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Popes & Anti-Popes AD 1500-1600

AD 0-100 AD 100-200 AD 200-300 AD 300-400 AD 400-500 AD 500-600 AD 600-700 AD 700-800 AD 800-900 AD 900-1000 AD 1000-1100 AD 1100-1200 AD 1200-1300 AD 1300-1400 AD 1400-1500 AD 1500-1600 AD 1600-1700 AD 1700-1800 AD 1800-1900 AD 1900-2000

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Alphabetical list of Popes

96    Adrian I  (772-75)
107  Adrian II (867-872)
110  S. Adrian III (884-885)
168  Adrian IV  (1154-9)
185
  Adrian V  (1276)
217
 Adrian VI  (1522-3)
57
    S. Agapitus  (535-6)
130
  Agapitus II (946-955)
79
    S. Agatho  (678-81)
6    S. Alexander (105-115)
155  Alexander II (1061-73)
169
 Alexander III (1159-81)
180
 Alexander IV  (1254-61)
anti-pope  Alexander V
213
  Alexander VI (1492-1503)
236
 Alexander VII (1655-67)
240
 Alexander VIII (1689-91)
3.
    S. Anacletus  (76-93)
39.
  S. Anastasius  (399-401)
50.
 Anastasius  II (496-98)
121
.  Anastasius III  (911-13)
167.
  Anastasius IV  (1153-4)
11.
 S. Anicetus  (155-166)
19.  S. Anterus  (236)

62
  Benedict I  (575-9)
81.
  S. Benedict II (684-5)
105
.  Benedict III  (655-8)
118.
  Benedict IV  (900-903)
133.
  Benedict V  (964-6)
135.
  Benedict VI  (973-4)
136
.  Benedict VII  (974-83)
144.  Benedict VIII  (1012-24)
146.
  Benedict IX  (1042)
anti-pope  Benedict X  (1058)
193.
  Benedict XI (1303-4)
196.
  Benedict XII (1335-42)
244.
  Benedict XIII (1724-30)
246.
  Benedict XIV (1740-58)
247.
  Benedict XV  (1914-22)
42.
  S. Boniface  I  (418-22)
55.  Boniface II (530-2)
66
.  Boniface III (607)
67.  S. Boniface IV  (608-15)
69.
  Boniface V  (619-25)
113.  Boniface VI  (896)
anti-pope
 Boniface  VII (974)
192.  Boniface VIII (1294-1303)
202.  Boniface IX (1389-1404)

28.
 S. Caius  ( 283-96)
16.
 S. Callistus  ( 217-22)
161.
 Callistus  II  ( 1119-24)
208.
 Calistus III  ( 1455-58)
43.
  S. Celestine I ( 422-32)
164.  Celestine II  ( 1143-4)
174.
  Celestine III  ( 1191-8)
178.  Celestine IV  ( 1241)
191.
  Celestine V  ( 1294)
4.
   S. Clement I  ( c.91-101)
149.
 Clement II  (1046-7)
173.  Clement III  ( 1187-91)
182.
  Clement IV  (1265-8)
194.  Clement V  ( 1305-14)
197.
 Clement VI  ( 1342-52)
218.
 Clement VII  ( 1523-34)
230.
 Clement VIII  ( 1592-1605)
237.
 Clement IX  ( 1667-9)
238.
 Clement X  ( 1670-6)
242.  Clement  XI  ( 1700-21)
245.
 Clement XII  ( 1730-40)
247.  Clement XIII  ( 1758-69)
248.
  Clement XIV  ( 1769-74)
83.   Conon  ( 686-7)
21.
  S. Cornelius  ( 251-3)
88.
   Constantine I  ( 708-15)

37.
 S. Damasus I  ( 366-84)
150.  Damasus  II  ( 1048)
68.
St. Deusdedit (615-18)
25.   Dionysios  ( 260-8)
78.   Donus  (676-8)

