Adrian IV is both the only Englishman and the only denizen of the British Isles to have occupied the papal throne. It is believed that he was born in Bedmond in the parish of Abbots Langley in Hertfordshire and received his early education at Merton Priory and the Abbey School, St Albans.
Breakspeare became a canon regular of St Rufus monastery near Arles and rose to be prior. He later served as papal legate in Scandinavia.
|Papacy began||4 December 1154|
|Papacy ended||1 September 1159|
by Pope Eugene III
|Birth name||Nicholas Breakspear or Breakspeare|
Abbots Langley, Hertfordshire, Kingdom of England
|Died||1 September 1159 (aged 59)|
Anagni, Papal States, Holy Roman Empire
|Other popes named Adrian|
|Papal styles of|
Pope Adrian IV
|Reference style||His Holiness|
|Spoken style||Your Holiness|
|Religious style||Holy Father|
Nicholas' father was Robert, who later became a monk at St Albans. Nicholas was refused admission to his local monastery, so he went to Paris and later became a canon regular of St Rufus monastery near Arles. He rose to be prior and was then soon unanimously elected abbot; this latter event is traditionally dated to 1137, but evidence from the abbey's chronicles suggests that it happened about 1145.
Nicholas gained a reputation as a formidably strict disciplinarian. His reforming zeal as abbot led to the lodging of complaints against him at Rome, but these merely attracted the favourable attention of Pope Eugene III ("a convinced Anglophile"), who named him Cardinal Bishop of Albano in December 1149. It is also reported that Nicholas' eloquence, ability and "his outstanding good looks" assisted with his selection.
From 1152 to 1154, Nicholas was in Scandinavia as papal legate, establishing an independent archepiscopal see for Norway at Trondheim, a place he chose chiefly in honour of St Olaf. This led him to create the Diocese at Hamar, and, according to tradition, to form cathedral schools in Norway's bishopric cities. These schools were to have a lasting effect on education and Catholic spirituality in Norway (even after the Reformation Norway's cathedral schools persisted, although they later lost their formal ties to the church.). Nicholas made arrangements which resulted in the recognition of Gamla Uppsala (Old Uppsala) as seat of the Swedish metropolitan in 1164 (later moved to Uppsala). As compensation for territory thus withdrawn, the Danish archbishop of Lund was made legate and perpetual vicar and given the title of primate of Denmark and Sweden. Nicholas was accompanied to Scandinavia by another English-born priest, Henry, Bishop of Finland (d. 1156), who was later venerated by Catholics, Lutherans and Anglicans as Saint Henry of Uppsala.
On his return to Rome, Nicholas was received with great honour by Pope Anastasius IV. On the death of Anastasius, Nicholas was unanimously elected as Pope on 3 December 1154, taking the name Adrian IV. He at once endeavoured to bring down Arnold of Brescia, the leader of the anti-papal faction in Rome. Disorder within the city led to the murder of a cardinal, prompting Adrian, shortly before Palm Sunday 1155, to take the unheard-of step of putting Rome under interdict, effectively closing all the churches in Rome. This act had a huge impact on daily life in Rome:
Exceptions were made for the baptism of infants and the absolution of the dying: otherwise all sacraments and services were forbidden. No masses could be said, no masses solemnised: even dead bodies might not be buried in consecrated grounds. In the days where religion still constituted an integral part of every man's life, the effect of such a moral blockade was immeasurable.
This act also had a huge potential economic impact: the interdict greatly diminished the seasonal influx of pilgrims, thus damaging the local economy. Without Easter services the pilgrims would not visit; thereupon, the Senate (City Council of Rome) exiled Arnold, and the pope, with the cooperation of the newly arrived Frederick I (Barbarossa), procured Arnold's execution.
