MARTYR

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MARTYR, Peter (more correctly Pietro Martire d'Anghiera), an Italian writer, who, after having attached himself to the cardinal Visconti, and to the archbishop of Milan, went to Spain (1487), distinguished himself in the military service of Ferdinand and Isabella, and then embraced the clerical profession. Ferdinand employed him in some important affairs, and created him counsellor of the Indies. Charles V also treated him with favor. He died in 1526, at the age of 75 years. His principal works are De Rebus Occanicis el Orbe novo Decades,a history of the discoveries of Columbus and his successors, from their own relations; Be Insulis nuper inventis (1521); De Legatione Babylonica,an account of his embassy to Egypt, whither Ferdinand had sent him, in 1501; and his Opus Epistolarium.