We often say the Papal Artifacts’ Collection is peppered with unusual and interesting stories about the popes, and this particular urban legend regarding Pope Alexander VI, the Borgia Pope, is one of them.
Father Kunst recorded 20 such papal minutes for Real Presence Radio that include several interesting and often little known facts having to do with our pontiffs.
We hope you enjoy them as you can access them from this link.
Just click on, “Papal Urban Legend.”
Alexander VI: Papal Bull With Its Original Envelope, Dated 1495
The bull is dated 1495 and is untranslated. The envelope is fairly fancy in and of itself and the document is made of parchment. The thread used is twine, signifying a document of lesser importance. It was addressed to a bishop.
This document is significant because it comes from the most notorious pope in at least 500, if not 1000, years. Although Pope Alexander VI was a talented, generous and wise patron of the arts, his personal life was highly immoral.
The papal bull is the particular type of letter issued by a pope that is authenticated by the bulla, the lead seal, appended to the end of it. This name was used for any document that contained a metal seal of this sort.