Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Celebrating Independence!

King Louis XV, by Hyacinthe Rigaud 1730

Fifteen years after the death of Louis XV (1789) the French revolted against the decadent aristocracy- storming the Bastille- in pursuit of freedom and independence.  Louis XV was the great grandson of King Louis XIV.  His legacy was thought to have weakened the nation- and perhaps demoralized the people.

19th century (1889) La Tour Eiffel on Bastille Day, Paris

I always love how the city of Paris has dramatic lighting for this iconic monument- in every colour of the rainbow !  They don't call it the city of light for nothing!

Louis XV family portrait
The blonde wigged man is his famous great grandfather, Louis XIV
who was married to Marie Antoinette, who also called the Palace of Versailles "home" 
Favourite mistress of Louis XV, Madame de Pompadour, by Boucher
She was also known as Jeanne-Antoinette Poisson
His (Louis XV) ill fated mistress Madame du Barry, by Le Brun

Louis XV -who assumed the throne at age five

Infanta Marianna Victoria of Spain, engaged to
Louis XV at age 7...a victim of age discrimination
she was rejected due to her youth. Louis XV then
married Marie Leszczynska (daughter of Queen Catherine
and King Stanislaw of Poland)

Bastille Day (July 14) is also celebrated in other european countries, including Hungary- shown above. I found these beautiful images most compelling- the opulence is staggering- and the pressures they must have endured are difficult to imagine in this day and age.  Celebrate the independence, and enjoy some wonderful French or California champagne- or a Spanish Cava !  Cheers!  DF *****    

2006 Sofia Coppola film