Pope Anacletus, also known as Cletus, was the third Bishop of Rome, following Saint Peter and Pope Linus. Anacletus served as pope between c. 79 and his death.
The name "Cletus" in Ancient Greek means "one who has been called," and "Anacletus" means "one who has been called back." Also "Anencletus" (Greek: Ανέγκλητος) means "unimpeachable." The Roman Martyrology mentions the Pope in question only under the name of "Cletus". The Annuario Pontificio gives both forms as alternatives. Eusebius, Saint Irenaeus, Saint Augustine and Optatus all suggest that both names refer to the same individual.
St. Cletus/Anacletus was traditionally understood to have been a Roman who served as pope for twelve years. The Annuario Pontificio states, "For the first two centuries, the dates of the start and the end of the pontificate are uncertain." It gives the years 80 to 92 as the reign of Pope Cletus/Anacletus. Other sources give the years 77 to 88.
According to tradition, Pope Anacletus divided Rome into twenty-five parishes. One of the few surviving records concerning his papacy mentions him as having ordained an uncertain number of priests.
He died and was buried next to his predecessor, Saint Linus, near the grave of St. Peter's, in what is now Vatican City. His name (as Cletus) is included in the Roman Canon of the Mass.