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Jean de La Haye

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Franciscan Biblical scholar, b. at Paris, 20 March, 1593; d. there 15 Oct., 1661. He passed his boyhood in Spain and received the Franciscan habit in the province of St. Gabriel, of the Alcantarine Reform. He taught philosophy and theology, and distinguished himself as pulpit orator. Being called to France in 1620, he was assigned important offices both in the order and at the Court of Louis XIII. De la Haye is the author or editor of some forty folio volumes, besides several unpublished manuscripts. He edited the works of St. Bernardine of Siena, and the writings of St. Francis and St. Anthony of Padua , but his project of bringing out all important works by Franciscan authors in a "Bibliotheca Ordinis Minorum" was not realized. Designed principally for the use of preachers are his commentaries "In Genesim, sive Arbor vitae concionatorum", 4 vols.; "In Exodum, vel Concionatorum virga, percutiens peccatores", 3 vols.; "In Apocalypsim", 3 vols. We have from de La Haye's pen two works of monumental importanee, namely, the "Biblia Magna", 5 vols. (Paris, 1643) and the "Biblia Maxima", 19 vols. (Paris 1660). The text of the Vulgate forms the basis of the two. In the former the author quotes verbatim, after every chapter, the commentaries of Gagnaeus, Estius, Sa, Menochius, and Tirinus, S.J.; whereas in the latter he appends to each extract (1) the various readings of the versions, (2) a paragraph in which the harmony of these readings and the literal meaning of the text are briefly discussed, and (3) annotations drawn from the commentators above cited, but headed, in this case, by Nicolaus Lyranus, O.F.M. The methods followed by the author have been pronounced excellent, and the wonderful assiduity and toil to which the twenty-four volumes bear witness have been the object of undivided praise; yet it has been rightly observed that the prolegomena and his own interpretations of the text are lacking in judgment and solidity. Withal, the "Biblia Maxima", and even more so the "Biblia Magna", will continue to be of invaluable service to the student of exegesis.

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