Pope Alexander VII, born Fabio Chigi, was Pope from 7 April 1655 to his death in 1667.
He began his career as a vice-papal legate, and he held various diplomatic positions in the Holy See. He was ordained as a priest in 1634, and he became Bishop of Nardo in 1635. He was later transferred in 1652, and he became Bishop of Imola. Pope Innocent X made him Secretary of State in 1651, and in 1652, he was appointed as a Cardinal.
Early in his papacy, Alexander, who was seen as an anti-Nepotist at the time of his election, lived simply; later, however, he gave jobs to his relatives, who eventually took over his administration.
His administration worked to support the Jesuits. However, his administration's relations with France were strained due to his frictions with French diplomats.
Alexander was interested in architecture and supported various urban projects in Rome. He also wrote poetry and patronized artists who expanded the decoration of churches. His theological writings included discussions of heliocentrism and the Immaculate Conception.