il_papa_terribile - Adam Hosey Il Papa Terribile,1...

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Adam Hosey 1 Il Papa Terribile , 1 politics, and the economy To say that the period known as the Renaissance is starkly different from today’s society might be an understatement. But, when the foundations of how Renaissance Italy worked are examined, many of the cogs in the complicated machine are very similar to how things are run today. One aspect that might never change is the relationship between politics and the economy. Excessive spending on modern political campaigns has caused campaign finance reform movements, and it’s a well-known fact that to obtain and hold a political office, you must have money. Money was also a requirement to have a political office five hundred years ago. There was a simple progression in Renaissance politics—high social standing leads to money, which leads to power and eventually a political office if it is desired. This connection between politics and money was very evident in the ecclesiastical sense with the practice of simony. Before a discussion of politics and the economy in regards to the church can be commenced, it is necessary to understand that there was no separation between the church and state. In fact, the Church was the state. The Papal States comprised of a large part of Italy, stretching from Ferrara in the north to as far south as Rieti, and this was just the physical border, since the Pope’s religious power stretched much farther than his political borders. While today’s Papal State is technically the smallest country in the world, 2 the Papal State of the Renaissance was far reaching in political and religious matters. But it is the political influence that will be of most concern. Julius II, known as the “Warrior Pope,” is a fine example of a Machiavellian “Prince” and shows how economics and politics go hand in hand; from his election as Pope 3 until his death in 1513, his political power was contingent on the economics of the day. 1 Or “Warrior Pope” 2 .2 square miles according to 3 1503
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Adam Hosey 2 As Christine Shaw states in her biography of Julius II (1993), Giuliano della Rovere’s election as pope was based on unrealistic promises and bribery: How had he managed to do this, within two months of returning to Rome after ten years in exile? Bribery, the cynics said. He had promised so much to so many that he would have trouble in making all the promises good. (p. 120) Julius’ election is the fastest conclave on record, and it was founded on bribery. Money could buy even the most influential position in Renaissance world. Shaw explains that from the day he
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This note was uploaded on 03/30/2008 for the course HIST 414 taught by Professor Rebane,ppeter during the Spring '07 term at Pennsylvania State University, University Park.

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il_papa_terribile - Adam Hosey Il Papa Terribile,1...

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