Pope Gregory XVI
Overview
 
Pope Gregory XVI born Bartolomeo Alberto Cappellari, named Mauro as a member of the religious order
Religious order
A religious order is a lineage of communities and organizations of people who live in some way set apart from society in accordance with their specific religious devotion, usually characterized by the principles of its founder's religious practice. The order is composed of initiates and, in some...

 of the Camaldolese
Camaldolese
The Camaldolese monks and nuns are part of the Benedictine family of monastic communities which follow the way of life outlined in the Rule of St. Benedict, written in the 6th century...

, was Pope
Pope
The Pope is the Bishop of Rome, a position that makes him the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church . In the Catholic Church, the Pope is regarded as the successor of Saint Peter, the Apostle...

 of the Catholic Church from 1831 to 1846. Strongly conservative
Conservative Christianity
Conservative Christianity is a term applied to a number of groups or movements seen as giving priority to traditional Christian beliefs and practices...

 and traditionalist
Traditionalist Catholic
Traditionalist Catholics are Roman Catholics who believe that there should be a restoration of many or all of the liturgical forms, public and private devotions and presentations of Catholic teachings which prevailed in the Catholic Church before the Second Vatican Council...

, he opposed democratic
Democracy
Democracy is generally defined as a form of government in which all adult citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives. Ideally, this includes equal participation in the proposal, development and passage of legislation into law...

 and modernising reforms in the Papal States
Papal States
The Papal State, State of the Church, or Pontifical States were among the major historical states of Italy from roughly the 6th century until the Italian peninsula was unified in 1861 by the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia .The Papal States comprised territories under...

 and throughout Europe, seeing them as fronts for revolutionary leftism
Left-wing politics
In politics, Left, left-wing and leftist generally refer to support for social change to create a more egalitarian society...

, and sought to strengthen the religious and political authority of the papacy (see Ultramontanism
Ultramontanism
Ultramontanism is a religious philosophy within the Roman Catholic community that places strong emphasis on the prerogatives and powers of the Pope...

).
Cappellari was born at Belluno
Belluno
Belluno , is a town and province in the Veneto region of northern Italy. Located about 100 kilometres north of Venice, Belluno is the capital of the province of Belluno and the most important city in the Eastern Dolomiti's region. With its roughly 37,000 inhabitants, it the largest populated area...

 on 18 September 1765 to a noble family
Nobility of Italy
The Nobility of Italy consisted of individuals and their families of Italy recognized by sovereigns, such as the Holy Roman Emperor, the Holy See, Kings of Italy or certain other Italian kings and sovereigns as members of a class of persons officially enjoying hereditary privileges which...

.
Encyclopedia
Pope Gregory XVI born Bartolomeo Alberto Cappellari, named Mauro as a member of the religious order
Religious order
A religious order is a lineage of communities and organizations of people who live in some way set apart from society in accordance with their specific religious devotion, usually characterized by the principles of its founder's religious practice. The order is composed of initiates and, in some...

 of the Camaldolese
Camaldolese
The Camaldolese monks and nuns are part of the Benedictine family of monastic communities which follow the way of life outlined in the Rule of St. Benedict, written in the 6th century...

, was Pope
Pope
The Pope is the Bishop of Rome, a position that makes him the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church . In the Catholic Church, the Pope is regarded as the successor of Saint Peter, the Apostle...

 of the Catholic Church from 1831 to 1846. Strongly conservative
Conservative Christianity
Conservative Christianity is a term applied to a number of groups or movements seen as giving priority to traditional Christian beliefs and practices...

 and traditionalist
Traditionalist Catholic
Traditionalist Catholics are Roman Catholics who believe that there should be a restoration of many or all of the liturgical forms, public and private devotions and presentations of Catholic teachings which prevailed in the Catholic Church before the Second Vatican Council...

