Vitalian pope from 657 until 672. In that age the pope was subject to the emperor, and Vitalian was obliged to write to Constans II to request the imperial confirmation of his elevation to the papal chair. In the Monothelite controversy he was obliged to bend before the imperial party, which favored the Monothelite error. He was also unsuccessful in maintaining the superiority over bishop Maurus of Ravenna to which he laid claim, Vitalian's influence seems to have been more powerful in England than elsewhere, through the labors of Theodore, archbishop of Canterbury, who endeavored to establish uniformity with the Church of Rome. Vitalian left certain letters which are yet extant; and died, it is stated, on Jan. 27, 672. See Herzog, Real-Encyklop. s.v.

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