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Italy And Avignon, 1305–1325

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Chapter Summary

The real roots of the Avignon papacy, of course, were immeasurably more complex, but the depth and intensity of Italian feeling underscore a crucial fact: if the Avignon papacy was part of a larger “crisis of the later medieval Church,” in the familiar parlance of so many undergraduate textbooks, it was also, in the eyes of many Italians, emblematic of a cultural and historical crisis. The “cultural patriotism,” for want of a better term, had undergone significant development in the thirteenth century, when rising urban literacy rates sparked a new demand for vernacular literature, and the contending armies of foreign powers heightened the Italian peoples’ awareness of their distinctness from other peoples in the West.

Keywords: Avignon; Cardinal Giovanni Gaetano Orsini; Clement; Italy



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