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The American Cyclopædia (1879)/Christian (archbishop)

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CHRISTIAN, archbishop of Mentz, born at the beginning of the 12th century, died in 1183. He is chiefly celebrated for his military exploits under Frederick Barbarossa, for whom he opened the way to Italy in 1161. On May 30, 1167, he defeated with a small band of 1,000 Germans a much superior Roman force near Tusculum, and seized Cività Vecchia. After the coronation of the emperor at Rome, Aug. 1 of the same year, Archbishop Christian's task was to subdue Tuscany and the Romagna. The town of Pisa, which rebelled against his authority, was deprived by him of all its privileges and put under interdict. At the beginning of 1174 he besieged Ancona by land, while the Venetians blockaded it by sea. Peace was established between the emperor and the pope, Aug. 1, 1177; but the archbishop, carried away by his desire to subdue the only party which still held out against the emperor, and which had its headquarters at Viterbo, continued the war, and finally fell into the hands of the leader of that party, Conrad of Montferrat, who detained the warlike prelate in the prisons of Acquapendente till 1181, when he was ransomed. Hardly had he recovered his liberty when he again took up the sword, and fell in battle endeavoring to rescue Pope Lucius III. from the attacks of hostile Roman armies.