Menard, Leon

Menard, Leon a French antiquary, was born Sept. 12, 1706, at Tarasgon. After having studied successfully at the college of the Jesuits at Lyons, he took his degree in law at Toulouse, and succeeded his father in the position of counsellor to the inferior court of Ninmes. After 1744 he resided almost continually at Paris, whither he had been sent in the interest of his clients. Largely devoted to the study of history and antiquity, he made himself known by his History of the Bishops of Nimes, the success of which opened to him in 1749 the doors of the Academy of Inscriptions. He also became a member of the academies of Lyons and of Marseilles. In 1762 he went to Avignon, and, at the express invitation of the magistrates, he spent two years in collecting the materials necessary for a history of that city; but, his health failing, he was obliged to desist from this work. He died Oct. 1, 1767, at Paris. Menard wrote, Histoire des Eviques de Nimes (La Haye [Lyons], 1737, 2 vols. 12mo); revised in the Histoire of that city :- Histoire civile, ecclesiastique, et litteraire de la Ville de Nimes, avec des Notes et les Preuves (Paris, 1750-58, 7 vols. 4to). The only fault of this learned work is its excessive prolixity. An abridgment of it has appeared, continuing as far as -1790 (Nimes, 183133, 3 vols. 8vo):-Refutation du Sentiment de Voltaire qui traite d'Ouvrage suppose le "Testament du Cardinal Richelieu" (anonymous, 1750, 12mo). Foncemagne joined Menard in sustaining the authenticity of a writing that -Voltaire persisted in declaring apocryphal:-Pieces fugitives pour servir a l'Histoire de, France avec des Notes historiques et geographiques (Paris, 1759, 3 vols. 4to). This valued collection, published in cooperation with the marquis D'Aubois, contains a number of researches respecting persons, places, dates, etc., from 1546 to 1653 :-Vie de Flechier, at the head of an edition of the works of that prelate, but of which only the first volume appeared (1760, 4to). Menard is also the author of several dissertations, which have been printed in' the Memoires de I'A;cademie des Inscriptions. See Le. Beau, Eloge de Menard, in the Mem. de l'A cad. des Inscript. vol. xxxvi; Necrologe des Hommes illustres de la France (1770).

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