The Queen’s residence
The Petit Trianon and its park are indissociably linked to the memory of Queen Marie-Antoinette. She is the only queen to have imposed her personal taste on Versailles. Sweeping away the old court and its traditions, she insisted on living as she wished. In her Trianon domain, which Louis XVI gave her in 1774, she found the heaven of privacy that enabled her to escape from the rigours of court etiquette. Nobody could come there without her invitation.
The Rustic style of the Queen’s Hamlet
Marie-Antoinette, seeking to flee the Court of Versailles, ordered the construction of her hamlet in 1783. There, she regularly found the charms of country life, surrounded by her lady’s companions. It became a veritable farm, directed by a farmer, whose products supplied the kitchens of the Palace. Under the First Empire, the Hamlet was refurnished with refinement for Empress Marie-Louise. No sooner had the first garden in the area around Petit Trianon been finished than Marie-Antoinette was thinking about creating another. On this new territory, the Queen developed an aspect started earlier by Louis XV with the Menagerie of Trianon: the taste for rustic style. Between 1783 and 1787, the Hamlet was thus created in the spirit of a true Norman village, with eleven houses spread out around the Big lake.
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