The Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church

Biographical Dictionary
Pope Gregory XVI (1831-1846)
Consistory of February 12, 1838 (X)

(36) 1. FALCONIERI MELLINI, Chiarissimo (1794-1859)

Birth. September 25, 1794, Rome. Youngest of the two sons of Marquis Alessandro Falconieri Mellini and Marianna Lante Montefeltro della Rovere, of the dukes of Bomarzo. Relative of Cardinals Lelio Falconieri (1643) and Alessandro Falconieri (1724). Great-grand-nephew of Cardinal Mario Millini (1747).

Education. Studied at Collegio Tolomei, Siena; at Collegio Romano, Rome; and at La Sapienza University, Rome, where he earned a doctorate in utroque iuris, both civil and canon law, on September 13, 1824.

Priesthood. Ordained, September 19, 1818. Domestic prelate of His Holiness. Auditor of the Sacred Roman Rota.

Episcopate. Elected archbishop of Ravenna, July 3, 1826. Consecrated, August 15, 1826, church of S. Maria degli Angeli, Rome, by Pope Leo XII, assisted by Filippo Filonardi, archbishop of Ferrara, and by Giuseppe Perugini, titular bishop of Porfireone, papal sacristan.

Cardinalate. Created cardinal priest in the consistory of February 12, 1838; received the red hat and the title of S. Marcello, February 15, 1838. Participated in the conclave of 1846, which elected Pope Pius IX. Secretary of Memorials, April 2, 1857. Camerlengo of the Sacred College of Cardinals, beginning of 1859 until his death.

Death. August 22, 1859, Ravenna. Exposed and buried in the metropolitan cathedral of Ravenna.

Bibliography. Farabulini, David. Vita del cardinale Chiarissimo Falconieri, arcivescovo di Ravenna. Roma : Aurelj, 1860; 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, pp. 29, 42 and 318; Weber, Christoph and Becker, Michael. Genealogien zur Papstgeschichte. 6 v. Stuttgart : Anton Hiersemann, 1999-2002. (Päpste und Papsttum, Bd. 29, 1-6), I, 393.

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(37) 2. ORIOLI, O.F.M.Conv., Antonio Francesco (1778-1852)

Birth. December 10, 1778, Bagnacavallo, diocese of Faenza.

Education. Joined the Order of the Friars Minor Conventuals (a branch of the Franciscans); professed, May 6, 1793, convent of Bologna. Franciscan colleges of Bologna and Parma; St. Bonaventure College, Rome (1804; doctorate in arts and theology).

Priesthood. Ordained (no information found). Lector of theology, St. Bonaventure College, Rome, 1807-1809. In France, 1809-1812. Returned to Italy; professor, St. Bonaventure College, Rome, 1817. Definitor general of his order. Consultor of the S.C. of the Index. Examiner of the Roman Clergy. Examiner for the promotion to academic chairs. Vicar general of his order, September 4, 1832.

Episcopate. Elected bishop of Orvieto, April 15, 1833. Consecrated, May 1, 1833, basilica of Ss. XII Apostoli, Rome, by Cardinal Giacinto Placido Zurla, O.S.B.Cam., assisted by Giovanni Soglia, titular archbishop of Efeso, and by Alessandro Bernetti, bishop of Recanati.

Cardinalate. Created cardinal priest in the consistory of February 12, 1838; received the red hat and the title of S. Maria sopra Minerva, February 15, 1838. Resigned pastoral government of the diocese, December 18, 1841. Participated in the conclave of 1846, which elected Pope Pius IX. Prefect of the S.C. of Bishops and Regulars, May 2, 1847. Secretary of State ad interim, May 5 to June 4, 1848. Opted for the title of Ss. XII Apostoli, September 30, 1850.

Death. February 20, 1852, Rome. Exposed and buried in the church of Ss. XII Apostoli, Rome; Pope Pius IX participated in his funeral.

Bibliography. Chapeau, O.S.B., André and Charles N. Bransom. "Franciscan bishops." Franciscan Studies, XLVIII (1988), 341; 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, pp. 29, 43 and 384.

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mezzofanti2.jpg

(38) 3. MEZZOFANTI, Giuseppe Gasparo
(1774-1849)

Birth. September 19, 1774, in via Malcontenti al vecchio, no. 1988, parish of S. Tommaso al Mercato, Bologna. Son of Francesco Mezzofanti, a carpenter, and Gesualda Dall'Olmo, a housewife. They had several children but all died in infancy except Teresa and Giuseppe Gasparo. He was baptized on September 20, 1774.