13.
 S. Eleutherus  (175-89)
75.
 S. Eugenius I  ( 654-7)
100.
 Eugenius  II  ( 824-7)
166.
  Eugenius III  (1145-53)
206.
  Eugenius  IV (1431-47)
31.
  Eusebius  ( 310)
27.
  S. Eutychian  (275-83)
5.
  Evaristus  (101-9)

20.
 Fabian  (236-50)
26. 
Felix I  (269-74)
anti-pope  Felix II (355-65)
48.
 S. Felix  III (483-492)
54.
 S. Felix  IV  (526-30)
anti-pope 
Felix V (1439-49)
112
.  Formosus  (891-96)

49.
St Gelasius (492-6)
160.
Gelasius II (1118-9) 
64. Gregory I (590-604)
89.
Gregory II  (715-31)
90.
Gregory III (731-41)
102.
Gregory IV (827-44)
139.
Gregory V (996-9)
anti-pope  Gregory VI  (1012)
148.
Gregory VI (1045-6)
156.
Gregory VII (1073-85)
anti-pope
  Gregory VIII (1187)
172.
Gregory VIII (1187)
177. Gregory IX  (1227-41)
183. Gregory X  (1271-6)
200.
Gregory XI (1370-8)
204.
Gregory XII (1405-15)
225.
Gregory XIII  (1527-85)
228.
Gregory XIV  (1590-1)
233.
Gregory XV  (1621-3)
253.
Gregory XVI  (1831-46)

46.
Hilarus  (461-8)
anti-pope 
Hippolytus  (217-35)
70.
Honorius I  (625-38)
anti-pope
  Honorius II (1061-4)
162. Honorius II  (1124-30)
176. Honorius III  (1216-27)
189.
Honorius IV  (1285-7)
52. Hormisdas  (514-23)
9. St.Hyginus  (c. 138-42)

40.
Innocent I  (401-17)
163.
Innocent II  (1130-41)
anti-pope  Innocent III (1179-80)
175.
Innocent III  (1198-1216)
179.
Innocent IV  (1243-54)
184.
Innocent V  (1276)
198.
Innocent VI (1352-62)
203.
Innocent VII (1404-6)
212.
Innocent VIII  (1484-92)
229.
Innocent IX  (1591)
235.
Innocent X  (1644-55)
239.
Innocent XI  (1676-89)
241. Innocent XII  (1691-1700)
243.
Innocent XIII  (1721-4)

53.
John I  (523-6)
56. John II  (533-5)
61. John III  (561-74)
72.
John IV  (640-2)
82.
John V  (685-6)
85.
John VI  (701-5)
86.
John VII  (705-7
anti-pope
 John  (844)
108
. John VIII  (872-82)
117. John IX  (898-900)
123.
John X  (914-28)
126.
John XI  (931-6)
131.
John XII  (955-64)
134.
John XIII (965-72)
137,
John XIV  (983-4)
138.
John XV  (985-96)
anti-pope  John XVI  (997-8)
141. John XVII  (1003)
142.
John XVIII  (1003-9)
145. John XIX  (1024-32)
186.
John XXI  (1276-7)
195.
John XXII  (1316-34)
anti-pope
  John XXIII  (1410-15)
260.
John XXIII   (1958-63)
262.
John Paul I  (1978)
263.
John Paul II (1978-2005)
35.
Julius I  (337-52)
215.
Julius II  (1503-13)
220.
Julius III (1550-5)

122.
Lando  (913-14)
anti-pope
  Laurentius (498-9; 501-6)
45.
Leo I (440-61)
80. Leo II  (682-3)
97.
St Leo III (795-816)
104.
St Leo IV  (847-55)
119. Leo V  (903)
124. Leo VI (928)
127.
Leo VII  (936-9)
132.
Leo VIII (963-5)
151. Leo IX  (1049-54)
216. Leo X  (1513-21)
231.
Leo XI  (1605)
250.
Leo XII  (1823-9)
255.
Leo XIII (1878-1903)
36.
Liberius  (352-66)
2.
 Linus  (c. 66-78)
22. St. Lucius I  (253-4)
165.
Lucius II  (1144-5)
170.
Lucius III  (1181-5)

