Albert Sorel

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Sorel, Albert


Born Aug. 13,1842, at Honfleur, Normandy; died June 29, 1906, in Paris. French historian. Member of the Académie des Sciences Morales et Politiques (1889) and the Académie Française (1894).

Sorel worked in the ministry of foreign affairs. A student of H. Taine, Sorel was greatly influenced by A. de Tocqueville. As a historiographer he sided with the bourgeois-conservative trend. His works, which deal with the history of diplomacy and international relations, were based on extensive documented material and are masterful works of prose. In his work Europe and the French Revolution (1885–1911; Russian translation of vols. 1–8, 1892–1908), Sorel gave a broad view of international relations during the late 18th and early 19th centuries. However, he did not recognize revolutionary France’s war of liberation and the predatory wars of the Directory, the Consulate, and the Empire. Sorel idealized Napoleon I.


Histoire diplomatique de la guerre franco-allemande, vols. 1–2. Paris, 1875.
La Question d’Orient au XVIII siècle. Paris, 1878.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The great 19th century diplomatic historian Albert Sorel, whose treatment of the king and queen is still unsurpassed in its honesty, wisdom, and compassion, described Louis as a good Christian and a good man, but no king; he believed Louis and Marie-Antoinette suited to rule a small Italian principality but hopelessly inadequate to rule France.
I assume that unfinished works are allowed, that the books can have been started before the century began and that truly multi-author works are not admitted: Joseph Needham's Science and Civilisation in China; Walter Guthrie's History of Greek Philosophy; Halevy's Histoire du peuple anglais au XIXe siecle; Albert Sorel's L'Europe et la revolution francaise; Pirenne's Mohammed and Charlemagne; The Spanish Labyrinth by Gerald Brenan; The Empire of the Steppes by Rene Grousset; The Renaissance of the Twelfth Century by Charles Homer Haskins; Kenneth Clark's Civilisation; The Art of Memory by Frances Yates.
Thereafter he lived mainly in London, where, in addition to translating the works of the philosopher Henri Bergson and the historian Albert Sorel, he joined with Ezra Pound, F.S.