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Versailles

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Versailles is a city in France; palace of the French kings (built in the 17th century); peace treaty signed in 1919 between Germany and the Allies.The name Versailles appeared for the first time in a medieval document dated A.D. 1038. In the feudal system of medieval France, the lords of Versailles came directly under the king of France, with no intermediary overlords between them and the king; yet they were not very important lords. In the end of the 11th century, the village curled around a medieval castle and the Saint Julien church. Its farming activity and its location on the road from Paris to Dreux and Normandy brought prosperity to the village, culminating in the end of the 13th century, the so-called "century of Saint Louis", famous for the prosperity of northern France and the building of Gothic cathedrals. The 14th century brought the Black Plague and the Hundred Years' War, and with it death and destruction. At the end of the Hundred Years' War in the 15th century, the village started to recover, with a population of only 100 inhabitants.In 1561, Martial de Loménie, secretary of state for finances under King Charles IX, became lord of Versailles. He obtained permission to establish four annual fairs and a weekly market on Thursdays. The population of Versailles was 500 inhabitants. Martial de Loménie was murdered during the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre (24 August 1572). In 1575, Albert de Gondi, a man from Florence who had come to France with Catherine de' Medici, bought the seigneury of Versailles.Henceforth Versailles was the possession of the family of Gondi, a family of wealthy and influential parliamentarians at the Parliament of Paris. Several times during the 1610s, the Gondi invited King Louis XIII to hunt in the large forests around Versailles. In 1622, the king became the owner of a piece of wood in Versailles for his private hunting. In 1624, he bought some land and ordered Philibert Le Roy to build there a small hunting "gentleman's château" of stone and red bricks with a slate roof.This small manor was the site of the one of the historical events that took place on the Day of the Dupes, on 10 November 1630, when the party of the queen mother was defeated and Richelieu was confirmed as prime minister. Eventually, in 1632, the king obtained the seigneury of Versailles altogether from Gondi. The castle was enlarged between 1632 and 1634. At the death of Louis XIII, in 1643, the village had 1,000 inhabitants.King Louis XIV, son of Louis XIII, was only five years old when his father died. It was 20 years later, in 1661, when Louis XIV commenced his personal reign that the young king showed interest in Versailles. The idea of leaving Paris, where, as a child, he had experienced first-hand the insurrection of the Fronde, had never left him. Louis XIV commissioned his architect Le Vau and his landscape architect Le Nôtre to transform the castle of his father, as well as the park, in order to accommodate the court. In 1678, after the Treaty of Nijmegen, the king decided that the court and the government would be established permanently in Versailles, which happened on 6 May 1682.At the same time, a new city was emerging from the ground, resulting from an ingenious decree of the king dated 22 May 1671, whereby the king authorized anyone to acquire a lot in the new city for free. The plans provided for a city built symmetrically with respect to the Avenue de Paris (which starts from the entrance of the castle). The roofs of the buildings and houses of the new city were not to exceed the level of the Marble Courtyard, at the entrance of the castle (built above a hill dominating the city), so that the perspective from the windows of the castle wou

Tags:France, French, Germany, Louis XIV, Paris, Parliament, Versailles




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