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Crequy, Renee Caroline De Froullay

CREQUY, RENEE CAROLINE DE FROULLAY, Marquise de (1714-1803), was born on the 19th of October 1714, at the château of Monfleaux (Mayenne), the daughter of Lieutenant-General Charles François de Froullay. She was educated by her maternal grandmother, and married in 1737 Louis Marie, marquis de Créquy (see above), who died four years after the marriage. Madame de Créquy devoted herself to the care of her only son, who rewarded her with an ingratitude which was the chief sorrow of her life. In 1755 she began to receive in Paris, among her intimates being D'Alembert and J. J. Rousseau. She had none of the frivolity generally associated with the women of her time and class, and presently became extremely religious with inclinations to Jansenism. D'Alembert's visits ceased when she adopted religion, and she was nearly seventy when she formed the great friendship of her life with Sénac de Meilhan, whom she met in 1781, and with whom she carried on a correspondence (edited by Edouard Fournier, with a preface by Sainte-Beuve in 1856). She commented on and criticized Meilhan's works and helped his reputation. She was arrested in 1793 and imprisoned in the convent of Les Oiseaux until the fall of Robespierre (July 1794). The well-known Souvenirs de la marquise de Créquy (1710-1803), printed in 7 volumes, 1834-1835, and purporting to be addressed to her grandson, Tancrède de Créquy, was the production of a Breton adventurer, Cousin de Courchamps. The first two volumes appeared in English in 1834 and were severely criticized in the Quarterly Review.

See the notice prefixed by Sainte-Beuve to the Lettres; P. L. Jacob, Enigmes et découvertes bibliographiques (Paris, 1866); Quérard, Superchéries littéraires, s.v. "Créquy"; L'Ombre de la marquise de Créquy aux lecteurs des souvenirs (1836) exposes the forgery of the Mémoires.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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