Vaissette, Joseph

, a French historian, was born in 1685, at Gaillac in Agenois. He was for some time king’s attorney in the country of the Albigenses, but in 1711 entered the Benedictine order in the priory of la Daurade at Toulouse. His studious turn, and taste for history, induced his superiors to send for him to Paris in 1713, where they employed him in writing the history of Languedoc with Claude de Vic. The first volume appeared 1730, and de Vic dying in 1734, the whole of this great work devolved on Vaissette, who executed it with success, and published the four other volumes. At the end of each are learned and curious notes, and throughout the whole he is candid and impartial, especially in speaking of the protestants. He had before written a small piece “On the Origin of the French Monarchy,” which was well received; and afterwards published an abridgment of his “History of Languedoc,1749, 6 vols. 12mo. Vaissette has also left a “Universal Geography,” 4 vols. 4to, and 12 vols. 12mo, which was formerly thought one of the best the French had, though not wholly free from errors. He died in the abbey of St. Germain-des-Pres’at Paris, April 10, 1756. 2