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After LaviniaA Literary History of Premodern Marriage Diplomacy$
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John Watkins

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781501707575

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501707575.001.0001

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Divas and Diplomacy in Seventeenth-Century France

Divas and Diplomacy in Seventeenth-Century France

(p.174) Chapter 6 Divas and Diplomacy in Seventeenth-Century France
After Lavinia

John Watkins

Cornell University Press

This chapter examines how war affected interdynastic marriage in seventeenth-century France. By late seventeenth century, the hope for European peace had lost its foundations in a shared sacramentology and confidence in women's intercessions. When discrete national historiographies celebrating nation-states rather than dynasties appeared, their writers cast the women whose marriages bound Europe in a single family as tragic victims of their fathers' ambitions and husbands' infidelities. This chapter analyzes how French drama registered the personal and cultural impact of marriage diplomacy's declining prestige by focusing on Pierre Corneille's Horace and Tite et Bérénice, as well as Jean Racine's Andromaque and Bérénice. It also discusses two treaties, the 1659 Treaty of the Pyrenees and the 1670 Treaty of Dover.

Keywords:   war, interdynastic marriage, France, women, Europe, marriage diplomacy, Pierre Corneille, Jean Racine, Treaty of the Pyrenees, Treaty of Dover

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