Arms of Pietro Card. Aldobrandini, Camerlengo of the Holy Roman Church (1599-1621), surmounted by the Ombrellone, crossed keys.
Berman, p. 132 #1638.
Born in Rome in 1571, PIETRO CARD. ALDOBRANDINI, the son of Pietro Aldobrandini and of Flaminia Ferracci, was nephew of Pope Clement VIII (1592-1605). He obtained a doctorate in Civil and Canon Law, and was named Protonotary Apostolic. He was created a cardinal deacon in 1593, and along with his cousin Cardinal Cincio took over the affairs of the papal government. On December 20, 1599 he was appointed Cardinal Chamberlain of the Holy Roman Church for life. He acted as Legate for the Pope to Henri IV of France, first to regularize his situation with the Church, and then to finalize the marriage of the king with Catherine de' Medici (1600-1601). He became Archbishop of Ravenna in 1604, and in 1620 was promoted Bishop of the Suburbicarian See of Sabina. He died on the day after the conclusion of the Conclave of 1621.
The Dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals was Cardinal Ptolomeo Galli.
The Secretary of the Conclave was Msgr. Muzio Riccerio [Gattico I, p. 345]
The Marshal of the Conclave was Paolo Savelli, Prince of Albano, Duke of Castel Gandolfo [Moroni, Dizionario storico-ecclesiastica 42, 283; 61, 301].
The Governor of the Conclave was Msgr. Orazio Spinola, Archbishop of Genoa (d. 1616). He was made a referendary by Sixtus V, Vice-Legate of Bologna by Clement VIII. After the Conclave Paul V made him Vice-Legate of Ferrara. He was named a cardinal by Pope Paul V in 1606, with the title of St.Biagio
The Governor of the City of Rome was Msgr. Benedictus Ala of Cremona, Referendary of the Tribunal of the Two Signatures. He later became Bishop of Urbino (1610-1620).
The Captain General was Don Giovanni Giorgio Aldobrandini.
The Papal Master of Ceremonies was Msgr. Paolo Alaleone, who left a diary of the proceedings [Vincenzo Forcella, Catalogo dei manoscritti relativi alla storia di Roma I (Roma 1879), p. 291 no. 828 (ms. Vat. Lat. 9246)]. He was assisted by Msgr. Guido Ascanio Praevostus, and by Msgr. Giovanni Paolo Mucanzio, who also left a diary covering the period from Gregory XIV to Paul V [Gauchat, 8 n. 1; Gattico, pp. 343-348; Bullarium Romanum (Turin edition) Volume XI, p. 212; V. Forcella Catalogo dei manoscritti relativi alla storia di Roma I (Roma 1879), p. 44, no. 156].
Cardinal Pietro Aldobrandini, the nephew of Pope Clement, was on his way to Ravenna, to take formal possession of the See; actually he was supposed to engage in negotiation with various parties, including Venice, over the Marquisate of Saluzzo, which had passed to the Dukes of Savoy by the Treaty of Lyon in 1601. Pope Clement had in mind a project of creating a defensive alliance against the Spanish, which was to include Venice, Florence, and Savoy. Vincenzo Siri explains (probably paraphrasing reports of Cardinal du Perron to Henri IV) [Memorie recondite, Dal anno 1601. sino al 1640. Volume primo (Ronco 1677), p. 334-335]:
Fino à questo ultimo Conclave il Cardinale Aldobrandini andò sempre negotiando coll' Ambasciadore di Savoia suo intimo amico per rannodare insieme il Re Cristianissimo, e 'l Duca di Savoia persuadendosi che ove riuscisse prosperevolmente un repentino, e portentoso cambiamento ne seguirebbe nelle pendenze d' Italia; e che di riverbero quelli di Fiandra ne riceverebbono un notabile miglioramento. pareva che ciò fosse un residuo delle istruttioni di Papa Clemente; imperoche dopo la sua morte si riseppe che suo intendimento era stato di ordire una lega difensiva trà lui, e i Principi d' Italia in opposito de gli Spagnuoli subito che 'l Cardinale Aldobrandini saria ritornato da Ravenna. E Paolino Datario [Bernardino Paolini, sub-dataruy under Cardinal Sasso (1590-1604), then pro-Datary] per suo comandamento ne formò la bozza; e veniva destinato Cardinale Legato di Romagna affinche sotto il manto di quella Legatione potesse opportunamente manipolare l' unione con la Republica di Venetia, e col Granduca; e rimettere in tavola il negotio del parentado trà lui, e il Duca di Savoia. Dopo essersi il medesimo Cardinale Aldobrandini dato per inteso coll' Ambasciadore di Savoia circa l' onore fattogli dal Re di gradire che s' ingerisse della pendenza trà la M. S. e il Duca prese consiglio di spedire corriero à Torino per avvertirlo come andasse divisando di fare un viaggio fino à Ravenna affinche se voleva il Papa valersi della sua opera per trattare di qualche altra faccenda in quella Corte gliè lo notificasse avanti la sua mossa.
