Pondering the Self-Indulgence of King Louis XIV’s Versailles
©2015, David A. Porter
I captured this photograph last year as our private guide was walking us through the Palace of Versailles just outside of Paris. You can read a little more about our experience by clicking here.
The Palace of Versailles is absolutely a must-see when visiting Paris. When you visit, you’re certain to have a jaw-dropping experience as you’re first assaulted with the mammoth size of this structure, the beautiful architecture, the massive gardens, and you’ll absolutely be gobsmacked as you experience the opulence of this world-famous chateau.
As an American walking through this structure, and as you begin to visually wrap your mind around the concept of an “absolute monarchy”, and look at the indescribable indulgence lapped up by King Louis XIV, you can’t help but better understand why the French Revolution took place roughly a century after this building was completed. As our expert guide described not only the beauty that surrounded us, but the beyond-lavish parties that routinely occurred in this place, you can’t help but come away thankful that you were born in a democracy and not subject to the whims of a man who behaved as though he were god on earth.
King Louis XIV, on his deathbed, is said to have given his heir the following advice:
“Do not follow the bad example which I have set you; I have often undertaken war too lightly and have sustained it for vanity. Do not imitate me, but be a peaceful prince, and may you apply yourself principally to the alleviation of the burdens of your subjects.”
A thinking person gains much through travel, and believe me, you’ll have a lot to think about after you’ve toured the self-indulgent chateau of King Louis XIV.
If you haven’t visited the Palace of Versailles, put it on your bucket list. 🙂
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