Abbé Lacuria (1806-1890) is a rather unheralded figure of the tumultuous 19th century. If anyone has heard of him, it’s because they weren’t interested in the history, politics, society or Catholic Church of the 19th century; still less in theology, philosophy, ethics, aesthetics, psychology, the sciences of education or metaphysics, nor in mysticism – all of which were Abbé Lacuria’s areas of predilection. Indeed, curiously enough, the only fields in which Lacuria has been mentioned recently – in the last third of the 20th century – are those of Romanticism, esotericism and occultism.

With esotericism, whether musical or not, arithmological or not, scientific or amateur, we find academics Jean-Pierre Laurant, Jean-Pierre Brach and Joscelyn Godwin, on the one hand, and writers Raymond Christoflour and Jean-Pierre Bonnerot, on the other; with Romanticism, we come across Franck Paul Bowman; finally, with the occult, it’s Robert Amadou, the most prolific, who stands up as the promoter of a Lacuria who would be a theosophist and magician.

If we go back in time to the Belle Époque, or even to the end of the 19th century, Lacuria is already considered a fourth-period esotericist by Albert Jhouney1, a hermetist by Camille Mauclair, an “occultist” by Marcus de Vèze, an occultist by François Jollivet-Castelot, a kabbalist by a regionalist politician from France d’Oc, by Papus, or by Jacques Marion… Lacuria is even one of the hand-picked magi under the pen of Sar Péladan, immediately taken up by Huret, Henri Nizer, Etienne Cornut, Sergines, Pierre Janet… the list could be longer!

In other words, Lacuria is mainly to be found where he hasn’t really been, so much so that one might have feared it would be irrelevant to talk about him in Politica Hermetica! Luckily, Lacuria was a priest all his life, and a theologian to some extent, as well as a genuine metaphysician and mystic. In other words, far from being the priest historians expected in the 19th century, i.e. a social figure forged in the fires of the Sulpician reform and conforming to the expected model, Lacuria embraced all the esotericism intrinsic to Catholicism, and this – in the 19th century, it seems to us, is a tour de force – while escaping all the reductionisms of his time: rationalism, fideism, traditionalism, prophetism, apocalypticism… (even royalism, for its possibly sacred component).

As he was also preoccupied with society, politics, education and economics, albeit as an amateur, Lacuria is ultimately a highly relevant subject for the study of the links between Hermeticus and Politicus. We’ll say a few words about his biography, before illustrating these links on several significant points.


Lacuria was born in Lyon – which may not be insignificant – in January 1806, and was immediately baptized in the church of Saint-Nizier, where Ballanche had been baptized thirty years earlier. The family was of Piedmontese origin, with its first members in Savoy as early as 1625, and a branch descending on Lyon in the 18th century. Like his two brothers, Lacuria’s father was a goldsmith and jeweler, while his mother was an orphan and weaver. Lacuria was the third of five surviving siblings; two of his brothers became ingrist painters, one a schoolteacher and the other, who outlived him by three years, the founder of a nursing home run by auxiliary nuns.

Lacuria’s early childhood was spent at the beginning of the First Empire, when “citizens who had stayed away from churches out of incredulity began to show up at least out of convenience”2, which of course was not the case for his very pious family. The first Restoration, then, with the minister Fontanes3 who wanted to make religion “the soul of all education”4, will enable Lacuria to study at a Petit Séminaire. It was there that he added “Paul” to his two first names: François, Gaspard.

In 1826, Lacuria joined the Grand Séminaire Saint-Irénée in Lyon, where he was trained alongside superior Gardette by one of the “fathers of the Lyonnais clergy”5: l’abbé Duplay, “le type parfait du sulpicien du XIXe siècle”.6 If he was not finally ordained until 1836, as a diocesan secular priest, it was because Lacuria had interrupted his seminary from 1829 until 1834. On the basis of documentary evidence, he may have been a conscript for a short time, but like others, he may have suffered from an interruption in his scholarship. He then became involved in the Lyonnais movement for liberal Catholicism – of which he was to become local president – and took part in the L’Avenir movement for freedom of education, while teaching at the Saint-Nizier manécanterie – “manécanterie, i.e. a minor seminary giving the poor access to college and so named to get round the law. It was the future school of the Petit Chose, where, writes Daudet, they learned more about serving mass than Greek or Latin7.

