Pope and Devil: the Vatican´s Archive and the Third Reich

© C. H. Beck

The Vatican’s dealings with the Weimar Republic and the Third Reich have long been swathed in myth and speculation. After almost seventy years, the crucial documents for the years leading up to 1939 were finally made accessible, revealing the bitter conflicts that raged behind the walls of the Vatican. Anti‐Semites and philo‐Semites, adroit diplomats and dogmatic fundamentalists, influential local bishops and powerful cardinals argued passionately over the best way to contend with the intellectual and political currents of the modern age: liberalism, communism, fascism, and National Socialism.

Hubert Wolf explains why a philo‐Semite association was dissolved, while at the same time anti‐Semitism was not condemned, how the Vatican concluded a concordat with the Third Reich in 1933, why Hitler’s “Mein Kampf” was never prohibited by the Church and which factors surrounded the Pope’s “silence” on the persecution of the Jews.

Literature: Wolf, Hubert: Papst und Teufel. Die Archive des Vatikan und das Dritte Reich, München: C. H. Beck, 2nd edition 2009 (2012 Paperback edition).

Italian edition: Il papa e il diavolo. Il Vaticano e il Terzo Reich, Rome: Donzelli 2008.
French edition: Le pape et le diable. Pie XII, le Vatican et Hitler: les révélations des archives, Paris: CNRS-Éditions 2009.
Catalan edition: El Papa i el diable. El Vaticà i el Tercer Reich, Lleida: Pagès editors 2009.
English edition: Pope and Devil. The Vatican’s Archive and the Third Reich, Cambridge (MA): Harvard University Press 2010.
Hungarian edition: A Pápa és az Ördög. A Vatikáni levéltárak és a Harmadik Birodalom, Budapest: Szent István Társulat 2010.