Sunday 19 November 2017

Churning out the misquotes

EVERYBODY knows that in 1789 Queen Marie Antoinette, when told that the people had no bread, said "qu'ils mangent de la brioche" (let them eat cake). But everybody is wrong.

It would appear that a different queen of France said it 100 years earlier.

In 1789, it may have suited French revolutionaries to attribute the phrase to the reigning queen. They guillotined her soon afterwards. But there is no evidence that her alleged remark led to her death.

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