A visit to Versailles, part one

7 December 2009

Inspired by my post from last night and because leaving Live Journal meant that the photographs on my earlier posts vanished because they were no longer hosted anywhere, I thought I would post some of the photographs that I took during my last visit to Versailles.

Marie Antoinette and countless others got married beneath this beautiful ceiling!

A young, heroic Louis XIV.

Madame de Montespan surrounded by her children by Louis XIV. I love how Louise peeps through the artfully placed hedgerow.

Marie Leczinska, Louis XV’s pious Polish wife. The angle that I took this from makes her dress looks all the more ballooning and her head absolutely pin like in comparison. I love the jaunty little spaniel at her feet.

One of the many thousands of beautiful chandeliers in the château. It wasn’t very busy when we were there last but there were enough people for me to realise that if I wanted to get reasonable shots then lifting my camera towards the ceiling was definitely the best bet!

A throne in what would have been used as the throne room on state occasions. This hasn’t always been in here so must have been added as part of the most recent round of improvements. It looks good though, and gives visitors an idea of how the château would have been used in its heyday. When I first visited in 1989, it was still relatively empty in comparison to how it is now.

The ante chamber before you enter the legendary Hall of Mirrors. This one is ‘war’ themed, while the one next to the Queen’s bedroom at the very end is ‘peace’ themed.

A view across the parterre from the window of the Hall of Mirrors. I keep meaning to photoshop courtiers over the tourists!

Another view from the window. In the corner you can see the mad little bus that takes people down to the Trianons.

Another view of the ante chamber, this time showing the marble warlike Louis XIV on the wall.

Self portrait reflected in the famous mirrors. They aren’t the originals, but who cares? I have bare feet as we foolhardedly decided to walk from the Opéra to the Louvre then down the Champs Elysées to the Arc de Triomphe and THEN on to the Eiffel Tower the night before and my feet were killing me!

View towards the ceiling in the Hall of Mirrors.

Beautiful gilt statues that line the gallery.

More of the Hall of Mirrors.

The chubby little cherubs that ornament one of the chandelier plinths in the gallery.

The end wall of the gallery and my husband looking totally fed up!

The ceiling of the ‘peace’ ante chamber at the other end.

Louis XIV had himself depicted in a warlike state, while Louis XV prefered to be painted in a state of peace, with his twin baby daughters beside him.

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