The Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church

Biographical Dictionary
Pope Pius VII (1800-1823)
Consistory of June 4, 1819 (XV)


(82) 1. HABSBURG-LOTHARINGEN, Rudolf Johannes Joseph Rainier von (1788-1831)

Birth. January 8, 1788, Pisa (1). Youngest of the sixteen children of Emperor Leopold II of Austria-Hungary and Infanta Maria Luisa of Spain. He was royal prince of Hungary and Bohemia and archduke of Austria.

Education. Pupil, 1803-1804, and important promoter of Ludwig van Beethoven. Compositions (op. 58, 73, 81a, 96, 97, 106, 111, 133, 134) and the Missa solemnis (op. 123, for his enthronization in Olomouc) were dedicated to him. Received the sacrament of confirmation, the insignias of the clerical character, and the minor orders, March 19, 1805.

Episcopate. Elected archbishop coadjutor of Olomouc by its cathedral chapter, June 24, 1805. Cardinal Theodore von Colloredo, archbishop of Olomouc, died on September 12, 1811 and the archbishop coadjutor elect resigned on September 15, 1811 and passed to the lay state. Knight of the Golden Fleece, 1811. Elected archbishop of Olomouc by its cathedral chapter, March 24, 1819; preconized, June 4, 1819.

Cardinalate. Created cardinal priest in the consistory of June 4, 1819; received the title of S. Pietro in Montorio, June 4, 1819; and the red hat from the nuncio in Vienna, September 28, 1819. Received the subdiaconate, August 22, 1819; diaconate, August 24, 1819.

Priesthood. Ordained, August 29, 1819. Received the episcopal consecration on September 26, 1819, in Vienna, from Sigismund Anton Hohenwart, archbishop of Vienna, assisted by Andreas Alois Ankwicz, archbishop of Lviv of the Latins, and by Alois Joseph Krakowsky von Kolowrat, bishop of Köninggrätz; enthroned, March 9, 1820. Decorated with the grand cross of the Austrian Order of Sankt Stefan, 1819. Did not participate in the conclave of 1823, which elected Pope Leo XII. Did not participate in the conclave of 1829, which elected Pope Pius VIII. Did not participate in the conclave of 1830-1831, which elected Pope Gregory XVI.

Death. July 23/24, 1831, Baden, Austria. Exposed in the Augustinian imperial parish church, Vienna, and buried in the imperial tomb in the Capuchin church, Vienna. His heart was buried in the crypt of the metropolitan cathedral of Olomouc.

Bibliography. LeBlanc, Jean. Dictionnaire biographique des cardinaux du XIXe siècle : contribution à l'histoire du Sacré Collège sous les pontificats de Pie VII, Léon XII, Pie VIII, Grégoire XVI, Pie IX et Léon XIII, 1800-1903. Montréal : Wilson & Lafleur, 2007. (Collection Gratianus. Série instruments de recherche), p. 460-461; Ritzler, Remigium, and Pirminum Sefrin. Hierarchia Catholica Medii et Recentioris Aevi. Volumen VII (1800-1846). Patavii : Typis et Sumptibus Domus Editorialis "Il Messaggero di S. Antonio" apud Basilicam S. Antonii, 1968, p. 14, 44 and 290-291.

Links. Brief biographical data, in German, and portrait; his genealogy, IX, 16a; another genealogy, A3 B12; brief biographical data, in German, last on the page; his engraving and effigy on three medals; engravings, Bildarchiv Austria, Österreichischen Nationalbibliothek; his effigy on nineteen coins and medals, Numismatic collection of Olomouc archiepiscopate, Czech Republic; genealogy and biographical data, in English; his portrait; another portrait; another portrait, crypt in St. Vaclav metropolitan cathedral, Olomouc, Czech Republic; and his bust, crypt in St. Vaclav metropolitan cathedral, Olomouc, Czech Republic.

(1) This is according to Ritzler, Hierarchia Catholica Medii et Recentioris Aevi, VII, 291; and to all the sources linked above except his first biographical data in German and the one in Czech, which indicate that he was born in Florence.

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