Ernest Renan

Joseph Ernest Renan (French: [ʁənɑ̃]; 28 February 1823 – 2 October 1892)[2] was a French expert of Semitic languages and civilizations (philology), philosopher, biblical scholar and critic,[3] and historian of religion. He is best known for his influential and pioneering historical works on the origins of Early Christianity,[3] and his political theories, especially concerning nationalism and national identity. Renan is credited as being among the first scholars to advance the Khazar theory, which held that Ashkenazi Jews were descendants of the Khazars, Turkic peoples who had adopted Jewish religion and migrated to Western Europe following the collapse of their khanate.

Ernest Renan
A black and white photograph of Renan
Ernest Renan by Antoine Samuel Adam-Salomon, circa 1870s
Joseph Ernest Renan

28 February 1823
Died2 October 1892 (aged 69)
Era19th-century philosophy
RegionWestern philosophy
SchoolContinental philosophy
Main interests
Philosophy of religion, political philosophy
Notable ideas
Civic nationalism[1]
Signature of Ernest Renan


Birth and family

Maison Musée Ernest Renan Tréguier
Ernest Renan birthplace museum in Tréguier

He was born at Tréguier in Brittany to a family of fishermen.[4] His grandfather, having made a small fortune with his fishing-shack, bought a house at Tréguier and settled there, and his father, captain of a small cutter and an ardent republican, married the daughter of a Royalist tradesman from the neighbouring town of Lannion. All his life, Renan was aware of the conflict between his father's and his mother's political beliefs. He was five years old when his father died, and his sister, Henriette, twelve years his senior, became the moral head of the household. Having in vain attempted to keep a school for girls at Tréguier, she departed and went to Paris as a teacher in a young ladies' boarding-school.


Ernest, meanwhile, was educated in the ecclesiastical seminary of his native town.[5] His school reports describe him as "docile, patient, diligent, painstaking, thorough". While the priests taught him mathematics and Latin, his mother completed his education. Renan's mother was half Breton. Her paternal ancestors came from Bordeaux, and Renan used to say that in his own nature the Gascon and the Breton were constantly at odds.[6]

During the summer of 1838, Renan won all the prizes at the college of Tréguier. His sister told the doctor of the school in Paris where she taught about her brother, and he informed F.A.P. Dupanloup, who was involved in organizing the ecclesiastical college of St Nicholas du Chardonnet, a school in which the young Catholic nobility and the most talented pupils of the Catholic seminaries were to be educated together, with the idea of creating friendships between the aristocracy and the priesthood. Dupanloup sent for Renan, who was only fifteen years old and had never been outside Brittany. "I learned with stupor that knowledge was not a privilege of the church ... I awoke to the meaning of the words talent, fame, celebrity." Religion seemed to him wholly different in Tréguier and in Paris. He came to view Abbé Dupanloup as a father figure.[7]

Study at Issy-les Moulineaux

In 1840, Renan left St Nicholas to study philosophy at the seminary of Issy-les-Moulineaux. He entered with a passion for Catholic scholasticism. Among the philosophers, Thomas Reid and Nicolas Malebranche first attracted him, and, then he turned to G. W. F. Hegel, Immanuel Kant and J. G. Herder.[7] Renan began to see a contradiction between the metaphysics which he studied and the faith he professed, but an appetite for verifiable truths restrained his scepticism. "Philosophy excites and only half satisfies the appetite for truth; I am eager for mathematics", he wrote to Henriette. Henriette had accepted in the family of Count Zamoyski an engagement more lucrative than her former job. She exercised the strongest influence over her brother.

Study at college of St Sulpice

It was not mathematics but philology which was to settle Renan's gathering doubts. His course completed at Issy, in 1844 he entered the college of St Sulpice in order to take his degree in philology prior to entering the church, and, here, he began the study of Hebrew. He realized that the second part of the Book of Isaiah differs from the first not only in style but in date, that the grammar and the history of the Pentateuch are later than the time of Moses, and that the Book of Daniel is clearly written centuries after the time in which it is set. St. Sulpice, at that time, was noticeably infected by the twin epidemics of philology and liberalism. At night he read the new novels of Victor Hugo; by day, he studied Hebrew and Syriac under Arthur-Marie Le Hir.[7] In October 1845, Renan left St Sulpice for Stanislas, a lay college of the Oratorians. Still feeling too much under the domination of the church, he reluctantly ended the last of his associations with religious life and entered M. Crouzet's school for boys as a teacher.

Scholarly career

Joseph Ernest Renan, by F. Mulnier
Portrait of Joseph Ernest Renan, by F. Mulnier

Renan, educated by priests, was to accept the scientific ideal with an extraordinary expansion of all his faculties. He became ravished by the splendor of the cosmos. At the end of his life, he wrote of Amiel, "The man who has time to keep a private diary has never understood the immensity of the universe." The certitudes of physical and natural science were revealed to Renan in 1846 by the chemist Marcellin Berthelot, then a boy of eighteen, his pupil at M. Crouzet's school. To the day of Renan's death, their friendship continued. Renan was occupied as usher only during evenings. During the daytime, he continued his researches in Semitic philology. In 1847, he obtained the Volney prize, one of the principal distinctions awarded by the Academy of Inscriptions, for the manuscript of his "General History of Semitic Languages." In 1847, he took his degree as Agrégé de Philosophie – that is to say, fellow of the university – and was offered a job as master in the lycée Vendôme.

In 1856, Ernest Renan married in Paris Cornélie Scheffer, daughter of Hendrik Scheffer and niece of Ary Scheffer, both French painters of Dutch descent. They had two children, Ary Renan, born in 1858, who became a painter, and Noémi, born in 1862, who eventually married Yannis Psycharis.

