Madame de Maintenon, in the corridors of power
Barely 16 years old, Françoise d’Aubigné, after a difficult and poor childhood, married the famous poet Scarron who introduced her into the high Parisian society. As a widow, she was entrusted by Madame de Montespan, then favourite of King Louis XIV, with the mission of raising the illegitimate children born of her love with the king. This position of governess opened the doors of the court where she was quickly noticed by the monarch. He appreciated her wit and charms so much that, after granting her the title of marquise, he married her in the greatest secrecy a few years later. By weaving a whole network of friendships around her, this devout woman asserted herself as an essential figure in the eyes of the king and the court, credited with an occult political role. In 1686, as the culmination of her work as an educator, she opened the Royal House of Education of Saint-Cyr, whose objective was to welcome poor young girls from the French aristocracy. She died in Saint-Cyr in 1719, at the age of 84.
The fate of a woman who remained in the shadow of the Sun King, queen of his heart if not queen of France.
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From 16⁄04 to 21/07/2019, daily between 9 AM and 6.30 PM except on May 1st. Closed on monday.