Avignon Papacy

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The Avignon Papacy was the period from 1309 to 1378 during which seven Popes resided in Avignon (modern-day France).[1] This arose from the conflict between the Papacy and the French crown.

Following the strife between Boniface VIII and Philip IV of France, and the death after only eight months of his successor, a deadlocked conclave finally elected Clement V, a Frenchman, as pope in 1305. Clement declined to move to Rome, remaining in France, and in 1309 moved his court to the papal enclave at Avignon, where it remained for the next 68 years. This absence from Rome is sometimes referred to as the "Babylonian Captivity of the Papacy".[1][2] A total of seven popes reigned at Avignon; all were French, and all were increasingly under the influence of the French crown. Finally in 1377 Gregory XI moved his court to Rome, officially ending the Avignon papacy.

However, in 1378 the breakdown in relations between Urban VI and the cardinals gave rise to the Western Schism, and a second line of Avignon popes, though these are not now regarded as legitimate. These became irrelevant with the end of the schism in 1417, though Benedict XIII, the last Avignon pope, had not resided there since 1403.

Contents

Avignon Popes

The legitimate Popes who resided in Avignon were:

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