47 Facts About Leo X


In Protestant circles, Leo X is associated with granting indulgences for those who donated to reconstruct St Peter's Basilica, a practice that was challenged by Martin Luther's 95 Theses.

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Leo X rejected the Protestant Reformation, and his Papal bull of 1520, Exsurge Domine, condemned Luther's condemnatory stance, rendering ongoing communication difficult.

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Leo X borrowed and spent money without circumspection and was a significant patron of the arts.

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Leo X reorganised the Roman University, and promoted the study of literature, poetry and antiquities.

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Leo X died in 1521 and is buried in Santa Maria sopra Minerva, Rome.

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Leo X was the last pope not to have been in priestly orders at the time of his election to the papacy.

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Leo X received the tonsure at the age of seven and was granted rich benefices and preferments.

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Leo X returned to Rome to participate in the conclave of 1492 which followed the death of Innocent VIII, and unsuccessfully opposed the election of Cardinal Borgia .

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Leo X had intended his younger brother Giuliano and his nephew Lorenzo for brilliant secular careers.

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Leo X had named them Roman patricians; the latter he had placed in charge of Florence; the former, for whom he planned to carve out a kingdom in central Italy of Parma, Piacenza, Ferrara and Urbino, he had taken with himself to Rome and married to Filiberta of Savoy.

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The sacred college had allegedly grown very worldly and troublesome since the time of Sixtus IV, and Leo X took advantage of a plot by several of its members to poison him, not only to inflict exemplary punishments by executing one and imprisoning several others, but to make radical changes in the college.

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Leo X, meanwhile, felt the need of staying the advance of the Ottoman sultan, Selim I, who was threatening eastern Europe, and made elaborate plans for a crusade.

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Leo X was disturbed throughout his pontificate by schism, especially the Reformation sparked by Martin Luther.

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Leo X sent a new nuncio to Copenhagen in the person of the Minorite Francesco de Potentia, who readily absolved the king and received the bishopric of Skara.

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Leo X elevated Adriaan Florensz Boeyens into the cardinalate who would become his immediate successor Pope Adrian VI.

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Pope Leo X canonized eleven individuals during his reign with seven of those being a group cause of martyrs.

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Leo X did not do more to check the anti-papal rebellion in Germany and Scandinavia is to be partially explained by the political complications of the time, and by his own preoccupation with papal and Medicean politics in Italy.

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Leo X vacillated between the powerful candidates for the succession, allowing it to appear at first that he favoured Francis or a minor German prince.

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Leo X was now eager to unite Ferrara, Parma and Piacenza to the States of the Church .

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Leo X agreed to invest Charles V with the Kingdom of Naples, to crown him Holy Roman Emperor, and to aid in a war against Venice.

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Leo X has been criticized for his handling of the events of the papacy.

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Leo X had a musical and pleasant voice and a cheerful temper.

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Leo X was eloquent in speech and elegant in his manners and epistolary style.

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Leo X enjoyed music and the theatre, art and poetry, the masterpieces of the ancients and the creations of his contemporaries, especially those seasoned with wit and learning.

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Leo X especially delighted in ex tempore Latin verse-making and cultivated improvisatori.

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Character of Leo X was formerly assailed by lurid aspersions of debauchery, murder, impiety, and atheism.

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Martin Luther, in a conciliatory letter to Leo X, himself testified to Leo X's universal reputation for morality:.

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Leo X loved the Latin poems of the humanists, the tragedies of the Greeks and the comedies of Cardinal Bibbiena and Ariosto, while relishing the accounts sent back by the explorers of the New World.

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Pastor says that "From his youth, Leo X, who had a fine ear and a melodious voice, loved music to the pitch of fanaticism".

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Leo X fostered technical improvements developed for the diffusion of such scores.

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Leo X indulged buffoons at his Court, but tolerated behavior which made them the object of ridicule.

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Leo X was then taken to the piazza of St Peter's and was mounted on the back of Hanno, a white elephant, the gift of King Manuel I of Portugal.

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Luther spent a month in Rome in 1510, three years before Leo X became pontiff, and was disillusioned at the corruption he found there.

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Leo X's death came just 10 months after he had excommunicated Martin Luther, the seminal figure in the Protestant Reformation, who was accused of 41 errors in his teachings.

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Possibly the most lasting legacy of the reign of Pope Leo X was his perceived failure to not just stem the Reformation but to fuel it.

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Leo X was renowned for spending money lavishly on the arts; on charities; on benefices for his friends, relatives, and even people he barely knew; on dynastic wars, such as the War of Urbino; and on his own personal luxury.

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Additionally, Leo X sold cardinals' hats; memberships to a fraternal order he invented in 1520, the Papal Knights of St Peter and St Paul; and borrowed such immense sums from bankers that upon his death, many were ruined.

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Leo X raised the Church to a high rank as the friend of whatever seemed to extend knowledge or to refine and embellish life.

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Leo X made the capital of Christendom, Rome, a center of European culture.

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Leo X restored all its faculties, gave larger salaries to the professors, and summoned distinguished teachers from afar; and, although it never attained to the importance of Padua or Bologna, it nevertheless possessed in 1514 a faculty of eighty-eight professors.

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Leo X called Janus Lascaris to Rome to give instruction in Greek, and established a Greek printing-press from which the first Greek book printed at Rome appeared in 1515.

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Leo X made Raphael custodian of the classical antiquities of Rome and the vicinity, the ancient monuments of which formed the subject of a famous letter from Raphael to the pope in 1519.

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Leo X was particularly friendly with King Manuel I of Portugal as a result of the latter's missionary enterprises in Asia and Africa.

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Pope Leo X was granted a large embassy from the Portuguese king furnished with goods from Manuel's colonies.

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Leo X maintained close relations with Poland because of the Turkish advance and the Polish contest with the Teutonic Knights.

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Leo X showed special favours to the Jews and permitted them to erect a Hebrew printing-press at Rome.

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Leo X approved the formation of the Oratory of Divine Love, a group of pious men at Rome which later became the Theatine Order, and he canonized Francis of Paola.

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