Life of Jesus

Within his lifetime, Renan was best known as the author of the enormously popular Life of Jesus (Vie de Jésus, 1863).[8][9] Renan attributed the idea of the book to his sister, Henriette, with whom he was traveling in Ottoman Syria and Palestine when, struck with a fever, she died suddenly. With only a New Testament and copy of Josephus as references, he began writing.[10] The book was first translated into English in the year of its publication by Charles E. Wilbour and has remained in print for the past 145 years.[11] Renan's Life of Jesus was lavished with ironic praise and criticism by Albert Schweitzer in his book The Quest of the Historical Jesus.[12]

Renan claimed Jesus was able to purify himself of "Jewish traits" and that Jesus became an Aryan, his Life of Jesus promoted racial ideas and infused race into theology and the person of Jesus, he depicted Jesus as a Galilean who was transformed from a Jew into a Christian, and that Christianity emerged purified of any Jewish influences.[13] The book was based largely on the Gospel of John, and was a scholarly work.[13] It depicted Jesus as a man but not God, and rejected the miracles of the Gospel.[13] Renan believed by humanizing Jesus he was restoring to him a greater dignity.[14] The book's controversial assertions that the life of Jesus should be written like the life of any historic person, and that the Bible could and should be subject to the same critical scrutiny as other historical documents caused some controversy[15] and enraged many Christians,[16][17][18][19] and many Jews were enraged because of its depiction of Judaism as foolish and absurdly illogical and for insisting that Jesus and Christianity was superior.[13]

Continuation of scholarly career: social views

Renan was not only a scholar. In his book on St. Paul, as in the Apostles, he shows his concern with the larger social life, his sense of fraternity, and a revival of the democratic sentiment which had inspired L'Avenir de la Science. In 1869, he presented himself as the candidate of the liberal opposition at the parliamentary election for Meaux. While his temper had become less aristocratic, his liberalism had grown more tolerant. On the eve of its dissolution, Renan was half prepared to accept the Empire, and, had he been elected to the Chamber of Deputies, he would have joined the group of l'Empire liberal, but he was not elected. A year later, war was declared with Germany; the Empire was abolished, and Napoleon III became an exile. The Franco-Prussian War was a turning-point in Renan's history. Germany had always been to him the asylum of thought and disinterested science. Now, he saw the land of his ideal destroy and ruin the land of his birth; he beheld the German no longer as a priest, but as an invader.

Ernest Renan in his study by Anders Zorn

In La Réforme Intellectuelle et Morale (1871), Renan tried to safeguard France's future. Yet, he was still influenced by Germany. The ideal and the discipline which he proposed to his defeated country were those of her conqueror—a feudal society, a monarchical government, an elite which the rest of the nation exists merely to support and nourish; an ideal of honor and duty imposed by a chosen few on the recalcitrant and subject multitude. The errors attributed to the Commune confirmed Renan in this reaction. At the same time, the irony always perceptible in his work grows more bitter. His Dialogues Philosophiques, written in 1871, his Ecclesiastes (1882) and his Antichrist (1876) (the fourth volume of the Origins of Christianity, dealing with the reign of Nero) are incomparable in their literary genius, but they are examples of a disenchanted and sceptical temper. He had vainly tried to make his country obey his precepts. The progress of events showed him, on the contrary, a France which, every day, left a little stronger, and he roused himself from his disbelieving, disillusioned mood and observed with interest the struggle for justice and liberty of a democratic society. The fifth and sixth volumes of the Origins of Christianity (the Christian Church and Marcus Aurelius) show him reconciled with democracy, confident in the gradual ascent of man, aware that the greatest catastrophes do not really interrupt the sure if imperceptible progress of the world and reconciled, also, if not with the truths, at least with the moral beauties of Catholicism and with the remembrance of his pious youth. [This entire section requires citation]

Definition of nationhood

Renan's definition of a nation has been extremely influential. This was given in his 1882 discourse Qu'est-ce qu'une nation? ("What is a Nation?"). Whereas German writers like Fichte had defined the nation by objective criteria such as a race or an ethnic group "sharing common characteristics" (language, etc.), Renan defined it by the desire of a people to live together, which he summarized by a famous phrase, "avoir fait de grandes choses ensemble, vouloir en faire encore" (having done great things together and wishing to do more). Writing in the midst of the dispute concerning the Alsace-Lorraine region, he declared that the existence of a nation was based on a "daily plebiscite." Some authors criticize that definition, based on a "daily plebiscite", because of the ambiguity of the concept. They argue that this definition is an idealization and it should be interpreted within the German tradition and not in opposition to it. They say that the arguments used by Renan at the conference What is a Nation? are not consistent with his thinking.[20]

Karl Deutsch (in "Nationalism and its alternatives") suggested that a nation is "a group of people united by a mistaken view about the past and a hatred of their neighbors." This phrase is frequently, but mistakenly, attributed to Renan himself. He did indeed write that if "the essential element of a nation is that all its individuals must have many things in common", they "must also have forgotten many things. Every French citizen must have forgotten the night of St. Bartholomew and the massacres in the 13th century in the South."

Renan believed "Nations are not eternal. They had a beginning and they will have an end. And they will probably be replaced by a European confederation”[21]

Renan's work has especially influenced 20th century theorist of nationalism, Benedict Anderson.

Late scholarly career

Renan in his Study in the College of France
Renan in his study in the College of France
Caricature of Ernest Renan, Vanity Fair
Renan caricatured by GUTH in Vanity Fair, 1910

Shifting away from his pessimism regarding liberalism's prospects during the 1870s while still believing in the necessity of an intellectual elite to influence democratic society for the good, Renan rallied to support the French Third Republic, humorously describing himself as a légitimiste, that is, a person who needs "about ten years to accustom myself to regarding any government as legitimate," and adding "I, who am not a republican a priori, who am a simple Liberal quite willing to adjust myself to a constitutional monarchy, would be more loyal to the Republic than newly converted republicans."[22] The progress of the sciences under the Republic and the latitude given to the freedom of thought that Renan cherished above all had allayed many of his previous fears, and he opposed the deterministic and fatalist theories of philosophers like Hippolyte Taine.[23][24]

As he got older, the philosopher contemplated his childhood. He was nearly sixty when, in 1883, he published the autobiographical Souvenirs d'Enfance et de Jeunesse, the work by which he is now best known in France.

They showed the blasé modern reader that a world no less poetic, no less primitive than that of the Origins of Christianity exists or still existed within living memory on the northwestern coast of France. They have the Celtic magic of ancient romance and the simplicity, the naturalness, and the veracity which the 19th century prized so highly. But his Ecclesiastes, published a few months earlier, his Drames Philosophiques, collected in 1888, give a more adequate image of his fastidious critical, disenchanted, yet optimistic spirit. They show the attitude towards uncultured Socialism of a philosopher liberal by conviction, by temperament an aristocrat. We learn in them how Caliban (democracy), the mindless brute, educated to his own responsibility, makes after all an adequate ruler; how Prospero (the aristocratic principle, or, if we will, the mind) accepts his dethronement for the sake of greater liberty in the intellectual world, since Caliban proves an effective policeman and leaves his superiors a free hand in the laboratory; how Ariel (the religious principle) acquires a firmer hold on life and no longer gives up the ghost at the faintest hint of change. Indeed, Ariel flourishes in the service of Prospero under the external government of the many-headed brute. Religion and knowledge are as imperishable as the world they dignify. Thus, out of the depths rises unvanquished the essential idealism of Renan.

