Donation of Sutri
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The Donation of Sutri was an agreement reached at
Sutri held a strategic importance as a fortified place near the borders of the Duchy of Rome, which commanded the road into Tuscany.
In 728 the Lombard king Liutprand took the Castle of Sutri, which dominated the highway at Nepi on the road to Perugia. But Liutprand, softened by the entreaties of Pope Gregory II, restored Sutri "as a gift to the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul". According to
This expression of the "Liber pontificalis" was erroneously interpreted to mean that in this gift the beginning of the States of the Church was to be recognized. This is incorrect inasmuch as the popes continued to acknowledge the imperial Government, and Greek officials appear in Rome for some time longer. True it is, however, that here for the first time we meet the association of ideas on which the States of the Church were to be constructed. The pope asked the Lombards for the return of Sutri for the sake of the Princes of the Apostles and threatened punishment by these sainted protectors. The pious Liutprand was undoubtedly susceptible to such pleas, but never to any consideration for the Greeks. For this reason he gave Sutri to Peter and Paul, that he might not expose himself to their punishment. What the pope then did with it would be immaterial to him.
The pact was the first extension of Papal territory beyond the confines of the Duchy of Rome.