To dwell upon such literary infamies would be below the dignity of the historian, were it not that these habits of the early Italian humanists imposed a fashion upon Europe which extended to the later age of Scaliger's contentions with Scioppius and Milton's with Salmasius.
In 1607 Gaspar Scioppius, then in the service of the Jesuits, whom he afterwards so bitterly libelled, published his Scaliger hypobolimaeus (" The Supposititious Scaliger"), a quarto volume of more than four hundred pages, written with consummate ability, in an admirable and incisive style, with the entire disregard for truth which Scioppius always displayed, and with all the power of his accomplished sarcasm.
He immediately wrote a reply to Scioppius, entitled Confutatio fabulae Burdonum.
In the opinion of the highest authority, Mark Pattison, "as a refutation of Scioppius it is most complete"; but there are certainly grounds for dissenting, though with diffidence, from this judgment.
Scaliger undoubtedly shows that Scioppius committed more blunders than he corrected, that his book literally bristles with pure lies and baseless calumnies; but he does not succeed in adducing a single proof either of his father's descent from the La Scala family, or of any single event narrated by Julius as happening to himself or any member of this family prior to his arrival at Agen.
Nor does he even attempt a refutation of the crucial point, which Scioppius had proved, as far as a negative can be proved - namely, that William, the last prince of Verona, had no son Nicholas, the alleged grandfather of Julius, nor indeed any son who could have been such grandfather.
Scioppius was wont to boast that his book had killed Scaliger.
Julius is simply held up to ridicule, while the life of Joseph is almost wholly based on the book of Scioppius and the Scaligerana.