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 Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette? 
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
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Events then conspired to make this shift in emphasis, this transformation, even more marked, with the court (what's left of it) moving or being moved to the Tuileries. A captive King and Queen was hardly the norm, barriers were broken down, the family lived together far more promiscuously than before, the parents actually saw a lot of their children. Nothing was as before, and in this strange new environment why should set behaviour not change as well? We know that Fersen visited the Queen also at St Cloud at this time, and that Lafayette tolerated these visits....for reasons of maybe hoping to use these visits against her at some stage? He was living in Auteuil and went there on foot. Even before the Tuileries exodus, we know that the Queen had procured for herself some surprizing private rooms at Versailles. As the Baron de Besenval, who had been given a private audience with the Queen in one of these deserted rooms in the castle, exclaims: 'I was surprized not that the Queen had such facilities, but rather by the fact that she had dared procure them!'

Where did you read Fersen visited the queen at Saint Cloud ? How can you be so sure ? Are you reffering to those letters he wrote to Sophie Piper, so often quoted ? Webster and Loomis however showed the count could not mean Marie Antoinette, and that "his friend" certainly was another woman.

Thank you for your geographical speech about Besenval's promenade in Versailles... Always refreshing...

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Tue Oct 28, 2008 9:08 am
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
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In conclusion it seems that the two protagonists here who are so convinced of the absence of a love affair (consummated or not) between MA and Fersen conveniently explain away so much curious evidence, be it epistolary (the famous exchange of letters addressed to Joséphine, MA's third given name, concerning the "niche au poêle" for example) or that of contemporaries witnessing this unique attraction. One can find a reason for everything if one tries hard enough, but for me (and for many others) there's too much smoke here to not find a fire somewhere. Please note that I have put in this post just some of the many arguments that can be raised. There's more if you need it.

Oh, this Josephine thing... It is another among Söderjhelm's suppositions... Why not, after all ? Maybe Fersen referred to the queen of France under a coded name, Josephine. Did they correspond using this name ? That would be another point... Madame Söderjhelm herself admits there were several Josephines in Fersen's entourage. So, what... ? In any case, none of these are love letters, they are but superficial conversations about clothes, music, health...

Talking about this stove... Did they finally find anything convincing ? A bill or an order... ?

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Tue Oct 28, 2008 9:15 am
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
Therese wrote:
Hans Axel wrote:
I can not find anything rude in what baron de batz wrote.


I am sorry, Hans Axel, I disagree. I think that the Baron was rude. It is not necessary to label Pim and myself as "protagonists." What is that supposed to mean? That we see ourselves as heroines in a movie? It is also discourteous to infer that we have some deep need for a "pure" Marie-Antoinette. I would love her no matter what. I enjoy discussions (and have been discussing this topic for two years) but cannot do so when such intrusive personal remarks are made.

My dear Therese, it is the last argument those believers finally use : if you don't think a love affair existed, it is because you want to make a saint out of Marie Antoinette. Isn't it stupid ? Of course, we would love Marie Antoinette anyway !

Actually, I am only interested in one point : how could such a legend raise upon nothing substantial ? What does this process reveal about human nature generally speaking ? Do we really want so hard to dream around... ? And do we prefer dreams to factual history ?

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Tue Oct 28, 2008 9:29 am
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
Pimprenelle wrote:
... Madame Söderjhelm herself admits there were several Josephines in Fersen's entourage. So, what... ? In any case, none of these are love letters, they are but superficial conversations about clothes, music, health...


Very true. Webster claims that Fersen had at least five "Josephines" among his women friends.

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Tue Oct 28, 2008 1:46 pm
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
Pimprenelle wrote:
My dear Therese, it is the last argument those believers finally use : if you don't think a love affair existed, it is because you want to make a saint out of Marie Antoinette. Isn't it stupid ? Of course, we would love Marie Antoinette anyway !


Yes, Pim. Furthermore, there is a great deal more to sainthood than just keeping one's marriage vows.

Pimprenelle wrote:
Actually, I am only interested in one point : how could such a legend raise upon nothing substantial ? What does this process reveal about human nature generally speaking ? Do we really want so hard to dream around... ? And do we prefer dreams to factual history ?


This is what fascinates me, too.

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Tue Oct 28, 2008 1:51 pm
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
I don't know if this Italian site on the two of them has been posted somewhere in these 20 something pages, but I couldn't find it with a search:

http://www.madamedepompadour.com/_m_antonietta_fersen/
Maria Antoinette & Fersen - un icontro romantico?

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Sun Mar 08, 2009 6:17 am
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
Oh, yes, I had seen it time time ago; but I don't think it had been posted yet. Thanks, Jim!

