Countries of the Popes

Name the modern-day countries in whose territory the popes were born.
Quiz by Quizmaster
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Last updated: August 19, 2016
First submittedAugust 19, 2016
Times taken45,432
Average score73.3%
Rating4.74
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# Popes
Country
212
Italy / Vatican City
16
France
6
Germany
3
Greece
3
Israel
3
Syria
2
Croatia
2
Spain
# Popes
Country
2
Turkey
1
Argentina
1
Libya
1
Netherlands
1
Poland
1
Portugal
1
United Kingdom
+20
Level ∞
Aug 19, 2016
A couple of notes:
  • We don't know where every pope was born
  • Many popes were born in Rome. Some were probably born in what is today the Vatican. It's impossible to say which are which, so I had to combine Italy and the Vatican
+3
Level 75
Aug 24, 2016
I am curious about this - is there anyone specifically likely to have been born in the vatican or is this a general statement for all the ones born in Rome?
+2
Level 80
Oct 6, 2016
Not for all of them I guess, some birth houses must be well documented, inside or outside Vatican, while others were probably born long before modern layout of Rome/Vatican
+2
Level 68
Apr 4, 2022
Interestingly, every pope except Francis was born prior to the establishment of the Vatican City as we know it.
+1
Level 55
Jun 17, 2022
Remember that, the Vatican controlled large amounts of territory back in the day
+5
Level 74
Aug 19, 2016
Nice quiz. I never knew there was a dutch pope
+28
Level 87
Aug 20, 2016
Adrian VI - He was elected in 1522 and was the last non-Italian before St John Paul II was elected in 1978.
+14
Level 55
Sep 13, 2017
^^ wow that's a crazy fact. over 400 years without a non-Italian pope, very interesting
+5
Level 63
Oct 25, 2017
He was born in Utrecht but lived most of his life around the university and court in Leuven, Belgium.
+1
Level 70
Jan 14, 2022
Especially weird because travel became much easier during the Industrial Revolution. I mean, earlier in history, the Church had an excuse for not having foreign popes, but why not during the Industrial Revolution, when people in Europe could easily travel by rail? I wonder if the lack of non-Italian popes in the 1800s and early 1900s had something to do with Italian nationalism.
+1
Level 71
May 30, 2022
I mean, the pope is also the "Bishop of Rome". Rome is Italian, so you'd want an Italian bishop i guess
+3
Level 63
Aug 19, 2016
Cool quiz! Would've never thought of Syria
+11
Level 61
Oct 6, 2016
I tried Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Iran and Iraq but not Syria! Argh! Only one I missed!
+2
Level 71
Oct 6, 2016
Not one from the Vatican.
+11
Level 18
Jul 17, 2018
There are many from Vatican..
+4
Level 70
Oct 6, 2016
I'm from Croatia and had no idea two of the popes were born here. Thanks, Jetpunk!
+15
Level 66
Oct 7, 2016
Yes, but they were Romans, born before our Croatian ancestors came to this land that is today Croatia. But there is some strong evidence that pope Sixtus V was of Croatian origin, but born in Italy.
+9
Level 74
Sep 16, 2020
Was there a Sixtus VI?
+4
Level 55
Dec 18, 2020
Not yet.
+3
Level 51
Jul 8, 2021
idk thats kinda sus
+1
Level 57
Feb 7, 2022
Was there a Sixtus IX?
+4
Level 47
Oct 6, 2016
Is anyone else surprised that Israel is so low on the rate answered? 54% when I took it
+6
Level 77
Oct 6, 2016
Since the modern country isn't that old, maybe they didn't think about it from biblical times. I only got it by typing Palestine.
+5
Level 84
Oct 6, 2016
Catholicism is a Roman religion.
+4
Level 54
Mar 26, 2020
It does have distant roots in Israel, though. Once I got through the countries near Italy, I went straight there.
+6
Level 84
Mar 26, 2020
No, it did not.
+1
Level 79
Jun 22, 2022
Huh? Catholics are Christians. Christianity is rooted in Israel. That certainly qualifies as "distant roots".
+4
Level 61
Mar 26, 2020
I was also surprised, given that Peter was the first pope.
+1
Level 58
Jul 19, 2021
@kalbahamut is correct
+3
Level 52
Oct 6, 2016
Very original! Great idea!
+2
Level 43
Oct 8, 2016
Very surprised by Syria where there are three popes was born!
+14
Level 84
Aug 12, 2017
Syria was home to some of the oldest Christian communities in history. Remember Paul was supposedly converted by a vision he saw on the road to Damascus. You know where Damascus is, right?