Renan was a great worker. At sixty years of age, having finished the Origins of Christianity, he began his History of Israel, based on a lifelong study of the Old Testament and on the Corpus Inscriptionum Semiticarum, published by the Académie des Inscriptions under Renan's direction from the year 1881 till the end of his life. The first volume of the History of Israel appeared in 1887; the third, in 1891; the last two posthumously. As a history of facts and theories, the book has many faults; as an essay on the evolution of the religious idea, it is (despite some passages of frivolity, irony, or incoherence) of extraordinary importance; as a reflection of the mind of Renan, it is the most lifelike of images. In a volume of collected essays, Feuilles Détachées, published also in 1891, we find the same mental attitude, an affirmation of the necessity of piety independent of dogma. During his last years, he received many honors, and was made an administrator of the Collège de France and grand officer of the Legion of Honor. Two volumes of the History of Israel, his correspondence with his sister Henriette, his Letters to M. Berthelot, and the History of the Religious Policy of Philippe-le-Bel, which he wrote in the years immediately before his marriage, all appeared during the last eight years of the 19th century.

Renan died after a few days' illness in 1892 in Paris, and was buried in the Cimetière de Montmartre in the Montmartre Quarter.

Reputation and controversies

Hugely influential in his lifetime, Renan was eulogised after his death as the embodiment of the progressive spirit in western culture. Anatole France wrote that Renan was the incarnation of modernity. Renan's works were read and appreciated by many of the leading literary figures of the time, including James Joyce, Marcel Proust, Matthew Arnold, Edith Wharton, and Charles Augustin Sainte-Beuve.[25][26] One of his greatest admirers was Manuel González Prada in Peru who took the Life of Jesus as a basis for his anticlericalism. In his 1932 document "The Doctrine of Fascism", Italian dictator Benito Mussolini also applauded perceived "prefascist intuitions" in a section of Renan's "Meditations" that argued against democracy and individual rights as "chimerical" and intrinsically opposed to "nature's plans".[27]


Statue of Ernest Renan in Tréguier town square

In 1903 a major controversy accompanied the installation of a monument in Tréguier designed by Jean Boucher. Placed in the local cathedral square, it was interpreted as a challenge to Catholicism, and led to widespread protests, especially because the site was normally used for the temporary pulpit erected at the traditional Catholic festival of the Pardon of St Yves. It also included the Greek goddess Athena raising her arm to crown Renan gesturing in apparent challenge towards the cathedral.[28][29] The local clergy organised a protest Calvary sculpture designed by Yves Hernot as "a symbol of the triumphant ultramontaine church."

Views on race

Renan believed that racial characteristics were instinctual and deterministic.[30][31] He has been criticised for his claims that the Semitic race is inferior to the Aryan race.[32] Renan claimed that the Semitic mind was limited by dogmatism and lacked a cosmopolitan conception of civilisation.[33] For Renan, Semites were "an incomplete race."[34] Some authors argue that Renan developed his antisemitism from Voltaire's anti-Judaism.[35]

He did not regard the Ashkenazi Jews of Europe as being a Semitic people; Renan is credited with launching the so-called Khazar theory. This theory states that Ashkenazim had their origin in Turkic refugees that had converted to Judaism and later migrated from the collapsed Khazar Khanate westward into the Rhineland, and exchanged their native Khazar language for the Yiddish language while continuing to practice the Jewish religion. In his 1883 lecture "Le Judaïsme comme race et comme Religion" he disputed the concept that Jewish people constitute a unified racial entity in a biological sense,[36] which made his views unpalatable within racial antisemitism. Renan was also known for being a strong critic of German ethnic nationalism, with its antisemitic undertones.[37] His notions of race and ethnicity were completely at odds with the European antisemitism of the 19th and 20th centuries.

Renan wrote the following about the long history of persecution of Jews:

When all nations and all ages have persecuted you, there must be some motive behind it all. The Jew, up to our own time, insinuated himself everywhere, claiming the protection of the common law; but, in reality, remaining outside the common law. He retained his own status; he wished to have the same guarantees as everyone else, and, over and above that, his own exceptions and special laws. He desired the advantages of the nations without being a nation, without helping to bear the burdens of the nations. No people has ever been able to tolerate this. The nations are military creations founded and maintained by the sword; they are the work of peasants and soldiers; towards establishing them the Jews have contributed nothing. Herein is the great fallacy inspired in Israelite pretensions. The tolerated alien can be useful to a country, but only on condition that the country does not allow itself to be invaded by him. It is not fair to claim family rights in a house which one has not built, like those birds which come and take up their quarters in a nest which does not belong to them, or like the crustaceans which steal the shell of another species.[38]

However, during the 1880s, Renan shifted away from these views. In a lecture on "Judaism as a Race and as a Religion", he stated:

When, in 1791, the National Assembly decreed the emancipation of the Jews, it concerned itself very little with race. It considered that men ought to be judged, not by the blood that runs in their veins, but by their moral and intellectual value. It is the glory of France to take these questions by their human side. The work of the nineteenth century is to tear down every ghetto, and I have no praise for those who seek to rebuild them. The Israelite race has in the past rendered the greatest services to the world. Blended with the different nations, in harmony with the diverse national unities of Europe, it will continue to do in the future what it has done in the past. By its collaboration with all the liberal forces of Europe, it will contribute eminently to the social progress of humanity.[39][40]

And in 1883, in a lecture called "The Original Identity and Gradual Separation of Judaism and Christianity":

Judaism, which has served so well in the past, will still serve in the future. It will serve the true cause of liberalism, of the modern spirit. Every Jew is a liberal ... The enemies of Judaism, however, if you only look at them more closely, you will see that they are the enemies of the modern spirit in general.[41][42]

Other comments on race, have also proven controversial, especially his belief that political policy should take into account supposed racial differences:

Nature has made a race of workers, the Chinese race, who have wonderful manual dexterity and almost no sense of honor... A race of tillers of the soil, the Negro; treat him with kindness and humanity, and all will be as it should; a race of masters and soldiers, the European race. Reduce this noble race to working in the ergastulum like Negroes and Chinese, and they rebel... But the life at which our workers rebel would make a Chinese or a fellah happy, as they are not military creatures in the least. Let each one do what he is made for, and all will be well.[43]

This passage, among others, was cited by Aimé Césaire in his Discourse on Colonialism, as evidence of the alleged hypocrisy of Western humanism and its "sordidly racist" conception of the rights of man.[44]

Republican racism

During the arising of racism theories around Europe and specifically in France—French Republic (1870–1940)—Renan had an important influence on the matter. He was a defender of people's self-determination concept,[45] but on the other hand was in fact convinced of a "racial hierarchy of peoples" that he said was "established".[46] Discursively, he subordinated the principle of self-determination of peoples to a racial hierarchy,[47] i.e. he supported the colonialist expansion and the racist view of the Third Republic because he believed the French to be hierarchically superior (in a racial matter) to the African nations.[48] This subtle racism, called by Gilles Manceron "Republican racism"[49] was common in France during the Third Republic, and was also a well-known defensing discourse in politics. Supporters of colonialism used the concept of cultural superiority, and described themselves as "protectors of civilization" to justify their colonial actions and territorial expansion.


