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Marie

By worldhistoryhelp5 Mar 29, 2014 1244 Words
Marie Antoinette was just a young noble girl when she was promised to the future king of France Louis XVI. Then at fifteen, she was married and then at nineteen she was crowned queen of France. She was used to a very lavish life style in Austria so when she came to France she expected the same. She was a huge partier and spender; many people believe that she is one of the causes of the French revolution because of those reasons. She was extremely self-fish and although it has never been proven true, her statement “Let them eat cake” people believed it for so long because she of she conceded ways. However, she could have been a victim of slander because the people of France did not like the foreign-born queen, so was the French Revolution very because of Marie Antoinette? Marie Antoinette was born in Vienna, Austria 1755 and she was the fifteenth child of the Holy Roman Emperor Francis the first and the Habsburg empress Maria Theresa. In 1766, as a way to concrete the new alliance between the French and Habsburg thrones, Maria’s hand was promised to the future king Louis XVI of France. Four years later, Marie Antoinette, and Louis XVI were married, this was also their first time meeting one another, by proxy in Vienna. Then on May 16 1770, a second lavish wedding ceremony took place in the royal chapel at Versailles, more than 5,000 guests watched as the two were married. She was bathed in riches and attention this was just the beginning of her life in the lime light (History.com). Marie Antoinette was swiftly cherished and appreciated at the court. However, she and her husband’s relationship was the subject to most jokes and sarcasm of the people of Versailles. In addition, she had a bad reputation for her partying, her spending, and her affairs with other men. Cause the people of Paris to become very suspicious of the fact that the couple waited eight years for their first child to be born (bastille-day.com). Marie Antoinette was known for being amazingly independent; therefore, she refused to follow court etiquette. Was her independency too much for people of Versailles? They believed that she was the reason for most of the problems in the French monarchy, so yes they probably felt threatened by her strong will and started blaming her for things that were not her fault. Along with that, the Parisians came to resented her because she was not of French blood and for her extremely extravagant lifestyle. The peasants believed she was egotistic and consequently, she became the target of horrid gossip and was accused many things including, affairs with both men and women. All of this leads to claims of corruption and illegitimate sexual behavior and her later being called an “Austrian Whore”. The people used Marie Antoinette as a punching bag for their inability to change what their government was becoming (www.greatkat.com). On May 10, 1774, Louis XV died and on June 11, 1775, Louis was crown king Louis XVI of France and Marie Antoinette was named Queen of France. Louis XVI permitted Marie Antoinette to take a part in French political power, which was not the most ingenious idea since she began to nominate some of her closest friends and advisers to strategic positions. In 1784, Marie Antoinette supported her brother, Joseph the second, in his dispute with Netherlands. However, Louis XVI refused to support Austria and Marie Antoinette began to be strongly criticized by the French who called her "L'Autrichienne" or "the Austrian" showing how she was not being accepted by her French subjects. She tried to help fix her bad reputation by promoting the image of a caring mother, but even this was not enough to calm the angry protesters (bastille-day.com). The citizens of France began to blame Marie Antoinette for everything that was wrong with the monarchy, but were they correct in their assumption or was she just an accuse to get their anger out? Before the French revolution, Eighteenth-century colonial wars, the American Revolution for example, in which the French had interfered to help the colonists created a tremendous debt France. People in the first and second estate, The Catholic Church and Nobles, generally did not have to pay taxes due to their wealth. However, the third estates, which were peasants, felt pressured by the high taxes and became aggrieved with the royal family and their extreme spending. Louis XVI and his advisers tried to enforce a more representative system of taxation but the nobles resisted. In 1789, representatives from all three of the estates met at Versailles to make a plan to reform the French state. Yet there were still noble men that were averse to give up their privileges. The third estate delegates then formed a “National Assembly” that place government in the hands of the French citizens for the first time (History.com). Although conditions just got worst for the French peasants, many stated to believe that the monarchy and nobility were conspiring against them. Then in October of 1789, a mod of Paris women started protesting the high cost of bread and other goods dragged the entire royal family back to the city and imprisoned them in the Tuileries. In June of 1791, Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette tried to flee Paris and go to the Austrian border where the queen’s brother, the Holy Roman Emperor, waited with troops to invade France, over throw the revolutionary’s government, and restore power to the monarchy and nobles. This event was proof to the French people that the queen was a foreigner and a traitor (History.com). The royal family returned to Paris and Louis XVI reclaimed his throne. Although there were still many French revolutionaries that believed that, the treacherous enemies were the monarchs. In April of 1792, the Jacobin, radical revolutionary, declared war on Austria as a way to experiment on the loyalties of the king and queen. The French army was a wreck and the war did not go as well as the French revolutionaries planed, the people of France blamed the foreign-blood queen for their loss (History.com) Then again, in August, another mob captured the Tuileries, dethroned the monarchy, and locked the royal family in a tower. In September, the revolutionaries began to massacre the royalist prisoners by the thousands. One of Marie Antoinette’s closest friends, the Princesse de Lamballe, was dismembered on the streets and revolutionaries paraded her head and other body parts through the streets of Paris. Then in December, Louis XVI was put on trial and was executed in January. The hate of Marie Antoinette continuously grew stronger; in July of 1793, she lost custody of her youngest son, who was later forced to accuse his mother of sexual abuse and incest before a Revolutionary court. She was convicted of treason and sent to the guillotine in October 1793 (History.com). Marie Antoinette may have not been the direct cause of the people of Frances anger; but did she give them a reason to believe she was? Yes, she did, she was a partier, and a huge spender and people were convinced it was she that put France into debt. Even though she was not the exact reason for the revolution her conceded ways caused people to think she wanted France to collapse. She was an extremely influential person in French history but the French revolution, on contrary to popular belief, was not directly her fault.

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