Foucault, Nicolas Joseph

, born at Paris Jan. 8, 1643, was a man of some political rank, advocate-general to the grand council, a celebrated intendant, and chief of the council to ber royal highness madame, duchess of Orleans, and in the literary world was an eminent antiquary, and an honorary member of the academy of belles-lettres; He was successively intendant of Montauban, of Pau, and of Caen, and within six miles of the latter place, discovered in 1704 the ancient town of the Vinducassians. An exact account of this discovery is inserted in the first volume of the history of the academy of inscriptions, with an enumeration of the coins, marbles, and other antiquities there found. His museum, formed from this and other sources, was of the most magnificent kind. Some time before this, he had made a literary discovery also, having found, in the abbey of Moissac in Querci, a ms. of “Lactantius de mortibus Persecutorum,” then only known by a citation of St. Jerom from it. From this ms. Baluce published the work. He died Feb. 7, 1721. He was of gentle manners, though austere virtue; and pleasing, though deeply learned. 2