Marie Antoinette Online Forum

What was this 'petit' operation'?
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Author:  Moose [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 5:43 pm ]
Post subject:  What was this 'petit' operation'?

I often wondered when younger what on earth the 'petit operation' that Louis underwent in order to be able to consummate his marriage actually WAS - most books I have read about the couple are rather coy on the subject, or at least presume that readers will know without being told what is being referred. I can only presume that it was circumsion... am I correct?

Author:  Louis-Charles [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 6:02 pm ]
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This operation is not sure for all the historians….Louis XVI had a phymosis, but nobody knows if he was really operated… :?

Author:  Moose [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 6:10 pm ]
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A phymosis? *hops off to google*. So it wasn't something as simple as an overtight foreskin which could be correct by circumsion? (btw I hope that this topic is appropriate for this forum .. I will remove it if not :)).

Author:  Louis-Charles [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 6:12 pm ]
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Yes a phymosis can be looked like that indeed! But nothing proves that Louis XVI was operated… :wink:

Author:  Moose [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 6:17 pm ]
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Oh I didn't know that -I thought it was documented that he was operated. Is it just speculated then?

Author:  Louis-Charles [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 6:34 pm ]
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Certain witnesses say that he was operated, as those of the clan Marie-Antoinette who absolutely wanted to defer the fault of this not consumed marriage on Louis XVI, but other witnesses say the opposite….who says the truth? We do not know… :?

Author:  Moose [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 6:53 pm ]
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In the book that I am reading, which admittedly is written by someone who usually writes romantic historical fiction, it quotes correspondence between Marie Antoinette and her mother and brother on the subject .. is this not legitimate?

Author:  Louis-Charles [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 6:57 pm ]
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Yes indeed Marie-Thérèse and Joseph II gave councils to Marie-Antoinette to consume their marriage, they exchanged letters, and Joseph II even spoke about it directly with her at the time of his visit in Versailles. But nothing proves this operation…

Author:  Pimprenelle [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 7:02 pm ]
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Indeed, since the marriage was not consummated for 7 years, people suggested that an operation could be necessary to cure Louis' phimosis. But it actually were suppositions...

Antoinette and Marie Therese talked about it in their correspondence, it is true. But there were but rumors and suggestions. There are no actual reports of any operation made by any surgeon.

On the contrary, Louis' diary shows no interruption in his huntings, while this operation would require several days convalescence at least.

Furthermore, there are doctors' reports and Antoinette's letters confirming that Louis was examined and that they found nothing wrong with him.

Author:  Moose [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 7:47 pm ]
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Interesting I hadn't realised that the operation was not definitely known to have been carried out. However is it likely that such a condition would have reversed itself spontaenously?

Author:  Louis-Charles [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 7:54 pm ]
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However is it likely that such a condition would have reversed itself spontaenously?

If the handicaps was not very serious yes it is possible…and I think it was a little problem. And this little physqic problem exaggerated by contemporaries was not the only reason of this not consumed marriage … Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette was timid and did not have big individual pleasures with the sexual relations… But with time, they could do it naturally :D

Author:  Moose [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 8:54 pm ]
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Interesting - that's rather different than some of the reports of the situation I have read and just goes to show that you can't always know what the truth of a matter is :).

Author:  Louis-Charles [ Mon Feb 26, 2007 9:16 pm ]
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Indeed Moose, therefore it is preferable to read several books written by different historians or witnesses, because we discover various testimonys and possible versions… and there are much of it!
And thus we can sort the right and the bad information, with a personal and legitimates interpretation too :D

Author:  Therese [ Tue Feb 27, 2007 1:52 am ]
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There is no evidence that Louis XVI had a phimosis. It was never mentioned in the medical reports of his examinations and such a defect would have been considered of great import in one destined to beget heirs for France. He went hunting everyday when the alleged operation was supposed to have happened, which would have been difficult. There were other medical procedures that may have been discussed, other than circumcism, that would help the young couple consummate their marriage, but I don't think any were actually performed.

Author:  Moose [ Tue Feb 27, 2007 9:03 am ]
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I see.. though it would be unusual for a marriage to be unconsummated for seven years in a 'normal' couple I would think, even though they were young when they married..

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