Chapelle royale de Dreux
In the 1770s, Louis Jean Marie de Bourbon, Duke of Penthièvre was one of the greatest land owners in France prior to the French Revolution. In 1775, the lands of the county of Dreux had been given to the Penthièvre by his cousin King Louis XVI. In 1783, the Duke sold his domain of Rambouillet to Louis XVI. On November 25 of that year, in a long religious procession, Penthièvre transferred the nine caskets containing the remains of his parents, Louis Alexandre, Count of Toulouse and Marie Victoire de Noailles, his wife, Princess Maria Teresa Felicitas of Modena, and six of their seven children, from the small medieval village church next to the castle in Rambouillet, to the chapel of the Collégiale Saint-Étienne de Dreux.
Penthièvre died in March 1793 and his body was laid to rest in the crypt beside his parents. On November 21 of that same year, in the midst of the French Revolution, a mob desecrated the crypt and threw the ten bodies in a mass grave in the Chanoines cemetery of the Collégiale Saint Étienne. In 1816, the Duke of Penthièvre's daughter, the Duchess of Orléans, had a new chapel built on the site of the mass grave of the Chanoines cemetery, as the final resting place for her family. In 1830, Louis Philippe I, King of the French, son of the Duchess of Orléans, embellished and enlarged the chapel which was renamed the Royal Chapel of Dreux, now the necropolis of the Orléans royal family.
List of burials
Among the seventy-five members buried in the new chapel are:
- Louis Alexandre, Count of Toulouse (1678–1737)
- Marie Victoire de Noailles (1688-1766) wife of the above.
- Louis Jean Marie de Bourbon, Duke of Penthièvre (1725-1793)
- Princess Maria Teresa Felicitas of Modena (1726-1754) wife of the above.
- Louis Marie, Duke of Rambouillet (1746-1749).
- Louis Alexandre, Prince of Lamballe (1747-1768);,
- Jean Marie, Duke of Châteauvillain (1748-1755).
- Vincent Marie Louis de Bourbon (1750-1752).
- Marie Louise de Bourbon (1751-1753).
- Louise Marie Adélaïde de Bourbon (1753-1821);
- Louis Marie Félicité de Bourbon (1754).
- Louis François Joseph, Prince of Conti (1734–1814)
- the heart of Philippe d'Orléans, Duke of Orléans, Regent of France for Louis XV of France (1674–1723).
- Louis Philippe I (1773–1850).
- Princess Maria Amalia of the Two Sicilies (1782-1866) wife of the above.
- Antoine Philippe, Duke of Montpensier (1775-1807).
- Princess Adélaïde of Orléans (1777-1847).
- Françoise d'Orléans Mademoiselle d'Orléans (1777-1782).
- Louis Charles, Count of Beaujolais (1779-1808).
- Prince Ferdinand Philippe, Duke of Orléans (1810-1842)
- Duchess Helen of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1814-1858) wife of the above.
- Charles, Duke of Penthièvre (1820-1828).
- Prince Henri, Duke of Aumale, (1822–1897)
- Princess Maria Carolina of the Two Sicilies (1822–1869) wife of the above.
- Louis, Prince of Condé (1845-1866)
- Léopold Philippe, Duke of Guise (1847-1847)
- François Paul d'Orléans, Duke of Guise (1852-1852)
- François Louis, Duke of Guise (1854-1872)
- Prince Henri, Count of Paris (1908-1999)- Orléanist pretender
- Princess Isabelle of Orléans and Braganza (1911-2003) wife of the above.
- Prince François Gaston, Duke of Orléans, son of the above (1935–1960)
- Prince Thibaut, Count of La Marche, brother of the above (1948–1983)
- Bathilde d'Orléans (1750–1822).
- Prince Antônio Gastão of Orléans-Braganza (1881-1918)
- G. Lenotre, Le Château de Rambouillet, six siècles d'histoire, Calmann-Lévy, Paris, 1930, reprint: Denoël, Paris, 1984, (215 pages), chapter 5: Le prince des pauvres, pp. 78-79
- Not buried in the chapel is the Princess Maria Teresa Luisa of Savoy, Princess de Lamballe, Penthièvre's daughter-in-law, a victim of the September massacres during the French Revolution, killed at the La Force prison in Paris, on 3 September 1792. Buried in the Enfants-Trouvés cemetery, her body could not be identified later on: Michel de Decker, La Princesse de Lamballe, Librairie Académique Perrin, Collection historique dirigée par André Castelot, Paris, 1979, chapter XII: Ils sont blanchis par le malheur, p. 265.
- After Philippe, duc d'Orléans, Philippe Égalité (1747-1793), was executed in November 1793, his body was buried in the Madeleine cemetery in Paris. It was never found.
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