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FLOTSAM: General Pope Notes

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eggshaped
342992.  Fri May 23, 2008 11:15 am Reply with quote

General Pope Notes.

Formosus (whose name means “good looking”) had become caught up in the power struggles between Royal families and their own religious nominees. In 891, after a spell of excommunication and banishment from Rome, he had made a triumphant comeback and got himself elected Pope, making plenty of enemies on the way. One of these enemies was his successor Stephen VI.

Stephen VI apparently spent the trial shouting and yelling at the corpse which was accused of usurping the papal throne, perjury, violated the canons forbidding the translation of bishops (of which he was actually guilty) and of serving as a bishop whilst still a layman. When they could get a word in, someone standing behind Formosa, pretending to be him, denied the charges. But that didn't work out well and Formosa was convicted on all counts. The three fingers he used during his lifetime for papal blessings were cut off, his papal vestments were removed and he was to be reburied in a common grave - actually it was then thrown in the Tiber and rescued by a monk.

Some historians say Stephen VI was bonkers, which sounds about right, but he got his comeuppance, the people of Rome found this all a bit peculiar and took against Stephen. He was deposed and imprisoned and, shortly after, strangled. Three months later another pope called John IX annulled the Cadaver Synod and Formosa was back in favour and reburied as a pope back in St. Peters. THEN, in the 10th century when Sergius III was pope, Formosa was RE convicted.

The 60 years of papal history beginning with Sergius III’s rule saw the papacy controlled by three Roman families and in particular the powerful women within each. It has become known to church historians as the ‘pornocracy’.
Pope Formosus (whose name means “good looking”) became caught up in the power struggles between Royal families and their own religious nominees. In 891, after a spell of excommunication and banishment from Rome, he had made a triumphant comeback and got himself elected Pope, making plenty of enemies on the way. One of these enemies was his successor Stephen VI.

Stephen VI apparently spent the trial shouting and yelling at the corpse which was accused of usurping the papal throne, perjury, violated the canons forbidding the translation of bishops (of which he was actually guilty) and of serving as a bishop whilst still a layman. When they could get a word in, someone standing behind Formosa, pretending to be him, denied the charges. But that didn't work out well and Formosa was convicted on all counts. The three fingers he used during his lifetime for papal blessings were cut off, his papal vestments were removed and he was to be reburied in a common grave - actually it was then thrown in the Tiber and rescued by a monk.

Some historians say Stephen VI was bonkers, which sounds about right, but he got his comeuppance, the people of Rome found this all a bit peculiar and took against Stephen. He was deposed and imprisoned and, shortly after, strangled. Three months later another pope called John IX annulled the Cadaver Synod and Formosa was back in favour and reburied as a pope back in St. Peters. THEN, in the 10th century when Sergius III was pope, Formosa was RE convicted.

The 60 years of papal history beginning with Sergius III’s rule saw the papacy controlled by three Roman families and in particular the powerful women within each. It has become known to church historians as the ‘pornocracy’.

The Catholic Church in the 17th and 18th centuries regularly condemned the fandango as being lewd and morally dangerous. In 1717, a formal ban was put on the dance, and the playing of castanets in public was also forbidden because they suggested disorder and rebellion. In 1764 another threatened ban resulted in a trial where Pope Clement VIII saw no reason to ban it. So as far as we can see, the Pope is quite within his rights to do the fandango, but could not accompany the dance with castanets.


Additional sources:
None

Picture Ideas
A picture of Formosus would be good:


Last edited by eggshaped on Sat May 31, 2008 8:42 am; edited 2 times in total

 
eggshaped
342993.  Fri May 23, 2008 11:15 am Reply with quote

I'm looking for a better question for this story. Anyone?

 
Flash
343004.  Fri May 23, 2008 11:35 am Reply with quote

Here's my worry: they don't often respond well to questions about historical characters they've never heard of.

 
MatC
343654.  Sat May 24, 2008 4:38 am Reply with quote

eggshaped wrote:
I'm looking for a better question for this story. Anyone?


It's got to involve the word pornocracy, hasn't it?

 
Flash
344056.  Sat May 24, 2008 5:49 pm Reply with quote

Yes. And then lead into the thing about Alexander VI and the prostitute racing (post 308760).

Or, better: start with the prostitute races and then lead into the pornocracy and have Formosus as a note.

 
MatC
345030.  Mon May 26, 2008 4:42 am Reply with quote

Q: "How do you start a prostitute race?"

F: Ready, steady, ho.

A: ... um ... I'll get back to you on that ...

 
eggshaped
349035.  Sat May 31, 2008 8:42 am Reply with quote

**changed to general nutty pope notes**

 

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