Girolamo Cardano was born in Pavia in 1501, the illegitimate son of Fazio Cardano and Chiara Micheria. His father was a Milanese notary, but also a scholar of mathematics and optics, and a friend of Leonardo da Vinci. Girolamo studied medicine at the University of Pavia, and then at Padua, where he graduated in 1525. He began a medical practice (initially in Sacco, a small village near Padua, where he married the daughter of a soldier, and thereafter in Milan), but encountered many difficulties because his illegitimate birth prevented him from being accepted in the College of Physicians of Milan. In order to survive, he practiced games of chance, dice gambling and chess: a very difficult period that would nevertheless promote his …

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Vecce, Carlo. "Girolamo Cardano". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 08 June 2009
[, accessed 29 September 2016.]