Which pre VII, Pope wrote the best (as in most readable) encyclicals?
#1
Just a question for discussion.

I'm not so much curious about who wrote the most important encyclicals, "Pascendi" "Humani Generis" "Rerum Novarum"  but actually which Pope wrote or signed onto encyclicals with the most literary flair or which had the most individual personality.
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#2
(07-20-2012, 01:25 AM)Gerard Wrote: Just a question for discussion.

I'm not so much curious about who wrote the most important encyclicals, "Pascendi" "Humani Generis" "Rerum Novarum"  but actually which Pope wrote or signed onto encyclicals with the most literary flair or which had the most individual personality.

That should be easy ... I nominate all the popes who wrote and signed encyclicals using the plural "WE" rather than the personal "I" which has been in used since John Paul II.  Even Pope Paul VI wrote using "We" in his addresses.  There is a vast significance in distinguishing between these two pronouns.  The "I" to me appears arrogant.  There is more humility in "We."  You can disagree with me, np.
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#3
Leo XIII, however all from Gregory XVI to Pius XII are excellent.
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#4
(07-20-2012, 01:48 AM)Crusader_Philly Wrote: Leo XIII, however all from Gregory XVI to Pius XII are excellent.

I tend to agree.
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#5
I do think it would be interesting to read a stylistic analysis not only of papal but perhaps also of conciliar documents from the modern period (i.e., starting around Leo X).
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#6
To be fair, the  singular "I" seems relegated to the English translation, whereas the "We" is used in the original Latin for John Paul II and Benedict XVI.

I just made a couple quick looks.  Evangelium Vitae and Ordinatio Sacerdotalis of John Paul II both use the the plural in Latin even though the English has the singular ("I declare..." in English, "declaramus" in Latin). I checked Spe Salvi for Benedict XVI, and in the third paragraph, the English says "I am thinking of the African Josephine Bakhita," but the Latin says "Etenim mens Nostra vertitur ad Iosephinam Bakhita" (literally "Our thoughts turn to...").
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#7
Good catch Sebastian.  As others have said, the 100plus years before VII are very readable, not that furthur back were not.  It really is a hard choice for me because they all write so clear, unlike what you often find in the VII stuff.  I think I lean towards Pope Pius XI.  I have read many of the others which are very good.  Somehow Pius XI's have stuck in my mind.  Perhaps because of refering to "Mortalium Animos" , "Quas Primas", "Casti Cannubi" and others encyclicals of his that we make much use of today leans me this way.  Just a thought.

  Joe
 
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#8
Peter I and II, and Clement
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#9
(07-20-2012, 11:26 AM)SaintSebastian Wrote: To be fair, the  singular "I" seems relegated to the English translation, whereas the "We" is used in the original Latin for John Paul II and Benedict XVI.

I just made a couple quick looks.  Evangelium Vitae and Ordinatio Sacerdotalis of John Paul II both use the the plural in Latin even though the English has the singular ("I declare..." in English, "declaramus" in Latin). I checked Spe Salvi for Benedict XVI, and in the third paragraph, the English says "I am thinking of the African Josephine Bakhita," but the Latin says "Etenim mens Nostra vertitur ad Iosephinam Bakhita" (literally "Our thoughts turn to...").

I am aware of these.  Just saying, in the English translation (as well as in the Spanish and French) why the reversion from "We" to the singular  "I."  Is there an explanation anywhere?   Do you know?   Sounds to me as ipse dixits:  "We" speaks from the universal Church; "I" is me saying so.  And then also, who today reads or speaks in the Latin.  One hilarious incident at a consistory when the MC started his spiel in Latin, almost all of the bishops reached out for their headphones. 
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#10
(07-20-2012, 01:42 AM)Vincentius Wrote:
(07-20-2012, 01:25 AM)Gerard Wrote: Just a question for discussion.

I'm not so much curious about who wrote the most important encyclicals, "Pascendi" "Humani Generis" "Rerum Novarum"  but actually which Pope wrote or signed onto encyclicals with the most literary flair or which had the most individual personality.

That should be easy ... I nominate all the popes who wrote and signed encyclicals using the plural "WE" rather than the personal "I" which has been in used since John Paul II.  Even Pope Paul VI wrote using "We" in his addresses.  There is a vast significance in distinguishing between these two pronouns.  The "I" to me appears arrogant.  There is more humility in "We."  You can disagree with me, np.
Anyone notice that Benedict XVI used "WE" in the Motu Proprio but, everywhere esle uses I?
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