Henry Benedict Stuart

Henry Benedict Stuart

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Henry Benedict Stuart was a Roman Catholic Cardinal
Cardinal (Catholicism)
A cardinal is a senior ecclesiastical official, usually an ordained bishop, and ecclesiastical prince of the Catholic Church. They are collectively known as the College of Cardinals, which as a body elects a new pope. The duties of the cardinals include attending the meetings of the College and...

, as well as the fourth and final Jacobite
Jacobitism
Jacobitism was the political movement in Britain dedicated to the restoration of the Stuart kings to the thrones of England, Scotland, later the Kingdom of Great Britain, and the Kingdom of Ireland...

 heir to publicly claim the thrones of England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

, Scotland
Scotland
Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. Occupying the northern third of the island of Great Britain, it shares a border with England to the south and is bounded by the North Sea to the east, the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west, and the North Channel and Irish Sea to the...

, and Ireland
Ireland
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

. Unlike his father, James Francis Edward Stuart
James Francis Edward Stuart
James Francis Edward, Prince of Wales was the son of the deposed James II of England...

, and brother, Charles Edward Stuart
Charles Edward Stuart
Prince Charles Edward Louis John Casimir Sylvester Severino Maria Stuart commonly known as Bonnie Prince Charlie or The Young Pretender was the second Jacobite pretender to the thrones of Great Britain , and Ireland...

, Henry made no effort to seize the throne. After Charles's death in January 1788 the Papacy did not recognise Henry as the lawful ruler of England, Scotland and Ireland, but referred to him as the Cardinal Duke of York.

He spent his life in the Papal States
Papal States
The Papal State, State of the Church, or Pontifical States were among the major historical states of Italy from roughly the 6th century until the Italian peninsula was unified in 1861 by the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia .The Papal States comprised territories under...

 and had a long career in the clergy of the Roman Catholic Church
Roman Catholic Church
The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the world's largest Christian church, with over a billion members. Led by the Pope, it defines its mission as spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ, administering the sacraments and exercising charity...

, rising to become the Dean of the College of Cardinals
Dean of the College of Cardinals
The Dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals is the president of the College of Cardinals in the Roman Catholic Church, and as such always holds the rank of Cardinal Bishop. The Dean is not necessarily the longest-serving member of the whole College...

 and Cardinal-Bishop of Ostia and Velletri. At the time of his death he was (and still is) one of the longest serving Cardinal
Cardinal (Catholicism)
A cardinal is a senior ecclesiastical official, usually an ordained bishop, and ecclesiastical prince of the Catholic Church. They are collectively known as the College of Cardinals, which as a body elects a new pope. The duties of the cardinals include attending the meetings of the College and...

s in the Church's history.

In his youth, Henry's father made him Duke of York
Duke of York
The Duke of York is a title of nobility in the British peerage. Since the 15th century, it has, when granted, usually been given to the second son of the British monarch. The title has been created a remarkable eleven times, eight as "Duke of York" and three as the double-barreled "Duke of York and...

 (in the Jacobite peerage
Jacobite peerage
After the deposition by the English parliament in February 1689 of King James II and VII from the thrones of England and Ireland , he and his successors continued to create peers and baronets, which they believed was their right...

), and it was by this title that he was best known. Upon the death of his brother in 1788 Henry became known by Jacobites, and within his personal entourage, as Henry IX of England, although publicly he referred to himself as Cardinal-Duke of York nuncupatus.

Early life



Henry Benedict Thomas Edward Maria Clement Francis Xavier Stuart was born in exile at the Palazzo Muti in Rome
Rome
Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...

 on 6 March 1725 and baptized on the same day by Pope Benedict XIII
Pope Benedict XIII
-Footnotes:...

, 37 years after his grandfather James II and VII
James II of England
James II & VII was King of England and King of Ireland as James II and King of Scotland as James VII, from 6 February 1685. He was the last Catholic monarch to reign over the Kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland...

 lost the throne, and ten years after his father's failed attempt
Jacobite rising
The Jacobite Risings were a series of uprisings, rebellions, and wars in Great Britain and Ireland occurring between 1688 and 1746. The uprisings were aimed at returning James VII of Scotland and II of England, and later his descendants of the House of Stuart, to the throne after he was deposed by...

 to regain it. His father was James Francis Edward Stuart
James Francis Edward Stuart
James Francis Edward, Prince of Wales was the son of the deposed James II of England...

