Hungary and the Holy See of Rome III

vol. 21
Péter Tusor–Viktor Kanász

Hungary and the Holy See of Rome III. Exquisitae lucubrationes Cornelio Szovák amicabiliter dicatae (CVH I/21), ed. Péter Tusor–Viktor Kanász, Budapest-Rome 2022. 468 p. + 4 annexes (1 p. art. illustrated, 3 maps)

As in its predecessors (CVH I/8 and CVH I/15), this volume of studies presents the current trends in Vatican Hungarian historical research in the form of sample publications and preliminary studies. All this done, as before, not only by members of the Vilmos Fraknói Vatican Historical Research Group, but also with the involvement of wider professional circle, mainly with the participation of other members of the Hungarian research community and partly of research institutes. The conference will be preceded by the VIII Fraknói Summer Academy in Piliscsaba.

The opening essay, written by Dániel Bácsatyai on the 800th anniversary of the publication of the Golden Bull (Aranybulla), finally outlines the real historical context of the document’s creation in the force field of the Vatican research. The original of the bull of Pope Honorius III, dated 9 December 1222, preserved in Barcelona, has so far completely escaped the attention of the relevant research, and its careful analysis reveals completely new data, aspects and contexts. Tamás Fedeles publishes and processes the Hungarian entries of hitherto neglected Camera Apostolica volume from the late 14th century. Gábor Nemes publishes and places in historical context newly discovered papal breves from 1476 from Sixtus IV. The Vestigia Research Group, personally Hajnalka Kuffart, has the merit of unearthing the earliest Hungarian canonical investigation record to date, dating from 1503. This is followed by two impressive contributions by the Hungarian Mediavistical Research Group. Norbert C. Tóth presents and publishes his rotula of the litigation on the Sacra Romana Rota in 1514–1515 concerning the canonry of the St. Peter’s altar in Esztergom. Bálint Lakatos has compiled the documents of the appointment of the renowned humanist Girolamo Balbi, provost of Pozsony (Bratislava), as bishop of Gurk (1522–1523), thanks to his collection of sources from the Vatican and Austria. Lakatos’ study clarifies and supplements Balbi’s biography in several aspects.

In the study introducing the early modern period, Viktor Kanász examines the Hungarian aspects of the reports sent to Rome by Girolamo Martinengo of Vienna and Ludovico Beccadelli, the Venetian Apostolic Nuncio, between 1550 and 1554. It demonstrates that the papacy had complex and reliable information on the Kingdom of Hungary in the mid-16th century. Tamás Kruppa traces the diplomatic efforts of Filippo Spinelli, the new papal nuncio to the imperial court in Prague in 1598, in relation to the Principality of Transylvania until 1600. He reveals that the idea of a possible principality of the ruling papal dynasty, the House of Aldobrandini, was also raised in the Roman planning. Péter Tusor examines the denunciation of Péter Pázmány, Archbishop of Esztergom, against Gáspár Verbanovich, canon of Zagreb, sent to Rome in the autumn of 1625, and places it in the coordinates of the Catholic confessionalization in Hungary, the history of the diocese of Eger and Croatian-Hungarian relations in the 17th century. From the ELKH Institute of History, Béla Mihalik takes a closer look at the appointment of Mihály Telekessy, canon of Győr, bishop of Csanád, famous for his archpastorship of Eger, using the letters of Abbot Fabrizio Agostini, cardinal protectorate agent, active in the Roman proceedings, preserved in Florence. Also an illustrative example of the special value of the Roman agent reports is the article by Róbert Oláh P., who describes the papal conclave of 1769 on the basis of Bartolomeo Pinto Poloni’s reports preserved in Győr, using sources of control from Vienna. The statement of Mons. Tamás Tóth describes the first canonical investigation protocol of the diocese of Székesfehérvár in 1777, due to the location of the conference history in Piliscsaba. Katalin Nagy, a colleague of the Moravcsik Institute, and a research resident of the same institute and of the Vilmos Fraknói Research Group in the Vatican archives, publishes the first research request of Vilmos Fraknói from the prefectural archives of the Archivio Apostolico Vaticano in 1881. Their particular informative value is that they irrefutably prove that the aim of Fraknói and his associates was from the very beginning to explore and publish Vatican sources of Hungarian relevance, and not a (even) larger-scale project.

The 20th century is represented by three papers. Tamás Véghseő from Nyíregyháza, with the help of some documents from the Historical Archives of the Papal State Secretariat, shows the early memories of the foundation of the diocese of Hajdúdorog in 1912 in Romanian aspect, and the fears of the restoration of the original borders of the Hungarian Greek Catholic diocese in the context of the Second Vienna decision of 1940. From the same repository come two reports by Alvary Gascoigne, the British Ambassador Extraordinary in Budapest, on his negotiations with Archbishop József Grősz of Kalocsa in 1945. The documents, processed by György Sági, reached the Papal Secretariat of the State through the British Ambassador Extraordinary to the Vatican. Finally, Balázs Rétfalvi analyses the interesting and instructive account of the visit of Piarist General Vince Tomek to Hungary after the nationalisation of church schools in June 1948. The document is housed in the central archives of the Piarist Order in Rome (Archivio Generale delle Scuole Pie).

The title dedication of the present, third volume of Studies on Hungary and the Holy See of Rome is dedicated to Kornél Szovák, who will turn 60 on 24 December 2022. For this reason, Fraknói Summer Academy is now welcoming its curator in a book of essays. Kornél Szovák was present at the founding of the series Collectanea Vaticana Hungariae, was involved in the publication of the first volume, and has contributed to the progress of the series with his studies and advices. Most recently, as founding director of the Moravcsik Institute, he has organized its Hungarica Department, which alongside the Fraknói Research Group, is the other domestic pole of systematic Vatican source research. The subtitle of this volume is a tribute to all of this.