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85) he expressly rejects Christian doctrines. He professes a pure Theism, and in a long profession of faith is significantly silent about the belief in immortality. He says : The whole of the ecclesiastical system, with the pretensions of the clergy, the mock mystery of their ritual, the super natural nonsense of their claims, their schemes for the domination of the human

intellect are foolish, baseless, and to

the highest degree mischievous." He thinks that our age has " not a single rag or scrap of the ecclesiastical rubbish left." D. June 9, 1901.

BETHAM-EDWARDS, Matilda, writer. B. 1836. Ed. " at home, by herself " (she says). Her first novel, Kitty, was published in 1872. Besides her well-known novels, she wrote a number of valuable works on France, where she lived for forty years. She knew and appreciated France as few Englishmen do. In 1891 the French Government made her an Officier de 1 Instruction Publique. In the course of an obituary notice in the Positivist Review (Feb., 1919) Mr. F. Harrison, who knew her well, describes her as "an uncom promising opponent of the Catholic Church

hardly more tolerant of the Anglican

Church." He adds that she was too " Voltairean " to join the Positivists. D. Jan. 4, 1919.

BETTINELLI, Saverio, Italian ex- Jesuit. B. July 18, 1718. Ed. Jesuit College, Bologna. He entered the Jesuit Society, and filled in succession the offices of professor of rhetoric at Venice, rector of the Royal College at Parma (1751-58), and professor of rhetoric at Modena. When the Society was suppressed Bettinelli, who was one of its most learned Italian repre sentatives, remained nominally in the ranks of the clergy ; but he was a friend and admirer of Voltaire, and his numerous and weighty works (published in a collected edition of 24 vols. in 1801) show that he shared Voltaire s Deism. See especially his Discours philosophiques. D. Sep. 13, 1808. 73

BEYINGTON, Louisa Sarah.



BEYLE, Marie Henri (" M. de Stend hal"), French writer. B. Jan. 23, 1783. Beyle was educated by a priest, but he became a Rationalist at an early age. He served in Napoleon s army and in the French civil administration, and after the Restoration in 1815 he went to Milan to study the arts and sciences. He joined the Carbonari, and was expelled by the Austrians in 1821. The French then appointed him Consul at Civita Vecchia. Beyle s numerous, solid, and laboriously written works on art were little appreciated. Even his Essai sur I amour (1822), which has been much admired by later genera tions, sold only seventeen copies in eleven years. La Chartreuse de Parme (1839) was his first work to win attention, and he was greatly appreciated by Flaubert and other distinguished writers. His experience with the general public had not a little to do with his cynicism. He was an Atheist. " Ce qui excuse Dieu, c est qu il n existe pas," he said (quoted in Prosper Merimee s privately printed memoir, H.B., by " P. M.," 1853, a fine and candid appreciation, full of Rationalism). D. Mar. 23, 1842.

BIANCHI-GIOYINI, Aurelio, Italian historian. B. Nov. 25, 1799. Ed. Catholic Seminary, Milan. In 1830 the Austrian authorities drove him to Switzerland, where he founded II Eepublicano in 1835. He was a powerful opponent, in journalism and letters, of Austria and the Papacy. His Biografia da Fra Paolo Sarpi (2 vols., 1836) was put on the Index ; and he wrote also a valuable Storia del Papi (12 vols., 1850-54) and a number of other Rationalist historical works. D. May 16, 1862.

BICHAT, Marie Frangois Xavier,

French anatomist. B. Nov. 11, 1771. Ed. by his father (a physician), and at Lyons and Paris. From 1797 onward he taught anatomy and surgery at Paris, and he early entered upon the original researches into 74