Regnier De Marets

, or Des-Marais (Francis Seraphin), a French writer, was born at Paris in 1632 and, at fifteen, distinguished himself by translating the “Batrachomyomachia” into burlesque verse. At thirty, he went to Rome as secretary to an embassy. An Italian ode of his writing procured him a place in the academy de la Crusca in 1667; and, in 1670, he was elected a member of the French academy. In 1684, he was made perpetual secretary, after the death of Mezeray; and it was he who drew up all those papers, in the name of the academy, against Furetiere. In 1668, the king gave him the priory of Grammont, which determined him to the ecclesiastical function: and, in 1675, he had an abbey. His works are, an Italian translation of Anacreon’s odes, which he dedicated to the academy de la Crusca in 1692; a French grammar and two volumes of poems, in French, Latin, Italian, and Spanish. He translated, into French, Tully “De Divinatione, & de Finibus” and Rodrigue’s “Treatise of Christian perfection,” from the Spanish. He died in 17 Is, aged 82. “He has done great service to language,” says Voltaire, | and is the author of some poetry in French and Italian. He contrived to make one of his Italian pieces pass for Petrarch’s but he could not have made his French verses pass for those of any great French poet.1


Dict. Hist. Nicerem in Desmarais, vol. V.