Avignon of the Popes: City of Exiles
At the beginning of the fourteenth century anarchy in Italy led to the capital of the Christian world being moved from Rome for the first and only time in history. It was a critical moment, and it resulted in seven successive popes remaining in exile for the next seventy years. The city chosen to replace Rome was Avignon. And depending on where you stood at the time they were seventy years of heaven, or of hellopinions invariably ran to extremes, as did the behaviour of the popes themselves. It was during this period of exile that the city witnessed some of the most turbulent events in the history of Christendom, among them the suppression of the Knights Templar and the last of the heretical Cathars, the first onslaught of the Black Death, the final collapse of the crusading dream, and the first decades of the Hundred Years War between England and France, in which successive Avignon popes attempted to mediate.
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Albornoz Anagni anti-pope appointed army authority Avignon papacy Avignon popes became become began Benedict bishop Black Death Bologna Boniface Carpentras castle Cathars cathedral celebrated century chapel chose Christendom church Cistercian city's Colonna Comtat Venaissin crusade Dante earlier election England entire Europe finally France French cardinals French king frescoes further Giovanni Giovanni Visconti Gregory heretical Holy Roman Emperor hundred Innocent Italian cardinals Italy John's King Philip king's Knights known later Laura legate live Louis mercenaries Milan military monarch monastery monk Montaillou months Naples never once papacy to Rome papal city papal court papal palace papal territories papal treasury Paris Petrarch Philip the Fair plague Pont St.-Benezet pontiff Pope Clement Pope John Pope Urban pope's predecessor Provence Queen Joanna ramparts remained return to Rome Rhone river Rome royal rulers seems soon spiritual successor surprisingly survived Templars town Vatican Vaucluse Visconti walls wealth