Louis XIV, who ruled France from 1643 until 1715, left his immortal stamp in the form of the Palace of Versailles, the enormous and splendid structure named after the town where it is located. It used to be his father, Louis XIII’s hunting lodge but Louis XIV wanted his surrounding to suit the grandeur of his throne. He aimed to have a Court so magnificent that no other European ruler would ever outdo him! He commissioned the construction of the enormous palace outside Paris, with interminable halls, apartments and a vast garden stretching away behind it. This palace and its outlying buildings, including two or three less gorgeous residences for the king when he occasionally grew tired of the court life, cost the nation a huge sum of money. Thousands of peasants and soldiers toiled for this building without pay. The furniture and decorations were as rich and costly as the palace was splendid. For over a century Versailles continued to be the home of the French kings and the seat of the government.
Check out these eight magnificent photos and relive how the grandest of the French kings lived.
Aerial view of the Palace of Versailles
The Chapel of Versailles
Galerie des Batailles
The Hall of Mirrors
The Marble Court
One of the Fountains in Versailles
The Orangery of Versailles
The Queen's Bedchamber
Find out more about Versailles here.