An important figure in papal politics; fl. early tenth century. A member of the influential family of the crescentii, she was the daughter of theophylactus, leader of the Roman nobility, and the elder theodora. If the reports of liutprand of cremona (Monumenta Germaniae Historica: Scriptores 3:312) and the Liber pontificalis are accurate, she was the mistress of Pope sergius iii. She was married in turn to Alberic I, Marquess of Spoleto (c. 905); Guido, Marquis of Tuscany (925); and Hugh of Italy (932). This ambitious woman reached the zenith of her power over Rome and the papacy during the first three decades of the tenth century. She imprisoned Pope john x in castel sant' angelo, where he died in 928 either by assassination (Antapodosis 3.45) or from other causes (Annales Flodoardi MGS 3.378). In 931 she
had her son, probably by Sergius III (Duchesne, Liber pontificalis 2; 243), elected to the papacy as Pope john xi. During an uprising of the Roman nobility (932) led by Alberic II, her son by her marriage to Alberic of Spoleto, she was captured and imprisoned in Castel Sant' Angelo. How she died is unknown.
Bibliography: l. brÉhier, Dictionnaire d'histoire et de géographie ecclésiastiques 1:1404–06. a. fliche, L'Europe occidentale de 888 à 1125 (Histoire du moyen âge 2; Paris 1930) 54, 112, 113, 116, 120. a fliche and v. martin, eds., Histoire de l'église depuis les origines jusqu'à nos jours 7:35–40. j. haller, Der Papstitum 2:201–202, 548–549. f. x. seppelt, Geschichte der Päpste von dem Anfängen bis zur Mitte des 20.Jhr. 2:354–356. Cambridge Medieval History 2d new ed., 3:151–154. p. viard, Catholicisme 6:480–482.