The range of people interested in the Popes and the Papacy is very great indeed. As soon as Pope Benedict XVI was elected enquirers wanted to know about the previous Popes called Benedict. For those who travel abroad to look at works of art a book of this kind is an essential work for quick reference. Who were the Borgia Popes. So many Popes appear in great works of art (right up till Francis Bacon) but we know so little about them.
Who was the Pope who refused Henry VIII a divorce? Who was the Pope who declared Anglican orders null and void? Who was the Pope who tried to bring about world peace on the eve of the First World War? Who was the only English Pope? Is Benedict XVI the first German Pope? All these questions are answered in this compact book, which is packed with useful information.
The Popes are listed alphabetically according to the Papal names (Pius, John Paul, Alexander) but indexes also list the Popes by their family names (Borgia, Woytilja, Ratzinger). There is also a chronology so the Popes can be followed in historical order. Michael Walsh has written a short scholarly introduction in which he describes the role of the Papacy throughout history.
Burns & Oates, 2006. Softcover, 160 pp.