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Archive for the ‘Marie Antoinette’ Category

Marie-Antoinette en gaulle Vigee-Lebrun

Marie-Antoinette, simple elegance and the secrets of Versailles

Truth be told, Marie-Antoinette as a teenager and young woman very much enjoyed the outrageous hairstyles of her time, and during all of her years at Versailles she had to wear the court dress for all formal occasions. But it is true that, as her taste matured, she came to appreciate the freedom of simple […]



Marie Antoinette naked miniature

Marie Antoinette naked?

Would this miniature represent the young Queen of France, only dressed in a sheer veil? This is the intriguing question begged by the superb exhibition of late 18th century miniatures at Philip Mould Gallery in London. The exhibition Miniatures from the Time of Marie Antoinette offers an exceptional opportunity to view the delicate treasures of Tansey Collection, kept […]



Marie Antoinette shoes

Marie-Antoinette souvenirs at auction

These dainty pink and green silk shoes belonged to Marie-Antoinette. They sold yesterday for 62,460 euros, almost $82,000, at auction in Paris. They are a French size 36 1/2 (6.5 in the US.) According to the auctioneer’s information, they were presented to the Queen by Alexandre-Bernard Ju-Des-Rets, gentleman of her household, at Versailles in 1775. A pink […]



Marie-Antoinette-wedding

16th of May 1770: wedding of the Dauphin Louis-Auguste and Archduchess Marie-Antoinette

Louis-Auguste was 15, Marie-Antoinette 14. A marriage that began with mutual distrust and disdain, and ended in the closest of bonds… For details on the marriage certificate, misspellings, ink stains and all, see this post, and also this one on 18th century bridal attire



Marie-Antoinette-android

Marie-Antoinette’s android: the dulcimer player

I don’t quite like the term android applied to an 18th century artifact, though it was actually coined at that time. I much prefer automaton. To me, droids are more evocative of Star Wars than the Court of Versailles or the Enlightenment, but that just me… Anyway, all my thanks to my friend and fellow […]



Versailles-grand-couvert-didier-rykner

The Salon of the Grand Couvert at Versailles: the room where Marie-Antoinette did not have dinner

Another Versailles update: the Salon of the Grand Couvert has been restored to its past splendor, as part of the ongoing refurbishment of the entire palace. The Salon of the Grand Couvert is part of the Queen’s Grand Apartment. Couvert means place setting in French, and this is the room where the royal couple had […]



Maria-Theresa-and-the-imperial-family

2nd of November 1755: birth of Marie-Antoinette

Or, to give her her proper birthname, Archduchess Maria Antonia Josepha Johanna von Habsburg-Lothringen, fifteenth child of the Holy Roman Emperor Francis I Stephen (né François-Etienne de Lorraine) and his wife, Empress Maria Theresa. The little Archduchess was born at the Palace of the Hofburg in Vienna. Within the imperial family the little girl was […]



marie-antoinette-to-the-scaffold

16th of October 1793: execution of Marie-Antoinette

After the fall of the monarchy on the 10th of August 1792, the dethroned Queen was imprisoned in the Tower of the Temple, along with her husband, Louis XVI, their children and Madame Elisabeth, the King’s younger sister. The following December, Louis XVI stands trial before the National Convention, the elected body that now governs […]



lilac

Marie-Antoinette and lilac

One of the joys of the month of May is the sight and fragrance of lilac blossoms. Lilacs adorned the gardens of Versailles and Trianon. They had been great favorites with Louis XIV, and Marie-Antoinette enjoyed them no less in her private domain of Trianon. She liked them so much that, when it came to […]



Marie Antoinette a la rose by Vigee Lebrun

Marie-Antoinette and Louise-Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun: the Queen and the painter

Without Louise-Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun’s many portraits of Marie-Antoinette, our mental image of the Queen would be different, so iconic have these paintings become. All the more reason to look into the relationship between the two ladies. And what better way to do so than return to Madame Lebrun’s Memoirs? It was in the year 1779, she […]



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