Reference Entry

Mabillon, Jean

Andrew G. Watson

in Oxford Art Online

ISBN: 9780198661252
Published online January 2003 | e-ISBN: 9781884446054 | DOI:
Mabillon, Jean

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(b Saint-Pierremont, Ardennes, Nov 23, 1632; d Paris, Dec 27, 1707).

French historian and antiquary. A member of the Benedictine Order from 1654, he was called to St Germain-des-Prés Abbey in Paris in 1664 as an assistant to the aged scholar Luc d’Achery and remained a member of that house until his death. Although a monk of great piety, Mabillon was not remote from the world: his Order was in touch with the learning of Paris, and he travelled widely and maintained a vast correspondence with contemporary scholars. Added to his distinguished mind and character he possessed a fine sense of judgement and the ability to digest and order an immense range of material, and he was able to express himself in Latin of unusual clarity. Although he made errors of judgement (for example in his dating of the statues of kings and queens at St Germain-des-Prés, where he may have been influenced by a desire to give as impressively early a date as possible to the founding of the Abbey), and many of his conclusions have been discredited (Vanuxem), his writings remain of value due to the method they expound. ...

Reference Entry.  358 words. 

Subjects: Christian Art

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