Author Topic: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen  (Read 53076 times)

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Offline elena_maria_vidal

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #75 on: January 18, 2006, 09:50:23 AM »
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WOW!!!!!I didn´t know you were THAT Maria Elena Vidal! I have heard and read some very good critics about your books! I have already order  "Madame Royale".


Thank you very much, dear Sisi! You are very kind, and I am glad you have heard good things about my books! Enjoy the novel "Madame Royale." Count Fersen is featured prominently in the opening chapters, before he gets killed.

Offline coquelicot

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #76 on: January 18, 2006, 10:48:02 AM »
Congratulations, elena-maria-vidal ! And thank you ! It would be interesting for me too, for you seem to have a point of view different from most of the french writers I've read. Generally, they consider Marie-Antoinette, though raised in catholic religion, wasn't a very devote person.

My favourite author is Simone Bertière, whose analysis I find very objective and intelligent. She believes the relationship between Marie-Antoinette and Fersen looked like a middle-age romance, with the knight prosiming eternal faith and loyalty to his lady. For rligious, but also dynastic reasons, in her view, Marie-Antoinette would avoid adultery, because it was far too dangerous !

I think court life spoiled the royal family life a lot. They didn't even live together, they often slept separately. They didn't raise their children together. After, while inprisoned in the temple tower, they became more a family in the way we consider it now. They lived like common people, for one year, they shared almost everything, like any "bourgeoise" family, with both parents teaching their children.
qu'ils sachent du moins, que jusqu'à mon dernier moment j'ai pensé à eux.

Offline elena_maria_vidal

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #77 on: January 18, 2006, 11:17:48 AM »
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Congratulations, elena-maria-vidal ! And thank you ! It would be interesting for me too, for you seem to have a point of view different from most of the french writers I've read. Generally, they consider Marie-Antoinette, though raised in catholic religion, wasn't a very devote person.

My favourite author is Simone Bertière, whose analysis I find very objective and intelligent. She believes the relationship between Marie-Antoinette and Fersen looked like a middle-age romance, with the knight prosiming eternal faith and loyalty to his lady. For rligious, but also dynastic reasons, in her view, Marie-Antoinette would avoid adultery, because it was far too dangerous !

I think court life spoiled the royal family life a lot. They didn't even live together, they often slept separately. They didn't raise their children together. After, while inprisoned in the temple tower, they became more a family in the way we consider it now. They lived like common people, for one year, they shared almost everything, like any "bourgeoise" family, with both parents teaching their children.


I don't think the queen was deeply devout until after her oldest son died. Then, according to Desmond Seward, she turned to "the way of devotion" with Mme Elizabeth. Even when Baby Sophie died, she began to be more spiritual, turning to her pious sister-in-law for guidance. Before that, she was an observant Catholic, performing her basic duties, but nothing more. Even after she became more religious, her approach to faith was very joyful and non-judgmental, not at all Jansenistic like so many of the French at the time.

I agree completely about the l'affaire Fersen being something out of the Age of chivalry. It was in regard to Antoinette's death that Burke made his famous statement about "the age of chivalry is dead." I will try to find the entire quote.

Louis and Antoinette really tried to create a family life, which is why they escaped the court to Trianon. But it was difficult....

Offline Sissi

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #78 on: January 18, 2006, 11:26:39 AM »
She was surrounded by foreigners, Fersen, Esterazy... and others.
 She was a child woman, and it is sad that her mother being so intelligent never gave her the proper tool to be a more grown up sovereign. I think that she is a victim she was not a bad person nor a bad sovereign, she was just not prepare intellectually, which made her influenceable.

 I have always thought that if she have had her children earlier things might have been different. Motherhood gave her maturity, and a more accurate sense of responsability.  
 
Also she was a very modern woman, I mean she wanted to be active in the upbringing of her children, she influenced Louis XVI to get Vigee Lebrun into the Royal Academy of Arts, she was interested in music and had her own views about it, she influenced arquitecture and may many order things.
  I think that if she had put her mind into things she could have accomplish a great deal of other things.
 Or maybe she needed astronger man, I think she would have made a terrific couple with Louis XIV!!!!  

