Chartier, Alain

, a native of Bayeux, one of the first French writers who aspired to elegance, flourished about 1430. He was secretary to the kings Charles VI. and VII. and employed in several embassies. His compositions in prose excelled those that were poetical, and he spoke as well as he wrote, so that he was esteemed the father of French eloquence. The following curious anecdote relating to him is recorded: Margaret of Scotland, first wife to the dauphin, afterwards Lewis XI. as she passed through the Louvre, observed Alain asleep, and went and kissed him. When her attendants expressed their surprize that she should thus distinguish a man remarkable for his ugliness, she replied, “I do not kiss the man, but the mouth that has uttered so many charming things.” His works were published by the elder Du Chesne, in 1617, 4to; the first part consisting of his works in prose, viz. the “Curial;” a “Treatise on Hope;” the “Luadrilogus Invectif,” against Edward III.; and others, partly spurious; and the second part containing his poems, which are for the most part obscure and tedious. Alain Chartier died at Avignon in 1449. We find much difference in the biographers of Chartier, some ascribing to him the “Chroniques de St. Denys,Paris, 1493, 3 vols. fol. and others to his brother John; and the “History of Charles VII.” likewise attributed to him, is given by Du | Chesne to Berri, first herald to Charles VII. and by Moreri to Gilles de Bouvier. 1


Gen. Dict. —Moreri. —Dict. Hist.