Pope Leo XI

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Leo XI, n Alessandro Ottaviano de' Medici (Florence, June 2 1535April 27 1605), was pope from April 1, 1605 to April 27 of the same year. He was born into the powerful Medici family: his mother, Francesca Salviati, was a daughter of Giacomo Salviati and Lucrezia de' Medici, a sister of Leo X, while his father was a more distant scion of the Medici family. After a late start he was ordained priest, and Cosimo I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, sent him as an appropriate ambassador to Pope Pius V, a position which he held for fifteen years. Gregory XIII made him bishop of Pistoia in 1573, archbishop of Florence in 1574, and cardinal in 1583.

Clement VIII sent him, in 1596, as legate to France where Maria de' Medici was queen. Alessandro was a friend and disciple of Philip Neri.

On March 14, 1605, eleven days after the death of Clement VIII, 62 cardinals entered the conclave. Prominent among the candidates for the papacy were the great historian Baronius and the famous Jesuit controversialist Cardinal Bellarmine. But Aldobrandini, the leader of the Italian party among the cardinals, allied with the French cardinals and brought about the election of Alessandro against the express wish of King Philip III of Spain. King Henry IV of France is said to have spent 300,000 cus in the promotion of Alessandro's candidacy. On April 1, 1605, Alessandro ascended the papal throne with the Medici name Leo XI, being then seventy years of age, but took sick immediately after his coronation and died within the month.

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Preceded by:
Clement VIII
Pope
1605
Succeeded by:
Paul V

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original text from the 9th edition (1882) of a famous encyclopedia.de:Leo XI. (Papst) fr:Lon XI it:Papa Leone XI ja:レオ11世 (ローマ教皇) pl:Papież Leon XI pt:Papa Leo XI sv:Leo XI zh:良十一世

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