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Louis XIV

Louis XIV
Louis XIV of France.jpg
Louis XIV by Hyacinthe Rigaud (1701)
King of France and Navarre
Reign 14 May 1643 – 1 September 1715
Coronation 7 June 1654
Predecessor Louis XIII
Successor Louis XV
Regent Anne of Austria (1643–51)
Born (1638-09-05)5 September 1638
Château de Saint-Germain-en-Laye, Saint-Germain-en-Laye, France
Died 1 September 1715(1715-09-01) (aged 76)
Palace of Versailles, Versailles, France
Burial Basilica of St Denis, Saint-Denis, France
Spouse Maria Theresa of Spain
among others...
Louis, Grand Dauphin of France
House Bourbon
Father Louis XIII of France
Mother Anne of Austria
Religion Roman Catholicism
Royal styles of
King Louis XIV
Par la grâce de Dieu, Roi de France et de Navarre
France moderne.svg
Reference style His Most Christian Majesty
Spoken style Your Most Christian Majesty
Alternative style Monsieur Le Roi

Louis XIV (5 September 1638 – 1 September 1715), known as Louis the Great (Louis le Grand) or the Sun King (le Roi-Soleil), was a monarch of the House of Bourbon who ruled as King of France from 1643 until his death in 1715. His reign of 72 years and 110 days is the longest of any monarch of a major country in European history. In the age of absolutism in Europe, Louis XIV's France was a leader in the growing centralization of power.

Louis began his personal rule of France in 1661, after the death of his chief minister, the Italian Cardinal Mazarin. An adherent of the concept of the divine right of kings, which advocates the divine origin of monarchical rule, Louis continued his predecessors' work of creating a centralized state governed from the capital. He sought to eliminate the remnants of feudalism persisting in parts of France and, by compelling many members of the nobility to inhabit his lavish Palace of Versailles (formerly a hunting lodge belonging to Louis' father), succeeded in pacifying the aristocracy, many members of which had participated in the Fronde rebellion during Louis' minority. By these means he became one of the most powerful French monarchs and consolidated a system of absolute monarchical rule in France that endured until the French Revolution.

Louis encouraged and benefited from the work of prominent political, military, and cultural figures such as Mazarin, Colbert, Louvois, the Grand Condé, Turenne, and Vauban, as well as Molière, Racine, Boileau, La Fontaine, Lully, Marais, Le Brun, Rigaud, Bossuet, Le Vau, Mansart, Charles and Claude Perrault, and Le Nôtre. Under his rule, the Edict of Nantes, which granted rights to Huguenots, was abolished. The revocation effectively forced Huguenots to emigrate or convert in a wave of dragonnades, which managed to virtually destroy the French Protestant minority.

