Pope NICHOLAS II

[Pope Nicholas II]
Also known as
Gerhard of Burgundy
Profile
Bishop of Florence, Italy. Chosen 155th pope in Siena where the cardinals had fled after the nobles who supported anti-pope John Mincius had occupied Rome. Immediately after his election, Nicholas gathered his army, marched on Rome, and claimed his rightful position. He was a strong proponent of papal reform. In 1059 he issued the Papal Election Decree to minimize political interference in papal elections by requiring the pope to be elected only by the college of cardinals. Favored the elimination of simony, clerical marriage, and lay influence in the Church. Negotiated a peace with the Normans that ended fighting in Sicily. Tried to restore a common life for cathedral clergy and to eliminate abuse of ecclesiastical property.
Born
1010 at Lorraine, France as Gerard
Papal Ascension
elected in 1058 at Siena, Italy; enthroned in 1059 at Rome, Italy
Died
1061 at Florence, Italy
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