L’affaire de la garde corse

In August 1662, a little over a year after the death of Cardinal de Mazarin and Louis XIV taking things into his own hands, there was a bit of an incident between France and theContinue reading

Dangeau’s Diary, August 1688

2d. — Arlequin died this day at Paris. It is said he leaves behind him property worth three hundred thousand livres. All the sacraments were administered to him, because he promised not to appear againContinue reading

Dangeau’s Diary, July 1688

23d. — Marshal Estrees is bombarding Algiers and the inhabitants of the town have already blown many French slaves from the mouths of their cannon. As many herts have been shot, as the Algerines haveContinue reading

Jeu de paume

You probably heard the expression that Tennis is the sport of Kings and that is quite true. The predecessor of what we call Tennis in English today is the French jeu de paume and theContinue reading

La Maison de la Reine

Louis XIV’s court, and the French court in general, had a lot of court offices for male beings… and not so many for females. The Queen’s of France did not get their own Households untilContinue reading

Dangeau’s Diary, June 1688

6th. — The Prince d’Elbeuf and the Prince Philip of Savoy had a quarrel while at play. Monseigneur reconciled them, but some days after the Prince d’Elbeuf was found to be wounded in the thigh.Continue reading

La Fontange

There were quite a few popular hairstyles at the court of the Sun King. In his youth it was all about curls and ringlets for the ladies, but later on, there was one particular hairstyleContinue reading

The baptism of Louis XIV

Louis XIV received a so-called ondoiement shortly after his birth. An emergency baptism, something administered to a person in danger of death, or small children after their birth to make sure, if they should passContinue reading

Dangeau’s Diary, May 1688

21st. — The Comte de Solre has lost at Malines an important law-suit, which he had pending against the Prince of Orange and the King, who knows that injustice has been done him, has causedContinue reading

Notre-Dame de Paris

That most glorious church of the most glorious Virgin Mary, mother of God, deservedly shines out, like the sun among stars. There is the saying that all roads lead to Rome. In France, all majorContinue reading

Dangeau’s Diary, April 1688

22d. — The King has presented Racine and Despreaux, who are employed in writing his history, with one thousand pistoles each. 29th. — I am told that the King has given a pension of twoContinue reading

Élisabeth Jacquet de La Guerre

Music during the time of Louis XIV was dominated by the male gender, there is one woman however who was celebrated for her creations as much as the males.   Élisabeth Jacquet was born in theContinue reading

La Galerie des Glaces

The chateau de Versailles has a lot of places and rooms that make one look around in awe, but the most impressive of them all is most likely the Hall of Mirrors aka the GalerieContinue reading

Dangeau’s Diary, March 1688

2d. — Intelligence from Rome has arrived stating that the Pope was extremely vexed and mortified at the decree of the parliament, and the speech of Monsieur Talon, that at first he was inclined toContinue reading

Anne d’Autriche

Ana María Mauricia de Austria y Austria-Estiria or short Anne d’Autriche was born on 22 September 1601 as eldest daughter of Philip III of Spain and his second cousin and wife Margaret of Austria.  Continue reading

Dangeau’s Diary, February 1688

8th. — After supper, Monsieur de Luxembourg introduced at the Princesse de Conti’s, three Italian comedians, some of the best dancers, and Mademoiselle de la Lande, Monseigneur and Madame la Duchesse, were present. The spectacleContinue reading

Les Filles du Roi

Nouvelle-France or New France, the area colonised by France in North America, was a place for adventures and in first mainly occupied by gentlemen, who weren’t always really gentlemen-like. New France was a place ofContinue reading

Dangeau’s Diary, January 1688

  8th. — The Pope has ordered, that in all the churches throughout Rome, service should be stopped the moment Monsieur de Lavardin, our ambassador, should enter them. Thus treating him as an excommunicated person.Continue reading

Adieu 2018…..

This has become a bit of a tradition, hasn’t it? I don’t know about you, but many say 2017 was quite a strange year. 2018 tops it for me by far and I’m not evenContinue reading

A 17th century Christmas….

Christmas, as we know it now with all its tinsel and presents, did not always involve presents… and for the court of Louis XIV it was a rather dull affair mostly. Christmas meant a massContinue reading

Dangeau’s Diary, December 1687

1st. — Marly. The King remarked, that so many persons had desired to accompany him to Marly, that if the chateau had been as large as that of Fontainebleau, they could not all be accommodated.Continue reading

L’escalier des Ambassadeurs

L’escalier des Ambassadeurs, also called Grand escalier de Versailles, was one of the château’s main attractions and of great political importance. This monumental staircase was the place, where ambassadors from all around the world were waiting toContinue reading

Julie d’Aubigny, Mademoiselle Maupin

One can use a lot of words to describe Mademoiselle Maupin, a flamboyant cross-dressing opera-singing swords-woman, but utterly badass might be the most fitting.   Julie was born between 1670 and 1673 to Gaston d’Aubigny, who servedContinue reading

Dangeau’s Diary, October 1687

22d. — Fontainebleau. The King expected that Monsieur le Prince would have been here to speak to him, respecting the conduct of Monsieur le Duc, with whom his Majesty is not satisfied. He wishes himContinue reading

The War of the Reunions, 1683-1684

The War of the Reunions was a short conflict in a larger conflict between France, the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands, Spain and the Holy Roman Empire. Some historians claim it was Louis XIV’sContinue reading