Repertorium Pomponianum

Paolo Pompilio

Pietro Paolo Pompilio (Petrus Paulus Pompilius), 1454-1491.
Roman humanist, teacher at the Studium Urbis, member of Leto's Second Academy, private tutor to Cesare Borgia, strong ties to the Spanish circles in Rome; author of works on grammar, language, history, poetry, commentaries on Catullus, Sallust, Suetonius, and Varro.

to cite this entry

Relations with Pomponio Leto—Testimonia

Pompilio repeatedly alludes to Pomponio Leto and the Second Roman Academy in his works. The allusions primarily consist in explicit mentions of Leto or other members of the Academy, the use of the colophon Ex sodalitate Sancti Victoris et sociorum in Quirinale (or Viminale) in Pompilio's printed works, or in the use of a so-called Pomponian hand in the manuscripts.


a) Pompilio declares himself an eternal admirer of Leto in the preface to his work Framea (ed. Rome 1482: BAV, Ottob. lat 1982 ff. 13r-23v; cf. Bracke 1993 p. 14, 33). The work is part of a polemic between Pompilio and his academic rival, Sulpizio Verulano, and it is dedicated to Leto's close friend, Giuliano Cecio. In the preface, addressed to Cecio, Pompilio proposes Leto as judge in the controversy and refers (f.13v-14v) to some orations in which he had declared his fervent admiration for Leto (cf. Bracke 1992a p. 156ff, esp. note 36; the following quotation, which differs slightly from Bracke's text, has been collated with the Ottob., fol. 13v):


Ego in causa nostra iudicem, ut par est, constituo Pomponium Laetum, quem nostrum uterque audiuit, et semper ego illius disciplinam ueneratus osculabor. Nosti tu, qui bis prioribus annis orantem dignatione tua et tuo optimo instituto me audivisti; nosti profecto quibus illum verbis prosecutus sum, et quia ille peruersitate ingenii [...] me quod praeceptorem meum carpserim insimulat, hic verba ipsa mea apponere libuit. Tu ea agnosce. In oratione priore haec: "Secutus Heschinis exemplum totum me Pomponio dedidi" (cp. Sen. benef. 1.8.1-2)


(I'll set up Pomponio Leto as judge in our case, as is fitting. We both studied with him, and I shall always venerate his teaching. You know that, you who twice in the preceding years have listened to my orations with your customary consideration and courtesy. Indeed, you know the words with which I have honoured him, and since this person [Sulpizio] with a distorted mind accuses me of having critizised my teacher, I would like to quote my own words here. Hear them. In the former oration I spoke these words: "Following Aeschines' example I have devoted myself entirely to Pomponio")


b) Pompilio wrote a dialogue on love dedicated to Leto (1487)
The preface is entitled: "Prefatio et epistola in dialogum Pauli Pompilii de vero et probabili amore ad Pomponium Letum. Paulus Pompilius Pomponio Leto salutem pl. D." (Vat. lat. 2222, f. 46r). In the dialogue, Pompilio makes Platina (himself the author of a dialogue on love) play a significant role.


c) Pompilio composed a vita Senecae which begins with a reference to a conversation he once had with Leto about Seneca: "Cum aliquando de Senecae philosophi uita cum Pomponio Laeto sermo fuisset ..." (sig. a2r; Vat. lat. 2222, f. 1r)


d) Pompilio's handwriting has "Pomponian" features including the Pomponian uncial-g, majuscule-t (so-called "tall tau" written like the number 7), majuscule letters in minuscule words, a very distinctive ampersand, etc.


Pompilio's commentary on Sallust, Biblioteca Angelica 1351, fol.2r (reproduced by permission)


e) Pompilio attended a course on Varro by Leto in 1484. We have testimony of this in the commentary on Varro that Pompilio took down during the lectures (Vat. lat. 3415) entitled: Pomponii viri clarissimi in Varronem dictata 1484 (f. 2r) Pompilio has added - sometimes quite creatively - marginal illustrations in the commentary [see here].


