Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Politian, otherwise Angelo Poliziano (1454-94), an Italian scholar and poet, was born in Tuscany, his real name being Ambrogini. He was wonderfully gifted as a boy, and some of his first writings are among his best. He was patronised by Lorenzo de' Medici, and was enabled to study under the greatest scholars. Lorenzo made him tutor of his son, and keeper of his manuscripts and books, allowing him to live with him. Even after he had had a serious dispute with the household, he was still sheltered by Lorenzo. At twenty-nine years of age he was a professor of Greek and Latin in Florence, and his reputation was so great that pupils and admirers came from all parts of Europe to attend his discourses. He was, however, of such an irritable and vain temper that he was always quarrelling with other scholars, Michael Angelo being of those with whom he was at enmity. Politian published many learned works, but his poems are the best known of his writings. He translated various Greek writers into Latin, among these versions being one of the Iliad, which has been lost. His Orfeo (acted in 1483) was the first of Italian operas. Towards the close of his life he became a priest.