Adrian. The name of six popes, of. whom three were distinguished; viz. .
Adrian I. (772-795), a contemporary of Charlemagne, who protected him against the encroachments of Desiderius, king of Lombardy. The 7th (Ecumenical Council of Nicaea (Nice) was held in his pontificate, and restored the worship of images (787). Charlemagne, calling a general council of the West (794), condemned the worship but sanctioned the use of these symbols, much to the Pope's annoyance. He was an independent, liberal, and able pontiff.
Adrian IV., Nicholas Breakspebe, the only English Pope, was born at St. Albans, and settled in France as abbot of a monastery near Avignon, 1137. The strictness of his discipline recommended him to Eugenius III., who made him Cardinal-Bishop of Albano; and upon the death of Anastasius IV. (1154) he was raised to the Holy See. He held very advanced views as to papal supremacy, and began a quarrel with the Emperor Frederick (Barbarossa), which led to a rupture under his successor Alexander III. He died in 1159.
Adrian VI. of Utrecht, tutor to Charles V., and successor in the papal chair of Leo X., 1521. He attempted to reform the Church, and especially to mend the lives of the higher clergy. He thus rendered himself very unpopular, and his death (1523) was hailed with much delight.