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Pope Gregory VII, 1073–1085$
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H. E. J. Cowdrey

Print publication date: 1998

Print ISBN-13: 9780198206460

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198206460.001.0001

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Pope Gregory VII and the German Kingdom and Empire

Pope Gregory VII and the German Kingdom and Empire

(p.75) 3 Pope Gregory VII and the German Kingdom and Empire
Pope Gregory VII, 1073–1085

H. E. J. Cowdrey

Oxford University Press

When Gregory became pope in 1073, the German kingdom was entering upon an internal crisis that would have tested it to its foundations even if a conflict with the papacy had not supervened. For Henry IV's struggle with Gregory compounded another with the German princes, lay and ecclesiastical. The upheavals in Germany during the 1070s and 1080s, therefore, assumed the form of a three-cornered contest between pope, king, and princes, where each party pursued aims and interests that did not fully correspond to either of the other's. This chapter focuses on Pope Gregory VII's reign in the German kingdom and Empire, particularly under the Ottonian and early Salian kings; King Henry IV's minority and early years; the Saxon War; the recalcitrance of the German bishops; Henry IV's breach with Gregory VII; and the excommunication of Henry IV.

Keywords:   Pope Gregory VII, Germany, kings, papacy, excommunication, Henry IV, princes, Saxon War, bishops, German kingdom

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