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eight years, and had also a considerable share in preparing a nautical almanack. While at Amsterdam, wbere he had been invited to give lectures on mathematics, he wrote his useful and excellent treatise on navigation, the first part of which was published there in 1793. In 1789 be was
chosen member of a learned society, distinguished by the ·motto of Felir Meritis, whose object was chemical expe
riments; and contributed many very valuable papers to it. In July 1793 be was invited to the university of Leyden, to be professor of philosophy, astronomy, and the higher mathematics, in the room of the celebrated Damen ; and * the adıniralty of Amsterdam requested him to continue his nautical researches, which he did with great assiduity till the period of his death. The only variation which he now - made in his studies related to natural philosophy, for with
the mathematics he was already sufficiently acquainted. · He applied himself, therefore, to the experimental part,
and spared no pains or labour to become perfect in it; · which would certainly have been the case, had he not been snatched from science and his friends at the early age of thirty. He died of an inflammation in his throat, accompanied with a fever, Nov. 13, 1794.
In his external appearance, Nieuwland was not what might be called handsome, nor had he ever been at pains to acquire that ease of deportment which distinguishes those who have frequented polite coni pany. His behaviour and conversation were, however, agreeable, because he could discourse with facility on so many subjects, and never wished to appear but under his real character. On the first view one might have discerned that he was a man of great modesty and the strictest morality. His father was a Lutheran, and his mother a Baptist; but he himself was a member of what is called the reformed cburch, i.e. a Calvinist, and always shewed the utmost respect to the Supreme Being, both by his words and actions. His attention appears to have been directed to three principal pur. suits, which are seldom united; poetry, the pure mathe. matics, and natural philosophy. In the latter part of his life he added to these also astronomy. Among the poems which be published, bis “ Orion” alone has rendered bis name immortal in Holland. Of the small essays which he published in his youth, the two following are particularly deserving of notice, 1. “A comparative view of the value of the different branches of science ;" and, 2. " The best means to render general, not learning, but soundness of judgment and good taste."] ,
NIFO. See NIPHUS. :- NIGIDIUS FIGULUS (PUBLIUS), one of the most learned authors of ancient Rome after Varro, flourished in the time of Cicero, was his fellow-student in philosophy, and tbe counsellor with whom be advised in affairs of state; .aud, being prætor and senator, he assisted the orator in
defeating the conspiracy, of Catiline, and did him many : services in the time of his adversity. . Cicero acknowledged, that it was in concert, with Nigidius, that he took those important measures which saved the commonwealth under his consulship: and, when Cicero went to his government of Cilicia, Nigidius, who was returning to Rome, after having exercised a public employment in Greece, waited .for him at Ephesus ;. where these two friends had long philosophical conferences with Cratippus the Peripatetic. Nigidius was a professed advocate for the doctrine of Pythagoras. Cicero speaks of him as an accurate and penetrating inquirer into nature, and ascribes to him the revival of that philosophy, which formerly, for several ages, flou. rished in the Pythagorean schools, both in Italy and Sicily. He was a considerable proficient in . mathematical and i astronomical learning, and, after the example of his master, applied his knowledge of nature to the purposes of imposture. In çiyil affairs, he attached himself to the party of Pompey; and, upon Cæsar's accession to the supreme power, he was banished from Rome. After his time, the Pythagorean doctrine was much neglected; few persons being then able to decypher, with accuracy, the obscure dogmas of this mysterious sect. Of the impostures practised by Nigidius, there are some anecdotes told, but .scarcely worth repeating. It has, been thought, that these deceptions were the cause of his banishment; but this appears not to have been the case, nor did he dare to return to Rome after Julius Cæsar had possessed himself of that .city. He died 45 B. C. His works were entitled, “ De Augurio privato," “ De Animalibus," “ De Extis,” “ De Vento;" and " De Diis.” He also wrote “ Commentaries upon Grammar.” Fragments of these only remain, wbich were collected and published by James Rutgersius, who has also inserted among them the Greek translation of
1 Dr. Gleig's Supplement to the Encycl. Britannica.—Dict. Hist.
A Treatise of Nigidius," by John Laurentius of Philas delpbia.'
NIPHUS (AUGUSTINE,) a learned Italian, was born at Sessa, in the kingdom of Naples, in 1473. About 1500, he was appointed professor of philosophy at Padua, where he composed a treatise“ De Intellectu et Dæmonibus," in which he maintained that there is but one soul, which ani: mates all nature. This raised many opponents, and he was forced to publish his treatise with amendments in 1492, fol, reprinted 1503 and 1.527. He afterwards gained so much reputation by his other works, however insignificant they may now appear, that the most celebrated universities of Italy offered him professorships with large stipends; and he had a salary of a thousand crowns in gold, when pro fessor at Pisa, about, 1520. Pope Leo X. had such a value for Niphus, that he made him count palatine, per: mitted him to quarter his arms with those of the Medici family, and granted him power to create masters of arts, bachelors, licentiates, doctors of divinity, civil and canoni law, to legitimate bastards, and to ennoble three persons. The letters patent which conveyed these singular privileges, are dated June 15, 1521. Niphus was a philosopher in theory only, being remarkable even in old age for levity and intrigue. He also loved high living; and such were the charms of his conversation, that he had easy access to the nobility and ladies of rank. The year in which he died is not exactly known, but it is certain that he was' living in 1545, and dead in 1550, and that he was above seventy at the time of his death. He left Commentaries in Latin on Aristotle and Averroes, 14 vols. fol.; some smaller works on subjects of morality and politics, Paris, 1845, 4to; a treatise “ on the Immortality of the Soul," against Pomponatius, Venice, 1518, fol. ; “De amore, de pulchro, Veneris et Cupidinis venales," Leydæ, 1641, 16to, &c. · NITHARD, a French historian of the ninth century, the son of Angilbert, abbot of St. Riquier, and of Bertha, daughter of Charlemagne, was born before the year 790, and was probably educated at the court of his grandfather. He appears to have been distinguished both as a soldier and politician, and was occasionally employed by Charles the Bald, king of France, as a negociator. His history con
| Vossius de Scient. Math.- Fabric. Bibl. Lat.-Brucker.--Essay on his Life by Burigny, in Hist. Act. Reg. Inscript. rol. XXIX.
