Chapter 3 ‘Before the Explosion of the Novatores’ Ideas’: Sforza Pallavicino Lincean

In: Sforza Pallavicino
Federica Favino
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1 The Last of the Linceans*

On January 29, 1629, in one of their final collective actions, Federico Cesi’s companions decided to nominate Sforza Pallavicino, Pietro della Valle, and Lukas Holste to the Academy of the Linceans.1 According to Giuseppe Gabrieli, it was Cesi himself—founder and head of the Academy—who gathered the biographical notes to be jotted down on the minutes of the meeting by the Secretary Johannes Faber.2

All three nominations were founded on a trust in the future development of the men’s activities. Cesi extolled the virtues of the erudite polyglot Lukas Holste—Greek and Latin poet, geographer, bibliophile, and philologist—from whose “exertion with the pen” (“lavoro di penna”) “the most beautiful works” (“bellissime fatighe”) were expected. According to the prince, della Valle deserved membership for his “thoughtful diligence of observations” (“studiosa diligentia d’osservazioni”) during his voyage to the Orient, for his personal erudition, and for his kindly disposition toward men of letters. As for Pallavicino, when summarizing his early scholastic and academic endeavours, Cesi portrayed him as a child prodigy, whose great ingegno (“ingegno grande”), relentless will (“volontà indefessa”), and his familiarity with writing (“l’amicitia stretta della penna”) held promise “of even greater things” (“di cose tuttavia maggiori”) in the future.3

The choice to nominate three such characters for the Academy—men without manifest interest in scientific investigation, but above all perfectly assimilated into the “uniform horizon of the inclusive patronage of the Barberinis”—has been read as a sign of Cesi’s renunciation to claim the realm of science as the specific purview of his Academy.4 If examined from another angle, however, these same considerations provide proof of the fact that Cesi’s was a politically opportune choice, made with foresight by the prince at a time when his health continued to decline. Plagued by kidney problems since 1626, in September 1628 he wrote to Galileo that he was feeling somewhat better, after a long crisis: “… something else remains for me [to do], and that is to explain the reasons behind my long silence. Your Lordship can imagine, in addition to the health shock of a kidney ailment for the last three years, from which I have partly recovered.”5 According to surviving sources, in the year 1629 Cesi wrote one single letter, with birthday wishes to Cassiano dal Pozzo.6

I would go further. To me it seems that each of the three final nominations represents three different ‘souls’—which could behave like different pressure groups, when necessary—that coexisted within the Academy at that moment. The final appointments ensured that each of the parties would have the possibility to direct and negotiate the appointment of the prince’s successor, and prefigured three different scenarios for the post-Cesi era. In January 1629, the German proselyte Holste had been in Rome for two years, as secretary to the cardinal nephew, a position he assumed the same year in which Francesco Barberini was named Vatican librarian. Nicolas Fabri de Peiresc had recommended him to the Barberini, after hearing good things about him from the Dupuy brothers in Paris, where Holste had served as librarian to the president of Parliament, Jean-Antoine de Mesmes, a friend of the two scholars.7 A figure of international stature and a member of the Republic of Letters, who engaged in dialogue with the Academy through Cassiano dal Pozzo and his epistolary network, according to my reading of the events, Holste could have played a role in the succession of the Academy’s leadership and guaranteed its future. He may have served as a personal link to patrons capable of relocating the Academy to the Barberini court and thus placing it under the most powerful form of protection, while circumventing inconveniences (such as the requirement that the prince resides at the Academy) that would have prevented the cardinal nephew from assuming its leadership.8

Della Valle, meanwhile, would have been the natural candidate from that group of Linceans still working on the publication of the Tesoro messicano.9 Talk of his nomination had been circulating since May 1626, several months after della Valle had arrived in Naples from his long voyage to the East (from Greece to Persia, then India, and returning via Mesopotamia).10 Della Valle had developed close ties with the “Neapolitan colony” of the Academy prior to, during, and after this voyage. From 1614 on and throughout his long absence from Italy, he maintained a rich correspondence (fifty-four descriptive letters) with Mario Schipano, the archiater of the Hospital of Santa Annunziata in Naples. Schipano held public readings of his letters to several of the city’s men of science, including Fabio Colonna, Colantonio Stigliola, and Ferrante Imperato, who also got in contact with della Valle.11 This epistolary exchange allowed the Lincaeans in Naples direct confrontations with the distant, unknown natural world that Della Valle was exploring in person, confrontations that were to emerge in Fabio Colonna’s later Adnotationes to the Tesoro messicano (that is, in the commentary on the Mexican flora that Nando Antonio Recchi’s text covered).

An echo of these relationships with Neapolitan learned men seems to resound in Cesi’s reference to the “kindly disposition” that Della Valle had displayed towards the Lincaean literati. Indeed, he had willingly let himself be gently steered, from a distance, away from the objects that attracted his dilettantism, toward more precise and detailed research of the natural world and more rigorous ways of collecting and conserving.12 Also after his return to Rome in the spring of 1627, he had made himself available on multiple occasions to relate what he had witnessed, with regard to the task of completing the Mexican annotations pursued by Colonna.13 It was during this trip—as Colonna himself noted—that Della Valle offered evidence of his ample financial means, resources that could in fact have secured the fate of universal knowledge if they had been allocated to objectives of a scholarly kind.14 In short, in 1629, thanks to his financial means and his sensitivity to the study of nature, “the pilgrim of the East” would have permitted the Academy not only to survive, but also to complete the work that stood as the “emblem of Lincaean activity,” as it illustrated the team work of the Academy and represented the outcome of the academic commitment to spreading knowledge and the fame of the society through books.15

If such a reading is valid, then to what party can Pallavicino’s candidacy be traced? And what fate would have befallen the Academy had he succeeded Cesi as its prince?

2 ‘Dimidium mei’

Biographies of Pallavicino, even the most apologetic ones, make no mystery of the close friendship that bound him, from the time of his youth, to Monsignor Giovanni Battista Ciampoli. The anonymous author of the earliest biography of Pallavicino, in Vite dei Cardinali [Lives of the Cardinals] compiled by Alfonso Chacón, writes:

Some of his father’s friends introduced Giovanni Ciampoli to him almost like the smartest man among the learned men (‘prince of the ingegni’). In fact, Ciampoli had an admirable mind, even if boastful and brash. Following Ciampoli’s guide […] Pallavicino started an open and harsh struggle against the Aristotelian Philosophy.16

The passage alludes summarily to events in Sforza’s life prior to his departure for the governorate in 1632, under circumstances to which we shall return.17 In the years in which he was completing an “official” trajectory of study in anticipation of his entry into the prelacy—a degree in philosophy at the Collegio Romano (1625), a degree in utroque at the Sapienza (1625), and a doctorate in theology, likewise from the Jesuits (1628)—the young Pallavicino did in fact pursue a sort of extra-institutional instruction in anti-Aristotelianism from his friend Giovanni Battista Ciampoli. Situated at the intersection between the “school” of Galileo and the environment of the Roman Curia, Ciampoli (1589–1643) is a key figure for understanding the relationship between science and religion in the age of the Counter-Reformation. A descendant of an impoverished branch of the Cavalcanti family, Ciampoli had been raised by the maecenas and madrigalist Giovan Battista Strozzi the Younger (1551–1634). Endowed with a prodigious talent for composing verse, he frequented the court of the Grand Duke Ferdinand de’ Medici from his youth and became a close friend of Prince Cosimo. In the summer of 1608 he met Galileo at the villa of the Grand Duke, and became his loyal disciple and advocate for the rest of his life. Established by Strozzi in a curial career after receiving his degree in jurisprudence in Pisa in 1614, and through patronage ties with some of Rome’s most powerful families, he rose to the position of secretary of secret briefs to princes, first under the Ludovisi Pope, Gregory XV in 1621, then under the Barberini Pope, Urban VIII in 1623.18

