Tears from the Temple Tower

Holding the first letter, written to Melanie from Marie-Thérèse, she broke the seal. Unfolding the parchment paper, she looked at the date. It was written just six days after she had arrived safely in Vienna. Marie-Thérèse the 10-year-old innocent flower girl at Melanie’s wedding in Versailles, was now a very different seventeen-year-old woman. She had undergone much in the four years of internment in the Temple Tower.


15 janvier 1796

Mélanie, j'espère que cette lettre se penchera sur l'avenir, pour être un jour entre tes mains. Mon rêve, c’est que vous puissiez remonter dans le passé à ma très chère mère et lui faire savoir que j’ai survécu aux ennuis.

{January 15th 1796

Melanie, my hope is that this letter will reach into the future, to one day, be in your hands. My dream, is that you can reach back to the past to my dearest mother and let her know I survived the troubles.}

Melanie looked across to Marie Antoinette. Her hands clasped firmly, her eyes looking downward; listening to every word.

Melanie continued to read.

Le jour de votre mariage a été l’un de mes souvenirs les plus heureux et m’a aidé à traverser les nuits et les jours sombres qui m’ont frappé.

Maman m'a lu la lettre que tu lui avais écrite et les avertissements que tu nous as donnés.

Le fait de savoir, d'après votre lettre, que je survivrais à la terreur de la tour du temple, m'a donné de la force lorsqu'il semblait ne plus rester que peu d'espoir.

Je suis maintenant en sécurité avec la famille de maman à Vienne.

Lorsque maman m'a été enlevée en août 1793, je ne comprenais pas ce qui lui était arrivé.

Je me souviens d'avoir été si perdu et impuissant. Les murs de ma chambre retiennent mes mots.

"Marie-Thérèse Charlotte est la personne la plus malheureuse au monde. Elle ne peut obtenir aucune nouvelle de sa mère; elle ne peut être réunie avec elle bien qu'elle l'ait demandé mille fois. Vivez, ma bonne mère! dont mon père ne peut rien entendre. O mon père! veille sur moi du ciel au-dessus. O mon Dieu! pardonne à ceux qui ont fait souffrir mes parents. "

Même maintenant, Mélanie, je ne peux pas exprimer la profondeur de ma tristesse. Maman avait subi son sort le 16 octobre 1793, mais on ne m'en a jamais rien dit. Ce n'est que juste avant ma libération que Mme Renée de Chanterenne m'a dit que ma famille était partie et que les terreurs inimaginables qu'elles avaient endurées aux mains de nos compatriotes.

Je dois maintenant aller pleurer. Je vous écrirai davantage dans l'espoir qu'un jour ma douleur et ma tristesse s'atténueront.

Ton ami.

Marie Thérèse

{The day of your wedding was one of my happiest memories and helped me through many of the dark days and nights that befell me.

Mama read me the letter you had written her and the warnings you gave us.

Knowing from your letter, that I would survive the terror of the Temple Tower, gave me strength when there seemed little hope left.

I am now safe with Mama’s family in Vienna.

When Mama was taken from me in August 1793, I had no understanding as to what had happened to her.

I remember being so lost and helpless. The walls of my chamber hold my words.

"Marie-Thérèse Charlotte is the most unhappy person in the world. She can obtain no news of her mother; nor be reunited to her, though she has asked it a thousand times. Live, my good mother! whom I love well, but of whom I can hear no tidings. O my father! watch over me from Heaven above. O my God! forgive those who have made my parents suffer."

Even now Melanie, I cannot express the depths of my sadness. Mama had suffered her fate on October 16th 1793, but I was never told. It was only just before my release that Madame Renée de Chanterenne told me that my family had all gone and what unimaginable terrors they had suffered at the hands of our countrymen.

I must now go to weep. I will write more to you in the hope that one day my pain and sadness will subside.

Your friend.


As with Melanie’s letter to Marie Antoinette, the letter was stained by Marie-Thérèse’s tears.

Melanie held Marie as they cried together.

To be continued in Melanie’s Biography with love for her sister by her side.

Transported into history

1 - It was a night to remember forever!

2 - Moving within elite circles.

3 - Melanie was transported to ‘Un jour à Versailles’

4 - James will never believe this!

5 - James called back, but Melanie was away in France!

6 - “Happy anniversary my love - See you tonight”

7 - They woke in each other’s arms

8 - “Would you marry me 230 years ago James?”

9 - The French Court setting designs.

10 - Immersed in history

11 - Planning a trip for one day in May

12 - Auction Day to come somewhere in time May 7th 1819

13 - A breakfast fit for a King

14 - Hello Lord Wemsys - May 7th 1819

15 - Now we can return to see Marie.

16 - James and Melanie will marry in Versailles tomorrow.

17 - The wedding June 7th 1789.

18 - The letter was stained by Melanie’s tears.

19 - To visit Versailles once more

20- The flight to Geneva with Merie by her side

21 - The saving of Marie’s Jewels

22 - I fear to be the Last Queen of France. Write our story!

23 - Holding you forever my sister. Time still exists!

24 - A lock of hair

25 - Slavery – the absence of Choice to Choose.

26 - James will you still love me in another 200 years?

27 - Our bond will never break, even in a thousand years.

28 - A hole in the heart of history. A story of slavery.

29 - Our love will go on wherever you are.

30 - ‘The Slavery of Marie Antoinette’

31 - Loveless for so long.

32 - The Power of the pendant. "Nous avons aimé dans le temps."

33 - “Viva La Vida Melanie.” {“Live life Melanie.”}

34 - Time alone gives Marie love.

35 - Marie-Thérèse did live.
36 - Time heals. 

37 - Escape from Tuileries Palace.

38 - The endless dawns of time.

39 - A blast from the past.

40 - Where is it? Where is it!!?

Ching Dynasty Collection

We are the custodians of some of the most exquisite examples of hand carved artistry from 200 years ago, here as just a few for you to look at: