Pope Gregory XI

Pope Gregory XI

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See also Vicedomino de Vicedominis
Vicedomino de Vicedominis
Vicedomino de Vicedominis was an Italian cardinal.-Biography:Born at Piacenza, he was the cardinal-nephew of Pope Gregory X, his cousin who elevated him on June 3, 1273. From 1257 until 1273 he was archbishop of Aix, then cardinal-bishop of Palestrina...

, a pope-elect who took the name Gregory XI
.

Gregory XI (c. 1329 – March 27, 1378) was pope from 1370 until his death.

Biography


He was born Pierre Roger de Beaufort, in Maumont, in the modern commune of Rosiers-d'Égletons
Rosiers-d'Égletons
Rosiers-d'Égletons is a commune in the Corrèze department in central France.-Population:-References:*...

, Limousin
Limousin (province)
Limousin is one of the traditional provinces of France around the city of Limoges. Limousin lies in the foothills of the western edge of the Massif Central, with cold weather in the winter...

 around 1336. He succeeded Pope Urban V
Pope Urban V
Pope Urban V , born Guillaume Grimoard, was Pope from 1362 to 1370.-Biography:Grimoard was a native of Grizac in Languedoc . He became a Benedictine and a doctor in Canon Law, teaching at Montpellier and Avignon...

 (1362–70) in 1370
Papal conclave, 1370
Papal conclave 1370 held after the death of Pope Urban V, elected as his successor cardinal Pierre Roger de Beaufort, who under the name Gregory XI became seventh ant the last Pope of the period of Avignon Papacy....

, and was pope until 1378. He was the seventh and last of the Avignon Popes
Avignon Papacy
The Avignon Papacy was the period from 1309 to 1376 during which seven Popes resided in Avignon, in modern-day France. This arose from the conflict between the Papacy and the French crown....

.

During his pontificate vigorous measures were taken against the heresies which had broken out in Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

, England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

, and other parts of Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

; a sincere effort was also made to cause a reformation in the various monastic orders. The nineteen propositions of John Wycliffe
John Wycliffe
John Wycliffe was an English Scholastic philosopher, theologian, lay preacher, translator, reformer and university teacher who was known as an early dissident in the Roman Catholic Church during the 14th century. His followers were known as Lollards, a somewhat rebellious movement, which preached...

 (c. 1320–84) and the thirteen articles of the Sachsenspiegel
Sachsenspiegel
The Sachsenspiegel is the most important law book and legal code of the German Middle Ages. Written ca...

 were formally condemned by Pope Gregory XI in 1377.

His return to Rome on January 17, 1377, is attributed in part to the stirring words of Catherine of Siena
Catherine of Siena
Saint Catherine of Siena, T.O.S.D, was a tertiary of the Dominican Order, and a Scholastic philosopher and theologian. She also worked to bring the papacy of Gregory XI back to Rome from its displacement in France, and to establish peace among the Italian city-states. She was proclaimed a Doctor...

. This had been attempted by Gregory's predecessor, Urban V, without success. The project was delayed by a conflict between the pope and Florence, known as "the War of the Eight Saints
War of the Eight Saints
The War of the Eight Saints was a war between Pope Gregory XI and a coalition of Italian city-states led by Florence, which contributed to the end of the Avignon Papacy.-Causes:...

" for the "Eight for War," the Florentine magistrates responsible for the conduct of the war. The pope put Florence under interdict for a time.

Gregory XI did not long survive this removal, dying on March 27, 1378. After his death the College of Cardinals was pressured by a Roman mob, which broke into the voting chamber, to vote an Italian Pope into the papacy. This Italian Pope was Urban VI
Pope Urban VI
Pope Urban VI , born Bartolomeo Prignano, was Pope from 1378 to 1389.-Biography:Born in Itri, he was a devout monk and learned casuist, trained at Avignon. On March 21, 1364, he was consecrated Archbishop of Acerenza in the Kingdom of Naples...

. Soon after being elected, Urban gained the Cardinals' enmity. With the encouragement of the French king, the cardinals returned to Avignon and in 1378 elected a French pope, Clement VII
Antipope Clement VII
Robert of Geneva was elected to the papacy as Pope Clement VII by the French cardinals who opposed Urban VI, and was the first Avignon antipope of the Western Schism.-Biography:...

.

Subsequently, the Western Schism
Western Schism
The Western Schism or Papal Schism was a split within the Catholic Church from 1378 to 1417. Two men simultaneously claimed to be the true pope. Driven by politics rather than any theological disagreement, the schism was ended by the Council of Constance . The simultaneous claims to the papal chair...

 created by the selection of a rival pope forced the people of Europe into a dilemma of papal allegiance. This schism was not fully resolved until the Council of Constance
Council of Constance
The Council of Constance is the 15th ecumenical council recognized by the Roman Catholic Church, held from 1414 to 1418. The council ended the Three-Popes Controversy, by deposing or accepting the resignation of the remaining Papal claimants and electing Pope Martin V.The Council also condemned and...

 (1414–1418) was called by a group of cardinals. The council boldly deposed the current popes and in 1417 elected Martin V
Pope Martin V
Pope Martin V , born Odo Colonna, was Pope from 1417 to 1431. His election effectively ended the Western Schism .-Biography:...

as their successor. The chaos of the Western Schism thus brought about reforming councils and gave them the power over who was elected, replacing (for a time) the College of Cardinals.