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Jurist, Minister for Religion

Fact file

Born in Redon, in 1750, died in Paris on 31 July, 1825
Up to 1789, a lawyer at the Parlement de Paris
1790, elected Judge of the fourth arrondissement in Paris
In September 1791, Bigot de Préameneu was appointed one of the Députés de Paris in the first legislature
May 1792, elected President of the Parlement de Paris
1800 appointed to the Académie Française as the replacement for Baudin
30 frimaire an X (21 December, 1801), appointed Conseiller d'Etat, and he was president of the Section de législation de l'an X until 1808. Also appointed to the Government Commissioner for the Tribunal de Cassation.
1805 Grand officier de la Légion d'honneur and Comte d'Empire, and commissioned to organise the judiciary in Liguria
1806 he entered the Institut.
1807 joined the Commission des Pétitions.
1808 He succeeded Portalis as Minister of Religion (Ministre des Cultes), which held until 1814
1815 Pair de France during the Hundred Days and appointed to the Direction Générale des Cultes.
A moderate lawyer during the French Revolution, Bigot de Préameneu went into hiding when Louis XVI was finally overturned by the revolution of 10 August, 1792, not to reappear in public life until after Bonaparte's triumph on 18 Brumaire. It was in his role as President of the Legislative Section of the Conseil d'Etat that he worked usefully and honorably with Portalis and Tronchet on the redaction of the Code civil. He was to lose everything on the Bourbons' second return and was never to reappear again on the political stage. He spent his retirement performing charitable deeds. His only surviving literary work is his speech of welcome to the Bishop of Hermopolis (Frayssinous), 8 November, 1822. No legal works survive. Comte Bigot left behind him a considerable fortune, as much the result of his miserliness as his significant remuneration.


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