Author Topic: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family  (Read 196221 times)

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Offline prinzheinelgirl

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #45 on: February 27, 2009, 12:04:00 AM »
I've read in one of MT's biographies (I forgot which) that she would send one of her daughters to stay with Amalia from time to time in an effort to make her feel better..... if true, that showed that MT felt guilty about her although she never admitted it aloud. Same with her efforts to reconcile.  I guess Mimi was sent because she was the only one who could freely travel. Marianne was sickly,  Elisabeth too traumatized and angry by her disfigurement, Marie Antoinette was in France.....although I think Amalia visited Caroline in Naples (as well as Leopold in Tuscany). I also don't think Amalia cared much about what Mimi would say. She was, clearly, her own person from the time she arrived in Parma. 

I also read that, among her sisters, it was Marianne and Caroline who were closest to her since moving to Parma. Both, it was said, understood her. Later on, she also visited Elisabeth and Marianne in their convents.     
« Last Edit: February 27, 2009, 12:14:58 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
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Offline prinzheinelgirl

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #46 on: March 22, 2009, 04:25:01 AM »
Some info on Amalia, Ferdinand and their children, Caroline and Louis, in 1773.  From the diary of Lady Mary Coke (1727-1811)....

Sunday Nov 21, 1773

I am so tired of the excessive impositions, and wore out with the continual cross accidents and even misfortunes that constantly attend me, that I repent extremely coming into this Country; I expect no amusement and constant vexations. About one O'clock I arrived at Parma. The post for England went out yesterday, and does not go out again till Tuesday. This is disagreeable, as I had two journals ready to have sent you. I found Lord Huntingdon  and his two Nephews in the same House where I am lodged. I've seen him and he tells me he arrived last night, that he has not been at the Court, as the Infant Duke and Duchess of Parma are in the Country, and he is not sure whether they see Foreigners when they are there, but, he added, to be sure they wou'd see me, being so well acquainted with the Empress; I do suppose they will; not that I had determined to come here when I took leave of Her Majesty, otherwise I imagine She wou'd have done me the honour to have wrote, as She said She wou'd to the other places. Lord Huntington ask'd me where it was I intended making any stay: I told him at Florence provided the Duke of Cumberland did not send me away, for I was determined not to be in the same place, knowing His Majesty's orders. He said he had acted differently, for that he had been to wait on the Duke at Milan. I answer'd I was surprised he had, for his Majesty's orders apart, I felt no inclination to make the visit. He is gone to dine with the French Minister and said he wou'd call on me in the evening; I've received an invitation to dine with the first Minister which I've accepted with reluctance: I've no pleasure in anything.

Parma, (Sunday) Nov. 21 (22) 1773

Sunday. -- I dined at the Minister's, and mentioned the desire I had to be presented to the Duke and Duchess; he said he wou'd let them know. His Lady is very polite: I had a great deal of conversation with her about the Arch Duchess. She says she hardly sees any body or goes to any diversation; her humour seems very different to the rest of her Family, who are all very lively. Her Children are always in the Palace here: She comes now and then to see them, but never stays. I'm going again to the Minister's, where I shall pass the evening. I play'd at Omber for two hours. When I came away the Minister told me the Duke wou'd come to Parma tomorrow and wou'd invite me to dinner, but that I cou'd not see the Duchess for a day or two, as the news of the death of the Princess Charlotte of Lorraine just arrived.

Novr. 22, Monday.

I fancy I dated my last journal wrong, for it was today I dined with the Duke of Parma, and was presented a little before dinner. He has a very handsome face, fair complexion, fair hair, and dark eyes, good teeth, and something agreeable in his countenence, tho' not a look of sense. His figure bad, very short and thick. Civil, but nothing very pleasing in his manner. The Minister's Lady and Madame La Comtesse de Flavigny, the wife of the French Minister, were the only Ladies beside myself. After the dinner was over he stood and talked to us for some time, and then made his Bow, and said he was going into the Country. The Arch Duchess was at Parma, but the Minister said she was ill and cou'd not see me, but the Young Prince and Princess I saw, and they are the most beautiful Children I ever remember to have seen. They are so very handsome, and their features so formed and so regular, that I should question whether they can continue so when they grow up, for they must change and it cannot be for the better: I wish the Empress could see them. The Duke talked of his children with great pleasure, said his little Daughter was three years old that day, and that her understanding was surprising for that age; I am apt to think the Children will take after their Mother's Family, for they have all that sense and spirit in their countenence which is so particular in the Empress and most of her Family. There is at present no public diversion; I pass my evening at the Minister's; both him and his Lady have been particularly civil to me.

