Dupin, Louis Ellies
Dupin, Louis Ellies a learned doctor of the Sorbonne, eminent as an ecclesiastical historian, was born at Paris June 17, 1657. In 1684 he became doctor of the Sorbonne, and was afterwards lecturer on moral philosophy, and devoted his life chiefly to the study of ecclesiastical history and literature. He died at Paris June 6, 1719.
Dupin rendered himself conspicuous as an opponent of the bull Unigenitus, and by his moderation gained the friendship of several Protestant divines, such as archbishop Wake. It is especially as the historian of ecclesiastical literature that Dupin has rendered valuable service to theology. He had an uncommon talent for analyzing the works of an author; and he gives not only a history of the writers, but also the substance of what they wrote, in his Bibliotheque, of which the best edition is Nouvelle Bibliotheque des auteurs ecclesiastiques contenant histoire de la vie, le catalogue, la critique et la chronologie de leurs ouvrages, etc., Paris, 1688 (47 volumes, 8vo); reprinted at Amsterdam (19 volumes, 4to); translated into English under the title A new History of Ecclesiastical Writers, etc., including the 17th century (London. 1693-1707, 17 volumes, fol., bound in 7). There is a Dublin edition without the 17th century (1722-24, 3 volumes, fol.). No theological library is complete without Dupin, although many of his statements must be corrected by the additional light which modern research has thrown upon Church history. The freedom and general impartiality of Dupin's views brought upon him attacks from the Benedictine monks and from Bossuet, with whom he maintained a very successful controversy.
Dupin was also brought into trouble by the celebrated Case of Conscience. This Case of Conscience was a paper signed by forty doctors of the Sorbonne in 1702, which allows latitude of opinion with respect to the sentiments of the Jansenists. It occasioned a bitter controversy, and most of those who signed it were censured or punished. Dupin was not only deprived of his professorship, but banished to Chatellerault. At length, by the interest of friends, he was permitted to return but his professorship was not restored. Clement XI sent formal thanks to Louis XIV for bestowing this chastisement upon Dupin; and in the brief which he addressed to the king on that occasion, characterized him as a man who held very pernicious opinions, and who had been guilty of a criminal opposition to the proper authority of the apostolical see. Dupin afterwards met with trouble under the regency on account of the correspondence which he held with Dr.
Wake, archbishop of Canterbury, which had for its object the formation of a union between the Church of England and the Church of France. Dupin drew up a Commonitorium, and discussed in it the Thirty-nine Articles. He insisted on the necessity of tradition, on the infallibility of the Church in faith and morals, and contended that the sacrifice of the mass was not a simple sacrament, but a continuation of the sacrifice of the cross. The word transubstantiation he seemed willing to give up if the Roman Catholic doctrine, intended to be expressed by it, were retained. He proposed that communion under both kinds, or under bread alone, should be left to the discretion of the different churches, and consented that persons in holy orders should retain their state, with such provisions as would place the validity of their ordination beyond exception. The marriage of priests in the countries in which such marriages were allowed, and the recitation of the divine service in the vulgar tongue, he allowed; and intimated that no difficulty would be found in the ultimate settlement of the doctrine respecting purgatory, indulgences, the veneration of saints, relics, or images. He seems to have thought that the pope can exercise no immediate jurisdiction within the dioceses of bishops, and that his primacy invested him with no more than a general conservation of the deposit of the faith, a right to enforce the observance of the sacred canons, and the general maintenance of discipline. He allowed, in general terms, that there was little substantially wrong in the discipline of the Church of England; he deprecated all discussion on the original merit of reformation, and he professed to see no use in the pope's intervention till the basis of the negotiation should be settled" (Hook, Ecclesiastes Biography, 4:512 sq.). The correspondence is given in Maclaine's 3d Appendix to his translation of Mosheim, Ecclesiastical History.
Besides his great work on Ecclesiastical Writers, Dupin published De antiqua Ecelesiae Disciplina (Paris, 1686, 4to): Liber Psalmorum, cum notis (Paris, 1691, 8vo): — Le Livre des Psalmes, traduit selon hebreu (Par. 1691, 12mo): — S. Optati Afri Milevitani episcopi, De Schismate Donatistarum, cum notis (Paris, 1700, fol.): — Notae in Pentateuchum (Paris, 1701, 8vo): — Lajuste defense du sieur Dupin (Cologne, 1693, 12mo): — Defense de la censure de la Faculte de thiologie de Paris contre les Memoires de la Chine [du P. Lecomte jesuite] (Par. 1701, 8vo): — De la Necessite de la Foi en Jesus Christ pour etre sauve (Paris, 1701, 8vo): — Dialogues posthumes du sieur de la Bruyere sur le quietisme (Paris, 1699, 12mo): — Traite de la Doctrine chretienne et orthodoxe
(Paris, 1703, 8vo): — Joannis Gersonii, doctoris et cancellarii Parisiensis, Opera (Amsterd. 1703, 5 volumes, fol.): — L'Histoire d'Apollone de ,Tyane convaincue de faussete et d'imnposture (Paris, 1705, 12mo): — Traite de la Puissance ecclesiastique et temporelle (Paris, 1707, 8vo): — Bibliotheque universelle des Historiens (Paris, 1707, 8vo): — Lettre surfancienne Discipline de l'Eglise touchant la celebration de la Messe (Paris, 1708, 12mo): — Histoire des Juifs depuis Jesus-Christ jusqu'l present (Par. 1710, 12mo): — Dissertations historiques, chronologiques, et critiques, sur la Bible (Paris, 1711, 8vo): — L'Histoire de Eglise en abrege (Paris, 1712, 12mo): — Histoire profane, depuis son commencement jusqu'a present (Par. 6 volumes, 12mo): — Analyse de l'Apocalypse, contenant une nouvelle explication simple et litterale de cevre, avec des dissertations sur les Millinaires (Paris, 1714, 12mo): — Traite historique des excommunications (Paris, 1715, 12mo): — Methode pour etudier la theologie (Paris, 1716, 12mo): — Defense de la Monarchie de Sicile contre les entreprises de la cour de Rome (Amsterdam, 1716, 12mo): — Traite philosophique et theologique sur amour de Dieu (Paris, 1717, 12mo): — Bibliotheque des Auteurs separes de la communion romaine du seizieme et du dix septieme siecle (Paris, 1718, 8vo).