Pope John X

John X redirects here. It can also refer to John X of Antioch.
Pope John X can also refer to Pope John X of Alexandria.

John X
Pope John X
Papacy beganMarch 914
Papacy endedMay 928
SuccessorLeo VI
Personal details
Birth nameGiovanni da Tossignano
BornTossignano, Papal States
DiedRome, Papal States
Previous postCardinal-Priest (907–914)
Other popes named John

Pope John X (Latin: Ioannes X; d. 28 May 928) was Pope from March 914 to his death in 928. A candidate of the Counts of Tusculum, he attempted to unify Italy under the leadership of Berengar of Friuli, and was instrumental in the defeat of the Saracens at the Battle of Garigliano.[1] He eventually fell out with Marozia, who had him deposed, imprisoned, and finally murdered. John’s pontificate occurred during the period known as the Saeculum obscurum.

Early career

John X, whose father’s name was also John,[2] was born at Tossignano, along the Santerno River.[3] He was made a deacon by Peter IV, the Bishop of Bologna, where he attracted the attention of Theodora, the wife of Theophylact, Count of Tusculum, the most powerful noble in Rome. John was a relative of Theodora's family.[4]

It was alleged by Liutprand of Cremona that John became her lover during a visit to Rome;[5] However, Johann Peter Kirsch says, "This statement is, however, generally and rightly rejected as a calumny. Liutprand wrote his history some fifty years later, and constantly slandered the Romans, whom he hated. At the time of John's election Theodora was advanced in years, and is lauded by other writers (e.g. Vulgarius)."[4]

It was through Theodora’s influence that John was on the verge of succeeding Peter as bishop of Bologna, when the post of Archbishop of Ravenna became available.[3][6] He was consecrated as Archbishop in 905 by Pope Sergius III, another clerical candidate of the Counts of Tusculum.

During his eight years as archbishop, John worked hard with Pope Sergius in an unsuccessful attempt to have Berengar of Friuli crowned Holy Roman Emperor and to depose Louis the Blind.[3] He also had to defend himself from a usurper who tried to take his Episcopal See away, as well as confirming his authority over Nonantola Abbey when the abbot attempted to free it from the jurisdiction of the Archbishop of Ravenna.[7]

After the death of Pope Lando in 914, a faction of the Roman nobility, headed by Theophylact of Tusculum, summoned John to Rome to assume the vacant papal chair. Although this was again interpreted by Liutprand as Theodora personally intervening to have her lover made Pope, it is far more likely that John’s close working relationship with Theophylact, and his opposition to the ordinations of Pope Formosus, were the real reasons for his being transferred from Ravenna to Rome.[8] Since switching sees was considered an infraction of canon law, as well as contravening the decrees of the Lateran Council of 769, which prohibited the installation of a pope without election, John’s appointment was criticised by his contemporaries.[9] Nevertheless, whilst Theophylact was alive, John adhered to his patron’s cause.

The Saracen war and coronation of Berengar

Berengar I of Italy
Berengar (seated on the left) whom John X crowned Holy Roman Emperor in December 915

The first task that confronted John X was the existence of a Saracen outpost on the Garigliano River, which was used as a base to pillage the Italian countryside. John consulted Landulf I of Benevento, who advised him to seek help from the Byzantine Empire, and from Alberic, marquis of Camerino, and governor of the duchy of Spoleto.[10] John took his advice and sent Papal legates to King Berengar of Italy, various Italian princes, as well as to Constantinople, seeking help to throw out the Saracens.

The result was a Christian alliance, a precursor to the Crusades of the following century. The forces of the new Byzantine strategos of Bari, Nicholas Picingli, joined those of various other south Italian princes: Landulf I of Benevento, John I and Docibilis II of Gaeta, Gregory IV and John II of Naples, and Guaimar II of Salerno. Meanwhile, Berengar brought with him troops from the northern parts of Italy, and the campaign was coordinated by John X, who took to the field in person, alongside Duke Alberic I of Spoleto.[11]

After some preliminary engagements at Campo Baccano and at Trevi, the Saracens were driven to their stronghold on the Garigliano. There, at the Battle of Garigliano, the allies proceeded to lay siege to them for three months, at the end of which the Saracens burnt their houses and attempted to burst out of the encirclement. With John leading the way, all were eventually caught and killed, achieving a great victory and removing the ongoing Saracen threat on the Italian mainland.[12] John then confirmed the granting of Traetto to the Duke of Gaeta, as a reward for abandoning his Saracen allies.[13]

Berengar, King of Italy, had pressed for the imperial crown ever since he had defeated and driven the Roman Emperor Louis the Blind out of Italy in 905. John X used this as leverage to push Berengar into supporting and providing troops to the Saracen campaign.[11] Having completed his end of the bargain, Berengar now insisted that John do likewise.[14] So in December 915, Berengar approached Rome, and after being greeted by the family of Theophylact (whose support he secured), he met Pope John at St. Peter’s Basilica. On Sunday 3 December, John crowned Berengar as Roman Emperor, while Berengar in turn confirmed previous donations made to the See of Peter by earlier emperors.[15]

Political realignments

Although Berengar had the support of the major Roman nobility and the Pope, he had enemies elsewhere. In 923, a combination of the Italian princes brought about the defeat of Berengar, again frustrating the hopes of a united Italy, followed by his assassination in 924.[16] Then in 925 Theophylact of Tusculum and Alberic I of Spoleto also died; this meant that within the course of a year, three of Pope John’s key supporters had died, leaving John dangerously exposed to the ambitions of Theophylact’s daughter, Marozia, who, it was said, resented John’s alleged affair with her mother Theodora.[17]

To counter this rising threat, in that year John X invited Hugh of Provence to be the next king of Italy, sending his envoy to Pisa to be among the first to greet Hugh as he arrived. Soon after Hugh had been acknowledged king of Italy at Pavia, he met with John at Mantua, and concluded some type of treaty with him, perhaps to defend John’s interests at Rome.[18] However, a rival Italian king in the form of Rudolph II of Burgundy meant that Hugh was not in a position to help John, and the next few years were a time of anarchy and confusion in Italy.

