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Pope Victor II

From Academic Kids

Victor II, né Gebhard, Count of Calw, Tollenstein and Hirschnerg (ca. 1018 - July 28, 1057), pope (1055-1057), kinsman of Emperor Henry III. One of the series of German popes during Hildebrand's reform movement, he was consecrated in St. Peter's in Rome on April 13th, 1055. His father was a Swabian baron, Count Harwig von Calw, and his own baptismal name was Gebhard. At the insistence of another Gebhard, bishop of Ratisbon and uncle of the emperor Henry III, he was appointed at the age of 24 as bishop of Eichstätt. In this position, he supported Henry's interests and eventually became one of the emperor's closest advisors. He was nominated to the Papacy by Henry at Mainz, in September 1054, at the instance of a Roman delegation headed by Hildebrand, later Pope Gregory VII, who likely intended to deprive the empire of one of its most capable advocates.

In June 1055, Victor met the emperor at Florence and held a council, which reinforced Leo IX's condemnation of clerical marriage, simony, and the loss of the church's properties. In the following year, he was summoned to the Emperor's side, and was with Henry III when he died at Botfeld in the Harz on October 5th, 1056. As guardian of Henry's infant son Henry IV and adviser of the empress Agnes, Henry's mother and regent, Victor now wielded enormous power, which he used to maintain peace throughout the empire and to strengthen the papacy against the aggressions of the barons. He died shortly after his return to Italy, at Arezzo, on July 28, 1057.

Victor's retinue wished to bring his remains to the cathedral at Eichstädt for burial. Before they reached the city, however, the remains were seized by some citizens of Ravenna and buried there in the Church of Santa Maria Rotonda, the burial place of Theodoric the Great.

Although there have been eight German popes, Victor II is one of only three popes from the territory of present-day Germany, the others being Clement II and the current Benedict XVI.

References



Preceded by:
Leo IX
Pope
1055–1057
Succeeded by:
Stephen X

Template:End boxde:Viktor II. (Papst) fr:Victor II it:Papa Vittorio II pl:Papież Wiktor II pt:Papa Vítor II fi:Victor II nl:Paus Victor II

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