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Pope Benedict XI

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Benedict XI
Papacy began22 October 1303
Papacy ended7 July 1304
PredecessorPope Boniface VIII
SuccessorPope Clement V
Personal details
Birth nameNicholas Boccasini
Died1304 (aged 63–64)
Other Popes named Benedict

Pope Benedict XI (Latin: Benedictus Undecimus; 1240–7 July 1304), born Nicholas Boccasini, was an Italian priest of the Roman Catholic Church and the 195th Pope from 1303 to 1304.[1]

Early life

Boccasini was born in Treviso.[2]

Dominican monk

In 1254, Boccasini became a Dominican monk at age 14.[2] He rose in the ranks of the Order; and was elected General or Master of the Order of Preachers in 1296.[3]


Pope Boniface VIII raised Boccasini to the rank of cardinal.[2] In 1298, he was named Cardinal of Santa Sabina.[3]

In 1300, Cardinal Boccasini was named Bishop of Ostia and Velletri.[3]

In 1302, he was the diplomatic representative of Boniface VIII in Hungary.[3]


Cardinal Boccasini was elected pope on October 22, 1303;[4] and he chose to be called Benedict XI.[5] He was pope for only eight months.

Benedict was a supporter of the Ultamontane policies of Pope Boniface VIII.[3]

In a conciliatory gesture, Benedict released the King of France from excommunication.[3]

Pope Benedict died suddenly at Perugiain July 1304.[2]


Benedict XI was beatified in 1773.[2]

Select works

Benedict XI was the author of a volume of sermons and commentaries on the Gospel of Matthew, on the Psalms, the Book of Job, and John's Apocalypse.

Related pages


The Coat of Arms of Benedict XI
  1. "List of Popes," Catholic Encyclopedia (2009); retrieved 2011-11-02.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 "Pope Benedict XI," Catholic Encyclopedia; retrieved 2011-11-3.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 "Benedict XI", Encyclopedia Britannica (1910), Vol. 3, p. 718.
  4. "Benedict XI", Encyclopedia Americana (1918), p. 504.
  5. Note on ordinal numbering: Popes Benedict XI–XVI are really the 10th–15th popes with that name. This is because Benedict X is now parsed as an antipope; but during the reign of Benedict XI, this was not recognized. The "true" or actual tenth pope Benedict identified himself with the ordinal number XI. In other words, the numbering of popes after the 10th Benedict needs to be explained -- compare Popes Boniface VIII–IX.

Other websites

Media related to Benedictus XI at Wikimedia Commons

Preceded by
Boniface VIII
Succeeded by
Clement V