Marozia in the meantime had married Guy, Margrave of Tuscany . Soon a power struggle began between them and Pope John, with John’s brother, Peter, the first to feel their enmity.[19] John had Peter made Duke of Spoleto after Alberic’s death, and his increased power threatened Guy and Marozia.[3] Peter was forced to flee to Lake Orta, where he sought the aid of a rampaging band of Magyars. In 926 he returned to Rome in their company, and with their support he intimidated Guy and Marozia, and Peter was allowed to return to his old role as principal advisor to and supporter of Pope John.[20]

Affairs in the east

Although these troubles were continuing to trouble John in Rome, he was still able to participate and influence broader ecclesiastical and political questions across Europe. In 920, he was asked by the Byzantine Emperors Romanos I and Constantine VII and the Patriarch of Constantinople Nicholas Mystikos to send some legates to Constantinople to confirm the acts of a synod which condemned fourth marriages (a legacy of the conflict which embroiled Constantine’s father Leo VI the Wise) thereby ending a schism between the two churches.[21]

Papa Ivan X. Tomislav-dio pisma26
A part of the letter written by pope John X to king Tomislav of Croatia in 925, in which Tomislav, earlier titled "duke", is now titled "king"

In 925 John attempted to stem the use of the Slav liturgy in Dalmatia, and enforce the local use of Latin in the Mass. He wrote to Tomislav, "king (rex) of the Croats", and to Duke Michael of Zahumlje, asking them to follow the instructions as articulated by John’s legates.[22][23]

The result was a synod held in Split in 926, which confirmed John’s request; it forbade the ordination of anyone ignorant of Latin, and forbade Mass to be said in the Slav tongue, except when there was a shortage of priests.[24] The decrees of the synod were sent to Rome for John’s confirmation, who confirmed them all except for the ruling which placed the Croatian Bishop of Nona under the jurisdiction of the Archbishop of Spalatro. He summoned the parties to see him at Rome, but they were unable to attend, forcing John to send some papal legates to settle the matter, which were only resolved by Pope Leo VI after John’s deposition and death.[25]

Around the same time, Tsar Simeon I of Bulgaria made overtures to John, offering the renounce his nation’s obedience to the Patriarch of Constantinople, and place his kingdom under the ecclesiastical authority of the popes at Rome. John sent two legates, who only made it as far as Constantinople, but whose letters urging Simeon to come to terms with the Byzantine Empire were delivered to him.[26] However, John did confirm Simeon’s title of Tsar (emperor), and it was John’s representatives who crowned Simeon’s son Peter I of Bulgaria as Tsar in 927.[27] Finally, John sent a legate to act as intermediary to attempt to stop a war between the Bulgarians and Croatians.[28]

Affairs in western Europe

John was just as vigorous in his activities in Western Europe. Early on in his pontificate he gave his support to Conrad I of Germany in his struggles against the German dukes. He sent a papal legate to a synod of bishops convoked by Conrad at Altheim in 916, with the result that the synod ordered Conrad’s opponents to present themselves before Pope John at Rome if they did not appear before another synod for judgement, under pain of excommunication.[29]

In 920, John was called upon by Charles the Simple to intervene in the succession in the Bishopric of Liège, when Charles’ candidate Hilduin turned against him and joined Gilbert, Duke of Lorraine in rebellion. Charles then tried to replace him with another candidate, Richer of Prüm Abbey, but Hilduin captured Richer, and forced Richer to consecrate him as bishop. John X ordered both men to appear before him at Rome, with the result that John confirmed Richer’s appointment and excommunicated Hilduin.[30] When in 923 Charles was later captured by Herbert II, Count of Vermandois, John was the only leader who protested over Charles’ capture; he threatened Herbert with excommunication unless he restored Charles to freedom, but Herbert effectively ignored him.[31] Contemptuous of the pope’s authority, in 925 Herbert had his five-year-old son Hugh made Archbishop of Reims, an appointment which John was constrained to accept and confirm, as Herbert declared that if his son were not elected, he would carve up the bishopric and distribute the land to various supporters.[32]

John also supported the spiritual side of the Church, such as his advice to Archbishop Herive of Reims in 914, who asked for advice on converting the Normans to Christianity.[33] He wrote:

”Your letter has filled me at once with sorrow and with joy. With sorrow at the sufferings you have to endure not only from the pagans, but also from Christians; with gladness at the conversion of the Northmen, who once revelled in human blood, but who now, by your words, rejoice that they are redeemed by the life-giving blood of Christ. For this we thank God, and implore Him to strengthen them in the faith. As to how far, inasmuch as they are uncultured, and but novices in the faith, they are to be subjected to severe canonical penances for their relapsing, killing of priests, and sacrificing to idols, we leave to your judgment to decide, as no one will know better than you the manners and customs of this people. You will, of course, understand well enough that it will not be advisable to treat them with the severity required by the canons, lest, thinking they will never be able to bear the unaccustomed burdens, they return to their old errors.”[34]

In addition, John supported the monastic reform movement at Cluny Abbey. He confirmed the strict rule of Cluny for the monks there.[33] He then wrote to King Rudolph of France, as well as local bishops and counts, with instructions to restore to Cluny the property of which Guido, abbot of Gigny Abbey, had taken without permission, and to put the monastery under their protection.[35] In 926, he increased the land attached to the Subiaco Abbey in exchange for the monks reciting 100 Kyrie eleisons for the salvation of his soul.[36]

In 924 John X sent a Papal Legate named Zanello to Spain to investigate the Mozarabic Rite. Zanello spoke favourably of the Rite, and the Pope gave a new approval to it, requiring only to change the words of consecration to that of the Roman one.[37] John’s pontificate saw large numbers of pilgrimages from England to Rome, including Wulfhelm, Archbishop of Canterbury in 927. Three years before, in 924, King Æthelstan sent one of his nobles, Alfred, to Rome, on charges of plotting to put out the king’s eyes, where he was supposed to swear an oath before Pope John declaring his innocence of the charges, but he died soon afterwards in Rome.[38] In 917 John also gave the Archbishop of Bremen jurisdiction over the bishops in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Iceland and Greenland.[39]

Finally, during his pontificate, John also restored the Lateran Basilica, which had crumbled in 897.[40]

Deposition and death

Marozia e Teodora
Theodora and Marozia, one John X’s reputed lover, the other his reputed murderer

The power struggle between John X and Guy of Tuscany and Marozia came to a conclusion in 928. Guy had secretly collected a body of troops, and with them made an attack on the Lateran Palace when Peter, Duke of Spoleto, was caught off his guard, and had only a few soldiers with him. Peter was cut to pieces before his brother's eyes, while John himself was thrown into a dungeon, where he remained until he died.[41] There are two variant traditions surrounding his death; the first has it that he was smothered to death in the dungeon within a couple of months of his deposition. Another has it he died sometime in 929 without violence, but through a combination of the conditions of his incarceration and depression.[42]

According to John the Deacon, John X was buried in the atrium of the Lateran Basilica, near the main entrance.[43] He was succeeded by Pope Leo VI in 928.

