Marie de Rabutin Chantal, Marquise de Sevigne

[Marie de Rabutin Chantal, Marquise de Sevigne] Born in Paris, France on 5 February 1626; died in Grignan, France on 17 April 1696. Noted letter-writer. Having become an orphan at age six, she was educated by the Abbe de Coulanges, her uncle, who taught her Latin, Spanish and Italian, and gave her his own practical spirit and deep sense of religion. Married at 18, she was a widow at 25, devoting all her time and energy to the education of her two children, Charles and Frances-Margaret who became Marquise de Grignan and whom she idolized. It is to her separation from that daughter, who had to follow her husband to Provence, that we are indebted for most of her celebrated Letters, which constitute one of the most fascinating monuments of French literature. The best edition of them was begun by Monmerque in Grands ecrivains de France (1865 to 1867), and supplemented by Chapmas' Lettres inedites de Madame de Sevigne (1876).

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