Angélique and the Kingdom of France
This is to be the final, we are told, instalment of this great historical saga. Following some discussion with friends and the offer of additional information, it seems to me to be the right time to make some changes to this page.
Having reached the conclusion of La Victoire d'Angélique - what do we actually know?
It is Spring 1681 (see updated information below*) and the persecution of the Huguenots is escalating. Running in parallel to the escalation of the actions taken against the Huguenots is the rise in power and influence of Louis who, by 1680, had become Louis the Great (Louis le Grand) or simply The Great Monarch (Le Grand Monarque) after the City of Paris had conferred the title of 'Le Grand' upon his august majesty.
Louis as the Sun God in his own timeline and in the 21st century Hermès are still using his imagery on their unique scarves.
Leaping forward (historically) to 1714 Louis' increasing power and influence allows for him to make major legislative changes and this particular one should be of interest to our principal characters (see timeline) : "Louis makes it possible for his legitimised sons, the duke of Maine and the count of Toulouse, to succeed if the Orleans and Condé families should die out in the male line; both are declared princes of the blood."
"Louis XIV also had children with his other mistresses, including Françoise-Athénaïs de Rochechouart de Mortemart, Marquise de Montespan (5 October 1641 - 27 May 1707): Louise Françoise de Bourbon (March 1669 - 23 February 1672), Louis-Auguste de Bourbon, Duc du Maine (31 March 1670 - 14 May 1736), Louis-César de Bourbon, Comte de Vexin (20 June 1672 - 10 January 1683), Louise-Françoise de Bourbon, Mademoiselle de Nantes, Duchesse de Bourbon et Princesse de Condé (1 June 1673 - 16 June 1743), Louise-Marie-Anne de Bourbon, Mademoiselle de Tours (12 November 1674 - 15 September 1681), Françoise-Marie de Bourbon, Mademoiselle de Blois et Duchesse d'Orléans (4 May 1677 - 1 February 1749) and Louis-Alexandre de Bourbon, Comte de Toulouse (6 June 1678 - 1 December 1737)."
Louis obviously favoured a particular type of woman if these portraits are anything to go by - seen above is Françoise d'Aubigné, Marquise de Maintenon, the former Françoise Scarron who became Louis' second legitimate wife. On the right is Françoise-Athénaïs de Rochechouart de Mortemart, Marquise de Montespan who reigned supreme as Maîtresse-en-titre for many years and whose youngest son by Louis becomes the Count of Toulouse. Athénaïs is also seen below on the right with her children.
Is still in America with all her children bar Florimond who is in France.
Joffrey de Peyrac
Is on his way or already in Europe having crossed the ocean following the the footsteps of a disgraced friend with the intention of pleading with the King, for clemency (for Aristide not for himself).
Has assumed the titles and honours of the Count of Toulouse, his father having ceded these to him to enable him to take his rightful place at the court of Louis XIV.
Has just returned from the French Court with the astonishing news that, having been long believed dead, he can now confirm the demise of Ambroisine, former duchess of Maudribourg but recently concealed under another identity.
Is badly disfigured and nearly blind having survived a harsh winter and an attack of smallpox.
Raimon-Roger and Gloriandre
Are the infant twins born to Joffrey and Angélique in Salem in 'Route de l'Espoir'. As I read Route de L'Espoir in languages other than English, it is possible that I may have missed something in the naming of the infants (or I may just need to re-read them to refresh my memory) but, whilst researching the possible outcomes of this saga and finding that, astonishingly, Toulouse is to be given to a legitimised son (see above) of Louis XIV by Madame de Montespan, I also came across the fact that the early Counts of Toulouse were often named Raimon (or Raymond or other variations). I am reminded that in Book 1 we are also given the history of Raimon of Poitou as he and the legend of Mélusine are intertwined but I still need to try a find out a bit more about Roger and Gloriandre. I have looked them up as Saints but there is minimal information about Roger and nothing to indicate that there is a Saint Gloriandre.