Archives and memorabilia


  • (1848). De l'Origine du Langage.
  • (1852). Averroës et l’Averroïsme.
  • (1852). De Philosophia Peripatetica, apud Syros.
  • (1854). L'Âme Bretonne.
  • (1855). Histoire Générale et Systèmes Comparés des Langues Sémitiques.
  • (1857). Études d'Histoire Religieuse.
  • (1858). Le Livre de Job.
  • (1859). Essais de Morale et de Critique.
  • (1860). Le Cantique des Cantiques.
  • (1862). Henriette Renan, Souvenir pour ceux qui l’ont Connue.
  • (1863-1881). Histoire des Origines du Christianisme:
    • (1863). Vie de Jésus.
    • (1866). Les Apôtres.
    • (1869). Saint Paul.
    • (1873). L’Antéchrist.
    • (1877). Les Évangiles et la Seconde Génération Chrétienne.
    • (1879). L’Église Chrétienne.
    • (1882). Marc-Aurèle et la Fin du Monde Antique.
    • (1883). Index.
  • [1864). Mission de Phénicie (1865–1874)
  • (1865). Prière sur l'Acropole.
  • (1865). Histoire Littéraire de la France au XIVe Siècle [with Victor Le Clerc].
  • (1868). Questions Contemporaines.
  • (1871). La Réforme Intellectuelle et Morale de la France.
  • (1876). Dialogues et Fragments Philosophiques.
  • (1878). Mélanges d’Histoire et de Voyages.
  • (1878-1886). Drames Philosophiques:
    • (1878). Caliban.
    • (1881). L’Eau de Jouvence.
    • (1885). Le Prêtre de Némi.[50]
    • (1886). L’Abbesse de Jouarre.
  • (1880). Conférences d’Angleterre.
  • (1881). L’Ecclésiaste.
  • (1882). Qu’est-ce qu’une Nation?
  • (1883). L’Islamisme et La Science: conférence faite à la Sorbonne, le 29 mars 1883.
  • (1883). Souvenirs d'Enfance et de Jeunesse.
  • (1884). Nouvelles Études d’Histoire Religieuse.
  • (1884). Le Bouddhisme.
  • (1887). Discours et Conférences.
  • (1887-1893). Histoire du Peuple d’Israël [5 volumes].
  • (1889). Examen de Conscience Philosophique.
  • (1890). L’Avenir de la Science, Pensées de 1848.
  • (1892). Feuilles Détachées.
  • (1899). Études sur la Politique Religieuse du Règne de Philippe le Bel.
  • (1904). Mélanges Religieux et Historiques.
  • (1908). Patrice.
  • (1914). Fragments Intimes et Romanesques.
  • (1921). Essai Psychologique sur Jésus-Christ.
  • (1928). Voyages: Italie, Norvège.
  • (1928). Sur Corneille, Racine et Bossuet.
  • (1945). Ernest Renan et l’Allemagne.

Works in English translation

  • (1862). An Essay on the Age and Antiquity of the Book of Nabathaean Agriculture. London: Trübner & Co.
  • (1864). Studies of Religious History and Criticism. New York: Carleton Publisher.
  • (1864). The Life of Jesus. London: Trübner & Co.
  • (1866). The Apostles. New York: Carleton Publisher.
  • (1868). Saint Paul. London: The Temple Company.
  • (1871). Constitutional Monarchy in France. Boston: Robert Brothers.
  • (1883). Islam and Science: A lecture presented at La Sorbonne, 29 March 1883. ; translated by S.P. Ragep. Montréal, Canada: McGill University. 2nd ed. 2011.
  • (1885). Lectures on the Influence of the Institutions, Thought and Culture of Rome, on Christianity and the Development of the Catholic Church. London: Williams & Norgate (The Hibbert Lectures).
    • (1888). English Conferences of Ernest Renan. Boston: James R. Osgood and Company.
  • (1888-1895). History of the People of Israel. London: Chapman & Hall [5 vols.]
  • (1888). Marcus-Aurelius. London: Mathieson & Company.
  • (1888). The Abbess of Jouarre. New York: G.W. Dillingham.
  • (1889). The Gospels. London: Mathieson & Company.
  • (1890). The Antichrist. London: Mathieson & Company.
  • (1890). Cohelet; or, the Preacher. London: Mathieson & Company.
  • (1891). The Future of Science. London: Chapman & Hall.
  • (1891). The Song of Songs. London: W.M. Thomson.
  • (1892). Recollections and Letters of Ernest Renan. New York: Cassell Publishing Company.
  • (1893). The Book of Job. London: W.M. Thomson.
  • (1895). My Sister Henrietta. Boston: Robert Brothers.
  • (1896). Brother and Sister: A Memoir and the Letters of Ernest & Henriette Renan. London: William Heinemann.
  • (1896). Caliban: A Philosophical Drama. London: The Shakespeare Press.
  • (1896). The Poetry of the Celtic Races, and Other Essays. London: The Walter Scott Publishing Co.
  • (1904). Renan's Letters from the Holy Land. New York: Doubleday, Page & Company.
  • (1935). The Memoirs of Ernest Renan. London: G. Bles.


