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tiny-librarian:

He was shocked. From everything Tante Adelaide had said, he had half-expected a bold, flaunting woman like Madame du Barry. But his wife did not appear to be more than twelve years old! He had been told she was fifteen; he soon discovered she was only fourteen. Heavy powdering covered her hair, reported to be of a reddish colour, as his brothers had liked to tease him. With a high forehead, a thin, aquiline nose, the full Hapsburg lower lip, hers was a comely and bewitching visage. Her large sapphire eyes looked into his own, with unabashed curiosity. His feeling of consernation combined with a strong urge of protectiveness towards this foreign child. Somehow, he must shield her from the intrigues of the court. He himself was not quite sixteen; he did not know how he could protect her, just as he did not know how he could be expected to be a husband to such a little girl. In an instant, he realized he would have to wait to love her, wait for her to grow up, giving himself time to win her affection and respect.
Trianon, Elena Maria Vidal

tiny-librarian:

He was shocked. From everything Tante Adelaide had said, he had half-expected a bold, flaunting woman like Madame du Barry. But his wife did not appear to be more than twelve years old! He had been told she was fifteen; he soon discovered she was only fourteen. Heavy powdering covered her hair, reported to be of a reddish colour, as his brothers had liked to tease him. With a high forehead, a thin, aquiline nose, the full Hapsburg lower lip, hers was a comely and bewitching visage. Her large sapphire eyes looked into his own, with unabashed curiosity. His feeling of consernation combined with a strong urge of protectiveness towards this foreign child. Somehow, he must shield her from the intrigues of the court. He himself was not quite sixteen; he did not know how he could protect her, just as he did not know how he could be expected to be a husband to such a little girl. In an instant, he realized he would have to wait to love her, wait for her to grow up, giving himself time to win her affection and respect.

Trianon, Elena Maria Vidal

152 notes


… Marie Antoinette’s [Trianon retreat] was not an isolated case .Other princesses and great ladies wanted their country retreat in which to revel in a supposed return to nature. But people were willing to accept in others [such as the comtesse de Provence and Madame Elisabeth] what they did not tolerate in the queen.
… Why was Marie-Antoinette criticized for a lifestyle that was acceptable in her sisters-in-law? Purely because she was the queen, and all eyes turned toward her … the queen must live up to the image the public has of her. She is not a private individual.

—The Indomitable Marie-Antoinette, translated by Mary Hudson

… Marie Antoinette’s [Trianon retreat] was not an isolated case .Other princesses and great ladies wanted their country retreat in which to revel in a supposed return to nature. But people were willing to accept in others [such as the comtesse de Provence and Madame Elisabeth] what they did not tolerate in the queen.

… Why was Marie-Antoinette criticized for a lifestyle that was acceptable in her sisters-in-law? Purely because she was the queen, and all eyes turned toward her … the queen must live up to the image the public has of her. She is not a private individual.

—The Indomitable Marie-Antoinette, translated by Mary Hudson

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tiny-librarian:

Surrounded by the dignitaries of the Church and State, all these people waited for the young Archduchess on the morning of 14 May at Compiegne. By a special favour Choiseul had been allowed to meet her and to conduct her on the last stage of her journey. He was presented to her by Starhemberg. “I shall never forget, Monsieur,” said the tactful child, “That I owe my happiness to you.” “And that of France,” said the equally adroit Minister. He entered her coach and together they drove the last few miles of the way. When the head of the cortege was seen, the King descended from his carriage and accompanied by the Dauphin took a few steps towards the Archduchess, but she was before him; springing lightly to the ground she ran and sank to her knees, he raised her with a kiss, and presented her to the young man who touched her cheek with his lips.

The Tragic Queen - Dorothy Moulton Mayer