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XVII.

A. t. 43.

CHAP. His Latin tracts, and particularly his treatise

De liberis instituendis, have been greatly adA. D. 1518. mired. This work is indeed considered by A. Pont . VI. Tiraboschi as superior to the many essays and

systems of education which have been produced in modern times, when, as he justly observes, it is too common to insult the elder writers as barbarians.(a)

Latin writings of Bembo.

The Latin writings of Pietro Bembo appear, as well from the nature of the subjects as the persons to whom they are addressed, to have been chiefly the production of the early part of his life; after which he was induced, by causes which we have before assigned, to devote himself more particularly to the cultivation of his native language ;(b) this alteration in his

studies

" quin tale opus a tali viro profectum bonorum omnium “ suffragiis approbetur ; vereor tamen ne apud complures

ipse phraseos nitor nonnihil hebetet aculeos ad pietatem." Erasm. Ep. lib. xxvii. Ep. 38. It appears, also, that Erasmus admonished him to be cautious in publishing his commentary. De commentariis Jacobi Sadoleti mihi tale “ quiddam præsagiebat animus. Admonui illum literis " quantum licuit tantum admonere Præsulem. Insumpsit “ in hoc opus immensos labores. Audio nec a Sorbonicis

probari.”. Erasm. Ep. lib. xxx. Ep. 72.
(a) Tiraboschi, vii. i. 277.
(b) y, ante, vol. i. chap. ii. p. 91.

A. D. 1518. A. St. 48: 4. Pont. VL.

studies is also alluded to in the following CHAP.

XVII. ļines, prefixed to the generaļ collection of his works:(a)

Whilst, rivalling the strains that Maro sung,
Thine hands across the Latian chords were flung,
Love raptur'd heard ; and bad thee next aspire
To wake the sweetness of the Tuscan lyre,

Neither the Italian nor the Latin writings of Bembo have been considered as entitled to the praise of originality. If, in the former, he has manifested a close adherence to Petrarca, he has in the latter been thought to have followed, with too servile a step, the track of the ancients, and to have imitated as well in his verse as his prose writings, the style of Cicero. It may, however, be observed, that this imitation is not so apparent in his Latin poems as in his Italian sonnets and lyric productions; and that the former, although not numerous nor on subjects of importance, possess in general more interest and vivacity than the latter.

In briefly noticing the attention paid by
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Julius

(a) "! Tu quoque Virgilio certabas, Bembe, Latino

Magnanimum heroum carmine facta canens, " Audiit, et Musæ captus dulcedine, Thuscos

" Ad citharam versus condere jussit Amor."

Giovanni Aurelio

CHA P. Julius II. to the learned men of his time, we XVII.

have already had occasion to mention the Latin A. D. 1518. poet Augurelli;(a) but as he lived also during A. Pout. vi. the pontificate of Leo X. and survived that

pontiff several years, and as his most consi

derable work is on a singular subject, and is Augurelli. inscribed to Leo X. a' more particular account of him will be necessary.

Giovanni Aurelio Augurelli, or Augurello, was born about the year 1441,(b) of a respectable family in the city of Rimini, whence he was frequently denominated Giovanni Aurelio da Rimini. His early studies were completed in the celebrated university of Padua, where he made a long residence,(c) and where it is probable that he first

began began to give public instructions in polite li- CHAP terature ; he being mentioned by Trissino, in his treatise entitled Il Castellano, as the first A. D. 1518. person who had observed the rules of the Ita- A. Pont. VI. lian language prescribed by Petrarca.(a) Having afterwards the good fortune to obtain the favour and patronage of Nicolo Franco bishop of Trevigi, he took up his residence with him at his episcopal see, where he was appointed a canon and honoured with the freedom of the city, as he had before been with that of Padua. After the death of his patron he left Trevigi, and passed about fifteen months at Feltre, for the purpose of devoting himself without interruption to the study of the Greek language,(b) and at length fixed his abode at Venice, where he obtained great reputation as a private instructor and had the honour of numbering among his pupils Bembo, Navagero, and others, who afterwards rose to great eminence. Augurelli is represented by Paulo Giovio as the most learned and elegant preceptor of his time.(c) His studies are, however, said to have

(a) Ante, vol. ii. chap. vii. p. 24. & chap. ix. p. 218.

16) Mazzuchelli fixes his birth about 1454, but the count Rambaldo degli Azzoni Avogari, in his memoirs of Augurelli, published in the sixth volume of the Nuova Raccolta d' Opuscoli, þ. 162, has sufficiently shewn that this event is to be placed at an earlier period.

(c) It appears, from the following passage in one of his odes, that he remained at Padua twenty years.

66 Dulcibus sic dum teneor potentum
“ Ipse Musarum studiis, et otî
" Debitus, dudum patriæ duo bis
66 Lustra reposcor."

Carm. lib. ii. 17. Ed. Ald. 1505.

XVII.

been

(a) “ Le prime regwle de la lingua di lui, (Petrarca) 66 Cwminciatesi ad wsservare in Padwa, per M. Giwvan Au66 reliw da Rimini." Trissin. Il Castellano. b. iv.

16) Mazzuchelli, Scrillori d' Ital. in art. Augurelli.
(c) “Il più dotto e candido d' ogni altro, ch'a tempi

16 suoi

XVII,

A. Et. 43.

CHÀ B. been interrupted by a violent passion for

alchemy, which induced him to consume his A. D. 1518. hours over a furnace, in the vain expectation A. Poit. VI. of discovering a substance which he supposed

would convert the baser metals into gold.(a) The failure of his hopes seems not to have deterred him from pursuing his speculations ; but instead of persisting in his chemical operations, he prudently resolved to commit his ideas on this abstruse subject to Latin verse, in

which he completed a poem in three books, His Chry. which he entitled Chrysopoeia, or the art of dopoeia. making gold.

This work he dedicated to Leo X. in a few elegant introductory lines, which are well entitled to notice.(b) By this

production,

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66 suoi insegnasse privatamente (e però forse con guadagno " maggiore) lettere Creche e Latine."

Giov. Iscritt. lib. i.

p. 128.

(a) Fovius ut sup. Mazzuch. art. Augurelli.

16) From this introduction, as well as from various pas. sages in the poem itself, it appears, that this work wa written in the pontificate of Julius II. during the war of Cambray, and that the address to Leo X. was prefixed to it afterwards, when the author resolved to publish it. As this piece is not frequently met with, not being found in the usual collections of the works of its author, the introduction to it is given in the Appendix, No. CLXV.

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