Antipope Constantine II
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Historical Figure
Nationality: Italy
Date of Birth: Unknown
Date of Death: 769 (presumed)
Religion: Catholicism
Occupation: Clergy, claimed to be Pope
Turtledove Appearances:
"Islands in the Sea"
POD: 717 CE
Type of Appearance: Contemporary reference
Occupation: Pope
Antipope Constantine II (d. 769?) was an Italian man who claimed the title of Pope in Rome in 767. The most powerful Lombard authorities considered his papacy invalid, and in spring 768 they deposed and imprisoned him. He was blinded in August after a rebellion attempted to restore him to power. In April 769, the Lateran Council had Constantine's tongue cut out for perjury. He was returned to prison, but the manner of his death is unknown.

Constantine II in "Islands in the Sea"Edit

In AD 769, at the request of the heathen Bulgar Khan Telerikh, Pope Constantine II sent Fathers Niketas and Theodore, and Brother Paul to describe the merits of Christianity. Telerikh was considering whether to adopt Christianity or Islam to be the new religion of his people.[1]

Literary commentEdit

As Constantine was a respected name and could have been adopted as a reign name by any new Pope, it is possible that Pope Constantine II (who is not described in any detail, and took office long after the POD) is not the same person as the historical Antipope Constantine II. However, given Harry Turtledove's fondness for "reversals of fortune" in his alternate history works, Pope Constantine has been treated as the same man.


  1. Departures, pg. 68.
Religious titles
Preceded by
Paul I
(reign unrecognized, claim declared invalid as "Antipope")

Succeeded by
Stephen III
Religious titles
(Fictional Work)
Preceded by
last known is
Gregory II
("Islands in the Sea")

Succeeded by
Incumbent at story's end, 769

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