About: Ashley Hilton

I graduated from UCLA in 2014 with college and departmental honors in art history. During my time at UCLA, I completed an honors thesis in art history, in which I analyzed marriage and engagement imagery in Byzantium. In fall 2014 I begin medical school at the USC Keck School of Medicine.

Posts by Ashley

Posted in Art, Exhibitions and Installations, Getty Villa

Put a Ring On It

Engagement Ring with a Greek Inscription / Byzantine
Image courtesy of the National Archaeological Museum, Athens

One ring and the two women who treasured it. More»

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      The Queen Who Wasn’t

      Louis XIV clandestinely wed his mistress, Madame de Maintenon, at Versailles on October 9 or 10, 1683. The marriage was much gossiped about but never openly acknowledged. She was never queen.

      Madame de Maintenon had been the {judgy} governess to Louis XIV’s children by his previous mistress, Madame de Montespan. Louis gave these children moneyed titles—such as the comte de Toulouse, who ordered the tapestries shown here for his residence outside Paris.

      Louis’s secret marriage ushered in a period of religious fervor, in sharp contrast to the light-hearted character of his early reign. Madame de Maintenon was known for her Catholic piety, and founded a school for the education of impoverished noble girls at Saint-Cyr in 1686 that stayed in operation until 1793. This engraving of the Virgin and Child was dedicated to her by the king.

      Virgin and Child, late 1600s, Jean-Louis Roullet after Pierre Mignard; Johann Ulrich Stapf, engraver. The Getty Research Institute. Tapestries from the Emperor of China series. The J. Paul Getty Museum


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