Pellegrin, Simon Joseph

, an abbe, and an author by profession, of some celebrity at Paris, was born at Marseilles in 1663, and became a religious of the order of Servites. Being tired of this mode of life, he took some voyages as chaplain to a vessel. On his return, he wrote a poem called “An Epistle to the King on the glorious Success of his Arms,” which gained the prize irt th french academy in 1704. With this Epistle Pellegrin had sent an Ode on the same subject, which proved the only formidable rival to his Epistle, and for some time divided the opinions of the academy. This singular success made him known at court. Madame Maintenoti took notice of | him, and gained him a brevet to be translated into the order pf Cluni. Pellegrin subsisted solely by the prizes he gained in several literary academies, and his other literary labours. He even kept a kind of shop, where those who wanted occasional verses, as epigrams, sonnets, madrigals, &c. were supplied at certain prices, according to the number and goodness of the lines. This trade growing slack, he began to write for the theatres, but here a new obstacle arose. The cardinal de Noailles insisted that he should either cease to write for the stage, or to officiate at the mass. He would fain have had a dispensation on this $ubject, but, the cardinal being inexorable, he gave up the mass, as least profitable. He would, however, have felt the loss of the latter, had not his friends procured him a salary for writing the account of the theatrical entertainments in the Mercure. Pellegrin deserved to be in better circumstances, for a great part of what he earned so laboriously was distributed among his relations: and his disposition was singularly candid and modest. He was, at the same time, negligent of his appearance, and had an impediment in his speech; circumstances which conspired to plunge him in that neglect he so severely experienced. He lived, however, to the age of 82; and closed this long life on the 5th of September, 1745. His works are very various; poems of all kinds, sacred and profane; versions of the Psalms and other parts of Scripture; comedies, operas, &c. the general character of all which is, that they are seldom excellent in their plans, and that the veriification is almost invariably flat and tedious. 1