St. Malachy Prophecy: Analysis

What follows is an analysis of the “prophecy of the popes” attributed to St. Malachy (1094-1148).

This page contains raw data for the analysis.

The proposed explanations are taken from Wikipedia.

Click here for my own report on the reliability of the prophecy.

Hit/Miss Motto (Translation) Pope Proposed Explanation
HIT 1. From a castle of the Tiber (Ex castro Tiberis) 167. Celestine II, 1143–1144 (Guido de Castello) An inhabitant of Tifernum. (1) Born in Citta di Castello, Umbria, on the banks of the Tiber. (2)
HIT 2. Enemy expelled (Inimicus expulsus) 168. Lucius II, 1144–1145 (Gherardo Caccianemici del Orso) Of the Caccianemici family. (1) This motto refers to Gherardo Caccianemici’s surname. “Cacciare” means “to hunt”, and “nemici” is the Italian word for “enemies”. As his name foreshadowed, Caccianemici would be driven from Rome by his own subjects. (2)
HIT 3. Out of the greatness of the mountain (Ex magnitudine motis) 169. Eugene III, 1145–1153 (Bernardo dei Pagnelli di Montemagno) Tuscan by nation, from the town of Montemagno. (1) The motto refers to Pope Eugene’s last name, “Montemagno.”(2)
HIT 4. Suburran abbot (Abbas Suburranus) 170. Anastasius IV, 1153–1154 (Corrado di Suburra) From the Suburra family. (1)
HIT 5. From the white countryside (De rure albo) 171. Adrian IV, 1154–1159 (Nicholas Breakspear) Humbly born in the town of St. Albans. (1) Educated at the St Albans School in Hertfordshire. Nicholas Breakspear was the bishop of Albano before becoming pope. [NOTE: “Albus” is “white” in Latin—ja](2)
HIT 6. Out of a loathsome prison. (Ex tetro carcere) Victor IV, Antipope, 1159–1164 (Ottaviano Monticello) He was a cardinal of St. Nicholas in the Tullian prison. (1)
HIT 7. Road across the Tiber. (Via Transtiberina) Paschal III, Antipope, 1164–1168 (Guido di Crema) Guido of Crema, Cardinal of St. Mary across the Tiber. (1) As a cardinal, he had held the title of Santa Maria in Trastevere. (2)
HIT 8. From Tusculan Hungary (De Pannonia Thusciae) Callixtus III, Antipope, 1168–1178 (Giovanni di Strumi) Antipope. A Hungarian by birth, Cardinal Bishop of Tusculum. (1) He was John, Abbot of Struma, originally from Hungary. (2)
HIT 9. Out of the guardian goose (Ex ansere custode) 172. Alexander III, 1159–1181 (Orlando Bandinelli Paparoni) Of the Paparoni family. (1) His family’s coat of arms had a goose on it. (2)
HIT 10. A light in the entrance (Lux in ostio) 173. Lucius III, 1181–1185 (Ubaldo Allucingoli) A Luccan Cardinal of Ostia. (1) In 1159, he became Cardinal Bishop of Ostia. Lux may also be a wordplay on Lucius. (2)
HIT 11. Pig in a sieve (Sus in cribro) 174. Urban III, 1185–1187 (Umberto Crivelli) A Milanese, of the Cribella (Crivelli) family, which bears a pig for arms. (1) His family name Crivelli means “a sieve” in Italian. (2)
HIT 12. The sword of St. Lawrence (Ensis Laurentii) 175. Gregory VIII, 1187 (Alberto De Morra) Cardinal of St. Lawrence in Lucina, of whom the arms were curved swords. (1) He had been the Cardinal of St. Lawrence and his armorial bearing was a drawn sword. (2)
HIT 13 He will come from school (De Schola exiet) 176. Clement III, 1187–1191 (Paolo Scolari) A Roman, of the house of Scolari. (1) His family name was Scolari. (2)
HIT 14. From cattle country (De rure bouensi) 177. Celestine III, 1191–1198 (Giacinto Bobone) Bovensis (Bobone) family. (1) He was from the Bobone family; a wordplay on cattle (boves). (2)
HIT 15. Designated count (Comes Signatus) 178. Innocent III, 1198–1216 (Lotario dei Conti di Segni) Family of the Counts of Signia (Segni)(1) Descendant of the Segni family. (2)
HIT 16. Canon from the side (Canonicus de latere) 179. Honorius III, 1216–1227 (Cencio Savelli) Savelli family, canon of St. John Lateran(1) He was a canon for the church of Santa Maria Maggiore, and had served as papal chamberlain in 1188. (2)
