He was the son of a banker of Dauphiny, and after receiving his early education at a lyceum, was sent in 1813 to the Ecole Polytechnique.
There are an episcopal lyceum, a clerical seminary, a classical and a modern school, and numerous religious houses.
On leaving the lyceum Gorchakov entered the foreign office under Count Nesselrode.
It has a town hall with handsome rooms, a library, a gymnasium, a lyceum, elementary schools, an arsenal, and eleven churches, the finest of which is St Martin's, of the 15th century, with many excellent paintings and a tower 300 ft.
But I soon discovered that college was not quite the romantic lyceum I had imagined.