Author Topic: Books on French Royals  (Read 130553 times)

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Offline Lolita

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #60 on: June 13, 2007, 06:01:21 PM »
There's a French edition somewhere

but I don't speak/read French

Can someone please help me?

if there isn't one out there,oh well,maybe the next few years an English edition will pop up

palatine

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #61 on: June 13, 2007, 10:11:45 PM »
There's a French edition somewhere

but I don't speak/read French

Can someone please help me?

if there isn't one out there,oh well,maybe the next few years an English edition will pop up

Secrets of Marie Antoinette: A Collection of Letters by Oliver Bernier.  It's out of print, but copies are readily available on the used book sites.

Offline Helen_Azar

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #62 on: September 01, 2007, 09:06:02 AM »
The other day I picked up a book published at the turn of last century (1903), titled "Memoirs of the Comtesse Du Barry, with intimate details of her entire career as favorite of Loouis XV. Written by herself, with special introduction by George Kendal Delahanty". The spine says "Memoirs and Secret Confessions of Madame Du Barry".

I am wondering if these are authentic memoirs of Du Barry... I wasn't aware she wrote any (was she even able to write?). They appear legit...

Offline Helen_Azar

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #63 on: September 01, 2007, 11:28:59 AM »
Just checked Amazon, this book is available there (it was just reprinted last year it seems): http://www.amazon.com/Memoirs-Comtesse-intimate-details-favorite/dp/1406923133/ref=sr_1_2/002-6934782-2583239?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1188663880&sr=1-2

Not much info, but you can search inside...

Offline Robert_Hall

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #64 on: September 01, 2007, 04:23:58 PM »
I wonder when she would have written them, on the way to the guillotine?
 Having said that, I checked my own library- it did sound familiar- and found Memoirs of Madame du Barry. It is one volume of many in the [Secret] Memoirs of the Courts of Europe. I have 14 of the volumes in that series and there are more. In this case, however, the Memoirs" were written by H Noel Williams.
« Last Edit: September 01, 2007, 04:35:31 PM by Robert_Hall »
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Offline Helen_Azar

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #65 on: September 04, 2007, 12:42:04 PM »
Thanks, Robert. I kind of figured that this was one of those "fake" memoirs, but wasn't sure... My book has plates with photos from the play "Madame Du Barry" (late 19th century, NYC).

Offline Robert_Hall

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #66 on: September 04, 2007, 01:35:18 PM »
H. Noel Williams is actually a pretty good author. He wrote several decent biographies of the ladies  and otherwise of the French Court.   Rather than "memoirs" his Du Barry of the court memoirs series  is more properly, a biography I think. I do have a rather lavish volume of his that is just that- a boigraphy. Published in 1904.
Life may not be the party we expected, but while we are here, might as well dance..

Do you want the truth, or my side of the story ?- Hank Ketchum.

Offline Helen_Azar

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #67 on: September 04, 2007, 01:37:36 PM »
I think that the one I have is written from the first person perspective, so definitely meant to be memoirs not a biography... No other author is listed but "herself".

Offline Mari

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #68 on: September 05, 2007, 06:56:56 AM »
The one I found is by H. Noel Williams also. I tried to find an Author biography on him but couldn't so Robert if you think he writes pretty good Biographies I will read it.  Thank you.

Offline Paola

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #69 on: November 15, 2007, 06:33:40 AM »
Does anyone has any info about the new book by Dominique Paoli "Les Orléans en exil" ? I like much all her books so  I pre ordered it in Amazon.fr.

Offline Greenowl

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #70 on: December 21, 2007, 06:29:48 AM »
I read a few volumes of the Maurice Druon novel "Les rois maudits" many years ago and was fascinated by the character of Mahaut d' Artois. Duron presents Mahaut as responsible for poisoning Guillaume de Nogaret in 1314 and  Louis X (lLe Hutin) in June 1316. She later killed the new-born Jean I (son of Louis X and Clemence of Hungary), while presenting him to the barons in November 1316, in order to ensure that his uncle (her son-in-law, husband of her daughter Jeanne de Bourgogne) Philippe de Poitiers would become king instead, which duly came to pass. My question is: how much of this is based on fact or is it merely a legend or an invention of Maurice Duron? I have to admit that I don't know very much about Mr. Duron, but I assume he is/was a novelist as opposed to a historian?

Any information about the real Mahaut d' Artois would be most welcome!

Offline Mari

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #71 on: December 21, 2007, 03:26:22 PM »
Mahaut of Artois (1268 – October 27, 1329, Paris), also known as Mathilda, was the daughter of Robert II, Count of Artois and Amicie de Courtenay.

She married Otto IV, Count of Burgundy, to whom she bore three children, including two girls who married kings of France, Blanche and Jeanne. Because of the premature death of her brother Philip in 1298, she inherited the County of Artois at her father's death in 1302, rather than her nephew Robert (her inheritance being based upon proximity of blood). Although he repeatedly challenged the decision, her rights to the County were consistently upheld. She was an able administrator and managed to defeat revolts of nobles. At her death, the county was inherited by her daughter Jeanne II, Countess Palatine of Burgundy (d 1330), who was married to Philip V of France.

