Patriarch Michael Cerulaius, 1043-1058
- a learned professor in Constantinople, he so impressed the people that there were plots around to make him the emperor - instead he became the Patriarch and wanted to insure that the Patriarch of Constantinople was regarded as the equal of the Pope of Rome
- the Pope wanted to maintain his claim as being ‘supreme’ because he was the bishop of Rome, the original capitol of the empire - the Patriarch wanted to maintain his claim of equality with the Pope because he was the bishops of Constantinople, the “New Rome”
In 1054, after quite a bit of arguing between east and west, papal representatives excommunicated and condemned Michael Cerulaius. A few days after that Michael Cerulaius and his followers excommunicated and condemned Pope Leo IX. While Michael was pleased at his independence, some historians have suggested that this helped contribute to the destruction of the Byzantine empire.