FrenchBorn Françoise Athénais DE ROCHECHOUART DE MORTEMART

Maîtresse en titre of King Louis XIV of France

Born on October 05, 1640 in Lussac-les-Châteaux , France

Died on May 27, 1707 in Bourbon-l'Archambault , France

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Françoise de Rochechouart de Mortemart was born at the Château of Lussac-les-Châteaux in today's Vienne department, in the Poitou-Charentes region in France, Françoise (as a précieuse, she later adopted the name "Athénaïs"), Mlle de Tonnay-Charente, possessed the blood of two of the oldest noble families of France through her parents, Gabriel de Rochechouart, Duke of Mortemart, Prince of Tonnay-Charente, and Diane de Grandseigne, a lady-in-waiting to Anne of Austria, Queen consort of France.

From her father, she inherited the famous Mortemart esprit ("wit"). As a young girl, she often travelled with her mother between the family estates and the court at the Louvre in Paris. At the age of twelve, she began her formal education at the Convent of St Mary at Saintes, where her sister Gabrielle had started hers almost a decade earlier. She was very religious and took Communion once a week, a practise that she would continue as a young woman.


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Geographical origins

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