Antique & Vintage Dress Gallery
BRIEF HISTORY of the HUGUENOTS of FRANCE
Some little reference to the Huguenots may be useful to those whose attention
has not been drawn particularly to the subject;
but for the origin and history of these people, works relating to them should be consulted, especially the writings
of Mr. H. M. Baird. It is sufficient to state here that their great conflict with their persecutors in France began early in the sixteenth century,
and continued until April 13, 1598, when King Henry IV, by the celebrated Edict of Nantes, granted them toleration and liberty to worship
in their own way. But, notwithstanding the freedom thus given them, their enemies still continued to harass them, and for years brought such
pressure upon the throne for their overthrow, that Louis XIV finally yielded and revoked the Edict on October 18, 1685.
Immediately there ensued a general flight of these people in all directions; some escaped only with their lives, whilst others, more fortunate,
were enabled to take with them much of their possessions. Amongst the first class were the Valleaux, who left at night, leaving behind
their property, which was then confiscated by the government. On the other hand, Pierre Fauconnier and his wife had been naturalized in England
some six months prior to the Revocation, so that they were enabled to come to America as English subjects, he holding an official appointment.
It is thought that the Revocation lost to France a half million persons, at the least, among whom were some of the most skilled artisans of the land.
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