Marie Antoinette

The Journey

Publisher: Anchor Canada
France’s iconic queen, Marie Antoinette, wrongly accused of uttering the infamous "Let them eat cake," was alternately revered and reviled during her lifetime. For centuries since, she has been the object of debate, speculation, and the fascination so often accorded illustrious figures in history. Antonia Fraser’s lavish and engaging portrait excites compassion and regard for the queen, immersing the reader not only in the coming-of-age of a graceful woman, but in the culture of an unparalleled time and place.


Chapter Oone

A Small Archduchess

"Her Majesty has been very happily delivered of a small, but completely healthy Archduchess."

Count Khevenhuller, Court Chamberlain, 1755

On 2 November 1755 the Queen-Empress was in labour all day with her fifteenth child. Since the experience of...
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1. How important was Marie Antoinette's childhood in Austria -- hereditary enemy of France -- in influencing her career? Was it ever possible for an Austrian princess to have a satisfactory life in France?

2. Was Marie Antoinette's relationship with her mother the Empress Maria Teresa, conducted in copious...

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“Absorbing as ever, Fraser’s blend of insight and research persuades us that this unfortunate queen deserves neither the vilification nor the idealization she has received.” The New Yorker

“Fascinating. . .filled with thorough research, fast-paced writing and loving attention to detail.” The Globe and Mail