Accolti, Bernard

was one of the sons of the preceding, and,on account of the great fame of his poetry, called Unico Aretino; but such of his works as have descended to our days are not calculated to preserve the very extraordinary reputation which he enjoyed from his contemporaries. According to them, no fame could be equal to what he obtained at the court of Urbino and at Rome, in the time of Leo X. When it was known that the Unico was to recite his verses, the shops were shut, and all business suspended; guards were necessary at the doors, and the most learned scholars and prelates often interrupted the poet by loud acclamations. The testimony of his contemporaries, and among them, of the Cardinal Bembo, will not permit us to doubt that his merit was extraordinary; but it is probable that he owed his fame more to his talents at extempore verse, than to those which he prepared by study. In the latter, however, there is an elegance of style, and often the fancy and nerve of true poetry. His poems were first printed at Florence in 1513, under the title “Virginia comedia, capitoli, e strambotti di messer Bernardo, Accolti Aretino, in Firenze (al di Francesco Rossegli),” 8vo; and at Venice, 1519, “Opera nuova del preclarissimo messer Bernardo Accolti Aretino, scrittore | apostolico ed abbreviatore, &c.” 8vo, and have been often re-printed. In this volume, his comedy “Virginie,” written, according to the custom of the age, in the ottava rima, and other measures, obtained its name from a natural daughter, whom he gave in marriage to a nobleman, with a large dowry. Leo X. who had an esteem for him, gave him the employment of apostolic secretary; and is likewise said to have given him the duchy of Nepi; but Accolti informs us, in one of his letters to Peter Aretin, that he purchased this with his own money, and that Paul III. afterwards deprived him of it. The dates of his birth and death are not known; but he was living in the time of Ariosto, who mentions him as a person of great consideration at the court of Urbino. 1

1 Biographic Universelle, 1811. Ginguene, Hist. Littera‘re d’ltalie, vol. Hi. p. 546. Some additional particulars are in Roscoe’s Life of Leo.