To this end he allied himself with his cousin Charles II of England and invaded the Netherlands in 1672.
While Louis watched his buildings going up, Colbert, who supervised the construction, obtained from him the means to carry out an economic revolution aimed at making France economically self-sufficient while maximizing exports.
Louis XV his great-grandson.
By Wendy Mead. A valuable recent work, with emphasis on France rather than on Louis and with an immensely useful picture of the economic and social situation in his reign, is Pierre Goubert, Louis XIV and Twenty Million Frenchmen, translated by Anne Carter 1970. The king identified with his office to such an extent that it is difficult to find the individual. Throughout his long reign Louis XIV 1643—1715 never lost the hold over his people he had assumed at the beginning. The same day the king received his five-year-old great-grandson, the future Louis XV , to give him advice.
He applied a strict etiquette at court, a set of rules and protocols by which his noble courtiers were obliged to abide. Louis neither initiated this centralization nor carried it to its final completion, but he certainly accelerated it. The following year marked a turning point in the life and reign of Louis XIV.
Louis XIV was the foremost example of the monarchy that brought France to its pinnacle. To honour this pledge and preserve the religious unity of his kingdom, he cracked down on the Jansenists of Port-Royal and ordered the persecution of Protestants. The disasters of the war were so great that, in 1709, France came close to losing all the advantages gained over the preceding century.
An Informal Portrait 1959 , does not purport to give the whole picture but brings Louis to life as a man and is written in a delightful style. On his deathbed he confessed to having loved war too much, but there are no signs that he really understood what his passion had cost his country.
Finally, a palace revolution in London, bringing the pacific Tories to power, and a French victory over the imperial forces at the Battle of Denain combined to end the war. Louis then pursued a policy of deliberate, though limited, aggression, bullying his neighbors and encroaching on their territory. In the 1660s he indulged in some patronage of writers, but his benevolence was capriciously bestowed, frequently on secondrate men, and it dried up almost entirely when economic conditions worsened after 1672.
Always suspicious of any subject who might grow too powerful, he would not allow any great nobles, even his own brother, onto the council. John B. Hyacinthe Rigaud [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.