Famous French Priests

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 Bernard of Clairvaux

Bernard of Clairvaux.
Famous As: Abbot
Birthdate: 1090 AD
Birthplace: Fontaine-lès-Dijon, France
Died: August 20, 1153

Bernard of Clairvaux, or Saint Bernard, was a 12th-century Burgundian monk, who became the abbot of the abbey of Clairvaux, founded by him. He chose to live a life of physical austerities, which caused him ailments such as anemia. He is revered as the patron saint of beekeepers and candlemakers.

 2 Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord

Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord.
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: February 2, 1754
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: May 17, 1838

French diplomat and bishop Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord is counted among the most pragmatic and prominent diplomats in European history. He served King Louis XVI and thereafter changed sides several times, serving at highest levels of successive French governments of Napoleon I, Louis XVIII and Louis Philippe I. He served as the first Prime Minister of France under Louis XVIII.

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 3 François Rabelais

François Rabelais.
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: February 4, 1494
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Chinon, France
Died: April 9, 1553

François Rabelais was a French writer, Renaissance humanist, physician, monk, and Greek scholar. Regarded as one of the great writers by Western literary critics, Rabelais is also considered one of the creators of modern European writing. He is remembered for Gargantua and Pantagruel, a pentalogy of novels that are regarded as one of the earliest forms of the modern novel.

 4 Francis de Sales

Francis de Sales.
Famous As: Bishop
Birthdate: August 21, 1567
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Château de Sales, Thorens-Glières, France
Died: December 28, 1622

 5 Genevieve

Famous As: Saint
Birthdate: 0419 AD
Birthplace: Nanterre, France
Died: 0512 AD

Genevieve is the patron saint of Paris in the Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic traditions. Not much is known about her life, but it is believed that she became a nun as a teenager after deciding to dedicate her life to Christianity. She had frequent visions of heavenly angels and saints and was particularly devoted to Saint Denis. 

 6 Charles-Michel de l'Épée

Charles-Michel de l'Épée
Famous As: Educator
Birthdate: November 24, 1712
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Versailles, Yvelines, France
Died: December 23, 1789

 7 John Baptist de La Salle

John Baptist de La Salle
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: April 30, 1651
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Kingdom of France
Died: April 7, 1719

John Baptist de La Salle, also known as La Salle, is remembered as the founder of the Brothers of the Christian Schools, or the de La Salle Brothers. Apart from setting up charitable boarding schools, he also trained teachers. He is revered as the patron saint of school teachers and educators.

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 8 Pope Silvester II

Pope Silvester II
Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: 0946 AD
Birthplace: Auvergne
Died: May 12, 1003

 9 Emmanuel Joseph Sieyès

Emmanuel Joseph Sieyès
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: May 3, 1748
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Fréjus, France
Died: June 20, 1836

Emmanuel Joseph Sieyès, also known as the Abbé Sieyès, was a French Roman Catholic Abbé, clergyman, and political writer. He was a chief political theorist of the French Revolution and held offices in the French Consulate government. He is credited to have coined the term sociologie in an unpublished manuscript. He led a rather uninvolved social life.

 10 Héloïse

Famous As: French nun
Birthdate: 1101 AD
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: May 16, 1164

 11 Peter the Hermit

Peter the Hermit
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: 1050 AD
Birthplace: Amiens
Died: July 8, 1115

Peter the Hermit, also known as Little Peter, was a major figure of the First Crusade and a leader of the People’s Crusade, which entered the East before the Crusaders. He preached on the Mount of Olives just before Jerusalem was stormed. He also established an Augustinian monastery in Neufmoustier.

 12 Pope John XXII

Pope John XXII
Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: 1244 AD
Birthplace: Cahors, France
Died: December 4, 1334

Pope John XXII was the head of the Catholic Church from August 1316 to his death in 1334.  Elected by the Conclave of Cardinals, he was the second and longest-reigning Avignon Pope. He centralized power and income in the Papacy and lived a lavish life. He was considered an excellent administrator who efficiently reorganized the church.

