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Item 241 - Marie Antoinette Catalog 473 (Apr 2016)

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Sold Price: $18,050.38 (includes buyer's premium)


Manuscript DS in French, signed “Payez, Marie Antoinette,” one page, 9.5 x 14.5, October 1, 1783. Document issued at Versailles addressed to “The Treasurer General of Our house and finances M. Marc-Antoine-Francois-Marie Randon de la Tour,” in full (translated): "We want and command the monies mandated by the state and slated for the maintenance and food of several of our officers for the current year. Pay in cash the four master grooms in Our service by commission, the sum of three hundred sixty-five pounds that We granted them for wages and food for the past quarter of July, August and September. Keep this letter as a receipt. The sum of three hundred sixty-five pounds will be granted and allocated to your accounts as an expense for our dear and beloved people to the accounts of the King, Our very honored Lord and Husband.” Boldly signed in the lower left by Marie Antoinette to approve the payment; document also bears Marie’s secretarial proxy signature to the right side. In fine condition, with a small hole beneath the signature, and faint soiling and edge toning. Accompanied by an engraved portrait bearing a facsimile signature.

There were vast expenditures required for Marie Antoinette to maintain her household and frivolous lifestyle, perhaps best represented by her main project of this year—the construction of a miniature village, the Hameau de la Reine. She spent much of 1783 occupied with the creation of this rustic hamlet, a place of leisure where she could escape from the pressures of royal life. With the public becoming increasingly resentful of her extravagant lifestyle, this period marked the beginning of her downfall. Pre-certified PSA/DNA.

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