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Encyclopedia > Nicolas Fouquet
Portrait by Édouard Lacretelle.
Portrait by Édouard Lacretelle.

Nicolas Fouquet, marquis de Belle-Isle, viscomte de Melun et Vaux (January 27, 1615March 23, 1680) was the Superintendent of Finances in France under Louis XIV. Image File history File links Portrait_Nicolas_Fouquet. ... Image File history File links Portrait_Nicolas_Fouquet. ... January 27 is the 27th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Events June 2 - First Récollet missionaries arrive at Quebec City, from Rouen, France. ... March 23 is the 82nd day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (83rd in leap years). ... Events First Portuguese governor was appointed to Macau The Swedish city Karlskrona was founded as the Royal Swedish Navy relocated there. ... The Superintendent of Finances (Surintendant des finances) was the name of the minister in charge of finances in France from 1561 to 1661. ... Louis XIV (Louis-Dieudonné) (September 5, 1638 – September 1, 1715) ruled as King of France and of Navarre from May 14, 1643 until his death just prior to his seventy-seventh birthday. ...


Biography

Born in Paris, he belonged to an influential family of the noblesse de robe, and after some preliminary schooling with the Jesuits, at the age of thirteen was admitted as avocat at the Parlement of Paris. While still in his teens he held several responsible posts, and in 1636, when just twenty, he was able to buy the post of maître des requêtes. From 1642 to 1650 he held various intendancies at first in the provinces and then with the army of Mazarin, and, coming thus in touch with the court, was permitted in 1650 to buy the important position of procureur général to the parlement of Paris. During Mazarin's exile Fouquet shrewdly remained loyal to him, protecting his property and keeping him informed of the situation at court. City flag City coat of arms Motto: Fluctuat nec mergitur (Latin: Tossed by the waves, she does not sink) Location Coordinates Time Zone CET (GMT +1) Administration Country France Region ÃŽle-de-France Department Paris (75) Subdivisions 20 arrondissements Mayor Bertrand Delanoë  (PS) (since 2001) City Statistics Land area¹ 86. ... The nobility (la noblesse) in France in the Middle Ages and the Early Modern period had specific legal and financial rights and prerogatives (the first official list of these prerogatives was established relatively late, under Louis XI of France after 1440), including exemption from paying the taille (except for non... Seal of the Society of Jesus. ... Parlements in ancien régime France — contrary to what their name would suggest to the modern reader — were not democratic or political institutions, but law courts . ... Maître des requêtes (in French, literally, master of petitions (the term maître is an honorific title for lawyers); plural: maîtres des requêtes) is an official title carried by certain high-level magistrates and adminstrators in France and some other European countries since the Middle Ages. ... New France was governed by three rulers: the governor, the bishop and the intendant, all appointed by the King, and sent from France. ... Cardinal Jules Mazarin, French diplomat and statesman Jules Mazarin, born Giulio Raimondo Mazzarino; but best known as Cardinal Mazarin (July 14, 1602 – March 9, 1661) served as the chief minister of France from 1642, until his death. ...


Upon Cardinal Mazarin's return, Fouquet demanded and received as reward the office of superintendent of the finances (1653), a position which, in the unsettled condition of the government, threw into his hands not merely the decision as to which funds should be applied to meet the demands of the state's creditors, but also the negotiations with the great financiers who lent money to the king. The appointment was a popular one with the moneyed class, for Fouquet's great wealth had been largely augmented by his marriage in 1651 with Marie de Castille, who also belonged to a wealthy family of the legal nobility.


His own credit, and above all his unfailing confidence in himself, strengthened the credit of the government, while his high position at the parlement (he still remained procureur général) secured financial transactions from investigation. As minister of finance, he soon had Mazarin almost in the position of a suppliant. The long wars, and the greed of the courtiers, who followed the example of Mazarin, made it necessary at times for Fouquet to meet the demands upon him by borrowing upon his own credit, but he soon turned this confusion of the public purse with his own to good account.


