Daubenton, William

, a French Jesuit, of some fame, was born at Auxerre October 21, 1648, and aftt-r performing his noviciate, became a member of the society of Jesuits at Nancy in 1683. After preaching with much success for some time, his health obliged him to desist, and he was chosen companion or assistant of the provincial. He was afterwards elected rector of the college of Strasburgh, and promoted to be provincial of Champagne. He would have been advanced to another ecclesiastical government, had not Louis XIV. requested that he might continue in the college of Strasburgh, more effectually to establish some regulations which he had begun when-first appointed rector. In 1700 the king appointed him confessor to Philip V. of Spain, and he remained in high favour with that prince until the courtiers, grown jealous of his power, prevailed upon the king to send him from the court in 1706. He was, however, recalled again in 1716, and being reinstated in his office, gained a still greater ascendancy over the mind of Philip V. This prince, when disgusted with his throne, and wishing to abdicate it, confided his design to Daubenton, who is said to have betrayed the secret to the duke of Orleans, which conduct terminated in his disgrace a second time, but the manner of it is variously represented by historians. He died, however, in 1723. His character is doubtful, some main.aining that he was a man of intrigue, and others that he made no improper use of his talents or influence. His works consist chiefly of funeral orations, and a life of St. Francis Regis, Paris, 1716, 4to, which was translated and published in English, Lond. 1738, 8vo, a work full of absurd miracles. He published likewise a more enlarged account of the merits of this saint, entitled “Scripta varia in causa beatificationis et canonrzationis J. F. Regis,Rome, 1710 and 1712, 2 vols. folio. 2