Anne Marie d'Orléans


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Victor Amadeus II of Savoy

Anne Marie d'Orléans

  • Born: 27 Aug 1669, Château de Saint-Cloud, Paris, France
  • Marriage: Victor Amadeus II of Savoy
  • Died: 26 Aug 1728, Turin, Piedmont, Italy at age 58

  General Notes:

Anne Marie d'Orléans (Saint-Cloud, ), was the Queen consort of Sardinia and the maternal grandmother of Louis XV of France. She was the first Queen consort of Sardinia under the House of Savoy.

Among her descendents are Prince Henri, Count of Paris, the present Orléanist pretender to the French throne, Carlos Hugo, Duke of Parma, pretender to Parma. She is also an ancestor of Juan Carlos I of Spain, Albert II, King of the Belgians, Henri, Grand Duke of Luxembourg and Vittorio Emanuele, Prince of Naples, the pretender to the Italian throne, and of Queen Anne of Romania.


Anne Marie d'Orléans was born in the Château de Saint-Cloud, the second daughter of her parents, Philippe I, Duke of Orléans, and Henrietta Anne of England. Her paternal grandparents were Louis XIII of France, and Anne of Austria. Her maternal grandparents were Charles I of England and Henrietta Maria of France. As the granddaughter of a King of France, she was a petite-fille de France. Her older sister was Marie Louise d'Orléans, future Queen of Spain.

Baptised in the private chapel of the Palais Royal on 8 April 1670 by the Duke of Orléans' first chaplain, Louis de la Vergne Montenard de Tressan, Bishop of Vabres, later Bishop of Le Mans. Present were King Louis XIV, Queen Marie-Thérèse, Monseigneur le Dauphin and La Grande Mademoiselle. The latter pair were her godparents. Also present were the Princes and Princesses of the Blood, the Princes of Condé, Conti, the Duke and Duchess of Enghien and the Dowager Princess of Carignan.

Her mother died at the Château de Saint-Cloud ten months after Anne Marie's birth, at the age of twenty-six. A year later, her father married twenty-one year old Elizabeth Charlotte of the Palatinate who became very close to her stepdaughters. Three children were born from that marriage, one of them being Philippe d'Orléans, the future Regent of France.

After her elder sister Marie Louise's proxy marriage, which took place on 30 August 1679 at Fontainebleau, Anne Marie was addressed to as Mademoiselle. This denoted her status as the most important unmarried lady at Court. Anne Marie was also known as Madame Royale and Mademoiselle de Valois.

Though not as beautiful as Marie Louise, she was still attractive. At the time of her marriage, when she was within a month of completing her fifteenth year, she is described as tall and graceful, with black hair falling in long curls upon white and shapely shoulders, an oval face, a high forehead, an aquiline nose, smiling lips, and " an air of dignity tempered by an expression of goodness." Her countenance did not belie her character, for her stepmother, the second ''Madame'' \emdash no mean judge of her own sex by the way \emdash describes her as one of the most amiable and virtuous of women.


Anne Marie's proxy marriage to Víctor Amadeus II, Duke of Savoy, future King of Sicily and of Sardinia, took place at Versailles on 10 April 1684, the day after the signature of the marriage contract. Her husband to be was represented by her cousin, the duc du Maine, Légitimé de France, son of Louis XIV and Madame de Montespan.

Unfortunately, at the time, both the courts of France and Savoy were in mourning for the death of the French-Savoyard Queen of Portugal, a granddaughter of Henry IV of France, and the Duke of Savoy's aunt.

The Duke of Orléans accompanied his daughter as far as Juvisy-sur-Orge not far from Paris, and the comtesse de Lillebonne (wife of the Count of Lillebonne) accompanied her all the way to Savoy. She met her husband at Chambéry on the following 6 May. The wedding took place at the castle of Chambéry, the religious ceremony being performed by the Archbishop of Grenoble. Two days later, at two o'clock in the morning, the newlywed couple made its entry into Turin, amid great rejoicings.
Anne Marie as the Queen of Roses

Anne Marie was known as Anna Maria de Orleans in Savoy. At first, the arranged marriage was a happy one; the couple were devoted to each other and her husband had conquered her heart as soon as they had met. But things soured when her husband became overly involved in state affairs, forgetting about his devoted wife. He was also unfaithful to her within the first two weeks of their marriage with a lady-in-waiting to her mother-in-law Marie Jeanne of Savoy.

They had eight children, two of them stillborn. The first of these children, named Maria Adelaide nearly cost Anne Marie her life and her condition was at one time so critical that the viaticum was administered.

Anne Marie was a devoted mother; she insisted on nursing her daughters with her own hands in all their childish ailments, and once, when one of the young princesses had contracted some contagious malady, she shut herself up with her, and would not permit even Madame Royale to enter the sick-room. Nevertheless, despite the care and affection which she lavished upon her daughters, there was little of that intimacy between her and her children. Her eldest daughter, Marie Adélaïde, would always be closer to her paternal grandmother Marie Jeanne of Savoy.

