Alexandrine Charlotte de Rohan-Chabot

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Alexandrine Charlotte "Rosalie" de Rohan-Chabot (1763-1839), the duchesse de La Rochefoucauld was a French duchess and letter writer, known for the events of her life during the French Revolution.

She witnessed the infamous Reign of Terror at firsthand, including the assassination of her husband and uncle the Duc de La Rochefoucauld in Gisors during the September Massacres (they had married in 1780 and the marriage was childless) and the execution of her brother. In 1810 she remarried to her relation Boniface Louis Andre, Marquis de Castellane.[1]

She is also notable as the lover of U.S. ambassador William Short, the "adoptive son" of Thomas Jefferson. Their love affair was recorded in hundreds of letters, which document the lovers' pains of separation and their frustration with social norms. Likewise, their words of devotion are especially poetic and moving. The love letters are an authentic literary contribution, and offer delightful personal insights into a turbulent era of world history.[2]


  1. ^ Shackelford, p. 160
  2. ^ “William Short, Jefferson's Only "Son"” The North American Review, September 1926, p. 471-486

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