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 children of Marquis Alessandro Falconieri Mellini and Marianna Lante Montefeltro della Rovere, of the dukes of Bomarzo, duchess of Santa Croce. The other child was Orazio (1793-1849); in 1819 he married Paola, of the marchises of Carcano. Relative of Cardinals Lelio Falconieri (1643) and Alessandro Falconieri (1724). Great-grand-nephew of Cardinal Mario Millini (1747).

Education. Studied grammar and rhetoric at Collegio Tolomei, Siena; later, he also studied 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. At the same time, he was guided by Modenese B. Cavani in his theological studies.

Early life. The events of the Revolution brought the family to France, and when he was 18 years old Chiarissimo was admitted to be part of Emperor Napoléon I's pages, an honor that, even in admiration for the emperor, did not seem to gratify him much and at that time, the vocation for the priesthood manifested itslf in him.

Priesthood. Ordained, September 19, 1818. Privy chamberlain supernumerary in 1822. Canon of the patriachal Vatican basilica in 1823. Domestic prelate of His Holiness. Referendary and ponens of the Congregation of Good Government. Auditor of the Sacred Roman Rota in 1824. He met and became friend of Giovanni Maria Mastai Ferretti, future Pope Pius IX.

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. In the same ceremony was consecrated Gasparo Bernardo Pianetti, bishop of Viterbo e Toscanella. He took possession of the see of Ravenna on the following October 21.

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.

Webgraphy. Biography by Giuseppe Monsagrati, in Italian, Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani - Volume 44 (1994), Treccani; his engraving, Araldica Vaticana.

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

Birth. December 10, 1778, Bagnacavallo, diocese of Faenza. Son of Bernardo Orioli and Teresa Alberti.

Education. Joined the Order of the Friars Minor Conventuals (a branch of the Franciscans); professed, May 6, 1793, convent of Bologna. Franciscan collegiod of Bologna and Parma; Collegio San Bonaventura, Rome, from 1804; he earned doctorates in arts and theology.

Priesthood. Ordained (no further information found). Lector of theology, Collegio San Bonaventura, Rome, 1807-1809. In France, 1809-1812. Returned to Italy; professor, Collegio San Bonaventura, 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 of Orvieto, 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 until his death. 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.

Webgraphy. Biography by Ignazio Veca, in Italian, Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani - Volume 79 (2013), Treccani; his engraving, arms and portrait, Araldica Vaticana; Reliquiario di Santa Filomena, bottega dell'Italia centrale, secolo XIX (1840-1860), regione ecclesiastica Umbria, diocesi Orvieto-Todi, Beni Ecclesiastici in web, (BeWeB); Orazione funebre del cardinale Ant. Francesco Orioli di Bagnacavallo dell'Ordine de'Minori Conventuali Morto il XX. Febbraio MDCCCLII. Detta da Monsignor Gio. Benedetto Folicaldi Vescovo di Faenza Dopo la Messa Pntificale nella Chiesa di San Francesco della stessa Città All Occasione di Solenne Funerale il dì VIII. Marzo del Messimo Anno. Firenze Tipografia della Casa di Corbezione 1853, Google Books.

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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 also professor of Greek, at the University of Bologna from 1804 to 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 Books of the Oriental Church, 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 April 28, 1844 until his death. Prefect of the S.C. of Studies from May 20, 1845 until April 10, 1848. 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, Sanskrit, 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 (1).

Death. March 15, 1849, of pneumonia and gastric flu, in Rome. Exposed and buried without pomp in a modest tomb in his title (2). The monument above the tomb was erected in 1885.

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.

Webgraphy. Biography by Umberto Benigni, in English, The Catholic Encyclopedia; The World Record Cardinal, in English; his engravings, arms and portraits, Araldica Vaticana.

(1) Lord Byron referred to Cardinal Mezzofanti as "monster of languages [...] who ought to have existed at the time of the Tower of Babel, as universal interpreter".
(2) 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. Son of Marchis Gregorio Ugolini, from Mont'Olmo (now city of Pausula), and Ludovica Alaleona, from a patrician family.

