• LOCATION 67 | Hidden Messages from the Sun King: A Guide to the Palace of Versailles' Gardens

    Bosquet de L'Arc de Triomphe

    Bosquet de L'Arc de Triomphe on Versailles, Yvelines audio tour Hidden Messages from the Sun King: A Guide to the Palace of Versailles' Gardens

    This is the Wood of the Victory Arch. You probably know Napoleon's Arc de Triomphe in Paris. This is a similar monument to the glory of royal France on the battlefield. The gilded woman seated in a golden chariot represents France Triumphant.

    The French Navy had only just established itself during Louis XIII's reign. Louis XIV invested heavily to rival the British and Spanish fleets. Louis XVI's naval support during the War of Independence was decisive in the American victory. French explorers were very active in planting the tricolor flag across the world, and even today, French territorial waters are larger than every nation except for the USA.

    Louis XIV fought against Britain, the Netherlands, Spain and the Austrian Hapsburg empire, often all at once as they ganged up on the continent's top military threat. France held its own, and even won a bit of new land in this period, at great cost. The monarchy felt quite good about their battle results, and this sculpture depicts that sentiment. On the right they have one soldier out of armor sitting on an eagle symbolising Austria, and on the left, another soldier pushing his backside into a lion, symbolising Spain. I guess somewhere in Waterloo, a statue must be sitting on a rooster!

    When you're ready, exit to the left of the statue.

Preview mode limited to first 3 locations.
Hidden Messages from the Sun King: A Guide to the Palace of Versailles' Gardens