Reputation and legacy

For centuries, John X’s pontificate has been seen as one of the most disgraceful during the shameful period of the Saeculum obscurum. Much of this can be laid at the feet of the Liutprand of Cremona, whose account of the period is both inaccurate and uniformly hostile.[44] His characterisation of John as an unscrupulous cleric who slept his way to the papal chair, becoming the lover of Theodora,[45] and who held the throne of Saint Peter as a puppet of Theophylact I, Count of Tusculum until he was murdered to make way for Marozia’s son Pope John XI, has coloured much of the analysis of his reign, and was used by opponents of the Catholic Church as a propagandist tool.[46]

Thus according to John Foxe, John X was the son of Pope Lando and the lover of the Roman “harlot” Theodora, who had John overthrow his supposed father, and set John up in his place.[47] While according to Louis Marie DeCormenin, John was: ”The son of a nun and a priest... more occupied with his lusts and debauchery than with the affairs of Christendom... he was ambitious, avaricious, an apostate, destitute of shame, faith and honour, and sacrificed everything to his passions; he held the Holy See about sixteen years, to the disgrace of humanity.”[48]

However, in recent times, his pontificate has been re-evaluated, and he is now seen as a man who attempted to stand against the aristocratic domination of the papacy, who promoted a unified Italy under an imperial ruler, only to be murdered for his efforts.[49]

So according to Ferdinand Gregorovius (not known for his sympathies towards the Papacy), John X was the foremost statesman of his age. He wrote:

”John X, however, the man whose sins are known only by report, whose great qualities are conspicuous in history, stands forth amid the darkness of the time as one of the most memorable figures among the Popes. The acts of the history of the Church praise his activity, and his relations with every country of Christendom. And since he confirmed the strict rule of Cluny, they extol him further as one of the reformers of monasticism.”[50]


  1. ^ Johann Lorenz von Mosheim (1841). Soames, Henry (ed.). Institutes of ecclesiastical history, ancient and modern. A new and literal tr. Longman. p. 721.
  2. ^ Mann, pg. 152
  3. ^ a b c d Levillain, pg. 838
  4. ^ a b Kirsch, Johann Peter. "Pope John X." The Catholic Encyclopedia Vol. 8. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1910. 23 September 2017
  5. ^ Norwich, John Julius, The Popes: A History (2011), pg. 75; Mann, pg. 151
  6. ^ Richard P. McBrien, Lives of the Popes, (HarperCollins, 2000), 152.
  7. ^ Mann, pg. 153
  8. ^ Levillain, pg. 838; Mann, pg. 153
  9. ^ Mann, pg. 153; Levillain, pg. 838
  10. ^ Mann, pg. 154
  11. ^ a b Mann, pg. 155
  12. ^ Mann, pg. 155-156
  13. ^ Mann, pg. 156
  14. ^ Mann, pg. 157
  15. ^ Mann, pgs. 158-159
  16. ^ Mann, pgs. 159-160
  17. ^ Mann, pg. 161; Norwich, pg. 75
  18. ^ Levillain, pg. 839; Mann, pg 161
  19. ^ Norwich, pg. 75; Mann, pgs. 161-162
  20. ^ Mann, pg. 162
  21. ^ Norwich, John Julius, Byzantium: The Apogee (1993), pg. 137; Mann, pgs. 133-134
  22. ^ Vlasto, A. P. (1970). The Entry of the Slavs into Christendom: An Introduction to the Medieval History of the Slavs. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p. 209. ISBN 9780521074599.
  23. ^ Mann, pgs. 165-166
  24. ^ Mann, pg. 166
  25. ^ Levillain, pg. 839; Mann, pgs. 167-168
  26. ^ Mann, pg. 169
  27. ^ Levillain, pg. 839; Mann, pg. 170
  28. ^ Mann, pg. 171
  29. ^ Levillain, pg. 839; Mann, pgs. 171-173
  30. ^ Mann, pgs. 174-175
  31. ^ Levillain, pg. 839; Mann, pgs. 175-176
  32. ^ Mann, pg. 176
  33. ^ a b Levillain, pg. 839
  34. ^ Mann, pgs. 177-178
  35. ^ Mann, pgs. 178-179
  36. ^ Mann, pg. 179
  37. ^ Mann, pg. 181
  38. ^ Mann, pgs., 182-183
  39. ^ Mann, pg. 184
  40. ^ Levillain, pg. 839; Mann, pg. 185
  41. ^ Mann, pgs. 162-163
  42. ^ Norwich, pg. 75; Mann, pgs. 163-164
  43. ^ Mann, pg. 185
  44. ^ Mann, pg. 151
  45. ^ Platina, Bartolomeo (1479). "The Lives of the Popes From The Time Of Our Saviour Jesus Christ to the Accession of Gregory VII". I. London: Griffith Farran & Co.: 245–246. Retrieved 2013-04-25{{inconsistent citations}}
  46. ^ Mann, pgs. 151-152
  47. ^ John Foxe, George Townsend, Josiah Pratt, The acts and monuments of John Foxe, with a life and defence of the martyrologist, Vol. II (1870), pg. 35
  48. ^ DeCormenin, Louis Marie; Gihon, James L., A Complete History of the Popes of Rome, from Saint Peter, the First Bishop to Pius the Ninth (1857), pgs. 285-286
  49. ^ Duffy, Eamon, Saints & Sinners: A History of the Popes (1997), pg. 83
  50. ^ Gregorovius, Ferdinand, The History of Rome in the Middle Ages, Vol. III, pg. 280

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainHerbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "Pope John X". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton.

Further reading

  • Norwich, John Julius, The Popes: A History (2011)
  • Levillain, Philippe, The Papacy: Gaius-Proxies, Routledge (2002)
  • Mann, Horace K., The Lives of the Popes in the Early Middle Ages, Vol. IV: The Popes in the Days of Feudal Anarchy, 891-999 (1910)

External links

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Leo VI

The 920s decade ran from January 1, 920, to December 31, 929.

== Events ==

=== 920 ===

==== By place ====

====== Byzantine Empire ======

December 17 – Romanos I has himself crowned co-emperor of the Byzantine Empire. He shares the throne with the 15-year-old Constantine VII (his son-in-law), and constructs an alternative palace at Constantinople with an adjoining monastery near the Great Palace. Though Constantine retain his formal position as first on the protocol list, Romanos becomes the sole ruler.

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

The nobles of Lotharingia under Gilbert, duke of Lorraine, revolt against King Charles III ("the Simple"). They recognize King Henry I ("the Fowler") as their sovereign. Charles invades Lotharingia as far as Pfeddersheim (near Worms), but retreats when he learns that Henry is mobilizing an army to attack the West Frankish Kingdom.

Henry I conquers Utrecht (modern-day Netherlands), which has been in possession of the Vikings for 70 years. Balderic, bishop of Utrecht, moves his seat back from Deventer to Utrecht (approximate date).

