Jean-Baptiste Cléry

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Jean-Baptiste Cléry (1759–1809) was the personal valet to King Louis XVI.

Valet male domestic workers and personal attendants to their employer

A valet is a male servant who serves as personal attendant to his employer. In the Middle Ages and Ancien Régime, valet de chambre was a role for junior courtiers and specialists such as artists in a royal court, but the term "valet" by itself most often refers to a normal servant responsible for the clothes and personal belongings of an employer, and making minor arrangements.



Before the Revolution

First serving as secretary of the Princess of Guéménée, he was made valet of the dauphin (who would become Louis XVII).

During the Revolution

Cléry became the valet of Louis XVI when he was imprisoned in the Temple until January 21, 1793. Although he was arrested on September 25, 1793, he avoided the fate of the guillotine and was freed on July 27, 1794.

After the Revolution

Cléry became valet to the Count of Provence (future Louis XVIII) and gave him his journal detailing the events of the revolution. His journal gave an account of what he saw of his touching farewell with his family. The journal was published and was well received, and later led to Cléry's being knighted by Louis XVIII. The popularity and pro-royalist sentiments generated by the memoirs led the French government to release a distorted copy of the book. [1]

Louis XVIII of France Bourbon King of France and of Navarre

Louis XVIII, known as "the Desired", was a monarch of the House of Bourbon who ruled as King of France from 1814 to 1824, except for a period in 1815 known as the Hundred Days. He spent twenty-three years in exile, from 1791 to 1814, during the French Revolution and the First French Empire, and again in 1815, during the period of the Hundred Days, upon the return of Napoleon I from Elba.

Cléry moved to Austria and purchased an estate where he stayed until his death in 1809.

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  1. Cléry, Jean-Baptiste; Henry Essex Edgeworth (1961) [1798]. Sidney Scott, ed. Journal of the Terror. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p. 162. OCLC   3153946. "The memoirs were published in London in 1798. They enjoyed tremendous success from the beginning, and were translated into most European languages. As a mark of his appreciation, Louis XVIII made Cléry a Knight of the Order of St Louis. The French government, however, has alarmed at the reaction in the King's favour produced by the publication of the memoirs, and caused a spurious edition to be printed containing a distorted account of the facts.

This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain:  Wood, James, ed. (1907). "article name needed". The Nuttall Encyclopædia . London and New York: Frederick Warne.

The public domain consists of all the creative works to which no exclusive intellectual property rights apply. Those rights may have expired, been forfeited, expressly waived, or may be inapplicable.

The Reverend James Wood was a Scottish editor and Free Church minister. He was born in Leith and studied at the University of Edinburgh, living most of his life in Edinburgh. His admiration for Thomas Carlyle and John Ruskin may have contributed to his failure to secure a ministry. Instead he earned a living as a writer. He translated Auguste Barth's Religions of India and edited Nuttall's Standard Dictionary, The Nuttall Encyclopaedia, Warne's Dictionary of Quotations, Bagster & Sons' Helps to the Bible, and a Carlyle School Reader. In 1881 he published anonymously The Strait Gate, and Other Discourses, with a Lecture on Thomas Carlyle, by a Scotch Preacher. He is described by P. J. E. Wilson as " that most conscientious of pedants".

The Nuttall Encyclopædia: Being a Concise and Comprehensive Dictionary of General Knowledge is a late 19th-century encyclopedia, edited by Rev. James Wood, first published in London in 1900 by Frederick Warne & Co Ltd.