Bernard, Catharine

, of the academy of the Ricovrati of Padua, was born at Rouen, and died at Paris in J7 12. She acquired some poetical fame, her works being everal times crowned by the French academy, and that of the Jeux floraux. Two of her tragedies were represented at the French theatre, “Laodamia,” in 1689, and “Brutus” in 1690. It is thought she composed these pieces conjointly with Fontenelle and the two Corneille’s, who were her relations. She wrote also some other poems with ease and delicacy. Some distinction is set upon her poetical petition, which has some wit, to Louis XIV. to ask for the 200 crowns, the annual gratification given her by that prince it is inserted in thfc “Recueil de vers choisis du pere Bouhours.” She discontinued writing for the theatre at the instance of madame de Pont-Chartrain, who gave her a pension. She even suppressed several little pieces, which might have given a bad impression of her manners and religion. Three romances are likewise ascribed to her “The count d'Amboise,” in 12mo “The miseries of Love;” and “Ines of Cordova,” 12mo. Some of the journalists have attributed to mademoiselle Bernard the account of the isle of Borneo, and others to FonteneHe. “It may be doubted,” says the abbé Trublet, “whether it be hers and it is to be wished that it is not.” It is an allegorical account of the religious disputes of that period. Beauchamps says she wrote the tragedy of “Bradamante,” represented in 1695, which is certainly the same with that in the works of Thomas Corneille. Her Eloge is in the “Histoire du Theatre Francois.2


Dict. Hist.—Biog. Universelle.—Moreri.