Education. Piarist School Bologna (classical languages, Spanish, German, and some South American dialects); he had a prodigious memory; at the age of twelve years he began the three-year course of philosophy, which he closed with a public disputation; his theological studies were completed with no less distinction, at an age at which he could not yet be ordained; consequently he devoted himself to the study of Oriental languages.

Priesthood. Ordained, September 23, 1797. Professor of Hebrew, University of Bologna, 1797. For his refusal to take the oath of allegiance to the Cisalpine Republic he lost his teaching position. Pastoral work with soldiers of many countries of Europe in the hospitals of Bologna, 1799-1800, provided him the opportunity to expand his knowledge of the languages. Assistant in the library of the Institute of Bologna, 1803. Again, professor of Hebrew and of Greek, University of Bologna, 1804-1808. Declined an invitation of Napoleon to settle in Paris, 1806. Librarian and professor, University of Bologna, 1815. Also studied ethnology, archeology, numismatics, and astronomy. Pastoral work as confessor of visitors and foreigners. Pope Gregory XVI asked him to move to Rome and work at the Holy See, 1831; after a long time, he accepted. Domestic prelate of His Holiness, June 14, 1831. Canon of the patriarchal Liberian basilica. Protonotary apostolic. Canon of the patriarchal Vatican basilica. Custodian of the Vatican Library, April 16, 1833. Consultor of the S.C. of Extraordinary Ecclesiastical Affairs, May 22, 1833. Consultor of the S.C. for the Correction of the Liturgical Books of Oriental Rites, 1833. Consultor of the S.C. of the Index, March 4, 1835.

Cardinalate. Created cardinal priest in the consistory of February 12, 1838; received the red hat and the title of S. Onofrio al Gianicolo, February 15, 1838. Honorary member of the Division of Historical Sciences and Philology of the Russian Academy of Sciences, December 16, 1843. Prefect of the S.C, of the Correction of Oriental Books from 1844. Prefect of the S.C. of Studies, May 23, 1845. Prefect of the S.C. for the Correction of the Liturgical Books of Oriental Rites. Participated in the conclave of 1846, which elected Pope Pius IX. A famous linguist and polyglot known for the facility with which he learned languages. He was called a "living Pentecost". These are some of the languages he spoke: Albanian, Amaric, Angolan, Arabic, Aramean, Armenian, Ancient Armenian, Bohemian, Bulgarian, Catalan, Celtic, Chaldean, Chinese, Coptic, Kurd, Danish, English, Ethiopic, French, Georgian, German, Ancient and Modern Greek, Hebrew, Rabbinic Hebrew, Dutch, Hungarian, Illiric, Indostanic, Irish, Italian, Latin, Malaysian, Maltese, Mongol, Norwegian, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Samaritan, Sanscrit, Sardic, Singalese, Spanish, Syriac, Swedish, Tartar, Turkish, and Valakese. It is said that he spoke perfectly thirty-eight languages; thirty other languages, less perfectly; plus fifty dialects.

Death. March 15, 1849, Rome. Exposed and buried in his title (1).

Bibliography. De Camillis, Mario. Il Cardinale Giuseppe Mezzofanti, principe dei poliglotti. Roma : Lucci, 1937. Note: Dédicace mss. de l'auteur à Claudio Isopescu; Meluzzi, Luciano. Il cardinale Giuseppe Gaspare Mezzofanti, poliglotta e bibliotecario.Bologna : [s.n.], 1963; 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, pp. 29 and 41; Russell, Charles William. The life of Cardinal Mezzofanti; with an introductory memoir of eminent linguists, ancient and modern. London : Longman, Brown, 1858.

Links. Biography, in English; his funeral monument in the church of S. Onofrio al Gianicolo, Rome; The World Record Cardinal, in English; and his portrait by P. Garosini, Museo di Roma, Rome.

(1) This is the transcription of the text in the plaque, on the outside wall of the church S. Onofrio al Gianicolo, commemorating the cardinal:

HEIC IN SEDE HONORIS SUI
SITUS EST
IOSEPHUS MEZZOFANTI S R E CARD
INNOCENTIA MORUM ET PIETATE MEMORANDUS
ITEMQUE OMNIUM DOCTRINARUM
AC VETERUM NOVORUMQUE IDIOMATUM SCIENTIA
PLANE SINGULARIS ET FAMA CULTIORI ORBI
NOTISSIMUS
BONONIAE NATUS AN MDCCLXXIV
ROMAE DECESSIT AN MDCCCXLVIIII<

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(39) 4. UGOLINI, Giuseppe (1783-1867)

Birth. January 6, 1783, Macerata.

