Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Perigord - Encyclopedia

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CHARLES MAURICE DE TALLEYRAND-PERIGORD (1754-1838), French diplomatist and statesman, was born at Paris on the r3th of February 1754, though some accounts give the date as the 2nd of February. His father was Lieutenant-General Charles Daniel de Talleyrand-Perigord, and his mother was Alexandrine (nee) de Damas Antigny. His parents, descended from ancient and powerful families, were in constant attendance at the court of Louis XV., and (as was generally the case then in their class) neglected the child. In his third or fourth year, while under the care of a nurse in Paris, he fell from a chest of drawers and injured his foot for life. This accident darkened his prospects; for though by the death of his elder brother he should have represented the family and entered the army, yet he forfeited the rights of primogeniture, and the profession of arms was thenceforth closed to him. Entrusted to the care of his grandmother at Chalais in Perigord, he there received the only kind treatment which he experienced in his early life, and was ever grateful for. it. He was removed at the age of eight to the College d'Harcourt at Paris (now the Lycee St Louis), where his rich intellectual gifts enabled him to make good by private study the defects of the training there imparted. At the age of twelve he fell ill of smallpox, but his parents showed little or no interest in his recovery. Destined for the church by the family council which deprived him of his birthright, he was sent when about thirteen years of age to St Sulpice, where he conceived a dislike of the doctrines and discipline thrust upon him. After a visit to his uncle, the archbishop of Reims, he returned to St Sulpice to finish his preliminary training for the church, but in his spare time he read the works of Montesquieu, Voltaire, and other writers who were beginning to undermine the authority of the ancien regime, both in church and state. As subdeacon he witnessed the coronation of Louis XVI. at Reims, but he did not take priest's orders until four years later. Recent researches into his early life discredit most of the stories that have been told respecting his profligacy and his contempt for the claims of the church; and it is admitted that, while rejecting her authority in the sphere of dogma and intellect, he observed the proprieties of life (gambling being then scarcely looked on as a vice) and respected the outward observances of religion.

During his life at Paris he had opportunities of mixing in the circles of the philosophers and of others who frequented the salon of Madame de Geniis, and he there formed those ideas in favour of political and social reform which he retained through life. After taking his licentiate in theology in March 1778, he gave little more attention to theological studies. Nevertheless the acuteness of his powers, added no doubt to his social position, gained for him in the year 1780 the position of agent-general of the clergy of France, in which capacity he had to perform important administrative duties respecting the relations of the clergy to the civil power. The growing claims of the state on the exchequer of the clergy made his duties responsible, his colleague as agent-general being of little use. At the extraordinary assembly of the clergy in 1782 he made various proposals, by one of which he sought, though in vain, to redress the most glaring grievances of the underpaid cures. Though the excellence of his work as agent-general in the years 1780-86 was fully acknowledged, and earned him a special gift of 31,000 livres, yet he did not gain a bishopric until the beginning of the year 1789, probably because the king disliked him as a freethinker. He now became bishop of Autun, with a stipend of 22,000 livres, and was installed on the r 5th of March.

The first rumblings of the revolutionary storm were making themselves heard. The elections for the States General were soon to take place; and the first important act of the new bishop was to draw up a manifesto or programme of the reforms which he desired to see carried out by the States General of France. It comprised the following items: the formation of a constitution which would strengthen the monarchy by calling to it the support of the whole nation, the drafting of a scheme of local self-government on democratic lines, the reform of the administration of justice and of the criminal law, and the abolition of the most burdensome of feudal and class privileges. This programme was adopted by the clergy of his diocese as their cahier, or book of instructions to their representative at the States General, namely Talleyrand himself.