====== Britain ======

High-Reeve Ealdred I, ruler of the former kingdom of Bernicia (Northumbria), and his brother Uhtred, submit to the overlordship of King Edward the Elder (approximate date).

The Welsh ruler Hywel Dda ("the Good") merges Dyfed and Seisyllwg, establishing a new kingdom known as Deheubarth.

====== Iberian Peninsula ======

July 26 — At the Battle of Valdejunquera, the Muslim forces of the Emir Abd-ar-Rahman III of Córdoba, defeat the Christian armies of King Ordoño II of León and King Sancho I of Pamplona. The decisive battle at the Val de Junquera takes place following the Emir's pre-emptive strike and his invasion of the upper Douro valley and the capture of Osma. The Arab army proceeds on to the upper Ebro, restoring and replenishing Umayyad garrisons in the region.

====== Africa ======

The Golden Age of the Ghana Empire begins in Africa (approximate date).

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

Emperor Taizu of the Khitan Empire orders the adoption of a written script by the Khitan, resulting in the creation of Khitan "Large Script."

==== By topic ====

====== Climate ======

Muslim chroniclers in Baghdad record an unusually cold summer.

=== 921 ===

==== By place ====

====== Byzantine Empire ======

March – Battle of Pegae: Bulgarian forces under kavhan (first minister) Theodore Sigritsa defeat the Byzantine army at the outskirts of Constantinople. After the battle the Bulgarians burn the palaces in Pegae ("the Spring") and devastate the area north of the Golden Horn.

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

Summer – King Henry I (the Fowler) defeats his rival Arnulf I (the Bad), duke of Bavaria, in two campaigns. Arnulf is besieged at Regensburg and forced to accept peace negotiations, recognising Henry as sole sovereign of the East Frankish Kingdom (Germany).

Landulf I, prince of Benevento, supports an anti-Greek Apulian rebellion, ravaging several Byzantine strongpoints as far as Ascoli. The Apulian nobility, professing loyalty to the Byzantine Empire, appoints Landulf as stratego of the Theme of Longobardia.

September 15 – Ludmila, Bohemian duchess and widow of Bořivoj I, is murdered by her daughter-in-law Drahomíra at Tetín (modern Czech Republic). Ludmila will be canonised and become the patron saint of the Orthodox and the Catholic Church.

November 7 – Treaty of Bonn: King Charles III (the Simple) and Henry I sign a peace treaty or 'pact of friendship' (amicitia) at a ceremony aboard a ship in the middle of the Rhine, recognising the border between their two Frankish kingdoms.

A Hungarian mercenary force led by Dursac and Bogát defeats an army of insurgents, who plans to overthrow their ally, Emperor Berengar I, at Brescia. He appoints Giselbert I as count palatine of Bergamo (Northern Italy).

====== Arabian Empire ======

June 21 – A diplomatic delegation is sent from Baghdad to establish trade routes between the Abbasid Caliphate towards Bukhara (modern Uzbekistan). Ahmad ibn Fadlan, an Arab diplomat and traveller, makes contact with Almış, the İltäbär (vassal-king under the Khazars) of Volga Bulgaria, on behalf of Caliph al-Muqtadir.

Battle of Sevan: Sajid forces under Yusuf Beshir invade Armenia and besiege King Ashot II near Lake Sevan. After gathering a small force he attacks Beshir's camps and drives the enemy out of the country. Ashot starts a counter-offensive to rebuild the ruined cities and fortresses.

====== Africa ======

The Fatimid Caliphate crushes Idrisid forces in battle, capturing the cities of Tlemcen and Fez.

The Fatimid Caliphate creates a new capital in Ifriqiya, al-Mahdiya on the Tunisian coast.

====== China ======

The Later Liang Dynasty reports that all "barbarian" tribes have been pacified by the Khitan Empire.

=== 922 ===

==== By place ====

=== 923 ===

==== By place ====

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

June 15 – Battle of Soissons: King Robert I is killed, the Frankish army led by Charles the Simple is defeated and routed near Soissons. Charles is captured and imprisoned at Péronne. The nobles elect Robert's son-in-law Rudolph, duke of Burgundy, as king of the West Frankish Kingdom (until 936).

July 29 – Battle of Fiorenzuola: Lombard forces led by King Rudolph II and Adalbert I, margrave of Ivrea, defeat the deposed Emperor Berengar I at Firenzuola (Tuscany). A pact is reached between Rudolph and Berengar, who abdicates the imperial throne and cedes sovereignty over the rest of Italy.

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

May 13 – The Later Liang, one of the Five Dynasties in China, falls to Later Tang (founded by Li Cunxu). Li proclaims himself emperor and moves his residence back to the old Tang capital of Luoyang.

=== 924 ===

==== By place ====

====== Byzantine Empire ======

Byzantine–Bulgarian War: Forces led by Simeon I, ruler (knyaz) of the Bulgarian Empire, arrive before the walls of Constantinople, after they have pillaged the suburbs of the capital. Simeon meets Emperor Romanos I on the Golden Horn to arrange a truce, according to which he pays the Bulgarians an annual tax. Simeon in return cedes back some cities on the Black Sea coast.

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

Spring – King Berengar I makes a new alliance with the Hungarians who, following his death, sack and burn the city of Pavia. They cross the Alps via the St. Bernard Pass, where Provence and Septimania (Southern France) are pillaged. Hungarian forces penetrate as far as the Pyrenees.

Summer – King Ordoño II of Galicia dies after a 14-year reign. He is succeeded by his brother Fruela II, reuniting Asturias now known as the Kingdom of León. Fruela, who is not popular with the nobles, has assassinated the sons of Olmundo, possible descendants of the Visigothic king Wittiza.

Fall – Bulgarian–Serbian War: Tsar Simeon I sends a punitive expedition force against Serbia, led by Theodore Sigritsa and Marmais, but they are ambushed and defeated. Zaharija, prince of the Serbs, sends their heads and armour later to Constantinople (approximate date).

Winter – The Hungarians invade Saxony and force King Henry I (the Fowler) to retreat into the Castle of Werla. He makes a pact and agrees to pay them tribute for 9 years. They return to the Po Valley and sack the cities of Bergamo, Brescia and Mantua (Northern Italy).

====== Britain ======

July 17 – King Edward the Elder dies at Farndon after a 25-year reign in which he has gained direct control over Mercia, including the Danish-occupied areas. He is succeeded by his eldest son Æthelstan, who will reign as King of England (see 927). He continues his father's conquest of the Danelaw north of the Thames-Lea line from the Vikings.

