Encyclopaedia Britannica 11th Edition


(1815-1886), French actor, was born at Chalon-sur-Saône on the 23rd of October 1815, and began his stage career at the Variétés in Paris in 1833. In 1838 he went to the French theatre at St Petersburg, where for eight years he played important parts with ever-increasing reputation. His success was confirmed at the Gymnase when he returned to Paris in 1846, and he made his début at the Comédie Française as a full-fledged sociétaire in 1854. From playing the ardent young lover, he turned to leading rôles both in modern plays and in the classical répertoire. His Richelieu in Mlle de Belle-Isle, his Octave in Alfred de Musset's Les Caprices de Marianne, and his appearance in de Musset's Il faut qu'une porte soit ouverte ou fermée and Un caprice were followed by Tartuffe, Le Misanthrope and Don Juan. Bressant retired in 1875, and died on the 23rd of January 1886. During his professorship at the Conservatoire, Mounet-Sully was one of his pupils.