His influence in the estate of the clergy, however, was cast against the union of the three estates in a single assembly, and he voted in the minority of his order which in the middle of June opposed the merging of the clergy in the National Assembly. The folly of the court, and the weakness of Louis XVI. at that crisis, probably convinced him that the cause of moderate reform and the framing of a bicameral constitution on the model of that of England were hopeless. Thereafter he inclined more and more to the democratic side, though for the present he concerned himself mainly with financial questions. In the middle of July he was chosen as one of the committee to prepare a draft of a constitution; and in the session of the Assembly which Mirabeau termed the orgie of the abolition of privileges (4th of August) he intervened in favour of discrimination and justice. On the 10th of October, that is, four days after the insurrection of women and the transference of the king and court to Paris, he proposed to the Assembly the confiscation of the lands of the church to the service of the nation, but on terms rather less rigorous than those in which Mirabeau (q.v.) carried the proposal into effect on the 2nd of November. He identified himself in general with the Left of the Assembly, and supported the proposed departmental system which replaced the old provincial system early in 1790. At the federation festival of the 14th of July 1790 (the "Feast of Pikes") he officiated at the altar reared in the middle of the Champ de Mars. This was his last public celebration of mass. For a brilliantly satirical but not wholly fair reference to the part then played by Talleyrand, the reader should consult Carlyle's French Revolution, vol. ii., bk. i., ch. 12. The course of events harmonized with the anticlerical views of Talleyrand, and he gradually loosened the ties that bound him to the church. He took little part in, though he probably sympathized with, the debates on the measure known as the Civil Constitution of the Clergy, whereby the state enforced its authority over the church to the detriment of its allegiance to the pope. When the Assembly sought to impose on its members an oath of obedience to the new decree, Talleyrand and three other bishops complied out of the thirty who had seats in the Assembly. The others, followed by the greater number of the clergy throughout France, refused, and thenceforth looked on Talleyrand as a schismatic. He did not long continue to officiate, as many of the so-called "constitutional" clergy did; for, on the 21st of January 1791, he resigned the see of Autun, and in the month of March was placed under the ban of the church by the pope.

Just before his resignation he had been elected, with Mirabeau and Sieyes, a member of the department of Paris; and in that capacity did useful work for some eighteen months in seeking to support the cause of order in the turbulent capital. Though he was often on strained terms with Mirabeau, yet his views generally coincided with those of that statesman, who is said on his death-bed (2nd of April 1791) to have communicated to him his opinions on domestic and international affairs, especially advising a close understanding with England. Talleyrand's reputation for immorality, however, was as marked as that of Mirabeau. While excelling him in suppleness and dexterity, he lacked the force of character possessed by the great "tribune of the people"; and his influence was gradually eclipsed by that of the more ardent and determined champions of democracy, the Girondins and the Jacobins. In the closing days of the first or Constituent Assembly, Talleyrand set forth (loth of September 1791) his ideas on national education. Education was to be free, and to lead up to the university. In place of dogma, the elements of religion were alone to be taught.

Debarred from election to the second National Assembly (known as the Legislative) by the self-denying ordinance passed by the "constituents," Talleyrand, at the close of 1791, sought to enter the sphere of diplomacy for which his mental qualities and his clerical training furnished him with an admirable equipment. The condition of affairs on the continent seemed to French enthusiasts to presage an attack by the other Powers on France. In reality those Powers were far more occupied with the Polish and Eastern questions than with the affairs of France; and the declaration of Pilnitz, drawn up by the sovereigns of Austria and Prussia, which appeared to threaten France with intervention, was recognized by all well-informed persons to be "a loud-sounding nothing." The French foreign minister, Delessart, believed that he would checkmate all the efforts of the emigres at the continental courts provided that he could confirm Pitt in his intention of keeping England neutral. For that purpose Delessart sent Talleyrand, well known for his Anglophil tendencies, to London, but in the unofficial or semiofficial capacity which was rendered necessary by the decree of the Constituent Assembly referred to above. Talleyrand arrived in London on the 24th of January 1792, and found public opinion so far friendly that he wrote off to Paris, "Believe me, a rapprochement with England is no chimera." Pitt received him cordially; and to Grenville the envoy stated his hope that the two free nations would enter into close and friendly relations, each guaranteeing the other in the possession of its existing territories, India and Ireland being included on the side of Britain. After some delay the British government decided to return no definite answer to this proposal, a result due, as Talleyrand thought, to the Gallophobe views of King George and of the ministers Camden and Thurlow. Talleyrand, however, was convinced that Great Britain would not intervene against France unless the latter attacked the Dutch Netherlands.

