Lami, Giovanni, an Italian writer of note, was born at Santa Croce, Tuscany, in 1697. He studied law at the University of Pisa, and for a time practiced his profession at Florence. But his fondness for literature, and especially classical and ecclesiastical erudition, interfered with his professional pursuits, and he became an author. He first wrote in defense of the Nicene Creed concerning the Trinity, and against Leclerc and other Socinian writers. He contended that the Nicene dogma concerning the Trinity was the same as that held by the early promulgators of Christianity in the apostolic times. His work is entitled De recta patrum Nicenorum fide (Venice, 1730). In 1732 he was made librarian of the Riccardi Library, and professor of ecclesiastical history in the Florence Lyceum, and while in this position he published De Eruditione Apostolorum (1738), a sort of continuation of his former work. In 1740 Lami began to publish a literary journal, entitled Novelle Letterarie, which he carried on till 1760, at first with the assistance of Targioni, Gori, and other learned Tuscans of his time, with whom he afterwards quarrelled, and he then continued the work alone. During his position as librarian he made a selection of inedited works, or fragments of works, from the manuscripts of the Riccardi Library, which he published in a series entitled Delicic Eruditorum (Florence, 1736-69, 18 volumes, 8vo). He also edited the works of the learned John Meursius, in 12 volumes, folio. He wrote short biographies of many illustrious Italians of his age, under the title of Memorabilia Italorum eruditione praestantirum quibus praesens seculum gloriatur (Florence, 1742-48, 2 volumes, 8vo), and published in Greek the letters of Gabriel Severus, archbishop of Philadelphia, in Asia Minor, and of other prelates of the Greek Church: Gabrielis Severi et aliorum Gracorum recentiorunm
Epistolce (Flor. 1754. 8vo). A History of the Eastern Church from the Council of Florence to 1439, he left unfinished. Lami died in 1770. He was a great hater of the Jesuits, and wrote many satires against them. Memoirs of his life were published by Fabroni (Vitae Italorum, volume 16) and Fontanini (Flor. 1789, 4to). See Engl. Cyclop. s.v.; Hoefer, Nouv. Biog. Generale, 29:216 sq.; Sax, Onomasticon, 6:490.