, known to his opponents as "the Old Pretender". His mother was the Princess Maria Klementyna Sobieska
Maria Klementyna Sobieska
Maria Clementina Sobieska was a Polish noblewoman, the granddaughter of the Polish king John III Sobieski.-Biography:...

, granddaughter of the Polish
Poland
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...

 King, John III Sobieski
John III Sobieski
John III Sobieski was one of the most notable monarchs of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, from 1674 until his death King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania. Sobieski's 22-year-reign was marked by a period of the Commonwealth's stabilization, much needed after the turmoil of the Deluge and...

.

Henry went to France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 in 1745 to help his brother, Prince Charles Edward Stuart
Charles Edward Stuart
Prince Charles Edward Louis John Casimir Sylvester Severino Maria Stuart commonly known as Bonnie Prince Charlie or The Young Pretender was the second Jacobite pretender to the thrones of Great Britain , and Ireland...

 ("Bonnie Prince Charlie", or "the Young Pretender") prepare the Jacobite campaign
Jacobite rising
The Jacobite Risings were a series of uprisings, rebellions, and wars in Great Britain and Ireland occurring between 1688 and 1746. The uprisings were aimed at returning James VII of Scotland and II of England, and later his descendants of the House of Stuart, to the throne after he was deposed by...

 of that year. After its defeat, Henry Stuart returned to Italy. On 30 June 1747 Pope Benedict XIV
Pope Benedict XIV
Pope Benedict XIV , born Prospero Lorenzo Lambertini, was Pope from 17 August 1740 to 3 May 1758.-Life:...

 conferred him with tonsure
Tonsure
Tonsure is the traditional practice of Christian churches of cutting or shaving the hair from the scalp of clerics, monastics, and, in the Eastern Orthodox Church, all baptized members...

 and created him Cardinal-Deacon of S. Maria in Portico in special consistory
Consistory
-Antiquity:Originally, the Latin word consistorium meant simply 'sitting together', just as the Greek synedrion ....

 held on the 3 July 1747. On 27 August 1747 he was promoted to the four minor orders by the Pope. He received the subdiaconate on 18 August 1748 and diaconate on 25 August 1748. He was ordained priest on 1 September 1748 and consecrated titular Archbishop
Archbishop
An archbishop is a bishop of higher rank, but not of higher sacramental order above that of the three orders of deacon, priest , and bishop...

 of Corinth
Corinth
Corinth is a city and former municipality in Corinthia, Peloponnese, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Corinth, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit...

 on 2 October 1758.

He was advanced to the order of Cardinal Priest in 1748, maintaining title to S. Maria in Portico. In 1752 he transferred to the titulus of Ss. XII Apostoli. He was made Cardinal-Bishop of Frascati on 13 July 1761, and eventually succeeded to the See of Ostia and Velletri on his appointment as Dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals on 26 September 1803. He lived and worked in Frascati for many years, descending each afternoon in his carriage to Rome, where his position as vice-chancellor entitled him to the Palazzo della Cancelleria
Palazzo della Cancelleria
The Palazzo della Cancelleria is a Renaissance palace in Rome, Italy, situated between the present Corso Vittorio Emanuele II and the Campo de' Fiori, in the rione of Parione...

.
Henry was the last claimant to the English throne to touch
Touch pieces
A touch piece is a coin or medal attached to attracted superstitious beliefs, such as those with "holes" in them or those with particular designs...

 for the King's Evil
Scrofula
Tuberculous cervical lymphadenitis refers to a lymphadenitis of the cervical lymph nodes associated with tuberculosis. It was previously known as "scrofula".-The disease:...

.

French Revolution and later life


At the time of the French Revolution
French Revolution
The French Revolution , sometimes distinguished as the 'Great French Revolution' , was a period of radical social and political upheaval in France and Europe. The absolute monarchy that had ruled France for centuries collapsed in three years...

