Madame Elizabeth of France Corrects an Egalitarian Bishop

February 3, 2022

Élisabeth Philippine Marie Hélène of France, known as Madame Élisabeth.

On 29th August [1786] the Bishop of Alais, at the head of a deputation from Languedoc, had an audience with the King [Louis XVI], and on leaving the royal presence begged to be allowed to offer his homage to Mme. Elizabeth. He made her, according to the custom of the times, a complimentary address. Quite confused at his praise, the Princess blushingly replied that the Bishop judged her too kindly.

“Madame,” he replied, “I am not even at the level of my subject.”

“You are right,” she returned, “you are far above it.”

The Hon. Mrs. Maxwell-Scott of Abbotsford, Madame Elizabeth of France (London: Edward Arnold, 1908), 50.

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 814

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