Name : Maria Antonia Josepha Johanna (better well-known as Marie Antoinette-Queen of France)
Tenure :10 May 1774 – 21 September 1792
Name: Sophie Friederike Auguste (later well-known as Catherine the Great)
Reign : 9 July 1762 – 17 November 1796
Died :17 November 1796 (aged 67)
Saint Petersburg, Russia
Beautiful, charming, gracious,with a lips only for a kiss and magical desire burning in their eyes -two women,but above all women in power! This article will be about one of the greatest women leaders who ever have lived. It’s much more about that , I would like to present how two world-powers like France and Russia changed the course of the history under the protection of their queens. It’s about two women destined to be great ,but how much greatness they achieved in the world of history is a question open to discussion if we are bold enough to consider their achievements ,devotions and contribution to the people above whom they ruled.We would never be able to understand the measure of the crown’s weight ,neither the pressure which had on their shoulders, but we could explore the vast array of the consequences of their action throughout the prism of the history itself. We are able to see how rightful and wrongful their power was explored by themselves and the people around them.
First of all, both of them were not queens of the countries in which they were born ,Marie was austrian born and bred to be the future queen of France while Sophie (Catherina) was German by origin ,but later the world announced her reign as the Golden age of the Russian Empire. Both of them were brought into their new home due to the ambitious of their mothers ,who had unquenchable desire for power and prestige.From political standpoint the Russian-Prussian relations needed to happen in order Austria’s influence to be reduced while France was in need of another partner in its international relations like Austria. That’s beside the point , despite the fact that Catherine was born as a princess she was out of money and didn’t posses great weight,while Marie was born Archduchess of Austria with quite the opposite status of being well off. From here ,we could observe their first striking difference between them and that was based only on their birth rights and would play a crucial role in their life.
Secondly, both had the undesirable misfortune to be rejected by their husbands. There was a rumour that Peter ,the future Tsar of Russia, was impotent and could not or was not aware how to perform his husband’s duties.Somewhat equal destiny reached Louis XVI of France, with the exception of being not so fatal and irreversible (the Queen ,herself had to waited seven endless years for the consumption of their marriage). Indeed ,the humiliation was disaster which composed an enormous strain on their reputation,but the approach they used was complete verification of their characters as a person first ,then as a ruler. For Catherine that was an ample evidence that she was supposed to justify her position and status on her own,that’s why she eagerly shared her bed with many lovers and later assassinated her husband.Being ruthless and merciless ,she felt for the first time the weight of the crown on her head -a price that she was ready to pay.She was a woman of passion and determination ,a woman who could calculate with great precision every step she takes. Moreover , as if she had sensed the greatness that was on her path ,she embraced the Eastern Orthodox religion as her own,despite the oppositions of her father. While in response to her own humiliation Maria Antoinatte did only one thing-to wait. That passive-agressive response made her much more immature and incapable of solving the problem on her own. She was too gentle ,too fragile and partly too weak to do so- being rejected by her husband ,being pushed by her mother and surrounded by bad advisers ,she almost being trapped in that ridiculous situation.That’s why she did relinquish from her power in her mind-she had a great desires not for power and control ,but for pleasure ,dancing and flirt. She was young and nobody was able to tame her lust for freedom and to make her much more sensible.She lavishly entertained herself in dancing, gambling and expensive dresses almost every night while her husband was sleeping.Luis and Marie was like chalk and cheese ,the king was much more serious for her taste ,but is that fully excuse her actions? I do not think so!