In 1155, Byzantine Emperor Manuel Comnenus reconquered southern Italy, landing his forces in the region of Apulia. Making contact with local rebels who were hostile to the Sicilian crown, Greek forces quickly overran the coastlands and began striking inland. Pope Adrian IV watched these developments with some satisfaction. The Papacy was never on good terms with the Normans of Sicily, except when under duress by the threat of direct military action. For Adrian, having the Eastern Roman Empire on its southern border was preferable to having to deal constantly with the troublesome Normans. Therefore, negotiations were hurriedly carried out, and an alliance was formed between Adrian and Manuel. Adrian undertook to raise a body of mercenary troops from Campania. Meanwhile, Manuel dreamed of restoration of the Roman Empire; this was, however, at the cost of a potential union between the Orthodox and the Catholic Church. Negotiations for union of the eastern and western churches, which had been in a state of schism since 1054, soon got under way. The combined Papal-Byzantine forces joined with the rebels against the Normans in Southern Italy, achieving a string of rapid successes as a number of cities yielded either to the threat of force or to the lure of gold.
But just as the war seemed decided in the allies' favour, things started to go wrong. The Greek commander Michael Palaeologus alienated some of his allies by his arrogance, and this stalled the campaign as rebel Count Robert of Loritello refused to speak to him. Although the two were reconciled, the campaign lost some of its momentum. Worse was to come: Michael was soon recalled to Constantinople. Although his arrogance had slowed the campaign, he was a brilliant general in the field, and his loss was a major blow to the allied campaign. The turning point was the battle for Brindisi, where the Sicilians launched a major counterattack by both land and sea. At the approach of the enemy, the mercenaries who were serving in the allied armies demanded impossible increases in their pay; when these were refused, they deserted. Even the local barons started to melt away, and soon Adrian's Byzantine allies were left hopelessly outnumbered. The naval battle was decided in the Sicilians' favour, and the Byzantine commander was captured. The defeat at Brindisi put an end to the restored Byzantine reign in Italy, and by 1158 the Byzantine Army had left Italy.
Hopes for a lasting alliance with the Byzantine Empire had also come up against insuperable problems. Pope Adrian IV's conditions for a union between the eastern and western churches included recognition of his religious authority over Christians everywhere; the Emperor in turn required recognition of his secular authority. Neither East nor West could accept such conditions. Adrian's secular powers were too valuable to be surrendered and Manuel's subjects could never have accepted the authority of the distant Bishop of Rome. In spite of his friendliness towards the Roman Church, Adrian never felt able to honour Manuel with the title of "Augustus". Ultimately, a deal proved elusive, and the two churches remained divided.
In 1155, three years after the Synod of Kells, the Papal Bull Laudabiliter was published which was addressed to the Angevin King Henry II of England. It urged Henry to invade Ireland to bring its church under the Roman system and to conduct a general reform of governance and society throughout the island. The authenticity of this grant, the historian Edmund Curtis says, is one of "the great questions of history." He states that the matter was discussed at a Royal Council at Winchester, but that Henry's mother, the Empress Matilda, had protested, and the expedition was put off to another time.
In Ireland however, nothing seems to have been known of it, and no provision appears to have been made to defend against the prospect of Angevin Norman aggression, despite their westward expansion throughout England and Wales. Ernest F. Henderson states that the existence of this Bull is doubted by many while, in noting that its authenticity has been questioned without resolution, P. S. O'Hegarty suggests that the question is now purely an academic one. It is notable that decisions of Pope Alexander III, Pope Lucius III, and King Henry VIII in proclaiming the Crown of Ireland Act 1542 were predicated on this document.
The Normans invaded Ireland in two stages. Dermot McMurrough invited a small number of Norman knights led by Richard de Clare, 2nd Earl of Pembroke in 1169 to help in a local war, and they were rewarded with grants of land. Fearing that they might create an autonomous power, Henry II landed with a much larger force in 1171. In November 1171 Henry accepted the fealty of the Dublin Vikings, the Gaelic kings and the Norman knights. Henry's action was approved by Pope Alexander III and the Synod of Cashel met in 1172. Laudabiliter came to be seen as the first step in a process, but modern historians think it less important.
Adrian and Frederick Barbarossa met on 9 June 1155 near Sutri to discuss Barbarossa's crowning as Holy Roman Emperor by the Pope. According to protocol, the King should have met the Pope outside the camp to hold the bridle of the Pope's horse while he dismounted; Barbarossa did not do this, saying it was not part of his duty to act as Papal groom. In turn, Adrian refused the King the traditional kiss of peace until this service was delivered. In the end, Barbarossa gave in and ordered his camp moved a little further south where, on 11 June, the procedure was repeated - this time with Barbarossa undertaking the groom duties - and conversations about the coronation began.
