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Boissard, Jean Jacques

BOISSARD, JEAN JACQUES (1528-1602), French antiquary and Latin poet, was born at Besançon. He studied at Louvain; but, disgusted by the severity of his master, he secretly left that seminary, and after traversing a great part of Germany reached Italy, where he remained several years and was often reduced to great straits. His residence in Italy developed in his mind a taste for antiquities, and he soon formed a collection of the most curious monuments from Rome and its vicinity. He then visited the islands of the Archipelago, with the intention of travelling through Greece, but a severe illness obliged him to return to Rome. Here he resumed his favourite pursuits with great ardour, and having completed his collection, returned to his native country; but not being permitted to profess publicly the Protestant religion, which he had embraced some time before, he withdrew to Metz, where he died on the 30th of October 1602. His most important works are: Poemata (1574); Emblemata (1584); Icones Virorum Illustrium (1597); Vitae et Icones Sultanorum Turcicorum, etc. (1597); Theatrum Vitae Humanae (1596); Romanae Urbis Topographia (1597-1602), now very rare; De Divinatione et Magicis Praestigiis (1605); Habitus Variarum Orbis Gentium (1581), ornamented with seventy illuminated figures.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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