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Tom Selleck and Donnie Wahlberg are back for an eighth run in this police He judged that royal authority thrived more surely by filling high executive and administrative positions with these men because they could be more easily dismissed than nobles of ancient lineage, with entrenched influence. It is believed that Louis' policies were rooted in his experiences during the Fronde , when men of high birth readily took up the rebel cause against their king, who was actually the kinsman of some.
This victory of Louis' over the nobility may have then in fact ensured the end of major civil wars in France until the French Revolution about a century later. In France was the leading European power, and most of the wars pivoted around its aggressiveness.
Only poverty-stricken Russia exceeded it in population, and no one could match its wealth, central location, and very strong professional army. It had largely avoided the devastation of the Thirty Years War. Its weaknesses included an inefficient financial system that was hard-pressed to pay for all the military adventures, and the tendency of most other powers to gang up against it. Impelled "by a mix of commerce, revenge, and pique," Louis sensed that warfare was the ideal way to enhance his glory.
What's more, most countries, both Protestant and Catholic, were in alliance against it. Vauban , France's leading military strategist, warned the king in that a hostile "Alliance" was too powerful at sea. He recommended the best way for France to fight back was to license French merchants ships to privateer and seize enemy merchant ships, while avoiding its navies:.
It has traditionally been suggested that the devout Madame de Maintenon pushed Louis to persecute Protestants and revoke the Edict of Nantes , which awarded Huguenots political and religious freedom, but her influence in the matter is now being questioned. An additional factor in Louis' thinking was the prevailing contemporary European principle to assure socio-political stability, cuius regio, eius religio "whose realm, his religion" , the idea that the religion of the ruler should be the religion of the realm as originally confirmed in central Europe in the Peace of Augsburg of Responding to petitions, Louis initially excluded Protestants from office, constrained the meeting of synods , closed churches outside of Edict-stipulated areas, banned Protestant outdoor preachers, and prohibited domestic Protestant migration.
He also disallowed Protestant-Catholic intermarriages to which third parties objected, encouraged missions to the Protestants, and rewarded converts to Catholicism. In , Louis dramatically increased his persecution of Protestants.
The principle of cuius regio, eius religio generally had also meant that subjects who refused to convert could emigrate, but Louis banned emigration and effectively insisted that all Protestants must be converted. Secondly, following the proposal of René de Marillac and the Marquis of Louvois, he began quartering dragoons in Protestant homes. Although this was within his legal rights, the dragonnades inflicted severe financial strain on Protestants and atrocious abuse. Between , and , Huguenots converted, as this entailed financial rewards and exemption from the dragonnades.
On 15 October , Louis issued the Edict of Fontainebleau , which cited the redundancy of privileges for Protestants given their scarcity after the extensive conversions. The Edict of Fontainebleau revoked the Edict of Nantes and repealed all the privileges that arose therefrom. No further churches were to be constructed, and those already existing were to be demolished. Pastors could choose either exile or a secular life.
Those Protestants who had resisted conversion were now to be baptised forcibly into the established church. Writers have debated Louis' reasons for issuing the Edict of Fontainebleau. He may have been seeking to placate Pope Innocent XI , with whom relations were tense and whose aid was necessary to determine the outcome of a succession crisis in the Electorate of Cologne. He may also have acted to upstage Emperor Leopold I and regain international prestige after the latter defeated the Turks without Louis' help.
Otherwise, he may simply have desired to end the remaining divisions in French society dating to the Wars of Religion by fulfilling his coronation oath to eradicate heresy. Many historians have condemned the Edict of Fontainebleau as gravely harmful to France.
On the other hand, there are historians who view this as an exaggeration. They argue that most of France's preeminent Protestant businessmen and industrialists converted to Catholicism and remained. What is certain is that reaction to the Edict was mixed. Protestants across Europe were horrified at the treatment of their co-religionists, but most Catholics in France applauded the move.
Nonetheless, it is indisputable that Louis' public image in most of Europe, especially in Protestant regions, was dealt a severe blow. In the end, however, despite renewed tensions with the Camisards of south-central France at the end of his reign, Louis may have helped ensure that his successor would experience fewer instances of the religion-based disturbances that had plagued his forebears. French society would sufficiently change by the time of his descendant, Louis XVI , to welcome tolerance in the form of the Edict of Versailles , also known as the Edict of Tolerance.
This restored to non-Catholics their civil rights and the freedom to worship openly. The War of the League of Augsburg , which lasted from to , initiated a period of decline in Louis' political and diplomatic fortunes. The conflict arose from two events in the Rhineland. All that remained of his immediate family was Louis' sister-in-law, Elizabeth Charlotte.
