Cardinal Joseph Fesch

Cardinal Joseph FeschProfile

Uncle of Napoleon I. After ordination in 1787, he embarked on a military career, becoming commissary of war under his nephew in 1795. When hostility to religion somewhat abated, he re-entered ecclesiastical life and helped to negotiate the Concordat of 1801. Archbishop of Lyon, France on 29 July 1802. CardinalPriest of San Maria della Vittoria on 17 January 1803 and ambassador from France to the Vatican. He induced Pope Pius VII to crown Napoleon in Paris, and was present at the ceremony. CardinalPriest of San Lorenzo in Lucina on 22 December 1822. Though powerless to prevent the rupture between the emperor and the Holy See, he prevented Napoleon from acknowledging an independent Gallican Church, upheld papal rights in the matter of canonical institution, and fell into imperial disfavor by protesting his loyalty to the exiled pontiff. After the Restoration he resided in Rome, Italy, his diocese being governed meanwhile by an administrator. Participated in the conclave of 1823 that chose Pope Leo XII, that of 1829 that chose Pope Pius VIII, and of 1830 to 1831 that elected Pope Gregory XVI.



MLA Citation

  • “Cardinal Joseph Fesch“. CatholicSaints.Info. 20 January 2019. Web. 23 January 2022. <>