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Chevreuse
Arms: Or a bend Gules charged with three alerions Argent (Chevreuse) impaled
by Gules nine mascles Or, set 3, 3, 3 (Rohan)

SOURCE, NOTES and CREDITS: Source is “A Fair Conspirator” by H. Noel Williams, Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York, 1913 for illustration for background and text for adaption. “Armorial of French Peers”, Wikipedia for illustrations and blazon texts for background and adaption. Wikipedia and Britannica internet articles text for background and adaption.

Marie de Rohan-Montbazon, duchesse de Chevreuse, 1600-1679 was an important
and tireless activist, intriguer, conspirator and troublemaker at the French court in the first half of the 17th century. She was active mainly between 1618-1652. Born in Dec 1600 the daughter of Hercule de Rohan, duc de Montbazon, married in 1617 to Charles d’Albert, duc de Luynes. In 1618 she became Superintendent of the household of Anne of Austria, Queen of Louis XIII, Widowed in 1621 she married the influential Claude de Lorraine, duc de Chevreuse in 1622.

In 1625 she promoted a liaison between Queen Anne and George Villiers, 1st Duke of Buckingham, but this failed as Buckingham openly declared his passion for the queen.

In 1626 Chevreuse was exiled in 1626 for her part in a plot against the Cardinal de Richelieu to the duchy of Lorraine. Allowed by Richelieu to return to France in 1628

She was again exiled in 1633 to Touraine for betraying state secrets to Spain received from her lover the Marquis de Chateauneuf, the Keeper of the Seals at the French court.

France went to war with Spain in 1635 and it was discovered in 1637 that Chevreuse and Queen were conducting treasonable with the Court of Spain. The duchesse fled in disguise to Spain.

The duchesse was allowed to return to France after the death of Louis XIII and Anne of Austria had become regent.

You would think at this point the duchesse would settle down. But no, she immediately joined the conspiracy of the “Importants”, a group of high nobles to assassinate the Queen’s first minister, Cardinal Jules Mazarin. The queen sent her into exile again. The duchesse returned to Paris in 1649 and joined in the aristocratic uprising against Mazarin known as the Fronde ( 1648-1652) supporting the revolt of the Prince de Condé ( the Great Condé ) in 1651.

The duchesse then became reconciled with Mazarin supporting him and the Queen. When Louis XIV took over, she supported him and contributed to the downfall of Fouquet and the elevation of Colbert.

When her husband died in 1655, she bought the duchy of Chevreuse from the Lorraine family and transferred it to her son the duc de Luynes around 1667. The title remains in the possession of the d’Albrets and the duc de Luynes to this day.

The duchesse de Chevreuse died on 12 Aug 1679 at age 78

The artwork is a rendition of John Hamilton Gaylor.

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