Pope Gregory XII

Pope Gregory XII (Latin: Gregorius XII; c. 1326 or 1327 – 18 October 1417), born Angelo Corraro, Corario,[1] or Correr,[2] was Pope from 30 November 1406 to 4 July 1415 when he was forced to resign to end the Western Schism. He succeeded Pope Innocent VII and in turn was succeeded by Pope Martin V.


Gregory XII
Bishop of Rome
Nuremberg Chronicles f 235v 2 Gregorius XII
Papacy began30 November 1406
Papacy ended4 July 1415
PredecessorInnocent VII
SuccessorMartin V
Opposed toAvignon claimant:
Benedict XIII
Pisan claimants:
Alexander V
Created cardinal12 June 1405
by Innocent VII
Personal details
Birth nameAngelo Corraro or Corario[1]
Bornc. 1326 or 1327
Venice, Republic of Venice
Died18 October 1417 (aged 90–91)
Recanati, Marche, Papal States
Previous post
Coat of armsGregory XII's coat of arms
Other popes named Gregory
Papal styles of
Pope Gregory XII
C o a Gregorio XII
Reference styleHis Holiness
Spoken styleYour Holiness
Religious styleHoly Father
Posthumous styleNone


Angelo Corraro was born in Venice of a noble family, about 1326 or 1327, and was appointed Bishop of Castello in 1380, succeeding Bishop Nicolò Morosini.[3]

On 1 December 1390 he was made titular Latin Patriarch of Constantinople. On 12 June 1405 he was created cardinal and the Cardinal-Priest of San Marco by Pope Innocent VII. He was Apostolic Administrator of Constantinople from 30 November 1406 to 23 October 1409.[4]

Papal conclave

Gregory XII was chosen at Rome by a conclave consisting of only fifteen cardinals under the express condition that, should Antipope Benedict XIII (1394–1423), the rival papal claimant at Avignon, renounce all claim to the Papacy, he would also renounce his, so that a fresh election might be made and the Western Schism (1378–1417) ended. He became Supreme Pontiff on 30 November 1406, taking the name Gregory XII.[3]


Negotiations to end the schism

The two pontiffs opened wary negotiations to meet on neutral turf at Savona in Liguria, but soon began to waver in their resolve. The Corraro relatives of Gregory XII in Venice and King Ladislaus of Naples, a supporter of Gregory XII and his predecessor for political reasons, used all their influence to prevent the meeting, and each Pope feared being captured by partisans of the rival Pope.[3]

The cardinals of Gregory XII openly showed their dissatisfaction at this manoeuvring and gave signs of their intention to abandon him. On 4 May 1408, Gregory XII convened his cardinals at Lucca and ordered them not to leave the city under any pretext. He tried to supplement his following by creating four of his Corraro nephews cardinals – including the future Pope Eugene IV, despite his promise in the conclave that he would create no new cardinals. Seven of the cardinals secretly left Lucca and negotiated with the cardinals of Benedict XIII concerning the convocation of a general council by them, at which both pontiffs should be deposed and a new one elected. Consequently, they summoned the council to Pisa and invited both pontiffs to be present. Neither Gregory XII nor Benedict XIII appeared.

Meanwhile, Gregory XII stayed with his loyal and powerful protector, the condottiero Carlo I Malatesta, who had come to Pisa in person during the process of the council to support Gregory XII. At the fifteenth session, 5 June 1409, the Council of Pisa deposed the two pontiffs as schismatical, heretical, perjured, and scandalous; they elected Alexander V (1409–10) later that month.[5] Gregory XII, who had meanwhile created ten more cardinals, had convoked a rival council at Cividale del Friuli, near Aquileia; but only a few bishops appeared. Gregory XII's cardinals pronounced Benedict XIII and Alexander V schismatics, perjurers, and devastators of the Church, but their pronouncement went unheeded.

Resolution of the schism

The Council of Constance finally resolved the situation. Gregory XII appointed Carlo Malatesta and Cardinal Giovanni Dominici of Ragusa as his proxies. The cardinal then convoked the council and authorized its succeeding acts, thus preserving the formulas of Papal supremacy.

Thereupon on 4 July 1415, Malatesta, acting in the name of Gregory XII, pronounced the resignation of the Pope, which the cardinals accepted. According to prior agreement, they agreed to retain all the cardinals that had been created by Gregory XII, thus satisfying the Corraro clan, and appointed Gregory XII Bishop of Frascati, Dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals and perpetual legate at Ancona. The Council then set aside Antipope John XXIII (1410–15), the successor of Alexander V. After the former follower of Benedict XIII appeared, the council declared him deposed; and the Western Schism was ended. A new Roman pontiff, Pope Martin V, was not elected before Gregory XII's death. Therefore, the Papal seat was vacant for two years.

Retirement and death

The rest of Gregory XII's life was spent in peaceful obscurity in Ancona. He was the last pope to resign until Benedict XVI did so on 28 February 2013, almost 598 years later.[6]

See also


  1. ^ a b "Wikisource Baynes, T.S.; Smith, W.R., eds. (1880). "Gregory XII." . Encyclopædia Britannica. 11 (9th ed.). New York: Charles Scribner's Sons. p. 178.
  2. ^ Miranda, Salvador. "Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church
  3. ^ a b c Ott, Michael. "Pope Gregory XII." The Catholic Encyclopedia Vol. 7. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1910. 30 December 2015
  4. ^ "Titular Episcopal See of Castello". GCatholic. Retrieved 24 November 2013.
  5. ^ Caulfield, Philip (11 February 2013). "Pope Gregory XII, the last pope to resign, stepped down amid the Great Western Schism in 1415". Daily News. Retrieved 23 April 2017.
  6. ^ "Pope Benedict XVI to resign citing poor health". BBC News. Retrieved 11 February 2013.


