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Marriage and RevolutionMonsieur and Madame Roland$
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Siân Reynolds

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199560424

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199560424.001.0001

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‘This Astonishing Lady’:

‘This Astonishing Lady’:

What Did the Minister's Wife Do All Day?

(p.220) 22 ‘This Astonishing Lady’:
Marriage and Revolution

Siân Reynolds

Oxford University Press

This chapter considers Marie-Jeanne Roland's role alongside her husband. To what extent did she help compose his reports to the Convention, field paperwork, and influence appointments? The evidence points to the agreement of the couple on policy, and her role as right-hand woman. Secondly it explores hospitality: the Rolands hosted regular dinners once or twice a week, and the anachronistic ‘salon’ is discussed again in this context. Examination of the political and social context compares these with other examples of sociability of the time, and argues for the importance of patronage by her husband, other ministers and leading politicans as an element in entertaining. The chapter also considers Mme Roland's only appearance in public. (the Viard case).

Keywords:   salon, hospitality, politicians, appointments, Mme Roland, patronage, Viard

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