En route to Ravenna, on February 11, 1605, Cardinal Aldobrandini was overtaken by a courier who brought news that the Pope had fallen ill on the 10th with "un gagliarda convulsione di umori", and that he was in danger of his life. Cardinal du Perron noted in a letter to M. de Villeroy on February 23, that the outcome of the Pope's illness was uncertain [Les ambassades et negotiations de l' Illustrissime et Reverendissime Cardinal du Perron, p. 527]. On his return to Rome, Cardinal Aldobrandini did everything he could to find help for the Pope, but there was nothing to be done. [Histoire des conclaves; Platina IV, 282]. It is said that as soon as he had fallen ill Clement fell into a continuous delirium and that he had lost his memory [Novaes Elementi IX, 70]
Pope Clement VIII died on Thursday, March 3, 1605, around midnight, according to Cardinal de Joyeuse in a letter to Henri IV [Histoire du Cardinal de Joyeuse, p. 51; Gauchat Hierarchia catholica IV (1923),p. 3 n. 4: die Iovis 3 Mart. hora 5 noctis; Eubel, Hierarchia catholica III, p. 55, wrongly gives the date of March 5]. The sede vacante lasted for twenty-eight days.
The King of France, Henri IV, received the news of the death of the pope at Chantilly, on March 13; the news of the election of his successor on Monday, April 11 [Champollion, Mémoires et registre-journal de Henri IV, 383-384]
On June 9, 1604, eight months before he died, Clement VIII created eighteen new cardinals. This certainly disturbed the Courts of Europe, whose calculations for a future Conclave were completely upset.
Cardinal Pietro Aldobrandini, the Camerlengo, the late pope's nephew, controlled some twenty-eight votes [Wahrmund, 112], not enough to elect a candidate, but sufficient to exclude anyone objectionable to him. Among his supporters were the French cardinals, and the whole group had sworn not to elect anyone but a member of their faction. Aldobrandini's candidate was Baronius, and the virtual exclusiva would be used against Montelparo, Sauli and Ascoli, who were the favorite soggetti of Cardinal Montalto (Peretti). Against Aldobrandini were ranged a number of cardinals: Sforza, Santa Cecilia (Sfondrati), Acquaviva, Farnese, D'Este, Doria, Colonna, to whom were added Montalto, Madrucci, and Borromeo [Conclavi, 30-31; Histoire des conclaves, 296]. Montalto was the arch-enemy of Galli, the Dean [according to the Duc d' Escalona: Couderc, 44].
The French cardinals were subject to the will of the King of France. Henri IV had expressed his preferences in October, 1604, in a memorial to his ambassador and to Cardinal de Joyeuse: Baronius and the Cardinal of Florence, Medici, were his first choices. The King was also agreeable, however, to Cardinals Valier (Valerio), Sauli, Palotta, Bufalo, and Séraphin Olivier; he was not opposed to Pompeio Arrigoni and Camillo Borghese. The King most definitely did not want Como, Bernerio (Ascoli), Lorenzo Bianchetti, or Montelparo; he had no sympathy for Zacchia (S. Marcello) [Couzard, 347-348]. And on March 16, he repeated to Cardinal Joyeuse: "Je vous recommande sur toutes choses le cardinal de Florence, et aprés luy ceux sur lesquels vous sçavés que nous avons jetté les yeux." On March 16, King Henri also wrote to Ambassador de Béthune, "Partant si nous ne pouvons avoir pour pape Florence ou Baronius, j'aurai très agreable Vérone... Mais je désirerais fort que nous puissons avoir Florence par préférence a tout autre, et si nous sommes exclus et déboutés de Florence, donnons à l'un des deux autres" [Couzard, 349 n.].
Baronius himself, even before the Conclave began, had taken an oath that he would not accept the Papacy [Calenzio, p. 678]. He worked throughout the Conclave for the election of Alessandro de' Medici, the Cardinal of Florence. In a letter to his friend Father Talpa (April 25, 1605), he wrote [Calenzio, p. 680]:
.. innanzi che s'entrasse in Conclave, io per via secreta, come per Cuniculos cominciai a trattar per la personal dell' Illustrissimo Card. di Fiorenza per far da me diversione, indirizzando per la via il negozio, per la quale caminato, s' è venuto al desiderato fine, e Dio volse, che a me ancor toccasse peerfezionare il negozio spignendo io l' Illustrissimo Aldobrandino, qual stava ancor titubando, non poco, qual cosi volendo Dio, nell' istessa ora si risolse e fu finito il negozio.
Montalto became greatly annoyed by the tone and manner of the Adobrandini faction in the Congregations, where they tried to make themselves masters of the Conclave. And so he refused to make his votes available to them.
