Photius (d. 891 A.D.), Patriarch of Constantinople, was descended from a wealthy and noble Byzantine family. He became a favourite of the Caesar Bardas, uncle of the Emperor Michael III., and through his influence was raised to the patriarchate in 857, passing in the five previous days through all the preliminary orders. His opponent, Ignatius, was supported by the Pope Nicolas I., and a breach ensued between the two Churches, Photius raising difficulties concerning matters of doctrine and discipline, and (867) calling together a Council which excommunicated Nicolas. The murder of Michael III. and accession of Basilius the Macedonian were followed by the recall of Ignatius and the banishment of Photius; but the latter afterwards became reconciled to his old enemy, and succeeded him as Patriarch (878). He was again deposed and banished, however, in 886, and ended his days in an Armenian monastery. His Myriobiblion seu Bibliotheca is a very valuable work, containing the names and short accounts of some 280 authors with critical remarks.