, he opposed democratic
Democracy
Democracy is generally defined as a form of government in which all adult citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives. Ideally, this includes equal participation in the proposal, development and passage of legislation into law...

 and modernising reforms in the Papal States
Papal States
The Papal State, State of the Church, or Pontifical States were among the major historical states of Italy from roughly the 6th century until the Italian peninsula was unified in 1861 by the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia .The Papal States comprised territories under...

 and throughout Europe, seeing them as fronts for revolutionary leftism
Left-wing politics
In politics, Left, left-wing and leftist generally refer to support for social change to create a more egalitarian society...

, and sought to strengthen the religious and political authority of the papacy (see Ultramontanism
Ultramontanism
Ultramontanism is a religious philosophy within the Roman Catholic community that places strong emphasis on the prerogatives and powers of the Pope...

).

Early life

Cappellari was born at Belluno
Belluno
Belluno , is a town and province in the Veneto region of northern Italy. Located about 100 kilometres north of Venice, Belluno is the capital of the province of Belluno and the most important city in the Eastern Dolomiti's region. With its roughly 37,000 inhabitants, it the largest populated area...

 on 18 September 1765 to a noble family
Nobility of Italy
The Nobility of Italy consisted of individuals and their families of Italy recognized by sovereigns, such as the Holy Roman Emperor, the Holy See, Kings of Italy or certain other Italian kings and sovereigns as members of a class of persons officially enjoying hereditary privileges which...

. At an early age he joined the order of the Camaldolese
Camaldolese
The Camaldolese monks and nuns are part of the Benedictine family of monastic communities which follow the way of life outlined in the Rule of St. Benedict, written in the 6th century...

 (part of the Benedictine
Benedictine
Benedictine refers to the spirituality and consecrated life in accordance with the Rule of St Benedict, written by Benedict of Nursia in the sixth century for the cenobitic communities he founded in central Italy. The most notable of these is Monte Cassino, the first monastery founded by Benedict...

 monastic family) and entered the Monastery
Monastery
Monastery denotes the building, or complex of buildings, that houses a room reserved for prayer as well as the domestic quarters and workplace of monastics, whether monks or nuns, and whether living in community or alone .Monasteries may vary greatly in size – a small dwelling accommodating only...

 of San Michele di Murano
Murano
Murano is a series of islands linked by bridges in the Venetian Lagoon, northern Italy. It lies about 1.5 km north of Venice and measures about across with a population of just over 5,000 . It is famous for its glass making, particularly lampworking...

, near Venice
Venice
Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...

. As a Camaldolese monk
Monk
A monk is a person who practices religious asceticism, living either alone or with any number of monks, while always maintaining some degree of physical separation from those not sharing the same purpose...

, Cappellari rapidly gained distinction for his theological
Christian theology
- Divisions of Christian theology :There are many methods of categorizing different approaches to Christian theology. For a historical analysis, see the main article on the History of Christian theology.- Sub-disciplines :...

 and linguistic skills. His first appearance before a wider public was in 1799, when he published against the Italian Jansenist
Jansenism
Jansenism was a Christian theological movement, primarily in France, that emphasized original sin, human depravity, the necessity of divine grace, and predestination. The movement originated from the posthumously published work of the Dutch theologian Cornelius Otto Jansen, who died in 1638...

s a controversial work entitled II Trionfo della Santa Sede, which, besides passing through several editions in Italy, has been translated into several European languages. In 1800 he became a member of the Academy of the Catholic Religion, founded by Pope Pius VII
Pope Pius VII
Pope Pius VII , born Barnaba Niccolò Maria Luigi Chiaramonti, was a monk, theologian and bishop, who reigned as Pope from 14 March 1800 to 20 August 1823.-Early life:...

 (1800–23), to which he contributed a number of memoirs on theological and philosophical questions, and in 1805 was made abbot of San Gregorio on the Caelian Hill
Caelian Hill
The Caelian Hill is one of the famous Seven Hills of Rome. Under reign of Tullus Hostilius, the entire population of Alba Longa was forcibly resettled on the Caelian Hill...

 in Rome.

These were not tranquil times, and when Pius VII was forcibly removed from Rome in 1809 on the orders of Napoleon, Cappellari went back to Murano
Murano
Murano is a series of islands linked by bridges in the Venetian Lagoon, northern Italy. It lies about 1.5 km north of Venice and measures about across with a population of just over 5,000 . It is famous for its glass making, particularly lampworking...

