The Job of a Princess

60 000 letters, this is how many Charlotte Elizabeth of Bavaria, a.k.a. Princess Palatine wrote in those forty-eight years she’s been married to Louis XIV’s brother, Duke of Orleans. She had a style of writing distinctly her own….

Versailles, 3 February 1707

I eat my lunch by myself and as quickly as I can. There is nothing more annoying than chew surrounded by twenty guys who watch you chew and who wait for you to swallow; this is why I execute it in less than half an hour….

Saint-Germain, 14 December 1676

We had already caught a rabbit and scared off a magpie, and were travelling along peacefully when I’ve noticed that my dress was in disarray. I stopped the horse and began to dismount, and at this very moment another rabbit took off and everyone after him. My horse followed suit! I was half-way out of my saddle and his jump put me back in, but the reins were lost and I yelled to the rider in front of me to help me; but when he brusquely leaned over, my horse got scared and dashed on. I was OK as long as we were going with the rest of the group, but as soon as I was left alone, I eased myself gently on the grass….

Fontainebleau, 9 October 1694

You cannot imagine how lucky you are to shit whenever you like…. It’s quite different here. I have to carry mine around until evening. There are no latrines on the side of the palace that faces the forest, and I happen to live on that side; consequently, I have to shit in the forest. I like to do it comfortably, and I cannot do it comfortably when my butt is suspended in the air. Any passerby can observe me — men and women, boys and girls, priests and the Hundred Swiss. As you can see, there is no pleasure without pain; and if I didn’t have to shit, I would be a happy camper…; but everyone has to shit and this is why Fontainebleau is filled with shit, mainly that of the Hundred Swiss for they make turds size of you, Madam!


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, Princess Palatine, the Hundred Stooges, The Hundred Swiss, Versailles. Bookmark the permalink.

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