a) An anonymous vita of Pompilio
An anonymous vita in manuscript (Vat. lat. 2222, f. 93r-v) describes Pompilio thus (cf. Mercati 1924-25; Chiabò 1986; Bracke 1993 p.6) (the text differs slightly from previous editions; punctuation and capitals have been modernized):
Paulus Pompilius uir fuit plurimae lectionis et inter grammaticos Romae habitus est primus, comis praeterea et modestae uitae, preterquam quod de studiis litterarum etiam inter morbos remisit nihil; uitiorum uel uini abstemius, statura procera, macer et coloris subplumbei.
Composuit quae sequuntur: Syllabarum et de accentibus opus exactissimum, De orthographia librum unum, Notationum libros quinque, Dialogum de amore ad Pomponium, Historiam Balearicam, Epigrammatum etiam Graecorum libros quatuor, Panegyricorum, syluarum et heroicorum libros duos, inter quos praestare videtur Triunphus [!] Granatensis, Odysseam carmine elego, item elegias plures et orationes publice habitas; praeterea Vitam Senecae, item Frameam et inuectiones in Sulpitium sub dialogo, commentaria insuper ad uitas C. Iulii, Octavii et Tyberii Caesarum. Traduxit Andronicum de passionibus animi, exorsusque est paulo ante mortem uastum opus omnium uocabulorum per naturas rerum addens noua uocabula perpolite conficta, quae a uulgaribus a septingentis annis hactenus per Italiam, Galliam et Hispanias et alias nationes Latini nominis suborta sunt.
Mortuus est pleuresi septimo anno pontificatus Innocentii octaui et sepultus est in phano sacri Blasii ad Tyberim in regione pontis Hadriani haud longe ab aedibus suis ubi natus fuerat, aetate XXX et VII annorum, et paulo mox Plotia mater dolore animi extinta [!] eodem tumulo conditur.
(Paulus Pompilius was a man of great learning and considered the first among the grammarians of Rome. Moreover, he was affable and lived modestly, except that he never slackened in his studies, even when he was ill. He abstained from vices and wine, was tall and lean of stature and with a greyish complexion.
He composed the following works: a comprehensive work on syllables and accents, one book on orthography, five books of observations, a dialogue on love dedicated to Pomponio, a history of the Baleares, four books of epigrams, including some in Greek, two books of panegyric and heroic verse and sylvae among which his Triumph over Granada seems best, an Odyssey in elegiac verse, several elegies and orations delivered publicly, moreover a Life of Seneca, the Framea and attacks on Sulpizio composed as a dialogue, as well as commentaries on the Lives of the Emperors C. Iulius (Caesar), Octavius (Augustus) and Tiberius [sc. by Suetonius]. He translated Andronicus' On the Passions of the Soul and began, shortly before he died, a huge dictionary organized according to subject adding new and elegantly composed words which had in the last 700 years arisen in the vernaculars of Italy, France, Spain and other areas belonging under the rule of Latin.
He died from pleurisy in the seventh year of the papacy of Innocent VIII [September 1490 – September 1491] at the age of thirty seven and was buried in the church of San Biagio al Tevere in the district of Hadrian's bridge [Ponte Sant'Angelo, rione Ponte] not far from the house where he had been born. Soon afterwards, his mother Plotia died from sorrow and was buried in the same tomb.
There is no reason to doubt the biographical information on Pompilio in the vita. His death must have been in 1491 since in August that year Girolamo Pau published a work entitled Barcinona in Barcelona, addressing it to Pompilio who had asked for a chorographic and historical description of Barcelona. Consequently, he must have been alive at that time or died only recently (ISTC ip00160500; Mercati 1924-25; Bracke 1993, 7, digital repr. here). The bibliographical list in the vita is on one hand incomplete, leaving out several of Pompilio's works, on the other hand instructive by mentioning works that are now lost. See the bibliography at the end of this article for a full list of Pompilio's works.
b) Pompilio's life
The earliest surviving mention of Pompilio is probably in two letters from 1472 written in France by Domizio Calderini to his friend Oliviero Palladio who was in Rome. Here Calderini alludes, passionately, to a certain Paulus (I quote Perosa 1973 pp. 6-7, cf. pp. 16ss), translation by J. Ramminger and P. Osmond (see the entry of J. Ramminger on Calderini here and that of Patricia Osmond on Stati here):
Letter I
[...] Eorum, quae hic canemus, Paulus initium et auspicium felicissimum dabit. Scribas velim interea valeatne an Alexis suspiret amores, cui carior est quam vellem. Monebis ut nostri vivat memor, atque ita Alexi praeceptore utatur, ut se a nobis amari intelligat.
([...] Paulus will make a most auspicious beginning to the things of which we shall sing here. In the meantime I would like you to write whether he is well or sighs for the affections of Alexis, to whom he is more dear than I would wish. Remind him to keep us in his thoughts and learn from Alessio in such a way that he understands that we love him.)
Letter II
[...] Te oro vehementer Helio, Paulo nostro et amicis omnibus salutem dicas. Ad Pomponium scripsi, nihil respondit; posthac silebo, nisi ipse loqui coeperit.
Vale ex Vernoto Turonum, ad VII Kalendas Septembres. Cherubino Quarqualio meis verbis salutem dices et Pantagato nostro.
([...] I ask you earnestly to greet Helius, our Paulus and all friends. I have written to Pomponio, he has not answered; henceforth I shall be silent, if he does not begin to speak.
Farewell from Vernou near Tours, August 26. Give my greetings to Cherubino Quarquaglio and to our Pantagatus.)
