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Colbert and the Nièvre, Culture

Colbert and the Nièvre – Acte 3 Key handover ceremony of the Duchy

24 October 2019

Key handover ceremony of the Duchy of Nivernais to Jean-Baptiste Colbert


On October 23 1659, Colbert wrote to Mazarin to describe the key handover ceremony of the Duchy of Nivernais which took place on the previous Sunday (October 19 1659). The festivities went forth till the day after as specified by Colbert : “The day after, I took possession, by the reading of the contract which was done during the audience. At night, they lighted a bonfire”. Colbert refers here to the sales contract between Duke of Mantoue and Cardinal Mazarin concluded on July 11 1659.


Colbert stayed in the province until the end of October 1659. On his return to Paris, he asked to Mazarin on November 23 1659 to give him 16 guards for the Duchy of Nivernais for the conservation of forests. Colbert went back to the duchy the following year, during October 1660, acting on behalf of Cardinal Mazarin to inspect the Chatellenies of Nivernais.



Portrait of Jean-Baptiste Colbert by Philippe de Champaigne and extract from the Cassini map

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