Colbert, Jean-Baptiste

   Known for his efforts to reorganize France's economic structure so as to increase revenue and reach self-sufficiency, Jean-Baptiste Colbert was born in Reims, the son of a drapery merchant. He obtained employment at age 19 in the Ministry of War and, in 1651, was hired by King louis XIV's chief minister, cardinal mazarin, to handle his personal finances. Before he died, Mazarin recommended Colbert to the king for preferment. As adviser to the monarch, Colbert prosecuted the superintendent of finance for embezzlement and, in doing so, gained the king's confidence. After serving as intendant of finances, superintendent of royal buildings, arts and manufactures, and secretary of state to the royal household and the navy, in 1665 Colbert was made comptroller general of finance. Proceeding to reconstruct industry and commerce along the lines of mercantilism, he began a large-scale overhaul of state finances while continuing to prosecute officials for graft and corruption. With government control of industry and protective tariffs and navigation laws, Colbert organized state colonization and trading companies, established model factories, including Gobelins, Beauvais, and La Savonnerie, and extended French trade and industry. The name "Colbertism" is given to his mercantile fiscal and economic system, and he created the East and West India Companies based on the Dutch model. As secretary of state for naval affairs, Colbert directed the building of a network of roads and canals, the fortification of seaports, strengthening of the navy, and the writing of marine and colonial legal codes. His policies can be considered, however, to have inhibited agriculture and the free development of industry in France. Colbert gave positions to his own family, made brilliant marriages for his daughters, and was the head of a clan that continuously opposed that of the marquis de louvois, the le tellier family. As a patron of the arts and culture (with charles le brun), he also founded several learned academies (Inscriptions, 1663; Sciences, 1666) and societies (now part of the Institut de France), established the Paris Observatory (1667), and sponsored many public works. Colbert was named to the Académie Française in 1667.

France. A reference guide from Renaissance to the Present . 1884.

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  • COLBERT, JEAN BAPTISTE° — (1619–1683), comptroller general of finances under Louis XIV of France. Contrary to the prevailing attitude of his day, Colbert was in favor of the presence of the Jews. He believed them advantageous to the economy because of their trade, their… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Colbert,Jean Baptiste — Colbert, Jean Baptiste. 1619 1683. French politician who served as an adviser to Louis XIV. Colbert reformed taxes, centralized the administration, and improved roads and canals in an effort to encourage trade. * * * …   Universalium

  • Colbert, Jean-Baptiste — • Marquis de Seignelay, statesman, b. at Rheims, France, 1619; d. at Paris, 1683 Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006 …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Colbert, Jean-Baptiste — born Aug. 29, 1619, Reims, France died Sept. 6, 1683, Paris French statesman. He was recommended to Louis XIV by Jules Mazarin, whose personal assistant he had been. He engineered the downfall of Nicolas Fouquet, and thereafter he served the king …   Universalium

  • Colbert, Jean-Baptiste — (29 ago. 1619, Reims, Francia–6 sep. 1683, París). Estadista francés. Fue recomendado a Luis XIV por el cardenal Julio Mazarino, de quien había sido asistente personal. Tramó la caída de Nicolas Fouquet y de ahí en adelante sirvió al rey tanto en …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Colbert, Jean Baptiste — ► (1619 83) Estadista francés, ministro de Luis XIV. Impulsó un sistema proteccionista llamado colbertismo, que se basaba en un equilibrio entre los sectores productivos y en la protección de la producción industrial nacional …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • COLBERT, JEAN BAPTISTE —    a French statesman, of Scotch descent, born in Rheims, the son of a clothier; introduced to Louis XIV. by Mazarin, then first minister; he was appointed Controller General of the Finances after the fall of Fouquet, and by degrees made his… …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

  • Colbert, Jean Baptiste — (1619 1683)    First minister to Louis XIV.    Index: F Creates West India Company, 49; disapproves Frontenac s action in summoning three estates, 67; anti clerical tendencies, 73; Madame Maintenon s opinion of, 74; advice to Courcelles in… …   The makers of Canada

  • Colbert, Jean-Baptiste, Marquis De Seignelay — ▪ French diplomat born Nov. 1, 1651, Paris died Nov. 3, 1690, Versailles, Fr.       French secretary of state under Louis XIV.       As the eldest son of the famous secretary of state of that name, Colbert was given the best possible tutors, who… …   Universalium

  • Jean-baptiste colbert — Buste de Colbert par Antoine Coysevox Naissance 29  …   Wikipédia en Français

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