He returned to Paris on the 10th of March to persuade the foreign minister (Dumouriez now held that post) of the need of having a fully accredited ambassador at London. The exMarquis Chauvelin was appointed, with Talleyrand as adviser. The situation became more complex after the 19th of April, when France declared war against Austria and prepared to invade the Austrian or Belgic Netherlends. Owing to certain indiscretions of Chauvelin and the growing unpopularity of the French in England (especially after the disgraceful day of the 10th of June at the Tuileries), the mission was a failure; but Talleyrand had had some share in confirming Pitt in his policy of neutrality, even despite Prussia's overtures for an alliance against France. After Talleyrand's return to Paris early in July (probably in order to sound the situation there) matters went from bad to worse. The overthrow of the monarchy on the 10th of August and the September massacres rendered hopeless all attempts at an entente cordiale between the two peoples; and the provocative actions of Chauvelin, undertaken in order to curry favour with the extremists now in power at Paris, undid all the good accomplished by the tact and moderation of Talleyrand. The latter now sought to escape from France, where events were becoming intolerable; and after some unsuccessful attempts to obtain a passport to leave Paris,. he succeeded on the 14th of September and landed in England on the 23rd, avowedly on private business, but still animated by the hope of averting a rupture between the two governments. In this he failed. The provocative actions of the French Convention, especially their setting aside of the rights of the Dutch over the estuary of the Scheldt, had brought the two nations to the brink of war, when the execution of Louis XVI. (21st of Jan. 1793) made it inevitable. Talleyrand was expelled from British soil and made his way to the United States. There he spent thirty months in a state of growing uneasiness and discontent with his surroundings.

The course of events after the Thermidorian reaction of July 1 794 favoured his return to France. Thanks to the efforts of Daunou and others his name was removed from the list of emigres, and he set sail for Europe in November 1795. Landing at Hamburg in the January following, he spent some time there in the company of his friends Madame de Geniis and Reinhard; and when party rancour continued to abate at Paris, he returned thither in September. After a time marked by some pecuniary embarrassment, he was recommended by Madame de Stael to the Director Barras for the post of minister of foreign affairs..

His claims on the attention of the Directors had been strengthened by his reading two papers before the French Institute, the first on the commercial relations between England and the United States (in the sense referred to above), and the second on the advantages to be derived from new colonies. In the latter there occurred the suggestive remarks that, whereas revolutions made men prematurely old and weary, the work of colonization tended to renew the youth of nations. France, he observed, needed the spur to practical energy which the Americans had at hand in the effort to subdue the difficulties placed in their way by nature. Similar efforts would tend to make Frenchmen forget the past, and would at the same time supply an outlet for the poor and discontented. The practical statesmanship contained in these papers raised Talleyrand in public estimation; and, thanks to the efforts above named, he gained the post of foreign minister, entering on his duties in July 1797.

Bonaparte by his victories over the Austrians in Italy and Styria had raised the French republic to heights of power never dreamed of, and now desired to impose on the emperor terms of peace, to which the Directors demurred. Talleyrand, despite the weakness of his own position (he was as yet little more than the chief clerk of his department), soon came to a good understanding with the general, and secretly expressed to him his satisfaction at the terms which the latter dictated at Campo Formio (17th of October 1797). The coup d'etat of Fructidor (September 1797) had perpetuated the Directory and led to the exclusion of the two "moderate" members, Carnot and Barthelemy; but Talleyrand saw that power belonged really to the general who had brought about the coup d'etat in favour of the Jacobinical Directors headed by Barras.

After the rupture of the peace negotiations with England, which resulted from the coup d'etat of Fructidor, the policy of France became more warlike and aggressive. The occupation of Rome and of Switzerland by the French troops and the events of Bonaparte's Egyptian expedition (see Napoleon I.) brought about a renewal of war on the continent, but with these new developments Talleyrand had little or no connexion. His powers as minister were limited, and he regretted the extension of the area of war. Moreover, in the autumn of 1797 his reputation for political morality (never very bright) was overclouded by questionable dealings with the envoys of the United States sent to arrange a peaceful settlement of certain disputes with France. The investigations of the most recent of Talleyrand's biographers tend to show that the charges made against him of trafficking with the envoys have been overdrawn; but all his apologists admit that irregularities occurred. Talleyrand refused to clear himself of the charges made against him as his friends (especially Madame de Stael) urged him to do; and the incident probably told against his chances of admission into the Directory, which were discussed in the summer of 1798. A year later he resigned the portfolio for foreign affairs (20th of July 1799), probably because he foresaw the imminent collapse of the Directory. If so, his premonitions were correct. Their realization was assured by the return to France of the "Conqueror of the East" in October. The general and the diplomatist soon came to an understanding, and Talleyrand tactfully brought about the alliance between Bonaparte and Sieyes (q.v.) (then the most influential of the five Directors) which paved the way for the coup d'etat of Brumaire (see French Revolution and Napoleon I.).

