Louis XIV And His Contributions

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Dalia Selman
The Modern World
01/28/2014
Response paper 2

Louis XIV

I read many fascinating things in chapter 21. During the times between 1550 and 1750, absolutism spread across Europe and Asia. Even in the Muslim world, people were claiming their power was from god directly. France was ruled by the great King Louis XIV, who referred to himself as "le roi soleil" meaning the sun king. In this paper I will be focusing on Louis XIV and his contributions to the artistic world then and now.

Louis XIV and his family lived in Paris, in a palace called the Louvre. However, The Sun King had an upgrade in store. It took 36,000 workers and almost twenty years to build his new palace in Versailles (12miles from Paris). Versailles was so grand and gorgeous it was symbolic of Louis XIV kingship in all its glory. The palace was decked with gold detailing, mirrored hallways, courtyards, gardens, zoos, exotic pets, and practically every sixteen hundred luxury you could imagine. The one thing they couldn't figure out was plumbing, servants carried the human waste from the palace.

It is unbelievable to think that rulers were able to have such "absolute" godly power. Thousands of people put there time and energy into crafting a magnificent home for the royal family that they will never exist in. I thought it was so typical of Louis XIV to live with his many mistresses in the same home as his children and wife. The palace is a historic status symbol that is permanently reminding France of Louis XIV impact on architecture and art. After Versailles was built it became the inspiration for much more building during the time but also in our modern day, it is still being cherished.

Although all that power for just one person is over kill, you don't see gorgeous palaces built today. It's upsetting that we don't value and cherish art as some rulers in the past have. In turn we have come to equality and religious tolerance which has allowed millions of people to...
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