In the fortress of Turin he remained immured during the last twelve years of his life, although part of his time was spent in composing a defence of the Sardinian interests as opposed to those of the papal court, and he was led to sign a retractation of the statements in his history most obnoxious to the Vatican (1738).
The retractation imposed upon Cardinal de Noailles, and his replacement in the archbishopric of Paris by Vintimille, an unequivocal Molinist, excited among the populace a very violent agitation against the court of Rome and the Jesuits, the prelude to a united Fronde of the Sorbonne and the parlement.
His merit lies in the fact that he was the first to deal systematically with the question of Church and State, and the position thus taken up by him, and the manner in which that position was assumed, gave rise to a lifelong conflict between Giannone and the Church; and in spite of his retractation in prison at Turin, he deserves the palm--as he certainly endured the sufferings - of a confessor and martyr in the cause of what he deemed historical truth.
Submission is enforced by an argument which almost amounts to a retractation of the difference between things natural and things contrary to nature, as understood by Zeno.
In this year he lost his seat in consequence of the popular prejudice aroused against him by his trenchant pamphlet Oui et non (1845) against attacks on religious liberty, and a second entitled Feul Feul (1845), written in reply to those who demanded a retractation of the former.