On the death of Pope Innocent VIII in 1492, Cardinals meet in conclave to elect his successor. Cardinal Rodrigo Borgia has waited all of his life for this opportunity and he is not going to let it pass. With no successful candidate on the first and several successive ballots, he secretly communicates with his son Cesare, advising him on which Cardinals to bribe in order to get their votes. Successfully elected, he moves quickly to establish hi control over the Church. As Pope Alexander VI, he also decides that the Pope must not be chaste but be seen to be chaste and tells Vanossa, the mother of his children, that they can no longer have a physical relationship. The Pope is no sooner elected than his son Cesare discovers a plot to poison him at a banquet hosted by Cardinal Orsini. Written by
Did You Know?
The real Orsino Orsini was Giulia Farnese's husband, not a cardinal. The Borgias did poison a Giambattista Orsini in 1503, not 1492. See more
[on his death bed
You are afraid to enter, but you must. I am about to meet my maker. I have confessed. And I confess I am very afraid. Colonna. Sforza. Orsini. Borgia.
Della Rovere. You will fight like dogs over this corpse I leave for this throne of St. Peter's. But it was pure once. We have all sullied it with our greed and lechery. Which of you will wash it clean?
It shall be cleansed, Your Holiness, with the tears we shed for you. I swear before the Living God.
Zadok the Priest
George Frideric Handel See more