, he lost his French Royal benefices and sacrificed many other resources to assist Pope Pius VI
Pope Pius VI
Pope Pius VI , born Count Giovanni Angelo Braschi, was Pope from 1775 to 1799.-Early years:Braschi was born in Cesena...

. This, in addition to the seizure of his Frascati property by the French, caused him to descend into poverty. The British Minister in Venice
Venice
Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...

 arranged for Henry to receive an annuity of £4,000 from King George III of Great Britain. Although the British government represented this as an act of charity, Henry and the Jacobites
Jacobitism
Jacobitism was the political movement in Britain dedicated to the restoration of the Stuart kings to the thrones of England, Scotland, later the Kingdom of Great Britain, and the Kingdom of Ireland...

 considered it to be a first installment on the money which was legally owed to him. (For many years the British government had promised to return the English dowry
Dowry
A dowry is the money, goods, or estate that a woman brings forth to the marriage. It contrasts with bride price, which is paid to the bride's parents, and dower, which is property settled on the bride herself by the groom at the time of marriage. The same culture may simultaneously practice both...

 of his grandmother, Mary of Modena
Mary of Modena
Mary of Modena was Queen consort of England, Scotland and Ireland as the second wife of King James II and VII. A devout Catholic, Mary became, in 1673, the second wife of James, Duke of York, who later succeeded his older brother Charles II as King James II...

, but had never actually done so.)

Henry returned to Frascati
Frascati
Frascati is a town and comune in the province of Rome in the Lazio region of central Italy. It is located south-east of Rome, on the Alban Hills close to the ancient city of Tusculum. Frascati is closely associated with science, being the location of several international scientific...

 in 1803. In September of that year he became the Dean of the College of Cardinals
Dean of the College of Cardinals
The Dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals is the president of the College of Cardinals in the Roman Catholic Church, and as such always holds the rank of Cardinal Bishop. The Dean is not necessarily the longest-serving member of the whole College...

 and hence Cardinal Bishop of Ostia and Velletri, though he still lived in the episcopal palace at Frascati. He died there on 13 July 1807, aged 82.

Personal relationships



Historians have drawn upon contemporary perceptions to explore the suggestion that Henry was homosexual
Homosexuality
Homosexuality is romantic or sexual attraction or behavior between members of the same sex or gender. As a sexual orientation, homosexuality refers to "an enduring pattern of or disposition to experience sexual, affectional, or romantic attractions" primarily or exclusively to people of the same...

. These accounts include the writings of Hester Lynch Thrale
Hester Thrale
Hester Lynch Thrale was a British diarist, author, and patron of the arts. Her diaries and correspondence are an important source of information about Samuel Johnson and 18th-century life.-Biography:Thrale was born at Bodvel Hall, Caernarvonshire, Wales...

 (1741–1821), and the diplomat and writer Giuseppe Gorani (1740–1819). However, Gorani admitted to not having gathered sufficient evidence to confirm his suspicions either way.

The writer Gaetano Moroni
Gaetano Moroni
Gaetano Moroni was an Italian writer, the author of the well-known Dizionario di erudizione storico-ecclesiastica.- Biography :Moroni was born in Rome....

 provides the lengthiest account of Henry’s close attachment with Monsignor Lercari, his majordomo. This led to tensions between the cardinal and his father who tried to have Lercari dismissed from service and sent from Rome. A public scandal was only narrowly avoided after the personal intervention of Pope Benedict XIV.

From 1769 onwards Henry remained close to Monsignor Angelo Cesarini, a nobleman from Perugia
Perugia
Perugia is the capital city of the region of Umbria in central Italy, near the River Tiber, and the capital of the province of Perugia. The city is located about north of Rome. It covers a high hilltop and part of the valleys around the area....

, who thanks to Henry’s protection, won various honours, was made canon of the cathedral in Frascati
Frascati
Frascati is a town and comune in the province of Rome in the Lazio region of central Italy. It is located south-east of Rome, on the Alban Hills close to the ancient city of Tusculum. Frascati is closely associated with science, being the location of several international scientific...

