Pontas, Jean

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Moral theologian; b. Saint-Hilaire-du-Harcouet, Dec. 31, 1638; d. Paris, April 27, 1728. He studied at Rennes and Navarre and at the age of 25 was ordained. After receiving his doctorate in Canon Law, he became vicar of Sainte-Genevievedes-Ardents in 1666 and subpenitentiary at Paris in 1693. Although he wrote a number of works during his active career, his most important work was published during the long years of his retirement. The Dictionnaire des cas de conscience appeared first in two volumes (Paris 1715), but was followed by a supplement of three volumes in 1718. The entire work was reedited in 1724 and 1726, and several times edited after his death. Numerous editions were published in both French and Latin translation in the 18th century. Benedict XIV regarded Pontas as an eminent theologian.

Bibliography: j. carreyre, Dictionnaire de théologie catholique (Paris 190350) 12.2:255152, with bibliog. h. hurter, Nomenclator literarius theologiae catholicae (Innsbruck 190313) 4:131213.

[m. d. barry]