The Life of Marie Antoinette, Queen of France eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 573 pages of information about The Life of Marie Antoinette, Queen of France.
which, as he affirmed, surpassed those of her portrait, and was predisposed to view all her words and actions in the most favorable light.  Avoiding Paris, which Louis, ever since the riots of 1750, had constantly refused to enter, they reached the hunting-lodge of La Muette, in the Bois de Boulogne, for supper.  Here she made the acquaintance of the brothers and sisters of her future husband, the Counts of Provence and Artois, both destined, in their turn, to succeed him on the throne; of the Princess Clotilde, who may be regarded as the most fortunate of her race, in being saved by a foreign marriage and an early death from witnessing the worst calamities of her family and her native land; of the Princess Elizabeth, who was fated to share them in all their bitterness and horror; and (a strangely incongruous sequel to the morning visit to the Carmelite convent), the Countess du Barri also came into her presence, and was admitted to sup at the royal table; as if, even at the very moment when he might have been expected to conduct himself with some degree of respectful decency to the pure-minded young girl whom he was receiving into his family, Louis xv. was bent on exhibiting to the whole world his incurable shamelessness in its most offensive form.

At midnight he, with the dauphin, proceeded to Versailles, whither, the next morning, the archduchess followed them.  And at one o’clock on the 16th, in the chapel of the palace, the Primate of France, the Archbishop of Rheims, performed the marriage ceremony.  A canopy of cloth of silver was held over the heads of the youthful pair by the bishops of Senlis and Chartres.  The dauphin, after he had placed the wedding-ring on his bride’s finger, added, as a token that he endowed her with his worldly wealth, a gift of thirteen pieces of gold, which, as well as the ring, had received the episcopal benediction, and Marie Antoinette was dauphiness of France.

CHAPTER III.

Feelings in Germany and France on the Subject of the Marriage.—­Letter of Maria Teresa to the Dauphin—­Characters of the Different Members of the Royal Family.—­Difficulties which beset Marie Antoinette.—­Maria Teresa’s Letter of Advice.—­The Comte de Mercy is sent as Embassador to France to act as the Adviser of the Dauphiness.—­The Princesse de Lorraine at the State Ball.—­A Great Disaster takes place at the Fire-works in Paris.  —­The Peasant at Fontainebleau.—­Marie Antoinette pleases the King.—­ Description of her Personal Appearance.—­Mercy’s Report of the Impression she made on her First Arrival.

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The Life of Marie Antoinette, Queen of France from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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