much a part of the Ultramontane movement as the great bishops, journalists and theologians who espoused it, as papal prestige and authority over the church flourished by ways and means which Rome itself had often done little to inspire.
Yet neo-Ultramontanism was also sustained by a succession of strong, attractive papal personalities who, in the Catholic view, were martyrs. Pius VII, who was held prisoner from 1809 to 1814, reverted to the role of the monk who mended his own soutane. In 1814, the defeat of the Emperor Napoleon allowed him to return to Rome, where he revived the Society of Jesus. Almost alone amongthe numerous ecclesiastical principalities ofthe ancien regime, the astute Cardinal Ercole Consalvi negotiated the restoration almost in toto of the Papal States at the Congress of Vienna, losing Avignon and the Venaissin in France, before taking up the reins of papal government. The papal archives and many of the artistic treasures looted by the French were returned to Rome. The recovery in papal prestige was marked by concordats with Bavaria and Sardinia (1817), Naples (1818) and Prussia (1821) and the Upper Rhine Provinces (1821). The portrait of Pius by Sir Thomas Lawrence commissioned by the Prince Regent conveys the weariness of the man in the beauty of his wasted face and the long hands never raised except in blessing. It was the first papal icon of the coming age.
The restoration of the Papal States belonged to the conservative reaction to the revolutionary turmoil of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic wars, as the Austrian foreign minister (later chancellor) Prince Metternich, the 'coachman of Europe', guided the continent back into its ancient political paths. Catholicism remained the most popular religion in Europe - there were about 100 million Catholics to 40 million Protestants and 40 million Orthodox - but the 'Congress system' left the continent dominated by the non-Catholic powers (Great Britain, Prussia and Russia) with millions of Irish, German and Polish Catholics under their rule. These Catholics might feel more affinity with radical politics, even revolution, than with the status quo. Yet the new arrangement also left the papacy to a degree the creature of the conservative order of Metternich's creation. One of its foremost new apologists, Count Joseph de Maistre, author of Du Pape (1819), was an arch-conservative who looked to Rome as the sanction for monarchic rule, although Rome refused to join the Holy Alliance of non-Catholic Russia and Prussia with Catholic Austria which sought to give Metternich's order a religious colouring.
Rome's main problems were nearer home. Consalvi's division of the Papal States into four legations and thirteen delegations involved an element of lay
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