Papal conclave, January 1276

Papal conclave
January 1276

Coat of arms during the vacancy of the Holy See
Dates and location
21–22 January 1276
Cathedral of S. Pietro, Arezzo
Key officials
Protopriest Simone Paltineri
Protodeacon Riccardo Annibaldi
Ballots 1
Elected Pope
Pierre de Tarentaise
(Name taken: Innocent V)

Papal conclave, January 1276 (January 21–22), was the first papal election held under the rules of constitution Ubi periculum issued by Pope Gregory X in 1274, which established papal conclaves. According to Ubi periculum Cardinals were to be secluded in a closed area; they were not even accorded separate rooms. No cardinal was allowed to be attended by more than one servant unless ill. Food was to be supplied through a window; after three days of the meeting, the cardinals were to receive only one dish a day; after five days, they were to receive just bread and water. During the conclave, no cardinal was to receive any ecclesiastical revenue. These provisions were regularly disregarded, at the discretion of the cardinals, particularly the requirement of being incommunicado.

Although several times before papal elections were held in the circumstances similar to those described by Ubi periculum,[1] for the first time such situation was formally required by a papal Constitution. For this reason, the Conclave of January 1276 can be considered the first papal conclave in history in the strictly legal sense of this word.

List of participants

Pope Gregory X died on January 10, 1276, at Arezzo. At the time of his death there were probably 15 cardinals in the Sacred College, but only 13 of them participated in the subsequent conclave. Seven of them were created by Urban IV, four by Gregory X and one by Gregory IX:

Elector Cardinalatial title Elevated Appointed by Other ecclesiastical titles Notes
Pierre de Tarentaise, O.P. Bishop of Ostia e Velletri June 3, 1273 Gregory X Grand penitentiary Elected Pope Innocent V
João Pedro Julião Bishop of Frascati June 3, 1273 Gregory X Future Pope John XXI
Vicedominus de Vicedominis Bishop of Palestrina June 3, 1273 Gregory X Nephew of Pope Gregory X
Bertrand de Saint-Martin, O.S.B. Bishop of Sabina June 3, 1273 Gregory X
Simone Paltanieri Priest of SS. Silvestro e Martino December 17, 1261 Urban IV Protopriest
Ancher Pantaleon Priest of S. Prassede May 1262 Urban IV
Guillaume de Bray Priest of S. Marco May 1262 Urban IV
Riccardo Annibaldi Deacon of S. Angelo in Pescheria 1238 Gregory IX Protodeacon; Archpriest of the patriarchal Vatican Basilica;
Protector of the Order of Augustinians
nephew of Pope Innocent III
Ottobono Fieschi Deacon of S. Adriano December, 1251 Innocent IV Archpriest of the patriarchal Liberian Basilica future Pope Adrian V
Uberto Coconati Deacon of S. Eustachio December 17, 1261 Urban IV
Giacomo Savelli Deacon of S. Maria in Cosmedin December 17, 1261 Urban IV Future Pope Honorius IV
Goffredo da Alatri Deacon of S. Giorgio in Velabro December 17, 1261 Urban IV
Matteo Rosso Orsini Deacon of S. Maria in Portico May 1262 Urban IV Nephew of Pope Nicholas III

Absentee cardinals

Two cardinals were absent, including one created by Urban IV and one created by Innocent IV:

Elector Cardinalatial title Elevated Appointed by Other ecclesiastical titles Notes
Simon Monpitie de Brie Priest of S. Cecilia December 17, 1261 Urban IV Papal Legate in the Kingdom of France Future Pope Martin IV
Giovanni Gaetano Orsini Deacon of S. Nicola in Carcere Tulliano May 28, 1244 Innocent IV Inquisitor General; Protector of the Order of Franciscans Future Pope Nicholas III

Conclave. Election of Pope Innocent V

On January 20, 10 days after the death of Gregory X, 15 cardinals assembled in the episcopal palace in Arezzo. In the first scrutiny on the following day they unanimously elected French Cardinal Pierre de Tarentaise, bishop of Ostia e Velletri, who took the name of Innocent V. He was the first Dominican Pope.


  1. For example, during Papal election, 1241 cardinals had been enclosed by Senator Matteo Rosso Orsini, who gradually reduced food supplies for them.

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