Pope Gregory VIII

[Pope Gregory VIII]
Also known as
Albert de Morra; Alberto di Morra
Beneventan noble. Well educated. Cistercian monk at a young age. Created cardinal-deacon in 1155 by Pope Adrian IV. Created cardinal-priest in Lucina in 1158. Papal chancellor to Pope Alexander III in 1172, the last cardinal to have the title of chancellor for centuries. Papal legate to England to investigate the murder of Saint Thomas a Becket. Papal legate Portugal, crowning King Alfonso II. Papal legate to Dalmatia. The College of Cardinals selected Cardinal Henry, monk of Clairvaux to succeed Pope Urban III, but he refused and worked for the election of Albert de Morra. Chosen 173rd pope.

Learned and zealous in religious affairs, he was noted for being gentle with all. Worked for the reconquest of Jerusalem, and ordered a general fast throughout Christendom as a mark of grief for its loss. Worked for reconciliation of the Church with Emperor Barbarossa. Died while trying to rearm Pisa and Genoa in order to fight the Saracens, and bring the two disputing republics together. His papacy last a mere eight weeks.
c.1100 at Benevento, Italy as Albert de Morra
Papal Ascension
elected on 21 October 1187 at Ferrara, Italy; consecrated on 25 October 1187
17 December 1187 at Pisa, Italy of fever; buried at the cathedral in Pisa; the cathedral burned in 1600, destroying the tomb
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