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Luigi Tripepi

Cazzuitis S., Ritratto del Cardinale Luigi Tripepi
The Mausoleum of Cardinal Tripepi, Mallemace

Luigi Tripepi (21 June 1836 – 29 December 1906) was an Italian Roman Catholic cardinal and poet. He was one of the most important Roman Catholic apologists of the 19th century.


He was born in Cardeto, a small town in the province of Reggio Calabria, in the deepest south of Italy.

He studied at the local seminary and soon became famous for his skills in different subjects: Latin, Greek, theology, history, moral theology and dogmatics. He moved to Rome for further study and in 1864, was ordained a priest. He stayed in Rome for more than 40 years, until his death in 1906. He wrote about 200 works in different languages on a wide range of topics, including: theology, ecclesiastical history, apologetics as well as poetry in Greek, Latin and Italian.

Originally a Jesuit, he left the order in 1865 and was subsequently appointed to a series of important positions in the Church. In 1868, he was appointed Privy chamberlain and beneficiary of the patriarchal Lateran basilica. In 1878 he was appointed Canon of San Lorenzo in Damaso, Rome and, the following year, of San Giovanni in Laterano basilica. In 1885 he was named canon of St. Peter's. His following appointments include: prelate referendary of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura (1883); secretary of the Commission for Historical Studies (1884); prefect of the archive of the Holy See (1892); secretary of the Congregation of Rites (1894); Substitute of the Secretariat of State (1896). He was created and proclaimed Cardinal-Deacon of Santa Maria in Domnica

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