Bentivoglio, Hercules

, one of the best Italian poets of the sixteenth century, was born at Bologna in 1506, of one of the most illustrious families of that city and of all Italy. His father, Hannibal II. being obliged, by pope Julius II. to leave his country, of which his ancestors had been masters from the commencement of the fifteenth century, and to go to Milan, he took his son with him, then an infant. Seven years after, he settled with his whole family at Ferrara, under the protection of the princes of the house of Este, to whom he was nearly related. His son here made rapid progress in his studies, and became distinguished at the court of duke Alphonso I. He was accomplished in music, singing, and the sports and exercises of manly youth; and to all this he added a solidity of judgment which procured him to be employed by the dukes of Ferrara in state-affairs of importance. He was employed on one of these negociations when he died, Nov. 6, 1573. His works, which were printed at first separately, and inserted in many of the collections, were published together under the title of “Opere poetiche del sig. Ercole Bentivoglio,Paris, 1719, 12mo. They consist of sonnets, stanzas, eclogues, satires, which for easy elegance of style are inferior only to those of Ariosto; five epistles or capitoli, in the manner of Berni, and two comedies of great merit. Of these last there was a French translation by Fabre, printed at Oxford, 1731, 8vo. 2


Biog. Universelle, Life prefixed to the Paris edition. —Moreri. —Saxii Onomasticon.