Singleton Distinguished Lecture Series 2022

The Singleton Center will present its seventh (and thrice-covid-delayed) Distinguished Lecture Series on September 19, 21, and 22. Our Distinguished Lecturer is Professor Simon Ditchfield (York University) who will speak on Discovering How to Describe the World: Writings of Daniello Bartoli SJ (1608-85).

This series will use the writings of the Jesuit polymath, Daniello Bartoli (1608-85) to explore and understand how the Old World came not to discover the World, but rather to discover how to describe the world. Author of an unfinished history of the Jesuits and their missionary activities in Asia and Europe, Bartoli was also hagiographer of several leading protagonists of the Society’s first century: the controversialist and adversary of Galileo, Roberto Bellarmino and the astronomer (and sometime Kepler correspondent) Niccolò Zucchi as well as the founder saints Francis Xavier and Ignatius Loyola. Much of Bartoli’s later years were devoted to natural philosophy, when experimented on, inter alia, acoustics and the properties of ice. He also produced a dictionary of synonyms and treatises on Italian usage which commanded the admiration of no lesser judge than the Romantic poet, Giacomo Leopardi (1798-1837), who considered the Jesuit to be: ‘the Dante of Italian prose.’ It is thus perhaps unsurprising how well-equipped Bartoli was to put the globe on paper.

You are all warmly invited to the three lectures and to the dinner reception that follows the Monday evening lecture.