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 The Queen Versus the 'Favorite' 
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Joined: Sat Mar 07, 2009 4:12 am
Posts: 89
Post The Queen Versus the 'Favorite'
We all know that Louis XVI was the only French King not to have a mistress (or 'favorite'). Which leads me to wonder about those who did.

For example, Versailles was so etiquette oriented and procedure/privilidge burdened, when there was a ball, who attended; the Queen or the 'favorite?' At Sunday mass, who attended? If a Royal child died, did the 'favorite' attend the funeral? When the public was permitted to observe the Royal family eat, was the 'favorite' present? Were the 'favorite' and the Queen ever together? If they passed each other in a hallway, would the 'favorite' have to curtsey? Did they ever speak?

The whole idea seems so awkward and unpleasant and hurtful, I'm surprised it flourished for as long as it did.

Tue Jan 19, 2010 1:16 pm
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Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2007 10:21 am
Posts: 1545
Location: paris
Post Re: The Queen Versus the 'Favorite'
The favourite was often attached to the Queen's household and owed her complete deference. Conflictual relations between them were not possible in the context of the court. As for attending funerals of royal children, even the Sovereigns could not attend their own child's funeral. The favourite would eat sometimes in the private appartments with the King or at dinners she was specifically invited to, but not at the meals where the sovereigns ate before the court. Favourites attended mass but discreetly. If you ever visit Versailles, ask for one of the guided visits which includes a charming little room with a latticed window opening on to the royal chapel from high above the congregation, wherein Mme de Pompadour would assist at Mass. Its' quite a feeling to be in that intimate and unchanged little room, to the left of the altar.

"Fidelité et constance, sans espoir de récompense."

Tue Jan 19, 2010 4:02 pm
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Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2008 4:10 pm
Posts: 710
Post Re: The Queen Versus the 'Favorite'
Catherine De Medici was married to King Henri II and was known to have been extremely jealous of Diane De Poitiers his mistress (who was also about 20 years older than the King). Catherine De Medici did all sorts of weird things - including having a hole cut through a floor so that she could watch the King and Diane (!) - Catherine De Medici loved her husband, but her husband loved Diane. As soon as the King died - Catherine booted Diane out of her beloved chateau Chenonceau - given to Diane by Henri II - and took it for herself!

Tue Jan 19, 2010 8:32 pm
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