Versailles was originally an aristocratic hunting lodge, before capturing the dreams of the young Louis XIV.
Versailles is a place where once visionary King resides with his ambition of being remembered for generations and his glory of Hall of mirrors witnessing important events of French history is here.
Versailles is almost 45-minute ride with metro and RER from Paris and you have one have to buy a separate ticket for it. You will get a sense of what the outside of Paris seems like, it because more of a normal people are busy in their daily chore and shopping outside Versailles is really cheap compared to the main Paris.
My awareness for Versailles was limited to the treaty of Versailles which became cause of World War 2 and Netflix TV series on the same name until I gave it a visit.
While I was walking in the palace resuming a king with a long hair fair skin sparkling eyes ambitious king with a dream for eternity and a court full of nobles, keeping them busy in the luxurious life of Palace at the court and while king could read his country on his own.
Servant passing secret messages at Court which is full of ladies and mistresses. This was once a center for political maneuvering which was always running ahead of his time.
In July 1589, the future Henri IV of France spent two nights at Versailles. He was preparing to lay siege to Paris, then in hands of Holy League. When he becomes king of France, he returned Versailles in 1604 in order to hunt.
The beginning of Louis XIV reign
Louis XIV lived in his father’s apartment, on the first floor in the Northen part of the Chateau, and Queen Marie –Therese lived in a symmetrically opposite apartment in the southern part.
Louis XIV interest in Versailles became evident as of 1662-the two wings in the forecourt were entirely reconstructed in order to create a larger entrance area: the stable wings (the old wing)and the wings of the government offices in the north (where Gabriel wing now stand)
In 1663, the architect Louis Le Vau built the Orangery and the Menagerie. As of 1665, the Grotto of Tethys was created in the lower part of a water reservoir.
Versailles became a venue for entertainment, housing, in particular, the “Pleasure of the Enchanted Island”
Between 1668 and 1671, the chateau was enlarged by le Vau, who was succeeded by Francois d’Orsay in 1670. The original chateau was conserved in keeping with the king’s wishes, was enveloped on three sides by taller stone building with a flat roof:
Le Vau’s included a large terrace opening out into the garden on the first floor. This offered the panoramic view of the Grand perspective, which was extended to the west by Grand Canal, whose construction began in 1668.
At the same time, the four Court wings built-in 1662 were linked to the schedule by the main building and intermediate pavilions, which were
Symmetrically opposite to the jutting corner pavilions, we are enclosed by railings, 4 Pavilion square building 1672 the house the securities and the king wish to hold the Council at Versailles.
Throughout the Summer of 1674, Versailles hosted sumptuous festivities in celebration of the conquest of Franche Comte. During these Divertissement de Versailles ‘, Alceste, the lyrical tragedy by Philippe Quinault and Jean – Baptiste Lully, was performed in the marble courtyard.
Louis XV and Louis XVI
As of 1678, extensive modifications we are made to the schedule and its associated building and the ground, under the direction of architect Julius Hardouin – Mansart: The terrace and Six room that surrounded in the le Vau ‘s ‘ envelope’ where replaced by the great Hall or the hall of mirrors, which was completed in 1684;- to create new accommodation, the south or prince’s wing , completed in 1682,
The North wing was built between 1685 and 1689;- to provide permanent accommodation for the government staff, the wings of the Minister wear building the four Code by integrating the to Eastern pavilions built-in 1670; the two Western pavilions where reconstructed.
After the Regency period in Paris (17 15 – 22) the Louis XV decided to return to the Versailles, he made many remarkable creations such as the Hercules room the Neptune basin the Opera the French Garden and Petit Trianon.
During the reign of Louis XVI, the evolution in the taste was reflected in the creation of new decorations and furniture, the return to antique was expressed with discrete elegance.
Replanting of Garden was major project carried out under his Reign, this resulted in the creation of new groups such as that of Apollo baths.
From the revolution to Louis Phillippe”s museum
In 1789, several Revolutionary events took place in Versailles
The opening of estate general on 5th May, the formation of assembly National French national assembly on 17 June, the oath of Jeu de Paume on 20 June,
The abolition of feudal privileges on 4th August, and the March of Teresian on Versailles on 5th 6th October.
On 6th October 1789 that king, the royal family, the court and the government left Versailles for Paris.
In 1792, most of the paintings antique sculpture and jewels were sent to central Museum of Art now the Muse the Louvre, books, and medals were sent to the National Library.
Wilder rock and scientific instrument where transfer to the school of art and craft.
With the Proclamation of Empires, Versailles once again became an official residence of the Crown. Napoleon rebuilt part of the park, which had been neglected during the revolution, and had the Chateau restored; he planned to set up residence there, abdicated before being able to carry out his project, and instead of occasionally decided in the Grand Trianon as of 1809.
Likewise, the Restoration was too short-lived to enable LouieXVIII to settle down again in the Chateau where they were born.
It was during this period that the Dufour Pavilion was built.
In1830, the Chateau was practically intact. In 1833, in order to save it from an unworthy use, Louis Philippe decided, the interest of national reconciliation, to transform it at his own expense into a museum dedicated to all the glories of France.
In this museum, he assembles the collection of portraits and historical scenes, whose size (6000 paintings, 2000 sculptures, and 35000 drawing and engravings), documentary interest and very often artistic value made Versailles the largest museum of history in the world.
In 1855, Napoleon III received Queen Victoria at Versailles, with great pomp and Splendor.
On 18 January 1871, the king of Prussia, who had become Emperor Wilhelm I of Germany, announce the birth of second German Reich in Hall of the mirror.
To erase the humiliation of 1871, the Peace Treaty that ended the first world war was signed in the hall of mirrors on 28 June 1919.
In March 1871, the government and the Assembly moved to Versailles. The Royal Opera was transformed into an assembly hall for the deputy.
In 1875, after the Re-establishment of bicameral system, The Royal Opera became home to the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies was installed in a new room, built in the center of South wing.
When the Senate and the Chamber of deputies move back to Paris in 1879, the Great Hall, building 1875, became the Congress room. It was used until 1958 for elections of presidents of Republic.
In 2005, the parliamentary retroceded the other room that had been assigned to it since 1879. The Congress room is the only area that continues to be used for governmental purposes, in particular, the revision of the constitution.