The Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church

Biographical Dictionary
Pope Clement XIV (1769-1774)
Consistory of December 16, 1771 (VIII)


(10) 1. LA ROCHE-AYMON, Charles-Antoine de (1697-1777)

Birth. February 17, 1697, Castle of Mainsat, diocese of Limoges, France (1). Third of the three children of Renaud Nicolas, count de La Roche-Aymon, and Geneviève de Baudri de Piancourt. The other siblings were Paul-Philippe and Marie.

Education. Received his initial education in letters and humanities from private tutors; later, attended the Theological Faculty of Paris, where he obtained a doctorate in theology in April 1724.

Priesthood. Ordained (no information found). Canon of the cathedral chapter of Mâcon. Vicar general of Limoges, 1724.

Episcopate. Elected titular bishop of Sarepta and appointed suffragan of Limoges, June 11, 1725. Consecrated, August 5, 1725, cathedral of Meaux, by Cardinal Henri de Thyard de Bissy, bishop of Meaux, assisted by Jean Le Normand, bishop of Évreux, and by Scipion-Jérôme Bégon, bishop of Toul. Abbot commendatario of Obazine, Limoges, 1729. Transferred to the see of Tarbes, October 2, 1730. He was nominated to the metropolitan see of Toulouse by the king of France on January 10, 1740. Promoted to the metropolitan see of Toulouse, November 11, 1740; he was granted the pallium on that same day. In the tensions between Jansenists and Jesuits on the one hand, and Catholics and Protestants on the other hand, he assumed tried a conciliatory position; he also supported the establishment of seminars. Member of the Assembly of the Clergy since 1740; its vice-president, 1748-1760; and its president, 1760-1775. Nominated to the metropolitan see of Narbonne by the king of France on October 2, 1752. Transferred to the metropolitan see of Narbonne, December 18, 1752; he was granted the pallium on that same day. Commendatory of the Order of the Saint-Esprit, 1753. Grand almoner of the French Kingdom, 1760-1777. Abbot commendatario of the Benedictine abbey of Trinité de Fecamp, March 1761. Nominated by the king of France to the metropolitan see of Reims on December 5, 1762. Transferred to the metropolitan see of Reims, January 24, 1763; on that same day he was granted the pallium; he was also named legate of the Holy See. In May 1766, he was named president of the Commission of Regulars, post from which he introduced important reforms such as raising the age to make the religious profession and the establishment of a minimum number of monks to form a community. Pair de France. Legate of the Holy See. From April 1771 he was in charge of the feuille de benefices, which made him virtual minister of Cults, because he was the one proposing the nominations for the different ecclesiastical benefices.

Cardinalate. Created cardinal priest in the consistory of December 16, 1771; with an apostolic brief of December 16, 1771, the pope sent him the red biretta; he never went to Rome to receive the red hat and the title. Did not participate in the conclave of 1774-1775, which elected Pope Pius VI. Abbot commendatario of Saint-Germain-des-Prés from January 1774. He presided over the consecration of King Louis XVI and Queen Marie-Antoinette on June 11, 1775. Dean of the French bishops.

Death. October 27, 1777, after having being sick for two years suffering from several illnesses, in Paris. Buried, with solemn pomp, in the church of the abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés, on the following October 30, after his body had been taken in procession through the streets of that district. The funeral oration was delivered by Pierre-Joseph Perreau, titular bishop of Tricomi, on April 1, 1778, in the metropolitan cathedral of Reims.

