Madame Elisabeth: a tragic princess




Madame Elisabeth playing a harp, Leclercq, 1783. Photo: RMN–Grand Palais / Gérard Blot.

I can’t believe how much time has passed since I first wrote here about the upcoming exhibition at Montreuil about Madame Elisabeth, the youngest sister of Louis XVI. Anyway, it’s due to open on the 27th of April and there’s now a rather lovely website all about the exhibition and some of the exhibits.

It looks like it’s going to be as wonderful as I had expected and I’m really looking forward to taking a day trip to Versailles at some point in the next couple of months to have a look for myself!

Pages from Madame Elisabeth’s dress book, which she would use to select her clothes for each day by placing a pin by the relevant fabric sample. This one is for summer 1792, during which time she was in the Tuileries before being moved to the Temple in August of that year. Photo: Archives Nationales /Pierre Grand.

Madame Elisabeth: Une Princesse au Destin Traqique is running at her former private residence, Montreuil in Versailles from the 27th of April until the 21st of July – so I’d better get my skates on if I want to go and see it for myself!

Plan of the domain of Madame Elisabeth at Montreuil, 1787-8. Photo: Bibliothèque nationale de France.

If you want to know more about the life of Madame Elisabeth, who was destined to die on the guillotine in May 1793 just a few days after her thirtieth birthday, then I have a series of posts here.