Pius VII, named Luigi Barnaba Chiaramonti (1742-1823), was born in Gesena.
He became bishop of Tivoli, and, already a cardinal, succeeded Pius VI
in 1800. After war conflicts with France, Rome was restored to the papal
authority and next year the French troops were withdrawn from most of the
papal territory. Pius reinstated order in his states, and in 1801 concluded
a concordat with Napoleon, which the latter altered by autocratic Articles
organiques. In 1804, Napoleon compelled Pius to come to Paris to consecrate
him as emperor. Pius VII failed to get any modification of the articles,
and soon after his return to Rome the French seized Ancona and entered
Rome. This was followed by the annexation (May 1809) of the papal states
to the French empire. In return the pope excommunicated the robbers of
the Holy See. After that he was removed to Grenoble, and finally to Fontainebleau,
where he was forced to sign a new concordat and sanction the annexation.
The fall of Napoleon (1814) allowed Pius VII to return to Rome, and the
Congress of Vienna restored to him his territory.
See: Jacques-Louis David. Portrait of Pope Pius VII.
Gergely Jenö. History of Popes. Moscow. 1996.
Chambers Biographical Dictionary. Chambers. 1996.