The Council of Piacenza was an international conference between both secular and ecclesiastical powers called by Cardinal Odo de Chatillon, who was then elected as Pope Urban II. This council brought an end to the investiture conflict in Germany, and cemented the ecclesiastical influence of the papacy championed in the Gregorian Reforms.
Pope Urban II organized and presided at this Council. A total 200 Bishops, 4,000 clerics and 30,000 laymen from all across Europe were present, including the following embassies from European monarchs:
The topics that the council are here to discuss are:
- Status of Bishop Guilbert of Ravenna
- Settlement of the Great Saxon Revolt:
- Status of Emperor Rudolf and Prince Conrad II in the German monarchy
- Estates and excommunication on Conrad
- Settlement for the Saxon nobles
- Future of the Duchy of Bohemia
- Advancement of the Gregorian reforms:
- Condemnation of Simony and Clerical Sodomy
- Ecclesiastical investiture over the entire Catholic Church
- Papal supremacy over the authority of Emperor
- Relation of the Byzantine Empire with the Roman Empire
Pope Urban II makes the following proposal:
- Bishop Guilbert of Ravenna is removed from his office, but the other clerics that supported him are forgiven
- Excommunication is lifted from the Salian dynasty, and Conrad is returned all the personal titles of Henry IV
- Rudolf remains as Holy Roman Emperor, but Conrad will be made Co-King of Germany
- A marriage between the two families will ensure the legitimacy of Rudolf's successors from the Salian dynasty
- Lands of the Saxon nobles will be expanded as compensation, at the expense of Thuringia and Bohemia
- The demesne of the Bohemian monarch will be heavily reduced, giving some titles to the Saxons and some to the Rus
- All monarchs will accept the clerical reforms of Pope Gregory in condemning simony and sodomy
- All ecclesiastical offices within the Holy Roman Empire are at the will of the Catholic Church alone, and Rome is the head of the Church
- The title and authority of Emperor, as a successor of the Western Roman Empire, is at the will of the Pope alone
- The Komnean Dynasty is confirmed as Emperor of the Eastern Roman Empire, and shall be allied with the Western Emperor. While further relations are negotiated between the east and west, the excommunication on Alexios is lifted.
Duke Magnus Billung, in regards to the marriage alliances, suggests the following:
- Emperor Rudolf's son Berthold of Rheinfelden to the late Emperor Henry's daughter and the Prince Conrad's sister Agnes.
- Emperor Rudolf's daughter Bertha of Rheinfelden to the late Emperor Henry's son and the Prince Conrad's younger brother Henry.
Emperor Rudolf and his noblemen initially want nothing to do with the young Conrad, but the lack of a better successor, plus the proposed marriage ties and other compensations, are enough to sway them to accept the Pope's wisdom.
Duke Welf (represented by his father, Albert Azzo II of Milan) argues that the Bavarians should be given Bohemian titles too, since they participated in the invasion and even suffered occupation for Rudolf's cause.
The Byzantine ambassadors accept this arrangement eagerly. Now that the Pope has set the foundations for an alliance between West and East, they call upon the West to help liberate Anatolia from the Seljuks.
Duke Magnus Billung suggests they work out the specific Bohemian titles that should be handed out.
Prince Vladimir Monomakh agrees to the proposal of the Pope, and enthusiastically embraces the steps taking by Constantinople and Rome to improve relations. He also commits to aiding inthe normalization of relations between the East and West. To this end however Prince Monomakh requests that the members of the council formally recognize the Eastern Rite as a full and equal member within the church, and through this afforded the same rights and standing as their Latin kin. Monomakh implores that should disputes arise between the followers of the Latin, and Eastern rites that these disputes should resolved through peaceful means if possible and within the norms set by Rome for all the devout.
In reply to Duke Magnus, Duke Welf suggests:
- The county of Plzeň goes to the Saxons
- The county of Doudleby goes to the Bavarians
- The Moravian-Silesian lands go to the Rus
Pope Urban II suggests the counties of Lusatia and Meissan can also be considered for the Saxons or Bavaria
The representatives of Francia, Raymond of Bourges and Hugh of Vermandois agree with most of the propositions made by Pope Urban II. However, they have doubts if keeping Conrad in a position of power like co-king would be wise. Even with alliances trough weddings a betrayal can happen, this way restarting the conflict between the Salian dynasty and the Holy Father.
- Rudolf, Emperor of the Romans
- Alexios, Emperor of the Romans
- Conrad II, Duke of Franconia
- Bertha of Savoy
- Welf, Duke of Bavaria
- Albert Azzo II, Margrave of Milan
- Matilda, Margravine of Tuscany
- Magnus Billung, Duke of Saxony
- Raymond of Bourges, Abbot of Sens (representative of Philip I, King of the Franks)
- Hugh I, Count of Vermandois (representative of Philip I, King of the Franks)