Marie Madeleine, Pioche de la Vergne, Comtesse de La Fayette (1634 -1693) was educated in the heart of French cultural life through the courts and salons of Paris. Her writing, especially La Princesse de Clèves (1678),continues to spark interest within academic circles as well as popular culture.
Her parents—Marc Pinoche, Sieur de la Vergne, and Isabelle Pena—were both from families of the minor nobility. As a young woman, she served at court, frequented the salons of the cultural elite—such as that of Madeleine de Scudéry—and learnt Italian and Latin from the noted scholar, the Abbé Gilles Ménage. In 1650, after a year of widowhood, Isabelle Pena remarried. This connection introduced the sixteen year-old Marie …
Kugler, Emily MN. "Madame de La Fayette". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 07 April 2012
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=2582, accessed 27 February 2017.]