Popes and Pornocrats: Rome in the Early Middle Ages
By Lindsay Brook
Foundations: The Journal of the Foundation for Medieval Genealogy, Vol. 1:1 (2003)
Abstract: Rome between the late ninth and the mid-eleventh centuries was in turmoil. Rival families fought for control of the city, successfully fighting off the Saracens encamped close to the city, and then against various interlopers, from Lombardy, Tuscany and Germany. This article tries to use prosopography and genealogy to document the stratagems employed by the Roman aristocracy in this period to gain and retain power, especially through placements of popes. An Appendix shows how brutal and short the lives of many of these medieval popes were.