Like many great thinkers of the Renaissance and the Enlightenment, Francesco Scipione Maffei (1675-1755) excelled in several fields of science and the arts. A dramatist, archaeologist, scholar, soldier and philosopher, he was born of noble stock in Verona on 1 June 1675. He published works on music, theatre, history, art and architecture, science, pedagogy, philosophy and, that greatest of all medieval disciplines, chivalry.
His vision, based on enlightened catholicism, was a reference point for Italian intellectuals and political reformers throughout the 18th Century. He dominated the cultural, administrative and civic life of Verona and he remains one of the city's most famous sons.
He fought under his brother (Alessandro, Marquis de Maffei) against the Duke of Malborough in the War of the Spanish Succession and in later life received a doctorate from the University of Oxford. One of his most famous works is the Verona illustrata (1731–1732), a seminal work that explores the history of his hometown.
Today Verona is littered with references to Maffei, including his museum dedicated to stone carving, the Museo Lapidario Maffeiano and the cities most prestigious school, Liceo ginnasio statale Scipione Maffei. In 1903, a group of students from the school founded a football club. The club was named Hellas Verona and today it plays in Italy's Serie A.