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Marie Antoinette - Preface

Marie Antoinette (Illustration) Awesome Radio - Narrated Stories Famous Historical Events Famous People Government World History Film

Portrait of Marie Antoinette painted by Vigée-Lebrun in 1779.  Maintained by the Palace of Versailles.  Image online, courtesy Wikimedia Commons. 

 

Courage!
I have shown it for years;
think you I shall lose it
at the moment when my sufferings are to end?

Marie Antoinette 
Queen of France

Maria Theresa, mother of sixteen children, had the best interests of her country in mind when she selected a husband for her daughter. A meaningful political alliance, not a love match, was most important to the Empress as she determined the future of her youngest girl.

At fifteen - the average age of a high-school sophomore - Marie Antoinette (then called Antoine) left her family’s home in Vienna to solidify an Austro-Hungarian alliance with France (previously longstanding enemies). Within four years, the young foreigner would become queen of her adoptive country.

Had she lived to learn her child’s fate, Antoinette’s mother - the daughter of Charles VI and the only woman to be Empress of the Holy Roman Empire - would surely have regretted her political-marriage decision. 

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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5124stories and lessons created

Original Release: Oct 01, 2006

Updated Last Revision: Nov 04, 2016


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