The Spanish interest, led by Francisco Cardinal de Avila, the official Protector of Spain, controlled around twenty-five votes. He was associated with Cardinals Montalto and Farnese. He too could exclude any candidate. The Spanish (at the request, as well, of the Duke of Mantua) certainly intended to exclude Baronius, as well as Cardinal Seraphin Razali (who had been proposed by Aldobrandini). They were also opposed to some of the creature of Clement VIII, notably the Cardinal of San Marcello (Zacchia), the Cardinal of San Clemente (Biandrate di San Giorgio), Sannesio, Toschi, St. Pietro in vinculis (Agucchi), and Tarugi. They also gave the appearance of disliking the Cardinal of Florence (Medici) and the Cardinal of Verona (Valier).
Cardinal de' Medici, Archbishop of Florence, had been instructed by the Grand Duke of Tuscany to work with Cardinal Montalto and attempt to influence him in favor of the Grand Duke's candidates. [Histoire des conclaves, 299]. The Grand Duke himself wrote to his ambassador in Madrid, Bishop Sallustio Tarugi (March 23, 1605) [tr. Petruccelli II, p. 417], "Bref, vous direz franchement au duc de Lerme que nous désirons Firenze et excluons Como pour nous et pour Montalto, qui ayant marié sa sœur au marquis de Caravaggio, a intenté procès à Como pour certains fiefs. Nous exclurons Baronio, bien qu’il nous convienne, pour plaire au roi." The decision about the exclusion of Como (Tolomeo Galli) was also conveyed to Cardinal del Monte and to Ambassador Belisario Vinta, with instructions not to mention it to Aldobrandini. The Grand Duke did not want Aldobrandini in a position to decide who the new pope was to be, and he had plans to win over the weaker members of Aldobrandini's faction to his point of view through various methods. He warned his agents not to propose Medici until all of Aldobrandini's candidates had been rejected [Petruccelli, II, p. 418]. It should be remembered that the Grand Duke Ferdinand had once been Cardinal de' Medici, created in 1563. After twenty-five years in the Sacred College, and having risen to be Protodeacon, he resigned to continue the family line as rulers of Florence and Tuscany. He had been present as an elector in three conclaves, and he knew personally most of the senior Cardinals.
The Venetian Ambassador was Agostino Nani, who supported Aldobrandini, with the understanding that Aldobrandini would not promote a pro-Spanish candidate. The French Ambassador was Philippe de Béthune, brother of Maximilien de Béthune, Duc de Sully, Minister of State of Henri IV. The Spanish Ambassador was the Marquis de Villena. The Tuscan ambassador was Cavaliere Belisario Vinta, Secretary of State of the Grand Duke of Tuscany.
According to the Conclavi di pontefice romani (Volume II, p. 38-39), sixty cardinals entered Conclave on March 14. They were later joined by Cardinal Dietrichstein. There was one surviving creatura of Pius V, Cardinal Galli, the Dean of the Sacred College. Four of Gregory XIII's cardinals were present: Medici, Valier, Joyeuse, and Sforza. Twelve cardinals of Sixtus V were in attendance: Pinelli, Ascoli (Bernerio), Pallo (Galli), Sauli, Palotta, Camerino (Pierbenedetti), Montepulciano, Giustiniani, Monte, Borromeo, and Montalto. Five cardinals of Gregory XIV were present: Santa Cecilia (Sfondrato), Aquaviva, Piatti, Pallavicini and Farnese. The only creatura of Innocent IX was Santi Quattro (Facchinetti). There were thirty-eight cardinals of Clement VIII: Aldobrandini, Tarugi, Bandino, Giuri (Givry), San Clemente, Borghese, Pianchetto, Baronius, Avila, Mantica, Arigone, Bevilaqua, Visconti, Tosco, San Marcello, Bellarmin, Sourdis, Seraphin, Spinelli, Conti, Madrucci, du Perron, Bufalo, Delfino, Sannesio, Valenti, San Pietro in vinculis (Agucchi), San Giorgio (Cinzio Aldobrandini), Cesi, Peretti, d'Este, Deti, San Cesario (Silvestro Aldobrandini), Doria, and Pio. Cardinal Dietrichstein was a late arrival. Five of the Cardinals were French (Joyeuse, du Perron, Sourdis, Séraphin, and Givry). Forty-one votes were needed for the canonical election of a pope [Cardinal de Joyeuse, in Aubery, L' histoire du Cardinal duc de Joyeuse (1664), p. 66]. A list is given in Ciaconius-Olduin, IV, 369-371.
Ciaconius-Olduin provides a list of sixty-one cardinals who participated in the Election of Leo XI (IV, columns 369-371).
An official list of the Cardinals and their Conclavists is attached to the Bull Romanum decet pontificem, issued by Pope Paul V on July 31, 1605 [Bullarium Romanum 11 (Augusta Taurinorum 1867), pp. 212-215]. It took into account the fact that Leo XI (Medici) had not had the opportunity to issue the appropriate bull during his brief pontificate of 27 days.