« Last Edit: March 22, 2009, 04:41:43 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
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Offline prinzheinelgirl

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #47 on: March 22, 2009, 04:28:21 AM »
Same source.... from  the diary of Lady Mary Coke (1727-1811)......

Tuesday 23 November 1773

The Minister, the Marquis de Llano, has sent two Gentlemen every morning to attend me to all the Churches, the University, the library etc. If Lord Strafford was here he will remember that the finest picture Correggio ever painted is here. There are several of his painting in the Churches, but most of them very much hurt. The Town is very pretty but not large. The Country, like all the rest of Italy I have seen, exceedingly disagreeable, and for the Climate I think it the worst I know. Lord Huntingdon, as I believe I have already mention'd, is very liberal of his praises when he talks of the Duke of Cumberland and his party, but as I thought they were improperly bestow'd, I told his Lordship how exceedingly he had been condemn'd at Venice for desiring to have all those honours and ceremoneys at Verona, which the Emperor declined when he was in that Town. I ask'd his Lordship whether he thought the Duke and his family had observed that strict incognito which he said was his plan when he went Abroad? and which was certainly his Majesty's intention, as the Secretary of State wrote to all the Ministers at the Foreign Courts, that the King's wishes were that no honours shou'd be offer'd. He was oblig'd to agree that he might have done better; and in the praises I observed a disposition of spite against the King, upon which I believe the commendations were more founded then upon the merits of either the Duke or his Lady.

Wednesday 24 Nov 1773

Lord Huntingdon is gone this morning. I stay till Friday to go the Opera tomorrow at Colorna

Thursday 25 Nov 1773

I went this morning to see the Wardrobe of Monseigneur l'Infant: it consists of many rooms of very fine furniture and other things: among others the furniture of the room which was made for his Father Don Philip's marriage with the King of France his eldest Daughter. It is crimson velvet embroidered with gold, and cost twenty thousand pounds sterling. I saw also the furniture of the room which was made for his own marriage with the Arch Duchess. There are many fine things of various sorts that were presents from the King of France to his mother. I dined at the Minister's, and went with him after dinner to Colorna. 'Tis about ten miles from Parma. We went directly into the Theatre, which is one of the prettiest for the size I ever saw. The Opera was very tolerably performed. The Duke acted the part of the Father, and not ill. When it was over a Gentleman came from the Duke to desire we wou'd come to his Box which is in the front of the stage to see a fire work. He had got on his own Clothes, and we found him in the Box. Nothing cou'd be civiler. The fire work ended, we followed the Duke into an Apartment where the supper was prepared, but before we sat down, he said to me he was very sorry I had not seen Madame l'InFante act in the Opera, for that she had a very pretty voice. He then asked me if I had not seen her at Vienna; I told him no, that H. R. H. was married above a year before my first journey to Vienna. What was the reason she would not see me I cannot tell, but it either proceeded from the Empress being angry that I did not mention it to her, when she did me the honour to ask me where I went to, or from her own caprice of which (she is known). She is very handsome.

« Last Edit: March 22, 2009, 04:42:08 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
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Eric_Lowe

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #48 on: March 22, 2009, 05:40:36 PM »
Was the diary of Lady Mary Coke published ?

Offline prinzheinelgirl

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #49 on: March 22, 2009, 07:26:25 PM »
Oh, yes, it was published in 4 volumes.


Volumes 3 and 4 have some details on her trips to Vienna.  If I remember it right, she displeased MT on her last visit and she thought that Amalia's and Leopold's 'snub' had something to do with that.  I browsed over them and found the details  of her contact and impressions with MT, Amalia & family,  and other Habsburgs quite interesting. At one point, she went to Versailles before Vienna and apparently, Marianne and Elisabeth were eager to hear news about their youngest sister when she saw them.   :)
« Last Edit: October 08, 2010, 03:56:13 AM by Svetabel »
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Offline Marc

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #50 on: March 22, 2009, 08:56:39 PM »
Thank you prinzheinelgirl for those details...I find it very interesting to read...Do you maybe know how Maria Amalia got her name?Was it in honor of Archduchess Maria Amalia,youngest sister of Maria Theresia?

Offline CountessKate

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #51 on: March 24, 2009, 03:47:39 PM »
Quote
Do you maybe know how Maria Amalia got her name?Was it in honor of Archduchess Maria Amalia,youngest sister of Maria Theresia?

I imagine it originally came from Josef I's wife, Amalia Wilhelmina of Brunswick originally, since there were no Amalias before her and one in each generation of Habsburgs of the imperial line after her - her own daughter, her niece the sister of Maria Theresa, our Amalia Maria Theresa's daughter, Leopold's daughter Amalia, Franz II's daughter Amalia - after which the name died out.

