Valentine Words of Warning
King Louis XVI & Marie Antoinette:
How NOT to behave within a Partnered Relationship or Reign of Rulership
To commemorate the upcoming Jour d’Amour, also known as Valentine’s Day, the man who brought you THE astrological love guide of the 21st century, “Love in the Stars” thought he’d shake things up this year. Rather than tell a romantic tale saccharinely soaked to the hilt that everyone automatically assumes ends up like this:
In factual reality, abruptly and grimly concludes more like this:
The union between the King and Queen of France, Louis XVI and his wife, Marie Antoinette sets a memorable standard on how NOT to behave within a partnership be it via a marriage or a monarchy. For not only did the relationship between the 18th century rulers not survive due to both parties repeating negative behavior cycles inherent within their Virgo Scorpio union, their cyclical blunders were the cause behind neither of the two royals surviving at all.
The King and Queen’s failure to trust each other along with their inability to communicate openly and honestly between themselves are the key factors which make their royal partnership one of the most tragic (and gruesome) examples of its kind in all of Western History.
Along with misdirected communication, ironically what sealed the Queen of France’s grim fate were some famous words she is accredited for carelessly uttering,
….but in actuality, never really said.
A portrait taken of the princess Maria Antonia at the age of 13, a few months prior to her leaving her native Austria for the French royal palace at Versailles.
Maria Antonia was the 15th child and last daughter born to the Holy Roman Emperor Francis I of Austria and his wife, the Hapsburg Empress Maria Theresa. Born November 2nd, 1755, the young Austrian princess was summoned to France’s palace of Versailles while still a girl at the age of 14. Following her arrival at the French royal court, Maria was married off two days later to a teenage boy she had previously never met, who by all accounts, was a teenage girl’s worst nightmare.
One year her senior, Louis XVI of France was far from the typical boy in his mid-teens. Born on August 23rd, 1754 Louis was a sullen and painfully shy portly teenager who was utterly deficient in the art of conversation or any of the other social graces.
There were no wedding nuptials following the marriage ceremony of Louis and Maria Antonia, now Marie Antoinette. Louis kept himself occupied for the entirety of their wedding night partaking in his favorite pastime – the making and subsequent breaking of locks.
Right from the start, Marie knew that her main purpose being at Versailles was to bear the throne of France a male heir. Her mother constantly reminded Marie of her royal duty by barraging her with letters stating she still had no word of a royal pregnancy followed by lamentably writing if only she had a daughter with truly striking looks, then she wouldn’t have to trouble herself with such constant worry.
The pressure was unrelenting for Marie to become pregnant. It didn’t help the situation that her Fertile Myrdle of a sister-in-law, the Countess d’Artois produced two bouncing blue-blooded baby boys within the first two years of Marie’s arrival at court.
Seven years would pass before the Queen bore the first of her four children with only one surviving to adulthood.
Both of Hollywood’s film renditions portraying the life of Marie Antoinette stunned audiences with their focus on the excesses of Versailles: 1938’s “Marie Antoinette” starring Norma Shearer
And 2006’s “Marie Antoinette” starring Kirsten Dunst and directed by Sofia Coppola
Despite being crowned King and Queen of France, Louis and Marie were never quite on the same page whenever attempting to communicate with each other. If any given conversation made the King uncomfortable, unsure, or embarrassed, he would abruptly stop speaking, proceeded by his Majesty hurriedly vacating whatever room he was in.
When the King was first shown the smutrags printed by the French peasants, known as “libels”, which claimed the most base and character damaging falsehoods about his wife, “that foreign bitch”, Louis looked away and said nothing. How could a King even lower himself to discuss such disdainful, yet widely believed rumors about his wife sleeping with every man, woman, and yes, even child in the palace?
Despite being quite the trend setter who introduced the high powdered wig or “pouf” to French high society which subsequently became wildly popular across all of Europe, Marie Antoinette’s penchant for high hair was a favorite image exaggeratingly cartoonized by the revolutionary libels in order to portray the Queen as a vapidly self-obsessed hedonist. Above: the image depicts a “typical” day at Versailles where all activity revolves around the Queen’s wig including a massive crane-like apparatus that appears guillotine like (bottom center) accompanied by a crew of 9 men needed just to hoist the towering hair piece onto her head. Below: a caricature of Marie donning a gargantuan powdered wig of the most excessive kind.
