Tomo III (Roma: Pagliarini 1793) 1-61. On Cardinal Cesarini, see the life by Vespasiano da Bisticci, in Vite di uomini illustri del secolo XV (edited by Ludovico Frati) Volume I (Bologna 1893) 109-130. On Cardinal Correr, ibidem, 102-105. On Cardinal Albergati, 105-109. The Life of Pope Eugenius IV is at pp. 5-26. The fame of Vespasiano's style conceals a poverty of historical facts. Stefano Infessura, Diario della citta di Roma (a cura di Oreste Tommasini) (Roma 1890).
Augustinus Theiner (Editor), Caesaris S. R. E. Cardinalis Baronii, Od. Raynaldi et Jac. Laderchii Annales Ecclesiastici Tomus Vigesimus Octavus 1424-1453 (Barri-Ducis: Ludovicus Guerin 1874) [Baronius-Theiner].
Petrus Aloysius Galletti, Inscriptiones Romanae Infimi Aevi Romae Exstantes Tomus I (Romae 1760) cciii, no. 25 (Tomb of Cardinal Domenico Capranica, in the Cloister of Santa Maria sopra Minerva).
Eugène Müntz, Les arts à la cour des Papes pendant le XVe et XVIe siècle. Premier partie. Martin V–Pie II, 1417-1464 (Paris: Thorin 1878) [BEFAR, 4].
G. Constant, "Les maîtres de cérémonies du XVIe siècle: leurs Diaires ," Mélanges de l' École français de Rome 23 (1903), 161-229; 319-344. Mario Pelaez, "Il memoriale di Paolo di Benedetto di Cola dello Maestro dello Rione di Ponte, " Archivio della Società romana di storia patria 16 (1893), 41-130.
Gaetano Novaes, Elementi della storia de' Sommi Pontefici terza edizione Volume V (Roma 1822) 89-90. G. Moroni, Dizionario di erudizione storico-ecclesiastica Volume 22 (Roma 1843) 181. F. Petruccelli della Gattina, Histoire diplomatique des conclaves Volume I (Paris: 1864), 236-252. Francesco Cancellieri, Notizie istoriche delle stagioni e de' siti in cui sono stati tenuti i conclavi nella città di Roma... (Roma 1823) 12-14. J. C. L. Gieseler, A Compendium of Ecclesiastical History 4th edition, revised and emended (translated by J. Hull) Volume IV (Edinburgh 1853). Ferdinand Gregorovius, The History of Rome in the Middle Ages (translated from the fourth German edition by A. Hamilton) Volume 7 part 1 [Book XIII, Chapter 1] (London 1900) 22-26. F. A. Artaud de Montor Histoire des souverains Pontifes Romains Volume III (Paris 1851) 287-288. Ludwig Pastor, History of the Popes (tr. R.F. Kerr) Volume II (St. Louis 1908). Peter Partner, The Papal State under Martin V (London 1958).
On Cardinal Domenico Capranica, see: Battista Poggio, "Cardinalis Firmani vita," in Stephani Baluzii Miscellaneorum Liber Tertius, hoc est Collectio veterum monumentorum (Paris: Franciscus Muguet 1680), 263-301, esp. 272-273 and 290. J.-B. Christophe, Histoire de la papauté pendant le XVe siècle Tome premier (Paris 1863) 93-96; 116-119. William Cornwallis Cartwright, On the Constitution of Papal Conclaves (Edinburgh 1878) 125-129. P. A. Kirsch, "Die reservatio in petto bei den Cardinalscreation," Archiv für katholisches Kirchenrecht 81 (1901), 421-432. M. Morpurgo-Castelnuovo, "Il cardinal Domenico Capranica," Archivio della R. società romana di storia patria, 52 (1929), 1-142. K. A. Fink, "Domenico Capranica als Legat in Perugia 1430-31," Römische Quartalschrift, 39 (1931), 269-279. P. Simonelli, La famiglia Capranica nei secoli XV-XVII (Roma 1973).
On Cardinal Antonio Correr: Vespasiano da Bisticci, Vita di uomini illustri del secolo XV, a cura di P. D'Ancona-E. Aeschliman, (Milano 1951), pp. 72-74. G.Correr, "De vita et obitu beatae memoriae Antonii episcopi Ostiensis soliloquium ad Deum," in G.Musolino-A. Nievo and S. Trarnonfin, Santi e beati veneziani (Venezia 1963) pp. 189-196, 329-341.
On Cardinal Louis Aleman: Joannes Stilting, SJ, in Acta Sanctorum September V (Antwerp 1755), 436-462. Domenico Maria Manni, Della vita e del culto del beato Lodovico Alemanni o Alamanni (Firenze: Gaetano Cambiagi 1771). G. Pérouse, Le cardinal Louis Aleman, président du concile de Bâle, et la fin du grand schisme (Paris: Picard 1904).
On Cardinal Albergati: Ercole Maria Zanotti, Vita del B. Niccolò Albergati (Bologna 1747).
On Cardinal Pierre de Foix: Francois Baron, Le cardinal Pierre de Foix, le vieux (1386-1464) (Amiens: Yvert & Tellier, 1920).
A complete list of all cardinals, of all obediences, from 1378 to 1411, with copious notes, can be found in Martin Souchon, Die Papstwahlen in der Zeit des Grossen Schismas Zweiter Band (Braunschweig: Benno Goeritz 1899) 257-321.
On the Colonna: Luigi Fumi, "I Colonna contro Roma e Papa Eugenio IV nel 431," Bolletino della Società Umbra di storia patria 1 (1895) 611-618. Ridolfo Lanciani, "Il patrimonio della famiglia Colonna al tempo di Martino V (1417-1431)," Archivio della R. Società Romana di Storia Patria 20 (1897), 369-450.
Erich König, Kardinal Giordano Orsini (†1438). Ein Lebensbild aus der Zeit der grossen Konzilien und des Humanismus (Freiburg im Breisgau: Herder 1906). W. Brandmüller, Das Konzil von Konstanz, 1414-18, I. Band (Paderborn 1991), pp. 239-261.
G. Bourgin, "La «familia» pontificia sotto Eugenio IV," Archivio della Societa romanà di storia patria 27 (1904), 203-224. W. Brandmüller, "Der Ubergang vom Pontifikat Martins V. zu Eugen IV.," Quellen und Forschungen aus italienischen Archiven und Bibliotheken, 47 (1967), 585-618.