CASTELNUOVO, ENRICO (1839–1915), Italian author. Born in Florence, Castelnuovo spent most of his life in Venice, where for many years he taught at the commercial high school. He was the father of the well-known mathematician Guido Castelnuovo. He wrote literary criticism and history but was known chiefly as a novelist and short-story writer. He published about 20 novels, including Nella lotta ("In the Struggle," 1880), Il fallo di una donna onesta ("The Sin of an Honest Woman," 1897), I coniugi Varedo ("The Varedo Couple," 1899), Nella bottega del cambiavalute ("In the Moneychanger's Shop," 1895), and I Moncalvo ("The Moncalvos," 1908). His two collections of short stories, Alla finestra and Reminiscenze e fantasie, both appeared in 1885. Castelnuovo wrote in the style of late 19th-century Italian popular fiction, describing provincial life in Venice during the period of deception that followed the ideals of the Italian "Risorgimento." In I Moncalvo he deals with a Jewish milieu; the main characters are a rich Jewish banker who wishes to be accepted by the clerical and reactionary aristocracy and his brother, an austere scientist who follows positivist ideas.
C. Bordiga, Enrico Castelnuovo (1916); G. Romano, in: Scritti in memoria di Leone Carpi (1967), 189–90; A. Levi, in: rmi, 15 (1949), 388–419. add. bibliography: R. Becchilongo, Dizionario biografico degli italiani, 21 (1978), 818–20.
[Giorgio Romano /
Alessandro Guetta (2nd ed.)]