Pastor aeternus, cap. iv.); " we teach and define as a divinely revealed dogma, that the Roman Pontiff, when he speaks ex cathedra - i.e.
Supreme apostolic authority, he lays down that a certain doctrine concerning faith or morals is binding, upon the universal Church, - possesses, by the Divine assistance which was promised to him in the person of the blessed Saint Peter, that same infallibility with which the Divine Redeemer thought fit to endow His Church, to define its doctrine with regard to faith and morals; and, consequently, that these definitions of the Roman Pontiff are irreformable in themselves, and not in consequence.
These negotiations ended when the pontiff grossly insulted the envoys of the king of Bohemia.
Was able before his death in 1455 to secure the modern status of the pontiff as a splendid patron and a wealthy temporal potentate.
Under the same pontiff, the Holy See absorbed the duchy of Urbino on the death of Francesco Maria II., the last representative of Montefeltro and Della Rovere.
At Valence (August 29, 1799) deprived the French of whatever advantage they had hoped to gain by dragging him into exile; on the 24th of March 1800 the conclave, assembled for greater security on the island of San Giorgio at Venice, electec a new pontiff, Pius VII.
For some time past the relations between Napoleon and the pope, Pius VII., had been Napoleon severely strained, chiefly because the emperor insisted ~pacj~ on controlling the church, both in France and in the kingdom of Italy, in a way inconsistent with the traditions of the Vatican, but also because the pontiff refused to grant the divorce between Jerome Bonaparte and the former Miss Patterson on which Napoleon early in the year 1806 laid so much stress.
The first, containing thirteen articles, recognized (Articles 1 and 2) the person of the pontiff as sacred and intangible, and while providing for free discussion of religious questions, punished insults and outrages against the pope in the same way as insults and outrages against the king.
Article 4 allotted the pontiff an annuity of 3,225,000 lire (~I29,ooo) for the maintenance of the Sacred College, the sacred palaces, the congregations, the Vatican chancery and the diplomatic service.
As foreign minister of a young state which had attained unity in defiance of the most formidable religious organization in the world and in opposition to the traditional policy of France, it could but be ViscontiVenostas aim to uphold the dignity of his country while convincing European diplomacy that United Italy was an element of order and progress, and that the spiritual independence of the Roman pontiff had suffered no diminution.
At the same time the duke of Aosta, commander of the Rome army corps, ordered the troops to render royal honors to the pontiff should he officially appear in the capital.
More important than all was the interest of the Roman curia, composed almost exclusively of Italians, to retain in its own hands the choice of the pontiff and to maintain the predominance 01 the Italian element and the Italian spirit in the ecclesiastical hierarchy.
The new pontiff, although nominally upholding the claims of the temporal power, in practice attached but little importance to it.
Before he reached Rome, Pope John XV., who had invited him to Italy, had died, whereupon he raised his own cousin Bruno, son of Otto duke of Carinthia, to the papal chair as Pope Gregory V., and by this pontiff Otto was crowned emperor on the 21st of May 996.
Van Espen says: " The whole right of appeal to the Roman pontiff omisso medio had undoubtedly its origin in this principle, that the Roman pontiff is ordinary of ordinaries, or, in other words, has immediate episcopal authority in all particular churches, and this principle had its own beginning from the False Decretals."
And seized this opportunity of lavishing on the pontiff friendly congratulations mingled with useful advice.
Two years later, before the same pontiff, he preached in the city of Genoa a sermon which led to the general institution, in the countries of the obedience of Avignon, of the festival of the Holy Trinity.
As chief pontiff he inquired rigorously into the character of the vestal virgins, three of whom were buried alive; he enforced the laws against adultery, mutilation, and the grosser forms of immorality, and forbade the public acting of mimes.
At first the emperor succeeded in persuading the aged pontiff to sign the preliminaries of an agreement, known as the "Fontainebleau Concordat" (25th of January 1813); but, on its insidious character becoming apparent, Pius VII.
Nevertheless Napoleon ordered the preliminary agreement to be considered as a definitive treaty, and on the 2nd of April gave instructions that one of the refractory cardinals should be carried off secretly by night from Fontainebleau, while the pontiff was to be guarded more closely than before.
Hildebrand, now pope as Gregory VII., next summoned him to Rome, and, in a synod held there in 1078, tried once more to obtain a declaration of his orthodoxy by means of a confession of faith drawn up in general terms; but even this strong-minded and strong-willed pontiff was at length forced to yield to the demands of the multitude and its leaders; and in another synod at Rome (1079), finding that he was only endangering his own position and reputation, he turned unexpectedly upon Berengar and commanded him to confess that he had erred in not teaching a change as to substantial reality of the sacramental bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ.
In vain did the pope explain his reasons and yield certain points; the fathers would listen to nothing, and, relying on the decrees of the council of Constance, which amid the troubles of the schism had proclaimed the superiority, in certain cases, of the council over the pope, they insisted upon their right of remaining assembled, hastily beat up the laggards, held sessions, promulgated decrees, interfered in the government of the papal countship of Venaissin, treated with the Hussites, and, as representatives of the universal Church, presumed to impose laws upon the sovereign pontiff himself.
Trustworthy evidence, they said, proved to them that this pontiff accepted the dogma of the superiority of the council as it had been defined at Constance and at Basel.
Here are Pinturicchio's famous frescoes of scenes from the life of the latter pontiff, and the collection of choir books (supported on sculptured desks) with splendid illuminations by Sienese and other artists.