  1. ^ Ernest Renan. "What is a Nation?", 1882; cf. Chaim Gans, The Limits of Nationalism, Cambridge University Press, 2003, p. 11.
  2. ^ "Notes & Obituary Notes" . Popular Science Monthly. Vol. 42. December 1892. ISSN 0161-7370 – via Wikisource.
  3. ^ a b Römer, Thomas (11 October 2012). Homage to Ernest Renan: Renan’s historical and critical exegesis of the Bible (Speech). Symposium. Amphithéâtre Marguerite de Navarre-Marcelin Berthelot: Collège de France. Retrieved 10 December 2018.
  4. ^ Kaufmann, Alfred (1924). "Renan: The Man," The Catholic Historical Review, Vol. 10, No. 3, pp. 388-398.
  5. ^ Loth, Joseph (1892). "Renan au Collège de Tréguier," Annales de Bretagne 8 (1), pp. 124-9.
  6. ^ Galand, René (1959). L'Âme Celtique de Renan. Presses Universitaires de France.
  7. ^ a b c Theiss, Will. "The Pale Galilean: Ernest Renan, Jesus, and Modern History", Marginalia, Los Angeles Review of Books, March 16, 2018
  8. ^ Wright, Terence R. (1994). "The Letter and the Spirit: Deconstructing Renan's "Life of Jesus" and the Assumptions of Modernity," Religion & Literature, Vol. 26, No. 2, pp. 55-71.
  9. ^ Pitt, Alan (2000). "The Cultural Impact of Science in France: Ernest Renan and the Vie de Jésus," The Historical Journal, Vol. 43, No. 1, pp. 79-101.
  10. ^ Hammerton, J.A. (1937). Outline of Great Books, New York: Wise & Co., p. 998.
  11. ^ As of this writing, WorldCat reports 115 different editions of the book in 1426 different libraries.
  12. ^ Baird, William (1992). History of New Testament Research: From Deism to Tubingen. Augsburg: Fortress Press, p. 382.
  13. ^ a b c d Susannah Heschel (2008). The Aryan Jesus: christian theologians and the Bible in Nazi Germany. Princeton University Press. p. 34–. ISBN 978-0-691-12531-2. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  14. ^ Chadbourne, Richard M. (1968). Ernest Renan. New York: Twayne Publishers, p. 68.
  15. ^ "Renan's 'Vie de Jesus'," The Dublin Review 2, January/April 1864, pp. 386-419.
  16. ^ Jules Théodose Loyson Une prétendue Vie de Jésus, ou M. Ernest Renan, historien, philosophe et poëte (Paris, Douniol, 1863)
  17. ^ Cochin, Augustin (1863). Quelques mots sur la Vie de Jésus de M. Ernest Renan. Paris: Douniol.
  18. ^ Instruction pastorale de Monseigneur l'évêque de Nîmes au clergé de son diocèse contre un ouvrage intitulé "Vie de Jésus" par Ernest Renan (1863)
  19. ^ Several of the books of Henri-Joseph Crelier have polemical titles naming Renan.
  20. ^ Azurmendi, Joxe . Historia, arraza, nazioa . Donostia: Elkar, 2014. ISBN 978-84-9027-297-8
  21. ^ "Inventing national identity". June 1999.
  22. ^ Lee, David C. J. (1996). Ernest Renan. Ardent Media. pp. 97–99.
  23. ^ Lee, David C. J. (1996). Ernest Renan. Ardent Media. p. 96.
  24. ^ Noronha-DiVanna, Isabel (2010). Writing History in the Third Republic. Cambridge Scholars Publishing. p. 70.
  25. ^ Singley, Carol J. (2003). "Race, culture, nation: Edith Wharton and Ernest Renan". Twentieth Century Literature. 49 (1): 32.
  26. ^ Brown, Richard (1988). James Joyce and Sexuality. Cambridge University Press. p. 130.
  27. ^ The Doctrine of Fascism by Benito Mussolini Complete text of the essay "Dottrina" (Doctrines).
  28. ^ Ernest Renan à Tréguier
  29. ^ Catalogue, Ernest Renan (1823–1892) un Celte en Orient, Musée d’Art et d’histoire, Musée de Bretagne, 1992, Ville de Saint-Brieuc, Ville de Rennes.
  30. ^ Olender, Maurice (1992). The Languages of Paradise: Race, Religion, and Philology in the Nineteenth Century. Harvard University Press.
  31. ^ Susannah Heschel (2008). The Aryan Jesus: christian theologians and the Bible in Nazi Germany. Princeton University Press. p. 30–. ISBN 978-0-691-12531-2. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  32. ^ "I am therefore the first to recognize that the Semitic race, compared to the Indo-European race, truly represents an inferior combination of human nature."—Arvidsson, Stefan (2006). Aryan Idols: Indo-European Mythology as Ideology and Science. University of Chicago Press, p. 107.
  33. ^ "The Racial Motif in Renan's Attitude to Jews and Judaism", in: S. Almog (ed.), Antisemitism Through the Ages, Oxford, 1988, pp. 255–278.
  34. ^ Anti-Semitism, by Gotthard Deutsch, Jewish Encyclopedia
  35. ^ Azurmendi, Joxe (2014). Historia, arraza, nazioa. Donostia: Elkar. pp.177-86. ISBN 978-84-9027-297-8
  36. ^ Le Judaïsme comme Race et comme Religion: Conférence faite au Cercle Saint-Simon. Paris: Calmann Lévy, 1883.
  37. ^ Mian, Aristide (1945-46). "Renan on War and Peace," The American Scholar, Vol. 15, No. 1, pp. 90-96.
  38. ^ Antichrist. London: Walter Scott, Ltd., 1900, pp. 126-127.
  39. ^ Rose, Paul Lawrence (2013). "Renan versus Gobineau: Semitism and Antisemitism, Ancient Races and Modern Liberal Nations". History of European Ideas. 39 (4): 528–540.
  40. ^ Gidley, Ben (2011). "On the Nation and the 'Jewish People'". Ethnic and Racial Studies. 35 (4): 782–783. doi:10.1080/01419870.2011.643817.
  41. ^ Trawny, Peter (2015). "Heidegger, "World Judaism," and Modernity". Gatherings: The Heidegger Circle Annual. 5: 1–20.
  42. ^ Graetz, Michael (1996). The Jews in Nineteenth-century France: From the French Revolution to the Alliance Israélite Universelle. Stanford University Press. p. 212.
  43. ^ From Ernest Renan, "La Reforme Intellectuelle et Morale". Paris: Calmann-Levy, 1929.
  44. ^ Césaire, Aimé (2000). Discourse on Colonialism, Joan Pinkham, trans. New York: Monthly Review Press, pp. 37–8.
  45. ^ "What is a Nation?" In: The Poetry of the Celtic Races, and Other Essays. London: The Walter Scott Publishing Co., 1896, pp. 61-83.
  46. ^ Preface to The Future of Science. London: Chapman & Hall, 1891.
  47. ^ The Future of Science. London: Chapman & Hall, 1891.
  48. ^ Manceron, Gilles (2005). Marianne et les Colonies: Une Introduction à l'Histoire Coloniale de la France. Editions La Découverte.
  49. ^ Manceron (2005).
  50. ^ Renan considers the problem of a rational transformation by High Priest Antistius of the practice of human sacrifice into "a more humane, spiritual, and scientific form." See Brieux and Contemporary French Society, by William H. Scheifley, 408. Accessed 27 Feb. 2014

