Stefano Durazzo

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Durazzo's tomb in the church of Santa Maria in Monterone.

Stefano Durazzo (16 June 1594 - 11 July 1667) was an Italian Catholic cardinal and archbishop of Genoa.

Early life[edit]

Durazzo was born 16 June 1594 in Multedo, Genoa, the son of Pietro Durazzo, Doge of Genoa and Aurelia Saluzzo. He was the uncle of Cardinal Marcello Durazzo.[1] He was sent to Rome to study law.

Ecclesiastic career[edit]

Durazzo was ordained in 1618 and was appointed referendary of the Tribunals of the Apostolic Signature of Justice and of Grace in 1621. Being from a wealthy family, Durazzo was able to purchase positions as clerk of the Apostolic Chamber between 1621 and 1623 and protonotary apostolic in 1624.[2] He became treasurer-general of the Apostolic Chamber in 1627 and held that position until 1633 before being appointed pro-secretary of the Apostolic Chamber in 1633.[1]

In November 1633 he was elevated to cardinal and was made cardinal-priest at the church of San Lorenzo in Panisperna early the following year.

In 1635 he was appointed archbishop of Genoa,[3] a role he retained until his death. As archbishop of Genoa, Durazzo also conducted mercantile business in addition to his ecclesiastic work and was able to become very wealthy.[2] Contemporary John Bargrave also suggested that he developed a reputation for spending vast sums of money on gambling and women.

Between 1640 and 1642 he was appointed legate in Bologna and Ferrara during the First War of Castro but left when Antonio Barberini arrived with papal forces, forcing papal representatives to return to Rome.[2]

Durazzo participated in the conclave of 1644 which elected Pope Innocent X, the conclave of 1655 which elected Pope Alexander VII and the conclave of 1667 which elected Pope Clement IX.

References and notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b S. Miranda: Stefano Durazzo
  2. ^ a b c Pope Alexander the Seventh and the College of Cardinals by John Bargrave, edited by James Craigie Robertson (reprint; 2009)
  3. ^ Catholic Hierarchy: Stefano Cardinal Durazzo