29.
Marcellinus  (c.296-304)
30. Marcellus I  (306-8)
221. Marcellus II  (1555)
109.
Marinus I (Martin II) (882-4)
129.
Marinus II  (Martin III) (942-6)
34. St Mark  (336)
74.
Martin I  (649-53)
188.
Martin IV  (1281-5)
205. Martin V  (1417-31)
32.
Miltiades  (311-14)

106.
St Nicholas  (858-67)
154.
Nicholas II  (1056-61)
187.
Nicholas III  (1277-80)
190.
Nicholas IV  (1288-92)
anti-pope  Nicholas V  (1328-30)
207.
Nicholas V  (1447-55)
anti-pope
Novatian  (251-8)

anti-pope 
Paschal  (687)
99. Paschal I  (817-24)
159.
Paschal II  (1099-1118)
anti-pope
  Paschal III  (1164-8)
94.
St Paul  (757-67)
210.
Paul II  (1464-71)
219.
Paul III  (1534-49)
222. Paul IV  (1555-9)
232.
Paul V  (1605-21)
261. Paul VI  (1963-78)
60.
Pelagius  (556-61)
63.
Pelagius II  (579-90)
1.  St. Peter (died c. 64)
anti-pope  Philip  (768)
10.
St Pius I  (c. 142-55)
209.
 Pius II  (1458-64)
214.
 Pius III  (1503)
223.
Pius IV  (1559-65)
224.
St Pius V  (1566-72)
249.
Pius VI  (1775-99)
250.
Pius VII  (1800-23)
252.
Pius VIII  (1829-30)
254.
Pius IX  (1846-78)
256.
St Pius X  (1903-14)
258.
Pius XI  (1922-39)
259.
Pius XII  (1939-58)
18.
St Pontian  (230-5)

115.
Romanus  (897)

65.
Sabinian  (604-6)
84. Sergius I  (687-701)
103.
Sergius II  (844-7)
120. Sergius III  (904-11)
143.
Sergius IV  (1009-12)
71. Severinus  (640)
58.
Silverius  (536-7)
33. Sylvester i  (314-35)
140. Sylvester II  (999-1003)
147.
Sylvester III (1045)
anti-pope
  Sylvester IV (1105-11)
47.
St Simplicius  (468-83)
38.
Siricius  (384-99)
87.
Sisinnius  (708)
7.
Sixtus I  (c.116-125)
24.
Sixtus II  (257-8)
44.
St Sixtus  III  (432-40)
211.
Sixtus IV  (1471-84)
226.
Sixtus V (1585-90)
12.
St  Soter  (c. 166-74)
23.
Stephen I  (254-7)
92. Stephen II  (752-7)
95.
Stephen III (768-72)
98.
Stephen IV  (816-17)
111. Stephen V  (885-91)
114.
Stephen VI  (896-7)
125.
Stephen VII  (928-31)
128.
Stephen VIII  (939-42)
153.
Stephen IX  (1057-8)
51.
St. Symmachus  (498-514)

8.
Telesphorus  (125-136)
73. Theodore I  (642-9)
anti-pope
  Theodore  (687)
116.
Theodore II  (897)
anti-pope  Theodoric  (1100-1)

17.
St. Urban I (222-30)
158
. Urban II  (1088-99)
171.
Urban III  (1185-7)
181. Urban IV  (1261-4)
199.
Urban V  (1362-70)
201.
Urban VI  (1378-89)
227.
Urban VII  (1590)
234.
Urban VIII  (1623-44)
anti-pope
 Ursinus  (366-7)

101.
Valentine  (827)
14.
St. Victor I  (189-98)
152. Victor II  (1055-7)
157.
Victor III  (1086-7)
anti-pope
 Victor IV  (1138)
anti-pope
  Victor V  (1159-64)
59.
Vigilius  (537-55)
76. St. Vitalian  (657-72)

91.
Zacharias  (741-52)
15.
Zephyrinus  (198-217)
41.
St. Zosimus  (417-18)

 

The Popes, in chronological order

AD 1500-1600

214. Pius III   b. Siena, as Francesco Todeschini. elected 8 Oct, 1503, d. 18 Oct, 1503, aged 64. A nephew of Pope Pius II who appointed him, aged 21, archbishop of Siena and then a cardinal deacon, he was in poor health when  elected and survived less than one month.
Fresco by Pinturicchio in Siena Cathedral.