She was portrayed by Jeanne Moreau in the 2005 French miniseries Les Rois Maudits.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mahaut,_Countess_of_Artois

http://les-rois-maudits.france2.fr/ site for the video






Also even more interesting:
in French

http://home.nordnet.fr/~pbyledbal/mahaut.html

in English more or less:

http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=fr&u=http://www.mahaut-artois.org/&sa=X&oi=translate&resnum=5&ct=result&prev=/search%3Fq%3DMahaut%2Bd%2527%2BArtois%26hl%3Den%26newwindow%3D1%26client%3Dfirefox-a%26rls%3Dorg.mozilla:en-US:official%26hs%3Dad9%26pwst%3D1

Just a little note of interest in "Pariswalks"  this is mentioned:

The Caveau de la Huchette is a Club today but the building itself dates from the sixteenth century and was connected by secret passageways to the Petit Chatelet, then a prison at the Petit Pont. The Templars used the basement as a secret meeting place in the late thirteenth century. Their riches were so great that King Phillippe IV felt the need to suppress them in order to relieve them of their wealth. It was the curse the Templars laid on the King and his descendants that Maurice Druon took on in his series of historical novels Les Rois Maudits.

http://books.google.com/books?id=jzsrPcutUgQC&pg=PA46&dq=Les+Rois+maudits+by+Maurice+Druon&ei=gDFsR8yRBpjSigHP3eFp&sig=_QIzgXiz4nIPctzFptSF-sZCNSs#PPA46,M1
« Last Edit: December 21, 2007, 03:49:03 PM by Mari »

Offline Greenowl

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #72 on: December 21, 2007, 05:00:14 PM »
Thank you ever so much for those splendid links and information. Mahaut seems to have been an extremely able and, by the standards of that era, a very generous person. It appears that the negative rumours about her were spread by her nephew, Robert d'Artois, but no court at that time ever ruled against her or upheld his claims. However, as the rumours (witchcraft and murder) are so much more dramatic than the sober reality, they naturally gained more attention and eventually overshadowed the true state of affairs.

Are there any books about Mahaut d'Artois other than Druon's "Les rois maudits"?

Offline bell_the_cat

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #73 on: December 23, 2007, 05:01:22 AM »
Hi Greenowl!

I loved the books as well! I also loved the original French series which was televised in the early Seventies. Haven't seen the new film...

If I remember rightly, in the Druon version Mahaut didn't  succeed in murdering the infant Jean I - he had been substituted for the son of his wet nurse, and appears in later books as a grown up. It is the wet nurse's son who is poisoned by the countess at the christening when she puts her finger dipped in poison in her mouth! :)

A lot of events (like the above) are pure speculation. Druon also has Robert of Artois responsible for the poisoning of Mahaut and her daughter much later on. However it is well researched speculation, so it is an plausible embellishment of historical facts. Maurice Druon is, I believe, still alive and is the sometimes controversial head of the Academie Francaise. It's certainly likely that Mahaut would be keen to have her son in law on the throne, as this helped her shortly afterward in the second of the three court cases in which she successfully defended her claim to Artois.

Interestingly her claim to Artois (where a daughter has precedence over a deceased son's children) was quite the opposite of the male line succession which was behind Philippe V and Philippe VI's claims. It was ironically more like Edward III's female line claim to the throne of France, which was supported by Mahaut's nephew and enemy, Robert of Artois. As she was the only woman on the council of peers of the realm, representing both the County of Burgundy and Artois, she would have been pretty tough, I imagine.

It is probable that Nogaret died in 1313 (though dates in the fourteenth century are notoriously unreliable), which makes casts doubt on Druon's account in "The Iron King", where Nogaret is summoned by the Grand Templar at the stake to appear with the King and the Pope before the throne of God within a year.

We had good fun on the Tudor forum discussing the question of whether Queen Isabella was responsible for the downfall of her sisters in law (also in "The Iron King").

Which of the books did you like best?
Never put off until tomorrow what you can put off until the day after tomorrow. (Mark Twain)

Offline Greenowl

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Re: Books on French Royals
« Reply #74 on: December 23, 2007, 03:59:43 PM »
Hi Bell the cat, thanks for all that information. It is a very long time (i.e about 30 years) since I read Les Rois maudits, so I really cannot remember the various volumes all that well. The only volume that I actually possess myself is, in the German translation, “Das Schicksal der Schwachen”, which literally translates as “The fate/destiny of the weak”, and starts with the departure of Clemence from Naples on 1st June 1315 to make the journey to France to marry Louis X and ends with the suspicion that the death of Louis X was due to poison and that as a result, Clemence should be guarded day and night in case an attempt is made on her life or that of her unborn child (which of course more or less amounts to the same thing). The two things that made a striking impression on me when reading the books in the original French all those years ago are (1) the character of Mahaut d’Artois and (2) when one of the kings died (was it perhaps Philippe IV le Bel ??) the courtiers were unable to close his eyes and Druon comments “so this king went to face his creator with his eyes wide open”….at 17 years old I found that very dramatic indeed. I would really like to read the complete work again, as it was very interesting. I am fascinated by medieval French history, but as yet not very knowledgeable about it

With regard to the speculation about Robert d’Artois poisoning Mahaut….what makes it seem a bit suspicious is that after Mahaut died, Robert fled to England, as he feared he would be held responsible for her death (or at least that is how I understood it), so it does rather look as if he had a guilty conscience. Mind you, by the standards of those days when life expectancy was very low, at 61 years of age Mahaut was quite an advanced age when she died. I think that very few survived much longer, Eleanor of Aquitaine being one notable exception.