His mother, Marie FranÃ§oise de Pesnel, who died when Charles was seven, was an heiress who brought the title of Barony of La BrÃ¨de to the Secondat family. M… But he does not appear to have been either faithful or greatly devoted to her. 2019. âColonialism and Slavery.â Pg 273 in, CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (, Considerations on the Causes of the Greatness of the Romans and their Decline, hypothetical list of arguments for slavery, Learn how and when to remove this template message, ConsidÃ©rations sur les causes de la grandeur des Romains et de leur dÃ©cadence, "French Political Thought from Montesquieu to Tocqueville: Liberty in a Levelled Society? In 1722, he wrote a book, ridiculing the reign of Louis XIV and the doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church. Memoirs and discourses at the Academy of Bordeaux (1718â1721): including discourses on echoes, on the renal glands, on weight of bodies, on transparency of bodies and on natural history. This was radical because it was very different from the three Estates … Although he was the least academic of modern philosophers, he was also in many ways the most influential. These national transformations had a great impact on Montesquieu, who would refer to them repeatedly in his work. It was one of the most outstanding figures of the enlightenment. Two years later he married Jeanne de Lartigue, a wealthy Protestant, who brought him a respectable dowry of 100,000 livres and in due course presented him with two daughters and a son, Jean-Baptiste. He achieved literary success with the publication of his 1721 Persian Letters, a satire representing society as seen through the eyes of two imaginary Persian visitors to Paris and Europe, cleverly criticizing the absurdities of contemporary French society. As Caillois has written, the positive construction later und… His stay in England was one of the most formative periods of his life. Charles-Louis de Secondat, Baron de La BrÃ¨de et de Montesquieu (/ËmÉntÉskjuË/; French: [mÉÌtÉskjÃ¸]; 18 January 1689 â 10 February 1755), generally referred to as simply Montesquieu, was a French judge, man of letters, and political philosopher. For other uses, see, French social commentator and political thinker, Significant civil and political events by year, Mander, Jenny. He inherited a fortune, a title, and an important judicial office in Bordeaux. In Naples he skeptically witnessed the liquefaction of the blood of the city’s patron saint. The climate of middle Europe is therefore optimal. His father Jacques de Secondat had a long noble ancestry and was a soldier. He attended parliamentary debates and read the political journals of the day. The executive power ought to be in the hands of a monarch, because this branch of government, having need of dispatch, is better administered by one than by many: on the other hand, whatever depends on the legislative power, is oftentimes better regulated by many than by a single person. The administrative powers were the legislative, the executive, and the judiciary. To free himself in order to continue his scholarly interests, Montesquieu took little concern in the routine of the Bordeaux Parlement and eventually sold his office as president in 1721. He left Juilly in 1705, continued his studies at the faculty of law at the University of Bordeaux, graduated, and became an advocate in 1708. By the second, he makes peace or war, sends or receives embassies, establishes the public security, and provides against invasions. His father was from a wealthy aristocratic background and his mother died when he was very young. He made a surprising detour into Hungary to examine the mines. Leaving his wife at La Brède with full powers over the estate, he set off for Vienna in April 1728, with Lord Waldegrave, nephew of Berwick and lately British ambassador in Paris, as travelling companion. Enjoy the best Montesquieu Quotes at BrainyQuote. He is also known for doing more than any other author to secure the place of the word "despotism" in the political lexicon. His view is that people living in very warm countries are "too hot-tempered", while those in northern countries are "icy" or "stiff". Montesquieu advocated reform of slavery in The Spirit of Law, specifically arguing that slavery was inherently wrong because all humans are born equal, but that it could perhaps be justified within the context of climates with intense heat, wherein laborers would feel less inclined to work voluntarily. Montesquieu is credited as being among the progenitors, which include Herodotus and Tacitus, of anthropology â as being among the first to extend comparative methods of classification to the political forms in human societies. Montesquieu was also highly regarded in the British colonies in North America as a champion of liberty (though not of American independence). He presided over the criminal division of the Parlement of Bordeaux from 1716 to 1727, intimately familiarizing himself with the machinery and administration of criminal justice in pre-Revolutionary France. The cause was not the ambition of Caesar or Pompey, but the ambition of man. Ask the Romans, who had a continuous sequence of successes when they were guided by a certain plan, and an uninterrupted sequence of reverses when they followed another. In his Bordeaux period Montesquieu began the Persian Letters, which was published anonymously in Amsterdam in 1721. Montesquieu was also born into a climate of discontent in France. Baron de Montesquieu Name: Montesquieu p.1 A Baron is Born Charles Louis de Secondat was born in 1689 in the