Sunday, August 26, 2012

August 26, 2012

Victims of the Saint Bartholomew’s Day Massacre: Pierre Monnet, His Wife and Son

It was just a random name I discovered while searching for those who died in the St. Bartholomew’s. “Pierre Monnet,” the genealogical entry said. He was born in Poitou, France, in 1523, and was forty-nine at the time of the massacre. Records show that his parents were Abraham Monnet and Susanne Chastian (possibly meant to be Chastain, a notable Huguenot family). It has been said that Catholic and Protestant families in France were easy to tell apart, since the Catholics tended to use saints’ names and the Huguenots preferred more Biblical names (Abraham, Isaac, David, etc). 

Pierre Monnet (or Monnett) married in 1545 at the age of 22 and had at least one child, Pierre. This child, either twenty-two or seventeen years of age depending on the source, was apparently killed in the St. Bartholomew’s massacre as well. History seems to suggest that the elder Madame Monnet bore the same fate. What may have happened to any other possible children is unknown. A few sources list the elder Pierre’s wife and younger Pierre’s mother as Marie Guillamart.

As always, there are two things that bother me about this story. First, there is modern man’s quest to justify and explain away the massacre by saying it was “how times were” (evil has always been evil, let us not forget!), that it is wrong to judge because it was “right at the time” (which is truly sad), and that the Parisian mob thought they were acting in a Christian manner (which, as we know, could not be more wrong). There have always been people who implied that the massacre was undertaken so the Catholic dominance of the day might be protected. I cannot see how the deaths of a father, mother, and son could have “protected” anyone, let alone how the deaths of thousands could have! We ought to remember events such as the St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre without justifying, explaining away, or failing to properly commemorate and honor. Do it for the Monnets, and for thousands of other families. They died for their faith. They deserve our remembrance.

(c) 2012 Joyously Saved

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