By this time Ciampoli shared with Pope Urban (and by extension—through their friendship—with a still “downy-chinned” Pallavicino)19 a close knowledge of and adherence to the ethics and literary aesthetics of the so-called Barberini circle: moralizing but nonetheless open to Marinism. As a matter of fact, in the early thirties, Ciampoli published a manifesto of this aesthetics in his Poetica sacra (“sacred poetics”), which he wished to see built upon scriptural and hagiographic foundations.20 At the same time, his confirmation as secretary of briefs in 1623 was the seal of protection accorded by Urban VIII to the Lincaean Academy, into which Ciampoli had been accepted thanks to Galileo in 1618.21

It remains unclear who were the “paternal friends” the early biography in Ciacon’s Lives refers to who introduced the young man to monsignore Ciampoli as a “Prince of the ingegni”.22 One may presume, however, that they were erudite aristocratic members of Rome’s “Farnese clan,” whom the Marquis Alessandro Pallavicino naturally found himself joining after seeking refuge in the city.23 As the widower of cardinal Odoardo Farnese’s natural daughter, and bound through a second marriage to a descendent of Paul III, Alessandro belonged to this clique by right.24 Until 1622, when the cardinal moved to Parma to deal with dynastic feuds on behalf of the young Duke Odoardo, the common home of the group’s descendents had been the palazzo that “Duarte” (Cardinal Odoardo) had inherited from the “great Cardinal” Alessandro, his uncle.25 In 1611, on the occasion of his trip to Rome to demonstrate the telescope, it was in palazzo Farnese that Galileo had made the acquaintance of several members of this clan, showing them how to observe new things in the sky through the instrument, but also seizing the opportunity to “suggest” to them that the heliocentric theory had acquired the status of “absolute truth” thanks to the discovery of the Medicean planets and phases of Venus.26 Odoardo had owned a telescope—a gift from Galileo—since the fall of 1610, and had used it in the countryside to “change his mind (‘discredersi’)” about the nature of celestial bodies 27 Meanwhile, Lotario Conti, the Duke of Poli and son of Torquato and Violante Farnese,28 had, after meeting Galileo, begun working on a personal solution to the cosmology of Genesis on the assumption of the existence of the heliocentric structure that he had learned from Galileo.29 At Palazzo Farnese, Galileo also became personally acquainted with Cardinal Carlo Conti, Lotario’s brother, from whom in the summer of 1612 he requested a theologically qualified opinion on the actual conformity of Aristotle’s cosmological system to the dictates of the Holy Scriptures.30 This was likely the setting in which the future Lincean Virginio Cesarini had his first opportunity to establish personal and direct ties with the scientist. The nephew, on his father’s side, of Clelia Farnese, who was the natural daughter of Cardinal Alessandro, Cesarini was studying at the Collegio di S. Rocco in Parma in 1611, and living with his brother Alessandro in the palazzo of the duke Ranuccio Farnese, his cousin.31 His presence is not recorded in Galileo’s chronicles of his sojourn in Rome. However, it is easy to imagine the conversations between the young Cesarini and Robert Bellarmine, a close friend of Cardinal Farnese, at the court of “Duarte.” According to the biographers of Cesarini, at that time Bellarmine would have attempted to direct Cesarini towards a “peripatetic philosophy” more “orthodox” than the one he had picked up in Parma, and urged him to reconsider, through the composition of a treatise, the grave problem of the soul’s immortality.32 As for Alessandro Pallavicino, he had been an admirer of Galileo from the outset. Already in 1596, as an exile on the Riviera di Salò, where he had repaired after the expropriation of his portion of the Pallavicino State due to the maneuvers of his father-in-law, he had tried to engage the scientist as a private tutor for his oldest daughter.33

When Giovanni Ciampoli arrived in Rome in 1614 to enter the prelacy, and before the “affair” of 1616 had chilled relations between the Farnese in Rome and Galileo, he must have had easy access to the Farnese entourage. From 1616 onward, the correspondence certainly portrays Ciampoli as being steadily at the side of Virginio Cesarini, who was back in Rome by this point, particularly after Ciampoli moved to Cesarini’s home in the capacity of secretary and assistant, at the time when Cesarini’s ill health was so unpredictable. The different stages and important implications of the friendship between the two “Lincaean prelates,” which crossed the border between “two cultures”—the literary and the scientific—are now well known.34 They shared an interest in Galileo’s intellectual “brilliance” and diplomatic efforts to sustain his cultural battle within the Curia, that led them both to join the Linceans in 1618. Despite the significant differences,35 they shared a literary ethic in which the lyrical poetry of love yielded to the praise of moral virtue celebrated with a pronounced neo-stoic accent, and to sacred history, as well as an aesthetic in which classicism was polemically opposed to the “Baroque frisson,” yet without renouncing the “verbal ordeals of a perplexing concettismo.”36

For a short time, this intellectual friendship also involved the very young Pallavicino. Indeed, a much later recollection of the Arcadian Raffaele Fabretti depicts Pallavicino, along with Giovanni Ciampoli, Agostino Mascardi, Fulvio Testi, John Barclay, and Giulio Strozzi, participating in the conversation led by Cesarini in a period that can reasonably be dated to 1620–21.37 A text composed by Ciampoli in the years of his exile—the Dialogo Logica or De Intellectione—documents the group’s intense work on the gnosiological, ethical, and political implications of a resurgent skepticism.38 An echo of Pallavicino’s participation in these discussions lingers in his youthful oration, “Se sia più nobile l’intelletto o la volontà” (“On whether the intellect or the will be the more noble”), recited at the assembly of the Academy of Cardinal Prince Maurice of Savoy on December 30, 1624. In it, Pallavicino, still a student at the Collegio Romano, reaffirmed the autonomy and value of the will in the various spheres of human action, in controversy with the theory of the rational choice sustained by the Aristotelian philosophers.39 The work dates only a few months prior to the sole document of his involvement in the cosmological discussions that occupied the Linceans in those years. According to the testimony of the Florentine patrician Mario Guiducci, in June 1624, Pallavicino, along with his uncle Virgilio Malvezzi, dissuaded the Jesuit Orazio Grassi, on the grounds of his obviously inferior argumentative skills, from entering into a polemic with Galileo regarding the latter’s theory on “secondary qualities” expounded in the Saggiatore (Starry Messenger).40 By this point, however, Cesarini had died, at age 29, from complications arising from chronic tuberculosis.41 From the late 1620s on—when documents next become available—Pallavicino seems to have recreated the same rapport with Ciampoli that the latter had enjoyed previously with Cesarini.

In keeping with the classical and particularly stoic concept of friendship that continued to imbue intellectual relationships among male scholars in the seventeenth century, Pallavicino henceforth became Ciampoli’s favorite associate, sharing intellectual activity and inspiration, a beloved companion whom he met daily, to foster mutual moral betterment from their fond familiarity.42 Furthermore, as the social ranks of Pallavicino, an aristocrat, and Ciampoli, a prelate of lesser birth, were asymmetrical, the relationship could be transformed, if necessary, to one of patronage, as had already happened in the past between Ciampoli and Cesarini. In 1628, when speaking about his doctoral thesis in theology to his friend Paganino Gaudenzi, a lector in rhetoric in Pisa, Pallavicino mentioned Ciampoli, whose verses had provided him respite from those long and demanding sessions, and called him “my other half” (“dimidium mei”).43 As we have seen, on 27 January 1629, Pallavicino was inducted into the Academy of the Linceans. In Galileo’s letters and in the correspondence of Roman and Florentine scholars between August 1629 and January 1632, Pallavicino always appears at Ciampoli’s side at the meetings of the “continuous enviable conversation … in which the discussion always revolves around literature” (“continua invidiabil conversatione … dove sempre si ragiona di lettere”), which the secretary regularly held at his lodgings in the Vatican Torre dei Venti (Tower of the Winds).44

3 Which Kind of Academy? Galileo in Power

Ciampoli’s gatherings were not simply some late humanist literary circle; its composition reveals other objectives. It was a private academy open to literary philosophers—either residents of Rome or foreigners passing through—who clearly sided with the “new” faction. Among those who participated occasionally were the philosopher Tommaso Campanella and the mathematician Benedetto Castelli, as well as Galileo’s Florentine patrician fans, Vincenzo Capponi and Orazio Ricasoli Rucellai. Those engaged more regularly included the Scottish cleric George Conn, a polemical theologian and a secret chamberlain of Francesco Barberini, and Antonio Grimani, the secretary’s chamber musician and castrato. Inevitably present were Pallavicino and Andrea Conti, the youngest son of Lotario mentioned earlier.

