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Mark of Lisbon

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(Properly MARCOS DA SILVA).

Friar minor, historian, and Bishop of Oporto in Portugal, b. at Lisbon (date of birth uncertain); d. in 1591. While visiting the principal convents of the Franciscan Order in Spain, Italy, and France, at the instance of the minister general, Fr. Andrea Alvarez, he succeeded in collecting a number of original documents bearing upon the history of the order. Previous to this in 1532 the minister general, Father Paul Pisotti, had instructed all the provincials of the order to collect all documents they could find pertaining to the fifteenth century, for the purpose of continuing the "Conformities" of Bartholomew of Pisa. A great part of the material thus brought together was given to Mark of Lisbon; with the aid of which, and of the Chronicle of Marianus of Florence and what he had himself collected, he compiled in Portuguese his well-known "Chronicle of the Friars Minor ", published at Lisbon in 1556-68. This work has gone through several editions; and has been translated into Italian, French, and Spanish, and partly into English. The Italian translation by Horatio Diola, bearing the title "Croniche degli Ordini instituti dal P.S. Francesco" (Venice, 1606) is perhaps the best known of these and the one most often quoted, because it is the most accessible. The work is taken up almost completely with biographies of illustrious men of the order, the title being thus somewhat misleading. It is of great historical value, especially since the original sources to which the author had access, have entirely disappeared. It is worth recording that to Mark of Lisbon we are indebted for the first edition of a grammar of the Bicol language in the Philippine Islands.

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