Villalpando, John Baptist

a learned Spanish Jesuit, was born at Cordova in 1552, and entered the society of the Jesuits in the twenty-sixth year of his age. We have very few particulars, even by Antonio, of his personal history, unless that he was distinguished for his extensive theological and mathematical knowledge, and for some time was associated with Jerome Prado in a commentary on Ezekiel. It would appear that Villalpando had the king’s orders for this undertaking, as far as respected the description of the Temple, and city of Jerusalem; and Prado, dying before the work was finished, Villalpando has the sole reputation of the whole. It was published under the title of “Explanationes in Ezechielem,Rome, 1596 1604, 3 vols. fol. As a commentary, the catholic writers, Dupin, &c. assure us that it is one of the most learned. His skill in architecture gave him great advantages in endeavouring to trace the figure and dimensions of the temple of Solomon, but unfortunately he employed a sort of theory which was guided more by imagination than judgment. Having laid it down as a first principle, that the model of the temple, having been given by God himself, must be perfect, he therefore exhausted all the powers of conjecture and fancy to describe an edifice that should answer that character. This | led him, among other errors, to introduce many embellishments and additions not mentioned in the sacred text; instead of three courts, for example, he has described no less than eleven. But the reader who is curious in the inquiry, may consult Calmet’s Dictionary, where there are engravings as well as a description, from Villalpando. He edited also a work of St. Remi, “Remigii Rhemensis in Epistolas S. Pauli tractatus,” Mentz, which was not, however, published until after his death, as the date is 1614, fol. He died at Rome, May 23, 1608. 1

1 Antonio Bibl. Hiisp. Calmet’s Dictionary. Dupin.