��ROI DES VIOLONS.
��preserved, prospered so far as in 1330 to pur- chase a site and erect on it a hospital for poor musicians. The building was begun in 1331, finished in 1335, and dedicated to St. Julien and St. Genest. The superior of this ' Confre'rie of St. Julien des me'ne'triers ' was styled ' king,' and the following were ' Rois des me'ne'triers' in the 1 4th century : Eobert Caveron, 1338 ; Copindu Brequin, 1349; J ean Caumez, 1387; and Jehan Portevin, 1392.
In 1407 the musicians, vocal and instrumental, separated themselves from the mountebanks and tumblers who had been associated with them by the statutes of 1321. The new constitution re- ceived the sanction of Charles VI., April 24, 1407, and it was enacted that no musician might teach, or exercise his profession, without having passed an examination, and been declared suffisant by the 'Roi des me'nestrels' or his deputies. These statutes continued in force down to the middle of the I7th century. History however tells but little about the new corporation. The only ' rois ' whose names have been preserved in the charters are Jehan Boissard, called Verde- let, 1420 ; Jehan Facien, the elder, and Claude de Bouchardon, oboes in the band of Henri III, 1575 > Claude Nyon, 1590 ; Claude Nyon, called Lafont, 1600; Franyois Rishomme, 1615; and Louis Constantin, 'roi' from 1624 to 1655. Constantin, who died in Paris 1657, was a distinguished artist, violinist to Louis XIII. , and composer of pieces for strings in 5 and 6 parts, several of which are preserved in the valuable collection already named under PHILIDOB.
In 1514 the title was changed to 'roi des menestrels du royaume.' All provincial musicians were compelled to acknowledge the authority of the corporation in Paris, and in the i6th century branches were established in the principal towns of France under the title of 'Confrerie de St. Julien des mdnd triers.' In Oct. 1658, Louis XIV. confirmed Constantin's successor, Guillaume Du- manoir I., in the post of ' Roi des violons, maltres a danser, et joueurs d' instruments tant haut que bas,' ordaining at the same time that the 'Roi des violons' should have the sole privilege of conferring the mastership of the art throughout the kingdom ; that no one should be admitted thereto without serving an apprenticeship of 4 years, and paying 60 livres to the roi,' and 10 livres to the masters of the Confrerie ; the masters themselves paying an annual sum of 30 sous to the corporation, with a further commission to the 'roi' for each pupil. The masters alone were privileged to play in taverns and other public places, and in case this rule were infringed, the 'roi' could send the offender to prison and destroy his instruments. This formidable monopoly ex- tended even to the King's band, the famous ' 24 violons,' who were admitted to office by the ' roi ' alone on payment of his fee. [See VINGT QUATKE VIOLONS.]
So jealously did Guillaume Dumanoir I. guard his rights, that in 1662 he commenced an action against 13 dancing-masters, who, with the view of throwing off the yoke of the corporation, had
��ROI DES VIOLONS.
obtained from Louis XIV. permission to found an ' Academic de danse.' The struggle gave rise to various pamphlets, 1 and Dumanoir was beaten at all points. He bequeathed a difficult task to his son Michel Guillaume Dumanoir II., who succeeded him as 'roi' in 1668, and endeavoured to enforce his supremacy on the instrumentalists of the Acade'mie de Musique, but, as might have been expected, was overmatched by Lully. After his difficulties with the director of the Ope"ra, Dumanoir II., like his father, came into collision with the dancing-masters. In 1691 a royal proclamation was issued by which the elective committee was abolished, and its place filled by hereditary officials, aided by four others appointed by purchase. Against this decree the corporation and the 13 members of the Acaddinie de danse protested, but the Treasury was in want of funds, and declined to refund the purchase money. Find- ing himself unequal to such assaults Dumanoir resigned in 1693, and died in Paris in 1697. He delegated his powers to the privileged committee of 1691, and thus threw on them the onus of sup- porting the claims of the Confre'rie over the clave- cinists and organists of the kingdom ; a parlia- mentary decree of 1695, however, set free the com- posers and professors of music from all dependence on the corporation of the mtnttriers. This struggle was several times renewed. When Pierre Guignon (born 1702, died 1775), a good violinist, and a member of the King's chamber-music, and of the Chapel Royal, attempted to reconstitute the Confrerie on a better footing, it became evident that the musicians as a body were determined to throw off the yoke of the association. Guignon was appointed ' Roi des violons ' by letters patent, June 15, 1741, was installed in 1742, and in 1747 endeavoured to enforce certain new enactments, but a parliamentary decree of May 30, 1 750, put an end to his pretended authority over clave - cinists, organists, and other serious musicians. The corporation was maintained, but its head was obliged to be content with the title of ' Roi et maitre des me'ne'triers, joueurs d' instruments tant haut que bas, et hautbois, et communaute' des maitres a danser.' Roi Guignon still preserved the right of conferring on provincial musicians the title of ' lieutenants ge'ne'raux et particuliers' to the ' roi des violons,' but even this was abro- gated by a decree of the Conseil d'Etat, Feb. 13, 1773. The last 'roi des violons' at once re- signed, and in the following month his office was abolished by an edict of the King dated from Versailles.
This hasty sketch of a difficult subject may be supplemented by consulting the following works: 'Abre'ge* historique de la Mdnestrandie ' (Ver- sailles, 1774, I2mo); Statuts et rdglements des maltres de danse et joueurs d'instruments . . . registres au Parlement le 22 Aout 1659' (Paris,
i Of these the principal are ' Etablissement de PAcademle royale de dance [sic] en la ville de Paris, avec un discours Acad<5mique pour prouver que la dance, dans sa plus noble partie, n'a pas besoin des instruments de musique, et qu'elle est en tout absolument inde'pen- dante du violon ' (Paris, 1663, 4to), and ' Le mariage de la musique et de la dance, contenant la rlponce [fie] au livre des treize pre'tendus academicians touchants ces deux arts ' (Paris, 1664, 12mo).