Charles-François de Broglie, marquis de Ruffec

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Charles François de Broglie, marquis de Ruffec[1] (19 August 1719 – Saint-Jean-d'Angély, 16 August 1781), was a French soldier and diplomat from a distinguished French military family (see House of Broglie). He served for some years in the army, and afterwards became one of the foremost diplomatists in the service of Louis XV. He is chiefly remembered in connection with the Secret du Roi.[2]


Broglie was second son of François Marie de Broglie, Duke of Broglie

He served for some years in the army, and afterwards became one of the foremost diplomats in the service of Louis XV. He served as ambassador extraordinary to Poland (1752–56), was recalled at the outbreak of the Seven Years' War, was made a Chevalier des Ordres du Roi (1757), a lieutenant général (1760), commandant in Franche-Comté (1761–62), then after the peace, Governor of Saumurois (1770). He is chiefly remembered in connection with the secret du Roi, the private—as distinct from the official—diplomatic service of Louis XV,[3] of which he was the ablest and most important member. He held the post of premier colonel of grenadiers.[citation needed]

The marquis de Ruffec organized the famous diner de Metz (8 August 1775), when the young marquis de La Fayette was convinced by the guest of honour, the visiting Duke of Gloucester, George III's brother, that the insurgents' revolt in America was in some measure justified. Broglie-Ruffec was involved with Beaumarchais in devising a scheme to offer secret support to the American Revolution in its early stages.[4]

His funeral monument is in the cathedral of Angoulême. His portrait, painted by the Norman Michel Hubert Descours in 1762, is at the château of Bourdeilles.[5]


He married, 21 March 1759, Louise Augustine de Montmorency (1735–1817); they had three daughters, Louise 1760-1827; Philippine 1762-1843; and Adélaïde Charlotte 1763-1847.[6]


  1. ^ The seigneurie of Ruffec was sold to him, 6 December 1763, by the heiress of the memoirist Louis de Rouvroy, duc de Saint-Simon, marquis de Ruffec (1675-1755) ("Rouvroy de Saint-Simon")
  2. ^ Chisholm 1911, p. 626.
  3. ^ It was suppressed at the accession of Louis XVI.[citation needed]
  4. ^ Trentinian 2007[better source needed] from material in Perrault 1996[verification needed]
  5. ^ Patrimoine de France: Bourdeilles This site was down at 14:00, 23 July 2012 (UTC). The most recent WayBackMachine archived copy was here at the Wayback Machine (archived July 21, 2011)
  6. ^ Le cimitière virtuel staff 2006.