Papal medallion cast, Pope Urban VIII (1568-1644), reigned as pope from 6 August 1623 to his death in 1644. He expanded the papal territory by force of arms and advantageous politicking, and was also a prominent patron of the arts and a reformer of Church missions. However, the massive debts incurred during his pontificate greatly weakened his successors, who were unable to maintain the papacy's longstanding political and military influence in Europe. He was also involved in a controversy with Galileo and his theory on heliocentrism during his reign. He is the most recent pope to date to take the pontifical name of Urban upon being elected as pope.

Pope Urban VIII


Mid to Late 19th Century