Education. Studied literature and philosophy at Collegio Tolomei, Siena; and later, studied utroque iure, both canon and civil law, Rome, obtaining a doctorate.

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.

Webgraphy. Biography, in Italian, Wikipedia; his portrait by Francesco Podesti, Gabrius Databank; his engraving, arms and portrait, Araldica Vaticana; hia portrait, Regione Marche, sec. XIX (1824), Corridonia (MC), Cultura Italia, Ministero per i beni e le attività culturali (MiBAC); his effigy on a medal, 1839, for his nomination as Pontifical Legate of the City of Ferrara, Artemide Aste, 2007-2018; Cenni sulla vita del cardinale Giuseppe Ugolini, Roma, Tipografia del Ven. Ospizio Apostolico, Leonardo Olivieri Editore Tipografo 1868, Google Books .

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

Birth. August 16, 1788, Pesaro. From a family of the county nobility. Son of Count Gianbernardino Ciacchi and Annunziata Bourbon del Monte; he had held important public offices in the Marche region and twice, in 1781 and 1786, had been gonfaloniere.

Education. Initial studies in Pesaro. Having started ecclesiastical studies, he cultivated two interests in his youth: poetry and agronomy.

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 17, 1822. Domestic prelate and referendary, February 2, 1825. Relator of the S.C. of Good Government, March 19, 1826. Vice-legate in Ferrara, October 1826. Delegate in Frosinone, May 8, 1827. Delegate in Spoleto, January 6, 1829; and in Rieti, December 1828. Pro-legate in Bologna, briefly, in February 1829, during the conclave of 1829-1830. Apostolic delegate in Macerata and Camerino, July 13, 1830 until 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.

Webgraphy. Biography by Giuseppe Monsagrati, in Italian, Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani - Volume 25 (1981), Treccani; his arms and engraving, Araldica Vaticana.

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

Birth. October 10, 1779, Casola Valsenio, diocese of Imola. Second of the seven children of Giovacchino Soglia and Ana Braga. The other siblings were Maria Giovanna (August 22, 1778-1779); Maria Teresa (April 21, 1781; married Giovanni Bellini); Domenico (October 13, 1782-1783); Domenica March 8, 1784; married Francesco Montevecchi); Annunziata (April 27, 1786; married Giuseppe Bona); Maria Francesca October 27, 1789-1789). His last name is also listed as Soglia Ceroni.

Education. Studied at the Seminary of Imola; then, studied philosophy in Bologna; later, he attended Collegio Romano, Rome, where he obtained a doctorate in theology on September 5, 180); and finally, studied at La Sapienza University, Rome, where he earned a doctorate in utroque iuris, both civil and canon law, on 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, in the church of S. Gregorio al Coelio, Rome, by Cardinal Francesco Bertazzoli, assisted by Gregorio Muccioli, titular bishop of Agatopoli, and by Giuseppe Perugini, O.S.A., titular bishop of Porfireone, sacristan of His Holiness. 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. There is a street named after him in Casola Valsenio.

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.

Webgraphy. His engraving and biography, in Italian, Wikipedia; his engraving and arms, Araldica Vaticana; Il Card. Giovanni Soglia Ceroni Servitore di Cinque Papi. A cura di Pier Giacomo Rinaldi Ceroni e Andrea Padovani. www.terontola.it; Elogio dell'eminentissimo e reverendissimo principe signor cardinale Giovanni Soglia Ceroni vescovo di Osimo e Cingoli letto del terzo giorno delle solenni sue esequie 14. agosto 1856. Nella chiesa cattedrale di Osimo da Giuseppe Ignazio Montanari. Ancona dai tipi di Aurelj Giuseppe e Comp. 1856, Google Book.

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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. Studied theology and utroque iure, both canon and civil law at Collegio Romano, Rome.

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.

Webgraphy. His portrait and engraving, Araldica Vaticana.

