Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/Antoine Massoulié

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Theologian, born at Toulouse, 28 Oct., 1632; died at Rome, 23 Jan., 1706. At an early age he entered the order of St. Dominic, in which he held many important offices; but above all these, he prized study, teaching, and writing, for the love of which he refused a bishopric and asked to be relieved of distracting duties. It was said that he knew by heart the Summa of St Thomas. He devoted himself with such earnestness to the study of Greek and Hebrew that he could converse fluently in both of these languages. His knowledge of Hebrew enabled him to overcome in public debate two Jewish Rabbis, one at Avignon in 1659, the other at Florence in l695. The latter became an exemplary Christian, his conversion being modestly ascribed by Massoulié to prayer more than to successful disputation. His published works and some unpublished manuscripts (preserved in the Casanatense Library at Rome) may be divided into two classes: those written in defence of the Thomistic doctrine of physical premotion, relating to God's action on free agents, and those written against the Quietists, whom he strenuously opposed, both by attacking their false teaching and also by explaining the true doctrine according to the principles of St. Thomas. His principal works are: "Divus Thomas sui interpres de divina motione et libertate creata" (Rome, 1692); "Oratio ad explicandam Summan theologicam D. Thomae" (Rome, 1701); "Méditationes de S.Thomas sur les trois vies, purgative, illuminative et unitive" (Toulouse, 1678); "Traité de la véritable oraison, où les erreurs des Quiétistes sont réfutées" (Paris, 1699); "Traité de l'amour de Dieu" (Paris, 1703).

D.J. KENNEDY