Bailly, Jean Sylvain (1736-1793)

Bailly, Jean Sylvain, born in Paris, September 15, 1736, from art turned aside to literature, and thence to astronomy. He was early admitted to the Academie des Sciences, and he justified his honours by his great Histoire de I'Astronomie (5 vols. 1775-87). Elected to the Academie Fran-┬žaise, and next year to the Academie des Inscriptions, he was thus a member of the three academies at once, an honour that had fallen to no one before him save Fontenelle. The Revolution of 1789 interrupted his peaceful studies. As President of the National Assembly and Mayor of Paris, he conducted himself with great integrity but at last lost his popularity by allowing the National Guard to fire on the masses who were assembled in the Champ de Mars, 17th July 1791 to demand the dethronement of the king. He now threw up his mayoralty, and went to live first at Nantes, and afterwards with his friend Laplace at Melun. Here he was seized by the Jacobin soldiery, and brought to Paris, where he was guillotined November 12, 1793. See Nour-risson's Turgot, Necker, Bailly (1885).
1. Chamber's Biographical Dictionary, Philadelphia, 1926, page 60.

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