Poulle, Nicolas-louis

Poulle, Nicolas-Louis a French preacher, was born Feb. 10, 1703, at Avignon. He was destined to the magistracy, and studied law. But he did not allow those grave pursuits to interfere with his poetical tastes, and presented at the Jeux Floraux several poems which were crowned. Towards 1735 he received orders, and from that time devoted himself entirely to oratory. Encouraged by the favor some of his panegyrics and sermons had met with at the hands of his countrymen, he repaired to Paris in 1738, and preached in nearly all the great pulpits. In 1745 a life-rent of a thousand francs on the abbey of l'Argentiere was bestowed upon him; in 1748 he was nominated commendatory abbé of Nogent-sous-Coulcy, after pronouncing the panegyric of Saint-Louis before the French Academy. He was subsequently honored with the titles of ordinary preacher of the king and of grand vicar of Laon. Some writers have compared the abbé Poulle with Massillon: such a parallel can only be made by those who mistake brilliancy of style for eloquence. He might be more properly compared with the abbé De Boismont, his contemporary; they have the same qualities and the same defects. The abbé Poulle did not aspire to the honors of authorship: he was not in the habit of writing his sermons. In 1776, complying with the wishes of his nephew, Louis Poulle, grand vicar of Saint-Malo, he dictated to him eleven sermons which he had preserved in his memory for forty years, and these sermons were published, after he had corrected them himself, in Paris in 1778, 1781,1818, 1821 (2 vols. 12mo). This edition contains also his Panegyrique de Saint-Louis (1748, 4to) and a Discours pour la Prise d'Habit de Mme. de Rupelmonde aux Carmelites (1752, 12mo). The Bibliotheque das Orateulrs Chretiennes edited a volume of AEruvres Choisies of the abbé Poulle (1828, 18mo), preceded by a biographical notice. He died at Avignon Nov. 8, 1781. Hoefer, Nouv. Biog. Géneralé, s.v. See De Sainte Croix, Eloge de Poulle (Avignon, 1783, 8vo).

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