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By Hans-Jürgen Lüsebrink (auth.), Jeremy D. Popkin, Richard H. Popkin (eds.)

A distinctive team of foreign students from the disciplines of background, philosophy, literature and paintings historical past provide a reconsideration of the information and the effect of the abbé Henri Grégoire, the most very important figures of the French Revolution and a contributor to the campaigns for Jewish emancipation, rights for blacks, the reform of the Catholic Church and lots of different causes

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23 This powerful attachment stemmed from a powerful inspiration of an essentially spiritual nature. Undoubtedly it owed a good deal to the teaching of the abbe Antoine-Adrien Lamourette, who Gregoire would meet again and surpass in the Constituent Assembly, because Lamourette, a great teacher and trainer of young priests, had been Gregoire's teacher at the seminary in Metz. 24 Gregoire also professed a genuine devotion for one of the spiritual heroes of Lorraine, the Benedictine Dom Augustin Cal met, whose abbey of Senones in the Vosges was a great center of Biblical exegesis, and also for the author who he cited frequently as the 'judicious Fleury' [Claude Fleury], and whose work, the Moeurs des Israelites, had been reprinted numerous times.

25 22 Rita Hermon-Be/ot he had used for the first time in referring to Talmudic culture in the Essai sur fa regeneration des luifs. ,,30 This manner of reading the Bible and history led directly to the idea of the imminence of the accomplishment of prophecy, and therefore to a feverish interest in contemporary events, what the figurists called the "affaires du temps," always interpreted as the manifestation of the divine will in the process of being realized. This fundamental certitude would express itself in two lines of interpretation, the combination of which is one of the unique features of Gregoire's work.

At the ceremony the Society organized for the anniversary of the abolition decree on 16 pluvi6se VII (4 February 1799), he again read extensive "extracts from a work with which he had long been occupied on the moral qualities of men of color. ,,9 The importance of Gregoire's role in the Seconde Societe des Amis des Noirs is underlined, in our view, by an essential but neglected fact: Gregoire was an active correspondent of the Anti-Slavery Society of Philadelphia, from the time of the Directory to the early days of the Napoleonic Empire.

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