This is probably the least historical and most opinionated view anyone has posted in quite some time, if ever, but I'm not apologizing for it. I am not at all "too hard on the duchess." In fact, you got the nicer version of my opinion. What is true, I think, is that men are often too easily persuaded that some women are sweet, kind, nurturing, loyal, and positively angelic. In Louise's case she went about from 1810 forward--she finally died in 1856--perpetuating the image of the chaste, sweet, motherly soul who cared for nothing but her children and the memory of her poor husband. All the previous biographies--by men--swallowed this fiction hook, line, and sinker.
Horsefeathers! It often takes another woman to see through the window-dressing and false faces to get at the truth, or more of the truth, and then look for the documentary evidence to suport a different viewpoint.
You haven't seen anything yet...