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

Emperor Taizu of the Liao Dynasty leads a campaign to the West. He reaches the former capital of the Uyghur Kingdom on the Orkhon River. The Zubu begin to pay tribute to the Khitan Empire.

Emperor Zhuang Zong of Later Tang bestows the chancellor title on Gao Jixing (Prince of Nanping) and creates the Nanping State (Central China). The Qi State falls to Later Tang.

=== 925 ===

==== By place ====

====== Byzantine Empire ======

May 15 – Nicholas I Mystikos, twice the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople and having reigned a second time since 912, dies at the age of 73

June 29 — Stephen II becomes the new Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople and head of the Eastern Orthodox Church, succeeding Nicholas I.

Fall – John Mystikos, chief minister (paradynasteuon), is deposed and sent into exile in a monastery. He is replaced by the chamberlain (protovestiarios) Theophanes who becomes the closest adviser of Emperor Romanos I. At this time the Byzantine Empire has been embroiled in a protracted and disastrous war with Tsar Simeon I of Bulgaria.

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

Summer – King Fruela II dies after a reign of only 14 months. He is succeeded by his son Alfonso Fróilaz who ascends the throne. With the support of King Jimeno II of Pamplona (later Navarra), Sancho Ordóñez, Alfonso, and Ramiro (the sons of the late King Ordoño II) revolt and drive their cousin Alfonso to the eastern marches of Asturias, then divide the kingdom amongst themselves. Alfonso IV (the Monk) receives the crown of León, and Sancho I is acclaimed king of Galicia.

Alberic I, duke of Spoleto, attempts to seize Rome on his own account. Pope John X organizes an uprising and expels him. Alberic flees to Orte, where he sends out messengers calling on the Magyars for assistance. But a mob in Orte, informed by papal agents, rises up and murders Alberic (approximate date).

King Rudolph II of Burgundy (who also rules Italy) and his father-in-law, Burchard II of Swabia, lead a Burgundian expeditionary force over the Great St. Bernard Pass to confront Hugh of Provence. They head to the city of Ivrea where Rudolph's forces begin a civil war against Lombard partisans.

Tomislav, duke of the Croatian duchies of Pannonia and Dalmatia, is crowned as king of Croatia. He forges an alliance with the Byzantines during the struggle with the Bulgarian Empire (approximate date).

====== Africa ======

A Fatimid expeditionary force led by Jafar ibn Obeid lands in Abruzzo (Southern Italy). They overrun Apulia all the way to the city of Otranto. After defeating the Byzantine garrisons, the Arabs lay siege to the castle of Oria (which shortly after is destroyed). The defenders are massacred and the remainder (mostly woman and children) are taken as slaves back to North Africa.

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

Winter – Former Shu, one of the Ten Kingdoms in China, is invaded by Later Tang forces of Emperor Zhuang Zong, who incorporates the kingdom into his domains.

A visiting Uyghur delegation spurs the development of Khitan small script, based on alphabetic principles (approximate date).

==== By topic ====

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

Ha-Mim proclaims himself a prophet and a messenger of Islam, among the Ghomara Berbers near the city of Tétouan (modern Morocco).

=== 926 ===

==== By place ====

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

Spring – The Italian nobles turn against King Rudolph II of Burgundy and request that Hugh of Provence, the effective ruler of Lower Burgundy, is elected as king of Italy. Rudolph's father-in-law Duke Burchard II of Swabia is ambushed and killed near Novara by the henchmen of Archbishop Lambert of Milan. Rudolph, disillusioned by the news, returns to Burgundy to protect himself. Hugh has himself crowned King of Italy.

Battle of the Bosnian Highlands: Bulgarian forces under Duke Alogobotur, are ambushed and defeated by a Croatian army of King Tomislav in the mountainous area of Eastern Bosnia. Tsar Simeon I (the Great) meets his first defeat against Croatia, but overruns the Western Balkans several times.

The Hungarians besiege Augsburg in Bavaria, then conquer the monastery of St. Gallen (modern Switzerland). After an unsuccessful battle with the locals, they burn the suburbs of Konstanz, then they cross westwards and defeat a Frankish army led by Duke Liutfred of Alsace.

====== Britain ======

King Æthelstan of Wessex and Mercia annexes Northumbria, and forces Wales and Strathclyde to accept his sovereignty along with the Picts and the Scots (approximate date).

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

May 15 – Emperor Zhuang Zong is killed during an officer's rebellion led by Guo Congqian at the old Tang capital of Luoyang. He is succeeded by his adoptive brother Li Siyuan (Ming Zong) as ruler of Later Tang. Li sends Yao Kun, as an emissary, to create a friendly relationship with the Khitan Empire.

September 6 – Emperor Taizu dies after a 10-year reign. He is succeeded by his second son Tai Zong (Yaogu) as ruler of the Chinese Liao Dynasty. Taizu's eldest son Yelü Bei (designated heir apparent) becomes ruler of the Dongdan Kingdom (former Balhae), a puppet state of the Khitan Empire.

==== By topic ====

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

Pope John X allies himself with Hugh of Provence provoking the ire of Marozia, daughter of the Roman consul Theophylact I, who is married to Hugh's rival Guy of Tuscany.

=== 927 ===

==== By place ====

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

May 27 – Simeon I, emperor (tsar) of the Bulgarian Empire, dies of heart failure in his palace at Preslav after a 34-year reign. He is survived by four sons and succeeded by his second son Peter I, who signs a peace treaty with the Byzantine Empire. The peace is confirmed by Peter's marrying Maria Lekapene (the daughter of Christopher Lekapenos, son and co-emperor of Romanos I). The treaty restores the borders to those established by several treaties (thus recognizing Bulgaria's possession of Macedonia).

July 12 – King Æthelstan of Wessex claims his kingdom and receives the submission of High-Reeve Ealdred I of Bamburgh and probably also of Owain ap Dyfnwal, King of Strathclyde, at Eamont Bridge. He unifies the various small kingdoms of the Anglo-Saxon Heptarchy, creating the Kingdom of England, and also secures a pledge from King Constantine II of Scotland, that he will not ally with the Viking kings. This summer also Kings Hywel Dda of Deheubarth and Owain of Glywysing and Gwent submit to the overlordship of Æthelstan at Hereford. The borders between England and Wales are set at the River Wye.

Summer – The Hungarians fight in Rome, helping Margrave Peter against Pope John X. They then go to southern Italy, and conquer the cities of Taranto and Oria.

August 15 – The Saracens led by the Slavic Sabir, in conjunction with the Fatimids from Sicily, capture and destroy Taranto. They enslave much of the population.

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

Hubaekje, one of the Later Three Kingdoms of Korea, sacks the Silla capital at Gyeongju. King Gyeongae commits suicide and Gyeongsun is placed on the throne by the Hubaekje king Gyeon Hwon.

