Raimondo Montecuccoli

Beyond Raimondo, other famous members of the Montecuccoli family

Aside from Raimondo, whose fame and endeavours were awe-inspiring, we must not forget other Montecuccoli family members whose deeds gained glory for themselves and their family.

Amongst Raimondo’s direct ancestors emerges the figure of his uncle, Massimiliano, who commanded the Duke of Savoy’s army against the French, conducted on behalf of Pope Gregory XIII a military campaign against the rebel bands of the Papal State and served the Duke of Modena as governor of the Garfagnana and Brescello.

Meanwhile, Galeotto, Raimondo’s father, was a valiant soldier who was to shine in the imperial army in the centuries-old war against the Ottomans in the Balkan peninsula.

Amongst many figures worthy of note, Gerolamo and Ernesto from the Montese line stand out. Generals in Vienna’s imperial army, the latter of the two was mentioned fleetingly in a passage of Manzoni’s novel “The Betrothed”.

Finally, we cannot forget Andrea of the Renno branch, who served first in the King of France’s army and then transferred into the service of the King of Spain, who nominated him governor of the Armentières fortress in Flanders, where he died in 1665.

In another field entirely was the distinguished Carlo di Polinago, whose culture was so all-embracing that he was mentioned in the same breath as Pico della Mirandola. Then there was Antonio Montecuccoli from Polinago (1578-1648) who became a monk and took up a position as General Minister of the Capuchin Order.

In more recent times, Cardinal Giovambattista Caprara Montecuccoli came to the fore because of his much-appreciated diplomatic talents, to the extent that he became Apostolic nuncio first in Vienna, then in Paris where, in 1802, he managed to convince Napoleon to sign a Concordat with the Holy See. The same year, under pressure from Napoleon, he was nominated Archbishop of Milan and in this position, in May 1805, celebrated Holy Mass during Napoleon Bonaparte’s coronation as King of Italy.

Therefore, thanks to numerous representatives from all the family’s branches, and despite coming from such an out-of-the-way place as Montecuccolo in the heart of the Frignano region, the Montecuccoli family were to become one of the most important noble houses in the Este State, and their fame spread far beyond Italy.