Brisson, Barnaby

, president of the parliament of Paris, and an eminent lawyer, was born at Fontenay in Poictou, about the middle of the sixteenth century. He appeared at first with great eclat at the bar of the parliament; and, by his knowledge and skill in the law, recommended himself so powerfully to Henry III. of France, that this prince first made him his advocate general, then counsellor of state, and in 1580, honoured him with the dignity of president of the parliament. Scsevola Sammarthanus relates, that Henry III. declared in his hearing, that there was not a prince in Christendom, who could boast of so learned a man as Barnaby Brisson. The king employed him in several negociations, and sent him ambassador into England. At his return, he employed him to make a collection of his own ordinances, and of those of his predecessors; which he performed with wonderful expedition. He wrote some works in law: “De verbormxi, qua) ad jus pertinent, significatione.” “De formulis et solemnibus populi Romani verbis,Paris, 1583, fol. “De | regip Persarum principatu,” &c. 1580, 1590, 1599, 8voj 1606, 4to; but the best edition is that of Strasburgh, 1710, 8vo, with Sylburgius’ notes. H gave an expectation of more considerable performances; but his life was shortened by a very unfortunate accident. Living at Paris when that rebellious city was besieged by Henry IV. he remonstrated against the treasonable practices of the leaguers, who, under pretence of the holy union, contemned the royal authority, which was much more sacred. These religious traitors, being dissatisfied with his loyalty, fell violently upon him, dragged him to prison, and cruelly strangled him the 15th of Nov. 1591. 1

1 Moreri. —Chaufepie.Dict. Hist. Freheri Theatrum. Blounl’s Ctflsura. Memoirs of Literature, vol. IV, p. 7.