Education. Collegio Tolomei, Siena; later, studied utroque iure, both canon and civil law, Rome.

Sacred orders. Received the diaconate but was never ordained a priest (no further information found). Apostolic delegate in Frosinone, 1815. President delle Armi, 1830-1837. Dean of the clerics of the Apostolic Chamber.

Cardinalate. Created cardinal deacon in the consistory of February 12, 1838; received the red hat and the deaconry of S. Giorgio in Velabro, February 15, 1838. Apostolic legate in Ferrara. Opted for the deaconry of S. Adriano, September 13, 1838. Participated in the conclave of 1846, which elected Pope Pius IX. Opted for the deaconry of S. Maria in Cosmedin, December 17, 1855. Opted for the deaconry of S. Maria in Via Lata, March 15, 1858, retaining in commendam the deaconry of S. Maria in Cosmedin. Cardinal protodeacon.

Death. December 19, 1867, Rome. Exposed in the church of S. Salvatore in Lauro, Rome the funeral took place on December 23, 1867, with the participation of Pope Pius IX; and was buried in the church of S. Maria in Via Lata.

Bibliography. 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, pp. 29-30 and 45; Ritzler, Remigium, and Pirminum Sefrin. Hierarchia Catholica Medii et Recentioris Aevi. Volumen VIII (1846-1903). Patavii : Typis et Sumptibus Domus Editorialis "Il Messaggero di S. Antonio" apud Basilicam S. Antonii, 1979, pp. 54 and 55.

Link. His portrait by Francesco Podesti.

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(40) 5. CIACCHI, Luigi (1788-1865)

Birth. August 16, 1788, Pesaro. Of a family of the county nobility.

Education. Initial studies in Pesaro.

Early life. In his youth he was a member of the noble guard of the viceroy of Italy; later, he entered the papal administration. Privy chamberlain of His Holiness, February 1822. Domestic prelate and referendary, February 1825. Relator of the S.C. of Good Government, March 1826. Vice-legate in Ferrara, October 1826. Delegate in Frosinone, May 1827. Delegate in Spoleto and Rieti. December 1828. Pro-legate in Bologna, briefly, in February 1829, during the conclave of 1829-1830. Apostolic delegate in Macerata and Camerino, July 1830-1834. Governor of Rome, vice-camerlengo of the Holy Roman Church, and chief of director general of police, January 24, 1834 until February 12, 1838; he performed his duites with tolerance and measurement.

Sacred orders. (No information found).

Cardinalate. Created cardinal deacon in the consistory of February 12, 1838; received red hat and the deaconry of S. Angelo in Pescheria, February 15, 1838. Protector of Pesaro, March 1838. Participated in the conclave of 1846, which elected Pope Pius IX. Apostolic legate in Ferrara, March 29, 1847, where he remained unil the Austrian occupation, against which he energetically protested and tried to pratice the policy of openness of Pope Pius IX to diminsh the effects of the foreign presence; resigned the post on July 3, 1848. Named secretary of State and president of the Council of Ministers, May 4, 1848; resigned both posts on the following May 8, because he could not approved the hardening of the policies of the pope; returned to Ferrara and retired from public life. He went to Pesaro and devoted himself to his ecclesiastical ministry and the administrations of his domains. Cardinal protodeacon.

Death. December 17, 1865, Rome. Exposed in the church of S. Maria in Campitelli, Rome, where his funeral was held with the participation of Pope Pius IX; and buried, according to his will, in his deaconry.

Bibliography. Del Re, Niccolò. Monsignor governatore di Roma. Rome : Istituto di Studi Romani Editore, 1972, p. 126; LeBlanc, Jean. Dictionnaire biographique des cardinaux du XIXe siècle : contribution à l'histoire du Sacré Collège sous les potificats 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. 246-247; 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, pp. 30 and 45.

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(41) 6. SOGLIA, Giovanni (1779-1856)

Birth. October 10, 1779, Casola Valsenio, diocese of Imola. His last name is also listed as Soglia Ceroni.

Education. Seminary of Imola, Imola; studied philosophy in Bologna; Collegio Romano, Rome (doctorate in theology, September 5, 1805); La Sapienza University, Rome (doctorate in utroque iuris, both civil and canon law, July 22, 1807).

Priesthood. Ordained, January 1, 1803. Lector emeritus, La Sapienza University. Consultor of the S.C. of the Index. Examiner of the Roman clergy. Privy chamberlain of His Holiness. Secret almoner of His Holiness, 1819-1823.