The disorder in the accounts became hopeless; fraudulent operations were entered into with impunity, and the financiers were kept in the position of clients by official favours and by generous aid whenever they needed it. Fouquet's fortune now surpassed even Mazarin's, but the latter was too deeply implicated in similar operations to interfere, and was obliged to leave the day of reckoning to his agent and successor Jean-Baptiste Colbert. Jean-Baptiste Colbert Jean-Baptiste Colbert (August 29, 1619 – September 6, 1683) served as the French minister of finance from 1665 to 1683 under the rule of King Louis XIV. He achieved a reputation for his work of improving the state of French manufacturing and bringing the economy back from...


Upon Mazarin's death Fouquet expected to be made head of the government; but Louis XIV was suspicious of his poorly dissembled ambition, and it was with Fouquet in mind that he made the well-known statement, upon assuming the government, that he would be his own chief minister. Colbert fed the king's displeasure with adverse reports upon the deficit, and made the worst of the case against Fouquet. The extravagant expenditure and personal display of the superintendent served to intensify the ill-will of the king. Fouquet had bought the port of Belle-Isle and strengthened the fortifications, with a view to taking refuge there in case of disgrace.


He had spent enormous sums in building a magnificent château on his estate of Vaux-le-Vicomte, which in extent, magnificence, and splendour of decoration was a forecast of Versailles, and where he brought together three artist that the king would take up for Versailles: the architect Louis Le Vau, the painter Charles Le Brun, and the garden designer André le Nôtre. Here he gathered the rarest manuscripts, the finest paintings, jewels and antiques in profusion, and above all surrounded himself with artists and authors. The table was open to all people of quality, and the kitchen was presided over by François Vatel. Jean de La Fontaine, Corneille, and Paul Scarron were a few of the many artists who enjoyed his patronage. Château de Fontainebleau with gardens For other senses of this word, see château (disambiguation). ... Vaux-le-vicomte was in many ways the most important work built before Louis XIV came to power. ... The Versailles Palace is very Big and grand (Camacho, 2006). ... Louis Le Vau (1612 – 1670) was a French architect who worked for Louis XIV of France. ... Charles Le Brun, contemporary portrait Charles Le Brun (February 24, 1619 - February 22, 1690) was a French painter and art theorist, one of the dominant artists in 17th century France. ... Painting of André Le Nôtre by Carlo Maratti André Le Nôtre (March 12, 1613 - September 15, 1700) was a landscape architect and the gardener of King Louis XIV of France from 1645 to 1700. ... François Vatel (1631–April 1671) was a French chef, famous for supposedly having invented whipped cream for an extravagant banquet for 2,000 people hosted in honor of Louis XIV by Louis, the great Condé in April 1671 at the château de Chantilly - hence the name crème... Jean de La Fontaine (July 8, 1621 – April 13, 1695) is the most famous French fabulist and probably the most widely read French poet of the 17th century. ... Pierre Corneille (June 6, 1606–October 1, 1684) was a French tragedian tragedian who was one of the three great 17th Century French dramatists, along with Molière and Racine. ... Paul Scarron (c. ...


In August 1661 Louis XIV, already set upon his destruction, was entertained at Vaux with a fête rivalled in magnificence by only one or two in French history, at which Molière's Les Fâcheux was produced for the first time. The splendour of the entertainment sealed Fouquet's fate. The king, however, was afraid to act openly against so powerful a minister. By crafty devices Fouquet was induced to sell his office of procureur general, thus losing the protection of its privileges, and he paid the price of it into the treasury. Molière, engraved on the frontispiece to his Works. ...


