Benedict XV is best-known for his efforts to bring an end to World War I. Though his proposals were eventually rejected by all sides, his "Peace Note" of 1917 was the first manifestation of the peace-making role which the Papacy assumed for itself in the 20th century. Benedict's short pontificate also saw a significant improvement in the Church's attitude to colonial peoples. He was one of the founders of Save the Children and led European efforts at humanitarian aid. This biography, written using Vatican archives, correspondence and private papers, is a serious re-evaluation of Benedict XV.