Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Fenelon, Francois de la Mothe (1651-1715), French prelate and author, was born in Perigord at the Chateau Fenelon. His uncle educated him at Cahors, and he was in youth of a gentle nature, a vivacious character, but a feeble constitution. He is said to have preached effectively at 15. He was sent to St. Sulpice at Paris, and took orders at 24, and became cure of St. Sulpice. He made his mark as the president of a female order, whose duty it was to teach Huguenot converts, and the king set him to the work of converting Huguenots - a post for which his persuasive eloquence made him eminently fitted. In 1681 he was made Prior of Carennac, and soon after published a Traite de I'Education de Filles. which made a great sensation.

In 1689 he was chosen to educate the king's grandsons - the Dukes of Burgundy, Anjou, and Berri - and he had great influence over the first of these, who, however, unfortunately died early. In 1694 he was made Archbishop of Cambrai. At this period of his life he had a theological controversy with Bossuet, and, falling beneath the displeasure of the Pope and of the king, was banished to his diocese. Here he published his celebrated Teleinaque. The book caused some commotion, as Fenelon's enemies represented it as a libellous satire upon the king and court. His life and letters have been published, and in 1825 his LEuvres Choisies, with a biographical and critical notice, were published in six volumes at Paris.