Guy Aldonce de Durfort de Lorges

Guy Aldonce de Durfort, duc de Lorges, Marshal of France, (1630–1702) fought in the Franco-Dutch War mostly on the Rhine under his uncle Marshal Turenne, but in 1673 he was seconded to the Siege of Maastricht. Back on the Rhine he fought at Entzheim in 1674, at Turckheim in January 1675, and at Sasbach in July 1675, where Turenne fell. He distinguished himself at the retreat from Sasbach and the ensuing Battle of Altenheim.

Guy Aldonce de Durfort
duc de Quintin-Lorges
Blondel - Guy Aldonce de Durfort de Lorges (1630-1702) - MV 1042.jpg
SuccessorGuy Nicolas de Durfort de Lorges
Born22 August 1630
Château de Duras
Died22 October 1702
Spouse(s)Gabrielle de Frémont
Guy Nicolas & others
FatherGuy Aldonce de Durfort
MotherElisabeth de La Tour d'Auvergne

In the Nine Years' War he commanded the Rhine army and took the city and the castle of Heidelberg in 1692. He is often mentioned in Saint-Simon's Mémoires as he was the author's father-in-law.

Birth and originsEdit

Arms of the House of Durfort de Lorges

Guy Aldonce was born on 22 August 1630, at the Château de Duras,[1] the fourth son of Guy Aldonce de Durfort (1605-1665) and Elisabeth de La Tour d'Auvergne. His father was marquis of Duras, comte de Rauzan and comte de Lorges, as well as maréchal de camp in the French army.[2] The Durfort family held Duras since the 14th century. Guy's mother was a daughter of Henri de La Tour d'Auvergne and sister of the Marshal Turenne. Both his parents were Calvinists.

The Château de Duras where he was born.

Guy was the fourth son, but his twin brother, Armand, died as an infant[3] and he thereafter occupied the third position and was often counted as the third son. His father distributed his subsidiary titles as courtesy titles among his sons. Guy was thus, after the death of his twin brother, styled comte de Lorges and was called Lorges, sometimes spelled Lorge, notably by Saint-Simon. He was numbered "Guy Aldonce II de Durfort" in the Durfort family, whereas his father was numbered "Guy Aldonce I de Durfort".

Guy's eldest brother, Jacques Henri de Durfort de Duras, also became a Marshal of France. Their uncle Turenne probably helped to further the careers of both brothers.

Family tree
Guy Aldonce de Durfort with wife, parents, and other selected relatives.
Henri de
La Tour


de La Tour



de Frémont

de Mesmes





de Mesmes

de Poitiers
Also see the lists of siblings and children in the text.

Guy was one of 12 siblings:

Franco-Dutch WarEdit

In the Franco-Dutch War (1672–1678) Lorges served mostly under Turenne in the French Rhine Army. However, in 1673 he was sent to Flanders with a detachment of 7000 men[16] from Turenne's army to take part in the Siege of Maastricht.[17] He was assigned the north-eastern sector before Wijck, the part of Maastricht that lies on the right bank of the Maas river. The town, which was under the command of Jacques de Fariaux, surrendered on 30 June 1673.[18]

Back on the Rhine, Lorges probably participated in the devastation of the Palatinate by Turenne in 1674. On 4 October 1674 in the Battle of Entzheim, Lorges commanded the Brigade d'Humières and the Dragons de la Reine on the left wing.[19] On 5 January 1675 he fought at the French victory of Turckheim where he commanded the right wing.[20] When Turenne was killed at Sasbach on 27 July 1675,[21] Lorges was lieutenant-general of the day, but marquis de Vaubrun was the most senior lieutenant-general. They agreed to alternate the command daily between them.[22] The army retreated from Sasbach and fought the Battle of Altenheim, where Vaubrun, who commanded the rearguard, was killed on 1 August 1675. When Lorges arrived back in Alsace he was ordered to hand over the command of the Rhine army to his brother the Duke of Duras, who had come from the Franche-Comté for that purpose[23] while waiting for the arrival of Condé from Flanders whom Louis XIV had appointed as commander of the Rhine Army.[24] On 26 January 1679 France made peace with the Holy Roman Empire in the Treaties of Nijmegen ending the Franco-Dutch War.[25]