+1
Level 58
Jul 19, 2021
Itd be interesting to know whether Paul's vision was in Syria or not. It was on the road to Damascus like kalbahamut said, but he was travelling from Jerusalem, so it may have been in Israel before he reached modern day Syria.
+5
Level 72
Aug 12, 2017
The only one i missed was argentina, which i just found out was where pope francis was born in... i really dont know much about religion...
+2
Level 37
Mar 18, 2018
Would never have guessed Greece. Thought of it, but then said "Nah, they're Greek Orthodox."
+12
Level 84
Mar 7, 2019
There was a lot of Church history prior to the Eastern/Western split in the early 11th century.
+5
Level 87
Jul 2, 2018
Too Western World oriented.
+6
Level 58
Jul 19, 2021
Yeah, tell the popes that!
+1
Level 79
Jun 22, 2022
Given the plummeting religious affiliation in the West (replaced largely by political ideology), I don't think that will be a problem for long.
+3
Level 70
Mar 7, 2019
Bit too much time for this. Was just typing random countries in the end and got a few more right.
+3
Level 38
Dec 13, 2019
The French popes : Sylvester II (999-1003), Stephen IX (1057-58), Nicholas II (1059-61), Urban II (1088-99), Callixtus II (1119-24), Urban IV (1261-64), Clement IV (1265-68), Innocent V (1276), Martin IV (1281-85), Clement V (1305-14), John XXII (1316-34), Benedict XII (1334-42), Clement VI (1342-52), Innocent VI (1352-62), Urban V (1362-70), Gregory XI (1370-78).
+3
Level 38
Dec 13, 2019
The German popes : Boniface II (530-32), Gregory V (996-99), Clement II (1046-47), Damasus II (1048), Leo IX (1049-54), Victor II (1055-57), Benedict XVI (2005-13).
+1
Level 65
Oct 14, 2021
There's a rule that there has to be a German pope at least every 1000 years I guess.
+6
Level 68
Dec 28, 2019
I can imagine that one Pope, who was born in UK drinking his afternoon tea in the Vatican :)
+1
Level 46
Sep 30, 2020
bit steryotypical
+2
Level 72
Dec 25, 2020
Britain? And 93% got it (I didn't)? Who was it, Pope Nigel I ?
+1
Level 59
Sep 20, 2021
Almost as English-sounding - Adrian IV. He's quite important for Irish history since he 'gave' Ireland to Henry II of England. It's somewhat ironic that England's first attempt to subdue Ireland came with the blessing of the Roman Catholic church.
+2
Level 34
Mar 26, 2020
Nice quiz! I missed one because I somehow completely forgot that the UK existed 😂
+7
Level 67
Mar 26, 2020
Evaristus was born in modern day Palestine.
+3
Level 69
Mar 26, 2020
There is no such place.
+2
Level 59
Apr 29, 2022
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palestine_(region)
+1
Level 65
May 9, 2022
that's where you're wrong buddy
+5
Level 77
Mar 26, 2020
That feeling when the only answer you miss was Turkey because you're an idiot and you said Istanbul.
+4
Level 76
Mar 26, 2020
Typed*, you mean?
+5
Level 68
Aug 6, 2021
No, he looked up from his computer, out into the room, and said "Istanbul." That's why he was such an idiot.
+2
Level 82
Mar 26, 2020
Source?
+2
Level 36
Mar 26, 2020
I'd never get Libya.. But got all others
+2
Level 56
Mar 26, 2020
Tried Morocco; Algeria; Tunisia and Egypt, but decided there was too much desert in Libya - Yeah yeah - the Desert fathers and all that. Thought most of the north africans were Coptic.
+1
Level 58
Jul 19, 2021
Only missed Libya!
+6
Level 55
Mar 26, 2020
If the one from "Israel" is Pope Evaristus, he was from Bethlehem which is NOT in Israel. It's in the West Bank in Palestine.
+4
Level 84
Mar 27, 2020
except that's kinda in Israel.
+7
Level 55
Mar 27, 2020
Do you know how to read a map? Have you seen one of the Middle East?
+2
Level 46
Mar 30, 2020
Palestine is not a country and never was
+5
Level 55
Mar 30, 2020
1st of all that is wrong. 2nd, even if true, it still wouldn't make Bethlehem part of Israel. That is false. Look at a map.
+1
Level 58
Jul 19, 2021
Perhaps look at the JetPunk standard? That may help you understand better.
+2
Level 53
Jun 28, 2020
Ugh. Only forgot to guess one Yugoslav country. Croatia...
+1
Level 29
Jul 24, 2021
Pope Gregory V was born in Austria..