The Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church

Biographical Dictionary
Pope John VIII (872-882)
880 (V)


(7) 1. MARINO (?-884)

Birth. (No date found), Gallese, near Rome (1). Son of Palumbo, a priest. Uncle of Pope Romanus. He is also listed as Constantinus Marinus I.

Education. Educated at the Lateran palace.

Early life. Entered the service of the Lateran clergy at twelve. Received the subdiaconate from Pope Leo IV. In 860, the Liberian basilica, Rome, attended the reception of an embassy of Byzantine Emperor Michael. Received the diaconate in 862 or in one of the following four years. Sent as legate to Constantinople (together with Cardinal Donato, bishop of Ostia, and Cardinal priest Leone) by Pope Nicholas I in 866; the legation was stopped in the border between Bulgaria and the Greek empire; Deacon Marinus returned to Rome. In 869, he was sent again to Constantinople and presided, as third legate of Pope Adrian II, the Eighth Ecumenical Council (Fourth Council of Constantinople), which anathemized the recently deposed Patriarch Photius and confirmed Patriarch Ignatius; the legate had a sharp confrontation with Emperor Basil I for refusing to depart from the pope's instructions.

Episcopate. Elected bishop of Cere (Cerveteri) by Pope John VIII. Consecrated (no information found).

Cardinalate. Deacon cardinalis of the Holy Roman Church in 880 (?). In 880, he was sent in a difficult mission before future Emperor Charles III the Fat. Also in 880, he was sent by Pope John VIII as legate to Constantinople; Patriarch Photius retained him in prison for thirty day; as legate, he was always upright and inflexible in the discharge of his duties regardless threats or praises. He was in Naples at the beginning of 882 as arcarius Sanctae Sedis (treasurer) and as legate accredited for a diplomatic mission before Bishop Atanasio; the legate succeeded in making the bishop break his alliance with the Saracens. Cardinal archdeacon of the Holy Roman Church in spite of his episcopal character.

Papacy. Elected pope, unanimously, on December 16, 882 (2). Took the name Marinus I (3). He was installed without waiting for the consent of Emperor Charles III the Fat. In early 883, he granted a privilege to the church of Piacenza. On June 12, 883, by the bull "Convenit enim", he authorized the monastery of S. Pietro in Solignac, diocese of Limges, to fortify itself propter persecutionem infidelium Christianitatem devastantium (against the persecution of the infidels, which are devastating Christendom). On June 20, 883, he met the emperor in the monastery of Nonantula, near Modena, secured imperial recognition of his election to the papacy; and decided to pardon Bishop Formoso of Porto, future pope, and others who had been accused of conspiring against Pope John VIII and whom that pope had excommunicated and exiled; Pope Marinus restored Formoso to his see and released him from the vows he had been forced to make to Pope John VIII; another result of the meeting with the emperor was that the monarch pronounced a sentence of deposition on Duke Guido III of Spoleto, later emperor, who had been exercising pressure on the papal patrimony. On June 22, 883, by the bull "Te narrante" he confirmed the privileges of the abbey of Savignone, diocese of Genoa, at the request of its bishop, Gerardo. Also in 883, by the bull "uaeque ad laudem", he confirmed a privilege of the monastery of S. Silvestro in Nonantula, at the request of its abbot, Teoderico. Both Pope Marinus I and Patriarch Photius went out of their way to maintain good relations between themselves and between the Western and Eastern Churches; the pope appointed Zachary of Anangi, friend of Patriarch Photius and leader of the Greek faction in Rome, papal librarian; all of that in spite of the questioning of the legitimacy of the election of Pope Marinus I by Patriarch Photius and Emperor Basil I because he had occupied another episcopal see before. In 883/884, by the bull "Cognitum acimum", he communicated to the monastery of Saint-Gilles, diocese of Nîmes, the arrival of an apostolic visitor, Presbyter Amelio. Also in 883/884, he confirmed a privilege to the monastery of Fulda. In 884, he sent the pallium to Archbishop Fulk of Reims. In France, the pope was able to solve a dispute between Archbishops Fulk of Reims and Evrard of Sens over a newly founded monastery. Concerning England, the pontiff maintained excellent relations with King Alfred the Great and out of regard for the monarch, the pope exempted from taxes the Schola Saxonurn (the English quarter in Rome).

Death. May 15, 884, suddenly, perhaps poisoned, in Rome. Buried between portam Argenteam et portam Romanam in the portico of the popes in the Vatican basilica, Rome. His tomb was destroyed during the demolition of the old basilica and the construction of the new one in the 16th and 17th centuries. The entire text of his epitaph has been preserved (4).

