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LA BEAUMELLE, Laurent Angliviel de (1726-1773). Mémoires pour servir à l’histoire de Madame de Maintenon et à celle du siècle passé. [Geneva: C. et A. Philibert,] 1757. [WITH:] Lettres de Madame de Maintenon. [Geneva: C. et A. Philibert,] 1758.
LA BEAUMELLE, Laurent Angliviel de (1726-1773). Mémoires pour servir à l’histoire de Madame de Maintenon et à celle du siècle passé. [Geneva: C. et A. Philibert,] 1757. [WITH:] Lettres de Madame de Maintenon. [Geneva: C. et A. Philibert,] 1758.

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LA BEAUMELLE, Laurent Angliviel de (1726-1773). Mémoires pour servir à l’histoire de Madame de Maintenon et à celle du siècle passé. [Geneva: C. et A. Philibert,] 1757. [WITH:] Lettres de Madame de Maintenon. [Geneva: C. et A. Philibert,] 1758.

Finely bound set of La Beaumelles controversial works on Madame de Maintenon, from the library of the Duchesse de Berry. Laurent Angliviel, a Huguenot writer and free-thinker, adopted the pseudonym La Beaumelle upon entering the academy of Geneva in 1745. His works were frequently banned in France; La Beaumelle spent several months in prison at the Bastille in 1753 for his Notes sur le scle de Louis XIV. The publication of Madame de Maintenon’s alleged memoirs and letters, in which La Beaumelle presented her as the hidden architect of Louis XIV’s revocation of the Edict of Nantes and other persecutory measures, again landed him in prison in 1757. La Beaumelle’s reputation was eventually rehabilitated: in 1770 King Louis XV appointed him to a position at the Bibliothèque Royale and granted him a pension.

Six volumes (Mémoires) and nine volumes (Lettres), together 15 volumes, 12mo (160 x 94mm). Contemporary French dark green straight-grain morocco gilt, all edges gilt, silk endpapers, with the arms the Duchesse de Berry (light rubbing). Provenance: Marie-Caroline-Ferdinande-Louise de Bourbon-Sicile, duchesse de Berry (1798-1870; binding and Bibliothèque de Rosny bookplate) – Charles, marquis de Biencourt (1826-1914; bookplate) – Biencourt-Poncins family (bookplate) – Bruno Monnier (book label).

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