Marius Nizolius

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Marius Nizolius (Italian: Mario Nizolio; 1498–1576) was an Italian humanist scholar, known as a proponent of Cicero. He considered rhetoric to be the central intellectual discipline, slighting other aspects of the philosophical tradition.[1][2] He is described by Michael R. Allen as the heir to the oratorical vision of Lorenzo Valla, and a better nominalist.[3]


He was born in Brescello. He was professor of philosophy at Parma and Sabbioneta.[4][5]


His major work was the Thesaurus Ciceronianus, first published in 1535 in Brixen but not under this title, and running into many further editions. It was a lexicon of Latin words used in Cicero's works. It was adopted by Renaissance extremists who considered that writing in Latin could only be correct within this restricted vocabulary.[6] His Antibarbarus philosophicus (original title De veris principiis et vera ratione philosophandi contra psudophilosophos, Parma, 1553) was edited by Leibniz in 1670 with an important Preface.[7] It was a reply in a controversy with Marco Antonio Maioragio (1514-1555),[8] and going back to a dispute from the mid-1540s over the Paradoxes of Cicero.[9]

He died Sabbioneta.


  1. ^ Brian Vickers, In Defence of Rhetoric (1988), p. 181.
  2. ^ Charles B. Schmitt, Quentin Skinner (editors), Cambridge History of Renaissance Philosophy, p. 734.
  3. ^ In Richard Popkin (editor), The Pimlico History of Western Philosophy (1999), p. 297.
  4. ^ Edgar Zilsel, P. Zilsel, Diederick Raven, Wolfgang Krohn, Robert S. Cohen, The Social Origins of Modern Science (2003), p. 26.
  5. ^
  6. ^ Brian Vickers, English Renaissance Literary Criticism (1999), p. 27.
  7. ^ Commented German translation Klaus Thieme, Marius Nizolius aus Bersello: Vier Bücher über die wahren Prinzipien (1980); cfr. also Christia Mercer, Leibniz's Metaphysics: Its Origins and Development (2001), p. 99.
  8. ^ Cambridge History of Renaissance Philosophy, p. 828.
  9. ^ Lawrence D. Green, John Rainold's Oxford Lectures on Aristotle's Rhetoric (1986), p. 414.

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