Probably, the Paulus mentioned in these letters can be identified with Paolo Pompilio. The Alexis mentioned in the first letter is probably to be identified as Alessio Stati (see the entry of Patricia Osmond on Stati here). After Calderini's initial affection for the young Pompilio he soon seems to lose his sympathy for him, perhaps because Pompilio took sides with Niccolò Perotti when Calderini criticized the latter's philology. At least, Calderini in his attack on Perotti (entitled Defensio adversus Brotheum, added to his commentary on Juvenal published 1474) alludes derogatively to a certain "Hectorem, Pomilionem suum" presumably an ironic comment contrasting the famous Greek hero with the physically weak Pompilio (Bracke 1992a p. 166, Bracke 1993 p. 7 note 15). From 1475 we have Pompilio's first publication: an epigram celebrating an edition of Aesopus Moralisatus ([Rome: Bartholomaeus Guldinbeck or Wendelinus de Wila, about 1475]. ISTC ia00099500). The epigram could reflect Pompilio's appreciation of Perotti's interest in Aesop (cf. Bracke 1993 p. 13).
Another possible mention of the young Pompilio is found in two letters by Theodore Gaza written in 1473-74 to his friend Alessio Celadini (Bracke 1993 p. 9s; published by Mohler 1942). The letters reveal that Celadini has asked Gaza to take a young Roman named Paolo of good family into his household, but in the letters Gaza refuses due to his unsettled life, his lack of money, and the death of his patron, Bessarion, that will force him to leave the city soon. Instead, Gaza recommends that the young man stay with his parents.
In a letter dating from 1474 (Biblioteca Casanatense H 5455; Vol. Inc. 1493 f3r) Ottavio Cleofilo da Fano lists the most learned humanists in Rome during that year, among whom Pompilio is also found (I quote Bracke 1993, p. 10):
Ex doctis hi potissimum sunt a me cogniti Volscus, Sulpitius, Pompilius, Brentius, Teodorus, Argiropylos, Lucilius, Domitius, Marsus, Pomponius, Platyna, Sipontinus, Balbanus, Laurentius
(Among the learned, I am especially acquainted with the following: Volsco, Sulpizio, Pompilio, Brenta, Teodoro, Argiropylos, Lucilio, Domizio, Marsi, Pomponio, Platyna, Sipontinus, Balbanus, Laurentius)
Bracke (Bracke 1993, 11 incl. n. 11) has identified the names as Antonio Volsco, Sulpizio Verulano, Andrea Brenta, Teodoro Gaza, Giovanni Argiropulo, Domizio Calderini, Paolo Marso, Pomponio Leto, Bartolomeo Platina, Niccolo Perotti, but is not sure of the identity of Lucilius, Balbanus and Laurentius.
For the following years, we have no testimony concerning Pompilio. A guess would be that he studied with Leto at the Studium urbis. Pompilio is registered as grammar teacher in a school in the rione Campo Marzio in Rome 1480-81 (Da Empoli 1980 p. 142; Bracke 1993 p. 13ss, p. 20). At this time, Pompilio became involved in a fierce academic dispute with Sulpizio Verulano who had recently arrived in Rome from Perugia and was teaching with some success at the Studium urbis. A plausible description of this discussion is given by Wouter Bracke (Bracke 1992a and Bracke 1993 p. 14ss.). In the first edition of his work De Syllabis published 1480 (lost), Pompilio seems to have directed a harsh attack on an edition of Sulpizio's Metrica that had been published in an unfinished version without the author's approval, and Pompilio did not hesitate to criticize the famous newcomer to Rome. In 1481 Sulpizio published the finished edition of his Metrica adding a preface, Defensio Sulpitiana, wherein a certain Claudius Vallatus (probably a pseudonym of Sulpizio) responded to Pompilio's criticism. Pompilio answered the criticism in his Framea Pompilii contra Defensionen Sulpitianam published 1482 in Rome, adding a preface (mentioned initially in this article) in which he expresses the hope that Leto would intervene in the conflict. According to Bracke (Bracke 1993, p. 19) we may guess that the discussion thereafter was settled by Leto. At least, in the following editions, Sulpizio's Metrica (1482) and Pompilio's Syllabae (1488), the more polemical elements were removed, leaving only shadows of the former discussion. Pompilio's foremost purpose with this attack on Sulpizio seems to have been related to his advancement from neighborhood school teacher to university professor at the Studium urbis and his intentions of attracting students from Sulpizio's – apparently popular – courses to his own.
Pompilio is registered as professor of rhetoric at the Studium Urbis 1481–1484 (Da Empoli 1980 p. 122; Bracke 1993 p. 20), but due to lack of information in the registers of the Studium we cannot know how long he kept his professorship. Pompilio probably taught Sallust as his first university course (cf. Bracke 1993 p. 95s), a choice on his part that may be seen as an attempt to approach Leto's circle. For this course Pompilio composed a full handwritten lemmata commentary on Sallust's Catilina and Jugurtha, including sections on Roman history and topography as well as transcriptions of ancient inscriptions at the end (Biblioteca Angelica ms. 1351), clearly reflecting some of Leto's primary scholarly interests. Leto had himself taught Sallust the previous year as witnessed by the dictata of a German student (Trier, Stadtbibliothek, MS 1110/2037, ff. 78r-104r) and, in general, devoted much of his time to this author as reflected in his work on Roman history and, particularly, his 1490 editio princeps of Sallust's opera, published by Eucharius Silber in Rome. Moreover, Leto left a handwritten commentary in a copy of his Sallust edition (BAV, Ross. 441), and students copied Leto's commentary, adding to or selecting parts of it in several other copies of the edition (e.g. Farenga 2003, Ulery 2003, Osmond 2003, Osmond 2011a; Pade 2011), all of them writing in a style that was influenced by Pomponio. The precise mutual relationship among these annotations and their relation to Leto's commentary are not yet clear (Osmond 2011b). Another annotated copy of Leto's 1490 edition has recently entered the Vatican Library, Inc. IV. 974.