Bibliography. Bonaccorsi, Ilaria. "Marino I." Enciclopedia dei papi. 3 vols. Roma : Istituto della Enciclopedia italiana, 2000, II, 34-37; Cardella, Lorenzo. Memorie storiche de' cardinali della Santa Romana Chiesa. Rome : Stamperia Pagliarini, 1792, I, pt. 1, 70-71; Chacón, Alfonso. Vitæ, et res gestæ Pontificum Romanorum : et S.R.E. Cardinalium ab initio nascentis Ecclesiae usque ad Clementem IX P. O. M. Alphonsi Ciaconii Ord. Praed. & aliorum opera descriptæ : cum uberrimis notis. Ab Augustino Oldoino, Soc. Jesu recognitae, et ad quatuor tomos ingenti ubique rerum accessione productae. Additis Pontificum recentiorum imaginibus, & Cardinalium insignibus, plurimisque aeneis figuris, cum indicibus locupletissimis. Romæ : P. et A. De Rubeis, 1677, I, col. 665-670; Cristofori, Francesco. Cronotasi dei cardinali di Santa Romana Chiesa. Rome : Tipografia de Propaganda Fide, 1888, p. XXIX and 285; Del Re, Niccolò. "Marino I (Martino II), papa." Mondo vaticano. Passato e presente. Città del Vaticano : Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 1995, p. 685-686; "Essai de liste générale des cardinaux. Les cardinaux des 10 premiers siècles". Annuaire Pontifical Catholique 1926. Paris : Maison de la Bonne Presse, 1927, p. 153-154, no. 7; Gellhaus, Victor Joseph. "Marinus I, pope". New Catholic Encyclopedia. Prepared by an editorial staff at the Catholic University of America. 19 vols. New York, McGraw-Hill, 1967-1996. Alternate title: Catholic encyclopedia. Notes: Vol. 16: Supplement, 1967-1974; v. 17: Supplement, Change in the Church; v. 18: Supplement, 1978-1988. Vol. 16-17 have imprint: Washington, Publisher's Guild. Vol. 18-19 has imprint: Palatine, Il. : J. Heraty ; Washington, D.C. : Catholic University of America., 9, 222; Gregorovius, Ferdinando. Le tombe dei papi.. Roma : Edizioni del Centauro, 1931. Seconda edizione italiana riveduta e ampliata da C. Huelsen, p. 33*-34*; Kelly, John Norman Davidson. The Oxford Dictionary of Popes. Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 1986, p. 111-112; Le Liber pontificalis. Paris : E. de Boccard, 1981, 1955. 3 v. : facsims. (Bibliothèque des Écoles françaises d'Athènes et de Rome). Notes: Reprint of the 1955 edition./ Includes indexes./ Vol. 3: "Additions et corrections de L. Duchesne publiées par Cyrille Vogel ... avec L'Histoire du Liber pontificalis dupuis l'édition de L. Duchesne une bibliographie et des tables générales, II, LXVII, LXXV and 224; Montini, Renzo Uberto. Le tombe dei papi. Roma : Angelo Belardetti, 1957. Note: At head of title: Instituto di studi romani, p. 144-145; Reardon, Wendy J. The deaths of the popes : comprehensive accounts, including funerals, burial places and epitaphs. Jefferson, N.C. : McFarland & Co., Publishers, 2004, p. 65-66; Regesta pontificum Romanorum ab conditio Ecclesia. Ad annum post Christum natum MCXCVIII. Graz : Akademische Druck- u. Verlagsanstalt, 1956. 2 v. Reprint. Originally published : Lipsiae : Veit et comp., 1885-1888. Original t.p. included : Regesta pontificum Romanorum ab condita ecclesia : ad annum post Christum natum MCXCVIII. Editionem secundam correctam et auctam edidit Philippus Jaffè ; auspiciis Gulielmi Wattenbach; curaverunt S. Loewenfeld, F. Kaltenbrunner, P. Ewald, I, 425-426.

Links. Biography, in English, The Catholic Encyclopedia; biography, in English (Britannica; his image and biography, in English; biography, in English; biography, in German; his engraving, Fondazione Marco Besso, Rome; his engraving, Biblioteca comunale dell'Archiginnasio, Bologna; his engraving, Bildarchiv Austria. Die Bildplattform der Österreichischen Nationalbibliothek; his engraving, from the same source; another engraving also from the same source; and his effigy on a medal, Numismatic collection of Olomouc archiepiscopate, Czech Republic.

