(1391-1425) needed him, now that the latter had come to the west in order to seek aid against the Turks. From 1399 Chrysoloras acted as his emissary to a series of western courts. He returned with the emperor in 1403 to Constantinople. Despite imperial support he found life there uncongenial. It hastened his decision to convert to Rome and to make a permanent home in Italy, where he attached himself to the court of Pope John XXIII. He played some role in the negotiations which led to the opening of the council of Constance, where he died in April 1415. He was remembered in the west with deep veneration, while his comparison of the old and new Romes reveals his enthusiasm for the city of Rome. He came to realise that ancient Rome had been an amalgam of Greek and Latin, which he presented to his own times as a paradigm of cooperation between Byzantium and the west.47
Chrysoloras was still useful to the emperor Manuel, because his foreign policy remained orientated towards the west. But for all his Latin sympathies, the emperor avoided submission to the papacy. He had his father's fate before him. He also knew from his three years in the west the obstacles there were to the despatch of aid. Perhaps the most serious was the Great Schism, which divided the west into different ecclesiastical obediences. It was in Byzantium's interest to see it ended. Manuel therefore accepted the invitation of the German emperor Sigismund and sent a delegation to the council of Constance, which ensured that the union of churches came quite high on the agenda of the new pope Martin V (1417-31). By 1422 the pope had agreed in principle to debate the differences between the two churches within the framework of a General Council. Credit for the groundwork that eventually led to the council of Ferrara/Florence must therefore go to the emperor Manuel, but how sincere was he? In a famous passage in his Chronicle George Sphrantzes claims that Manuel gave the following advice to his son and heir John VIII Palaiologos (1425-48): by all means, use union ofthe churches as a ploy to discourage the Turks, but on no account ever allow its implementation, because of the divisions that would follow within Byzantium.48 Even if there is an element of the historian being wise after the event, caution was always Manuel's watchword after his return from exile. He ensured the election of moderates as patriarch of Constantinople. He accepted the ascendancy exercised over the church in Constantinople by the monk Joseph Bryennios. The latter's opposition to union suited the emperor rather well because his main concern was to extract concrete benefits from any engagement with the west. These came
47 G. Dagron, 'Manuel Chrysoloras: Constantinople ou Rome', BF12 (1987), 281-8.
48 Georgios Sphrantzes, Memorii 1401-1477, ed. V Grecu [Scriptores Byzantini V] (Bucharest: Editura Academiei Republicii Socialiste Romania, 1966), xxiii.5-8; 58-60.
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