So - where might the story go from here?
If Anne stays with the path of the historical facts and Louis bestows Toulouse onto his legitimised son 33 years after the point of the action that we have reached; we should indeed be worrying about what may have happened to Florimond and any offspring he may have had in the intervening years? It is difficult to think of Angélique in her 70s at this time which would mathematically place Florimond in his 50s. After 33 years he would be established in his title of Count of Toulouse and is likely to have children and probably grandchildren of his own.
Even if he has no male heirs, surely Cantor or conceivably Raimon-Roger would be next in line to claim their fathers'/brothers' titles? Or, in extreme measures there may even be a precedent for Joffrey to wrest them back for himself, although he may have decided, in view of his own mature years, not to lay yet another claim to the titles. However, I really don't know enough about French law to be able to state whether or not that would be possible - this is mere speculation.
I suppose the easiest way out is to accept that Anne Golon had never intended to make this into a series, let alone a long-running series. The original book was to have been the beginning and end of it (and wouldn't we have been the poorer for the experience) and so the question of what might or might not happen to the provenance of the tile of Count of Toulouse might not have been a consideration then - it is now!
Addendum (*new info):
Historian, Marie-France Bernier has been good enough to read and make a more enlightened comment about the general chronology of my musings and here is what she has come up with:
Essentially this is a SPOILER so if you have been to this page before and do not wish to know please do not read on!
"I especially read the items relating to Anne and Angélique and thought I would share with you that Angelique's birth year is 1638 (same as King Louis). It is written in Marquise of Angels that she is the same age as the king and this is confirmed in the "A. in Quebec" text that I had worked on with Elaine. It says that she arrives in Quebec in late November 1676 and at that point she is 38.
That means that at the end of "Victoire", it is spring 1681 and she is 42 years old at that point. The Revocation of the Edict of Nantes (which Anne has said Angélique will witness) took place in 1685, so that means the last book should cover roughly the period 1681-1685."
Thank you Marie-France
A little (intelligent) speculation .......
A friend of mine and I had a bit of a conversation about the above - we are chalk (me) and cheese (friend) but it makes for an interesting exchange of ideas:
"I have given a bit of thought to your comment about this being fiction - but even in fiction, I don't think real events should be messed with - so my solution to the Toulouse issue would be that Joffrey barters it back to the King to save Aristide - I haven't decided how he gets Florimond to agree to the idea but that isn't my worry! Comes of being a purist wanting things to be in order where they should be!
At heart I’m a purist too and would have preferred Louis XIV never to have conferred the title of Comte de Toulouse on his son. When I read Quebec and Joffrey’s titles and positions were all reinstated, I was hoping that just the one of Comte de Toulouse wouldn’t be included.
Joffrey could barter his title to save Aristide, (or for that matter rewriting Quebec including my idea above) but wouldn’t it be rather galling for Angélique? What a victory to hand to Mme de Montespan; an enormous victory in fact for Angélique’s sworn enemy and rival!
Actually, glossing over the historical existence of the real Comte de Toulouse (son of Louis and Mme de M) is no worse than the assumption that Joffrey was descended directly from the ancient Comtes de Toulouse and that the title had never been assumed by the French crown – as indeed by the middle of the 13th Century it had. (Historically, Raymond VII’s daughter married into the French royal family and as she was Raymond’s sole heir and died childless, the title of Comte de Toulouse reverted to the French crown – Raymond VII was the last medieval Comte de Toulouse.)
Actually, when I read that it was La Montespans child that gets Toulouse I did experience a frissom of mischief in that this is exactly the sort of rivalry that had existed and so I think it would be spot on of Louis to be mardy enough to cock a reciprocal snook at Angélique (remember trifle!) to remind her that however many victories she may have had over him, he, Louis XIV was still her sovereign liege lord! Added to that Joffrey did used to get a bit above himself and his arrogance toward the King was a little too chauvinistic and self-important however great and powerful the rank of Lord of Toulouse was in that time frame!