Further reading

  • Alaya, Flavia M. (1967). "Arnold and Renan on the Popular Uses of History," Journal of the History of Ideas, Vol. 28, No. 4, pp. 551–574.
  • Azurmendi, Joxe (2003): Humboldt eta Renanen nazio kontzeptua, RIEV, Vol. 48, No. 1, 91–124.
  • Azurmendi, Joxe (2014): Historia, arraza, nazioa. Renan eta nazionalismoaren inguruko topiko batzuk, Donostia: Elkar. ISBN 978-84-9027-297-8
  • Babbitt, Irving (1912). "Renan." In: The Masters of Modern French Criticism. New York: Houghton Mifflin Company.
  • Bancquart, Marie-Claire (1994). "Renan, Maître de la Violence Sceptique," Revue d'Histoire Littéraire de la France, 94e Année, No. 1, pp. 48–58.
  • Barry, William (1897). "Newman and Renan," The National Review, Vol. XXIX, pp. 557–576.
  • Barry, William Francis (1905). Ernest Renan. London: Hodder and Stoughton.
  • Bazouge, Francis (1889). "Ernest Renan," Revue du Monde Catholique, Vol. C, pp. 5–26.
  • Bierer, Dora (1953). "Renan and His Interpreters: A Study in French Intellectual Warfare," The Journal of Modern History, Vol. 25, No. 4, pp. 375–389.
  • Brandes, Georg (1886). "Ernest Renan." In: Eminent Authors of the Nineteenth Century. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell Company.
  • Chadbourne, Richard M. (1949). "Renan, or the Contemptuous Approach to Literature," Yale French Studies, No. 3, Criticism and Creation, pp. 96–104.
  • Chadbourne, Richard M. (1951). "Renan's Revision of His Liberté de Penser Articles," PMLA, Vol. 66, No. 6, pp. 927–950.
  • DiVanna, Isabel (2010). Writing History in the Third Republic. Cambridge Scholars Publishing excerpt and text search
  • Espinasse, Francis (1895). Life and Writings of Ernest Renan. London: The Walter Scott Publishing Co.
  • Grant Duff, Mountstuart E. (1893). Ernest Renan, in Memoriam. London: Macmillan & Co.
  • Guérard, Albert Léon (1913). "Ernest Renan." In: French Prophets of Yesterday. London: T. Fisher Unwin.
  • Ingersoll, Robert G. (1892). "Ernest Renan," The North American Review, Vol. CLV, No. 432, pp. 608–622.
  • Lemaître, Jules (1921). "Ernest Renan." In: Literary Impressions. London: Daniel O'Connor, pp. 80–107.
  • Lenoir, Raymond (1925). "Renan and the Study of Humanity," American Journal of Sociology, Vol. 31, No. 3, pp. 289–317.
  • Mott, Lewis F. (1918). "Renan and Matthew Arnold," Modern Language Notes, Vol. 33, No. 2, pp. 65–73.
  • Mott, Lewis F. (1921). Ernest Renan. New York: D. Appleton and Company.
  • Myers, F.W.H. (1897). "Ernest Renan." In: Essays. London: Macmillan & Co.
  • Neubauer, A. (1893). "M. Ernest Renan," The Jewish Quarterly Review, Vol. 5, No. 2, pp. 200–211.
  • Priest, Robert D. (2015). The Gospel According to Renan: Reading, Writing, and Religion in Nineteenth-Century France. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Richard, Edouard (1996). Ernest Renan Penseur Traditionaliste? Presses Universitaires d'Aix-Marseille.
  • Robinson, Agnes Mary Frances (1897). The Life of Ernest Renan. London: Methuen & Co.
  • Rolland, Romain (1925). "A Conversation with Ernest Renan," The Century Magazine, Vol. CIX, No. 4, pp. 435–439.
  • Saintsbury, George (1892). "Ernest Renan." In: Miscellaneous Essays. London: Percival & Co.
  • Shapiro, Gary (1982). "Nietzsche Contra Renan," History and Theory, Vol. 21, No. 2, pp. 193–222.

External links

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Alain de Benoist

Alain de Benoist (; French: [də bənwa]; born 11 December 1943) is a French academic, philosopher, a founder of the Nouvelle Droite (New Right), and head of the French think tank GRECE.Benoist is opposed to Christianity, the United States, free markets, neoliberalism, democracy, and egalitarianism. His work has been influential with the alt-right movement in the United States, and he presented a lecture on identity at a National Policy Institute conference hosted by Richard B. Spencer; however, he has distanced himself from the movement.


Amrit (Arabic: عمريت‎), the classical Marathus (Greek: Μαραθος, Marathos), was a Phoenician port located near present-day Tartus in Syria. Founded in the third millennium BC, Marat (Phoenician: 𐤌𐤓𐤕, MRT) was the northernmost important city of ancient Phoenicia and a rival of nearby Arwad. During the 2nd century BC, Amrit was defeated and its site largely abandoned, leaving its ruins well preserved and without extensive remodeling by later generations.


Averroism refers to a school of medieval philosophy based on the application of the works of 12th-century Andalusian Islamic philosopher Averroes, a Muslim commentator on Aristotle, in 13th-century Latin Christian scholasticism.

Latin translations of Averroes' work became widely available at the universities which were springing up in Western Europe in the 13th century, and were received by scholasticists such as Siger of Brabant, Boetius of Dacia who examined Christian doctrines through reasoning and intellectual analysis.The term Averroist was coined by Thomas Aquinas in the restricted sense of the Averroists' "unity of the intellect" doctrine in his book De unitate intellectus contra Averroistas.

Based on this, Averroism came to be near-synonymous with atheism in late medieval usage.As a historiographical category, Averroism was first defined by Ernest Renan in Averroès et l'averroïsme (1852) in the sense of

radical or heterodox Aristotelianism.The reception of Averroes in Jewish thought has been termed "Jewish Averroism".

Jewish Averroist thought flourished in the later 14th century, and gradually declined in the course of the 15th century.