At this time, Pallavicino and Conti had many things in common—first and foremost their age. Although the latter’s birthdate is not recorded,45 we know for certain that Conti received his doctorate in philosophy from the Collegio Romano in 1627, only two years after Pallavicino did, during a ceremony that was just as sumptuous as Sforza’s.46 Around twenty years Ciampoli’s juniors, Pallavicino, who was born in 1607, and Conti were the two most brilliant graduates of the Collegio Romano of their generation. Pallavicino has already been discussed here; as for Conti, the single trait that distinguished him within his family’s genealogies is a pronounced tendency towards intellectual speculation.47 In 1634, by which time “the ideas of the innovators had exploded,” Ciampoli, writing to Giovanni Battista Strozzi from exile, presented Conti (then governor of Fermo) as “my pupil who had participated regularly in my discussion group in Rome.”48 Clearly, in Ciampoli’s mind, his discussion group was intended as an actual school, founded to direct the best minds of future rulers toward a view of nature, man, society, and the state that was no longer dictated by Aristotle and St. Thomas through the mouthpiece of the Jesuits. According to language borrowed from the religious conflict between Catholics and Protestants and likewise adopted by the Lincaeans when describing the recruitment of new members,49 Ciampoli’s academy intended to ‘convert’ the crème de la crème of Rome’s young aristocrats to “re-mold” their mental attitude. These aristocrats, Ciampoli believed, would one day provide a substantial portion of the papal bureaucracy, of the college of cardinals, and thus perhaps lead to a pope capable not only of revoking the anti-Copernican decree, but also of keeping the Church in step with the challenges of modernity.

But what were the teachings of this school? What was the worldview that Ciampoli wished to forge in the minds of his young listeners in the hope of seeing it translated into government action one day? As noted, we have no direct evidence about these matters. Indeed, Ciampoli formulated his system of thought only in the years of his exile, which began in 1632. He committed it to a series of texts in prose left incomplete at his death in 1643, prose that censorship proceeded to render even more riddled with lacunas. As I have shown elsewhere on the basis of the inventory of Ciampoli’s possessions and letters as well as textual correlations, his texts must have consisted of three parts: a first—the earliest one—devoted to “political and sacred matters”;50 a second of a largely mechanical nature, inspired by Galileo’s Discorsi e dimostrazioni matematiche (Discourses and Mathematical Demonstrations), which was already available by 1640;51 and a third on natural philosophy, written in dialogue form and begun only after 1641, and which drew on a stock of experiences from before his exile.52 What remained of the first two was published in the seventeenth century in three different posthumous anthologies, two of which (1649, 1667) were conceived and edited by Pallavicino himself with the intention of preserving the memory of his mentor-friend. He stripped Ciampoli’s writings of their most compromising aspects and at the same time erased any record of his own heterodox youth.53 Though fragmentary and reconstructed without philological rigor, these writings make it possible to discern the unified vision of nature and man that Ciampoli intended to cultivate in his illustrious pupils.

In concert with Galileo and the Linceans, Ciampoli insisted on the philosopher’s freedom to philosophize about nature (libertas philosophandi in naturalibus). In his thinking, the philosopher had a right to this freedom for at least two reasons. First, the philosophical-theological system (Scholasticism) that theologians and censors insisted on imposing was not necessary, but was rather the product of a random historical encounter of the only philosophy that had survived the collapse of the Roman Empire with a Catholic theology still theoretically naive.54 Second, any connection between theology and philosophy needs to be rejected, since Nature and Scripture both derive from God and therefore possess the same degree of legitimacy and authority. If, then, the laws of nature discovered through an inquiry unconstrained by subordination to theology diverge from those expounded by the exegetes of the Bible, then, because Nature and the Scriptures are incapable of contradicting each other as both are manifestations of God’s will, the former must undoubtedly be the true laws of nature, since a natural fact is the word of God and as such takes precedence over any textual commentary.55

Up to this point, Ciampoli repeats the message of Galileo’s Lettere copernicane (Copernican letters), albeit with significant differences (for example, the instrumental rather than substantial role of mathematics).56 In contrast to Galileo however, in Ciampoli’s work this claim forms part of a revindication of the rights of Nature—its autonomy, its legitimacy vis à vis the spiritual and religious realm—that endows not only “scientific” inquiry, but also all aspects of human activity, especially politics, a key interest of Ciampoli.

Even the science of the State, such as gnosiology, ought in Ciampoli’s opinion to be constructed ex notioribus, that is, from direct evidence provided by the natural aspect of man. As the limits imposed by the senses do not allow man to attain knowledge of transcendent reality but merely of the phenomenal world,57 so his carnal and corruptible nature (which accounts for the original state of nature and a vision of the State as born of natural law)58 does not allow him to reach the beatitude on the Earth, which belongs to the Kingdom of Heaven, but only whatever happiness that is possible, namely, that which the pursuit of the relative good prescribes to men by means of law.59 Even within this ethical-political sphere, no contradiction can be presupposed between Nature (or humanity’s “common understanding” of that which is good,60 a concept that the prince’s wise counselor discovers by induction through a comparison of the customs of people of all times and places) and the Scriptures (or that which God reveals ab aeterno as Good in itself). While the first is dictated by natural reason (fama pubblica, or public repute), the second is eternal and revealed in the Bible and through the voice of the pope. Yet, since a spark of divine intelligence remains in man despite original sin, it follows that the philosopher-legislator, by mandating through law that men respect the good pursued by universal reason, does nothing else than set them on the path to happiness: “Born in Heaven, [the law of Rome] does not forget that we live on Earth: and while it procures that happiness possible down below for those who observe its precepts, it promises them absolute happiness above the stars.”61

Drawing on diverse readings and traditions, Ciampoli intended to propose an original and moderate compromise between Catholicism and modernity—scientific and political modernity—as an alternative to the one proposed by the Jesuits, which dominated both these spheres at the time. On the scientific level, he pursued a philosophy that denied subordination to theology, that replaced substantial forms with corpuscularianism and constructed a Copernican universe from the emanation of solar light, both physical and spiritual. On another level, with respect to persistent theocratic ideals but also to Jesuit anti-Machiavellism,62 he proposed a vision of Christian politics that did not altogether reject the reason of the State (religion is the “instrument of Rule,”63 its political anthropology being based on what humans are rather than what they should be),64 and supported a clear separation of spiritual and temporal power. The Christian prince, in his view, does not derive his power from the Creator, but rather indirectly, from the force of the sun, and directly, from the natural reason of people. His power, therefore, is not technically subordinate to that of the pope, but develops parallel to and in accordance with it toward a goal (happiness on Earth, identification of the true good) that is both complementary and preparatory to heavenly bliss. In sum, as he governs according to what all of humanity recognizes as its own good, the Christian prince does nothing else than putting in place the laws of the Lord.

