History of Florence and of the Affairs of Italy eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 472 pages of information about History of Florence and of the Affairs of Italy.

The States of Italy were governed in this manner:  Lombardy was under Berengarius III. and Alfred his son; Tuscany and Romagna were governed by a deputy of the western emperor; Puglia and Calabria were partly under the Greek emperor, and partly under the Saracens; in Rome two consuls were annually chosen from the nobility, who governed her according to ancient custom; to these was added a prefect, who dispensed justice among the people; and there was a council of twelve, who each year appointed rectors for the places subject to them.  The popes had more or less authority in Rome and the rest of Italy, in proportion as they were favorites of the emperor or of the most powerful states.  The Emperor Otho came into Italy, took the kingdom from the Berengarii, in which they had reigned fifty-five years, and reinstated the pontiff in his dignity.  He had a son and a nephew, each named Otho, who, one after the other, succeeded to the empire.  In the reign of Otho III., Pope Gregory V. was expelled by the Romans; whereupon the emperor came into Italy and replaced him; and the pope, to revenge himself on the Romans, took from them the right to create an emperor, and gave it to three princes and three bishops of Germany; the princes of Brandenburg, Palatine, and Saxony, and the bishops of Magonza, Treveri, and Colonia.  This occurred in the year 1002.  After the death of Otho III. the electors created Henry, duke of Bavaria, emperor, who at the end of twelve years was crowned by Pope Stephen VIII.  Henry and his wife Simeonda were persons of very holy life, as is seen by the many temples built and endowed by them, of which the church of St. Miniato, near Florence, is one.  Henry died in 1024, and was succeeded by Conrad of Suabia; and the latter by Henry II., who came to Rome; and as there was a schism in the church of three popes, he set them all aside, and caused the election of Clement II., by whom he was crowned emperor.

CHAPTER IV

Nicholas II. commits the election of the pope to the cardinals—­First example of a prince deprived of his dominions by the pope—­Guelphs and Ghibellines—­Establishment of the kingdom of Naples—­Pope Urban II. goes to France—­The first crusade—­New orders of knighthood—­Saladin takes from the Christians their possessions in the east—­Death of the Countess Matilda—­Character of Frederick Barbarossa—­Schism—­Frederick creates an anti-pope—­Building of Alexandria in Puglia—­Disgraceful conditions imposed by the pope upon Henry, king of England—­Reconciliation of Frederick with the pope—­The kingdom of Naples passes to the Germans—­Orders of St. Dominic and St. Francis.

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History of Florence and of the Affairs of Italy from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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