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Saint-Lambert, Jean Francois De

SAINT-LAMBERT, JEAN FRANCOIS DE (1716-1803), French poet, was born at Nancy on the 26th of December 1716. He entered the army and, when Stanislaus Leszczynski was established in 1737 as duke of Lorraine, he became an official at his court at Luneville. He left the army after the Hanoverian campaign of 1756-57, and devoted himself to literature, producing a volume of descriptive verse, Les Saisons (1769), now never read, many articles for the Encyclopedic, and some miscellaneous works. He was admitted to the Academy in 1770. His fame, however, comes chiefly from his amours. He was already high in the favour of the marquise de Boufflers, Stanislaus's mistress, whom he addressed in his verses as Doris and Thimire, when Voltaire in 1748 came to Luneville with the marquise de Chatelet. Her infatuation for him and its fatal termination are known to all readers of the life of Voltaire. His subsequent liaison with Madame d'Houdetot, Rousseau's Sophie, though hardly less disastrous to his rival, continued for the whole lives of himself and his mistress. Saint-Lambert's later years were given to philosophy. He published in 1798 the Principe des nuzurs chez toutes let nations ou catechisme universel, and published his CEuvres philosophiques (1803), two years before his death on the 9th of February 1803. Madame d'Houdetot survived until the 28th of January 1813.

See G. Maugras, La Cour de Luneville (1904) and La Marquise de Boufflers (1907); also the literature dealing with Rousseau and Voltaire.

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

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