, and finally in 1801 became Bishop of Milevi. When Henry died, Cesarini was still at his side, as he had been for 40 years. Caution should be given, however, against assuming any active sexual relationships, because equally clear in contemporary sources is York's proper and virtuous nature, and horror of all impropriety.

Post mortem



Under his will, which he signed as "Henry R", he was succeeded in all his claimed British rights by his friend and nearest blood-relative, Charles Emmanuel IV of Sardinia
Charles Emmanuel IV of Sardinia
Charles Emmanuel IV was King of Sardinia from 1796 to 1802. He abdicated in favour of his brother Victor Emmanuel I...

. But Charles never asserted nor renounced his Jacobite claims, nor have any of his successors to this day.

Contrary to popular belief, he did not leave the Crown Jewels to the Prince of Wales
Prince of Wales
Prince of Wales is a title traditionally granted to the heir apparent to the reigning monarch of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the 15 other independent Commonwealth realms...

, afterwards George IV of the United Kingdom
George IV of the United Kingdom
George IV was the King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and also of Hanover from the death of his father, George III, on 29 January 1820 until his own death ten years later...

. All his property was entrusted to Monsignor Angelo Cesarini, for distribution. Cesarini sent the Prince of Wales several jewels from Henry's private collection. These included a "Lesser George" (thought to have been worn by Charles I
Charles I of England
Charles I was King of England, King of Scotland, and King of Ireland from 27 March 1625 until his execution in 1649. Charles engaged in a struggle for power with the Parliament of England, attempting to obtain royal revenue whilst Parliament sought to curb his Royal prerogative which Charles...

 at his execution, and now at Windsor Castle
Windsor Castle
Windsor Castle is a medieval castle and royal residence in Windsor in the English county of Berkshire, notable for its long association with the British royal family and its architecture. The original castle was built after the Norman invasion by William the Conqueror. Since the time of Henry I it...

) and a St Andrew's Cross (now at Edinburgh Castle
Edinburgh Castle
Edinburgh Castle is a fortress which dominates the skyline of the city of Edinburgh, Scotland, from its position atop the volcanic Castle Rock. Human habitation of the site is dated back as far as the 9th century BC, although the nature of early settlement is unclear...

), which are insignia of the orders of the Garter
Order of the Garter
The Most Noble Order of the Garter, founded in 1348, is the highest order of chivalry, or knighthood, existing in England. The order is dedicated to the image and arms of St...

 and the Thistle
Order of the Thistle
The Most Ancient and Most Noble Order of the Thistle is an order of chivalry associated with Scotland. The current version of the Order was founded in 1687 by King James VII of Scotland who asserted that he was reviving an earlier Order...

, and also a ruby
Ruby
A ruby is a pink to blood-red colored gemstone, a variety of the mineral corundum . The red color is caused mainly by the presence of the element chromium. Its name comes from ruber, Latin for red. Other varieties of gem-quality corundum are called sapphires...

 ring.

Henry Benedict, his brother, his father and his mother are buried in the crypt of St. Peter's Basilica
St. Peter's Basilica
The Papal Basilica of Saint Peter , officially known in Italian as ' and commonly known as Saint Peter's Basilica, is a Late Renaissance church located within the Vatican City. Saint Peter's Basilica has the largest interior of any Christian church in the world...

 in the Vatican
Vatican City
Vatican City , or Vatican City State, in Italian officially Stato della Città del Vaticano , which translates literally as State of the City of the Vatican, is a landlocked sovereign city-state whose territory consists of a walled enclave within the city of Rome, Italy. It has an area of...

. There is a monument to the Royal Stuarts
Monument to the Royal Stuarts
The Monument to the Royal Stuarts is a memorial in St. Peter's Basilica, in the Vatican in Rome. It commemorates the last three members of the Royal House of Stuart: James Francis Edward Stuart, his elder son Charles Edward Stuart, and his younger son, Henry Benedict Stuart...

 designed by Antonio Canova
Antonio Canova
Antonio Canova was an Italian sculptor from the Republic of Venice who became famous for his marble sculptures that delicately rendered nude flesh...

 in the basilica to their memory on one of the columns in the basilica proper. This was restored within living memory at the expense of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother
Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon
Elizabeth Angela Marguerite Bowes-Lyon was the queen consort of King George VI from 1936 until her husband's death in 1952, after which she was known as Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, to avoid confusion with her daughter, Queen Elizabeth II...

