Gonzaga, Ercole De

Gonzaga, Ercole de an Italian cardinal, born in 1505, was the son of John Francis II, duke of Mantua. After he had studied at Bologna under the direction of Pomponacius, he was appointed bishop of Mantua in 1520, six years afterwards was made cardinal, and called to the archbishopric of Tarragona. In 1540 he took in his hands the direction of the government of the duchy of Mantua. In 1562 he was appointed by pope Pius IV to preside at the Council of Trent as first legate of the holy see, but he died March 2, 1563, leaving a catechism in Latin. published for the pastors of Mantua. He composed also a treatise on De Institutione Vitae Christianae, in MS. In the library of Este there are two volumes of letters written by him during 1559. See Hoefer, Nouv. Biog. Generale, s.v.

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