Adrian crowned Frederick I as Holy Roman Emperor on 15 June in Rome.
At the diet of Besançon in October 1157, the legates presented to Frederick I a letter from Adrian IV which alluded to the beneficia or "benefits" conferred upon the Emperor. The German chancellor translated this beneficia in the feudal sense of the presentation of property from a lord to a vassal (benefice). Frederick was infuriated by the suggestion that he was dependent on the Pope, and in the storm which ensued the legates were glad to escape with their lives. The incident at length closed with a letter from the Pope, declaring that by beneficium he meant merely bonum factum or "a good deed," i.e. the coronation. The breach subsequently became wider, and the Emperor was about to be excommunicated when Adrian died at Anagni on 1 September 1159, reputedly by choking on a fly in his wine, but more likely from quinsy.
Amongst a group of modern houses in the village of Bedmond near St Albans is a small plaque recording the spot as his birthplace, historically in the parish of Abbots Langley. Today the village has several streets named after him, including Popes Road, Adrian Road and Breakspeare Road.
One of the school houses of St Albans School (Hertfordshire) (founded in 948 AD) was named "Breakspear" until 1996.
|Catholic Church titles|
| Bishop of Albano
Walter II of Albano
The papal election of 1154 followed the death of Pope Anastasius IV and resulted in the election of Pope Adrian IV, the only Englishman to become pope.1155 in Ireland
Events from the year 1155 in Ireland.1159
Year 1159 (MCLIX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar.Abbots Langley
Abbots Langley is a large village and civil parish in the English county of Hertfordshire. It is an old settlement and is mentioned (under the name of Langelai) in the Domesday Book. Economically the village is closely linked to Watford and was formerly part of the Watford Rural District. Since 1974 it has been included in the Three Rivers district.Adrian
Adrian is a form of the Latin given name Adrianus or Hadrianus. Its ultimate origin is most likely via the former river Adria from the Venetic and Illyrian word adur, meaning 'sea' or 'water'. The Adria was until the 8th century BC the main channel of the Po River into the Adriatic Sea but ceased to exist before the 1st century BC. Hecataeus of Miletus (c.550 - c.476 BC) asserted that both the Etruscan harbor city of Adria and the Adriatic Sea had been named after it. Emperor Hadrian's family was named after the city or region of Adria/Hadria, now Atri, in Picenum, which most likely started as an Etruscan or Greek colony of the older harbor city of the same name.Several saints and six popes have borne this name, including the only English pope, Adrian IV, and the only Dutch pope, Adrian VI. As an English name, it has been in use since the Middle Ages, although it did not become common until modern times.Cardinals created by Adrian IV
Pope Adrian IV (r. 1154-59) created 23 cardinals in three consistories held during his pontificate. This included his future successor Pope Gregory VIII in 1155.Easington, County Durham
Easington is a town in eastern County Durham, England. It comprises the ancient village of Easington Village and the ex-mining town of Easington Colliery, which are separate civil parishes. It is located at the junction of the A182 leading north-west to Hetton-le-Hole. Seaham Harbour and Houghton-le-Spring, and the A19, which travels north to Sunderland and south to Middlesbrough. As a former coal mining town, Easington is now an unemployment blackspot after the mine closed in 1993. The population of Easington Village was 2,164 in 2001, increasing slightly to 2,171 at the 2011 Census.
There is evidence of Easington having been an important pre-conquest site, including architectural fragments (dating from as early as the 8th century) found within the fabric of St Mary's Church. St Mary's itself is mostly 12th–13th century, and contains a notable amount of seventeenth-century woodwork. From 1256 until 1832 the Rector of Easington was also Archdeacon of Durham. Seaton Holme (see below) served as the Rectory until around 1960.
One of the most prominent events in the long history of the village was the hanging of two men on the village green for involvement in the plot to replace Tudor monarch Queen Elizabeth with Mary, Queen of Scots. Pope Adrian IV (c. 1100–1 September 1159), born Nicholas Breakspear, lived here for a time.
