Roman Catholic Pope. Born into the wealthy Venetian Condulmer family, Gabriele had a religious education and became a bishop in 1074 and a cardinal a year later assisted by his uncle Pope Gregory XII. He was elected Pope Eugenius IV in 1431 after agreeing to distribute one half of the church revenues to the cardinals and consulting them on all matters of religious or civil importance. Eugene strove to end the Council of Basel which challenged the authority of the pope to make decisions and govern the church. An attempt to dissolve the Council led to opposition and compromise was finally arranged by the Holy Roman Emperor Sigismund. In 1434, the control of the Papal States were seized by the Colonna family necessitating Eugene's flight to Bologna. Political wrangling resurfaced concerning the Council of Basel with the monarchs of England and France and several city states Italy withdrawing support for Eugene's alternate council at Ferrara. This culminated in the Basel Council deposing Eugene as a heretic and appointing the Duke of Savoy as anti-pope under the name of Felix V. The rule of Felix V got little traction among the countries and by 1443 after compromises and pacts, Eugene made a re-entry into Rome after ten years. He issued several edicts condemning the slavery of christian natives on the Canary Islands. He also reformed monastic orders, and reestablished the university in Rome. Originally buried at Saint Peter's, his remains were later transferred to San Salvatore. At the time of this death, he was one of the longest reigning popes at sixteen years.
Bio by: Winter Birds PA