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THATEVER reason there might have been in furmer days distinguished persons, it can hardly be said of our times, that an difference prevails in regard to departed merit. Instead of lamenting, with the great lord Bacon, that “ The writing of Lives is not frequent,' we could, perhaps, with more propriety, wish that the practice were either limited or better directed.
The compiler of a BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY, at least, cannot well avoid this feeling; doomed, as he necessarily is, to drudge, and often with fruitless weariness, in search of information respecting men who were truly famous in their generation ; while his attention is continually diverted or perplexed with barren accounts and pompous eulogies of persons of ephemeral reputation.
Of late years, thanks to the officious zeal of friendship, and the active industry of literary undertakers, Biographical Memoirs have become as multitudinous, prolix, and veracious as epitaphs in a country church-yard. To form a proper selection from such an increasing mass of intelligence, for an alphabetical register, already abundantly copious, is by no means an easy task, particularly when so many places are required for characters of real eminence in literature, science, religion, and politics. The number of names of this description, that have been enrolled with the dead, since the last edition of this Dictionary, is so great that, without some alteration in the construction and arrangement of the collection, it would have been impossible to have compressed the old matter, with the unavoidable additions, into a single volume. To preserve the work, therefore, in the same portable form, and at the same time render it a standard of authority as a book of reference, all the articles exclusively belonging to General History, whether ancient or modern, civil or ecclesiastical, have been expunged. The reigns of sovereigns, and the revolutions of empires, demand a minuteness of detail incompatible with the contracted limits of a few pages. Besides this, the objects of historical inquiry are far more numerous and diversified than those which come under the proper denomination of Biography, since they not only include the actions and characters of individuals who have shone conspicuously in various ages of the world, but extend also to the particular events, natural as well as moral, that constitute the girat body of Chronology.
To satisfy curiosity, therefore, on every fact of importance, recorded in the annals of time, would require a volume of, at least, an equal magnitude with the present.
Such a Dictionary, purely Historical and Chronological, the author has long had in contemplation ; and he hopes, if health permits, speedily to carry the plan into execution, so as to render the work a fit companion, though perfectiy independent in itself, of this compendium of Biography; which, through the public patronage, has now reached a fourth edition.
In strict justice to himself, however, the compiler should here observe, that the present is a new work, rather than a new edition ; for, owing to causes over which he had no controul, the preceding impression was so incorrectly printed, that he found himself under the absolute necessity, not only of revising, but actually of re-writing the whole; carefully examining every authority, and taking the utmost care that no errors, in facts, names, or dates, should escape the press. * With the same sedulous attention, to render the Dictionary both accurate and complete, a supplement has been subjoined, consisting of amended and additional articles, thus bringing the biographical series up to the day of publication. As far, therefore, as fidelity and industry can ensure correctness, the author may feel satisfied in having attained it ; but after all, considering the imperfection of human nature, and the frequent conflict in accounts relating to the same object, he must adopt the language of the great lexicographer, — “ If sometimes the desire of accuracy has urged me to superfluities, and sometimes the fear of prolixity betrayed me to omissions ; I do not despair of approbation from those who, knowing the uncertainty of conjecture the scantiness of knowlege, the fallibility of memory, and the unsteadiness of attention, can compare the causes of error with the means of avoiding it, and the extent of art with the capacity of man."
London, April 10. 1821.
The following abbreviations alone require explanation, as the other references are sufficiently clear, and may be ascertained by consulting the rresponding
names in the Dictionary: -
ditto, by Kippis, 5 vols. folio, 1778, &c.
Biographie Universelle, ancienne et moderne, 20 vols. 8vo., Paris,
32 vols. 8vo., 1812.
others, 10 vols. folio, London, 1794.