HIT 17. Bird of Ostia (Auis Ostiensis) 180. Gregory IX, 1227–1241 (Ugolino dei Conti di Segni) Family of the Counts of Segni, Cardinal Bishop of Ostia. (1) Before his election to the papacy, Ugolino dei Conti was the Cardinal Bishop of Ostia, and the family coat of arms bear a bird on a gules background. (2)
HIT 18. Sabine Lion (Leo Sabinus) 181. Celestine IV, 1241 (Goffredo Castiglioni) A Milanese, whose arms were a lion, Cardinal Bishop of Sabina. (1) He was Cardinal Bishop of Sabina and his armorial bearing had a lion in it. Also a play on words, referring to the pope’s last name, Castiglioni. (2)
HIT 19. Count Lawrence (Comes Laurentius) 182. Innocent IV, 1243–1254 (Sinibaldo Fieschi) Of the house of Flisca (Fieschi), Count of Lavagna, Cardinal of St. Lawrence in Lucina. (1) He was the Cardinal-Priest of San Lorenzo in Lucca, and his father was the Count of Lavagna. (2)
HIT 20. Sign of Ostia (Signum Ostiense) 183. Alexander IV, 1254–1261 (Renaldo dei Signori di Ienne) Of the counts of Segni, Cardinal Bishop of Ostia. (1) He was Cardinal Bishop of Ostia and member of the Conti-Segni family. (2)
HIT 21. Jerusalem of Champagne (Hierusalem Campanie) 184. Urban IV, 1261–1264 (Jacques Pantaleon) A Frenchman, of Trecae (Troyes) in Champagne, Patriarch of Jerusalem. (1) Native of Troyes, Champagne, later patriarch of Jerusalem. (2)
HIT 22. Dragon pressed down (Draco depressus) 185. Clement IV, 1265–1268 (Guido Fulcodi) Whose badge is an eagle holding a dragon in his talons. (1) His coat of arms had an eagle crushing a dragon. (2)
HIT 23. Snaky man (Anguinus uir) 186. Gregory X, 1271–1276 (Tebaldo Visconti) A Milanese, of the family of Viscounts (Visconti), which bears a snake for arms. (1) The Visconti coat of arms had a large serpent devouring a male child feet first. (2)
HIT 24. French Preacher (Concionator Gallus) 187. Innocent V, 1276 (Pierre de Tarentaise) A Frenchman, of the Order of Preachers. He was born in south-eastern France and was a member of the order of Preachers. (1)
HIT 25. Good Count/companion (Bonus Comes) 188. Adrian V, 1276 (Ottobono Fieschi) Ottobono, of the Fieschi family, from the counts of Lavagna. (1) He was a count and a wordplay on “good” can be made with his name, Ottobono. (2)
HIT 26. Tuscan Fisherman (Piscator Thuscus) 189. John XXI, 1276–1277 (Pedro Juliao) Formerly John Peter, Cardinal Bishop of Tusculum. (1) John XXI had been the Cardinal Bishop of Tusculum. (2)
HIT 27. Composite Rose (Rosa composita) 190. Nicholas III, 1277–1280 (Giovanni Gaetano Orsini) Of the Ursina (Orsini) family, which bears a rose on its arms, called ‘composite’. (1) He bore a rose in his coat of arms. (2)
HIT 28. From the tollhouse of lilied Martin (Ex teloneo liliacei Martini) 191. Martin IV, 1281–1285 (Simone de Brion) Whose arms were lilies, canon and treasurer of St. Martin of Tours. (1) He was Canon and Treasurer at the Church of St. Martin in Tours, France. (2)
HIT 29. Out of the leonine rose (Ex rosa leonina) 192. Honorius IV, 1285–1287 (Giacomo Savelli) Of the Sabella (Savelli) family, arms were a rose carried by lions. (1) His coat of arms were emblazoned with two lions supporting a rose. (2)
VAGUE 30. Woodpecker between food (Picus inter escas) 193. Nicholas IV, 1288–1292 (Girolamo Masci) A Picene by nation, of Asculum (Ascoli). (1) He was from Ascoli, now called Ascoli Piceno, in Picene country. (2)
HIT 31. Raised out of the desert (Ex eremo celsus) 194. St. Celestine V, 1294 (Pietro Di Murrone) Called Peter de Morrone, a hermit. (1) Prior to his election he was a hermit (eremita, literally a dweller in the eremus, or desert). Also a play on words (celsus/Coelestinus), referring to the pope’s chosen name Celestine. (2)