Offline coquelicot

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #79 on: January 18, 2006, 11:42:23 AM »
Hi, Sissi !

Do you think 23 isn't a good age to have children ? There were huge pressures on her about it, but she had her children in due time... physically and psychologically, I mean.

She loved them greatly, she was very concerned in their education, raising them gave her more maturity, that's true... but it was not only that, I thing. She got wiser for she got older, like all of us !  

Let's notice she never really abandoned her pleasures and distractions when become a mother. Fortunately ! To be a mother doesn't mean to drop every passion ! In my view, she had a good balance between her children and her hobbies. Most of the time, moreover, she had her children with her, while singing, for instance, or playing harpsichord and harp.

I agree she had a poor education. She often said to Madame Campan she could have done better, if she was better instructed.  But she nevertheless became a good queen, in the way that she protected arts (Vigée, Montansier, Raucour, Redouté, Gluck, Saint Georges...), manufacture (Riesener, Sèvres...) and developped fashions (Bertin, Léonard, Fargeon...). All acts requested from a queen !

I'm deeply persuaded she was witty, clever and intelligent. It's obvious from her letters, her quotations, and her answers while on trial. I suspect that our still vivid opinion that she was let's say... a little stupid, is a sequel to the execrable revolution propaganda ! Better to think you've guillotined a silly bird than a sweet queen !

Quote:Or maybe she needed astronger man, I think she would have made a terrific couple with Louis XIV!!!!    

 

Do you think so ? Wouldn't they have arguments ? What a man, this sun Louis !
qu'ils sachent du moins, que jusqu'à mon dernier moment j'ai pensé à eux.

Offline elena_maria_vidal

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #80 on: January 18, 2006, 11:50:04 AM »
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Hi, Sissi !
 
Do you think 23 isn't a good age to have children ? There were huge pressures on her about it, but she had her children in due time... physically and psychologically, I mean.
 
She loved them greatly, she was very concerned in their education, raising them gave her more maturity, that's true... but it was not only that, I thing. She got wiser for she got older, like all of us !  
 
Let's notice she never really abandoned her pleasures and distractions when become a mother. Fortunately ! To be a mother doesn't mean to drop every passion ! In my view, she had a good balance between her children and her hobbies. Most of the time, moreover, she had her children with her, while singing, for instance, or playing harpsichord and harp.
 
I agree she had a poor education. She often said to Madame Campan she could have done better, if she was better instructed.  But she nevertheless became a good queen, in the way that she protected arts (Vigée, Montansier, Raucour, Redouté, Gluck, Saint Georges...), manufacture (Riesener, Sèvres...) and developped fashions (Bertin, Léonard, Fargeon...). All acts requested from a queen !
 
I'm deeply persuaded she was witty, clever and intelligent. It's obvious from her letters, her quotations, and her answers while on trial. I suspect that our still vivid opinion that she was let's say... a little stupid, is a sequel to the execrable revolution propaganda ! Better to think you've guillotined a silly bird than a sweet queen !
 
  
 
 


Agreed!!

Offline Sissi

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #81 on: January 18, 2006, 12:00:07 PM »
 do not have any doubt that she was a capable woman, she was witty and she had a quick mind, and you are right she defended herself splendidly during her trial. She always knew the right word for every occasion, she was an exceptional woman.

   23 is of course a good age to have children, but back then for a Queen married for seven years it was dangerous not to be a mother. She was always mistrusted regarding France political interest, she was regarded by many as an austrian spy. She was queen of France right from the start but having an heir was regarded by the people as finally being a french woman.
   

Offline coquelicot

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #82 on: January 18, 2006, 12:03:15 PM »
I fully agree with you ! Her situation was getting dangerous. Should she forget it, her brother Joseph was there to remind her of it !

