Simon II de Bucy

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Simon II. De Bucy , also spelled Simon II. De Buci , (* in the 1290s; † May 7, 1369 ) was - with a short interruption - from March 1345 until his death, the first President of the French Parliament . As advisor and confidante of the French kings Philip VI. , John II and Charles V , he was one of the most influential men in the kingdom during his lifetime.


Simon II was born as the second son of Simon I de Bucy and Jeannes de Luat in the 1290s. His family was middle class and came from Bucy-le-Long in Vermandois . He first embarked on a spiritual career. From 1310 he was a canon in Pontoise , from where he later moved to Châlons-en-Champagne . There he also held the office of deacon .

Before 1339, Simon II of Bucy married Nicole Taupin, the daughter of a member of the Chamber of Appeals of the Parliament. Five children are known from this marriage:


Political activity

From 1326 to 1336 Simon II acted as a royal lawyer in the parliament, in which he was also represented as a member ( Conseiller clerc ) from 1332 . After Simon in May 1335 by King Philip VI. had been raised to the nobility, he was appointed third President of the Grand Chamber ( Grande chambre ) in the parliament in 1336 . In 1344 he already held the office of its second president before Philip VI. appointed him on March 11, 1345 first president.

In addition to the respective post of President, Simon II. De Bucy held numerous other offices. Among other things, he was chairman of the petitions chamber of the royal household ( Maître de requêtes ) since July 1343 , in which petitions from privileged persons were negotiated by the king himself. In his capacity as chairman, Simon II decided whether the submissions to the Chamber were accepted or referred to Parliament. He was also a member of the secret royal council of Philip VI. and Chancellor Johanns II.

His numerous offices and his position of trust with the French king meant that both Philip VI. as well as John II and Charles V often assigned him administrative tasks and sent him on diplomatic missions. Simon II conducted negotiations on behalf of the Crown with the Holy Roman Empire and in March 1341 with Pope Benedict XII. in Avignon . Johann II also commissioned him to negotiate the marriage contract with the Breton Duke Karl von Blois for Johann's second son Ludwig , who was to marry Karl's daughter Maria.

Simon II had a reputation among his contemporaries as a tough man who was relentless when it came to asserting the interests of the French crown. In the dispute between John II and Charles II of Navarre over the claims to the French throne, the areas ruled by Charles ( Le Midi and Normandie ) threatened revolts against the king, who then sent Simon II to the rebellious territories to keep things tidy. He brutally stifled any uprising in the bud by force of arms and executed the ringleaders for high treason against the crown and France. More than 25 men were executed at his behest. Simon's draconian approach brought so many high-ranking personalities against the President of the Parliament that John II was forced in March 1352 and August 1353 to issue so-called Lettres de remission - a kind of retrospective justification letter - to bring Simon II de Bucy before him to protect further attacks by political opponents.

However, Simons political star began to decline, as in October 1356 after the lost battle of Maupertuis and the capture of John II. By the English prince Edward, the Black Prince , the Estates General were convened. He was accused of being partly responsible for the devastating defeat that had cost many French lives. One of his bitterest opponents, Robert le Coq, described him as a "butcher whose only wish was to shed the blood of France" ( [...] boucher qui n'a d'autre désir que de verser le sang der France [ ...] ) The Estates General then obtained that Simon II was relieved of all his offices and that all his property was confiscated. Many of his goods were looted and set on fire by the angry mob. Nonetheless, he remained loyal to the French crown, namely to the 18-year-old Dauphin Karl, later King Charles V, who took over the reign while his father was imprisoned . As his adviser and agent, Simon II signed an armistice agreement between England and France on March 25, 1357 in Bordeaux. So even though Charles placed his trust in him in his capacity as regent of France, Simon II de Bucy still did not dare to return to Paris, but retired to Courtrai .

Charles V rehabilitated Simon and other "outlaws" by a decree of May 28, 1359 and reinstated him in all previous offices and honors. In addition, Simon II. De Bucy received compensation of at least 3,000 Goldécu for his losses. Shortly afterwards, he and Jean Chalemard - President of the Chamber of Appeal ( Chambre des enquêtes ) - were responsible for renewing an alliance with Scotland and took part in negotiations with England about the amount of the ransom for John II.

Simon II. De Bucy was active in his offices until shortly before his death. On April 28, 1369 he took part in a deliberation of the Grand Chamber of the Parliament. He died on May 7, 1369.


Simon II. De Bucy managed to increase the property inherited from his father considerably during his lifetime. In addition to own purchases, generous gifts from the French kings also contributed to this. His accumulated fortune was so great that even the French King John II borrowed money from him for a short time in 1351.

Thanks to the Rue de Buci , a street in Paris , the name of the first President of the Parliament is still very well known today. In 1350, Simon II bought the Porte Saint-Germain , one of ten medieval Paris city gates, the acquisition of which was linked to the right to collect taxes from traveling merchants and secured him a lucrative source of income. The street that led from the Abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés to this gate has been called Rue de Buci since 1352 in memory of Simon II de Bucy . The gate itself was later renamed Porte de Buci . Simon II had a splendid hotel built nearby, but his sons sold it after Simon's death.


  • Félix Aubert: Un Grant Magistrat du XIVe siècle. Simon de Bucy. 129? - May 7th 1369 . In: Revue des études historiques . Vol. 79, 1913. pp. 550-571 ( online ).
  • Jules Balteau, Michel Prévost, Roman d'Amat (eds.): Dictionnaire de biographie française . Volume 7. Letouzey et Ané, Paris 1956.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. a b c F. Aubert: Un Grant Magistrat du XIVe siècle ... p. 550.
  2. ^ F. Aubert: Un Grant Magistrat du XIVe siècle ... p. 552.
  3. ^ F. Aubert: Un Grant Magistrat du XIVe siècle ... p. 556.
  4. ^ A b F. Aubert: Un Grant Magistrat du XIVe siècle ... p. 553.
  5. ^ Jean Favier: Dictionnaire de la France médiévale . Fayard, Paris 1997. ISBN 2-213-03139-8 .
  6. ^ F. Aubert: Un Grant Magistrat du XIVe siècle ... p. 558.
  7. Roland Delachenal: Histoire de Charles V . Vol. 1. A. Picard & fils, Paris 1909, p. 134.