Marie Antoinette and her Two Children by Pierre Alexandre Wille
August 06, 2010
Etiquette strikes again: Teens find small escape
Upon Louis XV's death, a stunned Marie Antoinette and now Louis XVI stood in their inner apartments of Versailles. Famously, they asked God to guide them because of the disadvantage of their youth. Of course, a court does not wait for prayers or thought; there was proper etiquette to be carried out right away.
The Comtesse de Noailles, or as Antoinette referred to, Madame Etiquette, was the first to approach the dismayed couple with instructions on what to do next. As etiquette demanded, they were to make their way to the Grand Salon. Once their they had to receive visits from those royal princes who had to pay homage to the new King and Queen.
Naturally, performing such a task was tough at that time. To those first in line, Marie Antoinette was introduced as the new Queen of France leaning weakly upon her husband with a handkerchief constantly up to her eyes and nose.
That evening the court left for Choisy, and a carriage was called for the new King, his Queen, his siblings and his sister in law, the comtesse d'Artois. No one was older than twenty in that carriage. Naturally, though grieving, and full of anticipation of what might happen next, the party all succumbed to laughter after the comtesse d'Artois mispronounced a word, striking a funny bone in everyone.