TOMASO GARZONI (1549-1589)

He was born in Bagnacavallo in 1549 and died in 1589. He was a preaching friar and a writer.

Garzoni was born in Bagnacavallo in 1549, and he is supposed to come from a wealthy family, since Ottaviano (this was Garzoni’s birth name) studied law in Ferrara, and then logic in Siena.

In 1566, with the name of Tomaso, he became part of the religious order “Canonici Regolari della Congregazione Lateranense” in Ravenna’s “Santa Maria in Porto” monastery. Here he spent the rest of his life, except for some short periods spent outside while travelling through Italy as a preaching friar; this activity led him to meet various cultural and social milieus.

He died in June 1589 at the early age of forty.

Garzoni started to write quite late, but with such a literary conscience that led him to produce a great amount of works in quite a short time. He wrote various encyclopedic literary works, amongst which the most important is considered to be the “La piazza universale di tutte le professioni del mondo” (1585). Other literary works written by Garzoni and published while he was still alive are: “Il teatro dei vari e diversi cervelli mondani” (1583); “L’ospitale de’ pazzi incurabili” (1586); “Le vite delle donne illustri della Scrittura Sacra” (1586) and “Sinagoga degli ignoranti” ( 1589). The following two works were published after his death: “L’huomo astratto” (1601) and “Il serraglio di tutti gli stupori del mondo” (1613).

Garzoni is buried in Bagnacavallo, in the church of San Francesco.

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