Open main menu

URBAN (Urbanus), the name of eight popes.

St Urban, first pope of that name, was bishop of Rome from 222 to 230. He had been preceded by Calixtus, and was followed by Pontianus.

Urban II. (Odo or Otho or Eudes de Lagary), pope from the 12th of March 1088 to the 29th of July 1099, was born of knightly rank at Lagary (or Lagery or Lagny), near Reims. He studied for the church, became archdeacon of Auxerre, and later joined the congregation of Cluny. Displaying great ability as reformer and theologian, he was chosen subprior of the celebrated monastery. He was created cardinal-bishop of Ostia in 1078 by Gregory VII., to whom he displayed such loyalty, especially as papal legate in Germany (1084), that

he was imprisoned for a time by Henry IV. He was designated by Gregory as one of four men most worthy to succeed him, and, after a vacancy of more than five months following the decease of Victor III., he was elected pope on the 12th of March 1088 by forty cardinals, bishops, and abbots assembled at Terracina, together with representatives of the Romans and of Countess Matilda. He frankly took up the policy of Gregory VII., but, while pursuing it with equal determination, showed greater flexibility and diplomatic skill. Throughout the major part of his pontihcate he had to reckon with the presence of the powerful antipope Clement III. (Guibert of Ravenna) in Rome; but a series of well-attended synods at Rome, Amalfi, Benevento and Troia, supported him in renewed declarations against simony, lay investiture, and clerical marriages, and in a policy of continued opposition to Henry IV. He maintained an alliance with the Norman Duke Roger, Robert Guiscard's son and successor, and united the German with the Italian opposition to the emperor by promoting the marriage of the Countess Matilda with young Welf of Bavaria. He aided Prince Conrad in his rebellion against his father and crowned him king of the Romans at Milan in IOQ3, and likewise encouraged the Empress Praxedis in her charges against her husband. By excommunicating Philip I. of France for matrimonial infidelity in 1095, Urban opened a struggle which was not terminated until after his death. Invited to Tuscany by the Countess Matilda, he convoked a council at Piacenza in March 1095, attended by so vast a number of prelates and laymen that its sessions were held in the open air, and addressed by ambassadors of Alexis, the Byzantine emperor, who sought aid against the Mussulmans. Urban crossed the Alps in the summer, and remained over a year in France and Burgundy, being everywhere reverently received. He held a largely attended council at Clermont in November 1095, where the preaching of the First Crusade marked the most prominent feature of Urban's pontificate. Thenceforth until his death he was actively engaged in exhorting to war against the infidels. Crusaders on their way through Italy drove the antipope Clement III. finally from Rome in 1097, and established Urban firmly in the papal see. With a view to facilitating the crusade, a council was held at Bari in October 1098, at which religious differences were debated and the exiled Anselm of Canterbury combated the Eastern View of the Procession of the Holy Ghost. Urban died suddenly at Rome on the 29th of July 1099, fourteen days after the capture of Jerusalem, but before the tidings of that event had reached Italy. His successor was Paschal II. It is well established that Urban preached the sermon at Clermont which gave the impetus to the crusades. The sermon was written out by Bishop Baudry, who heard it, and is to be found in full in I. M. Watterich, Pontif. Rornan. Vitae. Letters of Urban are published in ]. P. Migne, Patrol. Lat., vol. 151. See ]. Langen, Geschichte der rornischen Kirche 'von Gregor VII. bis Innocenz III. (Bonn, 1893); F. Gregorovius, Rome in the Middle Ages, vol. 4, trans. by Mrs G. W. Hamilton (London, 1900-2); K. ]. von Hefele, Conciliengeschichte, vol. 5 (2nd ed., 1873-go); jaffé-Wattenbach, Regesta pontif. Roman. vol. 1 (1885-88); H. H. Milman, History of Latin Christianity, vol. 3 (London, 1899); M. F. Stern, Zur Biographie des Papstes Urbans II. (Berlin, 1883); A. de Brimont, Un Pape au rnoyen age- Urbain II. (Paris, 1862); W. Norden, Das Papstturn und Byzanz (Berlin, 1903); Gigalski, “ Die Stellung des Papstes Urbans II. zu den Sacramentshandlungen der Simonisten, Schismatiker und Haretiker, " in the Tilbinger theol. Quartalschrift (1897).

