The Last Love Note of Marie-Antoinette

As we all recall Marie-Antoinette was the last queen of France before the leftist uprising of the French Revolution. The most famous anecdote about her being that when she was told that the poor have no bread to eat, she replied, “Then let them eat cake instead.” Thus proving how out of touch and ignorant she was with the common people of France. Whether she actually said this or it was a wonderful piece of propaganda is up for debate at this point.

However, what isn’t up for debate was that her husband was incredibly shy around women and disinterested in sex (apparently they didn’t consummate the marriage until four years after the ceremony). The royal personage preferred to dabble in cuckoo clocks than diddle his wife.

Thus the young girl took on a string of lovers. One of whom was a Swedish diplomat by the name of Axel Fersen, as we see in a letter from the Comte de Creutz to King Gustave III of Sweden.

220px-Hans_Axel_von_Fersen2
Axel Fersen

“April 10, 1780

I must confide in your majesty that the young count de Fersen has so charmed the Queen that people have started whispering. I swear that I’m unable NOT to believe that she has a crush on him; I’ve seen too many signs to doubt it.

The young count has acted admirably by his discretion and above all by his decision to go off to America.”

Years later, Fersen joined a French expeditionary force and fought valiantly in the Revolutionary War. Marie-Antoinette was sentenced to death in 1793. Fersen then wrote to his sister, pouring out this love.

“August 24, 1793

If I could still do something, could try to free her. I would suffer less. Not being able to do anything, what’s so horrid…. My greatest happiness would be to die for her, but that happiness is denied me….”

After much activity and bribing Fersen managed to get a note smuggled into Marie-Antoinette’s prison cell. It read,

“Adieu. My heart is completely yours.”

But alas, the note arrived one day after she lost her head in the guillotine, unaware of this last token of love.

For more fun try books by Rex Hurst


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