• Chronologie de la vie de Louis XIV, May 1662

    1 May, his Majesty is displeased with the Duchesse de Montpensier, for her lack of interest to marry the King of Portugal. 2 May, a grand spectacle is being prepared for the following month. It will be a competition of horsemanship and held in front of the Louvre to celebrate the birth of Monseigneur. 3 May, his Majesty pays a…

  • 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. He said that, having drawn his sword, and wishing to sheathe it, he missed the scabbard, and had thus wounded himself. The King has, however,…

  • 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 hairstyle that dominated Louis XIV’s court and swept all over the world.   Legend has it that this hairstyle is the result of a hunting accident.…

  • 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 pass away before their actual baptism, the gates of heaven would welcome them. Louis actual baptism took place in 1643. It was the first chance to shine…

  • Chronologie de la vie de Louis XIV, April 1662

    1 April, according to rumours a great scandal happened last month. It appears that Mademoiselle de La Vallière had fled court for a convent and his Majesty was forced to ride there to make her return. Their Majesties sign the contract of marriage of Monsieur le Marquis de Vaubrun and Mademoiselle Marie-Marguerite-Thérèse de Bautru de Serrant, daughter of the Comte…

  • 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 caused it to be notified to the Baron d’Elval, the Spanish envoy, that it was his wish that the decision might be set aside, otherwise he…

  • 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 major roads lead to Notre-Dame. The point zero, from which the distance between the French cities is calculated, is located just outside Notre-Dame. Thus one could…

  • Le Palais du Louvre, Une Histoire.

    I don’t know about you, but my favourite place to be in Paris is the Louvre. Not just because it is a fabulous museum now, but more because of its very walls. Just looking at this vast building and thinking about what those venerable walls have seen… if they could talk, the stories they would tell would be by far…

  • Marie-Madeleine Pioche de La Vergne, Comtesse de La Fayette

    Marie-Madeleine Pioche de La Vergne better known as Madame de La Fayette, was the author of France’s first first historical novel La Princesse de Clèves. It was so successful that people outside of Paris had to wait months in order to get their hands on a copy, if they managed at all. Marie-Madeleine was born on 18 March 1634, into…

  • Chronologie de la vie de Louis XIV, March 1662

      1 March, their Majesties travel to #Versailles in order to spend the day there. 3 March, their Majesties go to the Louvre to visit the Princesse Palatine (Anne de Gonzague) in order to state their condolences on the demise of her mother-in-law, la Reine de Bohême (Elizabeth Stuart). Afterwards, they attend the sermon of Abbé Bossuet. 4 March, the…

  • 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 two thousand livres to d’Estoublon, formerly maitre d’hotel to the Queen-mother.

  • 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 the first months of the year 1665 to Claude Jacquet and Anne de la Touche. Her baptism took place on 17 March 1665 and her papa…

  • 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 Galerie des Glaces. If you have been to Versailles, you probably remember very well what you thought the first time to stepped into the massive hall…

  • Charles Le Brun, premier peintre du roi

    Charles Le Brun, also written as Lebrun or LeBrun, was born on 24 February 1619 into a family of artists. He was the third of five children born to the sculptor Nicolas Le Brun and Julienne Le Bé, who came from a family of writers. Nicolas Le Brun trained his sons, Nicolas II, Charles and Gabriel, in the art of…

  • Jules Hardouin-Mansart, premier architecte du roi

    Born on 16 April 1646 in Paris, Jules Hardouin-Mansart rose to be one of the most famous French architects, whose style was often copied and can still be found in many places all over the world.   Hardouin-Mansart was a great-nephew of the today slightly less famous Nicolas-François Mansart, who had been named architecte du roi in 1625 and was…

  • Chronologie de la vie de Louis XIV, February 1662

    1 February, the King enjoys the hunt in the area around the village of Saint-Denis. 2 February, Feast of the Purification of the Virgin, as it is tradition, their Majesties, Monseigneur and Monsieur are presented with a ceremonial candle by the rector of the university. Then  their Majesties attend the procession which takes place by the Louvre, after which, in…

  • 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 to proceed to excommunications, but that afterwards he determined to listen to the Cardinals, whom he consulted two by two. The life of Mademoiselle de Guise…

  • Ten rules of etiquette for your Versailles visit….

    What could be worse than strolling Versailles and running into a noble, or even worse, the King himself and not knowing what to do? It might lead to one being forcefully removed from court and ridiculed for years to come… so, here are some rules of etiquette one should be aware of to be saved from eternal embarrassment. -If you…

  • Anne d’Autriche

    Ana María Mauricia de Austria y Austria-Estiria or short Anne d’Autriche was born on 22 September 1601 as oldest daughter of Philip III of Spain and his second cousin and wife Margaret of Austria.   Anne received her first name in honour of her grandmother Anne of Austria, fourth wife of Philip II, her second name María in honour of…

  • 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 spectacle was very diverting. Monsieur de Luxembourg had caused four guards, belonging to Noailles’ company, as tall as giants, to be disguised in girl’s clothes. Some…

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