215. Julius II.  b. Savona as Giuliano della Rovere. elected 26 Nov, 1503, d. 21 Feb, 1513, aged 69. Nephew of Pope Sixtus IV who appointed him as cardinal priest. Elected pope "with the help of lavish promises and bribes" (ODP) he worked hard at restoring and extending the papal state even to the extent  of personally leading, garbed in papal silver armor,  a successful campaign against Perugia, Bologna and later Venice. With the aid of European allies, he forced the French to leave northern Italy. Sexually profligate, he fathered three daughters out of wedlock. Although a Florentine historian wrote that  he was priest only in dress and name, he left a major cultural legacy having commissioned Bramante to work on the new St Peter's Basilica and being the patron of Raphael and Michelangelo, the latter carving his tomb in San Pietro in Vincoli. When Michelangelo suggested that the statue of Julius he had sculpted should carry a book in his hand, the pope replied: "Nay, give me a sword for I am no scholar".PRWquotes the French historian Mezeray as writing that Julius deposed France's Louis XII and "acted like a Turkish sultan and not like a lieutenant of the prince of peace and father of all Christians". After his death, a bitter satire accusing the warrior pope of "every crime from sorcery to sodomy" --S&S) was attributed to  the pious scholar Erasmus.
Fresco by Melozzo da Forti, Vatican; portrait by Raphael in the Pitti Gallery, Florence.

216. Leo X. b. Florence as Giovanni de Medici. Elected 19 March 1513, d. 1 Dec, 1521, aged 46. Son of Florence's Lorenzo the Magnificent with extravagant tastes and skill at falconry, he was groomed for the church being made a cardinal deacon aged 13. Stendahl wrote that he distributed 100,000 ducats at his coronation and  "had a horror of anything which might upset his carefree life of self-indulgence". After his election, he murmured to his brother Giuliano, "God has given us the papacy. Let us enjoy it". Leo "wrote ribald plays of easy sex and prostitution" says Uz. As pope, he foiled an assassination plot of dissident cardinals by executing the leader, imprisoning several others and raised money by selling the office of cardinal to some of his 31  new appointees. "Leo was recklessly extravagant" says ODP, "so desperate for money that he pawned his palace furniture and plate". He condemned and later excommunicated Martin Luther for his criticism of the church and, for his support on this issue, styled England's Henry VIII as "Defender of the Faith". The 1516 Concordat of Bologna "made the French king master of a French national church"--S&S) but restored the right of appeal to Rome and increased papal revenues. A generous patron of the arts, Leo commissioned Raphael to decorate the Vatican Palace and extended Florentian influence in Rome by sponsoring the building of San Giovanni dei  Florentini church. 
Portrait  as a boy in S. Maria sopra Minerva;  in  Raphael 's 
Meeting of Attila and St Leo  in Vatican museum;  portrait  by Raphael in Uffizi Gallery;  portrait by Raphael in Florencews Palazzo Pitti.

