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Bible Encyclopedias

1911 Encyclopedia Britannica

la Roche-Sur-Yon

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A town of western France, capital of the department of Vendee, on an eminence on the right bank of the Yon, 48 m. S. of Nantes on the railway to Bordeaux. Pop. (1906) town 10,666, commune 13,685. The castle of La Roche, which probably existed before the time of the crusades, and was frequently attacked or taken in the Hundred Years' War and in the wars of religion, was finally dismantled under Louis XIII. When Napoleon in 1804 made this place, then of no importance, the chief town of a department, the stones from its ruins were employed in the erection of the administrative buildings, which, being all produced at once after a regular plan, have a monotonous effect. The equestrian statue of Napoleon I. in an immense square overlooking the rest of the town; the statue of General Travot, who was engaged in the "pacification" of La Vendee; the museum, with several paintings by P. Baudry, a native artist, of whom there is a statue in the town, are the only objects of interest. Napoleon-Vendee and Bourbon-Vendee, the names borne by the town according to the dominance of either dynasty, gave place to the original name after the revolution of 1870. The town is the seat of a prefect and a court of assizes, and has a tribunal of first instance, a chamber of commerce, a branch of the Bank of France, a lycee for boys and training colleges for both sexes. It is a market for farm-produce, horses and cattle, and has flour-mills. The dog fairs of La Roche are well known.

Laromiguiere, Pierre (1756-1837), French philosopher, was born at Livignac on the 3rd of November 1756, and died on the 12th of August 1837 in Paris. As professor of philosophy at Toulouse he was unsuccessful and incurred the censure of the parliament by a thesis on the rights of property in connexion with taxation. Subsequently he came to Paris, where he was. appointed professor of logic in the Ecole Normale and lectured in the Prytanee. In 1799 he was made a member of the Tribunate, and in 1833 of the Academy of Moral and Political Science. In 1793 he published Projet d'elements de metaphysique, a work characterized by lucidity and excellence of style. He wrote also two Memoires, read before the Institute, Les Paradoxes de Condillac (1805) and Lecons de philosophic (1815-1818). Laromiguiere's philosophy is interesting as a revolt against the extreme physiological psychology of the natural scientists, such as Cabanis. He distinguished between those psychological phenomena which can be traced directly to purely physical causes, and the actions of the soul which originate from within itself. Psychology was not for him a branch of physiology, nor on the other hand did he give to his theory an abstruse metaphysical, basis. A pupil of Condillac and indebted for much of his ideology to Destutt de Tracy, he attached a fuller importance to Attention as a psychic faculty. Attention provides the facts, Comparison groups and combines them, while Reason systematizes and explains. The soul is active in its choice, i.e. is endowed with freewill, and is, therefore, immortal. For natural science as a method of discovery he had no respect. He held that its judgments are, at the best, statements of identity, and that its so-called discoveries are merely the reiteration, in a new form, of previous truisms. ' Laromiguiere was not the first to develop these views;. he owed much to Condillac, Destutt de Tracy and Cabanis. But,. owing to the accuracy of his language and the purity of his style, his works had great influence, especially over Armand Marrast, Cardaillac and Cousin. A lecture of his in the Ecole Normale impressed Cousin so strongly that he at once devoted himself to the study of philosophy. Jouffroy and Taine agree in describing him as one of the great thinkers of the 19th century.

See Damiron, Essai sur la philosophie en France au XIX e siecle; Biran, Examen des lecons de philosophic; Victor Cousin, De Methodo sive de Analysi; Daunou, Notice sur Laromiguiere; H. Taine, Les Philosophes classiques du XIX e siecle; Gatien Arnoult, Etude sur Laromiguiere; Compayre, Notice sur Laromiguiere; Ferraz, Spiritualisme et Liberalisme; F. Picavet, Les Ideologues.

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Bibliography Information
Chisholm, Hugh, General Editor. Entry for 'la Roche-Sur-Yon'. 1911 Encyclopedia Britanica. 1910.

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