The New Student's Reference Work/Cousin, Victor

Cousin (kōō′zan′), Victor, founder of a school of philosophy, was born at Paris, Nov. 28, 1792. After finishing his studies he was appointed professor at the Sorbonne. He early began to write, and one of his first books, his translation of Plato, met with immediate success. His lectures drew crowds; his ideas, for the most part, were new to his hearers, bold, clear and beautiful in style; he also had a wonderful power in bringing together facts of history and philosophy so as to throw light on each other. He also took part in politics, and was one of the leaders of thought in Paris. So when his friend Guizot, in 1830, became prime minister, Cousin was made a member of the council of public instruction and also a peer of France. He also held other offices, and was a public man until 1849. His teachings have had great influence in Germany, England and America as well as in France. Among the best-known of his books are The True, the Beautiful and the Good and The History of Philosophy. He died at Cannes, France, Jan. 13, 1867.