“I’m Sorry Sir, I Did Not Mean It”

That’s what Marie Antoinette said to her executioner when she accidentally stepped on his foot, moments before her head was unceremoniously lopped off. Guess what I did last night? Why, watched a documentary about Marie Antoinette of course! I’ll break down what I found most interesting, bullet style:

  • MA’s Mama had 16 kids – SIXTEEN!
  • MA was only 14-years-old when she married Louis.
  • Poor Louis was scared to death of sex and could not perform.
  • MA turned to other pleasures like fashion, theatre, opera, and gambling.
  • She wore her hair nearly three-feet high, adorned with feathers and ribbons. HOT!
  • MA was completely out of touch with the real France. She had no idea how the poor struggled.
  • MA and Louis finally consummated their marriage SEVEN YEARS years after their wedding.
  • Much like today’s tabloids, pamphlets and cartoons featuring MA in profane and compromising positions circulated, tarnishing her image forever.
  • Eventually, MA embraced a more pastoral lifestyle.
  • Although she began her reign as a frivolous, indulgent queen, by age 34, with France in the midst of a revolution, MA realized she needed to step up and get it together. By this time, Louis was despondent, politically inept, and MA was despised.
  • Eventually, the monarchy was dissolved and the royal family was imprisoned.
  • Neither Louis or MA were afforded fair trials. Both were accused of treason.
  • Many years later, historians discovered proof that MA had in fact committed treason. During the war between Austria and France, she sent Austria information about France’s troops and their positions. However, at the time of her trial, the court had no way of knowing this information. Still, she was found guilty and also accused of incest, which she found almost unbearable.
  • At the time of the trial, courts favored a new invention called the guillotine, which was considered a humane form of execution.
  • The press who chronicled MA’s journey to the platform on which she was executed admitted they wanted to report of her fear and cowering. Instead they couldn’t deny how dignified and poised she remained to the end.
  • MA was buried in an unmarked grave.

I’m excited to see Sophia Coppola’s treatment of the most hated woman in France. I saw a preview a few days ago – Kirsten Dunst plays quite the saucy minx. The documentary downplayed the stories of MA’s extramarital affairs, so I’m not sure what’s true and what isn’t. I’m intrigued by the music from the preview. It’s very Pretty in Pink. Interesting choice, no?


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