, then in 1814, with a group of monks, moved to Padua
Padua
Padua is a city and comune in the Veneto, northern Italy. It is the capital of the province of Padua and the economic and communications hub of the area. Padua's population is 212,500 . The city is sometimes included, with Venice and Treviso, in the Padua-Treviso-Venice Metropolitan Area, having...

. With the return of the papacy to Rome and to the sovereignty of the Papal States
Papal States
The Papal State, State of the Church, or Pontifical States were among the major historical states of Italy from roughly the 6th century until the Italian peninsula was unified in 1861 by the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia .The Papal States comprised territories under...

, Cappellari was called back to Rome as vicar general
Vicar general
A vicar general is the principal deputy of the bishop of a diocese for the exercise of administrative authority. As vicar of the bishop, the vicar general exercises the bishop's ordinary executive power over the entire diocese and, thus, is the highest official in a diocese or other particular...

 of the Camaldolese, then counsellor to the Inquisition
Inquisition
The Inquisition, Inquisitio Haereticae Pravitatis , was the "fight against heretics" by several institutions within the justice-system of the Roman Catholic Church. It started in the 12th century, with the introduction of torture in the persecution of heresy...

, and finally Prefect
Prefect
Prefect is a magisterial title of varying definition....

 of the Congregation of Propaganda Fide, which dealt with all mission territories other than in Latin America and the Spanish dominions, including non-Catholic states in Europe.

On 21 March 1825 he was created cardinal
Cardinal (Catholicism)
A cardinal is a senior ecclesiastical official, usually an ordained bishop, and ecclesiastical prince of the Catholic Church. They are collectively known as the College of Cardinals, which as a body elects a new pope. The duties of the cardinals include attending the meetings of the College and...

 by Leo XII, and shortly afterwards was given the task of arranging a concordat
Concordat
A concordat is an agreement between the Holy See of the Catholic Church and a sovereign state on religious matters. Legally, they are international treaties. They often includes both recognition and privileges for the Catholic Church in a particular country...

 to safeguard the rights of Catholics in the Low Countries
Low Countries
The Low Countries are the historical lands around the low-lying delta of the Rhine, Scheldt, and Meuse rivers, including the modern countries of Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and parts of northern France and western Germany....

. In this he was successful.

He negotiated peace on behalf of Armenian Catholics with the Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

. He discouraged Polish
Congress Poland
The Kingdom of Poland , informally known as Congress Poland , created in 1815 by the Congress of Vienna, was a personal union of the Russian parcel of Poland with the Russian Empire...

 revolutionaries who undermined Tsar Nicholas I
Nicholas I of Russia
Nicholas I , was the Emperor of Russia from 1825 until 1855, known as one of the most reactionary of the Russian monarchs. On the eve of his death, the Russian Empire reached its historical zenith spanning over 20 million square kilometers...

's efforts to support the Catholic royalist cause
Bourbon Restoration
The Bourbon Restoration is the name given to the period following the successive events of the French Revolution , the end of the First Republic , and then the forcible end of the First French Empire under Napoleon  – when a coalition of European powers restored by arms the monarchy to the...

 in France, by the necessity of diverting troops to Poland.

Election as Pope

On 2 February 1831, after sixty-four days of conclave, he was unexpectedly chosen to succeed Pope Pius VIII
Pope Pius VIII
Pope Pius VIII , born Francesco Saverio Castiglioni was Pope in 1829 and 1830.-Biography:He was born in Cingoli, Marche, the son of Count Ottavio Castiglioni and his wife Sanzia Ghislieri. He studied Canon law and, in 1800 became bishop of Montalto...

 (1829–30) in the papal chair. His election was influenced by the fact that the cardinal considered the most likely papabile
Papabile
Papabile is an unofficial Italian term first coined by Vaticanologists and now used internationally in many languages to describe a cardinal of whom it is thought likely or possible that he will be elected pope. A literal English translation would be "popeable" or "one who might become pope".In...

