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BÉRENGER—BERENICE

Mittelalters, vol. i. (Berlin, 1875); L. Schwabe, Studien zur Geschichte des Zweilen Abendmahlstreits (1887); and W. Broecking, “Bruno von Angers und Berengar von Tours,” in Deutsche Zeitichrift für Geschichtewissenschaft (vol. xii., 1895).

BÉRENGER, ALPHONSE MARIE MARCELLIN THOMAS (1785–1866), known as Bérenger de la Drôme, French lawyer and politician, son of a deputy of the third estate of Dauphiné to the Constituent Assembly, was born at Valence on the 31st of May 1785. He entered the magistracy and became procureur général at Grenoble, but resigned this office on the restoration of the Bourbons. He now devoted himself mainly to the study of criminal law, and in 1818 published La Justice criminelle en France, in which with great courage he attacked the special tribunals, provosts’ courts or military commissions which were the main instruments of the Reaction, and advocated a return to the old common law and trial by jury. The book had a considerable effect in discrediting the reactionary policy of the government; but it was not until 1828, when Bérenger was elected to the chamber, that he had an opportunity of exercising a personal influence on affairs as a member of the group known as that of constitutional opposition. His courage, as well as his moderation, was again displayed during the revolution of 1830, when, as president of the parliamentary commission for the trial of the ministers of Charles X., he braved the fury of the mob and secured a sentence of imprisonment in place of the death penalty for which they clamoured.

His position in the chamber was now one of much influence, and he had a large share in the modelling of the new constitution, though his effort to secure a hereditary peerage failed. Above all he was instrumental in framing the new criminal code, based on more humanitarian principles, which was issued in 1835. It was due to him that, in 1832, the right, so important in actual French practice, was given to juries to find “extenuating circumstances” in cases when guilt involved the death penalty. In 1831 he had been made a member of the court of appeal (cour de cassation), and the same year was nominated a member of the academy of moral and political sciences. He was raised to the peerage in 1839. This dignity he lost owing to the revolution of 1848; and as a politician his career now ended. As a judge, however, his activity continued. He was president of the high courts of Bourges and Versailles in 1840. Having been appointed president of one of the chambers of the court of cassation, he devoted himself entirely to judicial work until his retirement, under the age limit, on the 31st of May 1860. He now withdrew to his native town, and occupied himself with his favourite work of reform of criminal law. In 1833 he had shared in the foundation of a society for the reclamation of young criminals, in which he continued to be actively interested to the end. In 1851 and 1852, on the commission of the academy of moral sciences, he had travelled in France and England for the purpose of examining and comparing the penal systems in the two countries. The result was published in 1855 under the title La Répression pénale, comparaison du système pénitentiaire en France et en Angleterre. He died on the 15th of May 1866.

His son, René Bérenger (1830–), continued the work of his father, and at the outbreak of the revolution of 1870 was avocat général of Lyons. He served as a volunteer in the Franco-German War, being wounded at Nuits on the 28th of December. Returned to the National Assembly by the department of Drõme, he was for a few days in 1873 minister of public works under Thiers. He then entered the senate, of which he was vice-president from 1894 to 1897. He founded in 1871 a society for the reclamation of discharged prisoners, and presided over various bodies formed to secure improvement of the public morals. He succeeded Charles Lucas in 1890 at the Academy of Moral and Political Science.

BERENICE, or Bernice, the Macedonian forms of the Greek Pherenice, the name of (A) five Egyptian and (B) two Jewish princesses.

(A) 1. Berenice, daughter of Lagus, wife of an obscure Macedonian soldier and subsequently of Ptolemy Soter, with whose bride Eurydice she came to Egypt as a lady-in-waiting. Her son, Ptolemy Philadelphus, was recognized as heir over the heads of Eurydice’s children. So great was her ability and her influence that Pyrrhus of Epirus gave the name Berenicis to a new city. Her son Philadelphus decreed divine honours to her on her death. (See Theocritus, Idylls xv. and xvii.)

