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Handwritten letter from Pierre Nicolas Perrier-Jouët (1836)

Handwritten letter from Pierre Nicolas Perrier-Jouët (1836)

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In 1836, Nicolas Perrier-Jouët, the founder of the Champagne brand negotiates the amicable resolution of a financial disagreement with his historic English partner.

  • Handwritten letter from Pierre-Nicolas Perrier to Paul Clossmann.
  • Two pages.
  • In French.
  • 22 cm x 26.7 cm.
  • Epernay, on July 19, 1836.
  • Good state.
  • Unique piece.


(…) If I were in your position, I would not have condemned without listening. Your opinions prove to me that you have already decided that I am wrong.

(…) What is difficult for me is to see the difference in Mrs. Mathieu's behavior since the death of her husband. On June 28th, she wrote (…) that she thanked me very much for my loyalty and generosity towards her and her husband. Since your husband's death, I have not even received a letter as is the tradition to notify a foreigner of someone's death. Without you, I would still be waiting for Mr Mathieu's health to improve.

(…) What increases my surprise, reading your letter, is Ms. Mathieu's idea of ​​resolving our disagreements in court. (…) If I have other sacrifices to grant to Madame Mathieu, they cannot be forced, they must be of my own will.

(…) The result of the accounts only shows debts that Mrs Mathieu must pay.

(…) I am convinced that you are as surprised as I am sorry to see that Mrs Mathieu did not make the effort to write me a letter, a sincere explanation would probably have done more than all the courts in the world would do, because the courts judge, and good relations reconcile.


According to Perrier-Jouët who we contacted, « this letter is related to the death and irregularities found in the accounting of the first importer of the Perrier-Jouët house in England, James Mathieu. Pierre Nicolas Perrier and James Mathieu signed a trade treaty in 1832. Everything went well until 1835-1836 when irregularities appeared in Mr Mathieu's accounts, without many details and explanations. James Mathieu, sick with tuberculosis, died at the end of 1835, or at the beginning of 1836, and the contract was terminated with his widow in 1836. »

In this letter, Perrier-Jouët attempts to resolve the disagreement with the indebted widow Mathieu through a wine dealer named Clossman, who is charged with managing the widow's affairs and will. Clossman came from a German family, from the city of Manheim, who made their fortune with wine and racehorses, in the Bordeaux region in the 18th century.

We appreciate here the disappointment of the founder of the Champagne brand and his desire to resolve the disagreement amicably with the person responsible for his success in his first export market, England (from 1811), a few months before entering for the first time on the North American market (1837).

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