Schism in the West Vigilius and the Fifth Ecumenical Council

Justinian, who wanted to succeed where his predecessors had failed, promoted Nicaeno-Chalcedonian orthodoxy in dialogue with Miaphysites, and sought support from Pope John II (sed. 533-5) for this project.41 In 535, the new bishop of Constantinople, Anthimus, offered to re-establish communion with the Miaphysites and to welcome the Henotikon. When in the spring of 536 Pope Agapetus I (sed. 535-6) went to Constantinople on a political mission for the Ostrogothic king Theodahad, the pope forced Anthimus' resignation on canonical grounds and ordained his successor, Menas - the first papal ordination of an Eastern bishop.42 Justinian and Menas proved their orthodoxy to the pope by presenting an enlarged version of Hormisdas' formula. Agapetus responded by continuing John II's support for Justinian.43

If on this occasion pope and emperor found common ground, problems underlying their alliance became evident under Pope Vigilius (sed. 537-55). Vigilius had an aristocratic background (his father was a praetorian prefect of Italy, his brother a prefect of Rome) and exemplified the trend towards the 'aristocratisation' of the papacy.44 Having spent time as Roman ambassador to Constantinople, he seemed destined to enrol in Justinian's programme. But problems emerged between pope and emperor when Justinian took it in

40 Liber Pontificalis 55 (ed. Duchesne, i: 275); Anonymus Valesianus c. 88 (ed. Konig, 92). The details of Theoderic's demands are unclear; see J. Moorhead, Theoderic in Italy, 235-42.

41 Codex Justinianus 1.1.6, 8 (ed. Kruger, 7-8, 10-12); Collectio Avellana 84 (CSEL 35: 3208); ACO 4.2: 206-10. For Justinian's religious policy, see E. Schwartz, Vigiliusbriefe (bibliography); C. Capizzi, Giustiniano I; K.-L. Noethlichs, 'Iustinianus (Kaiser)', 688701; Chadwick, The church in ancient society, 612-27; K.-H. Uthemann, 'Kaiser Justinian'; C. Sotinel, 'Emperors and popes'.

42 Liberatus, Breviarium 21 (ACO 2.5:135-6).

43 Collectio Avellana 91 (CSEL 35: 342-7).

44 E. Wirbelauer, 'Die Nachfolgerbestimmung', 433-4; PLRE 2: 1166.

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