1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Barberini

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BARBERINI, the name of a powerful Italian family, originally of Tuscan extraction, who settled in Florence during the early part of the 11th century. They acquired great wealth and influence, and in 1623 Maffeo Barberini was raised to the papal throne as Urban VIII. He made his brother, Antonio, a distinguished soldier, and two nephews, cardinals, and gave to a third nephew, Taddeo, the principality of Palestrina. Great jealousy of their increasing power was excited amongst the neighbouring princes, and Odoardo Farnese, duke of Parma, made war upon Taddeo, and defeated the papal troops. After the death of Urban in 1644 his successor, Innocent X., showed hostility to the Barberini family. Taddeo fled to Paris, where he died in 1647, and with him the family became extinct in the male line. His daughter Cornelia married Prince Giulio Cesare Colonna di Sciarra in 1728, who added her name to his own. On the death of Prince Enrico Barberini-Colonna the name went to his daughter and heiress Donna Maria and her husband Marquis Luigi Sacchetti, who received the title of prince of Palestrina and permission to bear the name of Barberini. The fine Barberini palace and library in Rome give evidence of their wealth and magnificence. The ruthless way in which they plundered ancient buildings to adorn their own palaces is the origin of the saying, “Quod non fecerunt barbari, fecerunt Barberini.”

See A. von Reumont, Geschichte der Stadt Rom (Berlin, 1868), iii. b. 611–612, 615, 617, &c.; Almanach de Gotha (Gotha, 1902); J. H. Douglas, The Principal Noble Families of Rome (Rome, 1905).