Let them eat cake!

Versailles - Paris

17 July 2011

I thought this chateau needs a post all by itself….the photos do not give justice to the true decadence of this palace. After visiting it and the magnificent manicured gardens I could fully understand why the masses eventually beheaded the inhabitants. To see such splendour, opulence and utter decadence is enough to make anyone mad when the masses are hungry and when you are judged upon your religious and aristocratic status.When the château was built, Versailles was a country village; today, however, it is a suburb of Paris, some 20 kilometres southwest of the French capital. The court of Versailles was the centre of political power in France from 1682, when Louis XIV moved from Paris, until the royal family was forced to return to the capital in October 1789 after the beginning of the French Revolution. Versailles is therefore famous not only as a building, but as a symbol of the system of absolute monarchy of the Ancien Régime. “Let them eat cake” is the traditional translation of the French phrase “Qu’ils mangent de la brioche“, supposedly spoken by Marie Antoinette upon learning that the peasants had no bread. Since brioche was enriched, as opposed to normal bread, the quote supposedly would reflect the princess’s obliviousness to the condition of the people.

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