The Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church

Biographical Dictionary
Pope Clement XI (1700-1721)
Consistory of August 1, 1707 (IV)
Celebrated in Rome


(23) 1. MAILLARD DE TOURNON, Charles Thomas (1668-1710)

Birth. December 21, 1668, Turin. Of a noble family from Savoy. Son of Vitorio Amedeo Maillard, count of Tournon, who was governor of Nice, and Cecilia Maria Truchi de Paglières. His first name is also listed as Carolus Thomas and as Carlo Tommaso.

Education. Studied at the University of Nice, Savoy earning a master's in theology on August 28, 1688; and a doctorate in utroque iure, both canon and civil law, on January 23, 1690.

Priesthood. Ordained on June 12, 1695. Auditor of Cardinal Baldassare Cenci. Privy chamberlain and prefect of the Dottrina Cristiana, December 1700.

Episcopate. Elected titular patriarch of Antioch, December 5, 1701. Assistant at the Pontifical Throne, December 8, 1701. Consecrated, December 21, 1701, patriarchal Vatican basilica, Rome, by Pope Clement XI, assisted by Cardinal Nicola Acciaoli, bishop of Porto e Santa Rufina, and by Cardinal Gasparo Carpegna. Appointed apostolic visitor with faculties of legate a latere to promoted the Catholic faith in China and the kingdoms of the East Indies by apostolic brief of July 4, 1702. Started for the Far East accompanied by other priests and missionaries, February 9, 1703. During the trip, he became seriously ill in the Canary Islands. They landed in Pondicherry and in Coromandel in November 1703, and preached the Gospel. After a two and a half year trip, he arrived in Macao on April 2, 1705. On December 4 of that same year, he reached Peking, where he was graciously received by Emperor K'ang-hi. He received numerous gifts as well as ample faculties to preach the Gospel. The emperor believed that the ancient Chinese rites should be preserved along with Christianity. The legate totally disagreed with the imperial belief. He was accused by the emperor, the mandarins and the Chinese people of being an innovator, an impostor and an offender of lesa maestá. He was exiled, jailed handed over to the Portuguese in Macao. Before he was incarcerated, the legate published the apostolic decrees given to him by the pope. When the pope was informed of his legate's zeal, promoted him to the cardinalate (1).

Cardinalate. Created cardinal priest in the consistory of August 1, 1707; with the apostolic bull of October 5, 1707, the pope sent him the red biretta; he never received the red hat and the title. When he received the news of his promotion to the cardinalate, he wrote a humble letter of gratitude to the pontiff indicating that if the promotion would make him leave his mission in China, he would resign it immediately. The new cardinal added in his letter that he would happily die in the Indies wearing the cardinalitial purple, which required non mediocre services to the apostolic ministry. During his incarceration he was mistreated and humiliated suffering from illnesses and famine and even having to drink salt water to calm his thirst. He could have escaped with the help of Count of Lizzaraga, governor of the Philippines but he felt it was his duty to give witness of his Christian mission and stayed in prison. He died shortly after learning that he had been created cardinal. He received the last rites before dying.

Death. June 8, 1710, in confinement in the island of Macao. As soon as the pope learned of his death, he addressed the cardinals in consistory and celebrated solemn exequies in his own chapel. The pope made all efforts to insure that the late cardinal's remains were transferred to Rome. His remains were transferred to Rome by his successor in the Chinese legation, Carlo Ambrogio Mezzabarba, titular patriarch of Alessandria, and buried next to the main altar of the church of Collegio di Propaganda Fide, Rome, on September 27, 1723. Canon Crescimbeni wrote and published his life in 1711 in Rome, under the seal of Francesco Gonzaga. The cardinal's Memorie were published in eight volumes in Venice in 1771.

