The Palace of Versailles

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The Palace of Versailles

Post  laraschembrisant on Fri Jan 24, 2014 2:45 pm

The Palace of Versailles is a royal chateau of France built in what became the city of Versailles in 1624 as a small hunting lodge, with many enormous expansions afterward. Famed for its large size and very neatly ordered garden by landscape architect Andre Norte. The French crown decided to leave paris and live in the Palace of Versailles because of the poverty that surrounded them. King Louis XIV was responsible for its construction into a grand palace, trying to outdo the splendor of Vaux-le-Vicomte built for interim ruler of France Nicolas Fouquet. Versailles became a symbol of the height of aristocratic indulgences; Louis XIV often held parties here and invited the nobles to stay. By keeping them away from their estates and in the midst of luxury, Louis XIV reduced the power of the nobles and allowed himself to have more direct rule over France. The Palace of Versailles was accessible to members of the public, who would gather for royal audiences, or even just to stroll and chat. On grand occasions, twenty thousand candles and glittering chandeliers would be used to transform the Hall of Mirrors into a “corridor of light”. Louis XIV, the Sun King, controlled his image using stringent etiquette and ceremony. Every mundane act, including getting up in the morning or going to bed, was turned into a performance that the public attended in reverence. While the Palace was grand and luxurious, it was also impossibly expensive to maintain. Historians estimate that maintaining the Palace, including the care and feeding of its staff and the Royal Family, consumed as much as 25% of the entire national income of the country of France. The Treaty of Versailles, which officially ended the First World War, was signed in Versailles’ stunning Hall of Mirrors. It was also in this very room that, nearly five decades earlier, Germany had declared itself an empire. The Palace and Park of Versailles were added in 1979 to the UNESCO's list of the World Heritage Sites.


http://www.chateauversailles.fr/homepage
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palace_of_Versailles

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Re: The Palace of Versailles

Post  Dominique on Sun Jan 26, 2014 8:20 pm

The Palace of Versailles is a magnificent architectural piece of art that was started by King Louis XIV. It is a immense place and served as a place to stay for the nobility and clergy of France. As you mentioned, it was built to show the wealth and power of the French kingdom but all it really did was lead them into a deep financial crisis and bankruptcy.
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