Page:Catholic Encyclopedia, volume 10.djvu/126

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MEAUX


98


MEAUX


favourable recocnition. Tho Presentation Sisters have founilatious in MullinKarand Kalian, where they have charge of the primary schools, while the Sisters of Mercy have orphanages at Navari anil Kells, take care of the hospitals in Tullamore, Trim, Mullingar, Drogheda, and Navan, and at the same time conduct national schools in the principal towns of the diocese.

The Diocese of Meath, often called the "royal dio- cese", is rich in historic associations, pagan and Chris- tian. In Meath was Tara "of the kings", the palace of the Ard-righ, whither came the chieftains and princes, the banls and brehons of Erin. The princi- pal cemetery of the pagan kings of Ireland was at Brugh-na-Boinne. Competent authorities declare that the surrounding tumuli are among the oldest in Europe. Clo.se at hand is Rosnaree, where Cormac Mac .Vrt, the first Christian King of Ireland, who refused to be buried in pagan Erugh, awaits the last summons. Uisneach in Westmeath, Tlachtgha, or the Hill of Ward, and Teltown were celebrated for their royal palaces, their solemn conventions, their pagan games, and their druidic ceremonies, and in Christian times were sanctified bj' the labours of St. Patrick and St. Brigid. Slane reminds us of St. Patrick's first Holy Saturday in Ireland, when he lit the paschal fire, symbolizing the lamp of Faith which has never since been extinguished. Trim, founded by St. Loman, one of the first disciples of St. Patrick, still retains in its many ruins striking evidences of its departed glories. Kells, with its round tower, its splendid sculptured crosses, and the house of Colum- cille, reminds us of that "Dove of the Irish Church", whose memory is also cherished in his beloved Durrow. Finally, Meath is the birthjilace of the Venerable Oliver Plunket, the martyred Primate of Armagh, the last victim publicly sacrificed in England for the Faith. Coc.KN, Diocese of Meath (Dublin, 1862); Healt, Ancient Schools of Ireland (Dublin, 1890); Irish Ecclesiastical Record (June, 1900); Irish Catholic Directory (Dublin, 1910).

Patrick E. Duffy.

Meaux, Diocese of (Meldensis), comprises the en- tire department of Seine and Marne, suffragan of Sens until 1622, and subsequently of Paris. The Concor- dat of 1801 had given to the Diocese of Meaux the de- partment of Marne, separated from it in 1821 and 1822 by the establishment of the archiepiscopal See of Reims and the episcopal See of Chalons. The pres- ent Diocese of Meaux is made up of the greater part of the former Diocese of Meaux, a large part of the former Diocese of Sens, a part of the former Diocese of Paris, and a few parishes of the former Dioceses of Troyes, Soissons and Senlis. Hildegaire, who lived in the ninth century-, says in his "Life of St. Faro" (Burgundo- faro), that this bishop was the twentieth since St. Denis. According to the tradition accepted by Hilde- gaire, St. Denis was the first Bishop of Meaux, and was succeeded by his disciple St. Saintin, who in turn was succeeded by St. .\ntoninus; and another saint, named Rigomer, occupied the See of Meaux at the close of the fifth century. In 876 or 877, Hincmar showed Charles the Bald a document which he claimed had been transcribed from a very old copy and according to which St. Antoninus and St. Saintin, disciples of St. Denis, had brought to Pope Anacletus the account of the martyrdom of St. Denis, and on their return to Gaul had successively occupied the See of Meaux. (For these traditions see Pahis.)

According to Mgr. Duchesne, the first Bishop of Meaux historically known is Medovechus, present at two councils in 549 and 552. Of the bishops of Meaux the following may be mentioned (following Mgr. AUou's chronology): St. Faro (626-72), whose sister St. Fara founded the monastery of Faremoutiers, and who him- self built at Meaux the monastery of St-Croix; St. Hil- devert (672-680) ; St. Pathus, who died about 684 be- fore being consecrated; St. Ebrigisilus (end of the seventh century) ; St. Gilbert (first half of the eleventh


