Clement III
Bishop of Rome
13th century miniature of Pope Clement III from the Speculum Grandimontis
ChurchCatholic Church
Papacy began19 December 1187
Papacy ended20 March 1191
PredecessorGregory VIII
SuccessorCelestine III
Created cardinalMarch 1179
by Alexander III
Personal details
Paulino/Paolo Scolari

Died20 March 1191(1191-03-20) (aged 60–61)[1]
Rome, Papal States
Other popes named Clement
Ordination history of
Pope Clement III
Elevated byPope Alexander III
DateMarch 1179
Episcopal succession
Bishops consecrated by Pope Clement III as principal consecrator
Archbishop DauferiusDecember 1188
Martinho Pires1189
Archbishop Bernard19 November 1189

Pope Clement III (Latin: Clemens III; 1130 – 20 March 1191), born Paulino (or Paolo) Scolari, was the head of the Catholic Church and ruler of the Papal States from 19 December 1187 to his death.


A Roman by birth, Pope Alexander III appointed him in succession archpriest of the patriarchal Liberian Basilica, cardinal-deacon of Sergio e Bacco, and finally cardinal bishop of Palestrina in December 1180.


Shortly after his accession at the conclusion of the papal election of December 1187, Clement succeeded in allaying the conflict which had existed for half a century between the popes and the citizens of Rome, with an agreement by which the citizens were allowed to elect their magistrates, while the nomination of the governor of the city remained in the hands of the pope. On 31 May 1188 he concluded a treaty with the Romans which removed long standing difficulties, thus returning the papacy to Rome.[2][3]

Clement also inherited a depleted college of cardinals, consisting of no more than twenty cardinals. He orchestrated three series of promotions (March 1188, May 1189 and October 1190) that resulted in over thirty new cardinals.[4]

He pushed King Henry II of England and King Philip II of France to undertake the Third Crusade.[5] In April 1189, Clement made peace with the Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa.

He settled a controversy with King William I of Scotland concerning the choice of the archbishop of St Andrews, and on 13 March 1188 removed the Scottish church from the legatine jurisdiction of the Archbishop of York, thus making it independent of all save Rome.[2][6]

In spite of agreeing to crown Henry VI as Holy Roman Emperor, Clement III angered him by bestowing Sicily on Tancred, son of Roger III, Duke of Apulia.[7] The crisis was acute when the Pope died in the latter part of March 1191.[2]

See also


  1. ^ About the date of his death see Katrin Baaken: Zu Wahl, Weihe und Krönung Papst Cölestins III. Deutsches Archiv für Erforschung des Mittelalters Volume 41 / 1985, pp. 203-211
  2. ^ a b c Rockwell 1911.
  3. ^ Luscombe, David; Riley-Smith, Jonathan, eds. (2004). The New Cambridge Medieval History. Vol. 1. Cambridge University Press. p. 402.
  4. ^ Robinson, Ian Stuart, The papacy 1073–1198: continuity and innovation, (Cambridge University Press, 1990), 55.
  5. ^ Reston, James, Warriors of God: Richard the Lionheart and Saladin in the Third Crusade, (Random House Inc., 2001), 106.
  6. ^ Blair, D. Oswald Hunter, History of the Catholic Church of Scotland, (Willian Blackwood and Sons, 1887), 329.
  7. ^ Benson, Robert Louis and Robert Charles Figueira, Plenitude of power: the doctrines and exercise of authority in the Middle Ages, (Ashgate Publishing Ltd, 2006), 40.



Further reading

Catholic Church titles Preceded byGregory VIII Pope 1187–91 Succeeded byCelestine III