URBAN III. (Uberto Crivelli), pope from the 25th of November 1185 to the 2oth of October 1187, was a Milanese, and had been made cardinal-priest of St Lorenzo in Damaso and archbishop of Milan by Lucius' III., whom he succeeded. His family had suffered greatly at the hands of Frederick I., and he now took up vigorously his predecessor's quarrels with the emperor, including the standing dispute about the territories of the Countess Matilda. His opposition to the pretensions of the Roman senate to govern the Papal States, moreover, compelled him to remain in exile through his pontificate. He suspended the patriarch of Aquileia for crowning the emperor's son, Henry, king of Italy (January 1186), in violation of his own rights as archbishop of Milan; and only the entreaties of the citizens of Verona, where he was stopping, prevented him from excommunicating Frederick. In 1187 he exhorted the Christian kings to renewed endeavours in the Holy Land, and the fall of Jerusalem on the 2nd of October is said to have caused his death. He died at Ferrara and was succeeded by Gregory VIII. His letters are in ]. P. Migne, Patrol. Lat., vol. 202.

See ]. Langen, Geschichte der rérnischen Kirche von Gregor VII. bis Innocenz III. (Bonn, 1893); jaffé-Wattenbach, Regesta pontif. Roman. (1885-88); F. Gregorovius, Rome in the Middle A ges, vol. 4, trans. by Mrs G. W. Hamilton (London, 1896); P. Scheffer-Boichorst, Friedrichs I. letzter Streit mil der Curie (Berlin, 1866); W. Meyer, “ Zum Streite Kaiser Friedrichs I. mit Papst Urban IIl., " in Forschungen zur deutschen Geschichte, vol. 19 (1879). URBAN IV. (]acques Pantaléon), pope from the 29th of August 1261 to the and of October 1264, was the son of a shoemaker of Troyes. Having received a monastic education, he became archdeacon of Liége and papal legate of Innocent IV. to Poland and Prussia; he'was consecrated bishop of Verdun in 12 53, and two years later was translated to the patriarchate of Jerusalem. While on a trip to Italy to explain at court a quarrel with the Hospitallers he was elected to succeed Alexander IV., after a three months' vacancy in the Holy See. He never visited Rome, but lived most of his pontificate at Orvieto. He favoured his own countrymen, and under him began that preponderance of the French in the curia which later led to the papal residence at Avignon, and indirectly to the Great Schism. He endeavoured without success to stir up Louis IX. of France to undertake a new crusade. In 1264 he instituted the festival of Corpus Christi. His chief domestic problems arose out of the competing claims for the crown of the Two Sicilies. He favoured Charles of Anjou, and declared in June 1263 that the papal grant of the kingdom to Edmund, son of Henry III. of England, had expired because of the latter's inability to oust the usurper Manfred. Urban died before the arrival of Charles of Anjou, and was succeeded by Clement IV.

The registers of Urban IV. have been published by L. Dorez and ]. Guiraud in the Bibliothegne des écoles françaises d'Athenes et de Rome (Paris, 1892).

See F. Gregorovius, Rome in the Middle Ages, vol. 5, trans. by Mrs G. W. Hamilton (London, 1900-2); H. H. Milman, Latin Christianity, vol. 6 (London, 1899); K. Hampe, “Urban IV. und Manfred " in A bhandlungen zur rnittleren u. neueren Geschichte (Heidelberg, 1905); Sievert, “ Das Vorleben Papst Urbans IV.” in Die romische Quartalschrift (1898); A. Potthast, Regesta pontif. Roman. (Berlin, 1875).

URBAN V. (Guillaume Grimoard or Grimaud de Beauvoir), pope from the 28th of October 1362 to the 19th of December 1370, was born in 1309 near Lozére in Languedoc, and entered the Benedictine priory of Chiriac. After receiving orders he became successively professor of canon law at Avignon and Montpellier, vicar-general of the dioceses of Clermont and Uzés, abbot of St Germain d'Auxerre, abbot of St Victor at Marseilles, administrator of the bishopric of Avignon, and papal legate to Naples. He was returning from his mission to Italy when news reached him at Corneto that he had been chosen to succeed Innocent VI. He announced his acceptance from Marseilles, and was consecrated at Avignon on the 6th of November 1362. Urban witnessed the completion of the work of tranquillizing Italy under the able Cardinal Albornoz, and in 1364, in the interests of peace, made heavy concessions to Bernabo Visconti. Moved by Peter of Lusignan, king of Cyprus, and by the celebrated Carmelite Peter Thomas, who had come to Avignon in February 1363, the pope proclaimed another crusade, which found some echo in France and resulted in the temporary occupation of Alexandria (1365). Urban, yielding to the entreaties of the Emperor Charles IV. and of Petrarch, left Avignon on the 3oth of April 1367, despite the opposition of the French cardinals, and made his entry into Rome on the 16th of October. The following year he was visited by Charles IV., and crowned the Empress Elizabeth (1st of November); and in 1369 he received the Greek emperor, John Palaeologus, who renounced the schism but for whom the pope was unable to secure assistance. Urban sanctioned the order of lesuates and founded the medical school at Montpellier. On account of the poor repair of Rome, the restlessness of the Romans and the discontent of the French cardinals in Italy, he at length announced his intention of returning to France, avowedly to settle trouble between France and England. He took ship at Corneto on the 5th of September 1370, and, arriving at Avignon on the 24th of the same month, died on the 19th of December. Urban was serious and humble, opposed to all nepotism, simony, and secular pomp. He was himself of blameless morality and reformed many abuses in the curia. He was honoured as a saint immediately after his death, and beatified by Pius IX. in 1870. Urban's successor was Gregory XI.

