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FRANCOIS RAVAILLAC (1578–1610)

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Originally appearing in Volume V22, Page 922 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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FRANCOIS RAVAILLAC (1578–1610), the assassin of Henry IV. of France, was born near Angouleme. He was of humble origin and began life as a valet de chambre, but after-wards became a lawyer and also teacher of a school. After having been imprisoned by his creditors, he sought admission to the recently founded order of Feuillants, but after a short probation was dismissed as a visionary. An application for admission to the Society of Jesus was equally unsuccessful in 1606. His disappointments fostered a fanatical temperament, and rumours that the king was intending to make war upon the pope suggested to him the idea of assassination, which he carried out on the 14th of May 1610. In the course of his trial he was frequently put to the torture, but persistently (and it is now believed truly) denied that he had been prompted by any one or had any accomplices. Sentence of death was carried out on the 27th of May following. See Jules Loiseleur, Ravaillac et ses complices (1873), and E. Lavisse, Hisloire de France, tome vi. (Paris, 1905). RAVAISSON-MOLLIEN, JEAN GASPARD FELIX (1813–1900), French philosopher and archaeologist, was born at Namur on the 23rd of October 1813. After a successful course of study at the College Rollin, he proceeded to Munich, where he attended the lectures of Schelling, and took his degree in philosophy in 1836. In the following year he published the first volume of his famous work Essai sur la metaphysique d'Aristote, to which in 1846 he added a supplementary volume. This work not only criticizes and comments on the theories of Aristotle and the Peripatetics, but also deduces from them a modern philosophical system. In 1838 he received the degree of doctor, and became professor of philosophy at Rennes. From 1840 he was inspector-general of public libraries, and in 186o became inspector-general in the department of higher education. He was also a member of the Academy, and of the Academy of Moral and Political Science, and curator of the Department of Antiquities at the Louvre (from 1870). He died in Paris on the 18th of May 1900. In philosophy, he was one of the school of Cousin, with whom, however, he was at issue in many importantpoints. The act of consciousness, according to him, is the basis of all knowledge. These acts of consciousness are manifestations of will, which is the motive and creative power of the intellectual life. The idea of God is a cumulative intuition given by all the various faculties of the mind, in its observation of harmony in nature and in man. This theory had considerable influence on speculative philosophy in France during the later years of the 19th century. Ravaisson's chief philosophical works are: " Les Fragments philosophiques de Hamilton " (in the Revue des Deux Mondes, November, 1840) ; Rapport sur le stoicisme (1851) ; La Philosophic en France an dix-neuvieme siecle (1868; 3rd ed., 1889); Morale et metaphysique (1893). Eminent as a philosopher, Ravaisson was also an archaeologist, and contributed articles on ancient sculpture to the Revue Archeologique and the Memoires de l'Academie des Inscriptions. In 1871 he published a monograph on the Venus of Milo. See Renouvier, in L'Annee philosophique (Paris, 1868) ; Dawriac, " Ravaisson philosophe et critique " (La Critique philosophique, 1885, vol. ii.).
End of Article: FRANCOIS RAVAILLAC (1578–1610)
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