HIT 32. From the blessing of the waves (Ex undaru benedictione) 195. Boniface VIII, 1294–1303 (Benedetto Caetani) Previously called Benedict, of Gaeta, whose arms were waves. (1) His coat of arms had a wave through it. Also a play on words, referring to the pope’s Christian name, “Benedetto.”(2)
HIT 33. Preacher From Patara (Concionator patereus [sic]) 196. Benedict XI, 1303–1304 (Nicholas Boccasini) Who was called Brother Nicholas, of the order of Preachers. (1) This Pope belonged to the Order of Preachers. Patara was the hometown of Saint Nicholas, a namesake of this Pope (born Nicholas Boccasini). (2)
HIT 34. From the misfortunes/fesses of Aquitaine (De fessis aquitanicis) 197. Clement V, 1305–1314 (Bertrand de Got) An Aquitanian by birth, whose arms were fesses. (1) He was a native of St. Bertrand de Comminges in Aquitaine, and eventually became Archbishop of Bordeaux, also in Aquitaine. His coat of arms displays three horizontal bars, known in heraldry as fesses. (2)
HIT 35. From a bony cobbler (De sutore osseo) 198. John XXII, 1316–1334 (Jacques Duese) A Frenchman, of the Ossa family, son of a cobbler. (1) His family name was Dueze, D’Euze, D’Euzes, or Euse, the last of which might be back-translated into Latin as Ossa “bones”. The popular legend that his father was a cobbler is probably untrue. (2)
HIT 36. Schismatic crow (Coruus schismaticus) Nicholas V, Antipope, 1328–1330 (Pietro Rainalducci di Corvaro) Who was called Brother Peter of Corbarium (Corvaro), the Minorite antipope opposing John XXII. (1) The motto is a play on words, referring to Pietro di Corvaro’s last name. (2)
HIT 37. Cold abbot (Frigidus Abbas) 199. Benedict XII, 1334–1342 (Jacques Fournier) Abbot of the monastery of the cold spring. (1) He was an abbot in the monastery of Fontfroide (“cold spring”). (2)
HIT 38. From the rose of Arras (De rosa Attrebatensi) 200. Clement VI, 1342–1352 (Pierre Roger) Bishop of Arras, whose arms were roses. (1) He was Bishop of Arras, (Latin: Episcopus Atrebatensis), and his armorial bearings were emblazoned with six roses. (2)
HIT 39. From the mountains of Pammachius (De motibus Pamachii) 201. Innocent VI, 1352–1362 (Etienne Aubert) Cardinal of Saints John and Paul, Titulus of Pammachius, whose arms were six mountains. (1) Pope Innocent was born at Mont in the diocese of Limoges, France, and he rose to prominence as the Bishop of Clermont. He had been a cardinal priest with the title of St. Pammachius (i.e., the church of SS. Giovanni e Paolo in Rome)(2)
HIT 40. French viscount (Gallus Vicecomes) 202. Urban V, 1362–1370 (Guglielmo De Grimoard) Apostolic nuncio to the Viscounts of Milan. (1) He was born of a noble French family. (2)
HIT 41. New man from the strong virgin (Nouus de uirgine forti) 203. Gregory XI, 1370–1378 (Pierre Roger de Beaufort) Who was called Peter Belfortis (Beaufort), Cardinal of New St. Mary’s. (1) From the Beaufort family and Cardinal of Santa Maria Nuova(2)
VAGUE 42. From the apostolic cross (Decruce Apostolica [sic]) Clement VII, Antipope, 1378–1394 (Robert, Count of Geneva) Who was Cardinal Priest of the Twelve Holy Apostles, whose arms were a cross. (1) His coat of arms showed a cross, quarterly pierced. (2)
HIT 43. Cosmedine moon. (Luna Cosmedina) Benedict XIII, Antipope, 1394–1423 (Peter de Luna) Formerly Peter de Luna, Cardinal Deacon of St. Mary in Cosmedin. (1) He was the famous Peter de Luna, Cardinal of Santa Maria in Cosmedin. (2)
HIT 44. Schism of the Barcelonas (Schisma Barchinoniu) Clement VIII, Antipope, 1423–1429 (Gil Sanchez Munoz) Antipope, who was a canon of Barcelona. (1)