German law ostensibly barred her from succeeding to her brother's lands and electoral dignity, but it was unclear enough for arguments in favour of Elizabeth Charlotte to have a chance of success. Conversely, the princess was clearly entitled to a division of the family's personal property. Louis pressed her claims to land and chattels, hoping the latter, at least, would be given to her. The archbishopric had traditionally been held by the Wittelsbachs of Bavaria. However, the Bavarian claimant to replace Maximilian Henry, Prince Joseph Clemens of Bavaria , was at that time not more than 17 years old and not even ordained.
Louis sought instead to install his own candidate, William Egon of Fürstenberg , to ensure the key Rhenish state remained an ally.
In light of his foreign and domestic policies during the early s, which were perceived as aggressive, Louis' actions, fostered by the succession crises of the late s, created concern and alarm in much of Europe. Their stated intention was to return France to at least the borders agreed to in the Treaty of Nijmegen. Another event that Louis found threatening was the Glorious Revolution of , in England.
However, when James II's son James was born, he took precedence in the succession over his elder sisters. This seemed to herald an era of Catholic monarchs in England. He sailed for England with troops despite Louis' warning that France would regard it as a provocation. Witnessing numerous desertions and defections, even among those closest to him, James II fled England. Parliament declared the throne vacant, and offered it to James's daughter Mary II and his son-in-law and nephew William.
Before this happened, Louis expected William's expedition to England to absorb his energies and those of his allies, so he dispatched troops to the Rhineland after the expiry of his ultimatum to the German princes requiring confirmation of the Truce of Ratisbon and acceptance of his demands about the succession crises.
This military manoeuvre was also intended to protect his eastern provinces from Imperial invasion by depriving the enemy army of sustenance, thus explaining the pre-emptive scorched earth policy pursued in much of southwestern Germany the "Devastation of the Palatinate".
French armies were generally victorious throughout the war because of Imperial commitments in the Balkans, French logistical superiority, and the quality of French generals such as Condé's famous pupil, François Henri de Montmorency-Bouteville, duc de Luxembourg. His triumphs at the Battles of Fleurus in , Steenkerque in , and Landen in preserved northern France from invasion.
Although an attempt to restore James II failed at the Battle of the Boyne in , France accumulated a string of victories from Flanders in the north, Germany in the east, and Italy and Spain in the south, to the high seas and the colonies. Louis personally supervised the captures of Mons in and Namur in Luxembourg gave France the defensive line of the Sambre by capturing Charleroi in France also overran most of the Duchy of Savoy after the battles of Marsaglia and Staffarde in While naval stalemate ensued after the French victory at the Battle of Beachy Head in and the Allied victory at Barfleur-La Hougue in , the Battle of Torroella in exposed Catalonia to French invasion, culminating in the capture of Barcelona.
Although the Dutch captured Pondichéry in , a French raid on the Spanish treasure port of Cartagena in yielded a fortune of 10,, livres. Louis XIV ordered the surprise destruction of a Flemish city to divert the attention of these troops. This led to the bombardment of Brussels , in which buildings were destroyed, including the entire city-center. Peace was broached by Sweden in By , both sides evidently wanted peace, and secret bilateral talks began, but to no avail.
Thereafter, members of the League of Augsburg rushed to the peace table, and negotiations for a general peace began in earnest, culminating in the Treaty of Ryswick of By manipulating their rivalries and suspicions, Louis divided his enemies and broke their power. The treaty yielded many benefits for France. Louis secured permanent French sovereignty over all of Alsace, including Strasbourg, and established the Rhine as the Franco-German border which persists to this day.
Pondichéry and Acadia were returned to France, and Louis' de facto possession of Saint-Domingue was recognised as lawful. However, he returned Catalonia and most of the Reunions. French military superiority might have allowed him to press for more advantageous terms. Thus, his generosity to Spain with regard to Catalonia has been read as a concession to foster pro-French sentiment and may ultimately have induced King Charles II to name Louis' grandson Philip, Duke of Anjou , as heir to the throne of Spain.
Lorraine , which had been occupied by the French since , was returned to its rightful Duke Leopold , albeit with a right of way to the French military. The Dutch were given the right to garrison forts in the Spanish Netherlands that acted as a protective barrier against possible French aggression. Though in some respects, the Treaty of Ryswick may appear a diplomatic defeat for Louis since he failed to place client rulers in control of the Palatinate or the Electorate of Cologne, he did in fact fulfill many of the aims laid down in his ultimatum.