Pompilio's commentary on Sallust, Biblioteca Angelica 1351, fol. 1v (reproduced by permission)


Another reason for Pompilio's advancement from schoolteacher to university professor was probably his good relations with influential Spanish circles in Rome and with the Borgia family. Several of Pompilio's works are dedicated to a member of the papal court and treat a Spanish subject, for instance his Odyssea (1486), a poem of 402 hexameter verses on the travels of Ulysses dedicated to Pietro Ludovico Borgia, duke of Candia, the Panegyris de triumpho Granatensi (1490) on the Spanish conquest of Granada dedicated to Bernardino Carvajal, bishop of Badajoz and ambassador of King Ferdinand, his Historia Balearica (lost) apparently on the history of the Baleares, the Vita Senecae (1490) not only on the life of Seneca, but also on other ancient famous authors from Spain and dedicated to Giovanni Lopez, dean of the University of Valencia and Rodrigo Borgia's secretary. It is probably not a coincidence that Pompilio in his commentary on Sallust (f. 9v.) alludes to Fabius Pictor's theory that the original name of Rome was Valentia, and that the first inhabitants of Italy came from Spain (f. 10r). The native city of the Borgia family was Valencia (cf. Bracke 1992a p. 160 n. 15).
Pompilio probably continued teaching at the Studium urbis after 1484, since his university commentary on Catullus is clearly composed after this year (Bracke 1993, 20; Gaisser 1992, 250-251). His presence in Rome in 1485 is confirmed by one of the surviving chapters of his Notationes – a collection of reflections on different, often linguistic, matters (e.g. Bracke 1993 p. 85ss; Charlet 1993) – in which he describes some prodigies that had happened in Rome that year, among other things the remarkable finding of the perfectly preserved body of a supposed ancient Roman girl in Via Appia 18 April (Mercati 1924-25).
In 1488 Pompilio became private tutor to the young Cesare Borgia, an advancement undoubtedly again due to his close contacts with the Spanish circles in Rome and with the Borgia family. In the prefatory letter to his De Syllabis (1488), dedicated to Cesare, Pompilio calls himself a most loving client (amicissimi clientis) of the Borgia family and an attentive and diligent tutor of Cesare (solicitam praeceptoris diligentiam). In a letter of 1490 to Cesare (Copenhagen, Royal Library Gl. Kgl. S. 2125), Alexander Farnese alludes to Pompilio's teaching, calling him a very learned teacher (doctissimi praeceptoris Pompilii) and the most wonderful source of wisdom that should be drawn upon often ("iucundissimum illum sapientiae fontem hauriendum frequenter"). Pompilio's tutoring of Cesare probably lasted until 1491 when the latter moved to Pisa (Bracke 1993 p. 20s). A trace of Pompilio's private teaching is found in Cesare's personal copy of Leto's Sallust edition (1490; Nice, BNVR Louis Nucéra XV 56), containing the family coat of arms, in which we find a few annotations probably added by Pompilio himself.


