Cabochiens

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Cabochiens

(käbōshyăN`), popular faction in Paris in the early 15th cent. Composed largely of small tradespeople and members of the butchers' and skinners' guilds, it was named after one of the leaders, Simon Lecoustellier, called Caboche, a skinner. Opposed to the ruinous and corrupt fiscal practices of the government and the extravagance of the court, the Cabochiens espoused the cause of John the FearlessJohn the Fearless,
1371–1419, duke of Burgundy (1404–19); son of Philip the Bold. He fought against the Turks at Nikopol in 1396 and was a prisoner for a year until he was ransomed.
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 of Burgundy in the civil war (1411–13) between Armagnacs and BurgundiansArmagnacs and Burgundians,
opposing factions that fought to control France in the early 15th cent. The rivalry for power between Louis d'Orléans, brother of the recurrently insane King Charles VI, and his cousin John the Fearless, duke of Burgundy, led to Louis's murder
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. In 1413 they rebelled, violently seized the government of Paris, and promulgated the so-called ordonnance cabochienne, containing radical reforms. The Cabochiens were soon suppressed by the victorious Armagnacs.

Cabochiens

 

participants in the popular revolt of 1413 in Paris. One of the leaders of the uprising was Simon Le Coustellier (a skinner by trade), nicknamed Caboche (“pate,” hence Cabochiens).

The revolt was provoked by an increase in taxes during the Hundred Years’ War (1337-1453) and by the civil war between the Armagnacs and Burgundians, feudal factions fighting for power during the reign of the feebleminded Charles VI. The revolt was preceded by the convocation of the Estates General in Paris at the end of January 1413, at which the deputies demanded administrative and financial reforms and the arrest of crown officials who were guilty of abuses. There was a growing discontent among the artisans of Paris. The royal government made some concessions, replacing a number of high officials and establishing a commission to prepare administrative and financial reforms. At the same time, fearing unrest, it ordered a large garrison to be stationed in the Bastille. This action touched off the revolt on Apr. 27, 1413. Artisans (especially from the guilds of the butchers, skinners, and tanners), apprentices, and the urban poor played the major role. The leaders of the uprising were the owners of slaughterhouses, secretly bribed by the leader of the Burgundians, John the Fearless, who sought to use the movement in his struggle with the Armagnacs. Having seized weapons in the town hall, the insurgents besieged the royal palace, demanding a reduction of taxes, the regulation of tax collection, and the dismissal of crown officials.

The insurrection of the Cabochiens was exploited by the prosperous urban classes to obtain from the government moderate administrative and financial reforms, primarily the reorganization and improvement of the state apparatus. These reforms were embodied in the Cabochien Ordinance, adopted by the Estates General on May 26-27, 1413. The lower strata of the Parisian populace, whose interests had not been taken into consideration, continued the uprising, showing hostility not only toward the royal government but also toward the prosperous burghers. Frightened by the scope of the movement, the moderates dissociated themselves from the Cabochiens, and the Armagnacs and Burgundians joined together to crush the rebellion in late August 1413. At the beginning of September the Armagnacs occupied Paris, and the Cabochien Ordinance was abolished.

REFERENCES

Sebentsova, M. M. “Kabosh’eny i ordonans 1413 g.” Uch. zap. MGPI im. V. I. Lenina, 1946, vol. 37, issue 3.
Sebentsova, M. M. “Vosstanie kabosh’enov.” Trudy Moskovskogo gos. istoriko-arkhivnogo instituía, 1958, vol. 12.
Coville, A. Les Cabochiens et Vordonnance de 1413. Paris, 1888.