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Prof. Michele Salzman (UC Riverside) – Lay Aristocrats and Roman Bishops

February 22, 2018 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

Felix III, who held the papal seat from 483-492, is called by several scholars “Rome’s first aristocratic bishop.” As the first elected pope after the fall of the last western emperor, his aristocratic origins would bestow a distinctly new status to the office of bishop of Rome on the eve of new challenges to his authority from the Eastern Patriarch in Constantinople, Acacius. But was Felix the first aristocratic bishop? And how important were social background and aristocratic networks after the fall of the western empire? The Letters of Felix and close reading of contemporary sources shed new light on Felix’s social standing and how he used his social networks to become the first Roman pope to break with Constantinople in what is today known as the Acacian schism. Sponsored by the California Consortium for Late Antiquity, the Department of Art History and the Cordano Endowed Chair in Catholic Studies.


February 22, 2018
12:00 pm - 1:30 pm


Department of History
(805) 893-4505
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Arts 1332
University of California Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara, 93106 United States
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