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The word intransigence (from the French intransigeant , 'uncompromising', 'unyielding') generally denotes an inflexible attitude of rejection . In the modern papacy before the French Revolution , those popes were called intransigent who, as zealots ( zelanti ), gave ecclesiastical-religious affairs priority over political aspects, i.e. appeared adamant to the Catholic monarchies .

In the 19th century, the liberal nation-states became objects of papal intransigence (cf. Syllabus errorum , 1864). Since then, the lack of compromise in pastoral and dogmatic questions of church politics has gradually been differentiated more and more from more socio-political concepts ( social doctrine ).

The word “intransigent” has a reproachful sound towards politicians, something like “(advisory) resistance ”.


  • Otto Kallscheuer: Papism and Internationalism. In: Michael Minkenberg, Ulrich Willems (Hrsg.): Politics and Religion. VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften, Wiesbaden 2013, ISBN 978-3-322-80406-8 .

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Wiktionary: Intransigence  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations