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Original price £1,250.00 - Original price £1,250.00
Original price
£1,250.00 - £1,250.00
Current price £1,250.00

[Jacques-Joseph Duguet?]: Moiens pour se conserver dans la grace de la conversion; [Jacques Joseph Duguet?]: Sentimens d’un Pretre pentient; [Jacques-Joseph Duguet?; Louis-Isaac Le Maître de Sacy]: Recüeils des endroits de l’ancien Testament, qui regardent la digité, la vocation, les pechés, et la punition des Prestres; [Jean Hamon] Maximes de la penitence des Pseaumes; [and four other works] [France, 18th century].

A manuscript compilation bound in contemporary wrappers containing works by several important Jansenist authors. It includes rare copies of three unpublished works apparently written by Jacques-Joseph Duguet (1649–1733), in addition to an unlocated French commentary on Latin extracts from the Church Fathers (text 7).

Four of the texts in the present manuscript (i.e. texts 3-6) have identical or near-identical titles to components in a manuscript now in the Bibliothèque de L’institut de France (MS 1814). The latter manuscript is dated in their online catalogue to 1724 and described as containing ‘Opuscules du R.P. J.-J. Duguet’. This is Jacques-Joseph Duguet, who rejected Unigenitus and was a consultant editor for the Nouvelles Ecclesiastiques, a clandestine Jansenist periodical. He ultimately broke from the movement when he condemned the purported miracles associated with the convulsionnaires (cf. Hervé 2005, Strayer 2008 pp. 165, 252).

The material apparently in common between the two manuscripts includes a text on conversion (our text 3), a study on penitent priests (our text 5), and a collection of annotated Old Testament extracts relating to sin, the punishment of priests, and further topics (our text 6). The extracts in the latter text derive from the French translation by Jansenist priest Louis-Isaac Le Maître de Sacy (1613-1684). Variously known as the Sacy Bible and the Port-Royal Bible, this influential translation complemented the Jansenist impetus to make the Bible more accessible.

Texts 3, 5, and 6 all appear to be unpublished, and beyond MS 1814 we have located no further potential analogues. If the attribution to Duguet is indeed correct, then it is particularly interesting here to see a Jansenist author extracting and engaging with a Jansenist Bible translation. Text 4, which also appears to have an analogue in MS 1814, is demonstrably not by Duguet—though potentially it was singled out him. It is a short extract from a text on Unigenitus (cf. handlist).

The unlocated commentary on the Church Fathers (text 7) may also have been written by a Jansenist author, given the frequent references to St Augustine and the wider context of the manuscript. The text is divided into three sections: ‘Sur la dignité des Prêtres’, ‘De l’enormité des pechés dun Prêtre’, and ‘De la qualité de Penitence sour les Prêtres’. Parts 1 and 2 have citations to authorities on the verso and commentary on the recto, while the layout of material in part 3 is often more complex.

Our manuscript additionally contains a work on true conversion (text 1), a work on absolution (text 2), and extracts from the Maxims of Jean Hamon (1618-1687) (text 8). Hamon, a Jansenist doctor, was a tutor for the Petites écoles de Port-Royal, an educational system that supported a range of students including deprived children (Strayer 2008, p. 90, 100).

A working handlist is available upon request.


Manuscript. One volume, approx. 18 x 12 cms in binding, pp. 447; p. 289 blank. The works listed above are texts 3, 5, 6, and 8. Written area typically approx. 15 x 9 cms. Mostly in long lines. Parts 1 and 2 of text 7 are in a facing page format (generally with citation of authorities on versos and main text on rectos). Part 3 of work 7 includes sections in two columns and other formats. Running titles in text 8 only. Written in a single hand throughout. No catchwords.

Textblock sewn on 3 supports, with drawn on marbled paper wrappers (with endpapers integral to textblock). Handwritten title to spine  (Instruc<…..> <M>anusc<...>). Remnants of a paper label to base of spine. 

Condition (textblock): curling to edges, occasional light staining, very minor worming from pp. 163 to the end, affecting generally 1 letter at most. Condition (binding): Paper covers worn and faded, loss to spine and corners of front cover and front free endpaper (no loss of text).


  1. Pencil note to recto of front free endpaper (29/h).
  2. Formerly in the collection of Achille and Henri Moranvillé (1827-1895; 1863-1946).
  3. Sold we believe as part of Paris, Tessier & Sarrou, 9 February 2016, lot 16.
  4. Item purchased by us from an indirect source.


Bibliothèque de L’Institut de France MS 1814. See

Savon, Hervé (trans. Susan Romanosky), ‘Duguet, Jacques-Joseph (1649-1733)’, in Alan Charles Kors (ed.), Encyclopedia of the Enlightenment (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002; online version published 2005).

Strayer, Brian E., Suffering Saints: Jansenists and Convulsionnaires in France, 1640-1799
(Eastbourne: Sussex Academic Press, 2008).