More Catholic ornithology

Yes, this question has been broached before: Cardinal as a middle name

So, that thread managed to settle the origins of the term “cardinal”, their distinctive plumage, and that the AP no longer uses the style. What it doesn’t cover is why.

Yes, someone quotes the AP stylebook as saying that it’s associated to the customs of nobility, but I really can’t buy that. “William, Duke of Norfolk” was not “William Norfolk” from birth, but “William Cardinal Keeler” was always “William Keeler”. Also: as pointed out above it’s “William Cardinal Keeler”, not “William, Cardinal Keeler”. The whole AP explanation smells strongly of a backwards guess by someone who had to come up with something to put in the guide but really didn’t know what he was talking about.

Another twist: a number of websites I’ve run across in my recent readings have actually consistently italicized the title. Thus, “William Cardinal Keeler”. Is this part of the standard?

So, within the last week I’ve learned pretty much everything about the College of Cardinals that I wasn’t taught back in Sunday school (which amounted to “above an archbishop, below the Pope”) but this irritating bit. Can the SDMB irregulars come up with an answer before they become strongly inaccessible cardinals?

You are pronouncing the name wrong. It should be "Alfred, Lord Tennyson.

I reread the OP, and I still don’t get why don’t you accept this answer?

I have no clue why people italicize the word Cardinal. I need to point out that the portion of your OP I quoted above, Mathochist, is flat-out wrong by normal style standards, despite what the presumable AP usage may be.

Alfred Tennyson was ennobled by Queen Victoria and made 1st Baron Tennyson. He became Alfred, Lord Tennyson in consequence. Note the comma. His given name is Alfred; his surname and title are both Tennyson. Proper spell-it-out-in-full usage would be Alfred Tennyson, 1st Lord Tennyson, which of course nobody ever does.

When Bernard Law was made priest, he became Fr. Bernard Law; as Bishop, he was Bernard Law, Bishop of Nashua (or whatever his first see may have been). Then he became Bernard Law, Archbishop of Boston. When the Pope encardinalized him, he became Bernard Law, Archbishop of Boston, Cardinal Law of the Catholic Church – just like Tennyson became Lord Tennyson. That mouthful was shorthanded to Bernard, Cardinal Law. And that is the proper usage.

There are obvious exceptions to the nobility rule: Edward Wood, younger son of a Viscount and leading pre-WWII British politician, was made 1st Baron Irwin in his own right for his services in India. Later, he succeeded to his father’s title. He was Edward Wood, then Edward Wood, Lord Irwin, then Edward Wood, Viscount (usually rendered Lord) Halifax. But Cardinals are always en-titled by their surname, except the Chamberlain, who has a dual title. So they would all be “Firstname, Cardinal Surname” except for Giovanni, Cardinal Lombardo, who would also be Giovanni Lombardo, Cardinal Camerlengo. (I don’t think any of the other titles for individual Cardinals are used like that except the Camerlengo.)

And Cardinal is never properly treated as if a middle name, without the comma. If the AP is telling reporters to do that, it’s wrong.

I have the Chicago Manual of Style, 13th edition, not the newest. Section 7.20 includes this:

I don’t ever remember seeing any journalistic style that included a comma after the birth name. Maybe they were all wrong, but they all did it.

With all due respect, I believe this is incorrect. My Chicago Manual of Style and NY Public Library Desk Reference agrees with AP usage: Francis Cardinal Spelmann, no comma. This is the way I have always seen it in Catholic Church usage.

The Catholic Herald agrees with this usage, as do these additional websites from the first page of a Google search on “forms of address” “cardinal”:

Anecdotally, I grew up in New York with Terence Cardinal Cooke and John Cardinal O’Connor. Nary a comma.

But later Lords Tennyson need not have had the surname from birth. The famous Lord Kelvin, for instance, was born William Thompson.

A bad example. Just as the poet Alfred Tennyson was created 1st Baron Tennyson, William Thompson was created 1st Baron Kelvin (aka Lord Kelvin) and left no heirs. There has been no other Lord Kelvin, with or without the surname of Thompson.

Then it’s an even better example: Polycarp’s post seemed to indicate that the title as lord was derived from the original surname. If William Thompson was the first (and only) Lord Kelvin then this shows the distinction between lordships and cardinalities.

Further, I thought of this: cardinality is analogous to lordship in that there is a specific “office” to be held. William Cardinal Keeler is actually “Cardinal-Priest of S. Maria degli Angeli”, a post held by various cardinal-priests back to its establishment in 1565. That post is analogous to a lordship and I’d have no problem buying the analogy argument if the style were “William, Cardinal S. Maria degli Angeli” or something like that.

Why should it be accepted if there is no actual evidence for it? And as has been pointed out, the form is different from that used by royalty: there is never a comma between the first name and the title.

*The Catholic Herald * explains it like this:

This also seems like a “made-up” explanation by someone who didn’t know the real reason. For one thing, it doesn’t explain why only Cardinals are styled this way, not bishops or priests. The explanation would gain more weight if there was some evidence that these others were at one time referred to as Fulton Bishop J. Sheen or Guido Father Sarducci.

Great explanation, but I’m still in the dark as to how/why that particular styling came to be. Wouldn’t it make more sense to say Lord Alfred Tennyson if the title were the same as the last name, or Lord John Doe of Whatever if it weren’t?

It makes sense to say thing either way. I can introduce a friend as Lord Bob Smith, Bob, Lord of Smith, or prehaps even Bob, The Lord Smith. Gramatically, it seems to work in every example, except for leaving out the comma, simply smacks of lazyness made acceptable from decades of being used that way.

In Los Angeles, the cardinal styles himself Cardinal Roger Mahony. Or Cardinal Roger M. Mahony.

He’ll be the tall guy.

Nope, because Lord John Smith conveys a different meaning from John, Lord Smith.

Like this: For any peer ranked at Viscount or above, his heir is addressed as “Lord” by courtesy only. (Until he inherits the peerage, he himself remains a commoner.) The way to refer to one of these people is Lord Firstname Lastname, indicating that he’s not himself Lord Lastname, but the guy who will inherit the lordship of Lastname when his father kicks off. The Earl Grey for whom the tea was named was in the House of Lords in the mid 19th century; his son, Lord John Grey, was a prominent member of the House of Commons and I believe Prime Minister for a few years. He was “Lord” by courtesy, as the son of an Earl, but was himself a commoner who could and did stand for office and serve in the Commons.