Marie Antoinette's World: Intrigue, Infidelity, and Adultery in Versailles

Marie Antoinette's World: Intrigue, Infidelity, and Adultery in Versailles

by Will Bashor


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This riveting book explores the little-known intimate life of Marie Antoinette and her milieu in a world filled with intrigue, infidelity, adultery, and sexually transmitted diseases. Will Bashor reveals the intrigue and debauchery of the Bourbon kings from Louis XIII to Louis XV, which were closely intertwined with the expansion of Versailles from a simple hunting lodge to a luxurious and intricately ordered palace. It soon became a retreat for scandalous conspiracies and rendezvous—all hidden from the public eye. When Marie Antoinette arrived, she was quickly drawn into a true viper's nest, encouraged by her imprudent entourage. Bashor shows that her often thoughtless, fantasy-driven, and notorious antics were inevitable given her family history and the alluring influences that surrounded her. Marie Antoinette's frivolous and flamboyant lifestyle prompted a torrent of scathing pamphlets, and Bashor scrutinizes the queen's world to discover what was false, what was possible, and what, although shocking, was most probably true.

Readers will be fascinated by this glimpse behind the decorative screens to learn the secret language of the queen’s fan and explore the dark passageways and staircases of endless intrigue at Versailles.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781538138243
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date: 07/30/2020
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 782,072
Product dimensions: 9.10(w) x 6.20(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Will Bashor is the author of the award-winning Marie Antoinette's Head: The Royal Hairdresser, the Queen, and the Revolution and Marie Antoinette's Darkest Days: Prisoner No. 280 in the Conciergerie. He holds a doctorate in international studies from the American Graduate School in Paris and is professor of global issues at Franklin University. He lives in Barcelona, Spain. Visit him at

Table of Contents

Author’s Note
Family Tree
Part I: Enigmatic Versailles
1 Louis XIII’s Château of Debauchery
2 Louis XIV’s Reign of Bosoms and Cockles of the Heart
3 The Parc-aux-Cerfs: Louis XV’s Private Bordello
À Savoir: Marie Antoinette’s Handwriting (Vienna, Austria)
Part II: Marie Antoinette, Dauphine of France (1770–1774)
4 The Strawberry Blonde Arrives
5 New Friends, New Enemies, and the Princes Charmants
6 Fans and the Art of Seduction
À Savoir: Marie Antoinette’s Handwriting (1770–1774)
Part III: The Barren Queen’s Temptations (1774–1778)
7 Gallant Pursuers
8 Décampativos and Risky Diversions
9 Questionable Relationships with Women
À Savoir: Marie Antoinette’s Handwriting (1774–1778)
Part IV: The Queen’s Regrets (1778–1792)
10 Charlot and Toinette’s Love Affairs: A Play Stolen from V——
11 The Austrian Woman on the RAMPAGE, or the Royal Orgy: An Operatic Proverb
12 Description of the Royal Menagerie of Living Animals
13 Filth, Sex, and Erotica in Magnificence
À Savoir: Marie Antoinette’s Handwriting (1778–1792)
Part V: A Queen Dethroned and Diseased (1792–1793)
14 Maladies Vénériennes at the Court of Versailles
15 Maladies Vénériennes and the Unthinkable
16 Cancer Rising and Sun in Scorpio
À Savoir: Marie Antoinette’s Handwriting (1792–1793)
Part VI: The Verdict
17 The Last Testament
18 Guilty?
Selected Bibliography
List of Illustrations and Credits
About the Author

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