Marriage and childrenEdit

On 19 March 1676 (date of the contract) Lorges married Geneviève de Frémont, daughter of the keeper of the King's jewels.[26] Many of his friends considered that he had married socially beneath him, but the marriage was a happy one and even his son-in-law Saint-Simon, who disapproved of marriage between the classes, admitted that she was an admirable wife.[27]

The couple had one son and four daughters:

  1. Marie Gabrielle (1678–1743), married Louis de Rouvroy, duc de Saint-Simon;[28][a]
  2. Geneviève (1680-1740), called "Mademoiselle de Quintin", who married Antoine Nompar de Caumont, duke of Lauzun;[31]
  3. Guy Nicolas (1683–1758), succeeded him as duc de Lorges;[32]
  4. Élisabeth Gabrielle (died 1727), abbess of Andecy [fr];[33] and
  5. Claude Suzanne Thérèse (died 1745), abbess of Saint-Amand [fr], Rouen.[34]

Saint-Simon praised Lorges, his father-in-law, warmly in his Memoirs, describing him as highly principled, frank, upright, good-natured, sincere and the most truthful man alive.[35] Lorges supplied his son-in-law with useful material for his memoirs, particularly on the early relations between Louis XIV and Madame de Maintenon.

The Powder Tower of Heidelberg Castle, blown up and split by Lorge's troops in 1693.

Nine Years' WarEdit

During the Nine Years' War (1688–1697), also called the War of the Grand Alliance, Lorges commanded the French army of the Rhine from 1690 to 1695. On 31 December 1688 in the Chapel of the Château de Versailles[36] he was made a Knight of the Order of the Holy Spirit.[37]

On 27 September 1692, he surprised and routed 4,000 imperial cavalry under the command of Frederick Charles of Württemberg-Winnental in their camp at Ötisheim and took Frederick Charles prisoner.[38]

In 1691 Lorges was elevated by Louis XIV to duc de Quintin-Lorge.[39]

On 22 May 1693 Lorges took the city of Heidelberg.[40] The castle capitulated the next day.[41] Johann Wilhelm, Elector Palatine, was also Duke of Jülich and Berg and resided at Düsseldorf. Heidelberg been burned by René de Froulay de Tessé in 1689[42] and the castle's Fat Tower had been blown up.[43] Lorges now completed the destruction by burning the town and castle again. The commander des Bordes blew up many of the fortifications, notably the castle's Powder Tower, now known as the "Gesprengte Turm" (Blown-up Tower).[44]

The campaign of 1694 was relatively uneventful for the Rhine Army. On 20 June 1695 Lorges fell ill[45] and was temporarily replaced by Joyeuse as commander of the Rhine Army.[46] Lorges's wife came from Paris and took him to Vichy so that he should take thermal baths there for his health.[47] On 4 September Lorges returned to his post.[48] In 1696 he was ill again and Marshal Choiseul was appointed in his place.[49] On 30 October 1697 the Emperor signed the Peace of Ryswick ending the Nine Years' War.[50]

Death and timelineEdit

On 22 October 1702 he died in Paris of an unsuccessful kidney stone surgery; Guy died in agonising pain, which he endured with great courage.[51] He was succeeded by his son Guy Nicolas [fr], who would marry firstly Geneviève Chamillart (1685-1714) and then secondly in 1720 Marie Anne Antoinette de Mesmes (1696–1757), eldest daughter of Jean-Antoine de Mesmes, the premier président of the Parlement of Paris.

