The regular clerics of San Paolo are called Barnabites and postpone the letter B to their name. That of the Barnabites is one of the oldest regular orders, whose name derives from the mother house, in the church of San Barnaba in Milan. They submit to vows of charity, obedience, chastity, and the oath not to hold office of any kind.
The presence of the order in Livorno dates back to the 17th century. During the plague of the seventeenth century, they distinguished themselves as rescuers and they were granted as a reward the possibility of building the church of San Sebastiano, protector, in fact, of the plague victims.
In 1779 they became custodians of the Municipal Library of San Sebastiano, but their main function was as educators. Their college educated the best Labronic youth, not all of them, however, only those belonging to the wealthiest families, as it is in the spirit of the Barnabite colleges of Italy.
In the nineteenth century, their school, considered bleak and oppressive by many young people, formed, and put in contact with each other, many of those who would later become the prominent personalities of the Risorgimento culture of Livorno, from Carlo Bini to Francesco Domenico Guerrazzi.