Marie Antoinette

Marie Antoinette


About this podcast

Marie Antoinette was born on November 2, 1755, in Vienna, Austria. Antoinette was the fifteenth child of Emperor Francis I and the Holy Roman Empress Maria Theresa. However, Marie Antoinette is most remembered throughout history for being the Queen of France from 1774 - 1792. There is no evidence that she ever uttered the infamous words often attributed to her, "Let them eat cake."

Madame Deficit
In 1770, Antoinette married Louis-Auguste, the Dauphin of France. When her husband became the King of France in 1774, Marie then became the Queen of France. She would give birth to four children. At first, the French people adored her. As time went on, they came to dislike her because of her loyalties to her birthplace of Austria - an enemy of France. They also disliked what they thought was her extravagant spending and wild hairstyles. Many blamed France’s financial problems on her lavish spending. They even nicknamed her Madame Deficit (meaning Mrs. Debt).

The Flight to Varennes and Beheading
With the onset of the French Revolution and the fall of the French government, the royal family attempted to escape France to Austria in what came to be known as the Flight to Varennes. The pair was arrested at Varennes, near the France-Austria border, and imprisoned at the Temple Prison. The new National Convention of France then abolished the monarchy on September 21, 1792. Marie Antoinette was convicted of treason and beheaded at the guillotine on October 16, 1793, almost nine months after her husband was beheaded.



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