Enfin je me rappelai le pis-aller d'une grande princesse à qui l'on disait que les paysans n’avaient pas de pain, et qui répondit : « Qu’ils mangent de la brioche. »
Finally I recalled the last resort of a great princess who was told that the peasants had no bread, and who responded: "Let them eat brioche."
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Confessions — The quote that started the Beam Me Up, Scotty
It is now ſixteen or ſeventeen years ſince I ſaw the queen of France, then the dauphineſs, at Verſailles ; and ſurely never lighted on this orb, which ſhe hardly ſeemed to touch, a more delightful viſsion. I ſaw her juſt above the horizon, decorating and cheering the elevated ſphere ſhe juſt began to move in, glittering like the morning-ſtar, full of life, and ſplendor, and joy. Oh ! what a revolution ! and what an heart muſt I have, to contemplate without emotion that elevation and that fall ! Little did I dream that, when ſhe added titles of veneration to thoſe of enthuſiaſtic, diſtant, reſpectful love,that ſhe should ever be obliged to carry the sharp antidote againſt diſgrace concealed in that bosom ; little did I dream that I ſhould have lived to ſee ſuch diſaſters fallen upon her in a nation of gallant men, in a nation of men of honour and of cavaliers. I thought ten thousand ſwords muſt have leaped from their ſcabbards to avenge even a look that threatened her with inſult.―But the age of chivalry is gone.―That of that of ſophiſters, œconomiſts, and calculators, has ſucceeded ; and the glory of Europe is extinguiſhed for ever.
—Edmund Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France — Burke's famous Purple Patch
"Antoinette avait résolu [Antoinette had decided]
De nous faire tomber sur le cul; [To drop us on our arses]
Mais le coup a manqué [But the plan was foiled]
Elle a le nez cassé." [And she fell on her face.]
— La Carmagnole, French-Revolutionary song.
"Despite her noble birth, Marie Antoinette was an extremely vulgar woman. The idea of playing the shepherdess at the Trianon, for example, now that's vulgarity! And Marie Antoinette showed her true colors in these kinds of episodes...it seems to me that Marie Antoinette was above all, and quite simply, very stupid, really an idiot. All her adventures were grotesque: her constant compromising, her preromanticism, her unbridled waste, and the story of the necklace and the Trianon and running the silk manufacturers of Lyons out of business, because she wanted her undergarments made only from fine linen and said so, proclaimed it, and waged war on silk."
— Jean Renoir, Renoir on Renoir: Interviews, Essays, and Remarks