Pope Boniface VIII facts
|Papacy began||December 24, 1294|
|Papacy ended||October 11, 1303|
|Predecessor||Pope Celestine V|
|Successor||Pope Benedict XI|
|Birth name||Benedetto Caetani|
Anagni, Papal States
|Died||October 11, 1303
|Other Popes named Boniface|
Benedetto Caetani was born in 1235 at Anagni in Italy. Caetani studied at Todi and at Spoleto where he earned a degree in law. He came from a very noble family. His family was in government.
In 1265, Caetani traveled with Cardinal Ottobuono Fieschi to England.
Cardinal Caetani was elected in 1294; and he chose to be called Boniface VIII.
Pope Boniface confirmed the decree of Pope Celestine V that any pope can freely resign.
Boniface was involved in Italian and European political disputes.
Boniface VIII made a rule that if a ruler (king) fined people taxes without the church or popes' permission that the ruler would be excluded from the church. He would make rash decisions without consideration. He was known to be harsh, mean, cruel, and did not listen to other people's recommendations. For example, He declared a very rash papal law that all people, not just Christians, must follow him if they want to go to heaven. He believed as the Pope, all rulers should bow down to him and respect him.
After his death
Dante mentions Boniface in The Inferno. He identifies the pope as "the Prince of the new Pharisees."
- Boase, Thomas Sherrer Ross. (1933). Boniface VIII. London: Constable. OCLC 1387650
Statue of Pope Boniface VIII at the Museo dell'Opera del Duomo in Florence
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