.

Cardinalatial titles



During his life, Cardinal Stuart was assigned the following Diaconia
Diaconia
A diaconia was originally an establishment built near a church building, for the care of the poor and distribution of the church's charity in medieval Rome or Naples...

and Tituli:
  • 13 July 1747 Cardinal Deacon of Santa Maria in Portico
  • 16 September 1748 Cardinal Priest of Santa Maria in Portico
  • 18 December 1752 Cardinal Priest of Santi XII Apostoli
  • 12 February 1759 Cardinal Priest of Santa Maria in Trastevere
    Santa Maria in Trastevere
    The Basilica of Our Lady in Trastevere is a titular minor basilica, one of the oldest churches in Rome, and perhaps the first in which mass was openly celebrated...

  • 13 July 1761 Cardinal Bishop of Frascati
    Frascati
    Frascati is a town and comune in the province of Rome in the Lazio region of central Italy. It is located south-east of Rome, on the Alban Hills close to the ancient city of Tusculum. Frascati is closely associated with science, being the location of several international scientific...

  • 14 January 1763 Comendatario of San Lorenzo in Damaso
    San Lorenzo in Damaso
    San Lorenzo in Damaso is a basilica church in Rome, Italy, one of several dedicated to the Roman deacon and martyr Saint Lawrence...

     (proper of the cardinal vice-chancellor, held in addition to the suburbicarian sees)
  • 26 September 1803 Cardinal Bishop of Ostia e Velletri (proper of the dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals)


In March 1774 he became Sub-dean, and on 15 September 1803 - Dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals.

He was a cardinal elector in the papal conclave
Papal conclave
A papal conclave is a meeting of the College of Cardinals convened to elect a Bishop of Rome, who then becomes the Pope during a period of vacancy in the papal office. The Pope is considered by Roman Catholics to be the apostolic successor of Saint Peter and earthly head of the Roman Catholic Church...

s of 1758
Papal conclave, 1758
The Papal conclave, May 15 – July 6, 1758, convoked after the death of Pope Benedict XIV, was the conclave that elected Cardinal Carlo Rezzonico of Venice, who under the name of Clement XIII became 248th pope of the Catholic Church.-List of participants:...

, 1769
Papal conclave, 1769
A papal conclave which lasted from 15 February to 19 May 1769 was convoked after the death of Pope Clement XIII. It elected as his successor Cardinal Lorenzo Ganganelli, who took the name Clement XIV.- Death of Clement XIII :...

, 1774-75 and 1799-1800.

Arms


During the pretence of his father and brother, Henry claimed a coat of arms
Coat of arms
A coat of arms is a unique heraldic design on a shield or escutcheon or on a surcoat or tabard used to cover and protect armour and to identify the wearer. Thus the term is often stated as "coat-armour", because it was anciently displayed on the front of a coat of cloth...

 consisting of those of the kingdom, differenced
Cadency
In heraldry, cadency is any systematic way of distinguishing similar coats of arms belonging to members of the same family. Cadency is necessary in heraldic systems in which a given design may be owned by only one person at once...

 by a crescent argent
Argent
In heraldry, argent is the tincture of silver, and belongs to the class of light tinctures, called "metals". It is very frequently depicted as white and usually considered interchangeable with it...

or white crescent.

Ancestors





External links

  • Henry Benedict Maria Clement Stuart Catholic Encyclopedia
    Catholic Encyclopedia
    The Catholic Encyclopedia, also referred to as the Old Catholic Encyclopedia and the Original Catholic Encyclopedia, is an English-language encyclopedia published in the United States. The first volume appeared in March 1907 and the last three volumes appeared in 1912, followed by a master index...

    article