At the First Congregation, on Friday, March 4, a dispute arose over the status of Cardinal Conti. He had been named a Cardinal by Clement VIII in his last Consistory for the creation of Cardinals, on June 9, 1604. Cardinal Conti had duly appeared in Rome, and at the first Consistory thereafter he was received by the Pope and had his mouth closed, all according to custom. During the Consistory, however, the Pope specifically stated that if a cardinal had not had his mouth opened by the time of the next Conclave, he should not have a place or a vote. This turned out to be the case with Cardinal Conti. He appeared at the First Congregation, nonetheless, demanding his rights as a cardinal, stating that he would protest the invalidity of the election if he were not accommodated. The Cardinal Dean, who was a member of the Spanish party like Conti himself, attempted to refer the matter for decision by a three-member committee to be appointed by him (all members of the Spanish party). Cardinal Baronius protested, demanding that the will of the late Pope be followed. The College of Cardinals decided to appoint a committee composed Cardinal Giustiniani and all former Auditors of the Rota to study the matter and make a report.
On Tuesday March 8, the Marquis de Villena, the Spanish Ambassador, made his formal appearance before the College of Cardinals, and presented the condolences and respects of the King of Spain [Couzard, 354].
On Wednesday, March 9, the Dean of the Sacred College had a letter read out in Spanish to the Congregation of Cardinals. The Duke of Feria, Viceroy of Sicily, had written a letter to the late Pope Clement and another to to the Sacred College, as yet unaware of the Pope's death, to complain about the treatment the question of the Kingdom of Sicily had received in Volume XI of the Annales of Cardinal Baronius (published in November of 1604). He begged the Sacred College to do something about this matter. He demanded that Baronius' works be suppressed, in particular the Annales. At that point Cardinal Baronius arose, and apologized gracefully for his writings, stating that what he published was only based on what was in the Vatican Library, and his pieces had been read and reread by Cardinal Aldobrandini and published with consent of three other cardinals; that he had always had respect for the King of Spain, whose subject he had been born; and that the charge made by the Spanish that the French had dictated what he wrote was false [cf. Laemmer, Analecta Romana 142-143; Meletematum Romanorum Mantissa, p. 281, 360; Calenzio, pp. 656 ff.; 667]. Cardinal d' Avila, who had read out the letter at the Congregation, asked pardon for having read the letter before knowing its contents, and stated that there was good reason to have regard for the honor of His Catholic Majesty, a great prince, devoted to the Church, who had such great means to serve it. Upon that statement there arose a great murmuring among the cardinals, with sharp accents, from Bandini and S. Giorgio on one side, in Baronius' defense, while others were saying that great regard indeed should be had for the King of Spain, but the situation also involved the reputation of a Cardinal of the Church who had published on the urging of the recently dead Pope. [Laemmer, Meletematum, p. 360 n. 1; the conclavist is evidently a supporter of Baronius; Conclavi, 33-34; Histoire des conclaves, 297]. D'Avila demanded to know who had brought the Dean the letter. The Dean replied that he had been given it by a Secretary of the Pope, one Argentio. When Argentio was summoned, he denied that he had ever carried the letter. The Dean had nothing to say in reply [letter of Cardinal de Joyeuse to King Henri IV (April 13, 1605): Histoire du Cardinal de Ioyeuse, p. 60]. The whole business was obviously a trick, concocted by the Spanish, to ruin the reputation of Baronius in order to prevent his becoming pope. This was certainly the opinion of Cardinal du Perron [Les ambassades et negotiations de l' Illustrissime et Reverendissime Cardinal du Perron, p. 538-539]:
Du Cardinal Baronius, je n'en dirai autre chose ... que Mercredy au matin, les Espagnols voyans la partie Françoise si forte pour luy, qu'ils se désiroient d'y pouvoir resister, s'aviserent de luy joiier un plaisant stratageme; qui fut, que le Cardinal de Come presenta en la Congregation des lettres du VIceroy de Sicile, addressees au College des Cardinaux, pour les prier d'interceder envers le Pape, à ce qu'il fist raison au Roy d'Espagne et à ses Ministres, des livres du Cardinal Baronius, par lesquels il avoit attaque sa Majesté Catholique et ses officiers... De maniere que toute la tragedie des Espagnols se convertit en une farce qui leur conurit le visage de honte et de confusion, chacun croyant que c' estoient lettrés forgées a Rome, pour mettre sur le front du Cardinal Baronius, ceste exception, que comrne partial et ennemy declaré du Roy d‘Espagne il n'estoit pas propre à estre pere commun, ny par consequent à estre Pape.
The Dean, Cardinal Tolomeo Galli, was greatly blamed by many cardinals for having raised the issue, hoping (as they alleged) to base his own fortunes on the ruins of another's—he was, after all, the candidate of Spain. The letters he presented were not the originals, but the Dean could not explain how he had come by his copies. Nonetheless, Farnese defended him, which led to a discussion of the conduct of Cardinal del Monte and then an examination of the conduct of the cardinals who had been Auditors of the Rota. Cardinal Giustiniani undertook to defend Cardinal del Monte. [Another account ot the same General Congregation was written by Father Severani, Orat., to a colleague at the Oratory in Naples: Calenzio, 666-670].
