8 Louise-Emmanuelle de Châtillon, The Princess of Tarente [Taranto]
Marie-Antoinette’s aide, Lady-in-waiting
July 3, 1763-1814
Louise-Emmanuelle de Châtillon (1763-1814) was known as Princesse de Tarente and served as lady-in-waiting (Dame du Palais, Lady of the Palace) to Marie-Antoinette from 1782-1792. At the time of the revolution, her daughter, Charlotte (1788-1791), had already passed and her husband joined the émigré army under the Prince of Condé.
Louise-Emmanuelle was friendly with Princesse de Lamballe and frequented Lamballe’s salon in the Pavillon de Flore. Her bravery during the revolution saved the lives of the other women, and her outspokenness when arrested led to her acquittal. During the Reign of Terror (1793), Louise-Emmanuelle left and ultimately emigrated to Russia to become lady of the palace of Empress Marie Feodorovna (née Wurtemberg-Montbéliard) for the remainder of her life. She published her memoirs about the revolution in 1897.
What terrible days have I yet to describe? Recalling the events which have sullied France and which one would like to see forever erased from memory of mankind seems to prolong the horror; but I sentenced myself to it. Gratitude and admiration equally impose this painful task to me. I myself have experienced the attributes of devotion, I have seen the filial piety of my honourable companion rise to the highest degree of heroism, and I want to, if it is possible, to soften the atrocity of so many crimes by contrasting them with some inspired actions.
Bibliography of Sources:
“Louise-Emmanuelle de Châtillon, The Princess of Tarente.” Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia. Accessed May 22, 2019. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Louise-Emmanuelle_de_Châtillon,_Princesse_de_Tarente.
- de Châtillon, Louise-Emmanuelle. Memoirs of the Princess of Tarante, 1789-1792. Translated by Dr. Lindy Vinke. Amazon Digital Services LLC, 2017. ↵