HIT 45. From a pregnant hell. (De inferno praegnati) 204. Urban VI, 1378–1389 (Bartolomeo Prignano) The Neapolitan Prignano, born in a place which is called Inferno. (1) His family name was Prignano or Prignani, and he was native to a place called Inferno near Naples. (2)
HIT 46. Cube from a mixture (Cubus de mixtione) 205. Boniface IX, 1389–1404 (Pietro Tomacelli) Of the Tomacelli family, born in Genoa in Liguria, whose arms were cubes. (1) His coat of arms includes a bend checky — a wide stripe with a checkerboard pattern. (2)
HIT 47. From a better star (De meliore sydere) 206. Innocent VII, 1404–1406 (Cosmo Migliorati) Called Cosmato dei Migliorati of Sulmo, whose arms were a star. (1) The prophecy is a play on words, “better” (melior) referring to the pope’s last name, Migliorati (Meliorati). There is a shooting star on his coat of arms. (2)
HIT 48. Sailor from a black bridge (Nauta de Ponte nigro) 207. Gregory XII, 1406–1415 (Angelo Correr) A Venetian, commendatary of the church of Negroponte. (1) Was Bishop of Venice and the Bishop of Chalcice, Chalcice being located on the Isle of Negropont(2)
HIT 49. Whip of the sun (Flagellum solis) Alexander V, Antipope, 1409–1410 (Petros Philarges) A Greek, Archbishop of Milan, whose arms were a sun. (1) His coat of arms had a large sun on it. Also, a play on words, referring to the pope’s last name, “Philarges.”(2)
HIT 50. Stag of the siren (Ceruus Sirenae) John XXIII, Antipope, 1410–1415 (Baldassarre Cossa) Cardinal Deacon of St. Eustace, who is depicted with a stag; legate of Bologna, a Neapolitan. (1) Baldassarre Cossa was a cardinal with the title of St. Eustachius. St. Eustachius converted to Christianity after he saw a stag with a cross between its horns. Baldassarre’s family was originally from Naples, which has the emblem of the siren. (2)
HIT 51. Column of the golden curtain (Corona ueli aurei) 208. Martin V, 1417–1431 (Oddone Colonna) Of the Colonna family, Cardinal Deacon of St. George at the golden curtain. (1) Oddone Colonna was the Cardinal Deacon of San Giorgio in Velabro. The word “Velabrum” is here interpreted as derived from “velum aureum”, or golden veil. His coat of arms had a golden crown resting atop a column. (2)
HIT 52. Heavenly she-wolf (Lupa Coelestina) 209. Eugene IV, 1431–1447 (Gabriele Condulmaro) A Venetian, formerly a regular Celestine canon, and Bishop of Siena. (1) He belonged to the order of the Celestines and was the Bishop of Siena which bears a she-wolf on its arms. (2)
VAGUE 53. Lover of the cross (Amator Crucis) Felix V, Antipope, 1439–1449 (Amadeus Duke of Savoy) Who was called Amadeus, Duke of Savoy, arms were a cross. (1) He was previously the count of Savoy and therefore his coat of arms contained the cross of Savoy. Also, the prophecy is a play on words, referring to the antipope’s Christian name, “Amadeus.”(2)
HIT 54. From the meanness of Luna (De modicitate Lunae) 210. Nicholas V, 1447–1455 (Tommaso Parentucelli) A Lunese of Sarzana, born to humble parents. (1) He was born in Sarzana in the diocese of Luni, the ancient name of which was Luna. (2)
HIT 55. Pasturing ox (Bos pascens) 211. Callixtus III, 1455–1458 (Alfonso Borja) A Spaniard, whose arms were a pasturing ox. (1) Alonso Borgia’s coat of arms had a grazing ox. (2)
HIT 56. From a nanny-goat and an inn (De Capra & Albergo) 212. Pius II, 1458–1464 (Enea Silvio de Piccolomini) A Sienese, who was secretary to Cardinals Capranicus and Albergatus. (1) He had been secretary to Cardinal Domenico Capranica and Cardinal Albergatti before he was elected Pope. (2)
HIT 57. From a stag and lion (De Ceruo & Leone) 213. Paul II, 1464–1471 (Pietro Barbo) A Venetian, who was Commendatary of the church of Cervia, and Cardinal of the title of St. Mark. (1) Possibly refers to his Bishopric of Cervia (punning on cervus, “a stag”) and his Cardinal title of St. Mark (symbolized by a winged lion). (2)
