Janus' Home

6

Christians of Sicily and Southern Italy to acknowledge their hegemony and conform to the standards of Latin Christianity.9

The Normans would take advantage of this situation, since their conquest of the region could appear along the lines of a war fought on behalf of the Papacy in order to restore Muslim Sicily to the Christian world, and to compel the Greek Christians to recognize the supremacy of the Roman Pontiff. This holy war was completed between 1059 and 1091 by the constitution of Norman-ruled states, namely the Principality of Capua, the Duchy of Apulia, and the County of Sicily. Roger II subsequently merged these into the Kingdom of Sicily in 1130, but in each case the Norman rulers had to receive the titles of legitimate prince, duke, count, or king by Papal investiture, which they obtained through vassalage to the Papacy. Papal appointment to these posts gave the Normans credibility in the eyes of their Norman followers, their subjects, and their opponents. (This would also, however, invoke the resentment of the Eastern and Western Emperors, both of whom believed themselves to be the true lords of Sicily and Southern Italy.) This benefited the Popes because the Normans became their protectors at a time when the Papacy was on increasingly sour terms with their traditional guardians, the "Roman" emperors: the Holy Roman Emperors in Germany wanted to appoint Popes rather than allow canonical Papal elections, and the Byzantines refused to recognize the primacy of the Roman Pontiff over the Patriarchs of Constantinople, Antioch, Alexandria, and Jerusalem. The Normans, meanwhile, were happy to take on the attractive and intensely chivalric image of warriors charged with defending the Vicar of St. Peter. In addition, the Normans would be able to spread their influence throughout the region by taking charge of the process of reforming the Greek churches along the


9. Ibid. 13f.

 

Table of Contents | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 |28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36