Retz, Jean François Paul de Gondi, Cardinal de

Retz, Jean François Paul de Gondi, Cardinal de

(zhäN fräNswä` pōl də gôNdē`, də rĕts), 1613–79, French prelate and political leader. He was made (1643) coadjutor to his uncle, the archbishop of Paris. An enemy of Cardinal Mazarin, chief minister for the regent Anne of AustriaAnne of Austria,
1601–66, queen of France, daughter of King Philip III of Spain. Married to the French king Louis XIII (1615), she was neglected by her husband and sought the society of the court intriguer, Mme de Chevreuse.
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, Retz was prominent in the FrondeFronde
, 1648–53, series of outbreaks during the minority of King Louis XIV, caused by the efforts of the Parlement of Paris (the chief judiciary body) to limit the growing authority of the crown; by the personal ambitions of discontented nobles; and by the grievances of
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 against him. To win Retz's support, Anne nominated him (1651) to be made cardinal; he received the red hat in 1652. At the close of the Fronde, Retz was imprisoned (1652). When his uncle died (1654), he became archbishop of Paris but was not allowed to take office. He appealed unsuccessfully to the pope. After Mazarin's death (1661) he resigned his see in return for several rich abbeys. He occasionally represented the court at Rome. His memoirs (1717; tr., 4 vol., 1723) are classic.

Bibliography

See biography by J. H. Salmon (1969).

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