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21 Apr

Louis XIV evolved a rigid routine of court life as a performance, much of which took place in front of large groups of people, at some points in the day including tourists.

Building the château and maintaining the court there was phenomenally expensive, but did a good deal to establish the dominance of French style and taste in the whole of Europe, giving French luxury manufacturing advantages that long outlasted the fall of the Ancien Régime.

While the main château building remains essentially intact, though without much of its contents, some of these other buildings have been destroyed. 1661–1678) was designed and supervised by the architect Louis Le Vau.

It culminated in the addition of three new wings of stone (the enveloppe), which encompassed Louis XIII's original building on the north, south, and west (the garden side).

Initially, Versailles was planned to be an occasional residence for Louis XIV and was referred to as the "king's house".

Accordingly, much of the early funding for construction came from the king's own purse, funded by revenues received from his appanage as well as revenues from the province of New France (Canada), which, while part of France, was a private possession of the king and therefore exempt from the control of the Parliaments.

Louis XIV's expansion of the building was begun around 1661, with Louis Le Vau as architect.

It was not completed until about 1715, having been worked on by architects including François d'Orbay, Charles Le Brun (interiors especially), Jules Hardouin-Mansart and Robert de Cotte.

Expenditures on Versailles have been recorded in the compendium known as the Comptes des bâtiments du roi sous le règne de Louis XIV and which was edited and published in five volumes by Jules Guiffrey in the 19th century.Mansart also built the Petites Écuries and Grandes Écuries (stables) across the Place d'Armes, on the eastern side of the château, and, in 1687, the Grand Trianon, or Trianon de Marbre (Marble Trianon), replacing Le Vau's 1668 Trianon de Porcelaine in the northern section of the park.Work was sufficiently advanced by 1682, that Louis XIV was able to proclaim Versailles his principal residence and the seat of the government of the Kingdom of France and also to give rooms in the palace to almost all of his courtiers.1678–1715), two enormous wings north and south of the wings flanking the Cour Royale (Royal Courtyard) were added by the architect Jules Hardouin-Mansart.He also replaced Le Vau's large terrace, facing the garden on the west, with what became the most famous room of the palace, the Hall of Mirrors.