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|Pope Innocent III|
Evaluation of the influence of Innocent III
Innocent III is widely viewed as one of the most significant of all popes. He was intimately involved in the temporal affairs of worldy kingdoms and politics reflecting his understanding of the pope as having special authority on earth on behalf of God. Innocent III argued using Matthew 16:19 as an analogy, that the pope gave powers to and authorized kings, and so viewed it as his right to assess the morality of claimants to thrones. Using this as his basis he exercised significant power in the Holy Roman Empire leadership struggles of his day, supporting one monarch over another and excommunicating those he disapproved of.
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