2. Berenice, daughter of Ptolemy Philadelphus, wife of Antiochus Theos of Syria, who, according to agreement with Ptolemy (249), had divorced his wife Laodice and transferred the succession to Berenice’s children. On Ptolemy’s death, Antiochus repudiated Berenice and took back Laodice, who, however, at once poisoned him and murdered Berenice and her son. The prophecy in Daniel xi. 6 seq. refers to these events.

3. Berenice, the daughter of Magas, king of Cyrene, and the wife of Ptolemy III. Euergetes. During her husband’s absence on an expedition to Syria, she dedicated her hair to Venus for his safe return, and placed it in the temple of the goddess at Zephyrium. The hair having by some unknown means disappeared, Conon of Samos, the mathematician and astronomer, explained the phenomenon in courtly phrase, by saying that it had been carried to the heavens and placed among the stars. The name Coma Berenices, applied to a constellation, commemorates this incident. Callimachus celebrated the transformation in a poem, of which only a few lines remain, but there is a fine translation of it by Catullus. Soon after her husband’s death (221 B.C.) she was murdered at the instigation of her son Ptolemy IV., with whom she was probably associated in the government.

4. Berenice, also called Cleopatra, daughter of Ptolemy X., married as her second husband Alexander II., grandson of Ptolemy VII. He murdered her three weeks afterwards.

5. Berenice, daughter of Ptolemy Auletes, eldest sister of the great Cleopatra. The Alexandrines placed her on the throne in succession to her father (58 B.C.). She married Seleucus Cybiosactes, but soon caused him to be slain, and married Archelaus, who had been made king of Comana in Pontus (or in Cappadocia) by Pompey. Auletes was restored and put both Berenice and Archelaus to death in 55 B.C.

(B) 1. Berenice, daughter of Salome, sister of Herod I., and wife of her cousin Aristobulus, who was assassinated in 6 B.C. Their relations had been unhappy and she was accused of complicity in his murder. By Aristobulus she was the mother of Herod Agrippa I. Her second husband, Theudion, uncle on the mother’s side of Antipater, son of Herod I., having been put to death for conspiring against Herod, she married Archelaus. Subsequently she went to Rome and enjoyed the favour of the imperial household.

2. Berenice, daughter of Agrippa I., king of Judaea, and born probably about A.D. 28. She was first married to Marcus, son of the alabarch[1] Alexander of Alexandria. On his early death she was married to her father’s brother, Herod of Chalcis, after whose death (A.D. 48) she lived for some years with her brother, Agrippa II. Her third husband was Polemon, king of Cilicia, but she soon deserted him, and returned to Agrippa, with whom she was living in 60 when Paul appeared before him at Caesarea (Acts xxvi.). During the devastation of Judaea by the Romans, she fascinated Titus, whom along with Agrippa she followed to Rome as his promised wife (A.D. 75). When he became emperor (A.D. 79) he dismissed her finally, though reluctantly, to her own country. Her influence had been exercised vainly on behalf of the Jews in A.D. 66, but the burning of her palace alienated her sympathies. For her influence see Juvenal, Satires, vi., and Tacitus, Hist. ii. 2.

BERENICE, an ancient seaport of Egypt, on the west coast of the Red Sea, in 23° 56′ N., 35° 34′ E. Built at the head of a gulf, the Sinus Immundus, or Foul Bay, of Strabo, it was sheltered on the north by Ras Benas (Lepte Extrema). The port is now nearly filled up, has a sand-bar at its entrance and can be reached only by small craft. Most important of the ruins is a temple; the remnants of its sculptures and inscriptions preserve the name of Tiberius and the figures of many deities, including a goddess

  1. Alabarch or Arabarch (Gr. ἀλαβάρχης, or ἀραβάρχης), the name of the head magistrate of the Jews in Alexandria under the Ptolemaic and Roman rules.