Perizonius, James

, a learned German, was of a family originally of Teutorp, a small town in Westphalia: their name was Voorbrock; but being changed for Perizonius (a Greek word of similar import, implying something of the nature of a girdle) by one who published an “Epithalamium,” with this name subscribed, it was ever after retained by the learned part of the family. Anthony Perizonius, the father of the subject of this article, was rector of the school of Dam, professor of divinity and the Oriental languages, first at Ham, and afterwards at Deventer; at which last place he died in 1672, in his fortysixth year, he published, in 1669, a learned treatise, “De Ratione studii Theologici.

James, his eldest son, was born at Dam, Oct. 26, 1651. He studied first under Gisbert Cuper, at Deventer, and was afterwards, in 1671, removed to Utrecht, where he attended the lectures of Gracvius. His father designed him for the church, but after his death he preferred the mixed studies of polite learning, history, and antiquity, and went, in 1674, to Leyden, where his preceptor was Theodore Ryckius, professor of history and eloquence in that city. He became afterwards rector of the Latin school at Delft, from which he was promoted in 1681 to the professorship of history and eloquence at Franeker. His reputation bringing a great concourse of scholars to this university, he was complimented by the addition to his stipend of an hundred crowns, and when on the death of Ryckius in 1690, Perizonius was offered the vacant professorship, the curators of Franeker were so desirous of his continuing with them that they added another hundred crowns to his stipend. He was, however, in 1693, persuaded to goto Leyden to fill the place of professor of history, eloquence, and the Greek language and in this employment continued till his death. He was a man of incredible | diligence as well as accuracy, never committing any thing to the press without the strictest revisal and examination. Such uninterrupted application is said by his biographers to have shortened his life, which, however, extended to sixty-six years. He died April 6, 1717, and left a will that savoured a little of that whim and peculiarity which sometimes infects the learned in their retirements. He ordered, that as soon as he should expire, his body should be dressed in his clothes, then set up in a chair, and that a beard should be made for him. Some say this was done that a painter might finish his picture, already begun, in order to be placed over the manuscripts and books which he left to the library of the university. He was a man of a good mien, well made, of a grave and serious air, but far from any thing of pedantry and affectation; and so modest, that he never willingly spake of himself and his writings.

He published a great many works in Latin relating to history, antiquities, and classical literature, among which are, 1. “M. T. Ciceronis eruditio,” an inaugural oration, at his being installed professor of Franeker in 1681. 2. “Animadversiones Historicse, 1685,” 8vo, a valuable mis-, cellany of remarks on the mistakes of historians and critics. 3. “Q,. Curtius in integrum restitutus, et vindicatus ab immodica atque acerba nimis crisi viri ciarissimi Joannis Clerici,1703, 8vo. To this Le Clerc replied, in the third volume of his “Bibliotheque Choisee.” 4. “Rerum per Europam saeculo sexto-decirno maxime gestarum Commentarii Historici,1710, 8vo. 5. “Origines Ægyptiacae et Babylonicas,1711, 2 vols. 12m.o, being an attack on the “Chronological Systems” of Usher, Capellus, Pezron, but especially of sir John Marsham. Duker reprinted this work with additions in 1736. Perizonius wrote also several dissertations upon particular points of antiquity, which would have done no small credit to the collections of Groevius and Gronovius. Perizonius published an edition of “Ælian’s Various History,” corrected from the manuscripts, and illustrated with notes, in 1701, 2 vols. “8vo. James Gronovius having attacked a passage in his notes, a controversy ensued, which degenerated at length into such personal abuse, that the curators of the university of Leyden thought proper to put a stop to it by their authority. The edition, however, was reckoned the best until that of Gronovius appeared in 1731. He wrote also large notes upon” Sanctii Minerva, sive de causis linguae Latinae | Commentarius; M the best edition of which is that of 1714, 8vo. 1