Theodora (senatrix)

Theodora (circa 870 – 916) was a senatrix and serenissima vestaratrix of Rome.

She was the mother of Marozia, alleged concubine to Pope Sergius III, and the mother of Pope John XI, fathered byaccording to Liutprand of Cremona and the Liber Pontificalis Sergius.[1] A third contemporary source, howeverthe annalist Flodoard (c. 894–966)says John XI was the brother of Count Alberic II of Spoleto, the latter being the offspring of Marozia and her husband Count Alberic I of Spoleto. Hence John too was probably the son of Marozia and Alberic I.

Theodora was characterized by the aforementioned Liutprand as a "shameless whore ... [who] exercised power on the Roman citizenry like a man".[2] Liutprand, a bishop of Cremona, was described by the Catholic Encyclopedia as frequently being unfair to adversaries and could be partial in his judgments.



  1. Abbott, Elizabeth (2010). A history of mistresses. London: Duckworth. ISBN 1590208765.
  2. McCabe, Joseph (200u). Crises in the history of the papacy: a study of twenty famous popes whose careers and whose influence were important in the development of the church and in the history of the world. [Whitefish, Mont.]: Kessinger Publishing. ISBN 0766179044.

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