, Giacomo Giustiniani
Giacomo Giustiniani
Giacomo Giustiniani was an Italian papal diplomat and Cardinal. Considered papabile in the Papal Conclave , his election was vetoed by Ferdinand VII of Spain....

, was vetoed by King Ferdinand VII of Spain
Mid-nineteenth century Spain
Spain in the 19th century was a country in turmoil. Occupied by Napoleon from 1808 to 1814, a massively destructive "war of independence" ensued, driven by an emergent Spanish nationalism. An era of reaction against the liberal ideas associated with revolutionary France followed the war,...

. The other major candidates, Cardinals Emmanuele De Gregorio
Emmanuele de Gregorio
Emmanuele de Gregorio was an Italian Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church.De Gregorio was born on at sea while his mother was travelling to Spain. Although he had one other cardinal among his relatives, no other information about his early life survives...

 and Bartolomeo Pacca, had been candidates in the previous conclave. When a deadlock arose between them, the cardinals turned to Cappellari, but it took as many as eighty-three ballots for a decisive result to be obtained.

At the time of election, Cardinal Cappellari was not yet a bishop—the last man to be elected Pope without episcopal consecration. Hence, after his election he was consecrated bishop by Bartolomeo Pacca, Cardinal Bishop of Ostia and Velletri, dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals, with Pier Francesco Galleffi, Cardinal Bishop of Porto e Santa Rufina, sub-dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals, and Tommasso Arezzo, Cardinal Bishop of Sabina, acting as co-consecrators.

The choice of Gregory XVI as his regnal name
Regnal name
A regnal name, or reign name, is a formal name used by some monarchs and popes during their reigns. Since medieval times, monarchs have frequently chosen to use a name different from their own personal name when they inherit a throne....

 was influenced by the fact that he had been abbot
Abbot
The word abbot, meaning father, is a title given to the head of a monastery in various traditions, including Christianity. The office may also be given as an honorary title to a clergyman who is not actually the head of a monastery...

 of San Gregorio monastery on the Coelian Hill for over twenty years. This was the same abbey from which Pope Gregory the Great
Pope Gregory I
Pope Gregory I , better known in English as Gregory the Great, was pope from 3 September 590 until his death...

 had dispatched missionaries to England in 596.

Pontificate

The Revolution of 1830
Revolution of 1830
The Revolution of 1830 can be:* The July Revolution in France leading to a constitutional monarchy lasting until the revolutions of 1848* The Belgian Revolution in the United Kingdom of the Netherlands leading to the creation of Belgium...

 which overthrew the House of Bourbon
House of Bourbon
The House of Bourbon is a European royal house, a branch of the Capetian dynasty . Bourbon kings first ruled Navarre and France in the 16th century. By the 18th century, members of the Bourbon dynasty also held thrones in Spain, Naples, Sicily, and Parma...

 had just inflicted a severe blow on the Catholic royalist party in France, and almost the first act of the new government there was to seize Ancona
Ancona
Ancona is a city and a seaport in the Marche region, in central Italy, with a population of 101,909 . Ancona is the capital of the province of Ancona and of the region....

, thus throwing Italy
Italian unification
Italian unification was the political and social movement that agglomerated different states of the Italian peninsula into the single state of Italy in the 19th century...

, and particularly the Papal States
Papal States
The Papal State, State of the Church, or Pontifical States were among the major historical states of Italy from roughly the 6th century until the Italian peninsula was unified in 1861 by the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia .The Papal States comprised territories under...

, into an excited condition which seemed to demand strongly defensive measures. In the course of the struggle which ensued, it was more than once necessary to call in Austrian defenders against red-shirted republicans engaged in a terrorist campaign. The conservatives postponed their promised reforms after bombings and assassination attempts. Nor did the replacement of Tommaso Bernetti by Luigi Lambruschini
Luigi Lambruschini
Luigi Lambruschini was an Italian cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church in the mid nineteenth century.-Biography:...

 in 1836 mend matters.

