Welcome to the new HSLS website! See a problem with this page or have feedback about the site? Tell us about it!

Our classic website is also available for a limited time at hsls2.pitt.edu. Please remember to update any bookmarks.

Charles-Michel de l’Épée

Drag to Rotate
Click to Enlarge

Charles-Michel de l’Épée (1712-1789) was born in Versailles. He was a pioneer in the management of deafness and founded an institute for the education of the deaf and mute in Paris (now called Institut National de Jeunes Sourds de Paris). He also developed a sign language and a sign language dictionary, which was completed posthumously.

Medal
Bronze. France 1801. Signed. Posthumous. Issued to honor the educator of the deaf.
Size
42 mm
Artist
Pierre Simon Benjamin Duvivier (1728-1819), French medallist Pierre Simon Benjamin Duvivier (1728-1819), son of French medallist Jean Duvivier. Despite the discouragement from his father, he also became a medallist and the favorite artist of the French Court, served as Medallist of His Majesty, Louis XVI (1764-1791). He was very prolific and exhibited his works often, even after he was replaced by his successor. He was less productive after 1801. (Forrer 1, 685)
Obverse
Clothed bust to left, wearing clerical costume and skull-cap; around from lower left, CH ∙ MICHEL DE L'ÉPÉE NÉ A VERSAILLES 1712, MORT A PARIS 1789 ∙ ; on truncation, B DU VIVIER F∙.
Reverse
In a field, AU GÉNIE / INVENTEUR / DE L'ART D'INSTRUIRE / LES SOURDS-ET-MUETS / DANS LES SCIENCES / ET LES ARTS / B ∙ DUVIVIER / 1801 in eight parallel lines.
Ref
Freeman 312; Storer 2098; Nilsson 182