Polignac, Melchior de

Polignac, Melchior de mĕlkyôr´ də pôlēnyäk´ [key], 1661–1742, French diplomat, churchman, and author, cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. As ambassador to Poland he directed (1697) the unsuccessful candidacy of François Louis de Conti for the Polish crown. He was one of the negotiators of the Peace of Utrecht (1713–14). After being in disgrace during the regency of Philippe II d'Orléans, he served as ambassador to the Holy See. His Anti-Lucretius (1745, in Latin tr. 1757) is a philosophical poem attacking materialism from the Cartesian viewpoint.

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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.