In 1833, he helped found the Collège d’Oullins, from which he completed his seminary studies with a view to ordination, and where he remained until 1847. These were undoubtedly the best years of his life. He forged ties with the children that would become indefectible friendships, and invented the concept of living art, which is that of education. This concept does not appear in his opuscule De l’Église, de l’État et de l’enseignement, but will be part of his life’s work Les Harmonies de l’être, both published in 18478. Forced by his colleagues to choose between publishing his great book and staying at the Collège d’Oullins, Lacuria opted for the Parisian mirage. There, for forty years, he led a poor life near the Panthéon, a life devoted to writing texts that were never published, and to assiduous participation in the Conservatoire student concerts initiated by François-Antoine Habeneck (in 1828), and continued by his successor (from 1842 to 1871): Daniel Auber. The large number of friends he met every week – painters, musicians, astrologers, former students, doctors, military personnel – meant that he could be described as a “worldly hermit”, as Pascal, whom he admired, was buried in the church of Saint-Étienne-du-Mont, the parish where Lacuria was supernumerary priest.

The alumni association paid him a pension from the 1960s onwards, and when he fell ill in his eighties, his return to the Collège d’Oullins was organized. There, he put the finishing touches to the rewriting of the Harmonies de l’être, which had occupied his entire life, and which was published posthumously in 1899, nine years after his death.

Links between “esotericism” and “politics”

There are at least three themes that illustrate Lacuria’s particular relationship between the esoteric and the political: firstly, his way of being a priest in society – which can be seen in relation to the Sulpician formation then at work at the Grand Séminaire Saint-Irénée in Lyon; secondly, his approach to theology – which can be seen in relation to what has been called the “Mystical School of Lyon”; and thirdly, his politico-social thinking – which can be seen in relation to Menaisian, Fourierist and Saint-Simonian thought; as indicated, and especially in Lacuria’s case, “esoteric” is taken here above all in the sense of a Catholic religion that allows a metaphysics of its theology, an orthodox mysticism, and promotes holiness as the spiritual path to which every baptized person is invited; as for “political”, the term is taken in the sense of the polis, society in the broadest sense.

Conception of his priesthood

Let’s start with Lacuria’s conception of his priesthood. The historian would like to show the influence of Sulpician training on Lacuria – training according to which the apprenticeship of a state (in the sense that we would speak today of a “socio-professional category”) takes precedence over the acquisition of knowledge9, according to which it is exemplary, even compassive, morals that must be acquired. It’s hard to find this influence in Lacuria, who is too original, even iconoclastic, in his own way; on the other hand, we can show how he differs from it. Starting with Lacuria’s fundamental motivation: he wants to “turn his whole attention to human misery”10, and this human misery is not for him the result of societal dysfunction, but is, in Christian language, that which results from the fall of the creature; hence his daily commitment to children, to those poorer than himself, or to the people he meets and converts, in passing, to Christianity; he never meets them from the height of status, he always takes them in through love – and many will have returned the favor. Here we have Lacuria under his third given name, chosen at the minor seminary: Paul, as a missionary of charity11). As for his respect for discipline and tradition, which his Sulpician training should have instilled in him, with its emphasis on rules and conservatism, making him conform to the typical figure of the priest indulging in the society of his confreres: it’s nowhere to be seen. Admittedly, he was initially part of the group of four priests-directors of the Collège d’Oullins, but he immediately marginalized himself, firstly through the original link he established with the children, even if this created some jealousy; then through his book, which he first had printed in secret, i.e. on the bangs of his confreres; and finally through his consultations with a seeress who interrogated a seraph for him. We won’t mention the laying on of hands as a differentiator, since this, under the term “magnétiser”, is just as well attested by his co-religionist Abbé Dauphin, himself a very conformist, and a future bishop. Thereafter, the only priests with whom he kept in touch from time to time were three friends: Abbés Gay, de Beaufort and Mermet, to whom we should add Lamennais, and two former students, Abbés Mouton and Captier. On the other hand, he had no real connection with the priests of Saint-Etienne-du-Mont, even though he said mass there every Sunday for thirty years. Above all, his main friends – indeed, his only acquaintances – were painters and musicians (Gounod, Chausson, d’Indy, Odilon Redon, the Flandrin brothers, Fantin-Latour father and son…)12, or men of letters (Blanc-de-Saint-Bonnet, Paul de Musset, Victor de Laprade…)13; there were many others, active in all fields and whom Lacuria frequented, notably in the Salon of his friend Berthe de Rayssac.14 Here again, Lacuria’s authentic mysticism went far beyond piety, even though he remained assiduous throughout his life in reading the breviary – until, becoming blind in 1880, he asked his bishop for a dispensation – but obedience to the Church was not an exclusive feature of Sulpician training. As far as his studies were concerned, Lacuria, on the contrary, spent his life studying, albeit clumsily, practically everything he could get his hands on. First there was Pascal and S. Augustin, his favorites, then Thomas Aquinas, even before the angelic doctor returned to the forefront, but also Gioberti recommended by Lacordaire himself, Bossuet as well as Fénelon, naturally Blanc-de-Saint-Bonnet and the German philosophers translated by Victor Cousin, and so on. What’s less common is Lacuria’s marked interest in all the sciences: astronomy, chemistry, medicine, and even those that will never be sciences: physiognomy, phrenology, astrology, and also gold or electrical medicine, precisely in the century when medicine was abandoning its theoretical discourse in favor of experimentation. It was because of his interest in science that Lacuria sent his book of synthesis – an ambitious “synthesis” with the subtitle: “the laws of ontology, psychology, ethics, aesthetics and physics explained by each other and reduced to a single principle” – in 1847, as a press service to recognized scientists and scientific journals alike: Arago, Becquerel, Raspail, among others, as well as Les Annales de la chimie, the Gazette médicale and the Bulletin de l’Académie de médecine. Moreover, in theology itself, he never hesitated to meditate on the Christian mysteries, contrary to the reductive catechism known to the laity, even to the point of being falsely accused of wanting to explain them in their entirety – which was never, very explicitly, either his approach or his claim.