Copenhagen, Royal Library Gl. Kgl. S. 2125, fol.3r (reproduced by permission)



Copenhagen, Royal Library Gl. Kgl. S. 2125, fol.3v (reproduced by permission)


Although Pompilio published on a large range of subjects, he seems to have been especially interested in the Latin language, the relationship between Latin and the vernacular, and probably also between Latin and Greek. The vita emphasizes his work on syllables (opus exactissimum) and in the surviving parts of his Notationes (Vat. Lat. 2222, ff.113r-120r), we find chapters concerning the history and nature of Latin. Moreover, the vita mentions a work on orthography and a large work (vastum opus) presumably on Latin neologisms from the previous 700 years. Thus, it is not necessarily pure exaggeration when the anonymous vita honours Pompilio as the best language expert in Rome.

Works by Paulo Pompilio

The anonymous vita lists a number of Pompilio's works of which some are found in manuscripts, some in printed editions and some are lost. The list is incomplete, leaving out some of Pompilio's surviving works. The vita is one of several works in manuscript bound with an incunable collection of Pompilio's works. The volume is now Vat. lat. 2222 at the Vatican Library and was perhaps annotated by Pompilio himself (dig. reprod. here). The first part of the volume is ISTC ip00912000, printed by Eucharius Silber, 16. Feb 1490, containing the Vita Senecae (fol.1r-23v, with handwritten notabilia in the outer margins), and a Testimonium uitae Callisti Tertii, the so-called Silva Alphonsina (fol. 24r-25r) with Silber's colophon on fol. 25r. On fol.27r-45r follows ISTC ip00910000, printed by Silber as well, 1 April 1490, containing the Panegyris triumphi Granatensis with a preface by Pompilio (Preface 27r-29r, Inc.: "Quaesitum saepe est et multum", 29v four disticha "Ad lectorem", inc.: "Quisquis amas titulos", 30r-45r the Panegyris, inc.: "Nunc age Musa tubam", with rich handwritten marginal notes). On fol.45r there is again a colophon by Silber, and a handwritten entry "Eiusdem anni [sc. 1490] die xix Aprilis Recognouit Idem Pompilius et ubi uisum est emendavit." From fol. 46r the volume is handwritten.
For the following list cf. Bracke 1993 pp. 32ss. and Bracke 2015.
Surviving works
An epitaph to Aesopus
Esopo Phrygio Philosopho Pomphilius, in: Aesopus moralisatus.
Ed. princ.: Rome : Wendelinus de Wila, 6 July 1475. ISTC ia00128600. Inc.: "Hoc iacet in tumulo". Expl.: "culte sophista Vale."
Modern ed.: Chiabò 1986, 504 (from the copy of ISTC ia00128600 in BAV Ottobon. lat. 1982, fol. 215v).
Digital reproduction of the copy in Stuttgart, Württembergische Landesbibliothek: here.
Manuscript: Petrus Paulus Pompilius, Observationes contra Defensionem Sulpitii Verulani Firenze, Bibl. Riccardiana, 162 (N I 22), ff. 61v-78v
Ed. princ.: Framea Pompilii contra Defensionem Sulpitianam. [Rome : Stephan Plannck, about 1482]. ISTC ip00909500.
Digital reproduction of the copy in the BAV:
Manuscript: BAV, Vat. lat. 2222, ff.113r-120r.
"Ex libro primo notationum Pauli Pompilii. De antiquitate linguae latinae. Caput vicesimum." BAV, Vat. lat. 2222, 113r-115r. Ed.: Tavoni 1984, 297-300.
"Item ex libro secundo notationum. De ostentis quibusdam, apud aliquos frivolis, apud multos alicuius momenti. Caput III." BAV, Vat. lat. 2222, 115v-117v. Ed.: Mercati 1924-25, 268-286.
"Item ex libro secundo. Sibyllas non certo numero nec certa historia nunc legi. Caput tertiumdecimum." BAV, Vat. lat. 2222, 118r-119v.
"Item ex libro tertio notationum. Latinum sermonem olim promiscuum fuisse. Caput sextum." BAV, Vat. lat. 2222, 120r-120v. Ed.: Tavoni 1984, 300.
"Quaedam notata in lectione Virgiliana. Caput XII ex libro V Notationum." Inc.: "Notatu dignissima mihi uisa sunt quaedam in Virgilio". Expl.: "Ita et loco priore ludum ludionem interpreteris. Finis Syllabicorum Pompilii.". At the end of De syllabis, Rome 1488.
Manuscript: Vat. lat. 2222, ff. 77r-85r.
Digital reproduction: Vat. lat. 2222
Dialogus de amore ad Pomponium Letum
Manuscript: 2222, ff. 46r-76r.
