Memoirs of Louis XIV and His Court and of the Regency — Volume 02 - Charlotte-Elisabeth Orleans

Memoirs of Louis XIV and His Court and of the Regency — Volume 02

By Charlotte-Elisabeth Orleans

  • Release Date: 1722-01-01
  • Genre: Biographies & Memoirs


Never were two brothers more totally different in their appearance than the King and Monsieur. The King was tall, with light hair; his mien was good and his deportment manly. Monsieur, without having a vulgar air, was very small; his hair and eye-brows were quite black, his eyes were dark, his face long and narrow, his nose large, his mouth small, and his teeth very bad; he was fond of play, of holding drawing-rooms, of eating, dancing and dress; in short, of all that women are fond of. The King loved the chase, music and the theatre; my husband rather affected large parties and masquerades: his brother was a man of great gallantry, and I do not believe my husband was ever in love during his life. He danced well, but in a feminine manner; he could not dance like a man because his shoes were too high-heeled. Excepting when he was with the army, he would never get on horseback. The soldiers used to say that he was more afraid of being sun-burnt and of the blackness of the powder than of the musket-balls; and it was very true. He was very fond of building. Before he had the Palais Royal completed, and particularly the grand apartment, the place was, in my opinion, perfectly horrible, although in the Queen-mother's time it had been very much admired. He was so fond of the ringing of bells that he used to go to Paris on All Souls' Day for the purpose of hearing the bells, which are rung during the whole of the vigils on that day he liked no other music, and was often laughed at for it by his friends. He would join in the joke, and confess that a peal of bells delighted him beyond all expression. He liked Paris better than any other place, because his secretary was there, and he lived under less restraint than at Versailles. He wrote so badly that he was often puzzled to read his own letters, and would bring them to me to decipher them.