Romano, Giovanni Battista

Romano, Giovanni Battista, a convert from Judaism, was a native of Alexandria, and flourished in the 16th century. His grandfather was the famous Elias Levita (q.v.), who instructed him while in Germany. He then went to Italy, and in Venice he tried to bring his brother back into the fold of the synagogue, in which he did not succeed; on the contrary, he became himself a convert to Christianity, and was baptized in 1551. For a long time he was professor of Hebrew and Arabic in Rome. In 1561. pope Pius IV sent him to the patriarch of the Copts, together with Roderich, a member of his order. He translated Giov. Bruno's catechism, which was written against the Oriental heretics, into three Shemitic languages, and translated into Arabic the decrees of the Council of Trent, for the sake of having them circulated in the East. He died at Rome, March 3, 1580. See Delitzsch, Kunst, Wissenschaft u. Judenthum, p. 291 sq.; Phil. Alegambe, De Scriptor. Soc. Jesu, p. 225 sq.; R. Simon, Bibl. Selecta, 1, 148; Grätz, Gesch. d. Juden, 9, 356. (B.P.)

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