217 Hadrian VI. b. Utrecht as Adrian Florensz Dedal. elected  31 Aug, 1522, d. 14 Sept, 1523, aged 64. He had been a tutor to the emperor Maximilian's grandson  Charles V, who made him rector of the University of Louvain. Served as Grand Inquisitor in Spain in a period when 1,620 heretics were burned alive and fortunes confiscated from 21,000 others (PRW). "We know that for a considerable period many abominable things have found place beside the holy chair" said Hadrian, "abuses in spiritual matters, exorbitant straining of prerogatives, evil everywhere...we are all gone astray, there is none that hath done rightly, no not one" (LVR). A devout, indeed austere, man, Hadrian  instituted a daily Mass,  and reduced the Curia's numbers as well as abolishing many of "the offices invented and sold by his predecessors" says S&S which describes him as  "a clumsy politician".
   A lifelong foe of Martin Luther, the pope continually condemned his heresy. Taunted Luther: "The pope has wealth far beyond other men-why does he not build St Peter's church with his own money instead of the money of poor Christians?". Hadrian's attempts to unite European countries against the Turks were largely frustrated. "How much depends on the times in which even the best of men are cast?" he remarked (LVR). A Dutchman, he was the last non-Italian pope for 450 years.
Portrait in Uffizi Gallery, Florence.

218. Clement VII.  b. Florence as Giulio de Medici. Elected 26 Nov 1523, d. 25 Sept 1534, aged 56. Despite the illegitimacy of his birth, he was created cardinal by his cousin, Pope Leo X. His election was supported by Emperor Charles V who later confessed: "I poured out streams of gold to get de' Medici elected". Clement's vaccilation between the French king Francis I and the emperor eventually prompted an invasion of Rome by the imperial army whereupon Clement hid away in Castel Sant'Angelo to the invaders' taunts of "Luther for pope". LVR says: "He was not known to indulge in any kind of luxury or pleasure" quoting a 1526 despatch by ambassador Marco Foscari who added: "His only amusement is the conversation of engineers with whom he talks about waterworks and such matters".
   Clement's subservience to Charles (who called him "a poltroon") was subsequently emphasized by his crowning of the emperor--the last such coronation by a pope-- at Bologna in 1530. The pope excommunicated  England's Henry VIII after the king divorced the emperor's aunt, Catherine of Aragon. The inevitable schism--never to be resolved--between England and Rome, was supplemented by the spread of Lutherism in Scandinavia.  Under Clement's rule such figures as Machiavelli, Michelangelo, Cellini and Raphael received considerable patronage and the contemporary chronicler Franceso Vettori wrote approvingly of him: "Not proud, no trafficker in church property, not avaricious, not given to pleasure, moderate in food, frugal in dress, religious and devout" (LVR)
Portrait by del Piombo in Pinacoteca, Florence.

219. Paul III. b. Rome as Alessandro Farnese. elected 3 Nov, 1534, d. 10 Nov, 1549. aged  81. The brother of Giulia, mistress of Pope Alexander VI, who appointed him a cardinal deacon at 25, he had become the oldest cardinal (67) by the time he was  elected pope. He commissioned Michelangelo to design the Piazza Campidoglio,  to complete the Last Judgment  in the Sistine  and placed him in charge of building St Peter's. Paul enriched his four illegitimate children (whose mother is unidentified) and appointed as cardinals two teenage grandsons.  "Under him the Vatican resounded with masked balls and brilliant feasts" (ODP). Described as a "master diplomat", Paul reformed many of the church's religious Orders, giving sanction to Ignatius Loyola's Jesuits; founded the public pawnshop;  set up the Roman Inquisition "with punitive powers of censorship"  to combat heresy,  and encouraged the persecution of the French Huguenots. (Burning off the tongue and lips of a dissenter with a red hot iron was the Roman Inquisition's customary punishment).
   After a Reform Commission issued a  report (which the Curia tried to block) criticising corruption in the religious orders and papal sales of spiritual privileges, he appointed Cardinal Caraffa to lead an Inquisition "to suppress and  uproot error". Among the reforms emanating from the 1545 Council of Trent was the institution of seminaries to better train the clergy. Paul's excommunication of Henry VIII increased the schism with England. Statue in Sa Maria in Aracoeli.Portrait by Titian  in  Naples' useo di Capodimonte; and in group by Titian in Naples' Museo Nazionale.