The last representative of Jewish Averroism was Elia del Medigo, writing in 1485.

Bleus de Bretagne

The Ligue des bleus de Bretagne (League of Breton Blues) was a liberal organisation in Brittany founded in 1899, dedicated to promoting the ideals of the Enlightenment and the French Revolution in Brittany, and combating the influence of the aristocracy and clergy. The colour blue was chosen to contrast with the conservative "whites" and to emphasise their distinction from the Communist "reds". The term dates back to the Revolt in the Vendée when the counter-revolutionary Whites called the troops of the revolutionary government "the blues" (because of their uniforms).

The organisation arose from the Bretons de Paris, established by Armand Dayot and Ary Renan (son of Ernest Renan). It grew in Brittany from dissatisfaction with the conservative and clerical bias of the existing Breton Regionalist Union, founded a few months earlier. It was centred in the French-speaking east of Brittany and was strongest among the urban middle-class of the larger east-Breton towns. However it established branches throughout Brittany.It included a number of influential writers, artists and politicians. Notable members were Yves Le Febvre, Jean Boucher, Armel Beaufils, Anatole Le Braz, Pierre-Paul Guieysse and Jean-Bertrand Pégot-Ogier. The organisation worked to emphasise modernity and French identity, in contrast to the emphasis being placed by some Breton nationalists on the traditional Breton peasant Catholic culture and the preservation of the Breton language. The group promoted the commemoration of liberal and revolutionary heroes, organizing the creation of statues of Lazare Hoche in Quiberon and Ernest Renan in Tréguier.After 1905 its activity shifted to annual congresses, held across the major Breton towns. It also published the journal Araok!: La Bretagne Nouvelle (Forward!: the New Brittany).

Books of Adam

The Books of Adam is a collective name of several apocryphal books relating to Adam and Eve.

The Book of Adam or "Contradiction of Adam and Eve", denigrated as "a romance made up of Oriental fables" by the 1913 edition of the Catholic Encyclopedia. It was first translated from the 6th century Ethiopian version into German by August Dillmann, and into English by Solomon Caesar Malan.

The "Pénitence d'Adam", or "Testament d'Adam", composed of some Syrian fragments translated by Ernest Renan. "The Penitence of Adam and Eve" has been published in Latin by Wilhelm Meyer.

"The Books of the Daughters of Adam", mentioned in the catalogue of Pope Saint Gelasius in 495-496, who identifies it with the Book of Jubilees, or "Little Genesis".

The "Testament of Our First Parents", cited by Anastasius the Sinaïte.

The Book of Adam (Adamgirk) by Arakel of Siwnik (Arakel Sunetsi), a book of poetry on Adam and Eve. It was written in 1403, and first published in 1799. It was first translated to English by Michael E. Stone.


Calmann-Lévy is a French publishing house founded in 1836 by Michel Lévy (1821–1875) and his brother Kalmus "Calmann" Lévy (1819–1891), as Michel Lévy frères. It was renamed Calmann Lévy after the death of Michel in 1875.By 1875, the company was among the foremost publishing houses of Europe. It was the publisher of most

of the important French authors of the second half of the 19th century, including Balzac, Baudelaire, René Bazin, Gabriele D'Annunzio, Dumas, Flaubert, Victor Hugo, Lamartine, Ernest Renan, George Sand, Stendhal.

In 1893, Calmann was succeeded by his sons Georges, Paul and Gaston, who went on to publish authors including Anatole France, Pierre Loti and Proust.

During Nazi occupation, Gaston Lévy was interned, and the publishing company, run by the Germans, was renamed Éditions Balzac in 1943. After the liberation, the company was headed by Léon Pioton.

Authors edited in the postwar period include: Arthur Koestler, Elia Kazan, Anne Frank, and later Donna Leon, Nicolas Hulot, Patricia Cornwell, Guillaume Musso, among others.

Since 1993, Calmann-Lévy has been owned by Hachette (which is in turn owned by Lagardère Group).

Civic nationalism

Civic nationalism, also known as liberal nationalism, is a form of nationalism identified by political philosophers who believe in an inclusive form of nationalism that adheres with traditional liberal values of freedom, tolerance, equality, and individual rights.Civic nationalists often defend the value of national identity by saying that individuals need a national identity in order to lead meaningful, autonomous lives and that democratic polities need national identity in order to function properly. Civic nationalism is frequently contrasted with ethnic nationalism.

Ernest Renan is often thought to be an early civic nationalist.

Edgar Quinet-class cruiser

The Edgar Quinet class was the last type of armored cruiser built for the French Navy. The two ships of this class—Edgar Quinet and Waldeck-Rousseau—were built between 1905 and 1911. They were based on the previous cruiser, Ernest Renan, the primary improvement being a more powerful uniform main battery of 194 mm (7.6 in) guns. The Edgar Quinet class was the most powerful type of armored cruiser built in France, but they entered service more than two years after the British battlecruiser HMS Invincible, which, with its all-big-gun armament, had rendered armored cruisers obsolescent.

Both ships operated together in the Mediterranean Fleet after entering service, and they remained in the fleet throughout World War I. They participated in the blockade of the Adriatic to keep the Austro-Hungarian Navy contained early in the war. During this period, Edgar Quinet took part in the Battle of Antivari in August 1914, and Waldeck-Rousseau was unsuccessfully attacked twice by Austro-Hungarian U-boats. Waldeck-Rousseau participated in the Allied intervention in the Russian Civil War in the Black Sea in 1919–22, while Edgar Quinet remained in the Mediterranean during the contemporaneous Greco-Turkish War.

Edgar Quinet was converted into a training ship in the mid-1920s before running aground off the Algerian coast in January 1930. She could not be pulled free and sank five days later. Waldeck-Rousseau served as the flagship of the Far East fleet from 1929 to 1932 and was decommissioned after returning to France. She was hulked in 1936 and scrapped in 1941–44.

French cruiser Ernest Renan

Ernest Renan was an armored cruiser built for the French Navy in the first decade of the 20th century. At the outbreak of World War I in August 1914, she participated in the hunt for the German battlecruiser SMS Goeben and then joined the blockade of the Austro-Hungarian Navy in the Adriatic. She took part in the Battle of Antivari later in August, and the seizure of Corfu in January 1916, but saw no further action during the war. After the war, the British and French intervened in the Russian Civil War; this included a major naval deployment to the Black Sea, which included Ernest Renan. She served as a training ship in the late 1920s before she was sunk as a target ship in the 1930s.