External links

Catholic Church titles
Title last held by
Paul Palaiologos Tagaris
Latin Patriarch of Constantinople
Succeeded by
Louis of Mitylene
Preceded by
Innocent VII
30 November 1406 – 4 July 1415
Avignon claimant: Benedict XIII
Pisan claimants: Alexander V & John XXIII
Succeeded by
Martin V
1406 papal conclave

The papal conclave of 1406 (November 18–30), the papal conclave of the time of the Great Western Schism, convened after the death of Pope Innocent VII. It elected Cardinal Angelo Correr, who under the name of Gregory XII became the fourth pope of the Roman Obedience.

Angelo Marcuzzi

Angelo Marcuzzi (died 1453) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Bishop of Telese (1413–1453).

Antonio Correr (bishop)

Antonio Correr, O.P. (1378–1445) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Bishop of Ceneda (1409–1445) and Bishop of Asolo (1406–1409).

Antonio Correr (cardinal)

Antonio Correr (July 15, 1359 – January 19, 1445) was a Roman Catholic Cardinal who was appointed cardinal by his uncle Pope Gregory XII during the period of the Great Western Schism.

Bernardo Zambernelli

Bernardo Zambernelli, O.F.M. Conv. or Bernardo di Giambernardello Pace da Carpi or Bernardo Pace (died 1425) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Bishop of Parma (1412–1425).

Biagio Molino

Biagio Molino or Biaggio Molina or Biageo de Molina (1380–1447) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Titular Patriarch of Jerusalem (1434–1447), Patriarch of Grado (1427–1434), Archbishop of Zadar (1420–1427), and Bishop of Pula (1410–1420).

Costanzo Fondulo

Costanzo Fondulo (died 1423) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Bishop of Cremona (1412–1423).

Francesco Carosio

Francesco Carosio (died 1427) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Archbishop of Trani (1418–1427)

and Bishop of Melfi (1412–1418).

Francesco de Aiello

Francesco de Aiello (died 1453) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Archbishop of Bari-Canosa (1424–1453), Bishop of Todi (1407–1424), and Bishop of Cava de' Tirreni (1394–1407).

Gaspard de Diano

Gaspard de Diano or Gaspare de Diano (1389–1451) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Archbishop of Naples (1438–1451),

Archbishop of Conza (1422–1438),

and Bishop of Teano (1412–1422).

Giacomo Balardi Arrigoni

Giacomo Balardi Arrigoni (died 12 September 1435) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Bishop of Urbino (1424–1435),Bishop of Trieste (1418–1424),

and Bishop of Lodi (1407–1418).

Giovanni Bonifacio Panella

Giovanni Bonifacio Panella (died 1417) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Archbishop (Personal Title) of Muro Lucano (1407–1417),Archbishop (Personal Title) of Capaccio (1399–1407),Archbishop of Durrës (1395–1399), and

Bishop of Ferentino (1392–1395).

Giovanni Rosa

Giovanni Rosa (died 1448) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Bishop of Mazara del Vallo (1415–1448).

Giovanni Rusconi

Giovanni Rusconi (died 1412) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Bishop of Parma (1383–1412).

Giuseppe Faraoni

Giuseppe Faraon (died 1588) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Bishop of Crotone (1581–1588) and Bishop of Massa Lubrense (1577–1581).

Guido Memo

Guido Memo (died 1438) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Bishop of Verona (1409–1438).On 29 November 1409, Guido Memo was appointed during the papacy of Pope Gregory XII as Bishop of Verona. He served as Bishop of Verona until his death in 1438.

Pope Gregory

Gregory has been the name of sixteen Roman Catholic Popes and two Antipopes. The Latin name is Gregorius.

Pope Gregory I "the Great" (590–604), after whom the Gregorian chant is named

Pope Gregory II (715–731)

Pope Gregory III (731–741)

Pope Gregory IV (827–844)

Pope Gregory V (996–999)

Pope Gregory VI (1045–1046)

Antipope Gregory VI

Pope Gregory VII (1073–1085), after whom the Gregorian Reform is named

Pope Gregory VIII (1187)

Antipope Gregory VIII

Pope Gregory IX (1227–1241)

Pope Gregory X (1271–1276)

Pope Gregory XI (1370–1378)

Pope Gregory XII (1406–1415)

Pope Gregory XIII (1572–1585), after whom the Gregorian calendar is named

Pope Gregory XIV (1590–1591)

Pope Gregory XV (1621–1623)

Pope Gregory XVI (1831–1846)

Thomas Merke

Thomas Merke (or Merks; died 1409) was an English priest and Bishop of Carlisle from 1397 to 1400.

Educated at Oxford University, Merke became a Benedictine monk at Westminster Abbey and was consecrated bishop about 23 April 1397. He served Richard II as ambassador to various German princes in 1397, was one of the commissioners who negotiated the dowry of Isabella of Valois in 1398, and accompanied the king to Ireland in 1399.

Merke supported Richard against the usurper Henry IV and in 1400 was imprisoned in the Tower of London and deprived of his bishopric as a result. Although released and conditionally pardoned the following year, he was not restored to the bishopric, instead serving as a deputy and acting bishop in the Diocese of Winchester several times. He was one of those churchmen who sided against Pope Gregory XII at Lucca in 1408. He died in 1409.Merke's role in supporting the king is represented in William Shakespeare's play Richard II.

Tommaso Morganti

Tommaso Morganti (died 1419) was a Roman Catholic prelate who served as Bishop of Lecce (1409–1419).

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
Bible and
By country
of the faithful
Early Church
Late antiquity
Early Middle Ages
High Middle Ages
Late Middle Ages
19th century
20th century
21st century

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.