Papal conclave, April 1555
Coat of arms during the vacancy of the Holy See
|Dates and location|
|5–9 April 1555
Apostolic Palace, Papal States
|Dean||Giovanni Pietro Carafa|
|Camerlengo||Guido Ascanio Sforza di Santa Fiora|
|Protopriest||Robert de Lenoncourt|
|Marcello Cervini degli Spannochi
(Name taken: Marcellus II)
Papal conclave of April 1555 (April 5 – April 9) was a papal conclave convoked after the death of Pope Julius III. Elected as his successor Cardinal Marcello Cervini, who took the name of Marcellus II, being the last pope in the history who retained his baptismal name.
List of participants
- Gian Pietro Carafa (created cardinal on December 22, 1536) – Cardinal-Bishop of Ostia e Velletri; Dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals; Grand Inquisitor of the Supreme S.C. of the Roman and Universal Inquisition; Archbishop of Naples
- Juan Álvarez de Toledo, O.P. (December 20, 1538) – Cardinal-Bishop of Albano; Inquisitor of Rome; Archbishop of Santiago de Compostela; Cardinal-protector of the Orders of Dominicans and Barnabites
- Rodolfo Pio di Carpi (December 22, 1536) – Cardinal-Bishop of Frascati; Administrator of Girgento; Legate in the province of Patrimonium; Cardinal-protector of Scotland; Cardinal-protector of the Orders of Capuchins and Jesuits
- Niccolò Caetani (December 22, 1536) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Eustachio; Archbishop of Capua; Administrator of Quimper
- Marcello Cervini (December 19, 1539) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Croce in Gerusalemme; Bishop of Gubbio; Librarian of the Holy Roman Church
- Miguel de Silva (December 19, 1539) – Cardinal-Priest of Santa Maria in Trastevere; Administrator of Massa Marittima
- Cristoforo Madruzzo (June 2, 1542) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Cesareo in Palatio; Bishop of Trento and Brixen
- Bartolomé de la Cueva (December 19, 1544) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Bartolomeo all’Isola
- Federico Cesi (December 19, 1544) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Prisca; Administrator of Cremona; Camerlengo of the Sacred College of Cardinals
- Tiberio Crispi (December 19, 1544) – Cardinal-Priest of S. S. Agata alla Suburra; Administrator of Amalfi
- Girolamo Veralli (April 8, 1549) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Marcello
- Giovanni Angelo Medici (April 8, 1549) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Stefano in Monte Celio; Bishop of Cassano al Ionio; Governor of Campagna e Marittima; Prefect of the Tribunal of the Apostolic Signature of Grace
- Fulvio della Corgna, O.S.Io.Hieros. (November 20, 1551) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Maria in Via; Administrator of Spoleto; Legate in Ascoli Piceno and Rieti
- Giovanni Ricci (November 20, 1551) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Vitale, Gervasio e Protasio
- Giovanni Andrea Mercurio (November 20, 1551) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Ciriaco alla Terme; Archbishop of Messina
- Pietro Bertani, O.P. (November 20, 1551) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Marcellino e Pietro; Bishop of Fano
- Fabio Mignanelli (November 20, 1551) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Silvestro in Capite; Prefect of the Papal States
- Giovanni Battista Cicada (November 20, 1551) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Clemente; Legate in Capmagna; Administrator of Mariana
- Girolamo Dandini (November 20, 1551) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Matteo in Merulana; Cardinal Secretary of State
- Cristoforo Ciocchi del Monte (November 20, 1551) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Prassede; Bishop of Marseilles
- Giovanni Michele Saraceni (November 20, 1551) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Maria in Aracoeli; Archbishop of Acerenza e Matera
- Francesco Pisani (July 1, 1517) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Marco; commendatario of S. Maria in Portico; Protodeacon of the Sacred College of Cardinals; Bishop of Padua; Administrator of Narbonne
- Ercole Gonzaga (May 3, 1527) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Maria Nuova; Bishop of Mantua; Cardinal-protector of Spain; Cardinal-protector of the Order of Canons Regular; Regent of the Duchy of Mantua
- Guido Ascanio Sforza di Santa Fiora (December 18, 1534) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Maria in Via Lata; Camerlengo of the Holy Roman Church; Archpriest of the patriarchal Liberian Basilica; Administrator of Parma; Cardinal-protector of Spain and Armenia
- Ippolito II d'Este (December 20, 1538) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Maria in Aquiro; Administrator of Auch; Governor of Tivoli; Cardinal-protector of France
- Giacomo Savelli (December 19, 1539) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Nicola in Carcere Tulliano; Legate in March of Ancona
- Girolamo Capodiferro (December 19, 1544) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Giorgio in Velabro; Bishop of Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne
- Ranuccio Farnese (December 16, 1545) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Angelo in Pescheria; Grand penitentiary; Administrator of Ravenna; Archpriest of the patriarchal Lateran Basilica; Legate in Viterbo
- Giulio Feltre della Rovere (July 27, 1547) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. S. Pietro in Vincoli; Legate in Umbria and Perugia
- Innocenzo del Monte (May 30, 1550) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Onofrio
- Roberto de Nobili (December 22, 1553) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Maria in Domnica
