Roman Catholic Cardinal. One of seven children born to Guglielmo Cicognani, a modest fish vendor and shopkeeper, and his wife Anna Ceroni, Amleto Giovanni Cicognani followed the footsteps of his elder brother Gaetano. Entering seminary in Faenza, he moved to Rome in order to pursue his studies at the Pontifical Roman Athenaeum of S. Apollinare. Ordained priest in 1905, his first assignment was that of minute-taker of the Sacred Congregation for the Discipline of the Sacraments from which he was moved to the Sacred Consistorial Congregation in 1914. Assigned to the teaching staff of S. Apollinare, in 1924 he was sent to the United States of America in order to inquire about the works of the Scalabrinian Fathers, which he found particularly gratifying, such that he encouraged them to to extend their work in North and South America. Chaplain of the Catholic students of the University of Rome, Cicognani was named assessor of the Sacred Congregation for the Oriental Church in 1928 and secretary of the Cardinalitial Commission for the Codification of Oriental Canon Law the following year. Elected archbishop of the titular see of Laodicea di Frigia in 1933, he received his episcopal consecration at the church of Santa Susanna in Rome. Named apostolic delegate to the United States of America a month later, for twenty five years his presence across the states became familiar and appreciated: he not only traveled extensively and held hundreds of speeches, but the Catholic figure rose by ten million and the total number of bishops from a merely one hundred to over two hundred. Pope John XXIII created him cardinal priest with the title of San Clemente in his first consistory of December 15, 1958, and appointed him secretary of the Sacred Congregation for the Oriental Church the following year. In 1961, the Pope named him Secretary of State, president of the Pontifical Commission for the State of Vatican City, and president of the Commission of Cardinals for the Administration of the Wealth of the Holy See. Confirmed in the same posts by John XXIII's successor, Pope Paul VI, Cicognani became Cardinal bishop of the suburbicarian see of Frascati in 1962 and Camerlengo of the Sacred College of Cardinals in 1964. Retiring from his duties at the age of eighty six in 1969, he was elected dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals by the cardinal bishops and confirmed by Pope Paul VI in 1972. Cicognani passed away of cardiac insufficiency at the Vatican City and was buried in his title. His elder brother, who predeceased him in 1962, was the pro-prefect of the Apostolic Signatura and prefect of the Congregation of Rites.
Bio by: Eman Bonnici
XXIV FEB. MDCCCLXXXIII
HAMLETUS IOANNES S.R.E. CARD. CICOGNANI
XVII. DEC. MCMLXXIII