4 ‘Uno nato principe’

But let us turn to our original question: what fate would have befallen the Academy had Pallavicino succeeded Cesi as its prince? In January 1629, Pallavicino was Ciampoli’s natural candidate to be nominated for the Lincean Academy, and as such, a representative of the academic group most tightly bound to the Curia and closest to Galileo. This group, in which Virginio Cesarini, Mario Guiducci, Francesco Stelluti, and even Cesi himself had taken part over time, had already stood by Galileo in his disputes with the Jesuits over solar spots (1612–1613) and comets (1619–1623). The group was now getting ready to support him in the publication of the Discourse on the Tides (Dialogo del flusso e riflusso).65 In the post-Cesi era, Pallavicino’s potential succession as the Academy’s head would have guaranteed the continuation of both the anti-Aristotelian battle under the direct protection of the pope (with whom at the time Pallavicino was very close)66 and also the powerful aristocratic clique to which the young man belonged. Conversely, for Ciampoli, Pallavicino’s mentor and “great champion,” this possibility would have assured a platform that was far more stable and visible than those that had been hitherto used (the private “conversation,” the Academy of Maurice of Savoy)67 to wage the battle for a theologically redeemed natural philosophy and policy. And for a moment, Ciampoli’s project came close to succeeding.

As is well known, due to Cesi’s poor health, the last three Linceans to be nominated were unable to receive the Lincean rings that he himself had engraved with their names. After Cesi’s death in August 1630, neither the pleas of the Lincean secretary and dean, Francesco Stelluti, nor the good services of Cassiano dal Pozzo, Academy member and foremost secretary in Cardinal Francesco Barberini’s household, could make the cardinal nephew—the most illustrious figure in the group—agree to officiate in the induction ceremony for the three new members.68 It was not until a year later that the cardinal, once again pressured by Stelluti, agreed that a successor to Cesi be nominated, provided that he was “a born prince.”69

Scholarship has construed Barberini’s reticence on both occasions as nothing more than a sign of the cardinal’s ill will towards the Academy’s future, and agree that he did what he could as arbitrator to procrastinate and stall the institution’s fate.70 According to the current historical narrative, Barberini was to blame for imposing this condition on Cesi’s succession (the designated academician had to be born a prince) in the absence of any “statutary provision that was enshrined and proclaimed, that is to say that was brought into the public domain.”71 The “Lynceographum”—still in manuscript form but hardly unknown to the brethren—in fact set forth detailed rules for the election of new members. When compared to these rules, Barberini’s condition is less arbitrary than it appears at first glance.72 The “Lynceographum” was no less concerned with the qualities of the candidate for the directorship than was their patron Barberini (or Cesi himself), and demanded that such a subject possess “extraordinary means [that is, wealth], connections to princes and powerful individuals, [and] competence [expertise] in negotiating affairs.”73 In a word, given the high profile of the enterprise (no attachment to public institutions, financial self-sufficiency), the future prince (like Cesi) had to be independent in his actions and generous in terms of financial outlay. In the ancien régime, however, all these conditions would have been relevant solely to a “born prince.”74

However, because of Cesi’s foresight, the Academy’s personnel could still have easily met the condition Barberini imposed in August 1630. Among its members in Rome alone, at least two were members of the nobility—Della Valle and Pallavicino—both of whom were first born, hence heirs to the title and property of their families,75 of which the latter’s ranked higher. The Della Valle family were Palatine counts of relatively recent nobility, historically bound to the Curia, the Colonna, and the Imperial party. Until the family’s entry into the Roman aristocracy, brought about by the marriage of the papal archiater Paolo with Sabella Savelli in the first half of the Quattrocento, at least until the early fifteenth century their economic fortune had been bound with their activity as bovattieri, that is, merchants of agricultural commodities and livestock.76

The Pallavicino marquises, however, belonged to one of Europe’s oldest families, a holder since 1249 of a signory of imperial investiture, the jurisdictional autonomy of which had been respected for centuries by the Visconti and reconfirmed by popes. Despite the periodic divisions over the centuries caused by the application of Lombard hereditary law and more recent devolutions brought about by marriages, in the mid-sixteenth century these jurisdictions as a whole still constituted a political unity—the so-called Pallavicino “State”—sealed by common statutes dating back to the fifteenth century but still extant in effect in a good many of the manors.77 For complex dynastic reasons, and due to strong Farnese pressure on feudal vassals within their duchy, the Zibello branch, to which Sforza belonged, became in the 1580s the sole heir to the Fiorenzuola, Cortmaggiore, and Busseto branches, that is, to the most conspicuous part of the Pallavicino State to which the young Lincean Pallavicino, as eldest son, would become heir.78

Notwithstanding the disparity in rank, it was certainly Della Valle who had the most solid financial profile at this time. In 1650, the revenue generated by his property holdings amounted to 5,184 scudi.79 Things stood quite differently for Pallavicino. Because the lawsuit filed by Alessandro Pallavicino against the Farnese after the expropriation of his hereditary fiefdoms languished for years in the court of the Rota, the marquis and his family found themselves greatly impoverished. In 1633, lacking the money required to continue the lawsuit, Alessandro would have been compelled to accept an agreement with the Farnese that was no doubt disadvantageous to his lineage.80 In 1637 it was once again the economic situation of Sforza Pallavicino’s father that would have been the principal problem requiring resolution before Sforza could enter the Company of Jesus.81 Nevertheless, by August 1631, Pallavicino’s name was the only one being suggested as Cesi’s possible successor. “Regarding […] the matters of the Academy,” wrote the secretary of Stelluti to Galileo,

I was able to discuss them no earlier than last week with the Eminent Sir Cardinal Barberini, who feels that a new leader must be selected but nonetheless would like him to be a born prince; and as there is no subject to propose, he ordered me to write here and to Naples, so that their Lordships may see whether there exists such a subject and refer him. Here there is the Lord Marquis Pallavicino, but he’s already joined the prelacy, and the prince should be a layman; for which reason your Eminent Lordship can still think about it and state your consent.82

If one excludes the possibility of bad faith, the cardinal nephew’s imposition of the requirement of nobility upon the succession to the Lincean leadership can now easily be explained. This was no arbitrary and restrictive measure imposed by Cardinal Barberini to destroy the Academy, but rather a prerequisite suggested by Ciampoli to Barberini to guarantee Pallavicino’s succession without rivals, and his own directorship over the institution’s future cultural politics. The plan would have succeeded had it not been for a significant change that occurred during the interminable workings of bureaucracy (selecting the successor of the Lincean leadership was one of many and certainly not the foremost of Francesco’s concerns). Between Ciampoli’s hypothetical suggestion to Barberini and the conversation between the cardinal nephew and Stelluti in August 1631, Sforza had entered into the prelacy (in March 1631) as referendary of the two Signatures and a member of the congregations of Ecclesiastical Immunity and De bono regimine.

Due to the selective requirement probably suggested by Ciampoli but definitely imposed by Barberini, Pallavicino’s entry into the prelacy spoiled Ciampoli’s plans but also indirectly decreed the end of the Academy. According to the extant evidence, the letter of August 1631 is the final document related to the institutional fate of the first Academy of the Linceans; the last documented meeting of Ciampoli’s gatherings dates to January 1632. After March of that year, complaints voiced by cardinals of the Catholic League regarding the lack of support from the pope at a delicate moment in the Thirty Years War made it impossible for Urban VIII to continue guaranteeing freedom of expression to cultural dissent, even of a relative and local kind. Accused of treason, both in the exercise of his functions and in his more private guise as mediator of the imprimatur of Galileo’s Dialogues, Ciampoli was dismissed from his position in May 1632 and sent from Rome on a government assignment in November.83 His “pupils” were likewise sent away, admonished for sympathizing with “the ideas of the innovators,” but by the same token protected from further compromising dealings with a favorite who had fallen into disgrace. Andrea Conti left for the government of Camerino.84 Punished for trying to intercede for his friend before the pope, Pallavicino was sent to Jesi.85 Aside from the observance of the formalities and the prestige of the assignment, it was in effect “an honorable exile” for the young man, as his uncle Virginio Malvezzi clearly wrote.86

Because of Pallavicino’s career as an irreproachable “intellectual cadre”—first at the Company of Jesus, then in the Church—his exile and the record of his involvement in the cultural situation prior to 1632 left no stain on his curriculum vitae. After his death, his biographers were even able to count his faithfulness to Ciampoli among the proofs of his virtue:

We heard the old Sforza candidly confess this [i.e. his juvenile heterodoxy] about himself and declare that, once he reached the most mature age, after the novatores’ ideas exploded, he reconciled with Aristotle … that, in fact, he had followed his [i.e. Ciampoli’s] doctrine to please others, later he was forced to follow his fate by his own perseverance.87


This research received funds from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 799769.