HIT 58. Minorite fisherman (Piscator minorita) 214. Sixtus IV, 1471–1484 (Francesco Della Rovere) Son of a fisherman, Franciscan. (1) He was born the son of a fisherman and a member of the Franciscans, also known as “Minorites”. (2)
HIT 59. Forerunner of Sicily (Praecursor Siciliae) 215. Innocent VIII, 1484–1492 (Giovanni Battista Ciba2) Who was called John Baptist, and lived in the court of Alfonso, king of Sicily. (1) Giovanni Battista Ciba2 was named after John the Baptist, the precursor of Christ. In his early years, Giovanni served as the Bishop of Molfetta in Sicily. (2)
HIT 60. Bull of Alba in the harbor (Bos Albanus in portu) 216. Alexander VI, 1492–1503 (Rodrigo de Borgia) Cardinal Bishop of Albano and Porto, whose arms were a bull. (1) In 1456, he was made a Cardinal and he held the titles of Cardinal Bishop of Albano and Porto. Also, Pope Alexander had a red bull on his coat of arms. (2)
HIT 61. From a small man (De paruo homine) 217. Pius III, 1503 (Francesco Todeschini Piccolomini) A Sienese, of the Piccolomini family. (1) His family name was Piccolomini, from piccolo “small” and uomo “man”. (2)
HIT 62. The fruit of Jupiter will help (Fructus Iouis iuuabit) 218. Julius II, 1503–1513 (Giuliano Della Rovere) A Genoese, his arms were an oak, Jupiter’s tree. (1) On his arms was an oak tree, which was sacred to Jupiter. Pope Julius’ family name, “Della Rovere,” literally means “of the oak.”(2)
HIT 63. From a Politian gridiron (De craticula Politiana) 219. Leo X, 1513–1521 (Giovanni de Medici) Son of Lorenzo de’ Medici, and student of Angelo Poliziano. (1) His educator and mentor was the distinguished humanist and scholar, Angelo Poliziano. The “Gridiron” is the motto evidently refers to St. Lawrence, who was martyred on a gridiron. This is a rather elliptical allusion to Lorenzo the Magnificent, who was Giovanni’s father. (2)
HIT 64. Florentian lion (Leo Florentius) 220. Adrian VI, 1522–1523 (Adriaen Florenszoon Boeyens) Son of Florentius, his arms were a lion. (1) His coat of arms had two lions on it, and his name is sometimes given as Adriaan Florens, or other variants, from his father’s first name Florens (Florentius). (2)
HIT 65. Flower of the sick man’s pill (Flos pilei aegri) 221. Clement VII, 1523–1534 (Giulio de Medici) A Florentine of the Medicean house, his arms were pill-balls and lilies. (1) The Medici coat of arms were emblazoned with six medical balls. One of these balls, the largest of the six, was emblazoned with the Florentine lily. (2)
HIT 66. Hyacinth of the physicians (Hiacinthus medicoru) 222. Paul III, 1534–1549 (Alessandro Farnese) Farnese, who bore lilies for arms, and was Cardinal of Saints Cosmas and Damian. (1) Pope Paul’s coat of arms were charged with six hyacinths. (2)
HIT 67. From the mountainous crown (De corona montana) 223. Julius III, 1550–1555 (Giovanni Maria Ciocchi del Monte) Formerly called Giovanni Maria of the Mountain (de Monte)(1) His coat of arms showed mountains and palm branches laid out in a pattern much like a crown. (2)
HIT 68. Trifling grain (Frumentum flocidum [sic]) 224. Marcellus II, 1555 (Marcello Cervini) Whose arms were a stag and grain; ‘trifling’, because he lived only a short time as pope. (1) His coat of arms showed a stag and ears of wheat. (2)
VAGUE 69. From Peter’s faith (De fide Petri) 225. Paul IV, 1555–1559 (Giovanni Pietro Caraffa) Formerly called John Peter Caraffa. (1) He is said to have used his second Christian name Pietro. (2)
HIT 70. Aesculapius’ medicine (Esculapii pharmacum) 226. Pius IV, 1559–1565 (Giovanni Angelo de Medici) Formerly called Giovanni Angelo Medici. (1) His family name was Medici. (2)
