Liberius

d.366. Pope from 352. Shortly after his accession he was faced with the Eastern demand to condemn Athanasius. Not present at the Council of Milan (355) which succumbed to anti-Athanasian pressure, he was summoned before Constantius, but refused to condemn Athanasius and asked that the Nicene Creed be confirmed. He was exiled to Berea, and after two years he signed, under pressure, an agreement to the exile of Athanasius and to a heretical formula. The evidence for this is contained in four letters from exile, the authenticity of which is challenged, but cannot be doubted. There is, however, doubt as to which formula he signed and hence how heretical it was. He returned to Rome, and in 366 received into communion representatives of the Eastern Church, fleeing from the pro-Arian emperor Valens. He died that same year. Other items of his correspondence have been preserved, including three letters to Eusebius, bishop of Vercelli.