Twenty cardinals were absent:
- François de Tournon (March 9, 1530) – Cardinal-Bishop of Sabina; Archbishop of Lyon; Superior General of the Order of Canons Regular of Saint Augustine
- Robert de Lenoncourt (December 20, 1538) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Apollinare; Protopriest of the Sacred College of Cardinals; Administrator of Metz
- Claude de Longuy de Givry (November 7, 1533) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Agnese in Agone; Administrator of Langres
- Antoine Sanguin de Meudon (December 19, 1539) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Crisogono; Administrator of Toulouse
- Giovanni Girolamo Morone (June 2, 1542) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Lorenzo in Lucina; Bishop of Novara; Papal Legate in Germany; Cardinal-protector of Austria and Ireland; Cardinal-protector of Order of Cistercians
- Francisco Mendoza de Bobadilla (December 19, 1544) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Eusebio; Archbishop of Burgos
- Pedro Pacheco de Villena (December 16, 1545) – Cardinal-Priest of S. Balbina; Bishop of Sigüenza; Viceroy of the Kingdom of Naples
- Henry of Portugal (December 16, 1545) – Cardinal-Priest of SS. IV Coronati; Archbishop of Évora; Legate a latere in Portugal; Inquisitor General of the Portuguese Inquisition
- Pietro Tagliavia de Aragonia (December 22, 1553) – Cardinal-Priest of [no title assigned]; Archbishop of Palermo
- Girolamo Doria (January, 1529) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Tommaso in Parione; Administrator of Tarragona
- Odet de Coligny de Châtillon (November 7, 1533) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Adriano; Administrator of Beauvais
- Alessandro Farnese (December 18, 1534) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Lorenzo in Damaso; Vice-Chancellor of the Holy Roman Church; Archpriest of the patriarchal Vatican Basilica; Legate in Avignon; Administrator of Monreale and Cahors; Cardinal-protector of Poland, Portugal, Germany, Kingdom of Sicily, Republic of Genoa and Republic of Ragusa; Cardinal-protector of the Orders of Benedictines and Servites
- Reginald Pole (December 22, 1536) – Cardinal-Deacon of S. Maria in Cosmedin; Papal Legate in England
- Louis I de Guise (December 22, 1553) – Cardinal-Deacon of [no deaconry assigned]; Administrator of Albi
Thirteen were created by Paul III, four by Clement VII, two by Julius III and one by Leo X.
Divisions in the Sacred College
- French party – the adherents of the king Henry II of France. Their leader was Charles de Lorraine-Guise.
- Habsburg party – cardinals aligned with Emperor Charles V. Their leader was Cardinal Juan Álvarez de Toledo.
- Italian party – group of Italian cardinals headed by Alessandro Farnese, Cardinal-nephew of Paul III, with no direct connections with main Catholic powers: Habsburg Empire or France.
The election of Pope Marcellus II
The Cardinals present in Rome entered the conclave on April 5. Initially, they prepared and subscribed the conclave capitulation, which obliged elect to maintain neutrality in the European conflicts and forbade him conducting wars against Christian princes. In spite of the existed divisions, cardinals quickly achieved consensus. On April 9 at 11 p.m. they elected by acclamation Cardinal Marcello Cervini. He was proposed by French faction, but obtained also the support of the Imperial cardinals (e.g. Madruzzo) despite the expressed wishes of Charles V against Cervini's election.
On April 10 in the morning a formal scrutiny took place to confirm the election. Cervini received all votes except of his own, which he gave to Gian Pietro Carafa. He retained his baptismal name, adding to it only an ordinal number (Marcellus II). On that same day, he was consecrated bishop of Rome by Cardinal Gian Pietro Carafa, bishop of Ostia e Velletri and Dean of the College of Cardinals, and crowned by Cardinal Francesco Pisani, Protodeacon of S. Marco.
- This is according to an account of this conclave in German on Vatican History and to O. Panvinio, p. 424-425. Salvador Miranda: list of participants of the conclave of April 1555 indicates that all cardinals participated in this conclave except Pietro Tagliavia de Aragonia and Louis I de Guise. The list of the electors and absentees is presented according to Panvinio, p. 424-425.
- Valérie Pirie: The Triple Crown: the election of Paul IV Although that link concerns the next conclave held in May 1555, the informations about parties existed in the Sacred College are correct also for the conclave of April 1555.
- Vatican History
- Cardinal Marcello Cervini (Pope Marcellus II by S. Miranda
- Helmut Feld (1993). "Marcellus II., Papst". In Bautz, Traugott. Biographisch-Bibliographisches Kirchenlexikon (BBKL) (in German) 5. Herzberg: Bautz. cols. 771–775. ISBN 3-88309-043-3.
- The Triple Crown
- The Catholic Encyclopedia: Pope Marcellus II
- O. Panvinio, J. Strada, Epitome pontificum Romanorum a s. Petro usque ad Paulum IIII, gestorum videlicet electionisque singulorum & conclavium compendiaria narratio. Cardinalium item nomina... Onuphrio Panvinio,... authore... Ex musaeo Jacobi Stradae,... (J. de Strada edidit), Impensis Jacobi Stradae Mantuani, 1557
- Vatican History
- Valérie Pirie, The Triple Crown: An Account of the Papal Conclaves. Pope Marcellus II (Cervini)
- List of participants of papal conclave of April 1555 (by Salvador Miranda)
- S. Miranda: Cardinal Marcello Cervini (Pope Marcellus II)
- Bautz Biografisch-Bibliografiches Kirchenlexikon: Marcellus II
- Pope Marcellus II The Catholic Encyclopedia