Nicolas De Flavigny

Nicolas De Flavigny, a French prelate, flourished in the first half of the 13th century. We find him at first dean of the church of Laugres in 1229. He had doubtless gained great renown by his learning and his character, for in that year (February 20), the Church of Besangon having been agitated by grave discords for two years, Gregory IX selected Nicolas de Flavigny to put an end to them, and made. him archbishop. This choice resulted in removing the multitude of competitors, whose ambitious conspiracies had caused much scandal, and in restoring peace to the Church of Besanon. But scarcely was Nicolas established in his metropolitan chair than he was besieged by more turbulent agitators. They were the citizens of Besancon, his subjects and vassals, according to the feudal law, who, again insurgent, had pronounced the fall of his temporal authority. The citizens of Besancon were determined to conquer their independence; with this design they had already exiled one of their archbishops, and would persecute others: of all the adversaries who could oppose Nicolas, they were the most dangerous. He could not reduce them without having recourse to the emperor. Nicolas, at this formidable juncture, went to the emperor, claimed his titles, his rights, and obtained from Frederick II, in the month of December, 1231, a diploma full of menaces against the confederate citizens. They submitted, but with the firm resolution of again attempting to gain their civil independence. Thibauld de Rougemont, viscount of Besancon, also had great controversies with our archbishop. This viscount had arrogated to himself divers rights in the city formerly exercised by the metropolitan authority. Nicolas summoned him before his tribunal, and demanded an account of his abuses. The viscount at first resisted; yet as his power was not as formidable as that of the citizens, Nicolas himself, without the aid of the emperor, soon brought him to sign a formal disavowal of his pretensions. This occurred in 1232. About the same time Nicolas, having difficulty with the count de Montbeliard, who had permitted some usurpation of the domains of the monks of Lure, hesitated not to excommunicate him. Nicolas, then, was evidently a vigilant and firm prelate. In the month of August, 1235, he was in Mayence, where, as prince of the empire, he sat in the councils of Frederick II. He died Sept. 7, 1235, while returning from this city. In the last century, a manuscript. work of Nicolas de Flavignvy was found preserved at Citeaux, entitled Concordiat' Evangeliorum Nicolai Crisopolitani. It is not known where this w'ork is now stored. The authors of the Histoire litteraire de la France have omitted the name of this writer. See Dunod de Charnage, Histoire de' lAglise de Besangon, 1:196; Huillard Brehoilles, Hist. Diplom. Frederici II, vol. iv; Gallia Christiana vetus, vol. i.

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