Born at Bagni di Lucca on March 21,1875, he was awarded a degree in Chemistry and Pharmacology in 1897. At the start of his university career he served as assistant to Hugo Schiff (1834-1915), founder of the University of Florence Chemical Institutes. After having taught as professor at the Universities of Cagliari, Siena and Genoa, he was appointed to the Chair in Chemistry at the University of Bologna in 1923. Stereochemistry and, in particular, the problems linked to the relationship between the chemical constitution and the rotatory power of molecules were at the centre of his studies. Particularly significant were his contributions on optical activity in natural substances, in which he managing to synthesize optically active compounds from exclusively "dead" matter, an achievement that he divulged in his most famous work Chimica organica e vitalismo [Organic chemistry and vitalism] (1941). Noteworthy among his writings are some studies of hydrological nature: Le acque minerali dell'Alto Adige e del Trentino. Indagini chimiche e chimico-fisiche [The mineral waters of Alto Adige and the Trentino. Chemical and chemical-physical studies] (1933) and Le acque termali dei Bagni di Lucca [The Thermal Waters of Bagni di Lucca] (1937). A national member of the Academy of the Lincei since 1932 he was named Senator of the Kingdom, for his merits, in 1939. He died in Bologna at the age of 67.
Last update 25/feb/2008