<'entury); Durand de St-Pourgain (l.'526-l;j,'54), cora- nientator on the "Book of Sentences", known as the "resolutive doctor"; Philippe de Vitry (1351-1361), friend of Petrarcli and author of the " Metamorphoses d'Ovide Moralis(5es " ; Pierre Fresnel (13!)()-1409), sev- eral times ambassador of Charles VI; Pierre de Ver- sailles (1439-1446), charged with important missions by Eugene IV, and who, when commissioned by Charleys VII in 1429 to examine .Joan of Arc, had de- clared himself convinced of the Divine mission of the Maid of Orleans; Guillaunie Brigonnet (1516-1534), ambassador of Francis I to Leo X, and during whose episcopate the Reformation was introduced by Farel and Gerard Roussi'l, whom he had personally called to his diocese for tln' revi\al of studies; Cardinal Antoine du Prat (1534-1535), who had an active share in the drawing up of the concordat between Francis I and Leo X; the controversial writer and historian Jean du Tillet (1564-1570); Louis de Br^^z^. twice bishop, first from 1554 to 1564, then from 1570 to 1589, during whose episcopate the diocese was greatly disturbed by religious wars; Dominique St^guier (1637-1659), the first French bishop to establish "ecclesiastical con- ferences" in his diocese; the great Bossuet (1681- 1704); Cardinal de Bissy (1705-1737), celebrated for his conflict with the Jansenists; De Barral (1802- 1805), later Grand Almoner of Empress Josephine and Archbishop of Tours, who took a prominent part in 1810 and 1811 in the negotiations between Napoleon and Pius VII. In 1 562 most of the inhabitants of Meaux had become Protestants, and Joachim de Montluc, sent by the king, proceeded with rigour against them. They were still sufficiently powerful in 1567 to attempt to carry off, in the vicinity of Meaux, Catherine de' Medici and Ch.arles IX; and so for that reason, shortly after St. Bartholomew's day, Charles IX ordered the massacre of the Protestants of Meaux. At the ch;iteau of Fontainebleau, built by Francis I, was held the theological conference of 4 May, 1600, between the Catholics (Cardinal du Perron, de Thou, Pithou) and the Calvinists (du Plessis Mornay, Philippe Canaye, Isaac Casaubon).

A number of saints are found in the history of this diocese: St. Autharius, a relative of St. Faro, who re- ceived St. Columbanus in his domain at Ussy-sur- Marne, and father of Blessed Ado, who founded about 630 the two monasteries of Jouarre, and of St. Ouen, who founded the monastery of Rebais in 634 ana subsequently became Bishop of Rouen; the anchorite St. F^fre or Fiacre, and the missionary St. Chillen, both Irishmen, contemporaries of St. Faro (first half of the seventh ccntur}'); St. Aile (Agilus), monk of Lux- euil, who became in 634 the first Abbot of Rebais; St. Telchilde, died about 660, first Abbess of Jouarre; St. Aguilberte, second Abbess of Jouarre, a sister of St.- Ebrigisilus (end of seventh century); St. Bathilde, wife of Clovis II, foundress of the abbey of Chelles, died in 680; St. Bertille, first Abbess of Chelles, and St. Ethcria, first Abbess of Notre-Dame of Soissons (658), both of Uiem pupils at the abbey of Jouarre; finally, St. Vincent Madelgaire (or Mauger), founder of the monasteries of Haumont and Soignies; his wife, St. Waldetrude, foundress of the monastery of Mons; St. Aldegoiide, sister of St. Waldetrude, first Abbess of Maubeuge; St. Landry, Abbot of Soignies, claimed by some as a Bishop of Meaux; St. Adeltrude and St. Malberte, nuns of Maubeuge, the last three being children of St. Vincent Madelgaire and St. Walde- trude (seventh century).

Eugene III stayed some days at Meaux in 1 147. In 1664 Blessed Eudes preached for two months at Meaux. Mme Guyon passed the first six months of 1695 at the Visitation convent of Meaux, where Bofs- suet had frequent conferences with her, but failed to make her abandon her peculiar views. The celebrated Pere Loriquet (1767-1845) was superior from 1812 to 1814 of the preparatory seminary of Chfiage, in the