Aristocrat Henrietta-Lucy Dillon was born to a half-French mother and Anglo-Irish father in Paris in 1770. Married at 16, she spent her early life surrounded by luxury as a regular visitor to the court of Marie Antoinette. An outstanding diarist, in her later life she wrote her memoirs for her only surviving child Aymar; the diary records her experiences during the French Revolution, which saw her fleeing France for America and England, where she lived in much reduced circumstances. She later returned and was for the last years of her life the French ambassadress to Holland and the Kingdom of Sardinia. She died in Pisa, aged 83, having witnessed the Battle of Waterloo, the fall of Napoleon and return of Louis XVIII and the Restoration.
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