Canon of Belley, archaeologist; b. at Sauverny, Ain, in 1808; d. at Belley, August 19, 1880
Martigny, JOSEPH-ALEXANDRE, canon of Belley, archaeologist; b. at Sauverny, Ain, in 1808; d. at Belley, August 19, 1880. He studied at the petit seminaire of Belley and became a professor there in 1832. He was curate later at Cressy and afterwards parish priest of Arbignieu. Encouraged by his bishop and the learned Abbe Greppo, who was distinguished for his labors in promoting a revival of religious archaeology in France, he devoted his leisure hours to the pursuit of that science. He was appointed cure of Bagele-Chatel and made an honorary canon in 1849. From that time dates his acquaintance with J. B. de Rossi, to whom he became closely attached by reason of his work in the domain of Christian archaeology. Though living in a retired locality he collected the matter for his "Dictionnaire des antiquites chretiennes", which appeared in 1865, the first work of its kind, giving evidence of vast erudition, too vast perhaps, for the articles, so varied in matter and character, are all from the pen of this learned country priest. This work was soon taken up again by Smith in England and Kraus in Germany. Martigny published a corrected edition of his dictionary in 1877. The publisher, Hachette, had intended the work to be a part of the "Dictionnaire des antiquites grecques et romaines" of Daremberg and Saglio, but its importance made it an independent work. Msgr. Martigny published also a French edition of the "Bullettino di archaeologia cristiana" of de Rossi. His writings include beside his "Dictionnaire des antiquites chretiennes" (Paris, 1865; 2nd edition, 1877) various articles in "Annales de l'Academie de Macon", 1851, sqq., etc.