1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Eugenius/Eugenius III
Eugenius III. (Bernardo Paganelli), pope from the 15th of February 1145 to the 8th of July 1153, a native of Pisa, was abbot of the Cistercian monastery of St Anastasius at Rome when suddenly elected to succeed Lucius II. His friend and instructor, Bernard of Clairvaux, the most influential ecclesiastic of the time, remonstrated against his election on account of his “innocence and simplicity,” but Bernard soon acquiesced and continued to be the mainstay of the papacy throughout Eugenius’s pontificate. It was to Eugenius that Bernard addressed his famous work De consideratione. Immediately after his election, the Roman senators demanded the pope’s renunciation of temporal power. He refused and fled to Farfa, where he was consecrated on the 17th of February. By treaty of December 1145 he recognized the republic under his suzerainty, substituted a papal prefect for the “patrician” and returned to Rome. The celebrated schismatic, Arnold of Brescia, however, put himself again at the head of the party opposed to the temporal power of the papacy, re-established the patricianate, and forced the pope to leave Rome. Eugenius had already, on hearing of the fall of Edessa, addressed a letter to Louis VII. of France (December 1145), announcing the Second Crusade and granting plenary indulgence under the usual conditions to those who would take the cross; and in January 1147 he journeyed to France to further preparations for the holy war and to seek aid in the constant feuds at Rome. After holding synods at Paris, Reims and Trier, he returned to Italy in June 1148 and took up his residence at Viterbo. The following month he excommunicated Arnold of Brescia in a synod at Cremona, and thenceforth devoted most of his energies to the recovery of his see. As the result of negotiations between Frederick Barbarossa and the Romans, Eugenius was finally enabled to return to Rome in December 1152, but died in the following July. He was succeeded by Anastasius IV. Eugenius retained the stoic virtues of monasticism throughout his stormy career, and was deeply reverenced for his personal character. His tomb in St Peter’s acquired fame for miraculous cures, and he was pronounced blessed by Pius IX. in 1872.