Paschal II

Pope from 1099. An Italian monk, he lacked the worldly astuteness of his predecessor, Urban II.* He faced the unresolved problem of investiture, at first apparently successfully. In England the quarrel between Anselm and Henry I was settled in 1107 when Henry renounced investiture with the spiritual symbols, while retaining the right to receive homage for temporalities before consecration and to be present at episcopal elections. With Louis VI of France a similar agreement was reached, though he was satisfied with an oath of fealty rather than homage.

Paschal was not directly responsible for these settlements, but together with the First Crusade, they greatly enhanced the prestige of the papacy. In the empire he supported Henry V’s rebellion against his father, only to find that he refused to surrender investiture. Paschal denounced him at several synods, but when Henry appeared in Rome for his coronation Paschal incredibly agreed to renounce the regalia—the secular rights and possessions of the church—if Henry would give up investiture. This produced incensed feelings in the church, and bishops and princes helped to create an uproar of riot proportions at Henry’s coronation in 1111. Paschal’s surrender was, however, unacceptable to the reforming conscience of the church, and by 1116 he was condemning his own concessions. Driven from Rome in 1117, he returned the following year and died. The fact that the regalia increasingly emerged during his reign as, in some sense, a royal right had important bearings on the concordat which was eventually agreed to.

See Investiture Controversy.