Gilbert (Motier) du Motier de La Fayette

Marie-Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert (Motier) du Motier de La Fayette (1757 - 1834)

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Marie-Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert (Gilbert) du Motier de La Fayette formerly Motier aka Lafayette
Born in Château de Chavaniac, Saint-Georges d'Aurac, Auvergne, Francemap
Ancestors ancestors
[sibling(s) unknown]
Husband of — married in Paris, Seine, Francemap
Descendants descendants
Died in Paris, Seine, Francemap
Profile last modified | Created 10 Sep 2014
This page has been accessed 453 times.

Categories: American Founding Fathers | Namesakes US Counties | French Politicians | Chavaniac-Lafayette, Haute-Loire | American Revolution | French Notables.

Gilbert (Motier) du Motier de La Fayette participated in the American Revolution
Gilbert (Motier) du Motier de La Fayette is managed by the French Roots project.
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Gilbert (Motier) du Motier de La Fayette is Notable.

French aristocrat and military officer who was a general in the American Revolution, a key figure in the French Revolution of 1789, and the July Revolution of 1830.

Marie-Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert du Motier de Lafayette, Marquis de Lafayette was born on 6 September 1757 to Michel Louis Christophe Roch Gilbert Paulette du Motier, Marquis de La Fayette, colonel of grenadiers, and Marie Louise Jolie de La Rivière, at the château de Chavaniac, in Chavagnat (now Chavaniac-Lafayette), near Le Puy-en-Velay, in the province Auvergne (in the département Haute-Loire since the French Revolution). His ancestor Marshal of France Gilbert de Lafayette III was a companion-at-arms who led Joan of Arc's army in Orléans. Lafayette's great-grandfather was the Comte de La Rivière, commander of the Mousquetaires du Roi, or Black Musketeers, King Louis XV's personal horse guard. According to legend, another ancestor acquired the Crown of Thorns during the 6th Crusade. Lafayette's uncle Jacques-Roch died fighting the Austrians and left the marquis title to Lafayette's father. Lafayette's father, struck by a cannonball while fighting a British-led coalition at the Battle of Minden in Westphalia, died on 1 August 1759. Lafayette was raised by his paternal grandmother, Mme de Chavaniac.

Jean-Paul-François de Noailles, duc d'Ayen, was looking to marry off some of his five daughters. The young Lafayette, aged 14, seemed a good match to him for his 12-year-old daughter, Marie Adrienne Françoise, and he spoke to the boy's guardian (Lafayette's uncle, the new comte) to negotiate a deal. However, the arranged marriage was opposed by the duc's wife, who felt the couple, and especially her daughter, were too young. The matter was settled by agreeing not to mention the marriage plans for two years, during which time the two spouses-to-be would meet from time to time, seemingly accidentally. The scheme worked; the two fell in love and were happy together from the time of their marriage in 1774 until her death in 1807.

On 20 May 1834, Lafayette died on 6 rue d'Anjou-Saint-Honoré in Paris (now 8 rue d'Anjou in the 8th arrondissement of Paris) at age 76. He was buried next to his wife at the Picpus Cemetery under soil from Bunker Hill, which his son Georges sprinkled upon him.


There are eighteen counties in the United States named for the Marquis: Fayette, County, Alabama; Fayette County, Georgia; Fayette County, Illinois; Fayette County, Indiana; Fayette County, Iowa; Fayette County, Kentucky (originally in Virginia); Fayette County, Ohio; Fayette County, Pennsylvania; Fayette County, Tennessee; Fayette County, Texas; Fayette County, West Virginia; Lafayette County, Arkansas; Lafayette County, Florida; Lafayette County, Mississippi; Lafayette County, Missouri; Lafayette County, Wisconsin; Lafayette Parish, Louisiana. LaGrange County, Indiana is named for the Marquis de Lafayette's ancestral estate. Additionally, a number of U.S. Cities were named in his honor, the first being Fayetteville, North Carolina. Interestly, Fayetteville, Arkansas, is not one of those cities. It is named after Fayetteville, Tennessee, which is named for the Marquis.


Gilbert du Motier de La Fayette and Adrienne de Noailles had the following children:

  1. Adrienne-Henriette-Catherine-Charlotte (15 December 1775-3 October 1777, Paris)
  2. Anastasie-Louise-Pauline (born 1 July 1777, Paris)
  3. Georges-Louis-Gilbert, known as Georges-Washington, born 24 december 1779, Paris
  4. Antoinette-Marie-Virginie (born 17 september 1782)[1].


  • Marriage index: Fichiers alphabétiques de l’état civil reconstitué, Archives de Paris en ligne cote V3E/M 292 (slide 5)
  • Death index: Fichiers alphabétiques de l’état civil reconstitué, Archives de Paris en ligne cote V3E/D 505 (slide 31)
  • Wikipedia:Gilbert_du_Motier,_Marquis_de_Lafayette
  1. Notes prises aux archives de l'état-civil de Paris, par Henri-Paul-César de Chastellux, J.-B. Dumoulin (Paris) 1875, page: 447, consulté le 4 septembre 2017

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No known carriers of Gilbert's Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA have taken yDNA or mtDNA tests.

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Gilbert du Motier, marquis de La Fayette
Gilbert du Motier, marquis de La Fayette

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On 12 Oct 2018 at 17:55 GMT K Raymoure wrote:

See abolitionist Lewis Hayden's profile for a great story about how the Marquis inspired him to seek freedom in 1825.

Gilbert is 32 degrees from Rosa Parks, 26 degrees from Anne Tichborne and 12 degrees from Victoria of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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