After lunch on the 9th, Cardinal de Joyeuse paid a call on Cardinal de' Medici and informed him in detail about the negotiations which were being conducted on his behalf with Cardinal Aldobrandini, and the reasons which prompted the French to acquiesce in the candidacies of Biandrate di San Giorgio and Zacchia, which were so dear to Aldobrandini.
On Thursday, March 10, at the General Congregation the assignments for the various cells in the Conclave were allotted.
On Friday, March 11, the General Congregation received the draft of proposed Capitulations, which had been drawn up by a working committee. A Turkish war was demanded. A solution to the problem de auxiliis was demanded [See: de Ligny (editor), Les ambassades et negotiations de l' Illustrissime et Reverendissime Cardinal du Perron, p. 546; Daniel Mortier, Histoire des maîtres généraux de l Ordre des Frères Prêcheurs VI (Paris 1913) 68-99]. Means should be assigned to the cardinals so that they could live in an appropriate style. The cardinals should be absolved of all crimes, however great and horrible, which they had committed. Both the content and the wording of the last article were much objected to. Cardinal Aquaviva attempted to insert an article that would forbid popes to name their nephews as Chamberlain; the move was correctly judged to be intended as an insult to Cardinal Aldobrandini, and was rejected. Cardinal Sourdis proposed a clause that popes had to communicate their business with Princes to Consistory; Cardinal Valenti objected to that. It may be that there was a proposal to revise the size of the sums sent to Hungary. The Congregation also received the French Ambassador, Philippe de Béthune, who made his formal address to the College of Cardinals on behalf of the King of France [Couzard, 354].
On Saturday, March 12, the committee which had been appointed to study the credentials and the law applying to Cardinal Conti made their report. Cardinal Giustiniani stated that in justice his place and vote in the Conclave could not be denied. Cardinal de Joyeuse demanded facts and reasons for this report, so that the Cardinals could consider their conclusions and vote on what to do. Only seven or eight cardinals, however, supported him, and thereupon the secret ballot was taken. The vote in Conti's favor had only a single dissenting voice, that of Cardinal Baronius [Calenzio, pp. 662-663].
The Conclave opened on Monday, March 14 [Gauchat, 8 n. 1; Gattico I, p. 343]. The Oration de pontifice eligendo was pronounced in St. Peter's Basilica by Msgr. Marcello Vestrio, Secretary of Briefs to Princes [Novaes, Introduzione I, p. 291]. The usual solemn procession escorted the Cardinals to the Pauline Chapel. The papal bulls regulating conclaves were read and sworn to by the Cardinals. The various officials of the Conclave were sworn in by the Cardinal Dean of the Sacred College in a ceremony in the Capella Paolina. The various Ambassadors paid their courtesy calls on the various cardinals throughout the rest of the day [Aubery, Histoire du Cardinal de Ioyeuse, p. 64]. There were Capitulations, as a manuscript, Codex Vaticanus Ottobonianus 2440, c. 245, testifies [Francesco Cerroti (editor), Bibliografia di Roma medievale e moderna, I (1893), no. 5242].
On the morning of Tuesday, March 15, the Cardinals vested in the Aula Regia and proceded to the Capella Paolina. The Dean of the Sacred College, Cardinal Tolomeo Galli di Como, read the Mass of the Holy Spirit, and the Cardinals received Holy Communion. The Masters of Ceremonies then withdrew and the Cardinals began their balloting [Diary of Joannes Paulus Mucantio: Gattico, I, p. 344]. On the first vote, on Tuesday, March 15, Cardinal Robert Bellarmin received 11 votes and Baronius 8 [Couderc, 25]; Farnese, Doni and Pio each had one, and Montalto two (Histoire des conclaves, 301). It was noticed that an alliance was being formed against Cardinal Aldobrandini [Laemmer, Meletematum, p. 361 n.]. At the same time, the French were trying to press Aldobrandini to join their effort to make Baronius pope. Joyeuse believed that they might have perhaps forty votes. Aldobrandini, however, stubbornly insisted that the pope should be one of his creatures. They could not even get him to make any committments as to exclusions. This gave some considerable concern to Cardinal del Monte, who was representing the interests of the Grand Duke of Tuscany. Aldobrandini's promotion of his close friend, San Marcello (Paolo Emilio Zacchia), presented a barrier to the success of Tuscan interests, the election of Alessandro de' Medici. Del Monte approached Cardinal de Joyeuse about an exclusion against San Marcello, but he was frustrated when Joyeuse refused to cooperate. He believed that the French were deserting the Grand Duke—which was not the case. Joyeuse, however, did not want to alienate Aldobrandini at this early stage in the Conclave; he hoped, once Aldobrandini realized the futility of his promotion of his own favorites, that Aldobrandini would be open to listening to French proposals and would come to back de' Medici.
After lunch, the Conclavists were screened by the three Cardinals who were the senior members of each Order, with the assistance of the Secretary of the Conclave and the Masters of Ceremonies. The cardinals who were infirm were allowed three conclavists. In the afternoon, there was a meeting in Visconti's cell, and comparison of notes gave Cardinal de Joyeuse the hope that Cardinal Baronius could be made pope that evening. Late in the evening, Cardinal Delfini came to Joyeuse to tell him that Aldobrandini had at least agreed, and he would swear to it, that he would exclude Bianchetti [Aubery, Histoire du Cardinal de Ioyeuse, p. 67].
