The Wife of the Green Ape


This is a portrait of Louis XIV’s favorite daughter, nick-named Mademoiselle de Nantes. The year is 1710 and Louise Françoise chose to put on this Panda bear costume on the occasion of her husband’s death. Yes, she was a widow of Duke Bourbon. The guy was so ugly that at the Court they called him the Green Ape! That is why she was not exactly devastated but rather relieved and not only dressed up in the velour and ermine outfit, but also used the moment as a picture opportunity. Not a happy marriage any way you look at it: he frequented brothels, she cheated on him with his younger brother. Duke Bourbon was not satisfied with the match; first of all the princess was not a legitimate daughter of the king; her mother’s name, since the mom, Athenais Montespan, was a married woman, could not appear on the girl’s birth certificate; so, technically the king gave her birth all by himself — not an easy thing to do for a man, that’s why he loved her dearly; this also explains why she came with one million livres dowry, some important real estate and a lucrative position in the government, but a bastard nevertheless, even though of royal blood; while Henrie-Jules de Bourbon-Conde — a hunchback with a large wart under his eye, believing himself to be a ware-wolf, was a prince of blood.

 

See also Son of the Green Ape.

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About versaillesgossip, before and after Francis Ponge

The author of the blogs Versailles Gossip and Before and After Francis Ponge, Vadim Bystritski lives and teaches in Brest France. The the three main themes of his literary endeavours are humor, the French Prose Poetry, the French XVII and XVIII Century Art and History. His writings and occasionally art has been published in a number of ezines (Eratio, Out of Nothing, Scars TV, etc). He also contributes to Pinterest where he comments on the artifiacts from the Louvre and other collections. Some of his shorter texts are in Spanish, Russian and French.
This entry was posted in Chateau Versailles, Court, Courtiers, Louis XIV, Madame de Montespan. Bookmark the permalink.

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