1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Martin (popes)
MARTIN (Martinus), the name of several popes.
Martin I. succeeded Theodore I. in June or July 649. He had previously acted as papal apocrisiarius at Constantinople, and was held in high repute for learning and virtue. Almost his first official act was to summon a synod (the first Lateran) for dealing with the Monothelite heresy. It met in the Lateran church, was attended by one hundred and five bishops (chiefly from Italy, Sicily and Sardinia, a few being from Africa and other quarters), held five sessions or “secretarii” from the 5th to the 31st of October 649, and in twenty canons condemned the Monothelite heresy, its authors, and the writings by which it had been promulgated. In this condemnation were included, not only the Ecthesis or exposition of faith of the patriarch Sergius for which the emperor Heraclius had stood sponsor, but also the Typus of Paul, the successor of Sergius, which had the support of the reigning emperor (Constans II.). Martin published the decrees of his Lateran synod in an encyclical, and Constans replied by enjoining his exarch to seize the pope and send him prisoner to Constantinople. Martin was arrested in the Lateran (June 15, 653), hurried out of Rome, and conveyed first to Naxos and subsequently to Constantinople (Sept. 17, 654). He was ultimately banished to Cherson, where he arrived on the 26th of March 655, and died on the 16th of September following. His successor was Eugenius I. (L.D.*)
Martin II., the name commonly given in error to Marinus I . (q.v.).
Martin III., see Marinus II.
Martin IV. (Simon Mompitié de Brion), pope from the 22nd of February 1281 to the 28th of March 1285, should have been named Martin II. He was born about 1210 in Touraine. He became a priest at Rouen and canon of St Martin’s at Tours, and was made chancellor of France by Louis IX. in 1260 and cardinal-priest of Sta Cecilia by Urban IV. in 1261. As papal legate in France he held several synods for the reformation of the clergy and conducted the negotiations for the assumption of the crown of Sicily by Charles of Anjou. It was through the latter’s influence that he succeeded Nicholas III., after a six-months’ struggle between the French and Italian cardinals. The Romans at first declined to receive him, and he was consecrated at Orvieto on the 23rd of March 1281. Peaceful and unassuming, he relied completely on Charles of Anjou, and showed little ability as pope. His excommunication of the emperor Michael Palaeologus (Nov. 1281), who stood in the way of the French projects against Greece, weakened the union with the Eastern Christians, dating from the Lyons Council of 1274. He unduly favoured his own countrymen, and for three years after the Sicilian Vespers (Mar. 31, 1282) he employed all the spiritual and material resources at his command on behalf of his patron against Peter of Aragon. He was driven from Rome by a popular uprising and died at Perugia. His successor was Honorius IV. (C.H.Ha.)
Martin V. (Otto Colonna) (1417–1431) was elected at Constance on St Martin’s Day, in a conclave composed of twenty-three cardinals and thirty delegates from the five different “nations” of the council. Son of Agapito Colonna, who had himself become a bishop and cardinal, the new pope belonged to one of the greatest Roman families; to Urban VI. had been due his entry, as referendarius, upon an ecclesiastical career. Having become a cardinal under Innocent VII., he had seceded from Gregory XII. in 1408, and together with the other cardinals at Pisa, had taken part in the election of Alexander V. and afterwards of John XXIII. At Constance, his role had been chiefly that of an arbiter; he was a good and gentle man, leading a simple life, free from intrigue. While refraining from making any pronouncement as to the validity of the decrees of the fourth and fifth sessions, which had seemed to proclaim the superiority of the council over the pope, Martin V. nevertheless soon revealed his personal feelings by having a constitution read in consistory which forbade any appeal from the judgment of the sovereign pontiff in matters of faith (May 10, 1418). As to the reform, of which everybody felt the necessity, the fathers in council had not succeeded in arriving at any agreement. Martin V. himself settled a great number of points, and then passed a series of special concordats with Germany, France, Italy, Spain and England. Though this was not the thorough reform of which need was felt, the council itself gave the pope a satisfecit. When the council was dissolved Martin V. made it his task to regain Italy. After staying for long periods at Mantua and Florence, where the deposed pope, Baldassare Cossa (John XXIII.), came and made submission to him, Martin V. was enabled to enter Rome (Sept. 30, 1420) and measure the extent of the ruins left there by the Great Schism of the West. He set to work to restore some of these ruins, to reconstitute and pacify the Papal State, to put an end to the Schism, which showed signs of continuing in Aragon and certain parts of southern France; to enter into negotiations, unfortunately unfruitful, with the Greek Church also with a view to a return to unity, to organize the struggle against heresy in Bohemia; to interpose his pacific mediation between France and England, as well as between the parties which were rending France; and, finally, to welcome and act as patron to saintly reformers like Bernardino of Siena and Francesca Romana, foundress of the nursing sisterhood of the Oblate di Tor de’ Specchi (1425).
In accordance with the decree Frequens, and the promises which he had made, Martin V., after an interval of five years, summoned a new council, which was almost immediately transferred from Pavia to Siena, in consequence of an epidemic (1423). But the small number of fathers who attended at the latter town, and above all, the disquieting tendencies which began to make themselves felt there, induced the pope to force on a dissolution of the synod. Pending the reunion of the new council which had been summoned at Basel for the end of a period of seven years, Martin V. himself endeavoured to effect a reformation in certain points, but he was carried off by apoplexy (Feb. 20, 1431), just as he had designated the young and brilliant Cardinalto preside in his place over the council of Basel.