Vincenzo Lanza

This page lists items in the database related to Italian physician Vincenzo Lanza (b. Foggia, Italy, 7 May 1784; d. Naples, Italy, 3 April 1860):

Vincenzo Lanza was born in Foggia on 8 May 1784. When he was fifteen he was sent to Naples to study medicine. At the age of twenty-four he started working at the "Hospital of Incurabili” and in that period he produced numerous works. He set up a private clinic with the name “Clinica dei nuovi esperimenti” (the real name was Santa Maria della Pace's hospital) and in 1831 he was appointed professor of the second chair of medicine at university. During the cholera epidemic of 1836-37 he was a member of various commissions that studied measures and precautions both curative and preventive. His coming from a humble family developed a greatly liberal conscience in him that then would urge him to enter politics.


On 18 April 1848 the general election was held in the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies and Vincenzo Lanza was elected deputy. Vincenzo Lanza had understood well the power of the people: “The king is just one person, we are seven million, we represent the whole country", but the King Ferdinando II dissolved the Parliament. Lanza was obliged to leave Naples to avoid the arrest and moved to Genoa.

In consequence of the trial which took place on 20 August 1853 in Naples, Lanza and other 22 elected people were sentenced to death. Only in 1856, for the intervention of the Czar of Russia and of the Queen of England, pardon was granted to the doctor from Foggia and the permission to return to Naples as well, where Vincenzo Lanza continued working till his death for apoplexy on 3 April 1860.

In his memory, a statue was put up inside the ”Villa Comunale” in Foggia, a memorial tablet at the entrance of the church of St. Thomas Apostle, where Vincenzo Lanza was baptized,and a second one on the facade of the Palazzo Dogana, and a school was named after him.


- Salvatore De Renzi, Elogio storico di Vincenzo Lanza, Tip. Nobile, Napoli, 1869

- Alessandro Porro, "Vincenzo Lanza", Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani, Treccani, 2004, Vol. 63

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