Her husband had two further children with Jeanne Baptiste d'Albert de Luynes, his mistress from 1689 till 1700 when she fled the court. Jeanne Baptiste and the maréchal de Tessé helped to bring about the marriage of her daughter in the French court. After her multiple pregnancies, her beauty faded.

In 1706, Anne Marie's uncle, Louis XIV of France (along with Spanish forces from Anne Marie's second cousin Philip V of Spain) besieged Turin during the Battle of Turin. French troops were under the control of Anne Marie's half brother, the Duke of Orléans. She and her sons, Victor Amadeus and Carlo Emanuele, were forced to flee Turin.

The Savoyard consort had the use of the Royal Palace of Turin and the vast Palazzina di caccia di Stupinigi outside the capital.

As a result of his aid in the War of the Spanish Succession Victor Amadeus II was made King of Sicily in 1713 under the Treaty of Utrecht which ended the war. When her stepmother Madame heard of the news back in France, she wrote:

I shall neither gain nor lose by the peace, but one thing I shall enjoy is to see our Duchess of Savoy become a queen, because I love her as though she were my own child...

Victor Amadeus was forced to exchange Sicily for the less important kingdom of Sardinia in 1720 after objections from an alliance of four nations, including several of his former allies. The kingdom of Sicily went to Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor - father of Maria Theresa of Austria. Due to this rise of rank, Anne Marie and her husband became entitled to the style of Your Majesty.

A favourite haunt for the consort was the Vigna di Madama. This had been used by a previous French consort, Anne Marie's great-aunt Princess Christine Marie of France (1606-1663). Later on, her daughter, Maria Adélaïde recreated this little hideaway by having the Ménagerie at Versailles remodelled Anne Marie later changed the name of ''Vigna di Madama'' to the Villa della Regina, after herself.

Anne Marie died at the Royal Palace of Turin on 26 August 1728, the day before her 59th birthday. She was buried at the Basilica of Superga in Turin, where all her children, except Marie-Adélaïde and Maria Luisa, were later buried.

Her husband, Víctor Amadeus II, abdicated in favour of his son in 1730, and died two years later in Moncalieri, after having remarried morganatically.

* Princess Maria Adelaide of Savoy (1685-1712); married Louis, Duke of Burgundy and was the mother of Louis XV of France;
* Princess Maria Ana of Savoy (1687-1690);
* Princess Maria Luisa Gabriella of Savoy (1688-1714); first wife of Philip V of Spain;
* Princess X of Savoy (stillborn child, 1691);
* X of Savoy (stillborn child, 1697);
* Prince Victor Amadeus John Philip of Savoy (1699-1715), Prince of Piedmont;
* Prince Carlo Emanuele of Savoy (1701-1773); the next Duke of Savoy and King of Sardinia.
* Prince Emanuele Philibert of Savoy (1705-1705) Duke of Chablais.

At the age of ten, Anne Marie's eldest child, Marie-Adélaïde, was betrothed to the son of her cousin Louis, Dauphin of France; the eldest son of Louis was the Duke of Burgundy. This match was decided as part of the Treaty of Turin, which ended Franco-Savoyard conflicts during the Nine Years' War, and Marie-Adélaïde was sent to Versailles in order to learn her role as the future Dauphine and eventual Queen. By 1711, Marie-Adélaïde was the Dauphine of France but she died in 1712 of smallpox.

In June 1701, her father died at Saint-Cloud; her half-brother and his wife Françoise-Marie de Bourbon thus became the new Duke and Duchess of Orléans. In the same year, on 2 November, Maria Luisa, (Anne Marie's third daughter) then barely thirteen years old, married the French-born prince Philip, duc d'Anjou who had just become Philip V of Spain. The young princess would become Regent of Spain while her husband was away campaigning in Italy; she was a favourite with the Spanish court and would make Anne Marie the maternal grandmother of the Louis I of Spain and Ferdinand VI of Spain.

Jacobite succession

From 1714 to 1720, Anne Marie was the heiress presumptive to the Jacobite claim to the thrones of England, Scotland, and Ireland, which was held at the time by James Francis Edward Stuart, styling himself "James III and VIII". She became his heir on 1 August 1714, upon the death of his aunt Anne, and was displaced as his heir by the birth of the Old Pretender's son, Charles Edward Stuart, on 31 December 1720.

Through Anne Marie descend the current post-Stuart legitimist claims of the Jacobites to the English and Scottish thrones.

In 1807, almost eighty years after her death, Cardinal Henry Benedict Stuart died. He was the last of the descendants of her uncle, King James II of England. The Jacobites viewed the legitimate succession to the English and Scottish thrones as devolving upon the senior living descendant of King Charles I. In 1807, the Jacobite pretender became Charles Emmanuel IV of Sardinia, the great-grandson of Anne Marie d'Orléans and Victor Amadeus II of Sardinia.

Anne married Victor Amadeus II of Savoy, son of Charles Emmanuel II Duke of Savoy and Maria Giovanna Batista of Savoy. (Victor Amadeus II of Savoy was born on 14 May 1667 and died on 31 Oct 1732.)

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