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John of Ragusa

c.1380-c.1443. Dominican theologian. Born John Stoikovic, he became a considerable scholastic figure. In 1422, as a representative of Paris University, he successfully urged Martin V to hold a council, and was present at its sessions in Pavia and Siena. He became procurator general of the Dominicans in 1426, residing in Rome, and was influential with Martin V, helping to persuade him to call the Council of Basle* (1431). He attended its opening stages as papal theologian, preaching the opening sermon, and debating with the Hussites. In 1435 the council sent him to Constantinople as part of an embassy to attempt to achieve the union of Eastern and Western churches. He spent some years there persuading the emperor John Palaeologus to send representatives to the council, studying Greek, and when in 1437 there were envoys of the pope and council in Constantinople at the same time, preventing open hostility between them. He supported Felix V and became a cardinal, though some argue that he was faithful to Eugenius IV. Of his extant writings, his accounts of the councils of Siena and the early stages of Basle, together with his condemnation of Hussite teaching, are the most important.