Matthaeus Fortunatus was born probably some time after 1480 in Hungary but little is known about his background, education, or career, until the point when he met an older Hungarian humanist, István Broderics (known as Brodericus), at Buda and accompanied him on a 1522 embassy to Italy. Fortunatus arrived in Venice in April of that year, where it is possible that he made the acquaintance of Aldus. He moved on, however, to study Greek and Latin at Padua, depending for his livelihood on both Italian and Hungarian patrons in Italy such as Prince Gianludovico Saluzzo. His edition of Seneca, published by Aldus, was dedicated to this patron. Fortunatus based his work largely on the edition of Seneca published by Erasmus at Basel in 1515. However, he corrected many mistakes and produced an edition that is philologically much superior. His work is now regarded as being the first effort of its kind in Hungarian classical studies.