In 1737, Jérôme Trudon, heir of the family, purchased one of the most famous wax producing factories of the times that belonged to Lord Pean de Saint Gilles. Pean de Saint Gilles was then the official wax provider to the King. Drawing from the family expertise, Hierosme devoted his skills to the development of a vast factory. Skilful and very demanding, he produced a wax of very high quality, collecting it from the best hives of the kingdom and trading directly with the producers. The wax was then treated with the utmost attention: it was washed with the purest water after being filtered with gypsum, guaranteeing the highest quality. The factory also imported the finest cotton to manufacture wicks whose combustion was clean and regular. The Trudon candles, so white and so perfect, could burn for hours without crackling; their flame neither trembled nor smoked.

Maison Trudon furnished candles to the royal court, and cathedrals and churches over France. More than one hundred people worked at the time in a very large building – now registered in the French inventory of historical monuments – in the city of Antony, Hauts-de-Seine. Its Latin motto and its blazon are engraved on a stone board of the factory building: a depiction of hives and bees bordered by the saying: Deo regique laborant (“they work for God and for the King” — they meaning the bees).

Cire Trudon still keep records of recipe and tools of wax whitening: wrought iron, 17th century pans. The moulds used to form candles bearing the royal blazons still remain: “cierge pascal pour la Chapelle du Roy à Versailles, Bougies de nuit pour le Roy…” (“Easter candle church for the Royal Chapel in Versailles, night candle for the King…”)

Cire Trudon supplied the Versailles castle until the end of the monarchy. During his captivity, Louis XVI used the candles of his royal wax manufacturer. The blazon and the motto would be hidden under a layer of mortar to avoid the furies of the Revolution.

It is still today the candle provider of many churches, like Saint-Roch church in Paris, which has burned their candles since 1643. The brand was successfully relaunched in 2006.

“They (the bees) work for God and the king”

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