Urban III, Pope

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Pontificate: Nov. 25, 1185 to Oct. 20, 1187; b. Uberto Crivelli, Milan; d. Ferrara. Urban, the former archbishop of Milan, was the unanimous choice of the cardinals gathered at Verona, but he was unable to enter Rome. In the Curia prior to his election, he had been one of the staunchest foes of the emperor frederick barbarossa. As pope he opposed Frederick's attempt to secure imperial coronation for his son, Henry, while the Emperor was still alive, and he was disturbed by Henry's coronation as King of Germany on Jan. 27, 1186. From Lucius III Urban had inherited the dispute over the Tuscan lands of the Countess Matilda (see matilda of tuscany), long claimed by the Emperor. The disputed election of a new archbishop of Trier aggravated relations between pope and emperor when Urban consecrated one of the contenders despite his promise to Frederick. These disagreements culminated in an invasion of Italy and the siege of the pope and Curia at Verona. Meanwhile, Barbarossa gained substantial support from the German bishops. Frustrated by the cautious Veronese in his attempts to excommunicate the emperor, Urban left for Venice. He died en route at Ferrara.

Bibliography: Patrologia Latina, ed. j. p. migne (Paris 187890) 202:13291534. p. jaffÉ, Regesta pontificum romanorum ab condita ecclesia ad annum post Christum natum 1198, ed. s. lÖwenfeld (repr. Graz 1956) 2:492528, 726, 769770. h. kauffmann, Die italienische Politik Kaiser Friedrichs I. nach dem Frieden von Constanz, 11831189 (Greifswald, Ger. 1933). É. jordan, L'Allemagne et l'Italie aux XII e et XIII e siècles (Paris 1939). m. c. de fischer-reichenbach, Urbain III et Barberousse (Bern 1940). a. caso, I Crivelli. Una famiglia milanese tra politica, società ed economia nei secoli XII e XIII (Rome 1994). r. challet, "Quelques details sur la vie de Mašītre Humbert, cet archidacre [de Bourges] qui devint pape sous le nom d'Urbain III," Bulletin des Amis du Musée SaintVic 14 (1985) 1127. g. fransen, "Questions canoniques de la fin du douziéme siécle (Milan, Ambrosiana, H 248 Inf., ff. 8693)," Aevum 69 (Milano 1995) 37387. v. mertens, "Der 'heisse Sommer' 1187 von Trier. Ein weiterer Erklärungsversuch zu Hausen MF 47, 38," Zeitschrift für Deutsche Philologie (1976) 34656. j. n. d. kelly, Oxford Dictionary of Popes (Oxford 1986) 18182.

[j. m. powell]