Gabrieli G., “Verbali delle adunanze e cronaca della prima Accademia Lincea: 1603–1630” (1927), in idem, Contributi per la storia dell’Accademia dei Lincei, vol. 1 (Rome: 1989) 497–550, at 547.


Gabrieli G., “L’orizzonte intellettuale e morale di Federico Cesi illustrato da un suo zibaldone inedito”, in Rendiconti della Reale accademia nazionale dei Lincei 6.14 (1938) 27–77, at 65. The minutes of the meeting are preserved in BANLC, Archivio Linceo-Accad. 12, fol. 274r. Gabrieli attributes the notes of eulogy to Federico Cesi in “La Germania lincea: ovvero Lincei e linceabili tedeschi della prima Accademia: in particolare di Teofilo Müller”, in idem, Contributi 311–330, at 323. This is also true according to Martin Fogel’s notes of the history of the Academy, see Fogel M., Lynceorum historia: le schede lincee di Martin Fogel, eds. Camerota M., Ottaviani, A., Trabucco O. (Rome: 2021) 357.


See note 1. On Sforza Pallavicino, see Favino F., “Pallavicino, Francesco Maria Sforza,” in DBI, vol. 80 (2014) 512–518,


Bellini E., “‘Il papato dei Virtuosi’. I Lincei e i Barberini,” in idem, Stili di pensiero nel Seicento italiano: Galileo, i Lincei, i Barberini (Pisa: 2009) 109–157, esp. 136–138.


Federico Cesi to Galileo Galilei, Rome, 9 September 1628, in Gabrieli G., Il carteggio Linceo (Rome: 1996) 1180. See also Cesi’s letter to Galileo of 28 January 1628 in ibid. 1158 and note.


Gabrieli, Il Carteggio 1206–1207.


See note 1. On Holste, see Almagià R., L’ opera geografica di Luca Holstenio (Vatican City: 1949); Lejay P., “Lucas Holstenius”, in The Catholic Encyclopedia, vol. 7 (New York: 1910) ( and Visceglia M.A., “La Biblioteca tra Urbano VII (15–27 settembre 1590) e Urbano VIII (1623–1644): Cardinali bibliotecari, custodi, scriptores”, in Montuschi C. (ed.), La Vaticana nel Seicento (1590–1700): Una biblioteca di biblioteche (Vatican City: 2014) 77–123. On the ‘system’ of scientific academies in Barberini Rome, see Favino F., “Marvellous Conjuncture? The Academy of Maurizio di Savoia between Politics and ‘New Science’”, in Donato M.P. – Kraye J. (eds.), Conflicting Duties: Science, Medicine and Religion in Rome, 1550–1750 (London – Turin: 2009) 135–155.


On these obstacles, see De Angelis G., “Notizie inedite sulla prima giovinezza di Federico Cesi: una conferma delle fonti francescane della spiritualità cesiana”, in Battistini A. – de Angelis G. – Olmi G. (eds.), All’origine della scienza moderna: Federico Cesi e l’Accademia dei Lincei (Bologna: 2007) 17–105. According to De Angelis, however, common residence and the public use of the library would have been ‘maximum security’ provisions inserted by Cesi into the Praescriptiones Lynceae Academiae precisely with the aim of thwarting Barberini’s possible succession as head of his Academy (19–20).


Cadeddu M.E. – Guardo M. (eds.), Il tesoro messicano: libri e saperi tra Europa e Nuovo Mondo (Florence: 2013), with earlier bibliography, and Brevaglieri S., Natural desiderio di sapere: Roma barocca fra vecchi e nuovi mondi (Rome: 2019).


Salvante R., Il pellegrino in Oriente: La Turchia di Pietro Della Valle (1614–1617) (Florence: 1997) 46. See also Micocci C. – La Via S., “Della Valle, Pietro”, in DBI, vol. 37 (Rome: 1989),, Ben-Zaken A., “From Naples to Goa and back: a secretive Galilean messenger and a radical hermeneutist”, History of Science 47 (2009) 147–174, and Diario di Pietro della Valle di alcune cose memorabili, ed. G. Venditti (Rome: Bardi, 2019).


Salvante, Il pellegrino in Oriente (see previous note), Cardin C. (ed.), Appendice e passim; La porta d’Oriente: lettere di Pietro Della Valle: Istanbul, 1614 (Rome: 2001); Brevaglieri S., “Il cantiere del Tesoro Messicano tra Roma e l’Europa. Pratiche di comunicazione e strategie editoriali nell’orizzonte dell’Accademia dei Lincei (1610–1630)”, in Brevaglieri S. – Guerrini L. – Solinas F., Sul Tesoro Messicano e su alcuni disegni del Museo Cartaceo di Cassiano dal Pozzo (Rome: 2007) 23–36.


Brevaglieri, Il cantiere 28 and note.


Ibid. 31–36.


Gabrieli, Carteggio 1117–1118, as cited in Salvante, Il Pellegrino 45–46: ‘se vi fossero molti che volessero et potessero spendere et fare in suo genere diverso di curiosità quello che lui ha fatto, beato il mondo, che si comunicaria in breve ogni cosa per tutto’ (‘if there were many who wished and were able to spend and do the same thing that he did, even if of a different kind of curiosity, blessed [would be] the world, because everything would be transmitted everywhere in a short time’). See also Brevaglieri, “Il cantiere del Tesoro Messicano” 24.


Raimondi E., Il romanzo senza idillio. Saggio sui Promessi Sposi (Turin: 1974) 26–35, 237.


Ciaconius Alphonsus O.P. – Oldoinus Augustinus S.J., Vitae et res gestae pontificum romanorum et S.R.E. Cardinalium, vol. 4 (Rome, Tip. De Rossi: 1677) cols. 737–41, at 738: ‘cum […] authoritatem sequeretur Ioannis Ciampoli eidem Urbano ab epistolis, quem sibi nonnulli paterni amici quasi Principem ingeniorum colendum proposuerant, quique ut erat magni quidem & admirabilis, sed ambitiosi, praecipitisque ingenii, atrox et apertum Peripateticae Philosophiae bellum indixerat’. The author of Pallavicino’s biography may have been Oldoini himself, or else Agostino Favoriti, the secretary of the Cardinal College during the pontificate of Alexander VII, and Pallavicino’s personal friend.


Favino F., “‘Quel petardo di mia fortuna’. Riconsiderando la ‘caduta’ di Giovan Battista Ciampoli”, in Montesinos J. – Solís C. (eds.), Largo campo di filosofare. Eurosymposium Galileo 2001 (Orotava: 2001) 863–882.


Biographical notes in Ciampoli D., Un amico del Galilei: monsignor Giovanni Ciampoli, in Nuovi studi letterari e bibliografici (Rocca San Casciano: 1900) 5–170; Favaro A., “Amici e corrispondenti di Galileo. Giovanni Ciampoli”, Atti del Reale Istituto Veneto di scienze, lettere ed arti 62.2 (1902–1903) 91–145, now in Favaro A., Amici e corrispondenti di Galilei, vol. 1, ed. P. Galluzzi (Florence: 1983) 133–189; De Ferrari A., “Ciampoli, Giovanni Battista”, in DBI, vol. 25 (Rome: 1981),


APUG, ms. 132, fol. 5v: ‘Un anonimo biografo di Pallavicino, che gli fu sicuramente molto vicino in vita, ricordava a proposito della sua precocissima vocazione intellettuale come persino “quel literatissimo principe e insieme serissimo pontefice Urbano VIII non riputò disdicevole d’ammetterlo, tutto che giovane di prima lanugine, alla sua familiare conversatione, chiamandolo insieme con mons.r Ciampoli assai frequentemente a’ passar seco in eruditi discorsi l’ore più noiose del dopo pranzo, che tal’era quell’onesto rilassamento che dalle cure d’un mondo si prendea quel savio principe”’. (‘An anonymous biographer of Pallavicino, who was definitely very close to him in life, recalled apropos his highly precocious intellectual calling, how even “that most highly literate prince and simultaneously most severe pope, Urban VIII did not deem it improper to admit him, still very young and with a downy chin, to his private conversations, inviting him along with Mons.r Ciampoli quite frequently to spend the most tedious hours of the afternoon in learned discourse with him, as such was the upright escape that that wise prince took from the cares of the world”’).


