Reisach, Karl August von
REISACH, KARL AUGUST VON
Archbishop, cardinal, count; b. Roth, near Eichstätt, Germany, July 6, 1800; d. Contamine (Savoie), France, Dec. 16, 1869. After studying law at Heidelberg, Göttingen, and Landshut, Reisach obtained a doctorate in law (1821). He then attended the German College in Rome (1824–29), was ordained (1828), and received a doctorate in theology (1829). In 1830 he was appointed prefect of studies at the College of Propaganda in Rome. He became bishop of Eichstätt (1836), coadjutor (1841), and then archbishop of Munich and Freising (1846). At Eichstätt he established a minor seminary and also reorganized the major seminary. During the cologne mixed marriage dispute, he played an important role as confidant of the pope and of the kings of Bavaria and Prussia.
In Munich after 1846, he became intimately involved in the conflict over the government's use of the placet in Bavaria. He strongly upheld the Church's freedom at the first German bishops' conference in Würzburg (1848) and at the Bavarian bishops' meeting in Freising (1850). The conflict with the Bavarian government led to his transfer to Rome in 1855, when he was raised to the cardinalate.
Because of his agreeable personality, he was chosen to negotiate the concordats with Württemberg (1857) and Baden (1859), which were not ratified by the legislatures of these two states. Reisach became minister of education for the states of the church (1862) and a member of several Roman Congregations. In 1865, he was in appointed president of the preparatory commission for vatican council i and in 1867 president of the commission for Church–State questions. In 1868 he became cardinal bishop of the suburbicarian See of Sabina. He was named a council president (Nov. 27, 1869), but died before exercising this office.
Bibliography: h. rall, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. j. hofer and k. rahner (Freiberg 1957–65) 8:1151–52.