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Antipope Innocent III

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Title: Antipope Innocent III  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Antipope, Pope Alexander III, Pope Innocent, List of popes (graphical), Ban Borić, Palombara Sabina, Papal election, 1159, List of tombs of antipopes, Papal election, 1181
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Antipope Innocent III

Not to be confused with Pope Innocent III.

Innocent III (Lanzo of Sezza) was an antipope from 29 September 1179 to January 1180; original name Lando Di Sezze (born , Sezze, Papal States —died , La Cava, Apulia), was the last of four antipopes (1179–80) during the pontificate of Alexander III. A member of a family of German origin, he was a cardinal when elected on 29 Sept. 1179, by a faction opposing Alexander, who, in January 1180, relegated Innocent to the southern Italian abbey of SS. Trinità in La Cava, where he died.


In 1179, the enemies of Pope Alexander III (1159-1181) had successfully forced the pope to flee Rome, and never to return. In his place, the Roman barons setup Cardinal Lando of Sezza as Pope Innocent III on 29 September 1179. They had the support of Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa. Most other European countries supported Alexander III however.

Papal Claim Defeated

The main support in Rome for Innocent III was from the powerful Roman Tusulum families, who had setup the two previous antipopes - Antipope Victor IV (1159-1164) and his successor, Paschal III (1164-1168). The brother of the late Victor IV, out of hatred for Alexander III, gave Lando a well fortified castle at Palombara to defend against Alexander's supporters. A few months later however, Cardinal Hugo successfully bribed the guards to gain the castle. Innocent III and his supporters were then locked up for life in the monastery of La Cava in January 1180.


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