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Home > Mezzofanti > Eminent linguists > Italian Linguists > Giorgi

The Augustinian order in Italy, also, produced a linguist, not inferior in solidity, and certainly superior in range of attainments, to any of those hitherto enumerated—Antonio Agostino Giorgi. He was born at San Mauro, near Rimini, in 1711, and entered the Augustinian order at Bologna • but Benedict XIV., who, during his occupancy of the see of Bologna, had become acquainted with his merit, invited him to Rome after his elevation to the Papacy, and appointed him to a professorship in the Sapienza. Father Giorgi occupied this post with much distinction for twenty-two years, till his death, in 1797. His acquirements as a linguist were more various than those of any of the scholars hitherto named. Besides modern languages, he knew not only Greek, Hebrew, Chaldee, Samaritan, and Syriac, but also Coptic and (what was at that period a much more fare accomplishment) Tibetan. On the last named language he compiled an elementary work for the use of missionaries, which, although it is not free from inaccuracies, deserves, nevertheless, the highest praise as a first essay in that till then untried language.

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