==== By topic ====

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

The Bulgarian Orthodox Church is recognised as autocephalous, by the Patriarchate of Constantinople.

September 14 – Cele Dabhaill mac Scannal, Irish preacher and abbot, dies on his pilgrimage at Rome.

=== 928 ===

==== By place ====

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

King Rudolph I loses the support of Herbert II, count of Vermandois, who controls the prison at Péronne in which former King Charles III (the Simple) is imprisoned. Herbert brings him before William I (Longsword), count of Rouen, for homage and then to Rheims as leverage to blackmail Rudolph to make him cede sovereignty over Laon (Northern France).

June 5 – Louis III (the Blind), former king of Provence (Lower Burgundy), dies at Arles after a 27-year reign (of which 23 are sightless). He is succeeded by his brother-in-law Hugh I who is King of Italy. With the approval of his kinsman Rudolph I, Hugh strips Louis's son and heir, Charles Constantine, of his inheritance and proclaims himself as ruler of Provence.

Winter – King Henry I (the Fowler) subdues the Polabian Slavs who live on the eastern borders. He then marches against the Slavic Hevelli tribes and seizes their capital, Brandenburg. Henry invades the Glomacze lands in the middle Elbe valley, where he besieges and destroys the main castle called Gana (the later Albrechtsburg) at Meissen (Saxony).

====== England ======

King Hywel Dda (the Good) of Deheubarth makes a pilgrimage to Rome, he becomes the first Welsh ruler to undertake such a trip. Hywel begins the codification of English customary law and mints his own coinage.

====== Arabian Empire ======

Summer – An Arab expeditionary force led by the Slavic Sabir returns and seizes Otranto (Southern Italy). Although pressed by an epidemic, they withdraw their forces. After capturing some enclaves on the Tyrrhenian coast, Sabir sails into the harbors of Naples and Salerno, and forces the dukes (dux) to pay an enormous sum of tribute to go away.

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

Ishanavarman II dies after a 5-year reign and is succeeded by his uncle Jayavarman IV as king of the Khmer Empire (modern Cambodia). He moves the capital north from Angkor to Koh Ker.

==== By topic ====

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

Summer – Pope John X is deposed and imprisoned in Castel Sant'Angelo at Rome by order of the Roman senatrix Marozia after a 14-year reign. He is succeeded by Leo VI as the 123rd pope of the Catholic Church.

Leo VI abolishes the Nin Bishopric and transfers bishop Gregory (Croatian: Grgur Ninski) to Skradin. This ends the long running dispute between the Split and Nin Bishoprics in the Croatian kingdom.

July 18 – Tryphon succeeds Stephen II as patriarch of Constantinople (until 931).

=== 929 ===

==== By place ====

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

January 16 – Emir Abd-al-Rahman III of Córdoba proclaims himself caliph and creates the Caliphate of Córdoba. He breaks his allegiance to, and ties with, the Fatimid and Abbasid caliphs.

February 3 – Guy (the Philosopher) of Tuscany, second husband (third lover) of the Roman noblewoman Marozia, dies. He is succeeded by his brother Lambert as margrave of Tuscany.

Early 929 – Siege of Gana: German king Henry I (the Fowler) besieges Gana with an East Frankish army and conquers the stronghold. He establishes the fort of Meissen nearby.

Early 929 –Henry the Fowler invades Bohemia from the north and marches on Prague. Duke Arnulf I of Bavaria invades Bohemia from the south. The Bohemians capitulate.

Summer – The Slavic-Arab leader Sabir defeats a small Byzantine fleet and seizes Termoli (in Molise, on the Adriatic coast). He returns to Africa laden with booty and slaves.

September 4 – Battle of Lenzen: Slavic forces (the Redarii and the Obotrites) are defeated by a Saxon army near the fortified stronghold of Lenzen (modern Germany).

October 7 – Former king Charles III (the Simple) of dies in prison at Péronne, leaving Rudolph with no opposition except that of Herbert II, count of Vermandois.

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

Mpu Sindok, ruler of the Mataram Kingdom, moves his court from Central Java to East Java (modern Indonesia). Probably after the eruption of Mount Merapi and/or invasion from Srivijaya.

==== By topic ====

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

Pope Leo VI dies at Rome after a 7-month reign. He is succeeded (probably handpicked–by Marozia from the Tusculani family) by Stephen VII as the 124th pope of the Catholic Church.


Year 926 (CMXXVI) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar.


Year 927 (CMXXVII) was a common year starting on Monday (link 'will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar.

Abbo (bishop of Soissons)

Abbo (died 937) was the bishop of Soissons from 909. Throughout his episcopate, he was "under the thumb" of Count Herbert II of Vermandois (907–943).In 925, Abbo attended the uncanonical synod convoked in Reims by Count Herbert, who had his five-year-old son Hugh elected archbishop by the pliant clergy (including Bishop Bovo of Châlons) and the people of the city. This synod was retroactively approved by both King Rudolph of France and Pope John X, who gave Herbert the administration of the archdiocese's temporalities and Abbo, technically Hugh's suffragan, responsibility for its spiritual functioning, including its services.In 927 the pope revoked Abbo's charge and gave the spiritual administration of Reims to Odalric, the bishop of Aix-en-Provence, who had fled his see in the face of raids from the Muslim pirates based at Fraxinetum.

Battle of Garigliano

The Battle of Garigliano was fought in 915 between Christian forces and the Saracens. Pope John X personally led the Christian forces into battle. The aim was to destroy the Arab fortress on the Garigliano river, which had threatened central Italy and the outskirts of Rome for nearly 30 years.

Croatian–Bulgarian battle of 926

In 926 a battle was fought in the Bosnian highlands between the armies the Bulgarian Empire, under the rule of Bulgarian Tsar Simeon I, who at the time also fought a war with the Byzantine Empire, and the Kingdom of Croatia under Tomislav, the first king of the Croatian state. The battle is also known as the Battle of the Bosnian Highlands (Bulgarian: Битка при Босненските планини, Croatian: Bitka na Bosanskim visoravnima). It was fought in the mountainous area of Eastern Bosnia near the rivers Bosna and Drina, the border area between the Kingdom of Croatia and the Bulgarian Empire.Principal information on the battle is provided by the emperor Constantine VII of the Byzantine Empire in his work De Administrando Imperio ("On the Governance of the Empire") and in the collection of preserved historical writings called Theophanes Continuatus. Simeon's aim was to defeat the Byzantine Empire and conquer Constantinople. To achieve his aim, Simeon overran the eastern and central Balkans several times, occupied Serbia and finally attacked Croatia. The result of the battle was an overwhelming Croatian victory.

