Cornelius bishop of Rome, succeeded Falianus in that see June 4, A.D. 251. Some of the clergy and people of Rome, not approving of the election of Cornelius because of his controversy with Novatianus about the lapsi, to whom Cornelius was disposed to be lenient, chose Novatianus bishop, and three Italian bishops ordained him; he therefore was the first antipope. In October, 251, Cornelius having convened a numerous council at Rome, consisting of sixty bishops and a number of presbyters and deacons, they confirmed his election. He did not enjoy his honor long, for he was banished by the emperor Gallus to Civita Vecchia, where he died (or, according to some accounts, suffered martyrdom) September 14, 252. Ten of Cyprian's letters are directed to Cornelius. There are two genuine letters of Cornelius to Cyprian Still preserved among Cyprian's epistles; they are the forty-sixth and forty-eighth (ed. Oberthur). Besides these, Cornelius wrote a long letter to Fabianus concerning the character and conduct of Novatian, considerable extracts from which Eusebius has preserved (Hist. Eccl. bk. 6, chap. 43). — Lardner, Works, 3:74 sq.; Cave, Hist. Lit. 1:80; Wetzer u. Welte, Kirchen-Lex 2:879.