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Hayden
Hayden • 1 year ago

Marie Tussaud was one of the most successful career women of the 19th century. She is truly a fascinating woman. At the age of 17, she became the art tutor to King Louis XVI’s sister and then, during the French Revolution, was hastily forced to prove her allegiance to the feudalistic nobles by making the death masks of executed aristocrats. In 1802, when her marriage dissolved, she left France and took her sons and her waxworks to England; where she began displaying her lifelike artwork.

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The guillotine blade that was used to behead Marie Antoinette during the French Revolution on 16 October 1793. The blade is on display at Madame Tussauds in London.

Madame Tussaud was forced to make death masks of people she had known. To name a few, Louis XVI, Marie Antoinette, Marat and Robespierre.

Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI.

Madame Tussaud at age 42. She is said to have helped the cult of celebrity with her waxworks of the famous at the time, and with the founding of her waxworks museum. Marie Tussaud made her first wax figure—Jean Jacques Rousseau—at the age of 17, and followed that with Voltaire and Benjamin Franklin. She was also employed during the French Revolution in the gruesome task of making death masks of the victims of the guillotine.

| Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette before Revolution

A ring with locks of hair of Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI

Marriage Contract of Louis XVI & Marie Antoinette.

Portrait of Louis XVI before his death-looking like an old man. His execution made him the first victim of the Reign of Terror. His wife Marie Antoinette was guillotined on 16 October, the same year.

This mask is from Madame Tussaud. There is no evidence that Madame Tussaud was present at her execution or that his is indeed the face of Marie Antoinette.