Eric_Lowe

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #52 on: April 02, 2009, 11:27:40 AM »
Yes. It comes back.

I was trying to find a portrait of Maria Amalia's daughter Caroline, but cannot locate one.

Offline prinzheinelgirl

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #53 on: April 03, 2009, 12:22:25 AM »
You mean Caroline of Parma as an adult?  The only one I know of was a portrait done at the time of her wedding in Dresden although I have not seen it.   

This is the sort of welcome Amalia got from Ferdinand when she arrived in Parma.... (from the book on Maria Theresa by Paul Tabori):

In Parma, a tousle-headed, barefoot youth was tolling the bell in the tallest tower of the city.  Then he got tired of it, rushed down the spiral stairs and made posthaste for the turn of the road to spy on the arrivals.   When the travelling party appeared, he jumped from under a tree, began to pound his knees and laughed at the Archduchess, who was peering through the glass window of the coach.  She stared, amazed, at the uncouth lout, who, as soon as the coach rolled on, picked himself up and ran back to the city.

Within the palace there was total chaos. Duke Ferdinand had disappeared.  The court dignitaries, thin Du Tillot and fat Malaspina, his mistress, led the girl to her apartments in obvious embarrassment. Amalia showed no surprise. She stood in the middle of the large room and examined curiously the ancestral portraits of the Parma dynasty.  Suddenly, the door opened and the barefooted, dishevelled youngster whom she had noticed through the window of the coach burst in.  "You are my bride?" he demanded.  "I'm Ferdinand."  The girl stared at him, mouth agape.  The boy took her hand and led her down the basement kitchen.

"Do you like roast chestnuts?" he asked her. "If you do, I'll get you some..... Beatrice!" he shouted at a barefoot, olive-skinned girl whom Amalia hadn't even noticed and who stood with large, brilliant eyes full of hate next to the hearth.  "My mistress," Ferdinand presented her to his bride. "Make friends, you two.  Don't be afraid, she won't bite," he reassured Amalia. The archduchess, who was trained not to show surprise at anything nor form any hasty opinions, soon found her poise.  Half an hour later, they gaily munched the roast chestnuts.  Then Amalia proposed a game of hide-and-seek.

================
A rather unforgettable welcome, I might say.  ;) 
« Last Edit: April 03, 2009, 12:32:32 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
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Offline prinzheinelgirl

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #54 on: May 03, 2009, 03:11:41 AM »
For those who haven't seen it yet -- portrait of a young Amalia by Pietro Antonio Rotari, done when she was 16 or younger (the painter died in 1762):

http://www.prices4antiques.com/paintings/oil-on-canvas/Rotari-Pietro-Antonio-Oil-on-Canvas-Circle-of-Portrait-of-Duchess-of-Parma-D9844732.htm
« Last Edit: May 03, 2009, 03:26:53 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
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Offline prinzheinelgirl

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #55 on: September 03, 2009, 09:31:34 PM »
Maria Amalia depicted in pastel......sorry, PDF files only (from www.pastellists.com)

http://www.pastellists.com/Articles/Bernard.pdf  (page 2)

http://www.pastellists.com/Articles/Hagelgans.pdf  

http://www.pastellists.com/Articles/German.pdf   (see page 7 as a child and another as an adult; the same page also shows her sister Marianne, her aunt Maria Anna of Austria,  Karl of Zweibrucken's wife, Maria Amalia of Saxony,  as a young lady and his sister, Maria Amalia of Zweibrucken, as a much older adult)              
« Last Edit: September 03, 2009, 09:54:05 PM by prinzheinelgirl »
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Offline prinzheinelgirl

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #56 on: September 17, 2009, 10:33:20 PM »
Does anyone have any details on the relationship, if any, between Maria Amalia and Karl of Zweibrucken after the latter left Vienna?

I have just read part of the memoirs of Madame du Barry, who mentioned that she and Karl of Zweibrucken had a sincere friendship (he offered her asylum in Zweibrucken, if ever) and were likewise rumored to be lovers (just slander, she said). It appears that Marie Antoinette as Dauphine was cold to Karl and his brother Maximilian, particularly to the latter who spent more time at Versailles. Madame Du Barry said that Prince Maximilian was never invited to the Dauphine's parties until Louis XV made it known that he was to be included.  Even so, the Dauphine would ignore said guest.  Madame du Barry thought Marie Antoinette's attitude was due to the prejudices instilled by Maria Theresa..... I wonder if the rumors about Karl and Madame du Barry ever reached Amalia in Parma......  

