Pages 12

What made the case of Chalons especially striking was that from the point of view of pure political expediency, the city council did the exact opposite of what one might expect. One of the most important constraints on their freedom of action with which civic elites had to deal was the power of the provinicial governor and his patronage network. For most of the period under scrutiny, the governor of the province of Champagne was a member of the Guise family. Underlying the transformation of governors’ regimes was a long-term crisis in the clientele system that had formed the basis of governors’ regimes in the Renaissance. Beyond the standard contemporary histories and memoirs, there are a number of important primary sources which deal with the province of Champagne as a whole, or at least whose scope extends beyond the city walls.