Chapter

The Perils of the Sentimental Family For Royalty in Postrevolutionary France: The Case of Queen Marie-Amélie

Jo Burr Margadant

in Servants of the Dynasty

Published by University of California Press

Published in print October 2008 | ISBN: 9780520254435
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520941519 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520254435.003.0015
The Perils of the Sentimental Family For Royalty in Postrevolutionary France: The Case of Queen Marie-Amélie

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Historians of France's Old Regime and the French Revolution have often pointed out the dangers under absolutism of mixing monarchy and conjugal devotion—something all French kings managed to avoid except Louis XVI, whose fidelity to Marie-Antoinette accounts in part for the immense popular hatred of the queen. This chapter presents evidence that pursues the conundrum of mixing royal authority and marital bliss in the decidedly different setting of post-revolutionary France during the reign of Louis-Philippe (1830–1848), when his wife, Queen Marie-Amélie, became a universally recognized paragon of domestic love and duty in a royal couple known to be uncommonly devoted to each other. Paradoxically, by exhibiting those very virtues most admired in a wife and mother by a Europe-wide elite, Queen Marie-Amélie only helped undermine the dynasty that she tried so hard to save. This chapter first considers kings and queens in French history, then looks at the sentimental family of the liberal duc d'Orléans (1817–1830). The chapter concludes by focusing on the Republican satire of bourgeois domesticity.

Keywords: France; Queen Marie-Amélie; kings; queens; sentimental family; duc d'Orléans; satire; domesticity; monarchy; Louis-Philippe

Chapter.  8931 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Medieval and Renaissance History (500 to 1500)

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