HIT 71. Angel of the grove (Angelus nemorosus) 227. St. Pius V, 1566–1572 (Antonio Michele Ghisleri) Called Michael, born in the town of Bosco. (1) He was born in Bosco, (Lombardy); the placename means grove. His name was ‘Antonio Michele Ghisleri’, and Michele relates to the archangel. (2)
HIT 72. Half body of the balls (Medium corpus pilaru) 228. Gregory XIII, 1572–1585 (Ugo Boncompagni) Whose arms were a half-dragon; a Cardinal created by Pius IV who bore balls in his arms. (1) The “balls” in the motto refer to Pope Pius IV, who had made Gregory a cardinal. Pope Gregory had a dragon on his coat of arms with half a body. (2)
HIT 73. Axle in the midst of a sign. (Axis in medietate signi) 229. Sixtus V, 1585–1590 (Felice Peretti) Who bears in his arms an axle in the middle of a lion. (1) This is a rather straightforward description of the pope’s coat of arms. (2)
HIT 74. From the dew of the sky (De rore coeli) 230. Urban VII, 1590 (Giovanni Battista Castagna) Who was Archbishop of Rossano in Calabria, where manna is collected. (1) He had been Archbishop of Rossano in Calabria where sap called “the dew of heaven” is gathered from trees. (2)
MISS 75 Of the antiquity of the city (Ex antiquitate Vrbis) 231. Gregory XIV, 1590–1591 (Niccolo Sfondrati) His father was a senator of the ancient city of Milan. The word “senator” is derived from the Latin senex, meaning old man. (2)
MISS 76 Pious city in war (Pia ciuitas in bello) 232. Innocent IX, 1591 (Giovanni Antonio Facchinetti) He was Patriarch of Jerusalem before succeeding to the Papacy. (2)
VAGUE 77 Cross of Romulus (Crux Romulea) 233. Clement VIII, 1592–1605 (Ippolito Aldobrandini) He had been a cardinal with the title of Saint Pancratius, who was a Roman martyr. (2)
MISS 78 Wavy man (Vndosus uir) 234. Leo XI, 1605 (Alessandro Ottaviano De Medici) He had been the Bishop of Palestrina. The ancient Romans attributed the origins of Palestrina to the seafaring hero Ulysses. Also, he had only reigned for 27 days. (2)
MISS 79 Corrupted nation (Gens peruersa) 235. Paul V, 1605–1621 (Camillo Borghese) Pope Paul scandalised the Church when he appointed his nephew to the College of Cardinals. The word “nepotism” may have originated during this pope’s reign. (2)
MISS 80 In the trouble of peace (In tribulatione pacis) 236. Gregory XV, 1621–1623 (Alessandro Ludovisi) His reign corresponded with the outbreak of the Thirty Years’ War. (2)
MISS 81 Lily and rose (Lilium et rosa) 237. Urban VIII, 1623–1644 (Maffeo Barberini) He was a native of Florence, which has a red lily on its coat of arms. (2)
VAGUE 82 Delight of the cross (Iucunditas crucis) 238. Innocent X, 1644–1655 (Giovanni Battista Pamphili) He was raised to the pontificate around the time of the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross after a long and difficult conclave. (2)
HIT 83 Guard of the mountains (Montium custos) 239. Alexander VII, 1655–1667 (Fabio Chigi) His family arms include six hills with a star above them. (2)
MISS 84 Star of the swans (Sydus olorum) 240. Clement IX, 1667–1669 (Giulio Rospigliosi) The “star” in the legend refers Pope Alexander VII, who had made Clement his personal secretary. The Italian word for swan, cigni, rhymes with Pope Alexander’s surname, “Chigi.” [NOTE: This explanation has both “star” and “swans” referring—in an implausible way—to the *previous* pope, not Clement IX—ja](2)
VAGUE 85 From a great river (De flumine magno) 241. Clement X, 1670–1676 (Emilio Altieri) Pope Clement was a native of Rome. (2)
VAGUE 86 Insatiable beast (Bellua insatiabilis) 242. Innocent XI, 1676–1689 (Benedetto Odescalchi) Pope Innocent had a lion on his coat of arms. (2)
MISS 87 Glorious penitence (Poenitentia gloriosa) 243. Alexander VIII, 1689–1691 (Pietro Ottoboni) His first name was “Pietro”, after the apostle Peter who had repented after having denied Christ thrice. (2)
