Posts Tagged ‘France’

Glossary of French Terms Used in the Quadrille

The Quadrille was a popular square dance that became fashionable in the late 18th century. It was first introduced at Louis XV’s court sometime around 1760 and would have been danced by the Louis XVI, Marie Antoinette, and her friend, the Princesse de Lamballe. It was first performed with two couples facing each other.

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The Murder of Comte d’Antraigues and His Wife

Emmanuel Henri Louis Alexandre de Launay, comte d’Antraigues, was a French citizen. While living in France, d’Antraigues become involved in an incident known as the Favras Plot. When his involvement was discovered he fled to avoid execution. His mistress, a celebrated French operatic soprano named Madame de Saint-Huberty, followed him. They eventually married and lived…

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Places of the French Revolution: Hôtel de Ville

Administration for the city of Paris has been located in the same spot — the Place de l’Hôtel de Ville, formerly called the Place de Grève — since July of 1357. At that time, Paris’s provost of merchants (essentially mayor), Étienne Marcel, bought the maison aux piliers (House of Pillars) in the name of the…

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Pampering the French Royal Dog in the 1700s

Marie Antoinette was known to love dogs. When she first traveled from Austria to France to marry the Dauphin, her beloved pug Mops was with her. Unfortunately, she had to leave Mops at the border, although she did later manage to retrieve him. But Mops wasn’t the only dog that Marie Antoinette owned and neither…

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A French Balloon Duel

Frenchmen were well-known for defending their honor by dueling. In fact, according to one historian: “Duels did not always end in death, although too often they did. The practice among the nobility of wearing swords as everyday dress facilitated these kinds of encounters. The slightest pretext was used as an excuse for a duel of…

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Simon Nicolas Henri Linguet and the Bastille

Prior to patriots storming the Bastille on 14 July 1789, numerous prisoners were incarcerated there. As a prison, the Bastille held people considered dangerous by the King and government. Among the dangerous people was one man named Simon Nicolas Henri Linguet, a French journalist sentenced in 1780 because of his caustic attack against the Marshal…

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