Flaminio, Mark Anthony

, an eminent Latin poet, whose family name was Zarrabini, was born at Serevalle in 1498. His father, John Anthony, who first changed the family name to Flaminio on entering a literary society at Venice, was himself a man of learning, and professor of belles-lettres in different academies in Italy, and has left some works both in prose and verse, | particularly twelve books of letters, in which are many particulars of literary history. He bestowed great pains on the instruction of his son, and sent him, when at the age of sixteen, to Rome, with a poem addressed to Leo X. exhorting him to make war against the Turks, and a critical work entitled “Annotationum Sylvae.Leo appears to have been so pleased with the appearance of young Flaminio, as to request that he might remain at Rome, promising to encourage his studies there; but although this did not take place, in his after-visits to Rome, the pope patronized him with great liberality, and Flaminio answered every expectation that had been formed of his talents. In 1515 he accompanied the count Castiglione to Urbino, where he resided some months, and was held in the highest esteem by that accomplished nobleman for his amiable qualities and great endowments, but particularly for his. early and astonishing talents for Latin poetry. In this year he published at Fano, the first specimen of his productions, with a few poems of Marullus, not before printed, in a very rare volume in 8vo. entitled, “Michaelis Tardaaniotas Marulli Neniae. Ejusdem epigrammata nunquarn alias impressa. M. Antonii Flaminii carminum libellus. Ejusdem Ecloga Thyrsis.” Of these poems some have been printed, often with variations, in the subsequent editions of his works; but several pieces appear there which are not to be found in the edition by Mancurti, published at Padua, by Comino, in 1727, which is considered as the most complete; whence it is probable this early publication of Flaminio was not known to his editors.

After this, Flaminio was removed by his father to Bologna for the study of philosophy, after which he returned again to Rome, and formed an intimacy with the most illustrious scholars of that city. Without devoting himself to any profession, he for some years attached himself to the cardinal de Sauli, and after his death resided with the prelate Ghiberti, either at Padua, or at his see of Verona, where he secured the friendship of Fracastorius and Naugerius, a friendship of the most generous and disinterested kind, as appears from many passages in their writings. About 1538 he went to Naples in consequence of a long indisposition, and by relaxation from his studies, recovered his former health, and repaired to Viterbo, where cardinal Pole then resided as pontifical legate, and honoured Flaminio by the most friendly intimacy. He also accompanied the cardinal | to the council of Trent, but refused the office of secretary to this council, and by this refusal, as well as by other parts of his conduct, and a certain liberality of sentiment displayed in some of his writings, gave rise to suspicions that he was inclined towards the. opinions of the reformers. Whether this was actually the case has been a subject of dispute among his biographers; but that he was suspected is certain, for his writings were for some time prohibited in the Index Expurgatorius of the Roman church. Those who feel an interest in the question may consult Schelhornius’ dissertation on the subject in his “Amcenitates Hist. Eccles.” and compare it with Tiraboschi’s answer, who after being obliged to admit that Flaminio had embraced the opinions of the reformers, informs us that he was recalled to his former faith by cardinal Pole. And another account says, that cardinal Caraflfa (afterwards Paul IV.) attended him on his /death-bed. His death, which happened at Rome in 15.50, was lamented by all the learned of his time, and he appears to have deserved their highest encomiums. His poems place him in the first rank of the Latin school. Most of his poems are in the “Carmina quinque illustrium poetarum;” but the scarce editions of his works are, I. “M. Ant. Flaminii in Librum Psalmorum brevis explanatio,Venice, 1545, 8vo. 2. “Epistolae aliquot de veritate doctrinae eruditae et sanctitate religionis, in Latinum veterem sermonem conversse, ex Italico hodierno, nee non narrationes de Flaminio,” &c. Noriberg. 1571, 8vo. 3. “M. A. Flaminii Carmina sacra, quue extant omnia, hoc modo nunquam hactenus edita,” c. Rostock, 1578, 8vo. There is an edition of his works, with those of his father, by Maucurti, mentioned before, which was reprinted in 1743. 1


Tiraboschi. Roscoc’s Loo. Greswell’s Politian, Clement Bibl. Curieuse. Saxii Onomnst.