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. ^ Called Marie-Gabrielle in her act of marriage[29] but Geneviève-Françoise by Anselme[30] and by La Chesnaye.
  1. ^ a b La Chesnaye des Bois 1772, p. 719: "XV. GUY-ALDONCE DE DURFORT, né à Duras le 22 Août 1630 ..."
  2. ^ La Chesnaye des Bois 1772, p. 716, line 25: "XIV. GUY-ALDONCE DE DURFORT, Marquis de Duras, Comte de Rosan, &c. né à Duras le premier Juin 1605 ..."
  3. ^ La Chesnaye des Bois 1772, p. 716, line 43: "4. Armand, son frère jumeau, né le 22 Août 1630, mort de la peste le 6 Avril 1631;"
  4. ^ La Chesnaye des Bois 1772, p. 717, line 27: "XV. JACQUES-HENRI DE DURFORT, né à Duras le 9 Octobre 1625 ..."
  5. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 737, line 6: "FREDERIC-MAURICE de Durfort, comte de Rozan, né à Duras le vingt-deux novembre 1626 ..."
  6. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 737, line 13: "ARMAND de Durfort, frère jumeau de Guy-Aldonce, né le vingt-deux aoust 1630, mourut de la peste le 6 avril 1631."
  7. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 717, line 13: "LOUISE-MADELEINE, morte jeune."
  8. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 717, line 18: "ELISABETH, morte à Londres le 14 Janvier 1715, âgée de 82 ans. ... elle avoit épousé par contrat de 3 Juin 1656 Frédéric-Charles de La Rochefoucauld ..."
  9. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 717, line 14: "HENRIETTE, mariée en 1653 à LOUIS DE BOURBON ..."
  10. ^ La Chesnaye des Bois 1772, p. 716, bottom: "CHARLES HENRI, Comte de Montgommery, né à Duras le 21 juillet 1634 ..."
  11. ^ Cokayne 1890, p. 342: "... he [Louis] was b. 1641 ..."
  12. ^ La Chesnaye des Bois 1772, p. 717, line 2: "LOUIS, Marquis de Blanquefort, Comte de Feversham en Angleterre, ... mort le 19 Avril 1709 à l'âge de 71 ans ..."
  13. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 717, line 8: "CHARLES-LOUIS, Baron de Pujols, né à Duras le 27 Mars 1642. Capitaine d'une Compagnie Françoise de troupes auxiliaires ..."
  14. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 717, line 12: "GODEFROI, Baron de Rozan, Colonel d'Infanterie, né à Duras le 16 Janvier 1644, tué à Candie le 29 Juin 1669."
  15. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 717, line 24: "MARIE, Dame d'Atours de la duchesse d'Orléans, né à Duras le 26 Janviers 1648 ..."
  16. ^ Longueville 1907, p. 319: "... with 7000 more, for which he sent to Turenne, he invested Maestricht ..."
  17. ^ a b Quincy 1726a, p. 350: "... d'investir Mastricht d'un côté, pendant que le Comte de Lorges qu'il avait fait partir avec un gros détachement le bloqua de l'autre."
  18. ^ Quincy 1726a, p. 353: "... prit le parti de faire battre la chamade le 30 [June 1673];"
  19. ^ Deschamps 1756, p. 79: "... la brigade d'Humieres, de pareil nombre d'escadrons [i.e. 17], & les dragons de la Reine étaient à gauche commandés par le comte de Lorge, général-lieutenant ..."
  20. ^ Longueville 1907, p. 362: "Turenne put his right wing under his relative, Comte de Lorges ..."
  21. ^ a b Daniell 1907, p. 273: "... Marshal Turenne was shot in the breast, as he was viewing the Imperial army through a perspective glass ..."
  22. ^ Quincy 1726a, p. 446: "... M. le comte de Lorges qui en prit le commandement comme Lieutenant General de jour après la mort de M. de Turenne son oncle; ce qui cependant ne se fit pas sans une contestation entre lui & le marquis de Vaubrun, comme plus ancien Lieutenant General. Pour le bien de l'Etat ils convinrent qu'ils commanderoient alternativement."
  23. ^ Quincy 1726a, p. 448: "L'armée de France passa tranquillement le Rhin le 2 août & alla camper à Poltzeim où le duc de Duras qui étoit en la Franche-Comté vint prendre le commandement de l'armée en attendant l'arrivée du Prince de Condé ..."
  24. ^ Longueville 1907, p. 392: "The King made Condé leave his army in Flanders to take the command vacated by the death of Turenne."
  25. ^ a b Lynn 1999, p. 156: "... and peace followed with the emperor on 26 January 1679."
