Paris: Chez Léopold Collin, 1806. First edition of the correspondence of Louis XV’s mistress (1717-1744), edited by Marie-Armande-Jeanne Gacon-Dufour (1753-1835). Occasional light foxing, a few short marginal tears. A very good copy. Half later nineteenth-century calf over marbled boards, gilt spine. Two volumes in one, twelvemo. xx, 218, 4 (ads); , 286,  pp. Item #16547
“Though blamed for the decline of the monarchy’s prestige…[Madame de Cheauroux] upgraded the status of maîtress en titre (official mistress) to an institution of state, setting the stage for her successors. The widow of the marquis de Tournelle, she made use of her charms under the tutelage of the duc de Richelieu, her cousin and counselor in the game for power. She requested financial allowances, legitimization of any children she might bear the king, and the dismissal from the royal court of her eldest sister, Mme. de Mailly…[her] growing ambitions made her instrumental in Richelieu’s martial politics. Frederick the Great considered her a stabilizing agent in Franco-Prussian relations…” Sartori, The Feminist Encyclopedia of French Literature).