Charlotte de Minut

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Entry by Susan Broomhall, 2003

Charlotte de Minut's life is ill known. Her father, Jacques de Minut, was First President of the Parlement of Toulouse, her brother Gabriel, a writer, seneschal of Rouergue and counselor of Catherine de' Medici. Charlotte herself indicates that she was elected abbesss of the convent of the Order of St. Clare of Toulouse in 1585.

Her documented work consists of two prefaces for her brother's writings that Charlotte took upon herself to publish after his death in 1587. In these Charlotte proffers advice on French and Catholic politics to Pope Sixtus V and to the queen mother, Catherine de' Medici. She encourages them to support the Catholic position in France against the Huguenots and appeals for financial assistance for her convent, which had been damaged during local religious conflicts. She insists that it is her duty as abbess and as a good Christian that obliges her to publicly address powerful political insitutions. Her decision to use the discursive space in the preface to broach the public affairs of her time is particularly noteworthy. Despite this neither the Huguenots nor the Catholics paid the same attention to her works as they did to publications by her contemporary, the nun Anne de Marquets. Her writings are available only in the original editions, and only one modern analysis of her thought exists.

(translated by Hannah Fournier)


- 1587 : "A Nostre Sainct Pere le Pape Sixte Cinquieusme de ce Nom", in Gabriel Minut, Morbi Gallos. Infestantis Salubris curation et sancta medicina: HOC EST, Malorum, quae intestinum crudeléque Gallorum bellum inflammant, remedium, Auctore Gabriele Minutio, Lyon, Barthelemy Honorat, 1587, p.3-18.
- 1587 : "Epistre à Royne" [Catherine de Médicis], in Gabriel de Minut, De la beauté, avec la Paule-graphie Lyon, Barthelemy Honorat, 1587, p.3-19.

Selected bibliography

- Broomhall, Susan. "'In my opinion': Charlotte de Minut and Female Political Discussion in Print in Sixteenth-Century France". The Sixteenth Century Journal, 31, 1, Spring 2000, p.25-45.

Charlotte de Minut
Title(s) Abbesse des clarisses de Toulouse
Birth date After 1500
Death After 1585
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