Bellini E., Umanisti e Lincei. Letteratura e scienza a Roma nell’età di Galileo (Padua: 1997) 90–145. On Ciampoli’s poetry, see Apollonio S., “Per una lettura dei Fasti sacri di Sforza Pallavicino”, in Pallavicino Sforza, I Fasti sacri. Edizione critica e commento, ed. S. Apollonio (Lecce: 2015) 45–46, 109–111 and passim, Geri L., “Le ‘Meditazioni davidiche’ di Giovanni Ciampoli”, in Pettinelli R.A. et al. (eds.), La Bibbia in poesia: volgarizzamenti dei Salmi e poesia religiosa in età moderna (Rome: 2015) 227–250, and Apollonio S., “Ciampoli Giovanni”, in Ballarini M. (ed.), Dizionario biblico della Letteratura Italiana (Milan: 2018) 259–261. For a fine-tuned literary history, see also Russo E., “Sul barocco letterario in Italia. Giudizi, revisioni, distinzioni”, Les Dossiers du Grihl 2 (2012) ( [accessed July 8, 2022]). See also the contributions by Apollonio, Riga and Metlica in this volume.


De Ferrari, Ciampoli 149 n17.


Ciaconius – Oldoinus, Vitae col. 738.


Favino F., “Le ragioni del patronage: i Farnese di Roma e Galileo”, in Bucciantini M. – Camerota M. – Giudice F. (eds.), Il caso Galileo: una rilettura storica, filosofica, teologica. Convegno internazionale di studi, Florence, 26–30 May 2009 (Florence: 2011) 163–185.


The personal fortunes of Alessandro Pallavicino di Zabello, a fascinating character of the late Renaissance, intersect with those of his fiefdom. See Ghizzoni V., “Soprusi dei Farnese ai danni dei Pallavicino nella seconda metà del Cinquecento”, Archivio storico per le province parmensi 9 (1967) 149–161; Boscarelli M., “La conquista farnesiana dello Stato Pallavicino”, Archivi per la storia 1 (1988) 185–197. Alessandro’s first marriage was to Lavinia Farnese (d. 1605), the illegitimate daughter of Duke Ottavio, with whom he had a daughter, Vittoria Eufrosina, born in Parma in 1587, and a son, Francesco Maria (b. in Salò in 1597, and dead before 1607); see Litta P., “Pallavicino”, in Famiglie celebri italiane (Milan: 1819) table XXVII. In 1607 he took as his second wife Francesca Sforza di Santa Fiora (1573–1621), by then the widow of the Marquis Ascanio della Corgnia, lord of Castiglione del Lago. Scipione Tolomei, the court secretary, described her to her first husband as ‘tall rather than short, thin rather than fat […] who would seem mediocre among beauties and a beauty among the mediocre’ (Lettere [Perugia, nella Stampa Augusta: 1617] 47). The marriage produced nine children: Sforza Pallavicino’s ‘uterine brothers’ Duke Fulvio Alessandro (1589–1647), Marcantonio Federico (b. 1590, prelate), and Diomede Prospero (b. 1596); the twins Porzia Maura and Margherita Laura (b. 1598, both of whom entered a convent in 1610); Vittoria (b. 1599) and Margherita (b. 1600). To these could also be added Giuseppe (later bishop of Caserta, Squillace, and Orvieto), and Fabio, a painter (Donati-Guerrieri M.G., Lo Stato di Castiglione del Lago e i della Corgna [Perugia: 1972] 236–238).


For a biographical portrait of Odoardo Farnese, see Robertson C. – Zapperi R., “Odoardo Farnese, duca di Parma e di Piacenza”, in DBI, vol. 45 (Rome: 1995),; Zapperi R., Eros e Controriforma: preistoria della galleria Farnese (Turin: 1994) passim. On the gran cardinale, see Andretta S. – Robertson C., “Farnese, Alessandro”, in DBI, vol. 45 (Rome: 1995),; Robertson C., ‘Il Gran Cardinale’: The Artistic Patronage of Cardinal Alessandro Farnese (New Haven: 1992); Fragnito G., Storia di Clelia Farnese. Amori, potere, violenza nella Roma della Contoriforma (Bologna: 2013) passim.


Camerota M., Galileo Galilei e la cultura scientifica nell’età della Controriforma (Rome: 2004) 254–255.


Odoardo Farnese to Galileo, Rome, 24 December 1610 (OG, X, 494–495).


Andretta S., “Conti, Lotario”, in DBI, vol. 28 (Rome: 1983), Violante was the illegitimate daughter of Duke Odoardo I.


Favino, Le ragioni del patronage 175–181.


On the correspondence between Carlo Conti and Galileo, see Poppi A., “La lettera del cardinale Carlo Conti a Galileo su cosmologia aristotelica e Bibbia (7 luglio 1612): l’approdo galileiano alla nuova ermeneutica biblica”, Atti e Memorie dell’Accademia Patavina di Scienze, Lettere ed Arti, Parte III: Memorie della Classe di Scienze Morali, Lettere ed Arti 109 (1996–1997) 131–158; Galilei Galileo, Scienza e religione. Scritti copernicani, ed. M. Bucciantini and M. Camerota (Rome: 2009) ix.


Bertoni L., “Cesarini, Alessandro”, in DBI, vol. 24 (Rome: 1980); Mutini C., “Cesarini, Virginio”, in DBI, vol. 24 (Rome: 1980), The origins of this branch of the Cesarini family and its kinship with the Farnese are described in Fragnito, Storia di Clelia Farnese, passim.


The information is documented in Gottifredi Alessandro, In funere Virginii Cesarini (Rome, Apud Alexandr. Zanettum: 1624) 19–20. On sources, see Bellini, Umanisti e Lincei 245ff. and Guardo M., “Iustus Riquius e la Vita Virginii Caesarini. Fonti, tematiche e stile”, in Corradini M. – Ferro R. – Girardi M.T. (eds.), Dal ‘mondo scritto’ al ‘mondo figurato’. Studi di letteratura italiana per Eraldo Bellini (Pisa: 2021) 41–53.


Bettoni F., Storia della riviera di Salò (Salò: 1880) 215. In the following century, the palazzo passed into the estate of the Counts Martinengo of Brescia. It was precisely in this palazzo, ‘in the same sack with other similar documents pertaining to the Pallavicini family of Parma’, that Antonio Favaro found an autographed letter from Galileo—dated in Padua, 14 June 1596—to an anonymous recipient, whom he suggested be identified as Alessandro Pallavicino or perhaps his father Alfonso (OG, X [1934] 66–67).


Bellini, Umanisti e Lincei, passim; idem, Stili di pensiero, passim. See also Gabrieli G., “Due prelati lincei in Roma alla corte di Urbano VIII: Virginio Cesarini e Giovanni Ciampoli”, Atti dell’Accademia degli Arcadi e scritti dei soci 13 (1929/1930) 171–200, now in Gabrieli, Contributi 763–785.


Apollonio, Per una lettura 26.