 13 Jacques Marquette

Jacques Marquette
Famous As: Missionary
Birthdate: June 1, 1637
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Laon, France
Died: May 18, 1675

 14 Arnulf of Metz

Arnulf of Metz
Famous As: Bishop
Birthdate: 0582 AD
Birthplace: Lay-Saint-Christophe, France
Died: July 8, 0641

A Frankish noble, Arnulf of Metz served at the court of Theudebert II and was also made the bishop of Metz. Along with Pippin, he led a campaign against Brunhild and caused its downfall, eventually leading to the reunification of Frankish territories under Chlotar II.

 15 Saint Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort

Saint Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: January 31, 1673
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Montfort-sur-Meu, France
Died: April 28, 1716

 16 Urbain Grandier

Urbain Grandier
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: 1590 AD
Birthplace: Bouère, Maine, France
Died: August 18, 1634

 17 Jean de Brébeuf

Jean de Brébeuf
Famous As: Missionary
Birthdate: March 25, 1593
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Conde-sur-Vire, France
Died: March 16, 1649

Jean de Brébeuf was a French missionary who explored New France, now known as Canada. He later came to be known as the patron saint of Canada. Captured by the native Iroquois in Huronia, he and another missionary were tortured to their deaths. The Iroquois also ate up his heart.

 18 Pope Clement VI

Pope Clement VI
Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: 1290 AD
Birthplace: Rosiers-d'Égletons, Corrèze, France
Died: December 6, 1352

Pierre Roger, who later became the fourth Avignon pope, as Pope Clement VI, had also served as the archbishop of Sens and Rouen. He was a significant figure of the Crusades against the Ottoman Turks and led a campaign in Smyrna. Highly nepotistic, he erected statues of his relatives.

 19 Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet

Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
Famous As: Bishop
Birthdate: September 27, 1627
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Dijon, France
Died: April 12, 1704

 20 Charles de Foucauld

Charles de Foucauld
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: September 15, 1858
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Strasbourg, France
Died: December 1, 1916

Charles de Foucauld was a cavalry officer in the French Army in the late 19th century. He later became an explorer and geographer, eventually adopting the life of a hermit and a Catholic priest. He was assassinated in 1916 and is listed as a martyr in the liturgy of the Catholic Church. 

 21 Nicolas Malebranche

Nicolas Malebranche
Famous As: Philosopher
Birthdate: August 6, 1638
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: October 13, 1715

 22 Jean Meslier

Jean Meslier
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: June 15, 1664
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Mazerny, France
Died: June 17, 1729

 23 Jacques Hamel

Jacques Hamel
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: November 30, 1930
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Darnétal, Seine-Maritime, France
Died: July 26, 2016

 24 Jeanne Guyon

Jeanne Guyon
Famous As: Mystic
Birthdate: April 13, 1648
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Montargis, France
Died: June 9, 1717

 25 François Fénelon

François Fénelon
Famous As: Theologian
Birthdate: August 6, 1651
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Sainte-Mondane, France
Died: January 7, 1715

 26 Jean-Louis Tauran

Jean-Louis Tauran
Famous As: Librarian, Diplomat, Archivist, Catholic priest
Birthdate: April 5, 1943
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Bordeaux

 27 Ansgar

Famous As: Saint
Birthdate: September 8, 0801
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Amiens, France
Died: February 3, 0865

Saint Ansgar, or Oscar, was a medieval missionary and the first archbishop of Hamburg. He had been sent to evangelical missions in Denmark and Sweden. His frequent travels for work earned him the nickname the Apostle of the North. He was made a saint by Rembert, his successor.