By the time of the Treaty of Ryswick, the Spanish succession had been a source of concern to European leaders for well over forty years. He produced no children, however, and consequently had no direct heirs. The principal claimants to the throne of Spain belonged to the ruling families of France and Austria.
Based on the laws of primogeniture , France had the better claim as it originated from the eldest daughters in two generations. However, their renunciation of succession rights complicated matters. In the case of Maria Theresa, nonetheless, the renunciation was considered null and void owing to Spain's breach of her marriage contract with Louis.
This agreement divided Spain's Italian territories between Louis's son le Grand Dauphin and the Archduke Charles, with the rest of the empire awarded to Joseph Ferdinand. William III consented to permitting the Dauphin's new territories to become part of France when the latter succeeded to his father's throne.
In , he re-confirmed his will that named Joseph Ferdinand as his sole successor. Six months later, Joseph Ferdinand died. The Dauphin would receive all of Spain's Italian territories. On his deathbed in , Charles II unexpectedly changed his will.
The clear demonstration of French military superiority for many decades before this time, the pro-French faction at the court of Spain, and even Pope Innocent XII convinced him that France was more likely to preserve his empire intact. He thus offered the entire empire to the Dauphin's second son Philip, Duke of Anjou, provided it remained undivided. Anjou was not in the direct line of French succession, thus his accession would not cause a Franco-Spanish union.
If the Duke of Berry declined it, it would go to the Archduke Charles, then to the distantly related House of Savoy if Charles declined it. Louis was confronted with a difficult choice.
He might agree to a partition of the Spanish possessions and avoid a general war, or accept Charles II's will and alienate much of Europe. Initially, Louis may have been inclined to abide by the partition treaties. However, the Dauphin's insistence persuaded Louis otherwise. He emphasised that, should it come to war, William III was unlikely to stand by France since he "made a treaty to avoid war and did not intend to go to war to implement the treaty".
Eventually, therefore, Louis decided to accept Charles II's will. Most European rulers accepted Philip as king, though some only reluctantly. Depending on one's views of the war as inevitable or not, Louis acted reasonably or arrogantly. Admittedly, he may only have been hypothesising a theoretical eventuality and not attempting a Franco-Spanish union. But his actions were certainly not read as being disinterested. In , Philip transferred the asiento the right to supply slaves to Spanish colonies to France, alienating English traders.
These actions enraged Britain and the Dutch Republic. Even before war was officially declared, hostilities began with Imperial aggression in Italy. When finally declared, the War of the Spanish Succession would last almost until Louis's death, at great cost to him and the kingdom of France. The war began with French successes, however the joint talents of John Churchill, Duke of Marlborough , and Eugene of Savoy checked these victories and broke the myth of French invincibility.
The duo allowed the Palatinate and Austria to occupy Bavaria after their victory at the Battle of Blenheim. The impact of this victory won the support of Portugal and Savoy. Marlborough and Eugene of Savoy met again at the Battle of Oudenarde , which enabled them to mount an invasion of France. Defeats, famine, and mounting debt greatly weakened France. Between and , over two million people died in two famines , made worse as foraging armies seized food supplies from the villages.
By the winter of —, Louis was willing to accept peace at nearly any cost. He agreed that the entire Spanish empire should be surrendered to the Archduke Charles, and he also consented to return to the frontiers of the Peace of Westphalia, giving up all the territories he had acquired over sixty years of his reign. He could not speak for his grandson, however, and could not promise that Philip V would accept these terms.
Thus, the Allies demanded that Louis single-handedly attack his own grandson to force these terms on him. If he could not achieve this within the year, the war would resume.
Louis could not accept these terms. The final phases of the War of the Spanish Succession demonstrated that the Allies could not maintain the Archduke Charles in Spain just as surely as France could not retain the entire Spanish inheritance for King Philip V. The Allies were definitively expelled from central Spain by the Franco-Spanish victories at the Battles of Villaviciosa and Brihuega in French forces elsewhere remained obdurate despite their defeats.
The Allies suffered a Pyrrhic victory at the Battle of Malplaquet with 21, casualties, twice that of the French.
French military successes near the end of the war took place against the background of a changed political situation in Austria. In , the Emperor Leopold I died. His elder son and successor, Joseph I , followed him in His heir was none other than the Archduke Charles, who secured control of all of his brother's Austrian land holdings.
If the Spanish empire then fell to him, it would have resurrected a domain as vast as that of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V in the sixteenth century. To the maritime powers of Great Britain and the Dutch Republic, this would have been as undesirable as a Franco-Spanish union.
