Author Topic: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family  (Read 193066 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline prinzheinelgirl

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 478
    • View Profile
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #255 on: August 06, 2011, 08:34:56 AM »
Maria Amalia in 1795 by Francisco Vieira.

I have come across this article on Francisco Vieira; it says he was part of the social circle of the ducal family. He also painted Princess Carolina and her husband Maximilian of Saxony:

http://sigarra.up.pt/up_uk/web_base.gera_pagina?p_pagina=1006572

So, Maria Amalia and Ferdinand have at least 3 foreigner-painters who were considered "friends":

1.  Johann Zoffany
2.  Johann Christian von Mannlich (later on Karl of Zweibrucken's architect and his uncle Duke Christian IV's painter)
3.  Francisco Vieira

Angelica Kauffman also received commissions from Maria Amalia but I'm not sure if she was considered as a friend.  I think it is very likely though-- as she made friends with all the classes, plus Kauffman was highly esteemed by her siblings as well (Joseph, Leopold and Maria Carolina).
« Last Edit: August 06, 2011, 08:58:41 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
kindness is the magic elixir of love

Eric_Lowe

  • Guest
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #256 on: August 06, 2011, 11:51:49 AM »
Of course we must remember Mimi was written very subjectively on her sister. As you say Mimi had grown fat, but I think she still dresses luxuriously with appropriate amounts of jewelry. I think you wrote that Maria Amalia had in some point to sell her jewels. So dressing shabbily might be Mimi's "requirement" that her wayward sister had finally lost it. As you written that Maria Amalia wasn't that much interested in clothes and court balls, so that would explain that why she would look shabby anyway to her critical, proud and sharp tongued sister. Also Marie Antoinette may have lost her figure, but not her famous charm and wonderful complexion that even in her worst appearance was able to fascinate people. Hence lies the fatal attraction of her to historians & biographers even after 300 years after her death.

Offline prinzheinelgirl

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 478
    • View Profile
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #257 on: August 07, 2011, 06:39:29 AM »
Of course we must remember Mimi was written very subjectively on her sister. As you say Mimi had grown fat, but I think she still dresses luxuriously with appropriate amounts of jewelry. I think you wrote that Maria Amalia had in some point to sell her jewels. So dressing shabbily might be Mimi's "requirement" that her wayward sister had finally lost it.

I'm just trying to set the context/timeline straight. Context is as important as facts. Yes, Maria Amalia dressed shabbily for a royal but it seems that started by the early 1780s, not when Mimi visited. Yes, she had to sell and pawn her diamonds when the pensions from France and Spain stopped for a year (1772-73). She also sold them to pay her personal debts (which is a very good thing rather than dipping her hands into state coffers).  

Mimi and her husband Albert managed to "siphon" a lot of money and presents (jewels, paintings, etc.) while Maria Theresa was alive; it was one thing that irked the thrifty Joseph II very much. However, the indulged Mimi didn't even have enough funds to transfer from Pressburg to Brussels after MT died. Leopold had to lend her 200,000 florins for it.  If Mimi continued to dress luxuriously with appropriate amounts of jewelry after MT died, perhaps it was because she had more than enough from her mother. But it didn't seem as if she was cash-rich after MT died, if she were she wouldn't have to borrow money from Leopold.  Joseph did say that Mimi had a lot of dealings with a banker in Brussels so it was likely that she was trying to make more money to support her lifestyle post-Maria Theresa; Joseph II certainly not indulge her that way.

As you written that Maria Amalia wasn't that much interested in clothes and court balls, so that would explain that why she would look shabby anyway to her critical, proud and sharp tongued sister.

Again, context and timeline. Maria Amalia seemingly became disinterested in clothes and court events later on, not during Mimi's visit.

Also Marie Antoinette may have lost her figure, but not her famous charm and wonderful complexion that even in her worst appearance was able to fascinate people. Hence lies the fatal attraction of her to historians & biographers even after 300 years after her death.

Again, context. yes, Marie Antoinette was very charming but only to selected people and when it suited her.  And a wonderful complexion? Not entirely. She had facial marks from smallpox, which was concealed by powder. Maria Theresa fretted about it before her marriage.  Her "maid" Rosalie at the prison also saw the marks when MA stood by the window with the strong sunlight. It would make sense that her facial pock marks were noticeable then, she didn't follow her old toilette nor had access to expensive make-up. And she was older as well.  

I think MA's "attraction" mainly lies at her ultimate fate (which she didn't deserve) that's why she is much written about, not her selective charm nor her mythical "perfect" complexion.    
« Last Edit: August 07, 2011, 06:48:38 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
kindness is the magic elixir of love

Eric_Lowe

  • Guest
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #258 on: August 08, 2011, 08:15:18 AM »
I think we agree that it is all very subjected as Mimi's view on Maria Amalia was. She herself did live in a grand style and not above borrowing money to sustain it. In that context, I could see why she could see her sister as poor (as one who tried to live within one's means plus children to account for).

I think I read in a book that Marie Antoinette had very beautiful white and translucent skin. The author compared her to the infamous Charlotte Corday (who murdered Murat), who when she drank red wine, one could see the wine going down her throat ! After all, Maria Carolina was appreciated by her husband for her "milky arms".

