Friday, April 27, 2007

Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette's children

Since many readers find their way to this site while searching for information on the children of Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette, I thought I would do a post just about them. Above is their oldest daughter, Marie-Thérèse-Charlotte, known as "Madame Royale," born in front of the entire court on December 19, 1778.

Here is Madame Royale with the first Dauphin, Louis-Joseph, born in 1781.

Madame Royale as a small child. She was called "Mousseline la Sérieuse" because of her serious expression.

Madame Royale at about the age of twelve.

Madame Royale, the "Orphan of the Temple" at seventeen years old, dressed in mourning for her family.

Marie-Thérèse-Charlotte, the Duchesse d'Angouleme, in her late thirties.

This picture is almost always said to be Louis-Charles, the second son of Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette. Others, including myself, believe it to be the Dauphin Louis-Joseph, who died in June 1789 at the age of seven of tuberculosis. Louis-Joseph was slender, frail and delicate, with chestnut hair and ethereal blue eyes, like his mother's. Louis-Charles was robust and husky, like his papa; a "peasant child," his mother described him. He had blonde hair and was very mischievous.
A portrait of Louis-Charles, the "peasant child," later Louis XVII, who was so tormented in the Temple prison, after being torn from his mother's arms.

Louis-Charles, the second dauphin, born on Easter Sunday in 1785. Marie-Antoinette called him her "chou d'amour." History records that he died of neglect and tuberculosis in the Temple prison in June of 1795. His parents had been killed. His sister Madame Royale was in the room upstairs but not allowed to see him or even sit near him when he was sick and dying. She was not permitted to view his corpse or pray by his body. Very bizarre, to say the least.

The Dauphin Louis-Charles, Louis XVII. One can see the fear and confusion in the once cheerful little countenance, having witnessed the mob screaming for his mother's entrails. He was one of many, many French children who would suffer unspeakably during the Revolution.

Below is the baby Madame Sophie, who was born in 1786 and lived for not quite a year. Share


Anonymous said...

This is such a sad story where lives were counted too cheaply!

Do you often find parallels with the Romanov Royal family? Both Royal families would die by Revolution?

I know that many think the age of 'rationalism' began in the 1960's. I discussed with my friends that I believe it began with the Age of 'enlightenment' with the French Revolution.
With the French Revolution The Age of Enlightenment gained validity even though man himself was entering a dark period. The same with the Russian Revolution first seen as the workers unite became instead new chains around the soul of man.

Neither philosphy would bring the promised 'utopia'.....

Yours in Christ,


elena maria vidal said...

Yes, Marie, there are amazing parallels with the Romanovs. Like Alexandra, Marie-Antoinette wanted to take care of her own children. In MA's time it was the custom for nobles to foster their children out to others to raise but MA broke with the custom. She wanted to nurse her children herself, which was rarely done. The same with Alexandra.

Both France and Russia were the subject of apparitions and requested "consecrations." Our Lord asked Saint Margaret Mary to ask the King of France to consecrate France to the Sacred Heart. Our Lady asked at Fatima that Russia be consecrated to her Immaculate Heart by the Pope. In each country there was a bloody Revolution; in each country, the rulers killed were practicing Christians, devoted to their families. In both France and Russia, the monarch received holy orders at his anointing at the coronation. Fascinating and terrifying parallels.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for taking the time to research and share with us the artists rendition of these children. Thankfully these portraits were perserved in spite of the bloody upheaval of the French Revolution.

Michelle Therese said...

Pardon my simplistic understanding of the French Revolution...I was just struck by a thought:

It seems odd that so many uphold the French Revolution as a great thing, something that tore the people from the controlling grip of the Church etc - when in fact so many innocent people suffered so much during and after! And how can anyone justify the horrors that the Royal family was put through?? How does that make up for any of their faults and failings?? It makes me very very sad.

Revolution is always ugly and far more nasty and evil then the problems it is supposedly "correcting."

elena maria vidal said...

Thank you, alaughland!

Yes, Coffee Wife, the violence and neo-paganism of the Revolution only led to the dictatorship of Napoleon and two centuries of political upheaval in France and the world, culminating in the modern totalitarian regimes. It all really had nothing to do with the faults of the royal family; the faults of the royal family were used as a lame excuse to overthrow Christendom.

Michelle Therese said...

"the faults of the royal family were used as a lame excuse to overthrow Christendom."


Thank you so much for opening my eyes to the truth about Marie Antoi...(I can't spell). I've added her to my list of "Catholic Role Models."

Is there any way to get the Vatican to make a serious investigation into her life and see if she's a martyred Saint?

elena maria vidal said...

Yes, Coffee, I agree. Pope Pius VII said that as far as he was concerned, Louis XVI was a martyr of the Faith. Now at one point, Louis caved in and received Communion from a juring priest to avoid violence and he also signed the Civil Constitution of the Cergy, although later he repudiated it completely. Marie-Antoinette, however, never would have anything to do with the Civil Constitution of the Clergy, which denied the papal supremacy; she immediately found a new confessor who had not taken the oath (so did Louis for that matter.) So if Louis is a martyr,I think his wife is, too.

The problem is that both Louis and Antoinette have been SO vilified, that at best people think Louis was an idiot and Antoinette a floozy. I think when more Catholics become aware of the truth, there will be more hope to introduce the causes of both the Martyr-King nad the Martyr-Queen.