The Marquise de Pompadour is a larger than life character - part legend. She is the "poster child" for mid-eighteenth century style. It is said that she was raised from a young age to be the King's mistress by her ambitious mother. Her last name means fish and it was used against her repeatedly while she was the King's mistress. Specifically, she held the official title(!) "Maitresse-en-titre" or chief mistress. Previous mistresses had been noblewomen, but Madame de Pompadour came from the middle class - a first. She was intelligent, accomplished, and beautiful. Her small face and large eyes were captivating. Even after the sexual relationship between Louis XV and Madame de Pompadour ended, they remained on friendly terms. The phrase "Apres nous - le deluge" is attributed to her. She died in 1764. Her Wikipedia article is here.