Planetdes Maximus

Planetdes Maximus a Byzantine monk noted as a literary character, flourished in the 14th century. He was born, as he says himself in one of his works, at Nicomedia. The time of his birth is unknown, and almost the only circumstance of his life which is beyond doubt is that in the year 1327 he was sent on an embassy to Venice by the emperor Andronicus the elder. At this time he must have been of a mature age. That he was yet alive in 1340 is evident from a letter still extant, which he wrote to the emperor Johannes Palseologus, who ascended the throne in that year. D'Orville places his death in 1353, for which, however, he adduces no testimony. Gerhard Vossius prolongs his life to the year 1370, and others place it still later. Towards the close of his life Planudes, it is said, was imprisoned on account of his partiality for the doctrines of the Church of Rome; and when afterwards compelled to write against that Church, to have done so in such a manner and with such feeble arguments that cardinal Bessarion declared that the heart of Planudes had no share in what he had written on that occasion. His works, of which several exist only in MS. form, are not of sufficient importance to be enumerated here. They consist of orations and homilies; translations fronu Latin into Greek of several works of such classics as Cicero, Caesar, Ovid, etc.; also of Boethitus's De Consolatrione; St. Augustine. De Trinitate and De Cicitate Dei; a collection of AEsop's Fables; commentaries on the Rhetoric of Hermogenes, and other Greek writings. See Fabricius, Biblioth. Graeca, 11, 682 sq.; Hoffman, Lexicon Bibliog. Script. Graec. s.v.

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