Political Centralization • Louis XIV learned from the mistakes of Cardinals Richelieu and Mazarin • Ruled through councils composed of loyal ministers • Preserved regional autonomy except in Paris • Used the Palace of Versailles as propaganda • Divine Right of Kings
Religion • Louis XIV hounded Huguenots out of public life and bribed them to convert • Quartered troops in their towns • Revoked the Edict on Nantes in 1685 • A quarter of a million Protestants emigrated • Declaration of the Clergy of France – royal approval for clergy to leave France, can’t appeal to Pope, no excommunicating officials, royal assent for papal laws
Acquisition of Colonies France acquired territories in: • North America: the St. Lawrence River Valley; the Ohio and Mississippi River Valleys • The Caribbean: Saint Domingue (Haiti), Guadeloupe, Martinique • Trading posts in West Africa and India
The Sun King’s Major Wars War of Devolution: (1667-1668) Franco-Dutch War: (1672-1678) • France, Sweden, England, Munster and Cologne vs. The Dutch Republic, Austria, Prussia and Spain • Reasons= trade rivalries, expansionism and revenge for War of Devolution • Ends with the Treaty of Nimwegen. France gains Franche-Comte and more territories from the Spanish Netherlands War of the Reunions: (1683-1684) Nine Years War: (1688-1697) • France vs. H.R.E. , England, Spain, Dutch Rep., Sweden etc. • Revocation of Edict of Nantes, commercial interests in N. Am. Louis preemptive strike. • Treaty of Ryswick – recognize William III
War of the Spanish Succession: (1702-1714) • vs. England, Holland, H.R.E. (Grand Alliance) • Charles II of Spain leaves his inheritance to Louis XIV grandson • The Grand Alliance wanted to prevent France from becoming too powerful. • Treaty of Utrecht gives Gibralter to England making it a Mediterranean power, Philip renounces French throne, Sicily and Milan to Savoy, H.R.E. receives Spanish Netherlands, Naples and Sardinia.
The Ascendency of Cardinal Fleury • Tutor to the young Louis XV and served as defacto first minister from 1726 until his death in 1743 • Prudently managed France’s finances • Persecuted Catholic Jansenists and Freemasons • Promoted peace with France’s enemies but left France unprepared for the War of the Austrian Succession