Angelio, Peter

, an eminent Italian scholar and Latin poet, was born in 1517, at Barga in Tuscany, and thence surnamed, in Italian, Bargeo, and in Latin, Bargæus. He received his early education under an uncle, an able linguist, and was made acquainted with Greek and Latin when only ten years old. It was at first intended that he should study law at Bologna, but his taste for literature was decided, and when he found that his uncles would not maintain him there, if he continued to study the belles lettres, he sold his law books, and subsisted on what they produced, until a rich Bolognese, of the family of Pepoli, offered to defray the expence of his education. His poetical turn soon appeared, and while at the university, he formed the plan of his celebrated poem on the chase, but having written som satirical verses at the | request of a noble lady, with whom he was in lov, he dreaded the consequences of being known as the author, and quitted Bologna. At Venice, whither he now repaired., he found an asylum with the French ambassador, who entertained him in his house for three years, and employed him to correct the Greek manuscripts, which Francis I. had ordered to be copied for the royal library at Paris. He afterwards accompanied another French ambassador to Constantinople, and with him made the tour of all the places in Asia Minor and Greece that are noticed in the works of the classics. In 1543 he was on board the fleet sent by the grand seignior to the environs of Nice, against the emperor, and commanded by the famous Barbarossa; and he was with the above ambassador at the siege of Nice by the French. After encountering other hardships of war, and fighting a duel, for which he was obliged to fly, he found means to return to Tuscany. At Florence he was attacked with a tertian ague, and thinking he could enjoy health and repose at Milan, to which place Aiphonso Davalos had invited him, he was preparing to set out, when he received news of the death of that illustrious Maecenas.

He now endeavoured to console himself by cultivating his poetical talent, an employment which had been long interrupted, and resumed his poem on the chase, for which he had collected a great many notes and observations in the East and in France. In 1546, the inhabitants of Reggio chosd‘ him public professor of Greek and Latm, with a handsome allowance, and the rights of citizenship. In this office he continued about three years, after which the grand duke, Cosmo I. invited him to be professor of the belles lettres at Pisa. After filling this chair for seventeen years, he exchanged it for that of moral and political science, and lectured on Aristotle’s two celebrated treatises on these subjects. Such was his attachment to that university, and to the grand duke, that during the war of Sienna, when Cosmo was obliged to suspend payment of the professors’ salaries, Angelio pawned his furniture and books, that he might be enabled to remain at his post, while his brethren fled. And when the Siennese army, commanded by Peter’ Strozzi, approached Pisa, which had no troops for its defence, our professor put arms into the hands of the students of the university, trained and disciplined them, and with their assistance defended the city until the grand dukewas able to send them assistance. | in 1575, the cardinal Ferdinand de Medicis, who was afterwards grand duke, took Angelio to Rome with him, settled a large pension on him, and by other princely marks of favour, induced him to reside there, and encouraged him to complete a poem, which he had begun thirty years before, on the conquest of Syria and Palestine by the Christians. Angelio caused all his poems to be reprinted at Rome in 1585, and dedicated to this cardinal, who rewarded him by a present of two thousand florins of gold. When he became grand duke, Angelio followed him to Florence, and there at Jength published his “Syrias.” He was now enriched by other pensions, and was enabled to pass his declining years, mostly at Pisa, in opulence and ease. He died Feb. 29, 1596, in his seventy-ninth year, and was interred in the Campo Santo, with great pomp; and a funeral oration was read in the academy of Florence, and, what was still a higher honour, as he was not a member, in that of Delia Crusca.

Angelio’s published works are, 1. Three “Funeral Orations,” in Latin, one on Henry II. of Frtmce, read at Florence in 1559, the second on the grand duke Cosmo, at Pisa in 1574, and the third on the grand duke Ferdinand, his liberal patron, at Florence, 1587. 2. “De ordine legendi scriptores Historise Romanae,” twice printed separately, and inserted in Grotius “De studiis instituendis.” 3. “Poemata varia, diligenter ab ipso recognita,Rome, 1585, 4to. This collection, the greater part of which had been printed separately, contains the poem on which his reputation is chiefly founded, the “Cynegeticon,” or the Chase, in six books; and the “Syrias,” in twelve books, on the same subject as Tasso’s “Jerusalem delivered.” 4. “De privatorum publicorumque urbis Romae eversoribus epistola,Florence, 1589, 4to, printed since in the 4th volume of the “Thesaurus antiquitatum Romanarum.” 5. “Poesie Toscane,” published with a translation of the CEdipus of Sophocles, Florence, 1589, 8vo. 6. Letters in Latin and Italian in various collections. 7. “Memoirs of his life,” written by himself, and published by Salvini in the “Fasti Consolari” of the academy of Florence, and abridged in the present article. 1


Biog. Universelle. —Moreri.