Painter, born at Dole, France, 31 July, 1702; died at Pekin, 8 December, 1768. He made serious artistic studies in Rome and after returning to his native country achieved considerable reputation as a portrait painter. He entered the Jesuit novitiate as a lay brother and has left some specimens of his work in the Cathedral of Avignon and the Sodality chapel which he painted while a novice. The Jesuits had many of their men in China employed as painters. Attiret joined them in 1737 and was easily the superior of all. He was honoured with the title of Painter to the Emperor, who visited his studio daily and finally made him a mandarin in spite of the brother's unwillingness to accept the honour. As all the work was done not for art but for the sake of pleasing the emperor, every suggestion he made was carefully attended to. Oil was not agreeable, so aquarelles and distemper were resorted to. The Emperor did not like shading, for he thought of it was a blot, so that disappeared. It all ended in Attiret becoming altogether Chinese in his tastes and his methods, so that he no longer painted like a European. He made portraits of all the distinguished court-personages, but most of his work was done on glass or silk and represented trees, and fruits, and fishes and animals, etc. When, however, the emperor had beaten back the Tatars, he ordered the battles to be painted. Four Jesuit brothers, among whom was Attiret, made sixteen tableaux, which were engraved in France in 1774. When the collection arrived from France, however, Attiret was dead. The emperor manifested great concern at his loss, bore the expenses of the obsequies, and sent a special representative to show his sorrow at the tomb. Attiret is credited with at least 200 portraits.
The Catholic Encyclopedia is the most comprehensive resource on Catholic teaching, history, and information ever gathered in all of human history. This easy-to-search online version was originally printed between 1907 and 1912 in fifteen hard copy volumes.
Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching, the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church has defined, but also an impartial record of different views of acknowledged authority on all disputed questions, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archaeology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.
No one who is interested in human history, past and present, can ignore the Catholic Church, either as an institution which has been the central figure in the civilized world for nearly two thousand years, decisively affecting its destinies, religious, literary, scientific, social and political, or as an existing power whose influence and activity extend to every part of the globe. In the past century the Church has grown both extensively and intensively among English-speaking peoples. Their living interests demand that they should have the means of informing themselves about this vast institution, which, whether they are Catholics or not, affects their fortunes and their destiny.
Copyright © Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company New York, NY. Volume 1: 1907; Volume 2: 1907; Volume 3: 1908; Volume 4: 1908; Volume 5: 1909; Volume 6: 1909; Volume 7: 1910; Volume 8: 1910; Volume 9: 1910; Volume 10: 1911; Volume 11: - 1911; Volume 12: - 1911; Volume 13: - 1912; Volume 14: 1912; Volume 15: 1912
Catholic Online Catholic Encyclopedia Digital version Compiled and Copyright © Catholic Online