National Academy of Lincei

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

National Academy of Lincei


(Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei), an academy founded in 1603 in Italy. Its name derives from the Italian word lince, “lynx” (its founders swore to study nature with eyes as sharp and piercing as those of a lynx).

Because of a lack of funds, the academy was forced to close in 1630; it was reestablished in 1795. At the suggestion of Pope Gregory XVI, it was again closed from 1840 to 1847. After the unification of Italy (1870), the academy acquired the title “royal”; since 1920 it has been known as “national.” In 1939 the academy, which had been critical of the measures taken by the Fascist government in the field of culture, was abolished. It was reestablished soon after the overthrow of the Fascist regime in 1944.

The academy’s principal task is to promote the development of art, literature, and science in Italy. It coordinates scholarly and scientific research; organizes national and international congresses, symposia, and conferences; and maintains ties with foreign academies, scientific centers, and important scholars. It also awards prizes for outstanding works and inventions.

The academy is divided into two classes: (1) physics, mathematics, and natural sciences and (2) philosophy, history, and philology. Each class has 72 national associates, 72 foreign associates, and 72 corresponding members. Several honorary members may be elected to each class.

The academy is directed by a president and an executive council. The academy’s budget is funded by contributions from the Ministry of Public Education, the Italian National Council on Research, and private funds. The most important publications of the academy include Rendiconti della Classe di Scienze Fisiche, Matematiche e Naturali (Rome, since 1892), Rendiconti della Classe di Scienze Morali, Storiche e Filologiche (Rome, since 1892), Quaderni (Rome, since 1947), and Annuario (Rome, since 1602).


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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