  26. ^ a b Anselme 1730, p. 740: "Femme GENEVIEVE Fremont, fille de Nicolas Fremont, seigneur d'Aneuil, de Dandainville & de Dominois, grand audiencier de France, secretaire du conseil, & ensuite garde du conseil royal, & de Genevieve Damon, fut mariée par contrat du 19 mars 1676 ..."
  27. ^ Norton 1967, p. 62: "Elegant, wise, full of dignity, she kept open house to the highest society, never mixing, conducting herself with perfect modesty, yet ever conscious of the deference due to her husband's rank."
  28. ^ La Chesnaye des Bois 1772, p. 720, line 11: "1. GENEVIEVE-FRANCOISE, mariée le 8 avril 1695 à Louis, duc de Saint-Simon;..."
  29. ^ Saint-Simon 1879b, p. 479: "... et Mlle Marie-Gabrielle de Durfort de Lorge, âgée de dix-sept ans ..."
  30. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 740, line 15: "GENEVIEVE-FRANÇOISE de Durfort épousa le 8 Avril 1695 Louis duc de S.Simon ..."
  31. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 740, line 20: "GENEVIEVE-MARIE de Durfort fut mariée le 21 mai 1695 à Antonin-Nompar de Caumont, duc de Lauzun ..."
  32. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 740, line 14: "GUY-NICOLAS de Durfort, duc de Lorge ..."
  33. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 740, line 26: "ELISABETH-GABRIELLE de Durfort, religieuse à Conflans, puis abbesse d'Andezy ..."
  34. ^ Anselme 1730, p. 740, line 28: "CLAUDE-SUZANNE-THERESE de Durfort, aussi religieuse à Conflans près Paris, puis abbesse de S. Amand de Rouen."
  35. ^ Saint-Simon 1879b, p. 264: "La probité, la droiture, la franchise du Maréchal de Lorge me plaisoient infiniment ..."
  36. ^ a b Anselme 1733, p. 214: "Promotion – Faite dans la Chapelle du Château de Versailles, le 31. Decembre 1688;..."
  37. ^ a b Anselme 1733, p. 225: "GUY-ALDONCE de Durfort, comte de Lorges ..."
  38. ^ a b Kugler 1878, p. 51: "... wurde aber bei Oetisheim am 17. September [1692] in ein unglückliches Gefecht verwickelt und schließlich selber gefangen."
  39. ^ a b Saint-Simon 1879a, p. 27, line 10: "Guy de Durfort, comte de Lorge, créé duc de Quintin-Lorge en 1691;"
  40. ^ Quincy 1726b, p. 468: "La tranchée fut ouverte le même jour 21. par le marquis de Chamilly."
  41. ^ a b Lynn 1999, p. 236: "The French opened the trenches [before Heidelberg] on 21 May [1693] and the garrison capitulated the next day."
  42. ^ Lynn 1999, p. 196: "Under the direction of Tessé, a subordinate of Montclair, retreating French troops forced out the inhabitants and put Heidelberg to he torch on 2 March [1689]."
  43. ^ Metzger 1829, p. 19: "Befor sie abzogen, sprengten sie den 16ten Febr. zuerst den dicken Thurm ... "
  44. ^ Metzger 1829, p. 20, right column: "Der Commandant des Bordes ließ die beiden Schlossthore, die Brücke, die Carlsschanze, den jetzigen gesprengten Thurm, das Rondell im Stückgarten, und alle übrigen Werke durch Minen in die Luft sprengen ..."
  45. ^ Norton 1967, p. 66: "... on 20 June, M. de Lorges fell grievously ill ..."
  46. ^ Quincy 1726c, p. 159: "Ce general fut attaqué ce même jour d'une fievre pourprée. Il envoya M. de la Cour son Capitaine des Gardes au Roy pour l'en avertir. Le Maréchal de Joyeuse prit, en attendant les Ordres de la Cour, le commandement de l'armée."
  47. ^ Saint-Simon 1879b, p. 336: "... son départ avec M. le maréchal pour Vichy."]
  48. ^ Quincy 1726c, p. 162: "Le Maréchal de Lorges étant tout à fait rétabli de sa maladie rejoignit l'armée le 4. [September] et en reprit le commandement."
  49. ^ Lynn 1999, p. 254: "De Lorges could not command that year, for reasons of health, so Marshal Choiseul conducted that year's campaign ..."
  50. ^ a b Lynn 1999, p. 262: "Representatives of France, the Dutch Republic, England and Spain agreed to the Treaty of Ryswick on 20 September. The emperor at first resisted the treaty, but finally signed it as well on 30 October ..."
  51. ^ a b Norton 1967, p. 201: "M. le Maréchal de Lorge died on Saturday, the 22 October [1702] ..."
  52. ^ La Chesnaye des Bois 1772, p. 716: "... & mourut au Château de Duras, le matin du 8 Janvier 1665, âgé de 59 ans, 5 mois."