Maine coons . . . and the queen of France

The French court in the 1700s was home to numerous cats and the ill-fated Queen Marie Antoinette, who was sent to the guillotine during the French Revolution, had herself been a cat fancier. While Marie and her equally ill-fated husband, King Louis XVI, watched the Revolution unfold, numerous plots were hatched to help the royal pair escape to elsewhere in Europe—or to America. According to an old legend, Queen Marie sent her cats ahead of her to America, and they became the ancestors of the Maine coon cats. Nonsense, surely, but pleasant nonsense.
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