The pseudonym of CRISTOFORO BONAVINO, philosopher ; b. 24 February, 1821, at Pegli, province of Genoa ; d. 12 September, 1895, at Genoa. He entered the ecclesiastical state, and some time after his ordination to the priesthood, was appointed director of an institution for secondary education at Genoa. Soon, however, he became imbued with the doctrines of French positivism and German criticism. Doubts arose in his mind, followed by an internal struggle which he describes in his work on the philosophy of the Italian schools. At the same time, important political events were taking place in Italy, culminating in the revolution of 1848. Misled, as he later says of himself, by a political passion, and also by a kind of philosophical passion, Franchi abandoned the priest's habit and office in 1849, and assumed the name of Ausonio Franchi (i.e. free Italian), indicating thereby his break with his own past and his new aspirations. Henceforth all his talents were devoted to the cause of intellectual and political liberty. The dogmatic authority of the Church and the despotic authority of the State are the objects of his incessant attacks. Combining Kant's phenomenalism and Comte's positivism, he falls into a sort of relativism and agnosticism. For him, religious truth and reason, Catholicism and freedom, are irreconcilable, and Franchi does not hesitate in his choice.
In 1854 he founded the "Ragione", a religious, political, and social weekly which was a means of propagating these ideas. Terenzio Mamiani, then Minister of Education, appointed him professor of the history of philosophy in the University of Pavia (1860), and later (1863) in the University of Milan, where he remained until 1888. No work was published by him between 1872 and 1889. A change was again taking place in his mind, not now due to passion, but to the professor's more mature reflection. It led to the publication of Franchi's last work, in which he announces his return to the Church, criticizes his former works and arguments, and denounces the opinions and principles of his earlier writings. His works are: "Elementi di Grammatica generale applicati alle due lingue italiana e latina" (Genoa, 1848-49), under the name of Cristoforo Bonavino. Under the name of Ausonio Franchi he wrote "La Filosofia delle scuole italiane" (Capolago, 1852; "Appendice", Genoa, 1853); "La religione del secolo XIXo" (Lausanne, 1853); "Studi filosofici e religiosi: Del Sentimento" (Turin, 1854); "Il Razionalismo del Popolo" (Geneva, 1856); "Letture sulla Storia della Filosofia moderna; Bacone, Descartes, Spinoza, Malebranche" (Milan, 1863); "Sulla Teorica del Giudizio" (Milan, 1870); "La Caduta del Principato ecclesiastico e la Restaurazione dell' Impero Germanico" (Milan, 1871); "Saggi di critica e polemica" (Milan, 1871-72). He also edited "Appendice alle Memorie politiche di Felice Orsini" (Turin, 1858); "Epistolario di Giuseppe La Farina" (Milan, 1869(; and Scritti politici di Giuseppe La Farina" (Milan, 1870).
More Catholic Encyclopedia
Browse Encyclopedia by Alphabet
The Catholic Encyclopedia is the most comprehensive resource on Catholic teaching, history, and information ever gathered in all of human history. This easy-to-search online version was originally printed in fifteen hardcopy volumes.
Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching, the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church has defined, but also an impartial record of different views of acknowledged authority on all disputed questions, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archaeology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.
No one who is interested in human history, past and present, can ignore the Catholic Church, either as an institution which has been the central figure in the civilized world for nearly two thousand years, decisively affecting its destinies, religious, literary, scientific, social and political, or as an existing power whose influence and activity extend to every part of the globe. In the past century the Church has grown both extensively and intensively among English-speaking peoples. Their living interests demand that they should have the means of informing themselves about this vast institution, which, whether they are Catholics or not, affects their fortunes and their destiny.
Browse the Catholic Encyclopedia by Topic
Copyright © Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company New York, NY. Volume 1: 1907; Volume 2: 1907; Volume 3: 1908; Volume 4: 1908; Volume 5: 1909; Volume 6: 1909; Volume 7: 1910; Volume 8: 1910; Volume 9: 1910; Volume 10: 1911; Volume 11: - 1911; Volume 12: - 1911; Volume 13: - 1912; Volume 14: 1912; Volume 15: 1912
Catholic Online Catholic Encyclopedia Digital version Compiled and Copyright © Catholic Online