Catrou, Francis

, a learned and industrious writer, was born at Paris Dec. 28, 1659. After studying classics and philosophy, he relinquished the bright prospects of promotion held out to him by his maternal uncle M. de Lubert, who was treasurer-general of the marine; entered the society of the Jesuits in 1677, and completed his vows in 1694 at the college of Bourges, where he then | resided. After teaching for a certain number of years, agreeably to the custom of his society, his superiors ordained him to the pulpit, and he became a very celebrated preacher for some years, at the end of which the “Journal de Trevoux” was committed to his care: he appears to have been editor of it from 1701, and notwithstanding his almost constant attention to this journal, which for about twelve years he enriched with many valuable dissertations and extracts, he found leisure for various separate publications. In 1705, he published his “Histoire generate de Tempire du Mogul,Paris, 4to, or 2 vols. 12mo, and often reprinted. It is taken from the Portuguese memoirs of M. Manouchi, a Venetian. In 1706 appeared his “Histoire duFanatisme des religions protestantes,Paris, 12mo, containing only the history of the anabaptists; but he reprinted it in 1733, 2 vols. 12mo, with the history of Davidism, and added the same year in a third volume, the history of the Quakers. This work is in more estimation abroad than it probably would be in this country. He employed himself for some time on a translation of Virgil into prose, which was completed in 1716, Paris, 6 vols. 12mo, and was reprinted in 1729, 4 vols. The notes and life of Virgil are the most valuable part of the book, although his admirers affected to consider him as excelling equally as commentator, critic, and translator. That, however, on which his fame chiefly rests, is his “Roman History,” to which his friend Rouilie contributed the notes. This valuable work was completed in 20 vols. 4to, and was soon translated into Italian and English, the latter in 1728, by Dr. Richard Bundy, 6 volg. folio. Rouilie, who undertook to continue the history, 'after the death of his colleague, published only one volume in 1739, 4to, and died himself the following year. Father Routh then undertook the continuation, but the dispersion of the Jesuits prevented his making much progress. As a collection of facts, this history is the most complete we have, and the notes are valuable, but the style is not that of the purest historians. Catrou preserved his health and spirits to an advanced age, dying Oct. 18, 1737, in his seventy-eighth year 1