gets a new look !
Armand de Montriveau, a French general, arrives on a Spanish island during the French expedition to re-establish Ferdinand VII’s authority. For five years he’s been searching for a woman, who disappeared without a trace and with whom he was hopelessly in love, in all the convents of Europe and America. In the monastery on the island he discovers that Sister Thérèse is the woman he’s been searching for. He obtains the authorization to see her in the Mother Superior’s presence.
Five years earlier…
The story takes place during the Restoration, a period when the dominant values are hypocrisy, the importance of appearances, and avarice. Antoinette de Navarreins, a Parisian coquette and wife of Duke de Langeais, is a product of the epoch.
Right from their first encounter, General Armand de Montriveau falls hopelessly in love with her and devotes himself to worshipping her, encouraged by the duchess. Flattered to be desired to such a degree, she employs all the fashionable wiles to toy with his affections, and amuses herself by seducing him, but won’t let him become her lover. What greater proof of love is there than to love without giving oneself to the other!
Montriveau tries in vain to obtain irrefutable proof of love, but Antoinette hypocritically rebuffs him on religious grounds. During a ball, while pointing at her neck, Montriveau tells Antoinette of his most striking memory of his time in Westiminster. “Don’t touch the axe” were the words said by the guard, showing him the axe that had been used to cut of Charles the First’s head. Understanding that the duchess is playing games and will never give in, Montriveau decides to ignore his beloved and to take revenge.
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