Pope Leo III

Pope Leo III
Pope Leo III. Public Domain

Pope Leo III was also known as:

Charlemagne's Pope

Pope Leo III is noted for:

crowning Charlemagne Emperor and establishing the precedent that only the pope could confer the imperial crown. Leo was also physically attacked in the streets of Rome by supporters of his predeccessor.

Occupation & Role in Society:


Places of Residence and Influence:


Important Dates:

Elected pope: Dec. 26, 795
Attacked: April 25, 799
Died: June 12, 816

About Pope Leo III:

Rather than keeping the papacy independent of secular authorities, Leo deliberately took steps to ally with Charlemagne and his growing empire. Attacked in the streets of Rome by supporters of his predecessor's nephew, Leo sought the aid of Charlemagne and eventually crowned him emperor, establishing an important precedent. As pope, Leo was adept in diplomacy and managed to keep his Carolingian allies from exerting any real influence on matters of doctrine. He died in 816.

For more about Leo, visit your Guide's Concise Biography of Pope Leo III.

More Leo III Resources:

Concise Biography of Pope Leo III
Image of Leo crowning Charlemagne

Leo III on the Web

Pope St. Leo III
Fairly substantial bio by Horace K. Mann at the Catholic Encyclopedia.
Pope Saint Leo III
Concise collection of useful data, heavily hyperlinked, at the Patron Saints Index.

Leo III in Print

The links below will take you to a site where you can compare prices at booksellers across the web. More in-depth info about the book may be found by clicking on to the book's page at one of the online merchants.

by Richard P. McBrien
by P. G. Maxwell-Stuart

Chronological Index

Geographical Index

Index by Profession, Achievement, or Role in Society

mla apa chicago
Your Citation
Snell, Melissa. "Pope Leo III." ThoughtCo, Aug. 26, 2020, thoughtco.com/pope-leo-iii-profile-1789101. Snell, Melissa. (2020, August 26). Pope Leo III. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/pope-leo-iii-profile-1789101 Snell, Melissa. "Pope Leo III." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/pope-leo-iii-profile-1789101 (accessed May 30, 2023).