Pope Alexander I

Pope Alexander I (died c. 115) was the Bishop of Rome from c. 107 to his death c. 115. The Holy See's Annuario Pontificio (2012) identifies him as a Roman who reigned from 108 or 109 to 116 or 119. Some believe he suffered martyrdom under the Roman Emperor Trajan or Hadrian, but this is improbable.[1]


Alexander I
Pope Alexander I, Sistine Chapel
Fresco of Pope Alexander I In Sistine Chapel
Papacy beganc. 107
Papacy endedc. 115
SuccessorSixtus I
Personal details
Birth nameAlexander
Born10 January 75
Rome, Roman Empire
Diedc. 115
Rome, Roman Empire
Feast day3 May (Tridentine Calendar)
16 March (Greek Christianity)
Venerated inCatholic Church
Orthodox Church
Other popes named Alexander

Life and legend

According to the Liber Pontificalis, it was Alexander I who inserted the narration of the Last Supper (the Qui pridie) into the liturgy of the Mass. However, the article on Saint Alexander I in the 1907 Catholic Encyclopedia, written by Thomas Shahan, judges this tradition to be inaccurate, a view shared by both Catholic and non-Catholic experts.[2] It is viewed as a product of the agenda of Liber Pontificalis—this section of the book was probably written in the late 5th century—to show an ancient pattern of the earliest bishops of Rome ruling the church by papal decree.

The introduction of the customs of using blessed water mixed with salt for the purification of Christian homes from evil influences, as well as that of mixing water with the sacramental wine, are attributed to Pope Alexander I. Some sources consider these attributions unlikely.[1] It is certainly possible, however, that Alexander played an important part in the early development of the Church of Rome's emerging liturgical and administrative traditions.

A later tradition holds that in the reign of Emperor Hadrian, Alexander I converted the Roman governor Hermes by miraculous means, together with his entire household of 1,500 people. Saint Quirinus of Neuss, who was Alexander's supposed jailer, and Quirinus' daughter Saint Balbina were also among his converts.

Alexander is said to have seen a vision of the infant Jesus.[3] His remains are said to have been transferred to Freising in Bavaria, Germany in AD 834.[2]

Supposed identification with a martyr

Some editions of the Roman Missal identified with Pope Alexander I the Saint Alexander that they give as commemorated, together with Saints Eventius and Theodulus (who were supposed to be priests of his), on 3 May. See, for instance, the General Roman Calendar of 1954. But nothing is known of these three saints other than their names, together with the fact that they were martyred and were buried at the seventh milestone of the Via Nomentana on 3 May of some year.[4] For this reason, the Pope John XXIII's 1960 revision of the calendar returned to the presentation that was in the 1570 Tridentine Calendar of the three saints as simply "Saints Alexander, Eventius and Theodulus Martyrs" with no suggestion that any of them was a pope. The Roman Martyrology lists them as Eventius, Alexander and Theodulus, the order in which their names are given in historical documents.[5]

See also


  1. ^ a b Encyclopædia Britannica: Saint Alexander I
  2. ^ a b Catholic Encyclopedia: Pope St. Alexander I
  3. ^ Visions of Jesus: Direct Encounters from the New Testament to Today By Phillip H. Wiebe. Oxford University Press. p. 20.
  4. ^ Calendarium Romanum (Libreria Editrice Vaticana 1969), p. 122
  5. ^ Martyrologium Romanum (Libreria Editrice Vaticana 2004), p. 268

Further reading

  • Benedict XIV. The Roman Martyrology. Gardners Books, 2007. ISBN 978-0-548-13374-3.
  • Chapman, John. Studies on the Early Papacy. Port Washington, NY: Kennikat Press, 1971. ISBN 978-1-901157-60-4.
  • Fortescue, Adrian, and Scott M. P. Reid. The Early Papacy: To the Synod of Chalcedon in 451. Southampton: Saint Austin Press, 1997. ISBN 978-1-901157-60-4.
  • Jowett, George F. The Drama of the Lost Disciples. London: Covenant Pub. Co, 1968. OCLC 7181392
  • Loomis, Louise Ropes. The Book of Popes (Liber Pontificalis). Merchantville, NJ: Evolution Publishing. ISBN 1-889758-86-8
Pope St. Alexander I
Titles of the Great Christian Church
Preceded by
Bishop of Rome

Succeeded by
Sixtus I
100s (decade)

The 100s decade ran from January 1, 100, to December 31, 109.

