Antonio Bonombra was born 1430 in Province of Savona, Liguria, Italy and died 1480 of unspecified causes.

Antonio Bonombra was probably born in the province of Savona, Liguria in the first half of the 15th century. XV. He entered the Augustinian convent of Oulx. He had several positions such as apostolic notary in Genoa and chaplain of the hospital of San Biagio, near Genoa.

On May 4, 1467, on a proposal by Cardinal Alain de Coet, Antonio Bonombra was appointed Bishop of Accia in Corsica, seat vacant since 1466, when Giovanni Andrea di Bussi had been transferred to the bishopry of Aleria.

The Diocese of Accia, although very poor and of little importance, was the object of conflicting claims. A former bishop Natalino di Omessa (?-?) (also known as Fra 'Antonio), though canonically elected bishop of Accia in November 1450, had been deposed and excommunicated by the pope the following year for not paying the dues to the Vatican. Di Ormessa had continued to claim his title and exert his episcopal functions, even after the appointment of Di Bussi. His position had been strengthened by the ruling in his favor by an ecclesiastic court held in Biguglia. However, Bonombra acted with great firmness against his rival and was able to secure his position as bishop of Accia.

During his episcopate, Antonio Bonombra received a series of additional assignments by Pope Paul II. In December 1467, together with the Bishop of Nebbio, he was appointed to settle a land dispute between the priest Abramo Da Belgodere and the monastery of San Venerio del Tino in Portovenere. As apostolic delegate, Bonombra repeatedly summoned the parties to his presence, but, as Abramo Da Belgodere failed to appear before the court, the dispute dragged on until June 1458 without a settlement.

In 1469 Paul II gave Bonombra the responsibility of monitoring the spread of a heretical movement in Corsica and in August 1470 appointed him general collector of taxes for the entire island.

On 20 September the same year he was again appointed by the pope as arbiter and judge in a dispute between the bishop of Mariana and Cardinal Francesco della Rovere. It must be assumed that during this assignment significant ties were created between della Rovere and Bonombra, because when, the following year, the cardinal was elected pope under the name Sixtus IV, he called Bonombra to Rome as one of his aides.

The most important mission assignted to Antonio Bonombra was to accompny Princess Sophia Palaiologina, as papal legate and apostolic nuncio, during her voyage to Moscow. The wedding by proxy of the princess with the Grand Duke of Moscow Ivan III was celebrated by the pope on June 1, 1472, and the princess was travelling to Moscow to meet her new spouse. The pope had seen the marriage as a way of creating a rapprochement between the Catholic and the Orthodox churches. Anotnio Bonombra's mission also covered regions as remote as Pommerania in the north or the Genovese colony of Caffa in the south.

On June 20, Bonombra received 600 ducats for the expenses of the mission which included several other Italians. The voyage crossed [[Italy[[ and Germany and was marked by ceremonial stops in Siena, Bologna, Vicenza, Nüremberg and Lübeck, which was reached on September 1. Normally travelers to Russia followed the land route through Poland. However, as Ivan III was at war with Poland the sea route over the Baltic Sea from Lübeck to Kolyvan (now Tallin), which took 11 days, was preferred. The voyage continued through Yuryev (now Tartu), Pskov and Novgorod. Finally on November 12, 1472 Sofia Palailogina and her suite arrived in Moscow.

After attending the wedding ceremony in Moscow celebrated by Metropolitan Philip of Moscow, Bonombra extend his stay at the court of Ivan III until January 1473. There are several contemporary notates describing his activities in Moscow. Venetian sources, accuse Bonombra, a Genovese, of exerting a nocive and perfidious influence on the Tsar against Venetian interests [1] Russian sources, who always designate him as cardinal Antonio, though Bonombra never had this title) emphasize the religious disputes and emphasize his inability to defend his views in front of the dialectics of Orthodox theologians. In any case, the mission did not meet the Vatican's expectations of reducing the divergence between the two churches.

Antonio Bonombra left Moscow, on January 26 with rich gifts. On the return journey he passed through the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and Poland, where he was received with great honors.

It seems that, after his mission to Moscow, pope Sixtus IV gave Antonio Bonombra had other important assignments.

He died before April 14, 1480 (date of appointment of his successor [[Bartolomeo Pannoli (1512-?) as bishop of Accia), probably in Corsica.


  • </references>
  • [ G. Balbi - L'encicloppedia italiana]
  • Le carte del monastero di S. Venerio del Tino relative alla Corsica, a cura di G. Pistarino, Torino 1944
  • P . Pierling - La Russie et l'Orient. Mariage of a Tsar - Paris 1891
  • A. Ferretto - Per Antonio Bonombra, vescovo di Accia (1467-80) - Giornale ligustico, XX (1897), pp. 168-171
  • P. Pierling, La Russie et le Saint-Siège - Paris 1906
  • I. Rinieri - I vescovi della Corsica - Arch. stor. di Corsica VII (1931), p. 55;
  • L. von Pastor - Storia dei papi, vol. II - Roma 1942
  • Dictionnaire d'Histoire et de Géographie Ecclésiastique, Vol. IX


Footnotes (including sources)


  1. ^ P. Pierling - Un vénitien à Moscou au XV e siècle - Revue des questions historiques, XLVII [1890], pp. 600