Girolamo Bardi (humanities scholar)

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Girolamo Arcangelo Antonio Bardi (born August 25, 1777 in Vernio , † February 28, 1829 in Florence ) was an Italian scientist and humanities scientist, plus a teacher.

life and work

Girolamo Bardi was born into one of the wealthiest families in the Grand Duchy of Tuscany and was baptized Girolamo Arcangelo Antonio . He was the son of Count (Conte) Cosimo Gualterotto and his wife Eleonora Dainelli. Its first preceptor was Father Carlo Alessi, who later became his secretary, then Father Giovanni Babbini, lecturer in philosophy, classical languages ​​and mathematics at the Seminario maggiore arcivescovile di Firenze . To round off his education he stayed as a page at Leopold II's court .

Bardi was interested in the experiments that were carried out in Cosimo Ridolfi's laboratory . On August 17, 1797, he submitted a dissertation at the Accademia dei Georgofili , which dealt with the crystallization of fossils . In a further dissertation, he dealt with the theory of heat and light in the following year . Increasingly he dealt with questions of geology and mineralogy , where he made numerous finds available to the museum. He also started collecting books.

On March 6, 1799 he became Socio der Accademia dei Georgofili , where he made contacts with other scholars from Tuscany, including Giovanni Fabbroni , Neri Maria Corsini and Leonardo Frullani , but also with the mathematician and advocate of the unity of Italy Pietro Ferroni and the doctor Francesco Chiarenti .

1801 read his Memoria sul danno pubblico e privato degli affitti a breve in Toscana , 1802 a second memorandum Sulla più vantaggiosa forma da darsi alla potatura degli ulivi . These activities were characteristic of his attitude to work in the Museo di fisica e storia naturale , because he tried to combine theory and practice more closely. In this way he also came into contact with courtiers, such as the Paglicci sisters, who had access to Queen Maria Luisa of Etruria . In 1802 he was accredited at the Segreteria del Regio Diritto , in 1806 the Queen accepted his supplik and he became sotto director of the Museo di fisica e storia naturale , the most important scientific institute in the Grand Duchy. But the relationship with its director Giovanni Fabbroni was difficult. Bardi complained of hostility from his superior. The queen replaced the director with Bardi. He remained in this position until his death.

In addition to the departments for botany and anatomy created by Fabbroni, there were now those for chemistry, theoretical and applied physics, astronomy and natural history. The library was opened to the public and a liceo was established which was established on 1807/08. This should be linked to the university and work towards it. Bardi was named Director General of Public Education on March 14th. But with the end of the Bourbon rule in Tuscany, Bardi had to give up his plan for a comprehensive Istituto di Etruria .

When Napoleon took possession of Tuscany in March 1809, Bardi continued to stay with the court. He dedicated the first edition of the Annali to the new Queen Elisa Bonaparte . The museum was also able to continue its acquisition policy. Bardi first made contact with Napoleon in 1805 when he was sent to Milan as ambassador . In 1809 Napoleon appointed him ambassador to Paris. He was appointed chamberlain to the Grand Duchess and made baron of the Empire. On January 15, 1810, he received the title of Cavalier of the Legion of Honor.

As Grand Duke Ferdinand III. returned to the throne, the Liceo was closed and Bardi had to concentrate exclusively on his mineral collection, which brought his educational activities to a standstill. But in 1818 he founded the Florentine Scuola di mutuo insegnamento , which soon moved from Via dei Malcontenti to Via Ghibellina and was therefore close to the former convent of San Iacopo, where students were taught free of charge. Bardi himself paid the students' living expenses. He attached importance to popular education in the artistic field. On the basis of his testamentary dispositions, the Pio Istituto de 'Bardi was able to open its doors in 1865 .

Between 1819 and 1826 Bardi published on his piano, ed oggetto di una Società per l'istruzione, e riforma dei delinquenti and published his Memoria sulla maniera di trattare i carcerati per renderli utili alla società ea se stessi ('Memorandum on the way how the prisoners should be treated in order to make them useful to society and to themselves'). From 1821 to 1823 he was the institution's librarian, followed by Guglielmo Libri Carucci dalla Sommaja in office.

It was not until 1825 that his activities at the Liceo were modestly resumed, but Leopold II turned down further ideas.

Bardi died in 1829 of tuberculosis , which he had suffered from for years. With him the last member of the Bardi family died.

His private library was spread over several locations, including in Borgo Santa Croce 71, not far from Palazzo Bardi , then in the Villa Antinori delle Rose near Galluzzo and in the Villa di San Vivaldo not far from Montaione . In 1892 the collection was incorporated into the library of the Facoltà di Lettere e Filosofia of the University of Florence . The 13,600 printed volumes from the 16th century onwards, while the book collection of the Pio Istituto was donated to the Florence State Archives in the same year. These holdings include numerous private documents from the Bardi family, a document fund and a section of manuscripts and printed works. Girolamo Bardi's correspondence and his administrative legacies are also in the State Archives.

Publications (selection)

  • Prospetto sugli avanzamenti delle scienze fisiche in Toscana , in: Annali del Museo imperiale di fisica e storia naturale di Firenze 1 (1808) 1-26.
  • Osservazioni mineralogiche sopra alcuni luoghi adiacenti la pianura di Prato , in: Annali del Museo imperiale di fisica e storia naturale di Firenze 2 (1810) 163–192. ( Digitized version )
  • Sulla più vantaggiosa forma da darsi nella potatura agli ulivi , in: Atti della Imperiale Società economica di Firenze ossia de 'Georgofili 6 (1810) 163–173.
  • Memorie sulla scuola di mutuo insegnamento fondata in Firenze il 3 dicembre 1818 aperta gratis il 3 febbraio 1819 dal conte Girolamo De Bardi , Florence 1819.
  • Memoria sulla maniera di trattare i carcerati per renderli utili alla società ea se stessi, letta all'adunanza dell'Accademia de 'Georgofili di Firenze il dì 2 luglio 1820 , Luigi Pezzati, Florence 1821.
  • Sul metodo di insegnamento del signor Hamilton, portato in Italia dal signor Skene. Memoria letta all'Accademia de 'Georgofili dal conte Girolamo de' Bardi nella seduta del 5 febbraio 1826 , in: Antologia 22 (1826) 89-99.


  • Simone Bonechi: Un proprietario toscano tra scienza, rivoluzione e filantropismo. Girolamo de 'Bardi (1777-1829) , in: Nuncius 10.1 (1995) 51-97.
  • Maria Enrica Vadalà: Un affare minore fiorentino del 1827. Girolamo de 'Bardi, Guglielmo Libri e la biblioteca dei Georgofili , in: Atti e memorie dell'Accademia toscana di scienze e lettere La Colombaria 76 (2011) 375-400.
  • Maria Enrica Vadalà: La biblioteca di Girolamo de 'Bardi. Collezionismo librario e educazione popolare a Firenze nel secolo XIX , tesi di dottorato. Università degli studi di Udine, Udine 2012–2013.

Web links


  1. Girolamo Bardi a Margherita Paglicci, Firenze, 20 maggio 1806, in ASF, Bardi I serie, f. 547.
  2. Documenti Bardi nell'Archivio del Reale Museo di fisica e storia naturale, conservati presso la biblioteca del Museo Galileo .
  3. ^ Annali del Museo imperiale di fisica e storia naturale di Firenze (1808–1810).
  4. Memoria sulla maniera di trattare i carcerati per renderli utili alla società ea se stessi, letta all'adunanza Accademia de 'Georgofili di Firenze il dì 2 luglio 1820 , Luigi Pezzati, Florence 1,821th