city of Bordeaux, France. Charles-Louis de Secondat, baron de La Brède et de Montesquieu, generally referred to as simply Montesquieu, was a French social commentator and political thinker who lived during the Enlightenment.He is famous for his articulation of the theory of separation of powers, which is taken for granted in modern discussions of government and implemented in many constitutions throughout the … 1 (The Spirit of Laws)", "Esprit des lois (1777)/L11/C6 â Wikisource", The Canadian Journal of Economics and Political Science, Complete ebooks collection of Montesquieu, "Montesquieu", Institut d'histoire des reprÃ©sentations et des idÃ©es dans les modernitÃ©s, Charles de Secondat, baron de Montesquieu, Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, Prince Frederick, Duke of York and Albany, Charles William Ferdinand, Duke of Brunswick, Frederick Louis, Prince of Hohenlohe-Ingelfingen, FranÃ§ois Alexandre FrÃ©dÃ©ric, duc de la Rochefoucauld-Liancourt, HonorÃ© Gabriel Riqueti, comte de Mirabeau, Alexandre-ThÃ©odore-Victor, comte de Lameth, Louis Michel le Peletier de Saint-Fargeau, List of people associated with the French Revolution, Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe, Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe Party, International Alliance of Libertarian Parties, International Federation of Liberal Youth, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Montesquieu&oldid=992199991, Contributors to the EncyclopÃ©die (1751â1772), Members of the Prussian Academy of Sciences, Wikipedia pages semi-protected against vandalism, Short description is different from Wikidata, Articles needing additional references from January 2020, All articles needing additional references, Articles with French-language sources (fr), Articles with dead external links from March 2017, Wikipedia articles with BIBSYS identifiers, Wikipedia articles with CANTIC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with CINII identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SELIBR identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SNAC-ID identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with Trove identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, ÐÐµÐ»Ð°ÑÑÑÐºÐ°Ñ (ÑÐ°ÑÐ°ÑÐºÐµÐ²ÑÑÐ°)â, Srpskohrvatski / ÑÑÐ¿ÑÐºÐ¾Ñ ÑÐ²Ð°ÑÑÐºÐ¸, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. This was a common belief at the time, and can also be found within the medical writings of Herodotus' times, including the "On Airs, Waters, Places" of the Hippocratic corpus. Charles-Louis left Juilly in 1705, continued his studies at the faculty of law at the University of Bordeaux, graduated, and became an advocate in 1708; soon after he appears to have moved to Paris in order to obtain practical experience in law. Montesquieu Montesquieu was born into a noble family in south-western France, where his family was significantly involved in provincial government. In France, the long-reigning Louis XIV died in 1715, and was succeeded by five year-old Louis XV. His f… Montesquieu was a French judge and philosopher who became well-known for influencing the constitutions of many countries around the world. His mother and father both had noble histories, and his mother had a large monetary fortune. The book is witty and delightful, but Montesquieu’s irony and irreverence did more than amuse his readers. His office was marketable, and in 1726 he sold it, a move that served both to reestablish his fortunes, depleted by life in the capital, and to assist him, by lending colour to his claim to be resident in Paris, in his attempt to enter the Académie Française. Montesquieu was born into a noble family and educated in the law. Baron de Montesquieu was born in Aquitaine, France into a well to do family. When Charles Montesquieu (1689–1755) was born, France was ruled by an absolute king, Louis XIV. Montesquieu, in full Charles-Louis de Secondat, baron de La Brède et de Montesquieu, (born January 18, 1689, Château La Brède, near Bordeaux, France—died February 10, 1755, Paris), French political philosopher whose principal work, The Spirit of Laws, was a major contribution to political theory. Montesquieu devotes four chapters of The Spirit of the Laws to a discussion of England, a contemporary free government, where liberty was sustained by a balance of powers. He was born Charles Louis de Secondat on January 18, 1689, in Bordeaux, France, to Jacques de Secondat and Marie Francoise de Pesnel. Supposedly written by Persian travelers in Europe and their friends, the book was full of witty comments on French society, politics, and religion. In 1716 his uncle, Jean-Baptiste, baron de Montesquieu, died and left to his nephew his estates, with the barony of Montesquieu, near Agen, and the office of deputy president in the Parlement of Bordeaux. king, queen, emperor), which rely on the principle of honor; republics (free governments headed by popularly elected leaders), which rely on the principle of virtue; and despotisms (enslaved governments headed by dictators), which rely on fear. Montesquieu was born at the Ch teau de la Brède in southwest France, 25 kilometres (16mi) south of Bordeaux. These powers should be divided up so that each power would have power over the other. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica.  