As one of the courtiers had commented, neither they avoided each other’s company; nor did they seek it. Like everyone else in the XVIII century Marie and Louis married young. Many at Versailles thought it to be an unequal match. Marie Leszczhinska was already twenty-two and Louis XV only fifteen; furthermore, her credentials as a princess were weak — her father was a king of Poland only for a few years; and yet, technically she was a princess; whereas the French were actively searching for a healthy female of child-bearing age for this sickly adolescent whose chances of survival seemed nil. As a mother Marie Leszczinska succeeded beyond all expectations: She gave Louis XV seven surviving children — all daughters except for one boy; but after the twelfth pregnancy, her bedroom door was finally sealed. To the King’s infidelities the Queen took a pragmatic attitude: she was known to say of the Louis XV’s favorite that since there had to be one, it might as well be Pompadour.
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