Early life and election as Pope
The son of a Roman of German ancestry named Hildebrand, Benedict VI was born in Rome in the region called Sub Capitolio (in what was the old 8th region of Augustan Rome, the Forum Romanum). Prior to his election as pope, he was the Cardinal deacon of the church of Saint Theodore.
On the death of Pope John XIII in September 972, the majority of the electors who adhered to the imperial faction chose Benedict to be his successor. He was not consecrated until January 973, due to the need to gain the approval of the Holy Roman Emperor, Otto I. Installed as pope under the protection of Otto I, Benedict was seen as a puppet of the emperor by the local Roman aristocracy who resented the emperor’s dominance in Roman civil and ecclesiastical affairs.