A tiny town in Lower Austria is named after Maria Amalia....... Amaliendorf-Aaflang. The website in German.....

http://www.amaliendorf.at/
« Last Edit: September 17, 2009, 10:35:47 PM by prinzheinelgirl »
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Offline prinzheinelgirl

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #57 on: September 29, 2009, 01:20:50 AM »
Excerpts of Maria Amalia's letter to her mother when MT sent Count Rosenberg to Parma to make her daughter conform to expectations/good or 'correct' behavior. My own loose translation from Italian.  Amalia's replies are in italics while MT's criticisms are in bold font.  Original text in Italian from the book, I primi Borboni a Parma by C. Fano (1890).  I have grouped the replies according to the issue on hand.  

On the meddling of France and Spain and their criticisms:  From the beginning adopted the habits I have never liked.  I find it  quite ridiculous that a prince of a small (sovereign) state must submit to the annoyances of the Kings of France and Spain.  I find it well that when we are in public, we comply with the labels such as on Sundays, but in other days of the week it becomes excessive.  When I'm with the Infante, I will do what he wants but alone, I do not follow anyone.  The House of Bourbon is not in Parma, and I am neither in France nor in Spain. Otherwise,  I do not need the Minister to give me lessons.  

On her giving excuses as to being ill/seeking solitude and giving her husband Ferdinand supposedly bad advice:  Procure to remain constant all along with the Infante, not to depart under pretext of withdrawing into solitude or illness, etc.   I try to merit the esteem and friendship of the Infante in all circumstances, and would die rather than to the contrary in the things that seemed right and reasonable. I never sought solitude, until 18 August, the mournful death  of my father. I'm sure I do not abuse, that the Madame L’ Infante is acting above the husband, causing him to commit things against the established order, and the deference that lies to the Council from his ministers and the authority of the leaders of his Court. Why it is so implausible as to remove any possible censures?   Neither the firmness of my decision I would be changed.  I do not give reasons or excuses that I am ill, though you should already know that I am sometimes indisposed especially in the middle of summer and winter. I believe that the Infante can regulate himself and not in need of myths or advice, I do not ask anything.  But I am sure that many, except me, led him to perform actions that are hazardous  and hasty . I want nothing more so that he can enjoy public esteem. Therefore I believe that if the Infante was in need of advice, he goes to me  to me rather than to anyone else

On her giving orders in their household:   The Minister, unfortunately, sometimes trying to achieve preferences  for their interest and support its power. Every (sovereign) prince has the right and power to change the order and be the chief authority in his court.  I do not meddle in affairs of State or Government, militia, guards, officers, except in cases where I believe in suspending a punishment, pleading to be able to grant a pardon, or if anyone is missing to my person, and in this case I have every right to punish disobedience and no respect in carrying out my orders.  Concerning the officers of the stable and  keeping the same, I take care of myself all the time, seeing that  they do not know what they should do and how neglected the service is.  Thus  for the same reason, for everything concerning the house I always impart my orders, inasmuch as to scrupulously observe the customs and rules established and stability  court life; to conform completely to the labels of the house of Bourbon and adopt the decision of the minister. The Minister directs of the affairs of the state, not of these trifles.   So long as I am the wife of the sovereign, I will continue to give orders and to whom I please.

As for the guards and the lackeys:  After the arrival of Mr. de Chauvelin, I have not mixed up in  things about the guards, what he ordered about their service has not undergone any changes. I have allowed only changes in the evenings in which I spend with my daughter.  Now you want me to allow to make changes designed to make them remain in the first hall, not to speak to them in the building, or outside, unless absolutely necessary.

Not to prefer any particular lackey for the service of Infante and the Princess.  Not to grant protection to persons seeking employment, even if they were badly considered by the Minister.  I declare I will always chose the lackeys, for we are better served  by people who know how to serve, rather than the less fit for service for I demand to be served well.    

On the Minister (del Llano):  I can estimate him only after considerable facts and that I better know his personal merit. I do not want to give confidence to any person whom I do not know. I want to be told the truth, and I will not submit myself to blindly accept advice.  The  Minister can be sure that  I can also speak with confidence, but I will not be the  first, he has to do it. Give the Minister a little confidence and encourage him to explain quite openly in circumstances where he  can find fault with the conduct of Madame L 'Infante?

On the reports about her behavior and spies : Hath not anything more disgusting to listen to such reports or spies, it is this breed that today and tomorrow betrays one another.  It can be assumed that if one does not listen to such, many fights and unpleasantness would have been spared. So I have not ever listened and I will never do so.  

