Author(s): Evelyne Lever
Married for political reasons at the age of fourteen, Marie Antoinette was na ve, impetuous, and ill equipped for the role in which history cast her. From her birth in Vienna in 1755 through her turbulent, unhappy marriage, the bloody turmoil of the French Revolution, her trial for high treason (during which she was accused of incest), and her final beheading, Marie Antoinette's life was the tragic tale of disastrous circumstances colliding.
Drawing upon her diaries, letters, court records, and memoirs, Evelyne Lever paints vivid portraits of Marie Antoinette, her inner circle, and the lavish court life at Versailles. Marie Antoinette dispels the myth of the callous queen whose supposed response to her starving subjects was the comment, "Let them eat cake." What emerges instead is a surprisingly average woman thrust into a position for which she was wholly unprepared, a combination that proved disastrous both for her and for France. This is the revealing story of how Marie Antoinette kept her dignity and courage when Fate turned its back and she lost everything: throne, children, husband, and--in a very public and cruel execution--her life.