Symposia and Study Days

Call for papers: “Courtiers: return from exile”

Château de Versailles, 24 March 2018

In 1993, to mark the three-hundredth anniversary of the birth of Roger de Bussy-Rabutin, the CMR 17, under the leadership of Roger Duchêne, devoted its annual conference to the subject of exile; in 2018, on the fourth-hundred anniversary of his birth, the Société des amis de Bussy-Rabutin and the Centre de recherches sur l’Europe Classique de Bordeaux (E.A. 4593 CLARE) have chosen the theme of return from exile for the study day to be held at the Palace of Versailles with the support of the Centre de recherche du château de Versailles.


Sent to the Bastille prison after the scandal of the Histoire amoureuse des Gaules then exiled to Burgundy the following year, Roger de Bussy-Rabutin made many attempts to return to court and curry favour with the king. Although he received authorisation to stay in Paris on several occasions, he was only allowed to return to court fifteen years later, and never succeeded in restoring his position.
It is the circumstances, and not just the causes, of this partial failure that shall be examined, comparing them to the conditions of the return of other disgraced figures to the court of Louis XIV, described and analysed by epistolarians and chroniclers, such as Saint-Simon.

Areas of focus for the study day

With this in mind, proposals for papers will look at the careers of disgraced courtiers such as Chandenier, Lauzun, Pomponne and Vardes, and those punished (the Marshals of France, the main conspirators in the Affair of the Poisons, etc.).
They may also examine the conditions of the pardon. Three themes could be interesting to explore: who speaks for those exiled?; is their return negotiated (resignation from duties, consent to marriage or the clauses of) or does it depend solely on a royal pardon?; what becomes of courtiers called back to court?
Papers may study the staging of their return, its announcement, where it takes place (Versailles, Fontainebleau), the acts that mark the event, the associated visits, the accounts given, and the description of the reactions of other courtiers; it is also worth noting whether some of these returns are seen in terms of parties, factions or supporters, and whether it receives comment from the church.

To take part

Proposals for papers (lasting thirty minutes) should be submitted before 30 November 2017 by email to:

The final programme shall be released on 10 January 2018.
The study day shall be held in the auditorium of the Palace of Versailles on Saturday 24 March 2018.

Papers will be published before the end of 2018 in Rabutinages.

Website produced with the support of:
Château de Versailles
Conseil général des Yvelines