New Catholic Dictionary – Pope Pius IX

Pope Blessed Pius IX, c.1878Article

Reigned from 16 June 1846 to 7 February 1878. Born on 13 May 1792 Sinigaglia, Italy as Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferretti; died in Rome, Italy. Director of the hospital of San Michele. Archbishop of Spoleto, and of Imola. Cardinal-priest. The nineteenth century witnessed the rise of a false liberalism in almost every nation of the world. The movement came to a climax during his long pontificate. Pius was unable to better ecclesiastical conditions in Prussia, Russia, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Italy, and Mexico, but was successful in arranging concordats with Spain, Portugal, and the South American republics. He restored the hierarchy in England and Holland, but in Italy his efforts to stop the outrages committed in the name of progress against clerics and Church property were unsuccessful. Victor Emmanuel wrested from him all the papal dominions and in 1870 the Italian government unlawfully seized Rome, making it the capital of United Italy. The terms of the so-called Law of Guarantees, 1871, intended as a recompense, were rejected by Pius, who inaugurated the voluntary imprisonment of the popes in the Vatican, which continued until 1929 under Pius XI. In spite of these obstacles the spiritual history of the papacy is one co of extensive growth during this period. The Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin was proclaimed a dogma of the Church in 1854. The philosophico-theological writings of Günther were condemned in 1857. The Encyclical Quanta Cura was published in 1869, accompanied by the famous Syllabus which reiterated the condemnation of pantheism, naturalism, socialism, communism, freemasonry, and other forms of religious liberalism. During the Vatican Council I of 1870 papal infallibility was made a dogma of the Church. Among his appointees to the Sacred College were Cardinals Wiseman, Manning, Cullen, McCloskey, Diepenbrock, Geissel, Rauscher, Mathieu, and Donnet. He erected 36 sees and 10 vicariates Apostolic in the United States. In Rome he founded the Latin American College in 1853, and the College of the United States of America in 1859.

MLA Citation

  • “Pope Pius IX”. New Catholic Dictionary. CatholicSaints.Info. 2 June 2017. Web. 25 September 2017. <>