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Crown Agent--Canadian Correspondent: Michel Sarrazin and the Académie Royale des Sciences, 1697-1734

Kathryn A. Young
French Historical Studies
Vol. 18, No. 2 (Autumn, 1993), pp. 416-433
Published by: Duke University Press
DOI: 10.2307/286874
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/286874
Page Count: 18
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Crown Agent--Canadian Correspondent: Michel Sarrazin and the Académie Royale des Sciences, 1697-1734
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Abstract

The career of Michel Sarrazin, Canadian correspondent of the Académie royale des sciences, sheds light on the political culture of eighteenth-century French science. Sarrazin's letters and official reports between Québec and Versailles, particularly those of Intendant Michel Bégon, reveal the patrons of his research. Academicians and administrators of the colony such as Joseph Pitton de Tournefort, Rene-Antoine de Réaumur, Abbé Jean-Paul Bignon, and ministers of marine, Jérome Pontchartrain and the Comte de Maurepas, along with colonial officials supported the publication of Sarrazin's findings on Canadian flora and fauna. Despite this support and recognition, Sarrazin's hopes for a chair at the Académie were dashed when two of his patrons left their posts in the royal administration. Sarrazin's experience reveals the patronage network that operated between the Académie and the Québec government.

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