See H. J. Tomaseth, “ Die Register u. Secretiire Urbans V. u. Gregors Xl.” in Mitteilungen des Instituts fnr osterreichr-sche Geschiehtsforsehung (1898); Baluzius, Vitae Pap. A1/enion., vol. 1 (Paris, 1693); L. Pastor, History of the Popes, vol. 1, trans. by F. I. Antrobus (London, 1899); F. Gregorovius, Rorne in the Middle Ages, vol. 6, trans. by Mrs G. W. Hamilton (London, 1900*-2); P. Kirsch, Die Rrickkehr der Pdpste Urban V. u. Gregor XI. 'von Avignon nach Rom (Paderborn, 1898); ]. H. Albanes, Actes anciens eoncernant le lrienheureux Urbain V. (Paris, 1897); ]. B. Magnan, Histoire d'Urbain V. (2Hd ed., Paris, 1863); H. ]. Wurm, Cardinal Albornoz (Paderborn, 1892); H. H. Milman, Latin Christianity, vol. 7 (London. 1896); ]. B. Christophe, Histoire de la papauté pendant le XI Ve” siécle, vol. 2 (Paris, 1853). URBAN VI. (Bartolommeo Prignano), pope from the 8th of April 1378 to the 15th of October 1389, was born at Naples in 1318. He was made bishop of Acerenza in 1364, and in 1377 was translated to the archiepiscopal see of Bari and placed in charge of the papal chancery. On the death of Gregory XI., who had finally returned to Rome from Avignon, he was elected pope in a conclave held under circumstances of great excitement, owing to popular apprehension of an intention of the French cardinals to elect a French pope and again abandon Rome. The populace broke into the hall after the election had been made and dispersed the cardinals, but the latter returned and confirmed their action on the following day. Urban VI. turned his attention at once to the reformation of the higher clergy, and, in spite of the warnings of Catherine of Siena, so angered the cardinals by his harsh and ill-tempered measures that they assembled at Anagni in July 1378, and revoked his election, in which they declared they had acted under fear of violence. On the 2oth of September they elected at Fondi the Cardinal Robert of Geneva, who called himself Clement VII. and took up his residence at Avignon. Urban, on the other hand, remained at Rome, where he appointed twenty-six new cardinals and excommunicated Clement and his adherents. Thus began the Great Schism which divided the Western Church for about fifty years. Urban deposed ]'oanna of Naples (2 1st of April 1380) for adhering to France and Savoy in support of the antipope, and gave her kingdom to Charles of Durazzo. Charles was crowned at Rome on the first of Tune 1381, but three years later quarrelled with the pope and shut him up in Nocera. Urban succeeded in escaping to Genoa, where he put several of his cardinals to death for suspected disloyalty. On the death of Charles he set out with an army apparently to seize Naples for his nephew if not for himself. To raise funds he proclaimed, by bull of the 11th of April 1389, a jubilee for every thirty-three years, but before the celebration could be held he died of injuries caused by a fall from his mule. Urban was frugal and never practised simony, but harshness, lack of tact, and fondness for unworthy nephews disgraced his pontificate. He was succeeded by Boniface IX. The chief sources for the life of Urban VI. are in Baluzius, Vitae Pap. Avenion. (Paris, 1693); Theoderiei de Nyem De schisrnate Libri tres, ed. by G. Erler (Leipzig, 1890); Sauerlande, “ Actenstiicke zur Gesth. des Papstes Urban Vl., ” in Hist. Jahrbuch der Gorres-Gesellschaft, xiv. (1893); “Acta Urbani VI. et Bonifatii lX., " ed. C. Krofta, in Monurnenta vaticana res gestas Bohemicas illustrantia (Prague, 1905); Der Liber Cancellariae Apostolicae 'vom Jahre 1380, ed. by G. Erler (Leipzig, 1888); Il Trattato di S. Vincenzo Ferrer intorno al grande schisrna d'0ccidente, ed. by A. Sorbelli (Bologna, 1906).

See L. Pastor, History of the Popes, vol. 1, trans. by F. l. Antrobus (London, 1899); M. Souchon, Die Papstfwahle-n in der Zeit des grossen Schismas, vol: 1 (Brunswick, 1898); N. Valois, La France et le grand schisme d'Occident (Paris, 1896-1902); M. Creighton, History of the Papacy, vol. 1 (London, 1899); F. Gregorovius, Rome in the Middle Ages, vol. 6, trans. by Mrs G. W. Hamilton (London, 1900-2); R. jahr, “Die Wahl Urbans VI.” in Hallisehe Beitrdge zur Geschichtsforschung (1892); T. Lindner, “ Papst Urban VI., ” in Zeitschrift filr Kirchengeschichte, iii. (1879); W. St C. Baddeley, Charles III. of Naples and Urban VI. (1894); ]. B. Christophe, Histoire de la popauté pendant le X I V""° siéele, vol. 3 (Paris, 1853).  (C. H. Ha.) 

