Louis XIII raised the land of Hautefort to a marquisate for Jacques-François de Hautefort: well, that’s good! He re-raised his castle, in 1630. By the way, did you know that the hospital of Hautefort (we can visit it) was founded in 1669 by this chap? And this one was the brother of one of the most famous French favourite… Marie de Hautefort!
Whoa, that Marie! Mistress of king Louis XIII, exiled by cardinal Richelieu then by Mazarin (naughty little plotter), she made a name for herself among the upper crust of Louis XIII’s court. Louis fancied her from day one, he vowed her a chaste love: we know how she hid a letter in her cleavage, asking Louis to pick it up…
So, the little provincial from Périgord became the Belle Aurore (“Pretty Aurora”)! She was a descendant of the Born family, pretty, with blue eyes, with a “haughty temperament” and a mocking nature! People said she was pretty pious so they called her “Saint Hautefort”.
Marie plotted against Richelieu: one first exile. Then, she came back to the Court and she started to plot against Mazarin: another exile! A little exhausted by all this jumble, she finally married marshal of Schimberg, at the age of 28. In the court of Louis XIV, she dazzled.
Time flew, but the king remained her friend and asked her one day to be the dauphine’s lady-in-waiting. My word! But she declined, too tired. She was 68 years-old…