VAGUE 88 Rake in the door (Rastrum in porta) 244. Innocent XII, 1691–1700 (Antonio Pignatelli del Rastrello) His full name was Antonio Pignatelli del Rastrello. “Rastrello” in Italian means “rake.” [NOTE: I have been unable to verify, except from Wikipedia, that “del Rastrello” was part of his family name. The Catholic Encyclopedia and other sources list only “Pignatelli”](2)
VAGUE 89 Surrounded flowers (Flores circundati) 245. Clement XI, 1700–1721 (Giovanni Francesco Albani) He had been a cardinal with the title of Santa Maria in Aquiro. (2)
VAGUE 90 From good religion (De bona religione) 246. Innocent XIII, 1721–1724 (Michelangelo dei Conti) A play on words, referring to the pope’s regnal name. He was from the famous Conti family that had produced several Popes. (2)
MISS 91 Soldier in War (Miles in bello) 247. Benedict XIII, 1724–1730 (Pietro Francesco Orsini) Before he was pope there was a lot of wars in nearby countries, and it is possible he could have fought in one as a soldier. (2)
VAGUE 92 Lofty column (Columna excelsa) 248. Clement XII, 1730–1740 (Lorenzo Corsini) When still a cardinal, he had held the titular church of St Peter in Chains. The name “Peter” is derived from the Greek word “petros,” meaning “rock.” Clement was a frustrated architect who ordered, and sometimes interfered with, the building of many churches. He managed to salvage two columns of the Parthenon for his chapel at Mantua. (2)
MISS 93 Country animal (Animal rurale) 249. Benedict XIV, 1740–1758 (Marcello Lambertini) Might be a play on words because of his famous laws about missions in the two papal bulls. (2)
MISS 94 Rose of Umbria (Rosa Vmbriae) 250. Clement XIII, 1758–1769 (Carlo Rezzonico) He had been a cardinal with the titular church of Santa Maria in Aracoeli. In mystical circles, the Virgin Mary is represented by a rose. (2)
HIT 95 Swift bear (Vrsus uelox; later misprinted as Cursus velox, Swift Course, or Visus velox, Swift Glance) 251. Clement XIV, 1769–1774 (Lorenzo Giovanni Vincenzo Antonio Ganganelli) The Ganganelli family crest bore a running bear. (2)
VAGUE 96 Apostolic pilgrim (Peregrina apostolica) 252. Pius VI, 1775–1799 (Giovanni Angelico Braschi) Spent the last two years of his life in exile, a prisoner of the French Revolution. (2)
MISS 97 Rapacious eagle (Aquila rapax) 253. Pius VII, 1800–1823 (Barnaba Chiaramonti) The Pope’s pontificate was overshadowed by Napoleon, whose emblem was the eagle. (2)
MISS 98 Dog and adder (Canis & coluber) 254. Leo XII, 1823–1829 (Annibale Sermattei della Genga) “Dog” and “snake” are common insults, and Leo was widely hated. The legend could be an allusion to the pope’s last name, Sermattei. “Serpente” is the Italian word for snake. (2)
VAGUE 99 Religious man (Vir religiosus) 255. Pius VIII, 1829–1830 (Francesco Saverio Castiglioni) Another play on words, referring to the pope’s regnal name. (2)
VAGUE 100 From the baths of Tuscany (De balneis Ethruriae) 256. Gregory XVI, 1831–1846 (Mauro, or Bartolomeo Alberto Cappellari) Pope Gregory XVI belonged to the Camaldolese Order, which is said to have begun with two monastic houses. The first of these houses was Campus Maldoli, and the second was Fonte Buono, meaning “good fountain” in Italian. (2)
VAGUE 101 Cross from cross (Crux de cruce) 257. Bl. Pius IX, 1846–1878 (Giovanni Maria Mastai Ferretti) During his pontificate, the House of Savoy, whose coat of arms is a white cross on a red background, reunited Italy and stripped the pope of his territorial possessions. Pope Pius XII, commenting on the beatification process of Pius IX, used the words per crucem ad lucem (through the cross to light). Pius IX was finally beatified by Pope John Paul II in 2000. (2)