220.  Julius III. b. Rome as Giovanni Maria Ciocchi del Monte elected 22 Feb 1550; d. 23 March 1555, aged 87.  Son of a well-known jurist who had become chamberlain to Julius II, he had also  served as Pope Clement VII's governor of Rome before being made a cardinal bishop by Paul III. Continuing the fight against the Lutherans, Julius had helped to organise the long-delayed Council of Trent which had been called to counter the Protestant Reformation and to plan church reform. The pope gave his backing to Ignatius Loyola and the newly-formed Jesuit Order. He re-established contact with English contacts when Catholic Mary Tudor ascended the throne. Openly gay, Julius scandalized Rome over his affair with a teenage street waif, Innocenzo, with skin "as flawless as alabaster", whom he ordained as a cardinal.  "Naturally indolent" says ODP, "he devoted himself to pleasurable pursuits with occasional bouts of more serious activity". Pope Julius sponsored the composer Palestrina and  Michelangelo whom he appointed as chief architect of St Peter's.
Portrait by Scipione Pulzone in  the Palazzo Spada.

221. Marcellus II. b. Montepulciano as Marcello Cervini. elected 10 April 1555; d. 1 May 1555, aged 54. He had been tutor to Pope Paul III's nephew, the teenage cardinal Alessandro. Denounced the nepotism of his predecessor but died after less than  a month in office. Involved himself with Russian and Mongolian believers (ISPR).  During his papacy, Palestrina composed a mass bearing the pope's name.
Portrait by Francesco Salviati in the Galeria Borghese.

222 Paul IV. b. Naples as Gianpietro Caraffa family; elected 26 May 1555, d. 18 Aug 1559, aged 83.  A hardliner who fought the Lutherans with  help of the Inquisition, of which he was an ardent fan, he ghettoized the Jews (whom he called "fathers of iniquity and parents of Protestantism") forcing them to wear distinguishing headgear. Anton Henze wrote that Paul was "supposed to be the author of that horrible oath: 'If my own father were a heretic, I would collect the wood with which to burn him'".  Calling him "this terrifying old man", S&S  described him as "a man of unflinching courage and integrity, robbed of real greatness by a fatal narrowness of vision". Beggars and prostitutes were harassed or jailed, and Paul introduced censorship wth his 1654 bull Dominici gregis  establishing the Index of Forbidden Books which included all the works of Erasmus and which, declares the Catholic Fact Book, became "an embarassment to the church". 
   Backing the French against Spain, Paul sustained a humiliating defeat. His demands for submission from England's new queen, Elizabeth, after the death of Mary Stuart caused that country's final rejection of Roman authority. Unmourned when he died, "popular hatred for him and his family exploded" says ODP and (adds PRW) was followed by insulting comments posted on Rome's Pasquino statue  accusing him of cringing before his enemies and being faithless to his friends.
Sculptured tomb by Pirro Ligorio in Sa. Maria sopra Minerva. Painting by Palma il Giovine, Oratorio dei Croaferi, Venice.

223. Pius IV. b. Milan as Giovanni Angelo Medici. elected, after months of argument, 6 Jan, 1560, d. 9 Dec, 1565, aged 89. He encouraged with financial aid, the massacre of the French Huguenots whom he regarded as heretics (PRW) but otherwise modified some of his predecessor's edicts. Pius had two of the previous pope's unpopular nephews tried and executed for crimes which included instigating the ill-fated war against Spain. Uzcharges that he "took a personally active part in the inquisition methods...putting hapless victims into the Iron Lady which, when shut, would spike 'heretics' and 'deviants' to death". Bent on reform, he reopened the Council of Trent, and steered it to a successful conclusion  Demanding money for all church benefits and blessings, Pius consigned to the Index of Forbidden Books  all publications which reviewed him unfavorably. He  involved himself in European politics with mixed results. He was the last pope to have a Roman palace built.
Bust by Torrigiani in London's Victorias & Albert museum.

