The Huguenot Heritage

  • Jack Alden Clarke
Part of the International Archives of the History of Ideas / Archives Internationales D’Histoire des Idees book series (ARCH, volume 17)


Eighteen miles northwest of Nantes, in Loire-Inferieure, the southernmost of the five departments comprising the ancient province of Brittany, lies the village of Blain. Situated on the Isac River, the village is surrounded by lakes and forests, one of which, Le Gâvre, is the largest domainal forest in Brittany. The countryside is a pleasant land of broad valleys and swelling hills Its farmhouses lie scattered and secretive behind tall hedgerows. The province faces the ocean, turning its back on the rest of France — a geographical aloofness reflected in the obstinate and particularist strain of its people.


Reform Movement Marriage Contract Geographical Aloofness Young Cousin Court Life 
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  1. 1.
    For the full history of Blain Castle see L. Prevel, “Le Château de Blain, sa description son histoire” Annales de la société académique de Nantes Fourth series, vol. io t XL (1869) 7–14. 9.Google Scholar
  2. 1.
    Hervé Du Halgouet, La Vicomté de Rohan et ses seigneurs (Saint Brieuc, 1921) p. VI and passim.Google Scholar
  3. 2.
    Genealogical information on the Rohan family may be found in a variety of sources. The following works are particularly helpful: Gui Alexis Lobineau, Histoire de Bretagne composée sur les titres et auteurs originaux (2 vols., Paris, 1707) I, i o6, i i 8—i 9, 131–32, 168; Anselme de Sainte-Marie, Histoire généalogique de la maison royale de France, des pairs, grands officiers de la couronne et de la maison du roy4th edition (Vols. 4 and 9 all published, Paris,1868–90) IV, 50–75; Auguste du Paz, Histoire généalogique de plusieurs maisons illustres de Bretagne (Paris, 1620 ).Google Scholar
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    Charles Bernard, Histoire des guerres de Louis XIII roy de France et de Navarre contre les religionnaires rebelles de son état (Paris, n.d. but probably 1622) p. 35. Rohan attempted to raise a body of troops for service against Spain. See his letter to M de Puyraveau Jan. 28, 1598, and Catherine de Parthenay to the same Feb. 16, 1598, printed in Archives historiques de Poitou XXVII (1896) 505, 504.Google Scholar
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  32. 1.
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  34. 3.
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  35. 1.
    On October 4, 1594, Louise de Coligny wrote to Maurice of Nassau “Votre soeur Brabantine est aussi recherchée par M de Rohan et la Mère la désire fort mais l’âge de l’un (15) et de l’autre (not yet 14) me donneroit bien le loisir de la ramener avec moi.” Louise de Coligny, Princesse d’Orange, Correspondance — recueillie par Paul Marcheqay p. 114–115.Google Scholar
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    For the details of this projected marriage see Bibliothèque nationale,Fonds français 22, 343. f. 65, 69.Google Scholar
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    Maximilien de Béthune, duc de Sully Mémoires des sages et royales économies d’estat de Henry le Grand (9 vols., Paris, 182o) VI, 51. According to Mme de Mornay, Sully himself opposed this marriage because the Count of Laval was on the verge of abjuring Calvinism and Sully hoped to regain the esteem of his coreligionists by forbidding his daughter to wed a convert. Charlotte de Mornay, Mémoires edited by Mme DeWitt (2 vols., Paris, 1868–69) 11,62–63.Google Scholar
  38. 1.
    The marriage contract between Rohan and Marguerite de Béthune, dated Monday, January 7, 1605, may be found in Bibliothéque nationale, Fonds français 22, 343, f. 116–120. The financial settlement is correctly reported in a letter to Thomas Wilson dated February 12, 1605, reprinted in Calendar of the manuscripts of the Most Honorable Marquess of Salisbury preserved at Hatfield House (London, 1938) Part XVII, p. 53.Google Scholar
  39. 2.
    According to Philippe de Mornay, sieur de Bauves, Rohan took the oath of office as Colonel General of the Swiss on March 4, 1605. Inventaire des autographes et des documents historiques comprenant la collection de M. Benjamin Fillon (12 series, Paris, 1877–82) series XII, p. 58. His brevet as Colonel General is dated March 2, 1605, Bibliothèque nationale,Fonds français 22, 343, f. 121.Google Scholar
  40. 3.
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  42. 2.
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  43. 3.
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    Pierre Lenet, Mémoires (2 vols., Paris, 1826) I I, 212.Google Scholar
  45. 5.
    Tallemant des Réaux, Historiettes II, 78–80.Google Scholar

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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1966

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  • Jack Alden Clarke

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