The Death of the Sun King:
September 1, 1715
On September 1, 1715, King Louis XIV of France died. With his passing, the “Great Century” (the age of Louis XIV) came to an end. During that monarch’s reign, France became not only the most powerful nation in Europe but the undisputed leader of European culture. Throughout Europe, aristocrats took on French ways and spoke the French language. They built houses and public buildings in the French style, and the artists and writers they patronized imitated the patterns of French art and literature. Louis XIV may have been the most feared ruler in Europe, but he was also the most envied and imitated.