Jacques Lemercier

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Lemercier, Jacques


Born circa 1585 in Pontoise, Île-de-France; died June 4, 1654, in Paris. French architect.

Between 1607 and 1613, Lemercier studied in Rome. In 1639 he was made first architect to the king. In his buildings, Renaissance traditions are combined with characteristic features of classicism and Italian baroque. Examples of Lemercier’s works in Paris are the Louvre’s west wing with the Pavillon de l’Horloge and part of its north wing (from 1624), the Palais Richelieu (1629–36, now known as the Palais Royal), and the Sorbonne (from 1629) and its church (1635–54). Lemercier’s design of the city of Richelieu (in Poitou; construction undertaken in 1627), with its symmetrical street plan and park, marked an important stage in the development of urban construction.


Hautecoeur, L. Histoire de l’architecture classique en France, vol. 1. Paris, 1965.
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In France, the Mannerist tradition was more widely acceptable than in Germany and England; nonetheless, a more restrained classicism, as seen in the work of Jones' contemporaries Salomon de Brosse and Jacques Lemercier, offers some intriguing parallels with Inigo Jones' work.
"It's going to lead to chaos in our services, and we're going to lose skills," said Jacques Lemercier, head of the communications workers' arm of the Force Ouvriere union.