Ferdinando d'Adda

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Ferdinando d'Adda, in a mezzotint by Isaac Beckett (National Portrait Gallery)

Ferdinando d'Adda (27 August 1649 – 27 January 1719) was a Roman Catholic Cardinal, bishop and diplomat. As a member of the family of the counts of Adda, he was a kinsman of Pope Innocent XI,[1] who conferred upon him the titular abbacy of a famous abbey.[2]

Ferdinando d'Adda was born to an ancient patrician family in Milan.[3] He was educated at Bologna and Pavia. He served as Prefect of the Congregation of Rites. Having performed a purely formal duty in Madrid in 1681, Adda was sent by Innocent XI as Papal Nuncio in London during the reign of James II in November 1685,[4] the Catholic Encyclopedia reports that he was charged with the delicate task of inducing the English King to intercede with Louis XIV (then quite inimical to the Holy See) in favour of the oppressed Protestants of France.[5]

He was consecrated titular Archbishop of Amasia,[6] and was consecrated in the Royal Chapel of St James's Palace, in a full Roman Catholic ceremony, 1 May 1687.[7] He was made Cardinal Priest of San Clemente by Pope Alexander VIII in 1690. In 1715, d'Adda was made Cardinal Bishop of Albano, and began a thorough restoration of Albano Cathedral, where his memorial records his works.

He died in Rome in 1719 and is buried in the church of San Carlo ai Catinari.


  1. ^ Notes and Queries. 1868. pp. 204–. Retrieved 16 June 2012. 
  2. ^ Salvator Miranda, Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church: Ferdinando d'Adda.
  3. ^ Miranda..
  4. ^ Sent at James's request, he was the first papal nuncio in England since the reign of Mary.
  5. ^ Wikisource-logo.svg "Ferdinando d'Adda". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. 1913. 
  6. ^ Macaulay, Thomas Babington, History of England. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott & Co., 1878. Vol. II, Chapter VIII, p. 210
  7. ^ Miranda.

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainHerbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "Ferdinando d'Adda". Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company.