A statement attributed to Marie Antoinette from the French Revolution. Peasant crowds were gathering and complaining that there was no bread in the bakeries so they were starving. When Marie asked what the problem was, her response was "Let them eat cake!"

In some history books this is widely noted as an indicator of how out of touch the ruling class was from their populace and an example of why the revolution was justified because "The people are starving? Then let them eat desert."

As wildly obvious as this may seem, it is just wrong. Cake today is universally (ok, at least here in the USA) seen as a wonderful sweet treat. The term cake in the context of Antoinette's reference is the crumbly leftovers at the bottom of the oven when bread or pastries are baked. So instead this is an indicator of how out of touch the ruling class was from their populace and an example of why the revolution was justified because "The people are starving? Then let them eat crumbs."

When informed that the lower classes of France were starving, their supply of moldy bread running out, Marie-Antoinette has been thought to have said four insensitive little words that would forever brand her as cruel and greedy: "Let them eat cake."

- from the book "Confessions," by Jean Jacques Rousseau

Marie-Antoinette was falsly accused of making such comment in a publication two years before her reign as queen. The closest it ever got was Marie Therese, wife of Louis XIV, saying "Qu'ils mangent de la brioche," which means "Let them eat bread."  This correction is presented to tourists who visit the Versailles as a fact agreed upon by historians. She also went around France helping the poor, by the way. The misquote is an example of slanders made against her that shows how unpopular the woman from a different cultural background was, even before becoming a queen.

During the French Revolution, Marie-Antoinette was beheaded on the guillotine. Not much was known about economic depression back then, and the poor needed a scapegoat.

References: http://pages.about.com/versailles/marieantoinette.html
...and palace of Versailles tour.

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