Memoirs of the Court of Marie Antoinette, Queen of France, Volume 1

Memoirs of the Court of Marie Antoinette, Queen of France, Volume 1

By Genet Campan

  • Category: Biographies & Memoirs, Books
  • Type: ebook
  • Release Date: 2012-06-19
  • File Size: 41.12KB
  • Author: Genet Campan
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Memoirs of the Court of Marie Antoinette, Queen of France, Volume 1 Details

This is a biographical book. JEANNE LOUISE HENRIETTE GENET was born in Paris on the 6th of October, 1752. M. Genet, her father, had obtained, through his own merit and the influence of the Duc de Choiseul, the place of first clerk in the Foreign Office. Literature, which he had cultivated in his youth, was often the solace of his leisure hours. Surrounded by a numerous family, he made the instruction of his children his chief recreation, and omitted nothing which was necessary to render them highly accomplished. His clever and precocious daughter Henriette was very early accustomed to enter society, and to take an intelligent interest in current topics and public events. Accordingly, many of her relations being connected with the Court or holding official positions, she amassed a fund of interesting recollections and characteristic anecdotes, some gathered from personal experience, others handed down by old friends of the family'. The first event which made any impression on me in my childhood', she says in her reminiscences',was the attempt of Damiens to assassinate Louis XV. This occurrence struck me so forcibly that the most minute details relating to the confusion and grief which prevailed at Versailles on that day seem as present to my imagination as the most recent events. I had dined with my father and mother, in company with one of their friends. The drawing-room was lighted up with a number of candles, and four card-tables were already occupied, when a friend of the gentleman of the house came in, with a pale and terrified countenance, and said, in a voice scarcely audible',I bring you terrible news. The King has been assassinated!' Two ladies in the company fainted; a brigadier of the Body Guards threw down his cards and cried out',I do not wonder at it; it is those rascally Jesuits'. —'What are you saying, brother?' cried a lady, flying to him; 'would you get yourself arrested?'—'Arrested! For what? For unmasking those wretches who want a bigot for a King?' My father came in; he recommended circumspection, saying that the blow was not mortal, and that all meetings ought to be suspended at so critical a moment. He had brought the chaise for my mother, who placed me on her knees. We lived in the Avenue de Paris, and throughout our drive I heard incessant cries and sobs from the footpaths.

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