Bianchini, Joseph Maria

, an Italian scholar of the last century, was born at Prato in Tuscany, Nov. 18, 1685. He had but just finished his education at Florence, when he was admitted a member of the academy of the Apatisti, and two years after, of that of Florence, nor was he more than twenty when he became known to and associated with the principal literati of that city. He went afterwards to Pisa, and studied philosophy and mathematics under Alexander Marchetti, the translator of Lucretius, and there he received the degree of doctor of laws, and the order of priesthood. There also the bishop of Prato appointed him to give public lectures on the works of the fathers, in the course of which he became particularly attached to those of St. Bernard and the bishop of Pistoia gave him the living of St. Peter at Ajolo, where he made himself very popular. Such also was his literary fame, that besides the academies we have mentioned, he was admitted a member of the Inlecundi of Prato, the Innominati of Bra in Piedmont, of the Rinvigoriti of Foligno, the Arcadians of Rome, the Columbarian society, and the della Crusca. His life was exemplary, his character loyal and ingenuous, | although somewhat reserved. He loved retirement, yet was of a placid humour, and enjoyed effusions of wit but in his latter years he fell into a state of melancholy, aggravated by bodily disorder, which terminated in his death Feb. 17, 1749. His two most considerable works, were, 1. “De‘ gran duchi di Toscana della real casa de’ Medici,Venice, 1741, fol. an account of the ancient sovereigns of Florence, as patrons of literature and the arts, but containing little new matter. 2. “Della satira Italiana, trattato,” Massa, 1714, 4to. Florence, 1729, 4to a critical work highly esteemed in Italy. To the second edition the author has annexed an Kalian dissertation, on the hypocrisy of men of letters, in which he exposes what would be called in this country the arts of puffing, which his biographer remarks, have made very gieat progress since his time. 3. “La Cantica de Cantici di Salomone tradotta in versi Toscani con annotazioni,Venice, 1735. Various other small pieces of criticism, bibliography, &c. from his pen are inserted in the academical collections, particularly “Prose Fiorentine,Venice, 1754, 4to. 1


Biog. Universelle.