== Events ==

=== AD 100 ===

==== By place ====

====== Roman Empire ======

Emperor Trajan and Sextus Julius Frontinus become Roman Consuls.

Bricks become the primary building material in the Roman Empire.

Pliny the Younger advances to consulship, giving his panegyric on Trajan in the process.

The Roman Army reaches 300,000 soldiers.

Titus Avidius Quietus' rule as governor of Roman Britain ends.

Timgad (Thamugas), a Roman colonial town in North Africa is founded by Trajan.

Trajan creates a policy intended to restore the former economic supremacy of Italy.

The future emperor, Hadrian, marries Vibia Sabina.

====== Europe ======

Lions became extinct in the Balkans in the AD 100s

====== Asia ======

Pakores (last king of the Indo-Parthian Kingdom) takes the throne.

Paper is used by the general populace in China, starting around this year.

The Kingdom of Himyarite is conquered by the Hadramaut.

====== Americas ======

The Hopewell tradition begins in what is now Ohio c. this date.

Teotihuacan, at the center of Mexico, reaches a population of 50,000.

The Moche civilization emerges, and starts building a society in present-day Peru.

==== By topic ====

====== Arts and sciences ======

In China, the wheelbarrow makes its first appearance.

Main hall, Markets of Trajan, Rome, is made (until AD 112).

====== Religion ======

Appearance of the first Christian dogma and formulas regarding morality.

The Gospel of John is widely believed to have been written around this date.

The compilation of the Kama sutra begins in India.

The Temple of the God of Medicine is built in Anguo, China.

The Fourth Buddhist Council is convened c. this year.

=== 101 ===

==== By place ====

====== Roman Empire ======

Emperor Trajan starts an expedition against Dacia, exceeding the limits of the Roman Empire set by Augustus.

The Second Battle of Tapae is fought.

Epictetus writes and publishes The Discourses.

==== By topic ====

====== Arts and sciences ======

Plutarch writes his Parallel Lives of Famous Men (in Greek Βίοι Παράλληλοι) containing fifty biographies, of which 46 are presented as pairs comparing Greek and Roman celebrities—for example Theseus and Romulus, Alexander the Great and Julius Caesar, Demosthenes and Cicero.

=== 102 ===

==== By place ====

====== Roman Empire ======

Lucius Julius Ursus Servianus and Lucius Licinius Sura become Roman Consuls.

Emperor Trajan returns to Rome after a successful campaign against Dacia, through which he reestablishes clear Roman sovereignty over king Decebalus.

Trajan divides Pannonia into two provinces sometime between this year and 107.

The port of Portus is enlarged.

====== Asia ======

Having organised the territories of the Tarim basin, Chinese general Ban Chao retires to Luoyang, and dies shortly thereafter.

=== 103 ===

==== By place ====

====== Roman Empire ======

Emperor Trajan and Manius Laberius Maximus become Roman Consul.

Pliny the Younger becomes a member of the college of Augurs (103–104).

Legio X Gemina moves to Vienna where it remains until the 5th century.

==== By topic ====

====== Religion ======

In Palmyra, Syria, a Temple of the Sun is erected to the god Baal.

=== 104 ===

==== By place ====

====== Roman Empire ======

Pliny the Younger is a member of the college of Augurs (103–104).

Nijmegen is renamed Ulpia Noviomagus Batavorum.

A fire breaks out in Rome.

Trajan gives the order to have the Alcántara Bridge built over the Tagus River at Alcántara (Hispania), constructed by the architect Lacer.

Apollodorus of Damascus builds a stone bridge over the Danube more than 1,000 meters (3,300 feet) long, almost 20 meters (66 feet) high and 15 meters (49 feet) wide. The bridge connects what is now Serbia with Romania (at the time known as Dacia).

==== By topic ====

====== Religion ======

In India, figures of Buddha replace abstract motifs on decorative items.

=== 105 ===

==== By place ====

====== Roman Empire ======

Emperor Trajan starts the second expedition against Dacia, he leaves with the Imperial Roman fleet from Brundusium. Permanent castrum of Legio II Adiutrix at Aquincum (modern Budapest) in Pannonia.