Pope Gregory and Cardinal Lambruschini opposed basic technological innovations such as gas lighting and railways, believing that they would promote commerce and increase the power of the bourgeoisie
Bourgeoisie
In sociology and political science, bourgeoisie describes a range of groups across history. In the Western world, between the late 18th century and the present day, the bourgeoisie is a social class "characterized by their ownership of capital and their related culture." A member of the...

, leading to demands for liberal reforms which would undermine the monarchical
Monarchy
A monarchy is a form of government in which the office of head of state is usually held until death or abdication and is often hereditary and includes a royal house. In some cases, the monarch is elected...

 power of the Pope over central Italy. Gregory in fact banned railways in the Papal States, calling them chemins d'enfer (literally "ways of hell
Hell
In many religious traditions, a hell is a place of suffering and punishment in the afterlife. Religions with a linear divine history often depict hells as endless. Religions with a cyclic history often depict a hell as an intermediary period between incarnations...

," a play on the French for railroad, chemin de fer, literally "iron road"). However, under pressure from the French, Gregory was liberal in forgiving imprisoned revolutionaries, a policy which might have aided the final overthrow of Gregory's successor, Pope Pius IX
Pope Pius IX
Blessed Pope Pius IX , born Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferretti, was the longest-reigning elected Pope in the history of the Catholic Church, serving from 16 June 1846 until his death, a period of nearly 32 years. During his pontificate, he convened the First Vatican Council in 1869, which decreed papal...

, as temporal ruler in 1870.

Gregory XVI made great expenditures for defensive, architectural and engineering works, and was a major patron of learning in the hands of Angelo Mai
Angelo Mai
Angelo Mai was an Italian Cardinal and philologist. He won a European reputation for publishing for the first time a series of previously unknown ancient texts. These he was able to discover and publish, first while in charge of the Biblioteca Ambrosiana in Milan and then in the same role at the...

, Giuseppe Mezzofanti, Gaetano Moroni
Gaetano Moroni
Gaetano Moroni was an Italian writer, the author of the well-known Dizionario di erudizione storico-ecclesiastica.- Biography :Moroni was born in Rome....

. However, these large expenditures left the Papal States much weaker financially.

The insurrections at Viterbo in 1836, in various parts of the Legations in 1840, at Ravenna
Ravenna
Ravenna is the capital city of the Province of Ravenna in the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy and the second largest comune in Italy by land area, although, at , it is little more than half the size of the largest comune, Rome...

 in 1843 and Rimini
Rimini
Rimini is a medium-sized city of 142,579 inhabitants in the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy, and capital city of the Province of Rimini. It is located on the Adriatic Sea, on the coast between the rivers Marecchia and Ausa...

 in 1845, were followed by wholesale executions and severe sentences, hard labour or exile
Exile
Exile means to be away from one's home , while either being explicitly refused permission to return and/or being threatened with imprisonment or death upon return...

; still the Papal States continued to have considerable unrest.

In 1839 Gregory issued an encyclical against slavery, In Supremo Apostolatus
In Supremo Apostolatus
In Supremo Apostolatus is a papal bull issued by Pope Gregory XVI regarding the institution of slavery. Issued on December 3, 1839 as a result of a broad consultation among the College of Cardinals, the bull resoundingly denounces both the slave trade and the continuance of the institution of...

, and canonized Veronica Giuliani
Veronica Giuliani
Saint Veronica Giuliani, O.S.C. Cap., was an Italian Capuchin nun and mystic. She was canonized by Pope Gregory XVI in 1839.-Early life:...

, an Italian mystic. Gregory died on June 1, 1846.

Condemnation of the slave trade

In 1839, Pope Gregory XVI wrote In Supremo Apostolatus
In Supremo Apostolatus
In Supremo Apostolatus is a papal bull issued by Pope Gregory XVI regarding the institution of slavery. Issued on December 3, 1839 as a result of a broad consultation among the College of Cardinals, the bull resoundingly denounces both the slave trade and the continuance of the institution of...

, an historic Papal Bull
Papal bull
A Papal bull is a particular type of letters patent or charter issued by a Pope of the Catholic Church. It is named after the bulla that was appended to the end in order to authenticate it....

 condemning the international slave trade:

See also

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