Marie Thérèse, daughter of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette
Marie Thérèse, The Duchess of Angouleme in 1827. Painted by Alexandre-François Caminade
All this time, Marie Thérèse, or Madame Royale as she was called in the Versailles time, had been locked up in the tower above her little brother. She could not contact him. She is the only one of the children of Marie Antoinette that would survive the French revolution.
From from August 1792 until December 1795, Marie Thérèse was locked up in the tower, forced to watch her family members been taken away one by one. She did not know what had happened to her mother, aunt and brother until much later. She could hear her brother's cries though, when he was being beaten in another room of the castle. She only had two books that she read over and over again.
In December 1795, on her seventeenth birthday, she was finally released, traded for some French prisoners with the Habsburg Emperor Francis II, her uncle.
Marie Thérèse is all alone. Her parents and siblings are all dead, as are most of the people she knew from her youth are dead or in exile.
She herself will also spend most of the rest of her life in exile in foreign lands.
When she is liberated she goes to Vienna, later to Mitau, Courland (now Jelgava, Latvia) where her closest family members live in exile.
In order to help restore the Bourbon Dynasty she marries her cousin Louis-Antoine, duc d'Angoulême. He was the son of her father's younger brother.
In the meantime, her father's eldest surviving brother proclaimed himself King of France as Louis XVIII. Since he had no children of his own, he arranged the marriage between Marie Thérèse and Louis-Antoine. He hoped they would have childred to finally succeed him and prolonge the Bourbon rule. However, the couple never had any children, in fact, the question has been riased if the marriage was consummated at all.
The plan of King Louis XVIII worked just for part; his younger brother succeeded him as King Charles X and Louis-Antoine and Marie Thérèse became Dauphin and Dauphine of France. In 1830 King Charles X was forced to abdicate. This resulted in his son becoming King Louis XIX and Marie Thérèse becoming Queen of France. This lasted for only 20 minutes thought, the time that Louis-Antoine needed to sign his own abdication papers.
The singing of the papers was done in the Château de Rambouillet.
Marie Thérèse had to leave France in exile again, this time to Great Britain, later to Italy an Austria. She spends the last years of ther life in Schloss Frohsdorf, near Vienna. Her husband died in 1844, Marie Thérèse died in 1851. They are buried in the crypt of the Kostanjevica Monastery in what is now Slovenia (than part of the Austrian Empire).
What had happened to her brother also happened to Marie Thérèse. She had a mystery created around her, known as the"Dark Countess" mystery
From 1807 until 1837, a mysterious couple lived in a castle near Hildburghausen in Germany. The woman was rarely seen, and if she did appear she was veiled. Rumours rose that this women was the traumatized Marie Thérèse, who had swapped places with another lady during the French revolution.
This mystery was also proofed wrong after a DNA test on the remains of the women in 2014. It was definitely not Marie Thérèse, but the real identy of the women remains unknown.