Even upon seeing with his own eyes a libel which stated Marie’s favorite way to entertain at Versailles was by throwing all out orgies, the King of France still said and did nothing as he deluded himself into thinking the poisonous slander being openly stated by his subjects about him and his family wasn’t actually happening.
When the King and Queen along with their small children were forcibly removed from the grounds of Versailles by blood thirsty masses, many efforts were covertly undertaken for the royal family to escape, but miscommunication was the culprit behind every botched attempt.
A rather dashing portrait of King Louis XVI which attempted to convey the image of a self confident and decisive monarch – traits which Louis were anything but.
The Virgoan King would hem and haw indecisively over every detail whenever an escape plan was presented before him. Each time Louis never consulted his wife and each time the King would entreat upon a course of action far too late. The King, Queen, and their four children would actually manage to get past the prison walls with every attempt they made to escape but would get caught red-handed and sent back to jail every time, over and over again.
An image depicting one of the many failed attempts made by King Louis XVI (fretfully shown in carriage on the far right) to escape the imprisonment enforced upon him and his family.
When Marie received word that some of her countrymen planned on breaking her out of jail with the objective of retrieving her back to her native Austria, the Queen stood firm, bravely stating she would never leave her husband nor her children behind.
A painting showing the Scorpionic Queen putting herself between her family (including her husband) and imminent danger.
Despite the King’s public execution nine months earlier, Marie still couldn’t fathom what was happening when she was told her trial was next. It was at this sham display of farcical law that the Queen was stunned into silence upon hearing every fabricated accusation and vicious lie that had been whispered behind her back since she had ascended the throne of France. Marie lowered her sheared head and said not a word to allegations that would make even Caligula blush.
A sketch drawn by Jacques Louis David of Marie Antoinette seated with her hands tied and her hair shorn as she was paraded through the streets of Paris on the back of a carriage the morning of her execution before arriving at the guillotine.
It was upon hearing within this court of chaos a Jacobin faux magistrate announce to those present that amidst her numerous acts of debauchery while her subjects lay starving in the streets, the Queen was heard to have said a particular phrase, that Marie became noticeably confused.
The mob wildly screeched in unison that the Queen should die for saying such treasonous, unfeeling words while all of Paris suffered in hunger from a famine brought about by the skyrocketing price of bread.
Marie was too confused to defend herself by letting those present know she had never said such a thing in her life. The phrase actually came from a book which was printed while she was still a girl in Vienna, long before she embarked upon her doomed path as the headless Queen of France.
Even if the channels of communication were in-tact between the Royal Couple, your Love Author firmly believes that still wouldn’t have been enough to prevent Louis and Marie from undergoing their tragic fate. Along with the addition of open communication which was clearly absent, had the two rulers trusted one another, then maybe Louis’ intense fears would have subsided enough to allow for the relaxed poise needed for he and his family to successfully break free of their confined surroundings.
So this Valentine’s Day, heed your Love Author’s words of warning! Want to prevent your relationship with your significant other from being carted off to the chopping block, my good readers? Show yourselves you trust each other by openly communicating and for sovereign’s sake! never assume you know what your partner is thinking.
Because should the two of you play power games or withhold whatever misgivings either of you may have about your relationship, then your union will most assuredly befall the same fate as Louis and Marie:
Wax likenesses of the shorn heads of King Louis XVI (left) and Queen Marie Antoinette (right) taken immediately after their executions that were used as death masks to represent the end of the Bourbon monarchy following the King and Queen’s bodies being disposed of in common, unmarked graves.
Process that amidst your baby’s breathed teddy bears and chocolate covered roses. Happy Valentine’s!
*Brad Kronen’s book “Love in the Stars” published by Llewellyn Worldwide, Inc. is available for purchase at your local book seller or online at amazon.com at the link listed below.