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Bacinetti-Florenzi, Marianna (1802–1870)

Bacinetti-Florenzi, Marianna (1802–1870)

Italian philosopher and translator. Name variations: Marchesa Marianna Bacinetti-Florenzi Waddington. Born into a wealthy family in Ravenna, Italy, in 1802; died in April 1870; educated privately in Faenza by Torrigiani; married the Marquis Lodovico e Carlotta (died); married Evelino Waddington; children: (first marriage) two.

Selected works:

Italian translations of the works of German philosophers Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph von Schelling and Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz; annotations of the works of Giordano Bruno; Taluui Pensieri (1843); Letters filesofiche (1848); Alcune Riflessioni sopra il Socialismo ed il Comunismo (1860); Filosofemini di Cosmologia e di Antologia (1863); Saggi di Psicologia e di Logica (1864); Saggio sulla Natura (Dante, il poeta del pensiero, 1866); Saggio sulla filosofia dello spirito (1867); Della Immortalita dell'Anima Umana (1868); La Facolta di Sentire (1868); Corrispondenza inedita di Vittorio Cousin con la marchesa Florenzi (1870).

Marianna Bacinetti-Florenzi was born in 1802 to an illustrious family in Ravenna, Italy, who sent her to study with the distinguished philosopher Torrigiani in Faenza. At age 15, she left school and married the Marquis Lodovico e Carlotta. During her marriage and the birth of two children, she continued to read Italian and German philosophy, but she was soon widowed.

Known far and wide for her philosophical writing and her deft interpretations of other philosophers, Bacinetti-Florenzi astonished Friedrich Schelling, whose philosophy she was instrumental in introducing to Italy. She translated much of his work into Italian, including the conversion, commissioned by King Maximilian of Bavaria, of some of Schelling's unpublished writings. Particularly interested in Schelling's work, she ignited the movement of scientific philosophy in Italy. Bacinetti-Florenzi became known for her insight as well as for the beauty and clarity of her prose. She was generally well-loved in her community, and her work was so admired that many sought her correspondence. Her own philosophy, however, received some opposition from the Catholic Church, and she was disturbed by the philosophical writings of Bini, a monk and professor in Perugia. Although troubled by his lack of attention to human emotion, she tried to reconcile some of his understandings with her own, seeking help from her correspondents. Bacinetti-Florenzi married an Englishman, Evelino Waddington, who became an Italian citizen out of love for her. She died, greatly missed by her community, in April 1870.

Catherine Hundleby , M.A. Philosophy, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, Canada

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