I'm now back in France and this post continues the theme of visits to fine French historical buildings with a trip to the Palace of Versailles.
I don't suppose the palace needs a whole lot of introduction, but just in case it became the main residence of the French monarchy during the reign of Louis XIV. Louis decided to build himself a magnificent palace on the site of an old hunting lodge at Versailles, conveniently close to Paris but distant enough for Louis to stamp his own mark on the royal court.
The palace reached its peak of grandeur and importance during Louis XIV's reign, and was the home of the French royal family until 1789, when the events of the Revolution forced Louis and his family to relocate to the Tuileries Palace.
Since then, it has changed hands several times during France's immensely confusing post-Revolution history, in which France has been a republic (several times), an empire, a partly-occupied territory and a monarchy. Now that France is a settled republic, the chateau and its grounds are now a gigantic museum.
|The Hall of Mirrors|
|Peeking behind the royal covers|
This is the Queen's bedroom. Note the little door to the left of the bed: Marie Antoinette escaped through this door during the Revolution, when a mob of Versailles women stormed the palace demanding bread to eat.
|The rear facade of the palace|