Histoire de Roi Henry le Grand

Hardouin de Beaumont de Péréfixe, Paris, 1662 (Google Books)

In November 1664, Lister noted that he had read: ‘H. de Henry 4 per M. Hardovin de Perefixe. Esq. de Rodez etc’.

Péréfixe (1606-1671) served as the Bishop of Rodez and then Archbishop of Paris; he also was Louis XIV’s confessor.  Péréfixe was known as the bête noire of the Jansenists, responsible for expelling the nuns at Port-Royal.

His Histoire de Roi Henri de Grand was a panegyric and exhortation of moral virtue to Louis XIV whom he indifferently tutored.  As Riley stated, ‘ . . . Péréfixe, despite his scholarly reputation, never taught Louis philosophy or theology, but gave him larger doses of the already familiar Catholic Reformation piety’, mainly advising him against imitating the lustful adultery of Henry IV.  1

Lister later donated a 1679 edition of this work to Oxford.

  1. Philip F. Riley, A Lust for Virtue: Louis XIV’s Attack on Sin in Seventeenth-Century France (Westport, CT:  Greenwood Press, 2001), 10.

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