Madame Tussaud was forced to make death masks of people she had known, Louis XVI, Marie Antoinette, Marat and Robespierre, to name a few,
front view of the memorial to Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette
SAINT DENIS - La Basilique - A monument to Louis XVII, frail son of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. He was imprisoned with his parents, separated from his family, brainwashed to believe Revolutionary propaganda, neglected, and died in a squalid prison cell.
Marie Tussaud was arrested and taken to the Bastille for being a royalist supporter. Her head was shaven, a custom before being taken to the guillotine, but was pardoned. She was forced to do not only one of the more curious acts in history, but one of the most morbid. She was employed to make death masks. The first were of course the most obvious: Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette.
Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette; detail from a portrait of Louis XVI, Marie Antoinette and Archduke Maximilian of Austria by Joseph Hauzinger. Circa 1776.
Marie Antoinette's mother gives some advice in a letter: "You were quite right in thinking I should not approve your riding at fifteen; Mesdames, (Louis XVI's aunts) whom you quote, did not ride till thirty... Detail from Marie Antoinette and her husband hunting. 1783, by Louis-Auguste Brun.
Marie-Antoinette, en pied, de trois quarts à droite, presque de face, tenant à la main droite un minuscule médaillon de Louis XVI