Talleyrand's share in the actual events of the 18th, 19th Brumaire (9th, 10th of November) 1799 was limited to certain dealings with Barras on the former of those days. About midday he took to Barras a letter, penned by Roederer, requesting him to resign his post as Director. By what means Talleyrand brought him to do so, whether by persuasion, threats or bribes, is not known; but on that afternoon Barras left Paris under an escort of soldiers. With the more critical and exciting events of the 19th of Brumaire at St Cloud Talleyrand had no direct connexion; but he had made all his preparations for flight in case the blow failed. His reward for helping on the winning cause was the ministry for foreign affairs, which he held from the close of December 1799 on to the summer of 1807. In the great work of reconstruction of France now begun by the First Consul, Talleyrand played no unimportant part. His great aim was to bring about peace, both international and internal. He had a hand in the pacific overtures which Bonaparte, early in the year 1800, sent to the court of London; and, whatever may have been the motives of the First Consul in sending them, it is certain that Talleyrand regretted their failure. After the battle of Marengo an Austrian envoy had come to Paris in response to a proposal of Bonaparte, and Talleyrand persuaded him to sign terms of peace. These were indignantly repudiated at Vienna, but peace was made between the two Powers at Luneville on the 9th of February 1801.

As regards French affairs, Talleyrand used his influence to help on the repeal of the vexatious laws against emigres, nonjuring priests, and the royalists of the west. He was also in full sympathy with the policy which led up to the signature of the Concordat of 1801-2 with the pope (see Concordat); but it is probable that he had a hand in the questionable intrigues which accompanied the closing parts of that complex and difficult negotiation. At the end of June 1802 the pope removed Talleyrand from the ban of excommunication and allowed him to revert to the secular state. On the 10th of September 1803, owing to pressure put on him by Bonaparte, he married Madame Grand, a divorcee with whom he had long been living.

During the meeting of Italian notables at Lyons early in 1802 Talleyrand was serviceable in manipulating affairs in the way desired by Bonaparte, and it is known that the foreign minister suggested to them the desirability of appointing Bonaparte president of the Cisalpine Republic, which was thenceforth to be called the Italian Republic. In the negotiations for peace with England which went on at Amiens during the winter of 1801-2 Talleyrand had no direct share, these (like those at Luneville) being transacted by Napoleon's eldest brother, Joseph Bonaparte (q.v.). On the other hand he helped the First Consul in assuring French supremacy in Switzerland, Italy and Germany. In Germany the indemnification of the princes who lost all their lands west of the Rhine was found by secularizing and absorbing the ecclesiastical states of the empire. This unscrupulous proceeding, known as the Secularizations (February 1803), was carried out largely on lines laid down by Bonaparte and Talleyrand; and the latter is known to have made large sums of money by trafficking with the claimants of church lands.

While helping to establish French supremacy in neighbouring states and assisting Bonaparte in securing the title of First Consul for life, Talleyrand sought all means of securing the permanent welfare of France. He worked hard to prevent the rupture of the peace of Amiens which occurred in May 1803, and he did what he could to prevent the sale of Louisiana to the United States earlier in the year. These events, as he saw, told against the best interests of France and endangered the gains which she had secured by war and diplomacy. Thereafter he strove to moderate Napoleon's ambition and to preserve the European system as far as possible. The charges of duplicity or treachery made against the foreign minister by Napoleon's apologists are in nearly all cases unfounded. This is especially so in the case of the execution of the duc d'Enghien (March 1804), which Talleyrand disapproved. The evidence against him rests on a document which is now known to have been forged. On the assumption of the imperial title by Napoleon in May 1804, Talleyrand became grand chamberlain of the empire, and received close on 500,000 francs a year.

Talleyrand had rarely succeeded in bending the will of the First Consul. He altogether failed to do so with the Emperor Napoleon. His efforts to induce his master to accord lenient terms to Austria in November 1805 were futile; and he looked on helplessly while that Power was crushed, the Holy Roman Empire swept away, and the Confederation of the Rhine set up in central Europe. In the bargainings which accompanied this last event Talleyrand is believed to have reaped a rich harvest from the German princes most nearly concerned. On the 6th of July 1806 Napoleon conferred on his minister the title of prince of Benevento, a papal fief in the Neapolitan territory.

In the negotiations with England which went on in the summer of 1806 Talleyrand had not a free hand; they came to nought, as did those with Russia which had led up to the signature of a Franco-Russian treaty at Paris by d'Oubril which was at once disavowed by the tsar. The war with Prussia and Russia was ended by the treaties of Tilsit (7th and 9th of July 1807). Talleyrand had a hand only in the later developments of these negotiations; and it has been shown that he cannot have been the means of revealing to the British government the secret arrangements made at Tilsit between France and Russia, though his private enemies, among them Fouche, have charged him with acting as traitor in this affair.

