Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The Exclusion -- The jus exclusivae

Franz Joseph I., Austrian Emperor by God’s Grace, hindered a pro-French Pope in 1903.  The tool for that is a right of veto.
Mariano Rampolla del Tindaro: With the Insignia
of honors and Grand Cross of the Bailli of the Maltese Order 

Tempora mutantur: at the conclave 110 years ago the Austrian Empire still had a weighty word, because a prompt right of veto followed.

Pope Leo XIII closed his eyes at last on the 20th of July on 1903.  Then the choice of a new Pope in the course of a conclave was the order of the day.  This began on the 31st of July.

64 Voting Cardinals

The 64 eligible cardinals were:  39 Italians, seven Frenchmen, five Spaniards, including even five from Austria-Hungary, three from Germany.  There was one each from Portugal, Belgium, England, the USA and Australia.  In Rome there were 62, because Cardinal Patrick Maran from Sydney couldn’t be there at the appointed time.  For Pietro Michelangenlo Celesia, Archbishop of Palermo,  it wasn’t possible to come for reasons of sickness.

The five Princes of the Church from the Double-Monarchy were Kolos Ferenc Vaszary (Gran Esztergom), Leo Freiherr Skrbensky (Prague), Jan Puzyna (Cracow), Johannes Katschathaler, as the Archbishop of Salzburg Primate of the Germans, and last Anton Grscha, Archbishop of Vienna.

Course of the Election

For a valid election a requirement of two thirds majority (of those present) accounting for 42.  On the 1st of Augustin at 10 o’clock in the morning was the first vote.  As expected, Cardinal Rampola reaped the most votes (24), in the second round he pulled 29 votes after that.

Now the opponents of Rampolla --  who were in the first line of Austria-Hungary -- sounded the alarm, because Rampolla was a red cape for the Double-Monarchy.  Under his aegis the Holy See would turn away from the Archcatholic House of Habsburg and to the French Republic, to which the latter was connected to Czarist Russia,  which was at that time oppressing Catholic Poland.

The ius exclusivae

It was time for Vienna to play its trump, the jus exclusivae, namely the right of certain Catholic Princes, to prevent a non-desirable Papal claimant.  The exclusion, by which the ius exclusive shortly became known by,  belonged  to, besides the Emperor of Austria, the King of Spain as well as the French government as the successor of the King of France and Navarre.

It is false to say as it is introduced  hither and yon (see Google) that Franz Joseph asserted his privilege  (which was fundamentally also due to the Magyars for their fight as athletes of Christ against the Turks) in his quality as King of Hungary.  Were this so, then the Monarch would have certainly, as the Prince Primate of Hungary, therefore the Archbishop of Estergom, as the one who delivered the veto.

Cardinal Rampolla can not be chosen

In this consideration Franz Josef I. had assigned Cardinal Puzyna a so-called secretum to carry to Rome , which contained the written veto to be cast against Rampolla. Puzyna cast the veto just before the third session (2nd August), which read:

“Called by the highest commission of this office, I consider it my honor, to convey to the Dean of the Holy College in an official way and let it be conveyed the following:  His Apostolic Majesty the Emperor of Austria and King of Hungary intend, to serve his ancient right and privilege, namely to assert a veto against the selection of His Eminence of the Cardinal Lords, Mariano Rampola del Tinder."

Guiseppe Sarto Becomes Pius X

With that Rampolla was out of the running, two days later, Guiseppe Sarto, the Patriarch of Venice, was elected as the new Supreme Head of the Church.  He took the name Pius X., Austro-Hungary had asserted itself.  Once more the old saying was valid: AEIOU -- Alles Erdreich is Oestereich untertan.

Indeed, Pius X. shortly released the Constitution Commissum Nobis on the 20th of January, 1904.  The content was a cold shower for Vienna, because from then on, any worldly power which asserts for consideration the jus exclusivae is threatened with excommunication latae sententiae.  With that the ancient privilege declared by Franz Joseph would be in the past.

This article referenced the following:

Erich Körner Lakatos:
Palais des Beaux Arts? Normannen in der Karibik?
Vierzig historische Nischen

Edition Octopust, 2012, 369 Seiten, 17,80 Euro
Münster: Verl.-Haus Monsenstein und Vannerda

Link to….


Anonymous said...

I do not see it mentioned here, but I have seen it asserted in other places, that the Emperor also suspected Cardinal Rampolla of being a Freemason. But then no less than Blessed Pius IX had been the subject of an attempted veto by Franz Joseph's uncle and predecessor, the Emperor Ferdinand, amid similar suspicions. That veto only failed because the Imperial representative who was to present it, Cardinal Gaisruck, the Archbishop of Milan, arrived at the conclave too late, after the election was already over.

In Rampolla's case, there apparently may also have been a personal grudge at play. As Cardinal Secretary of State, he is said to have opposed the dispensation (which was ultimately granted) allowing the Christian burial of Franz Joseph's only son, Crown Prince Rudolf, after the latter's death in an apparent suicide pact (or murder-suicide) with his seventeen-year-old mistress.

The jus exclusivæ was controversial, anyway. Whether it was an ancient right or not is disputed. The old Catholic Encyclopedia is of the opinion that the modern concept cannot be traced back before the conclave of 1644, though similar rights may have been exercised by Holy Roman Emperors at an earlier period. While a number of treatises were written in its defense, it appears to directly contradict decrees of several popes, including Pius IV, Clement XII (himself elected after two other candidates had been excluded at the behest of Philip V of Spain), and the aforementioned Pius IX. Reportedly, most of the cardinals in 1903 were generally very unhappy about its revival (ignoring the failed attempt in 1846, it had last been invoked in 1830, after having been a feature of every conclave from 1691 on), and only acquiesced to it for sake of expediency. In fact, Cardinal Puzyna was tasked with presenting it only after Cardinal Gruscha had refused on principle.

It could be noted that, despite the "cold shower" to Austria-Hungary which abolishing the veto represented, Saint Pius X did soften the blow somewhat by opting not to retain Rampolla as Secretary of State, replacing him with Cardinal Merry del Val. Subsequently, in 1907, he also removed Rampolla's personal secretary of more than twenty years, Giacomo della Chiesa, from the Secretariat of State, by appointing him Archbishop of Bologna instead. Although the incumbent of that see was customarily made a cardinal at the first opportunity, Della Chiesa would be passed over through multiple consistories over the next six-and-a-half years — reputedly because it was not desired that there should be "two Rampollas" in the Sacred College. Only in May of 1914 would he finally receive his Red Hat, having been the celebrant at the funeral of his of friend and benefactor the previous December. For his part, in 1904, Cardinal Puzyna received from the Emperor the Grand Cross of the Order of Saint Stephen of Hungary.

In any event, though Rampolla did not live to see it, when Saint Pius died in August of 1914, it was none other than the newly-elevated Cardinal della Chiesa who was elected pope and became Benedict XV.

Anonymous said...

Ironies ? And Czarist Russia, the Last Czar...irony. A sad event.