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French Renaissance Paleography

 

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La Fayette-Langeac Contredict

Description: 

Pontgibaud and Paris, 5 July 1564
La Fayette-Langeac Contredict
Chicago, Newberry Library, VAULT Case MS 5027

 

Background: 

This document, along with the La Fayette-Langeac Contredict 2, the Grosse d’un arrêt du maître des requêtes du Parlement de Paris, and the Contrat d’échange de propriétés entre Gilbert de La Fayette et Delphine de Bonnabaud, forms part of the dossier of a legal dispute between Jacques de Langeac, seigneur of Bonnabaud, and his neighbor Louis de La Fayette, seigneur of Pontgibaud, regarding fishing rights on the river Sioule, which ran through the estates of both parties. The legal procedures lasted several months in 1564.

The document presented here is an unsigned and undated draft of a contredit, a legal procedure usually instigated by a defending party dissatisfied with a ruling against him or her. The procedure appeals to a higher court of justice to revise the ruling. In this particular case, it is the plaintiff Jacques de Langeac, who asked the tribunal to review the whole case, especially the pieces of evidence produced by his opponent La Fayette. The La Fayette-Langeac Contredict 2 presents an almost identical text to this one, in a very different hand. These two copies were likely used during the court procedures as handy summaries of the different aspects of the legal case.

On 4 August 1564, the maître des requêtes of the Parlement de Paris ruled in favor of Langeac, and condemned the defending party La Fayette to pay damages and interests to the plaintiff. You can read the ruling here: Grosse d’un arrêt du maître des requêtes du Parlement de Paris.

The court dossier for the 1564 fishing rights dispute is part of a larger collection of documents related to the seigneurie of Bonnabaud, sold by Anne-Joseph-Gilbert-Allyre de Langeac to Amable-Jacques Soubrany de Bénistant in 1787. A large quantity of documents were assembled at the time, including copies of the sale deed, as well as descriptions of the property, lists of tenants, yearly earnings, previous legal disputes, and so forth.

For more documents related to the Langeac family, see the Vente au profit de Gabriel de Langeac and the Bail à cens de la seigneurie de Bonnabaud.

See the Lauzanne Family Papers for an overview of this significant family archive of thousands of manuscript documents held at the Newberry Library.

- Caroline Prud’Homme

Bibliography: 

- Bercé, Yves-Marie, and Alfred Soman. “La justice royale et le parlement de Paris (XIVe-XVIe siècle).” Bibliothèque de l’École des Chartes 153, no. 2 (July-December 1995).
- Fordham University. Livre des sources médiévales: La Réglementation sur l’eau sous l’Ancien Régime.
- Garnot, Benoît. Justice et société en France aux XVIe, XVIIe et XVIIIe siècles. Paris: Ophrys, 2002.