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Molinier, Augusts

MOLINIER, AUGUSTS (1851-1904), French historian, was born at Toulouse on the 30th of September 1851. He was a pupil at the ficole des Charles, which he left in 1873, and also at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes; and he obtained appointments in the public libraries at the Mazarine (1878), at Fontainebleau (1884), and at St Genevieve, of which he was nominated librarian in 1885. He was a good palaeographer and had a thorough knowledge of archives and manuscripts; and he soon won a first place among scholars of the history of medieval France. His thesis on leaving the ficole des Chartes was his Catalogue des actes de Simon et d'Amauri de Montfort (inserted in vol. xxxiv. of the Bibliotheque de I'icole, an important contribution to the history of the Albigenses. This marked him out as a capable editor for the new edition of L'histoire generale de Languedoc by Dom Vaissete: he superintended the reprinting of the text, adding notes on the feudal administration of this province from 900 to 1250, on the government of Alphonso of Poitiers, brother of St Louis from 1226 to 1271, and on the historical geography of the province of Languedoc in the middle ages. He also wrote a Bibliographie du Languedoc, which was awarded a prize by the Academic des inscriptions et belleslettres, but remained in manuscript. He also published several documents for the Societe de 1'Orient Latin (Itinera hierosolymitana, in collaboration with Ch. Kohler, 1885) ; for the Societe de 1'Histoire de France (Chronique normande du xiif siecle, assisted by his brother Emile, 1883) ; for the Collection de textes relalifs a I'enseignement de I'histoire ( Vie de Louis le Gros, by Suger, 1887); for the Collection des documents inedits (Correspondance administrative d'Alfonse de Poitiers, 1894-1900); for the Recueil des hisloriens de la France (Obituaires de la province de Sens 1904, 1906), etc., and several volumes in the Recueil des catalogues des bibliotheques publiques de France. Applying to the French classics the rigorous method used with regard to the texts of the middle ages, he published the Pensees of Pascal, revised with the original manuscript (1887-1889), and the Provinciales (1891), edited with notes. In 1893 he was nominated professor at the ficole des Chartes, and gave a successful series of lectures which he published (Manuel des sources de I'histoire de France au moyen age, 1902-1906). He also taught at the ficole des Hautes fitudes. He died on the 19th of May 1904, after a short illness, leaving in manuscript a criticism on the sources of the Speculum historiale of Vincent de Beauvais.

His elder brother, CHARLES (b. 1843), is also of some importance as an historian, particularly on the history of art and on the heresies of the middle ages. He was appointed professor of history at the university of Toulouse in 1886.

A younger brother, EMILE (1857-1906), became an assistant in the print-room at the Bibliotheque Nationale, and afterwards joined the staff at the Musee du Louvre, of which he eventually became keeper, retiring in 1902. He was a well-known connoisseur of art. He organized the famous Exposition Retrospective held at the Petit Palais in 1900, and published a number of expert volumes on enamels, ceramics and furniture.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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