Bernini,. Giovanni Lorenzo, an Italian sculptor and architect, horn in Naples in 1598, died in Rome, Nov. 28, 1680. Having been presented by his father at an early age to Paul V., he drew the head of St. Paul in a manner which excited the admiration of the pope, and he recommended him to Cardinal Barberini. At the age of 18 he made a group of "Apollo and Daphne," which may still be seen at the villa Borghese. After Barberini became pope under the name of Urban VIII. (102.°,) Bernini was employed for nine years upon the bronze canopy over the tomb of St. Peter. He then built the niches in the four pillars that support the dome, and executed the statue of St. Longinus that stands in one of them. He afterward built the palazzo Barberini and executed the group of St. Theresa with the angel. Under Innocent X. he constructed the fountain in the piazza Navona and the palace of Monte Citono. Among the many works he executed for Alexander VII. was the colonnade in front of St. Peter's. His tame spread throughout Europe. Louis XIV. in an autograph letter (April 11, 1665) invited him to take charge of the completion of the Louvre. France was a triumphal procession; but his plans involved the destruction of all of the Louvre that had already been built, and were never carried out.
He returned to Italy in the spring of 1666 loaded with honors and with gifts. Upon his death at the age of 82 he left a large fortune.