224. St. Pius V. b. Bosco as Antonio Ghislieri. elected 7 Jan 1566; d. 1 May 1572, aged 68. A shepherd boy who joined the Dominicans at the age of 14, he  taught philosophy and theology until made bishop of Sutri and inquisitor for Lombardy. When, on his travels, he angered a petty official who threatened to throw him into a well, he responded humbly: "As to that, it shall be as God pleases" (LVR). Elected as a reformer, he was an ascetic  who lived mostly on a diet of vegetables and water and  encouraged the Inquisition to improve the moral climate. In a series of decrees he sought to  clamp down on  blasphemy and heresy while enacting laws against prostitution and bullfighting. "Of an austere and severe disposition he was well fitted for the  task of combatting the loose discipline of the time"(BS). "To contemporaries" says ODP, "he seemed to want to turn the city into a monastery". The 1570 bull Regnans in excelsis  excommunicating "the servant of vice, Elizabeth, pretended Queen of England" prompted the persecution of Catholics in that country and angered other European countries. With the support of Venice and Spain, Pius mounted a successful campaign against the Turks, winning a major naval victory over them at Lepanto.

225 Gregory XIII. b. Bologna as Ugo Boncompagni. elected 25 May, 1572, d. 10 April, 1585, aged 83. His election was supported by King Philip II of Spain where he had served as papal legate.  Gregory's legal skills were appreciated  by Popes Paul III and IV who both elevated him in the church. As an expert in canon law, Gregory helped to draft reform decrees at the Council of Trent.  A major backer of the Jesuit Order, he financed their foreign missionary work and set up several colleges to train priests for various European countries. In 1575, Rome celebrated another Jubilee Year. Gregory  gave support to the controversial order of barefoot Carmelite nuns founded by Teresa of Avila.  and, in 1582 eliminated the days between 4 Oct and 15 Oct. This was a rational  reordering of the longstanding Julian Calendar by correcting centuries of "slippage" in measurement, and was welcomed by astronomers but viewed elsewhere as an incomprehensible but disturbing papist plot. The maps of Italy and papal territories that he commissioned can be seen in the Vatican museum. He set up Palazzo del Quirinale as a papal summer residence, and his bastard son, as governor of Castel Sant' Angelo. 
Statue  in S. Maria D'Aracoeli; bust in Bologna's Civic Museum;  depicted in painting in Siena's State Archive.

226. Sixtus V. b. Grottammare as Felice Peretti, son of a vintner. elected 1 May 1585, d. 27 Aug. 1590, aged 69.   He had the face of "a sly, old peasant, quite capable of doing someone a bad turn" (PRW). He terminated a crime wave by having 500 criminals hanged. "I like crowded gallows better than crowded prisons" he said according to PRW. Sixtus nevertheless took care of the poor, lowered prices, made nobles pay their debts and boldly remodelled and improved the city's layout. Formerly a Franciscan friar--"violent-tempered, autocratic and ruthless he ruled the papal state with a rod of iron "(S&S), he introduced draconian law to deal with street violence, and sought unsuccessfuly to punish adulterers with the death penalty. Sixtus instituted a  rule requiring bishops to make regular visits to Rome to report on their dioceses and reduced the power of cardinals. To more efficiently handle different aspects of Vatican business, he set up the system of congregations (ministries ) of which the most important is the Holy Office, which has  the guardianship of faith and morals. Sixtus completed St Peter's dome and had the obelisk erected in silence, threatening death to anyone who spoke during the project.
   He was responsible for major urban replanning of Rome and replaced the statue atop the Marcus Aurelius column with a statue of St Paul. ODP calls him a "a man born to rule, energetic, violent and inflexible" adding that his prestige as a pope "rests on  his lasting reorganization of the church's central administration". In his diary he spoke, in the third person, of "the magnitude of his conceptions and his disdain of all mediocrity of glory" (LVR) .When he died, however,  angry Romans broke his statue in the Capitol.
Bust in the Victoria & Albert Museum, London.; print by Giovanni Pinadello

227. Urban VII.  b. Rome as Giambattista Castagna; elected 15 Sept 1590; d. 27 Sept. 1590, aged 69.  A former governor of the papal state, he took an active part in the five-year-long Council of Trent and accompanied Cardinal Boncompagni (the future Pope Gregory XIII) to Spain. An effective peacemaker between Pius V and King Philip II, his election had been partly due to the latter's influence. Two weeks later, he died of malaria leaving all that he owned to charity.
Monument by Ambrosio Buonvicino in S. Maria Sopra Minerva.

