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Alexis-François Artaud de Montor
A diplomat and historian, born at Paris, 31 July, 1772; died at Paris, 12 Nov., 1849. An émigré during the Revolution; he was entrusted by the royal princes with missions to the Holy See and served during the campaign of Champagne in Condé's army. Bonaparte made him secretary of the French Legation at Rome; Artaud occupied this post under Cacault, left Rome for a short time when Cardinal Fesch, Cacault's successor, brought Chateaubriand with him, and returned to Rome in the same capacity after Chateaubriand had resigned. Appointed chargé d'affaires of France to Florence in 1805 he was recalled in 1807 because he was wrongfully suspected of having employed his power in behalf of the Queen of Etruria whose possessions Napoleon wished to give to Elisa Bonaparte. Made censor during the last years of the empire, he became under the Restoration secretary of the embassy at Vienna, then again at Rome. In 1830 he retired upon a pension to devote himself exclusively to literary works. Besides his translation of Dante's "Divina Commedia" (1811-1813) which was rated very highly, Artaud de Montor left important historical works: "Machiavel, son génie et ses erreurs" (Paris, 1833); the volume on the history of Italy in the collection of the "Univers pittoresque" (Paris, 1834); "Histoire du pape Pie VII" (2 vols., Paris, 1836); "Histoire de Dante Alighieri" (Paris, 1841); "Histoire des souverains pontifes romains" (8 vols., Paris, 1842); "Histoire de Léon XII" (Paris, 1843); "Histoire de Pie VIII" (Paris, 1843). Shortly before his death, he published in 1849 when Pius IX was banished to Gæta, a work entitled: "La papauté et les émeutes romaines". His recollections and his observations as a diplomat form the valuable feature of Artaud de Montor's historical works. He was a member of the Académie des Inscriptions et belles lettres from 17 Dec., 1830.
QUÉRARD, La littérature française contemporaine, I (Paris, 1840), 78-82; LORENZ, Catalogue Général de la Librairie Française, I (Paris, 1892), 79.