Bibliography. Cardella, Lorenzo. Memorie storiche de' cardinali della Santa Romana Chiesa. 9 vols. Rome : Stamperia Pagliarini, 1794, VIII, 108-110; Ceva, Tommaso. Riflessioni sopra la causa della Cina : doppo venuto in Europa il Decreto dell'Eminentissimo di Tournon. [S.l.] : ;s.n.], 1700; Chapeau, O.S.B. André and Fernand Combaluzier, C.M. Épiscopologe français des temps modernes, 1592-1973. Paris : Letouzey et Ané, 1974, p. 399-400; The Chinese rites controversy : its history and meaning. Nettetal : Steyler Verlag, 1994. Edited by David E. Mungello. Corporate authors: Monumenta Serica Institute ; Ricci Institute for Chinese-Western Cultural History (San Francisco). Conference author: International Symposium on the Significance of the Chinese Rites Controversy in Sino-Western History ; (1992 ; San Francisco, Calif.) (Monumenta Serica monograph series, 33). Contents: An introduction to the Chinese rites controversy / D.E. Mungello -- Claims and counter-claims : the Kangxi emperor and the Europeans 1661- 1722) / Jonathan D. Spence --Jesuit accommodation and the Chinese cultural imperative / Erik Zürcher -- Chinese literati and the rites controversy, 18th-20th centuries / John Dragon young -- From Manila to Fuan : Asian contexts of dominican mission policy / John E. Wills-- Joseph premare and the names of God in China / Knud Lundbaek -- Charles Maigrot's role in the Chinese rites controversy / Claudia Von Collani -- Eliminating misunderstandings : Antoine de Beauvollier (1657-1708) and his Eclaircissements sur les controverses de la Chine / John W. Witek -- A fatal clash of Willis : the condemnation of the Chinese rite by the Papal lagate Carlo Tommaso Maillard de Tournon / Edward J. Malatesta -- Towards a history of the Chinese rites controversy / Paul Rule -- The Catholic Church in China today : a new rites controversy? / Richard Madsen -- The supression of the Chinese rites : a suggestion of some factors / Michael J. Buckley -- The crossing of cultural bridges / Donald W. Treadgold -- Reflections on the Chinese rites controversy / Theodore de Bary. Note: "Jointly published by Institut Monumenta Serica, Sankt Augustin, and the Ricci Institute for Chinese-Western Cultural History, San Francisco"/ "... the Ricci Institute sponsored an International Symposium on the "Significance of the Chinese Rites Controversy in Sino-Western History" on October 16-18th 1992 in San Francisco ..."; Clemens XI ; Tournon, Charles Thomas Maillard de. Mémoires pour Rome sur l'état de la religion chritienne dans la Chine : avec le décret de nostre S.P. le Pape Climent XI sur l'affaire des cultes chinois et le mandement de M. le Cardinal de Tournon sur le même sujet. [S.l.] : [s.n.], 1709-1710. Contents: [I]. Mémoires 1-6. Décret. Actes sur l'affaire. [II.] Mémoire 7. [III.] Mémoire 8. Additions. [IV.] Mémoire 9.Ceva, Tommaso. Riflessioni sopra la causa della Cina : doppo venuto in Europa il Decreto dell'Eminentissimo di Tournon. [S.l.] : ;s.n.], 1700; Jenkins, Robert Charles. The Jesuits in China and the legation of Cardinal de Tournon : an examination of conflicting evidence and an attempt at an impartial judgment. London : Nutt, 1894; Lucini, Luigi Maria. Esame e difesa del decreto publicato in pudisceri da monsignor Carlo Tommaso di Tournon. Roma : Nella Stamperia Vaticana, 1728. Responsibility: presentata alla medesima Santità Sua da Fra Luigi Maria Lucino; Maillard de Tournon, Carlo Tommaso ; Fatinelli, Giovanni Jacopo. Relazione del viaggio dall'isola de Tenariff nelle Canarie sino ` Pondisceri nella costa di Coromandel. Roma : G. Zenobj, 1704. Note: Dedication by G.J. Fatinelli; Notizie per l'anno 1721. Rome : Nella Stamperia di Gio: Francesco Chracas, presso S. Marco al Corso, 1721, p. 140, no. 2; Ritzler, Remigium, and Pirminum Sefrin. Hierarchia Catholica Medii et Recientoris Aevi. Volumen V (1667-1730). Patavii : Typis et Sumptibus Domus Editorialis "Il Messaggero di S. Antonio" apud Basilicam S. Antonii, 1952, pp. 26 and 89; Rouleau, Francis A. ; Stumpf, Kilian, 1655-1720. Maillard de Tournon : Papal Legate at the court of Peking. Roma : Archivum Historicum S.I., 1962. Note: "Archivum Historicum Societatis Iesu, extractum e vol. xxxi-1962"/ Summary and appendix in Latin./ Includes edited Latin appendix of Kilian Stumpf's diary record of the audience between the K`ang-hsi Emperor and the Patriarch. Other title: Archivum Historicum Societatis Iesu; Tabaglio, Giuseppe Maria ; Fatinelli, Giovanni Jacopo. Considerazioni sy la scrittura intitolata Riflessioni sopra la causa della Cina dopò venuto in Europa il decreto dell'Emo di Tournon. Roma : s.n., 1709. Named Person: Ceva, Tommaso, 1648-1737. Riflessioni sopra la causa della Cina. Maillard de Tournon, Carlo Tommaso, 1668-1710. Note: Attributed to: P. Tabaglio, O.P. (Streit, v. 7, no. 2549); P. Giuseppe Maria Tabaglio, domenicano (Melzi); L'abbé J. Jac. Fatinelli, procureur à Rome du Card. de Tournon (Sommervogel, v. 2, col. 1021)/ Place of publication from Melzi./ The Riflessioni ... is attributed to Thomas Ceva, and was also published as: Alcune riflessioni intorno alle cose presenti della Cina. 1709. Cf. Streit, v. 7, no. 2578-79. Other title: Considerazioni sù la scrittura intitolata Riflessioni sopra la causa della Cina doppo venuto in Europa il decreto dell'Eminentissimo di Tournon.

Links. Biography by Michael Ott, in English, The Catholic Encyclopedia; biography, in English, Britannica; biography, in English, Wikipedia; The "Acta Pekinensia" Project by Paul Rule; three engravings, Banque d'images, Centre de Recherche, Chateau de Versailles.

(1) For a description of his legation, see his biographical article in English, linked above.

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