228. Gregory XIV. b. Cremona as Nicolo Sfondrati elected 8 Dec. 1590; d. 16 Oct. 1591, aged 56. As the son of a cardinal, he was a mere 25 when appointed  Bishop of Cremona. A compromise candidate for pope,  he was pious but inexperienced and during his 10-month rule unwisely delegated too much responsibility to his 29-year-old nephew, Paolo,  whose usurped power and nepotism engendered severe criticisms within the church. "Upright and ascetical (Gregory) was swindled and cheated by his dishonest councillors" (ISPR). He forbade the common practise of betting on the outcome of papal elections or the names of new cardinals, on pain of excommunication. Without much success Gregory renewed  the struggle against France's  Huguenot Henry IV who had been excommunicated by Pope Sixtus And he was unable to persuade his friend Philip Neri--the Florentine layman whose "street ministry" had inspired the faithful for half a century--to accept a cardinal's hat.

229. Innocent IX. b. Bologna as Giovanni Antonio Fachineti. elected 3 Nov. 1591; d. 30 Dec. 1591, aged 71. As papal nuncio in Venice under Pius V, he had helped form the Holy League of Spain and Venice against the Turks whose defeat at the naval battle of Lepanto had ended Turkish domination of the Mediterranean. Beset by internal factions during his short reign, he was the scholarly author of several unpublished works and died within a few weeks of his election.

230 Clement VIII. b. Florence as Ippolito Aldobrandini; elected 9 Feb, 1592, d. 3 March, 1605, aged 68. Pious and devoted, he was a protegé of Philip (later Saint) Neri  who became cardinal priest and then legate to Poland for Sixtus V. As pope, he  delegated some papal duties to his two nephews  and "so doted on a 14-year-old grand-nephew that he made him a cardinal" (ODP).  Accepting the decision of the Edict of Nantes (1598),  Clement abandoned the persecution of the French Huguenots lifting the excommunication of their best-known advocate, France's King Henry IV who had now converted to Catholicism. Defying  public opinion, Clement sentenced to death Beatrice Cenci and two of her relatives for the murder of her perverted father. Adding Jewish works to the Index of Forbidden Books, he strengthened the Inquisition, and in 1600  approved the execution of a score of heretics including the former Dominican monk-writer Giordano Bruno. By rejecting the dogma that  some "absolute truth" could be declared, Bruno was burned at the stake before a crowd in a small Roman marketplace.

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Index of References

OTHER BOOKS consulted or quoted from include:

The Golden Legend (GL);
Butler's Lives of the Saints  (B);
A Catholic Dictionary
(ACD);
The Popes' Rights & Wrongs
  (PRW);
History of the Popes
  (HP);
The Dictionary of Sects, Heresies
&c (DSH);
History of the Popes
  by Leonard Van Renke (LVR);
A Biographical Dictionary of the Saints  (BDS);
The Book of Popes
(BP);
A Source Book 
(SB) for Ancient Church History;
Saints & Their Emblems in English Churches
 (StE);
A Catholic Dictionary
-(CD);
The Popes, a concise biographical history
, (tP);
The Bad Popes
  (TBP);
The Penguin Dictionary of the Saints  (PDS);
New Catholic Encyclopedia (NCE);
The Decline & Fall of the Roman Empire  (D&F);
the Oxford Dictionary of Popes (ODP);
Somni Pontifici Romani
  (ISPR);
the Book of Saints  (BS);
Saints & Sinners (S&S).

For a complete list of references, click here.