Patriarch Heraclius of Jerusalem

Patriarch Heraclius Of Jerusalem

Patriarch Heraclius of Jerusalem

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Heraclius or Eraclius (c. 1128-1190/1191), was archbishop of Caesarea and Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem.

Heraclius was from the GĂ©vaudan in Auvergne, France. Like his later rival William of Tyre he studied law at the University of Bologna: his contemporaries and friends included Stephen of Tournai and Gratian. He arrived in the Kingdom of Jerusalem before 1168, where he first appears as magister Heraclius, witnessing patriarchal deeds. He was appointed archdeacon of Jerusalem in 1169. In this capacity he tried unsuccessfully to persuade Pope Alexander III to reinstate Gilbert d'Aissailly as Grand Master of the Knights Hospitaller, although the Pope praised him for his presentation of the case. By 1175 he was archbishop of Caesarea (while William served as archbishop of Tyre). As archbishops, Heraclius and William attended the Third Lateran Council in 1179. In 1180, William considered himself the most likely candidate for the patriarchate of Jerusalem, but the king, Baldwin IV, delegated the choice to his mother Agnes of Courtenay, Lady of Sidon, and her ladies, according to the precedent of the previous election in 1157. Agnes and her committee chose Heraclius.

Because most of information about Heraclius comes from his rival William and the 13th-century Old French Continuation of his chronicle, sometimes attributed to Ernoul, Heraclius is often seen as a particularly corrupt and worldly choice for patriarch. He was accused of getting the appointment through being Agnes's...
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