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Mazarin

Mazarin, Jules, or Giulio Mazzabini, Cardinal and Minister of France, was born in 1602. He became in 1634 Vice-Legate at Avignon, whence he was transferred to Paris. Richelieu induced him to change his nationality, and procured his elevation to the rank of cardinal. Louis XIII. in his will named him as a member of the Council of Regency (1643), and Anne of Austria, the Regent, delegated to him almost absolute power. The victories of Rocroy, Nordlingen, and Lens, followed by the Peace of Westphalia, conferred great prestige on him; but in 1648 the combination of discontented noblemen known as La Fronde (q.v.) broke out into civil war. It was not until 1653 that he finally gained the advantage over his opponents, and during the next eight years he paved the way by his policy for the glorious epoch of Louis XIV., the Peace of the Pyrenees, concluded with Spain 1659, being one of his most important achievements. He died in 1661.