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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.
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