Benedict VII, Pope

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BENEDICT VII, POPE

Pontificate: Oct. 974 to July 10, 983. Benedict was a Roman and former bishop of Sutri. He was chosen as pope by the emperor otto ii. At his election, the antipope, Boniface VII (Franco), fled to Constantinople. Working in harmony with the emperor, Benedict granted many privileges to the churches and monasteries of Germany and concerned himself with the conversion of the slavs. But his decision to suppress the German See of Merseburg (981) was a setback in the conversion of Central Europe. Benedict published a strongly worded condemnation of simony (981). He allowed St. majolus of cluny to place his monastery under the special protection of the Holy See and granted the same privilege to the Abbey of saintvalÉry, recently founded by Hugh Capet. This practice later became more common and prepared the way for the reform movement of the 11th century.

See Also: cluniac reform; gregorian reform.

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[s. mckenna]