Albori di Entomologia merceologica e urbana nell'opera del microscopista Filippo Bonanni (1638-1725)

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Abstract

FILIPPO BONANNI (1638-1725) The Roman Jesuit Filippo Bonanni (1638-1725) is a prominent figure in the European cultural landscape of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. He was a scholar, a man of many interests, both humanistic and scientific, an eclectic writer; in the history of biological sciences Bonanni occupies a non-marginal position for his contributions in the malacological and entomological fields, but he is best known for being, in the wake of his master the Jesuit Athanasius Kircher, a staunch defender of the theory of spontaneous generation. This certainly damaged his reputation as a scholar in comparison with more or less contemporary scientists who instead contributed to refuting this theory with accurate experimental research (among the Italians, in this regard, Redi, Malpighi, Marsili, Cestoni and Vallisnieri stand out). Bonanni’s observations on insects and other arthropods, which he carried out above all with the aim of finding arguments in favor of the generatio aequivoca, are found in his work Observationes circa viventia, quae in rebus non viventibus reperiuntur. Cum micrographia curiosa sive rerum minutissimarum observationibus, quae ope microscopii recognitae ad vivum exprimuntur, published in Rome in 1691. Written observations thus supporting spontaneous generation, but accompanied by numerous valuable illustrations made with the aid of the microscope which Bonanni, valiant microscopist as well as a skilled draftsman and engraver, perfected himself, in order to investigate the microcosm of arthropods beyond the potential of the human eye - apart from the dialectical intent mentioned above. This is the primary objective of the Micrographia curiosa, the appendix to his work, which enriches what is presented in the main part of the volume with further findings and tables. A valuable work, above all related to commodity, urban and stored product entomology, given that the author finds in the arthropods of the urban and domestic environment the raw material most at hand as a source for observations and experiences. With surprising precision for the time, in the Observationes mosquito, sand fly, flea, lice, booklice, coleopteran larvae, moths, other dipterans and their details, mites, etc. are illustrated. Bonanni is the first descriptor and illustrator ever of certain insects. Among others, worthy of note is a dermestid larva, very probably of the genus Anthrenus, with much enlarged detail of the typical hastisetae or spear bristles, and some figures of pretarsi of Diptera Brachycera. As a microscopist he can be compared to the Englishman Robert Hooke (1635-1709), almost coeval, who published a Micrographia in London (1667), from which Bonanni seems to have drawn useful insights.
Titolo tradotto del contributo[Autom. eng. transl.] The dawn of commodity and urban Entomology in the work of the microscopist Filippo Bonanni (1638-1725)
Lingua originaleItalian
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteAtti del 10° Simposio "La difesa antiparassitaria nelle industrie alimentari e la protezione degli alimenti"
Pagine245-246
Numero di pagine2
Volume10°
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2020
Evento10° Simposio "La difesa antiparassitaria nelle industrie alimentari e la protezione degli alimenti" - Piacenza - Italia
Durata: 20 set 201722 set 2017

Convegno

Convegno10° Simposio "La difesa antiparassitaria nelle industrie alimentari e la protezione degli alimenti"
CittàPiacenza - Italia
Periodo20/9/1722/9/17

Keywords

  • Italia
  • XVII secolo
  • entomologia
  • storia

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