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LOTE 554:

[INNOCENT XI]: (1611-1689) Pope of the Roman Catholic Church 1676-89. An interesting A.L.S., Jo. Lytcott, by the ...

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[INNOCENT XI]: (1611-1689) Pope of the Roman Catholic Church 1676-89. An interesting A.L.S., Jo. Lytcott, by the British Diplomat, three pages, 8vo, Rome, 21st February 1688, to a gentleman, seemingly Sir Richard Bulstrode. Lytcott states, in part, '….what I chiefly have to plead is the very great distance of place & my very little capacity & post, wherein I might be usefull to you; for tho Rome sounds high, yet a poor agent is so low & unregarded a creature in it, as if he were quite lost there; but since you can find out so small an object so far off I shall a350lways strive to acknowledge yr. kind regard of me…..The present scene here is indeed very 8particular: & tho hitherto it has seemed to some only comical, yet God knows how it will end. The thunder from the Vatican you see the French despise…..The Pope now is moved to hear his Cardinals wch he does dayly two by two; as to what passes in the conference their Eminences themselves cannot tell, they being obliged to secrecy under censures, but by their looks they bode little good', further referring again to the problems between France and the Vatican, an excommunication, the resolute approach of the Pope and daily processions ('instead of a Carnival [we] shall have a Jubilee') before concluding 'We had at the English College high Masse & other devotions for a Prince of Wales & same day the thanksgiving was all over England; A concurrence of so many prayers will I hope prevail'. Some very light, extremely minor age wear, VG Sir Richard Bulstrode (1610-1711) English Author, Diplomat & Soldier, the resident agent of King Charles II at Brussels from 1673. The present letter was written in the months leading up to the Cologne controversy and the election for the Prince-elector of Cologne which took place on 19th July 1688. Pope Innocent XI was granted the final decision in the election, as neither candidate received the required number of votes, and his choice angered King Louis XIV of France and King James II of England. The French king retaliated by taking possession of the papal territory of Avignon and imprisoning the papal nuncio. Louis XIV also made little secret of his intention to separate the French church from Rome, however the Pope remained firm. The subsequent fall of James II in England destroyed French preponderance in Europe and shortly after Pope Innocent XI's death the struggle between Louis XIV and the papacy was settled in favour of the Church.