Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

it is not possible to have a better commentary upon Tully's historical work, Livy, Dionysius Halicarnassus, Dion Cassius, Florus, and all the writers of Roman affairs, than these Annals of Pigbius.”. Vossius also bestows the highest encomiums upon the author, and pronounces him, “Vir de Valerio Maximo, de annalibus suis Romanis, de universa antiquitate Romana, præclarè meritus." I

PIGNA (JOHN BAPTIST), an Italian historian and miscellaneous writer, was born at Ferrara in 1530, and prosecuted his studies with so much success, that at the

age of twenty he obtained the professorship of rhetoric. in his native city. Alphonsus II. who was then hereditary prince of Ferrara, having heard some of bis lectures, conceived a high opinion of him, and when he succeeded his father, extended his friendship to Pigna in a manner calculated to raise ambition in him, and envy among his contemporaries. Pigna, however, while he set a proper value on his prince's favours, studiously avoided every occasion of profiting by them, and refused every offer of preferment which was made, employing such time as he could spare from his attendance at court, on bis studies. . He died in 1575, in the forty-sixth year of his age, greatly lamented by the citizens of Ferrara, who had admired him as a favourite without pride, and a courtier without ambition. His chief work, as an bistorian, was his history of the house of Este, “ Historia de' Principi di Este, in sino al 1476," published at Ferrara, 1570, folio. This is a well-written account, but contains too much of the fabulous early history of that illustrious family, which was never judiciously investigated until Muratori and Leibnitz undertook the task. Pigna's other works are, 1.“ 11 Principe,” Venice, 1560, 8vo, in imitation of Machiavel's Prince, but written upon sound principles, which, says one of his biographers with too much truth, is the reason why it is almost unknown. 2. “ Il duello, &c." 1554, 4to. 3." I Romanzi in quali della poesia e della vita d'Ariosto si tratta," Venice, 1554, 4to. 4. “Carminum libri quatuor," in a collection consisting likewise of the poems of Calcagnini and Ariosto, printed at Venice in 1553, 8vo.”

PIGNORIUS (LAURENCE), another learned Italian, was born at Padua Oct. 12, 1571, and after being edacated among the Jesuits, became confessor to a nunnery,

* Tiraboschi,Dict. Hist.

1 Moreri. Blount's Censura. VOL. XXIV.

KK

and parish priest of St. Lawrence, to which a canonry of Treviso was added by cardinal Barberini. He was in habits of intimacy with many of the most illustrious men of his time, and collected a valuable library and cabinet of antiquities. He died of the plague in 1631. He distinguished himself by deep researches into antiquity, and published the “ Mensa Isiaca," and some other pieces, which illustrate the antiquities and hieroglyphics of the Egyptians, and gained him the reputation of a man accurately as well as profoundly learned. He was also skilled in writing verses, consisting of panegyrics, epitaphs, and a long poem inscribed to pope Urban VIII. It must be remembered to the honour of Pignorius, that the great Galileo procured an offer to be made to him, of the professorship of polite literature and eloquence in the university of Pisa ; which his love of studious retirement and his country made him decline. He wrote much, in Italian, as well as in Latin. G. Vossius has left a short but honourable testimony of him; and says, that he was “ob eximiani eruditionem atque humanitatem mihi charissimus vir." i

PILATUS (LEONTIUS), or LEO PILATUS, a monk of Calabria, who flourished about the middle of the fourteenth century, is considered as one of the most industrious of those eminent scholars who contributed to the revival of literature and taste in Europe, and was the first who taught Greek in Italy, where he had Petrarch and Boccaccio for his scholars. He was on his return from a journey through Greece, in search of manuscripts in that language, when he was killed by lightning. Notwithstanding his knowledge of Greek, he was thought but moderately skilled in Latin.

PILES (ROGER DE), an ingenious Frenchman, was born at Clameci, of a good family, in 1635; and was educated at Nevers, Auxerre, and Paris, and lastly studied divinity in the Sorbonne. In the mean lime, he cultivated the art of painting, which he was supposed to understand in theory as well as practice. The former accomplishment led him to an acquaintance with du Fresnoy, whose Latin poeni upon painting he translated into French. Menage also became acquainted with his great merit, and procured him, in 1652, to be appointed tutor to the son of Mons, Amelot : in which he gave such satisfaction, that, when his pupil was old enough to travel, he attended him to Italy. There he had an opportunity of gratifying his taste for painting; and upon his return to Paris, he devoted himself to the study of that art, and soon acquired a name among connoisseurs. In 1682, Amelot, his quondam pupil, being sent on an embassy to Venice, de Piles attended him as secretary; and, during his residence there, was sent by the marquis de Louvois into Germany, to purchase pictures for the king, and also to execute a commission relating to state affairs. In 1685, he attended M. Amelot to -Lisbon; and in 1689 to Switzerland, in the same capacity. In 1692, he was sent to Holland, apparently as a picturecollector, but in reality to act secretly with the friends of France. On this occasion, however, he was discovered, and thrown into prison, where he continued till the peace of Ryswick, and amused himself with writing “ The Lives of Painters.” In 1705, old as he was, he attended Amelot into Spain, when he went as ambassador extraordinary: but, the air of Madrid not agreeing with him, he was forced .to return, and died io 1709, aged seventy-four.

| Chaufepie.-Niceron, vol. XXI.-Tiraboschi. ? Hody de Græcis illustribus.