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

Birth. February 25 (or)26, 1806, Dresden, Saxony. Fourth child of Camillo Massimo, marquis of Roccasecca dei Volsci, and Princess Cristina von Saxony, daughter of Prince Franziskus Xavier von Saxony. The other siblings were Giuseppina (1799-1862); Teresa (1801-1858); Vittorio Emanuele (1803-1873); and Barbara (1813-1849). Related by the second marriage of his brother to Cardinal Giuseppe della Porta Rodiani (1834). He resigned his hereditary rights.

Education. Obtained a doctorate in utroque iure, both canon and civil law, in 1830.

Early life. In 1823, he was sent to Paris as apostolic ablegato to bring the red biretta to Anne-Louis-Henri de La Fare, archbishop of Sens. In 1829, he was named domestic prelate of His Holiness. In 1830, he became relator of of the Congregation of Good Government and assessor of the tribunalof the Auditor of the Apostolic Chamber. On July 8, 1832, he was named secretary of the S.C. of Waters and Roads. In 1833, he was named protonotary apostolic soprannumerario. In 1834, he became cleric of the Apostolic Chamber, president of the Zecche and of the Office of the bollo, ori, argenti and in charge of the decimal conversion of the papal currency. In 1836, he was named master of the Papal Chamber. On September 13, 1838, he was named papal maggiordomo and prefect of the Sacred Apostolic Palace.

Sacred orders. (No information found).

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. Member of the SS.CC. of Good Government, of Propaganda Fide, of the Census and of Waters and Roads. On November 29, 1842, he was named protector of the city of Tivoli. Prefect of the economics of the S.C. of Propaganda Fide, March 11, 1843. Apostolic legate in Ravenna, November 14, 1843; arrived in the city on December 10. Participated in the conclave of 1846, which elected Pope Pius IX. Prefect of the S.C. of Waters and Roads, August 7, 1846. In March 1847, he became member of the S.C. of the Fabric of the Patriarchal Vatican basilica. On December 31, 1847, he was named minister of Public Works. He was a decided conservative, hard in administering the Legation of Romagna, enemy of the liberals and contrary to attributing to the laity a significant role in the government of the State, not in line with the direction taken by Pope Pius IX in the early times of his pontificate. Man of vast culture, Cardinal Massimo can be considered, like his brother Vittorio Emanuele, as an example of the will of a part of the sleepy Roman court of the second quarter of the nineteenth century not to remain culturally isolated. Versed above all in the ancient disciplines, he was a member, president and founder of various archaeological societies: virtuoso in the Congregation of the Virtuosi al Pantheon (1838); resident member of the Tiberian Academy (1839); honorary member of the Pontifical Roman Academy of Archeology (1839), which he had helped to found; councilor and honorary president of the Archaeological and Heraldic College of France; honorary member of the Athens Fine Arts Society (1845). He was also a founding member and president of the Agricultural Statistical Institute (1847). As a prelate lover of the fine arts, in close relationship with Pope Gregory XVI, he conceived the villa Gregoriana of Tivoli, of distinctly Romantic taste and among the favorite destinations of the Grand tour, which was realized following the diversion of the Aniene and the creation of the "big waterfall". In addition, as prefect of the Holy Apostolic Palaces, he oversaw the construction of the Egyptian Gregorian Museum and had extensive restoration work done. As first secretary of the Congregation of Waters, and then as prefect of Water and Roads, he worked in the monumental work of deviation of the Aniene by excavating Mount Catillo near Tivoli, a work that had become necessary after the terrible flood of 1826 and on which he wrote an impressive treaty (Historical report of the tunnel of Mount Catillo in Tivoli for the invasion of the river Aniene, Rome 1838). During his stay in Ravenna, he restored the mausoleum of Theodoricus (1845).

Death. January 11, 1848, Rome, immediately after an agitated meeting of the Council of Ministers in which, according to his brother Vittorio, he "suffered severe sorrows". 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. The tombstone, composed by his brother, Vittorio Emanuele, says that the cardinal was happy for not having had time to see the Roman Revolution («Felix heu nimium felix qui tempestive Romanis casibus praereptus es».

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.

Webgraphy. Biography by Tommaso di Carpegna Falconieri, in Italian, Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani - Volume 72 (2008), Treccani; his engraving, arms and portrait, Araldica Vaticana.

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