A lesson in geometry, given by Ostilio Ricci to the pages of the grand-ducal court, chanced, tradition avers, to have Galileo for an unseen listener; his attention was riveted, his dormant genius was roused, and he threw all his energies into the new pursuit thus unexpectedly presented to him.
SYNOD OF PISTOIA, a diocesan synod held in 1786 under the presidency of Scipione de' Ricci (1741-1810), bishop of Pistoia, and the patronage of Leopold, grand-duke of Tuscany, with a view to preparing the ground for a national council and a reform of the Tuscan Church.
Probably no European name of past centuries is so well known in China as that of Li-ma-teu, the form in which the name of Ricci (Ri-cci Mat-teo) was adapted to Chinese usage, and by which he appears in Chinese records.
The former, well restored by Ricci in1898-1900(except for the dome with its baroque frescoes which has not been altered), is a regular octagon, with a vestibule, originally flanked by two towers on the west, a choir added on the east, triangular outside and circular within; it is surrounded within by two galleries interrupted at the presbytery, and supported by eight large pillars, the intervals between which are occupied by open exedrae.
Trans.: Methods and Results in Mexican Research, by Seymour de Ricci (Paris, 1909); Theobert Maler, Neue Entdeckung von Ruinen-Stcidten in Mittel-Amerika (Globus, lxx.
C. Macaulay (2 vols., 1890); in German by Bahr (Stuttgart, 1867) and Stein (Oldenburg, 1875); in French by Giguet (1857) and Talbot (1864);(1864); in Italian by Ricci (Turin, 1871-1876), Grandi (Asti, 1872) and Bertini (Naples, 1871-1872).
During his stay here Ricci was convinced that a mistake had been made in adopting a dress resembling that of the bonzes, a class who were the objects either of superstition or of contempt.
See also De Potter, Vie de Scipion de' Ricci (3 vols., Brussels, 1825), based on a MS. life and a MS. account of the synod placed on the Index in 1823.
Sealed despatches were sent to every Spanish colony, to be opened on the same day, the 2nd of April 1767, when the measure was to take effect in Spain itself, and the expulsion was relentlessly carried out, nearly six thousand priests being deported from Spain alone, and sent to the Italian coast, whence, however, they were repelled by the orders of the pope and Ricci himself, finding a refuge at Corte in Corsica, after some months' suffering in overcrowded vessels at sea.
His comrades were Rudolfo Acquaviva, Nicolas Spinola, Francesco Pasio and Michele Ruggieri, all afterwards, like Ricci himself, famous in the Jesuit annals.