Offline prinzheinelgirl

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 478
    • View Profile
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #259 on: August 08, 2011, 08:58:11 AM »
I think we agree that it is all very subjected as Mimi's view on Maria Amalia was. She herself did live in a grand style and not above borrowing money to sustain it. In that context, I could see why she could see her sister as poor (as one who tried to live within one's means plus children to account for).

Mimi was just, sadly, plain bitchy. I don't people should give much credence to her comments or her views. I also don't think Maria Amalia put much into it. She didn't have a lot of rancour in her, unlike some of her siblings.  What is more important is that she tried her best to show goodwill to her rather nasty sister.

I think I read in a book that Marie Antoinette had very beautiful white and translucent skin.

I have read that line from various authors as well. No matter what they say, two very important people (who were  intimate with Marie Antoinette) said she had smallpox marks on her face: her mother Maria Theresa and her "maid" Rosalie at the Concergerie. MT had her marks covered with powder (seemingly sustained) and later on her toilette and cosmetics in prison weren't grand enough to fully conceal them.
« Last Edit: August 08, 2011, 09:00:18 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
kindness is the magic elixir of love

Eric_Lowe

  • Guest
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #260 on: August 08, 2011, 09:27:57 AM »
I totally agree with your assessment on Mimi. However you wrote that Mimi in a letter did sympathize with her sister Marie Antoinette. Love to see how kind her words were. 

I think her skin was greatly admired when she first arrived from Vienna. So by the time she was in prison, she may have long last that glow (hard to glow when you are sick as she bled a lot in prison), and after all she was 38 by then (very middle-aged).

Offline prinzheinelgirl

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 478
    • View Profile
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #261 on: August 11, 2011, 04:25:34 AM »
I totally agree with your assessment on Mimi. However you wrote that Mimi in a letter did sympathize with her sister Marie Antoinette. Love to see how kind her words were.  

It was as I posted it earlier in this thread.

I think her skin was greatly admired when she first arrived from Vienna. So by the time she was in prison, she may have long last that glow (hard to glow when you are sick as she bled a lot in prison), and after all she was 38 by then (very middle-aged).

However Marie Antoinette's skin was admired in France when she first arrived there - for the last time - Marie Antoinette had some smallpox scars on her face, which was concealed by powder. And I'm not talking about the "glow" of the skin but some facial scars from smallpox.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2011, 04:44:02 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
kindness is the magic elixir of love

Eric_Lowe

  • Guest
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #262 on: August 11, 2011, 09:18:58 AM »
I don't think so. you talked about it but didn't not quote it directly (the exact words I mean). On Mimi's quote.

I know there are marks, but I don't think it was important enough to take away her beauty, charm and lovely skin. Unlike her sister Maria Elisabeth, Maria Antonia was not disfigured by the pox, she was wasn't "damaged goods" like her once beautiful sister...

Offline prinzheinelgirl

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 478
    • View Profile
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #263 on: August 12, 2011, 02:49:40 AM »
I don't think so. you talked about it but didn't not quote it directly (the exact words I mean). On Mimi's quote.

Please see the thread on Maria Theresa and her large family for the exact quotes in German.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2011, 03:04:22 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
kindness is the magic elixir of love

Eric_Lowe

  • Guest
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #264 on: August 14, 2011, 11:47:35 AM »
Thanks I would look for that in the MT thread.

I wonder what MC & Antonia thought about their sister Amalia ?

Offline prinzheinelgirl

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 478
    • View Profile
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #265 on: August 14, 2011, 05:30:34 PM »
I wonder what MC & Antonia thought about their sister Amalia ?

As discussed earlier in this thread (unsure if said posts were deleted or moved elsewhere), both sisters were disapproving of Maria Amalia at one point - Marie Antoinette at the height of the Parma/France/Spain/Austria disputes (1771-72 or 1773). Maria Carolina vented to Mimi (1783) about her disapproval regarding Maria Amalia. While Maria Amalia was far from perfect, she never seemed to exhibit any hostility or outright dislike of any of her siblings. Which speaks much of her character rather than their characters... no rancour either, which is more than one can say about her sister in France or Naples. 
kindness is the magic elixir of love

Eric_Lowe

  • Guest
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #266 on: August 15, 2011, 08:12:11 AM »
I think They were more or less toeing the official line laid down by MT.

Offline prinzheinelgirl

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 478
    • View Profile
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #267 on: August 18, 2011, 10:02:23 AM »
I think They were more or less toeing the official line laid down by MT.

It may be so. Or is it to make themselves feel "better"?  Marie Antoinette was playing a game with her mother throughout the 1770s. And it's rather rich of Maria Carolina to criticise Maria Amalia's behaviour to Mimi when: 1) she herself was not an example of an well- behaved person; 2) her friends were rather a disgraceful lot - I don't believe Acton's assertation that MC was not like her lady friends and was just attracted to her opposite. For one, she was deceitful....
« Last Edit: August 18, 2011, 10:06:33 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
kindness is the magic elixir of love

Eric_Lowe

  • Guest
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #268 on: August 18, 2011, 11:05:53 AM »
I don't think she was as forthright as Amalia, but her honesty only got her into more trouble especially with MT. Both Maria Antonia & Maria Carolina are totally honest in her dealings with MT, but Maria Carolina was more crafty.

Eric_Lowe

  • Guest
Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #269 on: August 18, 2011, 11:06:45 AM »
Sorry I mean not totally honest with MT.