* Gen. Dict.Dict. Hist, Tiraboschi. ---Roscoe's meo. ..!
tains an account of the divisions between the sons of Louis le Debonnaire, in four books, of which the first three were written in the year 842, and the fourth is lost. It was published in 1594, by M. Pithou, in his “Annalium et Historiæ Francorum Scriptores,” &c.; and has since been translated by Duchesne' and Bouquet, in their collection of French Historians, and by Cousin in his “ History of the Western Empire." .
NIVELLE DE LA CHAUSSEE (PETER Claude), a French academician and dramatic writer, was born at Paris in 1692. Being the nephew of a farmer-general, he might have acquired opulence, by so valuable a connection, but he preferred the study of polite literature. His first work was a criticism on the fables of La Motte, who was his friend, but who never objected to any liberties of that kind which his friends might take with him. When La Motte advanced his famous paradox on the inutility of versification in tragedy, &c. Nivelle joined la Faye as one of his oppo, nents, and published an “Epitre à Clio," 1732, 12mo, which was much admired, and in which he has taken conşiderable freedoms with La Motte. As a dramatic writer, Nivelle brought into fashion what the French call the comedies larmoyantes, or comedies in which there are more scenes of tenderuess than of wit and humour. Of these his “ Prejugé à la mode ;" “ Ecole des Amis,” and “ Meļaoide," are still much admired in France; as are his “ Ecole des Meres,” and “ La Gouvernante," although not received at first so favourably. He wrote many other dramatic pieces, with moderate success, which with his other works, were published at Paris, in 1762, 5 vols. 1 2mo. La Harpe ranks him among the authors who have done honour to the French theatre. He died May 14, 1754, in the sixty-second year of his age.
NIVERNOIS (LOUIS-JULES MANCINI, DUKE of), was born at Paris, Dec. 16, 1716. After he had served in the army some time, be was appointed ambassador to Rome, then to Berlin, and lastly, in 1763, was entrusted with the important negociation of the definitive treaty of peace at London, where he was highly respected, as a prudent and enlightened minister, who united amenity of manners with the dignity of his station. After his return to Paris, he devoted himself entirely to letters, and by some public
catio that of inscoferer from be tyran
cations he obtained an admission into the French academy, and that of inscriptions. This worthy and excellent man lived to be a sufferer from the revolution, and was committed to prison during the tyranny of Robespierre, in which he was forced to remain till 1796. He died Feb. 25, 1798, at the age of eighty-two. Of his works, his & Fables" have not been thought to preserve the reputation they had originally, when handed about in private. Many of them, however, equal any of the French productions of that class. An English translation, very ably executed, was published in 1799. The duke's reflections on the genius of Horace, Boileau, and Rousseau, are highly esteemed ; and his “ Dialogues of the Dead," “ Moral Letters," “ Lives of the Troubadours," &c. are distinguished proofs of an acute and well-cultivated mind. He was very conversant in English literature, and translated Pope's “ Essay on Man,” and Horace Walpole's “ Moderny Gardening, of which, in imitation of Walpole, he printed only a few copies for friends. Didot, while the author was alive, printed a five edition of his works, in 1796, 8 vols. 8vo, the demand for which, according to Brunet, is not
. NIZOLIUS (MARIUS), an eminent Italian scholar, was born in 1498, at Brescello, on the Po, in the duchy of Modena. He appears to have been first patronized by the counts Gambara of Brescia, with whom he lived for some years, amply provided with the means of study and im. provement. When his writings bad made him known, he was invited by the princes Farnese to Parma, to give public lectures on rhetoric, which he continued for many years. Prince Vespasian Gonzaga, a great patron of literature, having founded an university at Sabionetta, ap. pointed Nizolius chief director or principal. In 1562 this university was opened, at which ceremony Nizolius delivered a speech, which was printed at Parma the fol. lowing year. Some years after, being now advanced, he lost his sight, and retired to his native place, where he died in 1575.
The work for which he is chiefly entitled to notice, was his dictionary of the words that occur in Cicero, commonly called “ Thesaurus Ciceronianus;" but the first edition was entitled “ Observationes in Ciceronem,”. 1535, 2 parts fol.
Dict. Hist.-Blog. Moderne.