Full Name: Maria Antonia Josephina Johanna
Profession: Queen of France
Why Famous: Wife to Louis XVI of France, Marie Antoinette was born Archduchess of Austria, the youngest daughter of the Austrian Empress Maria Therese and her husband Francis I. She was married aged 14 to the dauphin of France in a dynastic marriage arranged by her parents and Louis XV in 1770.
As a daughter of France's enemy, Marie Antoinette was an unpopular pick for queen. Her and her husband's failure to consummate the marriage did not help. Her enemies succeeded in painting her as a mere frivolous and spendthrift queen. She eventually bore four children.
In 1791 Marie Antoinette accompanied her husband on his flight to Varennes and was imprisoned the next year. After the abolition of the monarchy she was put on trial and convicted of high treason in 1793, and like her husband nine months before her, was guillotined in the Place de la Révolution in Paris.
She is notorious for supposedly saying 'Let them eat cake' when told that the peasants had no bread, but historians now doubt she ever said this.
- 1790-07-14 The Fête de la Fédération, attended by Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, is held across France on the first anniversary of the French Revolution
- 1792-08-13 Revolutionaries imprison French royals, including Marie Antoinette
- 2018-11-14 Jewellery that belonged to French Queen Marie Antoinette is auctioned off in Geneva, after not being seen for 200 years