By Anjuli Kolb

“Lauren Greenfield's film The Queen of Versailles … has generated alawsuit in advance of its opening-night premiere. [The] plaintiff distinguished himself by not suing over the film, but over the online proliferation of the associated press release. Specifically, the complaint stems from the film's blurb contained in the announcement of the festival's selections. The festival press release describes the film as showing a journey of 'rags to riches to rags.' It's those last 'rags'...that have infuriated plaintiff David Siegel.”—IndieWire, 12 Jan, 2012, Park City, Utah

“What was really affecting was the tenderness and earnestness of the poor people, who, in spite of the taxes with which they are overwhelmed, were transported with joy at seeing us. When we went to walk in the Tuileries, there was so vast a crowd that we were three-quarters of an hour without being able to move either forward or backward. The dauphin and I gave repeated orders to the Guards not to beat any one, which had a very good effect. Such excellent order was kept the whole day that, in spite of the enormous crowd which followed us everywhere, not a person was hurt. When we returned from our walk we went up to an open terrace and stayed there half an hour. I cannot describe to you, my dear mamma, the transports of joy and affection which every one exhibited towards us. Before we withdrew we kissed our hands to the people, which gave them great pleasure. What a happy thing it is for persons in our rank to gain the love of a whole nation so cheaply.”—Marie Antoinette, Letter to Marie Terèse, 14 June, 1770, Versailles, France

“One time, we flew commercial for some reason, and one of the younger kids asked, 'Mommy, what are all these strangers doing on our plane?' They are used to traveling on our private jet.”—Jacqueline Siegel, interviewed by Jana Waring in Playground Magazine, 19 March, 2009, Isleworth, Florida

Let Me Recite What History Teaches (LMRWHT) is a weekly column that flashes the lavalamp, gaslight, candlelight, campfire, torch, sometimes even the starlight of the past on something that is happening now. The form of the column strives to recover what might be best about the “wide-eyed presentation of mere facts.” Each week you will find here some citational constellation, offered with astonishment and without comment, that can serve as an end in itself, or an occasion for further thought or writing. The title is taken from the last line of Gertrude Stein’s poem “If I Told Him (A Completed Portrait of Picasso)."

Image: Dezeen