Charles Gravier Vergennes, count de, a French statesman, born in Dijon, Dec. 28, 1717, died in Versailles, Feb. 13, 1787. He early accompanied his relative M. de Chavigny on diplomatic missions, and was minister at Treves from 1750 to 1755, and afterward at Constantinople till 1768, when the prime minister Choiseul, dissatisfied with his failure to instigate a Turco-Russian war, recalled him on the ground of his having married a Greek woman of low degree; but after Choiseul's removal he was restored to the service in 1771 as minister to Sweden, and in 1774 he became minister of foreign affairs on the recommendation of Count de Maurepas. He was very friendly to the American patriots, and the treaties of commerce (Dec. 8, 1777) and of alliance (Feb. 6, 1778) with the American colonies, as well as the preliminary (Nov. 30, 1782) and the final treaty of peace with Great Britain (Sept. 3, 1783), were all concluded under his administration. In the mean time he had brought about the treaty of Teschen (May 13, 1779), ending the war of the Bavarian succession. At home, he contributed to the downfall of Necker, and in 1783 became president of the royal council of finance, and later of the new committee of finance; and in the same year he promoted the appointment of Calonne as comptroller general of that department.
Louis XVI. lost in him one of his most judicious advisers at the most critical period of his reign. He wrote various memoirs, but the Mémoire historique et politique sur la Louisiane (Paris, 1802), attributed to him, is of doubtful authorship.