Britain kept Gibraltar and Menorca. Britain gained most from the Treaty of Utrecht, but the final terms were much more favourable to France than what was being discussed in peace negotiations in and Thanks to Louis, his allies the Electors of Bavaria and Cologne were restored to their pre-war status and returned their lands.
Louis and his wife Maria Theresa of Spain had six children from the marriage contracted for them in However, only one child, the eldest, survived to adulthood: Louis, le Grand Dauphin , known as Monseigneur. Maria Theresa died in , whereupon Louis remarked that she had never caused him unease on any other occasion.
Despite evidence of affection early on in their marriage, Louis was never faithful to Maria Theresa. He took a series of mistresses, both official and unofficial.
Through these liaisons, he produced numerous illegitimate children, most of whom he married to members of cadet branches of the royal family. Louis proved relatively more faithful to his second wife, Françoise d'Aubigné, Marquise de Maintenon. He first met her through her work caring for his children by Madame de Montespan, noting the care she gave to his favorite, Louis Auguste, Duke of Maine.
When he legitimized his children by Madame de Montespan on 20 December , Françoise d'Aubigné became the royal governess at Saint-Germain. Louis was a pious and devout king who saw himself as the head and protector of the Gallican Church. Louis made his devotions daily regardless of where he was, following the liturgical calendar regularly.
Towards the middle and the end of his reign, the centre for the King's religious observances was usually the Chapelle Royale at Versailles. Ostentation was a distinguishing feature of daily Mass, annual celebrations, such as those of Holy Week , and special ceremonies. Louis generously supported the royal court of France and those who worked under him. He brought the Académie Française under his patronage and became its "Protector".
He allowed Classical French literature to flourish by protecting such writers as Molière , Racine , and La Fontaine , whose works remain greatly influential to this day. Louis also patronised the visual arts by funding and commissioning various artists, such as Charles Le Brun , Pierre Mignard , Antoine Coysevox , and Hyacinthe Rigaud , whose works became famous throughout Europe. In , Louis founded the Académie Royale de Danse , and in , the Académie d'Opéra , important driving events in the evolution of ballet.
The King also attracted, supported and patronized such artists as André Charles Boulle who revolutionised marquetry with his art of inlay , today known as " Boulle Work ". With the exception of the current Royal Chapel built near the end of Louis' reign , the palace achieved much of its current appearance after the third building campaign, which was followed by an official move of the royal court to Versailles on 6 May Versailles became a dazzling, awe-inspiring setting for state affairs and the reception of foreign dignitaries.
At Versailles, the king alone commanded attention. Several reasons have been suggested for the creation of the extravagant and stately palace, as well as the relocation of the monarchy's seat. For example, the memoirist Saint-Simon speculated that Louis viewed Versailles as an isolated power center where treasonous cabals could be more readily discovered and foiled. However, his sponsorship of many public works in Paris, such as the establishment of a police force and of street-lighting,  lend little credence to this theory.
As a further example of his continued care for the capital, Louis constructed the Hôtel des Invalides , a military complex and home to this day for officers and soldiers rendered infirm either by injury or old age.
While pharmacology was still quite rudimentary in his day, the Invalides pioneered new treatments and set new standards for hospice treatment. The conclusion of the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle , in , also induced Louis to demolish the northern walls of Paris in and replace them with wide tree-lined boulevards.
Louis also renovated and improved the Louvre and other royal residences. Gian Lorenzo Bernini was originally to plan additions to the Louvre; however, his plans would have meant the destruction of much of the existing structure, replacing it with an Italian summer villa in the centre of Paris.
Bernini's plans were eventually shelved in favour of Perrault's elegant colonnade. With the relocation of the court to Versailles, the Louvre was given over to the arts and the public. Few rulers in world history have commemorated themselves in as grand a manner as Louis. With his support, Colbert established from the beginning of Louis' personal reign a centralised and institutionalised system for creating and perpetuating the royal image.
The King was thus portrayed largely in majesty or at war, notably against Spain. This portrayal of the monarch was to be found in numerous media of artistic expression, such as painting, sculpture, theatre, dance, music, and the almanacs that diffused royal propaganda to the population at large.
Over his lifetime, Louis commissioned numerous works of art to portray himself, among them over formal portraits. The earliest portrayals of Louis already followed the pictorial conventions of the day in depicting the child king as the majestically royal incarnation of France. This idealisation of the monarch continued in later works, which avoided depictions of the effect of the smallpox that Louis contracted in In the s, Louis began to be shown as a Roman emperor, the god Apollo , or Alexander the Great , as can be seen in many works of Charles Le Brun , such as sculpture, paintings, and the decor of major monuments.
