The Age of Magnificence

age of magnificenceThe Age of Magnificence: Memoirs of the Court of Louis XIV by the Duc de Saint-Simon, selected, ed. and trans. by Sanche de Gramont, 4/5

If these memoirs are at all accurate, there never were more despicable, inbred, petty, spoiled, childish, disgusting excuses for humankind than those (the writer not excepted) that clotted the courts of Louis XIV in the early 1700s.

I’ll leave you with two excerpts so you’ll know I’m not exaggerating.

Portrait of the Grand Prieur:

…In debauchery, he had an advantage over his brother in that he was fond of both fur and feather [note: I have no idea what that means, but it sure doesn’t sound good].  Every night for the last thirty years he had been carried to bed dead drunk, and he was faithful to this custom until he died (103)…

Portrait of the Princess d’Harcourt:

…She was also a glutton, and those who invited her to meals despaired because she wanted to relieve herself as soon as she arose from table, but often did not have the time, so that she let fall behind her a train of filth (112)…


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