Events

Portrait of Pope Formosus.Thursday, March 23

Lecture

sponsored by the History Graduate Student Organization

"The Cadaver Trial of Pope Formosus"

Michael Moore
University of Iowa

7 p.m.
Knauss 3512

flier

Dr. Moore will also meet with graduate students from all departments on Friday, March 24, at noon in the Emeriti Lounge of Walwood Hall on WMU's East Campus.

Dr. Moore's presentation examines the events of the posthumous trial of Pope Formosus in 897, its basis in papal theory and canon law, the charges against Formosus and the political climate that made such a trial thinkable. The trial, known as the Cadvor Synod, epitomizes a period of disintegration in ecclesiastical history. Occurring during the demise of the Carolingian world order, ca. 888-9000, the trial demonstrates that traditional sources of unity—and the norm of imperial-papal cooperation—were in crisis. The trial sheds uncanny light on legal culture, religious life and political mentality in fin-de-siècle papal Rome, with its deviant use of ecclesiastical law and its revival of the Roman practice of damnatio memoriae.