The preface is dated 1 August 1487. The work is presented as a dialogue between Alexis Eustathius (Alessio Stati) and Bartolommeo Platina, whom Alexis begs to relate to him a conversation which had taken place on the recent Floralia (28 April), when the pope had transferred the curia to the countryside to Anguillara (north of Rome) to avoid the plague in Rome. Possible dates are 1476 or 1478; but it is probably no more than a narrative device. The first part is a lighthearted conversation between two youngsters, Antonio Volsco and Papinio Cavalcanti (46r-53v). Then the two churchmen Pietro da Rocha and Francesco da Toledo join the conversation. The last part, supposedly during a short walk before returning to the presence of the pope, is only paraphrased by Platina (74v-76v). Explicit: "Finit Dialogus de Amore quem Pompilius scripsit Basanelli in secessu amoenissimo. MCCCLXXXVII".
Digital reproduction: Vat. lat. 2222
De syllabis
Manuscript: Milano, Bibliotecha Ambrosiana, R 119 sup. XVI: Paulus Pompilius, De pedibus carminis et eorum structura.
Ed. princ.: Rome : Eucharius Silber, July 1488. ISTC ip00911000.
A work on the quantity of syllables, metres and pronunciation.
Digital reproduction of the copy of München, BSB: urn:nbn:de:bvb:12-bsb00063303-1
Panegyricum carmen ad Carvajales
102 hexameters on the revolt against the duke of Piacenza in 1488.
Manuscript: Vat. lat. 2222, ff. 90v–92v
Attribution to Pompilio disputed.
Digital reproduction: Vat. lat. 2222
Panegyris de triumpho Granatensi
785 hexameters on the Spanish conquest of Granada and Baza dedicated to Bernadino Carvajal, ambassador of the Catholic kings in Rome
Manuscript: Vat. lat. 2222, ff. 27r–45r with Pompilio's personal corrections
Digital reproduction: Vat. lat. 2222
De vita et moribus L. Annei Senecae
Dedicated to Giovanni Lopez, dean of Valencia and Rodrigo Borgia's secretary.
Manuscripts: Vat. lat. 7192, ff. 346r –348v; Vat. Lat. 2222, ff. 1-23v (digital repr. here); Barcelona, Bibl. Univ. Y Prov., cod. 123 (20-4-21), ff. 47r-68r.
Ed. princ.: Rome : Eucharius Silber, 16 Feb. 1490. ISTC ip00912000 (digital repr. of the copy BSB Munich here)
Critical edition in Faider 1921, 269–323.
205 disticha on the Mellini family, especially Giovanni Battista, a learned theologian
Manuscript: Vat. lat. 2222, ff. 86v-90r.
Digital reproduction: Vat. lat. 2222
Symbolum Nicenum
Recomposition of the Nicene Creed in classical form
Manuscript: Vat. lat. 2222, f. 135r-v.
Digital reproduction: Vat. lat. 2222
Life of Catullus and Commentary on Catullus
"Collecte Catulli Veronensis edite a pompilio". Vatican Library, Ottob. lat. 1982 ff.171r-179r. containing a vita of Catullus (fol. 171r-v) and a commentary on poems 1-10 and 12 (fol. 173r-179r). See the description in Bracke 1992, 26-27.
Digital reproduction:
Commentary on Sallust
Rome, Biblioteca Angelica, 1351, containing 1) a full lemmata commentary on Catilina and Iugurtha, 2) a transcription of the so-called Publius Victor: Opusculum de regionibus urbis Romae, 3) a transcription of ancient Roman inscriptions and 4) a few excerpts from classical authors.
Commentary on Varro
Vatican City, BAV Vat. lat. 3415. Dictata taken down during a course on Varro Sub Pomponio. Drawings by Pompilio added in the margins.
Digital reproduction:
Works mentioned in the Vita but not preserved.
De orthographia
Historia Balearica
The work probably treated the conquest of the Baleari in the 13th century.
Four books with Latin and Greek epigrams
The epigram Ad Camillum amicorum optimum, Riccardiano 162, may have been part of this work (v. Framea).
Two books of panegyrics etc.
Phasma and Panegyris de Triumpho Granatensi may have been parts of this work.
Elegies and orations
The fragments from two academic orations cited in the preface to Framea may have belonged to this group of works.
Commentaria ad vitas C. Iulii, Octavii et Tyberii Caesarum.
Possibly commentaries to the Vitae by Suetonius.
Translation of Pseudo-Andronicos: περὶ παθῶν
According to the vita this work presented Latin vocabulary (including material from the Romance vernaculars) in a systematic arrangement.