Raimondi E., “Alla ricerca del classicismo”, in his Anatomie secentesche (Pisa: 1966) 41. On Cesarini’s activity as a poet, see Bonaccorsi T., “Clausum rerum aperire sinus. L’esperimento di un poeta linceo: Virginio Cesarini”, Bruniana & Campanelliana 7.1 (2001) 51–76; Ardissino E., “Pietas, curiositas et poesis nell’attività dell’Accademia dei Lincei. Intorno a Virginio Cesarini”, in Battistini – De Angelis – Olmi (eds.), All’origine della scienza moderna 147–173.


Favino F., La filosofia naturale di Giovanni Ciampoli (Firenze: 2015) 43–44. The report regarding Cesarini’s private conversations is discussed by Domenico Riviera, author of Vita di Raffaello Fabretti urbinate […] trasportata dal testo latino […], nel nostro volgare dal can. Gio. Mario Crescimbeni […] among Le vite degli Arcadi illustri, ed. Crescimbeni Giovanni Mario (Rome, Antonio de’ Rossi: 1708) 104.


Favino F., “Scetticismo ed empirismo: Ciampoli linceo”, in Battistini – De Angelis – Olmi (eds.), All’origine della scienza moderna 175–203. The dialogue has now been published in Favino, La filosofia naturale 183–249.


Favino, La filosofia naturale 52–56. On the academy of Maurice of Savoy, erroneously identified as the Accademia dei Desiosi, see Merolla R., L’Accademia dei Desiosi (Roma: 2008) with essays by Laura Alemanno, Stefano Arena, and Debora Vagnoni; and Favino F., “‘Marvellous Conjuncture?’” The oration was later published in Saggi accademici dati in Roma nell’Accademia del Serenissimo Prencipe cardinal di Savoia da diversi nobilissimi ingegni, raccolti e pubblicati da monsignor Agostino Mascardi (Venice, Bartolomeo Fontana: 1630) 50–70.


Mario Guiducci to Galileo Galilei, Rome, 23 June 1624, OG, XIII, 186.


Mutini, “Cesarini”.


Lochman D.T. – Lopez M. – Hutson L. (eds.), Discourses and Representations of Friendship in Early Modern Europe, 1500–1700 (Aldershot: 2011). On Lincean friendship in particular, see Biagioli M., “Knowledge, Freedom, and Brotherly Love: Homosociality and the Accademia dei Lincei”, Configurations 3.2 (1995) 139–166.


Sforza Pallavicino to Paganino Gaudenzi, 22 December 1628, BAV, Urb. lat. 1629, f. 20r. For biographical and bibliographical information on Gaudenzi, see Brunelli G., “Gaudenzi, Paganino”, in DBI, vol. 52 (Rome: 1999), On his activity as a historiographer, see also Callard C., Le Prince et la République. Histoire, pouvoire et société dans la Florence des Médicis au XVIIe siécle (Paris: 2007).


See Favino F., “A proposito dell’atomismo di Galileo: da una lettera di Tommaso Campanella ad uno scritto di Giovanni Ciampoli”, Bruniana & Campanelliana 3.3 (1997) 265–282; idem, La filosofia naturale 92–96, for a discussion on the information below. On Grimani, see Rismondo P.A., “Antonio Grimani ‘musico galileiano’ tra Venezia e Roma”, Recercare 31, 1/2 (2019) 103–128.


See Dionigi Marco, Genealogia di casa Conti (Parma, per gli eredi d’Erasmo Viotti: 1653) 175; Cascioli G., Memorie storiche di Poli con molte notizie inedite della celebre famiglia Conti di Guadagnolo (Rome: 1896) 177; Weber C. (ed.), Legati e governatori dello Stato Pontificio (1550–1809) (Rome: 1994) 592.


Avviso di Roma, 20 January 1627, BAV, Urb. lat. 1097, fols. 36r–36v. More space is granted to the ceremony celebrating Pallavicino’s graduation in the Roman Avvisi (see those of September 6 and 10 1625, in BAV, Urb. lat. 1095, fols. 538r, 546r).


Dionigi, Genealogia 175; Cascioli, Memorie 177.


Florence, Biblioteca Nazione Centrale, Magliab. VIII.1399, fol. 5v.


De Renzi S., “Courts and Conversions: Intellectual Battle and Natural Knowledge in Counter-Reformation Rome”, Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 21.4 (1996) 429–434.


Giovanni Ciampoli to Caspar Schopp, 11 November 1638, in Lettere di monsignor Giovanni Ciampoli. Con l’aggiunta in questa terza impressione di altre molte lettere del medesimo, e d’vna sua canzone non piu` stampate, insieme con la vita dell’autore, descritta dal sig. Alessandro Pozzobonelli (Venice – Macerata, Grisei and G. Piccini: 1666) 66.


Francesco Stelluti to Cassiano dal Pozzo, 2 August 1640, in Nicolò A., “Corrispondenza inedita di Francesco Stelluti a Cassiano dal Pozzo nel carteggio putaneo dell’Accademia dei Lincei”, Atti della Accademia nazionale dei Lincei 37 (1982) 91–99.


All that survives of this third work are the dialogues entitled Logica or De Intellectione and Del Sole e del fuoco, now published in Favino, La filosofia naturale, passim.


For a detailed reconstruction of this initiative see Favino F., “Sforza Pallavicino editore e ‘galileista ad un modo’”, Giornale critico della filosofia italiana 6.20 (2000) 280–315. On this subject, see also Baffetti G., “Un problema storiografico: Giovanni Ciampoli e Sforza Pallavicino”, in I primi Lincei e il Sant’Uffizio. Questioni di scienza e di fede (Rome: 2005) 125–139.


Ciampoli G. B., “Libro primo della filosofia naturale”, in Dei Fragmenti dell’opere postume di Monsignor Giovanni Ciampoli (Bologna, Presso Giovanni Battista Ferroni: 1653) 40–46. See Torrini M., “Giovanni Ciampoli filosofo”, in Galluzzi P. (ed.), Novità celesti in e crisi del sapere: Atti del Convegno internazionale di Studi Galileiani (Florence: 1983) 267–275, at 268, 270.


Ciampoli, “Libro primo della filosofia naturale” 40–46.


Galilei, Scienza e religione, passim.


Ciampoli, “Libro primo della filosofia naturale” prop. 1–3.


Ciampoli, “Della robustezza” (dedicated to his most Reverent and Eminent Cardinal Girolamo Colonna, at the request of Giovanni Casoni Libraro in Parione), in Prose di Monsignor Giovanni Ciampoli (Rome, Nella Stamperia di Manelfo Manelfi: 1649) 234–236.


Ciampoli Giovanni, “Il Zoroastro”, in Prose di monsignor Ciampoli (Rome, Fabio di Falco: 1667) 1–6.


“Potenza della fama publica”, in Ciampoli, Prose (1649) 329.


Ciampoli, Il Zoroastro 1–6: ‘essendo nata in Cielo [la legge di Roma] non si scorda che noi viviamo in terra: et agli osservatori de’ suoi precetti, mentre procura qua giù la felicità possibile, promette sopra le stelle la felicità totale’. Elsewhere he writes: ‘concludiamo dunque così: siamo composti di corpo e di anima: se abbiamo l’intelletto non siamo senza il senso; e però doviamo coltivar la naturalezza e implorar la gratia. Dunque, chi nell’istruire il mondo, mescolando le lettere secolari con l’ecclesiastiche, subordina la dottrina alla fede, ci benefica nella terra per beatificarci nel cielo’ (‘Let us thus conclude in this manner: we are composed of a body and a spirit; if we possess intellect we do not lack sense; and for this reason we must cultivate candour and beg for grace. Then, he who in teaching the world, mixing secular and ecclesiastical letters, subordinates doctrine to faith, helps us on Earth to beatify ourselves in heaven’). “Delle lettere sacre e profane”, in Ciampoli, Prose (1649) 117.