Naughty! (LOL) and poor Florimond! (as it is he and not now Joffrey who would primarily lose out). But your reasoning is logical and would make an admirable plot……though not one that might be appreciated by all lovers of Angélique and Joffrey! At the end of the day though, I’m glad it’s not our problem (I for one lack the necessary imagination) and that it is in the hands of Anne to sort out."
A French discussion site has noticed these pages and make comment about the topics I have touched on, one of which is the question of the title of the Count of Toulouse:
It would appear the author is surprised that an English site is quite as currently up to date as it is - namely that the Intégrale page has all the up to date versions of the books covers, that the rumoured film starring Elodie has been highlighted and that I placed a hypothesis about the title of the Count of Toulouse on this very page! Only one tiny thing wrong - this is not an entire site devoted to Anne - just a part of it, although a very important part it has to be said.
Sagittarius element. The Sagittarius personality traits are associated with the fire element in Western astrology. This element gives rise to the characteristic boldness, free-spiritedness, strong sense of fun and adventure, and recklessness of a Sagittarius. Symbolized by the Archer or the mythical Centaur, the Sagittarius zodiac sign is characterized by impulsiveness, pride, and idealistic fervour. Most especially evident in Sagittarius woman traits, the Sagittarian personality is highly flirtatious and carefree. In men, the need for variety and adventure is a key personality trait.
The Virgo element. The Virgo zodiac personality is directly associated with the zodiac element earth, which is characterized by sensuality, practicality, and fertility. Virgo is represented by the virgin maiden. It is ruled by the planet Mercury. The planet Mercury symbolizes the sharing of ideas, communication, and dexterity. When coupled with the other zodiac elements, the planet Mercury can indicate an indecisive and fickle-minded nature. But when combined with a Virgo’s earth element, the flighty qualities of Mercury are provided stability and a stunning attentiveness to detail.
The Libra element. The Libra personality traits are associated with the element of air in Western astrology. This element gives rise to the characteristic openness, intellect-driven, and expressiveness exhibited by a typical Libra. Symbolized by the Scales, the Libra zodiac sign is characterized by an extroverted personality who values commitments and the opinions of other people. By nature, the Libra is a true arbiter who will always lean towards whatever he or she thinks is right. The Libra has a very keen sense of justice. Moreover, a Libra possesses a vibrant and magnetic personality coupled with an air of diplomacy. The Libra is also said to be a naturally imaginative individual, too. This has something to do with having Venus as its ruling planet. There are so many writers, musicians, and painters who happen to be born under the sign of Libra. Stephen King, E. E. Cummings, Oscar Wilde, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Graham Greene, D.H. Lawrence, T. S. Eliot, Ursula K. Le Guin, Arthur Miller, and William Faulkner are just some of the few Libra-born individuals who excel in the arts and literature.
Owing to its dual element : Gemini is known to be of a Positive quality, meaning that people born under the Gemini Zodiac Sign are extroverts and outwardly expressive. They are very energetic, and their quick wit makes them absolutely adorable for most of the zodiac signs. They are very adaptable, and they are considered to be one of the most versatile of all the other astrological signs of the zodiac. One of their most impressive traits is that they are able to strike up a conversation out of anything, being helped by their intellect and quick wittedness. They also value the discovery and experience of new and exciting things. They love freedom and liberty, and would rather have fun than sit around and worry about other life matters.
(This narrative is also courtesy of the Zodiac Signs Org)
For the three major characters that we have grown to know through Angélique the generalisations relating to their star signs seem fair - with no knowledge of how Athénaïs son will turn out and Gemini being governed by two elements, we can probably assume this is also reasonably accurate.
I hope you have enjoyed this speculative journey and if you have anything you wish to comment on or add, please let me know.
Russian book web-sites are anticipating Book 14 although the timings are slightly late : 2010-2011 - Анжелика и королевство Франция
Page refreshed : 30th December 2016