The fundamental work on Pompilio's life and works is by Wouter Bracke in his doctoral thesis (Bracke 1993; unpublished) and in several articles.


Bracke 1992
Wouter Bracke, Fare la epistola nella Roma del Quattrocento. Roma nel Rinascimento, inedita 5 (Roma 1992).
Bracke 1992a
Wouter Bracke, "Contentiosa disputatio magnopere ingenium exacuit," Roma e lo Studium Urbis. Spazio urbano e cultura dal Quattro al Seicento. Atti del convegno , Roma, 7-10 giugno 1989, a c. di P. Cherubini (Roma 1992), 156-168. Dpr of the whole volume here (pdf).
Bracke 1993
Wouter Bracke, Pietro Paolo Pompilio grammatico e poeta. Tesi di dottorato di ricerca (Messina 1993).
Bracke 2002
Wouter Bracke, "Paolo Pompilio, una carriera mancata," Principato ecclesiastico e riuso dei classici. Gli Umanisti e Alessandro VI. Atti del convegno a. c. di D. Canfora et al. (Bari-Monte Sant' Angelo, 22-24 maggio 2000), Roma nel Rinascimento (Roma 2002) 429-438. Dpr of the entire volume here (pdf).
Bracke 2015
Wouter Bracke, "Pompilio, Pietro Paolo", Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani 84 (2015). URL:
Charlet 1993
Jean-Louis Charlet, "Un témoinage humaniste sur la latinité africaine et le grec parlé par les choriates: Paolo Pompilio," Antiquites Africaines 29 (1993), 241-247.
Chiabò 1986
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Rasmus Gottschalck

(2017; extensively revised by red. 2020)

This entry can be cited as follows:
Rasmus Gottschalck and red., "Pietro Paolo Pompilio," Repertorium Pomponianum
This entry replaced an earlier entry by Patricia Osmond (6.12.2006)