URBAN VII. (Giovanni Battista Castagna), successor of Sixtus V., was born on the 4th of August 1521. He became governor of Bologna, archbishop of Rossano, and was long nuncio to Spain. Gregory XIII. made him a cardinal, 1583; and in 1590 he was elected pope by the Spanish faction, but died twelve days later, on the 27th of September 1590, and was succeeded by Gregory XIV. I

See Ciaconius, Vitae et res gestae surnrnoruin Pontijf. Rom. (Rome, 1601~2); Cicarella, continua tor of Platina, De vitis Pontif. Rom. (both contemporary; the latter prolix and tedious); Arrigho, Vita Urbani VII. (Bologna, 1614); and Ranke, Popes (Eng. trans., Austin), ii. 227.

URBAN VIII. (Maifeo Barberini), pope from 1623 to 1644, was born in 1568, of a wealthy Florentine family. He early entered the prelacy, became prefect of Spoleto, twice nuncio to France, cardinal (1606), and finally, on the 6th of August 1623, succeeded Gregory XV. as pope. Urban was vain, self-willed and extremely conscious of his position; he accepted the papacy chiefly as a temporal principality, and made it his first care to provide for its defence and to render it formidable. He built Castelfranco on the northern frontier; fortified the port of Civita Vecchia; and strengthened the Castel Sant' Angelo, equipping it with cannon made from the bronze of the Pantheon, an act of vandalism which the Romans punished by the epigram, “ Quod non fecerunt barbari, fecerunt Barberini.” He also established an arsenal and a factory of arms. But all this provision was to no purpose. The only territory gained during Urban's pontificate, the duchy of Urbino, the last addition to the papal states, was acquired by reversion (1631); and in his one war, with the duke of Parma, for the district of Castro, he met defeat and humiliation (1644). The Thirty Years' War Urban professed to regard as waged for political, not for religious, ends. He therefore took counsel merely with his interest as a temporal prince, threw in his lot with France, supported the duke of Nevers in the Mantuan Succession, and, under stress of fear of Habsburg supremacy, suffered himself to be drawn into closer relations with the Protestants than beseemed his office, and incurred the reproach of rejoicing in the victories of heretics. Later, in keeping with his position, he opposed all concessions to the Protestants; but still showed himself so vacillating that the papacy ceased to be regarded as a serious political factor, and was entirely ignored in the hnal settlement of Westphalia, 1648. Urban was the last pope to practise nepotism on a grand scale. He failed to found a princely house; but he enriched his family to an extent that astonished even the Romans. Urban bore a hand in the condemnation of Galileo. He acknowledged the genius of the astronomer, and had not approved of the action of the Inquisition in 1616; but subsequently, believing himself to have been ca.ricatured in the Diologo, he. permitted the Inquisition to have its way and to compel an abjuration (1633). Urban also denounced the doctrines of ]ansen, 1644 (see JANSENISM). He promulgated the famous bull In Coena Domini in its final form, 1627; published the latest revision of the Breviary, 1631; founded the College of the Propaganda for the education of missionaries, 1627; and accorded the title of “eminence ” to the cardinals, 1630. Urban did much to embellish the city. Conspicuous among his works are the Barberini Palace, the College of the Propaganda, the Fountain of the Triton, and the baldachin of St Peter's. His hymns and poems, which have frequently been published, are evidence of his literary taste and ability. Urban died on the 29th of July 1644, and was succeeded by Innocent X. For contemporary accounts of ' Urban see: Tommasucci, in Platina, De vitis ~Ponti]Y. Rom; Oldoin, continua tor of Ciaconius, Vitae et res gestae surnmorum Pontijf. Rom.; and Simonin, Gesta Urbani (Antwerp, 1637). A rich collection of materials was made by Andrea Niccoletti, Della vita di Papa Urbana VIII. e storia del suo pontificate, never published, but extensively used by Ranke and others. See also Ranke, Popes (Eng. trans., Austin), ii. 552 seq., iii. 1 seq., 21 seq.; v. Reumont, Gesch. der Stadt Rorn, iii. 2, 611 seq., 702 seq.; Santa Pieralisa, Urbana VIII. e Galileo Galilei (Rome, 1875); Gregorovius, Urban VIII. im Widerspruch zu Spanien u. dem Kaiser (Stuttgart, 1879); and Weech, Urban VIII. (London, 1905).  (T. F. C.)