Marie Antoinette

Article

July 5, 2022

Maria Antoinette (French: Marie Antoinette, German: Maria Antonia Josepha Johanna; Vienna, November 2, 1755 - Paris, October 16, 1793) was the daughter of Empress Maria Theresa, wife of Louis XVI. The marriage of 14-year-old Marie Antoinette and 15-year-old Louis XVI, grandson of the French king, was concluded on May 16, 1770. It was the merger of the two largest European families, Habsburg and Bourbon. Upon her arrival in Paris in 1773, Marie Antoinette was received with great sympathy by the citizens of the capital. However, after some time, she became synonymous with extravagance, which caused great dissatisfaction among the people, who accused her of the country's financial crisis. In the first years of the French Revolution, she sought the help of Austria to suppress it. She was arrested in 1792 after an unsuccessful escape with the king to Belgium and accused of treason, and her head was beheaded.

Childhood and youth

Marie Antoinette was born in Vienna in the Hofburg Palace, as the fifteenth child and eleventh daughter of Franz I Stephen and Empress Maria Theresa. A court official described baby Antoinette as "a small but perfectly healthy Archduchess." Marie Antoinette's sisters married various kings in Europe. Maria Amalia married the Prince of Parma, her sister Maria Caroline married King Ferdinand of Naples, Maria Christina was regent of the Austrian Netherlands together with her husband Prince Albert of Saxony. The Treaty of Aachen, signed in 1748, meant that Austria and France ended about 150 years of continuous conflict. The two countries became allies during the Seven Years' War (1756-1763). In order to preserve the alliance between Austria and France, they proposed to the French king Louis XV that his grandson marry one of Maria Theresa's daughters. First, Marie Antoinette's older sisters were designated for that wedding, but they died of smallpox (Johanna Gabriel died in 1762 and Marie Josepha in 1767), so it was Marie Antoinette's turn. After long negotiations, the French king proposed Marie Antoinette as his grandson in 1769. When the marriage contract was signed, Maria Theresa realized that her daughter knew little of the French language and French customs. Because of this, many tutors were given the task of preparing the young Marie Antoinette for the role of the future queen of France.

Journey and arrival in France

Marie Antoinette is on her way