Added to all this is the fact that Lacuria was so resistant to his Sulpician training – which, it has to be said, was a degeneration of the initial – that he advised his former students to take some and leave some; and the ones to take are S. Augustin and S. Thomas Aquinas, what should be left is almost everything else – with the exception, of course, of everything to do with the celebration of mass, which for Lacuria constitutes an infinite dignity15 and a function of which even angels are not worthy.

We could end this portrait of an almost iconoclastic priest compared to the so-called Sulpician model, by quoting Berthe de Rayssac:

It seems that the good Abbot drags a whole choir of cherubs with him, and leaves a few after him. His poor curved staff is a beautiful mystical bishop’s crozier, and his white beard lights up his candid face16.

Or the testimony of Canon Pisani, who recalls Lacuria in 1900:

Around the same time [he’s talking about the 1850s] appeared Abbé Lacuria, who began coming to say the noon-and-a-half mass and would continue to do so for nearly thirty years. We’ve all seen him, punctual and modest, speaking little and, perhaps because of this, having the reputation of a great scholar; everything about him was mysterious, right down to that little worn and even filthy book he pulled out of his pocket and handed to the mass server, because he had to answer according to the Lyonnais rite, which he had continued to follow even after the adoption of the Roman rite. Abbé Lacuria is one of the last priests to have kept the custom of wearing a top hat 17.

Theological thought

If we now turn to Lacuria’s theological research, his independence is also strongly marked here. This is necessarily partly due to the context of his training, and, in this case, to the shortcomings of that training. In all likelihood, the inadequacy of the philosophy of the Lyon seminar frustrated Lacuria until he found in Lamennais both the heart of his research and the solution to all his questions: an idea of the Trinity, which he was to rework freshly (“freshly”, for Lacuria’s Trinity is not philosophical like Lamennais’s; it remains theological, even if it is expressed metaphysically, or even mystically). Here, Lacuria’s first name is François, “gentle and mystical”, as the Lyonnais academician Joseph Serre put it, comparing Lacuria to François d’Assise. To gentleness corresponds the systematic synthesis which, following St. Irenaeus, will see in creation the work of the two hands of God18, and this, in Lacuria, right down to the molecule of modern chemistry, which reveals what belongs to the Son and what belongs to the Holy Spirit. This mysticism is matched by everything that was to offend his co-religionists: his attempt to synthesize Creation and pantheism under the oh-so-clumsy title of “unity of substance”, or his very particular definition of philosophy as the possibility of harmony between science and faith – that is, in fact, a mystical theology, directly Dionysian19 or his conception of the natural and supernatural orders as not mutually exclusive. Here, Lacuria would precede Cardinal de Lubac, but would have no greater success, in the century when a certain ontologism, officially taught at Louvain, would finally be thrown out with the bathwater.