Duchy of Croatia

The Duchy of Croatia (Croatian: Kneževina Hrvatska; also Duchy of the Croats, Kneževina Hrvata; Dalmatian Croatia, Dalmatinska Hrvatska; Littoral Croatia, Primorska Hrvatska; Greek: Χρωβατία), was a medieval Croatian duchy that was established in the former Roman province of Dalmatia. Throughout its time it had several seats – namely, Klis, Solin, Knin, Bijaći and Nin. It comprised the whole of the littoral – the coastal part of today's Croatia – and included a large part of the mountainous hinterland, as well. The Duchy was in the center of competition between the Carolingian Empire and the Byzantine Empire for rule over the area. Rivalry with Venice emerged in the first decades of the 9th century and was to continue for the following centuries. Croatia also waged battles with the Bulgarian Empire, with whom the relations improved greatly afterwards, and the Arabs and sought to extend its control over important coastal cities under the rule of Byzantium. Croatia experienced periods of vassalage to the Franks or Byzantines and de facto independence until 879, when Croatian Duke Branimir received recognition from Pope John VIII as an independent realm. The ruling dynasty of Croatia was the House of Trpimirović, with interruptions by the House of Domagojević (864–878 and 879–c. 892). The Duchy existed until around 925 when, during the rule of Duke Tomislav, Croatia became a kingdom.

Gregory IV of Naples

Gregory IV (died 915) was the firstborn son of Duke Sergius II of Naples and successor of his paternal uncle, Bishop Athanasius, in 898, when he was elected dux, or magister militum, unanimously by the aristocracy. His other paternal uncle, Stephen, succeeded Athanasius as bishop. According to the Chronicon ducum et principum Beneventi, Salerni, et Capuae et ducum Neapolis, he reigned for sixteen years and eight months.

The Mezzogiorno in his time was under constant Saracen assaults. Around 900, Gregoy destroyed the castrum Lucullanum, a Neapolitan fortress just outside the city, to prevent the Moslems from taking it as a base. Otherwise, he reinforced the city walls and stored supplies to ensure survival in the event of a long siege. According to the much later chronicler Leo of Ostia, he signed a pact with the prince of Benevento and Capua, Atenulf, and the Amalfitans and attacked and defeated the Saracens. On 2 July 911, he signed another pactum with Atenulf's sons, the coprinces Atenulf II and Landulf I, whereby they shared the disputed territory of Liburia.

In that same year, he participated in allied attacks on the Saracen fortress on the Garigliano. In 915, he joined the massive army of south Italian princes and the Byzantine strategos Nicholas Picingli and received the imperial title of patricius. The army met with the forces of the central peninsula under Alberic I of Spoleto and Pope John X. Together they led another assault on the encampment of the Garigliano. In the ensuing battle, it was on the misplaced (or mendacious) advice of Gregory that they charged the Saracen line. Nevertheless, it was a success and the enemy fled into the forest to be hunted down and slaughtered. Gregory did not long live to enjoy the fruits of victory, he died within months, late in the year 915, and was succeeded by his firstborn son, John II, who had been present at the battle.

In 907 Gregory made a donation to the urban church of Saints Severinus and Sossus in Naples, which his forefathers had possibly founded.

Guy, Margrave of Tuscany

Guy (also Guido or Wido; raised Leo; called the Philosopher) (died 3 February 929) was the son of Adalbert II of Tuscany with Bertha, daughter of Lothair II of Lotharingia.

After the death of his father Adalbert II in 915, he was the Count and Duke of Lucca and Margrave of Tuscany until his own death in 928 or 929. His mother Bertha was his regent from his father's death until 916.

He kept court at Mantua around the year 920. In 924 or 925, he became the second husband of Marozia, a Roman noblewoman who had the title senatrix patricia Romanorum.

In order to counter the influence of Pope John X (whom the hostile chronicler Liutprand of Cremona alleges was one of Marozia's lovers), Marozia subsequently married his opponent Guy of Tuscany, who loved his beautiful wife as much as he loved power. Together they attacked Rome, arrested Pope John X in the Lateran, and jailed him in the Castel Sant'Angelo. Either Guy had him smothered with a pillow in 928 or he simply died, perhaps from neglect or ill treatment. Marozia seized power in Rome in a coup d'état. Guy died 3 February 929.

The following popes, Leo VI and Stephen VII, were both her puppets. In 931 she even managed to impose her son as Pontiff, under the name of John XI. John was only twenty-one at the time.He had one daughter, Theodora (or Bertha), and probably a few other children of which nothing else is known. None of his children survived him and when he died in 928 or 929 his brother Lambert succeeded him as count and duke of Lucca and margrave of Tuscany.

Landulf I of Benevento

Landulf I (died 10 April 943), sometimes called Antipater, was a Lombard nobleman and the Prince of Benevento and of Capua (as Landulf III) from 12 January 901, when his father, Atenulf I, prince of Capua and conqueror of Benevento, associated his with him in power.

In 909, he went to Constantinople to receive the titles of anthypatos and patrikios. His brother Atenulf II stayed behind in Italy and received like investiture. In June 910, his father died and he became sole prince. Immediately, he invested his brother as co-prince.

On 2 July 911, Landulf signed a treaty with Duke Gregory IV of Naples, part of a policy of alliance and friendship with his fellow Christian rulers of the Mezzogiorno. He also continued a policy of alliance with Byzantium, but never servility. He never pledged to be a vassal of the emperor in Constantinople. In 914, he succeeded in having the great abbey of Monte Cassino transferred from Teano to Capua and he and Atenulf appointed one John abbot. The next year (915), they sent John as ambassador to Constantinople to renew the bonds of allegiance.

The summer of 915, the forces of the new Byzantine strategos of Bari, Nicholas Picingli, joined those of various other south Italian princes: John I and Docibilis II of Gaeta, Gregory IV and John II of Naples, and Guaimar II of Salerno. Through diplomatic marriages, Landulf had succeeded in allying these rulers to himself: he had married Gemma, daughter of Athanasius of Naples, and Atenulf's daughter Gaitelgrima married Guaimar II. His own son, Atenulf III, married Rotilda, Guaimar's daughter. Together the Greco-Lombard army joined the northern forces of Pope John X and Alberic I of Spoleto and vanquished the Saracens at the Battle of Garigliano. According to Liudprand of Cremona, Landulf, a "potent prince", in answering a request for advice from the pope, initiated the alliance that brought an end to the Saracens on the Garigliano. He downplays the coordinating role of John X in favour of that of Landulf, who is portrayed as militarily savvy.

