Rodrigo Borgia, later Alexander VI, has assumed the role of the archetypical Renaissance pope.Historians cite his exploits as pontiff as representative of the nepotism and corruption that plagued the Papacy throughout the Renaissance period.Alexander VI died in 1503, and was succeeded by Pope Julius II.
Rodrigo Borgia, later Alexander VI, has assumed the role of the archetypical Renaissance pope.Historians cite his exploits as pontiff as representative of the nepotism and corruption that plagued the Papacy throughout the Renaissance period.
His long rule saw a huge expansion in the Roman Empire and the beginnings of a dynasty that, over the next century, would transform Rome, for better and worse.
The man who would become one of Rome’s greatest leaders had an unpromising start in life.
The main project Pope Julius II undertook was the destruction and rebuilding of St.
Peter's basilica, the oldest and most sacred building in all of Christianity, containing the tomb of St. Many questioned and opposed the wisdom of the project, but Julius II insisted that the building was in desperate need of repair and should be replaced with a structure more worthy of the glory of its purpose.
Rome received its final push to renaissance glory from Pope Leo X, second son of Lorenzo de Medici.
He came to the papal throne in 1513, following Julius II.
Under Leo X, the ruins of Rome began to be more effectively preserved, and metaphorically, so did the morality of the Papacy.
When he died in 1521, Rome's Golden Age effectively ended, and the Renaissance as a whole began to fade.
Certainly, the effect Alexander had upon Italy and upon the popular view of the Papacy cannot be denied.
Even in his own time, the Borgia family took on legendary status in Italy as cruel and manipulative monsters.