These three main elements of Lacuria’s possible heterodoxy (his pseudo-pantheism, his misuse of the word philosophy, and the presence of the supernatural in the natural) constitute one of the objective – albeit short-sighted – sources of his assimilation to various forms of esotericism, depending on the author. For example, Lacuria’s pantheistic – or pantheizing – error lies above all in his clumsy formulation; Lacordaire may have cried heresy, but Lamennais would confirm that S. Augustin said no different. In any case, as soon as Lacuria realizes the risk, he reformulates his unity of substance according to his astute metaphysics of the idea of non-being, which can then form a link, ontologically but not substantially, between Creator and creature.

The numbers in Lacuria’s theological work also illustrate his total discrepancy, his absolute independence, which is the hallmark of a mystic, a self-taught man and an idiosyncratic personality. Lacuria’s work is not about the symbolism of numbers, nor the mysticism of numbers; there is no gematria, isopsephia or arithmosophy; only a belated and anecdotal mention of the Jewish cabala. If we have to call Lacuria’s use of numbers, let’s call it the metaphysics of numbers, or perhaps even better, the theology of numbers. For Lacuria, numbers are neither the causes of anything, nor the instruments of anything; they have neither ontological nor even epistemological status; they belong to a science known only to God, and which Lacuria himself admits to being totally unaware of. What’s left? What remains are numbers, negative by nature, because they express limits, distinctions, intelligible forms… and these intelligible forms are placed in God himself, in the Word through whom everything was created. This is Platonism rectified by St. Augustine, quite simply. From then on, the mathematical or geometrical, which links the theological and the scientific, expresses the link between reality and its principle, between God and the world. It is not being that would be common between God and creatures, but its negative expression through number.

This is why, if Lacuria’s theology can sometimes seem to take the form of a theosophy, of a deciphering of the signatura rerum, it is only ever according to the contemplative path of a theophanic world, in which, moreover, nothing that is received can be other than given. Lacuria simply follows the Itinerarium’s contemplation of Nature, the universe and man created by God20; let’s recall here that the Itinerarium proposes seven chapters of pure contemplation, before an outcome that is none other than a “spiritual and mystical rapture”. Moreover, if Lacuria doesn’t use the word “theosophy”, it’s because this is the mystical theology he calls philosophy.

This explains why Joseph Buche excluded Lacuria from his École mystique de Lyon, much to the regret of Hector Talvart21: this is because Les Harmonies de l’être is, in fine, no more than a metaphysical meditation on the Christian mysteries and a simple Catholic apologetic.

Political and social thought

Finally, what about his politico-social thinking, in a century so marked by ideologies of all kinds? Would he be a royalist or a socialist, would he support a particular millenarianism or, like many, an apocalyptic one? What did he think of the industrial revolution, technical progress and the disappearance of the poor?

Here again, Lacuria demonstrates an incredible independence of thought. His quest for synthesis “at all costs” warns him against locking himself into any system whatsoever, and forbids him to hide behind a “single thought”; he cannot espouse the traits of any caricature, or fit into the mold of any category. To read the century through Lacuria’s eyes is to steer clear of any reductionist temptation, any facile simplification, and to discover the subtlety of things within a respected complexity. In this way, Lacuria finds qualities in most of the ideas of others, following the Pascalian conception of error as incomplete truth, while remaining himself on the radical line of classical metaphysical principles and Catholic doctrine. By classical metaphysical principles, we essentially mean the distinctions between finite and infinite, and between intelligence and reason.

Lacuria was an enthusiastic supporter of scientific discoveries, but for him, progress was just “one of those words that served as a flag for utopia”22; while he promoted a fairer society, equality remained for him an “impossible and useless chimera”23. In economics, while following – without knowing it – the Aristotelian distinction between economics and chrematistics, Lacuria agrees that rich and poor are condemned to coexist, and only the intelligence of this coexistence matters. To the utopian progress of “eating meat and drinking wine” at every meal, Lacuria retorts: “Is there nothing else to desire?” To Fourier, who “promises a time when we’ll have six good meals a day”, he asks, “but why this limit of six?” And, faced with the absurdity of a society of the rich, he proposes the following reasoning by the absurd:

Let’s suppose we reach this goal [no more poor people at all], let’s go to the point of extravagance, let’s say that all men were rich, that they were all millionaires! Why stop at a million? Is a million the final limit of indefinite progress? Aren’t there already many who can’t be content with that?