Name Birth Death Notes
By Maria Theresa, Infanta of Spain, Archduchess of Austria, Queen of France and of Navarre (20 September 1638 – 30 July 1683)
Louis de France, le Grand Dauphin 1 November 1661 14 April 1711 Fils de France. Dauphin of France (1661–1711). Had issue. Father of Louis, duc de Bourgogne (later Dauphin of France), Philippe, duc d'Anjou (later King of Spain) and Charles, duc de Berry. Grandfather of Louis, duc d'Anjou (later Dauphin, and then King of France)
Anne Élisabeth de France 18 November 1662 30 December 1662 Fille de France. Died in infancy.
Marie Anne de France 16 November 1664 26 December 1664 Fille de France. Died in infancy.
Marie Thérèse de France 2 January 1667 1 March 1672 Fille de France. Known as Madame Royale and la Petite Madame. Died in childhood.
Philippe Charles de France, duc d'Anjou 5 August 1668 10 July 1671 Fils de France. Died in childhood.
Louis François de France, duc d'Anjou 14 June 1672 4 November 1672 Fils de France. Died in infancy.
Name Birth Death Notes
By NN, a gardener
daughter 1660 unknown She married N de la Queue, a sentry.
By Louise de La Baume Le Blanc, duchesse de La Vallière et de Vaujours (6 August 1644 – 6 June 1710)
Charles de La Baume Le Blanc 19 December 1663 15 July 1665 (aged 1) Not legitimised.
Philippe de La Baume Le Blanc 7 January 1665 1666 (aged 1) Not legitimised.
Louis de La Baume Le Blanc 27 December 1665 1666 (aged 1) Not legitimised.
Marie Anne de Bourbon, Mademoiselle de Blois, duchesse de La Vallière, princesse de Conti 2 October 1666 3 May 1739 (aged 73) Legitimised on 14 May 1667. Married Louis Armand de Bourbon, prince de Conti.
Louis de Bourbon, comte de Vermandois 3 October 1667 18 November 1683 (aged 16) Legitimised on 20 February 1669. Held the office of Admiral of France.
By Françoise-Athénaïs de Rochechouart de Mortemart, marquise de Montespan (5 October 1641 – 27 May 1707)
Louise Françoise de Bourbon at the end of March, 1669 23 February 1672 (aged 2)
Louis Auguste de Bourbon, duc du Maine 31 March 1670 14 May 1736 (aged 66) Legitimised on 20 December 1673. Held numerous offices, of which: Colonel-Général des Suisses et des Grisons, Governor of Languedoc, Général des Galères, and Grand-Maître de l'Artillerie. Was also duc d'Aumale, comte d'Eu and prince de Dombes. Had issue. Founder of the Maine Line.
Louis César de Bourbon, comte de Vexin, abbé de Saint-Denis et de Saint-Germain-des-Prés 20 June 1672 10 January 1683 (aged 10) Legitimised on 20 December 1673.
Louise Françoise de Bourbon, Mademoiselle de Nantes, duchesse de Bourbon, princesse de Condé 1 June 1673 16 June 1743 Legitimised on 20 December 1673. Married Louis de Bourbon, duc d'Enghien, (later duc de Bourbon, and then prince de Condé). Had issue.
Louise Marie Anne de Bourbon, Mademoiselle de Tours 12 November 1674 15 September 1681 (aged 6) Legitimised in January 1676.
Françoise Marie de Bourbon, Mademoiselle de Blois, duchesse d'Orléans 9 February 1677 1 February 1749 Legitimised in November 1681. Married Philippe d'Orléans, duc de Chartres, (later duc d'Orléans), the Regent of France under Louis XV. Had issue.
Louis Alexandre de Bourbon, comte de Toulouse 6 June 1678 1 December 1737 (aged 59) Legitimised on 22 November 1681. Held numerous offices, of which: Admiral of France, Governor of Guyenne, Governor of Brittany, and Grand-Veneur de France. Was also duc de Damville, de Rambouillet et de Penthièvre. Had issue.
by Claude de Vin, Mademoiselle des Œillets (1637 – 18 May 1687)
Louise de Maisonblanche c. 17 June 1676 12 September 1718 (aged 42) In 1696 she married Bernard de Prez, Baron de La Queue.
by Angélique de Scorailles, Duchesse de Fontanges (1661 – 28 June 1681)
son January 1680 January 1680 (stillborn)
daughter March 1681 March 1681 (stillborn) Her existence is doubtful.
Louis XIV of France
Cadet branch of the Capetian dynasty
Born: 5 September 1638 Died: 1 September 1715
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Louis XIII
King of France and Navarre
14 May 1643 – 1 September 1715
Succeeded by
Louis XV
French royalty
Preceded by
Dauphin of France
5 September 1638 – 14 May 1643
Succeeded by
"le Grand Dauphin"

Upon his accession to the throne Louis assumed the royal coat of arms of France & Navarre.
1643 - 1715
The Royal crown of France
An opened gold helmet, with blue and gold mantling.
Azure, three fleurs-de-lis Or (for France) impaling Gules on a chain in cross saltire and orle Or an emerald Proper (for Navarre).
The two supporters are two angels, acting as heralds for the two realms. The dexter angel carries a standard with the arms of France, and wearing a tabard with the same arms. The sinister angel also carries a standard and wears a tabard, but that of Navarre. Both are standing on puffs of cloud.
The motto is written in gold on a blue ribbon: MONTJOIE SAINT DENIS the war cry of France, Saint Denis was also the abbey where the oriflamme was kept.
The escutcheons are surrounded first by the chain of the Order of Saint Michael and by the chain of the Order of the Holy Spirit, both were known as the ordres du roi.
Other elements
Above all is a pavilion armoyé with the Royal crown. From it, is a royal blue mantle with a semis of fleurs-de-lis Or, lined on the inside with ermine.
Royal Standard of King Louis XIV.svg Royal standard of the king
  • 5 September 1638 – 14 May 1643 His Royal Highness The Dauphin of France
  • 14 May 1643 – 1 September 1715 His Majesty The King


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