Giacomo Savelli (cardinal)
- Not to be confused with Pope Honorius IV (d. 1287), who was also named Giacomo Savelli.
This article relies largely or entirely on a single source. (September 2017)
A member of the Savelli family, Giacomo Savelli was born in Rome in 1523, the son of Roman nobles Giambattista Savelli and Costanza Bentivoglio. His paternal grandmother, Camilla Farnese, was a cousin of Pope Paul III.
Savelli studied Latin and Greek as a young man and then attended the University of Padua to study law. He joined the papal household of Pope Paul III as a chamberlain of honor. He also served as a protonotary apostolic.
Pope Paul III made him a cardinal deacon in the consistory of December 19, 1539. He received the red hat and the deaconry of Santa Lucia in Selci on April 16, 1540. On January 8, 1543, he opted for the deaconry of Santi Cosma e Damiano. From April 13, 1545 to May 26, 1546, he was the administrator of the see of Teramo.
He participated in the papal conclave of 1549-50 that elected Pope Julius III. The new pope made Cardinal Savelli papal legate in the March of Ancona and he served in that position throughout the pontificate of Julius III. He opted for the deaconry of San Nicola in Carcere on March 9, 1552.
He was the administrator of the see of Gubbio from May 29, 1555 until February 6, 1556, when he resigned the administration in favor of his nephew Marino Savelli, bishop-elect of Nicastro. Cardinal Savelli became administrator of Nicastro for a second time starting February 6, 1556, resigning sometime before January 26, 1560.
He was ordained as a priest on January 19, 1560, and he opted for the order of cardinal priests at that time. From January 26, 1560 until May 17, 1574, he was administrator of the see of Benevento. He was also the Vicar General of Rome from 1560 to 1587. On June 27, 1571, he was one of three cardinals appointed by the pope to study providing assistance for the poor of Rome. He participated in the papal conclave of 1565-66 that elected Pope Pius V. He served as Camerlengo of the Sacred College of Cardinals from January 14, 1568 until January 14, 1569. He was a participant in the papal conclave of 1572 that elected Pope Gregory XIII. On April 8, 1573, he opted for the titular church of Santa Maria in Trastevere.
On July 31, 1577, he opted for the order of cardinal bishops, receiving the suburbicarian see of Sabina. He opted for the suburbicarian see of Porto e Santa Rufina. During this period, he was the Vice-Dean of the College of Cardinals.