I am Catherine Charlotte de Gramont and I was fortunate to be born in the year 1631 into a wealthy family of the French nobility.
Françoise Marguerite du Plessis
My scandalous brother, Armand de Gramont, the celebrated Count of Guiche, was not only known for his haughty egotism and enchanting handsomeness, but also for his love affair with Philippe of France, Duke of Orléans and his wife, Henrietta of England. I shall leave you to make your own conclusions as I have made mine. He was brash, highly sexual, and charming, equally attracting both men and women to him.
In 1660, I was married to Louis de Grimaldi, the 2nd Duke of Valentinois and heir to the throne of Monaco. Prior to meeting him, he was described to me as a glorious and avaricious Italian. Throughout the years of our marriage, I would bear him six children.
Two years after our marriage, in 1662, I became Princess of Monaco and travelled there where I remained for 3 years, however, I preferred Paris to Monaco and thus returned to the French court of Louis XIV where I was given the post of lady-in-waiting to Henrietta of England, sister-in-law and former lover of Louis XIV. It pleased me to be with my aunt, Suzanne Charlotte de Gramont, marquise de Saint Chaumont, who also served Henrietta as governess to her daughters, Marie Louise and Anne Marie.
Life in the French court was not always easy, but I soon learned how to use my beauty and wits to gain attention. I took many lovers to my bed including King Louis, the marquis de Villeroi, and my favourit lover of all, my cousin, Antonin Nompar, Marquis de Puyguilheim.
When I resumed my affair with my cousin, Nompar, King Louis XIV was outraged, and ordered Nompar to stay away from me. But my cousin refused and the king sent him to the Bastille for six months.
You may think that this was all my doing, but it was not. Henrietta designed the plot in order to distract the king from Louise in the hopes that he would return to her bed.
Unfortunately, our affair did not last long. King Louis XIV left me after a few months, not to go return to Henrietta, but in favor of Madame de Montespan.
It was then that I began an affair with the Chevalier de Lorraine, a friend of the Duke of Orleans.
In 1672, when France and Holland went to war, my husband was recalled to duty and I was able to return to my beloved France. Madame de Montespan gave me a position as her lady-in-waiting. The king gave me my own home in St Germain and I lived happily there until the day of my death on June 4, 1678.