Henry VIII, the Reign
Profile of Giovanni di Lorenzo de' Medici, Pope Leo X
Pope Leo X (11 December 1475 – 1 December 1521), born Giovanni di Lorenzo de' Medici, was Pope from 9 March 1513 to his death in Rome in 1521. Leo was the second son Lorenzo de' Medici also known as Lorenzo the Magnificent who was ruler of the Florentine Republic. His mother was Clarice Orsini.
Giovanni became a cardinal in 1489 at the age of thirteen.
After the death of Giuliano della Rovere, Pope Julius II in February 1513 Giovanni was elected pope supported by the younger members of the Sacred College.
He managed the last sessions of the Fifth Ecumenical Council of the Lateran, but fell short of introducing all of the reforms agreed.
In 1517 began the war that secured for his nephew Lorenzo di Piero de' Medici the dukedom of Urbino, but damaged the papal finances in the process. He later escaped a plot by some cardinals with a humpty gripe to poison him.
Indulgences granted to those people who donated to reconstruct St. Peter's Basilica marks out Leo’s time as Pope. The practice was vigorously and famously challenged by Martin Luther's 95 Theses.
There is very little evidence that he treated the demands for reform in church with sincerity. His shilly-shallying led to the growth of the Protestant Reformation. His Papal Bull of 1520, Exsurge Domine, merly condemned Luther on a number of issues with little regard for the future.
He borrowed a lot and spent a lot.
A prodigal patron of the arts, he is reported to have said, "Since God has given us the papacy, let us enjoy it".
The costly rebuilding of Saint Peter's Basilica proceed a pace during his time in office. Artists including Raphael decorated the Vatican.
Leo patronised the Roman University, and encouraged the study of literature, poetry and antiquities.
Giovanni di Lorenzo de' Medici died in 1521 and is buried in Santa Maria sopra Minerva, Rome.