A period piece which seeks to illustrate in one woman's life France in the Revolutionary and Napoleonic era dwells on the years from 1789 to 1815 in the existence of Constance Deschaumes. Born of noble and common parents, bred an aristocrat, Constance married aristocratic royalist Francois de Moiraus, who died under the guillotine. In exile, existing through the hospitality of a German nobleman, after years, Constance found the way cleared of obstacles (her royalist grand mother and Maximilien's first wife Laurette) to marry the republican Maximilien, whose name was anathema to her grandmother and her daughter by virtue of his father's decision as Deputy to vote for the king's death. Constance is aware of the conflicts in her relationships with two husbands, the first appealing to her spiritually and representative of the divine right and rule of kings, the second appealing to her passion and symbolic of the rise of human over godly values. The toll of the years is heavy in suffering as she attempts to meld the old and new aspects of France in her heart; the heaviest blow comes when Maximilien shoots down her daughter's husband Bernard, who has placed family loyalty above royalist duty in deciding to save Maximilien, then a conspirator working to reinstate Napoleon. These years of upheaval, of the Napoleonic bloodbath which left France blanched but united, are reflected in the passions of Constance, her husband, their friends and enemies. For feminine participation.