In politics, contrary to what one might have expected, Lacuria is not a royalist: “power, when it is attached to a fiction, lasts only as long as the fiction itself subsists, so royal power lasts only as long as the fiction we call royalty”24; here’s what he wrote in his Harmonies, as early as 1847. In his opuscule on teaching, his verdict is without appeal: “kings strangely abused divine right, which was only a reflection of the Church and which they took for a light coming from themselves”25. He was marked by the Springtime of the Peoples: only “to the peoples in their infancy can correspond the union of the two spiritual and material powers”, he wrote in 184326. What’s more, in one of his manuscripts, Lacuria defends the republic from being the cause of secularization: “Si donc le peuple s’éloigne de Dieu; la vraie cause n’est pas la république”27.

Nevertheless, he is no more a “republicanist” than a royalist, nor a true democrat (the dictatorship of the most numerous, he calls it, or the reign of the majority); he is content to assert that authority requires infallibility: “Social unity can only be achieved in two ways: either by force, or by authority whose source is infallibility. Force excludes freedom, infallibility admits it […]. The vital question is therefore that of infallibility”28. Thus he sees social unity in the parish, with bishops elected by the faithful. It’s a doctrine as simple as it is impracticable, based on the irrefragable reasoning of a believer: “The Church alone,” he writes, “has enough power and love to raise humanity to its perfection; […] she alone holds the secret of the last perfection and can put the last seal on the work; she is the social masterpiece of divine thought on earth”29, even if “heaven [alone] will be the apotheosis”30. Here, he anticipates the Church’s social doctrine, perfectly compatible with the separation of Church and State that he advocates and demonstrates the logic of, as early as 1830, in the wake of Lamennais and the ideas of L’Avenir; we know that it wasn’t until 1905 that religious marriage and the appointment of bishops are still under State control in 21st-century France. In any case, we understand why he rejects both Saint-Simonism and Fourierism, each of which falls into the opposite excess: “one pushes authority to infinity, the other freedom to infinity; both are [therefore] incomplete”31, writes Lacuria in an unpublished work on the “Problème social”.

If we are to speak of apocalypticism in the 19th century, Lacuria, who nonetheless wrote his commentary on the Apocalypse, in no way subscribes to it, and his moderate millenarianism, presented explicitly as a hypothesis, remains within the limits of magisterial acceptability and even anticipates the 1944 decree of the Holy Office. If Lacuria’s social doctrine can be called such, it cannot be equated with his hypothetical millenarianism; it is neither “social regeneration” nor social messianism.


The conclusion of the historian who studies the Catholic Church in the 19th century is that Lacuria, as far as theology is concerned, is “only one witness among many to the gradual advance of a relative uniformization of Catholic thought”32; rather, we believe that Lacuria, in this respect, bears witness to the permanence of a Christian gnosis – gnosis in the scriptural (Pauline) sense – and of which he is an exemplary representative, all other things being equal, in the lineage of the Areopagite or Meister Eckhart, albeit of a different kind by virtue of the nineteenth century he inhabits. Hence, preceding Cardinal de Lubac, his reflections on the impossibility of a reciprocal exclusion of the natural and supernatural orders, his orthodox ontologism at a time when it was still being taught at Louvain, or, quite simply, his vision of a theophanic nature and a world imbued with divine Providence, without this immanentism in any way overshadowing God’s absolute transcendence, which is very explicit in Lacuria.

Philosophically speaking, there is a common denominator in Lacuria’s seemingly disparate work (“rational sociology”, musicology, ethics, aesthetics, astrology…), and that is his systematic metaphysical perspective, which stems from his fundamental and universal law of being expressed by his triplicity “of positive and negative producing harmony”, itself directly inspired by his meditation on the Christian Trinity.

With this fixed point of reference, Lacuria is the ideal place for all kinds of receptions, from socialism and utopias to infallibility, Beethoven and fairytale literature, alchemy and astrology. His independence, reinforced by his naïveté and good faith, made him almost a touchstone in the proliferation of ideas of his century. In this respect, he is a prime counter-example to certain historical generalizations and categorical reductions.

