Books: An 18th Century Marriage

ADRIENNE: THE LIFE OF THE MARQUISE DE LA FAYETTE (482 pp.)—André Mourois—McGraw-Hill ($7.95).

The 16-year-old bridegroom was already dreaming of cutting a swath through battlefield and boudoir. The 14-year-old bride thought only of venerating church, husband and home. On April 11, 1774, as arranged by two of France's first families, Gilbert Motier de La Fayette married Adrienne d'Ayen. The bride had barely left the altar when she was forced to begin a lifelong struggle to preserve her marriage to the soldier who became a hero of the American Revolution, a prime mover of...