She was to a considerable extent selftaught; and her love of reading made her acquainted first with Plutarch - a passion for which author she continued to cherish throughout her life - thereafter with Bossuet, Massillon, and authors of a like stamp, and finally with Montesquieu, Voltaire and Rousseau.
As an orator his eloquence has been likened to that of both Bossuet and Vergniaud, but it had neither the polish of the old 17th century bishop nor the flashes of genius of the young Girondin.
Bossuet (Reponse au livre de M.
Voltaire said that his sermons surpassed those of Bossuet (whose retirement in 1669, however, practically coincided with Bourdaloue's early pulpit utterances); and there is little doubt that their simplicity and coherence, and the direct appeal which they made to hearers of all classes, gave them a superiority over the more profound sermons of Bossuet.
Brooke, Great French Preachers (sermons of Bourdaloue and Bossuet, London, 1904); F.
Bossuet (1627-1704), who remains perhaps the greatest preacher whom the world has ever seen.
Around that of Bossuet were collected other noble names: Louis Bourdaloue (1632-1704), whom his contemporaries preferred to Bossuet himself; Esprit Flechier (1632-1710), the politest preacher who ever occupied a Parisian pulpit; and Jules Mascaron (1634-1703), in whom all forms of eloquence were united.
A generation later appeared Baptiste Massillon (1663-1742), who was to Bossuet as Racine to Corneille; and Jacques Saurin (1677-1730), whose evangelical sermons were delivered at the Hague.
For this reason, probabilism found vigorous opponents in Bossuet and other eminent divines; and various of its excesses were condemned by the popes during the latter half of the 17th century.
His style is strongly tinged with preciosite; and his chief surviving interest is as a glaring example of the evils from which Bossuet delivered the French pulpit.
She was buried at St Denis, her funeral oration being pronounced by her friend Bossuet, and it was asserted that she had been poisoned by order of her husband.
So late as the 16th century, Bossuet delivered a panegyric upon her, and it was the action of Dom Deforis, the Benedictine editor of his works, in criticizing the accuracy of the data on which this was based, that first discredited the legend.
A posthumous work entitled Contemplatio Philosophica was printed for private circulation in 1793 by his grandson, Sir William Young, Bart., prefaced by a life of the author, and with an appendix containing letters addressed to him by Bolingbroke, Bossuet, &c. Several short papers by him were published in Phil.
This was the conception expressed by Bossuet, "Tout l'etat est en la personne du prince," or in Louis XIV.'s saying, "L'etat c'est moi."
Other notable Roman Catholic historians of the 17th and 18th centuries were Natalis Alexander, Bossuet, Tillemont, Fleury, Dupin and Ceillier.
Bossuet, in educating the dauphin, added to the ordinary classical routine represented by the extensive series of the " Delphin Classics " the study of history and of science.
The Jesuits, on the other hand, claimed Corneille and Moliere, as well as Descartes and Bossuet, Fontenelle, Montesquieu and Voltaire.
The catechisms of Bellarmine (1603) and Bossuet (1687) had considerable vogue, and a summary of the former known as Schema de Parvo was sanctioned by the Vatican council of 1870.
It was elaborated, and connected with dogmatic Gallicanism, by the famous theologian, Edmond Richer (1559-1631), and finally incorporated by Bossuet in a solemn Declaration of the French Clergy, made in 1682.
Turenne, Moliere, Bossuet, Maintenon (Louvre), La Valliere, Sevigne, Montespan, Descartes (Castle Howard), all the beauties and celebrities of his day, sat to him.
Massillon enjoyed in the 18th century a reputation equal to that of Bossuet and of Bourdaloue, and has been much praised by Voltaire, D'Alembert and kindred spirits among the Encyclopaedists.
The discussions were approved by the pope and the emperor, but had no popular feeling behind them, and though the negotiations were continued for ten years, especially between Molanus on the one side and Bossuet on the other, no agreement was reached, for the Protestants could not accept the Council of Trent as authoritative or surrender the matter of communion under both species.
Jurieu defended the doctrines of Protestantism with great ability against the attacks of Antoine Arnauld, Pierre Nicole and Bossuet, but was equally ready to enter into dispute with his fellow Protestant divines (with Louis Du Moulin and Claude Payon, for instance) when their opinions differed from his own even on minor matters.
