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Governing PassionsPeace and Reform in the French Kingdom, 1576-1585$
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Mark Greengrass

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199214907

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199214907.001.0001

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The Estates of Blois and the Bien Public

The Estates of Blois and the Bien Public

(p.66) 3 The Estates of Blois and the Bien Public
Governing Passions


Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the estates general of Blois, a national assembly summoned at the Palace Academy of Henry III of France on November 15, 1576. The delegates arrived equipped with cahiers which had carefully considered the issues of peace and reform, committed to a sense of the ‘commonwealth’. The chapter looks at what the deliberations at the estates general mean about the depth of commitment to the reformation of the French kingdom, and why the estates were a failure. The debate over catholicity at Blois is discussed, along with the delegates' concern to live up to the expectations of reform of the common weal that had been laid upon them, the so-called Gallican liberties of the French Catholic Church, dilemmas confronting the monarchy and the estates general in working together for the common good (bien public), and the engagement of the deputies in diplomacy in hopes of achieving the bien public.

Keywords:   France, estates general, reformation, peace, national assembly, catholicity, common weal, commonwealth, diplomacy, Catholic Church

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