Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

The name of a German noble family, many members of which were prelates of the Church.

(1) Johann Philipp von Schönborn

Archbishop of Mainz and Bishop of Würzburg and Worms, b. at Eschbach in the Westerwald, 6 August, 1605; d. at Würzburg, 12 February, 1673. When sixteen years old he became a cleric (an expectant for a canonicate) at the cathedral of Würzburg, and in 1625 at that of Mainz. He became cathedral canon at Würzburg in 1629, and at Worms in 1630. In 1635 he was made provost of Kronberg and of St. Burkard at Würzburg. On 16 August, 1642, he became Bishop of Würzburg ( deacon, 1642; priest, 1645); on 18 November, 1647, he was made Archbishop of Mainz, and in 1663 Bishop of Worms. His foreign policy was mainly directed towards the maintenance of peace, but this policy did not always meet with approval and often failed in its object. On the other hand his administration of all domestic affairs was excellent, and as a ruler he was not below the best of his era. His contemporaries gave him the honourable titles of "The Wise", "The German Solomon ", and "The Cato of Germany ". He succeeded in repairing the injuries inflicted upon his domains by the Thirty Years' War, settled the disputes as to territory with the neighboring rulers, reorganized the higher civil service, and improved the administration of justice. To compensate for the scarcity of priests and to raise the standard of the secular clergy he called to Mainz and Würzburg the Bartholomites, an institute founded by Bartholomew Holzhauser ( Institutum clericorum saecularium in communi viventium ); in 1654 he transferred to them the administration of the ecclesiastical seminary at Würzburg, and in 1660 also that of the gymnasium founded by him at Munnerstadt. In 1662 he established a seminary for priests at Mainz. Urged by the Jesuit Spee, he suppressed the trial of witches in his domains, and thus contributed, as far as was in his power, to the abolition of this miserable delusion. He was surrounded at his court by a large number of distinguished men, statesmen, diplomats, scholars, and pious ecclesiastics.

(2) Lothar Franz von Schönborn

Nephew of the above, was Archbishop of Mainz (1695-1729) and Bishop of Bamberg (1693).

(3) Damian Hugo Philipp von Schönborn

Prince Bishop of Speyer (1719-43) and of Constance (1740), and was also a cardinal. He did much for the Diocese of Speyer, and was conspicuous for his culture, learning, and piety.

(4) Franz Georg von Schönborn

Archbishop of Trier (1729-56) and Bishop of Worms (1732). Both Frederick the Great and Maria Theresa praised him as an excellent ruler.

(5) Johann Philipp Franz von Schönborn

Bishop of Würzburg (1719-24).

(6) Friedrich Karl von Schönborn

Bishop of Bamberg and Würzburg (1729-46). The last three prelates were brothers, and nephews of Lothar Franz.

(7) Franz von Schönborn

Born at Prague, 24 Jan., 1844; d. 25 June, 1899. He became Bishop of Prague in 1885, and was created cardinal in 1889.

More Encyclopedia

The Catholic Encyclopedia is the most comprehensive resource on Catholic teaching, history, and information ever gathered in all of human history. This easy-to-search online version was originally printed between 1907 and 1912 in fifteen hard copy volumes.

Catholic Encyclopedia

Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching, the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church has defined, but also an impartial record of different views of acknowledged authority on all disputed questions, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archaeology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.

No one who is interested in human history, past and present, can ignore the Catholic Church, either as an institution which has been the central figure in the civilized world for nearly two thousand years, decisively affecting its destinies, religious, literary, scientific, social and political, or as an existing power whose influence and activity extend to every part of the globe. In the past century the Church has grown both extensively and intensively among English-speaking peoples. Their living interests demand that they should have the means of informing themselves about this vast institution, which, whether they are Catholics or not, affects their fortunes and their destiny.

Copyright © Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company New York, NY. Volume 1: 1907; Volume 2: 1907; Volume 3: 1908; Volume 4: 1908; Volume 5: 1909; Volume 6: 1909; Volume 7: 1910; Volume 8: 1910; Volume 9: 1910; Volume 10: 1911; Volume 11: - 1911; Volume 12: - 1911; Volume 13: - 1912; Volume 14: 1912; Volume 15: 1912

Catholic Online Catholic Encyclopedia Digital version Compiled and Copyright © Catholic Online


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ephesians 6:1-9
1 Children, be obedient to your parents in the Lord -- that is what ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 145:10-11, 12-13, 13-14
10 All your creatures shall thank you, Yahweh, and your faithful shall ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 13:22-30
22 Through towns and villages he went teaching, making his way to ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 26th, 2016 Image

St. Bean
October 26: On December 16, there is named in the Roman ... Read More