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Bible Encyclopedias
Rollin, Charles

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

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a French historian, who formerly enjoyed, if he did not merit, an extensive popularity, was the son of a cutler, and was born in Paris, Jan. 30, 1661. He studied at the College du Plessis, where, in 1683, he became assistant to the professor of rhetoric, and four years later obtained the chair for himself. In 1688 he was called to the chair of eloquence at the College Royal de France, and for some ten years he discharged the duties of his office with remarkable zeal and success. In 1694 he was chosen rector of the University of Paris, a dignity which he held for two years, and signalized his brief tenure of office by many useful reforms, both in regard to discipline and study, and by his warm defense of the privileges of the university. His efforts to revive the study of Greek, then falling back into neglect, were particularly creditable to him, although his career as rector constitutes perhaps his best claim to the regard of posterity, and has certainly left a more permanent impression than his writings, for its influence is perceptible even to the present day. In 1699 he was appointed coadjutor to the principal of the College of Beauvais; but was removed from this situation in 1712 through the machinations of the Jesuits, for Rollin was a strenuous Jansenist. For the next three years he devoted himself exclusively to learned study, the fruit of which was his edition of Quintilian (Paris, 1715, 2 vols.). In 1720 he was re-elected rector of the university, and in the same year published his Traite des Etudes, which M.Villemain has pronounced "a monument of good sense and taste," and which is justly regarded as his best literary performance, for his Histoire Ancienne (ibid. 1730-38, 12 vols.), though long prodigiously popular, and translated into several languages (the English among others), is feeble in its philosophy, jejune in its criticism, and often inaccurate in its narrative. Nevertheless, to multitudes both in this country and in France it has formed the introduction to the study of ancient history. Frederick the Great, then the prince royal of Prussia, among otler princely notabilities, wrote to compliment the author, and opened up a correspondence with him. In 1738 Rollin published his Histoire Romaine (ibid. 9 vols.), a much inferior work, now almost forgotten. He died Sept. 14, 1741.

Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Rollin, Charles'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/​encyclopedias/​eng/​tce/​r/rollin-charles.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.
 
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