The same applies to disciplines such as astrology, which so intrigued Lacuria, or physiognomy, phrenology and even alchemy, all of whose works he collected. Lacuria’s interests were necessary to establish a correspondence with his third first name: Gaspard (the magician). But Lacuria never departed from the experimental approach established in the sciences at the time. Thus, his medicine was pragmatic; his astrology essentially characterological, and stipulatory but not predictive; as early as 1844, he wrote that phrenology could not be applied to man; as for the philosopher’s stone, it even became “legendary” in the 1899 edition of Harmonies de l’être.33

To conclude philosophically, Lacuria’s thought, whatever the field it traverses – philosophy, theology or science – is never idealistic; on the contrary, it is always realistic, even if it is a “symbolic realism” based on the “analogy” of being.34


  1. Conférence Politica Hermetica du vendredi 10 avril 2015, au couvent de l’Annonciation, 222, rue du Faubourg-Saint- Honoré, 75008, Paris.[]
  2. Portalis, Minister of Worship, 1807; quoted by Dansette Adrien, Histoire religieuse de la France contemporaine, De la Révolution à la IIIème République, Flammarion, 1948, p. 201.[]
  3. (Jean-Pierre) Louis (marquis) de Fontanes (1757-1821), first Grand Master of the University under the Empire and Minister of Public Instruction under the Restoration.[]
  4. “There is only one sure way to regulate feelings and morals, and that is to put them under the sway of religion. It is not enough for religion to be part of teaching; it must be the soul of all education”, cf. circular to rectors, June 1814, quoted in Cholvy Gérard, Hilaire Yves-Marie (sous la direction de), Histoire religieuse de la France, 1800-1880, Toulouse: éd. Privat, 2000, p. 22. Texte, “que ne désavouerait pas ses successeurs, les Frayssinous, Guizot ou Falloux” (ibid.).[]
  5. Thiollier Félix, Le Forez pittoresque et monumental, 1889, p. 436.[]
  6. Mas Gabriel, Le cardinal de Bonald et la question du travail (1840-1870), thèse d’histoire de l’Université Lumière Lyon 2, 2007, 1ère partie, ch.IV, III.1 Quelle formation pour les séminaristes et le clergé?[]
  7. “My father would have liked to send us to college, but it was too expensive. ‘Si nous les envoyions dans une manécanterie?’ says Mme Eyssette […] as St-Nizier was the nearest church, we were sent to the manécanterie de St-Nizier”; Daudet Alphonse, Le petit Chose: histoire d’un enfant, Paris: J. Hetzel, 1868 (4th ed.), p. 20. “It was great fun, the manécanterie! Instead of cramming our heads full of Greek and Latin as in other institutions, we were taught to serve mass on the long and short sides, to sing antiphons, to genuflect, to incense elegantly, which is very-difficult” (ibid.).[]
  8. The 1847 edition: Les Harmonies de l’être, exprimées par les nombres ou les lois de l’ontologie, de la psychologie, de l’éthique, de l’esthétique et de la physique, explées les unes par les autres et ramenées à un seul principe (by P. F.G. LACURIA), tome I corrigé et tome II, Paris: Comptoir des imprimeurs-unis, 1847; that of 1899: Les Harmonies de l’être exprimées par les nombres, édition nouvelle publiée par les soins de René PHILIPON, Paris: Bibliothèque Chacornac, 1899, 2 vols.[]
  9. Boutry Philippe, “”Vertus d’état” et clergé intellectuel : la crise du modèle ”sulpicien” dans la formation des prêtres français au XIXe siècle, Problèmes de l’histoire de l’éducation, Actes des séminaires organisés par l’École française de Rome et l’Università di Roma – la Sapienza (janvier-mai 1985), Rome: École Française de Rome, 1988. pp. 207-228. (Publications de l’École française de Rome, 104); URL: /web/ouvrages /home/prescript/article/efr_0000-0000_1988_act_104_1_3272, accessed March 19, 2015.[]
  10. Letter from Lacuria to Basset, 1828/1829.[]
  11. “Though I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries, and possess all knowledge; though I have all faith, even to the point of moving mountains, if I have not charity, I am nothing”; 1 Co XIII, 2.[]