(Peter Vander), a bookseller of Death of Christian IV. He died in 1664. Leyden, where he carried on an extensive His brother, Nicholas Aagard, was likewise business from 1682 to his death, in 1730. a professor at Sora, where he died at the age He applied chiefly to the publication of of 45, in 1657. His principal works are — geographical works, a catalogue of which 1. A Treatise on Subterraneous Fires. 2. appeared at Amsterdam in 1729. The prin- Dissertation on Tacitus. 3. Observations ajal of his compilations are - 1. A Collec- on Ammianus Marcellinus. 4. A Dissertacon of Travels in Europe, 30 vols. 12mo. tion on the style of the New Testament, 4to. 1706. 2. A Collection of Voyages in the 1655. All these pieces are in Latin. — Mom two Indies, 8 vols. fol. 1706; and again in reri. 99 vols. 8vo. 1707-10. 3. A Collection of AAGESEN (Suend), better known by the Torages in the East, by the Portuguese and Latin name of Sueno, a Danish historian, other nations, 4 vols. fol. All these works flourished about the year 1186. He appears ae in Dutch. 4. An Atlas of two hundred to have been secretary to the Archbishop Maps, fol. 5. A Gallery of the World, Absalon, who directed him to compile the containing maps and topographical plates, 66 history of Denmark, under the title of vols. folio, but commonly bound in 35. He " Compendiosa Historia Regum Daniæ." was also the publisher of Grævius' Thesau. This work is held in great estimation on acrus, or an account of modern Italian writers; count of its accuracy. Sueno was also the and a work on the antiquities of Sicily. author of another book, entitled “ Historia Nour. Dict. Hisi.
Legum Castrensium Regis
Canuti Magni, or AA (Christian Charles Henry Vander), the Laws of Canute.” Both works have a Lutheran divine, was born at Zwolle been frequently reprinted. — Biog. Univerin Overyssel in 1718, and died in 1795, at selle, 1811. Haerlem, where he had been pastor fifty-one AARON (St.), a British martyr, who suffer. years. He had a principal share in found- ed with Julius during the persecution under ing the Academy of Sciences at Haerlem; the emperor Dioclesian, in 303. There are and in 1778, formed another society at the no particulars recorded of these saints, whose same place, for the study of Economics. festival is placed, in the Roman calendar, on He was secretary to both institutions, and the 1st of July. — Biog. Brit. published some papers in their transactions ; Aaron, a Syrian priest and physician in also sermons, which are much esteemed.
the seventh century. He resided at AlexToid.
andria, where he exercised his two professions AAGARD (Christian), a Danish poet, with reputation, and wrote a treatise on the was born at Wibourg in 1616. He became small-pox and measles ; together with some successively professor of poetry at Sora, and other medical pieces under the general title of theology at Rissen in Jutland. His of Pandects. Moreri. works are -- 1. De Homagio Fred. III. AARON HARISCHON, commonly called 1650, fol 2. Threni Hyperborei, or the the Caraite, was a Jewishi rabbi and physician at Constantinople in the thirteenth cen- Orange and a daughter of Charles I. Pretury. He is known chiefly by a Commen- vious to this last mission he had succeeded in tary on the Pentateuch, printed at Jena, in removing the prejudices which were confolio, 1710; and a Hebrew Graminar, print- ceived against him by the court of France, ed at Constantinople in 1581. There have whi`her, in 1624, he went as ambassadorbeen several Hebrew writers of the saine extraordinary. Cardinal Richelieu held him name; as 1, Aaron Schascon, a learned rab in high estimation, saying that there were but bi and chief of the synagogue of Thessalo- three great politicians in his time, who were nica, who wrote a book called the Law Oxenstiern of Sweden, Viscardi of Montof Truth, printed at Venice in 1631, folio. serrat, and Francis Aarsens. He died in 2. Aaron Hacharoen, the author of a treatise 1641. A volume of his Negotiations has on Jewish customs. Ile was a native of Ni- been printed; besides which, “ A Journey comedia, and flourished in the fourteenth cen- into Spain,” bas been ascribed to him, which tury. 3. Aaron Ben dsser, another rab. was written by his grandson. — Bayle. bi of the fifth century, was the author of a ARANO, see APANO. Hebrew Granmar, printed at Venice in ABaris, a personage of antiquity, con1515. To him some have ascribed the in- cerning whom there is more of table than vention of the Hebrew points and accents; truth. He is said to have been sent by the but with little appearance of probability. Scythians on an embassy to the Athenians, 4. Aaron Levita, of Barcelona, was the author in the time of a general plague; and that of a rabbinical commentary on the precepts of while in Greece he held a disputation with Moses, printed at Venice in 1528. He died Pythagoras, in the presence of Phalaris; in 1292. 5. Aaron Ben Chaim, an African which circumstances are contradicted by Jew of Morocco, acquired some distinction chronological facts. According to the old among his brethren by treatises on the Ile writers who dealt in the marvellous, Abaris brew Scriptures, which were printed together was a philosopher, divinely inspired by Apol. At Venice, in 1909. – Joriri.
