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 The Queen's English 
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Post The Queen's English
I don't know if anyone has asked this before, but did the Queen speak english? I know she was friends with quite a few English people but I guess I am just curious as to whether she could speak it very well? Or did she use translators of some sorts?

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Wed Feb 28, 2007 4:40 am
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Mme Campan reports that Marie Antoinette had for a while English lessons.

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Wed Feb 28, 2007 6:27 am
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Most English aristocracy spoke French at that time. For some, it was their preferred language. So they would have been quite at home speaking to the Queen in French.

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Wed Feb 28, 2007 8:32 am
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Yes, the queen studied English and could speak it haltingly. She was fascinated in English past times such as horse-racing, tea-time, English country dances. She had many English friends, and once made a faux-pas in her English that had very proper Lady Spencer (Georgiana's mother) running from the room. Very funny.

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Wed Feb 28, 2007 4:20 pm
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Quite right, French was actually the court language, it was spoken at court not only in England, but in Germany and other places (Austria and Russia were among them I think). I think most official letters sent between countries at the time were in French.

I know that Louis XVI knew English very well, and even read books in English.

:lol: I wonder what the faux-pas was...maybe something about riding. ;)

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Thu Mar 01, 2007 1:43 am
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I think she mispronounced the word "breeches," without the 'r.' Something like that....

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Thu Mar 01, 2007 2:01 am
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Therese wrote:
I think she mispronounced the word "breeches," without the 'r.' Something like that....
:lol: that is too funny

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Tue Mar 06, 2007 4:16 am
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Locks of Louis wrote:
Quite right, French was actually the court language, it was spoken at court not only in England, but in Germany and other places (Austria and Russia were among them I think). I think most official letters sent between countries at the time were in French.

I know that Louis XVI knew English very well, and even read books in English.

:lol: I wonder what the faux-pas was...maybe something about riding. ;)


my dad always told me that french was the diplomatic language of europe and was always used by officials, royals etc. its such a shame that languages in the UK are as widely taught as they used to be, after all we're still part of europe and trade with each other. :roll:

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Tue Mar 06, 2007 2:17 pm
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I believe the faux-pas was all to do with pronunciation. As Scots, Severina, I suspect you and I would pronunce breeches just as it's written: br-ee-ches. Down in the home counties, though, they pronounce it 'britches'. If Marie Antoinette pronounced it the same way but missed the 'r' she'd have said bitches.

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Tue Mar 06, 2007 2:47 pm
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TsmnDs wrote:
I believe the faux-pas was all to do with pronunciation. As Scots, Severina, I suspect you and I would pronunce breeches just as it's written: br-ee-ches. Down in the home counties, though, they pronounce it 'britches'. If Marie Antoinette pronounced it the same way but missed the 'r' she'd have said bitches.


that's right! poor MA, she was obviously trying hard to speak english, i hope they were sympathetic at the time!

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Tue Mar 06, 2007 4:54 pm
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Lady Spencer was greatly offended and ran out of the palace, waving people aside with her cane.

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Tue Mar 06, 2007 6:13 pm
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Therese wrote:
Lady Spencer was greatly offended and ran out of the palace, waving people aside with her cane.


:shock:

i wonder if she was princess diana's ancestor?

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Tue Mar 06, 2007 6:22 pm
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Yes, she was. She was the mother of Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, who was related to Diana.

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Tue Mar 06, 2007 6:26 pm
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v interesting, i wonder what diana would have done if it'd been her?

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Tue Mar 06, 2007 6:30 pm
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She probably would have been amused, as Georgiana was.

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Tue Mar 06, 2007 6:40 pm
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