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Page 52 from the book 'Le Vite de' pontefici, di Antonio Ciccarelli,... con l'effigie di Giovan Battista de Cavallieri' (Lives of the Popes by Antonio Ciccarelli ..with engravings by Cavalieri), printed in 1587.
Text on back is associated with engraving of next Pope in book.
Fold upper right corner, large crease lower left corner, waterstain back and lower edge of front, chipping along left border.
21.5 x 15.5 cm
Giovanni Battista de'Cavalieri (1526–1597), an Italian engraver, was born at Lagherino and died at Rome. His style of engraving resembles that of Aeneas Vico. Many of his plates are copies after the great Italian masters; they are etched, and finished with the graver. He was very laborious, and his plates number nearly 380. The following are those most worthy of notice.
Pope Anastasius II (died 19 November 498) was Pope from 24 November 496 to his death in 498. He was an important figure trying to end Acacian schism, but his efforts resulted in the Laurentian schism, which followed his death. Anastasius was born in Rome, the son of a priest, and is buried in St. Peter's Basilica.....
....During the medieval period, Anastasius II was often considered a traitor to the Catholic Church and an apostate. The writer of the Liber Pontificalis, supporting the opponents to Anastasius' efforts, argued that Anastasius II's death was divine retribution and that he had broken with the church. Similarly, the Decretum Gratiani writes of the pope that "Anastasius, reproved by God, was smitten by divine command." This medieval view is described by modern commentators as a "legend", a "misinterpretation", a "confused tradition", and "manifestly unjust."
Dante placed Anastasius II in the sixth circle of hell: "Anastasio papa guardo, lo qual trasse Fotin de la via dritta" ("I guard Pope Anastasius, he whom Photinus drew from the straight path"). However, modern Dante scholars consider this to be a mistake: the person Dante intended to put at that level was the Byzantine emperor of the time, Anastasius I. Anastasius II is, with Pope Liberius, one of only two of the first 50 popes not to be canonized.