DU MOULIN, PIERRE (Molinæus): Celebrated preacher, professor, organizer, and controversialist of the French Reformed Church; b. at the Château of Buhyin, Normandy (department of Seine-et-Oise), Oct. 18,1568; d. at Sédan Mar. 10, 1658. His father, Joachim du Moulin, a Protestant preacher, after the Third Religious War took refuge at Buhy, which belonged to the family of Du Plessis-Mornay, and Pierre was born in the same room as Philippe du Plessis-Mornay (q.v.). After St. Bartholomew's Night (Aug. 24, 1572) the family, then settled at Soissons, was again obliged to flee, and, under the protection of the duke of Bouillon, reached Sédan. Here Pierre began his studies in the academy. In 1588 his father took him to Paris, and, declaring that he could no longer support his son, left with him twelve gulden in his purse. Paris not being safe at the time, Pierre went to England and spent four years in London, where he ultimately became tutor to the young dukes of Rutland. He accompanied his pupils to Cambridge and Oxford and heard lectures in theology and philosophy from Whitaker and Reynolds. His maiden Sermon at the Huguenot Church of London was a success. In 1592 he went to Holland and became, first, lecturer on ancient languages, then professor of philosophy and Greek in the University of Leyden. He lived in Scaliger's house and had Hugo Grotius among his pupils. In 1598, after dedicating to the hospitable Leyden university a Panegyricus Bataviæ, he returned to France, and in December was ordained at Gien, where his father was then living. In March, 1599, he became minister of the Reformed congregation at Charenton, where he remained twenty-one years, faithful in danger and noted for eloquence. Catherine of Bourbon, sister of Henry IV. and wife of Duke Henry of Bar (a Roman Catholic), made him her chaplain, and he spent two months of each year with her at her residence in Lorraine. Perhaps his greatest celebrity was gained by his controversies both with Roman Catholics and Calvinists. Noteworthy among the former were (1) those with Palma-Cayet (1602), who tried to convert Catherine to Roman Catholicism (cf. Narré de la conférence verbale et par escrit tenue entre M. P. du Moulin et M. Cayet par Archibald Adair, gentilhomme écossais (Geneva, 1625); (2) with De Beaulieu about the mass and the doctrine of the Church; (3) with the Jesuit P. Coton concerning the teachings and morals of the Jesuits (1606-07); (4) with the priests Gontier (1610) and Coeffeteau (1625) on transubstantiation (see list of works below). His principal controversies with Reformed theologians were (1) with D. Tilenus, professor at Sédan, on the ubiquitas corporis Christi; (2) with the Arminians, against whom he wrote his Anatome Arminianismi (Leyden, 1619); (3) against Amyraut and his school. By invitation of James L of England he went to London in 1615, promising his Paris congregation to return in three months, and James proposed to him to attempt to unite all Protestants. Shortly after his return a Jesuit, Amoux, preached before King Louis XIII., maintaining that the Scripture passages on which the Calvinist creed was founded were wrongly interpreted. In reply Du Moulin produced his two most celebrated works, La Défense de la religion chrétienne and Le Bouclier de la foy (Charenton, 1617; Eng. transl. of the latter, The Buckler of the Faith; or, A Defense of the Confession of Faith of the Reformed Churches in France, London, 1620; 3d ed., 1631). This controversy exasperated both parties and Du Moulin had to flee to Sédan, where he became pastor, professor, and tutor of the young duke of Bouillon. His oldest son, Pierre du Moulin (b. at Paris Apr. 24, 1601; d. at Canterbury, England, Oct. 10, 1684), lived in England, and died as chaplain to Charles II. and prebendary of Canterbury. He wrote a number of theological tracts.
The most important of the elder Du Moulin's numerous writings, not already mentioned, were: Défense de la foi catholique contenue au livre du roi Jacques I, contre la réponse de Coeffeteau (La. Rochelle, 1604); Apologie pour la Sainte Cène du Seigneur, contre la présence corporelle ou transsubstantiation (1607; Eng. transl., London, 1612); De l'accomplissement des prophéties (1612; Eng. transl., Oxford, 1613); Copie de la lettre écrite contre Tilenus aux ministres de France (Paris, 1613); De la vocation des pasteurs (Sédan, 1618); Nouveauté du papisme opposée à l'antiquité du vrai christianisme (1627); Abrégé des controverses, ou sommaire des erreurs de l’église romaine (1636); Du juge des controverses (1630).
]Bibliography: Du Moulin's Autobiographie, ed. C. Read, is given in Bulletin de la société d'histoire du protestantisme français, vii. 170 sqq.; J. Aymon, Tous les synods nationaux des églises, réformés de France, The Hague, 1710; A. Vinet, Histoire de la prédication parmi les réformés en France, Paris, 1860; H. M. Baird, The Huguenote and the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, vol. i. passim, New York, 1895; P. de Félice, Les Protestants d'autrefois, vol. i. passim, Paris, 1897.