The depiction of the king in this manner focused on allegorical or mythological attributes, instead of attempting to produce a true likeness. As Louis aged, so too did the manner in which he was depicted. Nonetheless, there was still a disparity between realistic representation and the demands of royal propaganda.
There is no better illustration of this than in Hyacinthe Rigaud 's frequently-reproduced Portrait of Louis XIV of , in which a year-old Louis appears to stand on a set of unnaturally young legs. Rigaud's portrait exemplified the height of royal portraiture during Louis' reign.
Although Rigaud crafted a credible likeness of Louis, the portrait was neither meant as an exercise in realism nor to explore Louis' personal character. Certainly, Rigaud was concerned with detail and depicted the king's costume with great precision, down to his shoe buckle. However, Rigaud's intention was to glorify the monarchy. Rigaud's original, now housed in the Louvre , was originally meant as a gift to Louis' grandson, Philip V of Spain.
However, Louis was so pleased with the work that he kept the original and commissioned a copy to be sent to his grandson. That became the first of many copies, both in full and half-length formats, to be made by Rigaud, often with the help of his assistants.
The portrait also became a model for French royal and imperial portraiture down to the time of Charles X over a century later. In his work, Rigaud proclaims Louis' exalted royal status through his elegant stance and haughty expression, the royal regalia and throne, rich ceremonial fleur-de-lys robes, as well as the upright column in the background, which, together with the draperies, serves to frame this image of majesty. In addition to portraits, Louis commissioned at least 20 statues of himself in the s, to stand in Paris and provincial towns as physical manifestations of his rule.
He also commissioned "war artists" to follow him on campaigns to document his military triumphs. To remind the people of these triumphs, Louis erected permanent triumphal arches in Paris and the provinces for the first time since the decline of the Roman Empire. Louis' reign marked the birth and infancy of the art of medallions. Sixteenth-century rulers had often issued medals in small numbers to commemorate the major events of their reigns.
Louis, however, struck more than to celebrate the story of the king in bronze, that were enshrined in thousands of households throughout France. He also used tapestries as a medium of exalting the monarchy. Tapestries could be allegorical, depicting the elements or seasons, or realist, portraying royal residences or historical events.
They were among the most significant means to spread royal propaganda prior to the construction of the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles.
Louis loved ballet and frequently danced in court ballets during the early half of his reign. In general, Louis was an eager dancer who performed 80 roles in 40 major ballets. This approaches the career of a professional ballet dancer.
His choices were strategic and varied. He danced four parts in three of Molière 's comédies-ballets, which are plays accompanied by music and dance. He sometimes danced leading roles which were suitably royal or godlike such as Neptune, Apollo, or the Sun. It is considered that, at all times, he provided his roles with sufficient majesty and drew the limelight with his flair for dancing. The sheer number of performances he gave as well as the diversity of roles he played may serve to indicate a deeper understanding and interest in the art form.
Besides the official depiction and image of Louis, his subjects also followed a non-official discourse consisting mainly of clandestine publications, popular songs, and rumors that provided an alternative interpretation of Louis and his government. They often focused on the miseries arising from poor government, but also carried the hope for a better future when Louis escaped the malignant influence of his ministers and mistresses, and took the government into his own hands.
On the other hand, petitions addressed either directly to Louis or to his ministers exploited the traditional imagery and language of monarchy. These varying interpretations of Louis abounded in self-contradictions that reflected the people's amalgamation of their everyday experiences with the idea of monarchy. The final part of the latter novel recounts the legend that a mysterious prisoner in an iron mask was actually Louis' twin brother and has spawned numerous film adaptations generally titled The Man in the Iron Mask.
Louis is a major character in the historical novel "Angélique et le Roy" "Angélique and the King" , part of the Angelique Series. The protagonist, a strong-willed lady at Versailles, rejects the King's advances and refuses to become his mistress.
A later book, the "Angélique se révolte" "Angélique in Revolt" , details the dire consequences of her defying this powerful monarch. A character based on Louis plays an important role in The Age of Unreason , a series of four alternate history novels written by American science fiction and fantasy author Gregory Keyes.
Louis features significantly in Neal Stephenson 's Baroque Cycle , specifically The Confusion , the greater part of which takes place at Versailles. In the 39 Clues series universe, it has been noted that Louis was part of the Cahill branch, Tomas. The film, Le Roi Danse ; translated: Alan Rickman directed, co-wrote, and stars as Louis XIV in the film, A Little Chaos , which centers on construction in the gardens of Versaille, at the time immediately before and after the death of Queen Maria Theresa.
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