The sinking of Easington Colliery began on 11 April 1899. The ward lies just north of Peterlee and the settlement grew up around the colliery. Development west along the B1283 road has resulted in a continuous settlement with Easington Village. However, the two places have retained their distinctive characters and continue to reflect different trends. Easington Colliery was the last pit to close on the Durham Coalfield in 1993, with the loss of 1,400 jobs.
The town is also known as the setting of the folktale, "The Legend of the Easington hare".Since 2000 the village and colliery have seen an influx of travellers with horses and traps using the roads as they demonstrate their horsemanship and harness driving skills. Many of the locals in the colliery now keep horses, even though they are not romany or Gypsies, and can be seen (especially at weekends) trotting around the village. The church of St. Mary the Virgin overlooking the green in May 2013 held a funeral with a horse from Essex brought up to pull the cart carrying the coffin.
The town is home to one of the few remaining 13th century domestic buildings in the country, Seaton Holme. Once an open hall medieval home, it became an archdeacon's residence and was a children's home for a time before falling into disrepair. In 1992 it was finally restored to a semblance of its former stature.Easington has been depleted of local banks and building societies due to the closure of the mine in 1993.There were two post Offices in Easington. The one in the town serves the top of Easington, the middle post office serves the area which is predominantly council properties, and the lower post office served the colliery housing area. This post office has now closed as of 10 October 2008 after being cut in the closure scheme by the Post Office. Easington Academy is located in the village. It acts as the main secondary school for the village and surrounding area.
Easington is notable for being the town with the highest percentage of white residents in England (99.2% white in 2001). According to the results of the 2001 census, it also has the UK's lowest population of Jedi knights.Edward of Aberdeen
Edward [Ēadweard, Eadward, Édouard, Étbard] was a 12th-century prelate based in Scotland. He occurs in the records for the first time as Bishop of Aberdeen in a document datable to some point between 1147 and 1151. His immediate predecessor, as far as the records are concerned, was Bishop Nechtán. The latter can be shown to have been active at least between 1131 and 1132, and possibly as late as 1137. Edward's accession must have occurred, then, sometime between 1131 and 1151, with a date after the 1130s more likely than not.
Edward witnessed charters of Kings David I, Máel Coluim IV and William the Lion. Bishop Edward was the recipient of a Bull, dated 10 August 1157, of Pope Adrian IV, confirming the possessions of the diocese of Aberdeen and authorising the bishop to appoint at his own discretion either monastic or secular canons to staff his cathedral. This to some extent marks Bishop Edward as a founding father figure for the bishopric, though he was not the first bishop. His name, Edward, may indicate an Anglo-Norman or even an Anglo-Saxon origin, though this cannot be taken with certainty, as the name was associated with the saintly and famous Normanised English King Edward the Confessor, and had been the name of a son of King Máel Coluim III mac Donnchada. Nevertheless, if the former is the case, he is the first non-native Scot to ascend the bishopric of Aberdeen.
It is possible, if not likely, that Edward was the Chancellor of that name who served King David I in the 1140s. Edward's death, recorded in the Chronicle of Melrose, occurred in 1171. He was succeeded by Matthew.Henry II of Leez
Henry II of Leez (died 4 September 1164) was prince-bishop of Liège from 1145 until his death. He supported the Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa in his quarrel with Pope Adrian IV and Pope Alexander III. In April 1164 he gave the episcopal consecration to Antipope Paschal III.John de Cheam
John de Cheam [Cheyam] was a 13th-century English cleric who became Bishop of Glasgow. Before attaining Glasgow, he had previously been the archdeacon of Bath and a papal chaplain. In the summer of 1259, after the quashing of the election of Nicholas de Moffat, Pope Adrian IV provided John to the see, and he was consecrated soon after at the Roman court without any consultation with the Glasgow canons. His election was opposed by King Alexander III of Scotland, who sent a protest to Pope Alexander IV. The pope refused to revoke the decision, but promised to make John render fealty to the king. Bishop John arrived in Scotland in the year 1260. When the mother of the king, Marie de Coucy, fled from her second husband John de Brienne (a.k.a. Jean d'Acre), the Grand Butler of the King of France and the son of John de Brienne, King of Jerusalem, Bishop John was used by King Alexander to reconcile them. Bishop John was one of the witnesses to the Treaty of Perth on 2 July 1266. However, his good relations with the king did not make up for the resentment felt by the Glasgow canons at an outside appointee, and John eventually resigned his see in 1267, and went to France. He died at Meaux the following year, and was buried there.Laudabiliter
Laudabiliter was a Papal Bull issued in 1155 by Pope Adrian IV, the only Englishman to have served in that office. Existence of the bull has been disputed by scholars over the centuries; no copy is extant but scholars cite the many references to it as early as the 13th century to support the validity of its existence. The bull purports to grant the right to the Angevin King Henry II of England to invade and govern Ireland and to enforce the Gregorian Reforms on the semi-autonomous Christian Church in Ireland. Richard de Clare ("Strongbow") and the other leaders of the Norman invasion of Ireland (1169–71) claimed that Laudabiliter authorised the invasion. These Cambro-Norman knights were retained by Diarmuid MacMorrough, the deposed King of Leinster, as an ally in his fight with the High King of Ireland, Ruaidrí Ua Conchobair.
