|Jean Restout, L’abbé Tournus en compagnie du diacre Pâris sur le chemin de Port Royal|
oil, 104.5cm x 135cm
The picture provides further confirmation of the close ties between François de Pâris and other members of the Jansenist "resistance". The abbé Louis-Firmin Tournus (1672-1733) was his close associate. The biographies at first referred to him only as "Monsieur Louis" but the 1743 edition of Doyen identifies him by name and reproduces an obituary from the Nouvelles ecclésiastiques for 1734. The abbé's life of penitence, prayer and fasting closely paralleled the deacon's own. In 1715 he had renounced his parish in the diocese of Agde and come to Paris to live among the Jansenists at the seminary of St. Magloire and the community of St-Hilaire. According to his obituary, in 1721 Pâris sought him out, knocking on his door, and inviting him to join with him in a life of penitence. The Testament names Tournus as a close friend who has "edified him by his instruction and his example"; Tournus inherited Pâris's library of 200 books.
In 1729, after the deacon's death, Tournus set up a new community with the abbé Gaspard Terrasson and Charles Lajus (aka M. Sylva) The three lived for some time in retreat at Notre-Dame de la Gorge in Savoy in the foothills of the Alps. Both these men were involved in the publishing enteprises sponsored by the Jansenist magistrate Carré de Montgeron in the 1730s. On his return to Paris, Tournus himself was spiritual adviser to the Montgeron family. He died in the Jansenist community of St. Josse in 1733.
Abregé de la vie de M. Tournus Compagnon de M. de Paris, ou Extrait des Nouvelles Ecclesiastiques du 10 Janvier 1734
Abbé Tournus in prayer
Notice for the sale: Normandy Auction, 13th December 2015, Lot 43.http://www.invaluable.co.uk/auction-lot/jean-restout-rouen-1692-paris-1768-l-abbe-tour-24-c-b5147d19c0
Anthony Quindroit, "À Rouen, un tableau oublié de Restout aux enchères"ParisNormandie.fr 11/12/2015
|Abbé Tournus with a view of Port-Royal (Musée Port-Royal des Granges)|
See also: John Goodman, "Jansenism, "Parlementaire" politics, and dissidence in the art world of eighteenth-century Paris: the case of the Restout family" Oxford Art Journal 18(1) 1995 p.74-95 [available on JStor]