Legio XXX Ulpia Victrix and II Traiana Fortis are created by Trajan.

The Romans conquer Kerak from the Nabateans.

Pacorus II of Parthia dies after a 27-year reign in which he has reclaimed all of his empire. His successor Vologases III reigns until 147 AD, suppressing brief rebellions as he battles against the Kushan and Alani.

====== Asia ======

Emperor He Di dies after a 17-year reign in which court eunuchs and the emperor's in-laws have regained influence. Empress Deng Sui placed her son Shang Di (barely 3 months old) on the throne, as the fifth emperor of the Chinese Eastern Han Dynasty.

Last year (17th) of yongyuan era and start of yuanxing era of the Chinese Eastern Han Dynasty.

A peace treaty is signed between Baekje and Silla in the Korean peninsula (the war started in AD 85).

==== By topic ====

====== Arts and sciences ======

Papermaking is refined by the Chinese eunuch Cai Lun, who receives official praise from the emperor for his methods of making paper from tree bark, hemp, remnant rags and fish nets. Paper had been made in China from the 2nd century BC, but Cai Lun's paper provides a writing surface far superior to pure silk and is much less costly to produce. Bamboo and wooden slips will remain the usual materials for books and scrolls in most of the world for another 200 years, and paper will remain a Chinese secret for 500 years.

The Trajan Bridge is finished. For more than a thousand years, it is the longest arch bridge in the world to have been built, in terms of both total and span length.

====== Religion ======

Pope Alexander I succeeds Pope Evaristus as the sixth pope – traditionally.

Change of Patriarch of Constantinople from Patriarch Plutarch to Patriarch Sedecion.

=== 106 ===

==== By place ====

====== Roman Empire ======

Ignatius writes a letter to Christians in Smyrna (around this year) where the term Catholic Church is used. This is the earliest surviving witness to the use of the term "Catholic Church".

Emperor Trajan conquers the Dacian Fortresses of the Orăştie Mountains and surrounds the capital, Sarmizegetusa. The Dacians are defeated in the Battle of Sarmizegetusa, the city is encircled with a circumvallation line. When the Romans destroy the water pipes, king Decebalus flees and commits suicide.

On August 11, the south-eastern part of Dacia (modern Romania) becomes a Roman province: Roman Dacia. The veterans of the legions are given land in the new province for their service in the Roman army.

Trajan annexes Nabataean Arabia (with its capital Petra) as a Roman province.

Aelian writes his Taktike Theoria (probable date).

====== Asia ======

Change of Han Hedi to Han Shangdi of the Chinese Eastern Han Dynasty. First and the only year of yanping era.

Change of Han Shangdi to Han Andi of the Chinese Eastern Han Dynasty.

=== 107 ===

==== By place ====

====== Roman Empire ======

Lucius Licinius Sura and Quintus Sosius Senecio become Roman Consuls.

Emperor Trajan divides Pannonia into two portions sometime between 102 and this year.

An Indian ambassador is received by Trajan.

====== Asia ======

First year of the yongchu era of the Chinese Eastern Han Dynasty.

Han Andi (An-ti, Ngan-ti), a young man, becomes emperor of China, giving power to Empress Deng Sui.

Suishō, King of Wa (Japan), sends 160 slaves as presents to the Emperor An of Han.

=== 108 ===

==== By place ====

====== Roman Empire ======

Appius Annius Trebonius Gallus and Marcus Appius Bradua become Roman Consul.

==== By topic ====

====== Arts and sciences ======

Tacitus writes Histories, which covers the period from AD 69 to AD 96.

The Hypogeum of Yarhai, an underground tomb from the Syrian city of Palmyra dedicated to the family of Yarhai is built.

=== 109 ===

==== By place ====

====== Roman Empire ======

June 24 – The Aqua Traiana is inaugurated by emperor Trajan; the aqueduct channels water from Lake Bracciano, 40 kilometers (25 mi) north-west of Rome.

The Via Traiana is constructed at the emperor Trajan's personal expense; the road connects Benevento with Brundisium (Brindisi).

The Baths of Trajan built by the architect Apollodorus of Damascus are dedicated during the Calends. The thermae are constructed on the platform of the Palace of Nero (Domus Aurea) in Rome.