Marie-Magdeleine is an oratorio (Drame Sacré) in three acts and four parts by Jules Massenet to a French libretto by Louis Gallet, based on La vie de Jésus (1863) by Ernest Renan. It was first performed at the Théâtre de l'Odéon in Paris on April 11, 1873. The first staged performance took place in Nice on February 9, 1903. It was Massenet's first success and won him the praise of Tchaikovsky, Gounod and Bizet.

The story concerns the last days of Jesus from the perspective of Mary Magdalene. The subject initially caused some controversy, as some believed that physical love was implied between Jesus and Mary Magdalene. From today's perspective those implications are difficult to detect. While it contains some beautiful music and has been revived for certain singers, notably Régine Crespin, the work has not endured and is rarely performed.

Minha formação

Minha formação (My Formation or My Education) is the autobiography of Joaquim Nabuco, a Brazilian writer, diplomat and abolitionist. First published in 1900, it is often cited as a classic of Brazilian literature.

The autobiography includes an account of the slave-holding society in 19th-century Brazil and of the author's travels in Europe and America, as well as extensive digressions on philosophy, politics and abolitionism. It describes his encounters with Pope Leo XIII, George Sand and Ernest Renan.

Mission de Phénicie (1865–1874)

Mission de Phénicie, written by Ernest Renan, published by Imprimerie impériale in Paris 1864, and republished by Beyrouth in 1997.

In October 1860 Renan, was entrusted with an archaeological mission to Lebanon. The Phoenician inscriptions that he discovered were published in his Mission de Phénicie (1864–74; “Phoenician Expedition”).

Reflections on Violence

Reflections on Violence (French: Réflexions sur la violence), published in 1908, is a book by the French revolutionary syndicalist Georges Sorel on class struggle and revolution. Sorel is known for his theory that political revolution depends on the proletariat organizing violent uprisings and strikes to institute syndicalism, an economic system in which syndicats (self-organizing groups of only proletarians) truly represent the needs of the working class.One of Sorel's most controversial claims was that violence could save the world from "barbarism". He equated violence with life, creativity, and virtue.In this book, he contends that myths are important as "expressions of will to act". He also supports the creation of an economic system run by and for the interests of producers rather than consumers. His ideas were influenced by various other philosophical writers, including Giambattista Vico, Blaise Pascal, Ernest Renan, Friedrich Nietzsche, Eduard von Hartmann, Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, John Henry Newman, Karl Marx, and Alexis de Tocqueville.

Renan, Virginia

Renan is an unincorporated community in the northeastern part of Pittsylvania County, Virginia, United States. It is included in the Danville, Virginia Metropolitan Statistical Area.

It is contained within the Staunton River Magisterial District, and is located on a crossroads between Straightstone, Mount Airy, and Hurt.

The community of Renan was named in the second half of the 19th century after Ernest Renan, French philosopher and theologian. The name of the community is pronounced with stress on the first syllable of the word, however. In the 1880s, the four-room Harmony Grove School served the area, which was then replaced by the brick Renan School. This was then closed and converted into a Virginia furniture factory.

A store served the community from 1901 until the 1980s.

Right to exist

The right to exist is said to be an attribute of nations. According to an essay by the nineteenth-century French philosopher Ernest Renan, a state has the right to exist when individuals are willing to sacrifice their own interests for the community it represents. Unlike self-determination, the right to exist is an attribute of states rather than of peoples. It is not a right recognized in international law. The phrase has featured prominently in the Arab–Israeli conflict since the 1950s.

The right to exist of a de facto state may be balanced against another state's right to territorial integrity. Proponents of the right to exist trace it back to the "right of existence", said to be a fundamental right of states recognized by writers on international law for hundreds of years.

The Wild and the Innocent (Millennium)

"'The Wild and the Innocent" is the tenth episode of the first season of the American crime-thriller television series Millennium. It premiered on the Fox network on January 10, 1997. The episode was written by Jorge Zamacona, and directed by Thomas J. Wright. "The Wild and the Innocent" featured guest appearances by Heather McComb and Jeffrey Donovan.

Forensic profiler Frank Black (Lance Henriksen), a member of the private investigative organisation Millennium Group, is following the trail of a murderous couple who are trying to track down a child that had been sold to another family.

"The Wild and the Innocent" makes reference to Ernest Renan, and featured several actors who would later appear in related series. The episode received mixed reviews, and has been compared to the works of Flannery O'Connor and Cormac McCarthy.

Théobald Chartran

Théobald Chartran (20 July 1849 – 16 July 1907) was a classical French propaganda painter.

As "T", he was one of the artists responsible for occasional caricatures of Vanity Fair magazine, specializing in French and Italian subjects. His work for Vanity Fair included Pope Leo XIII, Giuseppe Garibaldi, Umberto I of Italy, William Henry Waddington, all in 1878, Charles Gounod, Giuseppe Verdi, Ernest Renan, Jules Grévy, Napoléon Joseph Charles Paul Bonaparte, Victor Hugo, Marshal MacMahon, Granier de Cassagnac, Louis Blanc, and Alexandre Dumas fils, all in 1879.

President Theodore Roosevelt's official portrait was originally commissioned to Theobald Chartran in 1902, but when Roosevelt saw the final product he hated it and hid it in the darkest corner of the White House. When family members called it the "Mewing Cat" for making him look so harmless, he had it destroyed and hired John Singer Sargent to paint a more masculine portrait.

Among Chartran's work is his portrait of René-Théophile-Hyacinthe Laennec, the inventor of the stethoscope.


Tréguier (Breton: Landreger) is a port town in the Côtes-d'Armor department in Brittany in northwestern France. It is the capital of the province of Trégor.

Émile Boutmy

Émile Boutmy (13 April 1835 – 25 January 1906) was a French political scientist and sociologist who was a native of Paris.

He studied law in Paris, and from 1867 to 1870 gave lectures on the history and culture of civilizations as it pertained to architecture at the École Spéciale d'Architecture. Being shocked by the ignorance and disinterest in regards to political issues that he observed during the Paris Commune, he founded in 1872 the Ecole Libre des Sciences Politiques with important industrialists and academics that included Hippolyte Taine, Ernest Renan, Albert Sorel and Pierre Paul Leroy-Beaulieu.

From 1873 to 1890, Boutmy gave classes on the constitutional history of England, France and the United States. In 1879 he was appointed to the Académie des Sciences Morales et Politiques. Today the main auditorium of the Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Paris (Sciences Po) is named in his honor.

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