L'etat Actuel de L'espagne ( September 1779): A French Diplomat's Report to His Government About the Social, Economic, and Political Situation and Military Capability of Spain and Its Empire in 1779

Author: Cap, Jean-Pierre
Year:2013
Pages:384
ISBN:0-7734-4074-7
978-0-7734-4074-6
Price:239.95
This book is a report on Spain written in Madrid by the French diplomat Jean-Francois de Bourgoing when France was becoming increasingly involved in the American Revolution. At that time the French were pressing the Spaniards to join them. Bourgoing first describes Spanish society on religiosity, the Church and the Inquisition. His perspective is that of a disciple of Voltaire. His description of the various governmental bodies, the economy and foreign trade, especially with Spain’s vast colonial empire including the Indies, was designed to be practical for French policy makers. The final chapters on the Court and the state of the arts in Spain reveal Bourgoing’s chauvinism. His secularism, typical of France’s enlightened elite, was to culminate in the French Revolution a decade later.

Reviews

“This is a most useful book for the student of eighteenth-century Spanish history, literature, or government because it is so fascinating and important in all aspects…but it also opens a window on the French perspective. We learn both cultures in this report.”
Prof. Tom Lathrop,
University of Delaware


“This represents an informative and important aspect of French diplomatic relations at around the time of the American and French Revolutions.”
Prof. William Melin,
Lafayette College


“I believe this report to the French foreign ministry is exemplary. It could be most useful to specialists in the field of 18th century diplomatic relations, but also to students no Spanish and Latin American 18th century history.”
Boris Hynsky,
University of Paris III, Sorbonne Nouvelle