Frayssinous Denis, Count of

Frayssinous Denis, Count Of, an eminent prelate of the Gallican Church, bishop of Hermopolis, peer of France, commander of the order of the Holy Ghost, etc., was born May 9, 1765, at Curieres, in Gascony. His father designed him for the law, but he preferred the Church, and in 1788 he attached himself to the community of Laon, directed by the priests of St. Sulpica, in Paris. The society was broken up by the Revolution, but after the adoption of Napoleon's concordat in 1801 it was reunited, and Frayssinous became lecturer on dogmatic theology. In 1803 he commenced a series of "catechetical conferences" in St. Sulpice, which had great success. Napoleon threatened to break up these conferences unless Frasyssinous would make certain political recommendations to his hearers; but be waould not consent, nor was he further disturbed. These meetings were suspended by the Church authorities from 1809 to 1814, then continued till 1822; and his lectures at them were printed under the title Defense de Christianisme (Paris, 1823, 3 volumes, 8vo), containing a resume of previous books on the evidences, with additional scientific arguments. It was translated into English, Defense of Christianily, in a Series of Lectures, etc. (London,.1836, 2 volumes, 8vo). After the restoration (1814) he became very popular at court, and was made first almoner of Louis XVIII. He refused to accept the bishopric of Nismes, but in 1822 was made bisnop of Hermopolis in partibus infidellum. In the same year he was made grand master of the University and a member of the Academy, and one of his first acts was to put an end to Guizot's lectures on history "as of dangerous tendency." In 1824 he became peer of France and minister of public instruction and worship. He was also minister of worship under Charles X, but soon retired; and gave his advice, in retirement, against the famous Ordonnances which led to the Revolution of 1830. He followed the fortunes of Charles X, who died in his arms at Goritz. Frayssinous died at St. Genibz December 12, 1841. His life was written by Henrion (2 volumes, 8vo). Besides the work mentioned above, he wrote Les Vrais Principes de I'Eglise Gallicane sur la puissance ecclesiastique, la papaute, etc. (1817, 8vo), a work said by the Ultramosntanists to "look towards Jansenism, or something worse." According to it, the pope is infallible only when in harmony with the voice of the entire Church. —Hoefer, Nouv. Biog. Generale, 18:619.

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