By Stefan Zweig
Translated by Eden and Cedar Paul
Stefan Zweig based his biography of Marie Antoinette, who became the Queen of France at the age of fifteen, on the correspondence between her and her mother, and her great love the Count Axel von Fersen. Zweig analyzes the chemistry of a woman's soul from her intimate pleasures to her public suffering as a Queen under the weight of misfortune and history. Zweig describes Marie Antoinette in the King's bedroom, in the enchanted and extravagant world of the Trianon, and with her children. And in his account of 'The Revolution', he describes her resolve during the failed escape to varennes, her imprisonment in the Conciergerie and her final tragic destiny under the guillotine. Zweig's account has been the definitive biography of Marie Antoinette since its publication, inspiring Antonia Fraser and the recent film adaptation.