In 1777 he published under the title of Discours choisis his panegyrics on Saint Louis, Saint Augustine and Fenelon, his remarks on Bossuet and his Essai sur l'eloquence de la chaire, a volume which contains much good criticism, and remains a French classic. The book was often reprinted as Principes de l'eloquence.
As a critic he was a very able writer, and Sainte-Beuve gives him the credit of discovering Father Jacques Bridayne, and of giving Bossuet his rightful place as a preacher above Massillon; as a politician, his wit and eloquence make him a worthy rival of Mirabeau.
In the hands of Bossuet and other eminent divines it was developed along both theological and political lines.
In other words, Bossuet only answered Santarelli by setting up the divine right of kings, However, this dogma by no means scandalized the subjects of Louis XIV., for the worship of the sovereign was one of their most cherished instincts.
There the vision of a reunion with the Protestants had haunted many Catholic brains ever since Bossuet and Leibniz had corresponded on the subject.
Bossuet and the old-fashioned divines had believed in an elaborate system of checks and balances - popes, councils, bishops, temporal sovereigns each limiting and controlling the other - just as Montesquieu and Alexander Hamilton had believed in a careful separation of the executive from the legislative power.
The French bishops of the age of Bossuet had been a powerful estate of the realm, able in some degree to make their own terms with the king himself; their successors in the 10th century were a mere group of salaried public officials.
His protest against Louis XIV.'s extended claim to regalian rights called forth the famous Declaration of Gallican Liberties by a subservient French synod under the lead of Bossuet (1682), which the pope met by refusing to confirm Louis's clerical appointments.
He became a favourite disciple of Bossuet, and at the bishop's instance undertook to refute certain metaphysical errors of Father Malebranche.
More important were his Dialogues on Eloquence, wherein he entered an eloquent plea for greater simplicity and naturalness in the pulpit, and urged preachers to take the scriptural, natural style of Bossuet as their model, rather than the coldly analytic eloquence of his great rival, Bourdaloue.
Bossuet attacked this position as inconsistent with Christianity.
On the point of doctrine all good judges agree that Fenelon was wrong; though many still welcome the obiter dictum of Pope Innocent, that Fenelon erred by loving God too much, and Bossuet by loving his neighbour too little.
Of late years, however, Bossuet has found powerful defenders; and if they have not cleared his character from reproach, they have certainly managed to prove that Fenelon's methods of controversy were not much better than his.
Bossuet can only be thought of as the high-priest of authority and common-sense; but Fenelon has been made by turns into a sentimentalist, a mystical saint, an 18th-century philosophe, an ultramontane churchman and a hysterical hypocrite.
He came just at a time when the characteristic ideas of the 17th century - the ideas of Louis XIV., of Bossuet and Boileau - had lost their savour, and before another creed could arise to take their place.
Modern authorities are Fenelon a Cambrai (Paris, 1885), by Emmanuel de Broglie; Fenelon, by Paul Janet (Paris, 1892); Bossuet et Fenelon, by L.
Carlyle stands to Bossuet as the sage to the myth.
In not asserting more strongly the direct papal claim, whilst many French theologians, and especially Bossuet, condemned him for his defence of ultramontanism.
His speeches are lmost the one monument of the struggle on which a lover of english greatness can look back with pride and a sense of wort ness, such as a churchman feels when he reads Bossuet, or an A glican when he turns over the pages of Taylor or of Hooker.: urke's attitude in these high transactions is really more imp essive than Chatham's, because he was far less theatrical than Ch tham; and while he was no less nobly passionate for freedom and j stice, in his passion was fused the most strenuous political argu entation and sterling reason of state.
It is natural that the " variations " with which Bossuet reproached the Protestants should demand more space.
Had not Bodin, Hobbes and Bossuet taught that the force which gives birth to kingdoms serves best also to feed and sustain them?
His passion for absolutism made him consider himself master of souls as well as bodies, and Bossuet did nothing to contravene an opinion which was, indeed, common to every and the sovereign of his day.
Bossuet, Louis XIV.s mouthpiece, triumphed in his turn over the quietism of Madame Guyon, a mystic who recognized neither definite dogmas nor formal prayers, but abandoned herself to the torrent of the forces of God.
Given his adherence to her doctrine, was obliged to submit in 1699; but Bossuet could not make the spirit of authority prevail against the religious criticism of a Richard Simon or the philosophical polemics of a Bayle.
He went through his course of theological studies with great distinction, defeating Bossuet at the Baccalaureat in theology.
Serrant, L' Abbe de Rance et Bossuet (1903).