Three weeks after his visit to Vaux the king withdrew to Nantes, taking Fouquet with him. When he was leaving the presence chamber, flattered with the assurance of his esteem, Fouquet was arrested by a captain of musketeers named d'Artagnan. The trial lasted almost three years, and its violation of the forms of justice is still the subject of frequent monographs by members of the French bar. Public sympathy was strongly with Fouquet, and La Fontaine, Madame de Sévigné and many others wrote on his behalf; but when Fouquet was sentenced to banishment, the king, disappointed, commuted the sentence to imprisonment for life. He was sent at the beginning of 1665 to the fortress of Pignerol, where he undoubtedly died on March 23, 1680. Traditional city flag City coat of arms Motto: (Latin: Shall Neptune favour the traveller) Coordinates : , Time Zone : CET (GMT +1) Administration Département Loire-Atlantique (44) Région Pays-de-la-Loire Mayor Jean-Marc Ayrault (PS) (since 1989) Intercommunality Urban Community of Nantes City (commune) Characteristics Land Area 65. ... The statue of dArtagnan in Auch Statue of dArtagnan in Maastricht Charles de Batz-Castelmore, Comte dArtagnan (c. ... Jean de La Fontaine. ... Marie de Rabutin-Chantal, marquise de Sévigné (February 5, 1626 – April 17, 1696), French letter-writer, was born at Paris. ... Pinerolo is a town in Italy, 40 km southwest of Turin on the River Chisone. ...


Louis acted throughout "as though he were conducting a campaign," evidently fearing that Fouquet would play the part of a Richelieu. Fouquet bore himself with manly fortitude, and composed several mediocre translations in prison. The devotional works bearing his name are apocryphal. A report of his trial was published in the Netherlands, in 15 volumes, in 1665—1667, in spite of the remonstrances which Colbert addressed to the States-General. A second edition under the title of Oeuvres de M. Fouquet appeared in 1696. Cardinal Richelieu was the French chief minister from 1624 until his death. ... In France under the Ancien Régime, the States-General or Estates-General (French: États généraux), was a legislative assembly (see The States) of the different classes (or estates) of French subjects. ...


His closest friend and, maybe, mistress, was Suzanne de Rougé, the Marquise du Plessis-Bellière. To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Suzanne, Marquise du Plessis-Belliere et de Fay les Nemours, née de Bruc de Monplaisir, was the wife of Jacques de Rougé du Plessis-Bellière, Marquis du Plessis-Bellière. ...


Fouquet has been identified with the Man in the Iron Mask, but this theory is quite implausible. In fact, there is evidence that the Man in the Mask served as Fouquet's manservant in Pignerol prison. The Man in the Iron Mask was a prisoner believed to have been held in the Bastille prison from an unknown date to his death on November 19, 1703. ...


References

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Nicolas Fouquet
  • This article incorporates text from the Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition, a publication now in the public domain.

Image File history File links Commons-logo. ... Wikimedia Commons logo by Reid Beels The Wikimedia Commons (also called Commons or Wikicommons) is a repository of free content images, sound and other multimedia files. ... Encyclopædia Britannica, the 11th edition The Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition (1910–1911) is perhaps the most famous edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica. ... The public domain comprises the body of all creative works and other knowledge—writing, artwork, music, science, inventions, and others—in which no person or organization has any proprietary interest. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Nicolas Fouquet - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (927 words)
Nicolas Fouquet (January 27, 1615 — March 23, 1680) was viscount of Melun and of Vaux, marquis de Belle-Isle, superintendent of finance in France under Louis XIV.
Fouquet's fortune now surpassed even Mazarin's, but the latter was too deeply implicated in similar operations to interfere, and was obliged to leave the day of reckoning to his agent and successor Jean-Baptiste Colbert.
Upon Mazarin's death Fouquet expected to be made head of the government; but Louis XIV was suspicious of his poorly dissembled ambition, and it was with Fouquet in mind that he made the well-known statement, upon assuming the government, that he would be his own chief minister.
Encyclopedia4U - Nicolas Fouquet - Encyclopedia Article (931 words)
Nicolas Fouquet (1615 — March 23, 1680) was viscount of Melun and of Vaux, marquis of Belle-Isle, superintendent of finance in France under Louis XIV.
He had spent enormous sums in building a palace on his estate of Vaux, which in extent, magnificence, and splendour of decoration was a forecast of Versailles.
Three weeks after his visit to Vaux the king withdrew to Nantes, taking Fouquet with him, and had him arrested when he was leaving the presence chamber, flattered with the assurance of his esteem.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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