Monday, February 05, 2007

Out of Order Popes! 111 & 113 - 1 comments

Popes 111 and 113 strangely overlap! It's all got to do with a strange, true bit of history referred to as the Cadaver Synod.

In a weird bit of political wrangling, the 111th pope, Formosus, was exhumed from his grave by a successor, Stephen VI, and put on trial for various crimes. Stephen dressed the body in its old papal vestments, and sat it on a throne to face the accusations. Formosus didn't put up a very good defense (being, you know, dead and all), and was found guilty.

The punishment was pretty gruesome as well; Wikipedia says, "Stephen had the body stripped of its papal vestments, cut off the three fingers of his right hand used for benedictions, and declared all of his ordinations invalid. The body was finally interred in a graveyard for foreigners, only to be dug up once again, tied to weights, and cast into the Tiber."

After a few years, later popes overturned the decisions, and had Formosus' body buried in St. Peter's. History: stranger than fiction.


Blogger Chad Krizan said...

Sounds kinda gross.

Monday, 05 February, 2007  

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