Bibliography. Berton, Charles. Dictionnaire des cardinaux, contenant des notions générales sur le cardinalat, la nomenclature complète ..., des cardinaux de tous les temps et de tous les pays ... les détails biographiques essentiels sur tous les cardinaux ... de longues études sur les cardinaux célèbre .... Paris : J.-P. Migne, 1857 ; Facsimile edition. Farnborough ; Gregg, 1969, col. 1464; Chapeau, O.S.B. André and Fernand Combaluzier, C.M. Épiscopologe français des temps modernes, 1592-1973. Paris : Letouzey et Ané, 1974, p. 367-368; La Roche-Aymon, Charles-Antoine de. Condamnation de plusieurs livres contre la religion. [Signé : Ch.-Ant. card. de La Roche-Aymon.]. Paris : impr. de G. Desprez, 1775; La Roche-Aymon, Charles-Antoine de. Harangue faite au Roy, à Versailles, le 7 juin 1740, par Mgr l'archevêque de Toulouse [Ch.-Ant. de La Roche-Aymon], pour l'ouverture de l'assemblée générale du clergé de France. Paris : P. Simon et P.-G. Simon fils, 1740; La Roche-Aymon, Charles-Antoine de. Mandement de monseigneur l'archévêque duc de Reims, pour ordonner des prières publiques pour le repos de l'âme de feu monseigneur le dauphin. À Reims, Chez Barthelemi Multeau, imprimeur de son excellence monseigneur l'archévêque duc de Reims, de la ville & du Collége de l'Université. 1766. Notes: Avec privilege du roi./ Title vignette (arms of the Archbishop)./ Dated and signed on p. 11: Donné à Versailles ... le 6 janvier 1766. Charles Antoine, archévêque duc de Reims. Par monseigneur, Armand, sécr./ "Lettre du roi à m. l'archévêque duc de Reims. [Ecrit à Versailles le vingt-quatre décembre mil sept cent soixante-cinq]": p. 12; La Roche-Aymon, Charles-Antoine de. Missale sanctae ecclesiae metropolitanae Remensis. Parisiis : È typographiâ Joannis-Thomae Herissant, regis & domûs Augustae, tàm publicae quàm privatae, typographi ordinarii, 1770. Other title: Half-title Missale Remense. Responsibility: illustrissimi ac reverendisismi in Christo patris DD. Caroli-Antonii de la Roche-Aymon ... auctoritate, ac venerabilis ejusdem ecclesiae capituli consensu editum; La Roche-Aymon, Charles-Antoine de. Officia sanctorum propria ecclesiae et dioecesis Tolosanae : jussu illustrissimi & reverendissimi Dom. Dom. Caroli-Antonii de la Roche-Aymon, Archiepiscopi Tolosani edita : quibus adjecta sunt officia quae nuper Sanctae Sedis Apostolicae auctoritate, partim ex praecepto, partim ad libitum recitanda prodiere. Tolosae : Apud Claudium-Aegidium Lecamus, 1744. Note: Marque au titre (armoiries de Charles-Antoine de La Roche-Aymon), lettres ornées et bandeaux gravés sur bois. General Information: Ancienne collection Pifteau; fonds ancien de la bibliothèque universitaire de Toulouse 1 Version: Reliure parchemin 18e siècle; Perreau, Pierre-Joseph. Oraison funèbre d'éminentissime... Charles-Antoine de La Roche-Aymon,... prononcée dans l'église de Reims, le 1er avril 1778 : par messire Pierre-Joseph Perreau,... Reims : Piérard, 1778; 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. 345; Ritzler, Remigium, and Pirminum Sefrin. Hierarchia Catholica Medii et Recientoris Aevi. Volumen VI (1730-1799). Patavii : Typis et Sumptibus Domus Editorialis "Il Messaggero di S. Antonio" apud Basilicam S. Antonii, 1968, pp. 27, 301, 356 and 404; Seidler, Sabrina M.; Weber, Christoph. Päpste und Kardinäle in der Mitte des 18. Jahrhunderts (1730-1777) : das biographische Werk des Patriziers von Lucca Bartolomeo Antonio Talenti. Frankfurt am Main ; New York : Peter Lang, 2007. (Beiträge zur Kirchen- und Kulturgeschichte, Bd. 18), p. 669-670; Weber, Christoph. Senatus divinus : verborgene Strukturen im Kardinalskollegium der frühen Neuzeit (1500-1800). Frankfurt am Main ; New York : Peter Lang, 1996, p. 520, no, 748.

Links. Biography, by Hartmut Lohmann, in German, Biographisch-Bibliographisches Kirchelexicon; his portrait, arms and biography, in French, Wikipedia; his portrait and biography, in Italian, Wikipedia; his drawing, genealogy and biographical data, in French, GeneaNet; his drawing by Benjamin Duvivier, musée du Louvre, Ministère de la Culture et de la Communication, France; his portrait, château de Aulteribe, Ministère de la Culture et de la Communication, France; his portrait, by Alexandre Roslin, Museum Syndicate; his engraving by Antonio Capellan, Biblioteca comunale dell'Archiginnasio, Bologna; his coat of arms, second from the bottom, Héraldique européenne; his coat of arms, Wikimedia; his effigy on a medal, Numismatic collection of Olomouc archiepiscopate, Czech Republic; his effigy on a medal, Numismatic collection of Olomouc archiepiscopate, Czech Republic; his effigy and arms on a medal, MA-Shops.de Muenzen.

(1) This is according to Chapeau, Épiscopologe français des temps modernes, 1592-1973, p. 367-368; Seidler, Päpste und Kardinäle in der Mitte des 18. Jahrhunderts (1730-1777), p. 669; and his biographies in German and French, linked above. Ritzler, Hierarchia Catholica Medii et Recentioris Aevi, V, 345 says that he was born on February 17, 1696. Bertone, Dictionnaire des Cardinaux, col. 1464, indicates that he was born on February 17, 1692. Both Diccionario Hispano Americano and Enciclopedia ilustrada Seguí also indicate that he was born in 1697.

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