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Jacques Lelong

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A French bibliographer, b. at Paris, 19 April, 1665 d. there, 13 Aug., 1721. As a boy of ten, he entered the Order of the Knights of St. John of Malta, and after a very brief and unhappy sojourn in Malta, made his studies at Paris. He left the Order of the Knights and entered the Oratory in 1686. He then taught at the college of Juilly in the Diocese of Meaux, where he was ordained priest in 1689, and was later librarian at the seminary of Notre-Dame des Vertus in Aubervilliers near Paris. He was transferred in 1699 to the Oratory of St-Honore at Paris, and remained there as librarian till his death twenty-two years later. The title of the first work which brought him fame indicates its contents fairly completely: "Bibliotheca Sacra in binos Syllabos distincta quae (I) omnes sive Textus sacri sive Versionum ejusdem quavis lingua expressarum Editiones, necnon praestantiores manuscripts Codices cum notis historicis et criticis, (II) omnia eorum opera quovis idiomate conscripta, qui hucusque in s. Scripturam quidpiam ediderunt et grammaticas et Lexica linguarum praesertim orientalium, quae ad illustrandas Sacras paginas aliquid adjumenti conferre possunt, continet" (2 vols. 8vo, Paris, 1709; Vigouroux, contradicting other authorities, says 1702; 2nd ed., 1709); edited by Boerner with additions chiefly of German works (Antwerp, 1709), folio edition by the author (Paris, 1719); edited after the author's death with many additions and corrections by Lelong and by his confrere, Desmolets, who prefixed the life from which we draw our facts (2 vols. fol. Paris, 1723). The last and best edition is by Andrew Gottlieb Masch (6 vols., 4to, Halle, 1775-83). The work is still valuable as a bibliography of the printed Bible in its various editions, and of the earty modern literature concerning them. Lelong also wrote a "Discours historique sur les principales editions des Bibles polyglottes" (Paris, 1713). His other work, which shows his variety of tastes and has proved very useful to students of French history, is entitled "Bibliothèque historique de la France, contenant le catalogue des ouvrages imprimés et manuscrits qui traitent de l'histoire ce royaume, ou qui y ont rapport, avec des notes critqiues et historiques" (Paris, 1719).


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