  12. Borel, Chenavard, Janmot, Ricard, Laurens, Guiguet, Courbe, Baron, Français, Daubigny, Nanteuil…[]
  13. Charvériat, Charles Blanc, Victor Fournel, Louis Peisse…[]
  14. Mas Gabriel, Le cardinal de Bonald et la question du travail (1840-1870), thèse d’histoire de l’Université Lumière Lyon 2, 2007, 1ère partie, ch.IV, III.1.[]
  15. “It was indeed fifty years ago that I said my first mass at the Château du Perron. How many thanksgivings I owe to God for such a long prolongation of an infinite dignity, how many pardons I need for the defective exercise of a function of which angels are not worthy”; Letter from Lacuria to Paul Borel, Paris, June 20 [1886]; Archives des Dominicains, Toulouse.[]
  16. De Rayssac, Journal, Jan. 1876; Hardouin-Fugier Élisabeth, “L’abbé Lacuria, portraits et images”, Atlantis n° 314, May-June 1981, p. 342. Emphasis added.[]
  17. Pisani Paul, Patronage Sainte-Mélanie : souvenirs de famille, 1850-1900, Paris : J. Mersch, 1900, pp. 6, 17-18.[]
  18. St. Irenaeus, Contra Haereses IV, praefatio, P.G., t. VII, col. 975 B.[]
  19. Which, following Areopagite, overhangs and accomplishes the theological path; Cf. Borella, Lumières de la théologie mystique (Lausanne: L’Âge d’Homme, 2002).[]
  20. The seven chapters of the itinerarium lead through different contemplations (chs. I to VI) to the “spiritual and mystical rapture” (ch. VII).[]
  21. Talvart [1880-1959], “La semaine bibliographique analytique et critique” [about the publication of L’École mystique de Lyon], 1776-1847. Le Grand Ampère, Ballanche, Cl. Julien Bredin, Victor de Laprade, Blanc de Saint-Bonnet, Paul Chenavard (Preface by M. Edouard Herriot, Alcan, 1935), by Joseph Buche], Les Nouvelles littéraires, artistiques et scientifiques : hebdomadaire d’information, de critique et de bibliographie, Paris : Larousse, 12e année, n° 635, 15 déc. 1934, 9.[]
  22. Lacuria, Harmonies (1899), t. II, ch. II. II, ch. II. Du progrès, pp. 17-18.[]
  23. Lacuria, “La Voie unique”, p. 19 [B.M.L. Ms 5.943 C]; Archives Untereiner.[]
  24. Lacuria, Harmonies (1847), t. I, ch. XXII. De la spontanéité et de la liberté, p. 358.[]
  25. Lacuria, De l’Église, de l’État et de l’enseignement, Lyon: L. Boitel, 1847, pp. 15-16.[]
  26. Draft of a letter addressed to the director of a newspaper (unidentified), in reaction to an article published on teaching and freedom, concerning the Villemain law; Archives “Untereiner”.[]
  27. Conclusion of his booklet: “Sur la foi et la république”, Fonds Bernard Berthet, 14 pages.[]
  28. Lacuria, “De L’Infaillibilité, par M. Blanc Saint-Bonnet, chez Dentu”, in “Bulletin bibliographique”, Revue européenne. Lettres, sciences, arts, voyages, politique, Paris : [s.n.?], t. 15, 1861, pp. 1-2 [B.M.L. Ms 5.791, p. 12] ; Archives Untereiner.[]
  29. Lacuria, Harmonies (1847), t. II, p. 299.[]
  30. Lacuria, Harmonies (1847), t. II, ibid.[]
  31. Lacuria, “Problème social”, p. 20 [B.M.L. Ms 5.844 C]; Archives Untereiner.[]
  32. Cf. Paul Airiau, “Rapport de soutenance de la thèse de doctorat de M. Bruno Bérard, Un philosophe et théologien occultisant au XIXe siècle : la vie et l’œuvre de l’abbé Paul François Gaspard Lacuria (1806-1890), EPHE, ss dir. Jean-Pierre Brach, 2014. 1392 p. in 2 vols. notes, bibligr. index, tblx. ill, annexes”.[]
  33. Lacuria, Harmonies (1899), t. II, ch. XIII. De l’art vivant, 216.[]
  34. According to the formula and following the thesis of Jean Borella, explained in his Symbolisme et réalité (Geneva: Ad Solem, 1997). Very precisely: “Meaning is a requirement of analogy” (Penser l’analogie, Paris: ad solem, 2000, p. 210), “analogy is the meaning of symbol” (ibid., p. 209) and “symbol is the key to ontology” (Symbolisme et Réalité, p. 33); thus, “ontology is fundamentally analogical […because] even more than analogical, being reveals itself as analogical” (Penser l’analogie, p. 127).[]