Osroes I of Parthia succeeds his brother Pacorus II and rules over the western Parthian Empire.

Pliny the Younger is legate to Bithynia.

==== By topic ====

====== Religion ======

The Christian Church proclaims itself to be universal (catholic).


Year 105 (CV) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Consulship of Candidus and Iulius (or, less frequently, year 858 Ab urbe condita). The denomination 105 for this year has been used since the early medieval period, when the Anno Domini calendar era became the prevalent method in Europe for naming years.


Year 115 (CXV) was a common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Consulship of Messalla and Vergilianus (or, less frequently, year 868 Ab urbe condita). The denomination 115 for this year has been used since the early medieval period, when the Anno Domini calendar era became the prevalent method in Europe for naming years.


Alexander is a male given name, and a less common surname. The most prominent bearer of the name is Alexander the Great, who created one of the largest empires in ancient history.

Alexander I

Alexander I may refer to:

Alexander I of Macedon, king of Macedon 495–454 BC

Alexander I of Epirus (370–331 BC), king of Epirus

Pope Alexander I (died 115),

Pope Alexander I of Alexandria (died 320s), patriarch of Alexandria

Alexander I of Scotland (c. 1078 – 1124), king of Scotland

Aleksandr Mikhailovich of Tver (1301–1339), Prince of Tver as Alexander I

Alexander I of Georgia (1386–?), king of Georgia

Alexander I of Moldavia (died 1432), prince of Moldavia 1430–1432

Alexander I of Kakheti (1445–1511), king of Kakheti

Alexander Jagiellon (1461–1506), king of Poland

Alexander I of Russia (1777–1825), emperor of Russia

Alexander of Battenberg (1857–1893), prince of Bulgaria

Alexander I of Serbia (1876–1903), king of Serbia

Alexander I of Yugoslavia (1888–1934), king of Yugoslavia

Alexander of Greece (1893–1920), king of Greece

Alexander of Alexandria

Alexander of Alexandria may refer to:

Pope Alexander I of Alexandria, Patriarch of Alexandria in 313–326 or 328

Pope Alexander II of Alexandria, ruled in 702–729

Patriarch Alexander II of Alexandria, Greek Patriarch of Alexandria in 1059–1062


Freising is a town in Bavaria, Germany, and the capital of the Freising district, with a population of 45,227.

Patriarch Alexander

Patriarch Alexander may refer to:

Pope Alexander I of Alexandria, ruled in 313–326 or 328

Patriarch Alexander of Constantinople, ruled in 314–337

Patriarch Alexander II of Alexandria, Greek Patriarch of Alexandria in 1059–1062

Patriarch Alexander I

Patriarch Alexander I may refer to:

Pope Alexander I of Alexandria, ruled in 313–326 or 328

Patriarch Alexander of Constantinople, ruled in 314–337

Pope Alexander

There have been eight Popes and Antipopes named Alexander.

Pope Alexander I (c. 106 – c. 115)

Pope Alexander I of Alexandria, ruled in 313–326 or 328

Pope Alexander II of Alexandria, ruled 704–729

Pope Alexander II (1061–1073)

Pope Alexander III (1159–1181)

Pope Alexander IV (1254–1261)

Antipope Alexander V (1409–1410) (considered to be an Antipope; however, the next Pope Alexander took the name Alexander VI due to confusion over Alexander V's status at the time)

Pope Alexander VI (1492–1503)

Pope Alexander VII (1655–1667)

Pope Alexander VIII (1689–1691)

Pope Alexander I of Alexandria

St Alexander I of Alexandria, 19th Pope of Alexandria & Patriarch of the See of St. Mark. During his patriarchate, he dealt with a number of issues facing the Church in that day. These included the dating of Easter, the actions of Meletius of Lycopolis, and the issue of greatest substance, Arianism. He was the leader of the opposition to Arianism at the First Council of Nicaea. He also is remembered for being the mentor of the man who would be his successor, Athanasius of Alexandria, who would become one of the leading Church fathers.

Pope Alexander of Alexandria

Pope Alexander of Alexandria may refer to:

Pope Alexander I of Alexandria, Patriarch of Alexandria in 313–326 or 328

Pope Alexander II of Alexandria, ruled in 702–729

Pope Sixtus I

Pope Sixtus I (42 – 124, 125, 126 or 128), a Roman of Greek descent, was the Bishop of Rome from c. 115 to his death c. 124. He succeeded Pope Alexander I and was in turn succeeded by Pope Telesphorus. His feast is celebrated on 6 April.


