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.
than its developed perfection that her feat-* as yet presented, they already exhibited sufficient charms to exempt those who extolled them from the suspicion of flattery.  A clear and open forehead, a delicately cut nose, a complexion of dazzling brilliancy, with bright blue eyes, whose ever-varying lustre seemed equally calculated to show every feeling which could move her heart; which could, at times seem almost fierce with anger, indignation, or contempt, but whose prevailing expression was that of kindly benevolence or light-hearted mirth were united with a figure of exquisite proportions, sufficiently tall for dignity, though as yet, of course, slight and unformed, and every movement of which was directed by a grace that could neither be taught nor imitated.  If any defect could be discovered in her face, it consisted in a somewhat undue thickness of the lips, especially of the lower lip, which had for some generations been the prevailing characteristic of her family.

Accordingly, a month after her marriage, Mercy could report to Maria Teresa that she had had complete success, and was a universal favorite; that, besides the king, who openly expressed his satisfaction, she had won the heart of the dauphin, who had been very unqualified in the language in which he had praised both her beauty and her agreeable qualities to his aunts; and that even those princesses were “enchanted” with her.  The whole court, and the people in general, extolled her affability, and the graciousness with which she said kind things to all who approached her.  Though the well-informed embassador had already discovered signs of the cabals which the mistress and her partisans were forming against her, and had been rendered a little uneasy by the handle which she had more than once afforded to her secret enemies, when, “in gayety of heart and without the slightest ill-will,” she had allowed herself to jest on some persons and circumstances which struck her as ridiculous, her jests being seasoned with a wit and piquancy which rendered them keener to those who were their objects, and more so mischievous to herself.  He especially praised the unaffected dignity with which she had received the mistress who had attended in her apartments to pay her court, though in no respect deceived as to the lady’s disposition, her penetration into the characters of all with whom she had been brought into contact, denoting, as it struck him, “a sagacity” which, at her age, was “truly astonishing.[10]”

CHAPTER IV.

Marie Antoinette gives her Mother her First Impressions of the Court and of her own Position and Prospects.—­Court Life at Versailles.—­Marie Antoinette shows her Dislike of Etiquette.—­Character of the Duc d’Aiguillon.—­Cabals against the Dauphiness.—­Jealousy of Mme. du Barri.—­ The Aunts, too, are Jealous of Her.—­She becomes more and more Popular.—­ Parties for Donkey-riding.—­Scantiness of the Dauphiness’s Income.—­Her Influence over the King.—­The Duc de Choiseul is dismissed.—­She begins to have Great Influence over the Dauphin.

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