In 921, he supported an anti-Greek Apulian rebellion, ravaging as far as Ascoli. He was forced, however, to send his second son, Landulf II, to Constantinople as a hostage. In 923 or 926, by agreement with Guaimar, they would jointly attack Byzantine possessions, Landulf taking Apulia and Guaimar, Campania. Landulf was largely unsuccessful, though Guaimar was much so. In 929, with Atenulf II, Guaimar II, and Theobald of Spoleto, he invaded Apulia and Calabria again. This time, all were unsuccessful and Theobald hurt the old alliance.

In 933, Landulf associated his son Atenulf with himself and his brother in the government. In 934, Guaimar was persuaded to quit the alliance by the Byzantine agent Cosmas of Thessalonica. In 935, King Hugh of Italy gave his support to the Greeks. Within a few years, Landulf's successful anti-Byzantine policy had been reversed and he was forced to make peace, but clashes continued: at Siponto in 936 and at Matera in 940. In 937, a band of Hungarians marched from Burgundy to Italy via the Rhone valley in the service of King Hugh, who sent them against Monte Cassino, Naples and Capua, plundering and destroying all before them. In 939, Landulf's brother Atenulf died and Atenulf's eldest son, Landulf, succeeded him, but was soon exiled to Naples by his uncle. He died four years later on April 10.


Marozia, born Maria and also known as Mariuccia or Mariozza (c. 890 – 937), was a Roman noblewoman who was the alleged mistress of Pope Sergius III and was given the unprecedented titles senatrix ("senatoress") and patricia of Rome by Pope John X.

Edward Gibbon wrote of her that the "influence of two sister prostitutes, Marozia and Theodora was founded on their wealth and beauty, their political and amorous intrigues: the most strenuous of their lovers were rewarded with the Roman tiara, and their reign may have suggested to darker ages the fable of a female pope. The bastard son, two grandsons, two great grandsons, and one great great grandson of Marozia—a rare genealogy—were seated in the Chair of St. Peter." Pope John XIII was her nephew, the offspring of her younger sister Theodora. From this description, the term "pornocracy" has become associated with the effective rule in Rome of Theodora and her daughter Marozia through male surrogates.

Peter (floruit 926)

Peter was a governor of Rome, Roman consul, and brother of Pope John X. He became consul after the death of Alberic I of Spoleto.

Pope John

Pope John may refer to:

Pope John I (523–526)

Pope John II (533–535)

Pope John III (561–574)

Pope John IV (640–642)

Pope John V (685–686)

Pope John VI (701–705)

Pope John VII (705–707)

Antipope John VIII (844)

Pope John VIII (872–882)

Pope John IX (898–900)

Pope John X (914–928)

Pope John XI (931–935)

Pope John XII (955–964)

Pope John XIII (965–972)

Pope John XIV (983–984)

Pope John XV (985–996)

Antipope John XVI (997–998) (no longer recognized as a legitimate pope)

Pope John XVII (1003)

Pope John XVIII (1003–1009)

Pope John XIX (1024–1032)

Pope John XX (not an actual pope)

Pope John XXI (1276–1277)

Pope John XXII (1316–1334)

Antipope John XXIII (1410–1415)

Pope John XXIII (1958–1963)Another 19 Popes John in the List of Coptic Orthodox Popes of Alexandria

Pope John X of Alexandria

Pope John X of Alexandria (Abba Yoannis X) was the 85th Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of the See of St. Mark.

John was known by El-Mo'ataman the Syrian, and he was from Damascus, Syria. He was a righteous and knowledgeable man. He was enthroned on the 12th of Pashons in the Coptic calendar (May 7, 1363 AD). He remained on the throne for six years, two months, and seven days. He was buried at Saint Mercurius Church in Coptic Cairo beside Simon the Tanner.

Pope John of Alexandria

John has been the papal name of several Coptic Popes.

Patriarch John II (I) of Alexandria (496–505)

Patriarch John III (II) of Alexandria (505–516)

Pope John III of Alexandria (677–688)

Pope John IV of Alexandria (776–799)

Pope John V of Alexandria (1147–1166)

Pope John VI of Alexandria (1189–1216)

Pope John VII of Alexandria (1261–1268, 1271–1293)

Pope John VIII of Alexandria (1300–1320)

Pope John IX of Alexandria (1320–1327)

Pope John X of Alexandria (1363–1369)

Pope John XI of Alexandria (1427–1452)

Pope John XII of Alexandria (1480–1483)

Pope John XIII of Alexandria (1483–1524)

Pope John XIV of Alexandria (1573–1589)

Pope John XV of Alexandria (1621–1631)

Pope John XVI of Alexandria (1676–1718)

Pope John XVII of Alexandria (1727–1745)

Pope John XVIII of Alexandria (1769–1796)

Pope John XIX of Alexandria (1928–1942)

Pope Leo VI

Pope Leo VI (880 – 12 February 929) was Pope for just over seven months, from June 928 to his death in February 929. His pontificate occurred during the period known as the Saeculum obscurum.

Saeculum obscurum

Saeculum obscurum (Latin: the Dark Age) is a name given to a period in the history of the Papacy during the first two-thirds of the 10th century, beginning with the installation of Pope Sergius III in 904 and lasting for sixty years until the death of Pope John XII in 964. During this period, the popes were influenced strongly by a powerful and corrupt aristocratic family, the Theophylacti, and their relatives.

Tomislav of Croatia

Tomislav (pronounced [tǒmislaʋ], Latin: Tamisclaus) was the first King of Croatia. He became Duke of Croatia in c. 910, was elevated to kingship by 925 and reigned until 928. At the time of his rule, Croatia forged an alliance with the Byzantines during their struggle with the Bulgarian Empire, with whom Croatia eventually went to war that culminated in the decisive Battle of the Bosnian Highlands in 926. To the north there were often conflicts with the Principality of Hungary. Croatia kept its borders and to some extent expanded on the disintegrated Pannonian Duchy.

Tomislav attended the Church Council of Split in 925, convened by Pope John X to discuss the use of Slavic language in liturgy and the ecclesiastical jurisdiction over Croatia and the Byzantine Theme of Dalmatia. Although the Pope sought to prohibit Slavic liturgy, the Council did not agree, while jurisdiction was given to the Archbishop of Split instead of the Croatian Bishop Gregory of Nin. Since the historical sources about Tomislav are scarce, the exact year of his accession and his death are not known. The rule of his successors was marked by a series of civil wars in Croatia and gradual weakening of the country.


Wulfhelm (died 12 February 941) was Bishop of Wells before being promoted to the Archbishopric of Canterbury about 926. Nothing is known about his time at Wells, but as archbishop he helped codify royal law codes and gave lands to monasteries. He went to Rome soon after his selection as archbishop. Two religious books that he gave to his cathedral are still extant.

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