The Concordat of 1801: A Study of the Problem of Nationalism in the Relations of Church and State

By Henry H. Walsh | Go to book overview

CHAPTER III
CHATEAUBRIAND

(I)

BEFORE proceeding to a discussion of the opinions of the parties mentioned in the previous chapter, it will be well to pause on a group not yet mentioned, but whose influence is often important in society--the rising generation of young intellectuals, who had not had their opinions unalterably fixed during the stress of the more violent days of the Revolution. How did these newcomers, who were about to make themselves audible, regard the havoc which their predecessors had wrought upon the Church and society? This question, it seems, is sufficiently answered by the rapturous joy with which they greeted Chateaubriand Génie du Christianisme.1 This notable work was published in France for the first time in April, 1802, almost simultaneously with the publishing of the Concordat. Its success was tremendous and it secured for its author, in the words of Villemain, "a kind of acknowledgement which, mingled with enthusiasm, marked for M. de Chateaubriand one of those epochs of public favor, rare in the lives of the most illustrious."2

It is pretty clear from its contents, that it was not simply the persuasive eloquence of Chateaubriand that made the Génie du Christianisme so popular in 1802; as Sainte-Beuve

____________________
1
( Œuvres? Complètes de Châteaubriand (Paris, 1861, new ed.). Sainte- Beuve in his literary study of Chateaubriand says that four thousand copies of the first edition of the Génie du Christianisme were printed and were exhausted ten months later. Étude sur Châteaubriand, Œuvres Complètes, tom. i, p. 132.
2
Villemain M., La Tribune Moderne, Première Partie, M. de Châteaubriand, Sa Vie, Ses Écrits (Paris, 1858), p. 101.

-62-

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The Concordat of 1801: A Study of the Problem of Nationalism in the Relations of Church and State
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page 1
  • Preface 5
  • Contents 7
  • Introduction 11
  • Chapter I - On the Eve of the Concordat 23
  • Chapter II - The Negotiations for the Concordat 39
  • Chapter III - Chateaubriand 62
  • Chapter IV - Jean-Etienne Portalis 76
  • Chapter V - Jean Siffrein Maury 100
  • Chapter VI - Henri Grégoire 123
  • Chapter VII - Jacques-André Emery 146
  • Chapter VIII - Paul-Thérèse-David D'Astros 178
  • Chapter IX - Joseph De Maistre 199
  • Chapter X - Conclusion 233
  • Bibliography 247
  • Index 251
  • Vita 260
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