Pope Innocent IV had been friendly to the emperor before he was elected pope. Thereafter he turned on the amazing Frederick and excommunicated him. This was nothing new to the emperor, but it was the last such sen­tence against hint, since he died in 1250.

  [Innocent recapitulates the efforts of the popes to main­tain peace between the church and the empire. and dwells upon the sins of the emperor. Then, after charging him with the particular crimes of perjury, sacrilege, heresy, and tyranny, he proceeds as follows:]

  We, therefore, on account of his aforesaid crimes and of his many other nefarious misdeeds, after careful deliberation with our brethren and with the holy council, acting however un­worthily as the vicar of Jesus Christ on earth and know­ing how it was said to us in the person of the blessed apostle Peter, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; we announce and declare the said prince to be bound because of his sins and rejected by the Lord and deprived of all honor and dignity, and more­over by this sentence we hereby deprive him of the same since he has rendered himself so unworthy of ruling his kingdom and so unworthy of all honors and dignity; for, indeed, on account of his iniquities he has been rejected of God that he might not reign or exercise authority. All who have taken the oath of fidelity to him we absolve forever from such oath by our apostolic authority, abso­lutely forbidding anyone hereafter to obey him or look upon him as emperor or king. Let those whose duty it is to select a new emperor proceed freely with the election. But it shall be our care to provide as shall seem fitting to us for the kingdom of Sicily with the council of our brothers, the cardinals.