Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Tunis

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Archdiocese of Tunis
Archidioecesis Tunetanus
Country Tunisia
Area 62,632 sq mi (162,220 km2)
- Total
- Catholics

99750 (1%)
Denomination Catholic Church
Rite Latin Rite
Cathedral St Vincent de Paul
Current leadership
Pope Francis
Archbishop Ilario Antoniazzi

The Episcopal see of Carthage is intertwined with the ordinariate of Tunis, currently the Archdiocese of Tunis.


Around 500, the see of Carthage was elevated to an Metropolitan Archdiocese.[1] The episcopal see largely became titular after the 7th century when the Exarchate of Africa, a Byzantine territory, fell to the Arab invasion.[citation needed] The see was suppressed around 1000 to become a Titular Metropolitan See.[1] In 1843, the Vicariate Apostolic of Tunis was erected in Tunisia.[2] On November 10, 1884, the Vicariate was renamed to Archdiocese of Carthage.[1] The Archdiocese was recoginzed by Pope Leo XIII as the Primate of Africa in 1893.[3] The see's status was changed on July 9, 1964 to Territorial Prelature of Tunis with the original title become titlar again.[1][2] The Prelature was elevated to a Diocese on May 31, 1995.[2] On May 22, 2010, the Diocese was promoted an Archdiocese.[4]

Primate status[edit]

The Bishop of Carthage exercised a true primatial jurisdiction over the provinces of Roman Africa, without being called a primate; on the other hand, in the provinces, other than the Proconsular, the oldest bishop, who resembled a metropolitan, was called the primate. The title Primate of Africa was restored again in 1893 by Leo XIII in favour of the Archbishop of Carthage.[3] Current status as a Primatial See is questionable given its changes in status since 1964.

During the 3rd to the 7th century, the Bishop of Carthage has (unofficial) ecclesiastical primacy over these suffragan provinces in Northern Africa:


This is a list of bishops and archbishops of Carthage, often referred to as primate of Proconsular Africa, Numidia, Mauritania and Tripolitania. The early bishops, who preceded the East-West Schism, belong to a heritage shared by the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church.

Bishops of Carthage[edit]

Apostolic Vicar of Tunis, c. 1843–1884[edit]

  • Fidèle Sutter (1843–1881)
  • Charles Martial Allemand Lavigerie Apostolic Administrator (1881–1884)[4]
    • Francesco Maria Rueda, Coadjutor Apostolic Vicar (1882–1884) Titular Bishop of Sebastopolis[1]
  • Spiridion-Salvatore-Costantino Buhadgiar (1884–1884) Titular Bishop of Ruspæ [4]

Archbishops of Carthage, 1884–1893[edit]

  • Charles-Martial Allemand-Lavigerie (1884–1892)
  • Francesco Maria Rueda (1884 – ?)
    • Félix-Jules-Xavier Jourdan de la Passardière, Auxiliary (1887–1892)
    • Jules-Etienne Gazaniol, Auxiliary (1892–1896)
    • Jean-Joseph Tournier, Auxiliary (1892–1924)
    • Spiridion Poloméni, Auxiliary (1892–1930)[1]

Archbishops of Carthage and Primate of Africa[edit]

Auxiliary Bishop: Bishop Jean Saint-Pierre (1930.05.28 – 1937.08)

Prelate of Tunis, 1964–1995[edit]

  • Paul-Marie Maurice Perrin (1964–1965) Titular Archbishop of Nova
  • Michel Callens (1965–1990) Titular Archbishop of Moxori
    • vacant (1990–1992)
  • Fouad Twal (1992–1995) Bishop[4]

Bishops of Tunis, 1995–2010[edit]

Archbishops of Tunis, since 2010[edit]

Titular Archbishops of Carthage[edit]

  • Jacques-Nicolas de Colbert (1680–1691)
  • Cornelio Bentivoglio (1712–1719)
  • Antonius Balsarini (1730–1731)
  • Franciscus Hieronymus Bona (1731–1750)
  • Johannes Joseph von Trautson (later Cardinal) (1750–1751)
  • Christoph Anton von Migazzi von Waal und Sonnenthurn (1751–1756)
  • Ferdinando Maria Saluzzo 1784–1801)
  • Augustin-Louis de Montblanc (1821–1824)
  • Filippo De Angelis (1830–1838)
  • Michele Viale-Prelà (1841–1853)
  • Lajos Haynald (1864–1867)
  • Pietro Rota (1879–1884)
  • Agostino Casaroli (1967–1979)[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "Titular Metropolitan See of Carthage". Catholic Dioceses in the World. Retrieved 2 March 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c Cheney, David M. "Archdiocese of Tunis". Dioceses. Retrieved 2 March 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c Wikisource-logo.svg "Primate". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. 1913. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f "Archdiocese of Tunis". Catholic Dioceses in the World. Retrieved 2 March 2012. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g Wikisource-logo.svg "Carthage". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. 1913. 
  6. ^ Thomas Kelly Cheyne and John Sutherland Black, ed. (1903). "Epaenetus". Encyclopaedia Biblica.

Coordinates: 36°48′01″N 10°10′44″E / 36.80028°N 10.17889°E / 36.80028; 10.17889