GOUFFIER, the name of a great French family, which owned the estate of Bonnivet in Poitou from the 14th century. Guillaume Gouffier, chamberlain to Charles VII., was an inveterate enemy of Jacques Coeur, obtaining his condemnation and afterwards receiving his property (1491). He had a great number of children, several of whom played a part in history. Artus, seigneur de Boisy (c. 1475-1520)was entrusted with the education of the young count of Angouleme (Francis I.), and on the accession of this prince to the throne as Francis I. became grand master of the royal household, playing an important part in the government; to him was given the task of negotiating the treaty of Noyon in 1516; and shortly before his death the king raised the estates of Roanne and Boisy to the rank of a duchy, that of Roannais, in his favour. Adrien Gouffier (d. 1523) was bishop of Coutances and Albi, and grand almoner of France.
Guillaume Gouffier, seigneur de Bonnivet, became admiral of France (see Bonnivet). Claude Gouffier, Son of Artus, was created comte de Maulevrier (1542) and marquis de Boisy (1564).
There were many branches of this family, the chief of them being the dukes of Roannais, the counts of Caravas, the lords of Creveceeur and of Bonnivet, the marquises of Thois, of Brazeux, and of Espagny. The name of Gouffier was adopted in the 18th century by a branch of the house of Choiseul. (M. P.*)
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