Louis Nicolas de Clerville, a.k.a. Chevalier de Clerville, held many military positions during his life in France in 1610–1677. He was associated with Pierre-Paul Riquet and the building of the Canal du Midi.
During his association with the canal, Clerville worked for Jean-Baptiste Colbert, minister of finance under King Louis XIV of France. He served as Colbert's commissaire general des fortifications building ports, dry docks and fortresses. Clerville verified Riquet's proposal for the canal and was Colbert's eyes and ears keeping track of Riquet's efforts.
Clerville originated the ideas for the building a single large dam of the Laudot valley near Saint-Ferréol (a hamlet of Revel). When this was accomplished, it became the Bassin de St. Ferréol. He also had the idea for digging the tunnel through the Cammazes ridge to connect the rigole de la montagne to the Bassin de St. Ferréol.
Clerville lost his standing with King Louis in 1673 and died in 1677.