Rinaldi, Odorico (Raynaldus)

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Oratorian priest and historical scholar; b. Treviso, Italy, June 1594; d. Rome, Jan. 22, 1671. He pursued his studies in Parma and Padua and in 1618 entered the Oratory in Turin. He was twice elected superior general of that congregation. Rinaldi was distinguished for his scholarship as well as for his personal piety, and through his historical work he rendered inestimable services to the Church. At the request of Pope Innocent X he undertook the continuation of the Annales Ecclesiastici inaugurated by his fellow Oratorian, Cardinal Caesar baronius, in the previous century as a refutation of the errors and calumniations against the Church in the well-known Lutheran centuriators of Magdeburg. The work of Baronius had ended with the accession of Pope Innocent III in 1198 (v. 112); Rinaldi, who is generally recog nized as the ablest continuator of Baronius, extended the work from 1198 to 1565 (v. 1322) in a series of volumes published in Rome (164677). His work marks an advance over that of Baronius in the publication of new and important documentary materials. He also published excerpts from his own work and that of Baronius in Latin and Italian. An abridgment of his own work, in three volumes, was published in Rome in 1670. Rinaldi declined Pope Innocent X's offer of the directorship of the Vatican Library. The significance of the work of Baronius and Rinaldi is reflected in their careers as historiographers who pioneered in the critical evaluation and use of source materials.

Bibliography: a. marchesan, Lettere inedite di Oderico Rinaldi (Treviso 1896). w. werbeck, Die Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart, 6 v. (Tübingen 195763) 5:807.

[a. m. christensen]