Christina Roccati

Christina Roccati

Cristina Roccati (Rovigo, 24 October 1732 – Rovigo, 16 March 1797) was an Italian scholar and poet. She was on her way to an illustrious academic career following a degree at the University of Bologna (1751), only the third academic qualification ever bestowed on a woman by a European university, when economic problems impelled her return to the Venetian provinces (Rovigo), where she nonetheless continued to teach physics for decades.



Roccati was a member of a noble family in Rovigo. She studied Classic language under Peter Bertaglia Arquà, master at the seminar at Rovigo, and was at the age of fifteen received and admired by the Academy of Rovigo Ordna for her poems. In 1747, she was given permission by her parents to study natural philosophy at the University of Bologna under the guardianship of Bertaglia. She was accepted at the university the same year. She studied literature, logic, metaphysics, moral, meteorology and astronomy, but concentrated at physic and natural science. She was also decorated for her poetry. She became a member of the Academy of Concordia (1749), the academy tra gli Apatisti di Firenze (1750) and the academy nell’Arcadia under the name Aganice Aretusiana (1753), as well as the academy nell’Accademia degli Ardenti di Bologna e dei Ricoverati a Padova.

She graduated in philosophy the 5 May 1751. She was active as a teacher in physics at the Academy of Concordi from 1751 until at least 1777. From 1751, she also studied at the University of Padua. In 1752, however, financial difficulties for her family made her interrupt her studies at Padua. She was elected president of the Academy of Concordi in 1754.

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