Thursday, 23 October 2014

College prizes

Thursday, 23 October 2014 13:35
montagnarde1793: (Default)
Over four years ago, I discussed this topic in a comment thread at the community revolution_fr. I figure I should post it here to make it more findable, as I think I had originally intended to do anyway. And here, is, of course, the source.

It's a question of the academic competitions between the different colleges of the University of Paris and the prizes various revolutionary figures won in them. For those curious as to why there are fewer first prizes among the revolutionary generation than previous generations, it's not, contrary to what some have suggested, a symptom of the former's relative mediocrity. In previous generations, each college awarded its own prizes, whereas in the decades preceding the Revolution, all the colleges were competing for the same prizes.

Let's start with Robespierre:

Maximilianus Maria Isidorus de Robespierre
Atrebas (né à Arras)
e collegio Ludovici Magni

Maximilien Marie Isidore de Robespierre
Atrebas (born in Arras)
From the collège Louis-le-Grand


Concours de 1771
Classe de quatrième
6e accessit de version latine

Competition of 1771
Fourth Class [Robespierre entered Louis-le-Grand in the Fifth but won no prize that year. The easiest class was the Seventh, then the Sixth, and so on to the Second. Students in these classes were called Grammarians. Next came Rhetoric, and then Philosophy, which included Math, Physics, Logic, Metaphysics and Ethics. This is where secondary education ended. Students could then go on to study Theology, Medicine or Law. Robespierre chose the latter--to clarify, not all scholarships allowed students to choose; some only covered one or two of the higher faculties, most often Theology.]
6th honorable mention - Latin translation ["Accessits" are something akin to "honorable mentions." There were only two prizes awarded, after which these  honorable mentions began.]

Concours de 1772
Classe de quatrième (vétérans)
2e prix de thème latin
6e accessit de version latine

Competition of 1772
Fourth Class (veterans) [Repeating classes does not always indicate failure the first time around. Students repeated classes (especially rhetoric, but also others, as can be seen here) for a variety of reasons, typically most importantly because a given subject was important to them and they wanted to make sure they had as firm a grounding as possible in it. Students would have to repeat classes if they did not pass the exams given at the end of each year, as in the case of La Revellière-Lépeaux, who had to repeat his Second before he could move on to Rhetoric for that reason, but given that Robespierre had won a prize the first time around, this does not seem to be case here.]
2nd prize - Latin theme [A composition in Latin on a given topic.]
6th honorable mention - Latin translation


Concours de 1774
Classe de seconde
4e accessit de vers latins
4e accessit de version latine

Competition of 1774 [Robespierre won no prizes in the Third]
Second Class
4th honorable mention  - Latin verse [Students would have to take a Latin prose piece and recompose it into verse, poetically and in keeping with the meter]
4th honorable mention - Latin translation


Concours de 1775
Classe de rhétorique (nouveaux)
2e prix de vers latins
2e prix de version latine
4e accessit de version grecque

Competition of 1775
Rhetoric Class (new students)
2nd prize - Latin verse
2nd prize - Latin translation
4th honorable mention - Greek translation


Concours de 1776
Classe de rhétorique (vétérans)
3e accessit de version latine.

Competition of 1776
Rhetoric Class (veterans)
3rd honorable mention - Latin translation


And now for some contemporaries:

Joannes Maria Hérault de Séchelles
Parisinus
ex Harcurio (collège d'Harcourt)
(Hérault de Séchelles, le conventionnel)

Jean-Marie Hérault de Séchelles
Parisian
From the collège d'Harcourt
(Hérault de Séchelles, the member of the Convention)


Concours de 1770
Classe de troisième
4e accessit de vers latins

Competition of 1770
Third Class
4th honorable mention - Latin verse


Concours de 1771
Classe de seconde
2e prix de version latine

Competition of 1771
Second Class
2nd prize - Latin translation



Andreas Maria de Chénier
Constantinopolitanus
e Regia Navarra (collège de Navarre)

André-Marie de Chénier
Born in Constantinople
From the collège de Navarre


Concours de 1778
Classe de rhétorique (nouveaux)
1er prix de discours français
1er accessit de version latine

Competition of 1778 [Someone who knows more about Chénier will have to let me know whether the reason we have only prizes for one year is because this is the only year he attended collège in Paris, or whether he attended other years without winning anything - which seems unlikely, given his success in the year we do have information for.]
Rhetoric Class (new students)
1st prize - French discourse
1st honorable mention - Latin translation



Lucius Simplicius Camilla Benedictus des Moulins
Guisius Laudunensis (né à Guise)
e collegio Ludovici Magni

Lucien-Simplice-Camille-Benoist Desmoulins
Born in Guise
From the collège Louis-le-Grand


Concours de 1774
Classe de cinquième
2e prix de version latine

Competition of 1774
Fifth Class
2nd prize - Latin translation


Concours de 1775
Classe de quatrième
2e prix de thème latin
1er prix de version latine

Competition of 1775
Fourth Class
2nd prize - Latin theme
1st prize - Latin translation


Concours de 1778
Classe de rhétorique
9e accessit de discours français

Competition of 1778
Rhetoric Class
9th honorable mention - French discourse

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