Racine, Bonaventure

Racine, Bonaventure a French priest and historian, was born at Chauny, Nov. 25, 1708, and was the son of the most illustrious of French poets. He was educated at Paris, in the College Mazarin, and made remarkable progress in the languages and in theology. In 1729 he was placed at the head of the College de Rabasteins; but in 1731, becoming satisfied of the injustice done the Jansenists in the bull Uligenitus, SEE JANSENISM, he took ground against it, and thereby so displeased the powers that were at Rome and at Paris that he was displaced. The bishop of Montpellier, however. took his part, and gave him the presidency of the college at Lunel. But the Jesuits set the flames of opposition going, and Racine was obliged to quit Lunel in much haste. He went to Paris, ant there supported himself by teaching as a private tutor after having been ousted, by order of the cardinal Fleury, from a minor position he had secured at a Paris college. Finally the bishop of Auxerre, M. de Caylus, took an interest in Racine, called him into his diocese, and gave him a canonicate in his cathedral. He died May 15, 1755. He wrote much. His principal work is an Abriee de l'Histoire Ecclesiastique (Paris, 1748-56, 13 vols. 4to), which clearly reveals the position of its author on the important ecclesiastical questions of his time, and is a valuable index to the Jansenistic proclivities of France in the 18th century. His Reflexions sur l'Histoire Ecclsiastique (2 vols. 12mo) are not less valuable. See Feller, Dict. Historique, s.v. — Hoefer, Nouv. Biog. Generale, s.v.

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