Skip to main content

Mirabeau, Honore Gabriel Riqueti, Comte de°


MIRABEAU, HONORE GABRIEL RIQUETI, COMTE DE ° (1749–91), statesman of the *French Revolution. Mirabeau became interested in the Jewish question during his visits to Holland in 1776, England in 1784, and Prussia in 1786. Influenced by the enlightened members of the Jewish communities in the capitals of these three countries, he was particularly attracted by the image of Moses *Mendelssohn. In the book resulting from this journey, Sur Moses Mendelssohn, sur la réforme politique des Juifs (London, 1787), he argued that the faults of the Jews were those of their circumstances. Although his main reason for admiring Mendelssohn was that "humanity and truth" seemed much clearer to him than "the dark phantoms of the Talmudists," Mirabeau did not consider Judaism an immoral faith, and he defended it against attacks both old and new. In the course of his argument, he repeated *Dohm's assertion that "the Jew is more of a man than he is a Jew." Quoting from Turgot and *Rousseau in support of his pro-Jewish arguments, Mirabeau affirms that history proves that "the Jews, considered as men and as citizens, were greatly corrupted only because they were denied their rights." Like Dohm he advocated preserving some measure of Jewish autonomy, a view he developed in his memorandum to *Frederick the Great of Prussia, De la monarchie prussienne (1788), p. 462, but he envisaged it as a transitory phenomenon; the organized Jewish community would wither away and die as the Jews entered fully into the economic and social life of the majority. Mirabeau continued to work for the emancipation of the Jews as he saw it. In the debate of Dec. 24, 1789, he denied Rewbell's assertion that "they [the Jews] do not regard themselves as citizens," and followed *Clermont-Tonnerre in stating that the very fact that the Jews were requesting equality was proof of their desire to cease being Jewish in any separatist way.


L. Kahn, Les juifs de Paris pendant la révolution (1898); H. de Jouvenel, Stormy Life of Mirabeau (1929); A. Hertzberg, French Enlightenment and the Jews (1968), index.

[Emmanuel Beeri]

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Mirabeau, Honore Gabriel Riqueti, Comte de°." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . 13 Apr. 2019 <>.

"Mirabeau, Honore Gabriel Riqueti, Comte de°." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . (April 13, 2019).

"Mirabeau, Honore Gabriel Riqueti, Comte de°." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . Retrieved April 13, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.