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Claudius Salmasius

1588-1653. French Protestant scholar. Born in Semur, Burgundy, he studied philosophy at Paris (1604-6) under Isaac Casaubon,* through whom he was converted to Calvinism. While studying jurisprudence in Heidelberg he discovered the manuscript of the Palatine anthology. He edited two previously unprinted fourteenth-century tracts against papal supremacy by Nilus of Salonica and the monk Barlaam (1608). After publishing classical works, including an edition of Solinus's Polyhistor (1629), he became professor at Leyden (1632), succeeding J.J. Scaliger. Here he remained apart from a visit to the court of Queen Christina of Sweden (1650-51). He defended the compatibility of usury with Christianity in De usuris liba (1638) and De modo usurarum (1639). His Defensio regia pro Carolo I (1649), an accusation of regicide against the English people, provoked a counterblast from John Milton, Pro populo anglicano defensio (1651).