1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Anquetil, Louis Pierre

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ANQUETIL, LOUIS PIERRE (1723-1808), French historian, was born in Paris, on the 21st of February 1723. He entered the congregation of Sainte-Geneviève, where he took holy orders and became professor of theology and literature. Later, he became director of the seminary at Reims, where he wrote his Histoire civile et politique de Reims (3 vols., 1756-1757), perhaps his best work. He was then director of the college of Senlis, where he composed his Esprit de la Ligue ou histoire politique des troubles de la Fronde pendant le XVIe et le XVIIe siècles (1767). During the Reign of Terror he was imprisoned at St Lazare; there he began his Précis de l’histoire universelle, afterwards published in nine volumes. On the establishment of the national institute he was elected a member of the second group (moral and political sciences), and was soon afterwards employed in the office of the ministry of foreign affairs, profiting by his experience to write his Motifs des guerres et des traités de paix sous Louis XIV., Louis XV, et Louis XVI. He is said to have been asked by Napoleon to write his Histoire de France (14 vols., 1805), a mediocre compilation at second or third hand, with the assistance of de Mézeray and of Paul François Velly (1709-1759). This work, nevertheless, passed through numerous editions, and by it his name is remembered. He died on the 6th of September 1808.