|Pope Victor II|
AKA Gebhard, Count of Calw, Tollenst
Location of death: Arezzo, Italy
Cause of death: unspecified
Remains: Buried, Santa Maria Rotonda, Ravenna, Italy
Religion: Roman Catholic
Race or Ethnicity: White
Executive summary: Bishop of Eichstädt, Pope from 1055-57
Victor II, the successor of Pope Leo IX, was consecrated in St Peter's, Rome, on the 13th of April 1055. It is disputed whether his birthplace was Bavarian Nordgau or Swabia. His father was a Swabian baron, Count Hartwig von Calw, and his own baptismal name was Gebhard. At the instance of Gebhard, bishop of Regensburg, uncle of the emperor Henry III, he had been appointed while still a young man to the see of Eichstädt; in this position his great talents soon enabled him to render important services to Henry, whose chief adviser he ultimately became. His nomination to the papacy by Henry, at Mainz, in September 1054, was made at the instance of a Roman deputation headed by Hildebrand, whose policy doubtless was to detach from the imperial interest one of its ablest supporters. In June 1055 Victor met the emperor at Florence, and held a council, which anew condemned clerical marriages, simony and the alienation of the estates of the church. In the following year he was summoned to Germany to the side of the emperor, and was with him when he died at Botfeld in the Harz on the 5th of October 1056. As guardian of Henry's infant son, and adviser of the empress Agnes, Victor now wielded enormous power, which he began to use with much tact for the maintenance of peace throughout the empire and for strengthening the papacy against the aggressions of the barons. He died shortly after his return to Italy, at Arezzo, on 28 July 1057. His successor was Stephen IX (Frederick of Lorraine).
Roman Catholic Pope 1055-57
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