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Page:Catholic Encyclopedia, volume 10.djvu/765

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NAPOLEON


695


NAPOLEON


cal council and the diocesan authorities of Paris. On 21 January, 1810, Napoleon resolved to ask for the band of Marie-Louise. The French ambassador at Vienna, at the request of the Archbishop of Vienna, gave him his word of honour that the sentence pro- nounced by the diocesan authorities of Paris was legal. At last all the religious obstacles to the celebration of the new marriage were disposed of.

It took place on 1 April, 1810, but thirteen of the cardinals then in Paris refused to be present. These thirteen cardinals were turned away when they pre- sented themselves at the Tuileries two days later; the minister of public worship informed them that they were no longer cardinals, that they no longer had any right to wear the purple; the minister of police for- warded them, two by two, to small country towns; their pensions were suppressed, their property se- questrated. People called them "the black cardi- nals". The bishops and priests of the Roman States were treated with similar violence; nineteen out of thirty-two bishops refused the oath of allegiance to the emperor, and were imprisoned, while a certain num- ber of non-jiiring parochial clergy were interned in Corsica, and the emperor announced his intention of reducing the number of dioceses and parishes in the Roman States by three-fourths. This policy of bitter persecution coincided with fresh overtures to his pris- oner, the pope, through the Austrian diplomat Lebzel- tern (May, 1810). Pius VII's reply was that, to nego- tiate, he must be free and able to communicate with the cardinals. In July Napoleon sent Cardinals Spina and Caselli to Savona, but they obtained noth- ing from the pope. There had been no solution of the internal crisis of the Church of France; while Pius VII was a prisoner the bishops were not to receive canon- ical institution. Bigot de Prdameneu and Maury sug- gested to the emperor a possible arrangement: to in- vite the chapter in each diocese to designate the bishop who had been nominated, but not yet canonicallj' in- stituted, provisional administrator. Fesch refused to lend himself to this expedient and occupy the Arch- bishopric of Paris; but a certain number of nominated bishops did go to their episcopal cities in the capacity of provisional administrators. Going one step fur- ther. Napoleon removed Maury from the See of Mon- tefiascone, and d'Osmond from that of Nancy, and had them designated by the respective chapters provi- sional administrators of the two vacant Archdioceses of Paris and Florence. Maury and d'Osmond, at the emperor's bidding, loft the dioceses given them by the pope to install themselves in these archdioceses.

Despite the rigour of his captivity, Pius VII was able to make known the pontifical commands to Car- dinal di Pietro at Semur: a secret agency at Lyons, established by certain members of the Congregation, devised ingenious ways of facilitating ( hese communica- tions as well as the circulation of Bulls. In Novem- ber, 1810, the Court was stupefied with the news that two Bulls of Pius VII, addressed to the Chapters of Florence and Paris, forbade their recognizing d'Os- mond and Maury. The imperial fury was let loose. On 1 January, 1811, Napoleon, during an audience to Maury and the canons, demanded an explanation from d'Astros, the vicar capitular, who Iiad received the Bull, telling him that there is "as much dilTcrence between the religion of Bossuet and that of (iregory VII as between heaven and hell"; d'Astros, taken by Maury himself to police headquarters, was imprisoned at Vincennes. At the Council of State, 4 January, 1811, Portalis, a relative of d'Astros, was openly ac- cused of treason by Napoleon, and immediately put out of the council chamber (with a brutality that the emperor afterwards regretted) and was then ordered to quit Paris. Cardinals di Pietro, Oppizzone, and Gabrielli, and the priests Fontana and Gregori, former counsellors of the pope, were thrown into prison. Maury used his influence with the canons of Paris to


induce them to apologize to Napoleon, who received them, told them that the pope must not treat him as a Toi faineant, and declared that, since the pope was not acting up to the Concordat in the matter of institution of bishops, the emperor, on his side, renounced the Concordat. The conditions of the pope's captivity were made more severe; all his correspondence had to pass through Paris, to be inspected by the Govern- ment; the lock of his desk was picked; he could no longer receive visits without the presence of witnesses; a gendarme demanded of him the ring of St. Peter, which Pius VII surrendered after breaking it in two. Chabrol, the pope's custodian, showed him the ad- dresses in which some of the chapters were expressing their submission to the emperor, but Pius VII was in- flexible. A commission of jurisconsults in Paris, after discussing the possibility of a law regulating the ca- nonical institution of bishops without the pope's co- operation, ended by deciding that to pass such a law was almost equivalent to schism.

Napoleon was not willing to go so far. He sum- moned the ecclesiastical council which he had already estabhshed and, 8 February, ISll, proposed to it these two questions; (1) All communication be- tween the pope and the emperor's subjects being in- terrupted, to whom must recourse be had for the dis- pensations ordinarily granted by the Holy See? (2) What canonical means is there of providing institu- tion for bishops when the pope refuses it? Fesch and Emery tried to sway the council towards some courses which would save the papal prerogative. But the majority of the council answered: (1) That recourse might be had, pro\dsionally, to the bishops for the dispensations in question; (2) That a clause might be added to the Concordat stipulating that the pope must grant canonical institution within a stated time; failing which, the right of institution would devolve upon the council of the province; and that, if the pope rejected this amendment of the Concordat, the Pragmatic Sanction would have to be revived so far as concerned bishops. The council added that, if the pope persisted in his refusal, the possibility of a public abolition of the Concordat by the emperor would have to be considered; but that these questions could be broached only by a national council, after one last attempt at negotiation with the pope.

On 16 March, 1811, Napoleon summoned to the Tuileries the members of the council and several of the great dignitaries of the empire; inveighing bitterly against the pope, he proclaimed that the Concordat no longer existed and that he was going to convoke a council of the West. At this meeting Emery, who died on 28 April, boldly faced Napoleon, quoting to him passages from Bossuet on the necessity of the pope's liberty. Pius VII not yielding to a last sum- mons on the part of Chabrol, the council was convoked on 25 April to meet on 9 June. By this step Napoleon expected to subdue the pope to his will. In pursuance of a plan outlined by the philosopher Gerando, Arch- bishop Barral, and Bishops Duvoisin and Mannay were sent to Pius VII to gain him over on the question of the Bulls of institution. They were joined by the Bishop of Faenza, and arrived at Savona on 9 May. At first the pope refused to discuss the matter, not being free to communicate with his cardinals. But the bishops and Chabrol insisted, and the pope's phy- sician added his efforts to theirs. They represented that the Church was becoming disorganized. At the end of nine days, the pope, who was neither eating nor drinking anything, being very much fatigued, con- sented, not to ratify, but to take as "a basis of negotia- tion" a note drawn up by the four bishops to the purport that, in case of persistent refusal on his part, canoni- cal institution might be given to bisho[)s after six months. On 20 May, at four o'clock in the morning, the bishops started for Paris with this note; at seven o'clock the i)ope summoned Chabrol and told him