Freigius, John Thomas

, a German, who acquired great reputation by his learned labours, was born at Friburg in the 16th century; his father being a husbandman, who lived near Basil. He studied the law in his native country under Za&ius, and had likewise Henry Glarean and Peter Ramus for his masters. He was strongly attached to the principles and method of Ramus. He first taught at Friburg, and afterwards at Basil but, finding himself not favoured by fortune, he was going to disengage | himself from the republic of letters, and to turn peasant. While he was meditating upon this plan, the senate of Nuremberg, at the desire of Jerom Wolfius, offered him the rectorship of the new college at Altorf; of which place he took possession in November 1575. He discharged the duties of it with great zeal, explaining the historians, poets, Justinian’s institutes, c. He returned to Basil, and died there of the plague in 1583, which disorder had a little before deprived him of a very promising son and two daughters. One of the latter was, it seems, a very extraordinary young lady; for, as he tells us in the dedication to his elegies, or “Liber Tristium,” though scarce twelve years old, she had yet made such a progress in the Latin and Greek grammars, and the rudiments of other sciences, that she could translate out of her mother tongue into Latin, decline and conjugate Greek, repeat the Lord’s Prayer in Hebrew, and scan verses: she understood addition and subtraction in arithmetic, could sing by note, and play on the lute. And lest his reader should conclude from hence, that she had none of those qualities which make her sex useful as well as accomplished, he calls her in the same place, “Oeconomise meae fidelem administrain et dispensatricem,” that is, a very notable housewife.

Freigius published a great number of books among the rest, “Quastiones Geometricae et Stereometricae” a supplement to the history of Paulus Æmil’ms and Ferron, as far as the year 1596. “Logica Consultorum” a Latin translation of Frobisher’s voyages, and of the African wars, in which Don Sebastian, king of Portugal, lost his life. “Ciceronis Orationes perpetuis notis logicis, arithmeticis, ethicis, politicis, historicis, illustratte,” 3 vols. 8vo, at Basil, 1583. 1


Gen. Dict. —Moreri, —Saxii Onomast.