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MELIA, PIUS, D.D. (1800–1883), Roman catholic divine, born at Rome in 1800, became professor of literature in the Jesuits' College there, and afterwards visited Corsica, Tuscany, and other countries as a missionary priest. In 1848 he came to England and took charge of the mission at St. Leonards, whence he was removed to Walthamstow. About fourteen years later he was made almoner of the Italian Benevolent Society, and sought to ameliorate the condition of the poor Italian immigrants to this country, and to prevent the abuses arising from the importation of Italian children. For many years he officiated on Sundays at Brentwood, and also preached to the Italians of London on Sunday afternoons. He was a member of the Pious Society of Missions, and the erection of the Italian church of St. Peter in Hatton Garden, London, was in great measure due to his persevering efforts. He died in London on 25 May 1883, and was buried at St. Mary's, Kensal Green. He was the author of: 1. ‘Doctrines of St. Thomas Aquinas on the Rulers and Members of Christian States, extracted and explained,’ London, 1860, 8vo; entitled on the cover ‘The Pope, the Prince, and the People.’ 2. ‘The Origin, Persecution, and Doctrines of the Waldenses, from documents,’ London, 1870, 4to. 3. ‘Hints and Facts on the Origin of Man, and of his Intellectual Faculties,’ London, 1872, 8vo.

[Annual Reg. 1883, p. 152; Tablet, 2 June 1883, p. 873; Times, 1 June 1883, p. 8, col. 4; Weekly Register, 2 June 1883, p. 699.]

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