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Exile, Imprisonment, or Death – The Politics of Disgrace in Bourbon France, 1610-1789 - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Exile, Imprisonment, or Death: The Politics of Disgrace in Bourbon France, 1610-1789

Julian Swann


Between the assassination of Henri IV in 1610 and the French Revolution of 1789, thousands of French nobles, including members of the royal family, courtiers, bishops, generals, and judges suffered internal exile, imprisonment, or even death for having displeased their sovereign. For most that punishment was independent of the legal system and was the result of a simple royal command or a written order, known as a lettre de cachet. Yet rather than protest, the victims were willing to obey, spending months, even years in disgrace without any knowledge of when, or even if, their ordeal would end ... More

Keywords: exile, political culture, absolute monarchy, Louis XIII, Louis XIV, Louis XV, Louis XVI, French Revolution, lettres de cachet, court society, aristocracy

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2017 Print ISBN-13: 9780198788690
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2017 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198788690.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Julian Swann, author
Professor of History, Birkbeck College, University of London