It took over ten years after her death for Louis XV to find Marquise Pompadour a replacement. Not that she really looked like a replacement. I guess, at that point he just didn’t care, there comes that moment in life…: she was straight from a brothel and would dress accordingly, just walking around the palace….
I like her. And I like Louis XV because of her. This is the door of Madame du Barry, and every time I pass by I feel better about life, men and women. Today behind this door we find the Chamber of Commerce, but her name is still inscribed above, which makes me feel better. And as I walk by, I remember her reading that letter of Cardinal Rohan and I laugh. Isn’t this what history is about? I see her read it out loud at a royal dinner table while sipping something or munching on some royal biscuit.
Marrie-Antoinette is also at the table and fuming with anger. The letter describes the future queen’s mom, Marie-Therese of Austria, taking part in partitioning of Poland. Cardinal Rohan is one of a kind and his letter to the king is a masterpiece of sarcasm. What a caricature of piety! The Austrian Empress is shown with a kitchen knife, serving herself a slice of Poland, while delivering a tearful sermon about Poland’s national integrity. The sixty-year-old monarch sneers, Poland is his late wife’s real estate. But Marie Leczinska is dead and Louis XV has no longer any say in this matter. Even his personal attendant, Lebel, the man with whom he had shared all of his intimate thoughts, is dead. So what is there to hide? Read it all out loud. Say it the way it is….