Pontas, Jean

Pontas, Jean a French prelate, was born Dec. 31, 1638, at Saint-Hilaire-du-Harcouet (diocese of Avranches). Brought up by his maternal uncle, M. d'Arqueville, he studied successively under his eves in his native city, then at the Jesuits' College of Rennes, finally in Paris at the College de Navarre. In 1663 he received, for reasons unknown, in the space of ten days, all the orders, inclusive of that of priesthood, from the bishop of Toul, with the consent of the bishop of Avranches. He was scarcely twenty-four years old. In 1668 he obtained the titles of doctor of canon and of civil law. The archbishop of Paris, Perefine, appointed him vicar of the parish of Sainte- Genevieve-des-Ardents, all easy place, which left him time enough for his learned pursuits. He next became sub-penitentiary of Notre Dame, and retired to the Petits-Augustins of the fauIbourg Saint-Germain, where he died, April 27, 1728. His principal work is the Dictionaire des Cas de Conscience (Paris, 1741, 3 vols. fol.). It is the completest on this subject, in the treatment of which Pontas displayed uncommon sagacity and great caution. His decisions founded on imposing authorities, are equally distant from loose morality and narrow rigorisma twofold danger which works of this description seldom avoid altogether. — Hoefer, Nouv. Biog. Géneralé, S. V.

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