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A term used by Petrarch and later writers of the exile of the popes at Avignon, France, from 1309 to 1377. Seven French popes--so called Clement V, John XXII, Benedict XII, Clement VI, Innocent VI, Blessed Urban V, and Gregory XI--were involved. Pope Gregory, the last one, yielded to the entreaties of St. Catherine of Siena (1347-80) to return to Rome in sprite of the protests of the King of France and most of the cardinals.
All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.