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King's Daughters

The King's Daughters (in French: filles du roi) were 774 Frenchwomenwomen who immigrated to New France (now part of Canada) between 1663 and 1673 under the monetary sponsorship of Louis XIV, as an attempt to balance the inequality in number between the males and females in New France. At the time there was a huge shortage of women because most in France had no interest in coming to the freezing climate and harsh conditions of frontier life at the time.

The title "King's Daughters" is a metaphor. These women were commoners and had no royal blood. They are called "King's Daughters" because of the king's monetary support of 50 French pounds (livres) and the costs of their transportation.

737 Daughters married in New France, many to soldiers of the Carignan Regiment. The rest were already married or remained single. Many Daughters were recruited from orphanages from Ile-de-France and Normandy, while some were prostitutes who were not jailed in exchange for agreeing to emigrate to New France.

About 40 Daughters, called Daughters of Quality (filles de qualité), were from upper class and had dowry of over 2000 French pounds. There were also three non-French Daughters, from England, Germany, and Portugal.

Originally, there were about 300 more recruits, but most of them were overwhelmed and gave up when they reached the ports of Normandy, and some died during the journey.

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