 28 Pierre Cauchon

Pierre Cauchon
Famous As: Bishop of Beauvais
Birthdate: 1371 AD
Birthplace: Reims, France
Died: December 18, 1442

 29 Peter Faber

Peter Faber
Famous As: French theologian
Birthdate: April 13, 1506
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Vilaret, France
Died: August 1, 1546

 30 Michel Aupetit

Michel Aupetit
Famous As: Catholic priest
Birthdate: March 23, 1951
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Versailles, France

 31 Pope Clement IV

Pope Clement IV
Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: November 23, 1190
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Saint-Gilles
Died: November 29, 1268

 32 Abbe Pierre

Abbe Pierre.
Famous As: Founder of the Emmaus
Birthdate: August 5, 1912
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Lyon
Died: January 22, 2007

Abbe Pierre was a French Catholic priest and a member of the Resistance during World War II. Born into a wealthy Catholic family, he entered the Capuchin Order as a teenager and renounced all his inheritances. Later on, he founded the Emmaus movement to help poor and homeless people. He remained active until his death at the age of 94.

 33 Antipope Clement VII

Antipope Clement VII
Famous As: Antipope
Birthdate: 1342 AD
Birthplace: Annecy, France
Died: September 16, 1394

 34 Pope Innocent V

Pope Innocent V
Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: 1225 AD
Birthplace: Savoy
Died: June 22, 1276

 35 Aaron Jean-Marie Lustiger

Aaron Jean-Marie Lustiger.
Famous As: French cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church
Birthdate: September 17, 1926
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Paris
Died: August 5, 2007

Former archbishop of Paris, Aaron Jean-Marie Lustiger was the inspiration behind the film The Jewish Cardinal. Born a Jewish, he was converted to Catholicism at 13 but lost his mother at the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp during the Nazi Holocaust. He won the Nostra Aetate Award for improving Catholic-Jewish ties.

 36 Henri de Lubac

Henri de Lubac
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: February 20, 1896
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Cambrai, France
Died: September 4, 1991

 37 Pope Stephen IX

Pope Stephen IX
Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: 1020 AD
Birthplace: Duchy of Lorraine, France
Died: March 29, 1058

 38 Berenger Sauniere

Berenger Sauniere
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: April 11, 1852
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Montazels, Languedoc-Roussillon, France
Died: January 22, 1917

 39 Bernard Gui

Bernard Gui
Famous As: Historian
Birthdate: 1261 AD
Birthplace: Royères, France
Died: December 30, 1331

 40 Pope Urban V

Pope Urban V
Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: October 31, 1310
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Château de Grizac, France
Died: December 19, 1370

 41 Henri d'Aramitz

Henri d'Aramitz
Famous As: Abbé
Birthdate: 1620 AD
Birthplace: Béarn, France
Died: 1674 AD

 42 Ranulf Flambard

Ranulf Flambard
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: 1060 AD
Birthplace: Normandy, France
Died: September 5, 1128

 43 Peter Chanel

Peter Chanel
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: July 12, 1803
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Montrevel-en-Bresse, France
Died: April 28, 1841

 44 Yves Congar

Yves Congar
Famous As: Friar
Birthdate: April 13, 1904
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Sedan, France
Died: June 22, 1995

 45 Guy Gilbert

Guy Gilbert
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: September 12, 1935
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Rochefort, France

 46 Pope Martin IV

Pope Martin IV
Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: 1210 AD
Birthplace: Touraine, France
Died: March 28, 1285

 47 Pope Innocent VI

Pope Innocent VI
Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: 1282 AD
Birthplace: Limousin, France
Died: September 12, 1362

 48 Gaunilo of Marmoutiers

Gaunilo of Marmoutiers
Famous As: Monk
Birthdate: 0994 AD
Birthplace: Unknown
Died: 1083 AD

 49 Edward Frederick Sorin

Edward Frederick Sorin
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: February 6, 1814
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Ahuille, France
Died: October 31, 1893

 50 Henri Grégoire

Henri Grégoire
Famous As: Political leader
Birthdate: December 4, 1750
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Vého, France
Died: May 28, 1831