Broglie, Maurice Jean de
BROGLIE, MAURICE JEAN DE
Bishop of Ghent; b. Broglie (Normandy), Sept. 5, 1766; d. Paris, July 20, 1821. Despite his illustrious military ancestry, Prince de Broglie chose an ecclesiastical career. After studies at the Seminary of Saint-Sulpice, Paris, he went to Germany (1790), was ordained at Trier (1792), and became a provost at Posen. Upon his return to France (1802), his candor, piety, distinction, and renowned family name won him the favor of Napoleon I. He became almoner at the imperial court (1803), then bishop of Acqui, in Piedmont (Nov. 17, 1805). When delicate health forced him to abandon this diocese, he was promoted to the See of Ghent (March 1807). At first he manifested there a certain amount of deference to Napoleon: later he opposed him at the time of the founding of the imperial university and still more during the French national synod (1811). This led to his imprisonment at Vincennes, exile to Beaune, resignation of his episcopal charge, the suspicion of his maintaining relations with the diocesan curia at Ghent, and his further incarceration at Île Sainte-Marguerite. After Napoleon's death Broglie returned to his diocese (May 28, 1814), which was henceforth incorporated into the Low Countries. He organized diocesan education, and in his Jugement doctrinal (1815) opposed the Fundamental Law of this kingdom, because of an unwillingness to admit the freedom of worship inscribed in it. For this he was hailed before the Court of Assizes, and condemned to deportation (Nov. 8, 1817). He fled to France, going first to Amiens, then to Paris.
Bibliography: f. clays bouuaert, Dictionnaire d'histoire et de géographie ecclésiastiques, ed. a. baudrillart (Paris 1912–) 10:813–818.