His father died in 1713 and he became a ward of his uncle, the Baron de Montesquieu. He settled down to exercise his judicial function (engaging to this end in the minute study of Roman law), to administer his property, and to advance his knowledge of the sciences—especially of geology, biology, and physics—which he studied in the newly formed academy of Bordeaux. In the hypothetical list, he'd ironically list pro-slavery arguments without further comment, including an argument stating that sugar would become too expensive without the free labor of slaves. … Montesquieu withdrew from the practice of law to devote himself to study and writing. The work’s anonymity was soon penetrated, and Montesquieu became famous. Montesquieu was born at the ChÃ¢teau de la BrÃ¨de in southwest France, 25 kilometres (16 mi) south of Bordeaux. https://www.britannica.com/biography/Montesquieu, The Catholic Encyclopedia - Biography of Charles-Louis de Secondat Montesquieu, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy - Biography of Baron de Montesquieu, Charles-Louis de Secondat, Alpha History - Biography of Baron de Montesquieu, Montesquieu - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up), “Reflections on the Causes of the Grandeur and Decline of the Romans”. It is from this interest that his greatest work, The Spirit of the Laws,developed. He expounded the view in ConsidÃ©rations sur les causes de la grandeur des Romains et de leur dÃ©cadence that each historical event was driven by a principal movement: It is not chance that rules the world. “A nation may lose its liberties in a day and not miss them in a century.” -- Baron de Montesquieu. … It is called as the theory of separation of powers. Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. (review)", Random House Webster's Unabridged Dictionary, "Montesquieu, Complete Works, vol. In discussing the transition from the Republic to the Empire, he suggested that if Caesar and Pompey had not worked to usurp the government of the Republic, other men would have risen in their place. There are general causes, moral and physical, which act in every monarchy, elevating it, maintaining it, or hurling it to the ground. And if the chance of one battle â that is, a particular cause â has brought a state to ruin, some general cause made it necessary for that state to perish from a single battle. Montesquieu was born at Château de la Brède in the southwest of France. Onthe death of his father in 1713 he returned to La Brède tomanage the estates he inherited, and in 1715 he married Jeanne deLartigue, a practicing Protestant, with whom he had a son a… Please select which sections you would like to print: Corrections? Born Charles-Louis de Secondat, Baron de La Brede et de Montesquieu, Montesquieu was born in France in January, 1689, and died in February 1755. He goes so far as to assert that certain climates are superior to others, the temperate climate of France being ideal. The school was the Collège de Juilly, close to Paris and in the diocese of Meaux. He was born into a prosperous family who was part of the nobility. All … Montesquieu had powerful supporters, with Madame de Lambert’s salon firmly pressing his claims, and he was elected, taking his seat on January 24, 1728. A definitive edition of Montesquieu's works is being published by the SociÃ©tÃ© Montesquieu. After the death of his mother he was sent to the Catholic College of Juilly, a prominent school for the children of French nobility, where he remained from 1700 to 1711. This was a radical idea because it completely eliminated the three Estates structure of the French Monarchy: the clergy, the aristocracy, and the people at large represented by the Estates-General, thereby erasing the last vestige of a feudalistic structure. Associated With. Montesquieu's early life occurred at a time of significant governmental change. According to one political scientist, he was the most frequently quoted authority on government and politics in colonial pre-revolutionary British America, cited more by the American founders than any source except for the Bible. In 1721 he surprised all but a few close friends by publishing his Lettres persanes (Persian Letters, 1722), in which he gave a brilliant satirical portrait of French and particularly Parisian civilization, supposedly seen through the eyes of two Persian travellers. These ideas of the control of power were often used in the thinking of Maximilien Robespierre. Born at La Brède Educated at the Oratorian Collège de Juilly Got his law degree from the University of Bordeaux in 1708, later on he went to Paris to continue his legal studies. By depicting France as seen through the eyes of two Persians, he provided a double perspective, a revealing device used earlier by La Bruyère and Bayle. He was called back to Bordeaux by the death of his father in 1713. He … He is the principal source of the theory of separation of powers, which is implemented in many constitutions throughout the world. The new ideas fermenting in Paris had received their most-scintillating expression. , While addressing French readers of his General Theory, John Maynard Keynes described Montesquieu as "the real French equivalent of Adam Smith, the greatest of your economists, head and shoulders above the physiocrats in penetration, clear-headedness and good sense (which are the qualities an economist should have).". The work—infused throughout with a new spirit of vigorous, disrespectful, and iconoclastic criticism—made Montesquieu famous. In Paris his interest in the routine activities of the Parlement in Bordeaux, however, had dwindled. In Vienna he met the soldier and statesman Prince Eugene of Savoy and discussed French politics with him. Share with your friends. As judge for ten years he also developed his interests in philosophy, natural science, and history. 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