The Liberated Lives of Marie Mancini, Princess Colonna, and Her Sister Hortense, Duchess Mazarin
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Pub. Ed. $26.99
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In The Kings’ Mistresses, Elizabath C. Goldsmith tells the little-known story of two privileged, spirited sisters who flaunted every social convention of 17th century Europe in their determination to live independently.
The Mancini sisters, Marie and Hortense, were born in Rome, brought to the court of Louis XIV of France at Versailles, and strategically married off by their uncle, French chief minister Cardinal Mazarin, to secure his political power base. Such was the life of many young woman of the age: they had no independent status under the law, and were entirely a part of their husband’s property once married.
Marie and Hortense, however, had another lifestyle in mind altogether. Abandoning their husbands and children, they took to the road, using the brand-new post coach service to ferry them across Europe. Hortense became a famous gambler, the women often dressed and passed as men, and their scandalous behavior became a sensation.
Elizabeth Goldsmith has written a vibrant, engrossing biography of two pioneering free spirits—feminists long before the term existed—who refused to be constrained by the morals, mores, and hypocrisies of their age.
Hardcover Book : 288 pages
Publisher: Public Affairs, Mbr Of ( April 03, 2012 )
Item #: 13-555480
Product Dimensions: 6.125 x 9.25 x 0.72inches
Product Weight: 17.0 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)