Rambaud, Alfred Nicolas

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Alfred Nicolas Rambaud (älfrĕd´ nēkôlä´ räNbō´), 1842–1905, French historian and politician. He served in the administration of Jules Ferry, was elected senator (1895), and was minister of public instruction (1896–98). Rambaud taught at the universities of Caen, Nancy, and Paris. All his works are characterized by honest scholarship, insight, and lucidity. His studies in Byzantine history were major contributions, and his excellent short general works on French civilization appeared in numerous editions. Rambaud was also an authority on Russian history; his Histoire de la Russie (1877; tr., new ed. 1904) was for many years a standard work outside Russia. He edited, with others, a collection of instructions to the French ambassadors in Russia for the period 1648–1789. Some of Rambaud's most important writings, particularly on Byzantine history, are included in the monumental Histoire générale, which he edited jointly with Ernest Lavisse.