POPE EUGENE III, A HUMBLE MAN

Old Church Pope Eugene was born around 1080, of a humble background. His father was Godius and they lived near Pisa. His name before becoming Pope was Bernardo Pignatelli or Paganelli. But whether that was his name at birth or what he chose when he joined the...

POPE LUCIUS II, FACING DEATH IN BATTLE

Pope Lucius II was born Gherardo Caccionemicci, son of Orso, in the late eleventh century. His home town was Bologna. He entered into important duties at a relatively young age. Cherardo was a canon of the Basilica di San Frediano in Lucca Italy at a time when the...

POPE CELESTINE II, AN ATTEMPT TO CHANGE POLICY

Guido di Castello, born around 1085, may have been the son of the noble Niccolo di Castello. He was born in either Citta di Castello, in the foothills of the Apennines or in Macerata, in the March of Ancona, a little closer to the Adriatic. I tend to think the first...

ANTI-POPE ANACLETUS II

Pietro Pierleoni was born in Rome around 1090, the second son of the extremely rich and well-known Pier Leoni. As such, he was expected to raise through the ranks of the Church. One thing against his success was that his great grandfather, Baruch, or Benedictus, was a...

POPE INNOCENT III

Gregorio Papreschi became Pope Innocent III. He was a Roman from the section of Trestavere. And his family was friends with the notorious, two-faced Frangipani family. Born in 1082, he quickly moved up the ranks from a canon at the Lateran to an abbot to a cardinal...