Besides his “ Translation of Fresnoy,” and “ Lives of the Painters,” of which there is an English translation, he

“An Abridgement of Anatomy; accommodated to the arts of Painting and Sculpture;" “ Dialogues upon the Knowledge of Painting, and the judgement to be formed of Pictures ;" “ A Dissertation upon the Works of the most famous Painters ;" “ The Elements of practical Painting,” &c. In all these there is a considerable knowledge of his art, but many of his opinions have been justly controverted by more recent writers, and particularly by sir Joshua Reynolds in his Lectures.?

PILKINGTON (JAMES), a learned and pious English prelate, was the third son of Richard Pilkington of Rivington, in the county of Lancaster, esq. as appears by the pedigree of the family in the Harleian collection of manuscripts in the British Museum. He was born at Rivington in 1520, and was educated at St. Jobu's college, Cambridge, where he is said to have taken the degree of D. D. but Mr. Baker and Mr. Cole are of opinion he proceeded only B. D. In 1558, however, he was made master of that college, and was one of the revivers of the Greek tongue

wrote

i Niceron, vol. XII.-Mureri,

in the university. Strype says that he was presented by Edward VI. to the vicarage of Kendal in Westmoreland. He was obliged to leave the country during the Marian persecution, and abroad he appears to have associated with the Geneva reformers, and imbibed their opinions as to externals. When he returned, he was made bishop of Durham by queen Elizabeth, Feb. 1560-1, a proof that he must have been distinguished for learning and abilities, as he appears always to have been for piety. In 1562 he is said to have been queen's reader of divinity lectures. For this, Mr. Baker allows that he was well qualified, for besides that he bore a part in the disputation at the visitation of Cambridge, under king Edward, while Bucer was at Cambridge, he voluntarily read in public upon the Acts of the Apostles, and acquitted himself learnedly and piously.

During this prelate's time, not only the cause of religion, but also political matters, called the queen's attention towards Scotland, and the borders were frequently the scene of military operations. During these commotions, the queen having seized the earl of Westmoreland's estates within the bishopric of Durham, our prelate instituted his suit, in which it was determined, that " where he hath jura regalia (regal rights) he shall have forfeiture of high treason.' This being a case, says the historian of Durham, after the statute for restoring liberties to the crown, is materially worth the reader's attention. By an act of Parliament, made in the 13th year of Elizabeth, 1570, c.

“The convictions, outlawries, and attainders of Charles Earl of Westmoreland, and fifty-seven others, attainted of treason, for open rebellion in the north parts, were confirmed;" and it was enacted, "That the queen, her heirs, and successors, should have, for that time, all the lands and goods which any of the said persons attainted within the bishopric of Durham had, against the bishop and his successors, though he claimeth jura regalia, and challengeth all the said forfeitures in right of his church.” So that the see was deprived of the greatest acquisition it had been entitled to for many centuries.

Fuller says, that the reason for parliament taking the forfeited estates from the bishopric of Durham, was the great expence sustained by the state in defending the bishop's family, and his see, in that rebellion. It is certain that he being the first protestant bishop that held the see of Durham, was obliged to

centuries. Fuller

[blocks in formation]

suin.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

keep out of the way of the insurgents, to whom a man of his principles must have been particularly obnoxious. Another reason assigned, that the bishop gave ten thousand pounds with one of his daughters in marriage, appears to have less foundation.' Ten thousand pounds was sufficient for the dowry of a princess, and queen Elizabeth is said to have been offended that a subject should bestow such a

Fuller, who has been quoted on this subject, has not been quoted fairly: he gives the story,' but in bis index calls it talse, and refers to another part of bis history, where we are told that the bishop gave only four thousand pounds with his daughter. There is some probability, however, that the revenues of Durham, augmented as they must have been by these forfeited estates, became an object of jealousy with the crown.

The year 1564 was remarkable for a contest about the ecclesiastical habits, and about various irregularities which had taken place in the service of the church. Bishop Pilkington, who had adopted the notions of the Geneva reformers on such subjects, entertained some scruples in his own mind about the habits, and particularly disliked the cap and surplice, though not so as to refuse to wear them. He was, however, very averse to forcing compliance upon others; and when he observed that this matter was about to be urged by the court, he wrote a long and earnest letter, dated from Auckland, . Oct. 25, 1564, to the earl of Leicester, entreating him to use his interest to oppose it, and at the same time justified bis own practice as wearing the habits for the sake of peace, but not forcing others whose consciences prevented their compliance. In all other respects our prelate was a true friend to church and state, as appears by many of his writings, and was very assiduous in ecclesiastical duties. : He wrote a “ Commentary of Aggeus (Haggai) the Prophet,” 1560, 8vo. A sermon on the “ Burning of St. Paul's Church in London, in 1561,". 1563, 12mo." This occasioned a short controversy, as the papists and protestants mutually accused each other. He wrote also " Commentaries on Ecclesiastes, the Epistle of St. Peter, and of St. Paul to the Galatians," and "A Defence of the English Service;" but it seems doubtful whether these were printed. After his death, his “ Exposition on Nebemiah” was published 1585, 4to. He left in manuscript “ Statutes for the Consistory.” He died Jan. 23, 1575, aged

[blocks in formation]

9),

parti queer

alta

bishop

1, 2M

urch" tioni S, LAI s from tained

is see

it pro

« ZurückWeiter »