Clement II, Pope
CLEMENT II, POPE
Pontificate: Dec. 24, 1046 (election, Rome); Dec. 25, 1046 (consecration), to Oct. 9, 1047 (at the abbey of St. Thomas de Foglia, near Pesaro, buried at Bamberg cathedral, Bamberg, Germany); b. Suidger of noble Saxon descent; educated as a canon at the cathedral of Halberstadt, he became a chaplain of Archbishop Hermann of Hamburg-Bremen in 1032 and imperial court chaplain in 1035. At the nomination of Emperor Henry III, he was consecrated as bishop of Bamberg, Christmas, 1040. After the councils of Sutri and Rome in late 1046 and the deposition or abdication of Pope gregory vi because of simony, Henry III nominated him as successor. He was elected Pope Clement II December 24, but retained his office as bishop of Bamberg. Immediately upon his consecration on Christmas Day he crowned Henry emperor. Agnes, his consort and mother of Emperor Henry IV, was crowned empress. Clement II is the first of several "German" popes who pushed the aims of ecclesiastical reform in the city of Rome. He held a reforming synod in January 1047, issuing decrees against simony and accompanied Henry III to southern Italy. After a summer spent in Rome, he died on a journey north at the Abbey of St. Thomas near Pesaro. An exhumation in 1942 revealed an abnormally high lead content in his bones, thus lending credence to the ancient rumor that he was poisoned. Because of the brevity of his pontificate it cannot be fairly evaluated. His is the only papal tomb north of the Alps, and the treasury of the Cathedral of Bamberg preserves his pontifical vestments.
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