(1) This is according to Gellhaus, V. "Marinus I, pope". New Catholic Enyclopedia, 9, 222. Kelly, The Oxford Dictionary of Popes, p. 111, says that Gallese was in Tuscany.
(2) Kelly, The Oxford Dictionary of Popes, p. 112, indicates that when he succeeded to the papacy, "he was the first bishop of another see to be elected pope in violation of the ancient canons (notably canon 15 of Nicaea) prohibiting the translations of bishops from one see to another (a prohibition to which Nicholas I had appealed when refusing to appoint Bishop Formosus of Porto, later to be pope, to the archbishopric of Bulgaria)."
(3) The Catholic Encyclopedia, linked above, says that in "the seventh century there was a pope, St. Martinus I, and, owing to the similarity between the names Martinus and Marinus, some chroniclers called Pope Marinus Martinus. Hence, some modern historians have erroneously described the two popes Marinus as Martinus II and Martinus III respectively, and the successor of Nicholas III called himself Martinus IV.
(4) This is the epitaph taken from Montini, Le tombe dei papi, p. 145:

QVAM SOLLERS DOMINO PLACVIT QVI MENTE MODESTIA
PRAESVL APOSTOLICVS ORBIS ET OMNE DECVS
HIC STATVIT TVMVLO CLAVDI SVA MEMBRA SVB ISTO
HAEC EADEM SPERANS VT SIBI REDDAT HVMVS
ARDVA QVI FVLSIT CVNCTIS VT SYDERA CELI
AVGVSTIS CARVS GENTIBVS ET TRIBVBVS
DOCTRINIS COMPTVS SACRIS ET DOGMATE CLARO
PER PATRIAS SANCTA SEMINA FVDIT OVANS
NAM GRAIOS SVPERANS EOIS PARTIBVS VNAM
SCISMATA PELLENDO REDDIDIT ECCLESIAM
PRINCIPIS HIC PETRI SED QVISQVIS TENDIS AD AVLAM
dlC SVPPLEX ISDEM REGNET AB ARCE POLI


        Montini indicates that Pietro Mallio, an ecclesiastical historian of the 12th century attributes the tomb to a pope by the name of John (Ioannes papa bonae memoria), who had been assumed to be John VIII, XII, XVIII or XIX; but Montini adds that the text of the epigraph indicates that he is Pope Marinus I. Duchesne, Le Liber Pontificalis, II, 224, also says that Mallio attributes the epitaph to a Pope John but that Sarti (App. ad Dion., p. 137) demostrated, by comparing its text to the verses of Flodoard of Reiam concerning Marinus, that the epitaph refers to the latter pope.

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(8) 2. GIOVANNI, O.S.B. (?-ca. 880)

Birth. (No date or place found). He was denominated Hymonide.

Education. Entered the Order of Saint Benedict (Benedictines); "uomo eruditissimo, e infiammato dell'amore degli studij, e di acuto e penetrante ingegno" (1).

Priesthood. Ordained (no further information found). In 875, asked by Pope John VIII, he wrote a life of Pope St. Gegory I, the Great, in four volumes and dedicated it to the pontiff. At the instance of Cardinal Gauderico, O.S.B.Cas., bishop of Velletri, he also wrote a life of St. Clement, pope and martyr. Besides, he wrote commentaries on the Pentateuch, as well as on other books of the Holy Scriptures.

Cardinalate. Deacon cardinalis of the Holy Roman Church ca. 880. He was a friend of Antipope Anastasius III Bibliothecarius.

Death. Ca. 880, (no place found). Buried (no information found).

Bibliography. Cardella, Lorenzo. Memorie storiche de' cardinali della Santa Romana Chiesa. Rome : Stamperia Pagliarini, 1792, I, pt. 1, 67; Chacón, Alfonso. Vitæ, et res gestæ Pontificum Romanorum : et S.R.E. Cardinalium ab initio nascentis Ecclesiae usque ad Clementem IX P. O. M. Alphonsi Ciaconii Ord. Praed. & aliorum opera descriptæ : cum uberrimis notis. Ab Augustino Oldoino, Soc. Jesu recognitae, et ad quatuor tomos ingenti ubique rerum accessione productae. Additis Pontificum recentiorum imaginibus, & Cardinalium insignibus, plurimisque aeneis figuris, cum indicibus locupletissimis. Romæ : P. et A. De Rubeis, 1677, I, col. 665, no. I; "Essai de liste générale des cardinaux. Les cardinaux des 10 premiers siècles". Annuaire Pontifical Catholique 1926. Paris : Maison de la Bonne Presse, 1927, p. 154, no. 8.


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