Pope Clement V Biography
Born In: Villandraut, France
Pope Clement V was the ruler of the Papal States and the head of the ‘Catholic Church’ in the early 14th century. He was best known for moving the Papal territories from Rome to Avignon. He was born in Villandraut, Aquitaine, to the Lord of Villandraut. Growing up in a noble family, he had no dearth of comforts as a child. He completed his education in Toulouse, Orléans, and Bologna. Following this, he became the deputy of his brother, who was the archbishop of Lyon. Clement later became the bishop of ‘St.-Bertrand-de-Comminges’ and the archbishop of Bordeaux. As part of his role, he had to serve the king of England. Instead, his loyalty lay with the king of France, Philip the Fair. When the pope died in 1305, King Philip played a big role in making Clement the new pope. Clement is remembered as a weak pope and a puppet of Philip. On his insistence, he condemned Pope Boniface VIII, the pope before him, and suppressed the ‘Templars.’ However, given the difficult conditions for the papacy at that time, his actions are now justified by many as attempts to safeguard the institution of the church. His decision to move the Papal States from Rome to Avignon, in 1309, was also one such action.