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BENEDICT


429


BENEDICT


to intervene in the interminable strife for precedence between the Patriarchs of Grado and of Aquileia (Dandolo, Chron., IX, 2, n. 2). In 1022 he received Ethelnoth of Canterbury "'with great worship and verj' honourably hallowed him archbishop", and reinstated in his position Leofwine, Abbot of Ely (A. S. Chron., 125, 6. R. S.). A friend of St. Odilo, Abbot of Cluny, and one of the few popes of the 5Iiddle Ages who was at once powerful at home and great abroad, Benedict VIII has, on seemingly insufficient groimds, been accused of avarice.

Benedict IX, Pope. — The nephew of his two imme- diate predecessors, Benedict IX was a man of verj' different character to either of them. He w.as a dis- grace to the Chair of Peter. Regarding it as a sort of heirloom, his father Alberic placed him upon it when a mere youth, not, however, apparently of only twelve years of age (according to Raoul Glaber. Hist., IV, 5, n. 17. Cf. V, 5, n. 26), but of about twenty (October, 10.32). Of his pontifical acts little is known, except that he held two or three synods in Rome and granted a number of privileges to various churches and monasteries. He insisted that Bretis- lav, Duke of Bohemia, should found a monasterj% for having carried off the body of St. Adalbert from Poland. In 1037 he went north to meet the Emperor Conrad and excommunicated Heribert, Archbishop of Milan, who was at enmity with him (.Vnn. Hildes- heimenses, 1038). Taking advantage of the disso- lute life he was leading, one of the factions in the city drove him from it (1044) amid the greatest disorder, and elected an antipope (Sylvester III) in the person of John. Bishop of Sabina (1045 — Ann. Romani, init. Victor, Dialogi, III, init.). Benedict, however, succeeded in expelling Sylvester the same year; but. as some say, that he might marrj', he resigned his office into the hands of the Archpriest John Gratian for a large sum. John was then elected pope and became Oregon,' VI (May, 1045). Repent- ing of his bargain, Benedict endeavoured to depose Oregon*'. This resulted in the intervention of King Henry III. Benedict, Sylvester, and Gregorj' were deposed at the Coimcil of Sutri (1046) and a German bishop (Suidger) became Pope Clement II. After his speedy demise, Benedict again seized Rome (November, 1047), but was driven from it to make way for a second German pope, Damasus II (Novem- ber, 1048). Of the end of Benedict it is impossible to speak with certainty. Some authors suppose him to have been still alive when St. Leo IX died, and never to have ceased endeavouring to seize the papacy. But it is more probable that the truth lies with the tradition of the Abbey of Orottaferrata, first set down by Abbot Luke, who died about 1085, and corroborated by sepulchral and other monu- ments within its walls. Writing of Bartholomew, its fourth abbot (1065), Luke tells of the youthful pontiff turning from his sin and coming to Bartholo- mew for a remedy for his disorders. On the saint's advice, Benedict definitely resigned the pontificate and clied in penitence at Orottaferrata. [See "St Benedict and Orottaferrata " (Rome, 1895), a work founded on the more important " De Sepulcro Bene- dicti IX", by Dora Greg. Piacentini (Rome, 1747).]

Benedict X, Pope. — The bearer of this name was an antipope in the days of Nicholas II, 1056-61.

The most important source for the history of the first nine popes who bore the name of Benedict is the biographies in the Liber Ponlificalia, of which the most useful edition is that of DccHESNE, Le Liber Ponlificalia (Paris. 1886-92). and the latest that of Mommsen, Gesta Pontif. Roman, (to the end of the reign of Constantine only. Berlin. 1898). J.\ffe, Regesia Pant. Rom. (2d ed.. Leipzig. 1885). gives a summary of the letters of each pope and tells where they may be read at length. Modern accounts of these popes will be found in any large Church History, or history of the City of Rome. The fullest account in English of most of them is to be read in Mann, Lives of the Popes in the Early Middle Ages (London, 1902, passim).

HoKACE K. Mann.


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Benedict XI, Pope (Nicholas Boccasini), b. at Tre^•iso, Italy, 1240; d. at Perugia, 7 July, 1304. He entered the Dominican Order at the age of four- teen. After fourteen years of study, he became lector of theology, which office he filled for se\eral years. In 1296 he was elected Master General of the Order. As at this time hostility to Boniface VIII was becoming more pronounced, the new general issued an ordinance forbidding his subjects to fa- vour in anyway the opponents of the reigning pontiff; he also enjoined on them to de- fend in their sermons, when opportune, the legitimacy of the election of Boniface. This loyalty of Boccasini, which Asms of Benedict XI remained unshaken to the end,

was recognized by Boniface, who showed him many marks of favour and confidence. Thus with the two cardinal-legates, the Dominican General formed the important embassy, the purpose of which was the concluding of an armistice between Edward I of England and Philip IV of France, then at war with each other. In the year 1298 Boccasini was elevated to the cardinalate; he was afterwards appointed Bishop of Ostia and Dean of the Sacred College. As at that time Hungary was rent by civil war, the cardinal- bishop was sent thither by the Holy See as legate a latere to labour for the restoration of peace. At the time of the return of the legate to Rome, the famous contest of Boniface VIII with Philip the Fair had reached its height. When, in 1303, the enemies of the pope had made themselves masters of the sacred palace, of all the cardinals and prelates only the two Cardinal-Bishops of Ostia and Sabina re- mained at the side of the venerable Pontiff to defend him from the \-iolence of William of Nogaret and Sciarra Colonna.

A month after this scene of \nolence, Boniface having died, Boccasini was unanimously elected Pope, 22 October, taking the name of Benedict XI. The principal event of his pontificate was the restora- tion of peace with the French court. Immediately after his election Philip sent three ambassadors to the pope bearing the royal letter of congratulation. The king, while professing his obedience and devotion, recommended to the benevolence of the pope the Kingdom and Church of France. Benedict, judging a policy of indulgence to be necessarj' for the restora- tion of peace with the French court, absolved Philip and his subjects from the censures they had incurred and restored the king and kingdom to the rights and privileges of which they had been deprived by Boni- face. The Colonna cardinals were also absolved from their censures, but not reinstated in their former dignities. This policy of leniency Benedict carried out without compromising the dignity of the Holy See or the memory of Boniface VIII. Nogaret and Sciarra Colonna and those implicated in the outrage of .\nagni were declared excommunicated and sum- moned to appear before tlie pontifical tribunal. After a brief pontificate of eight months. Benedict died suddenly at Perugia. It was suspected, not altogether without reason, that his sudden death was caused by poisoning, through the agency of Wil- liam of Nogaret. Benedict XI was beatified in the year 1773. His feast is celebrated at Rome and throtighout the Dominican Order on the 7th of July. He is the author of a volume of sermons and com- mentaries on a part of the Gospel of St. Matthew, on the Psalms, the Book of Job, and the Apocalypse.

Ptol. Lite.. Hist. Eccl., Ill, 672; Bernardus Gvidonis, Vil. pont. rom.. IX, 1010; Script. Ord. Prad.. I, 444; Grandjean, Us registres de Benoit XI (Paris, 1883); Funke, Papst BenediU