Aventin, John

, author of the Annals ofBavaria, was born of mean parentage, in 1466, at Abensperg in the country just named. He studied first at Ingolstadt, and afterwards in the university of Paris. In 1503, he privately taught eloquence and poetry at Vienna; and in 1507, publicly taught Greek at Cracow in Poland. In 1509, he read lectures on some of Cicero’s pieces at Ingolstadt and in 1512, was appointed to be preceptor to prince Lewis and prince Ernest, sons of Albert the Wise, duke of Bavaria. He also travelled with the latter of those two princes. After this he undertook to write the “Annals of Bavaria,| being encouraged by the dukes of that name; who settled a pension upon him, and gave him hopes that they would defray the charges of the book. This work, which gained its author great reputation, was first published in 1554, by Jerome Zieglerus, professor of poetry in the university of Ingolstadt but, as he acknowledges in the preface, he retrenched the invectives against the clergy, and several stories which had no relation to the history of Bavaria. The Protestants, however, after long search, found an uncastrated manuscript of Aventin’s Annals, which was published at Basil in 1580, by Nicholas Cisner.

In 1529, he was forcibly taken out of his sister’s house at Abensperg, and hurried to a gaol the true cause of which violence was never known but it would probably have been carried to a much greater length, had not the duke of Bavaria interposed, and taken this learned man into his protection. In his 64th year he made an imprudent marriage, which disturbed his latter days. He died in 1534, aged 68, leaving one daughter, who was then but two months old. Jt was supposed, from the inquiries made by the Jesuits, that he was a Lutheran in sentiment and the adherents to the church of Rome make use of this argument to weaken the force of his testimony against the conduct of the popes, and the vicious lives of the priests for the Annals of Aventin have been often quoted by Protestants, to prove the disorders of the Romish church.

The principal editions of his works are, 1. “Annalium libri vii. ad annum usque 1533, cum notis Gundlingii,” Leipsic. 1710, foi. 2. “Chronica Bavarise,” Nuremberg, 1522, fol. 3. “Henrici IV. vita, epistolae,” &c, Augsburgh, 1518, 4to. 4. “Chronicon, sive Annales Schireuses,” Bipont. 1600, 4to. 5. “Liber de causis mlseriarum, cum chronicis Turcicis,” Loniceri, 1578, 4to. 6. “Antiquitates Danicse,” Hafnise, 1642, 4to. Another work is attributed to him by Gesner, relative to the manner of counting on the fingers, under the title “Numerandi per digitos rnanusque veterum consuetudines,1532. 1

1 Gen. Dict. —Moreri. - Saxii Qnomasticon,