The independent London newspaper

‘We’ve found a bit of Pope Clement’

Waste firm claims it has a bone of 1st-century cleric

04 May, 2018 — By Tom Foot

The relic, said to be from Clement I

A BONE claimed to be that of Pope Clement I has been discovered ­during a routine haul in central London, according to a waste clearance company.

The company said the bone was found in a red and gold wax-sealed case last year but workers did not realise what they had until it was appraised several days later.

The box was marked EX OSS S.CLEMENTIS P.M., which translates as “Bone from St Clements PM”, with PM believed to refer to “body” or “coffin” in Latin.

James Rubin, owner of Leyton-based Enviro Waste, said: “You can imagine our amazement when we realised our clearance teams had found bone belonging to a pope. It’s not something you expect to see, even in our line of work.

A popular image of Pope Clement I

“We often come across some weird and wonderful things on clearances, but we were definitely not expecting to find a bone fragment of an apostle. We know this is an important piece of history and are keen to find the most appropriate place for its final resting place, which is why we’re asking for help from members of the public.”

Saint Clement I is considered to be the first apostolic father of the church, the third successor to St Peter and the fourth pope. He was known as Clement of Rome and was the pope from about 88 to 97 or from 92 to 101 AD. And that would make one of his bones nearly 2,000 years old.

More than 200 suggestions have been made for a fitting resting place for the fragment, including the British Museum and several churches across the UK and overseas.

• To suggest a memorial spot visit


Share this story

Post a comment