History 104: Western Civilization since 1648

Lecture: 18th Century Economy and Society

Marie Antoinette and Children

Marie Antoinette and Her Children (1787)
Mary Louise Elisabeth Vigee-Lebrun
Vigee-Lebrun, court painter at Versailles, painted this in an effort to revive Marie Antoinette's reputation by showing her as a gentle mother. It didn't work, and garnered complaints that the painting was paid for by the unearned taxes of the people. Hence the French Revolution, 1789.

Mozart, Le Nozze di Figaro (The Marriage of Figaro) (1786)
Just couldn't resist a little more Mozart.

 

No limits whatever are placed to the productions of the earth; they may increase for ever and be greater than any assignable quantity, yet still the power of population being a power of a superior order, the increase of the human species can only be kept commensurate to the increase of the means of subsistence by the constant operation of the strong law of necessity acting as a check upon the greater power.

-- Thomas Malthus (1798)

 

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