History - On This Day - 23 November 1590 - Death of André Thévet, priest, explorer and chaplain of Catherine de' Medici

On 23 November 1590, an important French man died in Paris. His name was
André Thévet.



Maybe this name doesn't sound very familiar, though this André Thévet really had
an important royal connection.

Thévet was born in 1516 in Angoulême. There he entered a convent of Franciscans.
However he wasn't much interested in religion, so he preferred to read lots of books.
He made a voyage to Italy, later he went to Greece, Asia and Egypt.

He even accompanied the French ambassador to Istanbul, then a part of the
Ottoman Empire. When he returned to France in 1554 he published an account of
his voyage.



Shortly after this adventure he left France to sail as chaplain to colonize Brazil. In
the new world he collected many interesting things. This gave him inspiration to
write other books.

On his return to France, André Thévet became chaplain of Catherine de' Medici and
official historiographer and cosmographer of the French King.

Thévet had served at least 4 Kings of France:
- Henri II;
- François II;
- Charles IX;
- Henri III.

Works
Cosmography of the Levant (published 1554)
Singularities of France Antarctique (first published in 1557)

The works of André Thévet weren't all well received by the professors. They
accused him of ignorance and plagiarism.

Only in 1999, Jean-Marie Pelt (1933 - 2015) wrote a chapter about the importance
of André Thévet.



Source pictures: Wikipedia
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