VAGUE 102 Light in the sky (Lumen in coelo) 258. Leo XIII, 1878–1903 (Gioacchino Pecci) His coat of arms had a shooting star. (2)
VAGUE 103 Burning fire (Ignis ardens) 259. St. Pius X, 1903–1914 (Giuseppe Sarto) Pius advocated the codification of Canon law, daily communion and the use of Gregorian chant in the Catholic liturgy, and was an opponent of Modernism. He was the first pope to be declared a saint in over 400 years, the previous one being Pope Pius V. (2)
MISS 104 Religion destroyed (Religio depopulata) 260. Benedict XV, 1914–1922 (Giacomo Della Chiesa) Reigned during, but had no influence to stop, World War I. This unprecedented period of violence was mainly fought between the Christian powers of Europe, destroying empires which had lasted centuries and began the worldwide spread of atheistic Communism. (2)
VAGUE 105 Intrepid faith (Fides intrepida) 261. Pius XI, 1922–1939 (Achille Ratti) Established Vatican City as a sovereign country with the papal office as head of state. (2)
VAGUE 106 Angelic shepherd (Pastor angelicus) 262. Ven. Pius XII, 1939–1958 (Eugenio Pacelli) Reigning during World War II, he is reported to have covertly helped many Jews escape extermination in the Holocaust, though his role continues to be fiercely debated. Said to have received visions, some of which have yet to be revealed. (2)
HIT 107 Shepherd and sailor (Pastor & nauta) 263. Bl. John XXIII, 1958–1963 (Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli) Patriarch of Venice, a maritime city (and a fomer naval power), from 1953 until 1958 (when he was elected Pope). (2)
VAGUE 108 Flower of flowers (Flos florum) 264. Paul VI, 1963–1978 (Giovanni Battista Enrico Antonio Maria Montini) His coat of arms featured three fleurs-de-lis. (2)
MISS 109 From the midst of the moon (De medietate lunae) 265. John Paul I, 1978 (Albino Luciani) His month-long reign began with the moon half-full. (2)
VAGUE 110 From the labor of the sun (De labore solis) 266. Bl. John Paul II, 1978-2005 (Karol Wojtyla) Born (18 May 1920) on the day of a solar eclipse and entombed (Friday April 8, 2005) on the day of a solar eclipse. Writing before that second eclipse, Tony Allan had said that attempts to find a connection between ‘from the labour of the sun’ and John Paul II ‘by pointing out that he came from Krakow, the birthplace of Copernicus, who first expounded the Earth’s solar orbit, seem forced.’ (2)
VAGUE 111 Glory of the olive. (Gloria olivae) 267. Benedict XVI, 2005–2013 (Joseph Ratzinger) Chose the regnal name Benedict after St Benedict of Nursia, founder of the Benedictine Order. The order’s crest contains an olive branch. Since 1960, one of (currently) 20 congregations in the Benedictine Confederation has been the Olivetans (founded in 1313), whose name ultimately derives from the Mount of Olives in the New Testament. Notably, Pope Benedict XVI is personally unaffiliated with the Olivetan order. (2)
n/a In the extreme persecution of the Holy Roman Church, there will sit. (In persecutione extrema SRE sedebit) [NOTE: It is unclear whether this line is associated with the preceding or following entry—ja.] (2)
n/a 112 Peter the Roman, who will nourish the sheep in many tribulations; when they are finished, the city of seven hills will be destroyed, and the dreadful judge will judge his people. The end. (Petrus Romanus, qui pascet oues in multis tribulationibus: quibus transactis ciuitas septicollis diruetur, & Iudex tremedus iudicabit populum suum. Finis) 268. Unknown The Catholic Encyclopedia, an independent American research company, has said that, even if the prophecy is genuine, which it doubts, there may still be many Popes between Peter the Roman and his predecessor on this list. (2)

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