ENRICO CATERINO DAVILA (1576-1631), Italian historian, was descended from a Spanish noble family.
But in 1570 the island was taken by the Turks; and Antonio Davila, the father of the historian, had to leave it, despoiled of all he possessed.
Davila was murdered, while on his way to take possession of the government of Cremona for Venice in July 1631, by a ruffian, with whom some dispute seems to have arisen concerning the furnishing of the relays of horses ordered for his use by the Venetian government.
The best account of the life of Davila is that by Apostolo Zeno, prefixed to an edition of the history printed at Venice in 2 vols.
Peter Bayle is severe on certain historical inaccuracies of Davila, and it is true that Davila must be read with due remembrance of the fact that he was not only a Catholic but the especial protege of Catherine de' Medici, but it is not to be forgotten that Bayle was as strongly Protestant.
It included, besides Hearne's Ductor historicus and the successive volumes of the Universal History, which was then in course of publication, Littlebury's Herodotus, Spelman's Xenophon, Gordon's Tacitus, an anonymous translation of Procopius; "many crude lumps of Speed, Rapin, Mezeray, Davila, Machiavel, Father Paul, Bower, &c., were hastily gulped.
As early as 1450 a company of Jewish converts in Spain, at the head of which were Paul de Heredia, Vidal de Saragossa de Aragon, and Davila, published compilations of Kabbalistic treatises to prove from them the doctrines of Christianity.'
In 1519 Pedrarias Davila transferred the Darien settlement to Panama.
Gil Gonzalez Davila penetrated from the Gulf of Nicoya to the western provinces and sent his lieutenant Cordova to circumnavigate the great lake.
The country is said to take its name from Nicaras or Nicaragua (also written Micaragua), a powerful Cholutec chief, ruling over most of the land between the lakes and the Pacific, who received Davila in a friendly spirit and accepted baptism at his hands.