Abstract : 18th century writing on education seems to give an important place to the relationship between master and pupil.This is first seen in the way the Ancien Regime school is discussed in 1726 in Charles Rollin's Traité des études, also in the educational anthropology in Rousseau's Émile ou de l'Éducation (1762) and the royal institution in Condillac's Cours d'étude (1776) ; and finally in the upbringing, home education Alman's children receive in Stéphanie de Genlis' Adèle et Théodore (1782). Indeed, the relationship between master and pupil raises several questions at this time of intellectual ferment, when minds were filled with ideas of man's perfectibility. Our corpus brings together various educational modalities, shifting between home education and public education, and between an idealized vision and the representation of a social reality with people taking a new interest in childhood and the family. So we have striven to grasp the quality and the nature of the bond between master and pupil, and to see how knowledge is gained and transmitted in this relationship. First, we attempt to examine how educational thinking develops in the 18th century. It is often scholars who do not belong to the world of education who are involved in this thinking, which is based on generally controversial aspirations and values, some of which are new, and some of which stem from an old Christian heritage. The next aspect tackled is the way Charles Rollin sees the educational relationship in the school educational contract. The approach to education discussed in Traité des études puts forward the idea that a master gains recognition and grandeur in respecting his pupil's authentic character. In this instance, a spiritual bond is apparent, which is nurtured by affection and power and is thus close to the concept of filiation. Then we study the educational relationship in the light of the variable forms of tutorship. Rousseau intends to lead Emile to manhood in a Promethean daydream in which the human being and the recognition of otherness are dominant. On the other hand, Condillac rejects any idea of educational immediacy for Ferdinand de Parme. For him, if a prince is to be well-educated in accordance with the educational ideal of the Enlightenment, there should be no human dimension in the encounter between master and pupil. Finally, Genlis, who is so passionate about education, brings out the ambivalence present when the educational relationship is confined within the family unit. Here, nothing happens by chance, and the passion to educate prevents the pupil from growing and becoming an individual in his own right. In the 18th century, the different forms of educational relationship found in the writings of Rollin, Rousseau, Condillac and Genlis lead to a new idea emerging : a special bond is necessary between master and pupil for an educational situation to bear fruit.