Successive Kings of England, from Henry II (1171) until Henry VIII (1541), used the title Lord of Ireland and claimed that it had been conferred by Adrian's successor, Pope Alexander III.
After almost four centuries of the Lordship, the declaration of the independence of the Church of England from papal supremacy and the rejection of the authority of the Holy See required the creation of a new basis to legitimise the continued rule of the English monarch in Ireland. In 1542, the Crown of Ireland Act was passed by both the English and Irish Parliaments. The Act established a sovereign Kingdom of Ireland with Henry as King of Ireland. Despite being the first monarch of Ireland with the name "Henry", his regnal number was not "I" but "VIII" – his English regnal number.List of English cardinals
This is a list of cardinals of the Catholic Church from England. It does not include cardinals of non-English national origin appointed to English ecclesiastical offices such as the cardinal protectors of England.
Dates in parentheses are the dates of elevation and death (or, in the case of Pope Adrian IV, the date of his election as pope). Cardinals of antipopes are listed in italics. Living cardinals are bolded.
Prior to the English Reformation, most English cardinals were non-bishops or Archbishop of Canterbury. Four were Archbishop of York. Since the re-establishment of the hierarchy of Roman Catholicism in England and Wales by Universalis Ecclesiae (1850), most have also been the Archbishop of Westminster. Every Archbishop of Westminster has been created cardinal. The current Archbishop of Westminster, Vincent Nichols, was elevated to the cardinalate on 22 February 2014 by Pope Francis in Rome.M. de Dunblan
M. de Dunblan is the way the first known Bishop of Dunblane is written in a copy of a papal bull of Pope Adrian IV preserved in England; the bull dates to 1155.The papal bull was addressed to the bishops of Scotland ordering them to submit to the metropolitan authority of the Archbishop of York; the copyist made two other mistakes in the initials of bishops, so it is not totally reliable.Cockburn speculated that M. might stand for Máel Ísu; it is very unlikely that M. was a mistake for La., standing for Laurence the successor of M. at Dunblane.Matthias I, Duke of Lorraine
Matthias I (1119 – 13 May 1176) was the duke of Lorraine from 1138 to his death as the eldest son and successor of Simon I and Adelaide. Like his forefathers going back to Theodoric II and even to Adalbert, he was a stern supporter of the king of Germany and Holy Roman Emperor. He married Bertha (sometimes called Judith), daughter of Frederick II, Duke of Swabia, and therefore niece of the Hohenstaufen king Conrad III and sister of Frederick Barbarossa, future emperor.He accompanied Barbarossa on a number of important occasions, including his imperial coronation by Pope Adrian IV in Rome, 1155. He assisted the emperor in his wars against Adrian and his successor Alexander III and the kings of France and Sicily. He extended his own ducal demesne at the expense of the bishop of Toul, but was an important donor to the Church and founder of abbeys.
