In this Italy, and especially the renowned school of Padua, took the first step, where Giovanni De Monte (Montanus), (1498-1552), already mentioned as a humanist, gave clinical lectures on the patients in the hospital of St Francis, which may still be read with interest.
But there the German humanist who perhaps approached most nearly the Italian type, furnishes a good illustration.
Zwingli was a humanist, a type abhorred of Luther; and he was far more ready for the polite Erasmian society of Basel than for a monastery.
He had an unbounded admiration for Erasmus, with whom he entered into correspondence, and from whom he received a somewhat chilling patronage; whilst the brilliant humanist, Pico della Mirandola (1463-1494), taught him to criticize, in a rationalizing way, the medieval doctrines of Rome.
Towards the end of September he fell a victim to the plague which was ravaging the land, and his illness sobered his spirit and brought into his message a deeper note than that merely moral and common-sense one with which, as a polite humanist, he had hitherto been content.