Facio, Bartholomew

, a very learned man of the fifteenth century, was a native of Spezia, a sea-port in the Genoese territory. The most curious inquirers into the history of literature have not yet been able to ascertain the precise period of his birth. From many passages, however, which occur in his works, it appears, that he was indebted for instruction in the Latin and Greek languages to Guarino Veronese, whom he frequently mentions in terms of affectionate esteem. Facio was one of the numerous assemblage of scholars that rendered illustrious the court of Alphonsus, king of Naples, by whom he was treated with distinguished honour. He had been sent by the Genoese to Alphonsus on a political erraod, in which he failed; but the interviews he had gave the king so favourable an opinion of him, that he invited him into his service, and made him his secretary, an office which he filled for many years. During his | residence at Naples, the jealousy of rival ship betrayed him into a violent quarrel with Laurentius Valla, against whom he composed four invectives, and as he happened to die soon after Valla, the circumstance occasioned the following lines:

“Ne vel in Elysiis sine vindice Valla susurret,

Facius baud multos post obiit ipse dies.”

Some say Facio composed these lines himself on his deathbed, which is doubtful, as indeed is the period of his death. Menus, his last biographer, fixes his death in 1457; but Valla, we know, died eight years before, which is rather a too liberal translation of “baud multos dies.” Niceron contends for 1467, which is nine years after the death of Alphonsus.

His works, according to the catalogue given by Mehus, are, 1. 'De Bello Veneto Ciodiano ad Joannem Jacobum Spinulam, liber,“Leyden, 1568. 2.” De humanae vitæ felicitate,“Hanov. 1611, and with it,” De excellentia et prrcstantia hominis,“a work erroneously ascribed to Pius II. with whom Facio was intimately acquainted. 3.” De rebus gestis ab Alphonso primo Neapolitarum rege Commentariorum libri deceoi,“Leyden, 1560, 4to, and reprinted in 1562 and 1566. The first seven books were also published at Mantua in 1563, and it has been inserted in various collections of Italian history. 4.” Arriani de rebus gestis Alexandri libri octo, Latine redditi,“Basil, 1539, folio. This translation was made by Facio at the request of his patron Alphonsus. 5.” De viris illustribus liber,“published for the first time by the abbe Mehus, at Florence, 1745, 4to, with a life of the author, and some of his correspondence. Saxius has published in his Onomasticon a small tract of Facio’s,” de differentiis," or the difference between words apparently of the same meaning. Tiraboschi thinks Facio’s style much more elegant than that of any of his contemporaries, and in his lives of illustrious men, published by Mehus, he displays much impartial and just criticism. 1

1 Shepherd’s Life of Poggio, p. 435. Ginguene Hist, Lift, d’ltalie, —Niceron, vol. XXI. —Moreri, —Saxii Onomast.