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(both: ātyĕn`), or, Latinized,


(stĕf`ənəs), family of Parisian and Genevan printers of the 16th and 17th cent., distinguished through five generations in scholarship as well as in their craft.

The first of the line was Henri Estienne, d. 1520, who was by 1502 established as a printer in Paris. Before his death more than 100 books, some of them of great typographic beauty, had issued from his press. His foreman, Simon de ColinesColines, Simon de
, d. 1546, Parisian printer. He was associated with the elder Henri Estienne and continued his work. Colines used elegant roman and italic types and a Greek type, with accents, that was superior to its predecessors.
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, succeeded him and married his widow.

Some years later, probably in 1526, Henri's son, Robert Estienne, b. 1498 or 1503, d. 1559, took over his father's shop, and Colines then founded a new establishment. Robert, a capable scholar, devoted himself to printing only scholarly works, many of which he himself edited. He put out editions of classical authors, dictionaries and lexicons, and, more especially, critical editions of the Bible. He enjoyed the favor of Francis I and became king's printer for Latin, Hebrew, and Greek. The printer's mark used by him, the Olive Tree, was apparently designed by Geofroy ToryTory, Geofroy
, c.1480–1533, Parisian printer, typographer, and author, b. Bourges. After study in Italy, he won distinction as a professor in Paris and became editor to the printer Henri Estienne.
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, who is said to have been a proofreader for the elder Estienne; some of the Estienne types were designed by Claude GaramondGaramond, Claude
, 1480–1561, Parisian designer and maker of printing types. According to tradition he learned his art from Geofroy Tory. Types designed by Garamond were used in the printeries of the Estienne family, Colines, Plantin, and Bodoni, and types used by the
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. Robert Estienne, a thorough humanist, upheld the cause of the Reformation.

Long-continued attacks upon him by the faculty of the Univ. of Paris and by political opponents of the king caused him to move to Geneva in 1550. He set up a press there and continued to print books until his death. His own Latin dictionary, Thesaurus linguae Latinae (1531), probably compiled with the aid of other scholars, is a monumental work. His grammatical treatises on French are also of great importance.

One of Robert's brothers, François Estienne, d. 1553, was of minor importance as a bookseller, but another brother, Charles Estienne, c.1504–1564, succeeded Robert in the management of the Paris establishment in 1551. Educated in medicine and skilled in classical learning, Charles wrote many works on medicine, agriculture, and other subjects. A number of his books were printed by his brother, Robert, and by his stepfather, Colines. Among his best-known works are an encyclopedia, one of the earliest appearing in France, a treatise on dissection, and Praedium rusticum, which appeared later in English editions.

The second Henri Estienne, 1531?–1598, the greatest scholar of the family, was one of Robert's sons. He inherited his father's press on the express condition that it should not be moved from Geneva. He was a well-trained scholar and devoted years to searching for manuscripts. Although humanism was far advanced, he, nevertheless, discovered numerous works of classical authors of which he issued first editions. His editions of Greek and Latin works are remarkable for their accuracy and textual criticism. The greatest monument to his scholarship is, perhaps, his Thesaurus Graecae linguae (1572).

Henri also championed the use of the French language and wrote valuable treatises on the French tongue and on French grammar; the most important is La Precellence du langage françois (1579), in spite of its gross errors in philology. His satirical Apologie pour Herodote (1566) brought him trouble with the Consistory of Geneva, and after the publication of Deux Dialogues du nouveau langage françois italianizé (1578) he went to France to escape censure in Geneva. He was imprisoned for a short time on his return and afterward became a wandering scholar. The books he printed did not equal those of his father in typographic beauty. He marks, however, the highest point of the family's career, although the Estiennes continued prominent as printers until late in the 17th cent.


See M. Pattison, The Estiennes (1949).



(also Etienne; latinized, Stephanus), a family of French printers and publishers who worked in Lyon, Paris, and Geneva between 1502 and 1660.

The founder of the Estienne firm was Henri I Estienne (born c. 1460; died 1520). The most prominent members of the firm were also outstanding philologists. Robert I Estienne (born 1503; died 1559) compiled and published the Thesaurus of the Latin Language (vols. 1–2, 1531) and Latin-French and French-Latin dictionaries. His son Henri II Estienne (born 1528 or 1531; died 1598) compiled the Thesaurus of the Greek Language (vols. 1–6, 1572–73) and published annotated editions of many works by Latin and Greek authors. The Estiennes published more than 1,-500 books, and they introduced the excellent Greek typefaces known as the grecs du roi.


Renouard, A. A. Annales de l’imprimerie des Estienne, 2nd ed. Paris, 1843.
References in periodicals archive ?
42) Henri Estienne, Thesaurus xi-xii, quoting Ovid, Ars Amatoria 3.
Sidney in 1576), but Estienne is not known to have published any edition of Aemilius/Nepos.
Henri Estienne (1531-98) is known for his many contributions to the history of classical scholarship and early French literature.
What Estienne emphasizes in his reading of Seneca and what he neglects both deserve mention.
Lexical borrowing was an important source of new vocabulary, and in courtly circles in particular, it is clear that the prestige of Italy had engendered a vogue for Italian borrowings, which Estienne saw as an affectation.
Henri Estienne, erudit, novateur, polemiste: Etude sur Ad Senecae lectionem Proodopoeiae.
Trevor Peach indicated in his article 'Charles Estienne revu et augmente' (BHR, 57 (1995), 101-10) that he planned a critical edition of the Paradoxes.
Pernette du Guillet and Madeleine des Roches receive mention only in passing, and Catherine des Roches, Anne de Marquets, Nicole Estienne, Gabrielle de Coignard, and Marie Le Gendre figure nowhere in the book.
Address : Numro National D~identification : 13002345000013, Plate-Forme Achats Finances De Rambouillet - Quartier Gnral Estienne - 11 Rue De Groussay, 78120, Rambouillet, F
Henri Estienne, Gamier, Dubois, Nicot) who have examined similar grammatical points or commented on Cauchie's explanations.
the contract concerns the execution of maintenance services for electrical installations at the following sites: 78 saint-cyr-l~cole lyce militaire; 78 rambouillet headquarters estienne.
Floridi also quite perceptively discusses the possibility that the printer and scholar Paulo Manuzio was planning an edition of Sextus sometime between 1554 and 1561, an edition which, had it come to fruition, would have predated that of Estienne.