There were Electoral Capitulations, containing twenty-eight points. Point twenty-five obligated the Electus to promulgate a new constitution on papal conclaves within six months. These were also used, in a slightly expanded form at the second conclave of 1605 [Wahrmund, Archiv für katholisches Kirchenrecht 72 (Mainz 1894), 204, n. 2, with a summary of all thirty points at pp. 219-221; a copy of the full document is to be found in the Vatican Library in Codex Ottobonianus 2440: V. Forcella, Catalogo dei manoscritti relativi alla storia di Roma II (Roma 1880), p. 139 no. 270].
On Wednesday, March 16, the Sacristan read the Mass for the Election of the Supreme Pontiff in the Capella Paolina. After Mass, the Bulls of Pope Clement VIII and Pius V were read and sworn to. Then Cardinals Cesi and Pio presented and had read the Breves which granted them permission to participate and vote in the Conclave, despite the fact that they had not taken holy orders as Deacons. Cardinals Deti and Doria presented testimony that they had been ordained to the Diaconate; these too were read out. In the scrutiny, Cardinal Baronius received 19 votes, with none joining him at the accessio. Verona (Valier) and Visconti each had 7 [Histoire des conclaves, 301].
On the 17th, the Cardinal of Santa Cecilia (Sfondrati) became ill of the tertian fever, and decided that he had to leave the Conclave. A General Congregation of the Cardinals was called after lunch in the Paoline Chapel. The Spanish faction was alarmed, and attempted to convince him to remain. They wanted to remove him to the chamber reserved for a hospital, where he would be cared for. Medicines were sent for. But Aldobrandini pointed out that the papal Bulls forbade a cardinal to change cells, even if he was ill. The Cardinals heard a report from the doctors stating that Sfondrati was seriously ill and that the facilities to treat him adequately did not exist inside the Conclave. They were compelled to swear to the testimony. The Congregation of Cardinals considered Sfondrati's request to be removed from the Conclave with great reluctance, despite the fact that the litter and wagons were already prepared outside the Conclave. During the night his fever became worse, and on the 18th he was carried to his palazzo, leaving fifty-nine cardinals to continue deliberations. In the scrutiny of the 17th, Cardinal Baronius received only 12 votes, and Cardinal Bellarmin 8. For the next few days there was little change. Cardinal Silvestro Aldobrandini also became ill, with a "catarrh" ("fluxion"). Farnese also came down with a fever, and produced blood; he was given a third conclavist to attend to his needs [Conclavi, 45-48; Histoire des conclaves, 304-307].
On March 18, Cardinals Sfondrati, Bufalo and Deti were forced to leave the Conclave due to illness [Novaes VIII, p. 77].
On Saturday, March 19, Cardinal Franz von Dietrichstein appeared at the Door of the Conclave, still dressed in his traveling clothes (which caused a scandal, since he looked every bit a layman); he and his two conclavists were allowed entry by the Cardinal Camerlengo and the heads of the three orders. He would be an anti-Baronius vote [Cardinal de Joyeuse: Aubery, Histoire du Cardinal de Ioyeuse, p. 70].
From the 18th to the 20th, more names were proposed, and discarded. Aldobrandini engaged in frequent conversations with Cardinal d' Avila. The Spanish faction complained that Aldobrandini was wrong in wanting to exclude all of the creature of Sixtus V, among whom were several worthy candidates (that is, Spanish candidates).
On Sunday, March 20, Quadragesima Sunday, the Sacristan said the usual Mass for the Election of a Pope. Cardinal Sauli was ill and unable to appear in the Capella Paolina. The daily Congregation therefore met in his room. [Gattico, 345]. Cardinal de Joyeuse had already begun actively canvassing for Cardinal Toschi, though he had not informed Cardinal Aldobrandini, who was still completely wrapped up with the candidacy of Cardinal Zacchia (S. Marcello), heedless of the hopelessness of that cause [Aubery, Histoire du Cardinal de Ioyeuse, p. 71].
On Wednesday, March 23, Cardinal Baronius had 17 votes, and Cardinal Seraphin Olivier 10 (Conclavi, 65). That night, Cardinals Aldobrandini, Delfini, and Joyeuse assembled in the cell of Cardinal Cesi, and decided to make a push to elect Cardinal Seraphin Olivier. Some cardinals, who were not part of the Aldobrandini faction, would be told that this was just a gesture of respect toward Cardinal Seraphin, and if sufficient numbers cast their votes on the Scrutiny, Aldobrandini would throw in all of their forces at the accessio. The plan was leaked, however, and the next day there was nothing but failure and embarassment.
On Thursday, March 24, Cardinal Baronius had 23 votes [Aubery, Histoire du Cardinal de Ioyeuse, p. 74], and a rumor was going around that next day at the accessio would bring him victory; his opponents gathered around d' Avila, seeking to put together an exclusiva.