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Sun Mar 08, 2009 2:40 pm
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
This topic has always made me laugh. We have a royal family with etiquette requirements that call for an audience with courtisan participation when one rises in the morning; 'properly dressed' visitors could watch the royal family eat their meals. Louis especially had a day full of meetings; Marie Antoinette spent hours selecting wardrobe and dressing (not to mention her harp lessons), asorted royal duties took place as required; evenings were full of gambling, concerts, etc. Then it's time for bed with another ceremony before one could hit the sheets. And every minute of every day the prying eyes of servants and cortesans watched every move a royal made just hoping that His/Her Majesty, His Royal Highness etc. did something wrong that would serve as fodder for rumors, palace gossip, etc. Marie Antoinette had an especially difficult time. She was a tasty mmorsel for the gossip mongers because she was disliked simply because of who she was, and her distant mother (thanks to Mercy) knew every wrong move she made.

Now, in this environment, I'm to believe that MA and Fersen had an affair? Where? When? How? Just getting undressed would be a time consuming, major project as would dressing after the 2 minutes set aside for what had to be a laughable performance.

All the talk about this one having an affair with that one had to be nothing but rumor and gossip. Either that or these folks were Olympic quality athletes who performed amazing feats of physical love in record setting time.


Wed Mar 11, 2009 11:48 am
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
Artois wrote:
This topic has always made me laugh. We have a royal family with etiquette requirements that call for an audience with courtisan participation when one rises in the morning; 'properly dressed' visitors could watch the royal family eat their meals. Louis especially had a day full of meetings; Marie Antoinette spent hours selecting wardrobe and dressing (not to mention her harp lessons), asorted royal duties took place as required; evenings were full of gambling, concerts, etc. Then it's time for bed with another ceremony before one could hit the sheets. And every minute of every day the prying eyes of servants and cortesans watched every move a royal made just hoping that His/Her Majesty, His Royal Highness etc. did something wrong that would serve as fodder for rumors, palace gossip, etc. Marie Antoinette had an especially difficult time. She was a tasty mmorsel for the gossip mongers because she was disliked simply because of who she was, and her distant mother (thanks to Mercy) knew every wrong move she made.

Now, in this environment, I'm to believe that MA and Fersen had an affair? Where? When? How? Just getting undressed would be a time consuming, major project as would dressing after the 2 minutes set aside for what had to be a laughable performance.

All the talk about this one having an affair with that one had to be nothing but rumor and gossip. Either that or these folks were Olympic quality athletes who performed amazing feats of physical love in record setting time.


Excellent points. I always wondered about that myself.

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Wed Mar 11, 2009 12:58 pm
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
I think the idea of a romantic/affair love is , as others have commented certainly a more trumped up tale in later writings. But I do agree that there was a very intense, very real bond there, which may have been more like the relationships that Marie Antoinette expressed of her olders brothers. She craved and openly expressed her deep "love" and admiration for men of counsul in her life. What I found most interesting is that even after her death, Fersen continued to be in contact with her daughter Marie Therese, traveling far and wide to prove or disprove the death of her brother Louis Charles. Infact Fersen himslef is assasinated, I belive becasue of hius contnuing connections and support of the Bourbons.


Fri Mar 13, 2009 1:50 am
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
Welcome to the forum Dark Countess! In June of 1811, Axel Fersen was murdered in the street, in Sweden. He was accused by the angry mob of having poisoned the heir to the throne. After they severly beat him, they kicked him to death.


Fri Mar 13, 2009 2:20 am
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
Thanks for the information Lily- I apologize for the spelling errors in my post- I thought I had proofed it :oops:
Have you found in other sources besides Nagle that Fersen "quested" on the fate of Louis Charles?


Fri Mar 13, 2009 2:30 am
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
Happens to me every time with those spelling errors - don't worry about it - we all do it. We all know they are just typo's! I am not aware that Fersen was on any kind of a quest to find Louis-Charles. He went to Vienna in mid-January of 1796 to see Marie Therese and spoke with her on an occasion but he did not get to speak to her alone and left Vienna in June feeling kind of bitter about the whole trip. He never saw her again.
As I stated in an earlier post, I found alot of inaccurate things in this book. I finished it feeling glad that it was not the first information I had on Marie Therese, as I would have been misled.


Fri Mar 13, 2009 5:32 am
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
Actually I have read read that Fersen did go to England and visited the Bourbons at Hartwell House. I have read that in Meade Minnergerode's book, and other places, too.

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Fri Mar 13, 2009 2:16 pm
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Post Re: Count Axel von Fersen and Marie Antoinette?
I believe this too about Count Ferson's looks. They made it seem that they were perfect soulmates when she was married. anyone have any good book suggestions about Marie Antoinette.?


Sun Mar 15, 2009 2:43 am
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