Tags: marie antoinette | affair | love | children | book

Marie Antoinette Book Suggests a Secret Life, Affair, Love Children

Image: Marie Antoinette Book Suggests a Secret Life, Affair, Love Children
Marie Antoinette and Axel Fersen (Wikimedia/Commons)

By    |   Monday, 11 Jan 2016 11:24 AM

Marie Antoinette, the notorious French queen who was guillotined during the French Revolution, may have had an affair and perhaps even secret love children, according to a new book that reviewed correspondence from her lifetime.

"I Love You Madly: The Secret Letters of Marie Antoinette and Count Fersen" is scheduled for publication this summer, according to Amazon. In it, historian and biography Evelyn Fisher offers evidence to suggest that Antoinette not only had an affair with Swedish statesman Axel von Fersen, but allegedly gave birth to his child, as well. Sophie, who died as an infant, was fathered by Fersen and not King Louis XVI, the book suggests, as reported by The Independent.

Farr also calls into question the paternity of Antoinette's son Louis Charles, according to People magazine.

The main piece of evidence is a 1791 note from a friend of the couple, Quintin Craufurd, to then-British Prime Minister William Pitt and his Foreign Secretary Lord Grenville.

"I know [Fersen] intimately, and think him a man of unquestionable honour and veracity," Craufurd wrote, according to Farr. "He is calm, resolute, and uncommonly discreet, without being reserved. This gentleman was Colonel of the Royal Suédois; was Her Most Christian Majesty's prime favourite; and is generally supposed to be the father of the present Dauphin [eldest son of the King of France]."

The book's title comes from Fersen, who reportedly told Antoinette in one letter, "I love you and will love you madly all my life." The Independent added that Antoinette called Fersen "the most loved and loving of men" and wrote that "my heart is all yours."

Previous published letters between Antoinette and Fersen only concerned affairs of state, the U.K. newspaper said.

Farr told People she compiled what she calls the most complete collection of the couple's correspondence, looking through archives to discover what was behind the blacked-out sections of some of the letters.

Marie Antoinette was in a loveless marriage with King Louis XVI that was arranged since she was 14. She allegedly began her affair with Fersen when she was 18 and it became physical in the last 10 years of her life when he traveled back to France after the American Revolution in 1783, the magazine noted.

"If she hadn't had him, how absolutely awful her life would have been," Farr told People.

Marie Antoinette, who married the future French king when she was just 15, and her husband were reviled for their excesses and the royal family was forced live under supervision of revolutionaries after the French Revolution outbreak in 1789, according to History.com.

She was guillotined on Oct. 16, 1793, after being arrested and tried for "trumped-up" crimes against the French republic, the website said. King Louis was executed the same year.

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Marie Antoinette, the notorious French queen who was guillotined during the French Revolution, may have had an affair and perhaps even secret love children, according to a new book that reviewed correspondence from her lifetime.
marie antoinette, affair, love, children, book
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2016-24-11
Monday, 11 Jan 2016 11:24 AM
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