On Friday, March 25, the Feast of the Annunciation, Baronius had 27 votes The opposition was greatly irritated, and Cardinal Montalto remarked that they were dealing with children. He was so disturbed, however, that he sent with great haste for Cardinal Paolo Emilio Sfondrato, who was convalescing outside the Conclave.
On Saturday, March 26, Baronius had thirty-one votes, a majority, but still nine votes short of canonical election.
On Sunday, March 27, which was Passion Sunday, Baronius received thirty-one votes (Conclavi, 76). Cardinal d' Avila was so annoyed that he remarked loudly that those who were giving so many votes to an enemy of the King of Spain were insulting him.
On March 28, Baronius still had his thirty votes, Cardinal Sauli had ten, and Cardinal Bernerio (Ascoli) 10 (Conclavi, 79). D'Avila was as annoyed as ever. When some cardinals went to call on Aldobrandini in his cell, they found him out making the rounds ceaselessly. He was imitated by Cardinals Sannesio, Valenti, Cesi, Vicenza (Delfini), Spinelli, and others. On the same day Cardinal Deti had to leave the conclave, suffering from a tertian fever (Conclavi, 82)
On Tuesday, March 29, Baronius had 30 votes, and Medici 11 (Conclavi, 82, 88). The tedium of being locked in conclave, with no progress for all of Aldobrandini's efforts, began to have its effects [ Histoire des conclaves, 327-328]. At night, Aldobrandini himself turned up in de Joyeuse's cell very upset; he had agreed to choose one of the cardinals from Montalto's following to be pope, in order to solve the impasse. He had chosen Bianchetti. Aldobrandini was followed by a group of his own cardinals, complaining about his choice. Joyeuse himself was not happy, since Bianchetti was one of the cardinals whom Henri IV had excluded. It seemed as though the anti-Spanish would go into revolt against their own leaders. Joyeuse called in Cardinal Borromeo, and all the cardinals present demanded that Aldobrandini go to talk to d'Avila and explain the unhappy situation. When they finally came together Aldobrandini called d'Avila a liar, for making unauthorized promises that he could not keep, something which touched d'Avila's honor. In reply d'Avila impugned Aldobrandini's birth [Aubery, Histoire du Cardinal de Ioyeuse, p. 86].
On Wednesday, March 30, Baronius had 32 votes [Aubery, Histoire du Cardinal de Ioyeuse, p. 87], Medici 12, Sauli 11, and Aquaviva d' Aragona 10. [Conclavi, 91, 93; cf. Laemmer, Meletematum, p. 361 n.].
On Thursday, March 31, at 10:00 p.m., an audience was granted by the Cardinals to the Spanish Ambassador, at his urgent demand, at the small window of the Conclave. The Ambassador informed the Cardinals that Count de Fuentes, Governor of Milan, had discovered that 500 English heretics, pretending to be pilgrims, had entered Italy with the intention of pillaging the shrine of the Holy House of Loreto; he presented a letter from the Governor to that effect as well. He was thanked for his message [Diary of Joannes Paulus Mucantio, in Gattico, 346]. The Protector of the Holy House of Loreto was Cardinal Ptolemeo Galli, the Cardinal Dean, and it was widely believed that this was nothing but an electoral stunt by the Spanish to advance his candidacy. Cardinal de Joyeuse wrote to Henri IV [Aubery, Histoire du Cardinal de Ioyeuse, pp. 89-90]:
Tellement que je puis dire que de toutes les impertinences que je vis jamais en ma vie, celle-là estoit la plus solemnelle. Aussi tous les Cardinaux de cette faction en eurent tres-grande honte, ne pouvant trouver des paroles suffisantes pour l'excuser, et les autres s’en mocquoient bien fort.
On Friday, April 1, after the Scrutiny, there was a stunning change in direction. Cardinal de Joyeuse first of all had a meeting with Aldobrandini on the subject of Medici of Florence, going over with him again the arguments that he had already supplied by way of Delfini. He then spent more than five hours in continual conversation with one cardinal after another. When he finally able to start out for the Pauline Chapel for the afternoon accessio, he immediately noticed Cardinal Aldobrandini walking and conversing with Cardinal de' Medici. He had one more conversation with Cardinal Aldobrandini, as other cardinals began to pay more attention to Medici. It was, Joyeuse urged, the moment to strike; otherwise every opportunity might be lost permanently. Cardinals Deti and del Bufalo were summoned to return to the Conclave [Diary of Mucanzio in Gattico, p. 347]. Cardinal Doria, however, attempted to draw him away from Medici, alleging that Medici was an enemy of the King of Spain. Cardinal d'Avila was putting on the same show with another group of Cardinals who were gathered in one of the conclave halls in their rochets, threatening even his own followers with their ruin if they supported Medici. Cardinals Sfondrato and Farnese were working the other side, and accusing d'Avila of 'impudence'. The arrogant and hysterical behavior of the Spanish faction, however, was having the opposite effect to what was intended. Medici, who had gone back to his cell after meeting with Aldobrandini was receiving courtesy calls from one after another of the Cardinals, including Montalto and all his followers. Medici began to speak as though he were already Pope, and announced that he wished to be called Leo XI (after his relative, Leo X). At that point Aldobrandini arrived, too late to claim any credit for what was happening. The entire group then proceeded toward the Pauline Chapel. At the door, they came upon d'Avila, who stopped them and begged them to excuse him for what he had been doing on the command of the King of Spain to oppose him. The reply was that the King of Spain had never had a part (Il luy répondit: le Roy d’Espagne n’en avoit jamais eu sujet).