On her spending and supposed debts: I was wrong to make the expenses increase, to settle debts and make a second request from available means. But I have never borrowed money nor contracted debts with merchants or with the workmen.

On her household, finances, estates and staff: I always thought of entrusting to someone the administration  of my funds and also that of my two properties, but I find it inconsistent that they should be people who exclusively please the Minister as administrators. Any individual has the right  to select his agent.  On the other hand you do not want me to enjoy any privileges not permitted in private. The first condition is unfair, not being able to handle the people involved in my land, herds, stables and hunting.  I want to be treated as a private (individual).  

Again, I repeat, only the Infante and I recognize the right to give orders to my troops.  To treat the officers of the Court and the people with noble distinction to their due, according to the different degrees,  not give preference to low staff and waiters, not to accuse a pretext to prevent access to the maid and  the ladies of the palace, grant them to serve each  according to its rotation; of previously accustomed to give his orders to the heads of the house and stable, that is to say to the butler and the first squire, for when Madame L’  establishes her meals in the carriage, on horseback or on foot, and not forward these directly to cooks or squires. The trouble with this thing, besides being inconvenient also harms the good order and economy.  

« Last Edit: September 29, 2009, 01:52:42 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
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Offline prinzheinelgirl

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #58 on: September 29, 2009, 01:42:14 AM »
Part 2 of 2 of Maria Amalia's reply to MT when Count Rosenberg went to in 1772 (afterwhich MT stopped communicating with her for about a year). Same source I Primi Borboni a Parma (1890). My own loose translation from the original text in Italian.

On her preference for certain people:   I always acted in a gentle manner to please everyone  but with regard to preferences, I would rather attach myself to the honest people, or at least those I believe as such whether they are servants, attendants or assistants to the Court, farmers or ministers.  I never needed  an excuse like in my maid, for if I'm okay, I see all willingly, and only when I have indisposed or have something to do that they can not enter. Why do you think I'm making excuses, when I know I can do it freely with my own will, without resorting to subterfuge?  As for the orders to be given to the stable and kitchen, I repeat,  I want to issue orders to the most appropriate people and not to people who are not worthy to receive them.

On her conduct, her ladies in waiting and on forgiveness: The ladies cannot be offended if Madame L’Infante might have (preference)  for one or the other of  her ladies. To induce the Madame L’ Infante to establish an agreement with the Minister, a plan  of conduct, with dignity and decorum to appear at parties and not  admit other people, to honor his choice.  Forgive generously, and with all sincerity to those who have  had, inevitably, the misfortune to displease or disgrace.  The resentment is too strong a thing unworthy of a princess.  

I do not complain and draw a distinction between those that must accompany me to walk in the mornings, but they complain  themselves, because they are old or delicate, and I must necessarily select those that may follow me. (The plan of conduct) It is something that is within the functions of the Minister, and that I, knowing the difficulty in setting (it), I could not interfere. The plan of conduct that Madame L'Infante will perform in public I will follow but privately I will continue to do what I do. It's very true that we must forgive, it denotes a generous spirit.  When you're right, forgetting soon after receiving offense shows little firmness of mind.

On what a princess should do:  Dispense with pleasure and do everything to heart for every command, and want to find supporters among the people. This is not what a princess should do, the wife of a sovereign and must only take care of pleasing her husband, to inspire good feelings in the princess (daughter Caroline), to earn the confidence of the Minister, pleasing and easy to order services to all those assigned to the service of his person, to be  love the people honest and respected by all.

It's now two years, seven months that I have given up any idea  command and to govern the state, but for all that concerns my person, I always have the right to decide after the Infante. I try to gain the love the people as much as possible, they are always praying for us and give us blessings from heaven.  I constantly strive to inspire good feelings in my daughter and I think the Minister should rather try to get my  confidence.  I will try to make my personal service easy and pleasant, but so long as it is not an  obstruction to my system, (which) I myself want to direct.  I also want to be loved and adored like my dear husband, the Infante, is estimated by honest people.

    

« Last Edit: September 29, 2009, 01:58:48 AM by prinzheinelgirl »
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Offline CountessKate

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Re: Duke Ferdinand of Parma, his wife Maria Amalia,their family
« Reply #59 on: September 29, 2009, 07:39:38 AM »
I'm not surprised Maria Theresa stopped writing for a year.  Maria Amalia gave as good as she got, which wouldn't at all have suited the Empress!  No doubt she was expecting meek apologies, or excuses and explanations, like the sort of thing she received from Marie Antoinette when she sent her stern letters.