French history sucked me into its vortex at an early age. I read young-adult biographies of Marie Antoinette and Josephine before I was double-digits. It was only later that I discovered the restoration monarchy of Louis XVIII (or, as I still pronounce it in my head, “ex-vee-eye-eye-eye”) and the bourgeois monarchy of King Louis-Philippe and Queen Amelie, who had a magnificent sapphire parure. The bottom line? There are a lot of interesting jewels and royal ladies to talk about in these courts.

Vector graphic of a golden tiara with pearls

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