Talleyrand had long been weary of serving a master whose policy he more and more disapproved, and after the return from Tilsit to Paris he resigned office. Nevertheless Napoleon retained him in the council and took him with him to the interview with the Emperor Alexander I. at Erfurt (September 1808). There Talleyrand secretly advised that potentate not to join Napoleon in putting pressure on Austria in the way desired by the French emperor; but it is well known that Alexander was of that opinion before Talleyrand tendered the advice. Talleyrand disapproved of the Spanish policy of Napoleon which culminated at Bayonne in May 1808; and the stories to the contrary may in all probability be dismissed as idle rumours. It is also hard to believe the statement in the Talleyrand Memoirs that the ex-foreign minister urged Napoleon to occupy Catalonia until a maritime peace could be arranged with England. On Talleyrand now fell the disagreeable task of entertaining at his new mansion at Valencay, in Touraine, the Spanish princes virtually kidnapped at Bayonne by the emperor. They remained there until March 1814. At the close of 1808, while Napoleon was in Spain, Talleyrand entered into certain relations with his former rival Fouche (q.v.), which aroused the solicitude of the emperor and hastened his return to Paris. He subjected Talleyrand to violent reproaches, which the ex-minister bore with his usual ironical calm.

After the Danubian campaign of 1809 and the divorce of Josephine, Talleyrand used the influence which he still possessed in the imperial council on behalf of the choice of an Austrian consort for his master, for, like Metternich (who is said first to have mooted the proposal), he saw that this would safeguard the interests of the Habsburgs, whose influence he felt to be essential to the welfare of Europe. He continued quietly to observe the course of events during the disastrous years r 8r 2-13; and even at the beginning of the Moscow campaign he summed up the situation in the words, "It is the beginning of the end." Early in 1814 he saw Napoleon for the last time; the emperor upbraided him with the words: "You are a coward, a traitor, a thief. You do not even believe in God. You have betrayed and deceived everybody. You would sell even your own father." Talleyrand listened unmoved, but afterwards sent in his resignation of his seat on the council. It was not accepted. He had no share in the negotiations of the congress of Chatillon in February-March 1814. On the surrender of Paris to the allies (30th of March 1814), the Emperor Alexander I. took up his abode at the hotel Talleyrand, and there occurred the conference wherein the statesman persuaded the victorious potentate that the return of the Bourbons was the only possible solution of the French problem, and that the principle of legitimacy alone would guarantee Europe against the aggrandizement of any one state or house. As he phrased it in the Talleyrand Memoirs: " The house of Bourbon alone could cause France nobly to conform once more to the happy limits indicated by policy and by nature. With the house of Bourbon France ceased to be gigantic in order to be great." These arguments, reinforced by those of the royalist agent de Vitrolles, convinced the tsar; and Talleyrand, on the 1st of April, convened the French senate (only 64 members out of 1 4 0 attended), and that body pronounced that Napoleon had forfeited the crown. Ten days later the fallen emperor recognized the inevitable and signed the Act of Abdication at Fontainebleau. The next effort of Talleyrand was to screen France under the principle of legitimacy and to prevent the scheme of partition on which several of the German statesmen were bent. Thanks mainly to the support of the tsar and of England these schemes were foiled; and France emerged from her disasters with frontiers which were practically those of 1792.

At the congress of Vienna (1814-15) for the settlement of European affairs, Talleyrand, as the representative of the restored house of Bourbon in France, managed adroitly to break up the league of the Powers (framed at Chaumont in February 1814) and assisted in forming a secret alliance between England, Austria and France in order to prevent the complete absorption of Poland by Russia and of Saxony by Prussia. The new triple alliance had the effect of lessening the demands of those Powers, and of leading to the well-known territorial compromise of 1815. Everything was brought into a state of uncertainty once more by the escape of Napoleon from Elba; but the events of the Hundred Days, in which Talleyrand had no share - he remained at Vienna until the Toth of June - brought in the Bourbons once more; and Talleyrand's plea for a magnanimous treatment of France under Louis XVIII. once more prevailed in all important matters. On the 9th of July 1815 he became foreign minister and president of the council under Louis XVIII., but diplomatic and other difficulties led him to resign his appointment on the 23rd of September 1815, Louis,, however, naming him high chamberlain and according him an annuity of 100,000 francs. The rest of his life calls for little notice except that at the time of the July Revolution of 1830, which unseated the elder branch of the Bourbons, he urged Louis Philippe, duke of Orleans, to take the throne offered to him by popular acclaim. The new sovereign offered him the portfolio for foreign affairs; but Talleyrand signified his preference for the embassy in London. In that capacity he took an important part in the negotiations respecting the founding of the new kingdom of Belgium. In April 1834 he crowned his diplomatic career by signing the treaty which brought together as allies France, Great Britain, Spain and Portugal; and in the autumn of that year he resigned his embassy. During his last days he signed a paper signifying his reconciliation with the Roman Catholic Church and his regret for many of his early actions. The king visited his death-bed. His death, on the 17th of May 1838, called forth widespread expressions of esteem for the statesman who had rendered such great and varied services to his country. He was buried at Valencay. He had been separated from the former Madame Grand in 1815 and left no heir.