The moment of election was finally at hand. The details are provided by the Ceremoniere, Msgr. Giovanni Paolo Mucanzio (Gauchat, 8 n. 1):
Die 1 Apr. 1605 mane fuit ultimum scrutinium in quo rev(erendissi)mus Baronius 28 vota habuit. Hora prima noctis ei(u)sdem diei omnes card(ina)les praeter card(ina)lem Avilam ad electionem venerunt et ab eis el(ectus) fuit Alexander de Medicis card(inal) de Florentia nuncupatus. Et statim cardinales accesserunt ad cellulam dicti rev(erendissi)mi card(inalis) de Florentia (quia cum illis non fuerat), ut illum ducerent ad sacellum Paulinum, et in Sum(mum) Pont(ifi)cem eligerent. Tamen expectaverunt parumper, donec ad conclave redirent re(verendissi)mi card(ina)les Detus et de Bubalis, qui infirmitatis causa exiverant. Post adventum dictorum duorum card(ina)lium fere omnes card(ina)les accesserunt ad cellam rev(erendissi)mi card(inalis) de Florentia, et illum duxerunt in sacellum Paulinum, in quo, exclusis omnibus conclavistis, omnes card(ina)les sederunt in loco sup, et per vota aperta et viva suffragia elegerunt in Sum(mum) Pont(ifi)cum dictum card(ina)lem de Florentia qui assumpsit nomen Leonis XI.... Card(ina)les in conclavi fuerunt 61, et 60 fecerunt suffragia in dictum card(ina)lem de Florentia.
In the Pauline Chapel a vote was taken openly viva voce. Medici was elected unanimously. He immediately accepted, and, when asked by the Cardinal Dean to choose a name by which he would be known, he replied Leo XI. He retired to the Sacristy to vest in papal attire, and when he returned to the Chapel he was seated on the papal Sedia Gestatoria. Cardinal Aldobrandini, the Camerlengo, presented him with the ring of the Fisherman. Each cardinal came forward to congratulate the new Pope, and received the customary kiss in return. By that time it was the third hour of the night or later, and it was decided not to open the doors of the conclave. This would avoid the customary sacking of the property of the cardinals. When the new Pope retired to his cell in the Conclave, however, he discovered that it had already been sacked by the Conclavists. He spent the night instead in the cell of Cardinal Farnese.
In the early morning of Saturday, April 2, therefore, the new Pope Leo XI (Alessandro de Medici) was vested in the Capella Paolina. Cardinal Sforza then made the traditional announcement of the election, and the cardinals procededed to the ceremony of kissing the Pope's foot, hand and cheek. Thereupon the gates of the Conclave were opened and the Pope was escorted to the Vatican Basilica where a Te Deum was sung.
He was crowned Pope Leo XI in St. Peter's Basilica on April 10, Easter Sunday, by Cardinal Francesco Sforza, the Cardinal Protodeacon (Gauchat, 8 n. 3). Cardinal Cinzio Passeri Aldobrandini was named Major Penitentiary. Cardinal Pompeio Arrigoni was named pro-Datary, a position which was confirmed by Paul V. One week later, on April 17, he took possession of his cathedral, the Lateran Basilica (Gauchat, 8 n.4). He died on April 27, 1605, after a reign of twenty-seven days.
Before his death, however, he had decided to move forward on the matter of the reform of Conclave procedures, which had been discussed for fifteen years. He reappointed a committee of Cardinals to draft a bull, which would include clauses revoking the old traditional option of electing a pope by acclamation (Adoration) [Cardinal du Perron, in Les ambassades et negotiations de l' Illustrissime et Reverendissime Cardinal du Perron (Paris 1629) 308; Wahrmund, 205]. It was John Paul II who finally instituted the reform.
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E. Timpe, "Die Kirchenpolitischen Ansichten und Bestrebungen des Kardinals Bellermin," Kirchengeschichliche Abhandlungen III (edited by Max Sdralek) (Breslau 1905), 3-133. Joseph de la Servière, SJ, "Les idées politiques du Cardinal Bellermin," Revue des questions historiques 41 (1907); 42 (1908), 56-90. [extremely sympathetic]
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Ludwig Wahrmund, "Die Bulle «Aeterni Patris Filius» und der staatliche Einfluss auf der Papstwahlen," Archiv für katholisches Kirchenrecht 72 (Mainz 1894), 201-334.
John Paul Adams, CSUN