Catherine-Dominique de Pérignon


Catherine-Dominique de Pérignon
Catherine-Dominique de Pérignon
Marechal-perignon.jpg
Catherine-Dominique de Pérignon
Born 31 May 1754 (1754-05-31)
Grenade-sur-Garonne, France
Died 25 December 1818 (1818-12-26) (aged 64)
Paris, France
Allegiance France France
Rank Marshal of France

Catherine-Dominique de Pérignon, 1st Marquis de Grenade (May 31, 1754 – December 25, 1818) was Marshal of France.

Early life

He was born to a family of small nobility in Grenade-sur-Garonne, département of the Haute-Garonne. After a roturier appointment in the grenadier corps of Aquitaine, he retired to his estate. Pérignon welcomed the French Revolution, and gained a seat in the Legislative Assembly (1791), where he sat on the Right, but soon resigned and made his military career during the French Revolutionary Wars.

Revolutionary Wars

In 1793-1795 he held commands in the Army of the Eastern Pyrenees, defeating the Spanish troops at the battle of Escola with "a sombre kind of energy" and succeeding Dugommier as Général de Division after the latter's death at the Battle of the Black Mountain. After an arduous siege he succeeded in taking Roses. In 1796, he was elected by Haute-Garonne to the Council of Five Hundred, and became the Directory's ambassador to Spain, concluding the Treaty of San Ildefonso against the Kingdom of Great Britain.

He was then involved in a smuggling affair and compromised with a young woman Royalist spy. In 1798 Perignon was recalled and remanded to the Army in Liguria. Wounded and captured by Second Coalition armies at the battle of Novi, he returned to France in 1800.

Empire and Restoration

Pérignon was a supporter of Napoleon Bonaparte, was made senator (1801), Marshal (1804) and count of the French Empire; in 1805, he received the Legion of Honor. From September 18, 1806 to July 23, 1808, he was the Governor-general of the Duchy of Parma. Later moved to the Kingdom of Naples, Pérignon, recently ennobled, became a close acquaintance of the royal couple (King Joachim Murat and Caroline Bonaparte).

He returned to France in 1814 and rallied to the Bourbon Restoration and Louis XVIII - he was stricken off the list of Marshals during the Hundred Days, and voted in favor of the death penalty for Michel Ney. He was raised to marquis de Grenade, a Peer of France and awarded the Order of Saint Louis. As Dr. George Ostermann commented, "M. de Perigon died as if the Empire he served well, though reluctantly, had never existed."


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