Under all the inconsistencies of Talleyrand's career there lies an aim as steadily consistent as that which inspired his contemporary, Lafayette. They both loved France and the cause of constitutional liberty. Talleyrand believed that he served those causes best by remaining in office whenever possible, and by guiding or moderating the actions of his chiefs. He lived to see the triumph of his principles; and no Frenchman of that age did so much to repair the mischief wrought by fanatics and autocrats. In the opinion of enlightened men this will mitigate the censures that must be passed on him for his laxity in matters financial. If he enriched himself, he also helped to save France from ruin at more crises than one. In private life his ease of bearing, friendliness, and, above all, his inexhaustible fund of humour and irony, won him a large circle of friends; and judges so exacting as Mmes de Stael and de Remusat and Lord Brougham avowed their delight in his society.

By a codicil added to his will on the 17th of March 1838 Talleyrand left his memoirs and papers to the duchess of Dino and to M. de Bacourt. The latter revised them with care, and added to them other pieces emanating from Talleyrand. They were not to be published until after the lapse of thirty years from the time of Talleyrand's death. For various reasons they did not see the light until 1891. This is not the place in which to discuss so large a question as that of the genuineness of the Memoires, which, indeed, is now generally admitted. There are, however, several suspicious circumstances which tell against them as documents of the first importa nce, notably these: first that Talleyrand is known to have destroyed many of his most important papers, and secondly that M. de Bacourt almost certainly drew up the connected narrative which we now possess from notes which were in more or less of confusion. For this question see articles by M. Chuquet in Rev. critique d'histoire et de litterature, 25th of May 1891 (Paris); also articles by others in the Rev. historique, vols. xlviii. and xlix. (Paris); also in the Quarterly Review, No. 345 (London, 1891), and Edinburgh Review, vol. 174 (London, 1891); by P. Bailleu in the Historische Zeitschrift, vol. lxviii. (Munich, 1892), and by Albert Sorel in his Lectures historiques (pp. 70 -112).

The Talleyrand Memoires were edited by the duc de Broglie in 5 vols. (Paris, 1891-2). They have been translated into English by A. Hall, 5 vols. (London, 1891-2). Of his letters and despatches the following are the chief collections: G. Pallain, La mission de Talleyrand a Londres en 1792 (Paris, 1889), and Le ministere de Talleyrand sous le Directoire (Paris, 1891); P. Bertrand, Lettres inedites de Talleyrand a Napoleon, 1800-9 (Paris, 1889); G. Pallain, Talleyrand et Louis XVIII. (Paris, 1881), and Ambassade de Talleyrand a Londres (1830-4), 2 vols. (Paris, 1891).

Among the biographies, or biographical notices, of Talleyrand the following are, on the whole, hostile to him: G. Touchard Lafosse, Talleyrand, histoire politique et vie intime (Paris, 1848); G. Michaud, Hist. politique et privee de Talleyrand (Paris, 1853) A. Pichot, Souvenirs intimes sur Talleyrand (Paris, 1870); Sainte-Beuve, "Talleyrand," in Nouveaux lundis, No. xii.; and Villemarest, Talleyrand. The estimate of him of Sir H. L. E. Bulwer Lytton in his Historical Characters, 2 vols. (London, 1867) and that of Lord Brougham in Historical Sketches of Statesmen, 3 vols. (London, 1845, new edition), are better balanced, but brief. Of recent biographies of Talleyrand the best are Lady Blennerhasset's Talleyrand (Berlin, 1894, Eng. translation by F. Clarke, 2 vols. London, 1894); Talleyrand, a Biographical Study, by Joseph McCabe (London, 1906); and Bernard de Lacombe, La vie privee de Talleyrand (1910). (J. HL. R.)

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