Charles Rollin

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Charles Rollin
Coypel, Charles-Antoine (1694–1752) and Touzé, Jean (1747–1809), Charles Rollin, Rector of the University of Paris (Sorbonne Library, NuBIS)

Charles Rollin (born January 30, 1661 in Paris , † September 14, 1741 ibid) was a French historian and educator .

life and work

Charles Rollin was the son of a poor cutler from Montbéliard . As a boy he served a Benedictine at mass, and since the Benedictine was satisfied with him and knew how to appreciate his abilities, he found him a place at the Collège des Dix-huit. Rollin then studied theology at the Sorbonne and, without having received the higher ordinations, took over a professorship at the Collège du Plessis in 1683 . In 1688 he became professor of eloquence at the Collège de France , held the post of Rector of the University of Paris from 1694-96 , where he revived the study of Greek, among other things, and from 1696 developed a successful career as head of the Collège de Beauvais . Because of his sympathy for Jansenism , he had to resign in 1712, devoted himself to writing for young people and opposed the bull Unigenitus Dei filius . In 1720 he was re-elected as rector of the University of Paris, but dismissed after a few days. From 1701 he was a member of the Académie des inscriptions et belles-lettres . He died in Paris on September 14, 1741 at the age of 80.

Rollin has written many educational works and historical works intended for young readers, but the latter are uncritical and somewhat imprecise. The most important literary works of Rollins are:

  • Institutionum oratoriorum libri duodecim ... , abridged edition Quintilians , 2 vols., 1815
  • Traité de la manière d'enseigner et d'étudier les belles-lettres par rapport à l'esprit et au cœur ... , 4 vols., Paris 1726–28 (better known as Traité des études )
  • Histoire ancienne des Egyptiens, Carthaginois, Assyria, Babylonia, Mèdes et des Perses, des Grecs,… , 13 vols., Paris 1730–38
  • Histoire romaine , 16 vols., Paris 1738–48 (Rollin was only able to carry on the work until his death until the Battle of Actium (31 BC); it was continued by his student Jean-Baptiste-Louis Crevier )

Rollins' collected works appeared in Paris from 1807 to 1810 in 60 volumes and were edited by François Guizot (30 vols., Paris 1821-27, with atlas) and by Jean Antoine Letronne (30 vols., Paris 1821-25). Hachette (7 vols., 1837–41) and Didot (23 vols. 1845–63) organized new editions of his works. In his honor, the Paris Collège Sainte-Barbe was renamed Collège Rollin in 1830 by order of the French government .