POPE. The bishop of Rome and head of the Roman Catholic church. He is elected by certain officers called cardinals, and re mains in power during life. In the 9th Col lation of the Authentics it is declared the bishop of Rome hath the first place of sitting in all assemblies, and the bishop of Constanti nople the second. Ridley, Civ. & Eccl. L. pt. 1, c. 3, § 10. • "It does not appear necessary that a Pope be selected either from the ranks of the Car dinals or that he be in Orders." 1 Halleck, Int. L., Baker's ed. 104.
The Catholic powers concede the preceden cy to the Pope as the visible head of the church ; but Russia and Turkey and the Protestant states of Europe consider him only as the bishop of Rome, and a sovereign prince, although since September 20, 1870, he has been dispossessed of substantially all his territory. By the Italian decree of May 13, 1871, he is guaranteed his sovereign rights and other immunities by Italy, but he has refused to accept this decree. He main
tains diplomatic relations with France and some other Catholic states; id. 118.
Though deprived of the territorial domin ion which he once enjoyed, he holds, as sov ereign pontiff and head of the Roman Church, an exceptional position. Though, in default of territory, he is not a temporal sov ereign, he is in many respects treated as such. He has the right of active and passive legation, and his envoys of the first class, his apostolic nuncios, are specially privileg ed. Nevertheless he does not make war, and the conventions which he conoludes with states are not called' treaties but concordats. 1 Moore, Dig. Int. L. 39, cited in Ponce v. Church, 210 U. S. 318, 28 Sup. Ct. 737, 52 L. Ed. 1068.
See ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH.