Jacques Coeur: Merchant Prince of the Middle Ages

Jacques Coeur: Merchant Prince of the Middle Ages

Jacques Coeur: Merchant Prince of the Middle Ages

Jacques Coeur: Merchant Prince of the Middle Ages

Excerpt

If books were as scarce as in Jacques CŒur's lifetime there might be no need to apologize for the issuance of a new volume. Nowadays, however, when the great invention which made its appearance with his death produces so vast an annual supply of printed matter, a word of explanation is, perhaps, due the reading public for adding to the perplexities of its choice. It is only natural that historians should seek to preserve the record of a life so heroic as that of Jacques CŒour. The memory and example of lives such as his, wherever lived, belong to the common heritage of mankind. Yet, cosmopolite that he was, the epic story of this great Frenchman is but little known beyond his native land. The only previous attempt to narrate the tale in English was made eighty years ago, when the facts regarding it still were meagre and obscure.

No writer can approach this subject without a deep realization of his obligation to Pierre Clément, whose Jacques Cœur et Charles VII, published in 1866, must ever remain the base upon which all subsequent monuments to this memory are reared. I gratefully acknowledge my debt also to Mademoiselle Guiraud, whose scholarly and painstaking researches in the notarial registers and archives of Montpellier, the results of which are embodied in her work, Recherches et conclusions nouvelles sur le prétendu rôle de Jacques

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