And Sissi... yes, she was an exceptional woman !  ;D
qu'ils sachent du moins, que jusqu'à mon dernier moment j'ai pensé à eux.

Offline elena_maria_vidal

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #83 on: January 18, 2006, 12:07:57 PM »
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do not have any doubt that she was a capable woman, she was witty and she had a quick mind, and you are right she defended herself splendidly during her trial. She always knew the right word for every occasion, she was an exceptional woman.
 
    23 is of course a good age to have children, but back then for a Queen married for seven years it was dangerous not to be a mother. She was always mistrusted regarding France political interest, she was regarded by many as an austrian spy. She was queen of France right from the start but having an heir was regarded by the people as finally being a french woman.
    


I once heard a history professor quoted as saying that at her trial Marie-Antoinette conducted herself like a trained lawyer, so brilliant were her replies, especially considering that she was ill, exhausted and heartbroken.

Offline Sissi

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #84 on: January 18, 2006, 12:12:38 PM »
[ Her situation was getting dangerous. Should she forget it, her brother Joseph was there to remind her of it !

And Sissi... yes, she was an exceptional woman !  ;D[/quote]


  Yes exactly, Joseph II and eher motehr were aware that she needed to conceive an heir in order to consolidate her position as Queen of France.

Offline coquelicot

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #85 on: January 18, 2006, 02:41:58 PM »
And, as you already said, she was in danger of being brought back to Vienna.
However... I sometimes wonder... Is it impossible that she would have wished it ? To leave this hostile court of Versailles and find back her beloved Schönbrunn ? Her "Madame Mère", her sisters and brothers still happy at home, and this quiet town where proportions were more human than in this huge and cold palace ?
qu'ils sachent du moins, que jusqu'à mon dernier moment j'ai pensé à eux.

Offline elena_maria_vidal

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #86 on: January 18, 2006, 03:00:50 PM »
Yes, Mme du Barry was trying to have Louis and Antoinette's marriage annulled. But Louis had really come to care for her, and began to make public displays of affection, kissing her in the gardens and walking arm and arm, which was not done then, not even spouses.

Antoinette later said to her mother, that of the three brothers, she was glad she had married Louis-Auguste, the husband whom"God had chosen" for her.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by elena_maria_vidal »

Offline ilyala

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #87 on: January 18, 2006, 07:34:16 PM »
considerring the options it's not hard to see why ;D

louis had his faults, but he was a very kind and sensitive man and i'm pretty sure that's what every woman wants in the end :)
'loving might be a mistake, but it's worth making'
ilya


Offline elena_maria_vidal

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #88 on: January 18, 2006, 07:40:58 PM »
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louis had his faults, but he was a very kind and sensitive man and i'm pretty sure that's what every woman wants in the end :)


Very true, as well as the fact that he really did love her. Knowing her love for jewelry, he would leave gifts on her dressing table for her to discover. (Not that expensive gifts are indicative of love, but he did try to bring her happiness.)

Offline elena_maria_vidal

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Re: Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen
« Reply #89 on: January 18, 2006, 08:18:11 PM »
Here is the famous quote of the Irish philosopher and politician Edmund Burke on the death of Marie-Antoinette in October 1793. He saw her as Fersen must have first seen her and of course, as Louis did, too.

"It is now sixteen or seventeen years since I saw the Queen of France, then the dauphiness, at Versailles; and surely never lighted on this orb, which she hardly seemed to touch, a more delightful vision. I saw her just above the horizon, decorating and cheering the elevated sphere she had just begun to move in, glittering like the morning star full of life and splendor and joy....Little did I dream...that I should have lived to see such disasters fallen upon her, in a nation of gallant men, in a nation of men of honor, and of cavaliers. I thought ten thousand swords must have leaped from their scabbards to avenge even a look that threatened her with insult. But the age of chivalry is dead; that of sophisters, economists, and calculators has succeeded and the glory of Europe is extinguished forever."