Episcopate. Elected titular archbishop of Efeso, October 2, 1826. Consecrated, October 22, 1826, Rome, by Cardinal Francesco Bertazzoli. Secretary of the S.C. of Studies, 1834. Secretary of the S.C. of Bishops and Regulars, June 23, 1834. Canon of the patriarchal Vatican basilica. Titular Latin patriarch of Constantinople, April 6, 1835.

Cardinalate. Created cardinal and reserved in pectore in the consistory of February 12, 1838; published in the consistory of February 18, 1839; received red hat and the title of Ss. Quattro Coronati, February 21, 1839. Transferred to the see of Osimo e Cingoli, with personal title of archbishop, February 18, 1839. Participated in the conclave of 1846, which elected Pope Pius IX. Secretary of State, June 4 to November 29, 1848.

Death. August 12, 1856, Osimo. Exposed and buried in the cathedral of Osimo.

Bibliography. 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, pp. 30, 41, 161 and 188.

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(42) 7. TOSTI, Antonio (1776-1866)

Birth. October 4, 1776, Rome. Son of Tommaso Tosti, a Roman physician, and Agnese Massaroti.

Education. Collegio Romano, Rome, (theology and utroque iure, both canon and civil law.

Priesthood. Ordained (no further information found). Preceptor at Palazzo Ruspoli. Aiutante di studio of Joachim-Jean-Xavier d'Isoard, auditor of the Sacred Roman Rota. Member of the priestly association Pia Unione di San Paolo. Entered the service of the Roman Curia as chargé d'affaires in Turin, April 25, 1822. At his return from Turin, he was named cleric of the Aposolic Chamber and member of the Congregation for the Revision of Accounts, December 15, 1828. Domestic prelate of His Holiness, before January 7, 1829. Referendary prelate, April 22, 1829. Named by Pope Pius VIII secretary of the congregation of State formed the day after his election, April 23, 1829. Consultor of the S.C. of Rites, June 9, 1829. His financial expertise made him rise rapidly in the papal administration. President of the hospice S. Michele a Ripa Grande, Rome, January 1, 1830 until before March 12, 1839; named perpetual visitor, occupied the post until July 17, 1859, when he resigned after a demonstrations by the workers in front of the papal carriage. Pro-treasurer general of the the Apostolic Chamber, January 20, 1834; treasurer general, June 25, 1834 to February 21, 1839.

Cardinalate. Created cardinal and reserved in pectore in the consistory of February 12, 1838; published in the consistory of February 18, 1839; received red hat and the title of S. Pietro in Montorio, February 21, 1839. Pro-treasurer of the Apostolic Chamber, February 21, 1839 to April 21, 1845. Participated in the conclave of 1846, which elected Pope Pius IX. Cardinal protoprete. Camerlengo of the Sacred College of Cardinals, August 1859 until 1860. Named protector of the Vatican Library before December 20, 1859. Librarian of the Holy Roman Church, January 13, 1860; he took possession of the post on July 6, 1861 and occupied it until his death.

Death. March 20, 1866, Rome. Exposed in the basilica of S. Cecilia in Trastevere, Rome, where his funeral took place with the participation of Pope Pius IX; and buried, according to his will, in the church of the hospice S. Michelle a Ripa; his funeral monument was sculpted by Alessandro Ceccarini, his inheritor.

Bibliography. Boutry, Philippe Souverain et Pontife : recherches prosopographiques sur la curie romaine à l'âge de la restauration, 1814-1846. Rome : École française de Rome, 2002, pp. 477-478; 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, pp. 30 and 44.

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(43) 8. MASSIMO, Francesco Saverio (1806-1848)

Birth. February 26, 1806, Dresda. Son of Camillo Massimo, marquis of Roccasecca dei Volsci, and Princess Cristina di Sassonia. He resigned his hereditary rights.

Education. (No information found).

Sacred order. Ordained (no information found). Prefect of the Apostolic Palace.

Cardinalate. Created cardinal and reserved in pectore in the consistory of February 12, 1838; published in the consistory of January 24, 1842; received red hat and the deaconry of S. Maria in Domnica, January 27, 1842. Prefect of the economics of the S.C. of Propaganda Fide, March 11, 1843. Apostolic legate in Ravenna, November 14, 1843. Participated in the conclave of 1846, which elected Pope Pius IX. Prefect of the S.C. of Waters and Roads, August 7, 1846.

Death. January 11, 1848, Rome. Exposed in the basilica of S. Lorenzo in Damaso, Rome, where his funeral took place on January 15, 1848, with the participation of Pope Pius IX; and buried in the chapel of his family in that same basilica.

Bibliography. 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, pp. 32 and 46.

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