BORROMEO, biir'rii-mu/tt. Saint. CARLO ( 84). An Italian prelate and reformer. He was horn October 2, 1538, at the castle of Arona, on the west bank of Lago Maggiore, the family seat of his ancestors. He studied law- at Pavia, and took the degree of doctor in 1559. His uncle. Pope Pius IV. (1559-115), :own after being raised to the Pontificate, appointed him, notwithstand ing his youth. to a number of high offices, and made him a Cardinal and Archbishop of Milan. Borromeo displayed great faithfulness and abil ity in governing Ancona, Bologna, and other parts of the States of the Church as Legate, and in discharging the duties of offices connected with ecclesiastical administration in Rome. Sur rounded, as he was, with magnificence and luxury, lie was always grave, pious, and rigid in his life, studious, and a patron of letters.
Pius 1V. made him his grand plenipotentiary, and did nothing important without his •oiip eration. It was in a great measure through his in fiuenee that the reopening of the Council of Trent was accomplished, and that its deliberations were brought to a conclusion so satisfactory to the Papal wishes. He committed its decrees to mem ory, had the principal part in drawing up the Caterhismus Ramanns for exposition of them, and proceeded to give all possible effect to them in his .archiepiscopal province. Borromeo's exertions, not only for the improvement of ecclesiastical discipline. but also for the reformation of morals in the Arehbishoprie of Milan. aroused the hostil ity of some local monastic orders, and also, to some extent, that of the Spanish authorities in Milan, who were jealous of the extension of his jurisdiction. An attempt was even made upon his life in 15(19. lie spent a great part of his in
come in beautifying the cathedral and other churches. With a view to providing well-qualified priests, he founded in 1570 the Helvetic Col lege in Milan, lie brought about an alliance of the seven Catholic cantons, known as the Golden Borromean League, for the united defense of their faith. He exerted his energica successfully in extirpating Protestantism :Nina n by means of the Inquisition, In the famine of 1570, and during the plague in Milan in 1578. he dis played great energy and benevolence. saving the lives of multitudes by the prompt arrangements which he made for necessary relief. Exhausted by his labors and his austerities, lie (lied on November 3, 1584.. lie was CO nollizPil in 1610. His embalmed body, enshrined in a silver sareoph agus and visible through a lid of rock-crystal. lies in Milan Cathedral in the Cappella San Car lo Borromeo beneath the dome—a subterranean crypt. noted for its wealth of deowation and ac cumulation of priceless jewels and costly The saint's body and other relies may he viewed by permission. Many miracles are said to have been wrought at his tomb.
his theological works were published at Milan, in 1747, in five volumes folio. On the western bank of Lago Maggiore, in the neighborhood of his birthplace, a colossal brazen statue of him, 70 feet high, was erected in 1697. His broth er's son. Count Federigo Borromeo, born 1564, was also a cardinal, and from 1595 to 1631 Arch bishop of Milan, and was the founder of the Am brosial) Library (q.v.). He died in 1631. For the best biography of Borromeo, consult S'ylvain, 3 vols. (Bruges, 1884).