Desiderius Erasmus was the foremost humanist scholar of his day and one of the most influential European intellectuals of all time. A true cosmopolitan, Erasmus was born in Rotterdam but lived most of his adult life allover Europe, spending long periods in Paris, Leuven, England and Basel.
He visited Rome in 1509, at the threshold of the Reformation, where he closely observed the religious policies of the Vatican under the papacy of Julius II. This experience would deeply inform Erasmus' most famous work, The Praise of Folly, which he conceived when crossing the Alps on his way back from Rome.
He also wrote a biting critique of the rule of Julius II titled Julius exclusus de coelis. Erasmus' thought and stature made a large impact on the development of Dutch identity throughout the seventeenth century and beyond. (AW)
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L. d’Ascia, Erasmo e l’Umanesimo romano, Florence 1991
J. IJsewijn, ‘Erasmus in Rome: a Clash of Humanist Cultures ?’, in: C. M. Murphy, H. Gibaud, M. A. Di Cesare (eds.), Miscellanea Moreana. Essays for Germain Marc’hadour [Medieval and Renaissance Texts and Studies, 61] Binghamton 1989, pp. 139-151