Francesco Colonna

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Francesco Colonna (1433/1434 – 1527) was an Italian Dominican priest and monk who was credited with the authorship of the Hypnerotomachia Poliphili by an acrostic formed by initial letters of the text.

Hypnerotomachia Poliphili illustration (1499).

He lived in Venice, and preached at St. Mark's Cathedral. Besides Hypnerotomachia Poliphili, he definitely wrote a Latin epic poem, Delfili Somnium (the "Dream of Delfilo"), which went unpublished in his lifetime and was not published until 1959. [1] Colonna spent part of his life in the monastery of San Giovanni e Paolo in Venice, but the monastery was apparently not of the strictest observance and Colonna was granted leave to live outside its walls. In Ian Caldwell's and Dustin Thomason's novel, The Rule of Four, the Roman noble of the same name, Francesco Colonna, is featured as the true author of the Hypnerotomachia Poliphili.[2]


  1. ^ Francesco Colonna: vol. I Biographia Maria Teresa Casella, vol. II Opere, Giovanni Pozzi (Padua), 1959.
  2. ^ A comparable conclusion was reached in G. Goebel, "Le songe de Francesco Colonna, prince prenestin", Fifteenth Century Studies, Stuttgart, 1983.

External links[edit]

Media related to Francesco Colonna at Wikimedia Commons