* Russian Embassy
|LIFE OF CARDINAL MEZZOFANTI|
Home > Mezzofanti > Biography > 1807 to 1814 > Russian Embassy
During the year 1807, an opportunity occurred for testing practically how far the reputation which he had acquired corresponded with his real attainments. On the outbreak of hostilities between the Porte and Russia in that year, the Russian ambassador, Italinski, withdrew (not without some risk and difficulty) Note 1 from Constantinople, and, being conveyed on board the British ship of war, Canopus, to Malta, afterwards made his way to Ancona. While the ambassador remained at Ancona, the chancellor of the embassy, Angelo Timoni, who was of Bolognese origin, came to visit his native city; accompanied by Matteo Pisani, the official interpreter, who was one of the best linguists of his time, and especially a perfect master of all the modern languages of the East. As they resided, during their stay at Bologna, in the house of his friend, Dr. Santagata, their visit was a severe ordeal for Mezzofanti, who was constantly in their society; but he withstood it triumphantly; and Santagata records their wonder and delight to find that, without ever having visited theEast, or mixed in Oriental society, the Bolognese professor had nevertheless attained a "mastery over the many and various languages, especially Oriental ones, in which they tried him, and that the marvellous and all but inconceivable accounts which they had received regarding him, proved to be not only credible but actually true."Note 2
|Copyright 2009 - All rights reserved|
No part of this website may be copied by any means without my written authorization.
Printed from http://how-to-learn-any-language.com/e/mezzofanti/biography/4.2-russian.html