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Louis XIV vs. Peter “the Great”

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Presentation on theme: "Louis XIV vs. Peter “the Great”"— Presentation transcript:

1 Louis XIV vs. Peter “the Great”
Who best exemplifies the ideal 17th c. European absolute monarch?


3 King Louis XIV (1643-1715) Nickname: “Sun-King” Dynasty: Bourbon
Country: France Height: 5’5” Vice: Sex, sex & more sex

4 Czar Peter II (1689-1725) Nickname: “the Great” Dynasty: Romanov
Country: Russia Height: 6’9” Vice: Sex, alcohol & torture


6 Louis XIV: Palace of Versailles (1660-1688)
Largest secular structure in Europe (at time) 36,000 laborers (& 6,000 horses) forced into labor to build palace 5,000 acres of gardens, lawns & woods 1,200 fountains & 700 rooms 6,000 paintings & 2,100 sculptures Cost: 2.5 billion dollars (if built today)

7 Palace of Versailles (1668)

8 Pictures of Versailles (today)

9 Peter II: The City of St. Petersburg
Design based on the capitals of the Western Europe To finance the enormous costs, Peter taxed wealthiest Russians Forced serfs into labor to build the city (over 30,000 lost their lives Ordered nobles & craftsmen to move to the city to jumpstart population By 1725, St. Petersburg boasted a population in the thousands

10 Image of St. Petersburg:

11 Louis XIV: Distract the Nobles
Moved all high nobility, royal princes & chief state offices to Versailles Distracted nobles by keeping them involved in court activities, etiquette & intrigue Life at Versailles became court ceremony with Louis at center of it all Gained control over provincial gov’ts by bribing local officials

12 Peter II: “Westernize” Russia
Wanted to create a “police state” (well-ordered community governed in accordance the law) Created boards of administrators to handle different functions of the state Built schools & began a state-sponsored newspaper Introduced western customs, practices & manners (i.e. “beard tax”)

13 Religious Policies Louis XIV:“One King, One law, One faith”
Catholicism official state religion Revoked Edict of Nantes (Edict of Fountainbleau – 1685) 200,000 Huguenots flee France Peter the Great: State-controlled Church Sought to gain of Russian Orthodox Church Replaced patriarch w/ procurator loyal to the Tsar


15 Louis XIV: Economic Policy
Jean-Baptiste Colbert controlled finances Used mercantilist policies to increase wealth & power of France Louis depleted the treasury on wars & luxuries Burden of heavy taxes fell on peasants

16 Peter “the Great”: Economic Policy
Adopted mercantilist policies to stimulate economic growth Changed primary tax from land tax to soul tax (each person in Russia had to pay) 3/4ths of Russia’s total revenues spent on the military


18 Louis XIV’s Military Machine:
Secretary of War: Francois-Michel Le Tellier Developed a professional army of 100,000 men in peacetime & 400,000 in wartime Wars of Louis XIV: Invaded Spanish Netherlands & Franche-Comte (1667) Invaded Dutch United Provinces (1672) War of the League of Augsburg ( ) War of Spanish Succession ( )


20 Peter “Westernizes” Russian Military
Created standing army of 210,000 soldiers Used peasant conscripts as soldiers & nobility as officers Created 1st Russian navy Primary goal: Gaining a warm-water port on the Baltic Starts & wins Great Northern War ( ) against Sweden, Poland & Denmark


22 Louis XIV’s Legacy: Helped make France Europe’s political &cultural during the 17th century Monarchs all over Europe envied the court at Versailles Left France impoverished & surrounded by enemies Made emerging states (Brandenburg-Prussia & Austria) more powerful Increased England’s power & territory

23 Peter the Great’s Legacy:
Turned Russia into a great European state & military power His westernization of Russia only reached the upper classes of Russian society Added more burdens to the masses of Russian people Forceful way of implementing cultural reforms made Russian people distrust the West


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