lo, who gave him a golden arrow, which enAaron (Isaac), a learned Greek, who abled him to perform miraculous cures, and was interpreter to the emperor Manuel to transport himself from place to place with Comnenus ; but having grossly misrepresent- the utmost celerity. These idle stories in ed his master's meaning in order to serve the time became a bulky history, of which the interests of the Latin princes, he fell into Pagans availed themselves to attack the credisgrace, and lost his eyes and estate. When dit of the gospel. - Bayle, Brucker, Hist. Andronicus usurped the imperial throne, Phil. Isaac was taken into favour; on which occa- ABAs (Shah). The eighth king of Persion he avenged himself with savage cruelty sia, of that name, was the grandson of the upon his enemies, whom he deprived of their great Shah Abas, the friend of the English, sight and tongues. Providence, however, who assisted him in the capture of Ormus, did not suffer his treachery and barba- and in consequence were favoured beyond rity to go unpunished; for on the accession other traders to his dominions. The grandof Isaac Angelus to the throne, in 1203, that son, who died at the early age of 37, in 1666, emperor caused his tongue to be torn out, merits record for his tolerant spirit, which he under which torture he died. Ibid.
expressed by saying, when desired to enforce Aarox / Pietro), a Florentine writer upon Islamism by compulsion, that “the Almusic. He was one of the composers be- mighty alone is Lord of men's minds; and longing to the chapel of Leo X., at whose that, for his own part, instead of meddling death he lost his situation. His works are with private opinions, he felt it his duty to numerous; and the best is entitled Toscanello minister justice iinpartially." — Mod. Uni. della Musica, printed at Venice in 1523 Hist. and in 1539. – Burney.
ABASSA, sister to Haroun al Raschid, who AARSENS (Francis), Lord of Someldyck gave her in marriage to his vizier Giafar, on and Spyck, and one of the ablest diploinatists this strange condition,—that the union should of his age, was the son of Cornelius Aarsens, not be consummated. Love, however, pregreffier or secretary of state to the United vailed over the royal mandate; and a son Provinces. The son was born at the Hague was born, whom the parents conveyed sein 1572, and when young was placed under cretly from Bagdad to the country; yet not the care of Duplessis Mornay; after which he with such caution as to elude the vigilance of was employed by Barneveldt, as agent at the caliph, who not only disgraced Giafar, the court of France, where he became ambas. but afterwards put him to death, and turned sador, and in such favour, that Louis XIII. the princess out of the palace, with orders honoured him with the title of baron. that no one should give her relief. In this But after residing there 15 years, he gave wretched state she went about clad in a such offence to the French inonarch, that he sheep's skin, and reciting her own story in was recalled and employed in an embassy plaintive verse to excite compassion. to Venice and other courts. In 1620 he D'Herbelot. came to England, and again in 1641, to ne- ARATE (Andrea), a painter of Naples, piciate a marriage between the prince of who excelled in the representation of fruit