A reliquary (also referred to as a shrine or by the French term châsse) is a container for relics. These may be the purported or actual physical remains of saints, such as bones, pieces of clothing, or some object associated with saints or other religious figures. The authenticity of any given relic is often a matter of debate; for that reason, some churches require documentation of the relic's provenance.

Relics have long been important to Buddhists, Christians, Hindus and many other religions. In these cultures, reliquaries are often presented in shrines, churches, or temples to which the faithful make pilgrimages in order to gain blessings.

The term is sometimes used loosely of containers for the body parts of non-religious figures; in particular the Kings of France often specified that their hearts and sometimes other organs be buried in a different location from their main burial.

Rutilio di Lorenzo Manetti

Rutilio di Lorenzo Manetti (c. 1571 – 22 July 1639) was an Italian painter of late-Mannerism or proto-Baroque, active mainly in Siena.

Saint Alexander

Saint Alexander may refer to one of several saints including:

Pope Alexander I (died 115), saint and pope

See Epipodius and Alexander for Saint Alexander, martyred in Lyon, 178 AD

Alexander of Rome (died c. 289) - Christian martyr

Alexander of Bergamo (died c. 303), patron saint of Bergamo; may have been a Roman soldier

Alexander of Constantinople (born between 237 and 244 - 337), bishop of Byzantium and the bishop of Constantinople

Alexander of Jerusalem (d. 251 AD), venerated as a Martyr and Saint by Eastern Orthodox Churches & Roman Catholic Church

Alexander Nevsky (1220 – 1263), Grand Prince of Novgorod and Vladimir

Alexander Sauli, the "Apostle of Corsica", (1535-1592), member of an illustrious Lombard family

Alexander of Comana (died 251), bishop of Comana

Pope Alexander I of Alexandria, Patriarch of Alexandria

Alexander Svirsky (1448 - 1533), Eastern Orthodox saint, monk and hegumen of Russian Orthodox Church

One of the seven sons of Felicitas of Rome (101–165)

Sisinnius, Martyrius and Alexander (died 405), martyrs

Saint Alexander, a companion of St. Victor of Marseilles (died 290)

Alexander Schmorell (1917-1943), member of the White Rose

San Matteo in Merulana

San Matteo in Via Merulana was a titular church in Rome, dedicated to the Apostle and Evangelist Matthew, for cardinal priests (the intermediary class).


Theodulus (Theodoulos Θεόδουλος) is a Greek given name. It may refer to:

Theodulus of Grammont (d. c. 400), bishop of Sion

a saint martyred with Leontius and Hypatius

a saint and son of Nilus of Sinai

a saint martyred with Victor, Dorotheus and Agrippa at Synnada.

a saint and martyr with Anesius in Africa.

a saint martyred with Pope Alexander I and Eventius.

Theodoulos Parsakoutenos (fl. 960s), Byzantine generalfeminine Theodoula:

Theodula of Anazarbus


Ultramontanism is a clerical political conception within the Catholic Church that places strong emphasis on the prerogatives and powers of the Pope.

1st–4th centuries
During the Roman Empire (until 493)
including under Constantine (312–337)
5th–8th centuries
Ostrogothic Papacy (493–537)
Byzantine Papacy (537–752)
Frankish Papacy (756–857)
9th–12th centuries
Papal selection before 1059
Saeculum obscurum (904–964)
Crescentii era (974–1012)
Tusculan Papacy (1012–1044/1048)
Imperial Papacy (1048–1257)
13th–16th centuries
Viterbo (1257–1281)
Orvieto (1262–1297)
Perugia (1228–1304)
Avignon Papacy (1309–1378)
Western Schism (1378–1417)
Renaissance Papacy (1417–1534)
Reformation Papacy (1534–1585)
Baroque Papacy (1585–1689)
17th–20th centuries
Age of Enlightenment (c. 1640-1740)
Revolutionary Papacy (1775–1848)
Roman Question (1870–1929)
Vatican City (1929–present)
21st century
History of the papacy
Virgin Mary
See also

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