I.e., to the relationship between spiritual and temporal power prefigured in the theory of the pope’s indirect power, as articulated by Bellarmine (that is, the prerogative of the Roman See to judge and sanction the actions of sovereigns, even those pertaining to civil matters if they touch on the maintenance of faith). For more on this matter see Motta F., “Nature, Faith and the Judge of Faith. Some Considerations on the Historical-Political Context of Copernicus’ Condemnation”, in Fabbri N. – Favino F. (eds.), Copernicus Banned. The Entangled Matter of the Anti-Copernican Decree of 1616 (Florence: 2018) 57–100.


Ciampoli, “Della novità”, in Prose (1649) 142.


Ciampoli, “Delle lettere sacre e profane”, Ibid. 117.


Redondi P., Galileo eretico (Turin: 1983); Camerota M., Galileo Galilei e la cultura scientifica nell’età della Controriforma (Rome: 2004); Galluzzi P., Libertà di filosofare in naturalibus: i mondi paralleli di Cesi e Galileo (Rome: 2014).


APUG, ms. 132, fol. 5v.


It can easily be demonstrated that Ciampoli conceived if not wrote the oration inspired by Galileo’s Starry Messenger that was delivered at the Academy of Savoy by one of the pope’s familiars, Giuliano Fabrizi, on Maundy Thursday. See Favino, “Marvellous Conjuncture” 142–151. This reading of events does not underestimate the fact that the beginnings of Ciampoli’s conversatione (August 1629) coincide with the pause in the activity of the Lincaeans because of Cesi’s illness.


See letter from Stelluti to Cassiano dal Pozzo, Acquasparta, 17 August 1630, in Gabrieli, Il carteggio 1222 n5: ‘già vi sono tre anelli fatti per il Sig.r Marchese Pallavicino, per il Sig.r Pietro della Valle e per il Sig.r Luca Olstenio; et io dissi all’Eminentissimo Sig.r Card.l Barberino che il Sig.r Principe nostro voleva darli, et si contentò; ma bench’io più volte glie n’habbia fatta istanza, a che seguisse questa ascrittione […] con tutto non n’havevo risposta alcuna, ma solo mi guardava tutto dolente e taceva […] Hora, parendo al Signor Cardinale, potrebbe S. Eminenza ciò fare, già che per non essere in Roma il Sig.r Fabio Colonna viceprincipe non può da lui farsi: e poi conforme alle nostre regole eleggere il nuovo Principe’ (‘Three rings have already been made for the Lord Marquis Pallavicino, for the Lord Pietro della Valle, and for the Lord Lukas Holste; and I told the Most Eminent Lord Cardinal Barberino that our Lord Prince wished to give them to them, and he was satisfied; but although I have implored him that this enrolment be carried out many times […]this notwithstanding I have received no response, he merely looks at me with great sadness and remains silent […]. Now, if the Lord Cardinal agrees, Your Eminence could do this because the vice-Prince Lord Fabio Colonna cannot do it himself as he is not in Rome; and then according to our rules, to elect a new prince’).


OG, XV, 292–293.


See, for instance, Gabrieli G., “Come e quando precisamente ebbe fine la prima Accademia lincea” (1942), in idem, Contributi 617–632: 622.


Ibid. 621.


BANLC, Archivio Linceo-Accad. 4, fols. 171v–176v; Nicolò A. (ed.), Lynceographum: quo norma studiosae vitae Lynceorum philosophorum exponitur (Rome: 2001) 151ff. On the developments of the academic constitutions, see Guardo M. – Orioli R. (eds.), Cronache e statuti della prima Accademia dei Lincei. Gesta Lynceorum, “Ristretto” delle Costituzioni, Praescriptiones Lynceae Academiae (Rome: 2014).


Odescalchi B., Memorie istorico critiche dell’Accademia de’ Lincei e del principe Federico Cesi secondo duca d’Acquasparta fondatore e principe della medesima (Rome: 1806) 236–237.


On relations between intellectuals and power in Rome in this period, see Merolla R., “Lo Stato della Chiesa”, in Letteratura italiana: storia e geografia, L’età moderna, vol. 2 (Turin: 1988) 1019–1109; Rosa M., “La chiesa e gli stati regionali nell’età dell’ assolutismo”, in Letteratura italiana. I. Il letterato e le istituzioni (Turin: 1982); Boutier J. – Marin B. – Romano A. (eds.), Naples, Rome, Florence: une histoire comparée des milieux intellectuels italiens, 17.–18. Siècles (Rome: 2005). Proving that the social hierarchies permeated even the dynamics within the academy is the fact that between 1620 and 1624, the person who exercised the function of the prince and president during Cesi’s absence was Virginio Cesarini (Gabrieli, Contributi I 787–817), not on account of his age but rather his noble birth.


Della Valle had only a sister, Silvia. Left an orphan in 1587, he assumed the title and leadership of his paternal estate when he reached legal age after a long tutelage (Rome, Arch. Storico Capitolino, Arch. della Valle del Bufalo, Categoria III, sez. 1, tomo 7, fasc. 1A, c.n.n.).


Venditti G., Archivio Della Valle-Del Bufalo. Inventario (Vatican City: 2009); Gatta B., “Dal casale al libro: i Della Valle”, in Miglio M. (ed.), Scrittura, biblioteche e stampa a Roma nel Quattrocento: Atti del 2° Seminario, 6–8 May 1982 (Vatican City: 1983) 629–652, at 637–638.


Seletti E., La città di Busseto, capitale un tempo dello Stato Pallavicino, vol. 1 (Milan: 1883) 33.


Ibid. n25.


Rome, Arch. Storico Capitolino, Arch. della Valle del Bufalo, Categoria III, sez. 1, tomo 7, fasc. 1C, c.n.n. [sic!].


Poggiali C., Memorie storiche della citta di Piacenza (Piacenza: 1931) 238–239.


Rome, ARSI, Instit. 135, fols. 163–164: Johannes de Lugo, Consultazione morale sul luogo di entrare in religione.


OG, XIV, 292–293: ‘Circa […] le cose dell’Accademia, non prima della settimana passata ho potuto parlarne con l’ Sig.r Card.le Barberino, il quale è di senso che si faccia il novello principe, ma però vorrebbe uno nato Principe; e perchè in Roma non ci è soggetto a proposito, mi ordinò che ne scrivessi costì et a Napoli, acciò vedano le SS.rie loro se vi è tal soggetto e lo riferiscano. Qui v’era il Sig.r Marchese Pallavicino, ma s’è già messo in prelatura, e il principe vorrebbe esser secolare; onde potrà pensarci ancora V.S. e dire il suo assenso’.


Favino, “‘Quel petardo’” passim.


Andrea Conti was the governor of Camerino (1632), Fermo (1634), and Campagna (1638) (Weber, Legati e governatori 592).


There he became the local governor. Favino, “Pallavicino” 513.


Virginio Malvezzi to Fabio Chigi, Rome, 19 June 1632, in Virgilio Malvezzi, Lettere a Fabio Chigi, ed. C. Crisafulli (Fasano: Schena 1991) 117. Likewise Pallavicino, after stating his satisfaction with the nomination in conventional phrases, wrote to Chigi on June 4 in clear language: ‘Vorrei poter in un’altra materia scrivere abbondantemente a V.S., ma con legami invisibili mi si lega la mano’ (‘I would like to be able to write freely to your most Illustrious Lordship, but my hand is bound by invisible bonds’) (BAV, Chigiano A.III.53, fol. 274v).


Ciaconius – Oldoinus, Vitae et res gestae 739: ‘Id de se ipso candide confitentem’, one reads in Chacon’s Vitae, ‘Sfortiam iam natu grandem audivimus, affirmantemque, se ubi primum ad robustiorem aetatem pervenit, explosis Novatorum opinionibus, cum Aristotile in gratiam redijsse […] Verum cuius doctrinam aliena facilitate secutus fuerat, coactus postea est constantia sua etiam sequi fortunam’.

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Sforza Pallavicino

A Jesuit Life in Baroque Rome