He died in 1176 and was interred in his abbey of Clairlieu in Villers-lès-Nancy. By his Hohenstaufen marriage (1138), he had:
Simon (died 1205), his successor in Lorraine
Frederick (died 1206), count of Bitche and his nephew's successor
Judith (died 1173), married Stephen II, count of Auxonne (1170)
Alice (died 1200), married Hugh III, Duke of Burgundy
Theoderic (died 1181), bishop of Metz (1174–1179)
Matthias (died 1208), count of Toul
Unnamed daughter who died youngMonte San Giovanni Campano
Monte San Giovanni Campano is a comune (municipality) of about 12,800 inhabitants in the province of Frosinone in the Italian region Lazio, located about 90 kilometres (56 mi) southeast of Rome and about 14 kilometres (9 mi) east of Frosinone. Monte San Giovanni Campano is in the Latin Valley
It is best known as the place where Thomas Aquinas was imprisoned by his family for two years. St. Thomas' cell now houses a 16th-century triptych of the Neapolitan School.
Monte San Giovanni is home to an 11th-century fortress, the Castello di Monte San Giovanni Campano. It was the first western fortification ever to be breached and captured using a bombardment from portable field artillery, when its castle was stormed by the troops of Charles VIII of France in a mere eight hours in 1495.
Monte San Giovanni was also a summer residence of Pope Adrian IV starting in 1155, and where sojourned the poet Vittoria Colonna.Nicholas Breakspear School
Nicholas Breakspear School is a secondary school with academy status situated on the rural fringe of St Albans, an old Roman city in Hertfordshire, England.
The school takes its name from the 12th Century priest Nicholas Breakspeare, who, as Pope Adrian IV, is the only Englishman ever to have occupied the papal chair.
It was recently categorized in 2016 as a 'Good' school.Pietro di Miso
Pietro di Miso (died September 17, 1174) was Italian cardinal. He was elevated to the cardinalate by Pope Adrian IV in the consistory of February 1158. Initially he was cardinal-deacon of S. Eustachio, but in 1166 he was promoted to the order of cardinal-priests and received titulus San Lorenzo in Damaso. After the double papal election in 1159 he supported the obedience of Pope Alexander III and served as his legate in Hungary. He signed the papal bulls between April 24, 1158 and July 17, 1174.Richard of Andria
Richard was Bishop of Andria, Italy. He was appointed to the see of Andria by fellow Englishman Pope Adrian IV. In 1179, Richard was one of the Bishops present at the Eleventh Ecumenical Council (Third Lateran, 1179) held by Pope Alexander III. He remained in his office until his death, a period of well over 40 years.In 1438, under the rule of Duke Francesco II Del Balzo, a woman putatively rediscovered his remains under the main altar of the Cathedral where it was claimed they had been hidden during the Hungarian invasions. Under the patronage of Federico, he was able to obtain Richard's canonization by Pope Eugene IV.Symeon of Rosemarkie
Symeon (Middle Gaelic: Simón; fl. 1147 – 1155) is the second known Bishop of Ross in the 12th century. His predecessor Mac Bethad occurred as bishop in a document datable between 1127 and 1131.Symeon appeared for the first time when he witnessed a charter by King David I of Scotland granting Nithbren and Balcristin to Dunfermline Abbey. This is the only extant charter witnessed by Bishop Symeon. This charter is also witnessed by Alwin, Abbot of Holyrood (Alwyno abbate de Edenb.,), who had resigned his abbacy in 1151, and by Herbert, Bishop of Glasgow, who was consecrated as bishop at Auxerre on 24 August 1147, meaning that the charter was issued and witnessed between these two dates.A "S. Bishop of St Peter in Ross" was addressed by Pope Adrian IV in a Papal Bull issued on 25 February 1155. His date of death is not known, but fell between that date in 1155 and 1161, when his successor Gregoir was consecrated as bishop.
During the Roman Empire (until 493)
including under Constantine (312–337)
Ostrogothic Papacy (493–537)
Byzantine Papacy (537–752)
Frankish Papacy (756–857)
Papal selection before 1059
Saeculum obscurum (904–964)
Crescentii era (974–1012)
Tusculan Papacy (1012–1044/1048)
Imperial Papacy (1048–1257)
Avignon Papacy (1309–1378)
Western Schism (1378–1417)
Renaissance Papacy (1417–1534)
Reformation Papacy (1534–1585)
Baroque Papacy (1585–1689)
Age of Enlightenment (c. 1640-1740)
Revolutionary Papacy (1775–1848)
Roman Question (1870–1929)
Vatican City (1929–present)
|History of the papacy|
of the faithful
|Early Middle Ages|
|High Middle Ages|
|Late Middle Ages|