In the domain of letters he remained until his death a veritable pontiff, and an article or book of his was an event celebrated from one end of Portugal to the other.
Savonarola addressed to the pontiff a letter of condolence, boldly urging him to bow to the will of Heaven and repent while there was yet time.
Undismayed by personal danger, Savonarola resolved to appeal to all Christendom against the unrighteous pontiff, and despatched letters to the rulers of Europe adjuring them to assemble a council to condemn this antipope.
Theodosius the Great, in 380, soon after his baptism, issued, with his coemperors, the following edict: "We, the three emperors, will that all our subjects steadfastly adhere to the religion which was taught by St Peter to the Romans, which has been faithfully preserved by tradition, and which is now professed by the pontiff Damasus of Rome, and Peter, bishop of Alexandria, a man of apostolic holiness.
His work brought him into intercourse with this great pontiff, who soon saw what he could best do, and how his vast scholarship might be made of use to the church.
Fesch ventured to write to the aged pontiff a letter which came into the hands of the emperor.
The vows of this grade are the same as the last formula, with the addition of the following important clause: "Moreover I promise the special obedience to the Sovereign Pontiff concerning missions, as is contained in the same Apostolic Letter and Constitutions."
The Bab was succeeded on his death by Mirth Yahya of Nur (at that time only about twenty years of age), who escaped to Bagdad, and, under the title of Subh-i-Ezel (" the Morning of Eternity "), became the pontiff of the sect.
All obeyed the pontiff of Rome - save Rome itself.
" Ye know," he said, " that Rome is the capital of the world, that ye hold your dignities of the Roman pontiff as a vassal holds his fiefs of his sovereign, and that ye cannot retain them without his assent."
That a sovereign like St Louis should be able to associate himself officially with the feudalism of his realm to repress abuses of church jurisdiction; that a contemporary of Philip the Fair, the lawyer Pierre Dubois, should dare to suggest the secularization of ecclesiastical property and the conversion of the clergy into a class of functionaries paid out of the royal treasury; and that Philip the Fair, the adversary of Boniface VIII., should be able to rely in his conflict with the leader of the Church on the popular consent obtained at a meeting of the Three Estates of France - all point to a singular demoralization of the sentiments and principles on which were based the whole power of the pontiff of Rome and the entire organization of medieval Catholicism.
The feud between Italian and Frenchman broke out in a violent form; and it was in vain that St Catherine of Siena proffered her mediation in the bloody strife betwixt the pope and the Florentine republic. The letters that she addressed to the pontiff, on this and other occasions, are documents, which are, perhaps, unique in their kind, and of great literary beauty.
On the 25th of June 1439 the synod - which had already pronounced sentence of heresy on Eugenius IV., by reason of his obstinate disobedience to the assembly of the Church - formally deposed him; and, on the 5th of November, a rival pontiff was elected in the person of the ambitious Amadeus of Savoy, who now took the Felix V.
On the other hand, the troubled and not impeccable past of the new pontiff was bound to excite some misgiving; while, at the same time, severe bodily suffering had brought old age on a man of but 53 years.
But, though illuminated by the rays of art, and loaded with the exuberant panegyrics of humanists and poets, the reign of the first Medicean pontiff, by its unbounded devotion to purely secular tendencies and its comparative neglect of the Church herself proved disastrous for the See of St Peter.
- so the new pontiff styled himself - was soon VII., 1523- to discover the weight of the crown which he had 1534.
The first noteworthy pontiff of the period was Clement VIII., who gained a vast advantage by allying the papacy with the rising power of France.
The relations of one pope became the enemies of the next; and each pontiff governed at the expense of his successors.
During republican agitation at Rome the French general Duphot was killed, a French army advanced on the city, and carried the aged pontiff a prisoner of war to Valence in Dauphine, where he died on the 29th of August 1799.
In 1245 the Roman pontiff sent two embassies - one, a party of four Dominicans, sought the commander-in-chief of the Mongol forces in Persia; the second, consisting of Franciscans, made their way into Tartary, and sought to convert the successor of Oktai-Khan.
The pope might have said, like a later pontiff on another day, " remittimus irremissibile."
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 Io, 1418).
Even in the case of the sovereign pontiff the word pope is officially only used as a less solemn style: though the ordinary signature and heading of briefs is, e.g.
(I) In the matter of jurisdiction: "If any one say that the Roman Pontiff has an office merely of inspection and direction, and not the full and supreme power of jurisdiction over the whole Church, not only in matters of faith and morals, but also as regards discipline and the government of the Church scattered throughout the whole world; or that he has only the principal portion and not the plenitude of that supreme power; or that his power is not ordinary and immediate, as much over each and every church as over each and every pastor and believer: anathema sit."
(2) In the matter of infallibility: "We decree that when the Roman Pontiff speaks ex cathedra, that is to say, when, in his capacity as Pastor and Doctor of all Christians he defines, in virtue of his supreme apostolic authority, a certain doctrine concerning faith or morals to be held by the whole Church, he enjoys, by the divine assistance promised to him in the Blessed Peter, that infallibility with which the divine Redeemer has thought good to endow His Church in order to define its doctrine in matters of faith and morals; consequently, these definitions of the Roman Pontiff are irreformable in themselves and not in consequence of the consent of the Church."
He was an enlightened pontiff and collaborated with Cassiodorus in founding at Rome a library of ecclesiastical authors.