On 1 September 1715, as Louis lay dying, he advised his successor, his 5-year-old great-grandson, the future Louis XV. My child, do not imitate me in the taste that I have had for building or for war. Try, on the contrary, to be at peace with yourMoreOn 1 September 1715, as Louis lay dying, he advised his successor, his 5-year-old great-grandson, the future Louis XV. My child, do not imitate me in the taste that I have had for building or for war. Try, on the contrary, to be at peace with your neighbours.
Try to comfort your people, which unhappily I have not.After his death, few were sad to see him gone. During his reign, he had waged four wars over 33 years in Europe at the expense of the French people. He established the royal court at Versailles, which benefited the French state, but not the French people who financed it through an unjust taxation system.He ruthlessly persecuted the Huguenots, deprived the French nobility of their political rights and destroyed the French economy through mercantilism and an aggressive foreign policy.However, historians have found elements of Louis’ reign to justify his place as the greatest ruler of his age.
He secured a member of the house of Bourbon on the throne of Spain. His cultural accomplishments led to a Europe-wide admiration of France and her culture. Objectively, the early personal rule of Louis can be viewed as being successful in both home and foreign affairs.However, the turning point in Louiss reign between the earlier grandeur and the later disasters came after Colberts death in 1683, and it is for the misery, disasters and defeats of the second half of his reign that Louis is more realistically remembered.This 8,150 word review aims to provide the reader an essential understanding of Louis and his reign- both as a study in its own right, and as a stepping-stone to further research.The main areas covered in this work are:• The Early Years of Louis XIV• Cardinal Jules Mazarin (Giulio Mazarini).• The First or Parlementary Fronde (August 1648-March 1649).• The Second or Noble Fronde (January 1650-February 1653)• French Foreign Policy under Mazarin.• The Treaty of Westphalia (1648).• Treaty of the Pyrenees (1659).• Maria Teresa – Queen of France.• Louis’ Personal Rule• Jean-Baptiste Colbert.• Louis’ Years of Glory• Versailles.• Louis’ Absolutism.• The War of the Devolutions (1667-1668).• The Peace of Aix-la-Chapelle (May 1668).• The Dutch War (1672-1678).• Louis’ Years of Decline• The Revocation of the Edict of Nantes.• The War of the League of Augsburg (1688-1697).• The War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1714).• Treaty of Utrecht (1713).• Gallicanism.• Jansenism.• Louis’ Mistresses.• Louis’ Death.Early Modern Age Series by Andrew Alexander:Europe in 1500.Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain.Charles V – Holy Roman Emperor.The Protestant Reformation.Philip II – King of Spain (Domestic Policies).Philip II – King of Spain (Foreign Policies).Henry IV – King of France.Cardinal Mazarin – Chief Minister of France.Cardinal Richelieu’s Foreign Policy.Louis XIV – King of France.The Decline of Spain in the Seventeenth Century.Peter the Great.